are prof’s criticisms really for scottish labour? is this another big fib about discharges?

In the Herald this morning from young Bol:

A LEADING economist has labelled plans for a national care services to halt widespread strain at the height of the pandemic “a distraction” – instead calling for focus on properly funding the sector. Almost half of all Covid-19 deaths in Scotland have taken place in care homes – while the Scottish Government has been repeatedly asked to clarify why elderly patients were moved from hospitals to care homes without having negative test results for the virus at the outset of the crisis.

I’ll come back to that foul-smelling long-discredited, Labour-sourced, wrong insert about the hospital discharges, but first:

Scottish Labour and the Tories too, have been going on forever about not delaying investigations just because the SNP Government wants to concentrate of the pandemic. They’ve got their way. The First Minister has done what they asked. The independent review can get on with it off-to-the side. Happy now?

Why is a leading academic not happy now?

Has he not been appointed to join the review? Not leading enough? Not international?

As for the hospital discharges, the complete lack of evidence that they caused the outbreaks and the strong evidence that cost-cutting corporations did it it with the over-use of agency staff in over-sized care homes is ‘in.’ It’s here:

9 thoughts on “are prof’s criticisms really for scottish labour? is this another big fib about discharges?

  1. This blog from Common Weal hits several nails on the head –

    “Let’s unpack this a little. First, the argument that how to fund social care and the ownership structure of the sector are separate issues doesn’t hold up under scrutiny. A 2017 Competition & Market Authority study found the large care providers can expect profit margins of 21 per cent. That’s billions in profits which leaves UK social care every year to go to investors and shareholders, which could have been spent on improving services. Add to that the costs to the public purse of having to clean up after financially unstable entities owned by private equity firms collapse under the weight of their debt, as has been the case with Southern Cross in 2011 and Four Seasons last year. Finally, the cost in executive pay among private providers is something that a National Care Service would not be burdened with: the CEO of UK’s biggest care provider, HC-One, earns £800,000 a year.”


    1. Playing devil’s advocate, the Tory counter is that private companies offer more efficient service affording higher remuneration for CEOs and the lesson is to privatise more because the public sector is “inefficient”. This follows a tried and trusted pattern of asset stripping in play since Dr Beeching.

      One of the more in-depth reports on private Care-Homes which was illuminating (sorry but can’t recall which publication) unravelled a spider’s web of (linked on paper) separate companies charging massive rentals for the properties, loan repayments, etc., and an alarmingly frequent registration in tax havens. It’s a cash cow for investors, sanctioned and indeed promoted by the UK Government.

      Although I’ve no doubt these tax haven cash pumps arrangements are not the general rule, their dominance in the market and the investment vehicles involved in them should worry tax-payers as ultimately we are paying for it.
      Should it come under threat they have the funds to deploy high-priced lawyers, call in favours from the media, or lean on politicians, or ultimately declare bankruptcy and vanish leaving Joe Public to resolve it.
      Heads you lose, tails you lose, little wonder the Tories are terrified of “level playing fields”.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Haven’t read the Herald for several years now . Used to buy it for my husband but decided it had had its day in March of this year . The man who loved to have a newspaper for after work has not missed it since . And I don’t waste my money on a heap of misleading, arrogant trash . Only when making paper mache models with my granchildren I miss it.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Richard Murphy’s Tax Research blog is indeed excellent as are the btl contributions (for the most part) too!

      Although not principally concerned with Scotland, insights offered on monetary and fiscal policy, Green New Deal issues etc. are highly relevant to Scotland and especially in case-making for independence.

      Liked by 2 people

  3. National care services should be provided by the community–State, council or charity—there should NEVER be a profit motive.
    In the private sector—- “streamlining, cutting at the edges, efficiency savings” etc, are another way of making money at a cost to humans.

    Independent oversight with teeth to prosecute.

    Liked by 1 person

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