Over the weekend someone passed on some information that I thought was so shocking I have to share: This concerns a situation in England (my birth country) and although I cannot vouch for the accuracy of these figures, there must be some truth in it, otherwise the names mentioned would be suing for liable.

I will just repeat before I carry on: –

Latest figures published by the Bank of England, there is something very very wrong with the system.

British Gas made a profit of 1.3 billion GBP between January and June this year.

British Petroleum announced profits of 6.95 billion GBP between April and June alone

Shell has profited by 9.4 billion in a year

And not to mention those people at the top:

John Pettigrew, boss of the National Grid received a 6.5 m GBP bonus on top of his salary

Chris O’Shea, Chief Executive of British Gas was paid almost 2 million GBP last year in salary and benefits.

Centrica’s non-executive directors were paid almost 1 million GBP 

Scottish Power’s CEO Keith Anderson is on an annual salary of 1.15 million GBP

E-on Boss, Michael Lewis is on 1 million GBP

And the top executives enjoyed a share of 4.65 million GBP

Peter Simpson of Anglia Water earned a 1.3 million GBP pay package

Welsh Water bosses awarded themselves bonuses of over 930.000 GBP

Severn Trent bosses awarded themselves bonuses of 5.56 million GBP

Thames Water’s Sarah Bentley received a 727.000 GBP bonus on top of her annual 2 million salary


There are people who have not had breakfast and lunch today because they cannot afford it

People are using Foodbanks because food is becoming more of a luxury than a necessity.

Children are celebrating birthdays without presents.

Parents are worrying about purchasing new school uniforms and some school enforcing rules which are not cost effective.

People cannot get to work because they cannot afford to put petrol into their cars, or pay for public transport

People are having to work so much they are making themselves ill, and they still cannot afford to pay their bills

People are getting fined by these water/energy companies because they have not been able to afford or pay their bills in the first place – thus increasing the debt.

Customers are being told to do ‘star jumps’ to keep warm (for crying out aloud)!

Hose pipe bans when gallons of water leak away every day.

Elderly people not drinking because they are worried about running out of water.

And above this energy prices are expected to rise by 75% in October.


Question is: why is customer’s money being used to make life more comfortable for those who are making life more intolerable for the rest of us?

Maybe you have had to read this twice to take in the enormity of not only the salaries and bonuses of some totally greedy people but also the complete and utter madness as the article said itself. Again, these are not my words, merely copied to make a point and the point is, how much longer are people going to put up with this? Big question? Do I have an answer, unfortunately not.

Even though this applies to ex-EEC country The United Kingdom, it is the same here in Europe too.

Here energy prices and petrol prices are rising to levels which have never been heard of. Peoples’ monthly energy bills have doubled. I will use mine as an example. I used to pay about Euro 240 a month for my bill. This is gas and electricity and all the sneaky extra costs. The monthly cost is estimated by the usage in the previous year. Despite the fact that our government (and probably the first best thing they have done in yonks) lowered the VAT on bills. But my new estimation is nearly Euro 400 a month now. Despite the fact that I have solar panels which are generating more electricity back into the net than I am using personally, being on my own.

Health care costs have risen to exorbitant highs. And it’s obligatory. Even though we all agree health care has improved incredibly over the past decade and that our doctors and nurses work flat out to provide said care, the monthly costs are high. A basis package, then extra care for dental work, our own budget meaning we pay the first Euro 385 of any costs, and a very sneaky extra amount of Euro 250 for medication and other costs, even if you have them for a chronic disorder. Not many people know about this, until you check back on your annual summary and find out that the majority of medication you have collected from your pharmacist is not covered and you have to pay the Euro 250 first. What the hell is going on?

Despite extra coverage for dental care which is on average between Euro 30-50 per month per person, any dental charges are sky high. A visit to the dentist involves you since the Corona pandemic in extra cleaning costs, and inevitably they will suggest that you need to go the dental hygienist who charges by the minute! Yes seriously. Dental care is becoming so expensive that people are not going to the dentist.   I have had a broken back molar for some time which is not giving me any trouble but to be honest I have put off having it extracted because of course they also think another tooth should come out too and this will mean having implants.’ Have you any idea what this may cost”?  I asked last time around. “Oh at least Euro 2000’ of which I will only be covered by my insurance for about Euro 450.

And so, the story continues. The price of fuel has risen to figures we have never seen before. The majority of the cost is taxes on fuel. There is actually enough fuel stored here underground in an industrial area to keep us going for ages. The biggest industrial plant ever has been built to process the manure produced by farm animals into biogas. So, what is going wrong? Why are we continually being subjected to this nonsense and why aren’t politicians speeding up the processes to get things moving and that we as a country (and I am talking about the Netherlands here) become more self-sufficient. We have enough gas in the ground here to supply our entire country but what do we do with it? According to EEC legislation and rules we sell it to Germany and Belgium (our neighboring countries). 

On a daily basis hundreds of people seeking asylum in this country are arriving and in a country which is overfull to start with. Are these genuine people seeking refuge from war zones. I have my doubts as they are usually men, all have the latest iPhone and trendy clothes and sneakers, and everything is free here. They have left their women and children behind. They get priority on the housing lists for rented accommodation and a monthly allowance. Health care is free and if they get a house, it is fully furnished and equipped for them. Often, they refuse as they find it ‘not good enough’. If your blood is not already reaching boiling point by this stage of reading … And to cope with these numbers, they are now being placed in hotels??? Or on small cruise ships??? I mean come on !!!

Dutch people are still on housing waiting lists and have been now for years. The entire housing market has blown up to such highs it is ridiculous. A property coming on the market immediately has umpteen viewers a day and the highest offer wins, meaning that people are being guzumpted all the time and first-time buyers are standing at the waiting gate again and again. People take on mortgages for said properties which is way above their heads, meaning that if the housing market (which is inevitable I think) slumps and hits an all-time low, that they are literally ‘under water’ as we say, or in other words, their mortgage is more than that value of their house.

Another sad story to hit the headlines this weekend concerned health care research. A group of doctors are under investigation by a special governmental department (FIOD A very strict tax department by the way!) for accepting bribes for money for health research. What? And one happened to be the major shareholder in the company concerned. Now handouts, or acceptance of bribes is nothing new, it goes on all the time, the finest example of course known to many is the acceptance of money by a Dutch Prince Bernhard in the Lockheed affair, back in the 60-70’s. A national scandal and still it continues. Mafia like practices are the norm apparently. The unfair thing about this story is that other research centers are being targeted for being suspected of the same thing. Even though there are some honest and honorable people who are actually doing it properly. But information like that is not interesting enough for the ‘news’.

After the Corona pandemic, when doctors and nurses had to work flat out to cope, there is so much control by the Managers in their ivory towers, behind desks, demanded targets and goals, that 8% of our nursing staff is on sick leave. Doctors who are learning their profession are having burns outs and dropping out. We have gone beyond the times when a hospital had a doctor in charge. A person who knew and understood the medical profession. They have been replaced by mediocre managers who are greedy and only want to reach their targets and have little or no concern for the patients at all. Have virtually no idea whatsoever what actually goes on ‘downstairs’ on the work floor. What health care is being given and how hard work it is.

And I wonder what bonuses these managers get for reaching said targets over and above their already enormous salaries.

Yes, of course there will always be people who earn more than others, it’s always been that way, but I ask myself what on earth do you need a salary for in the millions anyway? To lead the high life, to have more and more, inevitably leading to the fact that it is never enough. Bonusses which are higher than the most peoples’ annual wage. And probably they are avoiding all possible ways to reduce their tax liability too.

So, when you think what is going on in our world and how do we ever come back to a point when things are fair, and that we all have the attitude that we also take care of one another. Does a boss of some energy company wonder at any time, maybe I should donate my bonus for the greater good of others. Or even better ensure that the costs are kept at a level that people are able to pay their bills. The thing is they are not interested in the slightest. It is a case of ‘I’m alright Jack and bugger the rest’.

How do these people sleep at night? Has their concept become so ridiculous that maybe they think this is the norm. That they are literally in the rat race worrying about having more and more materialistic things. Private schooling for the kids, a private nanny (because let’s face it in their position they don’t have the time to do mundane things like that).

I ask myself often, where is all of this going and where does it end? And even more important how do we, the people put a stop to it? Can we? How much longer are we going to accept that our lives are controlled by people who are in power (and usually the worst) who have not got the slightest care whatsoever for their fellow man. How appliable is the saying then: ‘what goes around comes around’? Are the people in the highest positions those who will have the biggest fall in the end?

Where has the compassion gone? Why aren’t the elderly being helped more, they did the work in the past to make the country great and are now treated as second rate citizens. That they are now afraid that things like one of life’s basic necessities will run out – water.  It is really quite disgusting that this is actually happening and how do we make our world a better place for everyone? 

When are we ever going to wake up?

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Jill Kramer

Hi! I'm Jill and I'm a passionate author of books, short stories, columns and blogs.

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