There are so many things that the government is doing wrong at the moment it's hard to pick one.
The NHS is the one making the headlines at the moment. Remember the 'airbrushed' David Cameron poster?
It was so widely mocked the original slogan can slip the mind: "We can't go on like this, I'll cut the deficit not the NHS".
Cameron was desperate to reassure us before the election that the NHS was safe in his hands. Well unfortunately the plan by Andrew Lansley to privatise it wasn't mentioned. I have family members who owe their lives to the doctors and nurses of the NHS, my baby was born in the Royal Berks (a home birth that was transferred!) and I was always confident that the only thing the mid-wives had in mind was ensuring we received the best possible care. My worry under the Tory reforms (supported by some Lib-dems,when they aren't at Libdem conference...) would be that this would change and the focus would be on treatments that made money for private companies. I'm also worried about the huge waste it would generate.
I would imagine every family in Reading has stories like that. Which is why the government saying they will now listen is so important. I'd like to see the Reading Conservative MPs host a public meeting on the NHS to explain their proposals and take questions from the patients, doctors, health visitors, midwives and nurses of their town about what exactly is supposed to be the benefit of these proposals.
Still at least the massive opposition has won a breathing space.
UPDATE: don't take my word for it. The cross party Health Select committee say that Lansley's arguments for change would lead to the OPPOSITE action to what he is proposing:
"Thee Committee finds that the evidence provided by the Secretary of State and officials runs counter to the direction of policy. If integration of primary and secondary care commissioning is important, then separating them in order to support the proposed system architecture may cause significant harm to the commissioning system as a whole, and should be reconsidered.""