Thursday, 22 November 2012

Katie Hopkins: Idiot Or Genius?

Katie Hopkins was prominent on BBC outlets yesterday.

Not heard of her? Well, she was once a contestant on The Apprentice and pops up occasionally with controversial views. Her website describes her as partly a social commentator, and I think her appearance on The Daily Politics can be placed quite firmly in that category.

Have a watch of this in case you missed it.

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I'll wager there are many of you bouncing off the walls like a Tasmanian Devil after seeing that, eh? It's another moment to set alongside Jane Deville-Almond's from 2009. Remember it?

Longrider and Captain Ranty are certainly spitting blood, and I can understand why. However, I am always personally quietly ecstatic when this proposal is pitched as it quickly and efficiently cuts through much of the bullshit we have to suffer from politicians and public health 'experts' on an almost daily basis now.

You see, once you shift the NHS very slightly down the road of charging for certain behaviours, the entire point of the NHS is threatened. Politicians are well aware that there is no official contract with the public on NHS healthcare, despite their charging us for it for decades. National Insurance was originally brought in to cover the cost and - even though it is not hypothecated these days, instead going into one big taxation pot - that's exactly how the public view their "stamp".

There would be uproar if charges began to be levied without anything done about NI payments. In fact, it is quite feasible that a case could be taken through to the European Court (because Westminster would fight it every step of the way) demanding refunds of taxes paid if the assumption of free healthcare was denied carte-blanche for sections of the population, as Hopkins' plan would demand. Just one successful judgement, and the vast level of PPI repayment claims would be pocket money by comparison and the NHS would be bankrupt overnight, if not the country itself.

Just the thought is enough to give sweat-inducing nightmares to politicians of any persuasion. Hence why, in the clip above, Philip Hammond and Emily Thornberry were so incredibly eager to knock the idea on the head as swiftly as humanly possible. Party politics disappear faster than Julian Assange near a foreign embassy once a threat to their budgets rears its ugly head.

These are the same people who have been pumping out this 'cost to the NHS' shit for a couple of decades, yet when Hopkins takes that line to its logical conclusion, they are terrified! They know full well that  their bent figures make up one of the biggest and most prevalent lies ever told in Westminster or beyond and, as such, are scared witless of any proposal like this.

If Katie's suggestion gains traction, we could quite conceivably see the hilarious situation where politicians who have been telling the unhealthy how costly they are for years, instantly U-turn and start arguing the opposite (and true) case that the healthy are more expensive. Can you imagine the fun we could have with that?

Now, I want to make it quite clear that Jane Deville-Almond's view is still evil by its very nature, simply for the fact that she is a dedicated and declared fan of the NHS, as well as benefiting herself from NHS funding. She really means it.

But with Hopkins, it's not as clear.

So we have a decision to make. Is Hopkins being serious, in which case she is a jaw-dropping incompetent? Or is she playing a game to highlight how the NHS - or, more specifically, the tax-sponging public health industry which profits from it - is an absurd contradiction in terms and should be changed dramatically from its current form? Which, of course, then makes her a very clever bunny.

At least one anti-smoking 'tobacco costs the NHS zillions' bore was very quick to make his mind up. He's very scared about how this might affect his livelihood.

So, Katie Hopkins. Idiot or genius? You decide.


Ivan_Denisovich said...

I think referencing the Danish fat tax some time after news that it is being repealed sways me in favour of idiot. But then again, that is so ill informed and stupid that it could be genius.

Personally I avoid the apprentice for many reasons, the principle one being that the contestants are all so obnoxious that I fail to see why any sane employer would hire any of them.

c777 said...

I would actually like to opt out of the NHS anyhow.
I reckon my 1600 a year saved would get me a better service privately.

Neal Asher said...

Just thought this might interest you (not regarding this article): a long-term tobacco user has a roughly twofold lower chance of developing Parkinson's disease.

JonathanBagley said...

Just been on the 5Live phone in. I think she's both mad and not very intelligent. Also a deluded attention seeker. Good point the presenter raised about horse riding. Professor Nutt did the country a favour.

RB said...

If Katie's suggestion gains traction - what from her blog? 2 coments on the entire blog - and read a couple of posts igf you have a strong stomach. What a vile woman.

Katie Hopkins. Idiot or genius?
Might I suggest another option? Arsehole.

RB said...

HI c777. It definitely would.
And dont forget that if you were allowed to have invested your NI pension contributions yourself you would get a pension about 5 times the size of the state pension.

RB said...

Did you all miss it? Last sentence - about those who "deserve" treatment. As always its a judgment, entirely subjective, in this case from a nutter.

Dick_Puddlecote said...

That's a third alternative, definitely. She could just enjoy winding people up, like during her appearance on Question Time.

Dick_Puddlecote said...

Most definitely!

Dick_Puddlecote said...

Yes, the fat tax comment was the one which started me thinking that her opinion might not be as straightforward, or transparent, as it looks.

Junican said...

I don't think that she is joking. We notice the "WE must....", "WE allow..." Classic Zealot speak. Did we notice the assumption throughout that being a bit plump, having few beers on a Saturday night or enjoying tobacco are inevitably the reason for ill-health and damage?

Dick_Puddlecote said...

Perhaps. Or it could be mimicry, she has been tweeting today about the "bloated" and "75 years out-of-date" NHS. I still think it's possible she's using the health lobby's arguments against the health system.

john miller said...

The trouble with zealots is that they always think themselves exempt from their religions.

I hate to say it guys and gals, but both of you are way over the weight limits you have convinced the NHS to proscribe.

Life's a shit if you take it seriously, innit?

Legiron said...

If she's an idiot, she might well prove to be our useful idiot.

Briar Tuck said...

Genius or idiot?

Well, what she said on your posted clip was clearly idiotic as it made the assumption that only those who made 'poor lifestyle choices' got ill in a particular way.

She also clumsily sidestepped the 'who decides?' question, already, I suspect, regretting the decision to appear on the show, which was probably made in an attempt to raise or maintain her public profile (unless the appearance fee was irresistible, which I doubt).

But take a look at the 'showreel' on her site, and it's hard (for me at any rate) to take issue with any of what she comes out with (particularly on Statutory Maternity Leave) -- she certainly isn't your typical Righteous.

The central point behind the NHS is that people don't get ill deliberately, and if you do get ill, it's regrettable bad luck. The NHS will therefore do its considerable best to fix you up, usually successfully. That's its prime function, and all else is pretty irrelevant. It's not, and never should be, a commercial organisation because an individual's need for it is involuntary. It's a service which is there to be used if required, and we all pay something towards it, with smokers and drinkers already paying disproportionately more.

Tony said...

I have no doubt she is fascinating like that Austrian leader who was also an inigma a very dangerous one! Beware this sort of person they are hiding a moral detachment from normal human beings. She didn't finish Sandhurst.