Meet the pain management nurse who is set to unseat Iain Duncan Smith

Kathryn Anderson

Kathryn Anderson

Gratitude is due to Andrew Sharp for notifying Vox Political of the one major omission in our story about the challenge to leading members of the Conservative – Liberal Democrat Coalition government by members of the National Health Action Party in next year’s general election.

Iain Duncan Smith will be challenged for his Chingford and Woodford Green constituency – not by a major media figure like, say, Rufus Hound, nor by a leading member of the NHA Party… but by a pain management nurse from North London.

Kathryn Anderson works at Hampstead’s Royal Free Hospital – but wants to make sure the people of Chingford and Woodford Green have a chance  to express their “disgust” at what she calls the work and pensions secretary’s “totally dismissive” attitude towards unwell, disabled or disadvantaged people who need assistance.

Who better to ram that point home than a nurse who spends every day working with people who suffer the chronic pain that is habitually dismissed as non-existent by the man this blog likes to call RTU (Returned To Unit – Army terminology for a failure)?

He might not say it himself but the work capability assessment his Department for Work and Pensions has forced on sick benefit claimants is nothing more than a crude essay in disability denial, written for him by an insurance company that earned a criminal conviction in the USA for using the very same formula to refuse claims on its policies.

“Just because this is considered a safe Tory seat doesn’t mean Iain Duncan Smith shouldn’t be challenged, and challenged fiercely,” the NHA Party candidate told the Chingford Guardian on Monday.

“As the deeply unpopular Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, he has shown just how incredibly cruel and vicious the Tory party can be, introducing the bedroom tax and making horrendous cuts to welfare and in the process, destroying lives. He has been far more interested in supporting the wealthy elite than supporting the vulnerable.

“It is also very clear that Iain Duncan Smith cares little for the NHS. The combination of his support for NHS cuts and privatisation, and his welfare reforms, are leading to an even greater reliance on healthcare support for those most in need.”

If Kathryn Anderson wins the seat, not only will the Monster of the Coalition Government be removed from Parliament, but a critical propaganda victory will be won – simply because she isn’t a political ‘Big Beast’.

She’s a nurse, from a London suburb.

Now, Labour is also fielding a candidate against RTU. Bilal Mahmood isn’t a ‘Big Beast’ either, but in the case of Her Majesty’s Loyal Opposition, this is not an attempt to win a symbolic victory; rather it is a concession that a Labour victory in such a Tory heartland is nigh-on impossible. We should not dismiss Mr Mahmood’s abilities or intentions, but it is incumbent on all of us to admit that he has an uphill struggle ahead of him.

This is something the naysayers – who popped up after Monday’s article – failed to grasp when they claimed the rise of the National Health Action Party showed that Labour had become impotent: The chances of Labour winning in Chingford are tiny. The blue-rinsed brigade would rather chew off their own writing hands than get into bed with a Red.

The NHA Party offers an acceptable alternative. Its members are mainly doctors and other medical professionals who are deeply concerned that a major Conservative Party policy will bring nothing but harm to the nation as a whole – and habitual Conservative voters may sympathise wholeheartedly with that point of view.

Look at Lord Tebbit. He reckons he has been a lifelong user of the NHS and the only member of his family ever to have enjoyed privatised medicine is his dog!

As far as the good of the National Health Service is concerned, the aim of the 2015 General Election must be to remove the Conservative Party from office (and, in the main, from Parliament altogether) and then to remove the private sector asset-strippers from the publicly-funded system. That should come above all party political allegiances.

That is why Vox Political, which supports Labour, is happy to call on all those in Chingford and Woodford Green – and in all the other Tory-held constituencies where an NHA Party challenger has arisen – to support them in their campaigns. In particular, help them overcome media resistance.

Tory-supporting money owns most of the press, and this means dissenting voices that offer an alternative to the Conservatives are likely to gain only a fraction of the Tories’ column-inches or TV exposure. Social media and people power can change all that.

If you live in Chingford or Woodford Green and you want people to know there is a viable alternative to Iain Duncan Smith, then spread the word – not just once, but often, until the message gets through that they don’t have to be the quiescent sheep that Tory High Command wants them to be.

Use the social media. Use newspaper letters pages. Phone in to radio and TV political programmes. Cause a stir.

Of course, if NHA Party candidates unseat RTU, David Cameron and all the rest, it means Labour will be more likely to win the election anyway, so Yr Obdt Srvt will get the desired result. But some readers have expressed misgivings about Labour’s will to go through with the repeal of the Health and Social Care Act.

The presence of NHA Party members in the House of Commons will hold Labour to its word.

If you live in a Tory ‘stronghold’ constituency, this is your best chance to save the NHS.

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  1. Rupert Mitchell (@rupert_rrl) September 10, 2014 at 6:45 am - Reply

    Thank you Mike for bringing this to our attention and thank you of course to Andrew Sharp too. A huge hug and good wishes for victory to Kathryn Anderson.

  2. Alex Deacon September 10, 2014 at 6:52 am - Reply

    “The presence of NHAP in the HOC will hold Labour to it’s word.” : that’s a reassurance is it?!? How well did it work out having ANYONE keeping anyone at their word?
    I fully trust NHAP to do what they say.
    I fully trust the Greens to do what they say. However, I lack your admirable level of faith in Parties that have betrayed us before, chief of whom, I have to say is Labour.
    Where were they when we first lost the NHS?
    Where is their opposition (Opposition) full-stop?!?
    They’re Neo-Liberal Austerians, the public have more than enough choice in that area, so Labour’s “efforts”, coming as they do, way too little at way too late a juncture to not look like desperation+ electioneering.

    There are stark parallels between the whole Parliamentary BDSM Love-In with Scotland+ Labour’s over-keen whitewashing Late-PolicyFest, “Oooooh, NHS, the public like them, add a bit of that. Sprinkle a bit of Bedroom Tax angst, stir in some tough talk on Immigrants+ we’re golden. NO-ONE will remember the last few years, or the last Parliament, or Iraq….”

    Only the Greens are a true alternative+ revolutionising force.

    Talk is cheap, people are dying. Next??

    • Mike Sivier September 23, 2014 at 3:13 pm - Reply

      Alex, I think you are a Friend Of Ol’ Lynton (Crosby).
      Your anti-Labour rant reveals his agenda – claiming that Labour has not opposed the Coalition when Labour’s opposition has been fierce. Do you understand, Alex, that a majority government in the House of Commons cannot be beaten on a whipped vote? That is why Labour was unable to prevent the passage of the Health and Social Care Act, diabolical though it was, and that is why Labour has been unable to prevent any of the other vile policies that have been heaped on us since then.
      There was neoliberalism in Labour – in the past – but the party is steering away from that. Comments like yours only serve to demoralise those in the party who are working towards that aim.
      If the Conservatives get back into office next May, off the back of comments by people like you, just remember to congratulate yourself on a nasty job well done.

  3. Nick September 10, 2014 at 9:12 am - Reply

    providing she talks and acts like myself and sticks on topic about the many hundreds of negligent deaths of the sick and disabled with some of the photos of those that have died to hand to back up her argument then she should win

    having said that IDS and Chingford and Woodford Green are like blood brothers so it wont be easy

    • Mike Sivier September 10, 2014 at 9:13 am - Reply

      Exactly – she needs all the help she can get.

  4. Mr.Angry September 10, 2014 at 9:28 am - Reply

    Let us hope and pray these two individuals put up a good fight and people with some sense of compassion support them fully. This waste of DNA (RTU) must be eliminated for good then held to account. The media needs to get a handle on this evil man long before next May. The residents of Chingford and Woodford surely can’t be blind to what this man has done.

  5. Clive Arnold September 10, 2014 at 9:35 am - Reply

    Yeah, yeah we keep hearing about people losing their DLA but what about the carer behind that loss who will lose their Carers Allowance? McVey stated 25,000 or more will lose it. You are telling one half of the story and omitting us cares who get hit. Try opening this up a little please instead of ignoring us

    • Mike Sivier September 10, 2014 at 9:41 am - Reply

      As a carer myself, I am well aware of the situation. When Mrs Mike was targeted by the DWP, it was only my intervention that stopped her from losing her benefit.
      Would you like to write a guest blog about this?

  6. trudy September 10, 2014 at 9:37 am - Reply

    Im sure she will be overwhelmed with help…go for it ….

  7. Alex Ashman September 10, 2014 at 9:58 am - Reply

    Thanks for this post, Mike. I wanted to add that Kathryn Anderson is a strong candidate: though not a political “big beast”, she is well-known and well-liked amongst the central party. I truly believe that she will challenge IDS, and fiercely at that.

  8. Andrew Longworth-Dames September 10, 2014 at 10:06 am - Reply

    Tactical voting would present the best chance of defeating Idiot Does Sums. The other candidates should stand aside and give Kathryn a clear run. Just dreaming.

  9. hilary772013 September 10, 2014 at 11:13 am - Reply

    Mike as a 63 year old I have never EVER voted Tory as I have never felt they have my interests at heart. As the 2015 election is now on the horizon I honestly haven’t got a clue who to vote for? my dilemma is: I do not feel that Labour has my best interests at heart either or the Country’s if it comes to that. I wanted them to come out and say categorically they will repeal the welfare bill AND all the other nasty policies the Tories have enforced upon us BUT they haven’t, the only Labour MP that I would trust to run the Country fairly & have our interests at heart is Michael Meacher but that won’t happen. I honestly feel that if Labour do win the next election we are only going to get a slightly watered down version of the Tories.. My other concern is that whatever Party wins next year they can say/promise anything in the run up to the election but once in power they can renege on their promises & there is nothing we can do about it. All I want is a government that is trustworthy & will run the Country in a way that will benefit ALL & not just the wealthy and one that will listen to the people, they seem to forget it is our money that pays their wages..

    This is the first time ever that I have got involved with politics but I just cannot sit by and watch the vulnerable being persecuted for the benefit of the rich, I have written FOI requests, written to my MP on numerous occasions, written to the BBC & other media, I also post on social media etc etc.

    I have always known which party I will vote for but not anymore, if I was truthful I would like a change of Labour leadership as I just do not trust the man, he does not come over as trustworthy or honest, in fact he doesn’t come over as anything.

    A very disillusioned confused pensioner x

    • Mike Sivier September 10, 2014 at 11:47 am - Reply

      I think you probably need to consider very carefully the consequences of any kind of voting that is likely to help the Conservatives get back in.
      You might not like Labour’s leader or all its policies, but at least Labour will repeal the Bedroom Tax and the Health and Social Care Act.
      Beyond that, I think they’ve said they need to see the state of the national finances before making any further decisions.

      • hilary772013 September 10, 2014 at 2:21 pm - Reply

        I certainly don’t want the Tories to get back into power EVER but Labour are not going far enough & I am frightened they will continue with the assaults the disabled & vulnerable & they are not promising not to. I applaud the fact they are going to save the NHS by repealing the health & social care act & they are also going to repeal the hated bedroom tax BUT what about the thousands of deaths caused by the welfare reform act? if they promised & kept their promise of a repeal of the welfare act I would vote Labour in the blink of an eye. Mike I can also tell you that most of the people that I have contact with on social media feel the same.

    • jess September 10, 2014 at 2:50 pm - Reply


      Like yourself, I would never vote for the tories, a party of privilege and dirty money

      And, when I give a vote to a Labour candidate, I have to hold my nose.

      But to let the nasty party back in power next year is to condemn (pun intended) many more of our neighbours, friends and family to a regime intent on trashing the last bastions of decency from our society

      But there is a difference between Milliband and the nulaourites that still infest the party

      He has already committed the party to scrapping the under-occupation penalty

      And the waste of money that RTU’s unumfest involves makes it a racing certainty to follow the rest of of the pogrom against the poor into oblivion

      (As for the tea-bag party of mr toad and their pretensions to ‘new politics’, it is worth remembering that moseley and his minions, the toad party’s forebears, claimed to be a ‘new party’ too)

      But voting is never enough

      To influence a political party, you need to be part of it. (And endure the endless bouts of revisionism that usually emanate from the ‘treasurer’s chair’)

      Whichever way you decide

      Good luck to yourself

  10. Alan Borgars (@watermelonalan) September 11, 2014 at 7:52 pm - Reply

    Sorry to say this, but if there is a Green Party candidate in Chingford I will have to support them first, as a Green activist. If only Britain used STV for elections….

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