Friday, 20 January 2012

Intimations of mortality

3 times this week. Yes, that's the number of times I was offered a seat on the bus and tube; once by a lady in her 20s. Surely I'm not looking that old! And I certainly don't feel it....

Still, I was in the right place last night if there were any problems. Guys Hospital; for a reception of the Guys and Tommies charity. Its the largest of the hospital charities in the UK. And saved from the grab of the state in 1947 by the Charity Commission , showing unusual determination they said Bevan could not nationalise the hospital endowments because they had been given for public benefit , not state aggrandisment.

I like to think of Guys as mine; because it is my local hospital and I have used it, and because I was a non exec for the 2 hospitals and because for over 500 years it was a charity hospital !

Paul Corrigan , that health radical , was speaking. The charity does huge good in supporting research and in making grants and loans locally. Yes, they do loans, so showing foundations can be radical!

Paul Corrigan

Up late this morning so heard Paul Johnston on desert island discs. He used to be a radical editor of the New Statesman. Now in his eighties he is a pompous old buffer defending dictators. He likes Pinochet and Nixon. Does not like Mandela. Apparently Nixon was good because he was always wanting to learn. So Paul, that's alright then, subvert democracy and lie but if your learning that's OK then. Humph. I know it might be said my views have mellowed over the decades but if I ever get that bad I must be taken out and shot. And that is not a hint Robin.

Age does not excuse ignorance. It should encourage wisdom. And I'm now off to dispense some to my staff!

1 comment:

Dan Filson said...

In defence of Paul Johnson, whose views I agree are increasingly old bufferish, he wrote a surprisingly readable history of the United States. I would no have credited him as having historian rather than journalistic qualities, so reading it was a surprise. His editorship at the Staggers was not especially radical, it was the period that was radical more than the editor.