May 06/05/2010 election UK

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Re: May 06/05/2010 election UK

Postby Flare on Tue May 11, 2010 8:24 pm

Least we can see if the Conservatives will bring us back from the brink, and hopefully dispell the Thatcheritis all these Labour scaremongers have been pumping into the air.
I just hope the people dont expect the country to be better suddenly overnight, hell it will take a long time to pay off the bills Labour ran up ... some sore times ahead, especially if your in the public sector in the silly schemes department.

Heard Brown looked a lot better when he went to say his farewells, geniune smiles and most likely a lot of relief to get out of that hotseat.



... just wonder if Clegg will play along, or will he toss in a wrench later to make the Tories look bad just before elections.
This term is bound to be a nightmare for Cameron, and the jackals are nearby.
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Re: May 06/05/2010 election UK

Postby Rico on Tue May 11, 2010 8:50 pm

sarie wrote:None of them giving any real argument as to why they think the country will fall over now...


I don't think the country will "fall over", but I think the poor will be poorer, and the rich will get richer. I also think minorities, gays, single parents, and a host of other sections of society will get the shitty end of policymaking.

I hope that's not what happens; I hope the current Tory party isn't the same as the Tory party of old.

There are some Tory policies I support (they seem committed to retaining the Pound, rather than joining the Euro, for example, and they support the action in Afghanistan), but I'm not expecting them to broadly fit my my outlook on life and the government of the UK. For example, taking the CTC's "Vote Bike Manifesto" (something that's very important to me, as a cyclist (leisure, commuting, sport) and cycling coach who tries to promote cycling within the community); of all the 86 elected MPs which signed up to the Vote Bike Manifesto:

* 4 are Conservatives (1%)
* 27 are Liberal Democrats (47%)
* 52 are Labour (20%)
* 1 each is Green (100%), SNP (16%) and DUP (12%)

So, it seems they're not particularly interested in the promotion of cycling as an activity with benefits to health and transport, promoting planning that improves cycling facilities, integrating cycles with public transport, raising awareness of safety issues surrounding cycling on the highways, etc. (you can read some of the headline details at http://www.ctc.org.uk/votebike/). The Lib Dems would be a lot better for that (or the Green, but she couldn't do much on her own :D).

That's just one example why I think they're a bad match for the things I feel are important. There are others (e.g. they oppose devolution, and I support it; they're not very hot on gay rights; their tax policies, I think, tend to favour the better off in society; they want to retain Trident, while I think it's a waste of money) but I'm sure you wouldn't read a blow-by-blow response to each item in their election manifesto (and I CBA to produce it for you).

Suffice to say, there are lots of reasons why I'm not keen on a Conservative government, rather than just the fact that they're Tories.
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Re: May 06/05/2010 election UK

Postby Flare on Tue May 11, 2010 9:32 pm

Now there is one of the reasons I disliked Labour, they would sign up for something like that cycling drive Rico is on about but... is it really something the GOVERMENT should be sticking thier noses into ?
Should tax payers money be redirected to this cause (amongst many other small fringe 'causes') ?
Should even more funds be allocated to commitees and directors to run this cause ?
Such things should be community driven, the goverment should be more focused on providing a stable and secure environment for communities to develop ... not try tell people how to live in thier communties.
(no offence Rico , cycling is a good cause)

Same with gay rights, Labour have taken minority rights to the other extreme... instead of equalising minorities group members they are now special and allocated special treatment, quiet often I have heard people say :

' in order to get any help these days you need to be a single teenage non white lesbian muslim mother suffering from disability who is applying for asylum '
(comment was a bit more colourfull and not so polite, but thats the gist)

... heres a perfect example, smoking ban... great idea, yeah ?
Result : No Smoking in pubs meant a drop in customers in the pubs, why go to a pub if you cant relax and you cant relax if you have to run outside to have a smoke. Less customers meant less need for people to work in the pubs, less jobs... oh and anther side effect, more binge drinking.
Hang on a moment, how is binge drinking related to smoking bans ? Easy, instead of meeting at the local and having a few expensive pints, guys are buying cheap booze at the market and meeting where they can drink and smoke... cheap booze has been around for a while before the smoking ban, but its much nicer to pint it up with the lads at the pub, or it was until you couldnt sit and smoke while you had your drink.

Labour was changing the UK into a nanny state, where the goverment was expected to look after you, your kids, your affairs ...everything.
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Re: May 06/05/2010 election UK

Postby Demiguise on Tue May 11, 2010 9:52 pm

Now there is one of the reasons I disliked Labour, they would sign up for something like that cycling drive Rico is on about but... is it really something the GOVERMENT should be sticking thier noses into ?


So you are of the position that governments promoting healthy living are bad influences? Do all Tories share this position?

Same with gay rights, Labour have taken minority rights to the other extreme... instead of equalising minorities group members they are now special and allocated special treatment, quiet often I have heard people say


This is total rubbish, anyone can get "help" - i.e. Government support, which will probably not exist much longer with Tories in power. Other references to things of this nature are normally directed at employment law, which can generally be put down to the misinterpretation by the employer that they must have a set number of whatever minority in their employment.

... heres a perfect example, smoking ban... great idea, yeah ?


The smoking ban was a fantastic idea, I love the fact that I don't have to damage my body any longer and can actually see other people whilst enjoying a drink at a pub. The decline in pubs was already happening before the smoking ban, mainly due to the price difference between a pint in the pub and a pint at home.

It is laughable that despite Labour being hugely unpopular, almost all media outlets pumping out Tory support, the recession, Afghanistan, Iraq and other huge slip-ups the Tories still only managed to get into power with a coalition - and people consider this a victory.

At least our new Chancellor is qualified though, worked at Selfridges, failed to become a journalist and was special advisor to the man who oversaw the BSE crisis. Clearly an obvious candidate for the position.
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Re: May 06/05/2010 election UK

Postby Haggus McGee on Tue May 11, 2010 10:08 pm

Sorry, but smoking should be banned outright for all the THOUSANDS of patients from smoking related diseases. In that example, cutting back smokers is good for the NHS which we value so dearly. Besides, regarding a liberal attitude, too much freedom and not enough control does lead to anti-social behavior in substances such as alcohol and tabacco. The problem is that the government has had no success in changing people's attitudes on these things, let alone dealing with the problems themselves.
Don't get me wrong though, health and safety is a complete wind-up, and it seems that various officials at present, from the park warden to the border patrol, have no common sense or good judgement on many occasions. Also, the surveillance and monitoring technology are always being abused by over-zealous procecutors. I definately agree with you, Flare, that there is not enough community initiative, and most of the steps taken by Labour to (marginally) improve our quality of life have just taken away some of our free spirit. And I don't see much equality in Britain after thirteen unfortunate years of Labour. What have they achieved? I could count on one hand, and the economy is certainly not one of those.
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Re: May 06/05/2010 election UK

Postby Rico on Tue May 11, 2010 10:09 pm

Flare wrote:Now there is one of the reasons I disliked Labour, they would sign up for something like that cycling drive Rico is on about but... is it really something the GOVERMENT should be sticking thier noses into ?


Yes, of course it is. Both for health reasons (since healthier people are less of a drain on the NHS), and for transport reasons. Unless you subscribe to the idea that the solution for our clogged streets is more cars. Transport policy and health are precisely the sort of areas that GOVERNMENT should be sticking their noses into.

Flare wrote:... heres a perfect example, smoking ban... great idea, yeah ?


Yes, excellent. One of the best bits of legislation to come out of the last decade. I'm really glad that I can go for a nice meal in a restaurant, and not have some one's smoke drifting over to my table. Of course, it would have been better to outlaw tobacco altogether, but there's too big a tax angle, and the tobacco companies are powerful.

People have been buying cheep booze and drinking in parks for decades. Long before any restrictions on smoking in pubs. Binge drinking of more a cultural phenomenon, which again has been around long before the smoking bans. In the UK, people seem to think it's necessary to go out and "get ratted" in order to have a good time; and that's quite independent of being able to smoke in pubs. The 11pm "last orders" may have contributed to the perceived need to get as many drinks in between 8pm and 11pm as possible, of course. Licensing laws have since been relaxed, but the impact on "binge" drinking is inconclusive.

As for the "nanny state", I agree that the Health & Safety Executive has gone overboard in some areas. But the HSE wasn't created recently; it was created by the Health and Safety at Work Act in the 1970s.
Last edited by Rico on Tue May 11, 2010 10:19 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: May 06/05/2010 election UK

Postby Xhiea on Tue May 11, 2010 10:15 pm

A couple of things flare. YES the government should intervene.

1. Cyclists create positive externalities, the more people there are cycling the more people are getting regular exercise. The more people who are getting regular exercise will be healthier overall, the more people there are healthier overall the more productive they will be at work (less sick days, less fatigue etc), the more productive people are at work the economy can produce more goods and services, leading to economic growth and development.

2. Smokers do the COMPLETE OPPOSITE

hence why the government should want to increase the amount of cyclists (let alone reduce the amount of cars, yet again possibly improving health and environmental conditions) and decrease the amount of smokers.
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Re: May 06/05/2010 election UK

Postby sarie on Tue May 11, 2010 10:26 pm

Rico wrote:I don't think the country will "fall over", but I think the poor will be poorer, and the rich will get richer.

Wow... where did you get that one from? What an original comment.

Sorry, but that comment riles me. Not to mention the fact that I've heard it a million times.
The gap between the rich and poor has widened since Labour took power and yet people are still making this stupid comment without even knowing why they're saying it.

Eugh. I might just give up on arguing politics online to be honest, it seems like a pointless endeavor and a huge waste of time.

I'd usually give you some good argument but I'm bored of the effort... if you want to read about why I think the Cons are good for the economy then read back over the thread... there's a whole load of decent posts from me about the economy.


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Re: May 06/05/2010 election UK

Postby Haggus McGee on Tue May 11, 2010 10:29 pm

Xhiea, Demiguise and Rico, you missed Flare's point, if I may speak for him, that it is the way Labour go about trying to improve the country that is flawed. Having a half-ban on smoking is not sending the right message, and frankly, discussing bike riding in a manifesto when there are so many more important things, is just waste of time and resources. Especially when it's the sort of thing that local councils should be managing, what else do we have them for? And not 'resting on your laurels' can be turned around to not judging people on them, no one really knows how the Torys/Lib-Dems are going to perform, and you can't go moaning about Torys from thirteen years previously, I don't remember that time, but I'll take your word for it. If you look at them now with an open mind, perhaps you will see that they are not trying to rip you off, but want to make this country a great place to live.
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Re: May 06/05/2010 election UK

Postby paddyohale on Tue May 11, 2010 10:30 pm

Demiguise wrote:It is laughable that despite Labour being hugely unpopular, almost all media outlets pumping out Tory support, the recession, Afghanistan, Iraq and other huge slip-ups the Tories still only managed to get into power with a coalition - and people consider this a victory.


You forget that Labour has created a "client state" of people unwilling to do anything as they rely on benefits to fund their lifestyle to such an extent that they are better off than many hardworking families (and bear in mind that the benefits won't be taxed). Labour plays the fear card by saying that the "nasty Tories" will come in and slash all their benefits, so all those in this position are frightened away from voting Conservative (as they want to keep their "benefits" and not work).

You also have the "Quangocrats", people who are on ridiculously high salaries (often £100k+) for non-jobs such as "teen funk instructor", "community walking coordinator", or "promoting healthy weight advisor". Big salary for no productivity. Are they likely to bite the hand that feeds?

Or the Health And Safety queens? The ones who allow no risk whatsoever, so you're usually better off doing nothing at all. I know this from personal experience, as some of the experiments/demos I would like to do with my classes can't be done as there is a risk that a kid might run forward and electrocute himself on the wire or I might get too close to a flame while standing at an "unsafe height" (while trying to create a 10-foot high flame :P). A return to "common sense" in everyday life would render most of them redundant straight away.

If you looked carefully, Labour has few real areas that support it - parts of London, Birmingham, South Yorkshire, the North West, the North East, South Wales, and Scotland. The vast majority of England is "Tory Blue" - look at the BBC election results map to see for yourself. Labour has been diverting funding away from the wealth-generating South East to its heartlands in the North, so it's understandable that the South hates Labour and the North is keen to keep the status quo. I've said it before, bring in fewer, larger constituencies and end this imbalance that makes the election imbalanced in favour of Labour - the Conservatives have a minority party with a similar but larger share of the vote (36.1% compared to Labour's 35.3%) that gave Labour a 66-seat majority in 2005, and in 2005 the second party (Conservative) had a noticeably larger share of the vote than they did in 2010 (Labour)!

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Re: May 06/05/2010 election UK

Postby sarie on Tue May 11, 2010 10:43 pm

Oh, and since the mood I'm in has potentially given me the only opportunity to make bigotted comments when I wouldn't normally..

I hate cyclists, they should pay road tax or get the hell off the road and out of my way. You don't own the road, I'm bigger than you.
The smoking ban is great, I don't have to stink when I go to pubs anymore. Smokers should have smoking rooms, I feel bad for them being ousted into the cold... but the ban has benefitted me no end.
I hate chavs.
I hate people who live off the benefits system like leeches on the face of taxpayers. Get a job you scummy, low life tramps.
I hate teenage mums, see above comment regarding scummy, low life tramps.
I hate the joke of an education system.
I hate the bloody stupid green hippies who think windmills can save the world. Well guess what, they don't make economical sense retards.
I hate sandals.
I hate football and the idiot yobbos who flock to watch it and clog up the city.
I hate speed cameras, I'd like to run over them all with a combine harvester.
I hate the really REALLY fat people you see in McDonalds. What the hell are you doing in there anyway? Ever heard of weight watchers? No, Weight Watchers doesn't have a giant yellow M on the front of its HQ you beached whale.
I hate supermarkets, especially Asda where all the asbo jerkoff lowlifes and their smelly little brats ram you in the back of the ankles with their trolleys. I'm standing here, why don't you go around me before I rip your sodding head off, shove a stamp on it and post it back to you.
And most of all, I hate people with BO who stand too close to you in lifts. Ever heard of Lynx? No it's not a type of wildcat you stinky hobo.

I wouldn't bother replying to this post, I'm just venting all the things I've been wanting to say to people for ages.


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Re: May 06/05/2010 election UK

Postby Rico on Tue May 11, 2010 10:43 pm

paddyohale wrote:The vast majority of England is "Tory Blue" - look at the BBC election results map to see for yourself.


If you look at the geographical map, yes. If you look at the proportional one, the split is a lot more even. In fact, the split of English seats is 297 Con, 191 Lab, 43 Lib, 1 Green. Yes, a majority are blue, but I wouldn't call that a vast majority.

As for the electoral imbalance, it's primarily the Conservative party who are in favour of retaining the current system. Labour have been talking about reforming it since 1997 (but they aren't that keen really, hence nothing has been done), and electoral reform has been central to the Lib Dems for ages. Both Lab and Con are guilty of gerrymandering.
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Re: May 06/05/2010 election UK

Postby Demiguise on Tue May 11, 2010 10:48 pm

Or the Health And Safety queens? The ones who allow no risk whatsoever, so you're usually better off doing nothing at all. I know this from personal experience, as some of the experiments/demos I would like to do with my classes can't be done as there is a risk that a kid might run forward and electrocute himself on the wire or I might get too close to a flame while standing at an "unsafe height" (while trying to create a 10-foot high flame :P).

A return to "common sense" in everyday life would render most of them redundant straight away.


The reduction of interesting/considered dangerous experiments has another partner - testing. There's not really much point in showing anything that is likely to spark an interest in education when it isn't on the test - and we all teach to the test as it is the standard to which we are measured. This is an issue for all parties, though - they seem to be equally clueless about education being a life-long process and not one that happens to coincide with the times we are tested.

If you looked carefully, Labour has few real areas that support it - parts of London, Birmingham, South Yorkshire, the North West, the North East, South Wales, and Scotland. The vast majority of England is "Tory Blue" - look at the BBC election results map to see for yourself.


The vast majority of rural England is Tory, yes. Population centres tend to be Labour. I'd argue that the sparseness of population in most of the blue areas indicates that, in general, people who vote Tory often don't have to deal with the consequences for it. If they painted that map factoring in population density, it wouldn't look so blue.

Labour has been diverting funding away from the wealth-generating South East to its heartlands in the North, so it's understandable that the South hates Labour and the North is keen to keep the status quo. I've said it before, bring in fewer, larger constituencies and end this imbalance that makes the election imbalanced in favour of Labour - the Conservatives have a minority party with a similar but larger share of the vote (36.1% compared to Labour's 35.3%) that gave Labour a 66-seat majority in 2005, and in 2005 the second party (Conservative) had a noticeably larger share of the vote than they did in 2010 (Labour)!


Larger constituencies would only make FPTP an even worse voting system. The election system is balanced in favour of Tories and Labour. The real losers are the LDs - in a PR system they would have a seat share almost equal to Labour.
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Re: May 06/05/2010 election UK

Postby Rico on Tue May 11, 2010 11:00 pm

sarie wrote:I hate cyclists, they should pay road tax or get the hell off the road and out of my way. You don't own the road, I'm bigger than you.


There's no such thing as "road tax". There was, once upon a time, but it was abolished by Churchill in the last century (the 1930s, IIRC). Even when it did exist, it didn't cover road maintenance and building; and one of the reason it was abolished was so that motorists wouldn't think they had more rights than others on the roads.

Roads are paid for out of general taxation. That includes income tax, council tax, etc. There's no ring-fenced pot into which only motorists pay.

There is Vehicle Excise Duty, but that's an emission-based tax. There are quite a lot of zero-rated cars these days. Their owners pay £0 per year; are you claiming they shouldn't use the roads either? If cycles were subjected to the emissions tests, they'd also be zero-rated.

A very large number of cyclists also own cars; so even if there was road tax, or VED went directly to road upkeep, those cyclists would be paying it anyway. As it is, most of them are paying via their income tax and council taxes etc. In fact, you could say they're over-paying and subsidising non-cycling motorists, since they're paying their tax and "buying the right to use the road", and then leaving their cars at home. You could say that, if that was how roads were funded and if "road tax" existed.

Cyclists are traffic, just like car drivers are. In fact, the Institute of Advanced Motorists recently published advice for cyclists to "claim their lane". Furthermore, particularly in busier towns and cities, more cyclists lead to less traffic congestion; if you think about it, each cyclist is probably one less car on the road (since many people don't even share their cars). In reference to the idea that cyclists "hold up traffic", I offer my video of just how much traffic I "hold up" (read "sail past") on a morning ride to work.

The typical cyclist owns the road as much as a car driver. In fact, one could claim even more so; because cyclists are allowed to use the road by right. Car drivers have to be licensed and insured, and have a vehicle which is tested as being roadworthy before they may use the roads.
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Re: May 06/05/2010 election UK

Postby sarie on Tue May 11, 2010 11:08 pm

Rico.. right now I REALLLLLLY don't care about the "arguments" for cyclists.

I hate them. They get in my way, they slow me down, and they give me the finger when I honk at them for clipping my wing mirrors.
They think by cycling they're doing the world a favour, being green and therefore they're better than you when you're behind the wheel.

They ignore the rules of the road, cut through traffic lights, squeeze alongside stationary traffic and bump into my car frequently. They don't wear adequate clothing, they rarely wear helmets and very few even know what the highway code is.

Well you know what? My car weighs over a tonne, and I won't be at all surprised when I run over the lycra wearing road hogs as they cut through the red lights at T junctions.


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Re: May 06/05/2010 election UK

Postby Rico on Tue May 11, 2010 11:22 pm

I hate cyclists who run red lights, too. There's no excuse for it, and you won't catch me doing it. But let's not kid ourselves that it's only some cyclists who don't obey the traffic laws. Many motorists don't either. They park on pavements, talk on mobile phones, run red lights, stop in the advanced stop line area etc. etc. It may be a minority of car drivers, but cyclists who behave badly on the roads are also a minority.

What's "adequate clothing"?

Helmets are not compulsory in the UK, so moaning about cyclists who choose not to wear them is irrelevant. A cyclist wearing a helmet isn't magically going to turn into the perfect road user, nor is someone not wearing one going to be a menage to road users. Helmets are primarily designed to help in low speed "drop" impacts, and their effectiveness overall is questionable (I wear one most of the time, but it's a matter of personal choice). No car drivers or passengers wear helmets, but I reckon many lives could be saved in car accidents if the occupants of vehicles were adequately protected.

Some won't be familiar enough with the Highway Code, I agree. Especially non-drivers/non-motorcyclists. Most who are drivers are probably as familiar with it as the average non-cycling motorist. Ignorance of the Highway Code is cerainly not limited to cyclists though. It would be a good idea if more cyclists were adequately trained; but these days many children don't take their Cycling Proficiency test while at primary school, like I did 30 years ago. It's one reason why I'm trying to get the funding to train as a Bikeability instructor, so I am qualified to offer training for cyclists who intend to use the roads.
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Re: May 06/05/2010 election UK

Postby BenJy! on Tue May 11, 2010 11:23 pm

Doesn't really matter which party gets in at the end of the day, it's all the same bullshit. One political party can't cater to 62 million people with different opinions, beliefs and social class. David Cameron will probably make an idiot of himself as much as Gordon Brown, give it time.
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Re: May 06/05/2010 election UK

Postby Flawless on Tue May 11, 2010 11:24 pm

Keep it civil, and don't be going off on big tangents. Feel free to make another topic on the subject of "Do Cyclist do any good/Is going green worth it?"
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Re: May 06/05/2010 election UK

Postby EWJ on Wed May 12, 2010 12:53 am

so what was the actual voter turnout?
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Re: May 06/05/2010 election UK

Postby Rico on Wed May 12, 2010 6:13 am

EWJ wrote:so what was the actual voter turnout?


Turnout: 29,653,638 -- 65.1% (+4.0%)
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