Thursday, 10 June 2021

A Dangerous Conflation, Socialism = Communism, Divide and Rule! #Socialism #Communism #Capitalism #Anarchism #Schumacher #G7Summit #TropesandMemes #CryptoCurrencies #Emergence #Economics #LoS

 

Mount Recycle-more

"Two days until the G7 summit begins in the seaside village of Carbis Bay, and in this corner of Cornwall – a holiday idyll fast resembling a military Green Zone – rumours are rife.

One doing the rounds suggests surface-to-air missiles are to be installed somewhere behind the local cricket club. Another has it that American warships will soon join the British naval vessel which has already appeared off Porthmeor Beach. There’s a story that one chip shop has received an order for a thousand fish suppers on Friday night*.

Leaders of the world’s seven biggest advanced economies – including US president Joe Biden and Germany chancellor Angela Merkel – will be here and in neighbouring St Ives for diplomatic talks this weekend."…

“One complaint, in particular, is raised time and again: the sheer incongruity of so much taxpayer money being lavished on a three-day event in what is, despite pockets of affluence, the poorest region in England. Almost a third of children in St Ives live in poverty, while, across Cornwall, annual wages are £4,000 below the national average. Against this backdrop, the summit’s security bill alone is estimated to top £70 million: some 5,500 police officers and hundreds of army personnel will be here.” Rumours swirl and disquiet grows as locals says G7 is ‘last thing Cornwall needs’

*Yeah their only customers will be huge and all called “Brad” or "Bret"!

This being just another pill-to-swallow having been pre-medicated with the trope that; “socialism is communism”, quote; “That we now see how America continually, “makes its war on its children” should also give credence to the notion that the New World never did truly sever its links with the old but simply substituted a dictatorial republican hierarchy for a monarchical one” (go to: "Arafel": Part. 2 #WashingtonPost #FloridaSchoolShooting ). Since Reaganomics in the U.S and Thatcherism in the U.K the notion that one may conflate socialism with communism has been promulgated with increasing vigour and enthusiasm by the data-vampires and opinion formers giving the idea the appearance of a meme, ignorance is no defence under law, however, the populace may better understand the dangers of such conflation if the results are made clear to them.


#makingshoeswhatdoesitlooklikeImdoing?

 

The photo above is of E.F. Schumacher (both the college and the institute which bear his name are located in the West Country not a million miles from the venue for the G7 summit, go to: https://www.schumachercollege.org.uk/ & https://www.schumacherinstitute.org.uk/),  a “mixed economy” man who expounded the theory that the individual, communal and social realms need to be in balance, each with equal “weight” and import being ascribed to them, within an economy that perforce is dynamic. Thus capital, community and society form an equilateral triangle that provides the stability necessary for the emerging economy and the “cross-pollination” that can occur within such a system ensuring the biodiversity that is the engine of sustainability. A good exemplar of the principle is the fuel supply issue for, as we are now experiencing, over-reliance on any resource creates a monoculture (brittle and hugely destructive when they fail), introducing massive instability, therefore, it is surely sensible to attempt to diversify in terms of energy production. It’s an old story, in order to make use of more sustainable (and concomitantly less environmentally destructive), resources initial investment in infrastructure is essential, cleaning up our mistakes after we have made them being, of-course, a horribly inefficient option, however, these problems only occur when we attempt to exploit resources not when we use them sensibly.

It is in order to continue to exploit resources of all kinds that the attempt has been made to convince the global electorate that a socially dominant economic model is the same as a communal one. It’s called “divide and rule”, which in this case means “freedom or slavery", and is sold to the people as a simple choice between the reassuring gewgaws of the neo-liberal state or enslavement in a drab totalitarian one (anarchy being “Bellum omnium contra omnes”, the terrible “war of all against all”, is Khaos of-course).

Quote; ““Either/or democracy is the dalliance of the totalitarian”” Go to: https://www.arafel.co.uk/2020/11/yugoslavia-nato-brexit-europeanunion.html

Socialist systems rely on the institutions of the state (many of which being pre-existing), to run the economy, communist systems rely on communes to dictate to (and often form), state institutions. The notions are very different, for a socialist there is no “communal filter” between the individual and the insitutions of the state but for a communist the state doesn’t exist without one (the capitalist, of-course, their actions being anathema to community, doesn’t believe in society at all). This exemplifies the veracity of the maxim; “the trouble with “-isms” is that they are full of “-ists”!”

Schumacher and emergent economic theory allow for no dominant political ideology. So where is democracy? Well for one thing it ought to be clear by now that politics al.la the Industrial Revolution model is on its last legs, the G7 summit will be tackling the global problems of environmental damage, lack of biodiversity and sustainability issues that barely got a mention in the mainstream media (MSM), a hundred years ago. This macrocosm shines a light on the microcosm of our individual politics, whereby, we will become aware that democracy is process, it must always be thus for should we ever manifest “true democracy” we will have achieved totality, quote;

“Hence “lack of dimension” is only apparent regarding individual #BlackHoles because lack of totality denies them dimensional non-existence…the (SO-CALLED!), #EmergenceTheory guys won’t like that but other universes CAN ONLY EXIST AS POTENTIALS THEY MAY NOT MANIFEST #timesarrow

“Why that’s important is? Because of their #Gravitational effects…!”

“Thus black holes retain their? “Gravitational effects” even #Hawking had to begin to move away (re: “radiation”), from “singularity” (”'coz there’s lots of 'em"), totality doesn’t have the problems because (esp. given #relativity), it can remain UN-manifest…"

“…and is known ONLY by it’s effects and only when #Quantum is applied (no work it out), as opposed to black holes which are? Black #darkenergy #darkmatter, totality allows of NO continuum (of-course), …”

Nb. Therefore black-holes may partake of singularity and pertain to totality but they still retain a subjective existence.

“We” are no longer removed from the equation this is the legacy of quantum research…Currently we constantly look for answers “outside”… paralleling the (unsustainable), extraction of our economic (and political), answers from “without”… (in-fact -of-course-, the science, politics and economics -et.al-, are all aspects of the same problem)" Go to: https://twitter.com/Williamtheb

Our focus therefore becomes on “democratisation” not as an enforced process but as a principle the benefits of which are made manifest by entering into dialogue with all the organs of the body politic. This is consistent with the notion of “emerging economy”, quote;

““unsustainable economy” is an oxymoron” No? I thought about this…many would argue (and many on the “left” also), that “short-term” “profit-taking” exploitative economies exist…but do they? Can we truly call them “economies”? For one thing; “how long is your piece of string?” We define economies by describing relationships (they are “relative”), there is a chronological imperative concerned, one cannot (surely), argue that a 5 year “un-sustainability” is an economy whilst a 3 month one is not! 

Economy, of-course, also can be “of effort”, in other words efficient…there is no “economy of effort” in an inefficient system, therefore, we can argue that any economy that is not sustainable does not exist!

If one “economises” one makes one’s actions more efficient…literally one creates an economy.

One can argue that the economy existed for a five year period…but one cannot say it was “un-sustainable” for the same period…period

…and, therefore, sustainability is a necessary component of economy

The system is “open ended” (#opensource), it is emergent

Quote; "Words Based on the Eco- Root Word

Following is a list of words based on the Eco- Root Word:

1. Ecoactivist: One who actively opposes the pollution or destruction by other means, of the environment.
2. Ecobabble: Using the technical language of ecology to make the user seem to be ecologically aware.
3. Ecobiology: The study of the relationships of organisms to their natural environments.
4. Ecobiosis: The conditions pertaining to a mode of life within a specific habitat
5. Ecocatastrophe: Major damage to the environment, especially when caused by human activity
6. Ecocentric: Centering on the environment
7. Bioecological: A reference to the interrelationships between plants and animals and their abiotic enviro ments.
8. Bioecologist: Someone who favors, or specializes, bioecology; such as, an ecologist.
9. Bioecology: The science of organisms as affected by the factors of their environments.
10. Ecocidal: Designed or tending to destroy the environment.
11. Ecocide: Destruction or damage of the environment
12. Ecoclimate: The climate as an ecological factor; the climate of a habitat.
13. Ecocline: Reflecting ecological conditions in general.
14. Econometrician: A student of, or specialist in, econometrics.
15. Econometrics: The branch of economics concerned with the application of mathematical economics to economic data by the use of statistical methods.
16. Economics: The study or the social science of the production, distribution, and consumption of goods and services and with the theory and management of economies or economic systems which include material goods and financial resources.
17. Economist: Someone who studies, works, or is an expert in the field of economics." https://wordpandit.com/eco-root-word/ Here we can see how closely related the notions of ecology and economics really are, this seems to indicate that the Industrial Revolution (esp.), saw a perversion of the language describing transaction/exchange in order to underpin a Socially Darwinistic notion of human evolution, allow this exploitative model to gain ascendency and fulfil (esp.), capitalism’s imperial “manifest destiny”. It may, therefore, be the case that a misapprehension of the nature of economic theory has stemmed directly from the exploitation of non-renewable resources.

Go to: https://forum.5filters.info/t/declining-sperm-counts-natures-answer-to-overpopulation/1227/10

Democracy must be “open source” (Mr.Gates), only then can it be open-ended.


People are, however, desperate to save the shibboleths of the old paradigm take crypto-currencies for instance surely a true case (Mr.Keiser), of “The Emperor's New Clothes” (this yesterday from “Moon of Alabama”, quote; "Yves Smith of Naked Capitalism had christened crypto currencies “prosecution futures”.

Crypto currencies are not money. One can not pay ones taxes with them." Go to: MoA - The End Of Crypto Currencies), quote; "

“The skyrocketing value of Bitcoin is leading to soaring energy consumption. According to one widely cited website that tracks the subject, the Bitcoin network is consuming power at an annual rate of 32TWh—about as much as Denmark. By the site’s calculations, each Bitcoin transaction consumes 250kWh, enough to power homes for nine days.
Naturally, this is leading to concerns about sustainability. Eric Holthaus, a writer for Grist, projects that, at current growth rates, the Bitcoin network will “use as much electricity as the entire world does today” by early 2020. “This is an unsustainable trajectory,” he writes.”…
…“Bitcoin mining—the process that generates new bitcoins while maintaining the network’s shared transaction ledger—is a secretive global industry. No one knows exactly how much energy it consumes*.
However, we can make some educated guesses. For starters, we know the industry’s revenue: Bitcoin miners currently generate 75 bitcoins per hour, which, at the current price of around $12,500 per bitcoin, translates to $937,500 per hour, or more than $8 billion per year.
Moreover, the industry is highly competitive, and electricity is one of its biggest costs. So when the price of bitcoins rises, we can expect miners to spend more and more on electricity until electricity costs are roughly on par with revenues.” Go to: Bitcoin’s insane energy consumption, explained | Ars Technica for full article.
This may seem insane but the truth is desperate people do desperate things. It has surely been such desperation that has lead to a blind-eye being turned throughout the British media and wider society to the true level of the exposure of our financial system to the Credit Crunch that the LIBOR scandal attempted (and still attempts), to obfuscate."…"this is where Emergence Theory comes in. So far, however, those scientists studying emergence have not linked the disciplines together to form a “whole picture” but this is what a paradigm shift away from the exploitative model of economics requires, “biodiversity is the engine of sustainability” and its pursuit and protection are antithetical to; mono-cultural, short-term, “quick-fix” profit taking enterprises.
“Posturing is the method (or “vehicle”), by which denial transfers the shame that is its genesis.”

*Italics mine." Go to: "Arafel": "The Whole Story"?: #Epidemiology #MarketSegmentation #Algorithms #CambridgeAnalytica #CryptoCurrencies #Libor #CERN #VoteManipulation #Brexit #StrategicCommunicationLaboratories #TheMull #WiFiSurveillance #FusionReactors #TwinTowers #Incineration #Biodiversity #Sustainability #EmergenceTheory


Quote; "Bitcoin is the exemplar of that divorce of wealth from production. Its value appears to be derived from two features: the mathematically elegant blockchain code, which is a distributed accounting system supposedly impervious to government meddling. And “mining” Bitcoin using colossal amounts of electricity to churn the blockchain code, a simple dissipation of energy. What is actually produced by these operations? A promise that a set of digits residing on countless flash drives around the world equal X-amount denominated in national currencies, which are themselves spun out of nothing by a process far less complex than the exertions that produce Bitcoin.

It may be true that Bitcoin’s distributed “ledger” is difficult for governments to crack, but governments can just abolish Bitcoin in a few keystrokes by criminalizing the trade of it and confiscating any theoretical profits from it. They have probably refrained so far because the traffic in Bitcoin is still relatively tiny compared to the trade in stocks, bonds, and their derivatives, and because they prefer to keep the Bitcoin model running as a demonstration project in preparation for their own entry into national cryptocurrencies, with all its advantages for tracking individual transactions and targeting tax liabilities.

Let’s spell out the more blatant shortcomings of Bitcoin: The blockchain may be theoretically bomb-proof, but the exchanges that Bitcoin trades on can be fiddled, hijacked, and erased from the universe, and Bitcoins with them. Remember Mt. Gox? When it went tits-up in 2014, 850,000 Bitcoins vanished (out of the 21 million that can ever be “mined” under the system as designed). Bitcoins were worth under $1000 when that happened. Also, keep in mind that Bitcoin is meaningless without reliable electric service and the Internet that runs on it. How many Bitcoins were bought-and-sold in Texas those dark days a couple of weeks ago when a blue norther rolled in and the lights went out? Of course, trading Bitcoin might be the least of your problems when the pipes freeze and all the sheetrock in your house gets prepped for a black mold experiment. But just sayin," Go to: https://kunstler.com/

Nb. Similar to particle-beam accelerators crypto-currencies are destructive their only purpose being to aid in widespread denial re: our rapidly diminishing unsustainable resources (in other words the continuance of the neo-lib/con delusion). Crypto-currencies are a desperate response and in-fact represent, quote; "the plebs scrabbling in the Roman dirt beneath the emperor’s balcony for debased currency!"*  also both requiring and enabling a WiFi "economy" that itself is false.

*Go to: https://www.arafel.co.uk/2014/08/the-philosophy-of-loss-leader-re.html Also see: https://twitter.com/i/events/937997845344473088

Quote; "Stakeholder Capitalism as Newfangled Fascism

Let’s now turn our attention to the second weasel word in “stakeholder capitalism.” If you are confused about whether national socialism (a.k.a Nazism) is indeed a form of socialism, you should read more.

Socialism means the abolition of private ownership of the means of production in favor of mythical “collective ownership,” but the brutal reality is that it is a system of forceful centralized control.

In the same vein, “for fascism the state is absolute, individuals and corporations [are] relative” said Mussolini. Either way, the holders of centralized power, by controlling production, control your life. They become the solitary “stakeholder” in all decisions involving material resources.

As Ludwig von Mises showed, without real private ownership there is no buying and selling and therefore no market price system, so the planners have no way of knowing what people value. They are flying blind, creating chaos in place of economic coordination. For his scathing but inescapable insights Mises had the honor of being intellectual enemy number one of both the Nazis and the Soviets."

“Weasel words”? Oh really? Public ownership should be under democratic control, the accusation that nationalisation is totalitarian can only be made if the democratic process is subverted by allowing one of the realms (individual, communal or social), to assume dominance. I notice there is no mention of democratic process. Monetary value to the individual is not necessarily the prime concern of those in favour of (true -democratic-), public ownership, rather the health of society, community and the individual are (as expressed by the phrase “public happiness”), to claim other-wise is dangerous neo-liberal propaganda. The author does not accuse socialism of perverting public ownership, instead, they conflate public ownership with state control, thereby, denying the possibility of a mixed economy, Schumachians reject this characterisation."..."Where do they dig-these people up from feudal England?" Go to: The Lifeboat News: Neo-liberal Propaganda...

Nb. My goodness the neo-liberals needed state intervention when they were “too big to fail” though didn’t they?

As I am sure the neo-liberal data-vampires are well aware to reduce politics to a simplistic choice between “laissez faire” or social/communal totalitarianism both destroys the Schumachian model and prevents the emergence of an economy, it’s a case of “the elephant in the room” for failing to acknowledge the problem’s existence will only result in getting squished. The conflation exists in order to polarise, the truth is that none of the “-isms” are up to the job and should be consigned to the past. It’s indicative of the “dumbed down” nature of our public discourse that the socialism = communism trope has been allowed (esp. in the U.S), to gain such traction, however, it is vital that this state of affairs not be allowed to continue for the life of our species will be “nasty, brutish and short” otherwise. #DumbleDimandDimbleDumb #BiodiversityistheEngineofSustainability #TimeisoftheEssence #LoS

Sunday, 23 May 2021

Human Rights Issues re: #Covid19 Why we Need a Moratorium on Benefit Re-assessments/Re-applications and Greater Attention Paid to the Needs of Claimants During a Pandemic #Advocacy #InternetAccess #AccesstoTherapy #Lockdown #Eugenics

 

"The restrictions placed on us by our government as a result of the declaration of pandemic Covid-19 by the World Health Organisation (on 11th March 2020), have without question placed unusual stresses upon the body politic and these have exposed previously somewhat hidden flaws. These flaws have, however, never been hidden from those who experience their effects.

Being a sometime “service-user” myself here in Southampton, a treatment centre for mental health conditions, I have many friends and acquaintances who also use the service and as a result I have a catalogue of very harrowing stories which I could relate, however, one recent tale stands out particularly with regard to the effect of lock-down restrictions. Last November, my good friend Jonathan*, who has a paranoid-schizophrenic condition (episodically hearing voices, feeling persecuted and occasionally compelled to act by these delusions), received notice from the Dept. of Work and Pensions (“DWP”), requiring him to reapply for his Personal Independence Payment (“PIP”). He was then telephoned by the benefit service in order to complete a reassessment which he did, therefore, Jonathon underwent his reassessment for PIP over the phone whilst sat alone in his flat. The assessor even rang Jonathan back two or so days after his initial assessment to; “check some things” (again an inquisitor questioned Jonathan in his home whilst there was no advocate, or psychological/emotional support, present). Following this, Jonathan was informed that his reapplication for PIP had been unsuccessful. He immediately sought advocacy (he usually uses the Citizen's Advice Bureau -"CAB"-), but found that initially he could not get through on the phone (waiting 45 minutes to speak to someone), then that, due to lock-down restrictions, no one at the CAB could help him fill out his form for mandatory reconsideration and that they would send one to him. We agreed that he should inform the DWP that he had no help from an advocate whilst filling out the form and that he could only refer the dept. to the information they already had.

I spoke to him on the phone myself several times during this period and over the subsequent weeks, he was clearly very stressed and “elevated” but although the stress eventually triggered a paranoid-schizophrenic response he was well grounded enough to seek the advice of his psychiatrist. When the psychiatrist heard that Jonathan was suffering from paranoid-delusions she immediately increased his “Olanzapine” dose from 15mg-20mg/day and put him on an anti-depressant (that she hadn't previously prescribed), called “Sertraline”, at a dose of 100mg/day, she then wrote a letter in support of his claim informing the DWP/Tribunal benefit service that (paraphr.); “this man is unwell, he has a serious mental health condition”.

Then something very odd happened; a week or so after his psychiatrist had contacted the benefit service, Jonathan received a phone call from a member of staff who told him, whilst not specifying the decision to which she was referring; “I am on your side. I want to help you overturn this decision!” When he told me this I remarked what good news I thought it was, however, a week or so later Jonathan, rang to tell me that he had received a letter from the benefit service telling him that despite the fact that they had received his psychiatrist's letter and taken on board her remarks they would not overturn their decision following mandatory reconsideration. When I asked him when it was dated he told me that it was dated the very same day he had received a phone call from the member of staff who had told him that she wanted to help. I told him that I wasn't surprised and that I have encountered things like this before, the initial bad decision was affecting the claimant's subsequent dealings with the service (as it desperately tried to cover for itself), however, to ignore a psychiatrist's letter is a breach that probably should be challenged in law (esp. considering that this mentally-ill man was now receiving contradictory advice from authorities he desperately needed to be able to trust). They started paying regular amounts, and some back pay, into his bank during this period but did so whilst still not informing him of their final decision. He's paranoid schizophrenic for Ch****-sake who is going to take responsibility for his reaction to the self-serving two-faced-ness of the benefit service? They sent him confirmation of his award in the end (and gave him a year or two more than his usual apportion of PIP -very generous-), but left him with the legacy of the experience.

I find the story very instructive concerning the isolation and concomitant problems that claimants experience as a result of lock-down. It also shines a light on a wider truth that dare not be spoken of between advocates/claimants and the benefit service (believe me I know this to be a fact, having been a; Disability Living Allowance -“DLA”-, Employment and Support Allowance -“ESA”-, PIP, Universal Credit -“UC”-, and Limited Capability for Work Related Activities -“LCRWRA”-, claimant and ridden on the roller-coaster that is benefit entitlement here in Britain myself), financial insecurity causes mental-health problems! For goodness sake the principle is accepted within the wider population (ie. those not as subject to our government's openly eugenicist agenda)!

I myself am currently accessing advocacy and I can tell you that being re-assessed for or having to re-apply for benefits is an even more stressful process under lock-down that it usually is and, like I said, it's already a (lethal), roller-coaster.

I should have been informed that my PIP was up for reassessment in November, however, it wasn't until I received this year's Council Tax Bill (informing me that I was under different consideration because I was no longer in receipt of PIP), that I realised why it had seemed to me that my February entitlements had been reduced. On receiving my Council Tax Bill I immediately contacted one of my advocates (I use one for debt/benefits and another for medical/NHS issues), who questioned the DWP eliciting the admission that I should have been informed of my change of status. Despite this the DWP have so far refused to reinstate my payments for the few months I would have had to seek a continuation of my award, I am, therefore, being forced to make a new application (not something, I suspect, that will sit well with any possible future tribunal).

Lock-down restrictions mean that I cannot meet my advocate face-to-face to prepare my case, all the filing and referencing my advocate usually does for me is useless because we are not in the same room to go through the documentation together. There is no possible way that a phone call can replace an in-person advocacy appointment, many clients desperately need the psychological and emotional support that the presence of an advocate represents, otherwise they feel trapped, persecuted and isolated and as a result are incapable of rational response. Many claiming PIP, ESA and LCWRA have stress-sensitive mental and physical health conditions and the support an advocate gives is often in the form of help with the stress of dealing with correspondence, something that can only properly be dealt with if the client and advocate are in the same room but this cannot happen under lock-down either.

Advocacy represents the port of last resort for many claimants. Both accessing and making use of advocacy services is difficult at the best of times, but lock-down compounds these problems making of the advocacy process a truly “cruel and unusual” form of torture. I have a stress-related self-harm condition, who will take responsibility should I have an episode? My previous PIP entitlement lasted only 18 months and my condition hasn't changed in that time, in fact under lock-down certain aspects of it have worsened.

The advocates are stressed and over-worked too which doesn't help!

I will be making a paper application for PIP (face-to-face assessment in the presence of an advocate being completely out of the question), as I do not wish to go through the stress of an interrogation on the telephone alone. One can “share” phone calls but the physical presence of a supportive companion is supposed to be a right.

I have managed to get myself to A&E at Southampton General twice, on each occasion under lock-down and whilst “shielding”. On both occasions I was suffering from the worsening of a chronic condition due to lock-down stress. The worsening of these conditions was directly related to my inability to access the proper prescribed therapy, that of swimming/aqua-yoga/aqua-aerobics, for the serious and life-changing injuries I sustained as a teenager which caused me to suffer from tissue-damage, muscle-loss, nerve-damage, skeletal, spinal cord and circulatory problems.

I managed to secure a “Smart Cities” card from the Southampton Unitary Authority only because I paid my GP £30 to write a report stating that I need to have access to less-expensive (Nb. not free), swimming in the city's various public facilities. In the past being a recipient of PIP would have been enough, but now the claimant must receive certain components of the PIP award to qualify for a free Smart Cities card (although the holder is still only entitled to “half-price” access to swimming and/or gym sessions), or seek what is basically a “doctor's note” (the G.P surgeries now charging for such services). What this means, of-course, is that my physician recommends that I engage in certain forms of therapy regularly and that I have a “smart-chipped” card with my photograph on it that entitles me to greater access to such therapy.

As a result of not undergoing therapy I over-strained two old injuries one of which (to my back, pelvis and leg), has become considerably more troublesome and I can be virtually unable to move for days at a stretch. The A&E doctor prescribed a change of pain medication that increased my opioid dose from 4/day Co-codamol 8/500 to 6/day Dihydrocodeine 30mg and I reported to the doctor that the worsening of my condition had induced a self-harm episode. My GP has since concurred with the decision to increase my opioid dose and I now receive Dihydrocodeine on repeat prescription, this is not a solution for chronic pain but medical marijuana (not useless CBD “extract”), is still not available on prescription in Britain.

As I have been shielding I was unable to attend my appointment with Southampton NHS neurology last year but do intend to attend one in August. With various aspects of my conditions worsening and having already attended A&E twice I don't intend to wait any longer.

It is my contention that provision should be made during a pandemic for patients who require access to prescribed/recommended therapies and if this means only letting those who can prove (and with a Smart Cities card such verification is easy), their status have such access then so be it. This may sound harsh but I reiterate I've had to attend A&E twice, whilst shielding, during lock-down!

Even worse though (esp. considering that; "isolation is the worst form of torture"), has been the lack of provision made to ensure that the vulnerable have proper access to the internet during the pandemic and its concomitant lock-down restrictions. The notion that those with physical and/or mental health problems might have difficulty if their already poor access (for those on restricted incomes the option of utilising commercial companies often being a non-starter), to technical support for their internet connection be further restricted does not seem to have occurred to the Powers that Be. This was brought home to me when I tried to get in contact with "Jamie's" (a local charitable business organisation set-up in order to support the vulnerable both at home and with regard to employment and training in computer science and I.T skills; go to: https://jamies.org.uk/about/about-us/?v=79cba1185463), which proved impossible during lock-down as there was no-one in the office and, therefore, no-one who would have been able to help if my p.c had suffered from any technical issues or needed repairing.

Recently I have had trouble preparing to take up my place on a "Steps to Wellbeing" ten week webinar course ("S2W", go to: https://www.steps2wellbeing.co.uk/ -Nb. their courses would usually be face-to-face in groups but, of-course, this is impossible at the moment meaning that a stable connection, working equipment and a capable client base are essential-), although Jamie's are now open again they (unsurprisingly), have a considerable back-log of repair/programming work to do. Even my clinical psychologist with S2W was unaware (as I was), of the existence of; "SO: Let’s Connect/a new project starting in Southampton, with the aim of reducing isolation by enabling people to get connected online.

These issues should have been considered but given the Tory default setting they, of-course, were not.

Does it not seem odd that a government so keen that we should all be part of the "connected society" should fail such a large portion of the body politic in this regard? Perhaps not if one considers what a eugenicist agenda its leader espouses; "In 2000, while Johnson was editor of the Spectator, the magazine carried an article from columnist Taki which said: “On average, Orientals are slower to mature, less randy, less fertile, and have larger brains and higher IQ scores. Blacks are at the other pole, and whites fall somewhere in the middle, although closer to the Orientals than the blacks.”".."Downing Street repeatedly refused to say whether Johnson supported the views expressed by Sabisky on eugenics – the selective breeding of humans – or the IQ of black people." (Go to: https://www.thenational.scot/news/18240765.downing-street-refuse-clarify-boris-johnsons-views-eugenics/ ), he says this on his own website; "We seem to have given up on population control, and all sorts of explanations are offered for the surrender" (Go to: https://www.boris-johnson.com/2007/10/ ). "One" may have given up Boris but her majesty's government don't seem to.

Clearly our government was not properly prepared for Covid-19. Institutions need to be prepared to run as normally as possible during a pandemic, therefore, prioritising the mental and physical health of the body politic is essential. A triage system only works if physicians are able to correctly prioritise response. Any government's first priority should be the welfare of the citizens it governs and the modelling must reflect this. As E.F Schumacher pointed out, the economy is dependent on the health of each individual, this means that each must be treated equally and proportionately to their needs. Needs not wants!  

Our current administration only serves the wants of the few. What the Tories have been doing to the vulnerable during this Covid-19 pandemic is just a worsening, for the sake of expediency (and eugenics), of what they have been doing for years, marginalising the response to genuine concerns and maximising profit for themselves and their supporters, however, I believe we can challenge some of the hubris for there must be many stories like the two I’ve recounted.

We need to seek a moratorium on re-assessment/re-application for those on PIP, ESA and LCWRA during a pandemic. The risk of inflicting lasting harm and even death on claimants who do not have the resources to respond to the increased stresses imposed by lock-down, including the near impossibility of securing appropriate advocacy, by forcing them to undergo re-assessment and/or to have to re-apply for entitlements, is far too great. If you are, or were, a PIP, ESA or LCRWRA claimant who has been affected by Covid-19 pandemic lock-down restrictions, especially with regard to seeking advocacy, please contact https://dpac.uk.net/contact/.

If we need to challenge our government's actions in the international courts, so much the better. These are human rights issues and the solutions to the problems should be enshrined in international law (if they are not already), that way we can ensure that we are better prepared to protect the whole body politic in future."

by Kevin Francis

*Names of those mentioned in this article have been changed in order to protect their identity.

 
 Disabled people largely ignored in response to pandemic, says new book

Quote; "Those particularly impacted negatively by the pandemic, it says, include disabled people and those with long-term health conditions; black, Asian and minority ethnic groups; people living in deprived areas and poor housing; and older people.

But these are the groups who have largely been ignored in developing responses to the crisis, and as a result have been “further detrimentally impacted by it – in many cases fatally”"..

Disabled people with vast experience of social isolation could have made valuable contributions to ‘shielding’ policies and social care provision and yet typically were not invited to contribute to decision-making processes,”* it adds.

The collection of chapters by a range of authors, including leading disabled campaigners, calls for marginalised voices to be better heard through co-production.

In his chapter, Professor Peter Beresford, chair of Shaping Our Lives, compares the pandemic efforts of frontline NHS health workers with the “arbitrary and sweeping decisions” of senior NHS managers to “clear out thousands of older, long-term patients” into care homes and domiciliary services, which “then caused the infection to spread on a massive scale”.

He says that the NHS’s actions, which used “social care as a dustbin for COVID-19 casualties” were made “doubly dangerous and discriminatory by the appalling state of social care in England”."..."They say that the scale of the disproportionate impact of COVID-19 on disabled people –about three-fifths (59 per cent) of COVID-19-related deaths in England during the pandemic have been of disabled people – has “not been reflected in the response to the crisis”*." Go to: https://www.disabilitynewsservice.com/disabled-people-largely-ignored-in-response-to-pandemic-says-new-book/ for full article. 

*Italics mine.

Psychosis and COVID-19: is it time to pre-emptively revise advanced directives?

Quote; “Revised advanced directives might be necessary to indicate preferred treatment choices, given the re-assessment of the risks and benefits of health-care delivery during the pandemic. Decisions regarding hospitalisation, initiating clozapine, receiving long-acting injectables, and electroconvulsive therapy might pose different risk–benefit profiles after the pandemic onset. Additionally, given the increased mortality rates in people with psychosis secondary to COVID-19,4
dynamic revisions in advanced directives should also reflect the decisions regarding COVID-19 treatment—eg, whether to receive the vaccine or not, type of vaccine, and the mode of delivery.
Pandemics might come and go but medical ethics principles should stand resolute against mitigated or unmitigated disasters. Dynamic, advanced directives in line with the rapidly evolving pandemic situation will add more value to patients’ autonomy.” Go to: https://www.thelancet.com/journals/lanpsy/article/PIIS2215-0366(21)00119-X/fulltext for full article.

The Lancet seem, despite their posturing, to be prioritising enabling legislation for their own agenda not promoting individual autonomy for their patients, it’s a good example of bad-modelling by the institutions. One has no choice but to advise; “follow the money!”


 









 

Prison governors' chief says lockdown freedoms need to be extended

A 'significant kickback' could result if offenders are still required to spend up to 23 hours a day in their cells the country opens up

Quote; "Jails are at risk of a backlash from offenders if their release from lockdown lags behind the rest of society, the prison governors’ leader has warned.

Prisoners have spent up to 23 hours a day locked in their cells during the pandemic in a successful bid to avoid up to 2,700 deaths forecast by Public Health England (PHE).

It has led to falls of up to 45 per cent in violence with claims that jails have as a result become safer environments after years of record levels of assaults both on prisoners and staff.

But Andrea Albutt, president of the Prison Governors’ Association (PGA) warned there could be a “significant kickback” from offenders if there was not a return to normality in jails at a pace similar to society’s.

“We are moving into a period where they are beginning not to understand why they should not be unlocked, why they cannot hug their loved ones, why they cannot be unlocked in the same way as officers can hug people, socialise, go on holiday, shop and then come back into the prison,” she said.

“Prisoners are starting to feel less tolerant as they see the reduced risk to staff who are dealing with them on a daily basis. We need to watch and see if that tolerance we have had will continue or whether there will be a significant kickback if they don’t see a fairly speedy improvement.”

Prisons in England and Wales have moved to a “level 3” regime down from the highest “level 5 total lockdown” where offenders were allowed only “minimised” time out of their cells, meals served at their doors and no time in the open air.

The “restricted” level 3 regime still only allows limited time out of cells for some education and work and “limited” social visits instead of a total ban. Governors can apply for level 2, although this still requires segregation of symptomatic inmates, quarantine for arrivals and shielding the vulnerable.

Ms Albutt said there was not as yet any increase in violence or disorder because only small numbers were allowed out of their cells at any one time. 

But she added: “In prisoner focus groups you get a sense that they feel they are sacrificial lambs. To be fair, they have a reasonable argument because staff are living virtually normal lives.”" Go to: https://www.telegraph.co.uk/politics/2021/05/23/prison-governers-chief-says-lockdown-freedoms-need-extended/?utm_content=telegraph&utm_medium=Social&utm_campaign=Echobox&utm_source=Twitter#Echobox=1621757252 for full article.

Quote; "10 million people (8.5 million adults and 1.5 million children and young people) in England will need support for their mental health as a direct result of the pandemic over the next three to five years.

Based on an analysis of over 200 high-quality studies from around the world, our model (developed by clinicians, researchers and economists from the NHS and Centre for Mental Health) identifies key groups of people who face an especially high risk of poor mental health as a result of the pandemic. These groups include people who have survived severe Covid-19 illness (especially those treated in intensive care), those working in health and care services during the pandemic, people economically impacted by the pandemic, and those who have been bereaved.

While the NHS is already investing in additional mental health services, the predicted levels of demand are two to three times that of current NHS mental health capacity within a 3-5 year window. This briefing makes it clear that Government and the NHS must take action now to meet a very steep increase in demand for mental health support" Go to: https://www.centreformentalhealth.org.uk/publications/covid-19-and-nations-mental-health-may-2021 for full article.