One of the few traditional Conservatives to have served on the Tory front bench under Cameron, Paterson was Secretary of State for Northern Ireland before being promoted to the more high profile role of Secretary of State for Defra.

Candidate of the day

Owen Paterson

One day to go and Sir John Major has weighed in. “Labour divides to rule. To win votes they will turn rich against poor; north against south; worker against boss." We hope we don't wake up with them on Friday.

Hero of the day

Sir John Major

Another awful Labour woman. The fact Ed Miliband’s carved his pledges in stone doesn't mean he might not break them, campaign chief Lucy Powell has said.

Villain of the day

Lucy Powell

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THE REAL CONSERVATIVE MANIFESTO

Back marriage. Restore grammar schools. Leave the EU.

Reader’s Comment: Our state-funded broadcaster costs 167,000 nurses

In response to Caroline Farrow: Unpopular lefty Newsnight seeks to stitch up the popular righty DUP, Carbonari1848 wrote:

Starting salary for a nurse: £22,128. Cost of BBC per year: £3.7bn. The BBC costs us 167,000 nurses. Is it really worth it, just for a few (admittedly quite good) documentaries about wildlife?


  • Groan

    An excellent nugget for our “sound bite” politics. Coming hot on the heels of just how well paid the Beeb is. I hope this gets into social media. I think the suggestion that the Tax to fund the BBC lavishly be transferred to help the NHS could be a vote winner.

  • Tethys

    Get real:

    Brexit divorce bill: =160,000 Nurses for 10 years.

    Brexit Referendum cost: (£140m) = 6300 Nurses for 1 year.

    Brexit legal case cost: £1.2m = 54 Nurses for 1 year.

    Student Nurses costs up to now: covered by NHS bursary

    Student Nurses costs from 2017: part of a loan

    2017 Student Nurse applications: down 20%

    NHS Nurse vacancies 2017: 24,000

    EU Nurse registrations 2017: down 96% from 1304 to 46.

    • Carbonari1848

      Shouldn’t you be busy writing your Guardian opinion piece? I suppose it doesn’t take much effort to churn out the same “free stuff for everyone” rubbish every day, though.

      Student costs up to now – covered by taxpayer, not magic money tree

      Brexit legal case cost – unnecessary if the remoaners had simply respected democracy

      Brexit divorce bill – unjustified on the grounds that the EU will not keep its commitments to any EU funding net recipients if they left the EU, and the fact that we have contributed far more than we ever received from the EU.

      Oh, and of course you “forgot” to mention that no one voted for the BBC.

      My point was that the BBC does not give us anything like the same value of 167,000 nurses. But Brexit – whilst it probably won’t either – offers us opportunities and freedoms in return for whatever it might cost us in the short term.

      Getting rid of the BBC would have precisely zero social impact and provide a great deal of money for more worthy causes that promoting lesbian knitting therapy in the Outer Hebrides.

      I am surprised you support the most regressive tax in the country; £147 levied on everyone who watches TV, from the Duke of Westminster to the poorest single mum on a council estate, regardless of their ability to pay.

      But whatever – as long as they keep pumping out your propaganda and buying your lefty rag to keep it in business.

      • Tethys

        Not worth a reply. Sorry.

        • Johannes Factotum

          Wot, not even a ‘Get real’?

        • Carbonari1848

          Not capable of a reply. Sad.

          If you haven’t got any facts to counter the actual argument, surely you can try some other distracting tactic instead?

          Surely you’ve got some other means of distracting from the fact that our state funded broadcaster is funded by the most regressive tax there is, and is simply not worth the price?

    • Johannes Factotum

      Hey, Tethys, can you give me Saturday’s Lotto numbers? As from your ‘Brexit’ bill calculation you seem to be able to predict the future. Frankly, I’d be happy for us to pay three times the amounts shown to be rid of the E.U. – and our first year’s £8.5 billion will pay for plenty of nurses – from OUR shores if they set up a recruiting drive, but they also need to ditch this ‘degree’ nonsense and recruit people who have a vocational drive to CARE.

      • Tethys

        Minus the divorce bill and the rest.
        Then what about the minimum 4 year gap.
        Then the Midwives
        Then the Doctors

        Get real.

        • Johannes Factotum

          There you go with the bill, again. How is it you are party to final figures no-one else is? The deal has yet to be fully struck. Scaremongering and speculation of your sort was rampant before the referendum and immediately after, and it was just that – scaremongering. Frankly, this country, sorry, governments of all hues, wastes so much tax revenue on vanity projects and the E.U. that any price to get out will be money well spent, we know from previous experience the revenue pot will fill again and then, eventually, it will be business as usual. We who voted ‘Brexit’ new it would entail uncertainty and expense in the short run, but I look forward to the day we are masters of our own destiny, not Brussel’s.

        • Carbonari1848

          Again you are ignoring my argument and trying to distract from the obvious fact that the BBC is simply not worth 167,000 nurses.

          But you would rather have a state funded broadcaster to pump out propaganda that you agree with, than 167,000 nurses.

    • StopIslamofascism

      Are you saying Gina Miller should have put the £1.2m she spent to try to stop Brexit into the NHS instead? 😀

  • Johannes Factotum

    I’ve just watched, or rather gawped in astonishment, at the ‘BBC World News’ on BBC 4 ‘reporting’ the election result in Kenya – it was a shambles.

    A ‘live’ report under the grand banner of ‘Breaking News’, it dragged on, and on, and on, with little to show, the presenter slowing down her speech to a uncomfortable level, ‘er-ing’ and ‘umm-ing’, hoping the result would be announced (‘Oh, please’, I could almost hear her praying) before informing us… that they’d be back when the result was known.

    They returned, and I watched over five minutes of some bloke mumbling semi-coherently as he read results combined with percentages and named all the candidates… from the local districts in Kenya, and there are forty of them; eventually, around about district number seven, it dawned on the BBC what was happening and they returned to the studio.

    I switched off, musing what was so important about the Kenya results it merited ‘live’ coverage; presumably a expensive satellite ‘feed’, and a crowd of BBC staff on a jolly, sorry, job to Nairobi. At one time this would have been a item amongst many on the Nine o’clock news foreign segment, Time for reform.

  • Fern

    Except, of course, very few of those who write for or populate this site’s ‘Comments’ section actually believe in ‘socialised medicine’ so it’s an intellectually dishonest argument. A more honest one would be to enthuse about how many rich folk could benefit from being given that money in one form or another.

    • Carbonari1848

      I believe in socialised medicine.

      Explain to me why I’m being intellectually dishonest, then explain why you think the BBC is worth more than 167,000 nurses.

      You can’t, so you resort to the standard tactic of ignoring the argument and flinging mud at the arguer.

      • Tethys

        The Radio alone is worth my Licence fee compared to Netflix for example.
        Regarding News output: a state funded constitutionally neutral outlet is very desirable in context of the alternatives around us.