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Brexit and Mental Health

brexit

Brexit, like it or not is a reality. 54% of the public voted in a referendum for us to leave the EU. I watched with despair as events unfolded and was almost praying for us to stay in as I feared that a Brexit decision could really send my End Of Terror situation spiralling out of control. Post-Brexit, if I believed in restricting people’s liberties for thought crime and nowt else and I had the power as a psychiatrist, then maybe I’d be sentencing 54% of the population for section detainment in mental hospitals for making a completely irrational decision in voting, a decision I believe that long term will make the entire UK suffer, economically, politically and more importantly, to End Of Terror, within the mental health system. Why the big fear, you may ask? Firstly, one of the core components of EU membership is that EU citizens have access to the European Court of Human Rights in Strasbourg. This court, although I’ve never used it personally, acts as a safeguard for human rights. I’ve always dreamed of getting over to Strasbourg and felt that it would be one of the only places in which to get justice for End Of Terror. I will never realise that goal. But,many good things have come from Strasbourg over the years and indirectly it has safeguarded all those unnecessarily under the cosh, detained in UK mental health institutions. One piece of legislation that has been delivered through the presence of the EU Human Rights Court, is our own country’s Human Rights Act (1998). This Act came into being under the supervision of the Tony Blair government and basically enshrined EU Human Rights legislation into British Law. I have always felt that the Human Rights Act is incompatible with the Mental Health Act. The fundamental freedoms it enshrines are usurped once the Mental Health Act is invoked. I have constantly tried to argue a Human Rights case for myself, even in the Mental Health Tribunal Courts, quoting the United Nations Universal Declaration on Human Rights and referring to Strasbourg and indeed the Human Rights Act. Most debate, however, falls on deaf ears, and the tribunal courts tend to favour the misplaced incorrect mindset of Mental Health Workers who generally claim that the Mental Health Act is more important than any human rights legislation and overrides it. Treatment against consent is my main bugbear…

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Immigrant Doctors on the NHS: A Good Thing or Bad Thing?

nigel farage

Not wanting to sound the horn or anything, but: PEOPLE, THERE IS A GENERAL ELECTION COMING UP! Come May unless you adhere to Russell Brand’s non-voting strategy, then you could well be heading to the polling booth. We heard of ‘weaponising the NHS in the buildup and it looks like a weird old forthcoming election with the rise of UKIP and some pretty unsettling times here in the UK and indeed in the wider world. I put a picture of Farage on this post as I have heard time and time again people citing immigration as a key issue. I am very pro-European in essence. As a Translation student and a man with a passion for foreign languages, I embrace the ‘otherness’ of cultures from abroad. I think that in expelling immigrants and abandoning the European we would instantly be cats back into the stone age. Immigration brings us a net benefit in terms of capital, cultural diversity and skills in the workplace, plus it would be rather difficult to study foreign languages in the education sector if all foreigners are thrown out à la Farage. But, politics aside, immigration is a real issue. We hear of how our NHS is full of nurses and doctors from abroad. In fact, I believe that I am correct in saying that proportionally, the NHS employs more foreign workers than the average organisation. I think that in healthcare, some of my pro-immigration views do distort. I can especially remember when my dying grandmother was in hospital. She came from a pre 1960s immigration boom generation. She was supporting an RAF pilot during WW2 and part of the incredible effort made by home soil women during that conflict. Her values and ideas were very old-fashioned and quite a bit different from my own. I felt a bit ashamed when she was openly cursing foreign NHS workers during her treatment. I found it a little rude, but, who am I to judge? I come from a more tolerant generation whose values have been shaped by a different set of problems and I live in a more or less totally globalised world. I wonder though, how the older, often politically silent generation feel about their healthcare needs being attended to by foreigners. We are constantly told how our education and especially higher education system is among the best in the world. If that is the case,…

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Thatcher Thatcher, Freedom Snatcher

thatcher thatcher

This article is inspired by a bad dream that has just woken me up at 0740am. ‘Without a doubt, princes become great when they overcome difficulties and obstacles that are imposed upon them; and therefore fortune, especially when she wishes to increase the reputation of a new prince, who has a greater need to acquire prestige than a hereditary prince does, creates enemies for him and has them take action against him so that he will have the chance to overcome them and to climb higher up the ladder his enemies have brought him. Therefore many judge that a wise prince must, whenever he has the occasion, foster with cunning some hostility so that in stamping it out his greatness will increase as a result.’ Niccolò Machiavelli (in The Prince) Politics according to Machiavelli is an evil and ruthless game of cunning and to be honest is something which I do not relish. I find it boring and full of wicked people. Every so often in life, however, we are dealt a strange twist of fate and end up staring straight down the barrel at the perils of the political system created by our masters. I write this article as a moment of inspiration, though with a touch of antecedent clairvoyance and inevitability. The time is now and while the IRON LADY still lives on and is yet to draw her last breath I thought I’d pencil some thoughts into print. Margaret Thatcher is a name one associates with British politics at the very least. A striking figure who cut the world stage at an exciting time of history, of that there is no doubt, but here are some of my words that I wish to get published to my blog all ready to be posted at the time of her death as the world readies itself for public outpourings of grief, mingled with images of torn bodies of victims of the Falklands conflict and the strikes of brutalised South Wales miners. I grew up in South Wales though was too young to appreciate what was happening during the miners’ strike. However, my earliest memories of politics came to me at playgroup when a woman announced that free milk was being stopped for all children and that when we went onto infants school we would no longer qualify for a nice cold jar of white midmorning. The Korovo Milkbar’s playground…

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