Sorry Morty, I in no way intended to infer that you were having a pop at anyone who can't work because of illness
. I do, however, object to those who know how to 'work the system' and falsely claim for benifits that they are not entitled to. This leaves the genuine cases like yourself and countless others often (and unjustly) being viewed with suspicion - hence the reason for the need of safeguards should a system of 'enforced' voluntary be put in place (I believe the government were discussing such a scheme a while back).
I am definitely against National Service. Regardless of politics, I consider our armed forces as one of the most professional in the world. The reason for this (aside from training) is that they volunteered and the last thing they want is a bunch of layabouts foisted upon them!
By the way, I gave up being a Parking Attendant just over a year ago after 18 months service). I wasn't very good at the job as I wasn't A Complete Bastard*. Actually, the job itself wasn't too bad and the abuse quite amusing, although walking up to 15 miles a day in all weathers got a bit tryng.
About your last paragraph, things are never as bad as they seem. I've seen the local, much maligned, youths out having fun in the snow and helping the elderly along icy pavements. The scaremongering press would have us believe all kids are bad - don't believe it and have hope!
*A. Complete Bastard currently resides at Enclosure 3, Marwell Zoological Park
The difference between fiction and reality? Fiction has to make sense.