Tuesday, 30 September 2008

Amazing Grace....

A couple of weeks ago I ended up in the emergency room at the local hospital. I feel okay now. However I decided it was a good idea to have the problem that sent me there looked at more in-depth. So I agreed with the ER docs that I needed a referral to a specialist. A day or so later after I was out of my morphine hangover I rang the specialist who was based in a public hospital. They said ‘we’ll get back to you’. Today I got a later saying ‘you have been referred on to be referred to the specialist to see if he wants to see you.’ Uh huh…

I’m not sure what it is like in other countries. I expect it is the same - but in Australia the public hospital system is groaning under the pressure of sick people. To get into a public hospital unless you are an emergency is pretty damn hard. I wasn’t really surprised by the ‘hurry up and wait letter.’ So I will wander off to fairy floss (my pixie like new age doctor) next week and get a referral to a private hospital. Unlike some countries, medical insurance is not built into our wages. We are paid well and if you want private medical you buy it yourself. I have it. I will use it. I will get in for treatment faster than those who don’t. No, it’s not about being lucky as I had to pay for it. I earned it. It’s about governments wasting money on frigging stupid things like salary rises for politicians, high priced lunches for anyone’s arse they want to kiss, money wasted on useless crap like huge black public (or maybe pubic) sculptures that no one likes or understands, its about significant money given as grants to time wasters who want to write about their big left toe because ‘it’s art man’, it’s about playing for the British frigging royal family when they haul their blue blooded arses down under for a holiday, it’s about politicians jetting all over the world to study the surface of roads used by the North Eastern Mongolian tribesman and how that relates to Upper Kumbucca West in the outback, it’s about wanker parliamentarians who whine that their food in the Parliament House dining room (which is free to them) must be better than the normal Aussie’s, it’s about politicians jetting in to watch a football grand finals when they could have stayed at home and watched it on TV like everyone else….and I could go on and on.

The point is, like many countries, Australia has politicians and people in public service who should not be crossing the road by themselves let alone running a country. I don’t begrudge paying for health insurance. That’s my choice and it’s the way it is. I begrudge the waste of my tax payer dollars spent on crap when there are people in pain or dying because the thousands - millions – of dollars are wasted on things like providing what politicians consider a sub standard lunch each day that could have been spent putting people into the hospital system. Make a bloody sandwich at home and take it to work like everyone else does. I believe George Orwell, in Animal Farm, summed it up nicely -

Go ahead: Live with abandon. Be outrageous at any age. What are you saving your best self for?