Monday, December 31, 2012

Posted on the net by a Fellow Worker and lifted by your humble servant.
A Scottish toast, "Here's tae the next yin, ah'm sure o' this yin". It refers to the drink in hand, but I refer to the years, incoming and outgoing.
A light-hearted poem by the renowned scientist J.B.S. Haldane about the disease that was to kill him eventually. You have to admire the fellow's equanimity.

(J.B.S. Haldane)

I wish I had the voice of Homer
To sing of rectal carcinoma,
Which kills a lot more chaps, in fact,
Than were bumped off when Troy was sacked.

Yet, thanks to modern surgeon’s skills,
It can be killed before it kills
Upon a scientific basis
In nineteen out of twenty cases.

I noticed I was passing blood
(Only a few drops, not a flood).
So pausing on my homeward way
From Tallahassee to Bombay
I asked a doctor, now my friend,
To peer into my hinder end,
To prove or to disprove the rumour
That I had a malignant tumour.

They pumped in BaS04.
Till I could really stand no more,
And, when sufficient had been pressed in,
They photographed my large intestine,
In order to decide the issue
They next scraped out some bits of tissue.
(Before they did so, some good pal
Had knocked me out with pentothal,
Whose action is extremely quick,
And does not leave me feeling sick.)
The microscope returned the answer
That I had certainly got cancer,
So I was wheeled into the theatre
Where holes were made to make me better.
One set is in my perineum
Where I can feel, but can’t yet see ‘em.
Another made me like a kipper
Or female prey of Jack the Ripper,
Through this incision, I don’t doubt,
The neoplasm was taken out,
Along with colon, and lymph nodes
Where cancer cells might find abodes.
A third much smaller hole is meant
To function as a ventral vent:
So now I am like two-faced Janus
The only* god who sees his anus.

(*In India there are several more
With extra faces, up to four,
But both in Brahma and in Shiva
I own myself an unbeliever.)

I’ll swear, without the risk of perjury,
It was a snappy bit of surgery.
My rectum is a serious loss to me,
But I’ve a very neat colostomy,
And hope, as soon as I am able,
To make it keep a fixed time-table.
So do not wait for aches and pains
To have a surgeon mend your drains;
If he says “cancer” you’re a dunce
Unless you have it out at once,
For if you wait it’s sure to swell,
And may have progeny as well.
My final word, before I’m done,
Is “Cancer can be rather fun”.
Thanks to the nurses and Nye Bevan
The NHS is quite like heaven
Provided one confronts the tumour
With a sufficient sense of humour.

I know that cancer often kills,
But so do cars and sleeping pills;
And it can hurt one till one sweats,
So can bad teeth and unpaid debts.
A spot of laughter, I am sure,
Often accelerates one’s cure;
So let us patients do our bit
To help the surgeons make us fit.

Sunday, December 30, 2012

I quote my four-year-old grandson -
"You know my Dad? He knows everything. But, you know my Mam? She knows more."

Wednesday, December 26, 2012

A poem by Edwin Morgan as if penned by James Macfarlan (1832-64), 'the pedlar poet'. The attitude to Robert Burns in Morgan's poem does not reflect Macfarlan's attitude as expressed in the second poem, or in other poems of his that referred to Burns. So what was Morgan up to, depicting Burns as a poseur and a social climber? Was he calling for a reassessment of Burns' image, (though not his work)?

(Edwin Morgan)

'A man's a man for a' that' – how does he know?
Traipsing with his plough, the rural hero,
Swaggering down the lea-rigs, talking to mice,
Sweating his sickly verses to entice
Lassies he'd never see again, strutting
Through the salons in his best breeches, rutting
In a cloud of claret, buttonholing
Lord This, sweet-talking Doctor That, bowling
His wit down levees, bosoms, siller quaichs –
D'ye think he's ever heard the groans and skraighs
Of city gutters, or marked the shapes that wrap
Fog and smoke about them as if they could hap
Homelessness or keep hunger at bay? What,
Not heard or seen, but has he even thought
How some, and many, and more than many, survive,
Or don't survive, on factory floors, or thrive
Or fail to thrive by foundry fires, or try
To find the words – sparks scatter and bolts fly –
That's feeble – to show the new age its dark face?
The Carron Ironworks – how he laughed at the place,
Made a joke of our misery, passed on
To window-scratch his diamond-trivia, and swan
Through country-house and customs-post, servile
To the very gods from which he ought to resile!
'Liberty's a glorious feast,' you said.
Is that right? Wouldn't the poor rather have bread?
Burns man, I'm hard on you, I'm sorry for it.
I think such poetry is dangerous, that's all.
Poetry must pierce the filthy wall
With cries that die on country ways. The glow
Of bonhomie will not let the future grow.

(James Macfarlan)

PROUD was the morn old Scotland saw
The highest heaven of genius spread
A halo-crown of glorious light
Above yon humble shed.
The spirit of her ancient song
Again assumed the mountain lyre,
Till trembling o'er the witching chords
She found it strung with fire.

As Morning lifts her vapoury veil
To show the blessed face of Day,
That spell revealed a smiling love
Beside the humblest way.
Weird echoes floated o'er the fields,
Strange music melted o'er the hills,
Till wilder beauty tinged our flowers
And lit our wandering rills.

O stirring spirit! by our hearths,
When mad'ning winter scares the night,
With thee we chase the gloom and walk
A paradise of light.
And still that glorious spirit sings
By haunted heath and crumbling cairn,
And in each wailing sough that sweeps
Across the lonely fern.

It thrills the plumed and plaided band
When buried in the mists of fight:
Writes "Glory" on war's face of fire,
And gilds the haggard height.
All proud they climb the cliffs of death,
And dare the burning battle day,
Till Victory wreathes the heart that throbb'd
To sound of "Scots wha hae."

O mighty minstrel! still while e'er
A daisy decks thy native sward
The Scottish heart shall proudly hold
Its own immortal bard:
While virgin Spring, through glen and shaw,
Her thousand notes of love shall tune;
While Summers in their Eden sleep
Lie dreaming on the Doon.

Wherever Deity hath set
His signet on our human clay;
Wherever honour, truth, and love
Shall hold united sway:
Wherever Independance stern
The spangled minion spurns,
There—find embalmed in every breast
The name of ROBERT BURNS!

Tuesday, December 25, 2012

Christmas in Porvoo, Finland. Photograph by my friend Katriina who lives there.

Monday, December 24, 2012

"O come ye, O come ye, to Bethlehem"; but not if you're a Palestinian Christian.

Sunday, December 23, 2012

"If this can happen to a senior government minister, then what chance would a youth in Brixton or Wandsworth have?" (Andrew Mitchell, MP and paid up member of the patriciate).
The question is rhetorical, of course. Mitchell knows the answer and, to be frank, doesn't really give a shit about the youth of Brixton or Wandsworth. He's just got it in for the police. Once he's back where he thinks he belongs it'll be "Carry on, constable!".
The dispute about what Mitchell said to the coppers goes on. But I've been assured that he has never uttered the following -

"I'll sing you a song
and it won't take long
... (etc).

"I was done up like a kipper."

"Straight up, gov., I was verballed."

"Old Bill felt me collar, 'ad me dahn the factory on me toes, and fitted me up good and proper. Do you fink I'll do bird for this?"

Saturday, December 22, 2012


It has recently been discovered that the Co-Op Bank and group of companies
have had a 4 year occupational health contract with Atos.
Atos make huge profits carrying out work capability assessments on sick
and disabled people on behalf of the Government.
As was exposed by a Channel 4 documentary they automatically pass 7 out of
8 people as fit for work - to comply with Government targets for benefit
Their decisions are not based on objective medical opinion. The Government
are cutting benefits as part of their austerity measures aimed mainly at
the poor, while those responsible for the public debt continue to get
Despite the media headlines about one or two bankers losing their bonuses,
generally bankers' bonuses and those of company directors continue to
grow. Sales in luxury goods are also rising.
Citizens Advice Bureau Scotland have received 24,000 complaints about
Atos. CAB win 80% of appeals against Atos finding people fit for work.
The Daily Record reported on a Government survey that showed half of those
found fit for work by Atos end up destitute.
The Co-Op sells itself as an ethical company, but what ethical standards
are they maintaining by not publicly ruling out awarding a new contract
that gives millions to a company that cuts the benefits of sick and
disabled people?
Hundreds of people have already complained about the contract on The
Cooperative Facebook page and by tweeting @TheCo-operative.
Why not join them and tell the Co-Op that you will stop shopping at their
supermarkets or that you will close your Co-Op bank account unless they
publicly state they will not be renewing their contact with Atos? You can
also email
Charles Mackay nineteenth century author and journalist, born Perthshire. One of his works was an attempt to prove that all the languages of Europe derived from the Scots Gaelic. I wonder how he fared with that?

You have no enemies, you say?
Alas, my friend, the boast is poor,
For those who have mingled in the fray
Of duty, that the brave endure,
Must have made foes.
If you have none,
Small is the work that you have done.
You’ve hit no traitor on the hip,
You’ve dashed no cup from purjured lip,
You’ve never set the wrong to right.
You’ve been a coward in the fight.

I've left the spelling 'purjured' unchanged. For all I know it could be an acceptable alternative to the usual one.

Friday, December 21, 2012

Thinking about my other blog, redundant since I'm learning to live with the arrogant behaviour of this vehicle.
I have long nursed the idea of a website dedicated to an interest of mine, onomastics, especially the study of surnames. Being a technomoron I see all the problems that a website would heap on my head. Setting it up - should that be building? - would be the first obstacle, and probably the last; website a non-starter.
So here, lying fallow, is a website of sorts. What is to stop me posting up notes on local surnames that I've collected? Nothing but my inability to get on with the damned blog. I shall make a tentative start.
Heroic Israeli soldiers, unflinching in the face of Palestinian terrorism.

Thursday, December 20, 2012

Elsewhere on the net someone was asking for a translation into Latin of a couple of sentences. I advised google translate, which Chris H. directed me to some time back.
Then I had a thought - what if it doesn't work? I went to the site and typed the two sentences in and a load of nonsense appeared. It seems that google has the Latin vocabulary, but not the grammar. So most of the words were there but making no sense.
Translation always worries me. Is it correct? Could it be expressed more accurately? Has something been left out? Has something been added? I remember at school one of our language teachers uttering an Italian proverb, Traduttore, traditore. It would be treacherous of me to translate that phrase, but it has hung round my neck like an albatross ever since (well, maybe I exaggerate for effect).
In my current poetry season I posted a translation of Egan O'Rahilly's sneer at Cromwell and his Irish fans, and harked back to an earlier posting of the same poem by John Montague. The original Irish, as found, had three veres, as did the Leerssen translation. But Montague's version has four verses. Is the fourth verse his own?
So the following poem is on the theme of translation. It is another of Marvell's, dedicated to a Hull medical man, Dr. Robert Witty. Same Witty had translated a medical treatise from the Latin of Dr. James Primrose. Primrose is a person of interest to me as I can count kin with him. Although he was born in France and died in Hull his family origins lay in the parish of Culross, in Scotland, where the Primrose family grew, rose fell, and eventually moved on. The great genealogical chart of more than a thousand related Primroses features Doctor James as well as less illustrious ancestors of mine, tenant farmers, seafarers, etc.
The good doctor's medical work was an attack on some of the cranky ideas of his fellow professionals, but it seems that he could compete with his peers in the field of crankiness.
So to the poem. Who was Celia? A very smart lady, we learn, but that cut no ice with our Andrew. A woman should know her place and not try competing with men. Or was he holding up contemporary prejudice for inspection?


(Andrew Marvell)

Sit further, and make room for thine own fame,
Where just desert enrolles thy honour'd Name
The good Interpreter. Some in this task
Take of the Cypress vail, but leave a mask,
Changing the Latine, but do more obscure
That sence in English which was bright and pure.
So of Translators they are Authors grown,
For ill Translators make the Book their own.
Others do strive with words and forced phrase
To add such lustre, and so many rayes,
That but to make the Vessel shining, they
Much of the precious Metal rub away.
He is Translations thief that addeth more,
As much as he that taketh from the Store
Of the first Author. Here he maketh blots
That mends; and added beauties are but spots.
Caelia whose English doth more richly flow
Then Tagus, purer then dissolved snow,
And sweet as are her lips that speak it, she
Now learns the tongues of France and Italy;
But she is Caelia still: no other grace
But her own smiles commend that lovely face;
Her native beauty's not Italianated,
Nor her chast mind into the French translated:
Her thoughts are English, though her sparkling wit
With other Language doth them fitly fit.
Translators learn of her: but stay I slide
Down into Error with the Vulgar tide;
Women must not teach here: the Doctor doth
Stint them to Cawdles Almond-milk, and Broth.
Now I reform, and surely so will all
Whose happy Eyes on thy Translation fall,
I see the people hastning to thy Book,
Liking themselves the worse the more they look,
And so disliking, that they nothing see
Now worth the liking, but thy Book and thee.
And (if I Judgement have) I censure right;
For something guides my hand that I must write.
You have Translations statutes best fulfil'd.
That handling neither sully nor would guild.

Monday, December 17, 2012

America’s Teachers: Heroes or Greedy Moochers at the Public Trough?
(T-Bone Slim)

I pray dear Lord for Jesus' sake,
Give us this day a T-Bone Steak,
Hallowed be thy Holy name,
But don’t forget to send the same.
Oh, hear my humble cry, Oh Lord,
And send us down some decent board,
Brown gravy and some German fried,
With sliced tomatoes on the side.
Observe me on my bended legs,
I’m asking you for Ham and Eggs,
And if thou havest custard pies,
I like, dear Lord, the largest size.
Oh, hear my cry, All Mighty Host,
I quite forgot the Quail on Toast,
Let your kindly heart be stirred,
And stuff some oysters in that bird.
Dear Lord, we know your holy wish,
On Friday we must have a fish,
Our flesh is weak and spirit stale,
You better make that fish a whale.
Oh, hear me Lord, remove these “Dogs,”
These sausages of powder’d logs,
Your bull beef hash and bearded Snouts.
Take them to hell or thereabouts.
With Alum bread and Pressed-Beef butts,
Dear Lord you damn near ruin’d my guts,
Your white-wash milk and Oleorine,
I wish to Christ I’d never seen.
Oh, hear me Lord, I am praying still,
But if you won’t, our union will,
Put pork chops on the bill of fare,
And starve no workers anywhere.

Sunday, December 16, 2012


"That caused two Senators who are steadfast loyalists of the CIA - Senate Intelligence Committee Chair Dianne Feinstein and Armed Services Committee Chair Carl Levin - to issue statements definitively debunking this assertion. Even the CIA's then-Director, Leon Panetta, made clear that those techniques played no role in finding bin Laden. An FBI agent central to the bin Laden hunt said the same.
"What this film does, then, is uncritically presents as fact the highly self-serving, and factually false, claims by the CIA that its torture techniques were crucial in finding bin Laden. Put another way, it propagandizes the public to favorably view clear war crimes by the US government, based on pure falsehoods.
All six teachers killed in the Newtown massacre (USA) were members of the American Federation of Teachers, or 'union thugs' as some American perverts call. Gun loving perverts who make sneering remarks about photographs of dead Palestinian children.

Friday, December 14, 2012

Once, while deploring my home town's obsession with the racist poet Philip Larkin, I wondered how many statues of poets graced the Hull scene.
I'd forgotten one. Andrew Marvell (1621-1678), born near Hull, educated in Hull - "among Boatswains and Cabin boys" - and Member of Parliament for Hull in the 1660s; diplomat, linguist.
His best known poem is probably the one addressed "To His Coy Mistress", so I suppose I'd better give that an outing. It does mention the River Humber, so important to Hull, but also the Ganges, so as not to be too parochial.
I may publish one of more interest to me later, but for now -


Had we but world enough, and time,
This coyness, Lady, were no crime
We would sit down and think which way
To walk and pass our long love's day.
Thou by the Indian Ganges' side
Shouldst rubies find: I by the tide
Of Humber would complain. I would
Love you ten years before the Flood,
And you should, if you please, refuse
Till the conversion of the Jews.
My vegetable love should grow
Vaster than empires, and more slow;
An hundred years should go to praise
Thine eyes and on thy forehead gaze;
Two hundred to adore each breast,
But thirty thousand to the rest;
An age at least to every part,
And the last age should show your heart.
For, Lady, you deserve this state,
Nor would I love at lower rate.
But at my back I always hear
Time's wingèd chariot hurrying near;
And yonder all before us lie
Deserts of vast eternity.
Thy beauty shall no more be found,
Nor, in thy marble vault, shall sound
My echoing song: then worms shall try
That long preserved virginity,
And your quaint honour turn to dust,
And into ashes all my lust:
The grave's a fine and private place,
But none, I think, do there embrace.
Now therefore, while the youthful hue
Sits on thy skin like morning dew,
And while thy willing soul transpires
At every pore with instant fires,
Now let us sport us while we may,
And now, like amorous birds of prey,
Rather at once our time devour
Than languish in his slow-chapt power.
Let us roll all our strength and all
Our sweetness up into one ball,
And tear our pleasures with rough strife
Thorough the iron gates of life:
Thus, though we cannot make our sun
Stand still, yet we will make him run.

Marvell* is always described as a 'metaphysical poet'. I must demonstrate my ignorance and admit that I'm damned if I know why. Metaphysical, "beyond the physical"?

*In Hull we say Marvel, literary types say MarVELL. For English names my rule is, when in doubt stress the first syllable.

I just got a telephone call from my son with the news that the Tour de France 1914 will kick off as a petit tour de Yorkshire. Le Grand Départ will take place in my home county. No details of the route yet but rumours in the past have mentioned a crossing of the Humber Bridge just outside of Hull.
WayHAY! Here's hoping I live to see it.

Thursday, December 13, 2012

Crossing Monument Bridge in town on Saturday I heard these lads giving it hell on acoustic guitars. The music they were making was great, to me a cross between Flamenco guitar and the manouche jazz style of Django Reinhart and his many Sinti imitators. I thought of buying their CDs on the spot, but, ever cautious, I decided to look for their music online first and give it a listen.
I'm now a fan, and in pursuit of their recorded output.
They're also on facebook and twitter.

Tuesday, December 11, 2012

In the course of an earlier poetry season I posted an English language version, by John Montague, of a poem addressed to Oliver Cromwell. I could not find the Irish original at the time, but I have since. Here it is with (first) another translation by Joseph Theodoor Leerssen -

(Aogán Ó Rathaille)

More power to you Cromwell
you king in rustics' chronicles;
during your reign we got peace,
honey, cream and honour.

Just as Patrick removed murrain
from the race of Adam in Ireland,
so you removed our one-day -a-week service
and many unjust ordinances.

I pray that no Kavanagh, O'Byrne,
O'Nolan, Kinsella,
Rice nor Roche
may get a sod of his ancestral land.

Treise leat a Chromuil
a righ chroinic na sculóg'
as red linn fuaireamar suaimhneas,
mil, uachtar agus onóir.

Mar do choisg Pádruig an bó-ár
do chloinn Ádhaimh an Éirinn
do choisg tú dhínne lá seachtmhuine
is mórán dliosdionuis éigirt.

Iarruim gan Caomhánach ná Branach,
Nuallánach ná Cinnsiolach,
Raoisioch ná Róisteach
d'fhagháil fóid do chuid a sinnsior.

Monday, December 10, 2012

Quote -
"Prank calls are the new lowest form of wit." John Lloyd, comedy impresario, in today's 'i' (silly name).
If they can be be styled 'wit'. To me they are a form of bullying. They are the instrument of the irresponsible used in the main against people who have no defence mechanism and no means of redress. Only a sadist would regard such invasions as a form of entertainment.
Meanwhile, Scotland's Man of the Year has been named as Michael Forbes, steadfast opponent of Donald Trump's attempt to take over North-East Scotland. The billionaire bully and stranger to the truth has harassed and persecuted Mr. Forbes, cutting off his water and building on his land. He has also slandered Mr. Forbes to any journalistic toady willing to publish his lies. His allies in this dirty work are the local police force and the local MSP who is also Scotland's First Minister. Vote for devolution and Donald Trump.
The Scots, we learn, don't like a bully. Now Trump has turned his firepower on the sponsors of the award, the makers of Glenfiddich malt whisky. He has ordered his subjects to boycott that product. Let's see if the distillers stick to their guns over this. If they do it's Glenfiddich for me this festive season.
(This plug does not signal a change of policy on advertising and product placement)

Friday, December 07, 2012

Wednesday, December 05, 2012

François Villon (1431-1466?)was a strange fellow, a brilliant poet and a low criminal. He was once sentenced to death for the murder of a priest and wrote a poem "Ballad of the Hanged Men", about that experience. While his fellow truands were topped François appears to have claimed Benefit of Clergy and been reprieved. Anybody who could rattle off a line or two of Latin had a fair chance of avoiding the ultimate sanction. This is the origin of the term "patter" in English; if you could say the Paternoster, you had the patter. Later François left Paris and disappeared from history.
This poem takes the form of a prayer to the Mother of Jesus as it would be recited by a woman. It was said to have been written for his mother at her request. The envoi has an acrostic of the name Villon, plus an E which may be added as a feminine ending. It's in medieval French, which is tough, because I can't translate it, and I've never seen an English language version. But it is to me a beautiful poem, regardless of my opinion of religions.

(François Villon)

Dame des cieulx, régente terrienne
Empérière des infernaux paluz,
Recevez moy, vostre humble chrestienne,
Que comprinse soye entre vos esleuz,
Ce non obstant qu’oncques rien ne valuz.
Les biens de vous, ma dame et ma maistresse
Sont trop plus grans que ne suis pécheresse,
Sans lesquels biens ame ne peut mérir
N’avoir les cieulx, je n’en suis jengleresse.
En ceste foy je vueil vivre et mourir.

À vostre Filz dictes que je suis sienne;
De luy soyent mes péchiez absoluz:
Pardonne moy comme a l’Egipcienne,
Ou comme il feist au clerc Théophilus,
Lequel par vous fut quitte et absoluz,
Combien qu’il eust au diable fait promesse.
Préservez moy, que ne face jamais ce,
Vierge portant, sans rompure encourir,
Le sacrement qu’on célèbre a la messe
En ceste foy je vueil vivre et mourir.

Femme je suis, povrette et ancienne,
Qui rien ne sçay ; oncques lettre ne leuz;
Au moustier voy dont suis paroissienne
Pâradis painct, où sont harpes et luz,
Et ung enfer où damnez sont boulluz:
L’ung me fait paour, l’autre joye et liesse.
La joye avoir fais moy, haulte Déesse,
A qui pécheurs doivent tous recourir,
Comblez de foy, sans faincte ne paresse.
En ceste foy je vueil vivre et mourir.


Vous portastes, digne Vierge, princesse,
Iésus régnant, qui n’a ne fin ne cesse.
Le Tout-Puissant, prenant nostre foiblesse,
Laissa les cieulx et nous vint secourir,
Offrir à mort sa très chière jeunesse.
Nostre Seigneur tel est, tel le confesse.
En ceste foy je vueil vivre et mourir.

Tuesday, December 04, 2012

(copyleft, Miko Peled)

Just thinking.
The ubiquitous Gary Barlow - do I detect a pattern?
Cosying up to royalty; Crony of bullying right-wing Prime Minister; collector (incipient) of honours.
Could this be the new Jimmy Savile?

Monday, December 03, 2012



Disabled campaigners have declared International Disabled People's Day a 'national day of remembrance for those killed by Atos' claiming government welfare reform is destroying lives. As part of a national day of action supported by disabled campaigning groups and almost thirty MPs, campaigners will gather at the statue of Aneurin Bevan, founder of the NHS, for a candelight vigil at 5 pm on Monday 3 December.
ATOS, the French IT company that carries out the controversial Work Capability Assessments for the Department of Work and Pensions (DWP) has been the subject of widespread condemnation from disability charities and the British Medical Assocation who call for the assesments to be scrapped completely. The firm has been accused of target chasing for cutting the amount of people found eligible for benefits.Earlier this year a Channel 4 Dispatches documentary revealed the DWP requires ATOS to reject the benefit claims of 7 out of 8 disabled claimants without any reference to medical evidence.

A spokeswoman for Disabled People Against Cuts Cardiff said,

'ATOS make money implementing the UK Government’s cuts to social security. Last year they callously struck thousands of vulnerable and disabled people off the welfare roll with their bizarre “work capability assessments" that find cancer patients, heart transplant patients, the terminally ill, the mortally sick - even someone in a coma ‘fit for work'.
This government has sent too many of us to an early grave, and forced thousands of others to spend their last living days penniless and starving, fearful of losing the roof over their head. There is no greater symbol of everything wrong with this country than what is being done to kick the crutches away from the poor, the disabled and the dying.

Our campaign is part of a national campaign that goes by the name "Atos Kills". This is based on well-documented evidence that approximately 32 disabled people a week died last year after their Atos Work Capability Assessments deemed them "fit to work" and stopped benefits. This year the figure may have risen to 73 deaths per week including suicides'

Four Welsh MPs, Martin Caton, Anne Clwyd, Jonathan Edwards and Albert Owen, have signed an early day motion in support of the day of remembrance stating,

'That this House wishes to record the case of Mr Brian McArdle who, having suffered a blood clot on his brain, was left paralysed on one side, unable to speak properly and blind in one eye and yet was summoned to an Atos work capacity assessment, before which he suffered a further stroke and was eventually informed he was to lose his disability benefits; notes with sadness that Mr McArdle died from a heart attack the day after his benefits were stopped and that his 13 year old son Kieran wrote to Atos to tell the company that their assessments `are killing genuine people like my dad'; and appreciates why disability campaigners like Susan Archibald are calling for the suspension of Atos assessments, and why Jim Moore and other campaigners are calling for 3 December to be a day of remembrance for all Atos victims'
According to an FOI (Freedom of Information) response publicised by the Daily Mail journalist Sonia Poulton on October 7, the current weekly average Atos/DWP death toll of people found fit for work after an ESA work capability assessment now stands at 73 people per week.

A FOI in April revealed in 2011 an average of 32 dying a week after failing test for new incapacity benefit. More than a thousand ­sickness benefit claimants died last year after being told to get a job.

There have been numerous horror stories in the media of people with terminal illnesses (in one infamous case even someone in a coma) being declared fit for work by ATOS and having their benefits cut.

Recent Stories:

'A GRIEVING boy of 13 has accused Atos of killing his disabled dad. Kieran McArdle told the Daily Record in a harrowing letter how his father Brian, 57, collapsed and died the day after his disability benefits were stopped. He had been assessed by Atos and deemed “fit for work”'

'A cancer sufferer, who had her benefits cut by government officials who said she was fit to work, has died'.

'I sought this debate in order to raise the case of one of my constituents, Colin Traynor, who was epileptic. He was assessed as fit for work, yet died less than four months later' (Michael Meacher MP)

Sunday, December 02, 2012

(Mariko Sakurai)

A nation is dying in front of our eyes
You can close your eyes and choose not to see it
You can walk away and forget about it
But this nation closes its eyes to die
when we close our eyes not to see it

The world's largest prison with innocent people dying
The world's largest prison with children starving

A nation is dying in front of our eyes
You can close your eyes and choose not to see it
You can click and go to other videos
But this nation cannot even shout
when we drive the last nail to the coffin of Gaza

The world's largest prison with innocent people dying
The world's largest prison with children starving.