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Everything posted by basalte

  1. Good to hear from you again Trevor, also good to be back now I have resolved to get the car back on the road -obviously the pandemic didn`t help the delay either. The engine isn`t out-I want to jump start it tomorrow to get an MOT on it and the jump start with my battery pack didn`t go well. Borrowing a more powerful pack and/or pushing it into position to take a jump lead start, is the plan . Expect plenty of sweat....
  2. Hi it`s me again ; Basalte (named after the Citroen GS special edition not the volcanic rock) - the Lotus Elite 2.2 owner. I have not given up on this car bought in 2011 which has been in dry storage ; what happened was that after a long history (you`ve guessed it) of sporadic reliability it actually ran well in 2017 but persistently gobbled water and I suspect a slipped liner. My last posts on here were about using Steel Seal but I bottled out of doing that . My mate who is an extremely experienced mechanic said he`d do an engine rebuild as I have no doubt the engine needs attention in general after 74,000 miles (I`ve done about 3,000 of those-not much). Anyway despite being a star in relation to the Elite (like replacing the radiator and and steering rack for peanuts as well as many other parts ), he is bogged down with his day job, a house renovation and maintaining/shifting 20 (!) other classic cars to his new gaff. Its now been nearly 2 years since he repeatedly said he`d work on the car and nothing has happened. I kind of don`t blame him given the stuff he already has on his plate but the clock is ticking and I want to drive it again before I keel over. So....I am determined to get this car back on the road with an engine rebuild. So far I can only think of LotusBits as the people to do it and I have to admit that I wasn`t too impressed by their customer service-but does anyone have any other recommendations ? I`m resigned to the fact that it won`t be cheap .... (goodbye, chunk of pension....) Thanks, Dan
  3. OK maybe walking under that ladder and using petrol pump 13 wasn`t a good idea today ....after about a dozen enjoyable rides in the 2.2 , its run of good behaviour ended. Running on 3 cylinders and a snapped clutch cable. It meant that people joining the North Circular from the A1 got a great view of a flashing Elite rear end on a grass verge. Hats off to the recovery guy who used wooden planks creatively to get it onto and off the ramp. Overheard one man declare poshly that it was a "Jensen Interceptor". Nah mate. Try reading the badge on the back !
  4. It seemed similar but was slightly different in that the "lugs" seemed more solid and less tinny, -pure speculation but maybe because it was the original factory-fitted one. My replacement cap does seem identical to your newer one, bought it at a stall at the NEC show.
  5. Hi Soldave I too bought a replacement 10lb one and it was really reluctant to turn / remove at first but for no apparent reason other than the sheer abnormal number of times I`ve removed it to pour coolant in, it is straightforward now as though it had to "wear" in.
  6. There is an understandable but fundamental misconception that you all adopt here. You are firing flaming bazookas at an invisible target that you call "Socialism". We are just told that household savings are at their lowest since the 1970s running at 1.7% of income. No-one can say that is a healthy state of affairs in our free enterprise society. Personal cerdit is running out of control with all the stress and depression that defaulting brings to a household. (Of course one problem with Capitalism is that you run out of public assets to flog off to your megarich mates, but that`s another story). The fundamental misconception you seem intellectually content to run with is that "Socialism" these days means everyone gets to own everything equally and consequently "waste" it equally. That was probably true for the year 1960 in a third world country - but not here in the UK -and never here in the UK. There is no serious socialist for decades who wishes to nationalise and collectivize everything. That has not worked-(I clearly don`t have to convince you of that ! ) The bone of contention here is that if you think that Corbyn wants to do that you are quite simply wrong. It used to be the case in this country that parties adhered to their manifestoes from a sense of honour and integrity. It would take a colossal betrayal amounting to a rejection of the foundation of democracy itself if Corbyn started acting like Chairman Mao in relation to the economy. (A great script for a film by the way, but fantasy nonetheless). Of course the Tories have performed several U-turns from their manifesto commitments but they only ever care for democracy when its going their way. The setup in Scandinavian countries is one that should and will be sought to be emulated. Technically thats called "left social democracy" not "Socialism" . Bringing Communism into it is an utter red (obviously) herring. Marxism has much to offer in terms of economic analysis but has very little to offer politically as a solution except in the broadest sense of providing education health and welfare for all. If you read what Marx proposed as a political solution there`s sod-all. I would be the first to agree that you don`t achieve educatioon health and welfare for all simply by chucking money at it (though it certainly needs more chucked at it). Economies of scale apply. Key industry requiring targetted investment and co-ordination needs a national plan especially as we are leaving the EU. The hairdresser or (these days) coffee shop down the high street does not and never needed such a plan. The workshop manufacturing plumbing accessories does not need such a plan. The corporation employing thousands ? Well, maybe that does, especially if whole towns are reliant on its existence.
  7. Well Paul we are constantly being told how low unemployment is (although cynically they always include the impoverished self-employed in those figures) so that in itself would suggest that its a smallish number who prefer intoxicants to their kids. ...which leads us on to the Royal Family. They are incredibly wealthy simply for who they are and that is morally wrong. That is my real beef with them . Plenty of Americans and French felt the same way once -( much angrier than me about it !) That`s where we must resoundingly agree to disagree, I strongly suspect. Same with the footballers (obviously skilled, but honestly.....terrible taste in cars too) and bankers (where do I start?) Compare the earnings of the 1966 World Cup Squad and those of today and its just laughable. (That goes for the bankers too incidentally). This isn`t me being "jealous" of them as someone claimed, although I can`t prove that (which is exactly why it gets said in this context quite a lot). I could do with quite a few quid and an XK120 don`t get me wrong, but these are veritable Himalayas of cash that I am talking about and am against. Billions not millions. This is where me and the most gun-totin` GMC drivin` redneck are likely to agree-wealth ought to be earned through sweat, initiative and enterprise . And again-(this is the difficult bit to get right and I can`t be the judge and jury, only a democracy can be) -the sky can`t be the limit anymore when it comes to wealth. -Incidentally I do not have to personally dislike people to think that they should not be filthy rich, even if they got there through accident of birth. It`s a toughie. Some people will have worked really hard and/or are incredibly talented. Telling them they can`t have more than a few million each will be tough and I can`t see it happening any time soon. But I think it has to be done if we are not ultimately to end up like that film "Elysium" -which was kind of trying to make that point. Not the best film I`ve ever seen incidentally.
  8. Well considering 1% of the UK population own 14% of the wealth and 15% of the UK population own nothing of any value or are in debt, Corbyn is perfectly correct to raise wealth redistribution as an issue. But no I hadn`t noticed him smiling, the last politician whose smile I noticed a lot was Blair-not a good example to follow. Anyway if you follow politics as I do, you will be interested to know that Mr. Sainsbury (he of the supermarkets) has stopped funding Mr. Blair`s wing of the party. Good, how bloody working class was Mr. Sainsbury ?! Same as Tristram Hunt who swans off to run an art gallery. Anyway I digress... You need have no fear for your bricks and mortar ! What Corbyn was actually suggesting (before the Daily Mail put its lying boot in) was temporarily letting survivors and bereaved families stay in empty properties of which there are plenty in Kensington. Frankly if you buy a house as an investment opportunity and then swan off leaving it completely empty , why not move in families who`ve just seen their relatives burnt to death ? Its called having a heart. Labour proposes raising Corporation tax to 26 %. Under Margaret Thatcher it was 28 %. Now come on, that might be a lot of things but it sure ain`t Communism. Yes he rightly wants to nationalise rail water gas and electricity industries. "Taking Back Control" of Britain`s arteries in other words, in a very direct and practical way. -well, by the same token that makes Winston Churchill, Harold MacMillan and Edward Heath`s Governments Communist as well ! Things are wrong in our country and no-one will have all the answers or make everyone happy but I know Corbyn acts with integrity and honesty. And if you are wondering-no, he won`t be addressing any more pop festivals, Glastonbury is where specifically progressive causes get espoused (although less now the glittery welly crowd have moved in) and he is a long-time mate of the organiser. If you want some proof of integrity, he has the lowest expenses claim of any MP and that was before the expenses scandal broke which I am sure you were all outraged about ! Anyway look, nobody`s perfect. But I want someone who is not a grovelling slave to the billionaires (clue they have lots of money and power) who currently run the show and give ordinary folk a look in again.
  9. I can see how my post above can be interpreted as a personal attack on the Queen and I apologise for that because it was certainly not my intention. Her devotion to public duty is exemplary by any standards and I was moved to see her and Phil standing steadfastly in the wind and rain on the occasion of their procession down the Thames when people half their age would have buckled. (An ancestor of mine also foiled an assassination attempt on George II believe it or not-he pushed the offending firearm out of the hand of the intended regicide ! What I intended to attack was the institution of Monarchy and I do indeed of course accept that the mechanism is not directly at the disposal of the Royal Family although there is necessarily a degree of acquiescence in any decIsion made. I also note that the renovation bill for Buck House is actually over £300 million; I do not think that the family themselves offer good value for money although they should undoubtedly be paid over the odds for their service to the Nation. It is a cliche I know but the low profile example of the Dutch, Swedish and Norwegian monarchies are more proportionate to national resources and national priorities. If the Royals are indeed such money spinners that is surely all the more reason for them to pay their way with lesser need for State allocations.. On an abstract moral level I do not believe the hereditary principle to be apppropriate for these times and in 1776 a hell of a lot of those pesky colonists called Americans would have agreed with me to often lethal effect . The idea of gaining public office by merit of course led to a best -seller by Thetford`s very own Tom Paine at the time. However you will be pleased to note that I believe that Republicanism also has its deep flaws as Americans are discovering right now ; best if the Head of State is not a politician, an ex-politician or TV reality star trying to be a politician ! I believe that the benefit to tourism can be satsified by the opening up of the royal palaces-not even the Bolsheviks seriously considered demolishing their Monarchy`s rich heritage that was part of the fabric of Russian life and the Faberge Eggs remain on display to this very day. Perhaps more pertinently, do the Royals themselves really want to carry on ? The media makes them into a sort of reality soap opera when their origins amidst ancient claims to divine status as the Head of the Established Church and their residual executive powers sit very awkwardly and (in typically British fashion), are not codified. Prince Charles once quipped to Chris Mullin MP that when someone shouted "abolish the Monarchy " at him he had to restrain himself from shouting "I`ll just run for President instead then " back at them. Good man ! Similarly with Prince Harry`s recent remarks that no-one really wants to do the job. So, no, I don`t have anything personally against the Queen. It would be a mistake to personalise it. But the institution itself needs an overhaul and needs to cost a lot less.
  10. Hello Theresa , we`re firefighters police ambulance drivers and paramedics. We came in quite useful in the past few weeks I think you`ll agree. Could you give us more staff and a pay rise ? Theresa : There is no Magic Money Tree. Of course we can print our own money but we only do that for our mates the bankers. Its not for the likes of YOU. Hello Theresa, Our 10 MPs will support you - on the basics anyway-if you give Northern Ireland 1.5 billion quid. Hello ,Queen here, I need 82 million for Buck House. Can you sort it or I`ll have to doss down at Windsor Sandringham or Balmoral. Theresa: No probs.
  11. "If this potential terrorist was known to the security and intelligence agencies why wasn`t he monitored and prevented from carrying out this murderous attack ?" -Diane Abbott The Guardian 28th May 2017, writing about the ISIS- supporting perpetrator of the Manchester atrocity. Therefore Barry I do not think you are correct in jumping to portray Diane Abbott as the villain of the piece. (Incidentally (!) her constituents just voted her back in with a majority larger than Theresa May`s entire vote). The streets of Finsbury Park were filled the other day with people of all creeds and colours decrying this latest incident and leaving flowers. They know that hate just begats hate and 99% of Muslims know that too. And by the way Marc, Abu Hamza did used to preach there and since he left they`ve excluded anyone from the congregation who supported him. I live 2 miles away and pass through to and from work every few days. No-one round there gives a stuff whether there`s a Mosque there or not, there are also loads of ultra-orthodox jews living half a mile up the road and they frequently hang out with the muslims; again no-one gives a stuff, it`s London they`ve got more going on in their lives, no wonder the murderer was from Cardiff !
  12. Well, both are certainly not short of a bob or two.....
  13. Reading more and more of the Varoufakis, the nearest we have to an existing Brexit experience. Interesting that despite being one of the most left-wing people ever to hold high office in post-war Europe, -he agrees 100% with Maggie Thatcher that the Euro was a poisonous idea. Briefly- its because she was correct to realise that the Euro would be under the control of a central bank, not politicians. That would be its fatal flaw. The commitment to the Euro became a purely bureaucratic project, not a political one. That undermined its foundations from day 1. Once the effects of the credit crunch reverberated around Europe it had no solutions but fiscal ones, no flexibility or imagination to curb the instability that caused to its weakest member, Greece.
  14. "May the best woman win" Angela Merkel appreciates your support mate, she`ll get an easy ride.
  15. "In 7 General Elections as anchor of Channel 4 news, Theresa May is the first serving Prime Minister to refuse me an interview. Why ?" John Snow . ...extraordinary, just where are you hiding Mrs May ? In a bed with the blankets over your head ? Letting your billionaire mates scream "terrorists terrorists terrorists " for you ? ...........and people think this feeble charlatan of a bureaucrat is some kind of true-Brit leader. Wow. Just wow.
  16. If a human rights act case were brought on the basis that terrorists shouldn`t have been killed (Article 2 ECHR) , the central issue would be whether the police response was proportionate. The facts would vary from case to case but (leaving aside the rather obvious point that many are suicide bombers as in Manchester), it is very hard to see on the available evidence from London Bridge how the police could fail to justify shooting to kill. The fact that these scum wore fake bomb belts rather suggests that they knew that would get them killed. It is typical of May`s reactive incompetence to drag human rights into it.
  17. Meanwhile where is our Strong and Stable PM ? Whose idea of "naughtiness" was running through a wheatfield. Personally I think it is rather naughty to do business deals with alleged sponsors of terrorism and then refusing to release David Cameron`s Report into it. - A no-show for Question Time. -A no-show for Womans Hour. - A "meeting with the public" (who forget to take their blue rosettes off LOL) -No reply to senior police officers who accuse her of lying about police numbers. (at least Diane Abbott was talking about increasing police numbers when she screwed up !) Rightly or wrongly lots more people will vote for Corbyn if Abbott is off the scene.
  18. Yes their pay is probably too high but it pales into insignificance compared to the 6 figure bonuses awarded to CEOs for economic failure leading to mass redundancies for their employees . (BTW Corbyn is very much opposed to PFI. His Labour is certainly not actor/war criminal Tony Blair`s Labour. Tony Blair has already warned people not to vote for Corbyn - who might well send him to The Hague for trial if possible) UKIP voters should applaud like his policy of repatriating control over our railways, water, gas and electricity industries. For all the lies about Corbyn being a Communist he will not sell our crucial infrastructure out to the Chinese Communist Party as George Osborne has done through his nuclear power deal. Corbyn realises correctly that this is a war between the megarich and the rest of us. In a war you don`t sit on your backside moaning, you get out there on the stump every single day and state your case to total strangers. The proof of the pudding is that the tax-avoiding megarich are seriously concerned that he might win. They have a lie machine at their disposal. This election is far and away the worst I have known for lies. Precisely because the billionaires know that unlike Blair, Corbyn believes what he is saying. Every day another lie (starting of course with the lie that there wasn`t going to be an election at all !) The biggest lie that we cannot afford massive investment in infrastructure and public services. 13 trillion quid lies idle offshore. £70 billion in tax giveaways for the rich over the last 7 years.(Source Forbes Magazine 23rd July 2012) Corporation tax to rise to a level lower than when Thatcher was in power-aren`t these Labour people awful ???!! 24 hours to go ! Wheel on for the hundredth time the lie that opposition leaders support terrorism. Despite their signing parliamentary motions condemning IRA violence and Martin McGuinness shaking hands with The Queen. Wheel on the lie that Corbyn is a pacifist. Who supports terror. The first pacifist, terror supporter in recorded history and by total coincidence he wants to be Prime Minister. They`ll be calling him a vegetarian cannibal next ! The lie that the opposition did not support shoot to kill. The lie that he wants uncontrolled immigration-the manifesto refers to CONTROLLED immigration. The lie that the pound did not fall because of the Brexit vote. The lie that the Electoral Commission was "complied with" by you know who over allegations of electoral fraud. The Tories fought its investigation all the way. The lie that there were sufficient police to meet the terrorist threat. ...and to cap it all, they refuse to publish a report into Saudi sponsoring of terrorism because it will embarrass them over their commercial links with the Saudis. In some countries there would be riots over that. I leave you with this thought :"It is easier to fool people than to convince them that they have been fooled" Mark Twain :
  19. There is controversy as to whether we actually needed a bailout in retrospect but that aside, the early 1970s saw : the oil crisis, the 3-day week, the Miner`s Strike and the nationalisation of Rolls Royce by that well known Corbyn Supporter Edward Heath. -the problems had been growing for years !
  20. A "shoot to kill policy " is a contradiction in terms which is what Corbyn was opposing. A general policy cannot work in this context unless there is a war on or you declare Martial Law. The BBC twisted his words to make him appear "soft" and have since apologised to him-(they admit twisting his words-see references). It was fake news. Unfortunately (surprise surprise) I can see that that particular information has not been taken account of on these threads. Corbyn has always advocated a proportionate response which is a different thing and perfectly reasonable . If someone is killing or presenting an imminent threat to others` lives you kill them . That is standard. That is a "proportionate response" following a risk assessment by armed officers. It was the correct response on Saturday night and no politician-including Corbyn- is questioning that. None of the firearms officers concerned are under scrutiny by any authority for their brave actions.
  21. Will I would not be the one who says that 100 economics professors are wrong and it certainly seems to me that your boss will have made a very poor decision if he decides to move. More and more who are following election policies closely ( instead of believing our Prime Minister (bad idea !) have noticed that a proposed Corporation tax rate of 26% will still be one of the lowest tax rates in Europe. Just where will your ultimate boss go ? He`ll have a hard time elsewhere in Europe and trading/transport costs from the Middle East will be way more expensive . If he does move it will be because we will be out of the Single Market-a hard brexit. But that's a whole other argument. And secondly I am not remotely "suggesting " printing money on the scale you suggest. I merely point out that it can be used as a mechanism just as ultra low interest rates and printing money was used to keep us afloat since the Crash of 2008. Any rise in interest rates will cripple people on big mortgages and the colossal personal debt of UK citizens (the highest in Europe) will lead to misery reminiscent of the ERM days of John "Back to Basics" Major. Researchers now say that 13 trillion pounds are kept in offshore tax havens. 13 trillion pounds. That is incredible but that`s what they say. I`ll repeat it actually . 13 trillion pounds. I am certainly suggesting that we get our hands on some of that rather than have to print money because the people who are always saying how they love this country refuse to shell out for doing business in it.
  22. Hi, its fair to say that I rarely disagree with totally everything that people above post and vice versa. But one recurring theme that does divide opinion is of course the existence or otherwise of "The Magic Money Tree". This tree seems to get dragged out at elections like the plastic one from the loft every Christmas. (Usually by politicians who however don`t mind using said tree on the sly to pay for their Duck Islands or Moat-cleaning services). The short easy answer for me (if not you) is that over 100 economics professors have just endorsed Corbyn`s manifesto policies in an open letter to the media . Stephen Hawking has also endorsed Corbyn-and that guy is very good at maths (though I wouldn`t bet on him in the pole-vault). Apart from that easy way out above for my arguments (!) the idea of " printing more money" by the State attracts opprobrium but is quite simply not irresponsible in itself. The comparison with any household is misconceived (unless that household is run by forgers !) The problems begin with "more money out there" when spending is too high and tax too low, so inflation sets in. Its surely what that money gets used for that is the priority issue here. At the moment money is being used to prop up the banks ( or to be cynical, bankers` bonuses) . The ratio of quantitative easing to lending is not particularly good. Will it be used to invest in infrastructure (perhaps the one area where Trump and Corbyn agree ?) which in turn facilitates new business ? In other words, investing for the future ? Good health is somewhat indefinable as a contributory factor in productivity but there is a strong argument that it is worth having in itself. I personally would gladly pay more tax to see an NHS emerge from its undoubted crisis but that needs a whole thread. Likewise good education and training based on ability not wealth - a strong argument that it is worth having in itself. I am firmly in favour of the abolition of tuition fees for that reason. In partial answer to Steve`s very valid point above about small businesses facing severe challenges, there are multiple factors and the wage bill is one of them. Cannot we see adjustments to other impositions so that paying a living wage is not only possible but desirable ? At that level of payment (£10 an hour) the "extra" can often get spent at the very businesses who pay it ! I note that Labour says they won`t tax businesses or individuals whose income / turnover is less than £80,000 a year so there is a "carrot" there for startups. Can you trust them? Trust the figures ? Well sheer logic might compel you to do so after the loop-the-loop we`ve seen from the Government and their Manifesto of Misery with no figures in it at all.
  23. Sadly there is yet another occasion to express shock, grief and to offer condolences to all those bereaved. I certainly agree that religions are a problem because historically they have usually provided a pretext for all sorts of mentally disordered acts and land-grabbing . But there is also a hell of a lot of knee-jerking going on here about people who happen to look and speak and dress differently . If you add up the victims of terrorism worldwide huge numbers are Muslims . The sick twat who murdered Jo Cox in the street wasn`t muslim. The sick twat in Norway who murdered 150 young people wasn`t a muslim. You actually do not have to look far online to see myriad examples of Muslims helping those caught up in these attacks, in Manchester for starters . "Muslims Against Isis " has 106,000 likes on Facebook. I personally have given substantial sums to muslims who are fighting the mullahs` evil regime in Iran -they fight for a State NOT based on religion. BTW The Mosques are refusing to bury the Manchester attacker. They do not consider him Muslim. Yes of course by all means shoot those who present an imminent threat and I believe that they did so here - but at least consider whether they have intelligence to offer if caught alive. There is a background to all this and it must be looked into without fear or favour. I mentioned policing cuts previously which the politician you love to hate drew attention to in November 2015 and which a retired officer repeated on Sky News today. He said the Government were lying about the number of armed response officers on the streets. I absolutely do not apologise for drawing your attention to the following : The Government has just blocked publication of their Report into the funding of terrorism commissioned in 2015 . Why ? Because the contents are "highly sensitive", By highly sensitive they mean LINKS BETWEEN OUR GOVERNMENT AND THE SAUDI SPONSORS OF TERRORIST GROUPS. Yes I am angry about it . They do not want you to know something that is of direct relevance to the growth and sponsorship of terrorism ! The Government with which we have just concluded a big arms deal. (THE INDEPENDENT 1ST JUNE 2017). This is not some eccentric conspiracy theory-it is happening here and now. The usual excoriation of those who are soft on terrorism has taken place in posts above but unless you look at the cause and motivation of those who commit these atrocities and treat them as criminals at the same time-when will this end ? We want an end to this so we don`t have to keep posting like this.
  24. "You can`t just increase incomes, money doesn`t grow on trees it has to come from somewhere". The central thrust of your argument is of course entirely legitimate - that companies have to pay wages as part of their overall turnover. There would come a point when increases so as to hit the core of the business. Having worked for small businesses all my life I am well aware of this. But wage bills are one cog in the process. At the other extreme, If all profits went in dividends instead of wage increases that would ultimately be unhealthy for the economy-these "Captains of Industry" can only buy so many conservatories and Jaguars. One cause of the 1929 crash was the availability of goods compared to the ability of the vast mass of people to afford them .One cause of the 2008 crash was the availability of cheap home loans to the vast mass who could not afford to repay them. Seems a bit of a pattern emerging there. Reharding the effect of wage rises on employment I well remember the uproar that introduction of the Minimum Wage caused-that it would lead to mass unmployment . It quite simply did not do so. Myself and hundreds of thousands of others want an explanation for the fact that CEO pay is now over 160 times more than pay on the shop floor. In the 1960s it was 12 times that of the shop floor. Or are our Chief Exceutives now 150 times better at their jobs ? And don`t get me started on the bankers, six-figure bonuses paid out for making a loss ! That the purchasing power of UK wages has declined by 10.4 % since 2010. Politicians spout off about wage increases but of course if housing transport and living costs have soared those wage increases are not going to help . What they have done which makes people so angry, is give 60-70 billion in tax giveaways to corporations. Has that stimulated fantastic economic growth ? No it certainly has not. What has been happening since the economic crash of 2008 is that wealth has been flowing from the poor to the rich. That well-known socialist rag the Sunday Times Rich List confirms an increase in private wealth of 14% over the past year. £648 billion amongst 1000 families is a mighty big Money Tree ! Their private money tree, blocking the light to small businesses and small investors. If a nurse or police officer asked for a 14% rise now they would be laughed out of court. That`s what is meant when people like Corbyn or Sanders in the USA talk about " system rigged in favour of the rich". There is always a feeling on these threads that the "public sector" have it easy, That is arguable and public sector jobs have diminished hugely because there is no profit to be made in (for example) putting fires out. The ranks of the self-employed have increased to about 4.5 million people in proportion. People who by and large really do not have spare income and who are not even paid the minimum wage . Regarding the "cushiness" of public-v-private jobs, if everyone travelled by train (which I am NOT suggesting) then the risk of an accident to a Company Rep. would be almost zero compared to the risk to a firefighter but I digress.( Is it fanciful to venture that Company Reps suffer so many accidents because they are so busy speeding to the next crumb of commission that they can`t concentrate on safe driving ? Meanwhile the Boss has his chauffeur-driven 7-series...) Sir Philip Green is an extreme example but does symbolise the problems with your argument. There were billions and thousands of jobs at stake, so what does he do to help his country`s economic strength ? Sells the business for a quid to an asset-stripper and buys a new luxury yacht while his thousands of ex-employees -now on benefits- are left fretting over their pensions. The system that allows that to happen is inherently unfair to people who put the stability of their family life and their ability to resist stress and depression in the hands of a complete spiv. At least directors in the public services owe some accountability. Other public services (of which BHS clearly isn`t one) should be taken back into public ownership if only for strategic reasons. Regional investment and growth must be coordinated and lots of privateers make that inefficient at best and near- impossible at worst. A variable rate of Corporation Tax is the proposal-the bigger your Comapny the more you have to pay. We can all agree here that training in substantive subjects and apprenticeships such as engineering is desperately needed. That is exactly why massive long-term investment in education is needed togther with the abolition of tuition fees to give talented but poorer students a level playing field.. I know the philosophy behind this; that "Free Money" for everyone is a very Bad Thing. It encourages laziness, sloth etc. My short answer is "not necessarily". If the resources are there to motivate people then some money to give them and their families security is money well spent. At the moment we just have free money for the Rich and I don`t particularly see them getting off their backsides to help their country either. The longer answer starts with the concept of money seen as a form of social relationship because obviously we cannot live on bits of paper and metal discs alone; they merely signify our entitlement to food and goods. But what happens when it is so easy to produce goods (via automation) that there simply aren`t the jobs there ? The possible solution will be counter-intuitive to many but paying a universal basic income may be the only answer. That may make some peoples` blood boil on here !
  25. I agree that rent needs to be capped and incomes need to increase to lessen the need for benefits. In addition council housing must be built again to give people a stable life. Once you have a stable life, the chance to bring up a family and rights, dignity can be found doing valuable and valued work without letting go of studies to advance ambitions and take further opportunities. There was a time in the 1960s when people thought that in the future we would live on the moon and all drive around in cars like the Lotus Elite. We laugh now and whether they were right or wrong, that mentality stemmed from a society where everyone felt that they had a stake in the future instead of being the latest recipient of a cut in services / receiving a massive bill for their offspring`s tuition fees / getting a repossession notice because they`ve defaulted on the mortgage/ living from year to year hand to mouth in rented accommodation because there is no security and no rent controls. Financing the future ? The only actual numbers you`ll find in the Tory manifesto to give us hope for the future are the page numbers . Nothing in there for the young. McDonnell plans to tax people who earn over £80,000 a year, the rest of us are left alone. Unfortunately Theresa May has chickened out of every debate with anyone who was elected to challenge her so there is a bit of an information blackout from those in power. Bit like Uzbekistan really (not my opinion the words of the former British Ambassador to Uzbekistan Craig Murray in his blog). And a parting thought. If Theresa May is so keen to tell us all that Keir Starmer QC is such a lousy Brexit negotiator why did she call an election to allow him the chance to negotiate in the first place ? If it wasn`t for her mega rich mates Rupert Murdoch, Paul Dacre, Paul Desmond and the Barclay Twins yelling in your ear every day for her, she would be a non-starter. "Overpromoted" is the polite way to put it.
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