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November 24, 2007


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Paul Flynn

Two out three ain't bad Harold- as someone once said.
From an Australian point of view, they will never be a fully grown-up independent nation until they have their own head of state. It was not long ago that an elected premier was dismissed by the Queen's representative there.
It's possible in fully independent countries for citizens to become head of state. Not in Australia. I believe they will reverse the 1999 decision.


I am for action against climate change (or we'd better say: to minimize the effects of climate change), I am for the withdrawl of the Australian troops from Iraq, but I am equally for the Monarchy in Australia.
We need this institution more than ever. And better than talking about abolishing it, we should think how we can use the Monarchy and "green" Prince Charles.

Paul Flynn

Thanks for your kind words Valleylad.
I am not trying draw any great lessons. All I want to do to rec ord my own subjective experience as an NHS patient for the first time for 50 years. There is a mixture of emotions following my stay. Gratitude is the main one.

I see reports on the hospitals in Gwent - good and bad. Ann Drysdales's book was about Nevill Hall.


Good to see you're well again Paul, you'd be sorely missed - a very rare voice of sanity in the political world!

I'd be careful about generalising too much however. Hospitals vary greatly, I've experience of three local hospitals - Nevill Hall, UHW Cardiff, and the Royal Gwent. I can't praise the first two too highly, yet have nothing but contempt for the last.
I think the WAG have sound health policies, their focus on chronic illness rather than "waiting lists" makes sense, however we are still many many miles from a first class health service. When we can compete with France & Germany I would be satisfied, when we have a similar service to that enjoyed by US residents with Federal govt. health insurance I'll be happier!

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