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Everything posted by basalte

  1. Hi CK nothing personal of course , that would be plain silly ! Look forward to your ripostes / justifications. 🙂
  2. Oh dear I seem to have inadvertently touched a raw nerve by mentioning organisations controlled by small unaccountable groups running key parts of UK infrastructure. I had hoped that people who desire “ sovereignty “ could relate to that unsatisfactory undemocratic situation. As an aside there is still plenty of caricaturisation and assumptions over what people actually think and mean in this thread and it reeks of the screaming - headlines propaganda stance taken by particular newspapers and broadcasters who ( behind their moral high horses ) have their own reasons for avoiding scrutiny of their financial affairs ( by the EU amongst others ). Apparently my remarks about the way the EU oppressed Greece count for nothing in this thread ; I have to be a True Believer one way or the other ! Talking of “ country miles “ you have definitely missed my point by said measure .Trying to make my post a moan about Brexit when I was making a much wider point about lack of national control over economic destiny . I deliberately chose and included examples of foreign companies operating here long before Brexit - do you honestly think I am unaware of that timeline ? Bizarre . The point which you have all missed by a country mile is that this country started to fail to be be in control of its economic infrastructure in the 1980s , “EU or no EU “. I’ll repeat that , since you ignored it the first time in my above post that I took the trouble to put in black and white . “EU or no EU “. Like I wrote in my post above . In black and white . Bit miffed you chose to ignore that bit in favour of lazily stereotyping me as a moaner . Yes Honda and Nissan invested here from Japan and the EU let them . So what’s your problem with the EU there ? Apparently the “Soviet / Nazi EU “ didn’t mind the world investing in the UK . Not a very consistent position to take unless you accept the reality that the EU is not and never was an Enemy of the free market . - and so we arrive at the crux of your hostility . Do you honestly think I fail to recognise that most of you love the “free market “ ( despite that actually meaning “large corporations “ these days ) ? People who do well out of the free market love it and think it’s the best invention since money itself - that’s how our social system predominantly works . So ok , I am going to clarify ; maybe I just wasn’t clear enough about the nature of my scepticism over “ Sovereignty “ and “ Taking back control “ . You think foreigners owning our key infrastructure isn’t a problem. I happen to think it is . Most tax they pay goes to their home country ; most damagingly, decisions affecting the livliehood of thousands are made outside those communities, outside those countries , outside accountability , EU or no EU ! Yes ? I’m sure workers at the sharp end of those decisions would love a bit of “ taking back control “ . Or will they fling their caps in the air and shout “ Hooray for the wonderful Free Market and the dole office !!” (By the way you mean I should “figuratively “ fook off not “literally “. Maybe I would literally but your precious Brexit ended freedom of movement).
  3. Well there seems to have been a degree of caricaturisation of respective positions. I have zero doubt that all on this thread want our country to succeed , but the means to achieve that are of course in dispute. Making 44% of our trade more cumbersome with our nearest neighbours does not seem the easiest way to achieve it. On the other hand there have been diplomatic tensions regardless of wider basic allegiances. Whilst I can see some merit in arguments for "Sovereignty effectively whatever the cost" ( in the light of the experience of Greece in particular) , "Sovereignty" and "Taking Back Control" seem inadequate to describe a situation where for example 70% of UK train companies are partially or wholly foreign owned . Arriva aka Deutsche Bahn , includes Wales and Borders , Tyne and Wear Metro. Avanti West Coast -30 % Trenitalia C2C-Trenitalia Govia including Thameslink , London Midland, Gatwick Express, Southern, Great Northern - 35% Keolis (which is 70% owned by the French State-if we declare war on France we`re stuffed !) Heathrow Express : 41.88% Singapore China and Qatar shareholding Peppa Pig -US toy maker Hasbro (ok its a cartoon pig beloved of some senior politicians not a train but you get my drift)acquired British Company Entertainment One for $3.8 billion on 31st Dec 2019. So all this talk of "taking back control" and "sovereignty" only takes you so far where the predominance of a free market ideology holds sway here to a far greater extent then in most other European nations . French company PSA closed down their Ryton works ; did the 2,000 redundant workers there "take back control" ? Honda closed in Swindon -did their dismissed workers "take back control "? (I won`t mention other car companies just here...) Mondelez (a subsidiary of US corporation Kraft) own Cadburys . British greatness and independence depended to a very large extent on its own ability to make its own economic decisions, to say nothing of the personal feeling of "taking back control " if you have a steady job that puts food on the table for your family. EU or no EU that has largely gone. By all means laud "Global Britain" instead but in doing so, there is no room for economic jingoism . Citing our greatness whilst ignoring the sheer number bread and butter industries and infrastructure that are not controlled by Britain-many of which are indeed controlled by EU corporations - never ceases to amaze me.
  4. Latest update; after a final fun drive the car has gone today for the engine to be taken out and sent upcountry. Then, some fun and games will happen in a few days collecting the powerless car on a trailer to be put back in its garage ...given the garage`s tight location there will be formation pushing involved !
  5. basalte


    “You say it’s your printer ? Yeah , whatever mate “
  6. Hi Pete , yes he sprayed it meticulously and also cleaned and sprayed the drivers door panel which was equally stained. I think whoever had the car before me rarely carried passengers as the other seats are in very much better nick and none have cracks, even after 40 years. The guy who restored the seat told me he thought the seats had been restored before. They naturally look a bit older than the driver`s seat though. It would be nice to get them all done one day but the engine and electricals need to come first now ! 🙂
  7. basalte


    I certainly think its outside the zone as its North of the A 406. As I live inside the zone it`s caught me but the site says my 1980 Lotus is exempt so fingers crossed. (Can no longer afford to keep my restored 1970 Porsche 914 (also exempt) so am selling that if anyone`s interested).
  8. OK , the driver`s seat "Before " and "After" - "Before" picture was taken with car garaged so all a bit dark - not the greatest-but you can see the discolouration (despite my attempts to clean it) and cracks at the side which have now been filled . PS I know it`s not this thread but I`m now selling my 1970 Porsche 914. PM me for further details...
  9. Well, some topics (not necessarily this) are very like the BBC, it`s what is not reported / griped about that starts telling you more than what is !
  10. I agree C8RKH , your somewhat "throwing down of the gauntlet" - toned query on behalf of the UK`s "third nation" status does warrant a response despite many possibly being rather tired of the whole topic . But it remains an important topic for all that. Any response inevitably falls between two stools. Quoting chapter and verse from sources that support your opinion is extremely easy these days . Much too easy ! And just saying "but it IS Brexit" is even more unsatisfactory. I certainly agree with you from 7th Oct that people may be "grossly simplifying what is actually a very complex situation". And as you quite rightly point out, the fuel shortages are regional. To quote Brian Madderson Chairman of the Petrol Retailers Association 12th Oct (Evening Standard) regarding London :- "A large majority of retailers continue to express concerns that they have no forward visibility of their next deliveries. There are reports of wet sites going dry because the continuity of tankers sending out of kilter with orders . The situation in London and the South East remains serious. ...there had been a welcome improvement in the region over the weekend with 10% of non motorway sites running out of fuel which was not far behind the rest of the country. The survey was based on a quarter of petrol stations". Admittedly that was 9 days ago. I think you live in Scotland (?-apologies if you don`t) where demand must be lower given population densities. There are still shortages down here in my recent experience. But in any event your argument is that Brexit isn`t to blame anyway. More to the point I`ve just spent way too long scrolling back through the posts including my own , to find out who is blaming Brexit "for everything under the sun" and I confess to having a hard time finding a culprit for that. My own relevant comment Oct 4th ? "ending freedom of movement tipped a difficult situation into a crisis" . Oct 5th ? : "I already stated that Brexit was hardly the only factor" Doug Ashley ? : "Brexit is a major factor in the driver shortage". (That`s probably as "blaming everything under the sun " as it gets.) Bling ? He has referred to situations which you and others call for further evidence of . European commentators do not accept that the shortages Europe faces are anything like the UK ones. But I get the feeling you still won`t accept that. I note Government attempts to remove competition rules from suppliers in order to coordinate supplies and also the use of troops . I would have thought that these exceptional measures have helped to alleviate shortages of fuel supplies. As for "panic buying" , I return to my "man bites dog" thesis - yes some reckless ignorants filled water bottles , there were some fights-but most people actually need petrol (more than toilet roll even)and are genuinely stuffed if they run out. So they did flock to pumps for a period. Yes , it`s a factor. Maybe a major one ? There has been much citing of statistics in above posts and I would not wish to glibly dismiss them. But the statistics are a snapshot of a developing situation. Import levels , Increases in demand, conditions for HGV drivers , low wages (suddenly the Government cares about low wages - and if you believe THAT one...) . So, from a perusal of the posts so far I just don`t think anyone is saying Brexit is totally to blame. I think you are over-egging the pudding and (as we have seen time and time and time again over the past 6 years, caricaturing your opponents` arguments where there is no easy answer and the answer may change with the circumstances-is always a temptation. Leaving your nearest and largest trading bloc without a deal for so much as a Customs Union, has its downsides, which certainly appear from this thread to include a continuing burning animosity towards said trading bloc despite our having left it , not the other way round-an important basic distinction to be made when apportioning blame. I will end on a note of bombast; any citation of the "Daily Express" in relation to Brexit will automatically get a "nul points" from me. My own " Brexit Means Brexit Backstop Red Line "I suppose.
  11. Hi Jerzy yes was meaning to get around to this ...I have a "before" pic still !
  12. There are too many wider issues raised by the above posts ( mainly about where people derive their current affairs perspectives from ) to give an answer that will not take up at least an hour of my time but I will have a go .The main theme of many of the above posts follows a “ man bites dog “news agenda ; 90 % of dogs will bite people & it’s not news . Find the one man who bites the dog however and it’s big big news ! And it sells papers ! Find the hypocrite protester and it’s big news ! Find the protestor who prevents a driver visiting his sick relative and it’s big news ! Find the violent protestor and it’s big news ! A constant focus on the exceptional, the sensational , the scandalous the outrageous- oh yes you get a story alright - then use it to shore up your particular prejudices. We all do it but some are more aware of that indoctrination process than others . A key feature is the “labelling “ process via the mass media that singles out particular groups for “ criticism “. Look more closely and those groups ( “ woke politically correct brigades , rent a mobs “ et al ) start dissolving into individuals with their own motivations including hypocrites as referred to above - but the press insists on squashing them into artificial constructs who all behave similarly- or making the lone “dog- biter “ into a representative of the whole group - they LOVE to do that - and that’s the real lie at work here . Interestingly ( and linked to my above point ) there have been two above major mischaracterisations of my views - that I somehow “ accept “ the protests and that I think “all freedom is being stifled “ at the moment “. The relevant legislation has not yet been passed but the intended legislation is the police bill - that protestors who “ annoy “ others can be arrested & detained . There is no legal definition of “ annoyance “ in English law - if I turn up outside C8 RKHs house at present shouting this post out , he would rightly be annoyed but couldn’t have me arrested . With the new police bill , he could call police , claim to be annoyed and the police could then have grounds to arrest me . A judge then gets to decide whether I “annoyed “ anyone but by then I will have been in a police cell - probably overnight . That is China and North Korea territory. The above is what I mean by “ an agenda … to stifle freedom “ . It’s not some lefty fantasy , as has now been blatantly asserted by those whose sources of information lead them to particular perspectives that do not reveal the whole story ( that men bite dogs not the mundane reverse )!- the proposed legal changes are a cackhanded attempt to control elements who are going to be suffering from the austerity agenda . With the police as the fall guys . (oh well at least Ant and Dec might get arrested - they annoy me intensely . )
  13. Points taken Tony; indeed many you make paraphrase my own. It might be added that sitting down in the middle of a motorway also deprives those doing it of a normal day "earning a crust" - some are able to cope with that more than others of course, but it would be sheer prejudice here to accuse them of doing it somehow for fun or "because they can". It is genuinely difficult accommodating the right to protest with the (usually inevitable ) disruption this causes, and as we know, many regimes don`t bother to even try. The problem is that the form of protest chosen in this instance seems ill-advised and ill-chosen from a purely "will it work?" point of view. If I were Home Secretary ( and you or I could both do a better job than the present incumbent), I would warn them off further protest of that type but (crucially) would not make a mountain out of a molehill and seek to (cackhandedly at that-Police rightly have no confidence in Patel ! ) stifle all freedom to protest.
  14. Another little update...another brimming of the expansion tank for luck then a 20 mile drive with a horrible snail`s pace half hour double-temporary roadworks light traffic queue in the middle...temp needle and fans behaved fine-if anything the engine is running too cool ! Anyway main thing is car is now booked in for engine rebuild in December .( I can`t divulge who with as they said their waiting list is too long already...)
  15. Needless to say, the "swat `em away like flies" advocates are out in force over this one. Only they`re not flies, they`re human beings who thoroughly deserve to be treated as such in what we call a liberal democracy (fair enough if you don`t want a liberal democracy I suppose..but that`s another argument). They will also have numerous relatives who (history has repeatedly shown) are start being out for revenge if you deploy violence ; and so the cycle (no pun intended) of violent recrimination begins. Because most on either side cannot control their emotions in favour of seeing a bigger picture where emotions are a positive hindrance. Anger at failures to insulate homes ? Anger because some smug middle class quasi-hippy has stopped you earning your daily crust ? And....In the vile canon of human atrocity , blocking cars on a motorway comes very, very far down the list. Sorry if you think that`s a radical extremist lefty view. Trying to see both sides here that`s all. Talking of seeing the bigger picture, over the years I`ve met a few of the types who block the M25.I wasn`t impressed-relentless sanctimoniousness was and appears to remain, their key characteristic. "Why can`t you see things MY way, cretin ? I am here to save your life, ungrateful peasant ! " A very common stance in political argument of course but not a personal trait likely to win many over to your cause . Blocking people trying to get to work is crass self-indulgence. Also needless to say, it has fed into the authoritarian Government agenda to stifle all legitimate protest - whatever the issue. Bur what is the actual issue here ? To insulate homes . Not exactly forcing you all to live in yurts , eat lentils and ride penny-farthings. To commit to insulating homes. That is an entirely fair and reasonable demand if you accept (as the Government say they accept ) that there is an environmental crisis. It needs a fair hearing and sadly the sanctimonious actions of the emotionally-charged, are not the way to achieve it. Maybe direct protect at the decsion -makers and not daily drivers ? I would strongly argue that seeing "the bigger picture " applies to both sides. Blocking traffic is counterproductive and just encourages cheap outrage fanned by the gutter press. To make it all about law and order and not about the whys and wherefores of insulating homes, is equally crass.
  16. I am unhappy because 1.9 million families are today going to lose £20 a week to their Universal Credit. Yep. Here`s why. In detail . I was going to keep my unhappiness to myself but I am goaded into posting this by the expressed and openly politically-motivated unhappiness above at mega-grifters Tony and Cherie avoiding tax. Thank you for bringing this to our attention. (I will not initiate any party-partisan political posts on this forum (if I ever did and God knows, Starmer and Rayner`s surrender politics ain`t gonna make me ) and so all I ask is -just don`t be surprised if I post in response !) Firstly don`t worry, I can`t stand lying war criminal Tony and avaricious Cherie either, (and it`s still hilarious how the guy with the lowest parliamentary expenses of all was hounded out of our mainstream political discourse by the heirs to Blair in his own party; Austin. Woodcock. Watson. Mann. Streeting, Evans, Akehurst. The allegations against Labour staff named in the Forde Report - but I digress). I can already hear the Ayn Randite / Friedmanite/Reaganite and of course Thatcherite cries of "you do-gooder ! send `em out to work then ! Skivers! You`re doing alright ! Why do you care ? " Now I am very, very well aware that the main demographic on this forum (and I am one) is not one that hugely knows or cares about that -£20 is chickenfeed compared to the Blair`s tax avoidance - but look at it in this clinical way; poor people spend a far greater proportion of their income including in their local economy , helping independent small businesses survive. Richer people invest or save a far greater proportion where the money does far less. Giving people money to spend is actually a good thing for the economy whether those people "deserve" it or not (which is why Iceland (for one) is instituting a Universal Basic Income)-but the misplaced kneejerk gutter press morality of "how dare you get money for nothing !" is very embedded . Trouble with that reasoning is that billionaires living off their investments get immeasurably more "money for nothing" -which is the crux of my unhappiness. The morality of "leave the megarich alone and make the poor pay instead" just stinks, it really does. Secondly many families on benefits are working and getting family credit to top up their incomes. They are getting benefits but are not skivers . Your nanny State is paying them money which their EMPLOYERS ought to pay ! Cutting UC is a bad move all round. Hitting people right where they have to put food on the table is a recipe for a dysfunctional tense society where gated communities and guard dogs proliferate. Giving people a miserable existence to make them pursue a happy one for ideological reasons, spells no future for a society.
  17. Another update ....had the driver`s cream leather seat renovated; it was discoloured and tired with mild cracks at the shoulder. Guy came round in a pristine BMW X6 ( my only cause for discontent -it`s my least favourite car ever), filled and sanded the cracks and resprayed the seat (and a stained bit of door panel ) meticulously and thoroughly competently.It cost me £280 but seat now looks nearly new in a good way (not "like new" which would render it very distinct from the other seats which are not bad ). Very happy with the result and noted good reviews on the net. I would recommend his services any time. (PM me if you want more details). Sunday ; took the car on another 20 mile drive (half a tankful in there) just in time for it to get drenched. Thought I`d continue driving just to dry it off and that worked a treat. Temp needle behaved itself perfectly (as long as I fill up the expansion tank before every journey). What with a Level 42 cassette blasting out , the pleasure came back ; it was like the old days of 2013 again ! Rang to arrange the engine rebuild. No-one to book it in. Away for 2 weeks. Will try again in a few days. It can spend Winter being worked on instead of just laid up. That`s the plan !
  18. Ta Doug. You have expressed the origins of this situation more articulately than I can . "Critical mass" is the key expression here, as alluded to by the Chief Executive of the Road Haulage Association in my post of 4th August . The attribution of "ulterior" motives to him seems all too simplistic here when he`s been pretty quiet for the past year. The CEO of the Road Haulage Association seems to have given a credible prediction given the queues of traffic blocking the roads round here when the last time they did so was probably 2002. The idea that ending free movement and reintroducing customs checks won`t have any knock-on effects on a complex interlocking supply system - whenever those effects may kick in - is simply unrealistic. They happened to kick in last month. I already stated that Brexit was hardly the only factor. (I give the EU 5 out of 10 by the way, I`m hardly its greatest defender. You will note from my myriad comments elsewhere on the net that fanatical pro-EU people do not have all the answers by any means. But leaving the EU has some upsides and some downsides. This is one of the downsides). Meanwhile the only politician actually , literally, supportively quoting a Muppet is Mr. Johnson ! The Brexit elephant won`t shift from the room because the effects are too tangible not to attract comment, not because I want to put one over on a tribe called "Leavers" .
  19. Government : "Rejoice , we`re ending freedom of movement. Hurrah for giving you a 90 day time limit to your retirement in Spain if you`re not a citizen". Then Government : " Driver shortage nothing to do with Brexit". Now-Also Government : "We are issuing temporary visas to EU citizens (to give them freedom of movement to come here to drive HGVs)". Brave attempts made here to square the circle - and conditions for drivers here are indeed worse than they are on the continent- but ending freedom of movement tipped a difficult situation into a crisis. Not my word for it, the road haulage association`s , as above. Presumably it can be agreed that they know a bit about hauling things on the road . Certainly more than a Daily Express journalist would.
  20. Just thought of posting this whilst in the queue at Thurrock Services, Saturday , 10.15pm...
  21. OK, shall I go down my local nick (or any that remain open after the last 10 years of austerity cuts) and make the Super " an offer he can`t refuse " , "hounding" a man who happens to be equipped with Handcuffs ,Batons, Riot shields, Armoured vans, Tasers , Horses-and with the power to arrest and detain you for any offence to enable a "prompt and effective investigation" (ie anything they deem to be prompt and effective). That usually means at least 6 hours in a cell (due to lack of staff to process prisoners) then interviewed then quite often released without charge. " My "hounding" might end unhappily for me ! I think that a sense of proportion must come into play here. They are the Police Force , not trainee souffle-chefs. No problem for me if a suspected rapist - significantly an acquaintance of the murderer of Ms. Everard -of whatever occupation-is being investigated. We need and trust the police to protect the public-and I fully support them in that role- and 90% of the time they do precisely that. And with a proven bullying blowhard of a Home Secretary to contend with, putting them in harm`s way for her own selfish ends ? That is on the horizon. But the Police role is unique . They have wide powers to enforce the law and use physical force to do it. In doing so they have a particular obligation to obey the law themselves. And if they don`t , yes they have to be held accountable by the media and society as a whole.
  22. My DIY skills would spell disaster ! It’ll go to a specialist . Have enquired of a few and they all have waiting lists but if it’s done over winter that would suit anyway .
  23. It does seem to run well but is smoky and gobbles water. Tried K-seal a while back but it didn`t seem to help. Temp needle creeps up and up if I dont fill with coolant before every trip. Mayonnaise in the filler cap. So I think there`s a piston ring issue as well as a gasket /liner one.
  24. Bit of an update… it’s now a “ Historic Vehicle “ so tax and ULEZ free ! 20 mile drive to celebrate went fine , the temp needle behaved itself particularly well even in three local stop - start queues and a ten point turn needed to garage it ( brimmed with coolant , but maybe the new battery gives more power to fans and water pump ? ) Amazingly , ended up in traffic queue next to guy driving an Elan 2+2 ! Had a bit of a chat . Next job … the dreaded engine rebuild .
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