Joyce: we are proud of you

Joyce is my wife’s mother. Following two week’s hospitalisation she is now in a nursing home in South Manchester. This is likely to be her final throw of the dice. She is deaf, almost blind and desperately infirmed. Her treatment by the NHS, the care workers and the local authority has been superb throughout. She became a bed-blocker but everything was done to ensure her move to the nursing home was completed with her best interests in mind. The nursing staff now caring for her seem equally committed.

During our visit yesterday my wife showered her with love and affection.

However, I sensed there was another issue. She struggled to find a comb and then she tried to brush her hair with her hand. She could not straighten her night dress. She tried desperately to read words written in large letters on pieces of paper and held up in front of her one functioning eye.

The time came to leave. Judy wrote down, in large letters

“Mum, we are proud of you.”

It was held in front of her and, word by word, she absorbed the message.

As Judy exited the room I turned back. Joyce had her two frail arms on the side railings. Her hair was neat. Her eyes were closed. And on her lips was a smile.

She had the one thing left to her: her dignity as a human being.


Enterprise Britain was one of the first websites to question the performance of the UK’s Prime Minister. Telling the Americans we were the junior partners in the Second World War and the Pakistan Government to sort out the Taliban was bad enough. Preaching to the EU that there would be no budget increases and then getting the PR machine to convey a 2.9% increase as a victory (it may be more) was worse.

However, for me, it was the pure hypocrisy of this multi-millionaire, public school dominated Coalition Cabinet trying to pretend ‘We are all in this together’.

I also think that the Chancellor has based savage spending cuts (subject to revision when Dave wants to be popular) on an exaggerated financial proposition. We will never know whether Alistair Darling’s carefully thought through spending plans would have worked. They most certainly would have prevented much of the hurt many in the UK are experiencing.

The growing anger against Dave was caught this weekend by Peter Oborne’s Telegraph website blog. Here is a flavour:

“While he (Dave) travels the globe making grand bargains with world leaders, the stench of deceit and corruption is once again beginning to fill the Tory benches”.

‘The Daily Telegraph’ itself concentrated on Cameron’s ‘Behavioural Insight Team’ full of Notting Hill adoring cronies. These ‘officials’ want to change behaviours.

John Redwood MP, quoted in ‘Published’, suggested many ‘non-Cameron’ MPs want a Conservative Manifesto at the next election. Pity. ‘Policy Exchange’ has already declared Dave’s Coalition stance strategy.

But that is not my real concern. Much may and will happen long before 2015.

What is happening in the UK, which Dave occasionally visits, is that this Dave/George dominated Cabinet is humiliating us as work shy, benefits grabbing, tax avoiding, non-EU friendly, money grabbing student-based, individuals who need to be led by the nose on strings pulled by some weirdo misfits now employed by the tax-payer or travelling the world with their saviour.

“Joyce: we are proud of you”. You deserve the dignity I saw in your smile. I am also proud of the many UK professionals who, in the most difficult cost cutting conditions, have served you so well.

What a pity that the Prime Minister of the United Kingdom cannot meet his prime responsibilities with the same distinction.

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