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It's Official. UK is now the worst place to live in Europe


Kimbers

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Pish! Like they need to tell us.

http://news.uk.msn.com/uk/uk-officially-bottom-of-pile

"

pa.press.net, Updated: 29/09/2011 09:11

UK 'officially bottom of pile'

26E614CF5D1F8B54908DD414A049CE.jpg

The UK is the worst place to live in Europe, a survey has found, with one in 10 people considering emigrating

The UK is the worst place to live in Europe, with people getting a "raw deal" on quality of life and high cost of living, a study has revealed.

Comparison website uSwitch said that things were getting so bad that one in 10 people in this country were considering emigrating.

France and Spain came out on top of its Quality of Life Index, with the UK bottom of a 10-country league table, covering working hours, VAT, holidays, spending on health and education - and hours of sunshine.

The UK also came bottom of another table based on the cost of energy, petrol, food, alcohol, cigarettes, and life expectancy.

Households in the UK struggled with a high cost of living, with food and diesel prices the highest in Europe, while unleaded petrol, alcohol and cigarettes all cost more than the European average, said the report.

People in the UK now have the lowest holiday entitlement in Europe as well as having one of the highest retirement ages, the study found.

A survey of over 2,000 adults found their biggest concern was "broken society", as well as the cost of living, crime and violence, while some 5% said they were happy with the UK, with over one in 10 "seriously considering" emigrating.

France topped the index for the third year in a row, despite the average household annual net income being £7,000 below that of the UK.

Ann Robinson, director of consumer policy at uSwitch.com, said: "Last year at least our neighbours in Ireland were worse off, now we can't even console ourselves with that. We are now officially at the bottom of the pile.

"We may still be enjoying the fourth highest household income in Europe, but the high cost of living means that we're living to work."

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By "broken society" the following figures may have a little something to do with it :From Wikipedia.

1% of the UK population own 21% of the total UK wealth

10% of the UK population own 53% of the total UK wealth

50% of the UK population own 93% of the total UK wealth.

so, 50% of the UK population get to own (whoooo) 7% of the total UK wealth !

Oh and here in London town, 3% of the population earn 23% of the total salary income.

Whether or not you think the right to get not just rich (I`ve no problem with that !) but megarich is nobody elses`s business but your own, -

-that kind of discrepancy is deeply unhealthy, if only because poor people can`t spend money on stuff that keeps others employed making/selling it.

Never mind ; we can always console ourselves that the UK has the power to fry millions of innocent men women and children to death with Trident missiles at a cool 25 billion-oh, and with America`s permission, of course. So we`re still great !

Call me a cynic.... :rant:

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Its a shame isn't it.

Because at one time, we occupied/owned 25% of the earths surface and comprised 25% of the world's population.

Now all we have is this place and a rock with monkeys on it.

Oh, and since our Navy has been decimated, we no longer have anywhere to send the 'broken parts' of our society.

What are we doing wrong? Why does fuel cost need to be so high?

Is is really down to the £25 billion nuclear deterrent? Or could it also be our NHS. (FYI, it has cost more than £25 billion to implement an NHS computer system that doesn't work)

I think in general, we expect to get too much for too little. And thats on many levels.

"Intellectuals solve problems; geniuses prevent them." Albert Einstein

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And I live in Melbourne (well nearly). The best city in the world to live in. :harhar:

All we know is that when they stop making this, we will be properly, properly sad.Jeremy Clarkson on the Esprit.

Opinions are like armpits. Everyone has them, some just stink more than others.

For forum issues, please contact one of us Moderators.

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I don't know. It does seem like many other societies do things more efficiently. Much of this is, I believe, in part because we were the first to do many things. We have some of the oldest tax law, we were the first with a national health service, our infrastructure is old, our govt organisation is expensive and hasn't changed since the 1800's.

What it needs is stripping down and starting from scratch IMHO. (Yes I know thats nigh on impossible)

I mean, let me break down our taxes. We get taxed at Source (PAYE), you then invest or spend your money. If you save it you get taxed on the interest. If you invest it you get taxed on the dividend AND THEN when you cash it in you get taxed on the profit you made from the capital. If you spend it you get taxed VAT on what you spend.

So what started as a 1% tax to pay for the war with Napoleon has become a tax on a tax on a tax! I'm sure someone else could tell me a scenario where we get taxed on the same money more than 3 times.

Its even worse if you are made unemployed as you pay your National insurance to ensure you get the dole. The money they are giving you back is your own.....and yet when you then get a job they tax you on the dole payments you earnt...which was your own money anyway!! LMAO!

I do think the whole organisation of the UK needs a rethink to streamline systems and taxes, simplify to save costs! Australia developed their programs a hundred years after us and their govt organisation/welfare/schools etc is so much more efficient!

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DSC0255.jpg

I live in Coffs Harbour !

Seriously, if anyone thinks the UK is worst in Europe you know they've never use a public convenience in Italy, never changed flights at Charles De Gaulle, dealt with customs at Basel etc.

Life is like a sewer, what you get out of it, depends on what you put into it. (Tom Leahrer)

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But what I dont understand is this - we are taxed at huge levels but that is money that goes to government to spend on - us? Hurrah!

So how come it doesn't feel that way?

Hooroo.

The money is going somewhere....

Maybe its like Kimbers says - it costs a fortune to keep something old and unreliable running - hmm, sounds familiar somehow...

"Intellectuals solve problems; geniuses prevent them." Albert Einstein

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Article: Interesting that our Austerity measures are currently saving us £10 billion.

This year, Britain’s Department for International Development (DFID) has spent a staggering £9.1 billion on aid, funding 90 different countries.

Some money goes to nations which are desperately in need of help, such as impoverished African states on the brink of famine. Here, the concern is often not just whether the money is needed, but whether it is getting to those in need.

Every year, millions of pounds of British taxpayers’ money leaks into the pockets of corrupt officials and warlords.

In other cases, however, Britain is paying huge amounts in aid to projects of questionable worth.

In South America, for example, DFID indirectly funds an organisation which represents sex workers called RedTraSex. It refers to itself as ‘a movement in high heels’.

Then there is China. Last year, Britain paid £32 million to the Communist superpower, which is now officially classified by the World Bank as a middle-income country.

Britain has given Beijing on average £34.5 million a year since 2004 to fund schools, fight Aids and provide fresh water.

Ironically, as we face hard times in Britain, China is forecast to become the biggest economic power in the world within five years.

Indeed, the latest figures from the World Bank show China’s GDP was £2.8 trillion in 2008 — eclipsed only by the U.S. and Japan. So why on earth are we giving them aid?

And then there’s India, the single largest recipient of UK overseas aid — between 2003 and 2008, it benefited from £1 billion in aid. And two years ago, Gordon Brown agreed to give the former colony another £825 million by 2011.

In the past ten years, British development aid to the country has almost trebled — despite the fact the Indian economy is ranked 11th in the world and is predicted to overtake the British economy as the world’s fifth largest by 2015.

Canit be right that British taxpayers give such vast sums to a nation that can afford nuclear weapons, a space programme and has a defence budget of £25 billion?

Of course, India has hundreds of millions of poor people. But it is now so well-off that it has started an overseas aid programme of its own.

Indeed, MPs on the International Development Select Committee recently said India ‘seems to have become tired of being cast in the role of aid recipient’.

And on a visit to India in July, even our own Prime Minister suggested Britain should bend its knee to the former colony.

He said: ‘I have come to your country in a spirit of humility. I know that Britain cannot rely on sentiment and shared history for a place in India’s future. Your country has the whole world beating a path to its door.’ The Indian government now refuses to allow DFID to work directly with most local charities, insisting that payments be processed through official channels.

This, said the MPs, caused ‘ difficulties in tracking money trails, and problems in determining outcomes’. One might ask why Britain gives such huge amounts in the face of such an attitude. The majority of DFID’s spending — although at 56 per cent, perhaps less than you might expect — does go to what are known as the ‘least developed countries’, mostly in Africa.

Here, the problem is often what happens when the aid reaches these desperate countries. Earlier this year, for example, the House of Commons Public Affairs Committee (PAC) looked at the case of Malawi, in southeast Africa.

Britain has spent £312 million helping the country since 2003, despite evidence of widespread corruption.Indeed, a commission has recommended 118 cases for prosecution for aid fraud in the past year alone. MPs also expressed concern that around £23 million had been wasted buying surplus fertiliser at peak prices. The chairman of the PAC cited it as a case of ‘gross mismanagement’.

There were questions over whether the matter was down to corruption or sheer ineptitude. Either way, the money has gone. I n Gh a n a , t h e Br i t i s h Government has spent hundreds of thousands helping the country hand out social security payments.

In Cambodia, we handed out 56 per cent of condoms provided by the state. Another £800 million will be spent over three years on ‘clean technology investment plans’ for countries including Egypt, Mexico and Turkey.

Then there is Afghanistan. The Government has just announced a 40 per cent increase in aid funding to Afghanistan, increasing funding from £500 million to £700 million over the next four years.

Targets include getting six million children into school. The Secretary of State for International Development, Andrew Mitchell, is to redirect funding from under-performing projects in other parts of the world and from countries such as China and Russia. Aid to India is also to be reviewed.

The charity Christian Aid has already raised concerns, however, that much of this money will be diverted by warlords i n Afghanistan, at the expense of humanitarian goals.

In the U.S. congressmen voted to suspend £2.5 billion of aid to the Afghan government after a report revealed that at least £2.8 billion has been exported in cash from the country over the past four years.

Fraud investigators fear that most of the money leaving Kabul has been siphoned of from international aid contracts.

Doubtless, much of Britain’s aid budget does reach people in need. DFID is certainly keen to blow its own trumpet, saying it has trained 100,000 teachers, vaccinated over three million children against measles and provided half a billion condoms to help stop the spread of Aids.

Officials at the top-heavy organisation, which boasts in its annual report that it’s ‘in the Stonewall top 100 employers for lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender staff ’, enjoyed the good life while DFID has been on its spending spree. GRANDLY, the annual report says that ‘eliminating world poverty will remain our priority’. Is it selfish to suggest that, in times of trouble, charity should be redirected to projects back home?

Opinion polls show most voters want international aid to be cut during this time of austerity. In a recent poll, just 29 per cent agreed with increasing international aid.

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I really am impressed by the amount of knowledge that some of you guys show about your country's aid programmes etc. I would not have a clue what my country does nor would I even know where to find out.

All we know is that when they stop making this, we will be properly, properly sad.Jeremy Clarkson on the Esprit.

Opinions are like armpits. Everyone has them, some just stink more than others.

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I agree that aid to India and China now seems inappropriate, but it is arguable that at least China helped itself with the "one child" policy. And given the threat posed by global unrestricted population growth, helping to hand out as many condoms as possible on a world scale seems eminently sensible.

Its a big topic but I would maintain that the "big picture" is not whether we should help (mostly) poor people globally, but is to be found in disparities of wealth in the world`s 4th (or is it 5th?) largest economy; right here. The top 1000 richest UK individuals own £335 billion between them (Sunday Times "Rich List") -enough to halve the national deficit at a stroke for instance. As above this is not an argument against people who have million or two -but the richest now are multi-billionaires who could not even physically spend their fortunes even if they bought an ice-cream sundae in Wimpy every day ! (my childhood ambition of riches).

To which the response is "it`s their money-they can do what they like with it". Trouble is when you`re talking about that few people with that much moolah, (leaving aside whether they pay their taxes properly which has got a lot of people hot under the collar), there has to be a moral question raised when at the same time pensioners die of cold because they can`t afford the heating bills.

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A large number of asylum applications in the UK have been founded on the Chinese "one child" policy...so not only has it cut their birthrate but exported other mouths, too! As for the distribution of wealth...Pareto's analysis of this sort of thing states that 80% of anything considered valuable will end up belonging to 20% of the population, and there's no way round this. If we truly have 21% of everything owned by 1% of the population, something needs to be done to sort it out. Either redistribute the wealth or cull those at the other end of the distribution....(!) This used to be done by turning them into cannon fodder....but I would hope that we could find a way to enable people to rise out of the mire rather than sink below it.

Edited by molemot

Scientists investigate that which already is; Engineers create that which has never been." - Albert Einstein

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I don't think the "one child policy" has worked all that well. 1.3 billion and growing. Besides, the Chinese middle class are growing in wealth such that they can afford to pay the fines!

As to the UK, I think it's mainly the limited "hours of sunshine" that holds you back! :D

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Are you still here?

ARRRGGHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH!!!!

'Ahem'

ARHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH!!!!!

He is, and it's why i'm not.

:(

You say it's like a pub to you Kimbers, which is fair, and it's all yours.

A pub where the same guys gather and put the world to rights, and moan eldlessly about the country and whatever red top tabloid headline has been the theme of their day. I'm not disputing there are not pubs like that, there are...

...i don't drink in them.

:)

The forum is not like a pub, only someone that does not get out much could say that. In a real pub you could not stand up and spout twenty paragraphs of the same old dreary stuff every day, as (aside from the fact you would be told to shut up) nobody would care, and if you had the same gang of twenty mates to slap you on the back, quote you, and repeat the same stuff? again, nobody would care. That why despite tens of thousands of forum members, it's the same small lot on about the state of things, again.

To say an internet forum is like the pub is to declare yourself social bankrupt. Like i said, you have killed it for me, my profile shows most active in general chat, and by your own indulgence and lack of a (non captive audience) ear elsewhere, it's now totally your 'pub'. Jesus christ, why don't you guys just all get 'UK life sucks' tattoos???????????????

Well done! I mean seriously, cheers!

:D

PS,

ARRRRRGGGGHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH!!!!!!

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Hi Paul. You're back.

Or not.....

If you disagree with what's in the thread, don't just argue with a post, how would you fix the UK if it is that broken?

All we know is that when they stop making this, we will be properly, properly sad.Jeremy Clarkson on the Esprit.

Opinions are like armpits. Everyone has them, some just stink more than others.

For forum issues, please contact one of us Moderators.

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Guest WausauLotus

It seems as if we all have some major problems with the things that our gov's. do. Lots of money spent and not too much to show for it. I realize that this attachment is long, but this is the type of sentiment that going round her in the USA lately. I think you could interchange US/UK and president/PM and find some very close similarities.

WOULDN'T IT BE GREAT TO TURN ON THE TV AND HEAR ANY U.S. PRESIDENT, DEMOCRAT OR REPUBLICAN, GIVE THE FOLLOWING SPEECH?

'My Fellow Americans: As you all know, the defeat of the Iraq regime has been completed.

Since Congress does not want to spend any more money on this war, our mission in Iraq is complete.

This morning I gave the order for a complete removal of all American forces from Iraq . This action will be complete within 30 days. It is now time to begin the reckoning.

Before me, I have two lists. One list contains the names of countries which have stood by our side during the Iraq conflict. This list is short. The United Kingdom , Spain , Bulgaria , Australia , and Poland are some of the countries listed there.

The other list contains every one not on the first list. Most of the world's nations are on that list. My press secretary will be distributing copies of both lists later this evening.

Let me start by saying that effective immediately, foreign aid to those nations on List 2 ceases indefinitely. The money saved during the first year alone will pretty much pay for the costs of the Iraqi war.

THEN EVERY YEAR THEREAFTER It'll GO TO OUR SOCIAL SECURITY SYSTEM SO IT WONT GO BROKE IN 20 YEARS.

The American people are no longer going to pour money into third world Hell holes and watch those government leaders grow fat on corruption.

Need help with a famine? Wrestling with an epidemic? Call France ...

In the future, together with Congress, I will work to redirect this money toward solving the vexing social problems we still have at home. On that note, a word to terrorist organizations. Screw with us and we will hunt you down and eliminate you and all your friends from the face of the earth.

Thirsting for a gutsy country to terrorize? Try France or maybe China .

I am ordering the immediate severing of diplomatic relations with France , and Russia . Thanks for all your help, comrades. We are retiring from NATO as well.

I have instructed the Mayor of New York City to begin towing the many UN diplomatic vehicles located in Manhattan with more than two unpaid parking tickets to sites where those vehicles will be stripped, shredded and crushed. I don't care about whatever treaty pertains to this. You creeps have tens of thousands of unpaid tickets. Pay those tickets tomorrow or watch your precious Benzes, Beamers and limos be turned over to some of the finest chop shops in the world. I love New York .

A special note to our neighbors: Canada is on List 2. Since we are likely to be seeing a lot more of each other, you folks might want to try not ticking us off for a change.

Mexico is also on List 2. Its president and his entire corrupt government really need an attitude adjustment.

I will have a couple thousand extra tanks and infantry divisions sitting around. Guess where I am going to

Put 'em? Yep, border security.

Oh, by the way, the United States is abrogating the NAFTA treaty - starting now.

We are tired of the one-way highway. Immediately, we'll be drilling for oil in Alaska -which will take care of this country's oil needs for decades to come. If you're an environmentalist who opposes this decision, I refer you to List 2 above: pick a country and move there.

It is time for America to focus on its own welfare and its own citizens. Some will accuse us of isolationism. I answer them by saying, 'darn tootin.'

Nearly a century of trying to help folks live a decent life around the world has only earned us the undying enmity of just about everyone on the planet. It is time to eliminate hunger in America .

It is time to eliminate homelessness In America .

To the nations on List 1,

A final thought. Thank you guys.

We owe you and we won't forget.

To the nations on List 2, a final thought: You might want to learn to speak Arabic.

God bless America ...

Thank you and good night.'

If you can read this in English,

Thank a soldier.

Sorry for the lengthy read but sometimes it makes you wonder what our goverments are really up to?

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Have you ever seen a movie called "Charlie Wilson's War?"

I think it's second to last scene, an appropriation debate, the amount spent on the war against the Russians in Afghanistan, but a refusal to fund a school.

Watch it it's very telling.

Life is like a sewer, what you get out of it, depends on what you put into it. (Tom Leahrer)

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Speaking of friends and enemies of the USA, who said this ?

"This immortal statement in the US Declaration of Independence -the right to life liberty and the pursuit of happiness- in a broader sense means, all the peoples of the earth have a right to live, to be happy and free.

These are undeniable truths".

JFK ? Reagan ? Dubya ? Wrong.

It was Comrade Ho Chi Minh of North Vietnam speaking on September 2nd 1945 at the Vietnamese Declaration of Independence. If I was American I would have kinda admired him for that and given his poor country a few dollars. Instead, you know the rest.....

It`s complicated.

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I recall a Randy Newman song entitled "Political Science".... goes a bit further than Dave Alter's Presidential speech...but similar sentiments!

http://youtu.be/Wx-7THEZ6xk

Scientists investigate that which already is; Engineers create that which has never been." - Albert Einstein

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So what Dave is saying is that a country too poor to feed itself or install power grids or roads should step up to the plate and spend millions on supporting pointless wars in Iraq and Afghanistan or lose their aid? Don't see the logic there.

America's not short of money. The big companies are rolling in cash. They just don't or daren't spend it.

UK the worst place to live according to a web site. Oh my god! The sky is falling in! It's a survey, not facts. Anyway, you guys back there have the right to work anywhere in the EU so move if it's so bad.

S4 Elan, Elan +2S, Federal-spec, World Championship Edition S2 Esprit #42, S1 Elise, Excel SE

 

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Dan. I think "collecting wealth" is a highly contencious issue. I for one would sleep better at night knowing I had lots of moolah. Unfortunately I don't, but it's an aspiration and without dreams and aspirations life is very sad.

A while back I was interested in what people with huge amounts of money do with it. This was prompted by a news report about Bill Gates.

What I found made interesting reading. The monicker "from those to whom much is given, much is expected" seems to read true almost without exception, of the mega rich.

Bill Gates has so far given away $28bn to charity. He syill has $56bn left and has vowed to leave only $10 million to his kids, "The rest", he states "will go on my Vaccination Programme". Of his decision to fund vaccination programmes, rather than developing treatments for cancer, he said: "When you die of malaria aged three it's different from being in your seventies, when you might die of a heart attack or you might die of cancer. And the world is putting massive amounts into cancer, so my wealth would have had a meaningless impact on that."

People like Richard Branson live a nice life, and why not he earnt it, but he also gives to a huge number of charities and has pledge 100% of his profits from his travel firms and airlines, for the next 10 years, to charity.

The issue here is not so much people owning huge wealth, its organisations (as Trevor has just touched on above). Banks for example, give very little to charity. Infact, their spend on advertising and sponsorship of sporting events is more than 5 times their charitable donations. Tesco's and the other supermarkets are also very lax when it comes to spreading their wealth around. Last year they gave £21.7 million to charity. But this figure includes collections at till and "contributions" from their suppliers. Its suspected the real amount given from its own funds to be less than half that figure.

However, more than anything, I believe that if you work hard and get rich then good for you!! We should be encouraging people to create wealth because invariably they pay more of their money into the system than anyone else. Whilst a huge portion of the countries wealth is owned by just a few, a large portion of the countries income comes from the same people.

Possibly save your life. Check out this website.
http://everyman-campaign.org/

 

Distributor for 'Every Male' grooming products. (Discounts for any TLF members hairier than I am!)

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The London Fog Times

Special Edition

Friday

30Sep2011

Parliament announced today, by near unanimous vote, passage of the new "What's in it for me?" program for social reform. Beginning in early November of this year, all residents of the UK driving makes of vehicle other than British made (with special emphasis on Porsche owners) will be deported to The Falklands for internment in newly constructed labor camps. Their vehicles are to be melted down for scrap metal, the resultant product used to build and repair local infrastucture. Any remaining slag and tailings are to be strewn about in the Northern Hebrides in unmarked pits.

As a further boost to English national pride, each affected individual's personal wealth is to be confiscated and be deposited into a common fund administered by Welsh elves recruited from Snowdonian caves, the only remaining ethnic group in The Isles considered to be unaffected by current UK political influence. The fund will be invested in Chinese condom factories, the sole remaining risk free investment vehicle in the world today, and the proceeds used to raise the UK standard of living several points above that of Bangladesh.

Prime Minister Cameron lauded today's announcement, stating that "this new era of prosperity and good will is certain to raise the spirits of the downtrodden masses, restore The Empire to its rightful place as ruler of the high seas, and increase the odds of survival for certain British marques of vehicular conveyance."

"Hear, hears!" were heard from all corners of the Kingdom, and many a tear was seen to be shed by pub crawlers countrywide.

In a separate but related development, witnesses in the Oxford area reported that a local electrician was seen to have hastily pushed his wheeled Teutonic relic into his garage, throw numerous bolts and arc weld the door seams.

Being second is to be the first of the ones who lose.

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.

A while back I was interested in what people with huge amounts of money do with it. This was prompted by a news report about Bill Gates.

Bill Gates has so far given away $28bn to charity. He syill has $56bn left and has vowed to leave only $10 million to his kids, "The rest", he states "will go on my Vaccination Programme". .

Hmm shame he cant invest some of it into not making my windows PC crash at important moments!

Twitter @radioRedwards

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Hi Kimbers, yes you`ll notice I said it not once but twice that "rich" is not a problem for me and I`m working on it LOL -but what is "rich" ? Is it enough for a villa in Tuscany, a pad in Paris and an XK120 in addition to the Evora ? Would suit me fine. Or is it Mount Everests of cash like Bill Gates has got ? He is regrettably the exception in his philanthropy. If all mega rich were like him, matters would be helped immensely but the principle would remain a bit naff-bit like the Sun`s "Captain Cash" only 1000 times bigger, not really compatible with aspirations to retain democratic decisions over what to do. The ambition to make absolute mountains of cash doesn`t personally strike a chord with me - a bit like consuming as much candy floss as you can- we could certainly all do with (quite ) a bit more (especially the 50% who own 7% wealth in the UK) but I suppose it does boil down to where "rich" becomes size-of-a-small-country`s GDP-rich and whether that`s ultimately acceptable.

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