Tag Archives: healthcare

Are corporations people?

Corporations Are Not PeopleThe legal definition of a corporation in the UK is:

a body of persons authorised by law to act as one person, and having rights and liabilities distinct from the individuals who are forming the corporation.

A corporation can own property, do business, pays taxes – well, sometimes – be sued, sue individuals and other corporations, and though it can’t be born or die, a corporation usually has a definite beginning and can come to a definite end. A corporation doesn’t have a passport: it may be registered in just one country, but it can exist in many.

But no matter how many legal rights and powers a corporation may acquire, there are things it cannot do: it cannot vote in most democratic electionsthough the richer the corporation is, the more it is likely to get its way regardless of democracy; it cannot have sex or experience orgasm or know love or laughter or tears; and it has neither soul nor conscience – from a religious viewpoint, a corporation is not a person at all.

Or so I always thought.

But apparently, in the US at least, the Catholic Church has ruled that corporations have souls and consciences, and therefore rights of freedom of religion that ought not to be violated.

The American legal definition of a corporation is similar to the UK’s definition. A corporation in the US is an independent legal person, created, organised, and – should that time come – dissolved according to the laws of the state in which it is registered. Each state requires articles of incorporation that document the corporation’s creation and the corporation’s management of internal affairs. Nowhere in the legal definition of a corporation does it explain where in this process the corporation becomes ensouled.
Continue reading

Advertisements

2 Comments

Filed under American, Human Rights, Women

Prolife Ireland talking bollocks

Yesterday in Ireland 25,000 people [or 15,000] gathered to support the important ethical principle that when a woman in Ireland needs an abortion, she should have to go overseas. (Rumours that Ryanair was one of the major donors to “Vigil4Life” unconfirmed.)

This well-funded “vigil” was in response to the Irish government’s announcement that they would legislate for legal abortion in Ireland where the woman would otherwise die. Savita Halappanavar’s parents have said they would welcome the law that would have saved their daughter’s life to be named after her.

The prolifers in Dublin were so confident of the ethical case for outsourcing all abortions overseas at the patient’s expense that they did not stoop to lying about it:

Continue reading

11 Comments

Filed under Healthcare, Human Rights

Our constitution, July 2012: Social rights

1. Enhanced constitutional rights (b) Social rights (right to universal healthcare, education)

The right to work, and to be paid for your work, is a radical demand in the UK at the moment (see Economic Rights) also A day’s work for a day’s pay:

How is it that wanting a fair day’s pay for a fair day’s work has become a left-wing, radical/revolutionary value? Iain Duncan Smith notoriously called Cait Reilly “snooty” for expecting to be paid to work in Poundland – though he himself continued to draw his MP’s salary and expenses during the six months he took off work in 2009 to care for his wife when she had breast cancer.

Social rights are good for the individual, but they’re also good for the general welfare.

Article 25: (1) Everyone has the right to a standard of living adequate for the health and well-being of himself and of his family, including food, clothing, housing and medical care and necessary social services, and the right to security in the event of unemployment, sickness, disability, widowhood, old age or other lack of livelihood in circumstances beyond his control.
(2) Motherhood and childhood are entitled to special care and assistance. All children, whether born in or out of wedlock, shall enjoy the same social protection.

Healthcare: what you need, when you need it, free at point of access Continue reading

Leave a comment

Filed under Education, Elections, Equality, Healthcare, Housing, Scottish Constitution, Scottish Culture, Scottish Politics, Tuition fees

Lyall Duff, Facebook, and the Telegraph

Talking on Facebook is like having a conversation in a busy cafe. You have a reasonable expectation of privacy, if you’re an ordinary person talking quietly to a friend, but of course you can be overheard – and if you’re a political candidate for a non-Tory party and the person at the next table works for the Telegraph and you’re making [expletive deleted] comments that the Telegraph thinks they can use…

Lyall Duff is standing for election on 3rd May for the SNP in North Lanarkshire. Duff made the comments in January and February that the Telegraph chose to report today, so the timing is politically motivated: the SNP have the choice of backing Duff or sacking him, but it’s too late for them to invite him to stand down and let them find another candidate. If you are a candidate running for election it is sensible, to say the least, to make sure that your social media accounts say nothing that you would not wish to see quoted in the newspaper of your worst enemy.
Continue reading

15 Comments

Filed under Elections, Healthcare, Human Rights, Women

Profits, non-profits, and a living wage

Last night I had a nasty little conversation with a Cambridge Tory: I was rude (for which I am sorry today); so was he (but I can’t do anything about that).

The conversation began with a tweet by someone else:

To which the Tory, apparently confused about the difference between profiting from someone else’s illness, and making a living providing healthcare:
Continue reading

4 Comments

Filed under American, Healthcare, Poverty

Santa Lansley’s NHS

Whether you walk or are pushed into a NHS A&E department, there is one question that the staff will always ask you if you are able to communicate, or the person with you if you’re not:

“Are you allergic to anything?”

If and when there’s time, they’ll ask you other things, like “Describe where it hurts” and “What brings you here?” and “Can we have your name and your date of birth?” plus “Are you registered with a GP?” but those are low-priority. If you’re in too much pain to speak, they want to know if you’re allergic to anything before they give you painkillers.

Here’s what your time in hospital will look like once Andrew Lansley’s got his way:

I told Lori that over the last 10 minutes or so, Emily’s pain had grown tenfold, that it seemed like an appendix situation or maybe a tiny elf she swallowed was now trying to shoot his way out. So you know, we could really use someone down here right away to at least try to get that pain under control. Lori looked at me in a way that made me think she was going to reply in Russian, and said instead, “I’m just here to get some registration information.”

I focused all of my frustration into a very violent sigh and said, “Sure, I understand. However, she should have been on the road to the hospital an hour before we finally did. It’s a 35 minute drive. Then once we got here, she’s been laying in this bed, unseen by anyone at all for over an hour. If you can’t get someone in here yourself, at least point me in the right direction so I can.”

She then promptly ignored everything I just said and started asking Emily about her address and insurance information.
(5 Unhelpful People You Meet in Every Hospital)

The author’s girlfriend survived a ruptured appendix, but only just.

As was pointed out six months ago, Andrew Lansley’s reaction to massive public criticism of his attack on the NHS was to step up the spin rather than change the attack. In appreciation of the immense profits that are about to be made, John Nash (Care UK, etc), one of the private healthcare tycoons who look upon the NHS as a barrier to their just profit gave Lansley £21,000 in November 2011.

Andrew Lansley’s Christmas present to the private healthcare sector was huge:

NHS hospitals in England will be free to use almost half their hospital beds and theatre time for private patients under government plans.

These are hospitals, beds, and operating theatres that were paid for by the taxpayers, for the free use of all. As I saw posted on Twitter, this isn’t so much privatisation as welfare for the rich: private companies aren’t being asked to buy 49% of NHS hospitals in England: they’re being allowed to make use of our resources and we’ll have to pay them if we want the same level of access as we had before Santa Lansley filled John Nash’s stocking.

£21,000? Cheap at the price. Andrew Lansley is giving away what isn’t his. Ho ho ho.

Leave a comment

Filed under Equality, Healthcare, Poverty