Letter to Owen Smith

Dear Owen,

Not everyone is fortunate enough to be able to have much of a choice about who they work for and what they do. However, if one is fortunate enough to come from a middle class background and to have a good education then you are more likely to be able to do so than most. 

It seems to me that you were fortunate enough to come from a middle class background and have a good education. So you were fortunate enough to have a real choice about who you worked for and what you did. 

You describe yourself as a democratic socialist and a radical. So why did you choose to work in Corporate Public Relations looking after, protecting and promoting the interests of two large Pharmaceutical multi-nationals? You see I imagine that applications for jobs of this sort are very competitive. The sort of jobs you only get if you really want them. They are not the sort of jobs that would be offered to a candidate unless they were committed to the task of looking after, protecting and promoting the interests of those two Pharmaceutical multi-nationals. 

Of course there is absolutely nothing wrong about making that career choice in and of itself. People are entitled to choose a career that suits them and work for whom ever they like. I have absolutely no problem with that at all. Large Pharmaceutical multi-nationals need Public Relations and I am sure it is a worthwhile career. However, it does not appear to be a natural career choice likely to be made by a person who is a committed democratic socialist and a radical.

You see Owen, there are lots of organisations out there that exist to promote democracy, human rights and equality. They need Public Relations too. They need capable, energetic and enthusiastic people like you. Rather than looking after, protecting and promoting the interests of those organisations you chose to devote your capabilities, energy and enthusiasm to two Pharmaceutical multi-nationals. 

Why did you choose to do that Owen?

You say that Aneurin Bevan is a hero of yours and an inspiration. Bevan, as Minister of Health in the 1945 Labour Government, was responsible for establishing the National Health Service. On 21 April 1951 Bevan resigned from the Government when Gaitskell introduced prescription charges for dental care and spectacles. I do not think that Aneurin Bevan would ever have chosen a career looking after, protecting and promoting the interests of Pharmaceutical multi-nationals that advocate the merits of privatising the NHS. 

What do you think Owen?

Yours sincerely, 

SF

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