Monday, January 7, 2013

Oh, Hello 1984

Oh, Hello 1984

So you know how when people say that a situation is very "Orwellian", they're almost always exaggerating or completely misunderstanding what that means from Nineteen Eighty-Four?

Well, for once I can actually say that something is truly Orwellian and if you doubt me, tell me that This isn't actually like 1984 

Obese and other unhealthy people could be monitored to check whether they are taking exercise and have their benefits cut if they fail to do so under proposals published on Thursday by a Conservative-run council and a local government think tank.

Westminister council and the Local Government Information Unit say new technologies such as smart cards could be used to track claimants' use of leisure centres, allowing local authorities to dock housing and council benefit payments from those who refuse to carry out exercise prescribed by their doctor.

The report, A Dose of Localism: the Role of Councils in Public Health, precedes the transfer in April of responsibility for community wellbeing and public health from the NHS to local authorities.

The proposals address how councils can meet the financial challenges posed by their new public health function amid rising levels of obesity and major budget cuts. The report suggests linking benefit payments to claimants' lifestyles, and notes that some councils have introduced schemes allowing GPs to prescribe exercise at swimming pools, yoga, gyms and walking clubs.

"Where an exercise package is prescribed to a resident, housing and council tax benefit payments could be varied to reward or incentivise residents," the authors state

A Westminster council spokesman said the proposal would have to involve a "carrot and stick" approach.

Yes ma'am. That right there. Now that right there is fucking Orwellian as you can possibly get. It's truly shocking and rather sickening to think about it. I just wonder what else we can specifically penalize poor people for next. Maybe smoking? Or perhaps some alcohol. Those two seem like the obvious choices.

Perhaps we will eventually be able to cut benefits for people based on nutritional profile and carbon footprint. How about genetic make up and genetic dispositions? Fuck Obesity! It's ruining everything, I tells yah.

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