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  • Re: » Blog Archive » Good night for LAB, bad one for the LDs in this week’s local b

    Unfinished from a previous thread...
    One can read too much into a single month's figures, especially with the distortion of an election, but the borrowing figures for June are seriously disappointing:
    Still, look on the bright side. We are being treated to the hilarious spectacle of John McDonnell complaining that the deficit isn't being reduced fast enough.
    You're right. That is funny.
    Increase taxes, it's not rocket science!

    The government should top trying to pursue some ideological neoliberal low tax nirvana; they should run decent public services, that's what we pay them to do!
    The government wants low taxes because it thinks that this boosts spending and investment creating growth and thus more tax revenue. Increasing taxes can decrease the tax take through avoidance, relocation and overall reduced economic activity. At the extremes these are not really contentious points. It is where the optimum balance is that politicians have to judge.

    Take Labour's fantasy increased in CT that was supposed to pay for everything. Reducing CT has increased the take considerably in recent years and there is a legitimate expectation that reversing it would have the opposite effect. The result may make those who resent the success of others feel better but it is unlikely to reduce the deficit, quite the reverse in fact.
    "Reducing CT has increased the take considerably in recent years"

    Really?? Can we just kill that myth please...

    2008 rate = 28%; CT take = 3.28% of GDP
    2016 rate = 20%; CT take = 2.36% of GDP
    Raw figures not %ages, please? It is rather important in this context.
  • Re: » Blog Archive » Unsurprisingly the betting moves against Trump serving a full

    Well, at least they set out a bit of their working, rather than just saying "clearly X" or "clearly Y".
    No they don't, not on the critical question how far beyond cash "contribution" can be construed; they very much skate over this in the two paras beginning "The crucial phrase here..."

    I am a retired lawyer in the wrong country and you are not a lawyer at all afaik (apologies if that's wrong) so we are pretty much equally unqualified to have a view on this.
    Well, pretty much the only opinion I'm expressing is that the question isn't entirely as crystal clear as you claimed. But no doubt anyone arguing with a lawyer is bound to end up in the wrong :-)
    I would rather be too concise than not concise enough. Yes, there is obviously an argument on the lines in your (bad-mannered) post addressed to Mr Nabavi at 5.06. Yes, it might be right. I don't think it is, but who knows? The End.
  • Re: » Blog Archive » If this story is right then you should take the 4/1 on Mrs May

    I have decided on the perfect analogy for Brexit: an SAP R/3 implementation from about 1997. SAP R/3 is – somewhat ironically – by far Europe’s most successful software creation. It is the back-end accounting, inventory and process system used by the world’s largest companies.

    Now, the reason R/3 sold so well is that it made great promises for how it could change and improve organisations. And, by and large, those promises were true. When a firm had moved to SAP, things did work better.

    But installing (implementing) SAP could be a complex logistical nightmare that destroyed the careers of anyone who touched it. Budgets were blown out, with firms often spending more than 10x the cost of the software on “experts” (consultants) who helped with the implementation. Plans to get software installed in a six months often proved laughably optimistic, with go live often delayed years.

    It turned out that changing the entire software system on which your organisation run was a greater challenge that the SAP salespeople let on when they were showing you fancy Powerpoint slides.

    Brexit is like installing R/3. It’s a complex process with many dependencies.

    Later, when post-mortems were done on R/3 implementations, it turned out that (while all of them were late and over budget), there were clear common factors between those that worked and those that didn’t.

    Failed implementations usually had no greater plan than “install SAP”, and usually had a big bang mentality “on the first of January, we will go live on SAP worldwide!”. Successful ones had a tight plan with limited scope: “first we implement SAP Accounts Receivable on our Belgian subsidiary, and run it for three months to understand all the issues”.

    Proponents of SAP implementation as a series of baby-steps were rarely popular. Their proposals usually involved spending a lot more money, and taking a lot more time. But their proposals actually worked. The big bang guys crashed and burned. And the fallout from their crashes often resulted in profit warnings, CEO resignations, and the end of more than one company.

    Politicians: take note.
    So pilot Brexit on the Isle of Wight first?
    Cue joke about Sweden 1967 (change from driving on left to driving on right): we can't implement a change of this magnitude all at once so we will stagger it. In the first week HGVs and motorbikes with sidecars will switch to the right...
  • Re: » Blog Archive » How the overall majority odds moved on a dramatic night of pol

    Maybe one of the biggest mistakes by the Tories was to have such a long campaign. If you've decided on a snap election because the polls look good, surely the smart thing to do would be to have as short a campaign as possible so that time is limited if the polls do start to move against you.
    Conversely, none of the issues about Jeremy Corbyn have gone away.

    He's not the messiah. And a long period in opposition with him fully under the spotlight - having become so popular during the campaign - might not necessarily be to his benefit.

    If I were the Tories, I'd be undermining his economics and credibility for the next few years relentlessly, whilst positively engagingly with young voters-middle aged with an offer of their own based on economic reality.
    This could be the best thing that could have happened - if the Corbyn surge had not happened now and been defeated by a whisker, he could have made his move in 2020 and won. As it is we now know what we are faced with. He is a brilliant campaigner but he's still as mad as a box of frogs and his policies are worse, and can be attacked. He can't do too many stadium rallies outside of election campaigns, he is 68 and while he can ensure that his successor shares his politics, it's less easy to hand on the charisma.
    I never thought I'd hear Jeremy described as having charisma. It's amazing what a blue suit and tie will do.

    For what it's worth I don't think it has anything to do with charisma just that the zeitgeist has moved to someting less reactionary and stale than we've been used to. Banning the bomb and feeding the poor has always had more of an allure for the young and idealistic than 'Brexit means Brexit'
    He is a rock star when he is in a rock star setting - i.e.a rally of adoring fans. We just never knew this until a campaign came along.
  • Re: » Blog Archive » Youth and experience. Turnout among 18-24 year olds and past n

    Might be no.1 on iTunes but still nowhere on Apple Music and Spotify where it matters.
    Also lacking in any sort of satirical bite at all. This is how you do it (if you want 4.3m views and rising)