Politics

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michael scuffil
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Re: Politics

Post by michael scuffil » Tue Feb 06, 2018 8:22 am

doublethink
'is the act of holding, simultaneously, two opposite, individually exclusive ideas or opinions and believing in both simultaneously and absolutely'.

Mrs May is giving us a splendid example at the moment. You may think leaving the EU Customs Union and Mrs Thatcher's Single Market is a good thing, or you may think 'frictionless trade' with the EU is a good thing. I won't argue that point. But to believe both at once is 'doublethink' in the pristine Orwellian sense.

People confuse 'a free trade agreement' with the customs union. But even if you want the former (Moggie and his friends don't, of course) it will only apply to goods originating in the EU/UK (otherwise third-country goods can sneak in -- either way -- by the back door). But to avoid the problem of third-country goods, there will have to be border checks, which by definition is not 'frictionless trade'. And these, with the associated paperwork, will cost money which we could give to the NHS instead.
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Re: Politics

Post by Mid A 15 » Tue Feb 06, 2018 10:18 am

michael scuffil wrote:
Tue Feb 06, 2018 8:22 am
doublethink
'is the act of holding, simultaneously, two opposite, individually exclusive ideas or opinions and believing in both simultaneously and absolutely'.

Mrs May is giving us a splendid example at the moment. You may think leaving the EU Customs Union and Mrs Thatcher's Single Market is a good thing, or you may think 'frictionless trade' with the EU is a good thing. I won't argue that point. But to believe both at once is 'doublethink' in the pristine Orwellian sense.

People confuse 'a free trade agreement' with the customs union. But even if you want the former (Moggie and his friends don't, of course) it will only apply to goods originating in the EU/UK (otherwise third-country goods can sneak in -- either way -- by the back door). But to avoid the problem of third-country goods, there will have to be border checks, which by definition is not 'frictionless trade'. And these, with the associated paperwork, will cost money which we could give to the NHS instead.
Nobody said it would be easy.

However there does seem a will to make it as difficult and painful as possible.

The 'least worse' option in the short to medium term is to join EFTA. That way perceived economic advantages of the EEA are maintained but politically the UK has more autonomy and is not subject to the ECJ. (I appreciate that in reality there is often common ground between what the ECJ does and EFTA).

Stephen Kinnock, ironically given his parentage, seems to be the only leading politician of all sides to appreciate the advantages of EFTA in order to comply with the democratic wishes of the people with minimum economic disruption.

I cannot help but think that there is a desire amongst the political class to deliberately foul it up so that either we never actually leave or else run back, cap in hand, fully integrated.

Either that or they are incredibly arrogant and incompetent.
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Re: Politics

Post by Mid A 15 » Tue Feb 06, 2018 10:23 am

I see Michael Scuffil's old housemate has rerimanded Mrs May:

http://www.huffingtonpost.co.uk/entry/t ... e74aef0ac4
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Re: Politics

Post by michael scuffil » Tue Feb 06, 2018 11:56 am

I cannot help but think that there is a desire amongst the political class to deliberately foul it up so that either we never actually leave or else run back, cap in hand, fully integrated.

One can only hope so.

But mainly I would like honesty. 'Frictionless trade' is not compatible with leaving the customs union. The whole point of the customs union is to enable frictionless trade. Even with a free trade agreement, if the UK is not in the customs union, every truck and container has to be checked to ensure its contents originates in the EU/UK. That is not frictionless.

Although it is unglamorous, most UK non-agricultural trade with the EU is in components and semi-finished products. That is why UK exports to Germany have fallen markedly in the past few months, even though they are cheaper because of the fall in sterling. German manufacturers are re-sourcing to eastern Europe because even short delays interfere with production schedules.
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Re: Politics

Post by rockfreak » Wed Feb 07, 2018 7:05 pm

To avoid answering difficult questions the Maybot has her software engineers implant a new set of platitudes into her brain for every new phase of Brexit. Thus,"Brexit means Brexit" and "A red white and blue Brexit" have long been discarded and I've no doubt a new set of meaningless cliches are already being prepared. The only old favourite which never changes is "Let me be quite clear" which is to her what "Have you ever been tickled missus" is to Ken Dodd.

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Re: Politics

Post by rockfreak » Thu Feb 08, 2018 9:59 pm

Adding to Michael Scuffil's piece on the customs union, our local paper here is big on potential problems at Dover. We here in Gravesend are at the other end of the county but news from southern Kent often makes the headlines and not for the first time are they having kittens in Dover about the holdups at the port that will ensue, with expectations of mile-on-mile snarl-ups on the M20. They've also been refused permission for a lorry park at Folkestone which wouldn't have been built in time anyway for March 2019, but the whole thing adds up to the impression of the Maybot being completely clueless and merely kicking one can after another down the road. Also I still can't see how the Ireland border problem is going to be solved and I think that the EU just agreed to move on to the next phase in order to try and get some traction into the negotiations hoping that a miracle might turn up later. After 38 years of Thatcherism I didn't think things could possibly get worse but amazingly we've managed it with this stupid referendum. My big hope is that firms like Nissan, Hitachi and Toyota (all in the strong Leave areas) will someday stand up and say: "Losing the single market and customs union will make things economically unviable for us and we're making plans to relocate to the continent." That might eventually cause panic and wake everyone up. Although I've no doubt that diehard Tory leavers will airily claim that we're quite capable of owning and running mass car fleets ourselves even though there is absolutely no evidence for this.

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Re: Politics

Post by sejintenej » Sat Feb 10, 2018 8:24 pm

rockfreak wrote:
Thu Feb 08, 2018 9:59 pm
Also I still can't see how the Ireland border problem is going to be solved and I think that the EU just agreed to move on to the next phase in order to try and get some traction into the negotiations hoping that a miracle might turn up later..
;
Dead easy; anyone found guilty of breaking the rules has to live on the island for the rest of their life - St Kilda Trouble is lefties are too soft and put Britain last.
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Re: Politics

Post by rockfreak » Sun Feb 11, 2018 7:53 pm

Right on cue with my comments about firms decamping to the EU, up pops the Japanese Ambassador with a warning that if their car companies don't get the single market and the customs union they will have to decamp. Only this chilly, xenophobic, inward-looking little island's proximity to the biggest market in the world is apparently what's keeping them here. We couldn't have been more prescient. Maybe the Japanese Ambassador reads the CH Unofficial website. I wonder what he makes of it.

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Re: Politics

Post by rockfreak » Sun Feb 18, 2018 9:24 pm

Yo! Our splinter group Sisters Uncut have just invaded the red carpet at the BAFTAs and held the proceedings up for a while, just as they did at the premiere of Suffragette. So the posh, smooth, privately educated La Lumley had to put her silly speech on hold for a while.

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Re: Politics

Post by rockfreak » Wed May 16, 2018 8:43 pm

OK guys, let's kick off this site again after a long lay-off. We're that much nearer now to the disaster called Brexit that is going to engulf us when we jump off the cliff in just under a year's time. What will be the ramifications for CH? What will be left of our economy as all those foreign multinationals pack up and make for the continent (Tilda Rice sounding the latest warning - laugh if you like but in some areas the likes of Tilda Rice are the main employer). Will we be an offshore tax haven? Gibraltar but without the climate? The world's centre for laundering dirty money? But maybe CH will survive. Heritage and tradition will still be a big pulling point. Dodgy Russian oligarchs by the truckload will want to send their children to English boarding schools. CH will flourish. Ivan and Svetlana marching proudly into lunch. One big problem though: this is supposed to be a school for poor kids.

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Re: Politics

Post by sejintenej » Thu May 17, 2018 8:21 pm

rockfreak wrote:
Wed May 16, 2018 8:43 pm
But maybe CH will survive. Heritage and tradition will still be a big pulling point. Dodgy Russian oligarchs by the truckload will want to send their children to English boarding schools. CH will flourish. Ivan and Svetlana marching proudly into lunch. One big problem though: this is supposed to be a school for poor kids.
Which is why CH MUST survive in a form close to what the more elderly of us remember. Perhaps we can even civilise the Russkies (despite muscles putin)
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Re: Politics

Post by rockfreak » Sat May 19, 2018 3:09 pm

Managed to avoid the royal wedding ceremony completely by going to the garden centre which, as I suspected, was almost empty. Came back carrying carload of summer colour and switched on telly to find pundits and public still engaged in monumental grovelling, infantile, ass-licking, brain-numbing nonsense. One such pundit announced "this wedding will change the world". Does this get worse with each royal wedding or is it just my imagination? And yes, I do believe this subject is vaguely connected to politics although I'm not quite sure how.

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Re: Politics

Post by rockfreak » Sat May 19, 2018 8:59 pm

Freaky gets a letter in today's weekend FT. Replying to last week's advice by one of their (rather young) financial advisers urging people to punt on the stock exchange (and any other exchanges they could think of) in order to build a nest egg, I reminded her that the last time this happened was in the late 80s when Thatcher and birdbrain Nigel Lawson deregulated finance and had everyone combing the FT in an effort to be Warren Buffett. The subsequent speculative splurge in loose cash ended in a bust and many of the shares were sold off to the big financial institutions as people struggled to liquidise some money to survive. Only a few (like Warren Buffett and Banker Brown) appear to have emerged intact. Keynes said that trouble starts when governments tell people they can get rich without working. Wall Street 1929 the most disastrous example of this. Where does CH have its investments these days? Land? Private equity? Gold? Works of Art? Or in a chipped mug on the mantlepiece, as my grandmother would have advised.

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Re: Politics

Post by sejintenej » Sun May 20, 2018 8:38 am

rockfreak wrote:
Sat May 19, 2018 8:59 pm
Freaky? had everyone combing the FT in an effort to be Warren Buffett. The subsequent speculative splurge in loose cash ended in a bust and many of the shares were sold off to the big financial institutions as people struggled to liquidise some money to survive. Only a few (like Warren Buffett and Banker Brown) appear to have emerged intact..
You really asked for that one!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! No, I haven't read the FT in two or more decades. OTOH the FT did contribute directly to my champagne supply

The market has been open to the general populace since at least before the war though it is in recent years that trading has been easier due, in my case, to the internet. Remember also that I had two advantages - youthful upbringing outside CH and 40 years in the money business. I also bought a paperback for $9.99 full of useful information. (That is the cover price but it was bought in the UK)

As for combing the FT and other sources for recommendations I DO look at such recommendations to AVOID them and most especially those at the weekend. Like everyone I do have losses - it is a question of ensuring that the losses are exceeded by the gains. The market has violent swings and I am constantly watching for the next collapse looking to make profits then.

As for survival I simply cannot understand why people buy £150 trainers for every member of the family, £1000 TVs, £4000 holidays, £500 mobile phones (and the contracts to go with them) and expensive restaurant meals every week and then claim that they are too poor to survive. Totally unnecessary.
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Re: Politics

Post by rockfreak » Sun May 20, 2018 8:26 pm

The reason young people are buying loads of consumer stuff is that they get it on tick. This wouldn't have been allowed when we were younger. You were only allowed two and a half times your annual salary for a mortgage and you had to have an argument with your bank manager just to get a modest overdraft. It was Thatcher and Lawson who deregulated finance and started hard-selling people idiotic amounts of credit from 1986 onwards. It's all very well people saying that you don't have to avail yourself of these siren voices offering easy credit but the trouble is that the build-up of huge quantities of private credit led to disastrous crashes in 1990 and 2007, and when the manure hits the fan the wise virgins get splattered along with the foolish. The country is still awash with massive quantities of private credit, much of it unsecured (ie non-mortgage). It appears that this is the only way the present government can keep the economy afloat. But God help us when the crunch comes, probably with Brexit putting ball bearings under it.

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