David and Jeremy want your kids to die (unless you’re rich)

25 01 2014

So, last night I was on The Jonathan Ross Show with Robert Lyndsay. We’re promoting the show we’re in together so you’ll hopefully see us on lots of things together over the coming months. Well, in truth, hopefully you’ll just come and see the show :)

I also came out. Yes. That’s right. I know we live in enlightened times, but it was still very hard to do. In case you missed it, I’ll repeat it.

I’m… I’m… I’m going to become [bork]… a politician.

In May, I will be standing as a prospective Member of the European Parliament, and doing so for The National Health Action Party.

For anyone who follows me on Twitter, I doubt that my party of choice will come as too much of a surprise. I’ve been tweeting endlessly over the past few months about the dangers the NHS currently faces, but over Christmas, something changed. My wife – similarly passionate – suggested that we were becoming “those people”. Those people who whinge on and on, wringing hands and asking “But why isn’t somebody doing something?!” – instead of actually doing something.

So, we decided that we’d do something. We just didn’t know what. Neither of us imagined it would involve one of us becoming a… [double bork]… politician.

The NHS is the one of the single greatest achievements of any civilisation, ever, anywhere in the history of the world. Great Britain decided that being broken wasn’t your fault. If bits of you got smashed off, started going wrong or gave up entirely, it would do it’s best to stick them back on, put them right or find you a new one. It essentially made being healthy a human right.

Up until 1948, only wealthy people had access to doctors. Your likelihood of surviving disease was based on your income. In other words, if you were poor, you were fucked. Then came World War Two and with it a generation of young Britons who died in foreign fields, fought for queen and country, opposed fascism and sacrificed nearly everything. The only way through it was for everyone to pull together – prince and pauper, dustman and duke. The sense of nationhood that sprang from this tragedy, the sense that “we’re all in this together”, meant that within three years of the war finishing it was decided that the state would cover the healthcare costs of its citizens. That, regardless of your own personal wealth, you could expect medical attention as and when you needed it.

In short, compassion won.

Well, it won for a short while. The millionaires that currently run things have decided that you (assuming you’re not a member of the Bullingdon Club, or a trustafarian) can go fuck yourself. This place is for them, not you. Why should you get free healthcare? Why can’t they take that big pot of money ear-marked for medicine and just start sharing it out amongst themselves? People are desperate when they’re sick and nothing’s as easier to monetise than desperation. Big, rich, private heathcare companies have donated millions to the Conservative party and now they’re calling in the debt. Jeremy Hunt is killing the NHS so that his owners can bleed you dry.

I don’t believe the NHS is perfect or that it doesn’t need to change. I have known people have terrible times and feel completely betrayed by it. Sad, but true. However, the vast majority of those who use it are delighted. The NHS is composed of incredible human beings whose capacity to care is a combination of vocation, education and genuine kindness. Of course some of them screw up from time to time – sometimes with tragic results – but that’s because they’re human beings. Fallible human beings. And if you employ over a million of them, (as the NHS does), mistakes will be made. The NHS is imperfect, yes, but it’s still totally kick-ass.

It’s also the most cost effective health care system in the world. For every pound spent on the NHS, it returns a value of five times that to the economy. And we need to stop taking it for granted and tell the shower of outright bastards that are stealing it from us to back off. It’s ours, not theirs.

So that’s what I’m doing. There’s no way I should be an MEP. I’m not smart enough, or machiavellian enough, to survive in modern politics. My closet barely closes for the number of skeletons. I’m an ex-touring stand-up and professional show off, not a statesman. But then the NHA is wholly made up of people who don’t want to be politicians. Literally, none of them. It’s just that it turns out that the people who do want to be politicians – i.e. politicians – are a pack of duplicitous c**ts who have absolutely no interest in ensuring that free healthcare – provided according to need, not wealth – remains the cornerstone of our brilliant country. Somebody has to do something. So it looks like it’s going to have to be us. It’s a nightmare.

So, please, read the stuff on the NHA website. If you want to know how these politico douchebags are taking away your kids access to medicine, it’s all right there. The NHA folks are way smarter than I am. And nicer. I mean, most of them are doctors, ffs. You don’t get smarter or nicer than that.

Once you’ve got wise to these vampiric fuckers, get angry. Start making noise. Tweet. Facebook. Tell people what’s going on. Write to your MP. Tell them to stop what they’re doing. Tell them to act in the best interest of the people who elected them (y’know, almost as if that were their fucking job).

We can’t afford not to take a stand. The lives of our children, of our grand-children, of our great grand-children may very well depend on it.

(Thanks for reading this much text. I tried to be succinct, but there’s so much to say. Should probably have got an editor instead.

Oh, and sorry for all the swearing. I’m just a bit like that.

Anyway, cheers for reading.)


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52 responses

25 01 2014
Neil Cheesman

Best wishes for your future success and bl**dy well done!

25 01 2014
shazza (@margaretsharon)

Thank Christ ! at last a proper human being to highlight our wonderful NHS, I am one who works front line in a hospital of which we are depleting but managers are growing -they wont get rid of themselves will they ?

25 01 2014
drew

Love your work Rufus!

25 01 2014
nuz25
25 01 2014
Terry Casey (@tcliverpool)

Yes they do think it is part of welfare when we all pay for it through national insurance, good luck by the way.

25 01 2014
Beth Nash

So happy you’ve made this commitment. You are known & liked by the public. Obviously motivated by passion. Perfect candidate. Bless you xx

25 01 2014
25 01 2014
Rowan Draper

I admire your choice to come off the bench but why stand for Europe? And why stand for a party that will let the Tories back in?

25 01 2014
Montana Wildhack

Best of luck to you. I’m a Yank, but I received excellent medical and dental care in Britain when I lived there in the mid 80s and it saddens me beyond words to watch from afar as the NHS is destroyed.

You really don’t want a US-style healthcare system; where people lose their homes for the sake of paying medical bills, where people like my friend, Brenda, die at the age of 43 because they don’t have the money to go to the doctor to find out what’s wrong with them.

25 01 2014
Fiona Watson

Currently working on of theatre in Stockton Arc Arts Centre about all this – ‘Care’ by Tangled Feet

25 01 2014
Esther Page

Rufus I am so glad a “celeb” has taken up the banner for the NHS if only someone with your sense of compassion would do the same for what is happening to sick and disabled people but unfortunately no-one seems interested. But well done and I’m sure you will get the huge amount of backing you deserve.

25 01 2014
Hearten Soul

Good on you! 5th para from the end you mean comprised, not compromised. SaveOurNHS.

25 01 2014
darylcargill

Reblogged this on darylcargill and commented:
Very important…

25 01 2014
omenuk

Reblogged this on The Old Playstation Gamer and commented:
I know my blog is supposed to be for video games but there are more important issues in the world that bother me alot, and one of them is the continuing war on the poor and sick by the British Government or to be exact the Conservative Party and their bosom buddies the Liberal democrats.

Below (if I have done this correctly) is a blog by Rufus Hound, a famous Comedian, Actor, presenter, (and according to his twitter page Scoundrel lol) and hopefully soon to be a Member of the European Parliament representing The National Health Action Party. I would be really grateful, even if you are not based in the UK, if you could read this article because I think it’s an important issue which sadly has already seen the National Health Service here in the the UK already having budgets slats and parts sold off to the detriment of those people that are in desperate need of medical care.

Thank you.

25 01 2014
spideystan

If I can do anything to help………………………

25 01 2014
Jo Sutherland

Brilliant news…I and many others have been trying to get the message out for almost 2 years now..no one wanted to be our voice. All over England and Wales hospitals face losing Consultant led maternity services and overnight childrens units, which can only result in high risk to young lives as patients are forced to travel greater distances to receive medical help in an emergency.. We need people like you to speak out and say NO.

26 01 2014
Dr Tig Calvert

Fantastic and well done. I love brave people. Thank you, and your wife, for having that discussion and for deciding to be brave.

If anyone criticises the swearing please remind them that people who swear are much more trustworthy ;)

26 01 2014
watermelonbloke

Congrats and thanks for making a good stand, including on KR.

As for running for election, If only there were a national party, with representation at Westminster and in the EU, who were making a similar case eh?.

Oh, hang on…

http://greenparty.org.uk/news/2013/11/23/natalie-bennett-speech-the-nhs-our-nhs-is-under-attack/

26 01 2014
kraut

“The NHS is the one of the single greatest achievements of any civilisation, ever, anywhere in the history of the world.”
Bollocks. Twice over fucking bollocks. What a pathetic piece of crap.

Every. Single. Civilised. Country. Has. Healthcare. Available. To. Everyone.
(Certainly every European one. Let’s not start on the idiocracy of the US)

But everywhere in Europe does it. Better.

And most (IME; I haven’t tried them all for statistictal purposes, and I don’t intend to) do it better and cheaper than the sainted megalomanicac NHS..

26 01 2014
aj

Go for it mate. Get your artist mates involved. Personalities speaking out knackers the main stream media who would never speak out against the government. Art and artists can make a massive difference (lennon). please keep going. Thanks.

26 01 2014
Ian

Awareness is everything. I really hope you can make even a little difference to the publics opinion and they can then voice it. I was born in Tredegar the birth place of the NHS and feel a great pride in what Bevan achieved.
It started with the miners chipping in a penny a week to help pay for medical help for men who worked in such poor and dangerous conditions. It seems such an obvious thing to do, all chip in to help another human being less fortunate than yourself, with basic needs they may not attain themselves.
Before my grandad died he suddenly came out with how as a kid he worked in I think it was a hardware shop with Bevan ” lazy bugger always reading books” me and my brother just looked at each other and laughed but thankfully he read those books and saw the injustice

26 01 2014
lallygag26

There are many of us who blog and share information and try our small but persistent best via such groups as Keep Our NHS Public, the amazing Save Lewisham Hospital Campaign, the Save MidStaffs Campaign (oh yes, it is not the horror hospital of myth). We write to our MPs, but also need to alert all our MEPs to the real horror of the TTIP (aka the EU/US Free Trade Agreement) and its effect on the final destruction of the NHS. You will have a mammoth task ahead of you if you succeed in getting elected. But you will have a serious support base in your efforts to save the NHS as a publicly funded, publicly owned institution.

26 01 2014
Lorraine S Dunn

RUFUS YOU HERO !!!

26 01 2014
Penny Webb

You are an brave amazing principled human being!
I’m often to be found ranting on my Facebook page trying to get people it sign petitions which practically no one signs.
I cannot enlighten people about the the privatisation by the back door of the NHS.
The right wing media is clearly in on it with the NHS bashing, now we have the waiting times debacle and guess what… Private companies are going to “pick up the slack” so to speak.
Good luck and from a nurse.. Thank you.

26 01 2014
Jim

I’m not so sure it’s the NHS that needs saving: it’s the patients.

You should learn about the epidemic of malnutrition in this country that’s being ignored by the NHS because it and the pharmaceutical companies profit from the constant flow of ill people it produces. Have a search on twitter for #b12d for starters and then check out the pernicious anaemia society.

26 01 2014
Claire

Best I’ve read in ages . Thanks . Will be reading up more on the NHA. x

26 01 2014
londonstatto

Wow, what a load of nonsense. The idea that the Coalition government (for that is what it is) is “killing the NHS” is just absurd to the point of hilarity.

26 01 2014
Miss

Hell yes and good luck!

26 01 2014
Guy Chapman

Robert Lyndsay? The veritable Wolfie Smith? Awesome stuff, and best of luck. Cameron has probably done more for socialism in one parliament than the Labour Party in the whole of the last 50 years. Suddenly we realise why equality and fairness are important, because we see what happens when a government doesn’t think they are worth having.

26 01 2014
Vicky P

Rufus Hound, you are fucking awesome.

26 01 2014
Christopher Mockridge

*Comprised (not compromised)

26 01 2014
david thomas

hi rufus coildnt agree more!! by the way i think you meant to say the nhs is composed rather than compromised which is what youve written here!! :-)

26 01 2014
Rob Moore

That’s an excellent thing you are doing. Thank you!

26 01 2014
John

Hope there is some Scottish candidates.

26 01 2014
Jan Kelly

In Stafford and the Surrounds we know only too well what the politicians are up to, we have first hand knowledge of what lengths they will go to to achieve privatision. If 5000+ people had not marched last year our hospital the best in the area and one of the best in country would have closed. We have been lied about, lied to, mocked, trampled on and damned by the media. We aren’t going to let the children of Stafford and Surrounds die on route to a hospital which offers a lesser service than the one we have and has a much greater debt! We are not as keeps getting stated a “small minority” who do not care about patient safety, we are not “vile marsh people or vipers”, the name calling can continue it achieves nothing but we will that which is our human right, we will continue to make it known that the media fuelled by the government are drip feeding the public with lies to make them fearful of the most amazing healthcare system in the world. There are problems no one would deny that, how could there not be when it is starved of funding and staff for the sole purpose of making rich people even richer at our expense!

26 01 2014
vomsters

I’d vote for you – I’m in the SouthWest and my roll-call of MEPs is Tory, UKIP, LibDem, Tory, UKIP, Tory (rural southern England, you would not believe how depressing it is to live in an area where you have a choice of LD or Tory at every election) *sob* I need to find out who my NHA candidate will be, thanks for the reminder.

26 01 2014
guythemac

As someone who works part-time in the NHS trying to make sense of hospital finances (and with a wife who is a full-time NHS doctor) I think it’s good that people ask questions and have put the breaks on the recent Act, but I sincerely hope that any subsequent debate is slightly better informed than the sixth form level these two chaps manage. I’ve just watched that video: I’ll swear the anchor says “So you’re going to have a whole pile of competing organisations, which will by definition drive up the price”. He needs to redo economics 101. If the national debate is reduced to tweeting and settled by facebook likes or whatever then god help us.

My perception from watching this clip is they both have the same kind of ideological zeal they ascribe onto Cameron and Hunt, just the other way round. There is a knee jerk to the word ‘privatise’ which risks throwing the baby out with the bathwater for certain reform possibilities. Some things people seem to be raging against on principle have already been happening for years in various parts of the service quite successfully. For instance, since the very birth of the NHS all our GPs have been effectively ‘private’ and subcontract their services to the NHS. This seems to work without popular outrage. For many, many years third sector specialist organisations such as MacMillan or Marie Curie have been supplementing NHS palliative care without popular outrage (because they are magnificent at it). We should be open minded about looking at models that deliver that care, at the same or greater quality, at the same or less cost. I’m not convinced the NHA are.

The principle that needs fighting for is that care is provided to all in need ‘free’ at the point of delivery because it is funded by the state. My personal preference is that where it isn’t delivered directly by the NHS it is third sector or not-for-profits who deliver their specialist services, but I still can’t get as wound up as these chaps about there being a profit so long as quality of service is the same or higher and cost or providing it is the same or less.

26 01 2014
Comedian Rufus Hound in MEP election bid to campaign against NHS changes | News Bd Today

[…] achievements of any civilisation, ever, anywhere in the history of the world’, wrote on his blog: ’There’s no way I should be an MEP. I’m not smart enough, or Machiavellian […]

26 01 2014
J Mawson

I was reading with interest and agreement until the swearing.
I’m sorry but I just switch off, like many others, when swearing is included in a written piece. There are plenty of alternate words to emphasise strong feelings. A feeble line of apology at the end actually makes it worse.
Good luck though with trying to change things.

26 01 2014
dr Tim Smith

Good on you Rufus.
You’ve hit the nail on the head there. Whilst its sad to think that politicians don’t represent the electorate, most people would agree entirely. I certainly don’t think pre-election manifestos hold any credence anymore, and the number of conflicts of interests in politics would be baffling if we ever found out the real extent. At least we can rely on ordinary people to take a stand for the people. I give you my support, and I’m sure a great deal others already have. The comments on Jonathan Ross will hopefully have thrown the issue into the public spotlight

26 01 2014
allan sayers

brilliant news. good luck in becoming an mep. Up till now for some reason the bbc have virtually ignored the NHA party.

Join the NHA party everyone!

26 01 2014
Dytis

I think you mean: “The NHS is comprised of incredible human beings”
rather than: “The NHS is compromised of incredible human beings”

26 01 2014
Steve Mason

Badass and totally right on! Whats happening to the NHS is also being replicated in education. This shower of fascists running our great country seem to be trying to squeeze in as much damage as they can in the likely short time they’re gonna be in power. Then it’s gonna take the next administration at least two to three terms to undo the damage. I’m not a particularly religious drone, but if there is some divine oversee’er I do hope that like that German POW in Dads Army, names are going into his book!

26 01 2014
Funny Thoughts | Tiernan Douieb's Blog

[…] in May for the NHA party, formed to protect the NHS. His blog very succinctly explains why HERE, and I am hugely impressed and fully back him in doing what is a very bold move indeed. Rufus is, […]

26 01 2014
Kirsten

You should start by investigating NHS procurement processes. As with every other government department, think the Home Office’s relationship with G4S… The situation of Preferred Suppliers is bleeding the country dry. National procurement programs are highly corrupt.

26 01 2014
n hardy

Absolutely disgraceful title.

It’s your right to disagree with their politics but your title tells us all we need to know about you.

Truly pathetic.

26 01 2014
emsbabee

Russell Brand writes an eleventy thousand word essay and has a pop at Paxman’s beard…Rufus Hound DECIDED TO BECOME A RUDDY POLITICIAN.

26 01 2014
Annik Piriou

Congratulations!! You’re very brave, I hope you’ll stand for my bit of the world. I agree with you 100%. It breaks my heart to see what’s happening to the NHS and the attitudes that are being encouraged in an effort to sow division between us.

26 01 2014
An nhs worker in the south of england

Clive Peedell is right when he talks about health care spending being a fiscal multiplier, but more than increase healthcare spending, the spending could be smarter. The NHS continues to operate on a system of competition between Trusts rather than collaboration. One type of collaboration would be for trusts in need of capital spends on high ticket items (MRIs and CBCT machines) to make their need known to a central procurer. That central body could put out a robust tender process and get a larger number of items at a reduced cost…rather than making individual health care trusts rely upon their own (inexperienced and poorly resourced) procurement and finance teams to scrabble around a less competitively priced market.

26 01 2014
Michael-Israel Jarvis

All power to you, Mr Hound.
Well done, and let me tell you I’m delighted to discover this about you – before I just thought you were quite funny. :)

(Ok, very funny)

26 01 2014
Bill

Bob on…

26 01 2014
New Lord of the Web

wow

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