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Your political choices: delete as applicable


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Friday, 2 June 2017

Your political choices: delete as applicable

As you know, the public sector is forbidden from publishing anything that might influence the outcome of the general election. So in deference to purdah, but to give NHS staff the opportunity to prepare an appropriate response to the result on 8 June, here is an open letter to the winning leader (or leaders), which can be tailored for every eventuality. Simply delete as applicable.

Dear Mrs May/Mr Corbyn/rank outsider

Congratulations on your landslide victory/historic upset/hastily cobbled together coalition.

Now that you enjoy a clear mandate to govern/a narrow working majority/the mother of all hung parliaments, we look forward to working with you to make the NHS strong and stable/for the many not the few/something we can discuss as soon as you stop squabbling over who’s in charge.

We know that you will be keen to get on with your manifesto promises and look forward to an NHS that is held more closely to account/awash with cash/licensed to sell marijuana to raise money to train more doctors.

We also know that before that happens you need to get on with the urgent business of securing the best possible deal on Brexit by being very tough/very noncommittal/very reluctant to leave without just one more tiny referendum to make sure.

We understand that you have pressing problems at home to deal with, not least the threat posed to our way of life by extremists/social division/the wilful destruction of the environment, but we remain confident that under your leadership we will not have to wait long for a solution to Nicola Sturgeon/the parliamentary Labour Party/fly-tipping.

That will leave you free to reconsider/press on with/start thinking seriously for the first time about your NHS plans.

We can all agree that money remains the number one challenge, as the NHS clearly doesn’t know how to manage its finances/is suffering from years of under-investment and private-sector asset stripping/could benefit from an imaginative crowd-sourcing initiative such as income tax.

So we are heartened to know that you will not allow the NHS to indulge in further reckless spending/fall into disrepair/sell off valuable land for fracking. We look forward to a new era of investment made possible by your tough negotiating stance on Europe/bottomless pit of cash/plans for a benefit gig featuring Sting, Bananarama and other great acts from the 80s.

As you know, some economists argue that the extra 67p/£43bn/penny on income tax still won’t be anywhere near enough to fund the NHS in future, but we are reassured to learn that your plans are based on more reliable data/fully costed/coming soon.  

We would like to think that when Simon Stevens comes calling to ask for your support, you will not simply pretend to be out/claim that you left your wallet in your other trousers/give him some change for a cup of tea and the address of the nearest night shelter. Rather we would hope that you will listen sympathetically while he explains the hard choices facing the NHS/his determination to make health work for everyone/his vision for universal beard-care.

As public servants we are bound by time-honoured principles of impartiality and neutrality, particularly during the pre-election period. But now that the result is no longer in doubt we can set any differences aside and unite in the belief that however bad things may seem now, under your leadership we can face the challenges/opportunities/music together.

Apolitical editor: Julian Patterson


Anonymous says:
Jun 02, 2017 07:46 AM

Thank you Julian, this is spot on as ever and very funny!

Judy Aldred
Judy Aldred says:
Jun 02, 2017 08:30 AM

An absolute cracker!

Andrew Rix
Andrew Rix says:
Jun 06, 2017 05:45 PM

Well done Julian for an insightful analysis of how to deal with the next administration – whatever that may be. As usual you are quite right, it doesn’t really matter which lot you are dealing with – the cards are much the same and the policies all bear a marked reluctance to do anything that will actually make a difference because protecting the status quo is seen as more important than improvement and efficiency equates to cost cutting