Although I rarely restrain myself from vocally contributing to existing threads in SD, I seldomly start one of my own. But I think this is one such occasion. Because we may be on the cusp of a historical change that will resonate throughout the society of this nation for decades to come and will change everything. It may be as big a change as the industrial revolution, votes for all or, indeed, the inception of the NHS in 1947. It may be, in fact, the beginning of the end of the NHS. No scaremongering or Chicken Little "The sky is falling!" here. With the new reforms instigated by Lansley I see the first steps to systematically dismantling the NHS and turning it into a private health care enterprise much as we see in the US. As time goes on it looks more and more as if this is not a hare-brained cost-cutting exercise but a move that has been fermenting in the dank cellars of the Conservatives (and to some extent, New Labour) for years; a plan that has been plotted and executed like a chess game by interested private enterprise parties, many of which are from the US. Not convinced? Have a look here. Lefty consipracy-theorist paranoia or the tolling of the bell? You decide. I for one am seriously starting to think that in 10 years time, there will be no more NHS. National Insurance will devolve into an obligatory general health insurance for all, run by private enterprises, providing only the most basic (and costly) health care. For the first time you may be challenged on whether you are entitled to insurance coverage for a particular health intervention. For the first time, you may have to pay extra contributions to cover pre-existing conditions. Welcome to the 51st State.