Thursday, June 20, 2013
More of that GREAT multiculturalism in Britain
Aras Hussein appears in court accused of beheading 18-year-old woman then attacking five people while he was being treated in hospital. I kinda think I can guess Mr Hussein's religion. "Aras" appears to be mainly a Turkish given name
A 20-year-old man has appeared in court charged with the murder of a young woman who was beheaded in a knife attack. Aras Hussein appeared at Sheffield Magistrates' Court today accused of murdering Reema Ramzan, 18.
Miss Ramzan, who was from the Darnall area of Sheffield, died on June 4 following an incident at a property on Herries Road, in the city.
Detectives said she suffered a severe knife attack resulting in fatal injuries, including the severing of her head.
Hussein, of Sheffield, is also charged with assaulting five people at Sheffield’s Northern General Hospital, where he was taken following his arrest by police.
He stood in the glass-fronted dock today flanked by two uniformed police officers. Sporting full beard and short, dark hair, he wore a navy blue T-shirt and spoke only to confirm his personal details and that he understood the charge.
Hussein was remanded in custody following a 10 minute hearing and told he will appear again a Sheffield Crown Court on Thursday.
Miss Ramzan’s family issued a statement through police today.
It said: 'Following the death of Reema, a loving and caring daughter and sister, we as a family would like to pass on our heartfelt thanks for all of the messages and support we have received from our extended family, friends, people in the community where we live and especially from the staff and students at Sheffield College.
'These messages and support have given us strength and helped us to try to deal with the nightmare we have found ourselves in.
'As a family, our thoughts now turn to being able to bury Reema and to let her finally rest in peace.
And there are female multiculturalists in Britain too
Shocking picture that 'shows two on-duty carers asleep in £580 a week home for the elderly after turning off elderly patients' alarms so they wouldn't be disturbed'
This picture shows the moment two carers were apparently found asleep after allegedly unplugging the alarms of elderly patients so that they would not be disturbed.
Titilayo Ajala and Henretta Offae are accused of falling asleep during their 9pm to 7am night-shift at Westlands care home in Olney, near Milton Keynes.
Aylesbury Crown Court was told that care home manager Salina Ballard and a colleague took the picture during an unannounced 3am check.
Ajala, 56, from Milton Keynes, and Offae, 41, from Derby, deny 19 counts of ill treatment or neglect of a person who lacks capacity, between January 1, 2011 and August 19, 2011.
A jury was shown this picture of two care home assistants
Shocking: A jury was shown this picture of two care home assistants Titilayo Ajala and Henretta Offae apparently asleep on the night-shift after allegedly unplugging the alarms of the elderly and infirm people
The prosecution alleges the defendants left their patients - aged from 75 years to 100 years - unable to call for help.
The prosecution told the jury the pair disabled alarms and put extra incontinence pads on the residents, so they could sleep and would not have to change their soiled garments.
No paperwork was filled out, which they were required to do in a night log, the jury was told.
The care home assistants were allegedly discovered fast asleep in lounge armchairs on August 19 with a fan heater running by their care home manager Salina Ballard.
The home, run by St Andrews Care Home Ltd, charges £580 pounds per week per patient.
Mr Moore told the hearing that mats were placed at the side of the residents' beds which would set off an alarm if they fell.
However, the prosecution says 11 of the mats had been disabled so if the residents had fallen in the night, no alarm would have sounded.
Prosecutor Neil Moore told the jury: 'The prosecution case, in a nutshell, is that when they worked together during [their shifts] they would disable alarm systems, which would otherwise alert them if one of these elderly residents fell out of their beds.
'They would pad the residents up with extra incontinence pads or place waterproof sheets on the bed so they didn't need to be changed.
'Basically, the two defendants would then tuck themselves up in warm clothing in front of a television in one of the lounges and have a night's sleep. 'Therefore, the prosecution says, putting the welfare of the elderly residents at risk.'
The 17th Century building caters for high risk elderly people who suffer from dementia or are unable to look after themselves.
The trial heard today that the carers were allowed a 45-minute break, but not at the same time. Mr Moore said it was considered 'gross misconduct' if they slept.
Offae, who was known by the name Mapel Mensah, of St Chad's Road, Derby, worked at the home from October 24, 2010, and Ajala, of Fishermead, Milton Keynes, joined on August 9, 2009.
Mr Moore said after Mrs Ballard and Ms May arrived at the home, they took it in turns to check on the residents, before taking a picture of the two defendants half an hour later.
The prosecutor told the court that when Ms Ajala woke up she said 'My God Salina, what are you doing here?'
He added: 'Mrs Ballard replied by telling her she had been watching her sleep for half an hour and informed her some of the fall pads had been unplugged.
'Mrs Ajala said: "Salina, Barbara, you have to forgive me."
'Ms Offae said: "I hold my hands up, you caught me. What we have done is inexcusable". They had been caught red-handed and Mrs Offae at that time accepted it.'
Both were dismissed from their jobs that day and were later arrested by police. Both women denied the allegations when they were quizzed by detectives.
Mr Moore said: 'They neglected each and every resident. They went to sleep, 11 pressure mat alarms had been disabled so if any of these had fallen in the night they wouldn't have been found until the defendants decided to wake up.
'None of the residents had the more absorbent night pads on, they hadn't been changed since the afternoon shift and not at midnight when they should have been.
'Some of residents were fitted with two incontinence pads which should never have been the case. Some had pads shoved underneath them. 'Pads were soaked with urine and in one case faeces.'
Giving evidence Mrs Ballard said sleeping on the job was 'absolutely forbidden.'
She said: 'It amounts to gross misconduct. We're responsible for our residents' well-being. They (the defendants) were there to do a job to protect them (the residents).'
Mrs Ballard refuted suggestions by the defence barristers that the defendants were not asleep and were dozing or 'resting their eyes' during a break.
'They were asleep,' she said. 'I was standing there for half an hour and I took a photo. I stood watching them sleeping.'
British Guides drop God and country – but keep the Queen
The Girl Guides are to drop references to “God” and “country” from their traditional pledge but are to retain a public expression of allegiance to the Queen.
In one of the biggest changes in the organisation’s 103-year history, the promise to “love my God” is to be replaced with a more individualistic pledge to “be true to myself” and to “develop my beliefs”.
And a patriotic commitment to serving their country is to become one to the “community” in the oath taken by Brownies and Guides when they join the organisation.
But in a consultation which attracted almost 44,000 responses Guides made clear that they wanted to retain a public expression of allegiance to the Queen, who is also their patron.
A vow to “help other people” and to “do my best” are also to remain in the new promise, which will take effect from September.
It is not the first time that the organisation, founded in 1909 under the leadership of Agnes Baden-Powell, sister of Robert Baden-Powell, the creator of the Scouting movement, has altered the wording of its traditional promise over the last century but it is by far the most radical change.
The rethink followed the appointment of the group’s new chief executive, Julie Bentley, the former head of The Family Planning Association, who described the Guides as “the ultimate feminist organisation”.
Gill Slocombe, the Chief Guide, said the changes would make the promise less “confusing” and easier for the organisation’s 550,000 members to take with sincerity.
“I honestly think the Baden-Powells would have approved, they were so free thinking and good at thinking in terms of people’s needs,” she said.
“I don’t know whether it is radical I just think it is fantastic that our members have come up with a promise that they feel they can confidently say and feel that they can keep.”
She said she was also “delighted” that, despite the reference to God being dropped, there would still be a spiritual dimension to the promise and that the Queen would continue to be a focus of unity.
Among responses to the consultation, one young girl wrote that she felt like she was “lying to the Brownies” by making a promise to a God in whom she did not believe.
Stephen Evans, campaigns manager at the National Secular Society, said: “By omitting any explicit mention of God or religion the Guide Association has grasped the opportunity to make itself truly inclusive and relevant to the reality of 21st century Britain.
"The new secular promise can now be meaningful and relevant to all guides and potential leaders, whatever their beliefs – and sends a clear signal that Girlguiding is equally welcoming to all girls."
But Andrea Williams of Christian Concern said: “It sounds like jargon from a consumerist self-help manual completely at odds with the true ethos of the Guiding organisation which was set up to encourage belief in God and a corporate identity, not about individualism but to understand what it really is to be part of a community.”
David Landrum, advocacy director of the Evangelical Alliance said: "No doubt, the Girls Brigade will be the main beneficiaries from this erroneous decision, because as the growing poplularity of faith schools attests, parents will always seek to provide religious rather than secular humanist values for their children."
Government spending cuts needed in Britain
Something is rotten in the state of Britain, but those who believe the problem is that the Government isn’t spending enough of our money have got it all wrong.
True, given our dilapidated infrastructure and health service, a visitor from Mars might be forgiven for thinking that public expenditure had been cut to the bone. Yet the sobering truth is that the public sector still spends almost half of our national income, in a shocking indictment of its inefficiency, misplaced priorities and intractable structural flaws.
Public expenditure was 49pc of GDP in 2012, the OECD calculates, almost as much as Sweden’s 51.3pc, and yet there is immense pressure for even greater amounts of spending, in the short as well as the longer term. The Office for Budget Responsibility has run various scenarios as part of its Fiscal Sustainability Report. Its central projection is that health spending will rise from 6.8pc of GDP in 2016-17 to 9.1pc by 2061-62 as the population ages. Even such a modest rise would devastate the public finances.
But new treatments, and the likelihood that productivity growth in the NHS will remain feeble, suggest that health’s share of national income could actually explode uncontrollably. Depending on the assumptions used, health spending could easily grab more than a 10th of national income – and quite possibly even a crippling 20pc to 25pc under extreme but plausible scenarios. This would sink the public finances and send the national debt to more than 350pc of GDP.
Population ageing will have other consequences. State pension costs will increase from 5.6pc of GDP to 8.3pc by 2061-62.
Even with public sector pension costs falling a little, that represents a substantial increase. Social care spending is meant to increase from 1.1pc of GDP to 2pc; the final bill is likely to be even higher now that the Government is becoming involved.
None of this includes the cost of other major projects such as high-speed rail and energy investments to prevent the lights from going out. Wherever we look, there is immense, pent-up demand for higher spending; this will eventually prove irresistible to whoever is in power.
If unchecked, the state’s size could rise by 5pc to 6pc of GDP on the rosiest of scenarios and most likely by 10pc to15pc.
To allow this would be madness. We need a much smaller state, not an even bigger one. No political party is telling the truth: sooner or later, the welfare state as we know it will become unsustainable – and keeping it on life support for as long as possible, trimming on the margins while taxing until the pips squeak will only plunge us into a vicious spiral of decline.
What we need is a drastic new programme of cuts, accompanied by a radical restructuring of the way key services are financed, delivered and managed.
There are various ways this could be achieved – but here are my own 10 favourite ideas ahead of next week’s spending review. Some would help shrink today’s deficit; others address longer-term challenges.
1. First, the easy one: George Osborne must set up a commission on public spending. Paradoxically, this body needs to have a decent budget to hire consultants and accountants to plough through all public spending, uncovering as many savings as possible, waging war on non-jobs, waste, poor contracts, restrictive practices, duplication and useless expenditure. Prizes should also be offered for money-saving ideas from within the public sector.
2. Next, the Government needs to be remodelled. Councils would benefit from economies of scale by merging, if not entirely then at least their back offices. In a paper for the Free Enterprise Group, Dominic Raab, the Tory MP, wants to merge or abolish a number of Whitehall departments, cutting the total from 20 to 11 and saving £8bn a year.
3. Subsidies to business, green energy, the arts, foreign aid and pseudo-charities should be slashed. Eventually, a shift in the UK’s relationship with the European Union would allow additional savings in our contributions to Brussels. The TaxPayers’ Alliance’s latest Bumper Book of Government Waste lists many projects and areas that are ripe for pruning.
4. There should be further cuts to benefits and welfare reform. The richest 10th of households are in receipt of almost £5bn in cash benefits a year, according to Mike Denham’s Burning Our Money. The think-tank Reform puts the cost of middle-class welfare at £31bn a year. Prosperous pensioners should not be getting free TV licences or treated better than the rest of the public.
5. The Coalition has improved the way the Government purchases supplies, but more is needed. The Institute of Directors recommends centralising buying to manage key relationships and contracts. There should also be increased tendering: by law, anything that can be provided more cheaply by the private sector should be contracted out, albeit with proper, tight contracts. This could save billions.
6. It is also time for a further 10pc cut to all non-frontline public sector staff numbers, new contracts to boost working hours and productivity, the end of national pay scales and another two years of genuine pay freezes. In the interest of fairness as well as fiscal prudence, the aim must be to eliminate the pay gap with the private sector, which sees state employees paid significantly more on average. Their pension contributions also remain insufficient to fund liabilities, which must be rectified.
7. The private sector should build all new airports, rail links, motorways and tunnels, charging consumers; private firms should be allowed to develop shale gas and other kinds of commercially viable energy, with subsidies for other kinds of electricity phased out.
8. As to pensions, the sensible solution is to ditch the triple-lock, raise the retirement age to 70, starting as soon as 2030, and move towards an Australian or Singaporean-style system where people save for their own retirement. The new National Employment Savings Trust (Nest) system could be used as a starting point.
9. We also need to get more for less in education. That means taking all schools away from local government control, increasing parent choice and allowing for-profit companies to set up and run taxpayer-funded schools more efficiently. Technology needs to be used to boost productivity, with increased online learning co-ordinated by teachers.
10. Most controversially of all, the only way we are going to spend more on health without bankrupting the state is to encourage the public to pay more itself, as already happens in almost every other country. We need a European-style, insurance-based universal health system, with co-payments by those who can afford it and much greater private provision. Everybody should have access to high quality health care, regardless of ability to pay, but it will no longer be possible to provide it all through the NHS.
The UK is facing a terrifying public spending time bomb, and our mismanaged, sprawling government needs radical reform.
Trimming waste isn’t enough: now is the time to start thinking the unthinkable about what functions we want the state to perform in the years ahead.
Political correctness is most pervasive in universities and colleges but I rarely report the incidents concerned here as I have a separate blog for educational matters.
American "liberals" often deny being Leftists and say that they are very different from the Communist rulers of other countries. The only real difference, however, is how much power they have. In America, their power is limited by democracy. To see what they WOULD be like with more power, look at where they ARE already very powerful: in America's educational system -- particularly in the universities and colleges. They show there the same respect for free-speech and political diversity that Stalin did: None. So look to the colleges to see what the whole country would be like if "liberals" had their way. It would be a dictatorship.
For more postings from me, see TONGUE-TIED, GREENIE WATCH, EDUCATION WATCH INTERNATIONAL, FOOD & HEALTH SKEPTIC, AUSTRALIAN POLITICS, DISSECTING LEFTISM, IMMIGRATION WATCH INTERNATIONAL and EYE ON BRITAIN (Note that EYE ON BRITAIN has regular posts on the reality of socialized medicine). My Home Pages are here or here or here. Email me (John Ray) here.