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Posts posted by basalte

  1. 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). 

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  2. 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 


    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.



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  3. 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 !    

  4. 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 !  🙂

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  5. 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).

  6. 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...



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  7. 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 . )



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  8. 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.  

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  9. 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...)   

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  10. 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 !


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  11. 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" .

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  12. 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.


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  13. On 04/08/2021 at 12:44, basalte said:

    Since the driver shortage I am tempted to instead, ride that elephant in the room that some quite reasonably-it`s big news- invited onto this forum

    - and it has wandered in again, pesky pachyderm ... Time to gaze into my crystal ball of post 4th August...

    I see that Richard Burnett, the Chief Executive of the Road Haulage Association, is somewhat concerned. On 25th July 2021 he commented that :

    " We`re facing potentially in the next 2/3 weeks a collapse of the supply chain and we will see even bigger gaps on supermarket shelves because we cannot get product into the supply chain. ...

    This is a massive crisis - a crisis on a scale of which we have never seen before in this industry and Government is burying its head in the sand -it`s not recognising the seriousness of the situation

    ....we want the Government to recognise drivers and grant temporary visas to get more drivers into the country".

    The inescapable conclusion(which from looking at many many previous posts I have no doubt some here will try to escape from nonetheless !)-the inescapable conclusion- is that the ending of the Single Market and Free Movement has negative consequences for the employment of HGV drivers.  Or is Mr. Burnett just another Project Fear spreader ?


     Just thought of posting this whilst in the queue at Thurrock Services, Saturday , 10.15pm...

  14. 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.     

  15. 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. 

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