Nye Bevan on Conservative Plans to Destroy the NHS

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Nye Bevan pic

Bevan was also aware that the Tories desperately wanted to stop the creation of the welfare state. This was particularly true of Churchill, who bitterly hated the idea of the proles getting free medicine, loudly denouncing the new welfare state and NHS as a ‘A Gestapo for England’. This shows that once the War was over, Churchill was basically another hard-right Tory louse and the returning servicemen were quite right to kick him out.

At one point in its creation, the amount spent on the new NHS exceeded the initial estimates. Churchill seized on this to try and discredit the whole scheme. Bevan says of this in In Place of Fear

The first few Estimates for the Health Service seemed to justify the critics. Expenditure exceeded the Estimates by large amounts, and Mr Churchill with his usual lack of restraint plunged into the attack. In this he showed less insight…

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