Sunday 5 July 2009

Stormy Weather

Today at the supermarket we saw rather a lot of very smart convertible cars. Drop-top jaguars and mercedes, roaring porsche and TVR. I'm sure I read somewhere that there's a recession on. Isn't it interesting how the weather can reflect the times? Or do we just notice it when it does?
The weather's unpredictable. The public appears (at least from the newspapers I read) to be completely split on who is best to run the country - do we go for the party that promises everything to everyone (in the same speech promising to "cut mindless burocracy" and "provide administrative support for frontline staff"; then promising to hold down public sector spend with reductions of 10% a year, but of course the [insert audience here] department will have its budgets maintained), or the party that everyone loves to hate but rather a lot of economists and bankers are saying other countries should immitate?
The health service faces its own dichotomies. There are finite resources. There are new technologies, each more expensive than the last, each marginally better. People are definitely sicker - where did MS, ME, Fibromyalgia, CFS come from? Or did we just not diagnose them before? Why the sudden increase in diagnoses of depression, neuroses, autism? Is it really because we can diagnose them, is it really because we keep people alive who would otherwise have died, are there enough kept alive to account for these large increases?
I wonder how many of these problems come back to simple things. Take the situation in the health service: could it be that something has changed about the food we eat? And could it be that unexplained presences or absences in the food are causing all of these problems?
Makes you wonder if the same is the case for politics . . .

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