Answering back

And here comes another one. My busy local MP, Philip Dunne, sends me an email about what he’s doing and what’s going on in the world. but this time, just for once, I send him a reply. Not sure whether he’ll read it, but it makes me feel better:

Philip, hi. Thank you for your newsletter. Your own energy and commitment to the area are beyond question, but on the national issues I find your outline far from convincing. I guess it’s difficult to speak to a variety of audiences, and I understand that you have to remain loyal to party policy.

Even so, your general endorsement of Cameron’s macho posturing over terrorism is really depressing. We’re supposed to be excited by the prospect of banning jihadis from returning to this country, when security experts tell us that the return of disillusioned jihadis is the best possible (maybe the only?) way of deterring other youngsters from following their example.

You dismiss those who make noise to “defend the NHS” as though there were no threat to the NHS, but Lansley’s act has continued a process begun by New Labour which seriously threatens the whole structure. Headlines in the last week show specialists moonlighting and making false claims to boost their profits, and official assessments that the NHS’capacity to respond has been hampered by the changes over the last twelve months. Not to mention the constant drain of money which might have paid nurses and is now spent rewarding competition lawyers.

But the real problem is Scotland. You think that voters their are being tempted by an “emotional appeal to run their own affairs.” If only. I think they’re facing a very rational choice. Living under a distant, patronising government which values financial profiteering above the social fabric, would you like the chance to make sure you don’t have to suffer such a government ever again? They’re voting yes, and so would I.

Yours, with regret, Paul Francis.