As the papers fill up with pre-Budget speculation (most of which will be wrong) and as the Lib Dems wriggle around over health, and Nick Clegg and Vince Cable fight proxy battles over mansion taxes and tycoon taxes, a new and highly vulnerable front is opening for both of them. Crime.
One of the many perpetuating myths about the Tories is that ‘traditionally’, they are tough on crime. It is nearer the truth to say that they tradtionally talk tough on crime, but fail to deliver. Crime doubled under the Tories who were in power before 1997. Crime fell under Labour, one of the many facts about delivery that has been drowned in the successful ‘mess we inherited’ mantra of the new government.
They did not inherit a mess on the NHS, which is why it had the highest public satisfaction ratings in its history as a result of investment being up, waiting times being down, more buildings, doctors and nurses. Now Tory cuts are putting that at risk, and David Cameron’s breaking of his ‘no top down reorganisation’ pledge is delivering not a mess they inherited but a mess they are entirely responsible for delivering.
Across the public services he made big play in Opposition of another pledge, not to cut the frontline. There is of course always argument as to where exactly the frontline lies but in health, education and crime, even on the most generous definition of the frontline, it is being cut.
This morning it emerges via Freedom of Information requests reported in The Observer that the number of police dealing with 999 emergencies has fallen by more than 5,000 since the election. Even Cameron at his most spintastic would be hard pressed to say that a response to 999 calls did not constitute a call to the frontline of policing.
The latest British Crime Survey figures showed an 11 per cent rise in ‘personal crime”, which includes theft, robbery and violence. That is the sharpest rise for more than a decade, showing once more that it tends to be Labour that has the better record in getting crime down, and the Tories the better reputation for talking themselves up.
According to Vince Cable the Tory-led government lacks “compelling vision”.
George Osborne is preparing austerity budget on 21 March.
He believes that big government – not subprime crisis and banks – caused the financial crisis and recession. And now big cuts in government spending are needed to balance the books.
Mr Osborne compared Britain to Greece and stated that the UK was “bankrupt”. But countries can only go bust if they have incurred debts in other currencies.
Britain has its own currency and can print money to avoid bankruptcy. Much of the debt is owned by Britons (about 30% by the Bank of England), so the UK does not need to worry.
Anyway, the national debt will peak at 76% of GDP. Debt becomes a problem only at 90% of GDP by slowing growth.
David Cameron promised to protect frontline services.Yet another broken promise!
Vince Cable does not believe that private sector alone will deliver the recovery.
Blinded by his rightwing ideology Mr Osborne believed that by cutting public spending private sector would automatically start investing. This has not happened.
Quantitative easing (QE), which means creating electronic money through buying gilts, is already a deviation from plan A.
Recent IMF paper shows beyond doubt that expansionary fiscal contraction (plan A) does not work.
Plan A is already a staggering £158bn off the track!
The aim of Mr Osborne is that cyclically-adjusted deficit on current budget would be zero by 2015-16. This is the part that does not go away when the economy is operating at full capacity.
This target allows an increase in capital spending.
Total fiscal consolidation is £113bn by 2014-15, of which £83bn (74%) is cuts and £29bn tax increases.
£40bn of the cuts are unnecessary, so there is no need to cut frontline services on economic grounds.
These cuts are purely ideological aiming at small state.
Britain must maintain investment in capital projects. Britain must reduce the deficit more slowly.
The mix between cuts and tax rises should be 65:35.
There is no purpose in Mr Osborne´s plan. It only makes the public debt private again as taxpayers must borrow more money.
The Tory-led government did not inherit a mess caused by Labour overspending.
Th UK fiscal position according to the Treasury and ONS was sound.
The cyclically-adjusted current budget deficit was only 0.6% of GDP in 2007-08.
Debt ratio in 1996-97 was 43%. Under New Labour it fell to 36.5% in 2007-08.
Financial crisis in Britain was caused by Royal Bank of Scotland and HBOS – not by New Labour.
The mistakes of RBS were toxic assets and acquisition errors. HBOS failed because of risk control and property assets.
Much of their business was overseas which Labour could not touch.
The goal of the Tory-led government is to radically reshape Britain in the interest of big business by demolishing the welfare state and privatising all the rest.
Well well Olli. I have been chastised by the self-appointed board police (Michele and Janiete) for:- Talking about you and across you not to you- Using “Flashman tactics”- Putting in a few barbs about “pied pipers” and so on.- Criticising the person rather than the argument
This is apparently not allowed. Except of course, Michele and Janiete then followed up by talking about me across me, and calling me “green-eyed”, “flashman”, “the prancing and dancing one” and saying “don’t really need you to spell out the latest lesson from your economics primer!”
Also they cannot claim this was retaliation or sinking to my level – they started it. Have a look a few posts back.
So thats goodnight from Michele and Janiete’s argument enjoy the cocoa ladies.
Luckily for you Olli, facts will be enough as we shall see in the next post.
Sort out the chronology; I know it’s not easy with just ‘hours’ or ‘days’ and posts not being timed/dated but at least you can surely cope with seeing what was in reply to you, as in ‘taste of own medicine’ and what came first.
Just stop the 3rd person cowardice.
Cameron and Osborne have talked tough on cuts. But net spending has continually increased since they came to power. And we have stagnation.
Obama on the other hand has talked about stimulus but has cut overall spending, ie actually cut it, not slowed down its increase, and he has achieved a small recovery.
Debt ratio was 43% at end of Major’s reign and 36.5% under new labour. Now in both cases they leave out unfunded liabilities (our real debt is much higher, more than 4 trillion.)Labour also found ways to take things off the debt, that were included under Major.
Nevertheless, I do believe that Labour initially cut the deficit and debt (though they later grew it) and they certainly increased GDP, credit where its due.
You pick 1996-1997 under the Tories. Why stop there? Can we think of any reason why you wouldn’t want to go back a bit further than 1996-1997 and look at debts and deficit then?
Maybe we could cross the channel to the US and look at these things back as far as 1980, and look at job creation, standard of living and so forth while we do so?
This is another example of how you can post “facts” but whilst still giving a distorted picture.
Most importantly the way you frame this shows that you do agree that lower debt and deficit is good – so lets join together and agree that all prime ministers and parties who rack up debts and deficit should be vilified and that “yeah well you guys were even worse” or “you guys started it” does not count as an argument for either the spendthrift Labour or the spendthrift Tories.
What else – are you seriously, I mean seriously, saying that our debt doesn’t matter because we owe it to ourselves? How much comfort will that be to the pensioner or insurance victim who finds their policy doesn’t pay out. This argument has been long discredited. It actually was put forward by Friedman (thatcher guru) as a way of cutting public spending – sure you want to follow it? Personally I’d much rather we default on foreign debt (teach them for lending to us and stop them lending more) than default on debt to our own citizens.
Can any non partisan person seriously disagree with this?
Also you advocate printing money yet criticise QE in the same post. How many people saw that? You know what you were doing there – but so do I.
I agree with you that the financial crisis was not caused by New Labour. The overall political/economic consensus caused it, hence republican administrations in the us and labour administrations in the UK had similar problems and went for similar solutions. We could certainly argue that the next crisis is caused by them though, given that they showed bankers that they can gamble without fear of sanction – you might say that Cameron and co could reverse that but then I’d also argue that the policies of reagan and thatcher could have been reversed, and yet people blame them for the financial crisis.
Also can someone tell me why, and I know Olli is not asserting this here, but why do people on the Guardian readily swallow the line that the deficit was caused by the financial crash and bank bailouts, when we know that in the year of the crash / bailout the deficit was 155 billion whereas the bailout cost about 70 billion. The deficit was plus 100 billion years before that, and has been greater than 170 billion ever since.
Surely no economics degrees, let alone primers (that one’s for you Janiete) are required to understand this, just a bit of primary school maths / logic / common sense?
Why do people buy such obvious nonsense?
I’m not hearing anything about this on BBC radio this morning, even as a passing mention in the bulletins. Why am I not surprised?
Surely having an alternate number for the police has played a part in reducing the numbers serving 999? In my area most people use the alternate number and we are given a 2 hour response time as the staffing of this alternate number has increased. Further, my Chief Constable has combined beat areas, reduced backroom posts and privatised many functions including transferring staff to G4S. We now have more police officers on the streets.
As to the British Crime Survey, I am not at all surprised by the increase in personal crime. I am on the local policing forum and have seen the local statistics. Regrettably, the majority of the offenders coming before our courts are economic migrants.
I have read the Winsor report and I have a specific interest in criminal justice matters having spent my working life in the field. The police are one of the last services which have needed reform for years. One only has to look at the Home Affairs Select Committee reports from the previous government to see how critical they were of the police in terms of crime reduction and detection. We threw huge resources at the police, introduced fixed penalty notices, street cautions etc etc. At the same time, crime was falling (we had less immigration) and detection rates static at an average of 14%. I do not find it helpful to pick out certain facts to support an argument. I also feel concerned that issues of public safety which are often” in the mind” and not based in reality are being fuelled for political purposes.
Wasn’t the alternative number introduced more than 5yrs ago?
I would imagine therefore that people who still call 999 when they need 101 are asked to re-dial that number so something being described now as a 999 call means just that, it IS an emergency.
Tories deliver crime – it didn’t take long for last summer to happen.
LibDems are in a mess with the NHS, they are in a spin, not knowing which way they are facing. Clegg is pathetic as a leader for them. Wake up LibDems, and smell the anasthetic, or should I say, do not.
Ehtch, the mistake the LibDems made was going into any sort of coalition, we should have kept well away from both the Tories and Labour. It seems that personal ambition has played a part in the decision-making process, witness the coalition agreement and cabinet posts. However, now it’s a case of twixt the devil and the deep blue sea. If there’s an election now, we’ll be wiped out and all we can hope for is that things are slightly better if we can hold out ’til 2015.
I would think that after his ugly behaviour of today, telling members to ‘Move on’ (OMG it’s hardly believable) Clegg has confirmed he can’t be bovvered wiv much.
He’ll be thrown out by LibDems if there’s any pride left there and he’ll be thrown out by his exploited constituency.
The tories deliver dissatisfaction, that’s for sure.
It is no reason for what happened last August.
I must say that disgusting as the situation in Croydon was I’m amazed at the lack of comment about the Reeves sofa, which apparently went up in flames after a few seconds contact with a fag lighter flame ….. not much different to a dropped fag.
Don’t we have legislation about inflammability?
I might be misunderstanding this document which suggests that our safety standards were set to be ‘improved’ last year and in between times some laxity (which the industry had warned about) might have developed.
The knowalls that think they can do everything all at once without assessing the impact of one thing before putting the next in motion have so much to answer for.
Clegg et al at their conference seem to be sharing the sham’s insincerity about the calls for more debate of the Health Bill.
Dr Chand’s online petition passed the required 100k mark a couple of weeks ago and is now at nearly 173k!
He was made an OBE in 2010, perhap he’s seen as a dismissable nuisance as someone who succeeded under New Labour’s NHS ?
Reeves Corner in Croydon with their carpet and furniture place that got burnt down to cinders – went in there many times when I lived in Croydon – a bit pricier than the wotsit shop on old Brighton Road that turned pedestrian, ummmm! – that is it. Alders, but they were pricey too, but not as pricier. Croydon are a bit snobbish then on their reasons to buy furniture local then. But coin was not short in Croydon then, don’t know they were born they were, money for nothing jobs everywhere.
Saw an E.C. Esher one of his prints in an “art” shop there in a small Croydon precinct “artshop” – couldn’t take my eyes off it when I passed by, for some reason. This one – might explain my feeling then, in the age of Thatcher’s Croydon,
From a non partisan post yesterday Alastair you seemed to have stepped back into tribal warfare.
The truth of the matter is that both parties have been utterly feeble on crime. Those of us who live, or have lived, in high crime areas are aware of this. Which is why my solution to this would be allow people in high crime areas to decide what kind of justice they want, and let the middle class rent out their conservatories to criminals if they are so concerned about the resultant treatment.
But thats not to say that one party shouldn’t be commended for being less feeble. I feel that there are some who do deserve credit both for the message and the results, these include Michael Howard both as home secretary and for his “prison works” message, Boris Johnson for slight improvement over Ken’s stab city, Yvette Cooper for defending labour’s record on this and getting none other than the sun to prefer her for “speaking our language”, but most of all Tony Blair himself.
I am not a blind follower of Blair. I think crime was the biggest failure of his reign, even if he did get some marginal statistical improvement. I think “less crime than thatcher or major” is still not good enough.
But I am impressed that, unlike Alastair, he came out in support of Cameron’s point last year that there are 120,000 families who cause most of the crime, and they quite simply need to be sat on and stopped.
I do agree with Alastair however that this will be simply be tough talk from Cameron. This is the man who made Ken Clarke justice secretary for heaven’s sake! Clarke has talents but no in this area!
There is an excellent police blog here pointing out what we all know about both parties, well worth a read:
I see that the lib dems, following on from their good policy of raising the income tax threshold to £10,000, have now finally taken it to the next logical step and proposed to lift anyone on minimum wage out of income tax altogether for their election manifesto.
I don’t agree with the minimum wage, nor indeed with an income tax at all really (though I need to reconsult my Adam Smith on this due to further evidence), but certainly having a minimum wage and charging income tax on it is absolutely insane.
IDS on sunday politics has essentially confirmed that workfare is slavery. If you refuse to work you can starve. No doubt this will please the telegraph readers.
I shall be voting for an anti-slavery party if I can find one, or I shall be voting for noone as usual.
Posted this on the latest Jamie Carrigher vid on youtrumped, I quote,
“ey, ey, Carry larch, oos jachs beat thems Manch cees today. Jamie says,
mate, yeh you, that thinks he can sing, unlike Tom, Jones you knows, yews team
is shite, lost at Swans, yeh you fechah. Bardiotelli? Bardiotelli? My
bardiotelli more like – kiss it.” ”
at vid here, Alastair, please laugh,
translation can be supplied. Just send a pre-paid letter to bellow,
PO box no. fecha,
And please include a postal order for at least £100 pounds to cover expenses.
IDS behaving as melodramatically as you and some others does not confirm anything as worthy usage.
Heard today about the hundreds of thousands of Chinese women and children found after being sold in to slavery in Africa? Oh alright, perhaps I’ve caught your habit …… it might ‘only’ be tens of thousands.
I bet they’d wince at their situations being compared to what’s happening here.
Mind you, I do notice the ‘spin’ being put on it all.
People are (coerced in to?) volunteering to work for their benefit rate for 8wks.
Hopefully they will also gain some perks, discount etc if of any use.
Doubtless the employer is saving expenses of minimum wage totalling a few hundred over those weeks.
Who is gaining most and does this really come under the head of shifting public costs to private ones? Did someone mention spin?
ok, let me explain what I saw – Who is leading that, on the surface respectable person, up the ladder – does it look like a fool to you, leading him? If you do not get what I am trying to say, have a look at other etchings at the link.
Do we? You seem to but from where? Show your sources or dispute this one :
There is no point at all in throwing one figure around and acting as if it’s on your authority and that by itself is enough.
You see economics as a competitive sport, some here see it as the basis of the arrangements for (for) society.
Michele, if one person is simply forced to work in poundland or starve, another is shipped to africa to work in a mine, another is held in chains to do the same, and a fourth is beaten and threatened at gunpoint – then the fourth person has the worst conditions, and I’d rather have the first persons conditions but they are all slaves.
Forced labour is slavery. It is that simple.
Even if that were not true (but it is) you could replace the words “slavery” in all my posts with “forced labour” and I would still be against it.
However it did dawn on me that we will have “triumph” of democracy over individual rights here. It is obvious that “right wingers” (they are no such thing) support this policy. Left wingers do not, but once the government (or the companies themselves) remove the commercial from this scheme, then they will. They too are quite happy with slavery provided no company profits from it.
And this is where I realised that call-me-Dave has played a blinder here. He can do what he wants now to schools, libya or the NHS – because if he gets known for being the PM who booted the “scroungers” out the door and back to work, then there is enough of a nasty constituency in this country who want just that, that this will propel him to election victory. Ed knows this which is why he is silent on workfare.
This policy will win the Tories the next general election. And I hope all you “useful idiots” who will help them are proud of yourselves. You too Campbell.
Wrong, I see economics as a thing in a constant battle against politics, for arrangement of a society.
Did you read the article? Don’t you want to think it through a bit further? Or ask Olli, who uses official figures, what the deficit was in the couple of years preceding the crash. Clue: it wasn’t 24 billion.
Isn’t it right that unemployed people do some ‘work’ for their benefits? For example, in Spain they perform ‘jobs’ for the community that wouldn’t otherwise be done. They do look a bit like a chain-gang in their high vis as they clean along the sides of country roads.
reaguns, don’t let the thought police get you down as I enjoy your posts…I’ll probably be chastised for talking about people and not to them!
Didn’t see or hear any of this so, can’t comment. But please, ‘pride’….remember GB and his forgotten constituency…at least Clegg attends the HoC.
Yes he’s a brilliant draughtsman.
I don’t know how on earth you think BoJo has had anything to do with improvements in London. His disgusting blustering dismissive treatment of Ian Blair within days of getting in and his (rhymes with hanky panky) forghorning about that was vomitable.
However, so many of your posts can only be on to provoke disagreement (with nada as back up or …. LOL ….. you disagreed with someone’s detailed figures somewhere but ‘couldn’t be bothered’ to look up your facts when challenged).
Makes me laugh that BBC sport shepherds bush are cumming in their pants and panties that England public school rugger has won in France, in gay Parii, as if all of them were not mercenaries bought.
English c**** dreaming. How is this Salford move by the Beeb going, anyone fucking know? They don’t speak about how well it is going, the SE English closed non-England nation types, taking the piss out of the rest of England.
Song, for the rest of England,
You’re all heart aren’t you?
The real scroungers in all this are :
– landlords/ladies that screw housing benefit by upping their price and actually preferring claimants as tenants as they know payment will be on time and in some cases long term.
WE are paying their mortgages or for their ISAs.
– employers taking people on for free for 8wks, saving paying them even minimum wage and doubtless not even topping anything up if the claimant does get a permanent role.
WE are subsidising such users.
If the sham had the guts to comment on at least the former he would show some guts but I daresay he’ll stick to the populist target / claimants.
what’s the origin of /reason for ‘reaguns’?
Don’t say anything but I don’t like that Michele much… oops! Even though she keeps ‘accidentally’ liking my posts lol.
Only joking I do actually like Michele, Olli, Janiete, or at least their online personas, but I don’t think that should stop me saying what I think. I’m sure Alastair could ban / block me if he didn’t want free speech on here.
Anyway thanks libdem. I saw a half-decent policy from your lot for the first time in a while today btw.
Ok Michele lets test that argument then shall we?
Will “facts” be enough to persuade people who do not want to be persuaded, or will they be a waste of my time going to dig them up when I have them loosely in my head. Lets start with a few I do remember and see what effect it has shall we. Lets see how “facts” can be used but still distort an argument.
Gordon brown spent 76 billion pounds bailing out rich bankers. Tony Blair spent none. Therefore Tony Blair was a better prime minister than Gordon Brown. Fair enough? No? Ok try this one:
America once had a president who took the reins in a time of 10.5% unemployment and over 10 years of stagnation. He finished his term with 5.1% unemployment. Growth saw the economy expand by 42.7 gazillion dollars over his reign (ok I couldn’t remember that one so I made it up – I’m not that much of an economics nerd.) He created 21.4 million jobs over the course of his presidency. So according to all those facts, he must have been a brilliant president, right?
Oh and on the Bojo question, there were 50 plus stabbings in London in Ken’s last year and far less in Boris first year. Now I know, this may have happened anyway, it may not be down to Boris. However Ian Blair was in charge during this disaster along with Ken and its only right that both got booted out in my opinion. Now don’t get me wrong, the riots happened on Boris watch and I thought his performance during them was terrible. Likewise Cameron. In fact on second thoughts I think Bojo is in deficit now.
There has to be some credit given for good things that happen on your watch though surely, as well as some carrying the can for things that happen on your watch. This is why i don’t agree with people blaming thatcher and reagan for the financial crash but nor do i agree with cameron and osborne blaming labour for everything in our economy. Can we all just go back and pick a random person from history and blame them? I blame whoever gave women the vote then, idiot. (Only joking but hope it makes the point.)
Well for one thing, the only thing I want us copying from Spain is Barcelona FC’s youth system.
How can we treat unemployed people, who may be at worst lazy, or lacking confidence or whatever, how can we treat them worse than criminals who get less time on community service than workfare intends to provide for its victims? If it was a package deal where along with it we decided to start hitting criminals 10 times harder then I’d be tempted – but still wouldn’t agree with it. I’m more liberal than your boys see.
It will end up as a community system though, which will prove that people don’t want the people to get skills and all that – they just want them punished for not working. I can see the logic in that, but don’t agree with either doing it, or doing it and pretending otherwise.
I’m surprised we haven’t started a British Foreign Legion already and asked them to go and fight in it.
I believe we should make sure people do not starve or go homeless, even if they don’t work. We could reduce benefits for those who don’t, to stop them buying booze, fags and mobiles, but I do not believe we should take them away altogether.
There are other ways to incentivise work without this Stalinist policy.
It has always been known that Tory actions = increase in crime
They make people poorer so they resort to burglary and robbery
They make people more angry so they protest which often results in civil disorder
They make people jobless so they will resort to getting money by less than honest means
They make people more stressful due to fear of losing their job.
The list goes on ….
So Alistair let us not be surprised by the increase in crime .
The Barca youth policy is why my team ‘poached’ 2 of their coaches; the debatable bit is will there be a Messi found in England?
I’m not into making people starve or lose their homes but what’s wrong with them giving something back to the system that’s supporting them? The Spanish seem to do it in a way that doesn’t harm existing employees so, there’s no argument about slave labour.
The criminals thing is a bit harder to resolve as the Americans have proved; it would seem that incarcerating people for years doesn’t act as a deterrent. Maybe the real thing to do is make sure everyone is properly educated.
The periods of Ken’s mayorships compared with those of BJ are barely (never mind fairly) comparable.
KL had little if any public support from Govt.
London had far more terrorism unsettling people’s confidence.
London has been incredibly moved and changed by responses like Brooke Kinsella’s.
Schools have had weapon detectors installed.
These changes happened over periods of time and their effects are not attributable to the date they finally happened.
Just as with economics and the way you shift the balances around, dissing someone’s value detail by replacing it with percentages or vice versa while thinking nobody realises each will slip and slide when compared to shifting GDPs, you are choosing to ignore other circumstances as best suits you.
Most people treat posts full of stats as data that’s ‘just there’ and can be translated however one wishes. It’s a matter of choice and subjectivity and there’s little point in one person arguing about another’s choice of how to do so. This is why I daresay those that Like Olli’s posts do so, rather than arguing about the data.
Yes yes and sometimes they incite riots by shooting at innocent gun-toting drug dealers, setting off a series of humanitarian protests across the city where young political activists have to resort to stealing trainers in order to get “respect”.
Come off it – both parties are feeble on law and order, or to paraphrase Blair are “Soft on crime, soft on the causes of crime.”
Yes indeed. Subsidy always and everywhere goes to the big boys. We can increase minimum wage, dole, housing benefit all we want, it will simply be handed over to landlords, tescos etc.
I am not happy about the subsidisng of Tescos/Poundland et al, but nor will I be happy when the pressure forces the companies or the government to back out of that side of it (as is happening already) and the workfare people are asked to do community punishment instead (not that it will be called that.)
I would be fine with that if it was voluntary and they could earn a top up of their dole, or at a push if not doing it would mean them earning a bit less dole.
The other thing that is an economic reality, which just about all economists recognise, is that if a company thinks a workfare person is not worth £6 per hour, but thinks they are worth £2 or £4 per hour for example, we could have a system whereby the claimant would get dole, but earn £2 or £4 per hour on top of it. Which is better than £0 no matter what anyone says. But under current law that is illegal – it is illegal to employ someone who is not worth minimum wage, for less than minimum wage. “Quite right too” and “Everyone deserves a minimum wage” do not change those facts – those people simply don’t get employed, or get employed on workfare.
Michele, in the blog where this started (Is Nick Clegg Already Playing Prescott to Dave and George’s TB-GB) under Olli’s post where you and Janiete started this, you replied to Janiete with the following:
“Oh don’t be a spoilsport Janiete; I found the green-eyed exchanges about Olli’s Likes hilarious. ;-)”
What say you to that? It seems to me you have 3 options:
1. Don’t reply and move on (my money’s on this.)
2. Reply with another largely unfounded simplistic personal attack ignoring the issue such as “Well I’d expect no better from the ard talking prancing and dancing one, don’t be so (derogatory adjective)”
3. Humility. Are you a modest person Michele? I suspect so “for indeed you have much… to be modest about!” Sorry I’ve just been dying to get that quote in ever since I heard it, don’t really mean it! Gold star for anyone who knows the origin.
And you are calling me a “Coward” for responding in third person to someone on an online forum! I should get the Victoria Cross I suppose for addressing you directly here then, a real lionheart today?
Again you do the very thing you accuse me of, its like if I were to say “Cameron / Miliband is a villainous thieving coward only in politics to line his own pockets” you would quote rightly accuse of me of being overly dramatic. So follow your own logic.
Have a guess?
There is a liberal, or libertarian way to achieve this same goal in a more humane fashion. It has worked before in other countries.
I think being a small country with still the 7th largest GDP in the world, that we can afford enough food to feed everyone and we certainly have enough empty houses to house everyone. So I think we should do so, call me a communist! 🙂
I don’t think we should provide luxuries as well like we currently do whereby people on the dole can afford plenty of booze, fags, mobile phones etc.
It seems to me we could provide food clothing and shelter, then have the conditions whereby everyone would be better off and could afford luxuries only if they went out to work for it. This could be done with a workfare type scheme, or it could be done by changing the minimum wage law.
We would be using carrot rather than stick, incentive rather than coercion, which is at the heart of my beliefs. Am I so wrong for feeling that way?
The criminal thing I think is a lot easier to resolve, and I don’t think America has proved anything. On this I favour the stick not the carrot. I have seen it working. There are parts of the world, indeed there are parts of the UK, where you can leave your car unlocked without a worry. It is unsavoury but it is intellectually dishonest to pretend it doesn’t have success or that we can’t learn from it.
Criminals should be punished whether it acts as a deterrent to other criminals or not. If you have 100 would be criminals and you punish one and deter the other 99 great. If you don’t, you should still punish the other 99. They can’t commit crimes when they’re in jail. I get accused of being right wing, well when it comes to crime I certainly am, because I know what works and I know who deserves protection here – the weak.
Which is your team btw?
Glad you liked Michele. Escher has something that goes deeper than pen and ink on paper, even if he was oversold in the late and early 80’s/90’s. Bought his prints for twenty quid in Swansea – couldn’t believe it, in a chain shop, not Athena, another one that has slipped my mind what it’s name is, was a book shop, here today, Thatcher’s gone tomorrow type of fantasy economics type bookshop.
Christ.i am cutting in my memories, Michele, aren’t I?
ofgs, you still don’t get it to you?
My post about the ‘green-eyed’ exchange was directly and absolutely and immediate – about the laughable ‘convo’ between two big babbies moaning about a poster with Likes.
Do you not understand how childish that was?
I understand fully as I have once commented (or thought of doing so) myself about Olli’s qty and still cringe with embarrassment.
But note, the usual blog behaviour (most that I’ve seen) is, if in agreement, to Like and move on, leave a sign. Responses are usually in disagreement or debate.
I recognise that Michele, see my post above, the other reply to you, but there has to be some accountability for what happens on your watch as well though?
Now I know that Labour say everything bad that happens under the Tories is the Tories fault and anything bad under Labour was caused by previous policies of Thatcher and Reagan, likewise Tories say everything bad under them was caused by “the mess caused by the last Labour government” (yawn) whereas everything bad under Labour was Labour’s fault.
I wish the national debate would get past this but it seems unable to.
Oh and I both “like” and “Like” Olli’s posts, but I don’t see what’s wrong with arguing about them. Doesn’t the counterargument help strengthen a position if its a good one, or help abandon it if its bad, both of which are good outcomes?
Don’t political advisors drill their politicians with the counterarguments?
“Just as with economics and the way you shift the balances around, dissing someone’s value detail by replacing it with percentages or vice versa while thinking nobody realises each will slip and slide when compared to shifting GDPs, you are choosing to ignore other circumstances as best suits you.”
I don’t think I have done this, I think you just think its “the sort of thing the likes of me would do” but I agree it would be wrong to do that and please point out any past or future occasions where you think I do this.
Believe it or not I want the truth, I want to know what works, I change my positions, as Keynes said “When they facts change I change my opinions” and I am not stuck on right or left values, again I agree with Deng Xiaoping that “It doesn’t matter if the cat is black or white, as long as it catches mice.” I just want to know what will help the poor and weak, believing that the rich and strong can take care of themselves.
Get me with the quotes – hope that didn’t come across too David Brent.
BJ’s publicity for the upcoming election is trumpeting about the improvements in public transport punctuality.
As far as the buses are concerned this is down to pre-pay method being almost 100% (and has been for years) plus the IT monitoring along routes meaning stops have real-time info displays about imminent arrivals so one knows whether to wait or re-plan.
It’s barely believable that BJ is root-tooting about the Overground, that is down to people long before him and has been functioning wonderfully for years. A WestEnd journey that used to take me 1h15m minimum is now 28mins!
There are routes and linkages now that were down entirely to Ken and Prezza (apparently not working together but certainly with a shared ambition).
BJ’s contribution? Racks and racks and endless racks of idle Barclay bikes.
Anybody that believes BJ has been effective for London is being as bamboozled as Paxo was during the Tory conference. Plenty are stupid enough to fall for it, you appear to be one of them. Don’t like that? Then stow the word when discussing others with cling-ons.
I don’t fully understand what you mean, but no matter – the point I was making is that Olli can say things that are not critically analysed by anyone here, just accepted because they fit existing worldviews. Not always though, I’ll give him that.
I am not bothered about the “likes”, would I still be here or would I have commented here in the first place if I cared about likes? I would just post about depression, the NHS, Tony Blair, David Cameron, Alastair Campbell ie the subjects which I and most people here agree on.
I quite agree, many of these improvements would have happened with or without Boris. Likewise with Ken – is there anything positive he did that wouldn’t have got done anyway?
The depressing thing is that I think Boris is one of the better Tories and Ken one of the better Labour people!
I judge them both on what I consider London’s 3 main problems: Cost, Transport and Crime.
The first two are difficult, for anyone to reduce costs and improve transport in a megalopolis like London, and its not within the Mayor’s remit to start imposing discipline on transport services (no bonuses till customers are satisfied or till breakdowns are waaay less than now.)
Crime is much easier to solve, though to the extent the Mayor has remit I don’t know, they can’t start executing drug dealers for example.
Not sure what you mean about stow the word, clingons etc but I think things are better now than under Ken, but the riot swings things back, however I have just remembered Ken said the riots were not the rioters fault so screw Ken too.
Oh yeah I forgot about the bike thing, that is indeed another nail in the BJ coffin. Any politician who praises bikes is basically saying “I can’t do anything.”
I know you’ll ‘freak’ but my team is Liverpool, once a Red always a Red. This admission will probably give a few contributors the perfect opportunity to refer to me in future as a whining scouser.
When I mentioned the Americans, I was suggesting that simple incarceration doesn’t work. Remember they have the highest number of inmates and still have capital punishment in certain states.
Some of what Ken Clarke is saying makes sense, it’s just not populist enough for us to accept.
Regarding your liberal or libertarian view re. work, we’re not a million miles apart, just a different method. The one thing I should say though is that there are people with no aspirations, happy to live off the state. The question would be how many in your basic welfare system?
Re prison: What is the alternative, not incarcerate them? Prison should punish and deter. If America incarcerated fewer people would it have less or more crime? Now I think they should change a lot of things in America, and again I’d say all their leaders with the exception of Rudi Guiliani have been weak on crime, but of course they should also stop so many kids growing up in ghettos – how do you stay out of crime in such an area?
Re Welfare, I think dole should be lower and minimum wage abolished. We got away with minimum wage in the boom years, but now it is creating unemployment as it always does. Then people would need to work to get luxuries so most of them would, and those who didn’t would be cheaper to look after.
You’d see they have aspiration after all, ie the aspiration to drink, own mobile phones, own better clothes etc.
You could even incorporate a workfare element, where they could earn an extra few quid by doing workfare, but for the reward of pay, not so that the won’t starve.
If you are asking for number ie how many, what are the sums, the government never knows this anyway! Look at any of their economic projections! “More” and “less” are as accurate as such predictions need to be.
Re Liverpool, well millions of liverpool and man u fans are not from Liverpool or Manchester anyway so you could have avoided any scouser jibes!
No guess? Its goofy. Partially its because when I first went to reply to someone on disqus it was regarding national defence, the person was of the “Why would anyone attack us? We are just paranoid.” I believe in a more realistic analysis of history and human nature, I believe in democracy and a well armed defence of it using the best and most advanced weapons now (hence “Guns”) and in future hence “Ray-Guns”. Someone had already picked that so… here we are!
I am sure your opinion of me is yet higher still! (Bound to get a “like” for this one, fingers crossed…)
The Tory stance on crime would be laughable if it wasn’t so tragic. They desecrate whole swathes of society due to their economic policies and then talk tough on the poor bastards they’ve just thrown on the scrapheap.
But I foresee a potential long term strategic error. How will the Tories be able to square the circle of being tough on crime whilst at the same time cutting front line police services. And try as they might like to pretend otherwise that it isn’t happening, as has been seen with the public perception of the Tory handling of the NHS, the public will not believe them.
I use the word Tory as opposed to ‘coalition’ deliberately. The picture is now emerging of a blatantly Tory-led government with the Lib Dems getting dragged along for nothing more than ritual humiliation.