Analysis comment

Day after GE, Tories start mass social media disinformation campaign to soften us up for NHS charging

Just like fake posts before polling day to discredit true story of little boy with suspected pneumonia on hospital floor, Tories cloning thousands of messages to break ice on NHS charges
The NHS future – and the Tories have already started softening us up

During the general election campaign Boris Johnson described claims the Tories are planning to downgrade the NHS principle of universal healthcare free at the point of need as ‘cloud cuckoo land’ and complete fiction.

Less than twenty-four hours after polls closed, the Tories had already mounted a fresh disinformation campaign of cloned social media posts to soften up the public for exactly that.

During the last days of the campaign Boris Johnson was caught on the hook in the shape of four-year-old Jack Williment – the little boy with suspected pneumonia photographed lying on the floor of a hospital because the hospital had to remove the beds from the room in which he had to wait for treatment.

The Yorkshire Post had fully verified the story – and the hospital had already admitted it happened and formally apologised to Jack’s family.

Undeterred, the Tories mounted two shameless fake news campaigns involving thousands of fake Twitter and Facebook accounts all spouting word for word, the same lie: that a friend who works as a nurse at the hospital (which the cloned posts mis-named) had said the photo of Jack was a politically-driven set-up.

The posts was shared tens of thousands of times, both by more fake accounts and by people either eager to discredit the story or who were taken in by the fake news.

But the story was entirely true.

And with the election won on a campaign of lies, the Tories did not even pause for breath before launching a similar, coordinated campaign to start preparing the public for the idea of NHS service charges and rationing.

The message is word for word the same in all cases, apart from the occasional tweak at the beginning – having learned no doubt from the exposure of the Jack Milliment lie campaign:

None of the accounts checked by the SKWAWKBOX showed any signs that the holders – if they exist at all – work in the NHS.

All the posts even repeat the same error in their first line – “status’s” instead of statuses.

All suggest buying medicines and self-diagnosing rather than using the NHS. All suggest sick people are ‘lucky’ if they get a GP appointment.

All blame sick people for being ill or obese, even though around 20% of lung cancer occurs in non-smokers and many poor people can’t afford to eat better food or to join a gym.

Most recklessly, they suggest not calling an ambulance unless a situation is ‘genuinely life threatening’, even though NHS guidance suggests calling an ambulance immediately for, as an example, chest pains – not waiting to see whether it is a heart attack or trying to work it out for yourself.

The post is written in a way that perfectly matches existing Tory narratives used to excuse or introduce treatment rationing – and to blame ‘demand’ for the collapse of the NHS introduced by the record slow-down in funding that the Tories have imposed since 2010.

The Tories didn’t even have the decency to wait until after the weekend to embark on the measures they’ve been planning all along – and they are using the same fake-news tactics they used in the election campaign to soften up the population for the stripping of the rights we and our parents and grandparents paid to build.

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36 comments

  1. Currently I am plugging tooth cavities with beeswax (when I phoned the dentist to confirm my check up, no dentist, gone), redesigning my hernia support to cope with my hernia’s increased size, should have been fixed a year ago. Buying my wifes diabetes test strips online and getting her dementia medicine off the internet.

    1. GEORGE GALLOWAY , Like Ken Livingstone, just two of the most decent BRILLIANT people also slandered and suspended / expelled by the NEC – Because they knew these men understand TRUTH. See below. SPOT ON✅ CLEAR✅ Incisive ANALYSIS✅ INCISIVE EVIDENCE EXPLANATION. None of the FOG & FUDGE. I raised some of the same points but alas, i’m not as capable as George : https://www.rt.com/op-ed/475846-labour-culture-war-voters/

    2. CAROLINE FLINT said Emily Thornberry boasted that her London constituency did not vote for Brexit, because they were not STUPID LIKE CAROLINE FLINT’s. Clip is BBC 5 Live Pienar program after 0950 . Then please read my mentions of her and the other Coyles Khans etc ARROGANT, sneering, COMPLETELY OUT OF TOUCH. Those are the creatures the NEC and McDonnell appeased. The BEST defenders of JEREMY – CHRIS WILLIAMSON, GEORGE GALLOWAY, KEN LIVINGSTONE – all kicked out, because they speak truth🌹 Ken was out of breath like the last time i heard Chris on the radio. They rush from studio to studio DEFENDING Jeremy. To appease the vile vile liars, The NEC did not stand up for them as JEREMY defended ASHWORTH, and Watson. We now have the predicted reward as dished out at every election since JC was elected. Even at By-elections the same box of tricks were opened – AS, IRA the lot. And still, next time no change. Keep appeasing.

  2. To be expected and now our job or should I say with humility , the ALT Medias job is to carry on with the excellent expose work as illustrated here .
    WEll done SB as usual

    1. We entered into a ridiculous Tory fight. Instead of leaving Tories to implode, we joined in. Instead of giving a free vote and making Jeremy’s own beliefs shine and be well known, especially to us younger people, the party caved in to his enemies who were on the repeatedly LOSING SIDE. So his scarce voice was used to spout remaniac speculative rubbish. UTTER UN-EVIDENCED ILLOGICAL RUBBISH.

      AND at the root, there was a key defeatist culture. e.g. from Labour Referendum leaflet:

      “Without the EU, a Tory Government would be free to…”

      “… less protection from a Tory Government”

      It struck me then, so i kept the leaflet here.

      QUESTION: Why produce literature that predicts our defeat❓

      SO: There will be no DEEP VITAL change without fixing the culture at the CORE of our party. CLP – basics…too many to list. PLP – open MSM undermining of our leadership, brings the party into disrepute and is a MAIN cause of our defeat. The guilty should be suspended IMMEDIATELY. NOW IS THE TIME. NOTHING is lost by suspending them now. If during their suspension, they persist with their errant behaviour, then EXPELL THEM IMMEDIATELY. It is beyond ridiculous to have them wrecking from within, at OUR EXPENSE.

      We need to stop the indecision, the hesitant spirit sapping fog, the unrealistic pursuit of the mythical “bringing the country together”. A fog is not seen by the many as “principled”. It is felt by “the many” as the very opposite. The team and NEC allowed Jeremy’s reputation of decency and honesty to be sacrificed on the alter of incoherent myths.

      Even our parliamentary chamber is set up thus; Each side should put its view CLEARLY, bravely so they can be scrutinised, debated, a decision made, then IMPLEMENTED. One can never please everyone. And for the life of me, it is impossible to justify a “strategy” of reopening a decided outcome… with “CONSTRUCTIVE AMBIGUITY”. Who concocted that one??? At its root is a repellant attempt to deceive. That failed.

      After all, a Tory Prime Minister Cameron, called the Referendum to put a Tory argument to bed…. KICK IT INTO THE LONG GRASS… hoping to then say “the matter is closed”. “The people have decided”… as Blair did after each IRAQ INVASION INQUIRY & STRANGE DEATH OF DR. DAVID KELLEY in the woods near to his house. ie- Chillcot, Buttler inquiries etc SO …

      The person or persons who thought it sensible, after Jeremy’s long held view won, to reopen the “settled” argument…by hacking our way into the TORY long grass, to retrieve a TORY PROBLEM, OWN IT then present it to OUR TRADITIONAL HEARTLANDS poorly packaged in an insulting, down right insulting fudge… those people should go now. NOW! Those are the people who should go. They failed Jeremy. They should go. NOT Jeremy.

      A leader needs a good team. They cannot do it on their own. eg Note well, it was clear that Johnson was well managed. At first he could not cope. He looked and seemed ill. His team then gave some slack. He regained his ENERGY and bounce. So a well calibrated balance is needed.

      Huge hiccups like stuffing phone in pocket and hiding in a fridge were handed to us on a plate and COMPLETELY IGNORED possibly because some in high command thought it beneath us. I’m sorry, THAT has purchase, if repeated as often as “GBD”. It showed a deeply flawed personality and it lack of character. How could you care for the NHS if you hide the photo of the ill child in your pocket? Some will say, oh yes it was mentioned. I say hardly by us and NOT ENOUGH! A failure to recognise the implications of those two Johnson revealing actions, was a failure on the part of the team. A failure of detachment of the real world. Should they wish, then find Utopia and do their politics there. Jeremy deserves better than that.

      Hiding in a fridge: how can you keep us safe when you hide in fridges??? Again ignored. Instead we had a scattergun blizzard overwhelming storm of policies EVEN IN THE LAST WEEK … EVERY DAY A NEW POLICY and yes the symbolic planting of millions of trees, announced in Southampton. VERY plantable, I know. It has been done. Very doable, but it was not a priority. The election results show it. THAT’s EVIDENCE. We must accept it.

      If Jeremy can accept ALL of the essence of the above and transform the culture within, THEN we can transform the country. it is my FIRM opinion that he should not be forced out… as he was forced into an election when it was Cummings’ OBVIOUS game plan. CUMCUM’s & Jonjon’s frustration was palpable when they thought they would not be gifted a GE. And to my surprise, PERPETUAL GIVING IN, struck again.

      Phoney TORY BLIAR set its own timetable for departure. Long overdue. Brown said he will never trust a word from you again … or words to that effect. Theresa May also left at her leisure. This is one final opportunity for JEREMY NOT TO BE PUSHED ABOUT. NOT TO BE PULLED ABOUT. NOT TO BE FORCED OUT. Only one more chance to be VISIBLY DETERMINED.

      JEREMY MUST STAY🌹🌹🌹

    2. This article EXACTLY as i’v tried to say. Also, WHY MAKE McNicol and other saboteurs Lords??? What next Lord Watson??? The constant APPEASEMENT and timidity always afraid of bad press that’s already in the gutter‼️ Whe you have apologised before why not say I DID on x y z occasion , Did u not hear or read? Then do your job properly‼️‼️‼️ The timid soft approach on almost everything, encouraged the MSM as it says to them hit me again i’m a mug.

  3. Those who ‘lent’ their votes to the despicable Johnson are going to have a lot to answer for.

    1. those who were happy to ignore those who voted Leave, have a lot to answer for.

      1. By refusing to honour a democratic mandate from the base this party was created to serve, they have delivered Johnson’s Brexit rather than Corbyn’s.

        Nothing wrong with being a Labour Remainer – unless you continue to push for a result that has already been democratically rejected, overturning a commitment by the party to honour the very opposite result of the referendum, thereby demonstrating unequivocally to an electorate already bereft of any faith in politicians that they were completely untrustworthy.

        That is what lost us this election. The denial of those who lost it for us is doubly despicable in that it will prove the biggest threat to Corbyn’s legacy. They are beneath contempt.

      2. Forthestate, you say it in my opinion absolutely crystal clear… and without my many typos, and rush of thoughts on the run. BUT WELL SAID🌹🌹🌹

    2. The problem is SteveH, they will claim they were fooled but who was the fool for grasping at straws and believing in snake oil?

    3. …and the LP hasn’t? You speak as if the neoliberal project of privatisation and financialized economy has just begun. New Labour was in it up to it’s filthy, blood soaked, bankers bail out neck and since LP has done little to educate people deceived by decades of propaganda against those struggling in a capitalist system, NHS demonisation and false narratives to enable restructuring and ingress of bloated layers of corporate business model and rentier profiteers seeking a good return on their investment through expense drain on public purse..

      How about the corrupt political system, lobbying/revolving door and exploitative economic system UK has have a lot to answer for?

      1. Maria, i wish to be as concise as u r✅✅✅ Gloriously incisive as ever. PLEASE, never desert Skwawkbox your wisdom is an inspiration🌹🌹🌹

      2. Whoa signpostnotwindchimes,
        I am blushing as the punctuation and grammar police are grinding their teeth.

        Skwawkbox has been my go to source for LP goings on, why give up a reliable source especially in todays world?

        Foggy, I know you are correct, Johnson has not only taken up the mantle he has put his foot to the floor of his tank and no doubt taken the fastest route to Banker/investor Rentier profits via any means possible. The FIRE sector will burn brightly on the fuel of workers incomes and quality of life.
        In this neoclassical economic age, to paraphrase Prof Hudson, the meaning of the term ‘free market’ has been turned on its head from a market free from rentiers and monopolists in the classical economic age to freedom from regulation for Banks, monopolists and rentiers to parasitise the real, productive economy and wage earners/workers.

        Nearly all the gains made after WW2 for workers and society as a whole have been rolled back. The ‘ruling/Rentier classes’ made sure they took back their free lunch, dinner and banquet breakfast at the expense of everyone else at home and resource rich countries abroad… personally I hope they choke on it along with their political, propaganda and bureaucratic enablers.

  4. Excellent Skwawkbox as usual. And we need FOCUS on a few areas like this highlighted everyday. Focus on issues that people worry about all over the country everyday. Not metropolitan middle class obsessions. And for those calling the voters in the heartlands racist, tell Dennis Skinner, George Galloway, Tony Benn, Kate Hoey. And tell that to the poor souls from Vietnam who felt compelled to chance being smuggled into our country inna freezer lorry. Or the fellow who fell out of an aircraft hold. Tell the WINDRUSH VICTIMS subject to TORY hostile environment, held detention centres then deported to the Caribbean. See the documentary “THE UNWANTED”.
    The children of those invited here to rebuild our country were DELIBERATELY kicked out. See the thoroughly researched documentary. It includes archives which were secret (30 year rule). SO WHILE PEOPLE WHOSE parents fought side by side with us in the war against the Austro Germanic European EXPANSIONIST project, were kicked out using every injustice, decedents of those against us were welcomed. And that is not new. It was a deliberate secret policy incubated since the 1960’s.

    The people INVITED by Powell, yes “RIVERS of BLOOD” Powell… he went to the Caribbean to beg them to come and rebuild our BOMBED country, those people were wickedly turfed out in favour of Europeans from Hungary, Germany, France. REMANIACS focus on that! THAT us Xenophobic. THAT is racist. Lets treat people from other countries equally. THAT would be virtuous.

  5. The blame has been aceppted,we capitulated for so called party unity,me personally.I voted leave with my fellow Boltonians,but like many others in the Labour party I put party before the people and we are paying for it.Now is not the time for the leadership to bail out and capitulate even more by handing the party back to the right wing shambles that has failed to make the argument for neo liberal ideology.We have the strength and resources of the largest socialist party in Europe.We can win again without the baggage of the enemy within and need to have reform and a clearout.Do not forget that the Hearlands have just opened the door for a dismantling of our country for spite against the Labour party and socialism and will now pay for their mistakes ,not ours we were correct…We have been subjected to a hard lesson,so lets accept the lesson and move to getting the internal democracy and the baggage out and quickly. No more broad church ideology and start the purge…NEC,PLP,HQ and the whole failed system of appeasment. What have we got to loose,!.Show that bunch of traitors and use Corbyn and the membership to demand a complete clearout and a consultation and binding vote to remove those that cannot see the massive membership support for socialist ideology.We want more socialism,not less.

    1. “The blame has been aceppted,we capitulated for so called party unity,me personally.I voted leave with my fellow Boltonians,but like many others in the Labour party I put party before the people and we are paying for it.”

      Well it’s certainly been accepted by you, and as someone who knew, the moment Labour declared itself a Remain party, that we would lose, and lose badly, I cannot tell you how much I respect your honesty and courage in admitting it. That’s all we need to hold this thing together. That makes it all still possible. My contempt for those who persist in rewriting history in an attempt to avoid accountability for this disaster, and will do so until they write themselves out of it, as Clinton’s Democrats are currently doing in the US, is fathomless.

      Thank you.

      1. Forthstate,I am sure that many others who have held office in the council or MPs went along with unity of the party over democracy.Its a common problem in any organisation and even Jeremy ignored is personal beliefs and thought we need to win at all costs….We all know what thought did..and some of us followed and I am nobodys sheep as anyone would tell you on my former council,but that doesn’t mean we can’t learn from mistakes.They say that to keep making the same mistakes and repeating them is the first sign of mental illness.Better to own up and do whatever to make amends. So Corbyn must Stay and MacDonnell to ensure the party remains socialist and then handover to the younger generation.

  6. They will be doing this when we choose the new leader of the Labour Party. 1st out of the trap will be he/she’s an anti-Semite.

    If any presenter or journalist starts with this crap again like they did with Jeremy, who is no anti-Semite it needs to be nipped in the bud instantly by maybe asking;

    Are you saying this as a member of the public OR as a paid employee of Sky/BBC/Daily fail/Scum/Torygraph etc under the protections that journalism may afford you.

    As a member of the public you could be sued, declaring you may be protected will leave viewers questioning the presenter/journalist

    Either way it could stop it in a heartbeat. If not then ask where the assertion came from and if it’s been impartially & legally fact checked as they wouldn’t want to be credited with being a fake news spreader and have they reported it to the police, if not why not.

    I know it’s kinda long & drawn out but Jeremys way did nothing to stop it. Something along these lines has got to be the mantra to stop the demonization

    1. One way or another the EHRC’s report on their investigation into anti-Semitism within the Labour Party is going to be an interesting read.

  7. No doubt gym memberships will be paid and we’ll all be given time off from work to enable us to attend.

    More importantly, if we’re talking about a clear out we need Open Selection.

  8. We have the time now and we can demand what they denied us democracy and now.,We CANNOT wait for the congress next year and a new right wing shambles of a leader.Its our party,our subscription wasted on expelling true socialist members and Corbyn can call for a Labour party,referendum and the Democratic will of the membership must start now Deputy leader needs to be from the membership not the PLP and then the membership are truly represented.Parliament and Mps do not take the rap for this fiasco .We need change as the manifesto said,but that needs to be directed at the PLP and then the NEC and the HQ..Yes working class control of the Labour party…time for change.

    1. We, the membership did choose the deputy leader. Lying snake Watson lied to us stating his pledge to stand by and support the leader whoever it would be. No sooner than Jeremy won the leadership contest Watson removed that pledge from his website.

      We have to look back, who stood shoulder to shoulder with Jeremy during the coup, who has been verbally supportive of him and are their policy views the same as ours or are they flip floppers. Loyalty is massive.

  9. Back to their demonising of the sick…

    Amazing how people pick on the ‘fatties’ , the ‘alkies’ and the smokers and yet very few people (if anyone) bat an eyelid.

    One thing they WON’T do is the same thing to the LGBT sector, denying them their prep drugs or their sex change operations, etc. because then EVERYONE’s outraged, aren’t they?

    1. “Amazing how people pick on the ‘fatties’ , the ‘alkies’ and the smokers and yet very few people (if anyone) bat an eyelid.”

      It’s ironic isn’t it… they pick on those who were subjected to and addicted via the worst (or is that best?) of Capitalist propaganda and products that are naturally or made highly addictive. Additives to tobacco, 50/50 sugar/fat ratio in many pre prepared dishes and fast food etc. etc. etc

      Nah it’s not ironic… it’s ‘free market’ Capitalism, a circular loop of deception, profit gauging and inhumanity for pure greed and wealth gains for a few who eat the safest, best and most nutritious food their accumulated wealth can buy..

    2. Well, I think you have to look at how addiction happens in the human brain. I do not think it is quite the ‘free choice’ that we are told.

      That is the case for nicotine, alcohol and even sugar.
      And yet the firms that produce these are sometimes allowed to do what they like under the guise of ‘self-regulation’.

      1. Exactly Tony, much isn’t free choice 1. due to advertising which uses psychology and physiology experts to devise propaganda and recipies that make people desire more and 2. lax and self regulation that lets car manufacturers ‘fix’ cars to pass emissions tests for a non addictive but public health danger example.
        3) Cheap, poor quality mass produced by increasing monopolies and cartels of food and other products that squeeze out small, local farmers, producers and manufacturers in favour of factory farming and edge of town shopping centres so the less well off end up being a target and captive market for ruthless, immoral profiteers ie. victims of a venal system.
        Along with this goes the demise of the high street in communities where vacant shops, betting shops, ‘charity’ shops and loan sharks fill the void of no longer bustling, vibrant, community and local shops and amenities.

        Prof Richard D. Wolff documents this stuff every week on his democracyatwork.info economic update videos.

        Pilger’s documentary ‘The war you don’t see’ focuses on war propaganda but the principles are the same in PR (propaganda) to sell products or anything.
        ttp://johnpilger.com/videos/the-war-you-dont-see

  10. Leaving aside the fact this (identity politics?) journalist wrote a triumphant article about H.Clinton becoming the first female US President. ready for the result to be announced, yes that venal, ruthless, blood soaked warmonger backed by Oligarchs and banksters was of no consequence, she is female, this article is about her experience of the US health and other systems and worth a read.
    https://www.independent.co.uk/voices/boris-johnson-general-election-result-victory-british-us-future-a9246266.html

    I did try to leave Clinton’s record aside. Honest guv.

    Is Thornberry going to start the fight back she declared on Friday am with the NHS? LP really needs to fight back on this issue as hard as they can.

    Also a reminder to tell friends, family all social media contacts and anyone on the bus or train, Pilger’s documentary ‘The Dirty War on the NHS’ is on ITV 17th Dec, this coming Tuesday.
    Share links to other NHS documentaries, Peter Bach’s ‘Sell Off’ (find full version) Dr Bob Gill’s ‘NHS Heist’ on Vimeo for small fee.

    1. Pilger.s documentary is at 10.45pm on Tuesday 17th. So tape or whatever it is called these days to share with friends and family who are unable to watch at that late hour. It is in the public interest so in a truly free society should be during prime time viewing hours and on BBC and Channel 4!
      https://twitter.com/johnpilger/status/1206195316493553664

      See the repression of free speech used against the public in election period as BBC, Channel 4 state media and majority of corporate media et al use every trick in the book to push establishment narrative and agenda and demonize, misrepresent and surpress voices of those fighting against it.

      One thing that is confirmed in this GE is that UK is not a democracy and is increasingly moving towards authoritarian, I believe Mussolini style, Corporatism.

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