Tag Archives: economics 101

Social Security spending | Notes from the north

“Much has been said in the past about the UK as a tax haven. Certainly, from reports in the past, billions are lost due to “sweetheart deals” between big businesses and the tax authorities in cases where big business won’t pay what they are supposed to pay. This report, from April 2013 highlighted the case of just 4 such deals, which were worth £4.5 billion in total. If the agreements reached managed to get in £4.5 billion to the treasury, then that means several billion more is lost. But how much of the…”

Source: Social Security spending | Notes from the north

Labour didn’t lose the election in 2015…. | Paul Bernal’s Blog

Paul pretty much nails it. Cowardly in politics, cowardly in opposition, fear of the media all leads people to one of two conclusions. First, that the Tories are right about the Labour Party and second that the Labour Party generally agree with everything the Tories are doing. That there is no difference between the two parties, and hasn’t been since Tory Blair took leadership, seems quite obvious to many of us who would really like our real Labour Party back.

I am tempted to join the Labour Party simply so that I can have a say in the leadership elections, not that I expect to make a difference (much like in the General Election, I pretty much expect the Right to win). The words “Turn left. No, your other left!” just popped into my head for some reason!

Labour didn’t lose the election in 2015…. | Paul Bernal’s Blog.

Follow the Money: Tory Ideology is all about handouts to the wealthy that are funded by the poor | Politics and Insights – kittysjones

Originally published May 2013, this is still a very relevent.

“By portraying housing benefit as a payment for “the shirkers”, not “the strivers”, Cameron and Osborne aim to convince the public that their draconian, unprecedented welfare “reforms” are justified. 60 percent of people visiting food banks last year were in work. But unemployment benefits are just 13 percent of the national average earnings. What Cameron’s Government have done is created extreme hardship for many of those in work, and further severe hardship for those who are unemployed.”

via Follow the Money: Tory Ideology is all about handouts to the wealthy that are funded by the poor | Politics and Insights – kittysjones.

Conservatism in a nutshell. | Politics and Insights – kittysjones

A clue is in the name: The word “Tory” derives from the Middle Irish word tóraidhe, which means outlaw, robber or brigand, from the Irish word tóir, meaning “pursuit”, since outlaws were “pursued men”. It was originally used to refer to an Irish outlaw and later applied to Confederates or Royalists in arms. The term was thus originally a term of abuse. The Tories live by plunder. They steal your taxes, your public services, your state provision and your labour, in order to raise more money for the rich.

via Conservatism in a nutshell. | Politics and Insights – kittysjones.

Techniques of neutralisation: Cameron says keep calm and carry on climbing Allport’s ladder

As ever, an excellent piece of writing. If you’re not reading her blog, why not?

via Techniques of neutralisation: Cameron says keep calm and carry on climbing Allport's ladder.

Dominic Raab on BBC Question Time on Foodbanks

Of course Raab knew he was misquoting the Trussell Trust (aka lying). It’s a pity there’s never anyone on the panel (including the presenter) with either the knowledge or the guts to challenge him and his ilk when they spout rubbish. I’ve given up on watching Question Time or listening to Any Questions on R4 now, both given me an unwanted increase in blood pressure and put me in a bad temper.

via Dominic Raab on BBC Question Time on Foodbanks.

Osborne, G. – Failed

(edited and expanded from my original response to http://www.taxresearch.org.uk/Blog/2013/02/23/on-aaa-and-what-might-happen/comment-page-1/#comment-631503)

I believe the simplest way to stimulate the economy is not found by faffing about with banks & big business but by increasing the net income received by the middle & lower strata of society – the people who will actually spend the extra income – starting the very necessary cycle. It’s like an engine, and ours has stalled.

– people have excess income
– they spend it
– increasing income for business
– increased income allows business to expand/employ extra staff (with the extra bonus of shifting more people off JSA)
– this means more people who have excess income
– rinse & repeat

Yes, I know it’s simplistic, I never claimed to have studied economics (ok, one unit in 1st semester 1st year > 25 years ago). But it makes sense.

If no-one has excess income (except the very rich, who don’t spend in the same way at all), they can’t spend anything, the businesses cannot expand as no-one is using them or buying from them, so everything either stagnates or gets worse over time.  Every small, especially rural, town watches local business after business shutdown as no-one has any money to spend on anything but the absolute basics necessary to live. Cheap supermarkets & discount online sellers thrive, everyone else declines. Small towns end up with a High Street of empty premises, a few charity shops, banks, sometimes a pub &/or coffee shop and a never-ending cycle of hopeful businesses opening and closing shops every couple of weeks, with a large supermarket or “retail park” on the edge of town.

Oh, and surely boosting the economy (by increasing the income of more people again) would be done if we started with a bloody council house building program to replace the ones council tenants, like my grandparents, bought in the ’80s. As I said, I’m not an economist, but surely building your way out of a recession is more viable than austerity when all of your possible trading partners are in the same or worse state than you.

I look at our so-called leaders, their opposite numbers & those in the rest of the world and think they could all do with damned good talking to and a stint in the Naughty Corner (I’d say a smacked bottom but I’m afraid that too many of them would enjoy it).  Rip off their blinkers and force them to take part in the real world for a year, with no outside help, before they are allowed to make policy that affects lives – make them live the life of those they would destroy & demonise before they do so.  A friend said I’d make a good “World Mum” – I think I’d need a huge naughty step and a very big wooden spoon.