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    5. You can't be serious: how Labor is pushing the same ..


    You can't be serious: how Labor is pushing the same agenda as the Tories

    Sir Keir Starmer brought attention to Labor's NHS campaign this week. Photo: Leon Neal

    Labour leaders are on a mission: to convince the electorate they are 'serious people'.

    This week's battleground will be the National Health Service; traditionally an area of ​​major political controversy.

    But on Monday, when Sir Keir Starmer unveiled a plan for a future-proof NHS, the similarities between the major parties were more striking than the differences.


    In some cases, Labor and Tory are vying for nearly identical strategies (greater use of the private sector, giving consumers more choice of hospitals) that date back to Tony Blair's government.

    Meanwhile, both sides are promising to achieve many of the same goals, for example, 75% of all cancers are diagnosed in the first and second stages, which makes it easier to treat.

    Of course, there are differences; the most notable of these is Labour's flirting with the “heavy hand of government regulation” to improve the British diet.

    But the message Labor is trying to promote is that it is the only party that can be trusted to actually deliver on the promises it has made.

    To this end, Sir Keir and Shadow Health Minister Wes Streeting have spent the last days repeating one message: that they are serious, unlike those who challenge them.

    Perhaps coincidentally, this echoes a line that's been blazing on TV screens lately when Legacy's Logan Roy brutally dismisses his offspring with the words “you're not serious people.”

    With a less glamorous speech in Braintree, Essex, Sir Keir played the “serious” card again and again on Monday.

    “The NHS is not going to be sustainable unless we make big, deep, long-term changes,” he warned. “You can’t look at the problems now and tell me that they are only related to money – this is not serious,” he continued later, before moving on to the paramedics: “Seriously – we cannot offer different options for different people.”

    Similar language could be heard the day before, when Mr. Streeting discussed actions against food manufacturers, saying that “this is not serious on the part of Nestle” when he criticized the company's tactics.

    For Labor their broader strategy can be summarized as follows: the Tories may make similar claims about the health service, but 13 years in power undermine their credibility in their implementation.

    One of Five Missions

    The NHS is one of the five missions at the heart of Sir Keir's Election Manifesto.

    The 23-page plan released on Monday sets out delivery times to achieve NHS targets long overdue carried out, as well as some new ambitions to fight major killers such as heart disease and suicide.

    Promising to “cover the biggest crises in NHS history”, the plan promises to do so by “getting the basics right and taking long-term, pragmatic steps with common sense.”

    sector, increasing the number of staff and disseminating best practices. We've done this before. We will do it again. To eliminate the threat of a two-tier healthcare system, we will use spare capacity in the independent sector to ensure that patients are treated more quickly,” the document says.

    While such policies – controversial at the time – do indeed work back to the last Labor government, they are also at the forefront of the current government's plans for the NHS, with recent promises of a “turbo charge” using the private sector to reduce record waiting lists.

    For both mainstream parties, technology is key to such change, with the role of the NHS app central to allowing patients to choose where and when to be treated.

    Labor's strategy is based on the hope that they are more than Tories , you can trust the promises of the NHS, especially with regard to existing health targets, many of which have been missed since 2015.

    Hence the steady, somewhat boring “common sense” language of Monday's NHS plan is no coincidence.

    But this carries another risk; especially considering some similarities in politics; that the lack of fire in Labor's belly could cause potential voters to yawn and pass out.

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