Injured senior citizen waits FOUR HOURS for an ambulance — in the rain
A stricken pensioner who fractured his kneecap after slipping on a wet step was made to wait four hours in the rain before an ambulance arrived to take him to hospital.
Frank Miles, 69, was only kept dry thanks to the kindness of passers by who shielded him from the downpour by fashioning a makeshift shelter with their own umbrellas.
In a desperate bid to find help for the retired civil servant, they dialed 999 six times but were told there were more important emergencies to tend to – and one operator even hung up to take another call.
Mr Miles, from Magor, South Wales, had slipped on rain-soaked decking as he left a rotary club meeting in nearby Newport, leaving him unable to move for the pain and risk of further damage to his leg.
He was left lying on the floor outside the Waterloo Hotel in Pill, Newport, for three hours and 35 minutes with a fractured left kneecap.
Rotary club members and hotel workers covered him in blankets, propped his head up on a pillow, and supported his leg on a cardboard box.
Three hours and 20 minutes after the first emergency call was made, a “rapid response” vehicle arrived at 5:30pm. The paramedic apologised to Mr Miles, and fifteen minutes later he was taken to hospital by an ambulance.
Bob Evans, owner of the Waterloo Hotel, said: ‘I would have picked him up and taken him in my car but they said it’s too risky. It’s so frustrating that we can’t do anything.’
Dr Malcolm Bright, a former GP, made two of the 999 calls, and was hung-up on the second time after being told a more urgent call needed to be taken. The first time he called they said that there was no ambulance available. He said: ‘I think the paramedic service is wonderful but this has got to be a terrible system. Something needs to change and something needs to be improved. ‘It’s frightening that the ambulance service can’t cope at this time of year.’
A Welsh Ambulance Service spokeswoman said: ‘We very much regret the time taken to respond to this call, which was received during a period of high call volume in the area.
‘Whilst we cannot discuss individual patient details, we will be looking into this incident, and would encourage the patient or family involved to contact us directly should they wish to discuss their concerns.’
It’s raining, it’s pouring, that’ll be the global warming…
Background: Britain has just had what they call a “drought” (it still rains in British droughts) and the doomsters made the most of it. But in accord with the normal fluctuations of British weather Britain is now having huge downpours of rain, with resultant floods in some places
By Richard Littlejohn, commenting from England
Bill Giles, the nation’s favourite weatherman was in no doubt. Britain was burning up. Within 20 years, Dundee would soon be as balmy as Berkshire. France would be virtually uninhabitable, as the Dordogne turned into a desert.
So convinced was Bill by the imminent threat of global warming that he was ripping up his English country garden in Oxfordshire and planting olive trees instead. That was back in 1996.
To be fair to Bill, he wasn’t the only one suckered by the great global warming scam, although as a qualified meteorologist he should have known better. For the past 15 years we have been bombarded with ever more hysterical predictions about the momentous effect ‘man-made’ global warming would have on Britain.
There would be grapevines growing in the Pennines; the Midlands would resemble a Grapes of Wrath-style dustbowl; and in Torquay, giant wildebeest would sweep majestically across the veldt . . .
Unfortunately for these alarmists, the weather has continued to have other ideas. If the warmists were right, the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee would have been blessed with continuous, scorching sunshine and half the country wouldn’t be under three feet of water right now.
Britain’s weather has always been unpredictable. You might have thought they’d have got the message when snow fell in October 2008 on the very day the ‘Climate Change’ Bill was being debated in the House of Commons.
But, then again, you might just as well try to convince an Islamist suicide bomber that if he’s expecting to be greeted in Paradise by 72 virgins, there’s an outside possibility he may be disappointed.
G.K. Chesterton wrote memorably that when people stop believing in God, they don’t believe in nothing, they believe in anything. Never has that been more true than in the case of those who worship at the altar of global warming. Even though temperatures peaked in 1998 and the world has been getting colder ever since, the warmists refuse to be deflected from their conviction that the planet is in meltdown.
When it became apparent that temperatures were actually falling, they simply changed the name of their religion from ‘global warming’ to ‘climate change’. The cooler weather was merely a ‘blip’, they declared. Keep planting the olive trees.
Those of us who had the audacity to pour scorn on their new orthodoxy were smeared as ‘deniers’ — no better than Nazi apologists who maintain the Holocaust never happened.
The virulence of their character assassination merely serves to underline the desperation of their dishonest cause. All evidence to the contrary is discarded. Try pointing out that we had ice fairs on the Thames hundreds of years ago and that Britain experienced a well-documented warm period in medieval times and you can expect a torrent of self-righteous abuse.
They’re not interested in history, they’re only interested in the here-and-now, which is why the warmists have no sense of perspective and will brook no argument.
Thus, the recent drought was proof positive that the world will soon run out of water. Yet the fact that it hasn’t stopped raining since is dismissed as statistically irrelevant.
There is, of course, no accounting for any kind of religious fanatic. They are immune to reason and consider any heretic who challenges their sacred tenets to be fundamentally evil.
The central conceit is that everything bad which happens in the world is man-made and only man can do something about it. They refuse to acknowledge that there are forces bigger than themselves at work.
This is abject nonsense. Whenever there has been a man-made disaster, nature has been quick to clean up.
After Saddam Hussein flooded the Persian Gulf with crude oil, we were told the pollution would last two million years. It was all gone in six months.
Similarly, when the BP pipeline burst in the Gulf of Mexico, it was billed as a catastrophe of biblical proportions which would wipe out an entire ecology. Two years later, tourists are back on the beaches and the seafood restaurants are doing a roaring trade.
Taking advantage: Businesses have spotted a lucrative opportunity to cash in on everything from useless War Of The Worlds wind turbines to state-subsidised solar panels
Taking advantage: Businesses have spotted a lucrative opportunity to cash in on everything from useless War Of The Worlds wind turbines to state-subsidised solar panels
If the great global warming lie was confined to the usual weird beards and dope-addled hippies left over from the Woodstock Generation, none of this would matter much. But ‘climate change’ has been appropriated by big business and big government for their own ends.
Politicians quickly seized on it as a way to expand their own empires, pass new laws and levy an exciting new range of fines and taxes. Here in Britain, Westminster remains in thrall to the green lobby, setting insane targets for carbon reduction, which will destroy what’s left of our manufacturing industry and lead to a serious energy shortage within a few years.
Despite the financial crisis and unsustainable levels of government spending and borrowing, the public sector continues to hire ‘climate change’ advisers and auditors on salaries of up to £65,000.
In the private sector, businesses have spotted a lucrative opportunity to cash in on everything from useless War Of The Worlds wind turbines to state-subsidised solar panels. They are cheered on by the BBC and the Met Office, which continues to get the weather forecast spectacularly wrong while concentrating on its new role combating ‘climate change’. Meanwhile, back on Planet Earth, it’s Flaming June in Britain and it’s still raining.
What, then, became of Bill Giles, one of the original prophets of global warming doom? If you watch daytime TV, you may have spotted Bill advertising a home equity release scheme on behalf of a finance company.
Is he planting olive trees in his garden in Oxfordshire? Er, no. He’s playing golf on a time-share complex somewhere hot.
On the firm’s website, Bill writes: ‘I was delighted when they invited me to appear in their new TV advert, particularly when they offered to fly me to Spain to avoid the cold, wet UK weather!’
Be fair, though, Bill has been proved right about one thing. Yesterday the weather in Dundee was exactly the same as the weather in Berkshire — a balmy 53f (12c) and raining.
She Warned Us
One of many things left out of the film “The Iron Lady” was Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher’s warnings on the effects a single currency would have on the economies of European nations. Thatcher’s premonitions place her among the great political prophets of all time.
On the single currency, Peter Oborne, a columnist for the London Daily Telegraph, writes, “Mrs. Thatcher foresaw with painful clarity the devastation it was bound to cause. Her autobiography records how she warned John Major, her euro-friendly chancellor of the exchequer, that the single currency could not accommodate both industrial powerhouses such as Germany and smaller countries such as Greece.” Thatcher predicted the currency would harm poorer countries because it would “devastate their inefficient economies.”
The idea of a European Union modeled on the United States was unlikely to succeed from the beginning because, unlike American states, European countries lack a common bond. There are different languages, different histories (Colorado, for example, never invaded Nebraska) and different religions, including for six decades, atheism imposed by communist dictators in Eastern Europe.
How can a European “E Pluribus Unum” be forged out of that?
BBC reporter Laurence Knight stated the obvious when he summed up Spain’s financial disaster by noting its citizens during the relatively brief “good times” of the 1990s spent much more on housing and other material goods than they could afford. Sound familiar? Living within one’s means was a lesson forgotten by individuals and governments, whose main preoccupation — in Europe and America — has been giving people what they want in hopes they’ll re-elect the politicians who dispensed the goodies. That formula has contributed to an unemployment rate in Spain approaching 25 percent. Spain last weekend was approved for a bailout of up to $125 billion from the eurozone, the fourth country to ask for a loan since Europe’s debt crisis began.
Knight wrote last month, “Unfortunately for Spain, it shares a currency with Germany. That means Spain can no longer simply devalue the peseta — something that would automatically make its workers cheaper and more competitive in the world. There is no peseta to devalue.”
As columnist William Rees-Mogg wrote last Friday in The Times, “So far as British opinion goes, Europe is seen as a cost to be borne rather than a loyalty to be cherished.”
After all this, the “conservative” British government, still ignoring Thatcher’s warnings, is proposing a referendum that, if approved by voters, would move Britain closer to the European Union. The Daily Telegraph reported, “EU leaders are discussing moves toward more integrated financial, fiscal and even political systems among the 17 countries that use the euro.”
Are they mad? Why would Britain want to associate itself with governments and economies (and people) that have behaved so irresponsibly? During the Cold War, Britain did not try to integrate its economy with that of the Soviet Union. In Europe, union has not brought unity, nor can it. Does Britain want to share more of the continent’s misery, or should it try instead to point its people and the eurozone states to real change with freer and more empowered individuals, not government, leading the way?
Again, Margaret Thatcher was right when she said, “A democratic Europe of nation states could be a force for liberty, enterprise and open trade. But, if creating a United States of Europe overrides these goals, the new Europe will be one of subsidy and protection.”
Most profoundly, Thatcher warned, “We have not successfully rolled back the frontiers of the state in Britain, only to see them re-imposed at a European level with a European super-state exercising a new dominance from Brussels.”
That is precisely the seductive siren call the “conservative” British government now hears. It is a call, that, if answered “yes” by voters will wreck Britain’s struggling economy and potentially cause it to go down the drain along with most of the other economies on the continent.
Today’s politicians can’t pretend they were not warned.
Anger of Christian GP accused of discussing his faith with patient as his accuser is heard in secret
A doctor facing disciplinary action for discussing his faith in Jesus with a patient yesterday blamed ‘anti-Christian’ bias after his accuser was allowed to give evidence in secret.
Dr Richard Scott has spent two years under threat of an official warning after the ‘suicidal’ patient’s mother complained about the conversation.
Yesterday a General Medical Council disciplinary hearing agreed to go ahead with the case against him, even though the unnamed patient refused to attend.
Instead, the patient will be allowed to give evidence over the telephone with the Press and public barred from being present.
Last night Dr Scott accused the GMC of displaying bias against Christians, while his legal adviser said it was another example of ‘over-zealous victimisation of Christians by public bodies’.
‘I do not feel like I’m getting a fair trial,’ the father-of-three said outside the hearing. ‘It feels like it’s become almost like a secret court or secret justice which is outrageous.
‘Now I can’t see my accuser. We can’t see his body languages or expressions which is crucial for fair justice.’
Last year Dr Scott said he was ‘disgusted’ by the GMC’s stance when it agreed to continuing pursuing the case against him when the patient first refused to turn up to give evidence. ‘The GMC have relentlessly pursued me and are determined to put me on trial,’ the 51-year-old former missionary said yesterday. ‘First he didn’t turn up last year, now this. ‘There definitely seems like there is an anti-Christian agenda here.
‘This case should be thrown out, but now we have got to this outrageous situation where the whole thing is surrounded by secrecy and anonymity.’ He is taking legal advice on applying for judicial review of the GMC decision to accept the patient’s evidence by phone.
The case is the latest in a series of incidents in which hospitals and medical authorities have been accused of acting to suppress any expression of Christian beliefs.
Dr Scott spoke to the 24-year-old patient, described as suicidal and vulnerable, at the end of a consultation at the Bethesda Medical Centre in Margate, Kent in August 2010.
The practice declares its Christian orientation and informs prospective patients that they may be offered spiritual guidance as well as medical help.
He is said to have suggested to the patient that they might discuss religion.
The patient is believed to have replied ‘go for it’ and Dr Scott told him about the ‘additional help which he might derive from Jesus’ and added that he might feel better if he prayed, as the patient’s own religion did not appear to be giving him comfort.
The patient’s mother, who had recommended Dr Scott to her son, later complained.
Yesterday an investigation committee of the GMC, sitting in Manchester, agreed to hear the patient’s evidence in private over the telephone.
Committee chairman Dr Christopher Hanning said the decision had been made after considering the man’s physical and mental condition.
In a statement afterwards, Dr Scott said: ‘I, and every GP, should be outraged at this decision by our professional body.’ He said thousands of doctors who carried out one-to-one consultations with patients every day ought to have the right to have them cross-examined if they made a complaint.
Andrea Williams, of the Christian Legal Centre, which has backed Dr Scott’s case, added: ‘I am appalled by what I’m witnessing today. ‘The GMC is convening a secret court so that it can pursue disciplinary proceedings against a Christian doctor with an unblemished professional record, despite the complainant refusing to even turn up.
‘This is unheard of and many doctors will be deeply concerned with the way this is being handled by the GMC. ‘This is another example of the over-zealous victimisation of Christians by public bodies. Something has to change, and soon.’ The committee has the power to give Dr Scott a warning, not to strike him off.
Number of British schools judged to be failing increases by 50% as inspectors get tougher
The number of failing schools has leapt 50 per cent under a back-to-basics inspection regime. One secondary school in seven has been branded ‘inadequate’ by Ofsted because of poor teaching and under-achievement by pupils.
Nearly one primary in ten has also been given the watchdog’s lowest rating.
The schools were inspected under a tough regime introduced in January to stop weak head teachers bumping up ratings by concentrating on ‘peripheral’ areas such as pupil well-being, spiritual development and community cohesion.
After Coalition reforms, schools are now judged on just four key areas – teaching, pupil results, behaviour and leadership.
Figures on 1,964 inspections in the first three months of the year show more than half of secondaries – 53 per cent – missed out on a ‘good’ rating. Thirty-nine per cent were merely ‘satisfactory’ – and considered to need improvement – and 14 per cent were ‘inadequate’.
Nearly half the inadequate schools were put into immediate ‘special measures’, forcing them to take action to improve or face closure. The rest were given ‘notice to improve’, requiring them to agree a schedule for significant progress to avoid a ‘special measures’ verdict.
The picture contrasts with inspections during the last three months of the old regime, when 9 per cent of secondaries and 6 per cent of primaries were judged inadequate.
Just 6 per cent of secondaries and 5 per cent of primaries inspected since January were given the highest rating of ‘outstanding’, with 41 per cent of secondaries and 51 per cent of primaries judged ‘good’. Thirty-four per cent of primaries were rated satisfactory.
The latest results are partly down to more frequent visits to under-performing schools.
But Ofsted said inspectors were also paying closer attention to the core work of schools, ‘spending more time in classrooms observing the quality of teaching and looking in detail at the difference schools are making for pupils’.
Previously, schools were judged against an array of more than 20 politically correct targets, such as ‘the extent to which pupils adopt healthy lifestyles’.
Heads were required to rate themselves against the targets by filling in a ‘self-evaluation’ form.
Pressure on schools will intensify in September with further reforms to inspections being ushered in by Ofsted chief Sir Michael Wilshaw.
The satisfactory grading will be rebadged as ‘requiring improvement’ and outstanding judgments will be harder to achieve.
Russell Hobby, general secretary of the National Association of Head Teachers, said: ‘We are now in our sixth inspection regime, with a seventh due this September . ‘Every change introduces new mistakes as inadequately trained and ill-prepared inspectors make hasty judgments.’
Nick Gibb, the schools minister, said: ‘All schools should be providing an outstanding education.’
Headlight flashers pulled up in Britain too
For years, drivers who pass a police speed trap have flashed their headlights at oncoming cars to warn them to slow down. But this spirit of friendly co-operation could become a thing of the past after one police force caught almost as many drivers who flashed their lights as actual speeders.
In an anti-speeding campaign, Lancashire Police handed out 23 tickets for breaking the limit – and 20 for ‘misuse of headlights’.
Critics said it was a money-making exercise that would erode public support for the police, while the AA said imposing the £30 fines created a ‘legal and moral minefield’.
But the police insisted that warning other drivers of a speed trap was ‘a dangerous practice’. Lancashire traffic officer PC Antony Gray said: ‘Potentially they are putting lives at risk. ‘Flashing your lights at someone may make them slow down for a second, but it will not make them change their habits.
‘Speeding motorists need to be spoken to so they will seriously consider their irresponsible driving.’
However, Sean Corker, of the Drivers’ Alliance, said motorists had to be told they were in a speed-check area, adding: ‘I don’t think there’s a difference between a road sign and a person giving a warning.’
The purge on drivers who flashed their headlights was condemned as a ‘legal and moral minefield’ by the AA. The motoring organisation said the move is wide open to legal challenge and fears innocent motorists could be targeted for warning other drivers to slow down.
A court challenge is needed. Cops will get away with anything if you let them.