Dear Editor, Andy Burnham, the Health Secretary, has described a Tory MEP as unpatriotic for criticising the NHS while in America.
This comes from a Labour MP whose Government has done more than any other in our history to destroy our sovereignty, to a point where they have had difficulty in showing the flag – Union or St George; in fact, at times showing reluctance to fly the latter, even on St George’s Day, from Labour-controlled council offices.
The opposition and some of the media must try to avoid making childish and churlish criticisms of MPs who may wish to have an ‘individual’ opinion. They should not have to feel intimidated and gagged, because individual opinions can stimulate debate.
The NHS is not perfect by any stretch of the imagination, but it is too big an animal to be hurt by a little criticism.
Soon after the NHS was inaugurated in 1948, people and patients were criticised for asking the doctors for a bandage or a bottle of aspirin, free at the point of need. The NHS has moved a long way since then, when today it provides non-health services such as IVF. This is why it has become such an uncontrollable money triffid, consuming money in its frightening growth.
Party leaders should not be so sensitive to criticisms made of the NHS. It is the public that is having to pay for it.
America has a population of more than 300 million – can the cost of an American NHS be imagined?
Salford Priors, near Evesham
Dear Editor, In 1948 the NHS came into being – the finest achievement of the post-war Labour Government. It has saved millions of lives, including my own, and is still an inspiration to the world.
The American medical industry is terrified that the 46 million people in the US who have no medical cover would qualify for ‘free’ treatment.
An American once asked me how Britain could afford to treat millions for free. I explained that it was not free, but paid for by national insurance contributions and only those who were unemployed or too ill did not have to pay. When I told her that the contributions were deducted at source from wages she said Americans would never stand for that. Why not? I asked her, their income tax is deducted from pay, what’s the difference?
President Obama is pretty tough and can handle his own rednecks, but can Mr Cameron handle his?
James Benton, Hall Green, Birmingham