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Stanley
Local Historian & Old Fart


36804 Posts
Posted -  28/04/2011  :  07:37
Political comment is a high risk activity on the site these days so I thought I'd try again to give those who are interested in politics a safe haven!


Stanley Challenger Graham




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stanley at barnoldswick.freeserve.co.uk
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Stanley
Local Historian & Old Fart


36804 Posts
Posted - 05/06/2011 : 12:17
David, You're right, scrub homologated and substitute Hypothecated! Senior moment. Actually homologated nearly does the job if you take the meaning of adhering to a standard but in that case it would be against virement. When I was doing Ellenroad I heard the treasury officers at Rochadle going on about what sounded like 'viriment' what they meant was Virement, an old Norman legal term that means the freedom to swap money from one heading to another.


Stanley Challenger Graham




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Stanley
Local Historian & Old Fart


36804 Posts
Posted - 06/06/2011 : 05:28
Have a look at this LINK. I've been boring you with this for months. Looks as though the movement is spreading!  For those of you averse to reading links, a group of economists, including some who initially supported the ConDem cuts, wrote to the Observer yesterday and said it was time for Plan 'B'. Big problem is that Tory DNA is against any relaxation and if Cameron and Osborne waver they are in deep trouble with their right wing. Liberals ditched all their principles and supported deep cuts to get in power and their problem now is that pressure for plan B splits LIberals, if that happens the coalition is split and they lose power. Labour can't find a way to engage in discussions about the economy by stating a firm programme because to do so would mean admitting the cock-up Godron made of the economy. (Noticeable that he's saying nowt!). The only viable way out for the ConDem coalition is if there are worsening figures plus a global effect which would allow them a U-turn based on external factors. In other words they are sat there waiting for a miracle that would be bad for all of us and in the meantime the economy bumps along the bottom as incomes fall, inflation rises and the key indicators head South. Bloody Brilliant!

That's not all....  The Blackstone/Southern Cross affair and its disastropus denoument have placed a large danger flag on the tip of the iceberg that is privatisation of health care.  This is a large component of the ConDem 'plan' for the NHS and couldn't have come at a worse time for the policies. Meanwhile, despite the fact that alternative systems are not in place they carry on dismantling the PCTs as though everything was on course and cut funding to a de-stabilised system. You couldn't make it up! This neither good planning or logical governance. 

Add the fact that we engage in action overseas and at the same time cut the budget for defence. Same scenario for other essential services from immigration and prisons to tax gathering and they are sat there hoping for an improvement?

The mistakes started in the 1960s with deregulation of the banks, they continued while the financial sector worked hard at creating the illusion of the 'New Economy' , when that imploded the Labour government were so blinded by their own and the banks advertising that they fell in with the only game in town, save the banks because they are too big to be allowed to fail. Throw every halfpenny at them and none into stimulating the economy. Basic economics which everyone can agree on was ignored. It's a perfect storm and if anyone thinks that there is going to be a real deep-seated improvement, forget it!

Before you join the government and prattle on about increasing job numbers etc. have a look at them and ask whether they are proper living-wage jobs. Apply the same logic to the other indicators and ask if they are solid economic progress or just manipulation of the data. The other major problem is that the rest of the major Western Economies are playing the same game. Sorry Kids, I can't see a lot to be cheerful about and my heart goes out to the people looking for a way to survive. Car key loan at 800% APR? That about sums it up.

Oh, and by the way, Vince Cable is to make a speech to the GMBU today in which he will tell them that if they take concerted action the government will introduce legislation to hamstring them. Great! That's the Thatcher way! Get the unions onside by threatening them with draconian measures!  The fact that the speech has been released before the event ensures that he is in for a rough ride.


Stanley Challenger Graham




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Stanley
Local Historian & Old Fart


36804 Posts
Posted - 06/06/2011 : 08:19
George Osborne is on R4 as I write citing the current IMF inspection of the UK economy as the arbiter he relies on to 'certify' his policies. He may find that this is a weak reed. The IMF has been criticised for years as being too heavily influenced by Friedman style monetarism which is the economic policy which got us into the mess in the first place. Of course they are going to say that the UK policy is right, to do otherwise would be to reverse their policies for the last thirty years and put them on a directly opposite track to the US Treasury for a start. This not evidence, it is spin, the eventual arbiter will be what happens on the ground. I think it will end in tears.


Stanley Challenger Graham




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Stanley
Local Historian & Old Fart


36804 Posts
Posted - 07/06/2011 : 06:02
I listened to Young Osborne reporting on the IMF report as a justification for Plan 'A'. What else could they do? Were they going to give an adverse report on an economy that is pursuing exactly the strategy they apply to countries they are baling out? What he didn't comment on was the downgrading of the IMF prediction for growth, their pessimistic assessment of inflation and their worries about 'the unacceptably high level of unemployment'. The report also left the door open for further remedial action if things don't improve, would you believe tax cuts?

Vince Cable didn't have a happy day. He was heckled then laughed off the stage before the GMBU secretary comprehensively rubbished the strategy of threatening the unions with draconian legislation. (See this LINK) Surprise surprise the CBI immediately issued a statement supporting his speech. Exactly the strategy used by Thatcher against the unions, the big difference being of course that she had the windfall of North Sea Oil Revenues to use to create a pool of unemployment as a weapon. Sad to see the old laisser faire 19th century arguments being used in the 21st century.  They will be no more successful now than they were then. What they should be doing is building on the areas where agreement exists between the unions and the government. Addressing the problem of public sector pension deficits, getting domestic consumption up and using the great resource of British industry to pull us out of recession. Argue as they may, there is no evidence that the economy is doing any more than flat-lining.

Osborne always talks about manufacturing industry doing well and unemployment going down. Both these assessments are based on government statistics which in turn are snapshots based on some very dodgy assessment methods. What neither of them quantifies is the level of profit and re-investment in industry or whether the 'new jobs' are actually proper jobs returning a living wage. These are the crucial parameters which govern the overall health of the economy, not the raw figures based on opportunistic snapshots of the statistics. I notice that Cameron is saying nothing. Giving himself space to do a Lansley on young George?

Just been listening to the man from the retail traders talking about the 2.1% drop in retail sales on the High Street in May.  he said that the figure was worse than it looks because while food sales are holding up, the big ticket retailers (Carpets, white goods, DIY and furniture) are having a "miserable time". Not only that but the sales figures in these areas are being bolstered by massive levels of advertising and discounting, in other words they are buying sales at the expense of the profit margin. The thing about these figures is that they are reliable, based on hard reporting from the retailers. These are the indicators that show the real state of the economy.


Stanley Challenger Graham




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belle
VIP Member


6502 Posts
Posted - 07/06/2011 : 08:59
I was listening to Jeremy Vine and heard as an aside that the govt is currently looking at legislation for council houses that would allow each "landlord" to set rents according to the income of the inhabitants..the topic under discussion was that it was "unfair" that some people living in council accomodation had incomes of over £100,000, and they should be made to give up their homes. It sounds on the surface a very reasonable argument, but  once you start to unpick it, it is yet again the focus of the Conservatives to penalise the less well off. It seemed unclear whether the figure mentioned was accumulated imcome of the whole household...but imagine some middle aged couple in London with two young adult children being forced out of council accomodation then the children marry and move on, and the oule are faced with huge private housing costs in their retirement.


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frankwilk
Senior Member


3975 Posts
Posted - 07/06/2011 : 14:42
and the coule are faced with huge private housing costs in their retirement.

Sell and move on would be the answer.



Frank Wilkinson       Once Navy Always Navy Go to Top of Page
belle
VIP Member


6502 Posts
Posted - 07/06/2011 : 18:12
They would have nothing to sell Frank, the progrmme was advocating they move into private rented accomodation..perhaps because buying a house in london would require a greater income than £100,000 esp if it had to fit four people in it!


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Stanley
Local Historian & Old Fart


36804 Posts
Posted - 08/06/2011 : 06:41
Belle, what strikes me is that if a family in a council house was saving as hard as they could to buy privately they woulkd be penalised. It sounds like a tax on thrift to me. Housing has always been a mystery to me and even now, after a lot of thinking about it I still haven't really cracked why it went so wrong. The nearest I have ever got to it is a mismatch between asset prices and wages, how that came about is a knotty one ond very complicated. All I know is that in comparison to other goods and incomes house prices exploded after 1960. I'll see if I can find the article I wrote about it.

Cameron is hoping he has stopped the rot in the NHS proposals but I fear he may not be out of the wood by a long chalk.  A BMA spokesman has said that instead of tinkering with a flawed Bill the ConDem coalition would do better to scrap it, go back to the drawing board and start from new principles. While all the argument has been going on the 'extra money' for the NHS has been wiped out by inflation and many Trusts who built under PFI are finding that what looked like a cheap option is actually a disaster in terms of running costs. Add to that the confusion caused by initiating even more change in the system and the results are that waiting lists are creeping up and the number of available beds falling. One of the biggest obstacles I see is that GPs on the whole want to be left to practice and not be spot ball for deficiencies in the system. They are getting the feeling that one of the sub-agendas is for the government to be able to abdicate responsibility for the shortfalls in the system.

Energy and food price rises are kicking in just at the wrong time for the government. The hidden problem in these is that the effect of them on those with the lowest disposable incomes is far greater than the raw inflation figures suggest. The bad news is that this is the sector that, despite its relative poverty compared with the top 10%. this is the power house for domestic consumption and in turn this is the biggest single factor governing GDP. Work it out for yourself, basic year one economics.


Stanley Challenger Graham




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frankwilk
Senior Member


3975 Posts
Posted - 08/06/2011 : 07:57
The hike in Energy prices will encourage people to use less which is a good thing.
The NHS has to change  it can't go one like it is, with Doctors and Nurses holding the rest of us to ransom. No GP is on less than £100000 a year in Scotland, the NHS has to be reformed not for Political reasons but to Survive.
I love the sympathy for households on more than £100K per year for a few years now people have been encouraged to leave London, or any other major City in the world because of the cost of living in a City. BBC to Manchester !!!
Back to Energy and Food Prices  Thank goodness China insisted on one child per family otherwise what we are seeing now would be small fry.  Is it time we adopted  a policy of 2 children max and the benefits stop for anymore? as a first attempt at population control. Less Food, Less Energy, Less Housing. Or we start on GM modified Crops pretty soon otherwise we all starve. Another thing is maybe stop the Supermarkets from selling BOGOF on Food, encouraging people to both eat and waste more. Radical ? not as Radical as starving to Death in 50 years time,or being over run/war with the have not's from Africa !!!!



Frank Wilkinson       Once Navy Always Navy Go to Top of Page
frankwilk
Senior Member


3975 Posts
Posted - 08/06/2011 : 08:06
" Work it out for yourself, basic year one economics"
I agree It was basic economics years ago, but not anymore that was in a simplier world than the one we live in now.
Instant Communications/Transport have changed the World. We now have  Global Markets interlinked with High Speed Broadband etc, and a World Population who through Communications/Media now see and want the same things we have had, only problem is there is not enough left to go round for everyone!!!



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Big Kev
Big


2650 Posts
Posted - 08/06/2011 : 08:33


quote:
frankwilk wrote:
Is it time we adopted  a policy of 2 children max and the benefits stop for anymore?


I have been of the same opinion for years...


Big Kev

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belle
VIP Member


6502 Posts
Posted - 08/06/2011 : 10:58
"Thank goodness China insisted on one child per family otherwise what we are seeing now would be small fry."

 
Oh but the millions of girls abandoned or murdered....there has to be another way.

Edited by - belle on 08/06/2011 1:43:09 PM


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Another
Traycle Mine Overseer


6250 Posts
Posted - 08/06/2011 : 11:26
In the early 1980's I had a Chinese social worker on placement with me in Burnley. She said that the biggest social problem facing China was the abandonment and murder of girls - rarely boys. Authorities generally turned a blind eye to the issues.  Nolic


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Bruff
Regular Member


479 Posts
Posted - 08/06/2011 : 11:49
''Sell and move on would be the answer''

 
Which of course is the prevailing view in this country with respect to housing.  A house is encouraged to be seen as an asset, and not a home where you put down roots, raise a family, engage with the community etc etc.  Until we see housing as a 'home', we will never have a sensible housing policy in this country and why the prospect of turfing folk out the home they've lived for years raises not an eyebrow.

 
We did very well with our 'asset' when we moved from London to Hoylake.  Unfortunately, over time we have come to miss what we considered our home and wish now to move back.  That of course in a personal decision that hasn't worked out.  In contrast to the forced relocation of individuals and families from their homes.

 
''The hike in Energy prices will encourage people to use less which is a good thing''

 
It may encourage those who can easily afford fuel to use less.  Those that can't afford fuel at today's cost, and there are millions of them, will in increasing cases struggle and suffer.  As well as those who can just about afford being dragged into fuel poverty, with the resultant struggle and suffering. Thus a discussion on fuel prices should move beyond exhortations to pop another jumper on or get back under one's duvet, but this sadly is beyond the wit of many.

 
Good luck in telling the comfortably off middle classes that they should have 2 kids and no more.  After all, it is this demographic and upwards that tends to have the larger families.  I hope folk didn't think it was mainly the feckless scroungers that bred with gay abandon.  And as Nolic says, who's up for volunteering to scoop the unwanted children out of the rivers and streams, and off the streets?  I suppose being British we simply wouldn't do such a thing.  We wouldn't, would we?

 
Serious questions.  If 100 grand is too much for a GP, what is about right?  And what is the evidence base for the wholesale changes to the NHS planned?

 
Richard Broughton



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belle
VIP Member


6502 Posts
Posted - 08/06/2011 : 13:51
The energy prices might make people use a bit less, but it wil not stop the big consumers wasting it as there is so much middle management between the shop floor and the Accountant ..I sat on a bus last week on a day when the outside temp was 24 degrees, and the heating was on..the condensation was starting to mist the windows up. The saving recouped by one pensioner switching a two bar fire off is minimal as to be laughable, but for the pensioner it coud be deadly serious.


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