May 06/05/2010 election UK

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Re: May 06/05/2010 election UK

Postby Rico on Wed May 12, 2010 8:03 am

sarie wrote:
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.


I know why I say it. And I think it's fair to say that in the first 2 terms of the previous Labour government, the numbers below 60% of the median, and below 50% of the median were coming down (while the numbers below 40% remained more or less steady). Since 2005, though, you're right; the numbers have been going up. The numbers below 40% may indeed be larger than they have been over the past 30 years, base numbers don't tell the whole story - for example, the UK population in 1981 was 56 million; in 2001 it was 59 million and in 2008 it was 61 million. Demographics change, as well, and they'll influence the figures (e.g. ethnicity proportions, immigration). If you look at the numbers as a proportion of overall population, while increasing over the past 3 years (of the years on the charts I'm looking at, which only go up to 2008), they're still significantly below 1997 levels (other than the 40% band, which is slightly increased).

So I'm happy to concede the point at the 40% level, and maybe 50% and 60% if you've got the figures.

Another aspect I'm concerned with is the rate of change though. If you look at the charts for the period 1983 to 1988, for example, the rate of increase in numbers below the 60%, 50% and 40% income thresholds is scary fast. That was a period of Tory government (Thatcher, specifically), and when I say I hope the Tories today aren't the same as the Tories of the past, I really mean I hope they're not Thatcherites who'll cause a similarly rapid increase in the numbers.

Charts here: http://www.poverty.org.uk/01/index.shtml?2

Anyway, overall we're in uncharted territory for most of us (probably all of us in this community, unless we've any 70-year-olds). The Lib Dems seem to have got a better deal that I expected, and their presence in Cabinet and ministerial positions will temper the worst of Conservative policy (as I see it).

It's pretty exciting. For one thing, it gives the Lib Dems an opportunity to demonstrate that coalition government can work for the UK -- or that they can't make it work. After all, if they ever get their way regarding a proportional electoral system, we'll see a lot more coalitions.
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Re: May 06/05/2010 election UK

Postby G3!ST on Wed May 12, 2010 9:28 am

Relatively optimistic.
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Re: May 06/05/2010 election UK

Postby Flare on Wed May 12, 2010 10:07 am

Heh, didnt expect so many replies so quickly...

We already have way too many little schemes where the goverment try control aspects of our lives beyond the normal law and order, for our own good.
You may beleive this is good for us but really just promotes a society who do not think for themselves and require a goverment that holds thier hands all the time.
Most if not all these schemes have associated costs which often include new departments, lots of bosses and the usual cadre of aides and secetaries, calls for experts and consultants, and infrastructure...

... rather than worry about my salt intake, or smokers, or junkies, etc. etc. I would rather the money go into promoting sustained job creation and more pro-actively looking out for the UK citizens intrests in dealing with issues outside the UK. I would rather the goverment look at the figures of people living on our island and realise there isnt enough land left to fully support us who are already here... paint a sign on the cliffs of Dover 'Piss off, we are full up'.
The other EU nations are helping the asylum seekers get to the UK, are they not suppose to stop at the first border and claim there ?
Last I checked the UK wasnt the closest EU member to Africa.
For some reason you dont get a ton of people trying to get into France or Germany, thats because the French and Germans dont welcome them there, nor do they give them housing and money just to stay in there and most definetly dont give them work... all they get is a distinctly unwelcome wagon.

Back to smoking, I used to smoke for over 16 years, quit in 2004 but I remember the smokers side of the arguments.
Pubs have declined more rapidly due to the smoking ban, customers simply do not enjoy needing to dash outside to enjoy thier smokes and when you relax you smoke so while having a drink in the pub is relaxing you will be smoking... eventually customers will prefer drinking at home as its more enjoyable (its cheaper and you dont have some sods telling you you cant smoke). Yes it effected pubs, along with other issues... and yes it increases binge drinking, because of the effect on the pubs.
I concede there was binge drinking before, but the smoking ban has contributed to the problem.
Ask pub landlords / proprietors what they think of the smoking ban... lets face it , a pub is not a health centre and doesnt attract the health concious.

OH yeah, I am also tired of this anti Thatcher rubbish, I aksed earlier in this thread that someone point out what she done that was so horrific and no one answered. It seems its just a generic evil thingymajobbie that no one really knows but ...damn its evil.
My mother tells me how Thatcher took much needed control over the country in a time where it was at its knees, she (Thatcher) made unpopular but much needed decisions to pull the country out of the shitter it was in.
I was less than 6 months old at the time, my mom told me how she would have to visit the local cafe who had a gas heater to heat my bottles each time I needed feeding, how my grandfather had to abuse his coal allowance to nick a few extra sacks to keep us going through the winter, how my dad would be chopping up wood in the fields to burn.... all due to coal miner strikes every winter, power was cut due to coal shortages and strikes, council workers downed rubbish bags to strike.
Is my mom wrong ? Wasnt there piles of rubbish in the streets because of union lead strikes ? Power outages due to miner strikes and walk outs ?
Look at what the unions are doing to BAA now, how long will it be before BAA simply folds and all the BAA employed people find themselves at the jobcentre ?

So once again... what did Thatcher do that makes people hate her 20 years down the line, and react with universal fear of the return of the Thatcherites ?
Educate me here.
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Re: May 06/05/2010 election UK

Postby Rico on Wed May 12, 2010 10:48 am

Flare wrote:So once again... what did Thatcher do that makes people hate her 20 years down the line, and react with universal fear of the return of the Thatcherites ?
Educate me here.


I think the view of Thatcher probably varies depending on where you are in the country, your own ideals and philosophy, and how her government affected you. Under her tenure, industrial product plummeted, while unemployment tripled (mainly as a result of monetary policy focused on controlling inflation rather than unemployment). Particularly in the north of England and South Wales, there's a lot of resentment over the pit closures and dispute with the NUM in 1984/85. It was very bitter. Also, policies which cause the public to demonstrate in large numbers are bound to stick in the memory. In this case, I'm thinking of the Community Charge (poll tax). For Labour, it might be the Iraq invasion that people remember for years to come.

Obviously, a lot of people did well out of her policies, but a lot of people did very badly indeed, so it's not surprising that they haven't forgiven her.
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Re: May 06/05/2010 election UK

Postby BenJy! on Wed May 12, 2010 10:58 am

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Re: May 06/05/2010 election UK

Postby Flare on Wed May 12, 2010 11:36 am

Thanks for the answer Rico.

Isnt the pit closures due to the Unions pricing the workers out of contention, basically costing the mine operators too much to mine the remaining coal ?
The resulting closures could account for a lot of job losses, especially in Wales... and especially if you take into account that other industries was powered by coal mined out locally, when the mines closed it caused a chain reaction of closures of other industries and businesses.

From what I understood, Britian wasnt in a good position financially at the time and spiraling into ever increasing national debt, and constant strike actions by overly empowered unions caused instability in the economic sectors resulting in loss of confidance in Britian as a investment.
I think it was also the instability and percieved weakness that prompted the Falkland war.

In short Thatcher got the blame but it was really the unions that caused a lot of the mess ? Labour has always been powered by union funding, and as such was powerless to do anything about the rampant union strike action.
I point out the current situation with BAA, from all accounts the BAA pay more and have better perks than the competition as it is, and considering all the airlines are suffering from the economic downturn these union lead strike actions will pull BAA under, if BAA goes under... a lot of jobs will be lost, imagine the chain reaction from airlines, airports, catering, mechanics, suppliers, manufacturing, tourism... quiet the list.

Not that Thatcher was a saint, she did make some big errors ... especially noted is the Poll Tax.
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Re: May 06/05/2010 election UK

Postby Brick on Sat Jun 05, 2010 11:19 pm

Flare bit more info your on the right lines andout the manufacturing, basically its time was up all the industries that went under were low value added manufacturing, coal mining steel making ect, problem was developing coutries were making the stuff cheaper due to the low wages. high value added manufacturing (satalites technology ect)is were we needed to go, only thing you can sell when your wages make labour intensive uneconomical, but things go round in loops now with high levels of automation low value added manufacturing can be produced in our country and can be profitable due to the logistics advantage.
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Re: May 06/05/2010 election UK

Postby CraKinShOt on Wed Jun 09, 2010 9:53 am

One very simple example of what the conservatives did... in the 60's you had the Beeching Axe, which removed thousands of miles of railway lines from this country. At the time, they just raised the tracks and kept the land... Thatcher's government then sold the land in the 80's. Now you have towns which have grown so large and cannot have their railways reinstated easiliy because the track beds now have houses on them.

Its just a very simple example of how quick cost cuttings and a failure to plan for the future results in things costings multiple factors more in the long run; that is the legacy of Thatcher... Stupid, narrow minded individuals...
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Re: May 06/05/2010 election UK

Postby Haggus McGee on Wed Jun 09, 2010 4:32 pm

The problem is overpopulation there actually.
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