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I’m beginning to be concerned about my CON poll lead bet – politicalbetting.com

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  • JosiasJessopJosiasJessop Posts: 32,802
    Taz said:

    Lefty Labour MP dissing Starmer here, showing how disunited Labour still are.

    Words to cheer Big Johns owls up

    “Foy said she had no particular cause to socialise with Starmer. She is a member of the leftwing Socialist Campaign Group of MPs, often at odds with Starmer’s leadership.
    “To be quite frank I’d only met Keir once before,” she said. “There was no way that there was any real chit-chat. Because we didn’t really know each other.”

    https://www.theguardian.com/politics/2022/aug/23/labour-mp-claims-reporter-broke-into-her-office-to-find-beergate-material

    I don't think the story is Partygate, more Watergate. Durham police should be investing the burglary. An unusual request, investigating burglaries these days, granted.
    I'm sure they will give them a crime number for the insurance claim and then file the investigation in the round file, and Durham are one of the better forces in the UK.
    Two decades ago, the police arrested one burglar in central-northern Cambridge. From memory, he accepted many other crimes, and for a few months after he was arrested, burglaries in the area decreased by a third.

    A few people can cause a heck of a lot of crime. The relevance to your comment is ... remote. ;)
  • Driver said:

    Lets pile more debt onto future generations

    As opposed to your alternative, which obviously is...?
    Huge property taxes on the wealthiest generations that squandered the family silver
    Just out of interest, who was this wealthiest generation and what was the family silver they specifically squandered?
  • wooliedyedwooliedyed Posts: 6,650
    Starner 4 ahead of Truss who slips 2 points compared to a fortnight ago

    Labour lead by 13% in the Red Wall.

    Red Wall Voting Intention (21 August):

    Labour 47% (-1)
    Conservative 34% (+1)
    Liberal Democrat 8% (+1)
    Reform UK 5% (-1)
    Green 3% (-2)
    Plaid Cymru 2% (+1)
    Other 1% (-2)

    Changes +/- 8 August

    https://t.co/M4R2xxXiMh https://t.co/0fVSyZ0CdV
  • kinabalukinabalu Posts: 32,965
    edited August 2022
    MISTY said:

    kinabalu said:

    Driver said:

    kinabalu said:

    Driver said:

    TOPPING said:

    1. Diseases will always kill us and if they don't then I have bad news about life in any case.
    2. I can totally understand that the government, looking as we all did at those pictures from Italy of people dying in the corridors, had to do something and lockdowns was it.
    3. The whole point of society is a balance. Tragically it is not to keep every Archie alive at the expense of others who would benefit from those resources.

    Once the NHS was in no danger of "collapsing" as in real collapse, not the collapse that the Graun and the various health unions call every other week, then there should absolutely have been no more lockdowns.

    There should have been compensation for pubs if they wanted to close and teachers if they wanted to stay home but no mandate.

    Our freedoms are so precious and the great and good of PB dismiss them instantly and soil themselves at the first real test of freedom that we in the UK have had for 80 years. Doesn't bode well for the future.

    Which is a greater threat to Freedom: a temporary measure in the face of a novel pandemic, or a sustained campaign by government to restrict political protest and dissent? Is the collapse of the Court system due to chronic neglect perhaps a more pernicious threat? Is the drive to ban freedom of speech under the guise of Fighting Wokery more problematic? Are restrictions on the right to strike actually more consequential? I think one can debate whether temporary lockdowns were really the "first real test of freedom that we in the UK have had for 80 years".

    But, sure, lockdowns should be avoided. The way to avoid lockdowns is with better public health measures. We can look at a country like Japan that never had a national lockdown and had far fewer COVID cases. A better Test & Trace system, with more support for people self-isolating, would have been a huge help in the UK. A better funded primary health care system would have helped.

    This ain't rocket science. If you don't want lockdowns, do public health better.
    No, it isn't rocket science. If you don't want lockdowns, don't implement lockdowns.
    How would you have hampered the spread of the virus at those critical times then?

    It spread via close contact between people remember - not by black magic.
    Strong advice, not legislation. And this would have included strong advice to organisations and companies to stop doing counterproductive things, like supermarkets cutting their hours, which merely ensured that the average number of people in their shops at any given time was higher than it needed to be.
    Ok so Muscly goes "You MUST stay at home etc etc" but no laws are changed.

    Why is that so much better iyo?

    And what happens if people don't respond to the extent necessary to ward off a public health catastrophe?
    It isn't warding off anything, its just changing the emphasis of risk. You assume these measures, even short term, are risk free, but they aren't.

    Every kind of restriction is a swings and roundabouts calculation. Not how it was presented at the time (it was 'saving lives'), but we now know that is true.

    At best lockdown was sacrificing some lives to save others. At best. What's the balance? who knows?
    I never assumed the NPIs were cost free. However there was a train about to run us over and it had to be slowed down. The idea of somebody configuring and running a super-complex, multi-level cost/benefit model and trying to incorporate and quantify things like impact on mental health before we did anything is for the birds. We were too late acting as it is and found it hard enough just to model the spread of the virus and hospitalisations and deaths.
  • londonpubmanlondonpubman Posts: 2,080

    HYUFD said:

    HYUFD said:

    Driver said:

    Lets pile more debt onto future generations

    As opposed to your alternative, which obviously is...?
    Huge property taxes on the wealthiest generations that squandered the family silver
    Which would be hugely unpopular amongst 45 to 65 year olds who would inherit from them
    You are back on with your old inheritance mumbo- jumbo again.

    Anyone who goes into a care home for any length of time, really has nothing much to leave. I can show you the bills and a total lack of interest from Herefordshire Council if you like.
    Only 25% of over 65s at most will ever need to go into a care home, the rest will either die first or require only at home care. Plus the government has now capped care costs at £86k anyway
    The cap has not become law yet
    Anyone relying on this becoming law should exercise extreme caution in their planning...
  • Truss may have played a blinder here. After people have been ramping up talk of £3k, £4k or £6k bills or higher, if this suggested proposal goes ahead and bills are frozen then that's possibly going to seek quite a significant step taken.

    Oh and if it's a loan, then possibly not a handout either.

    But the devil will be in the details of course. What's going to happen with SMEs will be as important as what happens with consumer bills and that doesn't seem to be getting discussed much yet if at all.

    Can I please try those rather fetching rose-tinted beer googles?
    Truss hasn't be involved until now. Keith Anderson proposed this to Sunak back in April iirc. It was turned down.
    Don't tell me, tell Barty.
    What difference does it make?

    A PM doesn't need to come up with every solution from scratch, they need to go through the proposed solutions (ideally reading them first) and choose the best options.

    Truss's critics have set the bar so low with all their OTT criticisms, that doing anything at all is going to seem dramatic in comparison.
  • HYUFD said:

    Carnyx said:

    Driver said:

    Carnyx said:

    Driver said:

    Carnyx said:

    HYUFD said:

    Carnyx said:

    HYUFD said:

    Carnyx said:

    Driver said:

    Carnyx said:

    HYUFD said:

    Interesting analysis by @ShippersUnbound @thetimes on state of the Union. IMO what shld most alarm Unionists throughout UK is English indifference: 42% in 🏴󠁧󠁢󠁥󠁮󠁧󠁿 wld welcome or aren't bothered by 🏴󠁧󠁢󠁳󠁣󠁴󠁿 separation, goes up to 55% re Irish unification @YouGov

    https://twitter.com/dlidington/status/1561390942770405377?s=21&t=xp64aWKqX-FzMDFU9002QQ

    Yet only 1 in 7 English voters want Scotland to leave the UK and by a 17% margin English voters would be upset not pleased if Northern Ireland left the UK. Despite England still being the only home nation in the UK without its own parliament.

    In any case unless the whole UK gets a vote on the Union in a referendum or England
    votes for the English Democrats and ultimately English independence, English voters get no say on the Union anyway
    England does have its own Parliament. The one at Westminster. It is the old English Pmt with assorted others added and subtracted at various times. And until your very own glorious Party recently deleted the legislation for reasons which remain completely unclear, it had English votes for English laws.
    The reason was completely clear: EVEL as implemented was bollocks, as a majority of MPs representing English constituencies couldn't implement something if there was a UK majority against it.

    The idea that the Westminster parliament is an English parliament is risible.
    Surely the whole point of EVEL was to remove the question of a UK majority by making sure the non-English MPs couldn't vote.

    This was much touted by Mr Cameron as a solution to devolution's anomalies.
    If there is a Labour minority government at the next election propped up by the SNP, Starmer could well offer the SNP indyref2 in return for voting on English laws if the Tories still have most seats in England but no majority in the UK
    Like everyone else, you're missing what would happen before then. The situation would be too chaotic to get that far.

    And the deletion of EVEL means that that isn't even an offer, not least because the SNP don't vote on English laws*.

    *Except in aberrant cases, which EVEL eliminates - or would if the Tories hadn't cancelled it to give themselves the kind of girevance you are so assiduously repeating.
    No it wouldn't, Starmer just does a written deal with the SNP for indyref2 in return for SNP votes on English laws as May did a deal with the DUP in 2017. Starmer then enters No 10 to lead a minority government propped up by the SNP for a majority in a hung parliament.

    The SNP would vote on English laws in return for indyref2, guaranteed
    Projecting your views on the enemy. You think it fair to override other people's votes and parliaments, so of course you assume the 'enemy' are as bad.
    Given that the SNP has form for voting on English laws (for instance, we have them to thank for having to carefully plan our Sunday supermarket trips every week)...
    That was because of cross-border consequentials, at the request of the Trade Unions, some presumably part of the Labour Party.
    Excuses.
    Notd excuses. Reasons as discussed amply at the time.

    The fact you have to reach to a single and obscure piece of legislation shows the weakness of your argument, and HYUFD's. It would be a radical change of policy, for which there is zero evidence at present. It's projected fantasy on a par witdh the creation of a Free Antrim.

    Don't forget Down! Down is more Protestant than Antrim, per the 2011 Census.
    On Unionist voteshare it isn't and every seat in county Antrim is DUP but not every seat in Down is DUP, ignoring Belfast
    Belfast is almost entirely in County Antrim.
  • HYUFD said:

    HYUFD said:

    Driver said:

    Lets pile more debt onto future generations

    As opposed to your alternative, which obviously is...?
    Huge property taxes on the wealthiest generations that squandered the family silver
    Which would be hugely unpopular amongst 45 to 65 year olds who would inherit from them
    You are back on with your old inheritance mumbo- jumbo again.

    Anyone who goes into a care home for any length of time, really has nothing much to leave. I can show you the bills and a total lack of interest from Herefordshire Council if you like.
    Only 25% of over 65s at most will ever need to go into a care home, the rest will either die first or require only at home care. Plus the government has now capped care costs at £86k anyway
    Not yet it hasn't, if you know differently let me know.

    October 2023 is not much f...ing use for my 94 year old Mother in law. Between now and then is going to cost her another £84,000.
    As expensive as it is, you can't take it with you. The state should not be in the business of paying for people's inheritances. The cap should never come into place.
  • FlatlanderFlatlander Posts: 2,827
    edited August 2022
    Taz said:

    HYUFD said:

    Driver said:

    Lets pile more debt onto future generations

    As opposed to your alternative, which obviously is...?
    Huge property taxes on the wealthiest generations that squandered the family silver
    Which would be hugely unpopular amongst 45 to 65 year olds who would inherit from them
    While tax on inheritance would be a fair way of helping in this crises I do not know of any party suggesting it
    A wealth tax is not an unreasonable proposition.

    Event though Galloway seems to think everyone about 55 is wealthy beyond the dreams of avarice and has mugged his generation off and all of us got free Uni tuition, this isn't the case.

    However some form or wealth tax would only target those with wealth above a certain level and could be a useful implement to address so-called intergenerational unfairness. Wealthy pensioners with a 6 bed home in the home counties chip in, poor pensioners with a 2 up 2 down in Spennymoor don't
    To be equitable, I think it would have to be to a property tax rather than based on overall wealth in order to avoid the moral hazard of taxing savings (which are being hit by inflation anyway).
  • NickPalmerNickPalmer Posts: 20,050
    Taz said:

    Lefty Labour MP dissing Starmer here, showing how disunited Labour still are.

    Words to cheer Big Johns owls up

    “Foy said she had no particular cause to socialise with Starmer. She is a member of the leftwing Socialist Campaign Group of MPs, often at odds with Starmer’s leadership.
    “To be quite frank I’d only met Keir once before,” she said. “There was no way that there was any real chit-chat. Because we didn’t really know each other.”

    https://www.theguardian.com/politics/2022/aug/23/labour-mp-claims-reporter-broke-into-her-office-to-find-beergate-material

    Having seen a few of her woeful performances on local politics shows I think that reflects well on Starmer.

    She's got a safe seat for life and has nothing really to offer the labour movement.
    Remarkable spin by MoonRabbit, though - MP reports a burglary and media harassment against a background of family tragedy, Moon thinks the story is that she doesn't know SKS well.
  • kinabalukinabalu Posts: 32,965

    kyf_100 said:

    kyf_100 said:

    kyf_100 said:

    Anyone worked out how workable this is?
    (Though loading the costs on bill payers in the 2040s is very on-brand for a government that really doesn't give a stuff about anyone younger than about 60)

    Energy firm’s £100 billion plan to freeze energy bills for 2 years. A thread
    The Chief Executive of one of the UK’s largest energy providers presented Kwasi Kwarteng and Jacob Rees-Mogg with a £100 billion plan to stave off an energy price emergency last week...
    2/ Keith Anderson, CEO of Scottish Power will present the same plan to Scottish First Minister Nicola Sturgeon later today.
    The plan would involve the government guaranteeing loans to the energy companies enabling them to keep bills frozen while buying the gas needed....
    3/ ...for the next two years.
    £100 billion is Scottish Power’s best estimate of the difference between what it will actually cost to buy the energy and the current cap of £1971.
    Sources close to the company said that Kwasi Kwarteng, tipped to be the next Chancellor....
    4/ ..if Liz Truss is next PM, was broadly receptive to the idea. Sources close to Kwasi Kwarteng wouldn’t be drawn on his enthusiasm. “We had a meeting about it – that’s all”.
    The so called deficit fund would be repaid through bills over the next 20 or so years...


    https://twitter.com/BBCSimonJack/status/1562061859401900033

    Kwarteng and Truss would be well advised to go for it, it dwarfs Labour's plan and probably leaves some room for the 400 quid direct help that Labour would remove.
    In a my future generations' debt is bigger than your future generations' debt.

    I suppose on a positive note with inflation running at 20% p a for the next twenty years the debt will have withered to nothing anyway.
    Well the cost of not freezing everyone to death this winter will be hugely increased public debt. Thems the breaks. Labour are just proposing to do it in a series of depressing interventions rather than this option of more up front but over a longer period.
    Yes, something has to be done and Liz and her Chancellor and Energy Minister have come up with a corker of a plan that shames Labour's meagre effort. But the figure...wow!
    How have the energy companies - the big ones who actually supply energy I mean rather than the small ones that were just effectively trading futures - been doing the last few years?

    Would it be viable to call their bluff? Or even possible?

    Keep the energy cap where it is or even reduce it. Let the energy companies take the pain and see how much they can take and only then step in and introduce the support scheme when they are on the verge of going bust. It would ensure that they are actually doing all they can rather than just looking for a way to support their profits.

    Should any energy company be doing more than getting by right now?

    I am not actually advocating this as I am sure there are way too many flaws in my reasoning but just thought it was worth at least discussing.
    The mere fact that it's the energy companies favoured solution suggests to me it requires precisely this kind of scrutiny.

    One way or another, the taxpayer is going to be on the hook for a lot of debt - but how much of that should be going into energy suppliers profits?
    Well this is the issue with Labours plan too isnt it? Its going to cost us tens of billions either way
    I think the question is how many billions will be profits for the energy companies. When nationalisation means we could take those profits out of the equation.

    The energy companies are very keen on the "give us a big loan and we'll pay it off over the next 20 years with higher but manageable energy bills"

    Is that the best deal for Joe Billpayer, or is it the best deal for the energy companies?
    Nationalisation in this situation as Gordon Brown pushed for is so stupid, the crisis coming here is finding and getting money to those most in need, nationalisation will be using that money where it’s not needed, buying stuff we don’t need.

    Richard Tyndall is right, squeeze to find where the lean point is, leave any fat in the system (like news reports of number profits, dividends, pay and bonuses) whilst people freeze and starve lose business and homes is both politically toxic and a bit immoral.
    I am inclined towards what TSE was saying downthread, that there is a serious risk of general strike and civil disorder next year if the government do not get a handle on this. I'm not sure "trimming the fat in the system" is going to cover it.

    My natural instincts are libertarian ones, however I believe the government has a duty to defends its citizens in times of war. Not just with the army, however.

    Russia has weaponised energy against us in a proxy war. It is their intention to turn the screws as much as possible, to weaken our resolve against their invasion of Ukraine, and create precisely the kind of civil unrest that has been warned about downthread.

    As far as I'm concerned, that means greater government intervention is morally justifiable in this particular circumstance.

    It needs to be about more than just preventing pensioners from freezing to death and giving a few handouts here and there. We need to ensure an energy supply that is affordable for all this winter - and that may mean looking at radical solutions such as nationalisation to control prices, furloughing energy intensive industries, and scheduling rolling blackouts to control demand.

    The alternative is bankrupting hundreds of thousands of businesses, mass unemployment, strikes and civil unrest.
    I think the penny is dropping right across the board isn’t it - this is just not the moment to find the money for tax cuts. Hence the mood you describe, Tax cuts the solution promised by government, so they drop like stone in the polls, as 97.7% of electorate know it’s not the right moment for those policies. There is a right time for such policies and determination. But this is not that moment.
    The Truss mentality seems to be - I'm a Proper Conservative and Proper Conservatives know that tax cuts are the answer to every problem. Therefore the answer to this problem is tax cuts. Anybody thinking otherwise cannot by definition be a Proper Conservative.
  • kinabalu said:

    MISTY said:

    kinabalu said:

    Driver said:

    kinabalu said:

    Driver said:

    TOPPING said:

    1. Diseases will always kill us and if they don't then I have bad news about life in any case.
    2. I can totally understand that the government, looking as we all did at those pictures from Italy of people dying in the corridors, had to do something and lockdowns was it.
    3. The whole point of society is a balance. Tragically it is not to keep every Archie alive at the expense of others who would benefit from those resources.

    Once the NHS was in no danger of "collapsing" as in real collapse, not the collapse that the Graun and the various health unions call every other week, then there should absolutely have been no more lockdowns.

    There should have been compensation for pubs if they wanted to close and teachers if they wanted to stay home but no mandate.

    Our freedoms are so precious and the great and good of PB dismiss them instantly and soil themselves at the first real test of freedom that we in the UK have had for 80 years. Doesn't bode well for the future.

    Which is a greater threat to Freedom: a temporary measure in the face of a novel pandemic, or a sustained campaign by government to restrict political protest and dissent? Is the collapse of the Court system due to chronic neglect perhaps a more pernicious threat? Is the drive to ban freedom of speech under the guise of Fighting Wokery more problematic? Are restrictions on the right to strike actually more consequential? I think one can debate whether temporary lockdowns were really the "first real test of freedom that we in the UK have had for 80 years".

    But, sure, lockdowns should be avoided. The way to avoid lockdowns is with better public health measures. We can look at a country like Japan that never had a national lockdown and had far fewer COVID cases. A better Test & Trace system, with more support for people self-isolating, would have been a huge help in the UK. A better funded primary health care system would have helped.

    This ain't rocket science. If you don't want lockdowns, do public health better.
    No, it isn't rocket science. If you don't want lockdowns, don't implement lockdowns.
    How would you have hampered the spread of the virus at those critical times then?

    It spread via close contact between people remember - not by black magic.
    Strong advice, not legislation. And this would have included strong advice to organisations and companies to stop doing counterproductive things, like supermarkets cutting their hours, which merely ensured that the average number of people in their shops at any given time was higher than it needed to be.
    Ok so Muscly goes "You MUST stay at home etc etc" but no laws are changed.

    Why is that so much better iyo?

    And what happens if people don't respond to the extent necessary to ward off a public health catastrophe?
    It isn't warding off anything, its just changing the emphasis of risk. You assume these measures, even short term, are risk free, but they aren't.

    Every kind of restriction is a swings and roundabouts calculation. Not how it was presented at the time (it was 'saving lives'), but we now know that is true.

    At best lockdown was sacrificing some lives to save others. At best. What's the balance? who knows?
    I never assumed the NPIs were cost free. However there was a train about to run us over and it had to be slowed down. The idea of somebody configuring and running a super-complex, multi-level cost/benefit model and trying to incorporate and quantify things like impact on mental health before we did anything is for the birds. We were too late acting as it is and found it hard enough just to model the spread of the virus and hospitalisations and deaths.
    You're absolutely right that there wasn't a time to analyse it in advance, but there is time to do so in hindsight and in hindsight lockdown was a mistake.

    It was certainly not "too late".
  • OnlyLivingBoyOnlyLivingBoy Posts: 11,019
    kyf_100 said:

    kyf_100 said:

    kyf_100 said:

    kyf_100 said:

    Anyone worked out how workable this is?
    (Though loading the costs on bill payers in the 2040s is very on-brand for a government that really doesn't give a stuff about anyone younger than about 60)

    Energy firm’s £100 billion plan to freeze energy bills for 2 years. A thread
    The Chief Executive of one of the UK’s largest energy providers presented Kwasi Kwarteng and Jacob Rees-Mogg with a £100 billion plan to stave off an energy price emergency last week...
    2/ Keith Anderson, CEO of Scottish Power will present the same plan to Scottish First Minister Nicola Sturgeon later today.
    The plan would involve the government guaranteeing loans to the energy companies enabling them to keep bills frozen while buying the gas needed....
    3/ ...for the next two years.
    £100 billion is Scottish Power’s best estimate of the difference between what it will actually cost to buy the energy and the current cap of £1971.
    Sources close to the company said that Kwasi Kwarteng, tipped to be the next Chancellor....
    4/ ..if Liz Truss is next PM, was broadly receptive to the idea. Sources close to Kwasi Kwarteng wouldn’t be drawn on his enthusiasm. “We had a meeting about it – that’s all”.
    The so called deficit fund would be repaid through bills over the next 20 or so years...


    https://twitter.com/BBCSimonJack/status/1562061859401900033

    Kwarteng and Truss would be well advised to go for it, it dwarfs Labour's plan and probably leaves some room for the 400 quid direct help that Labour would remove.
    In a my future generations' debt is bigger than your future generations' debt.

    I suppose on a positive note with inflation running at 20% p a for the next twenty years the debt will have withered to nothing anyway.
    Well the cost of not freezing everyone to death this winter will be hugely increased public debt. Thems the breaks. Labour are just proposing to do it in a series of depressing interventions rather than this option of more up front but over a longer period.
    Yes, something has to be done and Liz and her Chancellor and Energy Minister have come up with a corker of a plan that shames Labour's meagre effort. But the figure...wow!
    How have the energy companies - the big ones who actually supply energy I mean rather than the small ones that were just effectively trading futures - been doing the last few years?

    Would it be viable to call their bluff? Or even possible?

    Keep the energy cap where it is or even reduce it. Let the energy companies take the pain and see how much they can take and only then step in and introduce the support scheme when they are on the verge of going bust. It would ensure that they are actually doing all they can rather than just looking for a way to support their profits.

    Should any energy company be doing more than getting by right now?

    I am not actually advocating this as I am sure there are way too many flaws in my reasoning but just thought it was worth at least discussing.
    The mere fact that it's the energy companies favoured solution suggests to me it requires precisely this kind of scrutiny.

    One way or another, the taxpayer is going to be on the hook for a lot of debt - but how much of that should be going into energy suppliers profits?
    Well this is the issue with Labours plan too isnt it? Its going to cost us tens of billions either way
    I think the question is how many billions will be profits for the energy companies. When nationalisation means we could take those profits out of the equation.

    The energy companies are very keen on the "give us a big loan and we'll pay it off over the next 20 years with higher but manageable energy bills"

    Is that the best deal for Joe Billpayer, or is it the best deal for the energy companies?
    Nationalisation in this situation as Gordon Brown pushed for is so stupid, the crisis coming here is finding and getting money to those most in need, nationalisation will be using that money where it’s not needed, buying stuff we don’t need.

    Richard Tyndall is right, squeeze to find where the lean point is, leave any fat in the system (like news reports of number profits, dividends, pay and bonuses) whilst people freeze and starve lose business and homes is both politically toxic and a bit immoral.
    I am inclined towards what TSE was saying downthread, that there is a serious risk of general strike and civil disorder next year if the government do not get a handle on this. I'm not sure "trimming the fat in the system" is going to cover it.

    My natural instincts are libertarian ones, however I believe the government has a duty to defends its citizens in times of war. Not just with the army, however.

    Russia has weaponised energy against us in a proxy war. It is their intention to turn the screws as much as possible, to weaken our resolve against their invasion of Ukraine, and create precisely the kind of civil unrest that has been warned about downthread.

    As far as I'm concerned, that means greater government intervention is morally justifiable in this particular circumstance.

    It needs to be about more than just preventing pensioners from freezing to death and giving a few handouts here and there. We need to ensure an energy supply that is affordable for all this winter - and that may mean looking at radical solutions such as nationalisation to control prices, furloughing energy intensive industries, and scheduling rolling blackouts to control demand.

    The alternative is bankrupting hundreds of thousands of businesses, mass unemployment, strikes and civil unrest.
    I think the penny is dropping right across the board isn’t it - this is just not the moment to find the money for tax cuts. Hence the mood you describe, Tax cuts the solution promised by government, so they drop like stone in the polls, as 97.7% of electorate know it’s not the right moment for those policies. There is a right time for such policies and determination. But this is not that moment.
    Supply is down by 15% or so due to Russia. That means demand needs to drop by a similar amount.

    Proposals like taking out a loan to freeze prices now, and paying that astronomical sum back over the next 20 years or so, don't fully solve the problem. There is simply only so much energy to go around. We can't keep bidding it up and up in a bidding war and putting it on the never never.

    We need to start looking seriously at how to reduce demand this winter while keeping the economy alive - it's going to require substantial government intervention.

    Keeping prices artificially low will only stimulate demand. Demand reduction is going to need to be part of the equation. It won't be popular, but ultimately difficult decisions need to be made during wartime, that's what a government is there for. And I would rather the government allocates available supply on a harm reduction basis (to both lives and the economy) than allow the free market to allocate energy to the highest bidder.
    Yes I made exactly this point a while back. We are at war and we need to take wartime measures, rationing supply in the national interest not subsidising demand that we can't afford or letting the rich outbid the poor. People are willing to put up with a lot if there is a sense that everyone is making the same sacrifices and if there is a clear objective. They won't put up with being told to put on an extra jumper while the wealthy turn up their thermostat and the energy firms enjoy surging profits. We need leadership on this, now.
  • rottenboroughrottenborough Posts: 55,103
    max seddon
    @maxseddon
    ·
    4h
    Russian senator Leonid Slutsky:

    "Whatever your political party, faith, or age, there is only one way. One country! One president! One victory!"

    ===

    Sounds like the GOP.

  • Alistair said:

    Carnyx said:

    Driver said:

    Important thread:

    NEW: the collapse of emergency healthcare in England may be costing 500 lives every week, a close match for non-Covid excess deaths

    Let’s look at how we reach that conclusion, by taking a deep-dive into non-Covid excess mortality and its possible causes

    https://ft.com/content/f36c5daa-9c14-4a92-9136-19b26508b9d2


    https://twitter.com/jburnmurdoch/status/1562004612172873728?s=20&t=HXvwp-7KD_d60f8CopIakw

    Entirely consistent with recent personal experience (the A&E wait, not the death). In my case 24h from accident to ward admission. After that they got their skates on, but it was a grim start.

    An excellent and detailed analysis. And, sadly, a brilliant example of Brandolini's Law (the effort required to counter bullshit is orders of magnitude greater than that required to generate it).

    The Telegraph came up with their crap in order to seed the idea that the excess deaths were due to lockdown. Didn't need any effort for Sarah Knapton to come up with it, and instantly publicised by the Usual Suspects (and added to the "we now know..." lines).

    John Burn-Murdoch put huge amounts of effort in to deep dive what is happening and where the excess deaths are and concluded it's down to the healthcare system collapse, especially in A&E and ambulances. What are the odds it gets the attention it deserves? Versus the odds that it vanishes under the Telegraph's crap?
    The healthcare system collapse now is due to lockdown though.

    Had we not locked down, had we allowed Covid to take its course, then we'd have had extra fatalities then, sure, but we wouldn't have trashed the future or the NHS for the long-term by abolishing everything else leading to mammoth waiting lists etc.

    People who would have died from Covid wouldn't be on any waiting lists now. People who survived, wouldn't be paying the price of lockdown.
    No, it's not.
    It's got very little to do with that. As Burn-Murdoch analyses.
    It's got most to do with the soaring waits in A&E and ambulances post-July 2021.
    But you will never accept that, because you hated lockdown (Can't blame you there; I hated it too) and therefore have to insist that bad things that happen must have come from it.
    And why did it soar post-July 2021 (the unlocking)? Surely not because people who had been complying by staying at home to protect the NHS finally sought treatment for what had been afflicting them for some time?
    No. Because we still had thousands of people going to hospital for covid. Far less than earlier, but a sustained and consistent high rate of utilisation of beds.

    When you're normally running at 85%+ utilisation, adding 10-15% on top consistently makes a big impact.
    It's also unlikely that these people would be phoning ambulances and getting categorised in the "emergency" category to seek treatment, isn't it? Few people would be waiting months during a heart attack in order to call for an ambulance.
    No but people who could have been treated sooner for diseases like diabetes etc that are not urgently life-threatening but lead to cardiovascular etc demands later on if left untreated could have been seen sooner. Similar for cancer etc
    1 - The excess deaths are not in the diabetes and cancer area, but across the board.
    2 - Your apparent belief that if the NHS was more swamped with covid, we'd somehow have been able to treat more cancer patients alongside (and kept them more separate?) and that having far more NHS stuff off sick with covid would have helped capacity does seem rather optimistic.
    If we hadn't had lockdown then the NHS wouldn't have been more swamped with Covid than it was.

    It would have been more swamped at the peak, but then that peak would have entailed telling more people "we can't help you" and the peak would have been over sooner and then the downhill would have happened sooner. Exponential figures again.

    Instead we "flattened the sombrero" with lockdown so that the NHS had nothing but Covid for two years, rather than 3 horrific months of Covid then it was done.
    Head.
    Desk.
    If you'd only ever come up with actual facts and numbers supporting your position - well, you'd not bother trying it, anyway.

    During the first wave, under 5% of the country had been exposed to covid.
    By the time of the second lockdown, about 9%
    By the third lockdown, about 12%
    (Source - ONS antibodies survey).
    That means we had LOADS of doubling left to do.

    If you have a capacity of c. 100,000 and existing utilisation of 75,000, how many people do you fit in on top of that?
    Note as well that the closer you get to capacity, the harder it is, and in many hospitals you'll already be over capacity (above 90% and you're in serious trouble)
    As it was, we added a bit under 20,000 in the first wave.
    They called the second lockdown when they could see they were heading over 15,000 additions (in winter, when the existing utilisation is closer to 85,000+)
    In the third one, they added nearly 35,000, and yes, heavy triaging was going on and we'll be feeling the effects of that for a long time.

    With your airy "Oh, it would have been more swamped" - we'd be looking at hundreds of thousands of extra beds needed.

    If people need intensive care to stay alive, then removing that intensive care is pretty sure to result in them being dead. To a slightly lesser extent, hospitalisation itself. It's rare that people go to hospital for fun.

    And the ones who most benefited from ICU and hospitalisation were the younger ones and those without serious conditions. Unsurprisingly.
    Fair points, but why didn't Sweden's health system collapse as you outline?
    Much lower population density and a much higher incidence of remote working prior to the pandemic. But even so they did terribly in comparison with their neighbours.
    On what metric did they do terribly?

    Preserving civil liberties?
    Keeping schools open?
    Budget deficit?
    Killing their population. It ranks quite highly in some people's minds.

    Oh and Sweden shut their secondary schools.
    Sweden switched their secondary schools to distance learning for a few weeks, which while not ideal secondary schools at least distance learning is far more viable.

    Sweden was AFAIK the only country in Europe not to shut its primary schools. For that alone, it did far better than every one of its neighbours.

    How many children need to lose their education to justify one fewer excess death in your eyes? What is the QALY value of an excess death, and the QALY value of education in your eyes, or are you just religiously dogmatic about it?
    Well given my son did miles better doing distance learning compared to being in school I am looking at this from both a practical and an ethical/moral point of view.

    Now clearly you, as an advocate of contrived euthanasia have no interest in the ethical and moral questions but even your practical claims are not as black and white as you like to pretend.
    I have never once advocated contrived euthanasia but I am certainly a lifelong advocate of voluntary euthanasia. People who wish to die absolutely should be treated with dignity and respect, but lets not mix it up with this serious conversation by using the term as a contrived insult.

    How old is your son? Secondary or primary, if you don't mind me asking. From what I saw, secondary pupils were better able to cope than primary pupils were with distance learning which makes sense considering their relevant stages of development. Being with other children and adults is a critical part of development for young children and can't be entirely displaced onto a computer screen.

    Sweden kept their primary schools open while other countries closed theirs. On that metric alone, Sweden undeniably had a superior pandemic to any of its neighbours.

    You may prefer other metrics to that one, but that's just your choice. In a free society, we all get to make our own choices, and I value children and their education more highly than just keeping adults alive for longer.

    Would you permanently abolish primary schools if it meant 1 year extra life expectancy for adults? I most certainly would not. Education is more important than mere life expectancy.
    You were certainly happy in principle for oldies to catch covid and die just because you were satisfying your libertarian principles by going out and doing things when infected. That's not voluntary euthanasia, except on your part.
    That's not true. Not just because libertarianism but because going out while infected, but because vaccines have been rolled out.

    I said that while we shouldn't have been locked down, in hindsight, I would still in hindsight have stayed at home pre vaccines if I knew I was infected.

    Now though we are post vaccines. I absolutely have no intention of remaining at home if I'm fit and healthy simply because I'm carrying a virus that people have been vaccinated against.

    Carrying a virus is natural. We all carry viruses all the time as far as I know. Staying at home because of viruses when you're healthy is just paranoia and I'll have no part in that, post vaccines.
    So just checking, as you never answered last time I asked.

    You are asymptomatic but have tested positive for Covid.

    Do you go visit your immunocompromised friend without taking precautions?
    I did answer last time and will answer again. If I knew that I would inform them I'm positive and let them make any informed decisions they want to make.

    This came up recently in my extended family. My granddad's sister died and her son tested positive immediately before the funeral. He informed everyone invited to the funeral that he was positive and would be attending his mother's funeral, so they could make an informed decision as to whether they wanted to attend or not.

    My granddad and his wife chose not to attend as a result. That is their choice. He was annoyed that he "couldn't" attend his sisters funeral and thought that her son should have chosen not to go to go, but respectfully I completely agreed with her son. Yes there are many immunocompromised people at funerals in general, like my granddad (92) but it's their choice whether to attend or not. No reason her son should miss his own mother's funeral just because he's positive.
    That's terribly selfish Bart.
    How?

    How is informing people that you're positive, if you know they are, and letting them make an informed decision based upon that "selfish"?
  • FlatlanderFlatlander Posts: 2,827
    edited August 2022

    kyf_100 said:

    kyf_100 said:

    kyf_100 said:

    kyf_100 said:

    Anyone worked out how workable this is?
    (Though loading the costs on bill payers in the 2040s is very on-brand for a government that really doesn't give a stuff about anyone younger than about 60)

    Energy firm’s £100 billion plan to freeze energy bills for 2 years. A thread
    The Chief Executive of one of the UK’s largest energy providers presented Kwasi Kwarteng and Jacob Rees-Mogg with a £100 billion plan to stave off an energy price emergency last week...
    2/ Keith Anderson, CEO of Scottish Power will present the same plan to Scottish First Minister Nicola Sturgeon later today.
    The plan would involve the government guaranteeing loans to the energy companies enabling them to keep bills frozen while buying the gas needed....
    3/ ...for the next two years.
    £100 billion is Scottish Power’s best estimate of the difference between what it will actually cost to buy the energy and the current cap of £1971.
    Sources close to the company said that Kwasi Kwarteng, tipped to be the next Chancellor....
    4/ ..if Liz Truss is next PM, was broadly receptive to the idea. Sources close to Kwasi Kwarteng wouldn’t be drawn on his enthusiasm. “We had a meeting about it – that’s all”.
    The so called deficit fund would be repaid through bills over the next 20 or so years...


    https://twitter.com/BBCSimonJack/status/1562061859401900033

    Kwarteng and Truss would be well advised to go for it, it dwarfs Labour's plan and probably leaves some room for the 400 quid direct help that Labour would remove.
    In a my future generations' debt is bigger than your future generations' debt.

    I suppose on a positive note with inflation running at 20% p a for the next twenty years the debt will have withered to nothing anyway.
    Well the cost of not freezing everyone to death this winter will be hugely increased public debt. Thems the breaks. Labour are just proposing to do it in a series of depressing interventions rather than this option of more up front but over a longer period.
    Yes, something has to be done and Liz and her Chancellor and Energy Minister have come up with a corker of a plan that shames Labour's meagre effort. But the figure...wow!
    How have the energy companies - the big ones who actually supply energy I mean rather than the small ones that were just effectively trading futures - been doing the last few years?

    Would it be viable to call their bluff? Or even possible?

    Keep the energy cap where it is or even reduce it. Let the energy companies take the pain and see how much they can take and only then step in and introduce the support scheme when they are on the verge of going bust. It would ensure that they are actually doing all they can rather than just looking for a way to support their profits.

    Should any energy company be doing more than getting by right now?

    I am not actually advocating this as I am sure there are way too many flaws in my reasoning but just thought it was worth at least discussing.
    The mere fact that it's the energy companies favoured solution suggests to me it requires precisely this kind of scrutiny.

    One way or another, the taxpayer is going to be on the hook for a lot of debt - but how much of that should be going into energy suppliers profits?
    Well this is the issue with Labours plan too isnt it? Its going to cost us tens of billions either way
    I think the question is how many billions will be profits for the energy companies. When nationalisation means we could take those profits out of the equation.

    The energy companies are very keen on the "give us a big loan and we'll pay it off over the next 20 years with higher but manageable energy bills"

    Is that the best deal for Joe Billpayer, or is it the best deal for the energy companies?
    Nationalisation in this situation as Gordon Brown pushed for is so stupid, the crisis coming here is finding and getting money to those most in need, nationalisation will be using that money where it’s not needed, buying stuff we don’t need.

    Richard Tyndall is right, squeeze to find where the lean point is, leave any fat in the system (like news reports of number profits, dividends, pay and bonuses) whilst people freeze and starve lose business and homes is both politically toxic and a bit immoral.
    I am inclined towards what TSE was saying downthread, that there is a serious risk of general strike and civil disorder next year if the government do not get a handle on this. I'm not sure "trimming the fat in the system" is going to cover it.

    My natural instincts are libertarian ones, however I believe the government has a duty to defends its citizens in times of war. Not just with the army, however.

    Russia has weaponised energy against us in a proxy war. It is their intention to turn the screws as much as possible, to weaken our resolve against their invasion of Ukraine, and create precisely the kind of civil unrest that has been warned about downthread.

    As far as I'm concerned, that means greater government intervention is morally justifiable in this particular circumstance.

    It needs to be about more than just preventing pensioners from freezing to death and giving a few handouts here and there. We need to ensure an energy supply that is affordable for all this winter - and that may mean looking at radical solutions such as nationalisation to control prices, furloughing energy intensive industries, and scheduling rolling blackouts to control demand.

    The alternative is bankrupting hundreds of thousands of businesses, mass unemployment, strikes and civil unrest.
    I think the penny is dropping right across the board isn’t it - this is just not the moment to find the money for tax cuts. Hence the mood you describe, Tax cuts the solution promised by government, so they drop like stone in the polls, as 97.7% of electorate know it’s not the right moment for those policies. There is a right time for such policies and determination. But this is not that moment.
    Supply is down by 15% or so due to Russia. That means demand needs to drop by a similar amount.

    Proposals like taking out a loan to freeze prices now, and paying that astronomical sum back over the next 20 years or so, don't fully solve the problem. There is simply only so much energy to go around. We can't keep bidding it up and up in a bidding war and putting it on the never never.

    We need to start looking seriously at how to reduce demand this winter while keeping the economy alive - it's going to require substantial government intervention.

    Keeping prices artificially low will only stimulate demand. Demand reduction is going to need to be part of the equation. It won't be popular, but ultimately difficult decisions need to be made during wartime, that's what a government is there for. And I would rather the government allocates available supply on a harm reduction basis (to both lives and the economy) than allow the free market to allocate energy to the highest bidder.
    Yes I made exactly this point a while back. We are at war and we need to take wartime measures, rationing supply in the national interest not subsidising demand that we can't afford or letting the rich outbid the poor. People are willing to put up with a lot if there is a sense that everyone is making the same sacrifices and if there is a clear objective. They won't put up with being told to put on an extra jumper while the wealthy turn up their thermostat and the energy firms enjoy surging profits. We need leadership on this, now.
    It would have to be a purchasing cartel involving all the other buyers, though.

    No point reducing our consumption 15% if Germany or Italy don't (other than the direct savings).

    Who are our competitors for the supply? Are they all European?
  • kinabalukinabalu Posts: 32,965
    edited August 2022
    Selebian said:

    kinabalu said:

    Driver said:

    kinabalu said:

    Driver said:

    kinabalu said:

    MISTY said:

    MISTY said:

    TOPPING said:

    The key reason Sweden did better during the pandemic is little to do with population density or that we are incorrigibly anti-social.

    It is to to with the independence of government agencies and the innate respect that most of the population has for the state, regional and local governments and other public agencies.

    On the schools point, it was only children 15+ who were, relatively briefly, prohibited from attending school physically. Children suffered *much* less than in the rest of Europe. That we favour our young over our old is one of the greatest triumphs, and the greatest tragedies, of modern Swedish society.

    You didn't do better. Compared to your neighbours you did far worse. Now extremists like Bart - typical of those who know the price of everything and the value of nothing - seem to think this was a price worth paying but most reasonable people would disagree with him.
    Neighbours, schmeighbours. Sweden IIRC outperformed many, most if not all other countries, from memory. In particular wrt excess deaths:

    Googled link: https://www.thelancet.com/article/S0140-6736(21)02796-3/fulltext

    Did it do worse than its immediate neighbours? Depends. It did better than Denmark (which has a very high population density) but worse than Norway (which has a comparatively tiny population density).

    imo weighed the balances well and overall I have no doubt will experience fewer post-covid problems, undiagnosed illnesses, mental health issues.

    And that's to say nothing of the freedom issue which you seem to dismiss, you of all people, as being of little or no import.
    It did worse than Denmark.

    Deaths per 1 million population

    (UK 2,724) For reference
    Sweden 1,920
    Denmark 1,177
    Finland 983
    Norway 706.

    Freedom is indeed important. But the temporary (and honestly very slight) limits on freedom we suffered were really as nothing compared to the rather more serious curtailment of freedom that results from being dead.

    The premise you put forth of a choice between lockdown and death is utterly spurious.

    Evidence mounts every month that lockdowns actually caused the deaths of people who were at no risk from covid whatever, so much so even the Telegraph admitted the other day the cure may have been more deadly than the disease.
    "Even the Telegraph admitted..."

    In an article that sparked all of this because it was a pile of crap and based on "We don't like lockdowns so the excess deaths must have been lockdowns."

    Whilst a far better analysis with far more work came up with the actual answer.

    Bringing up the other side of the ledger really is uncomfortable for you, isn't it Andy?

    Lockdowns kill people who would have survived covid. Suicides, missed medical diagnoses, upsurges in obesity due to inactivity, poverty caused by incurring crushing debt paying people to do nothing. Many more have their life chances ruined.

    Deal with it.
    Yes, a great pity there wasn't a pain-free costless way to deal with the pandemic.

    Ah well. Nice for all the little children to pretend there might have been.
    Lockdown zealots are the people who pretended that there was, and it was called lockdown.
    Not me guv. I argued against some of the rules, eg the brutal care home regime and the micro managing of household behaviour, I argued for more guidance and less law, and I argued for the Great Unlock of 2021 to be a deal swifter.

    There's plenty of debate to be had around all this. But not on the fact that we had to enforce distancing between people at critical times to manage the pandemic. Denial of this - whether to troll or due to lack of understanding - is not respectable.
    The problem with the bit in bold is that according to the "experts", all times were "critical times".
    You're sounding like Lawrence Fox now. And I'm not going to pretend to be a Lockdown Zealot just to balance things up.

    My point was and is that lockdowns of some sort at certain times were necessary to manage the pandemic. I hold this truth to be self-evident.
    There's an interesting question around whether asking nicely could have been sufficiently effective. But of course, if it was sufficiently effective then actually the lives of most people would have been pretty similar*, just voluntarily so, so most of the costs** would have been the same.

    *with some possible variations. People might have said sod it, I'm meeting my mate in the garden for a distanced drink/I'm going on walk outside with my mum, not getting too close - things that would have made lives better and been pretty low risk - i.e. they might have self-restricted in ways that were more effective than what was proscribed by law, but early on there wasn't really the information for people to make that choice, so voluntary behaviour would likely have followed guidance, largely.
    ** there's another question around whether a small minority disregarding guidance because they really had e.g. a mental health need to go and see someone else in person would have made much difference, but then we did have support bubbles and the like. In some cases the normal things that people need, like going to the office and seeing people, going to the pub, playing team sports etc would require a large group of people to decide to ignore the guidance, which, if it did happen, would have tended to reduce effectiveness
    Yes there are many interesting questions inc those you mention here. Also of note - in the big post pandemic audit if it's ever done - is that to a large extent the restrictions on behaviour were in practice voluntary regardless of what the law said. Eg I didn't follow all the Rules by any means yet I was never - as a rational person - seriously worried about the police feeling my collar. Ditto every single person I know.
  • MortimerMortimer Posts: 13,493

    MISTY said:

    MISTY said:

    kinabalu said:

    Driver said:

    kinabalu said:

    Driver said:

    TOPPING said:

    1. Diseases will always kill us and if they don't then I have bad news about life in any case.
    2. I can totally understand that the government, looking as we all did at those pictures from Italy of people dying in the corridors, had to do something and lockdowns was it.
    3. The whole point of society is a balance. Tragically it is not to keep every Archie alive at the expense of others who would benefit from those resources.

    Once the NHS was in no danger of "collapsing" as in real collapse, not the collapse that the Graun and the various health unions call every other week, then there should absolutely have been no more lockdowns.

    There should have been compensation for pubs if they wanted to close and teachers if they wanted to stay home but no mandate.

    Our freedoms are so precious and the great and good of PB dismiss them instantly and soil themselves at the first real test of freedom that we in the UK have had for 80 years. Doesn't bode well for the future.

    Which is a greater threat to Freedom: a temporary measure in the face of a novel pandemic, or a sustained campaign by government to restrict political protest and dissent? Is the collapse of the Court system due to chronic neglect perhaps a more pernicious threat? Is the drive to ban freedom of speech under the guise of Fighting Wokery more problematic? Are restrictions on the right to strike actually more consequential? I think one can debate whether temporary lockdowns were really the "first real test of freedom that we in the UK have had for 80 years".

    But, sure, lockdowns should be avoided. The way to avoid lockdowns is with better public health measures. We can look at a country like Japan that never had a national lockdown and had far fewer COVID cases. A better Test & Trace system, with more support for people self-isolating, would have been a huge help in the UK. A better funded primary health care system would have helped.

    This ain't rocket science. If you don't want lockdowns, do public health better.
    No, it isn't rocket science. If you don't want lockdowns, don't implement lockdowns.
    How would you have hampered the spread of the virus at those critical times then?

    It spread via close contact between people remember - not by black magic.
    Strong advice, not legislation. And this would have included strong advice to organisations and companies to stop doing counterproductive things, like supermarkets cutting their hours, which merely ensured that the average number of people in their shops at any given time was higher than it needed to be.
    Ok so Muscly goes "You MUST stay at home etc etc" but no laws are changed.

    Why is that so much better iyo?

    And what happens if people don't respond to the extent necessary to ward off a public health catastrophe?

    It isn't warding off anything, its just changing the emphasis of risk. You assume these measures, even short term, are risk free, but they aren't.

    Every kind of restriction is a swings and roundabouts calculation. Not how it was presented at the time (it was 'saving lives'), but we now know that is true.

    At best lockdown was sacrificing some lives to save others. At best. What's the balance? who knows?
    https://vf.politicalbetting.com/discussion/comment/4082138#Comment_4082138

    "Lockdown is the result of a failure of public health policy. It is hugely damaging. And it is used when not locking down is worse. "

    We do not assume these measures are risk free.
    Lockdown was presented to us, ad nauseam, as 'saving lives' in a huge propaganda campaign. We know now it was never that.

    That's not down to you, I understand. You were not a part of that campaign.
    Try rewriting that sentence with rises instead of cuts. Is this the time for tax rises?

    Truss isn't proposing some massive swingeing tax cuts taking tax rates to unseen lows like 16% Income Tax as Sunak is proposing. She's advocating bring some taxes back to the same rate they were five months ago.
    Indeed, her proposals are more in line with the 2019 Manifesto than the current Govt's tax rate or Sunak's proposed rates....
  • AlistairMAlistairM Posts: 1,591
    kyf_100 said:

    kyf_100 said:

    kyf_100 said:

    kyf_100 said:

    Anyone worked out how workable this is?
    (Though loading the costs on bill payers in the 2040s is very on-brand for a government that really doesn't give a stuff about anyone younger than about 60)

    Energy firm’s £100 billion plan to freeze energy bills for 2 years. A thread
    The Chief Executive of one of the UK’s largest energy providers presented Kwasi Kwarteng and Jacob Rees-Mogg with a £100 billion plan to stave off an energy price emergency last week...
    2/ Keith Anderson, CEO of Scottish Power will present the same plan to Scottish First Minister Nicola Sturgeon later today.
    The plan would involve the government guaranteeing loans to the energy companies enabling them to keep bills frozen while buying the gas needed....
    3/ ...for the next two years.
    £100 billion is Scottish Power’s best estimate of the difference between what it will actually cost to buy the energy and the current cap of £1971.
    Sources close to the company said that Kwasi Kwarteng, tipped to be the next Chancellor....
    4/ ..if Liz Truss is next PM, was broadly receptive to the idea. Sources close to Kwasi Kwarteng wouldn’t be drawn on his enthusiasm. “We had a meeting about it – that’s all”.
    The so called deficit fund would be repaid through bills over the next 20 or so years...


    https://twitter.com/BBCSimonJack/status/1562061859401900033

    Kwarteng and Truss would be well advised to go for it, it dwarfs Labour's plan and probably leaves some room for the 400 quid direct help that Labour would remove.
    In a my future generations' debt is bigger than your future generations' debt.

    I suppose on a positive note with inflation running at 20% p a for the next twenty years the debt will have withered to nothing anyway.
    Well the cost of not freezing everyone to death this winter will be hugely increased public debt. Thems the breaks. Labour are just proposing to do it in a series of depressing interventions rather than this option of more up front but over a longer period.
    Yes, something has to be done and Liz and her Chancellor and Energy Minister have come up with a corker of a plan that shames Labour's meagre effort. But the figure...wow!
    How have the energy companies - the big ones who actually supply energy I mean rather than the small ones that were just effectively trading futures - been doing the last few years?

    Would it be viable to call their bluff? Or even possible?

    Keep the energy cap where it is or even reduce it. Let the energy companies take the pain and see how much they can take and only then step in and introduce the support scheme when they are on the verge of going bust. It would ensure that they are actually doing all they can rather than just looking for a way to support their profits.

    Should any energy company be doing more than getting by right now?

    I am not actually advocating this as I am sure there are way too many flaws in my reasoning but just thought it was worth at least discussing.
    The mere fact that it's the energy companies favoured solution suggests to me it requires precisely this kind of scrutiny.

    One way or another, the taxpayer is going to be on the hook for a lot of debt - but how much of that should be going into energy suppliers profits?
    Well this is the issue with Labours plan too isnt it? Its going to cost us tens of billions either way
    I think the question is how many billions will be profits for the energy companies. When nationalisation means we could take those profits out of the equation.

    The energy companies are very keen on the "give us a big loan and we'll pay it off over the next 20 years with higher but manageable energy bills"

    Is that the best deal for Joe Billpayer, or is it the best deal for the energy companies?
    Nationalisation in this situation as Gordon Brown pushed for is so stupid, the crisis coming here is finding and getting money to those most in need, nationalisation will be using that money where it’s not needed, buying stuff we don’t need.

    Richard Tyndall is right, squeeze to find where the lean point is, leave any fat in the system (like news reports of number profits, dividends, pay and bonuses) whilst people freeze and starve lose business and homes is both politically toxic and a bit immoral.
    I am inclined towards what TSE was saying downthread, that there is a serious risk of general strike and civil disorder next year if the government do not get a handle on this. I'm not sure "trimming the fat in the system" is going to cover it.

    My natural instincts are libertarian ones, however I believe the government has a duty to defends its citizens in times of war. Not just with the army, however.

    Russia has weaponised energy against us in a proxy war. It is their intention to turn the screws as much as possible, to weaken our resolve against their invasion of Ukraine, and create precisely the kind of civil unrest that has been warned about downthread.

    As far as I'm concerned, that means greater government intervention is morally justifiable in this particular circumstance.

    It needs to be about more than just preventing pensioners from freezing to death and giving a few handouts here and there. We need to ensure an energy supply that is affordable for all this winter - and that may mean looking at radical solutions such as nationalisation to control prices, furloughing energy intensive industries, and scheduling rolling blackouts to control demand.

    The alternative is bankrupting hundreds of thousands of businesses, mass unemployment, strikes and civil unrest.
    I think the penny is dropping right across the board isn’t it - this is just not the moment to find the money for tax cuts. Hence the mood you describe, Tax cuts the solution promised by government, so they drop like stone in the polls, as 97.7% of electorate know it’s not the right moment for those policies. There is a right time for such policies and determination. But this is not that moment.
    Supply is down by 15% or so due to Russia. That means demand needs to drop by a similar amount.

    Proposals like taking out a loan to freeze prices now, and paying that astronomical sum back over the next 20 years or so, don't fully solve the problem. There is simply only so much energy to go around. We can't keep bidding it up and up in a bidding war and putting it on the never never.

    We need to start looking seriously at how to reduce demand this winter while keeping the economy alive - it's going to require substantial government intervention.

    Keeping prices artificially low will only stimulate demand. Demand reduction is going to need to be part of the equation. It won't be popular, but ultimately difficult decisions need to be made during wartime, that's what a government is there for. And I would rather the government allocates available supply on a harm reduction basis (to both lives and the economy) than allow the free market to allocate energy to the highest bidder.
    There will be a natural reduction in usage as people avoid where possible unnecessary energy use. I have small portable a/c unit I use on warm days to help keep my small upstairs study cool. It is a bit warm today and in other times I would have used it but I'm choosing not to. Similar decisions will be made up and down the land. I think TSE mentioned also that his company will be going back to WFH to save on energy costs. That will also feed into overal reduced energy consumption.

    Any high-energy usage devices have already become massively unpopular. See for example this 2KW outdoor heater reduced from £55 to less than £14. Clearly no one wants to be buying that sort of product right now and it will reduce our energy consumption!
    https://www.hotukdeals.com/deals/quartz-element-grey-2kw-electric-wall-mounted-heater-3985162

    Having said that we do need to look into all avenues for reducing our energy consumption, particularly around gas usage.
  • rottenboroughrottenborough Posts: 55,103

    kyf_100 said:

    kyf_100 said:

    kyf_100 said:

    kyf_100 said:

    Anyone worked out how workable this is?
    (Though loading the costs on bill payers in the 2040s is very on-brand for a government that really doesn't give a stuff about anyone younger than about 60)

    Energy firm’s £100 billion plan to freeze energy bills for 2 years. A thread
    The Chief Executive of one of the UK’s largest energy providers presented Kwasi Kwarteng and Jacob Rees-Mogg with a £100 billion plan to stave off an energy price emergency last week...
    2/ Keith Anderson, CEO of Scottish Power will present the same plan to Scottish First Minister Nicola Sturgeon later today.
    The plan would involve the government guaranteeing loans to the energy companies enabling them to keep bills frozen while buying the gas needed....
    3/ ...for the next two years.
    £100 billion is Scottish Power’s best estimate of the difference between what it will actually cost to buy the energy and the current cap of £1971.
    Sources close to the company said that Kwasi Kwarteng, tipped to be the next Chancellor....
    4/ ..if Liz Truss is next PM, was broadly receptive to the idea. Sources close to Kwasi Kwarteng wouldn’t be drawn on his enthusiasm. “We had a meeting about it – that’s all”.
    The so called deficit fund would be repaid through bills over the next 20 or so years...


    https://twitter.com/BBCSimonJack/status/1562061859401900033

    Kwarteng and Truss would be well advised to go for it, it dwarfs Labour's plan and probably leaves some room for the 400 quid direct help that Labour would remove.
    In a my future generations' debt is bigger than your future generations' debt.

    I suppose on a positive note with inflation running at 20% p a for the next twenty years the debt will have withered to nothing anyway.
    Well the cost of not freezing everyone to death this winter will be hugely increased public debt. Thems the breaks. Labour are just proposing to do it in a series of depressing interventions rather than this option of more up front but over a longer period.
    Yes, something has to be done and Liz and her Chancellor and Energy Minister have come up with a corker of a plan that shames Labour's meagre effort. But the figure...wow!
    How have the energy companies - the big ones who actually supply energy I mean rather than the small ones that were just effectively trading futures - been doing the last few years?

    Would it be viable to call their bluff? Or even possible?

    Keep the energy cap where it is or even reduce it. Let the energy companies take the pain and see how much they can take and only then step in and introduce the support scheme when they are on the verge of going bust. It would ensure that they are actually doing all they can rather than just looking for a way to support their profits.

    Should any energy company be doing more than getting by right now?

    I am not actually advocating this as I am sure there are way too many flaws in my reasoning but just thought it was worth at least discussing.
    The mere fact that it's the energy companies favoured solution suggests to me it requires precisely this kind of scrutiny.

    One way or another, the taxpayer is going to be on the hook for a lot of debt - but how much of that should be going into energy suppliers profits?
    Well this is the issue with Labours plan too isnt it? Its going to cost us tens of billions either way
    I think the question is how many billions will be profits for the energy companies. When nationalisation means we could take those profits out of the equation.

    The energy companies are very keen on the "give us a big loan and we'll pay it off over the next 20 years with higher but manageable energy bills"

    Is that the best deal for Joe Billpayer, or is it the best deal for the energy companies?
    Nationalisation in this situation as Gordon Brown pushed for is so stupid, the crisis coming here is finding and getting money to those most in need, nationalisation will be using that money where it’s not needed, buying stuff we don’t need.

    Richard Tyndall is right, squeeze to find where the lean point is, leave any fat in the system (like news reports of number profits, dividends, pay and bonuses) whilst people freeze and starve lose business and homes is both politically toxic and a bit immoral.
    I am inclined towards what TSE was saying downthread, that there is a serious risk of general strike and civil disorder next year if the government do not get a handle on this. I'm not sure "trimming the fat in the system" is going to cover it.

    My natural instincts are libertarian ones, however I believe the government has a duty to defends its citizens in times of war. Not just with the army, however.

    Russia has weaponised energy against us in a proxy war. It is their intention to turn the screws as much as possible, to weaken our resolve against their invasion of Ukraine, and create precisely the kind of civil unrest that has been warned about downthread.

    As far as I'm concerned, that means greater government intervention is morally justifiable in this particular circumstance.

    It needs to be about more than just preventing pensioners from freezing to death and giving a few handouts here and there. We need to ensure an energy supply that is affordable for all this winter - and that may mean looking at radical solutions such as nationalisation to control prices, furloughing energy intensive industries, and scheduling rolling blackouts to control demand.

    The alternative is bankrupting hundreds of thousands of businesses, mass unemployment, strikes and civil unrest.
    I think the penny is dropping right across the board isn’t it - this is just not the moment to find the money for tax cuts. Hence the mood you describe, Tax cuts the solution promised by government, so they drop like stone in the polls, as 97.7% of electorate know it’s not the right moment for those policies. There is a right time for such policies and determination. But this is not that moment.
    Supply is down by 15% or so due to Russia. That means demand needs to drop by a similar amount.

    Proposals like taking out a loan to freeze prices now, and paying that astronomical sum back over the next 20 years or so, don't fully solve the problem. There is simply only so much energy to go around. We can't keep bidding it up and up in a bidding war and putting it on the never never.

    We need to start looking seriously at how to reduce demand this winter while keeping the economy alive - it's going to require substantial government intervention.

    Keeping prices artificially low will only stimulate demand. Demand reduction is going to need to be part of the equation. It won't be popular, but ultimately difficult decisions need to be made during wartime, that's what a government is there for. And I would rather the government allocates available supply on a harm reduction basis (to both lives and the economy) than allow the free market to allocate energy to the highest bidder.
    Yes I made exactly this point a while back. We are at war and we need to take wartime measures, rationing supply in the national interest not subsidising demand that we can't afford or letting the rich outbid the poor. People are willing to put up with a lot if there is a sense that everyone is making the same sacrifices and if there is a clear objective. They won't put up with being told to put on an extra jumper while the wealthy turn up their thermostat and the energy firms enjoy surging profits. We need leadership on this, now.
    Maybe it should be a partial freeze on price rather than a total, so that price signals are still pushing demand down?
  • TazTaz Posts: 6,592

    Taz said:

    HYUFD said:

    Driver said:

    Lets pile more debt onto future generations

    As opposed to your alternative, which obviously is...?
    Huge property taxes on the wealthiest generations that squandered the family silver
    Which would be hugely unpopular amongst 45 to 65 year olds who would inherit from them
    While tax on inheritance would be a fair way of helping in this crises I do not know of any party suggesting it
    A wealth tax is not an unreasonable proposition.

    Event though Galloway seems to think everyone about 55 is wealthy beyond the dreams of avarice and has mugged his generation off and all of us got free Uni tuition, this isn't the case.

    However some form or wealth tax would only target those with wealth above a certain level and could be a useful implement to address so-called intergenerational unfairness. Wealthy pensioners with a 6 bed home in the home counties chip in, poor pensioners with a 2 up 2 down in Spennymoor don't
    To be equitable, I think it would have to be to a property tax rather than based on overall wealth in order to avoid the moral hazard of taxing savings (which are being hit by inflation anyway).
    Or pensions which are subject to market fluctuations.

    There was a wealth tax proposed by a self appointed group a couple of years back. Tax on wealth over £500K at 1% a year for 5 years. The chancellor at the time rejected it. I suspect it’s the sort of tax that is popular as people don’t think they’d be caught by it. But many millions would.
  • rottenboroughrottenborough Posts: 55,103

    HYUFD said:

    HYUFD said:

    Driver said:

    Lets pile more debt onto future generations

    As opposed to your alternative, which obviously is...?
    Huge property taxes on the wealthiest generations that squandered the family silver
    Which would be hugely unpopular amongst 45 to 65 year olds who would inherit from them
    You are back on with your old inheritance mumbo- jumbo again.

    Anyone who goes into a care home for any length of time, really has nothing much to leave. I can show you the bills and a total lack of interest from Herefordshire Council if you like.
    Only 25% of over 65s at most will ever need to go into a care home, the rest will either die first or require only at home care. Plus the government has now capped care costs at £86k anyway
    The cap has not become law yet
    Anyone relying on this becoming law should exercise extreme caution in their planning...
    It is law. It recvd Royal Assent back in April.

    It starts to work from Oct 2023. Five councils begin pilots at end of this year.

    What you can't rely on is the Government not pausing it all by not implementing the regulations associated with it. Which is what happened with Cameron when the Dilnot cap was first legislated for.
  • AlistairMAlistairM Posts: 1,591

    max seddon
    @maxseddon
    ·
    4h
    Russian senator Leonid Slutsky:

    "Whatever your political party, faith, or age, there is only one way. One country! One president! One victory!"

    ===

    Sounds like the GOP.

    Sounds like Germany in the 1930s (the literal motto of the Nazi party) - Ein Volk! Ein Reich! Ein Führer!

    Yet the Russians have the cheek to accuse the Ukrainians of being the Nazis!
  • ClippPClippP Posts: 1,370
    I wonder if, in the search for unimaginable wealth for the government to tax, anybody anywhere has thought of taxing trusts? Especially the tax-dodging ones, based in tax havens....
  • FoxyFoxy Posts: 36,821

    max seddon
    @maxseddon
    ·
    4h
    Russian senator Leonid Slutsky:

    "Whatever your political party, faith, or age, there is only one way. One country! One president! One victory!"

    ===

    Sounds like the GOP.

    Sounds a bit more like Ein Reich! Ein Volk! Ein Fuhrer!

  • tlg86tlg86 Posts: 24,023
    edited August 2022

    max seddon
    @maxseddon
    ·
    4h
    Russian senator Leonid Slutsky:

    "Whatever your political party, faith, or age, there is only one way. One country! One president! One victory!"

    ===

    Sounds like the GOP.

    For a moment there, I thought the former CSKA Moscow, Russia, and Hull City manager had gone into politics. Turns out there are two Leonid Slutskys:

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Leonid_Slutsky_(politician)

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Leonid_Slutsky_(football_coach)

    Oh! The football manager isn't a fan of Putin:

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Leonid_Slutsky_(football_coach)#TV_commenting_career
  • kinabalu said:

    MISTY said:

    kinabalu said:

    Driver said:

    kinabalu said:

    Driver said:

    TOPPING said:

    1. Diseases will always kill us and if they don't then I have bad news about life in any case.
    2. I can totally understand that the government, looking as we all did at those pictures from Italy of people dying in the corridors, had to do something and lockdowns was it.
    3. The whole point of society is a balance. Tragically it is not to keep every Archie alive at the expense of others who would benefit from those resources.

    Once the NHS was in no danger of "collapsing" as in real collapse, not the collapse that the Graun and the various health unions call every other week, then there should absolutely have been no more lockdowns.

    There should have been compensation for pubs if they wanted to close and teachers if they wanted to stay home but no mandate.

    Our freedoms are so precious and the great and good of PB dismiss them instantly and soil themselves at the first real test of freedom that we in the UK have had for 80 years. Doesn't bode well for the future.

    Which is a greater threat to Freedom: a temporary measure in the face of a novel pandemic, or a sustained campaign by government to restrict political protest and dissent? Is the collapse of the Court system due to chronic neglect perhaps a more pernicious threat? Is the drive to ban freedom of speech under the guise of Fighting Wokery more problematic? Are restrictions on the right to strike actually more consequential? I think one can debate whether temporary lockdowns were really the "first real test of freedom that we in the UK have had for 80 years".

    But, sure, lockdowns should be avoided. The way to avoid lockdowns is with better public health measures. We can look at a country like Japan that never had a national lockdown and had far fewer COVID cases. A better Test & Trace system, with more support for people self-isolating, would have been a huge help in the UK. A better funded primary health care system would have helped.

    This ain't rocket science. If you don't want lockdowns, do public health better.
    No, it isn't rocket science. If you don't want lockdowns, don't implement lockdowns.
    How would you have hampered the spread of the virus at those critical times then?

    It spread via close contact between people remember - not by black magic.
    Strong advice, not legislation. And this would have included strong advice to organisations and companies to stop doing counterproductive things, like supermarkets cutting their hours, which merely ensured that the average number of people in their shops at any given time was higher than it needed to be.
    Ok so Muscly goes "You MUST stay at home etc etc" but no laws are changed.

    Why is that so much better iyo?

    And what happens if people don't respond to the extent necessary to ward off a public health catastrophe?
    It isn't warding off anything, its just changing the emphasis of risk. You assume these measures, even short term, are risk free, but they aren't.

    Every kind of restriction is a swings and roundabouts calculation. Not how it was presented at the time (it was 'saving lives'), but we now know that is true.

    At best lockdown was sacrificing some lives to save others. At best. What's the balance? who knows?
    I never assumed the NPIs were cost free. However there was a train about to run us over and it had to be slowed down. The idea of somebody configuring and running a super-complex, multi-level cost/benefit model and trying to incorporate and quantify things like impact on mental health before we did anything is for the birds. We were too late acting as it is and found it hard enough just to model the spread of the virus and hospitalisations and deaths.
    You're absolutely right that there wasn't a time to analyse it in advance, but there is time to do so in hindsight and in hindsight lockdown was a mistake.

    It was certainly not "too late".
    In hindsight paying my home insurance last year was a mistake. My house didn't burn down after all. What a waste of money!

    (That's only one argument, of course. It is not at all clear, even in hindsight, that not locking down would have had lower social and economic costs than locking down did.)
  • kinabalu said:

    MISTY said:

    kinabalu said:

    Driver said:

    kinabalu said:

    Driver said:

    TOPPING said:

    1. Diseases will always kill us and if they don't then I have bad news about life in any case.
    2. I can totally understand that the government, looking as we all did at those pictures from Italy of people dying in the corridors, had to do something and lockdowns was it.
    3. The whole point of society is a balance. Tragically it is not to keep every Archie alive at the expense of others who would benefit from those resources.

    Once the NHS was in no danger of "collapsing" as in real collapse, not the collapse that the Graun and the various health unions call every other week, then there should absolutely have been no more lockdowns.

    There should have been compensation for pubs if they wanted to close and teachers if they wanted to stay home but no mandate.

    Our freedoms are so precious and the great and good of PB dismiss them instantly and soil themselves at the first real test of freedom that we in the UK have had for 80 years. Doesn't bode well for the future.

    Which is a greater threat to Freedom: a temporary measure in the face of a novel pandemic, or a sustained campaign by government to restrict political protest and dissent? Is the collapse of the Court system due to chronic neglect perhaps a more pernicious threat? Is the drive to ban freedom of speech under the guise of Fighting Wokery more problematic? Are restrictions on the right to strike actually more consequential? I think one can debate whether temporary lockdowns were really the "first real test of freedom that we in the UK have had for 80 years".

    But, sure, lockdowns should be avoided. The way to avoid lockdowns is with better public health measures. We can look at a country like Japan that never had a national lockdown and had far fewer COVID cases. A better Test & Trace system, with more support for people self-isolating, would have been a huge help in the UK. A better funded primary health care system would have helped.

    This ain't rocket science. If you don't want lockdowns, do public health better.
    No, it isn't rocket science. If you don't want lockdowns, don't implement lockdowns.
    How would you have hampered the spread of the virus at those critical times then?

    It spread via close contact between people remember - not by black magic.
    Strong advice, not legislation. And this would have included strong advice to organisations and companies to stop doing counterproductive things, like supermarkets cutting their hours, which merely ensured that the average number of people in their shops at any given time was higher than it needed to be.
    Ok so Muscly goes "You MUST stay at home etc etc" but no laws are changed.

    Why is that so much better iyo?

    And what happens if people don't respond to the extent necessary to ward off a public health catastrophe?
    It isn't warding off anything, its just changing the emphasis of risk. You assume these measures, even short term, are risk free, but they aren't.

    Every kind of restriction is a swings and roundabouts calculation. Not how it was presented at the time (it was 'saving lives'), but we now know that is true.

    At best lockdown was sacrificing some lives to save others. At best. What's the balance? who knows?
    I never assumed the NPIs were cost free. However there was a train about to run us over and it had to be slowed down. The idea of somebody configuring and running a super-complex, multi-level cost/benefit model and trying to incorporate and quantify things like impact on mental health before we did anything is for the birds. We were too late acting as it is and found it hard enough just to model the spread of the virus and hospitalisations and deaths.
    You're absolutely right that there wasn't a time to analyse it in advance, but there is time to do so in hindsight and in hindsight lockdown was a mistake.

    It was certainly not "too late".
    In hindsight paying my home insurance last year was a mistake. My house didn't burn down after all. What a waste of money!

    (That's only one argument, of course. It is not at all clear, even in hindsight, that not locking down would have had lower social and economic costs than locking down did.)
    If your home insurance only cost a few quid then it was probably worthwhile to have. If your home insurance cost more than your home and required your children to be out of school for months etc then it probably wasn't.
  • kinabalukinabalu Posts: 32,965
    Driver said:

    kinabalu said:

    Driver said:

    kinabalu said:

    Driver said:

    TOPPING said:

    1. Diseases will always kill us and if they don't then I have bad news about life in any case.
    2. I can totally understand that the government, looking as we all did at those pictures from Italy of people dying in the corridors, had to do something and lockdowns was it.
    3. The whole point of society is a balance. Tragically it is not to keep every Archie alive at the expense of others who would benefit from those resources.

    Once the NHS was in no danger of "collapsing" as in real collapse, not the collapse that the Graun and the various health unions call every other week, then there should absolutely have been no more lockdowns.

    There should have been compensation for pubs if they wanted to close and teachers if they wanted to stay home but no mandate.

    Our freedoms are so precious and the great and good of PB dismiss them instantly and soil themselves at the first real test of freedom that we in the UK have had for 80 years. Doesn't bode well for the future.

    Which is a greater threat to Freedom: a temporary measure in the face of a novel pandemic, or a sustained campaign by government to restrict political protest and dissent? Is the collapse of the Court system due to chronic neglect perhaps a more pernicious threat? Is the drive to ban freedom of speech under the guise of Fighting Wokery more problematic? Are restrictions on the right to strike actually more consequential? I think one can debate whether temporary lockdowns were really the "first real test of freedom that we in the UK have had for 80 years".

    But, sure, lockdowns should be avoided. The way to avoid lockdowns is with better public health measures. We can look at a country like Japan that never had a national lockdown and had far fewer COVID cases. A better Test & Trace system, with more support for people self-isolating, would have been a huge help in the UK. A better funded primary health care system would have helped.

    This ain't rocket science. If you don't want lockdowns, do public health better.
    No, it isn't rocket science. If you don't want lockdowns, don't implement lockdowns.
    How would you have hampered the spread of the virus at those critical times then?

    It spread via close contact between people remember - not by black magic.
    Strong advice, not legislation. And this would have included strong advice to organisations and companies to stop doing counterproductive things, like supermarkets cutting their hours, which merely ensured that the average number of people in their shops at any given time was higher than it needed to be.
    Ok so Muscly goes "You MUST stay at home etc etc" but no laws are changed.

    Why is that so much better iyo?

    And what happens if people don't respond to the extent necessary to ward off a public health catastrophe?
    Because you haven't established a principle that ministers can abolish civil liberties at a stroke of a pen. You also keep away from people focusing on the minutiae of the rules instead of the more fundamental question: essentially, "is your journey really necessary?".

    The latter is a moot question, people were already responding to the necessary extent as was clear in the data.
    They weren't though. After the Stay At Home instruction human interactions fell off a cliff. I still remember the eerie ghost-town that was central London.

    But anyway, thanks for offering some reasoning. Your points in para 1 are respectable.
  • AlistairM said:

    kyf_100 said:

    kyf_100 said:

    kyf_100 said:

    kyf_100 said:

    Anyone worked out how workable this is?
    (Though loading the costs on bill payers in the 2040s is very on-brand for a government that really doesn't give a stuff about anyone younger than about 60)

    Energy firm’s £100 billion plan to freeze energy bills for 2 years. A thread
    The Chief Executive of one of the UK’s largest energy providers presented Kwasi Kwarteng and Jacob Rees-Mogg with a £100 billion plan to stave off an energy price emergency last week...
    2/ Keith Anderson, CEO of Scottish Power will present the same plan to Scottish First Minister Nicola Sturgeon later today.
    The plan would involve the government guaranteeing loans to the energy companies enabling them to keep bills frozen while buying the gas needed....
    3/ ...for the next two years.
    £100 billion is Scottish Power’s best estimate of the difference between what it will actually cost to buy the energy and the current cap of £1971.
    Sources close to the company said that Kwasi Kwarteng, tipped to be the next Chancellor....
    4/ ..if Liz Truss is next PM, was broadly receptive to the idea. Sources close to Kwasi Kwarteng wouldn’t be drawn on his enthusiasm. “We had a meeting about it – that’s all”.
    The so called deficit fund would be repaid through bills over the next 20 or so years...


    https://twitter.com/BBCSimonJack/status/1562061859401900033

    Kwarteng and Truss would be well advised to go for it, it dwarfs Labour's plan and probably leaves some room for the 400 quid direct help that Labour would remove.
    In a my future generations' debt is bigger than your future generations' debt.

    I suppose on a positive note with inflation running at 20% p a for the next twenty years the debt will have withered to nothing anyway.
    Well the cost of not freezing everyone to death this winter will be hugely increased public debt. Thems the breaks. Labour are just proposing to do it in a series of depressing interventions rather than this option of more up front but over a longer period.
    Yes, something has to be done and Liz and her Chancellor and Energy Minister have come up with a corker of a plan that shames Labour's meagre effort. But the figure...wow!
    How have the energy companies - the big ones who actually supply energy I mean rather than the small ones that were just effectively trading futures - been doing the last few years?

    Would it be viable to call their bluff? Or even possible?

    Keep the energy cap where it is or even reduce it. Let the energy companies take the pain and see how much they can take and only then step in and introduce the support scheme when they are on the verge of going bust. It would ensure that they are actually doing all they can rather than just looking for a way to support their profits.

    Should any energy company be doing more than getting by right now?

    I am not actually advocating this as I am sure there are way too many flaws in my reasoning but just thought it was worth at least discussing.
    The mere fact that it's the energy companies favoured solution suggests to me it requires precisely this kind of scrutiny.

    One way or another, the taxpayer is going to be on the hook for a lot of debt - but how much of that should be going into energy suppliers profits?
    Well this is the issue with Labours plan too isnt it? Its going to cost us tens of billions either way
    I think the question is how many billions will be profits for the energy companies. When nationalisation means we could take those profits out of the equation.

    The energy companies are very keen on the "give us a big loan and we'll pay it off over the next 20 years with higher but manageable energy bills"

    Is that the best deal for Joe Billpayer, or is it the best deal for the energy companies?
    Nationalisation in this situation as Gordon Brown pushed for is so stupid, the crisis coming here is finding and getting money to those most in need, nationalisation will be using that money where it’s not needed, buying stuff we don’t need.

    Richard Tyndall is right, squeeze to find where the lean point is, leave any fat in the system (like news reports of number profits, dividends, pay and bonuses) whilst people freeze and starve lose business and homes is both politically toxic and a bit immoral.
    I am inclined towards what TSE was saying downthread, that there is a serious risk of general strike and civil disorder next year if the government do not get a handle on this. I'm not sure "trimming the fat in the system" is going to cover it.

    My natural instincts are libertarian ones, however I believe the government has a duty to defends its citizens in times of war. Not just with the army, however.

    Russia has weaponised energy against us in a proxy war. It is their intention to turn the screws as much as possible, to weaken our resolve against their invasion of Ukraine, and create precisely the kind of civil unrest that has been warned about downthread.

    As far as I'm concerned, that means greater government intervention is morally justifiable in this particular circumstance.

    It needs to be about more than just preventing pensioners from freezing to death and giving a few handouts here and there. We need to ensure an energy supply that is affordable for all this winter - and that may mean looking at radical solutions such as nationalisation to control prices, furloughing energy intensive industries, and scheduling rolling blackouts to control demand.

    The alternative is bankrupting hundreds of thousands of businesses, mass unemployment, strikes and civil unrest.
    I think the penny is dropping right across the board isn’t it - this is just not the moment to find the money for tax cuts. Hence the mood you describe, Tax cuts the solution promised by government, so they drop like stone in the polls, as 97.7% of electorate know it’s not the right moment for those policies. There is a right time for such policies and determination. But this is not that moment.
    Supply is down by 15% or so due to Russia. That means demand needs to drop by a similar amount.

    Proposals like taking out a loan to freeze prices now, and paying that astronomical sum back over the next 20 years or so, don't fully solve the problem. There is simply only so much energy to go around. We can't keep bidding it up and up in a bidding war and putting it on the never never.

    We need to start looking seriously at how to reduce demand this winter while keeping the economy alive - it's going to require substantial government intervention.

    Keeping prices artificially low will only stimulate demand. Demand reduction is going to need to be part of the equation. It won't be popular, but ultimately difficult decisions need to be made during wartime, that's what a government is there for. And I would rather the government allocates available supply on a harm reduction basis (to both lives and the economy) than allow the free market to allocate energy to the highest bidder.
    There will be a natural reduction in usage as people avoid where possible unnecessary energy use. I have small portable a/c unit I use on warm days to help keep my small upstairs study cool. It is a bit warm today and in other times I would have used it but I'm choosing not to. Similar decisions will be made up and down the land. I think TSE mentioned also that his company will be going back to WFH to save on energy costs. That will also feed into overal reduced energy consumption.

    Any high-energy usage devices have already become massively unpopular. See for example this 2KW outdoor heater reduced from £55 to less than £14. Clearly no one wants to be buying that sort of product right now and it will reduce our energy consumption!
    https://www.hotukdeals.com/deals/quartz-element-grey-2kw-electric-wall-mounted-heater-3985162

    Having said that we do need to look into all avenues for reducing our energy consumption, particularly around gas usage.
    The missus has already ordered some thicker curtains, and we are considering electric ponchos.
  • FoxyFoxy Posts: 36,821
    edited August 2022
    AlistairM said:

    kyf_100 said:

    kyf_100 said:

    kyf_100 said:

    kyf_100 said:

    Anyone worked out how workable this is?
    (Though loading the costs on bill payers in the 2040s is very on-brand for a government that really doesn't give a stuff about anyone younger than about 60)

    Energy firm’s £100 billion plan to freeze energy bills for 2 years. A thread
    The Chief Executive of one of the UK’s largest energy providers presented Kwasi Kwarteng and Jacob Rees-Mogg with a £100 billion plan to stave off an energy price emergency last week...
    2/ Keith Anderson, CEO of Scottish Power will present the same plan to Scottish First Minister Nicola Sturgeon later today.
    The plan would involve the government guaranteeing loans to the energy companies enabling them to keep bills frozen while buying the gas needed....
    3/ ...for the next two years.
    £100 billion is Scottish Power’s best estimate of the difference between what it will actually cost to buy the energy and the current cap of £1971.
    Sources close to the company said that Kwasi Kwarteng, tipped to be the next Chancellor....
    4/ ..if Liz Truss is next PM, was broadly receptive to the idea. Sources close to Kwasi Kwarteng wouldn’t be drawn on his enthusiasm. “We had a meeting about it – that’s all”.
    The so called deficit fund would be repaid through bills over the next 20 or so years...


    https://twitter.com/BBCSimonJack/status/1562061859401900033

    Kwarteng and Truss would be well advised to go for it, it dwarfs Labour's plan and probably leaves some room for the 400 quid direct help that Labour would remove.
    In a my future generations' debt is bigger than your future generations' debt.

    I suppose on a positive note with inflation running at 20% p a for the next twenty years the debt will have withered to nothing anyway.
    Well the cost of not freezing everyone to death this winter will be hugely increased public debt. Thems the breaks. Labour are just proposing to do it in a series of depressing interventions rather than this option of more up front but over a longer period.
    Yes, something has to be done and Liz and her Chancellor and Energy Minister have come up with a corker of a plan that shames Labour's meagre effort. But the figure...wow!
    How have the energy companies - the big ones who actually supply energy I mean rather than the small ones that were just effectively trading futures - been doing the last few years?

    Would it be viable to call their bluff? Or even possible?

    Keep the energy cap where it is or even reduce it. Let the energy companies take the pain and see how much they can take and only then step in and introduce the support scheme when they are on the verge of going bust. It would ensure that they are actually doing all they can rather than just looking for a way to support their profits.

    Should any energy company be doing more than getting by right now?

    I am not actually advocating this as I am sure there are way too many flaws in my reasoning but just thought it was worth at least discussing.
    The mere fact that it's the energy companies favoured solution suggests to me it requires precisely this kind of scrutiny.

    One way or another, the taxpayer is going to be on the hook for a lot of debt - but how much of that should be going into energy suppliers profits?
    Well this is the issue with Labours plan too isnt it? Its going to cost us tens of billions either way
    I think the question is how many billions will be profits for the energy companies. When nationalisation means we could take those profits out of the equation.

    The energy companies are very keen on the "give us a big loan and we'll pay it off over the next 20 years with higher but manageable energy bills"

    Is that the best deal for Joe Billpayer, or is it the best deal for the energy companies?
    Nationalisation in this situation as Gordon Brown pushed for is so stupid, the crisis coming here is finding and getting money to those most in need, nationalisation will be using that money where it’s not needed, buying stuff we don’t need.

    Richard Tyndall is right, squeeze to find where the lean point is, leave any fat in the system (like news reports of number profits, dividends, pay and bonuses) whilst people freeze and starve lose business and homes is both politically toxic and a bit immoral.
    I am inclined towards what TSE was saying downthread, that there is a serious risk of general strike and civil disorder next year if the government do not get a handle on this. I'm not sure "trimming the fat in the system" is going to cover it.

    My natural instincts are libertarian ones, however I believe the government has a duty to defends its citizens in times of war. Not just with the army, however.

    Russia has weaponised energy against us in a proxy war. It is their intention to turn the screws as much as possible, to weaken our resolve against their invasion of Ukraine, and create precisely the kind of civil unrest that has been warned about downthread.

    As far as I'm concerned, that means greater government intervention is morally justifiable in this particular circumstance.

    It needs to be about more than just preventing pensioners from freezing to death and giving a few handouts here and there. We need to ensure an energy supply that is affordable for all this winter - and that may mean looking at radical solutions such as nationalisation to control prices, furloughing energy intensive industries, and scheduling rolling blackouts to control demand.

    The alternative is bankrupting hundreds of thousands of businesses, mass unemployment, strikes and civil unrest.
    I think the penny is dropping right across the board isn’t it - this is just not the moment to find the money for tax cuts. Hence the mood you describe, Tax cuts the solution promised by government, so they drop like stone in the polls, as 97.7% of electorate know it’s not the right moment for those policies. There is a right time for such policies and determination. But this is not that moment.
    Supply is down by 15% or so due to Russia. That means demand needs to drop by a similar amount.

    Proposals like taking out a loan to freeze prices now, and paying that astronomical sum back over the next 20 years or so, don't fully solve the problem. There is simply only so much energy to go around. We can't keep bidding it up and up in a bidding war and putting it on the never never.

    We need to start looking seriously at how to reduce demand this winter while keeping the economy alive - it's going to require substantial government intervention.

    Keeping prices artificially low will only stimulate demand. Demand reduction is going to need to be part of the equation. It won't be popular, but ultimately difficult decisions need to be made during wartime, that's what a government is there for. And I would rather the government allocates available supply on a harm reduction basis (to both lives and the economy) than allow the free market to allocate energy to the highest bidder.
    There will be a natural reduction in usage as people avoid where possible unnecessary energy use. I have small portable a/c unit I use on warm days to help keep my small upstairs study cool. It is a bit warm today and in other times I would have used it but I'm choosing not to. Similar decisions will be made up and down the land. I think TSE mentioned also that his company will be going back to WFH to save on energy costs. That will also feed into overal reduced energy consumption.

    Any high-energy usage devices have already become massively unpopular. See for example this 2KW outdoor heater reduced from £55 to less than £14. Clearly no one wants to be buying that sort of product right now and it will reduce our energy consumption!
    https://www.hotukdeals.com/deals/quartz-element-grey-2kw-electric-wall-mounted-heater-3985162

    Having said that we do need to look into all avenues for reducing our energy consumption, particularly around gas usage.
    It is an international market too, so co-ordinated action with other European countries is required. Non European countries are less dependent on Russian gas, and also not needing winter heating to the same degree. Otherwise reducing our consumption by 15% doesn't help much, as much of that benefit diffuses internationally.

    If only we had some sort of European Union to co-ordinate policy 🤔
  • OnlyLivingBoyOnlyLivingBoy Posts: 11,019

    kyf_100 said:

    kyf_100 said:

    kyf_100 said:

    kyf_100 said:

    Anyone worked out how workable this is?
    (Though loading the costs on bill payers in the 2040s is very on-brand for a government that really doesn't give a stuff about anyone younger than about 60)

    Energy firm’s £100 billion plan to freeze energy bills for 2 years. A thread
    The Chief Executive of one of the UK’s largest energy providers presented Kwasi Kwarteng and Jacob Rees-Mogg with a £100 billion plan to stave off an energy price emergency last week...
    2/ Keith Anderson, CEO of Scottish Power will present the same plan to Scottish First Minister Nicola Sturgeon later today.
    The plan would involve the government guaranteeing loans to the energy companies enabling them to keep bills frozen while buying the gas needed....
    3/ ...for the next two years.
    £100 billion is Scottish Power’s best estimate of the difference between what it will actually cost to buy the energy and the current cap of £1971.
    Sources close to the company said that Kwasi Kwarteng, tipped to be the next Chancellor....
    4/ ..if Liz Truss is next PM, was broadly receptive to the idea. Sources close to Kwasi Kwarteng wouldn’t be drawn on his enthusiasm. “We had a meeting about it – that’s all”.
    The so called deficit fund would be repaid through bills over the next 20 or so years...


    https://twitter.com/BBCSimonJack/status/1562061859401900033

    Kwarteng and Truss would be well advised to go for it, it dwarfs Labour's plan and probably leaves some room for the 400 quid direct help that Labour would remove.
    In a my future generations' debt is bigger than your future generations' debt.

    I suppose on a positive note with inflation running at 20% p a for the next twenty years the debt will have withered to nothing anyway.
    Well the cost of not freezing everyone to death this winter will be hugely increased public debt. Thems the breaks. Labour are just proposing to do it in a series of depressing interventions rather than this option of more up front but over a longer period.
    Yes, something has to be done and Liz and her Chancellor and Energy Minister have come up with a corker of a plan that shames Labour's meagre effort. But the figure...wow!
    How have the energy companies - the big ones who actually supply energy I mean rather than the small ones that were just effectively trading futures - been doing the last few years?

    Would it be viable to call their bluff? Or even possible?

    Keep the energy cap where it is or even reduce it. Let the energy companies take the pain and see how much they can take and only then step in and introduce the support scheme when they are on the verge of going bust. It would ensure that they are actually doing all they can rather than just looking for a way to support their profits.

    Should any energy company be doing more than getting by right now?

    I am not actually advocating this as I am sure there are way too many flaws in my reasoning but just thought it was worth at least discussing.
    The mere fact that it's the energy companies favoured solution suggests to me it requires precisely this kind of scrutiny.

    One way or another, the taxpayer is going to be on the hook for a lot of debt - but how much of that should be going into energy suppliers profits?
    Well this is the issue with Labours plan too isnt it? Its going to cost us tens of billions either way
    I think the question is how many billions will be profits for the energy companies. When nationalisation means we could take those profits out of the equation.

    The energy companies are very keen on the "give us a big loan and we'll pay it off over the next 20 years with higher but manageable energy bills"

    Is that the best deal for Joe Billpayer, or is it the best deal for the energy companies?
    Nationalisation in this situation as Gordon Brown pushed for is so stupid, the crisis coming here is finding and getting money to those most in need, nationalisation will be using that money where it’s not needed, buying stuff we don’t need.

    Richard Tyndall is right, squeeze to find where the lean point is, leave any fat in the system (like news reports of number profits, dividends, pay and bonuses) whilst people freeze and starve lose business and homes is both politically toxic and a bit immoral.
    I am inclined towards what TSE was saying downthread, that there is a serious risk of general strike and civil disorder next year if the government do not get a handle on this. I'm not sure "trimming the fat in the system" is going to cover it.

    My natural instincts are libertarian ones, however I believe the government has a duty to defends its citizens in times of war. Not just with the army, however.

    Russia has weaponised energy against us in a proxy war. It is their intention to turn the screws as much as possible, to weaken our resolve against their invasion of Ukraine, and create precisely the kind of civil unrest that has been warned about downthread.

    As far as I'm concerned, that means greater government intervention is morally justifiable in this particular circumstance.

    It needs to be about more than just preventing pensioners from freezing to death and giving a few handouts here and there. We need to ensure an energy supply that is affordable for all this winter - and that may mean looking at radical solutions such as nationalisation to control prices, furloughing energy intensive industries, and scheduling rolling blackouts to control demand.

    The alternative is bankrupting hundreds of thousands of businesses, mass unemployment, strikes and civil unrest.
    I think the penny is dropping right across the board isn’t it - this is just not the moment to find the money for tax cuts. Hence the mood you describe, Tax cuts the solution promised by government, so they drop like stone in the polls, as 97.7% of electorate know it’s not the right moment for those policies. There is a right time for such policies and determination. But this is not that moment.
    Supply is down by 15% or so due to Russia. That means demand needs to drop by a similar amount.

    Proposals like taking out a loan to freeze prices now, and paying that astronomical sum back over the next 20 years or so, don't fully solve the problem. There is simply only so much energy to go around. We can't keep bidding it up and up in a bidding war and putting it on the never never.

    We need to start looking seriously at how to reduce demand this winter while keeping the economy alive - it's going to require substantial government intervention.

    Keeping prices artificially low will only stimulate demand. Demand reduction is going to need to be part of the equation. It won't be popular, but ultimately difficult decisions need to be made during wartime, that's what a government is there for. And I would rather the government allocates available supply on a harm reduction basis (to both lives and the economy) than allow the free market to allocate energy to the highest bidder.
    Yes I made exactly this point a while back. We are at war and we need to take wartime measures, rationing supply in the national interest not subsidising demand that we can't afford or letting the rich outbid the poor. People are willing to put up with a lot if there is a sense that everyone is making the same sacrifices and if there is a clear objective. They won't put up with being told to put on an extra jumper while the wealthy turn up their thermostat and the energy firms enjoy surging profits. We need leadership on this, now.
    Maybe it should be a partial freeze on price rather than a total, so that price signals are still pushing demand down?
    I would favour lump sum payments to cover the price increase at normal household usage minus 15%, not a price reduction. Plus if feasible even higher prices for usage above a threshold eg normal family usage plus x% to discourage the better off from using too much. For small businesses something similar, benchmarked to their historical usage minus 15%. Aim to encourage everyone to cut back while making sure everyone can afford to use enough to stay warm or keep their business running. Financed via borrowing, a windfall tax on energy firms and a temporary increase in income tax.
  • StuartDicksonStuartDickson Posts: 11,743

    The key reason Sweden did better during the pandemic is little to do with population density or that we are incorrigibly anti-social.

    It is to to with the independence of government agencies and the innate respect that most of the population has for the state, regional and local governments and other public agencies.

    On the schools point, it was only children 15+ who were, relatively briefly, prohibited from attending school physically. Children suffered *much* less than in the rest of Europe. That we favour our young over our old is one of the greatest triumphs, and the greatest tragedies, of modern Swedish society.

    You didn't do better. Compared to your neighbours you did far worse. Now extremists like Bart - typical of those who know the price of everything and the value of nothing - seem to think this was a price worth paying but most reasonable people would disagree with him.
    Depends on what you mean by “better”?

    If you mean minimising the long term damage to society and the economy, then yes, Sweden did better. A lot better.

    Sweden was playing the long game. Most of the rest of the world was running about like a headless chicken.

    One shudders to think what’s going to happen when a *real* killer pandemic shows up.

    Everyone in Sweden will die. Because you will continue to believe that what you did last time was the right way to go.
    You see, this is where you have *totally* misunderstood Swedish society, stamina and respect for independent governmental agencies.

    Covid = take care

    Real killer pandemic (2035?) = lockdown max = unpleasant, but hey we survived

    Swedes will manage both. No probs.

    Whereas I suspect that for most countries:

    Covid = headless chicken lockdown

    Real killer pandemic (2035?) = headless chicken disrespect for government = all fall down


  • MexicanpeteMexicanpete Posts: 19,093
    HYUFD said:

    HYUFD said:

    HYUFD said:

    Driver said:

    Lets pile more debt onto future generations

    As opposed to your alternative, which obviously is...?
    Huge property taxes on the wealthiest generations that squandered the family silver
    Which would be hugely unpopular amongst 45 to 65 year olds who would inherit from them
    You are back on with your old inheritance mumbo- jumbo again.

    Anyone who goes into a care home for any length of time, really has nothing much to leave. I can show you the bills and a total lack of interest from Herefordshire Council if you like.
    Only 25% of over 65s at most will ever need to go into a care home, the rest will either die first or require only at home care. Plus the government has now capped care costs at £86k anyway
    Not yet it hasn't, if you know differently let me know.

    October 2023 is not much f...ing use for my 94 year old Mother in law. Between now and then is going to cost her another £84,000.
    The next election is after October 2023
    Wtf does that mean?
  • The key reason Sweden did better during the pandemic is little to do with population density or that we are incorrigibly anti-social.

    It is to to with the independence of government agencies and the innate respect that most of the population has for the state, regional and local governments and other public agencies.

    On the schools point, it was only children 15+ who were, relatively briefly, prohibited from attending school physically. Children suffered *much* less than in the rest of Europe. That we favour our young over our old is one of the greatest triumphs, and the greatest tragedies, of modern Swedish society.

    You didn't do better. Compared to your neighbours you did far worse. Now extremists like Bart - typical of those who know the price of everything and the value of nothing - seem to think this was a price worth paying but most reasonable people would disagree with him.
    Depends on what you mean by “better”?

    If you mean minimising the long term damage to society and the economy, then yes, Sweden did better. A lot better.

    Sweden was playing the long game. Most of the rest of the world was running about like a headless chicken.

    One shudders to think what’s going to happen when a *real* killer pandemic shows up.

    Everyone in Sweden will die. Because you will continue to believe that what you did last time was the right way to go.
    You see, this is where you have *totally* misunderstood Swedish society, stamina and respect for independent governmental agencies.

    Covid = take care

    Real killer pandemic (2035?) = lockdown max = unpleasant, but hey we survived

    Swedes will manage both. No probs.

    Whereas I suspect that for most countries:

    Covid = headless chicken lockdown

    Real killer pandemic (2035?) = headless chicken disrespect for government = all fall down


    Quite possibly right.

    Once bitten, twice shy. I for one won't be prepared to show respect to a future government wanting to strip us of our liberties again. I'm sure others feel the same.
  • eekeek Posts: 22,076

    HYUFD said:

    HYUFD said:

    HYUFD said:

    Driver said:

    Lets pile more debt onto future generations

    As opposed to your alternative, which obviously is...?
    Huge property taxes on the wealthiest generations that squandered the family silver
    Which would be hugely unpopular amongst 45 to 65 year olds who would inherit from them
    You are back on with your old inheritance mumbo- jumbo again.

    Anyone who goes into a care home for any length of time, really has nothing much to leave. I can show you the bills and a total lack of interest from Herefordshire Council if you like.
    Only 25% of over 65s at most will ever need to go into a care home, the rest will either die first or require only at home care. Plus the government has now capped care costs at £86k anyway
    Not yet it hasn't, if you know differently let me know.

    October 2023 is not much f...ing use for my 94 year old Mother in law. Between now and then is going to cost her another £84,000.
    The next election is after October 2023
    Wtf does that mean?
    The point is that the issue of continually paying for care well beyond whatever the cap will (in theory) be resolved before the next election - hence it's not a political issue...
  • kinabalukinabalu Posts: 32,965
    Foxy said:

    kinabalu said:

    MISTY said:

    kinabalu said:

    Driver said:

    kinabalu said:

    Driver said:

    TOPPING said:

    1. Diseases will always kill us and if they don't then I have bad news about life in any case.
    2. I can totally understand that the government, looking as we all did at those pictures from Italy of people dying in the corridors, had to do something and lockdowns was it.
    3. The whole point of society is a balance. Tragically it is not to keep every Archie alive at the expense of others who would benefit from those resources.

    Once the NHS was in no danger of "collapsing" as in real collapse, not the collapse that the Graun and the various health unions call every other week, then there should absolutely have been no more lockdowns.

    There should have been compensation for pubs if they wanted to close and teachers if they wanted to stay home but no mandate.

    Our freedoms are so precious and the great and good of PB dismiss them instantly and soil themselves at the first real test of freedom that we in the UK have had for 80 years. Doesn't bode well for the future.

    Which is a greater threat to Freedom: a temporary measure in the face of a novel pandemic, or a sustained campaign by government to restrict political protest and dissent? Is the collapse of the Court system due to chronic neglect perhaps a more pernicious threat? Is the drive to ban freedom of speech under the guise of Fighting Wokery more problematic? Are restrictions on the right to strike actually more consequential? I think one can debate whether temporary lockdowns were really the "first real test of freedom that we in the UK have had for 80 years".

    But, sure, lockdowns should be avoided. The way to avoid lockdowns is with better public health measures. We can look at a country like Japan that never had a national lockdown and had far fewer COVID cases. A better Test & Trace system, with more support for people self-isolating, would have been a huge help in the UK. A better funded primary health care system would have helped.

    This ain't rocket science. If you don't want lockdowns, do public health better.
    No, it isn't rocket science. If you don't want lockdowns, don't implement lockdowns.
    How would you have hampered the spread of the virus at those critical times then?

    It spread via close contact between people remember - not by black magic.
    Strong advice, not legislation. And this would have included strong advice to organisations and companies to stop doing counterproductive things, like supermarkets cutting their hours, which merely ensured that the average number of people in their shops at any given time was higher than it needed to be.
    Ok so Muscly goes "You MUST stay at home etc etc" but no laws are changed.

    Why is that so much better iyo?

    And what happens if people don't respond to the extent necessary to ward off a public health catastrophe?
    It isn't warding off anything, its just changing the emphasis of risk. You assume these measures, even short term, are risk free, but they aren't.

    Every kind of restriction is a swings and roundabouts calculation. Not how it was presented at the time (it was 'saving lives'), but we now know that is true.

    At best lockdown was sacrificing some lives to save others. At best. What's the balance? who knows?
    I never assumed the NPIs were cost free. However there was a train about to run us over and it had to be slowed down. The idea of somebody configuring and running a super-complex, multi-level cost/benefit model and trying to incorporate and quantify things like impact on mental health before we did anything is for the birds. We were too late acting as it is and found it hard enough just to model the spread of the virus and hospitalisations and deaths.
    The Spring 2020 lockdown happened quickly internationally, and was based on limited information of how spread occurred. In a crisis things have to happen quickly.

    The later lockdown in winter 20-21 could have been planned better though. Remember Christmas shrinking from 5 days to 1? Schools being forced to go back, only for them to be closed a day later?

    There was scope for a better planned set of NPI that winter, and one that tailed off more quickly, particularly for outdoor activities.
    Yes that was probably the government's unfinest hour. A total mess which led to many lives AND many freedoms lost unnecessarily. The either/or framing of these things isn't how it actually worked a lot of the time.
  • Andy_CookeAndy_Cooke Posts: 4,510
    MISTY said:

    MISTY said:

    kinabalu said:

    Driver said:

    kinabalu said:

    Driver said:

    TOPPING said:

    1. Diseases will always kill us and if they don't then I have bad news about life in any case.
    2. I can totally understand that the government, looking as we all did at those pictures from Italy of people dying in the corridors, had to do something and lockdowns was it.
    3. The whole point of society is a balance. Tragically it is not to keep every Archie alive at the expense of others who would benefit from those resources.

    Once the NHS was in no danger of "collapsing" as in real collapse, not the collapse that the Graun and the various health unions call every other week, then there should absolutely have been no more lockdowns.

    There should have been compensation for pubs if they wanted to close and teachers if they wanted to stay home but no mandate.

    Our freedoms are so precious and the great and good of PB dismiss them instantly and soil themselves at the first real test of freedom that we in the UK have had for 80 years. Doesn't bode well for the future.

    Which is a greater threat to Freedom: a temporary measure in the face of a novel pandemic, or a sustained campaign by government to restrict political protest and dissent? Is the collapse of the Court system due to chronic neglect perhaps a more pernicious threat? Is the drive to ban freedom of speech under the guise of Fighting Wokery more problematic? Are restrictions on the right to strike actually more consequential? I think one can debate whether temporary lockdowns were really the "first real test of freedom that we in the UK have had for 80 years".

    But, sure, lockdowns should be avoided. The way to avoid lockdowns is with better public health measures. We can look at a country like Japan that never had a national lockdown and had far fewer COVID cases. A better Test & Trace system, with more support for people self-isolating, would have been a huge help in the UK. A better funded primary health care system would have helped.

    This ain't rocket science. If you don't want lockdowns, do public health better.
    No, it isn't rocket science. If you don't want lockdowns, don't implement lockdowns.
    How would you have hampered the spread of the virus at those critical times then?

    It spread via close contact between people remember - not by black magic.
    Strong advice, not legislation. And this would have included strong advice to organisations and companies to stop doing counterproductive things, like supermarkets cutting their hours, which merely ensured that the average number of people in their shops at any given time was higher than it needed to be.
    Ok so Muscly goes "You MUST stay at home etc etc" but no laws are changed.

    Why is that so much better iyo?

    And what happens if people don't respond to the extent necessary to ward off a public health catastrophe?

    It isn't warding off anything, its just changing the emphasis of risk. You assume these measures, even short term, are risk free, but they aren't.

    Every kind of restriction is a swings and roundabouts calculation. Not how it was presented at the time (it was 'saving lives'), but we now know that is true.

    At best lockdown was sacrificing some lives to save others. At best. What's the balance? who knows?
    https://vf.politicalbetting.com/discussion/comment/4082138#Comment_4082138

    "Lockdown is the result of a failure of public health policy. It is hugely damaging. And it is used when not locking down is worse. "

    We do not assume these measures are risk free.
    Lockdown was presented to us, ad nauseam, as 'saving lives' in a huge propaganda campaign. We know now it was never that.

    That's not down to you, I understand. You were not a part of that campaign.
    Thank you.

    But, net, it obviously did save a lot of lives. When the death toll was rising exponentially and the hospitalisations were rising exponentially past the capacity of the healthcare service (so when it gets past that point, a lot who could be saved by hospital assistance would no longer be saved), then obviously putting that into reverse until vaccines were available saved a lot of lives.

    If c. 75,000 died of covid in England at a point when 10% of us had been infected, then if we rushed through it and somehow, by magic, expanded healthcare capacity by a million beds or so (if 210,000 were hospitalised pre-vaccine when 10% were infected, we'd need to push nearly 2 million through hospital if we'd let it run riot), we'd be looking at 750,000 or so covid deaths. We've actually had about 175,000 covid deaths, so we probably saved well over half a million by lockdown and other restrictions.

    And, of course, if we'd had 2 million sufficiently ill as to need hospitalisation and the vast majority of them unable to receive it, how many more would have died that we "should" have saved with treatment?
  • kyf_100kyf_100 Posts: 3,415
    AlistairM said:

    kyf_100 said:

    kyf_100 said:

    kyf_100 said:

    kyf_100 said:

    Anyone worked out how workable this is?
    (Though loading the costs on bill payers in the 2040s is very on-brand for a government that really doesn't give a stuff about anyone younger than about 60)

    Energy firm’s £100 billion plan to freeze energy bills for 2 years. A thread
    The Chief Executive of one of the UK’s largest energy providers presented Kwasi Kwarteng and Jacob Rees-Mogg with a £100 billion plan to stave off an energy price emergency last week...
    2/ Keith Anderson, CEO of Scottish Power will present the same plan to Scottish First Minister Nicola Sturgeon later today.
    The plan would involve the government guaranteeing loans to the energy companies enabling them to keep bills frozen while buying the gas needed....
    3/ ...for the next two years.
    £100 billion is Scottish Power’s best estimate of the difference between what it will actually cost to buy the energy and the current cap of £1971.
    Sources close to the company said that Kwasi Kwarteng, tipped to be the next Chancellor....
    4/ ..if Liz Truss is next PM, was broadly receptive to the idea. Sources close to Kwasi Kwarteng wouldn’t be drawn on his enthusiasm. “We had a meeting about it – that’s all”.
    The so called deficit fund would be repaid through bills over the next 20 or so years...


    https://twitter.com/BBCSimonJack/status/1562061859401900033

    Kwarteng and Truss would be well advised to go for it, it dwarfs Labour's plan and probably leaves some room for the 400 quid direct help that Labour would remove.
    In a my future generations' debt is bigger than your future generations' debt.

    I suppose on a positive note with inflation running at 20% p a for the next twenty years the debt will have withered to nothing anyway.
    Well the cost of not freezing everyone to death this winter will be hugely increased public debt. Thems the breaks. Labour are just proposing to do it in a series of depressing interventions rather than this option of more up front but over a longer period.
    Yes, something has to be done and Liz and her Chancellor and Energy Minister have come up with a corker of a plan that shames Labour's meagre effort. But the figure...wow!
    How have the energy companies - the big ones who actually supply energy I mean rather than the small ones that were just effectively trading futures - been doing the last few years?

    Would it be viable to call their bluff? Or even possible?

    Keep the energy cap where it is or even reduce it. Let the energy companies take the pain and see how much they can take and only then step in and introduce the support scheme when they are on the verge of going bust. It would ensure that they are actually doing all they can rather than just looking for a way to support their profits.

    Should any energy company be doing more than getting by right now?

    I am not actually advocating this as I am sure there are way too many flaws in my reasoning but just thought it was worth at least discussing.
    The mere fact that it's the energy companies favoured solution suggests to me it requires precisely this kind of scrutiny.

    One way or another, the taxpayer is going to be on the hook for a lot of debt - but how much of that should be going into energy suppliers profits?
    Well this is the issue with Labours plan too isnt it? Its going to cost us tens of billions either way
    I think the question is how many billions will be profits for the energy companies. When nationalisation means we could take those profits out of the equation.

    The energy companies are very keen on the "give us a big loan and we'll pay it off over the next 20 years with higher but manageable energy bills"

    Is that the best deal for Joe Billpayer, or is it the best deal for the energy companies?
    Nationalisation in this situation as Gordon Brown pushed for is so stupid, the crisis coming here is finding and getting money to those most in need, nationalisation will be using that money where it’s not needed, buying stuff we don’t need.

    Richard Tyndall is right, squeeze to find where the lean point is, leave any fat in the system (like news reports of number profits, dividends, pay and bonuses) whilst people freeze and starve lose business and homes is both politically toxic and a bit immoral.
    I am inclined towards what TSE was saying downthread, that there is a serious risk of general strike and civil disorder next year if the government do not get a handle on this. I'm not sure "trimming the fat in the system" is going to cover it.

    My natural instincts are libertarian ones, however I believe the government has a duty to defends its citizens in times of war. Not just with the army, however.

    Russia has weaponised energy against us in a proxy war. It is their intention to turn the screws as much as possible, to weaken our resolve against their invasion of Ukraine, and create precisely the kind of civil unrest that has been warned about downthread.

    As far as I'm concerned, that means greater government intervention is morally justifiable in this particular circumstance.

    It needs to be about more than just preventing pensioners from freezing to death and giving a few handouts here and there. We need to ensure an energy supply that is affordable for all this winter - and that may mean looking at radical solutions such as nationalisation to control prices, furloughing energy intensive industries, and scheduling rolling blackouts to control demand.

    The alternative is bankrupting hundreds of thousands of businesses, mass unemployment, strikes and civil unrest.
    I think the penny is dropping right across the board isn’t it - this is just not the moment to find the money for tax cuts. Hence the mood you describe, Tax cuts the solution promised by government, so they drop like stone in the polls, as 97.7% of electorate know it’s not the right moment for those policies. There is a right time for such policies and determination. But this is not that moment.
    Supply is down by 15% or so due to Russia. That means demand needs to drop by a similar amount.

    Proposals like taking out a loan to freeze prices now, and paying that astronomical sum back over the next 20 years or so, don't fully solve the problem. There is simply only so much energy to go around. We can't keep bidding it up and up in a bidding war and putting it on the never never.

    We need to start looking seriously at how to reduce demand this winter while keeping the economy alive - it's going to require substantial government intervention.

    Keeping prices artificially low will only stimulate demand. Demand reduction is going to need to be part of the equation. It won't be popular, but ultimately difficult decisions need to be made during wartime, that's what a government is there for. And I would rather the government allocates available supply on a harm reduction basis (to both lives and the economy) than allow the free market to allocate energy to the highest bidder.
    There will be a natural reduction in usage as people avoid where possible unnecessary energy use. I have small portable a/c unit I use on warm days to help keep my small upstairs study cool. It is a bit warm today and in other times I would have used it but I'm choosing not to. Similar decisions will be made up and down the land. I think TSE mentioned also that his company will be going back to WFH to save on energy costs. That will also feed into overal reduced energy consumption.

    Any high-energy usage devices have already become massively unpopular. See for example this 2KW outdoor heater reduced from £55 to less than £14. Clearly no one wants to be buying that sort of product right now and it will reduce our energy consumption!
    https://www.hotukdeals.com/deals/quartz-element-grey-2kw-electric-wall-mounted-heater-3985162

    Having said that we do need to look into all avenues for reducing our energy consumption, particularly around gas usage.
    An electric fleece blanket retails for about £40-50.

    Government could sell them for £10 (giving them away for free just encourages people to hoard items they don't use), along with a public service ad campaign encouraging people to turn their thermostats down this winter.

    https://energyhistory.yale.edu/library-item/when-you-ride-alone-you-ride-hitler-us-government-propaganda-poster-1943

    "When you turn the thermostat up, you put money in Putin's pocket".

  • jamesdoylejamesdoyle Posts: 313
    kinabalu said:

    kyf_100 said:

    kyf_100 said:

    kyf_100 said:

    Anyone worked out how workable this is?
    (Though loading the costs on bill payers in the 2040s is very on-brand for a government that really doesn't give a stuff about anyone younger than about 60)

    Energy firm’s £100 billion plan to freeze energy bills for 2 years. A thread
    The Chief Executive of one of the UK’s largest energy providers presented Kwasi Kwarteng and Jacob Rees-Mogg with a £100 billion plan to stave off an energy price emergency last week...
    2/ Keith Anderson, CEO of Scottish Power will present the same plan to Scottish First Minister Nicola Sturgeon later today.
    The plan would involve the government guaranteeing loans to the energy companies enabling them to keep bills frozen while buying the gas needed....
    3/ ...for the next two years.
    £100 billion is Scottish Power’s best estimate of the difference between what it will actually cost to buy the energy and the current cap of £1971.
    Sources close to the company said that Kwasi Kwarteng, tipped to be the next Chancellor....
    4/ ..if Liz Truss is next PM, was broadly receptive to the idea. Sources close to Kwasi Kwarteng wouldn’t be drawn on his enthusiasm. “We had a meeting about it – that’s all”.
    The so called deficit fund would be repaid through bills over the next 20 or so years...


    https://twitter.com/BBCSimonJack/status/1562061859401900033

    Kwarteng and Truss would be well advised to go for it, it dwarfs Labour's plan and probably leaves some room for the 400 quid direct help that Labour would remove.
    In a my future generations' debt is bigger than your future generations' debt.

    I suppose on a positive note with inflation running at 20% p a for the next twenty years the debt will have withered to nothing anyway.
    Well the cost of not freezing everyone to death this winter will be hugely increased public debt. Thems the breaks. Labour are just proposing to do it in a series of depressing interventions rather than this option of more up front but over a longer period.
    Yes, something has to be done and Liz and her Chancellor and Energy Minister have come up with a corker of a plan that shames Labour's meagre effort. But the figure...wow!
    How have the energy companies - the big ones who actually supply energy I mean rather than the small ones that were just effectively trading futures - been doing the last few years?

    Would it be viable to call their bluff? Or even possible?

    Keep the energy cap where it is or even reduce it. Let the energy companies take the pain and see how much they can take and only then step in and introduce the support scheme when they are on the verge of going bust. It would ensure that they are actually doing all they can rather than just looking for a way to support their profits.

    Should any energy company be doing more than getting by right now?

    I am not actually advocating this as I am sure there are way too many flaws in my reasoning but just thought it was worth at least discussing.
    The mere fact that it's the energy companies favoured solution suggests to me it requires precisely this kind of scrutiny.

    One way or another, the taxpayer is going to be on the hook for a lot of debt - but how much of that should be going into energy suppliers profits?
    Well this is the issue with Labours plan too isnt it? Its going to cost us tens of billions either way
    I think the question is how many billions will be profits for the energy companies. When nationalisation means we could take those profits out of the equation.

    The energy companies are very keen on the "give us a big loan and we'll pay it off over the next 20 years with higher but manageable energy bills"

    Is that the best deal for Joe Billpayer, or is it the best deal for the energy companies?
    Nationalisation in this situation as Gordon Brown pushed for is so stupid, the crisis coming here is finding and getting money to those most in need, nationalisation will be using that money where it’s not needed, buying stuff we don’t need.

    Richard Tyndall is right, squeeze to find where the lean point is, leave any fat in the system (like news reports of number profits, dividends, pay and bonuses) whilst people freeze and starve lose business and homes is both politically toxic and a bit immoral.
    I am inclined towards what TSE was saying downthread, that there is a serious risk of general strike and civil disorder next year if the government do not get a handle on this. I'm not sure "trimming the fat in the system" is going to cover it.

    My natural instincts are libertarian ones, however I believe the government has a duty to defends its citizens in times of war. Not just with the army, however.

    Russia has weaponised energy against us in a proxy war. It is their intention to turn the screws as much as possible, to weaken our resolve against their invasion of Ukraine, and create precisely the kind of civil unrest that has been warned about downthread.

    As far as I'm concerned, that means greater government intervention is morally justifiable in this particular circumstance.

    It needs to be about more than just preventing pensioners from freezing to death and giving a few handouts here and there. We need to ensure an energy supply that is affordable for all this winter - and that may mean looking at radical solutions such as nationalisation to control prices, furloughing energy intensive industries, and scheduling rolling blackouts to control demand.

    The alternative is bankrupting hundreds of thousands of businesses, mass unemployment, strikes and civil unrest.
    I think the penny is dropping right across the board isn’t it - this is just not the moment to find the money for tax cuts. Hence the mood you describe, Tax cuts the solution promised by government, so they drop like stone in the polls, as 97.7% of electorate know it’s not the right moment for those policies. There is a right time for such policies and determination. But this is not that moment.
    The Truss mentality seems to be - I'm a Proper Conservative and Proper Conservatives know that tax cuts are the answer to every problem. Therefore the answer to this problem is tax cuts. Anybody thinking otherwise cannot by definition be a Proper Conservative.
    Reminds me of someone...
  • geoffwgeoffw Posts: 6,910
    @rottenborough @OnlyLivingBoy Agreed: support should not interfere with price signals or decisions at the margin.
  • FoxyFoxy Posts: 36,821
    kinabalu said:

    Foxy said:

    kinabalu said:

    MISTY said:

    kinabalu said:

    Driver said:

    kinabalu said:

    Driver said:

    TOPPING said:

    1. Diseases will always kill us and if they don't then I have bad news about life in any case.
    2. I can totally understand that the government, looking as we all did at those pictures from Italy of people dying in the corridors, had to do something and lockdowns was it.
    3. The whole point of society is a balance. Tragically it is not to keep every Archie alive at the expense of others who would benefit from those resources.

    Once the NHS was in no danger of "collapsing" as in real collapse, not the collapse that the Graun and the various health unions call every other week, then there should absolutely have been no more lockdowns.

    There should have been compensation for pubs if they wanted to close and teachers if they wanted to stay home but no mandate.

    Our freedoms are so precious and the great and good of PB dismiss them instantly and soil themselves at the first real test of freedom that we in the UK have had for 80 years. Doesn't bode well for the future.

    Which is a greater threat to Freedom: a temporary measure in the face of a novel pandemic, or a sustained campaign by government to restrict political protest and dissent? Is the collapse of the Court system due to chronic neglect perhaps a more pernicious threat? Is the drive to ban freedom of speech under the guise of Fighting Wokery more problematic? Are restrictions on the right to strike actually more consequential? I think one can debate whether temporary lockdowns were really the "first real test of freedom that we in the UK have had for 80 years".

    But, sure, lockdowns should be avoided. The way to avoid lockdowns is with better public health measures. We can look at a country like Japan that never had a national lockdown and had far fewer COVID cases. A better Test & Trace system, with more support for people self-isolating, would have been a huge help in the UK. A better funded primary health care system would have helped.

    This ain't rocket science. If you don't want lockdowns, do public health better.
    No, it isn't rocket science. If you don't want lockdowns, don't implement lockdowns.
    How would you have hampered the spread of the virus at those critical times then?

    It spread via close contact between people remember - not by black magic.
    Strong advice, not legislation. And this would have included strong advice to organisations and companies to stop doing counterproductive things, like supermarkets cutting their hours, which merely ensured that the average number of people in their shops at any given time was higher than it needed to be.
    Ok so Muscly goes "You MUST stay at home etc etc" but no laws are changed.

    Why is that so much better iyo?

    And what happens if people don't respond to the extent necessary to ward off a public health catastrophe?
    It isn't warding off anything, its just changing the emphasis of risk. You assume these measures, even short term, are risk free, but they aren't.

    Every kind of restriction is a swings and roundabouts calculation. Not how it was presented at the time (it was 'saving lives'), but we now know that is true.

    At best lockdown was sacrificing some lives to save others. At best. What's the balance? who knows?
    I never assumed the NPIs were cost free. However there was a train about to run us over and it had to be slowed down. The idea of somebody configuring and running a super-complex, multi-level cost/benefit model and trying to incorporate and quantify things like impact on mental health before we did anything is for the birds. We were too late acting as it is and found it hard enough just to model the spread of the virus and hospitalisations and deaths.
    The Spring 2020 lockdown happened quickly internationally, and was based on limited information of how spread occurred. In a crisis things have to happen quickly.

    The later lockdown in winter 20-21 could have been planned better though. Remember Christmas shrinking from 5 days to 1? Schools being forced to go back, only for them to be closed a day later?

    There was scope for a better planned set of NPI that winter, and one that tailed off more quickly, particularly for outdoor activities.
    Yes that was probably the government's unfinest hour. A total mess which led to many lives AND many freedoms lost unnecessarily. The either/or framing of these things isn't how it actually worked a lot of the time.
    It was that Jan and Feb that I was working ICU, and it was really grim.
  • kinabalukinabalu Posts: 32,965
    edited August 2022

    kinabalu said:

    MISTY said:

    kinabalu said:

    Driver said:

    kinabalu said:

    Driver said:

    TOPPING said:

    1. Diseases will always kill us and if they don't then I have bad news about life in any case.
    2. I can totally understand that the government, looking as we all did at those pictures from Italy of people dying in the corridors, had to do something and lockdowns was it.
    3. The whole point of society is a balance. Tragically it is not to keep every Archie alive at the expense of others who would benefit from those resources.

    Once the NHS was in no danger of "collapsing" as in real collapse, not the collapse that the Graun and the various health unions call every other week, then there should absolutely have been no more lockdowns.

    There should have been compensation for pubs if they wanted to close and teachers if they wanted to stay home but no mandate.

    Our freedoms are so precious and the great and good of PB dismiss them instantly and soil themselves at the first real test of freedom that we in the UK have had for 80 years. Doesn't bode well for the future.

    Which is a greater threat to Freedom: a temporary measure in the face of a novel pandemic, or a sustained campaign by government to restrict political protest and dissent? Is the collapse of the Court system due to chronic neglect perhaps a more pernicious threat? Is the drive to ban freedom of speech under the guise of Fighting Wokery more problematic? Are restrictions on the right to strike actually more consequential? I think one can debate whether temporary lockdowns were really the "first real test of freedom that we in the UK have had for 80 years".

    But, sure, lockdowns should be avoided. The way to avoid lockdowns is with better public health measures. We can look at a country like Japan that never had a national lockdown and had far fewer COVID cases. A better Test & Trace system, with more support for people self-isolating, would have been a huge help in the UK. A better funded primary health care system would have helped.

    This ain't rocket science. If you don't want lockdowns, do public health better.
    No, it isn't rocket science. If you don't want lockdowns, don't implement lockdowns.
    How would you have hampered the spread of the virus at those critical times then?

    It spread via close contact between people remember - not by black magic.
    Strong advice, not legislation. And this would have included strong advice to organisations and companies to stop doing counterproductive things, like supermarkets cutting their hours, which merely ensured that the average number of people in their shops at any given time was higher than it needed to be.
    Ok so Muscly goes "You MUST stay at home etc etc" but no laws are changed.

    Why is that so much better iyo?

    And what happens if people don't respond to the extent necessary to ward off a public health catastrophe?
    It isn't warding off anything, its just changing the emphasis of risk. You assume these measures, even short term, are risk free, but they aren't.

    Every kind of restriction is a swings and roundabouts calculation. Not how it was presented at the time (it was 'saving lives'), but we now know that is true.

    At best lockdown was sacrificing some lives to save others. At best. What's the balance? who knows?
    I never assumed the NPIs were cost free. However there was a train about to run us over and it had to be slowed down. The idea of somebody configuring and running a super-complex, multi-level cost/benefit model and trying to incorporate and quantify things like impact on mental health before we did anything is for the birds. We were too late acting as it is and found it hard enough just to model the spread of the virus and hospitalisations and deaths.
    You're absolutely right that there wasn't a time to analyse it in advance, but there is time to do so in hindsight and in hindsight lockdown was a mistake.

    It was certainly not "too late".
    Oh you've done all the cost/benefit models now, have you?

    Make sure to send them in to the Inquiry. It'll save them a ton of time and effort.
  • OnlyLivingBoyOnlyLivingBoy Posts: 11,019

    The key reason Sweden did better during the pandemic is little to do with population density or that we are incorrigibly anti-social.

    It is to to with the independence of government agencies and the innate respect that most of the population has for the state, regional and local governments and other public agencies.

    On the schools point, it was only children 15+ who were, relatively briefly, prohibited from attending school physically. Children suffered *much* less than in the rest of Europe. That we favour our young over our old is one of the greatest triumphs, and the greatest tragedies, of modern Swedish society.

    You didn't do better. Compared to your neighbours you did far worse. Now extremists like Bart - typical of those who know the price of everything and the value of nothing - seem to think this was a price worth paying but most reasonable people would disagree with him.
    Depends on what you mean by “better”?

    If you mean minimising the long term damage to society and the economy, then yes, Sweden did better. A lot better.

    Sweden was playing the long game. Most of the rest of the world was running about like a headless chicken.

    One shudders to think what’s going to happen when a *real* killer pandemic shows up.

    Everyone in Sweden will die. Because you will continue to believe that what you did last time was the right way to go.
    You see, this is where you have *totally* misunderstood Swedish society, stamina and respect for independent governmental agencies.

    Covid = take care

    Real killer pandemic (2035?) = lockdown max = unpleasant, but hey we survived

    Swedes will manage both. No probs.

    Whereas I suspect that for most countries:

    Covid = headless chicken lockdown

    Real killer pandemic (2035?) = headless chicken disrespect for government = all fall down


    Quite possibly right.

    Once bitten, twice shy. I for one won't be prepared to show respect to a future government wanting to strip us of our liberties again. I'm sure others feel the same.
    Maybe they will. Much as I despise this government I think they probably made okay calls on lockdown and I will continue to follow public health advice in pursuit of our common national interest in the future.
  • StuartDicksonStuartDickson Posts: 11,743

    The key reason Sweden did better during the pandemic is little to do with population density or that we are incorrigibly anti-social.

    It is to to with the independence of government agencies and the innate respect that most of the population has for the state, regional and local governments and other public agencies.

    On the schools point, it was only children 15+ who were, relatively briefly, prohibited from attending school physically. Children suffered *much* less than in the rest of Europe. That we favour our young over our old is one of the greatest triumphs, and the greatest tragedies, of modern Swedish society.

    You didn't do better. Compared to your neighbours you did far worse. Now extremists like Bart - typical of those who know the price of everything and the value of nothing - seem to think this was a price worth paying but most reasonable people would disagree with him.
    Depends on what you mean by “better”?

    If you mean minimising the long term damage to society and the economy, then yes, Sweden did better. A lot better.

    Sweden was playing the long game. Most of the rest of the world was running about like a headless chicken.

    One shudders to think what’s going to happen when a *real* killer pandemic shows up.

    Everyone in Sweden will die. Because you will continue to believe that what you did last time was the right way to go.
    You see, this is where you have *totally* misunderstood Swedish society, stamina and respect for independent governmental agencies.

    Covid = take care

    Real killer pandemic (2035?) = lockdown max = unpleasant, but hey we survived

    Swedes will manage both. No probs.

    Whereas I suspect that for most countries:

    Covid = headless chicken lockdown

    Real killer pandemic (2035?) = headless chicken disrespect for government = all fall down


    Quite possibly right.

    Once bitten, twice shy. I for one won't be prepared to show respect to a future government wanting to strip us of our liberties again. I'm sure others feel the same.
    And yours is a perfectly human, and common reaction: once fooled, twice shy.

    The Swedish populace were not fooled. Our government and governmental agencies were pretty straight with us. We listened, we digested, we (largely) behaved ourselves.

    Ditto when the real killer pandemic comes. (And it will.)

    The English populace on the other hand were led by total donkeys. The real damage to English society will only become truly apparent when the real pandemic arrives. You’ll mostly tell them to go fuck themselves. Before promptly croaking it.
  • LeonLeon Posts: 30,631
    I was worried my older daughter might not like Italy. I mean, she’s 16. Art, the Renaissance, churches, Michelangelo’s architecture? - yawn



    ADORES IT. The vivacity and the beauty and the charm and she now totally likes frescoes. We compare our favourite frescoes

    Cheers



  • BartholomewRobertsBartholomewRoberts Posts: 10,222
    edited August 2022

    kinabalu said:

    MISTY said:

    kinabalu said:

    Driver said:

    kinabalu said:

    Driver said:

    TOPPING said:

    1. Diseases will always kill us and if they don't then I have bad news about life in any case.
    2. I can totally understand that the government, looking as we all did at those pictures from Italy of people dying in the corridors, had to do something and lockdowns was it.
    3. The whole point of society is a balance. Tragically it is not to keep every Archie alive at the expense of others who would benefit from those resources.

    Once the NHS was in no danger of "collapsing" as in real collapse, not the collapse that the Graun and the various health unions call every other week, then there should absolutely have been no more lockdowns.

    There should have been compensation for pubs if they wanted to close and teachers if they wanted to stay home but no mandate.

    Our freedoms are so precious and the great and good of PB dismiss them instantly and soil themselves at the first real test of freedom that we in the UK have had for 80 years. Doesn't bode well for the future.

    Which is a greater threat to Freedom: a temporary measure in the face of a novel pandemic, or a sustained campaign by government to restrict political protest and dissent? Is the collapse of the Court system due to chronic neglect perhaps a more pernicious threat? Is the drive to ban freedom of speech under the guise of Fighting Wokery more problematic? Are restrictions on the right to strike actually more consequential? I think one can debate whether temporary lockdowns were really the "first real test of freedom that we in the UK have had for 80 years".

    But, sure, lockdowns should be avoided. The way to avoid lockdowns is with better public health measures. We can look at a country like Japan that never had a national lockdown and had far fewer COVID cases. A better Test & Trace system, with more support for people self-isolating, would have been a huge help in the UK. A better funded primary health care system would have helped.

    This ain't rocket science. If you don't want lockdowns, do public health better.
    No, it isn't rocket science. If you don't want lockdowns, don't implement lockdowns.
    How would you have hampered the spread of the virus at those critical times then?

    It spread via close contact between people remember - not by black magic.
    Strong advice, not legislation. And this would have included strong advice to organisations and companies to stop doing counterproductive things, like supermarkets cutting their hours, which merely ensured that the average number of people in their shops at any given time was higher than it needed to be.
    Ok so Muscly goes "You MUST stay at home etc etc" but no laws are changed.

    Why is that so much better iyo?

    And what happens if people don't respond to the extent necessary to ward off a public health catastrophe?
    It isn't warding off anything, its just changing the emphasis of risk. You assume these measures, even short term, are risk free, but they aren't.

    Every kind of restriction is a swings and roundabouts calculation. Not how it was presented at the time (it was 'saving lives'), but we now know that is true.

    At best lockdown was sacrificing some lives to save others. At best. What's the balance? who knows?
    I never assumed the NPIs were cost free. However there was a train about to run us over and it had to be slowed down. The idea of somebody configuring and running a super-complex, multi-level cost/benefit model and trying to incorporate and quantify things like impact on mental health before we did anything is for the birds. We were too late acting as it is and found it hard enough just to model the spread of the virus and hospitalisations and deaths.
    You're absolutely right that there wasn't a time to analyse it in advance, but there is time to do so in hindsight and in hindsight lockdown was a mistake.

    It was certainly not "too late".
    In hindsight paying my home insurance last year was a mistake. My house didn't burn down after all. What a waste of money!

    (That's only one argument, of course. It is not at all clear, even in hindsight, that not locking down would have had lower social and economic costs than locking down did.)
    If your home insurance only cost a few quid then it was probably worthwhile to have. If your home insurance cost more than your home and required your children to be out of school for months etc then it probably wasn't.

    kinabalu said:

    MISTY said:

    kinabalu said:

    Driver said:

    kinabalu said:

    Driver said:

    TOPPING said:

    1. Diseases will always kill us and if they don't then I have bad news about life in any case.
    2. I can totally understand that the government, looking as we all did at those pictures from Italy of people dying in the corridors, had to do something and lockdowns was it.
    3. The whole point of society is a balance. Tragically it is not to keep every Archie alive at the expense of others who would benefit from those resources.

    Once the NHS was in no danger of "collapsing" as in real collapse, not the collapse that the Graun and the various health unions call every other week, then there should absolutely have been no more lockdowns.

    There should have been compensation for pubs if they wanted to close and teachers if they wanted to stay home but no mandate.

    Our freedoms are so precious and the great and good of PB dismiss them instantly and soil themselves at the first real test of freedom that we in the UK have had for 80 years. Doesn't bode well for the future.

    Which is a greater threat to Freedom: a temporary measure in the face of a novel pandemic, or a sustained campaign by government to restrict political protest and dissent? Is the collapse of the Court system due to chronic neglect perhaps a more pernicious threat? Is the drive to ban freedom of speech under the guise of Fighting Wokery more problematic? Are restrictions on the right to strike actually more consequential? I think one can debate whether temporary lockdowns were really the "first real test of freedom that we in the UK have had for 80 years".

    But, sure, lockdowns should be avoided. The way to avoid lockdowns is with better public health measures. We can look at a country like Japan that never had a national lockdown and had far fewer COVID cases. A better Test & Trace system, with more support for people self-isolating, would have been a huge help in the UK. A better funded primary health care system would have helped.

    This ain't rocket science. If you don't want lockdowns, do public health better.
    No, it isn't rocket science. If you don't want lockdowns, don't implement lockdowns.
    How would you have hampered the spread of the virus at those critical times then?

    It spread via close contact between people remember - not by black magic.
    Strong advice, not legislation. And this would have included strong advice to organisations and companies to stop doing counterproductive things, like supermarkets cutting their hours, which merely ensured that the average number of people in their shops at any given time was higher than it needed to be.
    Ok so Muscly goes "You MUST stay at home etc etc" but no laws are changed.

    Why is that so much better iyo?

    And what happens if people don't respond to the extent necessary to ward off a public health catastrophe?
    It isn't warding off anything, its just changing the emphasis of risk. You assume these measures, even short term, are risk free, but they aren't.

    Every kind of restriction is a swings and roundabouts calculation. Not how it was presented at the time (it was 'saving lives'), but we now know that is true.

    At best lockdown was sacrificing some lives to save others. At best. What's the balance? who knows?
    I never assumed the NPIs were cost free. However there was a train about to run us over and it had to be slowed down. The idea of somebody configuring and running a super-complex, multi-level cost/benefit model and trying to incorporate and quantify things like impact on mental health before we did anything is for the birds. We were too late acting as it is and found it hard enough just to model the spread of the virus and hospitalisations and deaths.
    You're absolutely right that there wasn't a time to analyse it in advance, but there is time to do so in hindsight and in hindsight lockdown was a mistake.

    It was certainly not "too late".
    In hindsight paying my home insurance last year was a mistake. My house didn't burn down after all. What a waste of money!

    (That's only one argument, of course. It is not at all clear, even in hindsight, that not locking down would have had lower social and economic costs than locking down did.)
    If your home insurance only cost a few quid then it was probably worthwhile to have. If your home insurance cost more than your home and required your children to be out of school for months etc then it probably wasn't.
    The risk at the time of the first lockdown was that the hospitals would be overwhelmed and that tens of thousands of people would die unnecessarily. Giving the kids a couple on months off school and paying an economic cost was indeed the equivalent of a few quid when compared to the horrifying possible alternative.

    The case for the later lockdowns is not quite so clear, but in general locking down more quickly would have meant locking down for a shorter time.
    Tens of thousands dying doesn't justify millions losing their education.

    Would you sacrifice 100 people's education to prolong a single person's life? If not, why sacrifice millions for tens of thousands?

    The only way to justify millions losing education, is if millions were going to die.
  • tlg86tlg86 Posts: 24,023

    The key reason Sweden did better during the pandemic is little to do with population density or that we are incorrigibly anti-social.

    It is to to with the independence of government agencies and the innate respect that most of the population has for the state, regional and local governments and other public agencies.

    On the schools point, it was only children 15+ who were, relatively briefly, prohibited from attending school physically. Children suffered *much* less than in the rest of Europe. That we favour our young over our old is one of the greatest triumphs, and the greatest tragedies, of modern Swedish society.

    You didn't do better. Compared to your neighbours you did far worse. Now extremists like Bart - typical of those who know the price of everything and the value of nothing - seem to think this was a price worth paying but most reasonable people would disagree with him.
    Depends on what you mean by “better”?

    If you mean minimising the long term damage to society and the economy, then yes, Sweden did better. A lot better.

    Sweden was playing the long game. Most of the rest of the world was running about like a headless chicken.

    One shudders to think what’s going to happen when a *real* killer pandemic shows up.

    Everyone in Sweden will die. Because you will continue to believe that what you did last time was the right way to go.
    You see, this is where you have *totally* misunderstood Swedish society, stamina and respect for independent governmental agencies.

    Covid = take care

    Real killer pandemic (2035?) = lockdown max = unpleasant, but hey we survived

    Swedes will manage both. No probs.

    Whereas I suspect that for most countries:

    Covid = headless chicken lockdown

    Real killer pandemic (2035?) = headless chicken disrespect for government = all fall down


    Quite possibly right.

    Once bitten, twice shy. I for one won't be prepared to show respect to a future government wanting to strip us of our liberties again. I'm sure others feel the same.
    And yours is a perfectly human, and common reaction: once fooled, twice shy.

    The Swedish populace were not fooled. Our government and governmental agencies were pretty straight with us. We listened, we digested, we (largely) behaved ourselves.

    Ditto when the real killer pandemic comes. (And it will.)

    The English populace on the other hand were led by total donkeys. The real damage to English society will only become truly apparent when the real pandemic arrives. You’ll mostly tell them to go fuck themselves. Before promptly croaking it.
    I think this is bollocks. The big reason why COVID was quite divisive was the age profile of the people affected. If another pandemic turns up that starts bumping off children, you can be certain that we'll all go like Matt Damon in that film.
  • MortimerMortimer Posts: 13,493

    The key reason Sweden did better during the pandemic is little to do with population density or that we are incorrigibly anti-social.

    It is to to with the independence of government agencies and the innate respect that most of the population has for the state, regional and local governments and other public agencies.

    On the schools point, it was only children 15+ who were, relatively briefly, prohibited from attending school physically. Children suffered *much* less than in the rest of Europe. That we favour our young over our old is one of the greatest triumphs, and the greatest tragedies, of modern Swedish society.

    You didn't do better. Compared to your neighbours you did far worse. Now extremists like Bart - typical of those who know the price of everything and the value of nothing - seem to think this was a price worth paying but most reasonable people would disagree with him.
    Depends on what you mean by “better”?

    If you mean minimising the long term damage to society and the economy, then yes, Sweden did better. A lot better.

    Sweden was playing the long game. Most of the rest of the world was running about like a headless chicken.

    One shudders to think what’s going to happen when a *real* killer pandemic shows up.

    Everyone in Sweden will die. Because you will continue to believe that what you did last time was the right way to go.
    You see, this is where you have *totally* misunderstood Swedish society, stamina and respect for independent governmental agencies.

    Covid = take care

    Real killer pandemic (2035?) = lockdown max = unpleasant, but hey we survived

    Swedes will manage both. No probs.

    Whereas I suspect that for most countries:

    Covid = headless chicken lockdown

    Real killer pandemic (2035?) = headless chicken disrespect for government = all fall down


    Quite possibly right.

    Once bitten, twice shy. I for one won't be prepared to show respect to a future government wanting to strip us of our liberties again. I'm sure others feel the same.
    And yours is a perfectly human, and common reaction: once fooled, twice shy.

    The Swedish populace were not fooled. Our government and governmental agencies were pretty straight with us. We listened, we digested, we (largely) behaved ourselves.

    Ditto when the real killer pandemic comes. (And it will.)

    The English populace on the other hand were led by total donkeys. The real damage to English society will only become truly apparent when the real pandemic arrives. You’ll mostly tell them to go fuck themselves. Before promptly croaking it.
    Crikey, what must you think of the way Sturgeon behaved then?
  • kinabalu said:

    MISTY said:

    kinabalu said:

    Driver said:

    kinabalu said:

    Driver said:

    TOPPING said:

    1. Diseases will always kill us and if they don't then I have bad news about life in any case.
    2. I can totally understand that the government, looking as we all did at those pictures from Italy of people dying in the corridors, had to do something and lockdowns was it.
    3. The whole point of society is a balance. Tragically it is not to keep every Archie alive at the expense of others who would benefit from those resources.

    Once the NHS was in no danger of "collapsing" as in real collapse, not the collapse that the Graun and the various health unions call every other week, then there should absolutely have been no more lockdowns.

    There should have been compensation for pubs if they wanted to close and teachers if they wanted to stay home but no mandate.

    Our freedoms are so precious and the great and good of PB dismiss them instantly and soil themselves at the first real test of freedom that we in the UK have had for 80 years. Doesn't bode well for the future.

    Which is a greater threat to Freedom: a temporary measure in the face of a novel pandemic, or a sustained campaign by government to restrict political protest and dissent? Is the collapse of the Court system due to chronic neglect perhaps a more pernicious threat? Is the drive to ban freedom of speech under the guise of Fighting Wokery more problematic? Are restrictions on the right to strike actually more consequential? I think one can debate whether temporary lockdowns were really the "first real test of freedom that we in the UK have had for 80 years".

    But, sure, lockdowns should be avoided. The way to avoid lockdowns is with better public health measures. We can look at a country like Japan that never had a national lockdown and had far fewer COVID cases. A better Test & Trace system, with more support for people self-isolating, would have been a huge help in the UK. A better funded primary health care system would have helped.

    This ain't rocket science. If you don't want lockdowns, do public health better.
    No, it isn't rocket science. If you don't want lockdowns, don't implement lockdowns.
    How would you have hampered the spread of the virus at those critical times then?

    It spread via close contact between people remember - not by black magic.
    Strong advice, not legislation. And this would have included strong advice to organisations and companies to stop doing counterproductive things, like supermarkets cutting their hours, which merely ensured that the average number of people in their shops at any given time was higher than it needed to be.
    Ok so Muscly goes "You MUST stay at home etc etc" but no laws are changed.

    Why is that so much better iyo?

    And what happens if people don't respond to the extent necessary to ward off a public health catastrophe?
    It isn't warding off anything, its just changing the emphasis of risk. You assume these measures, even short term, are risk free, but they aren't.

    Every kind of restriction is a swings and roundabouts calculation. Not how it was presented at the time (it was 'saving lives'), but we now know that is true.

    At best lockdown was sacrificing some lives to save others. At best. What's the balance? who knows?
    I never assumed the NPIs were cost free. However there was a train about to run us over and it had to be slowed down. The idea of somebody configuring and running a super-complex, multi-level cost/benefit model and trying to incorporate and quantify things like impact on mental health before we did anything is for the birds. We were too late acting as it is and found it hard enough just to model the spread of the virus and hospitalisations and deaths.
    You're absolutely right that there wasn't a time to analyse it in advance, but there is time to do so in hindsight and in hindsight lockdown was a mistake.

    It was certainly not "too late".
    In hindsight paying my home insurance last year was a mistake. My house didn't burn down after all. What a waste of money!

    (That's only one argument, of course. It is not at all clear, even in hindsight, that not locking down would have had lower social and economic costs than locking down did.)
    If your home insurance only cost a few quid then it was probably worthwhile to have. If your home insurance cost more than your home and required your children to be out of school for months etc then it probably wasn't.

    kinabalu said:

    MISTY said:

    kinabalu said:

    Driver said:

    kinabalu said:

    Driver said:

    TOPPING said:

    1. Diseases will always kill us and if they don't then I have bad news about life in any case.
    2. I can totally understand that the government, looking as we all did at those pictures from Italy of people dying in the corridors, had to do something and lockdowns was it.
    3. The whole point of society is a balance. Tragically it is not to keep every Archie alive at the expense of others who would benefit from those resources.

    Once the NHS was in no danger of "collapsing" as in real collapse, not the collapse that the Graun and the various health unions call every other week, then there should absolutely have been no more lockdowns.

    There should have been compensation for pubs if they wanted to close and teachers if they wanted to stay home but no mandate.

    Our freedoms are so precious and the great and good of PB dismiss them instantly and soil themselves at the first real test of freedom that we in the UK have had for 80 years. Doesn't bode well for the future.

    Which is a greater threat to Freedom: a temporary measure in the face of a novel pandemic, or a sustained campaign by government to restrict political protest and dissent? Is the collapse of the Court system due to chronic neglect perhaps a more pernicious threat? Is the drive to ban freedom of speech under the guise of Fighting Wokery more problematic? Are restrictions on the right to strike actually more consequential? I think one can debate whether temporary lockdowns were really the "first real test of freedom that we in the UK have had for 80 years".

    But, sure, lockdowns should be avoided. The way to avoid lockdowns is with better public health measures. We can look at a country like Japan that never had a national lockdown and had far fewer COVID cases. A better Test & Trace system, with more support for people self-isolating, would have been a huge help in the UK. A better funded primary health care system would have helped.

    This ain't rocket science. If you don't want lockdowns, do public health better.
    No, it isn't rocket science. If you don't want lockdowns, don't implement lockdowns.
    How would you have hampered the spread of the virus at those critical times then?

    It spread via close contact between people remember - not by black magic.
    Strong advice, not legislation. And this would have included strong advice to organisations and companies to stop doing counterproductive things, like supermarkets cutting their hours, which merely ensured that the average number of people in their shops at any given time was higher than it needed to be.
    Ok so Muscly goes "You MUST stay at home etc etc" but no laws are changed.

    Why is that so much better iyo?

    And what happens if people don't respond to the extent necessary to ward off a public health catastrophe?
    It isn't warding off anything, its just changing the emphasis of risk. You assume these measures, even short term, are risk free, but they aren't.

    Every kind of restriction is a swings and roundabouts calculation. Not how it was presented at the time (it was 'saving lives'), but we now know that is true.

    At best lockdown was sacrificing some lives to save others. At best. What's the balance? who knows?
    I never assumed the NPIs were cost free. However there was a train about to run us over and it had to be slowed down. The idea of somebody configuring and running a super-complex, multi-level cost/benefit model and trying to incorporate and quantify things like impact on mental health before we did anything is for the birds. We were too late acting as it is and found it hard enough just to model the spread of the virus and hospitalisations and deaths.
    You're absolutely right that there wasn't a time to analyse it in advance, but there is time to do so in hindsight and in hindsight lockdown was a mistake.

    It was certainly not "too late".
    In hindsight paying my home insurance last year was a mistake. My house didn't burn down after all. What a waste of money!

    (That's only one argument, of course. It is not at all clear, even in hindsight, that not locking down would have had lower social and economic costs than locking down did.)
    If your home insurance only cost a few quid then it was probably worthwhile to have. If your home insurance cost more than your home and required your children to be out of school for months etc then it probably wasn't.
    The risk at the time of the first lockdown was that the hospitals would be overwhelmed and that tens of thousands of people would die unnecessarily. Giving the kids a couple on months off school and paying an economic cost was indeed the equivalent of a few quid when compared to the horrifying possible alternative.

    The case for the later lockdowns is not quite so clear, but in general locking down more quickly would have meant locking down for a shorter time.
    Tens of thousands dying doesn't justify millions losing their education.
    1) They didn't *lose* their education; their education was interrupted.
    2) Their education would probably have been interrupted anyway, due to teacher absence/death.
    3) You seem to place little value on human life.
  • MortimerMortimer Posts: 13,493

    The key reason Sweden did better during the pandemic is little to do with population density or that we are incorrigibly anti-social.

    It is to to with the independence of government agencies and the innate respect that most of the population has for the state, regional and local governments and other public agencies.

    On the schools point, it was only children 15+ who were, relatively briefly, prohibited from attending school physically. Children suffered *much* less than in the rest of Europe. That we favour our young over our old is one of the greatest triumphs, and the greatest tragedies, of modern Swedish society.

    You didn't do better. Compared to your neighbours you did far worse. Now extremists like Bart - typical of those who know the price of everything and the value of nothing - seem to think this was a price worth paying but most reasonable people would disagree with him.
    Depends on what you mean by “better”?

    If you mean minimising the long term damage to society and the economy, then yes, Sweden did better. A lot better.

    Sweden was playing the long game. Most of the rest of the world was running about like a headless chicken.

    One shudders to think what’s going to happen when a *real* killer pandemic shows up.

    Everyone in Sweden will die. Because you will continue to believe that what you did last time was the right way to go.
    You see, this is where you have *totally* misunderstood Swedish society, stamina and respect for independent governmental agencies.

    Covid = take care

    Real killer pandemic (2035?) = lockdown max = unpleasant, but hey we survived

    Swedes will manage both. No probs.

    Whereas I suspect that for most countries:

    Covid = headless chicken lockdown

    Real killer pandemic (2035?) = headless chicken disrespect for government = all fall down


    Quite possibly right.

    Once bitten, twice shy. I for one won't be prepared to show respect to a future government wanting to strip us of our liberties again. I'm sure others feel the same.
    Maybe they will. Much as I despise this government I think they probably made okay calls on lockdown and I will continue to follow public health advice in pursuit of our common national interest in the future.
    The most mask-keen mates of mine now laugh at the way they sheepishly followed the herd.

    I haven't worn one since Freedom day 2021. Not a single day lost to illness in that time.
  • Luckyguy1983Luckyguy1983 Posts: 20,505
    edited August 2022
    kyf_100 said:

    AlistairM said:

    kyf_100 said:

    kyf_100 said:

    kyf_100 said:

    kyf_100 said:

    Anyone worked out how workable this is?
    (Though loading the costs on bill payers in the 2040s is very on-brand for a government that really doesn't give a stuff about anyone younger than about 60)

    Energy firm’s £100 billion plan to freeze energy bills for 2 years. A thread
    The Chief Executive of one of the UK’s largest energy providers presented Kwasi Kwarteng and Jacob Rees-Mogg with a £100 billion plan to stave off an energy price emergency last week...
    2/ Keith Anderson, CEO of Scottish Power will present the same plan to Scottish First Minister Nicola Sturgeon later today.
    The plan would involve the government guaranteeing loans to the energy companies enabling them to keep bills frozen while buying the gas needed....
    3/ ...for the next two years.
    £100 billion is Scottish Power’s best estimate of the difference between what it will actually cost to buy the energy and the current cap of £1971.
    Sources close to the company said that Kwasi Kwarteng, tipped to be the next Chancellor....
    4/ ..if Liz Truss is next PM, was broadly receptive to the idea. Sources close to Kwasi Kwarteng wouldn’t be drawn on his enthusiasm. “We had a meeting about it – that’s all”.
    The so called deficit fund would be repaid through bills over the next 20 or so years...


    https://twitter.com/BBCSimonJack/status/1562061859401900033

    Kwarteng and Truss would be well advised to go for it, it dwarfs Labour's plan and probably leaves some room for the 400 quid direct help that Labour would remove.
    In a my future generations' debt is bigger than your future generations' debt.

    I suppose on a positive note with inflation running at 20% p a for the next twenty years the debt will have withered to nothing anyway.
    Well the cost of not freezing everyone to death this winter will be hugely increased public debt. Thems the breaks. Labour are just proposing to do it in a series of depressing interventions rather than this option of more up front but over a longer period.
    Yes, something has to be done and Liz and her Chancellor and Energy Minister have come up with a corker of a plan that shames Labour's meagre effort. But the figure...wow!
    How have the energy companies - the big ones who actually supply energy I mean rather than the small ones that were just effectively trading futures - been doing the last few years?

    Would it be viable to call their bluff? Or even possible?

    Keep the energy cap where it is or even reduce it. Let the energy companies take the pain and see how much they can take and only then step in and introduce the support scheme when they are on the verge of going bust. It would ensure that they are actually doing all they can rather than just looking for a way to support their profits.

    Should any energy company be doing more than getting by right now?

    I am not actually advocating this as I am sure there are way too many flaws in my reasoning but just thought it was worth at least discussing.
    The mere fact that it's the energy companies favoured solution suggests to me it requires precisely this kind of scrutiny.

    One way or another, the taxpayer is going to be on the hook for a lot of debt - but how much of that should be going into energy suppliers profits?
    Well this is the issue with Labours plan too isnt it? Its going to cost us tens of billions either way
    I think the question is how many billions will be profits for the energy companies. When nationalisation means we could take those profits out of the equation.

    The energy companies are very keen on the "give us a big loan and we'll pay it off over the next 20 years with higher but manageable energy bills"

    Is that the best deal for Joe Billpayer, or is it the best deal for the energy companies?
    Nationalisation in this situation as Gordon Brown pushed for is so stupid, the crisis coming here is finding and getting money to those most in need, nationalisation will be using that money where it’s not needed, buying stuff we don’t need.

    Richard Tyndall is right, squeeze to find where the lean point is, leave any fat in the system (like news reports of number profits, dividends, pay and bonuses) whilst people freeze and starve lose business and homes is both politically toxic and a bit immoral.
    I am inclined towards what TSE was saying downthread, that there is a serious risk of general strike and civil disorder next year if the government do not get a handle on this. I'm not sure "trimming the fat in the system" is going to cover it.

    My natural instincts are libertarian ones, however I believe the government has a duty to defends its citizens in times of war. Not just with the army, however.

    Russia has weaponised energy against us in a proxy war. It is their intention to turn the screws as much as possible, to weaken our resolve against their invasion of Ukraine, and create precisely the kind of civil unrest that has been warned about downthread.

    As far as I'm concerned, that means greater government intervention is morally justifiable in this particular circumstance.

    It needs to be about more than just preventing pensioners from freezing to death and giving a few handouts here and there. We need to ensure an energy supply that is affordable for all this winter - and that may mean looking at radical solutions such as nationalisation to control prices, furloughing energy intensive industries, and scheduling rolling blackouts to control demand.

    The alternative is bankrupting hundreds of thousands of businesses, mass unemployment, strikes and civil unrest.
    I think the penny is dropping right across the board isn’t it - this is just not the moment to find the money for tax cuts. Hence the mood you describe, Tax cuts the solution promised by government, so they drop like stone in the polls, as 97.7% of electorate know it’s not the right moment for those policies. There is a right time for such policies and determination. But this is not that moment.
    Supply is down by 15% or so due to Russia. That means demand needs to drop by a similar amount.

    Proposals like taking out a loan to freeze prices now, and paying that astronomical sum back over the next 20 years or so, don't fully solve the problem. There is simply only so much energy to go around. We can't keep bidding it up and up in a bidding war and putting it on the never never.

    We need to start looking seriously at how to reduce demand this winter while keeping the economy alive - it's going to require substantial government intervention.

    Keeping prices artificially low will only stimulate demand. Demand reduction is going to need to be part of the equation. It won't be popular, but ultimately difficult decisions need to be made during wartime, that's what a government is there for. And I would rather the government allocates available supply on a harm reduction basis (to both lives and the economy) than allow the free market to allocate energy to the highest bidder.
    There will be a natural reduction in usage as people avoid where possible unnecessary energy use. I have small portable a/c unit I use on warm days to help keep my small upstairs study cool. It is a bit warm today and in other times I would have used it but I'm choosing not to. Similar decisions will be made up and down the land. I think TSE mentioned also that his company will be going back to WFH to save on energy costs. That will also feed into overal reduced energy consumption.

    Any high-energy usage devices have already become massively unpopular. See for example this 2KW outdoor heater reduced from £55 to less than £14. Clearly no one wants to be buying that sort of product right now and it will reduce our energy consumption!
    https://www.hotukdeals.com/deals/quartz-element-grey-2kw-electric-wall-mounted-heater-3985162

    Having said that we do need to look into all avenues for reducing our energy consumption, particularly around gas usage.
    An electric fleece blanket retails for about £40-50.

    Government could sell them for £10 (giving them away for free just encourages people to hoard items they don't use), along with a public service ad campaign encouraging people to turn their thermostats down this winter.

    https://energyhistory.yale.edu/library-item/when-you-ride-alone-you-ride-hitler-us-government-propaganda-poster-1943

    "When you turn the thermostat up, you put money in Putin's pocket".

    A message which would go down like a bucket of cold sick and deservedly so. It's our Government and the green maniacs it has been in thrall to that have put money in Putin's pocket, by shutting down domestic energy supplies (and storage), and relying on imports instead. Why should people accept the halfwits who created this situation telling them it's all their fault for daring to have their heating on in Winter? Tone deaf doesn’t come close.
  • MoonRabbitMoonRabbit Posts: 9,214

    Taz said:

    Lefty Labour MP dissing Starmer here, showing how disunited Labour still are.

    Words to cheer Big Johns owls up

    “Foy said she had no particular cause to socialise with Starmer. She is a member of the leftwing Socialist Campaign Group of MPs, often at odds with Starmer’s leadership.
    “To be quite frank I’d only met Keir once before,” she said. “There was no way that there was any real chit-chat. Because we didn’t really know each other.”

    https://www.theguardian.com/politics/2022/aug/23/labour-mp-claims-reporter-broke-into-her-office-to-find-beergate-material

    Having seen a few of her woeful performances on local politics shows I think that reflects well on Starmer.

    She's got a safe seat for life and has nothing really to offer the labour movement.
    Remarkable spin by MoonRabbit, though - MP reports a burglary and media harassment against a background of family tragedy, Moon thinks the story is that she doesn't know SKS well.
    🙋‍♀️.
  • Mortimer said:

    The key reason Sweden did better during the pandemic is little to do with population density or that we are incorrigibly anti-social.

    It is to to with the independence of government agencies and the innate respect that most of the population has for the state, regional and local governments and other public agencies.

    On the schools point, it was only children 15+ who were, relatively briefly, prohibited from attending school physically. Children suffered *much* less than in the rest of Europe. That we favour our young over our old is one of the greatest triumphs, and the greatest tragedies, of modern Swedish society.

    You didn't do better. Compared to your neighbours you did far worse. Now extremists like Bart - typical of those who know the price of everything and the value of nothing - seem to think this was a price worth paying but most reasonable people would disagree with him.
    Depends on what you mean by “better”?

    If you mean minimising the long term damage to society and the economy, then yes, Sweden did better. A lot better.

    Sweden was playing the long game. Most of the rest of the world was running about like a headless chicken.

    One shudders to think what’s going to happen when a *real* killer pandemic shows up.

    Everyone in Sweden will die. Because you will continue to believe that what you did last time was the right way to go.
    You see, this is where you have *totally* misunderstood Swedish society, stamina and respect for independent governmental agencies.

    Covid = take care

    Real killer pandemic (2035?) = lockdown max = unpleasant, but hey we survived

    Swedes will manage both. No probs.

    Whereas I suspect that for most countries:

    Covid = headless chicken lockdown

    Real killer pandemic (2035?) = headless chicken disrespect for government = all fall down


    Quite possibly right.

    Once bitten, twice shy. I for one won't be prepared to show respect to a future government wanting to strip us of our liberties again. I'm sure others feel the same.
    Maybe they will. Much as I despise this government I think they probably made okay calls on lockdown and I will continue to follow public health advice in pursuit of our common national interest in the future.
    The most mask-keen mates of mine now laugh at the way they sheepishly followed the herd.

    I haven't worn one since Freedom day 2021. Not a single day lost to illness in that time.
    It it quite remarkable that you still haven't grasped the reason for wearing masks.
  • StuartDicksonStuartDickson Posts: 11,743
    tlg86 said:

    The key reason Sweden did better during the pandemic is little to do with population density or that we are incorrigibly anti-social.

    It is to to with the independence of government agencies and the innate respect that most of the population has for the state, regional and local governments and other public agencies.

    On the schools point, it was only children 15+ who were, relatively briefly, prohibited from attending school physically. Children suffered *much* less than in the rest of Europe. That we favour our young over our old is one of the greatest triumphs, and the greatest tragedies, of modern Swedish society.

    You didn't do better. Compared to your neighbours you did far worse. Now extremists like Bart - typical of those who know the price of everything and the value of nothing - seem to think this was a price worth paying but most reasonable people would disagree with him.
    Depends on what you mean by “better”?

    If you mean minimising the long term damage to society and the economy, then yes, Sweden did better. A lot better.

    Sweden was playing the long game. Most of the rest of the world was running about like a headless chicken.

    One shudders to think what’s going to happen when a *real* killer pandemic shows up.

    Everyone in Sweden will die. Because you will continue to believe that what you did last time was the right way to go.
    You see, this is where you have *totally* misunderstood Swedish society, stamina and respect for independent governmental agencies.

    Covid = take care

    Real killer pandemic (2035?) = lockdown max = unpleasant, but hey we survived

    Swedes will manage both. No probs.

    Whereas I suspect that for most countries:

    Covid = headless chicken lockdown

    Real killer pandemic (2035?) = headless chicken disrespect for government = all fall down


    Quite possibly right.

    Once bitten, twice shy. I for one won't be prepared to show respect to a future government wanting to strip us of our liberties again. I'm sure others feel the same.
    And yours is a perfectly human, and common reaction: once fooled, twice shy.

    The Swedish populace were not fooled. Our government and governmental agencies were pretty straight with us. We listened, we digested, we (largely) behaved ourselves.

    Ditto when the real killer pandemic comes. (And it will.)

    The English populace on the other hand were led by total donkeys. The real damage to English society will only become truly apparent when the real pandemic arrives. You’ll mostly tell them to go fuck themselves. Before promptly croaking it.
    I think this is bollocks. The big reason why COVID was quite divisive was the age profile of the people affected. If another pandemic turns up that starts bumping off children, you can be certain that we'll all go like Matt Damon in that film.
    Another age profile, say one that disproportionately cut down pre-pubescents?

    Same principle: I really do believe that Sweden will handle it far better than England. It is a structural issue: confidence in public authorities is totally shot in England.

    It is one reason why Scots are so attracted by the Nordic/Baltic model: create wealth, spread it around, build trust in public institutions.

    It’s not rocket science.

    And come Ebola VIII it might just make the difference between survival and extinction.
  • Daveyboy1961Daveyboy1961 Posts: 2,930

    Truss may have played a blinder here. After people have been ramping up talk of £3k, £4k or £6k bills or higher, if this suggested proposal goes ahead and bills are frozen then that's possibly going to seek quite a significant step taken.

    Oh and if it's a loan, then possibly not a handout either.

    But the devil will be in the details of course. What's going to happen with SMEs will be as important as what happens with consumer bills and that doesn't seem to be getting discussed much yet if at all.

    Barty loves Lizzy still

    :wink:
  • kinabalu said:

    MISTY said:

    kinabalu said:

    Driver said:

    kinabalu said:

    Driver said:

    TOPPING said:

    1. Diseases will always kill us and if they don't then I have bad news about life in any case.
    2. I can totally understand that the government, looking as we all did at those pictures from Italy of people dying in the corridors, had to do something and lockdowns was it.
    3. The whole point of society is a balance. Tragically it is not to keep every Archie alive at the expense of others who would benefit from those resources.

    Once the NHS was in no danger of "collapsing" as in real collapse, not the collapse that the Graun and the various health unions call every other week, then there should absolutely have been no more lockdowns.

    There should have been compensation for pubs if they wanted to close and teachers if they wanted to stay home but no mandate.

    Our freedoms are so precious and the great and good of PB dismiss them instantly and soil themselves at the first real test of freedom that we in the UK have had for 80 years. Doesn't bode well for the future.

    Which is a greater threat to Freedom: a temporary measure in the face of a novel pandemic, or a sustained campaign by government to restrict political protest and dissent? Is the collapse of the Court system due to chronic neglect perhaps a more pernicious threat? Is the drive to ban freedom of speech under the guise of Fighting Wokery more problematic? Are restrictions on the right to strike actually more consequential? I think one can debate whether temporary lockdowns were really the "first real test of freedom that we in the UK have had for 80 years".

    But, sure, lockdowns should be avoided. The way to avoid lockdowns is with better public health measures. We can look at a country like Japan that never had a national lockdown and had far fewer COVID cases. A better Test & Trace system, with more support for people self-isolating, would have been a huge help in the UK. A better funded primary health care system would have helped.

    This ain't rocket science. If you don't want lockdowns, do public health better.
    No, it isn't rocket science. If you don't want lockdowns, don't implement lockdowns.
    How would you have hampered the spread of the virus at those critical times then?

    It spread via close contact between people remember - not by black magic.
    Strong advice, not legislation. And this would have included strong advice to organisations and companies to stop doing counterproductive things, like supermarkets cutting their hours, which merely ensured that the average number of people in their shops at any given time was higher than it needed to be.
    Ok so Muscly goes "You MUST stay at home etc etc" but no laws are changed.

    Why is that so much better iyo?

    And what happens if people don't respond to the extent necessary to ward off a public health catastrophe?
    It isn't warding off anything, its just changing the emphasis of risk. You assume these measures, even short term, are risk free, but they aren't.

    Every kind of restriction is a swings and roundabouts calculation. Not how it was presented at the time (it was 'saving lives'), but we now know that is true.

    At best lockdown was sacrificing some lives to save others. At best. What's the balance? who knows?
    I never assumed the NPIs were cost free. However there was a train about to run us over and it had to be slowed down. The idea of somebody configuring and running a super-complex, multi-level cost/benefit model and trying to incorporate and quantify things like impact on mental health before we did anything is for the birds. We were too late acting as it is and found it hard enough just to model the spread of the virus and hospitalisations and deaths.
    You're absolutely right that there wasn't a time to analyse it in advance, but there is time to do so in hindsight and in hindsight lockdown was a mistake.

    It was certainly not "too late".
    In hindsight paying my home insurance last year was a mistake. My house didn't burn down after all. What a waste of money!

    (That's only one argument, of course. It is not at all clear, even in hindsight, that not locking down would have had lower social and economic costs than locking down did.)
    If your home insurance only cost a few quid then it was probably worthwhile to have. If your home insurance cost more than your home and required your children to be out of school for months etc then it probably wasn't.

    kinabalu said:

    MISTY said:

    kinabalu said:

    Driver said:

    kinabalu said:

    Driver said:

    TOPPING said:

    1. Diseases will always kill us and if they don't then I have bad news about life in any case.
    2. I can totally understand that the government, looking as we all did at those pictures from Italy of people dying in the corridors, had to do something and lockdowns was it.
    3. The whole point of society is a balance. Tragically it is not to keep every Archie alive at the expense of others who would benefit from those resources.

    Once the NHS was in no danger of "collapsing" as in real collapse, not the collapse that the Graun and the various health unions call every other week, then there should absolutely have been no more lockdowns.

    There should have been compensation for pubs if they wanted to close and teachers if they wanted to stay home but no mandate.

    Our freedoms are so precious and the great and good of PB dismiss them instantly and soil themselves at the first real test of freedom that we in the UK have had for 80 years. Doesn't bode well for the future.

    Which is a greater threat to Freedom: a temporary measure in the face of a novel pandemic, or a sustained campaign by government to restrict political protest and dissent? Is the collapse of the Court system due to chronic neglect perhaps a more pernicious threat? Is the drive to ban freedom of speech under the guise of Fighting Wokery more problematic? Are restrictions on the right to strike actually more consequential? I think one can debate whether temporary lockdowns were really the "first real test of freedom that we in the UK have had for 80 years".

    But, sure, lockdowns should be avoided. The way to avoid lockdowns is with better public health measures. We can look at a country like Japan that never had a national lockdown and had far fewer COVID cases. A better Test & Trace system, with more support for people self-isolating, would have been a huge help in the UK. A better funded primary health care system would have helped.

    This ain't rocket science. If you don't want lockdowns, do public health better.
    No, it isn't rocket science. If you don't want lockdowns, don't implement lockdowns.
    How would you have hampered the spread of the virus at those critical times then?

    It spread via close contact between people remember - not by black magic.
    Strong advice, not legislation. And this would have included strong advice to organisations and companies to stop doing counterproductive things, like supermarkets cutting their hours, which merely ensured that the average number of people in their shops at any given time was higher than it needed to be.
    Ok so Muscly goes "You MUST stay at home etc etc" but no laws are changed.

    Why is that so much better iyo?

    And what happens if people don't respond to the extent necessary to ward off a public health catastrophe?
    It isn't warding off anything, its just changing the emphasis of risk. You assume these measures, even short term, are risk free, but they aren't.

    Every kind of restriction is a swings and roundabouts calculation. Not how it was presented at the time (it was 'saving lives'), but we now know that is true.

    At best lockdown was sacrificing some lives to save others. At best. What's the balance? who knows?
    I never assumed the NPIs were cost free. However there was a train about to run us over and it had to be slowed down. The idea of somebody configuring and running a super-complex, multi-level cost/benefit model and trying to incorporate and quantify things like impact on mental health before we did anything is for the birds. We were too late acting as it is and found it hard enough just to model the spread of the virus and hospitalisations and deaths.
    You're absolutely right that there wasn't a time to analyse it in advance, but there is time to do so in hindsight and in hindsight lockdown was a mistake.

    It was certainly not "too late".
    In hindsight paying my home insurance last year was a mistake. My house didn't burn down after all. What a waste of money!

    (That's only one argument, of course. It is not at all clear, even in hindsight, that not locking down would have had lower social and economic costs than locking down did.)
    If your home insurance only cost a few quid then it was probably worthwhile to have. If your home insurance cost more than your home and required your children to be out of school for months etc then it probably wasn't.
    The risk at the time of the first lockdown was that the hospitals would be overwhelmed and that tens of thousands of people would die unnecessarily. Giving the kids a couple on months off school and paying an economic cost was indeed the equivalent of a few quid when compared to the horrifying possible alternative.

    The case for the later lockdowns is not quite so clear, but in general locking down more quickly would have meant locking down for a shorter time.
    Tens of thousands dying doesn't justify millions losing their education.
    1) They didn't *lose* their education; their education was interrupted.
    2) Their education would probably have been interrupted anyway, due to teacher absence/death.
    3) You seem to place little value on human life.
    1: Interruption is losing education. They didn't lose all of it, but that time won't be brought back.
    2: Yes it would have been interrupted anyway, but less.
    3: I value human life but I value what we do with our lives just as much if not more.

    Life merely for the sake of living isn't special. Life for the sake of living well, with good education etc is
  • Luckyguy1983Luckyguy1983 Posts: 20,505

    tlg86 said:

    The key reason Sweden did better during the pandemic is little to do with population density or that we are incorrigibly anti-social.

    It is to to with the independence of government agencies and the innate respect that most of the population has for the state, regional and local governments and other public agencies.

    On the schools point, it was only children 15+ who were, relatively briefly, prohibited from attending school physically. Children suffered *much* less than in the rest of Europe. That we favour our young over our old is one of the greatest triumphs, and the greatest tragedies, of modern Swedish society.

    You didn't do better. Compared to your neighbours you did far worse. Now extremists like Bart - typical of those who know the price of everything and the value of nothing - seem to think this was a price worth paying but most reasonable people would disagree with him.
    Depends on what you mean by “better”?

    If you mean minimising the long term damage to society and the economy, then yes, Sweden did better. A lot better.

    Sweden was playing the long game. Most of the rest of the world was running about like a headless chicken.

    One shudders to think what’s going to happen when a *real* killer pandemic shows up.

    Everyone in Sweden will die. Because you will continue to believe that what you did last time was the right way to go.
    You see, this is where you have *totally* misunderstood Swedish society, stamina and respect for independent governmental agencies.

    Covid = take care

    Real killer pandemic (2035?) = lockdown max = unpleasant, but hey we survived

    Swedes will manage both. No probs.

    Whereas I suspect that for most countries:

    Covid = headless chicken lockdown

    Real killer pandemic (2035?) = headless chicken disrespect for government = all fall down


    Quite possibly right.

    Once bitten, twice shy. I for one won't be prepared to show respect to a future government wanting to strip us of our liberties again. I'm sure others feel the same.
    And yours is a perfectly human, and common reaction: once fooled, twice shy.

    The Swedish populace were not fooled. Our government and governmental agencies were pretty straight with us. We listened, we digested, we (largely) behaved ourselves.

    Ditto when the real killer pandemic comes. (And it will.)

    The English populace on the other hand were led by total donkeys. The real damage to English society will only become truly apparent when the real pandemic arrives. You’ll mostly tell them to go fuck themselves. Before promptly croaking it.
    I think this is bollocks. The big reason why COVID was quite divisive was the age profile of the people affected. If another pandemic turns up that starts bumping off children, you can be certain that we'll all go like Matt Damon in that film.
    Another age profile, say one that disproportionately cut down pre-pubescents?

    Same principle: I really do believe that Sweden will handle it far better than England. It is a structural issue: confidence in public authorities is totally shot in England.

    It is one reason why Scots are so attracted by the Nordic/Baltic model: create wealth, spread it around, build trust in public institutions.

    It’s not rocket science.

    And come Ebola VIII it might just make the difference between survival and extinction.
    It won't, if the nations of the world hitch up their skirts, grab their balls, and tell America it must stop GOF research.
  • MortimerMortimer Posts: 13,493

    Mortimer said:

    The key reason Sweden did better during the pandemic is little to do with population density or that we are incorrigibly anti-social.

    It is to to with the independence of government agencies and the innate respect that most of the population has for the state, regional and local governments and other public agencies.

    On the schools point, it was only children 15+ who were, relatively briefly, prohibited from attending school physically. Children suffered *much* less than in the rest of Europe. That we favour our young over our old is one of the greatest triumphs, and the greatest tragedies, of modern Swedish society.

    You didn't do better. Compared to your neighbours you did far worse. Now extremists like Bart - typical of those who know the price of everything and the value of nothing - seem to think this was a price worth paying but most reasonable people would disagree with him.
    Depends on what you mean by “better”?

    If you mean minimising the long term damage to society and the economy, then yes, Sweden did better. A lot better.

    Sweden was playing the long game. Most of the rest of the world was running about like a headless chicken.

    One shudders to think what’s going to happen when a *real* killer pandemic shows up.

    Everyone in Sweden will die. Because you will continue to believe that what you did last time was the right way to go.
    You see, this is where you have *totally* misunderstood Swedish society, stamina and respect for independent governmental agencies.

    Covid = take care

    Real killer pandemic (2035?) = lockdown max = unpleasant, but hey we survived

    Swedes will manage both. No probs.

    Whereas I suspect that for most countries:

    Covid = headless chicken lockdown

    Real killer pandemic (2035?) = headless chicken disrespect for government = all fall down


    Quite possibly right.

    Once bitten, twice shy. I for one won't be prepared to show respect to a future government wanting to strip us of our liberties again. I'm sure others feel the same.
    Maybe they will. Much as I despise this government I think they probably made okay calls on lockdown and I will continue to follow public health advice in pursuit of our common national interest in the future.
    The most mask-keen mates of mine now laugh at the way they sheepishly followed the herd.

    I haven't worn one since Freedom day 2021. Not a single day lost to illness in that time.
    It it quite remarkable that you still haven't grasped the reason for wearing masks.
    I find it quite remarkable that the mask law made people feel safer. Or that they worried about catching Covid from someone in a supermarket.
  • Foxy said:

    AlistairM said:

    kyf_100 said:

    kyf_100 said:

    kyf_100 said:

    kyf_100 said:

    Anyone worked out how workable this is?
    (Though loading the costs on bill payers in the 2040s is very on-brand for a government that really doesn't give a stuff about anyone younger than about 60)

    Energy firm’s £100 billion plan to freeze energy bills for 2 years. A thread
    The Chief Executive of one of the UK’s largest energy providers presented Kwasi Kwarteng and Jacob Rees-Mogg with a £100 billion plan to stave off an energy price emergency last week...
    2/ Keith Anderson, CEO of Scottish Power will present the same plan to Scottish First Minister Nicola Sturgeon later today.
    The plan would involve the government guaranteeing loans to the energy companies enabling them to keep bills frozen while buying the gas needed....
    3/ ...for the next two years.
    £100 billion is Scottish Power’s best estimate of the difference between what it will actually cost to buy the energy and the current cap of £1971.
    Sources close to the company said that Kwasi Kwarteng, tipped to be the next Chancellor....
    4/ ..if Liz Truss is next PM, was broadly receptive to the idea. Sources close to Kwasi Kwarteng wouldn’t be drawn on his enthusiasm. “We had a meeting about it – that’s all”.
    The so called deficit fund would be repaid through bills over the next 20 or so years...


    https://twitter.com/BBCSimonJack/status/1562061859401900033

    Kwarteng and Truss would be well advised to go for it, it dwarfs Labour's plan and probably leaves some room for the 400 quid direct help that Labour would remove.
    In a my future generations' debt is bigger than your future generations' debt.

    I suppose on a positive note with inflation running at 20% p a for the next twenty years the debt will have withered to nothing anyway.
    Well the cost of not freezing everyone to death this winter will be hugely increased public debt. Thems the breaks. Labour are just proposing to do it in a series of depressing interventions rather than this option of more up front but over a longer period.
    Yes, something has to be done and Liz and her Chancellor and Energy Minister have come up with a corker of a plan that shames Labour's meagre effort. But the figure...wow!
    How have the energy companies - the big ones who actually supply energy I mean rather than the small ones that were just effectively trading futures - been doing the last few years?

    Would it be viable to call their bluff? Or even possible?

    Keep the energy cap where it is or even reduce it. Let the energy companies take the pain and see how much they can take and only then step in and introduce the support scheme when they are on the verge of going bust. It would ensure that they are actually doing all they can rather than just looking for a way to support their profits.

    Should any energy company be doing more than getting by right now?

    I am not actually advocating this as I am sure there are way too many flaws in my reasoning but just thought it was worth at least discussing.
    The mere fact that it's the energy companies favoured solution suggests to me it requires precisely this kind of scrutiny.

    One way or another, the taxpayer is going to be on the hook for a lot of debt - but how much of that should be going into energy suppliers profits?
    Well this is the issue with Labours plan too isnt it? Its going to cost us tens of billions either way
    I think the question is how many billions will be profits for the energy companies. When nationalisation means we could take those profits out of the equation.

    The energy companies are very keen on the "give us a big loan and we'll pay it off over the next 20 years with higher but manageable energy bills"

    Is that the best deal for Joe Billpayer, or is it the best deal for the energy companies?
    Nationalisation in this situation as Gordon Brown pushed for is so stupid, the crisis coming here is finding and getting money to those most in need, nationalisation will be using that money where it’s not needed, buying stuff we don’t need.

    Richard Tyndall is right, squeeze to find where the lean point is, leave any fat in the system (like news reports of number profits, dividends, pay and bonuses) whilst people freeze and starve lose business and homes is both politically toxic and a bit immoral.
    I am inclined towards what TSE was saying downthread, that there is a serious risk of general strike and civil disorder next year if the government do not get a handle on this. I'm not sure "trimming the fat in the system" is going to cover it.

    My natural instincts are libertarian ones, however I believe the government has a duty to defends its citizens in times of war. Not just with the army, however.

    Russia has weaponised energy against us in a proxy war. It is their intention to turn the screws as much as possible, to weaken our resolve against their invasion of Ukraine, and create precisely the kind of civil unrest that has been warned about downthread.

    As far as I'm concerned, that means greater government intervention is morally justifiable in this particular circumstance.

    It needs to be about more than just preventing pensioners from freezing to death and giving a few handouts here and there. We need to ensure an energy supply that is affordable for all this winter - and that may mean looking at radical solutions such as nationalisation to control prices, furloughing energy intensive industries, and scheduling rolling blackouts to control demand.

    The alternative is bankrupting hundreds of thousands of businesses, mass unemployment, strikes and civil unrest.
    I think the penny is dropping right across the board isn’t it - this is just not the moment to find the money for tax cuts. Hence the mood you describe, Tax cuts the solution promised by government, so they drop like stone in the polls, as 97.7% of electorate know it’s not the right moment for those policies. There is a right time for such policies and determination. But this is not that moment.
    Supply is down by 15% or so due to Russia. That means demand needs to drop by a similar amount.

    Proposals like taking out a loan to freeze prices now, and paying that astronomical sum back over the next 20 years or so, don't fully solve the problem. There is simply only so much energy to go around. We can't keep bidding it up and up in a bidding war and putting it on the never never.

    We need to start looking seriously at how to reduce demand this winter while keeping the economy alive - it's going to require substantial government intervention.

    Keeping prices artificially low will only stimulate demand. Demand reduction is going to need to be part of the equation. It won't be popular, but ultimately difficult decisions need to be made during wartime, that's what a government is there for. And I would rather the government allocates available supply on a harm reduction basis (to both lives and the economy) than allow the free market to allocate energy to the highest bidder.
    There will be a natural reduction in usage as people avoid where possible unnecessary energy use. I have small portable a/c unit I use on warm days to help keep my small upstairs study cool. It is a bit warm today and in other times I would have used it but I'm choosing not to. Similar decisions will be made up and down the land. I think TSE mentioned also that his company will be going back to WFH to save on energy costs. That will also feed into overal reduced energy consumption.

    Any high-energy usage devices have already become massively unpopular. See for example this 2KW outdoor heater reduced from £55 to less than £14. Clearly no one wants to be buying that sort of product right now and it will reduce our energy consumption!
    https://www.hotukdeals.com/deals/quartz-element-grey-2kw-electric-wall-mounted-heater-3985162

    Having said that we do need to look into all avenues for reducing our energy consumption, particularly around gas usage.
    It is an international market too, so co-ordinated action with other European countries is required. Non European countries are less dependent on Russian gas, and also not needing winter heating to the same degree. Otherwise reducing our consumption by 15% doesn't help much, as much of that benefit diffuses internationally.

    If only we had some sort of European Union to co-ordinate policy 🤔
    If only the existing European Union were doing anything to co-ordinate policy. Instead they are making vague platitudinous statements about energy transition and the need for unity whilst all the countries go their own way. Indeed the most useful suggestions for coordinated action have come from the IEA rather than the EU.
  • kyf_100 said:

    AlistairM said:

    kyf_100 said:

    kyf_100 said:

    kyf_100 said:

    kyf_100 said:

    Anyone worked out how workable this is?
    (Though loading the costs on bill payers in the 2040s is very on-brand for a government that really doesn't give a stuff about anyone younger than about 60)

    Energy firm’s £100 billion plan to freeze energy bills for 2 years. A thread
    The Chief Executive of one of the UK’s largest energy providers presented Kwasi Kwarteng and Jacob Rees-Mogg with a £100 billion plan to stave off an energy price emergency last week...
    2/ Keith Anderson, CEO of Scottish Power will present the same plan to Scottish First Minister Nicola Sturgeon later today.
    The plan would involve the government guaranteeing loans to the energy companies enabling them to keep bills frozen while buying the gas needed....
    3/ ...for the next two years.
    £100 billion is Scottish Power’s best estimate of the difference between what it will actually cost to buy the energy and the current cap of £1971.
    Sources close to the company said that Kwasi Kwarteng, tipped to be the next Chancellor....
    4/ ..if Liz Truss is next PM, was broadly receptive to the idea. Sources close to Kwasi Kwarteng wouldn’t be drawn on his enthusiasm. “We had a meeting about it – that’s all”.
    The so called deficit fund would be repaid through bills over the next 20 or so years...


    https://twitter.com/BBCSimonJack/status/1562061859401900033

    Kwarteng and Truss would be well advised to go for it, it dwarfs Labour's plan and probably leaves some room for the 400 quid direct help that Labour would remove.
    In a my future generations' debt is bigger than your future generations' debt.

    I suppose on a positive note with inflation running at 20% p a for the next twenty years the debt will have withered to nothing anyway.
    Well the cost of not freezing everyone to death this winter will be hugely increased public debt. Thems the breaks. Labour are just proposing to do it in a series of depressing interventions rather than this option of more up front but over a longer period.
    Yes, something has to be done and Liz and her Chancellor and Energy Minister have come up with a corker of a plan that shames Labour's meagre effort. But the figure...wow!
    How have the energy companies - the big ones who actually supply energy I mean rather than the small ones that were just effectively trading futures - been doing the last few years?

    Would it be viable to call their bluff? Or even possible?

    Keep the energy cap where it is or even reduce it. Let the energy companies take the pain and see how much they can take and only then step in and introduce the support scheme when they are on the verge of going bust. It would ensure that they are actually doing all they can rather than just looking for a way to support their profits.

    Should any energy company be doing more than getting by right now?

    I am not actually advocating this as I am sure there are way too many flaws in my reasoning but just thought it was worth at least discussing.
    The mere fact that it's the energy companies favoured solution suggests to me it requires precisely this kind of scrutiny.

    One way or another, the taxpayer is going to be on the hook for a lot of debt - but how much of that should be going into energy suppliers profits?
    Well this is the issue with Labours plan too isnt it? Its going to cost us tens of billions either way
    I think the question is how many billions will be profits for the energy companies. When nationalisation means we could take those profits out of the equation.

    The energy companies are very keen on the "give us a big loan and we'll pay it off over the next 20 years with higher but manageable energy bills"

    Is that the best deal for Joe Billpayer, or is it the best deal for the energy companies?
    Nationalisation in this situation as Gordon Brown pushed for is so stupid, the crisis coming here is finding and getting money to those most in need, nationalisation will be using that money where it’s not needed, buying stuff we don’t need.

    Richard Tyndall is right, squeeze to find where the lean point is, leave any fat in the system (like news reports of number profits, dividends, pay and bonuses) whilst people freeze and starve lose business and homes is both politically toxic and a bit immoral.
    I am inclined towards what TSE was saying downthread, that there is a serious risk of general strike and civil disorder next year if the government do not get a handle on this. I'm not sure "trimming the fat in the system" is going to cover it.

    My natural instincts are libertarian ones, however I believe the government has a duty to defends its citizens in times of war. Not just with the army, however.

    Russia has weaponised energy against us in a proxy war. It is their intention to turn the screws as much as possible, to weaken our resolve against their invasion of Ukraine, and create precisely the kind of civil unrest that has been warned about downthread.

    As far as I'm concerned, that means greater government intervention is morally justifiable in this particular circumstance.

    It needs to be about more than just preventing pensioners from freezing to death and giving a few handouts here and there. We need to ensure an energy supply that is affordable for all this winter - and that may mean looking at radical solutions such as nationalisation to control prices, furloughing energy intensive industries, and scheduling rolling blackouts to control demand.

    The alternative is bankrupting hundreds of thousands of businesses, mass unemployment, strikes and civil unrest.
    I think the penny is dropping right across the board isn’t it - this is just not the moment to find the money for tax cuts. Hence the mood you describe, Tax cuts the solution promised by government, so they drop like stone in the polls, as 97.7% of electorate know it’s not the right moment for those policies. There is a right time for such policies and determination. But this is not that moment.
    Supply is down by 15% or so due to Russia. That means demand needs to drop by a similar amount.

    Proposals like taking out a loan to freeze prices now, and paying that astronomical sum back over the next 20 years or so, don't fully solve the problem. There is simply only so much energy to go around. We can't keep bidding it up and up in a bidding war and putting it on the never never.

    We need to start looking seriously at how to reduce demand this winter while keeping the economy alive - it's going to require substantial government intervention.

    Keeping prices artificially low will only stimulate demand. Demand reduction is going to need to be part of the equation. It won't be popular, but ultimately difficult decisions need to be made during wartime, that's what a government is there for. And I would rather the government allocates available supply on a harm reduction basis (to both lives and the economy) than allow the free market to allocate energy to the highest bidder.
    There will be a natural reduction in usage as people avoid where possible unnecessary energy use. I have small portable a/c unit I use on warm days to help keep my small upstairs study cool. It is a bit warm today and in other times I would have used it but I'm choosing not to. Similar decisions will be made up and down the land. I think TSE mentioned also that his company will be going back to WFH to save on energy costs. That will also feed into overal reduced energy consumption.

    Any high-energy usage devices have already become massively unpopular. See for example this 2KW outdoor heater reduced from £55 to less than £14. Clearly no one wants to be buying that sort of product right now and it will reduce our energy consumption!
    https://www.hotukdeals.com/deals/quartz-element-grey-2kw-electric-wall-mounted-heater-3985162

    Having said that we do need to look into all avenues for reducing our energy consumption, particularly around gas usage.
    An electric fleece blanket retails for about £40-50.

    Government could sell them for £10 (giving them away for free just encourages people to hoard items they don't use), along with a public service ad campaign encouraging people to turn their thermostats down this winter.

    https://energyhistory.yale.edu/library-item/when-you-ride-alone-you-ride-hitler-us-government-propaganda-poster-1943

    "When you turn the thermostat up, you put money in Putin's pocket".

    A message which would go down like a bucket of cold sick and deservedly so. It's our Government and the green maniacs it has been in thrall to that have put money in Putin's pocket, by shutting down domestic energy supplies (and storage), and relying on imports instead. Why should people accept the halfwits who created this situation telling them it's all their fault for daring to have their heating on in Winter? Tone deaf doesn’t come close.
    If we'd listened to the "green maniacs" and built more renewable provision and insulated more homes, we'd be in less of a pickle than we are now.
  • DriverDriver Posts: 3,125

    Mortimer said:

    The key reason Sweden did better during the pandemic is little to do with population density or that we are incorrigibly anti-social.

    It is to to with the independence of government agencies and the innate respect that most of the population has for the state, regional and local governments and other public agencies.

    On the schools point, it was only children 15+ who were, relatively briefly, prohibited from attending school physically. Children suffered *much* less than in the rest of Europe. That we favour our young over our old is one of the greatest triumphs, and the greatest tragedies, of modern Swedish society.

    You didn't do better. Compared to your neighbours you did far worse. Now extremists like Bart - typical of those who know the price of everything and the value of nothing - seem to think this was a price worth paying but most reasonable people would disagree with him.
    Depends on what you mean by “better”?

    If you mean minimising the long term damage to society and the economy, then yes, Sweden did better. A lot better.

    Sweden was playing the long game. Most of the rest of the world was running about like a headless chicken.

    One shudders to think what’s going to happen when a *real* killer pandemic shows up.

    Everyone in Sweden will die. Because you will continue to believe that what you did last time was the right way to go.
    You see, this is where you have *totally* misunderstood Swedish society, stamina and respect for independent governmental agencies.

    Covid = take care

    Real killer pandemic (2035?) = lockdown max = unpleasant, but hey we survived

    Swedes will manage both. No probs.

    Whereas I suspect that for most countries:

    Covid = headless chicken lockdown

    Real killer pandemic (2035?) = headless chicken disrespect for government = all fall down


    Quite possibly right.

    Once bitten, twice shy. I for one won't be prepared to show respect to a future government wanting to strip us of our liberties again. I'm sure others feel the same.
    Maybe they will. Much as I despise this government I think they probably made okay calls on lockdown and I will continue to follow public health advice in pursuit of our common national interest in the future.
    The most mask-keen mates of mine now laugh at the way they sheepishly followed the herd.

    I haven't worn one since Freedom day 2021. Not a single day lost to illness in that time.
    It it quite remarkable that you still haven't grasped the reason for wearing masks.
    Showing you're doing something.
  • Mortimer said:

    The key reason Sweden did better during the pandemic is little to do with population density or that we are incorrigibly anti-social.

    It is to to with the independence of government agencies and the innate respect that most of the population has for the state, regional and local governments and other public agencies.

    On the schools point, it was only children 15+ who were, relatively briefly, prohibited from attending school physically. Children suffered *much* less than in the rest of Europe. That we favour our young over our old is one of the greatest triumphs, and the greatest tragedies, of modern Swedish society.

    You didn't do better. Compared to your neighbours you did far worse. Now extremists like Bart - typical of those who know the price of everything and the value of nothing - seem to think this was a price worth paying but most reasonable people would disagree with him.
    Depends on what you mean by “better”?

    If you mean minimising the long term damage to society and the economy, then yes, Sweden did better. A lot better.

    Sweden was playing the long game. Most of the rest of the world was running about like a headless chicken.

    One shudders to think what’s going to happen when a *real* killer pandemic shows up.

    Everyone in Sweden will die. Because you will continue to believe that what you did last time was the right way to go.
    You see, this is where you have *totally* misunderstood Swedish society, stamina and respect for independent governmental agencies.

    Covid = take care

    Real killer pandemic (2035?) = lockdown max = unpleasant, but hey we survived

    Swedes will manage both. No probs.

    Whereas I suspect that for most countries:

    Covid = headless chicken lockdown

    Real killer pandemic (2035?) = headless chicken disrespect for government = all fall down


    Quite possibly right.

    Once bitten, twice shy. I for one won't be prepared to show respect to a future government wanting to strip us of our liberties again. I'm sure others feel the same.
    Maybe they will. Much as I despise this government I think they probably made okay calls on lockdown and I will continue to follow public health advice in pursuit of our common national interest in the future.
    The most mask-keen mates of mine now laugh at the way they sheepishly followed the herd.

    I haven't worn one since Freedom day 2021. Not a single day lost to illness in that time.
    It it quite remarkable that you still haven't grasped the reason for wearing masks.
    Cloth masks that are being reused all the time?

    The reason is virtue signalling bullshit to pretend you're taking the pandemic seriously.
  • tlg86 said:

    The key reason Sweden did better during the pandemic is little to do with population density or that we are incorrigibly anti-social.

    It is to to with the independence of government agencies and the innate respect that most of the population has for the state, regional and local governments and other public agencies.

    On the schools point, it was only children 15+ who were, relatively briefly, prohibited from attending school physically. Children suffered *much* less than in the rest of Europe. That we favour our young over our old is one of the greatest triumphs, and the greatest tragedies, of modern Swedish society.

    You didn't do better. Compared to your neighbours you did far worse. Now extremists like Bart - typical of those who know the price of everything and the value of nothing - seem to think this was a price worth paying but most reasonable people would disagree with him.
    Depends on what you mean by “better”?

    If you mean minimising the long term damage to society and the economy, then yes, Sweden did better. A lot better.

    Sweden was playing the long game. Most of the rest of the world was running about like a headless chicken.

    One shudders to think what’s going to happen when a *real* killer pandemic shows up.

    Everyone in Sweden will die. Because you will continue to believe that what you did last time was the right way to go.
    You see, this is where you have *totally* misunderstood Swedish society, stamina and respect for independent governmental agencies.

    Covid = take care

    Real killer pandemic (2035?) = lockdown max = unpleasant, but hey we survived

    Swedes will manage both. No probs.

    Whereas I suspect that for most countries:

    Covid = headless chicken lockdown

    Real killer pandemic (2035?) = headless chicken disrespect for government = all fall down


    Quite possibly right.

    Once bitten, twice shy. I for one won't be prepared to show respect to a future government wanting to strip us of our liberties again. I'm sure others feel the same.
    And yours is a perfectly human, and common reaction: once fooled, twice shy.

    The Swedish populace were not fooled. Our government and governmental agencies were pretty straight with us. We listened, we digested, we (largely) behaved ourselves.

    Ditto when the real killer pandemic comes. (And it will.)

    The English populace on the other hand were led by total donkeys. The real damage to English society will only become truly apparent when the real pandemic arrives. You’ll mostly tell them to go fuck themselves. Before promptly croaking it.
    I think this is bollocks. The big reason why COVID was quite divisive was the age profile of the people affected. If another pandemic turns up that starts bumping off children, you can be certain that we'll all go like Matt Damon in that film.
    Another age profile, say one that disproportionately cut down pre-pubescents?

    Same principle: I really do believe that Sweden will handle it far better than England. It is a structural issue: confidence in public authorities is totally shot in England.

    It is one reason why Scots are so attracted by the Nordic/Baltic model: create wealth, spread it around, build trust in public institutions.

    It’s not rocket science.

    And come Ebola VIII it might just make the difference between survival and extinction.
    I am not sure there is much trust in Scottish public institutions at the moment.
  • MortimerMortimer Posts: 13,493

    kyf_100 said:

    AlistairM said:

    kyf_100 said:

    kyf_100 said:

    kyf_100 said:

    kyf_100 said:

    Anyone worked out how workable this is?
    (Though loading the costs on bill payers in the 2040s is very on-brand for a government that really doesn't give a stuff about anyone younger than about 60)

    Energy firm’s £100 billion plan to freeze energy bills for 2 years. A thread
    The Chief Executive of one of the UK’s largest energy providers presented Kwasi Kwarteng and Jacob Rees-Mogg with a £100 billion plan to stave off an energy price emergency last week...
    2/ Keith Anderson, CEO of Scottish Power will present the same plan to Scottish First Minister Nicola Sturgeon later today.
    The plan would involve the government guaranteeing loans to the energy companies enabling them to keep bills frozen while buying the gas needed....
    3/ ...for the next two years.
    £100 billion is Scottish Power’s best estimate of the difference between what it will actually cost to buy the energy and the current cap of £1971.
    Sources close to the company said that Kwasi Kwarteng, tipped to be the next Chancellor....
    4/ ..if Liz Truss is next PM, was broadly receptive to the idea. Sources close to Kwasi Kwarteng wouldn’t be drawn on his enthusiasm. “We had a meeting about it – that’s all”.
    The so called deficit fund would be repaid through bills over the next 20 or so years...


    https://twitter.com/BBCSimonJack/status/1562061859401900033

    Kwarteng and Truss would be well advised to go for it, it dwarfs Labour's plan and probably leaves some room for the 400 quid direct help that Labour would remove.
    In a my future generations' debt is bigger than your future generations' debt.

    I suppose on a positive note with inflation running at 20% p a for the next twenty years the debt will have withered to nothing anyway.
    Well the cost of not freezing everyone to death this winter will be hugely increased public debt. Thems the breaks. Labour are just proposing to do it in a series of depressing interventions rather than this option of more up front but over a longer period.
    Yes, something has to be done and Liz and her Chancellor and Energy Minister have come up with a corker of a plan that shames Labour's meagre effort. But the figure...wow!
    How have the energy companies - the big ones who actually supply energy I mean rather than the small ones that were just effectively trading futures - been doing the last few years?

    Would it be viable to call their bluff? Or even possible?

    Keep the energy cap where it is or even reduce it. Let the energy companies take the pain and see how much they can take and only then step in and introduce the support scheme when they are on the verge of going bust. It would ensure that they are actually doing all they can rather than just looking for a way to support their profits.

    Should any energy company be doing more than getting by right now?

    I am not actually advocating this as I am sure there are way too many flaws in my reasoning but just thought it was worth at least discussing.
    The mere fact that it's the energy companies favoured solution suggests to me it requires precisely this kind of scrutiny.

    One way or another, the taxpayer is going to be on the hook for a lot of debt - but how much of that should be going into energy suppliers profits?
    Well this is the issue with Labours plan too isnt it? Its going to cost us tens of billions either way
    I think the question is how many billions will be profits for the energy companies. When nationalisation means we could take those profits out of the equation.

    The energy companies are very keen on the "give us a big loan and we'll pay it off over the next 20 years with higher but manageable energy bills"

    Is that the best deal for Joe Billpayer, or is it the best deal for the energy companies?
    Nationalisation in this situation as Gordon Brown pushed for is so stupid, the crisis coming here is finding and getting money to those most in need, nationalisation will be using that money where it’s not needed, buying stuff we don’t need.

    Richard Tyndall is right, squeeze to find where the lean point is, leave any fat in the system (like news reports of number profits, dividends, pay and bonuses) whilst people freeze and starve lose business and homes is both politically toxic and a bit immoral.
    I am inclined towards what TSE was saying downthread, that there is a serious risk of general strike and civil disorder next year if the government do not get a handle on this. I'm not sure "trimming the fat in the system" is going to cover it.

    My natural instincts are libertarian ones, however I believe the government has a duty to defends its citizens in times of war. Not just with the army, however.

    Russia has weaponised energy against us in a proxy war. It is their intention to turn the screws as much as possible, to weaken our resolve against their invasion of Ukraine, and create precisely the kind of civil unrest that has been warned about downthread.

    As far as I'm concerned, that means greater government intervention is morally justifiable in this particular circumstance.

    It needs to be about more than just preventing pensioners from freezing to death and giving a few handouts here and there. We need to ensure an energy supply that is affordable for all this winter - and that may mean looking at radical solutions such as nationalisation to control prices, furloughing energy intensive industries, and scheduling rolling blackouts to control demand.

    The alternative is bankrupting hundreds of thousands of businesses, mass unemployment, strikes and civil unrest.
    I think the penny is dropping right across the board isn’t it - this is just not the moment to find the money for tax cuts. Hence the mood you describe, Tax cuts the solution promised by government, so they drop like stone in the polls, as 97.7% of electorate know it’s not the right moment for those policies. There is a right time for such policies and determination. But this is not that moment.
    Supply is down by 15% or so due to Russia. That means demand needs to drop by a similar amount.

    Proposals like taking out a loan to freeze prices now, and paying that astronomical sum back over the next 20 years or so, don't fully solve the problem. There is simply only so much energy to go around. We can't keep bidding it up and up in a bidding war and putting it on the never never.

    We need to start looking seriously at how to reduce demand this winter while keeping the economy alive - it's going to require substantial government intervention.

    Keeping prices artificially low will only stimulate demand. Demand reduction is going to need to be part of the equation. It won't be popular, but ultimately difficult decisions need to be made during wartime, that's what a government is there for. And I would rather the government allocates available supply on a harm reduction basis (to both lives and the economy) than allow the free market to allocate energy to the highest bidder.
    There will be a natural reduction in usage as people avoid where possible unnecessary energy use. I have small portable a/c unit I use on warm days to help keep my small upstairs study cool. It is a bit warm today and in other times I would have used it but I'm choosing not to. Similar decisions will be made up and down the land. I think TSE mentioned also that his company will be going back to WFH to save on energy costs. That will also feed into overal reduced energy consumption.

    Any high-energy usage devices have already become massively unpopular. See for example this 2KW outdoor heater reduced from £55 to less than £14. Clearly no one wants to be buying that sort of product right now and it will reduce our energy consumption!
    https://www.hotukdeals.com/deals/quartz-element-grey-2kw-electric-wall-mounted-heater-3985162

    Having said that we do need to look into all avenues for reducing our energy consumption, particularly around gas usage.
    An electric fleece blanket retails for about £40-50.

    Government could sell them for £10 (giving them away for free just encourages people to hoard items they don't use), along with a public service ad campaign encouraging people to turn their thermostats down this winter.

    https://energyhistory.yale.edu/library-item/when-you-ride-alone-you-ride-hitler-us-government-propaganda-poster-1943

    "When you turn the thermostat up, you put money in Putin's pocket".

    A message which would go down like a bucket of cold sick and deservedly so. It's our Government and the green maniacs it has been in thrall to that have put money in Putin's pocket, by shutting down domestic energy supplies (and storage), and relying on imports instead. Why should people accept the halfwits who created this situation telling them it's all their fault for daring to have their heating on in Winter? Tone deaf doesn’t come close.
    If we'd listened to the "green maniacs" and built more renewable provision and insulated more homes, we'd be in less of a pickle than we are now.
    If we had built more nuclear provision we would be less of a pickle than we are now.

    Which Lib Dem leader was it who mithered on about a plant not being on stream until the early 2020s?
  • HYUFDHYUFD Posts: 107,348

    HYUFD said:

    HYUFD said:

    Driver said:

    Lets pile more debt onto future generations

    As opposed to your alternative, which obviously is...?
    Huge property taxes on the wealthiest generations that squandered the family silver
    Which would be hugely unpopular amongst 45 to 65 year olds who would inherit from them
    You are back on with your old inheritance mumbo- jumbo again.

    Anyone who goes into a care home for any length of time, really has nothing much to leave. I can show you the bills and a total lack of interest from Herefordshire Council if you like.
    Only 25% of over 65s at most will ever need to go into a care home, the rest will either die first or require only at home care. Plus the government has now capped care costs at £86k anyway
    Not yet it hasn't, if you know differently let me know.

    October 2023 is not much f...ing use for my 94 year old Mother in law. Between now and then is going to cost her another £84,000.
    As expensive as it is, you can't take it with you. The state should not be in the business of paying for people's inheritances. The cap should never come into place.
    Then bang goes the Tory core vote to RefUK or stay home or even Labour or LD. One of the core points of being a Tory is to preserve peoples' private property.

    The cap ensured no family has to give all the family home to the state in care costs
  • MortimerMortimer Posts: 13,493

    Mortimer said:

    The key reason Sweden did better during the pandemic is little to do with population density or that we are incorrigibly anti-social.

    It is to to with the independence of government agencies and the innate respect that most of the population has for the state, regional and local governments and other public agencies.

    On the schools point, it was only children 15+ who were, relatively briefly, prohibited from attending school physically. Children suffered *much* less than in the rest of Europe. That we favour our young over our old is one of the greatest triumphs, and the greatest tragedies, of modern Swedish society.

    You didn't do better. Compared to your neighbours you did far worse. Now extremists like Bart - typical of those who know the price of everything and the value of nothing - seem to think this was a price worth paying but most reasonable people would disagree with him.
    Depends on what you mean by “better”?

    If you mean minimising the long term damage to society and the economy, then yes, Sweden did better. A lot better.

    Sweden was playing the long game. Most of the rest of the world was running about like a headless chicken.

    One shudders to think what’s going to happen when a *real* killer pandemic shows up.

    Everyone in Sweden will die. Because you will continue to believe that what you did last time was the right way to go.
    You see, this is where you have *totally* misunderstood Swedish society, stamina and respect for independent governmental agencies.

    Covid = take care

    Real killer pandemic (2035?) = lockdown max = unpleasant, but hey we survived

    Swedes will manage both. No probs.

    Whereas I suspect that for most countries:

    Covid = headless chicken lockdown

    Real killer pandemic (2035?) = headless chicken disrespect for government = all fall down


    Quite possibly right.

    Once bitten, twice shy. I for one won't be prepared to show respect to a future government wanting to strip us of our liberties again. I'm sure others feel the same.
    Maybe they will. Much as I despise this government I think they probably made okay calls on lockdown and I will continue to follow public health advice in pursuit of our common national interest in the future.
    The most mask-keen mates of mine now laugh at the way they sheepishly followed the herd.

    I haven't worn one since Freedom day 2021. Not a single day lost to illness in that time.
    It it quite remarkable that you still haven't grasped the reason for wearing masks.
    Cloth masks that are being reused all the time?

    The reason is virtue signalling bullshit to pretend you're taking the pandemic seriously.
    I'm quite proud to say I never did that idiotic Maoist clapping for the NHS either. Really scary how that took hold.

  • turbotubbsturbotubbs Posts: 11,570

    Mortimer said:

    The key reason Sweden did better during the pandemic is little to do with population density or that we are incorrigibly anti-social.

    It is to to with the independence of government agencies and the innate respect that most of the population has for the state, regional and local governments and other public agencies.

    On the schools point, it was only children 15+ who were, relatively briefly, prohibited from attending school physically. Children suffered *much* less than in the rest of Europe. That we favour our young over our old is one of the greatest triumphs, and the greatest tragedies, of modern Swedish society.

    You didn't do better. Compared to your neighbours you did far worse. Now extremists like Bart - typical of those who know the price of everything and the value of nothing - seem to think this was a price worth paying but most reasonable people would disagree with him.
    Depends on what you mean by “better”?

    If you mean minimising the long term damage to society and the economy, then yes, Sweden did better. A lot better.

    Sweden was playing the long game. Most of the rest of the world was running about like a headless chicken.

    One shudders to think what’s going to happen when a *real* killer pandemic shows up.

    Everyone in Sweden will die. Because you will continue to believe that what you did last time was the right way to go.
    You see, this is where you have *totally* misunderstood Swedish society, stamina and respect for independent governmental agencies.

    Covid = take care

    Real killer pandemic (2035?) = lockdown max = unpleasant, but hey we survived

    Swedes will manage both. No probs.

    Whereas I suspect that for most countries:

    Covid = headless chicken lockdown

    Real killer pandemic (2035?) = headless chicken disrespect for government = all fall down


    Quite possibly right.

    Once bitten, twice shy. I for one won't be prepared to show respect to a future government wanting to strip us of our liberties again. I'm sure others feel the same.
    Maybe they will. Much as I despise this government I think they probably made okay calls on lockdown and I will continue to follow public health advice in pursuit of our common national interest in the future.
    The most mask-keen mates of mine now laugh at the way they sheepishly followed the herd.

    I haven't worn one since Freedom day 2021. Not a single day lost to illness in that time.
    It it quite remarkable that you still haven't grasped the reason for wearing masks.
    Tbf both reasons are valid - to reduce spread from those infected (often unknowingly) AND to reduce your chances of inhaling aerosolise Covid.
  • LeonLeon Posts: 30,631

    Mortimer said:

    The key reason Sweden did better during the pandemic is little to do with population density or that we are incorrigibly anti-social.

    It is to to with the independence of government agencies and the innate respect that most of the population has for the state, regional and local governments and other public agencies.

    On the schools point, it was only children 15+ who were, relatively briefly, prohibited from attending school physically. Children suffered *much* less than in the rest of Europe. That we favour our young over our old is one of the greatest triumphs, and the greatest tragedies, of modern Swedish society.

    You didn't do better. Compared to your neighbours you did far worse. Now extremists like Bart - typical of those who know the price of everything and the value of nothing - seem to think this was a price worth paying but most reasonable people would disagree with him.
    Depends on what you mean by “better”?

    If you mean minimising the long term damage to society and the economy, then yes, Sweden did better. A lot better.

    Sweden was playing the long game. Most of the rest of the world was running about like a headless chicken.

    One shudders to think what’s going to happen when a *real* killer pandemic shows up.

    Everyone in Sweden will die. Because you will continue to believe that what you did last time was the right way to go.
    You see, this is where you have *totally* misunderstood Swedish society, stamina and respect for independent governmental agencies.

    Covid = take care

    Real killer pandemic (2035?) = lockdown max = unpleasant, but hey we survived

    Swedes will manage both. No probs.

    Whereas I suspect that for most countries:

    Covid = headless chicken lockdown

    Real killer pandemic (2035?) = headless chicken disrespect for government = all fall down


    Quite possibly right.

    Once bitten, twice shy. I for one won't be prepared to show respect to a future government wanting to strip us of our liberties again. I'm sure others feel the same.
    Maybe they will. Much as I despise this government I think they probably made okay calls on lockdown and I will continue to follow public health advice in pursuit of our common national interest in the future.
    The most mask-keen mates of mine now laugh at the way they sheepishly followed the herd.

    I haven't worn one since Freedom day 2021. Not a single day lost to illness in that time.
    It it quite remarkable that you still haven't grasped the reason for wearing masks.
    Cloth masks that are being reused all the time?

    The reason is virtue signalling bullshit to pretend you're taking the pandemic seriously.
    The freedom-loving chill-out libertine Italians are totally fascist about mask wearing on trains. FFP2 all the time or you’re kicked off

    They need Georgia Meloni to sort them out
  • BartholomewRobertsBartholomewRoberts Posts: 10,222
    edited August 2022
    HYUFD said:

    HYUFD said:

    HYUFD said:

    Driver said:

    Lets pile more debt onto future generations

    As opposed to your alternative, which obviously is...?
    Huge property taxes on the wealthiest generations that squandered the family silver
    Which would be hugely unpopular amongst 45 to 65 year olds who would inherit from them
    You are back on with your old inheritance mumbo- jumbo again.

    Anyone who goes into a care home for any length of time, really has nothing much to leave. I can show you the bills and a total lack of interest from Herefordshire Council if you like.
    Only 25% of over 65s at most will ever need to go into a care home, the rest will either die first or require only at home care. Plus the government has now capped care costs at £86k anyway
    Not yet it hasn't, if you know differently let me know.

    October 2023 is not much f...ing use for my 94 year old Mother in law. Between now and then is going to cost her another £84,000.
    As expensive as it is, you can't take it with you. The state should not be in the business of paying for people's inheritances. The cap should never come into place.
    Then bang goes the Tory core vote to RefUK or stay home or even Labour or LD. One of the core points of being a Tory is to preserve peoples' private property.

    The cap ensured no family has to give all the family home to the state in care costs
    So what?

    If the Tory core vote goes, because they want the state paying for their inheritance, then good riddance to them.

    "Private property" should be the income people are working for, not having others pay for them.

    Anyone who wants to live off welfare from people being actually working being taxed so you don't have to work doesn't deserve to be elected. Whether that be Tory or Labour core votes.
  • Richard_TyndallRichard_Tyndall Posts: 28,187
    edited August 2022



    The risk at the time of the first lockdown was that the hospitals would be overwhelmed and that tens of thousands of people would die unnecessarily. Giving the kids a couple on months off school and paying an economic cost was indeed the equivalent of a few quid when compared to the horrifying possible alternative.

    The case for the later lockdowns is not quite so clear, but in general locking down more quickly would have meant locking down for a shorter time.

    Tens of thousands dying doesn't justify millions losing their education.

    Would you sacrifice 100 people's education to prolong a single person's life? If not, why sacrifice millions for tens of thousands?

    The only way to justify millions losing education, is if millions were going to die.
    Telling outright lies - particularly when they are so easily refuted - doesn't help your argument at all.

    There were not 'millions losing their education' There was a small scale disruption for a few months.

    Your hyperbole does you no credit.
  • williamglennwilliamglenn Posts: 43,344
    Mortimer said:

    Mortimer said:

    The key reason Sweden did better during the pandemic is little to do with population density or that we are incorrigibly anti-social.

    It is to to with the independence of government agencies and the innate respect that most of the population has for the state, regional and local governments and other public agencies.

    On the schools point, it was only children 15+ who were, relatively briefly, prohibited from attending school physically. Children suffered *much* less than in the rest of Europe. That we favour our young over our old is one of the greatest triumphs, and the greatest tragedies, of modern Swedish society.

    You didn't do better. Compared to your neighbours you did far worse. Now extremists like Bart - typical of those who know the price of everything and the value of nothing - seem to think this was a price worth paying but most reasonable people would disagree with him.
    Depends on what you mean by “better”?

    If you mean minimising the long term damage to society and the economy, then yes, Sweden did better. A lot better.

    Sweden was playing the long game. Most of the rest of the world was running about like a headless chicken.

    One shudders to think what’s going to happen when a *real* killer pandemic shows up.

    Everyone in Sweden will die. Because you will continue to believe that what you did last time was the right way to go.
    You see, this is where you have *totally* misunderstood Swedish society, stamina and respect for independent governmental agencies.

    Covid = take care

    Real killer pandemic (2035?) = lockdown max = unpleasant, but hey we survived

    Swedes will manage both. No probs.

    Whereas I suspect that for most countries:

    Covid = headless chicken lockdown

    Real killer pandemic (2035?) = headless chicken disrespect for government = all fall down


    Quite possibly right.

    Once bitten, twice shy. I for one won't be prepared to show respect to a future government wanting to strip us of our liberties again. I'm sure others feel the same.
    Maybe they will. Much as I despise this government I think they probably made okay calls on lockdown and I will continue to follow public health advice in pursuit of our common national interest in the future.
    The most mask-keen mates of mine now laugh at the way they sheepishly followed the herd.

    I haven't worn one since Freedom day 2021. Not a single day lost to illness in that time.
    It it quite remarkable that you still haven't grasped the reason for wearing masks.
    Cloth masks that are being reused all the time?

    The reason is virtue signalling bullshit to pretend you're taking the pandemic seriously.
    I'm quite proud to say I never did that idiotic Maoist clapping for the NHS either. Really scary how that took hold.
    I wonder if any of your neighbours reported you.
  • Luckyguy1983Luckyguy1983 Posts: 20,505
    edited August 2022

    kyf_100 said:

    AlistairM said:

    kyf_100 said:

    kyf_100 said:

    kyf_100 said:

    kyf_100 said:

    Anyone worked out how workable this is?
    (Though loading the costs on bill payers in the 2040s is very on-brand for a government that really doesn't give a stuff about anyone younger than about 60)

    Energy firm’s £100 billion plan to freeze energy bills for 2 years. A thread
    The Chief Executive of one of the UK’s largest energy providers presented Kwasi Kwarteng and Jacob Rees-Mogg with a £100 billion plan to stave off an energy price emergency last week...
    2/ Keith Anderson, CEO of Scottish Power will present the same plan to Scottish First Minister Nicola Sturgeon later today.
    The plan would involve the government guaranteeing loans to the energy companies enabling them to keep bills frozen while buying the gas needed....
    3/ ...for the next two years.
    £100 billion is Scottish Power’s best estimate of the difference between what it will actually cost to buy the energy and the current cap of £1971.
    Sources close to the company said that Kwasi Kwarteng, tipped to be the next Chancellor....
    4/ ..if Liz Truss is next PM, was broadly receptive to the idea. Sources close to Kwasi Kwarteng wouldn’t be drawn on his enthusiasm. “We had a meeting about it – that’s all”.
    The so called deficit fund would be repaid through bills over the next 20 or so years...


    https://twitter.com/BBCSimonJack/status/1562061859401900033

    Kwarteng and Truss would be well advised to go for it, it dwarfs Labour's plan and probably leaves some room for the 400 quid direct help that Labour would remove.
    In a my future generations' debt is bigger than your future generations' debt.

    I suppose on a positive note with inflation running at 20% p a for the next twenty years the debt will have withered to nothing anyway.
    Well the cost of not freezing everyone to death this winter will be hugely increased public debt. Thems the breaks. Labour are just proposing to do it in a series of depressing interventions rather than this option of more up front but over a longer period.
    Yes, something has to be done and Liz and her Chancellor and Energy Minister have come up with a corker of a plan that shames Labour's meagre effort. But the figure...wow!
    How have the energy companies - the big ones who actually supply energy I mean rather than the small ones that were just effectively trading futures - been doing the last few years?

    Would it be viable to call their bluff? Or even possible?

    Keep the energy cap where it is or even reduce it. Let the energy companies take the pain and see how much they can take and only then step in and introduce the support scheme when they are on the verge of going bust. It would ensure that they are actually doing all they can rather than just looking for a way to support their profits.

    Should any energy company be doing more than getting by right now?

    I am not actually advocating this as I am sure there are way too many flaws in my reasoning but just thought it was worth at least discussing.
    The mere fact that it's the energy companies favoured solution suggests to me it requires precisely this kind of scrutiny.

    One way or another, the taxpayer is going to be on the hook for a lot of debt - but how much of that should be going into energy suppliers profits?
    Well this is the issue with Labours plan too isnt it? Its going to cost us tens of billions either way
    I think the question is how many billions will be profits for the energy companies. When nationalisation means we could take those profits out of the equation.

    The energy companies are very keen on the "give us a big loan and we'll pay it off over the next 20 years with higher but manageable energy bills"

    Is that the best deal for Joe Billpayer, or is it the best deal for the energy companies?
    Nationalisation in this situation as Gordon Brown pushed for is so stupid, the crisis coming here is finding and getting money to those most in need, nationalisation will be using that money where it’s not needed, buying stuff we don’t need.

    Richard Tyndall is right, squeeze to find where the lean point is, leave any fat in the system (like news reports of number profits, dividends, pay and bonuses) whilst people freeze and starve lose business and homes is both politically toxic and a bit immoral.
    I am inclined towards what TSE was saying downthread, that there is a serious risk of general strike and civil disorder next year if the government do not get a handle on this. I'm not sure "trimming the fat in the system" is going to cover it.

    My natural instincts are libertarian ones, however I believe the government has a duty to defends its citizens in times of war. Not just with the army, however.

    Russia has weaponised energy against us in a proxy war. It is their intention to turn the screws as much as possible, to weaken our resolve against their invasion of Ukraine, and create precisely the kind of civil unrest that has been warned about downthread.

    As far as I'm concerned, that means greater government intervention is morally justifiable in this particular circumstance.

    It needs to be about more than just preventing pensioners from freezing to death and giving a few handouts here and there. We need to ensure an energy supply that is affordable for all this winter - and that may mean looking at radical solutions such as nationalisation to control prices, furloughing energy intensive industries, and scheduling rolling blackouts to control demand.

    The alternative is bankrupting hundreds of thousands of businesses, mass unemployment, strikes and civil unrest.
    I think the penny is dropping right across the board isn’t it - this is just not the moment to find the money for tax cuts. Hence the mood you describe, Tax cuts the solution promised by government, so they drop like stone in the polls, as 97.7% of electorate know it’s not the right moment for those policies. There is a right time for such policies and determination. But this is not that moment.
    Supply is down by 15% or so due to Russia. That means demand needs to drop by a similar amount.

    Proposals like taking out a loan to freeze prices now, and paying that astronomical sum back over the next 20 years or so, don't fully solve the problem. There is simply only so much energy to go around. We can't keep bidding it up and up in a bidding war and putting it on the never never.

    We need to start looking seriously at how to reduce demand this winter while keeping the economy alive - it's going to require substantial government intervention.

    Keeping prices artificially low will only stimulate demand. Demand reduction is going to need to be part of the equation. It won't be popular, but ultimately difficult decisions need to be made during wartime, that's what a government is there for. And I would rather the government allocates available supply on a harm reduction basis (to both lives and the economy) than allow the free market to allocate energy to the highest bidder.
    There will be a natural reduction in usage as people avoid where possible unnecessary energy use. I have small portable a/c unit I use on warm days to help keep my small upstairs study cool. It is a bit warm today and in other times I would have used it but I'm choosing not to. Similar decisions will be made up and down the land. I think TSE mentioned also that his company will be going back to WFH to save on energy costs. That will also feed into overal reduced energy consumption.

    Any high-energy usage devices have already become massively unpopular. See for example this 2KW outdoor heater reduced from £55 to less than £14. Clearly no one wants to be buying that sort of product right now and it will reduce our energy consumption!
    https://www.hotukdeals.com/deals/quartz-element-grey-2kw-electric-wall-mounted-heater-3985162

    Having said that we do need to look into all avenues for reducing our energy consumption, particularly around gas usage.
    An electric fleece blanket retails for about £40-50.

    Government could sell them for £10 (giving them away for free just encourages people to hoard items they don't use), along with a public service ad campaign encouraging people to turn their thermostats down this winter.

    https://energyhistory.yale.edu/library-item/when-you-ride-alone-you-ride-hitler-us-government-propaganda-poster-1943

    "When you turn the thermostat up, you put money in Putin's pocket".

    A message which would go down like a bucket of cold sick and deservedly so. It's our Government and the green maniacs it has been in thrall to that have put money in Putin's pocket, by shutting down domestic energy supplies (and storage), and relying on imports instead. Why should people accept the halfwits who created this situation telling them it's all their fault for daring to have their heating on in Winter? Tone deaf doesn’t come close.
    If we'd listened to the "green maniacs" and built more renewable provision and insulated more homes, we'd be in less of a pickle than we are now.
    I don't disagree that there could have been far better and more imaginative use of renewables in the mix. But whilst hydrocarbons were still necessary it was (and is) hugely important that their continued supply is secure. Green extremists have repeatedly influenced policy on the side of foreign coal, oil and gas against UK coal, oil and gas.
  • LeonLeon Posts: 30,631
    Mortimer said:

    Mortimer said:

    The key reason Sweden did better during the pandemic is little to do with population density or that we are incorrigibly anti-social.

    It is to to with the independence of government agencies and the innate respect that most of the population has for the state, regional and local governments and other public agencies.

    On the schools point, it was only children 15+ who were, relatively briefly, prohibited from attending school physically. Children suffered *much* less than in the rest of Europe. That we favour our young over our old is one of the greatest triumphs, and the greatest tragedies, of modern Swedish society.

    You didn't do better. Compared to your neighbours you did far worse. Now extremists like Bart - typical of those who know the price of everything and the value of nothing - seem to think this was a price worth paying but most reasonable people would disagree with him.
    Depends on what you mean by “better”?

    If you mean minimising the long term damage to society and the economy, then yes, Sweden did better. A lot better.

    Sweden was playing the long game. Most of the rest of the world was running about like a headless chicken.

    One shudders to think what’s going to happen when a *real* killer pandemic shows up.

    Everyone in Sweden will die. Because you will continue to believe that what you did last time was the right way to go.
    You see, this is where you have *totally* misunderstood Swedish society, stamina and respect for independent governmental agencies.

    Covid = take care

    Real killer pandemic (2035?) = lockdown max = unpleasant, but hey we survived

    Swedes will manage both. No probs.

    Whereas I suspect that for most countries:

    Covid = headless chicken lockdown

    Real killer pandemic (2035?) = headless chicken disrespect for government = all fall down


    Quite possibly right.

    Once bitten, twice shy. I for one won't be prepared to show respect to a future government wanting to strip us of our liberties again. I'm sure others feel the same.
    Maybe they will. Much as I despise this government I think they probably made okay calls on lockdown and I will continue to follow public health advice in pursuit of our common national interest in the future.
    The most mask-keen mates of mine now laugh at the way they sheepishly followed the herd.

    I haven't worn one since Freedom day 2021. Not a single day lost to illness in that time.
    It it quite remarkable that you still haven't grasped the reason for wearing masks.
    Cloth masks that are being reused all the time?

    The reason is virtue signalling bullshit to pretend you're taking the pandemic seriously.
    I'm quite proud to say I never did that idiotic Maoist clapping for the NHS either. Really scary how that took hold.

    I did it once. Ludicrous Marxist emotional manipulation
  • MortimerMortimer Posts: 13,493
    Leon said:

    Mortimer said:

    The key reason Sweden did better during the pandemic is little to do with population density or that we are incorrigibly anti-social.

    It is to to with the independence of government agencies and the innate respect that most of the population has for the state, regional and local governments and other public agencies.

    On the schools point, it was only children 15+ who were, relatively briefly, prohibited from attending school physically. Children suffered *much* less than in the rest of Europe. That we favour our young over our old is one of the greatest triumphs, and the greatest tragedies, of modern Swedish society.

    You didn't do better. Compared to your neighbours you did far worse. Now extremists like Bart - typical of those who know the price of everything and the value of nothing - seem to think this was a price worth paying but most reasonable people would disagree with him.
    Depends on what you mean by “better”?

    If you mean minimising the long term damage to society and the economy, then yes, Sweden did better. A lot better.

    Sweden was playing the long game. Most of the rest of the world was running about like a headless chicken.

    One shudders to think what’s going to happen when a *real* killer pandemic shows up.

    Everyone in Sweden will die. Because you will continue to believe that what you did last time was the right way to go.
    You see, this is where you have *totally* misunderstood Swedish society, stamina and respect for independent governmental agencies.

    Covid = take care

    Real killer pandemic (2035?) = lockdown max = unpleasant, but hey we survived

    Swedes will manage both. No probs.

    Whereas I suspect that for most countries:

    Covid = headless chicken lockdown

    Real killer pandemic (2035?) = headless chicken disrespect for government = all fall down


    Quite possibly right.

    Once bitten, twice shy. I for one won't be prepared to show respect to a future government wanting to strip us of our liberties again. I'm sure others feel the same.
    Maybe they will. Much as I despise this government I think they probably made okay calls on lockdown and I will continue to follow public health advice in pursuit of our common national interest in the future.
    The most mask-keen mates of mine now laugh at the way they sheepishly followed the herd.

    I haven't worn one since Freedom day 2021. Not a single day lost to illness in that time.
    It it quite remarkable that you still haven't grasped the reason for wearing masks.
    Cloth masks that are being reused all the time?

    The reason is virtue signalling bullshit to pretend you're taking the pandemic seriously.
    The freedom-loving chill-out libertine Italians are totally fascist about mask wearing on trains. FFP2 all the time or you’re kicked off

    They need Georgia Meloni to sort them out
    I think you misspelled 'hypochrondiac' there...

    It was very interesting to see the order in which countries removed restrictions. There seemed to be a strong correlation between ex Facist countries and looooong mask mandates.
  • turbotubbsturbotubbs Posts: 11,570

    tlg86 said:

    The key reason Sweden did better during the pandemic is little to do with population density or that we are incorrigibly anti-social.

    It is to to with the independence of government agencies and the innate respect that most of the population has for the state, regional and local governments and other public agencies.

    On the schools point, it was only children 15+ who were, relatively briefly, prohibited from attending school physically. Children suffered *much* less than in the rest of Europe. That we favour our young over our old is one of the greatest triumphs, and the greatest tragedies, of modern Swedish society.

    You didn't do better. Compared to your neighbours you did far worse. Now extremists like Bart - typical of those who know the price of everything and the value of nothing - seem to think this was a price worth paying but most reasonable people would disagree with him.
    Depends on what you mean by “better”?

    If you mean minimising the long term damage to society and the economy, then yes, Sweden did better. A lot better.

    Sweden was playing the long game. Most of the rest of the world was running about like a headless chicken.

    One shudders to think what’s going to happen when a *real* killer pandemic shows up.

    Everyone in Sweden will die. Because you will continue to believe that what you did last time was the right way to go.
    You see, this is where you have *totally* misunderstood Swedish society, stamina and respect for independent governmental agencies.

    Covid = take care

    Real killer pandemic (2035?) = lockdown max = unpleasant, but hey we survived

    Swedes will manage both. No probs.

    Whereas I suspect that for most countries:

    Covid = headless chicken lockdown

    Real killer pandemic (2035?) = headless chicken disrespect for government = all fall down


    Quite possibly right.

    Once bitten, twice shy. I for one won't be prepared to show respect to a future government wanting to strip us of our liberties again. I'm sure others feel the same.
    And yours is a perfectly human, and common reaction: once fooled, twice shy.

    The Swedish populace were not fooled. Our government and governmental agencies were pretty straight with us. We listened, we digested, we (largely) behaved ourselves.

    Ditto when the real killer pandemic comes. (And it will.)

    The English populace on the other hand were led by total donkeys. The real damage to English society will only become truly apparent when the real pandemic arrives. You’ll mostly tell them to go fuck themselves. Before promptly croaking it.
    I think this is bollocks. The big reason why COVID was quite divisive was the age profile of the people affected. If another pandemic turns up that starts bumping off children, you can be certain that we'll all go like Matt Damon in that film.
    Another age profile, say one that disproportionately cut down pre-pubescents?

    Same principle: I really do believe that Sweden will handle it far better than England. It is a structural issue: confidence in public authorities is totally shot in England.

    It is one reason why Scots are so attracted by the Nordic/Baltic model: create wealth, spread it around, build trust in public institutions.

    It’s not rocket science.

    And come Ebola VIII it might just make the difference between survival and extinction.
    How is the Swedish response in terms of health impacts vs valid comparator nations? And economically?
    It’s not easy to directly compare U.K. with Sweden. Different housing, different population density and so on. It’s also, I think, accepted that Sweden actually did worse in health terms than other Scandinavian countries that perhaps had harder lockdowns.


  • kinabalu said:

    MISTY said:

    kinabalu said:

    Driver said:

    kinabalu said:

    Driver said:

    TOPPING said:

    1. Diseases will always kill us and if they don't then I have bad news about life in any case.
    2. I can totally understand that the government, looking as we all did at those pictures from Italy of people dying in the corridors, had to do something and lockdowns was it.
    3. The whole point of society is a balance. Tragically it is not to keep every Archie alive at the expense of others who would benefit from those resources.

    Once the NHS was in no danger of "collapsing" as in real collapse, not the collapse that the Graun and the various health unions call every other week, then there should absolutely have been no more lockdowns.

    There should have been compensation for pubs if they wanted to close and teachers if they wanted to stay home but no mandate.

    Our freedoms are so precious and the great and good of PB dismiss them instantly and soil themselves at the first real test of freedom that we in the UK have had for 80 years. Doesn't bode well for the future.

    Which is a greater threat to Freedom: a temporary measure in the face of a novel pandemic, or a sustained campaign by government to restrict political protest and dissent? Is the collapse of the Court system due to chronic neglect perhaps a more pernicious threat? Is the drive to ban freedom of speech under the guise of Fighting Wokery more problematic? Are restrictions on the right to strike actually more consequential? I think one can debate whether temporary lockdowns were really the "first real test of freedom that we in the UK have had for 80 years".

    But, sure, lockdowns should be avoided. The way to avoid lockdowns is with better public health measures. We can look at a country like Japan that never had a national lockdown and had far fewer COVID cases. A better Test & Trace system, with more support for people self-isolating, would have been a huge help in the UK. A better funded primary health care system would have helped.

    This ain't rocket science. If you don't want lockdowns, do public health better.
    No, it isn't rocket science. If you don't want lockdowns, don't implement lockdowns.
    How would you have hampered the spread of the virus at those critical times then?

    It spread via close contact between people remember - not by black magic.
    Strong advice, not legislation. And this would have included strong advice to organisations and companies to stop doing counterproductive things, like supermarkets cutting their hours, which merely ensured that the average number of people in their shops at any given time was higher than it needed to be.
    Ok so Muscly goes "You MUST stay at home etc etc" but no laws are changed.

    Why is that so much better iyo?

    And what happens if people don't respond to the extent necessary to ward off a public health catastrophe?
    It isn't warding off anything, its just changing the emphasis of risk. You assume these measures, even short term, are risk free, but they aren't.

    Every kind of restriction is a swings and roundabouts calculation. Not how it was presented at the time (it was 'saving lives'), but we now know that is true.

    At best lockdown was sacrificing some lives to save others. At best. What's the balance? who knows?
    I never assumed the NPIs were cost free. However there was a train about to run us over and it had to be slowed down. The idea of somebody configuring and running a super-complex, multi-level cost/benefit model and trying to incorporate and quantify things like impact on mental health before we did anything is for the birds. We were too late acting as it is and found it hard enough just to model the spread of the virus and hospitalisations and deaths.
    You're absolutely right that there wasn't a time to analyse it in advance, but there is time to do so in hindsight and in hindsight lockdown was a mistake.

    It was certainly not "too late".
    In hindsight paying my home insurance last year was a mistake. My house didn't burn down after all. What a waste of money!

    (That's only one argument, of course. It is not at all clear, even in hindsight, that not locking down would have had lower social and economic costs than locking down did.)
    If your home insurance only cost a few quid then it was probably worthwhile to have. If your home insurance cost more than your home and required your children to be out of school for months etc then it probably wasn't.
    The risk at the time of the first lockdown was that the hospitals would be overwhelmed and that tens of thousands of people would die unnecessarily. Giving the kids a couple on months off school and paying an economic cost was indeed the equivalent of a few quid when compared to the horrifying possible alternative.

    The case for the later lockdowns is not quite so clear, but in general locking down more quickly would have meant locking down for a shorter time.
    Tens of thousands dying doesn't justify millions losing their education.

    Would you sacrifice 100 people's education to prolong a single person's life? If not, why sacrifice millions for tens of thousands?

    The only way to justify millions losing education, is if millions were going to die.

    Telling outright lies - particularly when they are so easily refuted - doesn't help your argument at all.

    There were not 'millions losing their education' There was a small scale disruption for a few months.

    Your hyperbole does you no credit.

    There was large scale disruption for months on end for millions of people. That is millions losing their education, that time was valuable and won't be returned to them.

    Yes some will cope with it, but that doesn't make it OK. The law treats education as so serious that you can be fined for taking kids out of school for a few days for a vacation during term time, but you consider shutting down schools for months on end to be no biggy because you sold your soul to Covid death league tables being the only metric that matters to the exclusion of absolutely everything else.
  • MortimerMortimer Posts: 13,493



    kinabalu said:

    MISTY said:

    kinabalu said:

    Driver said:

    kinabalu said:

    Driver said:

    TOPPING said:

    1. Diseases will always kill us and if they don't then I have bad news about life in any case.
    2. I can totally understand that the government, looking as we all did at those pictures from Italy of people dying in the corridors, had to do something and lockdowns was it.
    3. The whole point of society is a balance. Tragically it is not to keep every Archie alive at the expense of others who would benefit from those resources.

    Once the NHS was in no danger of "collapsing" as in real collapse, not the collapse that the Graun and the various health unions call every other week, then there should absolutely have been no more lockdowns.

    There should have been compensation for pubs if they wanted to close and teachers if they wanted to stay home but no mandate.

    Our freedoms are so precious and the great and good of PB dismiss them instantly and soil themselves at the first real test of freedom that we in the UK have had for 80 years. Doesn't bode well for the future.

    Which is a greater threat to Freedom: a temporary measure in the face of a novel pandemic, or a sustained campaign by government to restrict political protest and dissent? Is the collapse of the Court system due to chronic neglect perhaps a more pernicious threat? Is the drive to ban freedom of speech under the guise of Fighting Wokery more problematic? Are restrictions on the right to strike actually more consequential? I think one can debate whether temporary lockdowns were really the "first real test of freedom that we in the UK have had for 80 years".

    But, sure, lockdowns should be avoided. The way to avoid lockdowns is with better public health measures. We can look at a country like Japan that never had a national lockdown and had far fewer COVID cases. A better Test & Trace system, with more support for people self-isolating, would have been a huge help in the UK. A better funded primary health care system would have helped.

    This ain't rocket science. If you don't want lockdowns, do public health better.
    No, it isn't rocket science. If you don't want lockdowns, don't implement lockdowns.
    How would you have hampered the spread of the virus at those critical times then?

    It spread via close contact between people remember - not by black magic.
    Strong advice, not legislation. And this would have included strong advice to organisations and companies to stop doing counterproductive things, like supermarkets cutting their hours, which merely ensured that the average number of people in their shops at any given time was higher than it needed to be.
    Ok so Muscly goes "You MUST stay at home etc etc" but no laws are changed.

    Why is that so much better iyo?

    And what happens if people don't respond to the extent necessary to ward off a public health catastrophe?
    It isn't warding off anything, its just changing the emphasis of risk. You assume these measures, even short term, are risk free, but they aren't.

    Every kind of restriction is a swings and roundabouts calculation. Not how it was presented at the time (it was 'saving lives'), but we now know that is true.

    At best lockdown was sacrificing some lives to save others. At best. What's the balance? who knows?
    I never assumed the NPIs were cost free. However there was a train about to run us over and it had to be slowed down. The idea of somebody configuring and running a super-complex, multi-level cost/benefit model and trying to incorporate and quantify things like impact on mental health before we did anything is for the birds. We were too late acting as it is and found it hard enough just to model the spread of the virus and hospitalisations and deaths.
    You're absolutely right that there wasn't a time to analyse it in advance, but there is time to do so in hindsight and in hindsight lockdown was a mistake.

    It was certainly not "too late".
    In hindsight paying my home insurance last year was a mistake. My house didn't burn down after all. What a waste of money!

    (That's only one argument, of course. It is not at all clear, even in hindsight, that not locking down would have had lower social and economic costs than locking down did.)
    If your home insurance only cost a few quid then it was probably worthwhile to have. If your home insurance cost more than your home and required your children to be out of school for months etc then it probably wasn't.
    The risk at the time of the first lockdown was that the hospitals would be overwhelmed and that tens of thousands of people would die unnecessarily. Giving the kids a couple on months off school and paying an economic cost was indeed the equivalent of a few quid when compared to the horrifying possible alternative.

    The case for the later lockdowns is not quite so clear, but in general locking down more quickly would have meant locking down for a shorter time.
    Tens of thousands dying doesn't justify millions losing their education.

    Would you sacrifice 100 people's education to prolong a single person's life? If not, why sacrifice millions for tens of thousands?

    The only way to justify millions losing education, is if millions were going to die.

    Telling outright lies - particularly when they are so easily refuted - doesn't help your argument at all.

    There were not 'millions losing their education' There was a small scale disruption for a few months.

    Your hyperbole does you no credit.

    For those with wealthy parents, multiple computers and some space outside, maybe a small disruption.

    That isn't everyone.
  • Leon said:

    Mortimer said:

    The key reason Sweden did better during the pandemic is little to do with population density or that we are incorrigibly anti-social.

    It is to to with the independence of government agencies and the innate respect that most of the population has for the state, regional and local governments and other public agencies.

    On the schools point, it was only children 15+ who were, relatively briefly, prohibited from attending school physically. Children suffered *much* less than in the rest of Europe. That we favour our young over our old is one of the greatest triumphs, and the greatest tragedies, of modern Swedish society.

    You didn't do better. Compared to your neighbours you did far worse. Now extremists like Bart - typical of those who know the price of everything and the value of nothing - seem to think this was a price worth paying but most reasonable people would disagree with him.
    Depends on what you mean by “better”?

    If you mean minimising the long term damage to society and the economy, then yes, Sweden did better. A lot better.

    Sweden was playing the long game. Most of the rest of the world was running about like a headless chicken.

    One shudders to think what’s going to happen when a *real* killer pandemic shows up.

    Everyone in Sweden will die. Because you will continue to believe that what you did last time was the right way to go.
    You see, this is where you have *totally* misunderstood Swedish society, stamina and respect for independent governmental agencies.

    Covid = take care

    Real killer pandemic (2035?) = lockdown max = unpleasant, but hey we survived

    Swedes will manage both. No probs.

    Whereas I suspect that for most countries:

    Covid = headless chicken lockdown

    Real killer pandemic (2035?) = headless chicken disrespect for government = all fall down


    Quite possibly right.

    Once bitten, twice shy. I for one won't be prepared to show respect to a future government wanting to strip us of our liberties again. I'm sure others feel the same.
    Maybe they will. Much as I despise this government I think they probably made okay calls on lockdown and I will continue to follow public health advice in pursuit of our common national interest in the future.
    The most mask-keen mates of mine now laugh at the way they sheepishly followed the herd.

    I haven't worn one since Freedom day 2021. Not a single day lost to illness in that time.
    It it quite remarkable that you still haven't grasped the reason for wearing masks.
    Cloth masks that are being reused all the time?

    The reason is virtue signalling bullshit to pretend you're taking the pandemic seriously.
    The freedom-loving chill-out libertine Italians are totally fascist about mask wearing on trains. FFP2 all the time or you’re kicked off

    They need Georgia Meloni to sort them out
    Still? Mask-wearing was obviously useful when covid was rife and we didn't have vaccines, but I wouldn't have thought there was much point now.
  • turbotubbsturbotubbs Posts: 11,570

    kyf_100 said:

    AlistairM said:

    kyf_100 said:

    kyf_100 said:

    kyf_100 said:

    kyf_100 said:

    Anyone worked out how workable this is?
    (Though loading the costs on bill payers in the 2040s is very on-brand for a government that really doesn't give a stuff about anyone younger than about 60)

    Energy firm’s £100 billion plan to freeze energy bills for 2 years. A thread
    The Chief Executive of one of the UK’s largest energy providers presented Kwasi Kwarteng and Jacob Rees-Mogg with a £100 billion plan to stave off an energy price emergency last week...
    2/ Keith Anderson, CEO of Scottish Power will present the same plan to Scottish First Minister Nicola Sturgeon later today.
    The plan would involve the government guaranteeing loans to the energy companies enabling them to keep bills frozen while buying the gas needed....
    3/ ...for the next two years.
    £100 billion is Scottish Power’s best estimate of the difference between what it will actually cost to buy the energy and the current cap of £1971.
    Sources close to the company said that Kwasi Kwarteng, tipped to be the next Chancellor....
    4/ ..if Liz Truss is next PM, was broadly receptive to the idea. Sources close to Kwasi Kwarteng wouldn’t be drawn on his enthusiasm. “We had a meeting about it – that’s all”.
    The so called deficit fund would be repaid through bills over the next 20 or so years...


    https://twitter.com/BBCSimonJack/status/1562061859401900033

    Kwarteng and Truss would be well advised to go for it, it dwarfs Labour's plan and probably leaves some room for the 400 quid direct help that Labour would remove.
    In a my future generations' debt is bigger than your future generations' debt.

    I suppose on a positive note with inflation running at 20% p a for the next twenty years the debt will have withered to nothing anyway.
    Well the cost of not freezing everyone to death this winter will be hugely increased public debt. Thems the breaks. Labour are just proposing to do it in a series of depressing interventions rather than this option of more up front but over a longer period.
    Yes, something has to be done and Liz and her Chancellor and Energy Minister have come up with a corker of a plan that shames Labour's meagre effort. But the figure...wow!
    How have the energy companies - the big ones who actually supply energy I mean rather than the small ones that were just effectively trading futures - been doing the last few years?

    Would it be viable to call their bluff? Or even possible?

    Keep the energy cap where it is or even reduce it. Let the energy companies take the pain and see how much they can take and only then step in and introduce the support scheme when they are on the verge of going bust. It would ensure that they are actually doing all they can rather than just looking for a way to support their profits.

    Should any energy company be doing more than getting by right now?

    I am not actually advocating this as I am sure there are way too many flaws in my reasoning but just thought it was worth at least discussing.
    The mere fact that it's the energy companies favoured solution suggests to me it requires precisely this kind of scrutiny.

    One way or another, the taxpayer is going to be on the hook for a lot of debt - but how much of that should be going into energy suppliers profits?
    Well this is the issue with Labours plan too isnt it? Its going to cost us tens of billions either way
    I think the question is how many billions will be profits for the energy companies. When nationalisation means we could take those profits out of the equation.

    The energy companies are very keen on the "give us a big loan and we'll pay it off over the next 20 years with higher but manageable energy bills"

    Is that the best deal for Joe Billpayer, or is it the best deal for the energy companies?
    Nationalisation in this situation as Gordon Brown pushed for is so stupid, the crisis coming here is finding and getting money to those most in need, nationalisation will be using that money where it’s not needed, buying stuff we don’t need.

    Richard Tyndall is right, squeeze to find where the lean point is, leave any fat in the system (like news reports of number profits, dividends, pay and bonuses) whilst people freeze and starve lose business and homes is both politically toxic and a bit immoral.
    I am inclined towards what TSE was saying downthread, that there is a serious risk of general strike and civil disorder next year if the government do not get a handle on this. I'm not sure "trimming the fat in the system" is going to cover it.

    My natural instincts are libertarian ones, however I believe the government has a duty to defends its citizens in times of war. Not just with the army, however.

    Russia has weaponised energy against us in a proxy war. It is their intention to turn the screws as much as possible, to weaken our resolve against their invasion of Ukraine, and create precisely the kind of civil unrest that has been warned about downthread.

    As far as I'm concerned, that means greater government intervention is morally justifiable in this particular circumstance.

    It needs to be about more than just preventing pensioners from freezing to death and giving a few handouts here and there. We need to ensure an energy supply that is affordable for all this winter - and that may mean looking at radical solutions such as nationalisation to control prices, furloughing energy intensive industries, and scheduling rolling blackouts to control demand.

    The alternative is bankrupting hundreds of thousands of businesses, mass unemployment, strikes and civil unrest.
    I think the penny is dropping right across the board isn’t it - this is just not the moment to find the money for tax cuts. Hence the mood you describe, Tax cuts the solution promised by government, so they drop like stone in the polls, as 97.7% of electorate know it’s not the right moment for those policies. There is a right time for such policies and determination. But this is not that moment.
    Supply is down by 15% or so due to Russia. That means demand needs to drop by a similar amount.

    Proposals like taking out a loan to freeze prices now, and paying that astronomical sum back over the next 20 years or so, don't fully solve the problem. There is simply only so much energy to go around. We can't keep bidding it up and up in a bidding war and putting it on the never never.

    We need to start looking seriously at how to reduce demand this winter while keeping the economy alive - it's going to require substantial government intervention.

    Keeping prices artificially low will only stimulate demand. Demand reduction is going to need to be part of the equation. It won't be popular, but ultimately difficult decisions need to be made during wartime, that's what a government is there for. And I would rather the government allocates available supply on a harm reduction basis (to both lives and the economy) than allow the free market to allocate energy to the highest bidder.
    There will be a natural reduction in usage as people avoid where possible unnecessary energy use. I have small portable a/c unit I use on warm days to help keep my small upstairs study cool. It is a bit warm today and in other times I would have used it but I'm choosing not to. Similar decisions will be made up and down the land. I think TSE mentioned also that his company will be going back to WFH to save on energy costs. That will also feed into overal reduced energy consumption.

    Any high-energy usage devices have already become massively unpopular. See for example this 2KW outdoor heater reduced from £55 to less than £14. Clearly no one wants to be buying that sort of product right now and it will reduce our energy consumption!
    https://www.hotukdeals.com/deals/quartz-element-grey-2kw-electric-wall-mounted-heater-3985162

    Having said that we do need to look into all avenues for reducing our energy consumption, particularly around gas usage.
    An electric fleece blanket retails for about £40-50.

    Government could sell them for £10 (giving them away for free just encourages people to hoard items they don't use), along with a public service ad campaign encouraging people to turn their thermostats down this winter.

    https://energyhistory.yale.edu/library-item/when-you-ride-alone-you-ride-hitler-us-government-propaganda-poster-1943

    "When you turn the thermostat up, you put money in Putin's pocket".

    A message which would go down like a bucket of cold sick and deservedly so. It's our Government and the green maniacs it has been in thrall to that have put money in Putin's pocket, by shutting down domestic energy supplies (and storage), and relying on imports instead. Why should people accept the halfwits who created this situation telling them it's all their fault for daring to have their heating on in Winter? Tone deaf doesn’t come close.
    If we'd listened to the "green maniacs" and built more renewable provision and insulated more homes, we'd be in less of a pickle than we are now.
    We’ve done pretty well. It’s hard to wean off something that’s cheap to something that’s expensive/difficult. Without general notice our renewables have increased massively. Our biggest mistakes have been around nuclear and other options such as tidal.
  • turbotubbsturbotubbs Posts: 11,570
    Leon said:

    Mortimer said:

    Mortimer said:

    The key reason Sweden did better during the pandemic is little to do with population density or that we are incorrigibly anti-social.

    It is to to with the independence of government agencies and the innate respect that most of the population has for the state, regional and local governments and other public agencies.

    On the schools point, it was only children 15+ who were, relatively briefly, prohibited from attending school physically. Children suffered *much* less than in the rest of Europe. That we favour our young over our old is one of the greatest triumphs, and the greatest tragedies, of modern Swedish society.

    You didn't do better. Compared to your neighbours you did far worse. Now extremists like Bart - typical of those who know the price of everything and the value of nothing - seem to think this was a price worth paying but most reasonable people would disagree with him.
    Depends on what you mean by “better”?

    If you mean minimising the long term damage to society and the economy, then yes, Sweden did better. A lot better.

    Sweden was playing the long game. Most of the rest of the world was running about like a headless chicken.

    One shudders to think what’s going to happen when a *real* killer pandemic shows up.

    Everyone in Sweden will die. Because you will continue to believe that what you did last time was the right way to go.
    You see, this is where you have *totally* misunderstood Swedish society, stamina and respect for independent governmental agencies.

    Covid = take care

    Real killer pandemic (2035?) = lockdown max = unpleasant, but hey we survived

    Swedes will manage both. No probs.

    Whereas I suspect that for most countries:

    Covid = headless chicken lockdown

    Real killer pandemic (2035?) = headless chicken disrespect for government = all fall down


    Quite possibly right.

    Once bitten, twice shy. I for one won't be prepared to show respect to a future government wanting to strip us of our liberties again. I'm sure others feel the same.
    Maybe they will. Much as I despise this government I think they probably made okay calls on lockdown and I will continue to follow public health advice in pursuit of our common national interest in the future.
    The most mask-keen mates of mine now laugh at the way they sheepishly followed the herd.

    I haven't worn one since Freedom day 2021. Not a single day lost to illness in that time.
    It it quite remarkable that you still haven't grasped the reason for wearing masks.
    Cloth masks that are being reused all the time?

    The reason is virtue signalling bullshit to pretend you're taking the pandemic seriously.
    I'm quite proud to say I never did that idiotic Maoist clapping for the NHS either. Really scary how that took hold.

    I did it once. Ludicrous Marxist emotional manipulation
    I came home from a run and all my neighbours clapped me in... Then I realised!
  • TheuniondivvieTheuniondivvie Posts: 35,866
    Driver said:

    Mortimer said:

    The key reason Sweden did better during the pandemic is little to do with population density or that we are incorrigibly anti-social.

    It is to to with the independence of government agencies and the innate respect that most of the population has for the state, regional and local governments and other public agencies.

    On the schools point, it was only children 15+ who were, relatively briefly, prohibited from attending school physically. Children suffered *much* less than in the rest of Europe. That we favour our young over our old is one of the greatest triumphs, and the greatest tragedies, of modern Swedish society.

    You didn't do better. Compared to your neighbours you did far worse. Now extremists like Bart - typical of those who know the price of everything and the value of nothing - seem to think this was a price worth paying but most reasonable people would disagree with him.
    Depends on what you mean by “better”?

    If you mean minimising the long term damage to society and the economy, then yes, Sweden did better. A lot better.

    Sweden was playing the long game. Most of the rest of the world was running about like a headless chicken.

    One shudders to think what’s going to happen when a *real* killer pandemic shows up.

    Everyone in Sweden will die. Because you will continue to believe that what you did last time was the right way to go.
    You see, this is where you have *totally* misunderstood Swedish society, stamina and respect for independent governmental agencies.

    Covid = take care

    Real killer pandemic (2035?) = lockdown max = unpleasant, but hey we survived

    Swedes will manage both. No probs.

    Whereas I suspect that for most countries:

    Covid = headless chicken lockdown

    Real killer pandemic (2035?) = headless chicken disrespect for government = all fall down


    Quite possibly right.

    Once bitten, twice shy. I for one won't be prepared to show respect to a future government wanting to strip us of our liberties again. I'm sure others feel the same.
    Maybe they will. Much as I despise this government I think they probably made okay calls on lockdown and I will continue to follow public health advice in pursuit of our common national interest in the future.
    The most mask-keen mates of mine now laugh at the way they sheepishly followed the herd.

    I haven't worn one since Freedom day 2021. Not a single day lost to illness in that time.
    It it quite remarkable that you still haven't grasped the reason for wearing masks.
    Showing you're doing something.
    The fairly well attested fact that masks prevented the wearer from spreading the virus apart, who’s to say there isn’t value in people feeling they’re doing something in a time of crisis? Wasn’t the collection of the nation’s aluminium pots & pans during WWII a propaganda exercise in solidarity rather than any contribution to building Spitfires?
  • kyf_100 said:

    AlistairM said:

    kyf_100 said:

    kyf_100 said:

    kyf_100 said:

    kyf_100 said:

    Anyone worked out how workable this is?
    (Though loading the costs on bill payers in the 2040s is very on-brand for a government that really doesn't give a stuff about anyone younger than about 60)

    Energy firm’s £100 billion plan to freeze energy bills for 2 years. A thread
    The Chief Executive of one of the UK’s largest energy providers presented Kwasi Kwarteng and Jacob Rees-Mogg with a £100 billion plan to stave off an energy price emergency last week...
    2/ Keith Anderson, CEO of Scottish Power will present the same plan to Scottish First Minister Nicola Sturgeon later today.
    The plan would involve the government guaranteeing loans to the energy companies enabling them to keep bills frozen while buying the gas needed....
    3/ ...for the next two years.
    £100 billion is Scottish Power’s best estimate of the difference between what it will actually cost to buy the energy and the current cap of £1971.
    Sources close to the company said that Kwasi Kwarteng, tipped to be the next Chancellor....
    4/ ..if Liz Truss is next PM, was broadly receptive to the idea. Sources close to Kwasi Kwarteng wouldn’t be drawn on his enthusiasm. “We had a meeting about it – that’s all”.
    The so called deficit fund would be repaid through bills over the next 20 or so years...


    https://twitter.com/BBCSimonJack/status/1562061859401900033

    Kwarteng and Truss would be well advised to go for it, it dwarfs Labour's plan and probably leaves some room for the 400 quid direct help that Labour would remove.
    In a my future generations' debt is bigger than your future generations' debt.

    I suppose on a positive note with inflation running at 20% p a for the next twenty years the debt will have withered to nothing anyway.
    Well the cost of not freezing everyone to death this winter will be hugely increased public debt. Thems the breaks. Labour are just proposing to do it in a series of depressing interventions rather than this option of more up front but over a longer period.
    Yes, something has to be done and Liz and her Chancellor and Energy Minister have come up with a corker of a plan that shames Labour's meagre effort. But the figure...wow!
    How have the energy companies - the big ones who actually supply energy I mean rather than the small ones that were just effectively trading futures - been doing the last few years?

    Would it be viable to call their bluff? Or even possible?

    Keep the energy cap where it is or even reduce it. Let the energy companies take the pain and see how much they can take and only then step in and introduce the support scheme when they are on the verge of going bust. It would ensure that they are actually doing all they can rather than just looking for a way to support their profits.

    Should any energy company be doing more than getting by right now?

    I am not actually advocating this as I am sure there are way too many flaws in my reasoning but just thought it was worth at least discussing.
    The mere fact that it's the energy companies favoured solution suggests to me it requires precisely this kind of scrutiny.

    One way or another, the taxpayer is going to be on the hook for a lot of debt - but how much of that should be going into energy suppliers profits?
    Well this is the issue with Labours plan too isnt it? Its going to cost us tens of billions either way
    I think the question is how many billions will be profits for the energy companies. When nationalisation means we could take those profits out of the equation.

    The energy companies are very keen on the "give us a big loan and we'll pay it off over the next 20 years with higher but manageable energy bills"

    Is that the best deal for Joe Billpayer, or is it the best deal for the energy companies?
    Nationalisation in this situation as Gordon Brown pushed for is so stupid, the crisis coming here is finding and getting money to those most in need, nationalisation will be using that money where it’s not needed, buying stuff we don’t need.

    Richard Tyndall is right, squeeze to find where the lean point is, leave any fat in the system (like news reports of number profits, dividends, pay and bonuses) whilst people freeze and starve lose business and homes is both politically toxic and a bit immoral.
    I am inclined towards what TSE was saying downthread, that there is a serious risk of general strike and civil disorder next year if the government do not get a handle on this. I'm not sure "trimming the fat in the system" is going to cover it.

    My natural instincts are libertarian ones, however I believe the government has a duty to defends its citizens in times of war. Not just with the army, however.

    Russia has weaponised energy against us in a proxy war. It is their intention to turn the screws as much as possible, to weaken our resolve against their invasion of Ukraine, and create precisely the kind of civil unrest that has been warned about downthread.

    As far as I'm concerned, that means greater government intervention is morally justifiable in this particular circumstance.

    It needs to be about more than just preventing pensioners from freezing to death and giving a few handouts here and there. We need to ensure an energy supply that is affordable for all this winter - and that may mean looking at radical solutions such as nationalisation to control prices, furloughing energy intensive industries, and scheduling rolling blackouts to control demand.

    The alternative is bankrupting hundreds of thousands of businesses, mass unemployment, strikes and civil unrest.
    I think the penny is dropping right across the board isn’t it - this is just not the moment to find the money for tax cuts. Hence the mood you describe, Tax cuts the solution promised by government, so they drop like stone in the polls, as 97.7% of electorate know it’s not the right moment for those policies. There is a right time for such policies and determination. But this is not that moment.
    Supply is down by 15% or so due to Russia. That means demand needs to drop by a similar amount.

    Proposals like taking out a loan to freeze prices now, and paying that astronomical sum back over the next 20 years or so, don't fully solve the problem. There is simply only so much energy to go around. We can't keep bidding it up and up in a bidding war and putting it on the never never.

    We need to start looking seriously at how to reduce demand this winter while keeping the economy alive - it's going to require substantial government intervention.

    Keeping prices artificially low will only stimulate demand. Demand reduction is going to need to be part of the equation. It won't be popular, but ultimately difficult decisions need to be made during wartime, that's what a government is there for. And I would rather the government allocates available supply on a harm reduction basis (to both lives and the economy) than allow the free market to allocate energy to the highest bidder.
    There will be a natural reduction in usage as people avoid where possible unnecessary energy use. I have small portable a/c unit I use on warm days to help keep my small upstairs study cool. It is a bit warm today and in other times I would have used it but I'm choosing not to. Similar decisions will be made up and down the land. I think TSE mentioned also that his company will be going back to WFH to save on energy costs. That will also feed into overal reduced energy consumption.

    Any high-energy usage devices have already become massively unpopular. See for example this 2KW outdoor heater reduced from £55 to less than £14. Clearly no one wants to be buying that sort of product right now and it will reduce our energy consumption!
    https://www.hotukdeals.com/deals/quartz-element-grey-2kw-electric-wall-mounted-heater-3985162

    Having said that we do need to look into all avenues for reducing our energy consumption, particularly around gas usage.
    An electric fleece blanket retails for about £40-50.

    Government could sell them for £10 (giving them away for free just encourages people to hoard items they don't use), along with a public service ad campaign encouraging people to turn their thermostats down this winter.

    https://energyhistory.yale.edu/library-item/when-you-ride-alone-you-ride-hitler-us-government-propaganda-poster-1943

    "When you turn the thermostat up, you put money in Putin's pocket".

    A message which would go down like a bucket of cold sick and deservedly so. It's our Government and the green maniacs it has been in thrall to that have put money in Putin's pocket, by shutting down domestic energy supplies (and storage), and relying on imports instead. Why should people accept the halfwits who created this situation telling them it's all their fault for daring to have their heating on in Winter? Tone deaf doesn’t come close.
    If we'd listened to the "green maniacs" and built more renewable provision and insulated more homes, we'd be in less of a pickle than we are now.
    I don't disagree that there could have been far better and more imaginative use of renewables in the mix. But whilst hydrocarbons were still necessary it was (and is) hugely important that their continued supply is secure. Green extremists have repeatedly influenced policy on the side of foreign coal, oil and gas against UK coal, oil and gas.
    As I recollect, the main switch from domestic to foreign coal was implemented by a certain Mrs T, whom most wouldn't have considered to be a green extremist.
  • turbotubbsturbotubbs Posts: 11,570

    Leon said:

    Mortimer said:

    The key reason Sweden did better during the pandemic is little to do with population density or that we are incorrigibly anti-social.

    It is to to with the independence of government agencies and the innate respect that most of the population has for the state, regional and local governments and other public agencies.

    On the schools point, it was only children 15+ who were, relatively briefly, prohibited from attending school physically. Children suffered *much* less than in the rest of Europe. That we favour our young over our old is one of the greatest triumphs, and the greatest tragedies, of modern Swedish society.

    You didn't do better. Compared to your neighbours you did far worse. Now extremists like Bart - typical of those who know the price of everything and the value of nothing - seem to think this was a price worth paying but most reasonable people would disagree with him.
    Depends on what you mean by “better”?

    If you mean minimising the long term damage to society and the economy, then yes, Sweden did better. A lot better.

    Sweden was playing the long game. Most of the rest of the world was running about like a headless chicken.

    One shudders to think what’s going to happen when a *real* killer pandemic shows up.

    Everyone in Sweden will die. Because you will continue to believe that what you did last time was the right way to go.
    You see, this is where you have *totally* misunderstood Swedish society, stamina and respect for independent governmental agencies.

    Covid = take care

    Real killer pandemic (2035?) = lockdown max = unpleasant, but hey we survived

    Swedes will manage both. No probs.

    Whereas I suspect that for most countries:

    Covid = headless chicken lockdown

    Real killer pandemic (2035?) = headless chicken disrespect for government = all fall down


    Quite possibly right.

    Once bitten, twice shy. I for one won't be prepared to show respect to a future government wanting to strip us of our liberties again. I'm sure others feel the same.
    Maybe they will. Much as I despise this government I think they probably made okay calls on lockdown and I will continue to follow public health advice in pursuit of our common national interest in the future.
    The most mask-keen mates of mine now laugh at the way they sheepishly followed the herd.

    I haven't worn one since Freedom day 2021. Not a single day lost to illness in that time.
    It it quite remarkable that you still haven't grasped the reason for wearing masks.
    Cloth masks that are being reused all the time?

    The reason is virtue signalling bullshit to pretend you're taking the pandemic seriously.
    The freedom-loving chill-out libertine Italians are totally fascist about mask wearing on trains. FFP2 all the time or you’re kicked off

    They need Georgia Meloni to sort them out
    Still? Mask-wearing was obviously useful when covid was rife and we didn't have vaccines, but I wouldn't have thought there was much point now.
    I’ve just been at a convention in Birmingham where the organisers insisted on masks. Very unpleasant, but most complied. Lots of very obese people seemed to be the justification.
  • Luckyguy1983Luckyguy1983 Posts: 20,505

    kyf_100 said:

    AlistairM said:

    kyf_100 said:

    kyf_100 said:

    kyf_100 said:

    kyf_100 said:

    Anyone worked out how workable this is?
    (Though loading the costs on bill payers in the 2040s is very on-brand for a government that really doesn't give a stuff about anyone younger than about 60)

    Energy firm’s £100 billion plan to freeze energy bills for 2 years. A thread
    The Chief Executive of one of the UK’s largest energy providers presented Kwasi Kwarteng and Jacob Rees-Mogg with a £100 billion plan to stave off an energy price emergency last week...
    2/ Keith Anderson, CEO of Scottish Power will present the same plan to Scottish First Minister Nicola Sturgeon later today.
    The plan would involve the government guaranteeing loans to the energy companies enabling them to keep bills frozen while buying the gas needed....
    3/ ...for the next two years.
    £100 billion is Scottish Power’s best estimate of the difference between what it will actually cost to buy the energy and the current cap of £1971.
    Sources close to the company said that Kwasi Kwarteng, tipped to be the next Chancellor....
    4/ ..if Liz Truss is next PM, was broadly receptive to the idea. Sources close to Kwasi Kwarteng wouldn’t be drawn on his enthusiasm. “We had a meeting about it – that’s all”.
    The so called deficit fund would be repaid through bills over the next 20 or so years...


    https://twitter.com/BBCSimonJack/status/1562061859401900033

    Kwarteng and Truss would be well advised to go for it, it dwarfs Labour's plan and probably leaves some room for the 400 quid direct help that Labour would remove.
    In a my future generations' debt is bigger than your future generations' debt.

    I suppose on a positive note with inflation running at 20% p a for the next twenty years the debt will have withered to nothing anyway.
    Well the cost of not freezing everyone to death this winter will be hugely increased public debt. Thems the breaks. Labour are just proposing to do it in a series of depressing interventions rather than this option of more up front but over a longer period.
    Yes, something has to be done and Liz and her Chancellor and Energy Minister have come up with a corker of a plan that shames Labour's meagre effort. But the figure...wow!
    How have the energy companies - the big ones who actually supply energy I mean rather than the small ones that were just effectively trading futures - been doing the last few years?

    Would it be viable to call their bluff? Or even possible?

    Keep the energy cap where it is or even reduce it. Let the energy companies take the pain and see how much they can take and only then step in and introduce the support scheme when they are on the verge of going bust. It would ensure that they are actually doing all they can rather than just looking for a way to support their profits.

    Should any energy company be doing more than getting by right now?

    I am not actually advocating this as I am sure there are way too many flaws in my reasoning but just thought it was worth at least discussing.
    The mere fact that it's the energy companies favoured solution suggests to me it requires precisely this kind of scrutiny.

    One way or another, the taxpayer is going to be on the hook for a lot of debt - but how much of that should be going into energy suppliers profits?
    Well this is the issue with Labours plan too isnt it? Its going to cost us tens of billions either way
    I think the question is how many billions will be profits for the energy companies. When nationalisation means we could take those profits out of the equation.

    The energy companies are very keen on the "give us a big loan and we'll pay it off over the next 20 years with higher but manageable energy bills"

    Is that the best deal for Joe Billpayer, or is it the best deal for the energy companies?
    Nationalisation in this situation as Gordon Brown pushed for is so stupid, the crisis coming here is finding and getting money to those most in need, nationalisation will be using that money where it’s not needed, buying stuff we don’t need.

    Richard Tyndall is right, squeeze to find where the lean point is, leave any fat in the system (like news reports of number profits, dividends, pay and bonuses) whilst people freeze and starve lose business and homes is both politically toxic and a bit immoral.
    I am inclined towards what TSE was saying downthread, that there is a serious risk of general strike and civil disorder next year if the government do not get a handle on this. I'm not sure "trimming the fat in the system" is going to cover it.

    My natural instincts are libertarian ones, however I believe the government has a duty to defends its citizens in times of war. Not just with the army, however.

    Russia has weaponised energy against us in a proxy war. It is their intention to turn the screws as much as possible, to weaken our resolve against their invasion of Ukraine, and create precisely the kind of civil unrest that has been warned about downthread.

    As far as I'm concerned, that means greater government intervention is morally justifiable in this particular circumstance.

    It needs to be about more than just preventing pensioners from freezing to death and giving a few handouts here and there. We need to ensure an energy supply that is affordable for all this winter - and that may mean looking at radical solutions such as nationalisation to control prices, furloughing energy intensive industries, and scheduling rolling blackouts to control demand.

    The alternative is bankrupting hundreds of thousands of businesses, mass unemployment, strikes and civil unrest.
    I think the penny is dropping right across the board isn’t it - this is just not the moment to find the money for tax cuts. Hence the mood you describe, Tax cuts the solution promised by government, so they drop like stone in the polls, as 97.7% of electorate know it’s not the right moment for those policies. There is a right time for such policies and determination. But this is not that moment.
    Supply is down by 15% or so due to Russia. That means demand needs to drop by a similar amount.

    Proposals like taking out a loan to freeze prices now, and paying that astronomical sum back over the next 20 years or so, don't fully solve the problem. There is simply only so much energy to go around. We can't keep bidding it up and up in a bidding war and putting it on the never never.

    We need to start looking seriously at how to reduce demand this winter while keeping the economy alive - it's going to require substantial government intervention.

    Keeping prices artificially low will only stimulate demand. Demand reduction is going to need to be part of the equation. It won't be popular, but ultimately difficult decisions need to be made during wartime, that's what a government is there for. And I would rather the government allocates available supply on a harm reduction basis (to both lives and the economy) than allow the free market to allocate energy to the highest bidder.
    There will be a natural reduction in usage as people avoid where possible unnecessary energy use. I have small portable a/c unit I use on warm days to help keep my small upstairs study cool. It is a bit warm today and in other times I would have used it but I'm choosing not to. Similar decisions will be made up and down the land. I think TSE mentioned also that his company will be going back to WFH to save on energy costs. That will also feed into overal reduced energy consumption.

    Any high-energy usage devices have already become massively unpopular. See for example this 2KW outdoor heater reduced from £55 to less than £14. Clearly no one wants to be buying that sort of product right now and it will reduce our energy consumption!
    https://www.hotukdeals.com/deals/quartz-element-grey-2kw-electric-wall-mounted-heater-3985162

    Having said that we do need to look into all avenues for reducing our energy consumption, particularly around gas usage.
    An electric fleece blanket retails for about £40-50.

    Government could sell them for £10 (giving them away for free just encourages people to hoard items they don't use), along with a public service ad campaign encouraging people to turn their thermostats down this winter.

    https://energyhistory.yale.edu/library-item/when-you-ride-alone-you-ride-hitler-us-government-propaganda-poster-1943

    "When you turn the thermostat up, you put money in Putin's pocket".

    A message which would go down like a bucket of cold sick and deservedly so. It's our Government and the green maniacs it has been in thrall to that have put money in Putin's pocket, by shutting down domestic energy supplies (and storage), and relying on imports instead. Why should people accept the halfwits who created this situation telling them it's all their fault for daring to have their heating on in Winter? Tone deaf doesn’t come close.
    If we'd listened to the "green maniacs" and built more renewable provision and insulated more homes, we'd be in less of a pickle than we are now.
    We’ve done pretty well. It’s hard to wean off something that’s cheap to something that’s expensive/difficult. Without general notice our renewables have increased massively. Our biggest mistakes have been around nuclear and other options such as tidal.
    There are less glamorous forms of power generation we've also neglected. We could burn a far higher percentage of our non-recyclable waste. At the moment that which we don't burn is exported to countries that do, or put in landfill where the carbon leaches out anyway. Germany, The Netherlands and Sweden are well ahead of us. All schemes currently proposed should be greenlit immediately, and those refused reviewed in the light of the current situation.
  • TheuniondivvieTheuniondivvie Posts: 35,866
    Leon said:

    Mortimer said:

    Mortimer said:

    The key reason Sweden did better during the pandemic is little to do with population density or that we are incorrigibly anti-social.

    It is to to with the independence of government agencies and the innate respect that most of the population has for the state, regional and local governments and other public agencies.

    On the schools point, it was only children 15+ who were, relatively briefly, prohibited from attending school physically. Children suffered *much* less than in the rest of Europe. That we favour our young over our old is one of the greatest triumphs, and the greatest tragedies, of modern Swedish society.

    You didn't do better. Compared to your neighbours you did far worse. Now extremists like Bart - typical of those who know the price of everything and the value of nothing - seem to think this was a price worth paying but most reasonable people would disagree with him.
    Depends on what you mean by “better”?

    If you mean minimising the long term damage to society and the economy, then yes, Sweden did better. A lot better.

    Sweden was playing the long game. Most of the rest of the world was running about like a headless chicken.

    One shudders to think what’s going to happen when a *real* killer pandemic shows up.

    Everyone in Sweden will die. Because you will continue to believe that what you did last time was the right way to go.
    You see, this is where you have *totally* misunderstood Swedish society, stamina and respect for independent governmental agencies.

    Covid = take care

    Real killer pandemic (2035?) = lockdown max = unpleasant, but hey we survived

    Swedes will manage both. No probs.

    Whereas I suspect that for most countries:

    Covid = headless chicken lockdown

    Real killer pandemic (2035?) = headless chicken disrespect for government = all fall down


    Quite possibly right.

    Once bitten, twice shy. I for one won't be prepared to show respect to a future government wanting to strip us of our liberties again. I'm sure others feel the same.
    Maybe they will. Much as I despise this government I think they probably made okay calls on lockdown and I will continue to follow public health advice in pursuit of our common national interest in the future.
    The most mask-keen mates of mine now laugh at the way they sheepishly followed the herd.

    I haven't worn one since Freedom day 2021. Not a single day lost to illness in that time.
    It it quite remarkable that you still haven't grasped the reason for wearing masks.
    Cloth masks that are being reused all the time?

    The reason is virtue signalling bullshit to pretend you're taking the pandemic seriously.
    I'm quite proud to say I never did that idiotic Maoist clapping for the NHS either. Really scary how that took hold.

    I did it once. Ludicrous Marxist emotional manipulation
    I didn’t do it at all. Does that mean I’m less susceptible to ludicrous Marxist emotional manipulation?
  • Leon said:

    Mortimer said:

    Mortimer said:

    The key reason Sweden did better during the pandemic is little to do with population density or that we are incorrigibly anti-social.

    It is to to with the independence of government agencies and the innate respect that most of the population has for the state, regional and local governments and other public agencies.

    On the schools point, it was only children 15+ who were, relatively briefly, prohibited from attending school physically. Children suffered *much* less than in the rest of Europe. That we favour our young over our old is one of the greatest triumphs, and the greatest tragedies, of modern Swedish society.

    You didn't do better. Compared to your neighbours you did far worse. Now extremists like Bart - typical of those who know the price of everything and the value of nothing - seem to think this was a price worth paying but most reasonable people would disagree with him.
    Depends on what you mean by “better”?

    If you mean minimising the long term damage to society and the economy, then yes, Sweden did better. A lot better.

    Sweden was playing the long game. Most of the rest of the world was running about like a headless chicken.

    One shudders to think what’s going to happen when a *real* killer pandemic shows up.

    Everyone in Sweden will die. Because you will continue to believe that what you did last time was the right way to go.
    You see, this is where you have *totally* misunderstood Swedish society, stamina and respect for independent governmental agencies.

    Covid = take care

    Real killer pandemic (2035?) = lockdown max = unpleasant, but hey we survived

    Swedes will manage both. No probs.

    Whereas I suspect that for most countries:

    Covid = headless chicken lockdown

    Real killer pandemic (2035?) = headless chicken disrespect for government = all fall down


    Quite possibly right.

    Once bitten, twice shy. I for one won't be prepared to show respect to a future government wanting to strip us of our liberties again. I'm sure others feel the same.
    Maybe they will. Much as I despise this government I think they probably made okay calls on lockdown and I will continue to follow public health advice in pursuit of our common national interest in the future.
    The most mask-keen mates of mine now laugh at the way they sheepishly followed the herd.

    I haven't worn one since Freedom day 2021. Not a single day lost to illness in that time.
    It it quite remarkable that you still haven't grasped the reason for wearing masks.
    Cloth masks that are being reused all the time?

    The reason is virtue signalling bullshit to pretend you're taking the pandemic seriously.
    I'm quite proud to say I never did that idiotic Maoist clapping for the NHS either. Really scary how that took hold.

    I did it once. Ludicrous Marxist emotional manipulation
    I didn't. My NHS employee partner found it ridiculous and condescending.
  • HYUFDHYUFD Posts: 107,348

    HYUFD said:

    HYUFD said:

    HYUFD said:

    Driver said:

    Lets pile more debt onto future generations

    As opposed to your alternative, which obviously is...?
    Huge property taxes on the wealthiest generations that squandered the family silver
    Which would be hugely unpopular amongst 45 to 65 year olds who would inherit from them
    You are back on with your old inheritance mumbo- jumbo again.

    Anyone who goes into a care home for any length of time, really has nothing much to leave. I can show you the bills and a total lack of interest from Herefordshire Council if you like.
    Only 25% of over 65s at most will ever need to go into a care home, the rest will either die first or require only at home care. Plus the government has now capped care costs at £86k anyway
    Not yet it hasn't, if you know differently let me know.

    October 2023 is not much f...ing use for my 94 year old Mother in law. Between now and then is going to cost her another £84,000.
    As expensive as it is, you can't take it with you. The state should not be in the business of paying for people's inheritances. The cap should never come into place.
    Then bang goes the Tory core vote to RefUK or stay home or even Labour or LD. One of the core points of being a Tory is to preserve peoples' private property.

    The cap ensured no family has to give all the family home to the state in care costs
    So what?

    If the Tory core vote goes, because they want the state paying for their inheritance, then good riddance to them.

    "Private property" should be the income people are working for, not having others pay for them.

    Anyone who wants to live off welfare from people being actually working being taxed so you don't have to work doesn't deserve to be elected. Whether that be Tory or Labour core votes.
    I would rather lose you to the LDs to be quite honest where you really belong than all the Tory core vote to RefUK or stay home by taking people's homes to pay for care costs.

    NI was set up to pay for care anyway
  • MoonRabbitMoonRabbit Posts: 9,214
    edited August 2022

    Truss may have played a blinder here. After people have been ramping up talk of £3k, £4k or £6k bills or higher, if this suggested proposal goes ahead and bills are frozen then that's possibly going to seek quite a significant step taken.

    Oh and if it's a loan, then possibly not a handout either.

    But the devil will be in the details of course. What's going to happen with SMEs will be as important as what happens with consumer bills and that doesn't seem to be getting discussed much yet if at all.

    Barty loves Lizzy still

    :wink:
    Barty doesn’t do the politics very well. You could never hire him to spin. In the round this proposal is the most expensive of all the options so far though, as longer paybacks tend to be? And You can imagine opponents exploiting this angle, not just immediately but for a long time to come

    “Is it not clear Mr Speaker, they have mortgaged our futures to afford their tax cuts today”

    “Don’t the tax payers of this country know it well, Mr Speaker, When they were last in power, rather than windfall tax the excessive profits of the energy barons, instead they saddled future generations with debt, and then gave tax hand outs to the rich whilst everyone else starved! Is it no surprise the country has not voted Tory since?”

    Shame on ex chancellor Rishi Sunak for not being more open and honest what he would do.
  • Andy_CookeAndy_Cooke Posts: 4,510
    edited August 2022



    kinabalu said:

    MISTY said:

    kinabalu said:

    Driver said:

    kinabalu said:

    Driver said:

    TOPPING said:

    1. Diseases will always kill us and if they don't then I have bad news about life in any case.
    2. I can totally understand that the government, looking as we all did at those pictures from Italy of people dying in the corridors, had to do something and lockdowns was it.
    3. The whole point of society is a balance. Tragically it is not to keep every Archie alive at the expense of others who would benefit from those resources.

    Once the NHS was in no danger of "collapsing" as in real collapse, not the collapse that the Graun and the various health unions call every other week, then there should absolutely have been no more lockdowns.

    There should have been compensation for pubs if they wanted to close and teachers if they wanted to stay home but no mandate.

    Our freedoms are so precious and the great and good of PB dismiss them instantly and soil themselves at the first real test of freedom that we in the UK have had for 80 years. Doesn't bode well for the future.

    Which is a greater threat to Freedom: a temporary measure in the face of a novel pandemic, or a sustained campaign by government to restrict political protest and dissent? Is the collapse of the Court system due to chronic neglect perhaps a more pernicious threat? Is the drive to ban freedom of speech under the guise of Fighting Wokery more problematic? Are restrictions on the right to strike actually more consequential? I think one can debate whether temporary lockdowns were really the "first real test of freedom that we in the UK have had for 80 years".

    But, sure, lockdowns should be avoided. The way to avoid lockdowns is with better public health measures. We can look at a country like Japan that never had a national lockdown and had far fewer COVID cases. A better Test & Trace system, with more support for people self-isolating, would have been a huge help in the UK. A better funded primary health care system would have helped.

    This ain't rocket science. If you don't want lockdowns, do public health better.
    No, it isn't rocket science. If you don't want lockdowns, don't implement lockdowns.
    How would you have hampered the spread of the virus at those critical times then?

    It spread via close contact between people remember - not by black magic.
    Strong advice, not legislation. And this would have included strong advice to organisations and companies to stop doing counterproductive things, like supermarkets cutting their hours, which merely ensured that the average number of people in their shops at any given time was higher than it needed to be.
    Ok so Muscly goes "You MUST stay at home etc etc" but no laws are changed.

    Why is that so much better iyo?

    And what happens if people don't respond to the extent necessary to ward off a public health catastrophe?
    It isn't warding off anything, its just changing the emphasis of risk. You assume these measures, even short term, are risk free, but they aren't.

    Every kind of restriction is a swings and roundabouts calculation. Not how it was presented at the time (it was 'saving lives'), but we now know that is true.

    At best lockdown was sacrificing some lives to save others. At best. What's the balance? who knows?
    I never assumed the NPIs were cost free. However there was a train about to run us over and it had to be slowed down. The idea of somebody configuring and running a super-complex, multi-level cost/benefit model and trying to incorporate and quantify things like impact on mental health before we did anything is for the birds. We were too late acting as it is and found it hard enough just to model the spread of the virus and hospitalisations and deaths.
    You're absolutely right that there wasn't a time to analyse it in advance, but there is time to do so in hindsight and in hindsight lockdown was a mistake.

    It was certainly not "too late".
    In hindsight paying my home insurance last year was a mistake. My house didn't burn down after all. What a waste of money!

    (That's only one argument, of course. It is not at all clear, even in hindsight, that not locking down would have had lower social and economic costs than locking down did.)
    If your home insurance only cost a few quid then it was probably worthwhile to have. If your home insurance cost more than your home and required your children to be out of school for months etc then it probably wasn't.
    The risk at the time of the first lockdown was that the hospitals would be overwhelmed and that tens of thousands of people would die unnecessarily. Giving the kids a couple on months off school and paying an economic cost was indeed the equivalent of a few quid when compared to the horrifying possible alternative.

    The case for the later lockdowns is not quite so clear, but in general locking down more quickly would have meant locking down for a shorter time.
    Tens of thousands dying doesn't justify millions losing their education.

    Would you sacrifice 100 people's education to prolong a single person's life? If not, why sacrifice millions for tens of thousands?

    The only way to justify millions losing education, is if millions were going to die.
    Telling outright lies - particularly when they are so easily refuted - doesn't help your argument at all.

    There were not 'millions losing their education' There was a small scale disruption for a few months.

    Your hyperbole does you no credit.
    There was large scale disruption for months on end for millions of people. That is millions losing their education, that time was valuable and won't be returned to them.

    Yes some will cope with it, but that doesn't make it OK. The law treats education as so serious that you can be fined for taking kids out of school for a few days for a vacation during term time, but you consider shutting down schools for months on end to be no biggy because you sold your soul to Covid death league tables being the only metric that matters to the exclusion of absolutely everything else.
    What about 9 weeks disruption to save half a million lives? Including many parents?

    EDIT: tried to fix a blockquote issue
  • IshmaelZIshmaelZ Posts: 21,830
    Mortimer said:

    Leon said:

    Mortimer said:

    The key reason Sweden did better during the pandemic is little to do with population density or that we are incorrigibly anti-social.

    It is to to with the independence of government agencies and the innate respect that most of the population has for the state, regional and local governments and other public agencies.

    On the schools point, it was only children 15+ who were, relatively briefly, prohibited from attending school physically. Children suffered *much* less than in the rest of Europe. That we favour our young over our old is one of the greatest triumphs, and the greatest tragedies, of modern Swedish society.

    You didn't do better. Compared to your neighbours you did far worse. Now extremists like Bart - typical of those who know the price of everything and the value of nothing - seem to think this was a price worth paying but most reasonable people would disagree with him.
    Depends on what you mean by “better”?

    If you mean minimising the long term damage to society and the economy, then yes, Sweden did better. A lot better.

    Sweden was playing the long game. Most of the rest of the world was running about like a headless chicken.

    One shudders to think what’s going to happen when a *real* killer pandemic shows up.

    Everyone in Sweden will die. Because you will continue to believe that what you did last time was the right way to go.
    You see, this is where you have *totally* misunderstood Swedish society, stamina and respect for independent governmental agencies.

    Covid = take care

    Real killer pandemic (2035?) = lockdown max = unpleasant, but hey we survived

    Swedes will manage both. No probs.

    Whereas I suspect that for most countries:

    Covid = headless chicken lockdown

    Real killer pandemic (2035?) = headless chicken disrespect for government = all fall down


    Quite possibly right.

    Once bitten, twice shy. I for one won't be prepared to show respect to a future government wanting to strip us of our liberties again. I'm sure others feel the same.
    Maybe they will. Much as I despise this government I think they probably made okay calls on lockdown and I will continue to follow public health advice in pursuit of our common national interest in the future.
    The most mask-keen mates of mine now laugh at the way they sheepishly followed the herd.

    I haven't worn one since Freedom day 2021. Not a single day lost to illness in that time.
    It it quite remarkable that you still haven't grasped the reason for wearing masks.
    Cloth masks that are being reused all the time?

    The reason is virtue signalling bullshit to pretend you're taking the pandemic seriously.
    The freedom-loving chill-out libertine Italians are totally fascist about mask wearing on trains. FFP2 all the time or you’re kicked off

    They need Georgia Meloni to sort them out
    I think you misspelled 'hypochrondiac' there...

    It was very interesting to see the order in which countries removed restrictions. There seemed to be a strong correlation between ex Facist countries and looooong mask mandates.
    north/South divide. Same rules notionally apply in sicily, in practice my 10 pack of FFP2s remains unopened after 2 weeks there
  • moonshinemoonshine Posts: 4,993
    .

    Driver said:

    Mortimer said:

    The key reason Sweden did better during the pandemic is little to do with population density or that we are incorrigibly anti-social.

    It is to to with the independence of government agencies and the innate respect that most of the population has for the state, regional and local governments and other public agencies.

    On the schools point, it was only children 15+ who were, relatively briefly, prohibited from attending school physically. Children suffered *much* less than in the rest of Europe. That we favour our young over our old is one of the greatest triumphs, and the greatest tragedies, of modern Swedish society.

    You didn't do better. Compared to your neighbours you did far worse. Now extremists like Bart - typical of those who know the price of everything and the value of nothing - seem to think this was a price worth paying but most reasonable people would disagree with him.
    Depends on what you mean by “better”?

    If you mean minimising the long term damage to society and the economy, then yes, Sweden did better. A lot better.

    Sweden was playing the long game. Most of the rest of the world was running about like a headless chicken.

    One shudders to think what’s going to happen when a *real* killer pandemic shows up.

    Everyone in Sweden will die. Because you will continue to believe that what you did last time was the right way to go.
    You see, this is where you have *totally* misunderstood Swedish society, stamina and respect for independent governmental agencies.

    Covid = take care

    Real killer pandemic (2035?) = lockdown max = unpleasant, but hey we survived

    Swedes will manage both. No probs.

    Whereas I suspect that for most countries:

    Covid = headless chicken lockdown

    Real killer pandemic (2035?) = headless chicken disrespect for government = all fall down


    Quite possibly right.

    Once bitten, twice shy. I for one won't be prepared to show respect to a future government wanting to strip us of our liberties again. I'm sure others feel the same.
    Maybe they will. Much as I despise this government I think they probably made okay calls on lockdown and I will continue to follow public health advice in pursuit of our common national interest in the future.
    The most mask-keen mates of mine now laugh at the way they sheepishly followed the herd.

    I haven't worn one since Freedom day 2021. Not a single day lost to illness in that time.
    It it quite remarkable that you still haven't grasped the reason for wearing masks.
    Showing you're doing something.
    The fairly well attested fact that masks prevented the wearer from spreading the virus apart, who’s to say there isn’t value in people feeling they’re
    doing something in a time of crisis? Wasn’t the
    collection of the nation’s aluminium pots & pans
    during WWII a propaganda exercise in solidarity rather than any contribution to building Spitfires?
    That’s not what it was about. It was a carefully calibrated psychological trigger to keep people afraid so they didn’t forget there was a pandemic on. The Belgians admitted as much. The UK’s mask mandate as carried out, would likely have had a negligible impact on R, other than the behavioural effect.

    What annoyed me most was even in late 2021, those chimps used to stand up on stage and say “we need to do X” but without ever opening up their data to scrutiny on what the anticipated impact on R would be from each given measure. It was mostly about, “say something scary on telly so they all shit themselves!”. The omicron measures in particular were childish in their implementation, and missed some obvious measures that would likely had had a far more positive impact.
  • Luckyguy1983Luckyguy1983 Posts: 20,505

    kyf_100 said:

    AlistairM said:

    kyf_100 said:

    kyf_100 said:

    kyf_100 said:

    kyf_100 said:

    Anyone worked out how workable this is?
    (Though loading the costs on bill payers in the 2040s is very on-brand for a government that really doesn't give a stuff about anyone younger than about 60)

    Energy firm’s £100 billion plan to freeze energy bills for 2 years. A thread
    The Chief Executive of one of the UK’s largest energy providers presented Kwasi Kwarteng and Jacob Rees-Mogg with a £100 billion plan to stave off an energy price emergency last week...
    2/ Keith Anderson, CEO of Scottish Power will present the same plan to Scottish First Minister Nicola Sturgeon later today.
    The plan would involve the government guaranteeing loans to the energy companies enabling them to keep bills frozen while buying the gas needed....
    3/ ...for the next two years.
    £100 billion is Scottish Power’s best estimate of the difference between what it will actually cost to buy the energy and the current cap of £1971.
    Sources close to the company said that Kwasi Kwarteng, tipped to be the next Chancellor....
    4/ ..if Liz Truss is next PM, was broadly receptive to the idea. Sources close to Kwasi Kwarteng wouldn’t be drawn on his enthusiasm. “We had a meeting about it – that’s all”.
    The so called deficit fund would be repaid through bills over the next 20 or so years...


    https://twitter.com/BBCSimonJack/status/1562061859401900033

    Kwarteng and Truss would be well advised to go for it, it dwarfs Labour's plan and probably leaves some room for the 400 quid direct help that Labour would remove.
    In a my future generations' debt is bigger than your future generations' debt.

    I suppose on a positive note with inflation running at 20% p a for the next twenty years the debt will have withered to nothing anyway.
    Well the cost of not freezing everyone to death this winter will be hugely increased public debt. Thems the breaks. Labour are just proposing to do it in a series of depressing interventions rather than this option of more up front but over a longer period.
    Yes, something has to be done and Liz and her Chancellor and Energy Minister have come up with a corker of a plan that shames Labour's meagre effort. But the figure...wow!
    How have the energy companies - the big ones who actually supply energy I mean rather than the small ones that were just effectively trading futures - been doing the last few years?

    Would it be viable to call their bluff? Or even possible?

    Keep the energy cap where it is or even reduce it. Let the energy companies take the pain and see how much they can take and only then step in and introduce the support scheme when they are on the verge of going bust. It would ensure that they are actually doing all they can rather than just looking for a way to support their profits.

    Should any energy company be doing more than getting by right now?

    I am not actually advocating this as I am sure there are way too many flaws in my reasoning but just thought it was worth at least discussing.
    The mere fact that it's the energy companies favoured solution suggests to me it requires precisely this kind of scrutiny.

    One way or another, the taxpayer is going to be on the hook for a lot of debt - but how much of that should be going into energy suppliers profits?
    Well this is the issue with Labours plan too isnt it? Its going to cost us tens of billions either way
    I think the question is how many billions will be profits for the energy companies. When nationalisation means we could take those profits out of the equation.

    The energy companies are very keen on the "give us a big loan and we'll pay it off over the next 20 years with higher but manageable energy bills"

    Is that the best deal for Joe Billpayer, or is it the best deal for the energy companies?
    Nationalisation in this situation as Gordon Brown pushed for is so stupid, the crisis coming here is finding and getting money to those most in need, nationalisation will be using that money where it’s not needed, buying stuff we don’t need.

    Richard Tyndall is right, squeeze to find where the lean point is, leave any fat in the system (like news reports of number profits, dividends, pay and bonuses) whilst people freeze and starve lose business and homes is both politically toxic and a bit immoral.
    I am inclined towards what TSE was saying downthread, that there is a serious risk of general strike and civil disorder next year if the government do not get a handle on this. I'm not sure "trimming the fat in the system" is going to cover it.

    My natural instincts are libertarian ones, however I believe the government has a duty to defends its citizens in times of war. Not just with the army, however.

    Russia has weaponised energy against us in a proxy war. It is their intention to turn the screws as much as possible, to weaken our resolve against their invasion of Ukraine, and create precisely the kind of civil unrest that has been warned about downthread.

    As far as I'm concerned, that means greater government intervention is morally justifiable in this particular circumstance.

    It needs to be about more than just preventing pensioners from freezing to death and giving a few handouts here and there. We need to ensure an energy supply that is affordable for all this winter - and that may mean looking at radical solutions such as nationalisation to control prices, furloughing energy intensive industries, and scheduling rolling blackouts to control demand.

    The alternative is bankrupting hundreds of thousands of businesses, mass unemployment, strikes and civil unrest.
    I think the penny is dropping right across the board isn’t it - this is just not the moment to find the money for tax cuts. Hence the mood you describe, Tax cuts the solution promised by government, so they drop like stone in the polls, as 97.7% of electorate know it’s not the right moment for those policies. There is a right time for such policies and determination. But this is not that moment.
    Supply is down by 15% or so due to Russia. That means demand needs to drop by a similar amount.

    Proposals like taking out a loan to freeze prices now, and paying that astronomical sum back over the next 20 years or so, don't fully solve the problem. There is simply only so much energy to go around. We can't keep bidding it up and up in a bidding war and putting it on the never never.

    We need to start looking seriously at how to reduce demand this winter while keeping the economy alive - it's going to require substantial government intervention.

    Keeping prices artificially low will only stimulate demand. Demand reduction is going to need to be part of the equation. It won't be popular, but ultimately difficult decisions need to be made during wartime, that's what a government is there for. And I would rather the government allocates available supply on a harm reduction basis (to both lives and the economy) than allow the free market to allocate energy to the highest bidder.
    There will be a natural reduction in usage as people avoid where possible unnecessary energy use. I have small portable a/c unit I use on warm days to help keep my small upstairs study cool. It is a bit warm today and in other times I would have used it but I'm choosing not to. Similar decisions will be made up and down the land. I think TSE mentioned also that his company will be going back to WFH to save on energy costs. That will also feed into overal reduced energy consumption.

    Any high-energy usage devices have already become massively unpopular. See for example this 2KW outdoor heater reduced from £55 to less than £14. Clearly no one wants to be buying that sort of product right now and it will reduce our energy consumption!
    https://www.hotukdeals.com/deals/quartz-element-grey-2kw-electric-wall-mounted-heater-3985162

    Having said that we do need to look into all avenues for reducing our energy consumption, particularly around gas usage.
    An electric fleece blanket retails for about £40-50.

    Government could sell them for £10 (giving them away for free just encourages people to hoard items they don't use), along with a public service ad campaign encouraging people to turn their thermostats down this winter.

    https://energyhistory.yale.edu/library-item/when-you-ride-alone-you-ride-hitler-us-government-propaganda-poster-1943

    "When you turn the thermostat up, you put money in Putin's pocket".

    A message which would go down like a bucket of cold sick and deservedly so. It's our Government and the green maniacs it has been in thrall to that have put money in Putin's pocket, by shutting down domestic energy supplies (and storage), and relying on imports instead. Why should people accept the halfwits who created this situation telling them it's all their fault for daring to have their heating on in Winter? Tone deaf doesn’t come close.
    If we'd listened to the "green maniacs" and built more renewable provision and insulated more homes, we'd be in less of a pickle than we are now.
    I don't disagree that there could have been far better and more imaginative use of renewables in the mix. But whilst hydrocarbons were still necessary it was (and is) hugely important that their continued supply is secure. Green extremists have repeatedly influenced policy on the side of foreign coal, oil and gas against UK coal, oil and gas.
    As I recollect, the main switch from domestic to foreign coal was implemented by a certain Mrs T, whom most wouldn't have considered to be a green extremist.
    Wilson/Callaghan shut more coal mining down than Thatcher. But that is hardly the point, when she left power over 30 years ago.
  • MrEdMrEd Posts: 5,578
    O/T, does anyone know what happened to the poster @Farooq ? Haven't seen him on here in a while. Came from nowhere, blazed out a whole load of posts and seems to have disappeared.

    (Off to dinner now so apologies in advance for not replying to any replies).
  • GallowgateGallowgate Posts: 18,696
    HYUFD said:

    Driver said:

    Lets pile more debt onto future generations

    As opposed to your alternative, which obviously is...?
    Huge property taxes on the wealthiest generations that squandered the family silver
    Which would be hugely unpopular amongst 45 to 65 year olds who would inherit from them
    No guarantee of an inheritance
  • kinabalukinabalu Posts: 32,965
    Leon said:

    Mortimer said:

    The key reason Sweden did better during the pandemic is little to do with population density or that we are incorrigibly anti-social.

    It is to to with the independence of government agencies and the innate respect that most of the population has for the state, regional and local governments and other public agencies.

    On the schools point, it was only children 15+ who were, relatively briefly, prohibited from attending school physically. Children suffered *much* less than in the rest of Europe. That we favour our young over our old is one of the greatest triumphs, and the greatest tragedies, of modern Swedish society.

    You didn't do better. Compared to your neighbours you did far worse. Now extremists like Bart - typical of those who know the price of everything and the value of nothing - seem to think this was a price worth paying but most reasonable people would disagree with him.
    Depends on what you mean by “better”?

    If you mean minimising the long term damage to society and the economy, then yes, Sweden did better. A lot better.

    Sweden was playing the long game. Most of the rest of the world was running about like a headless chicken.

    One shudders to think what’s going to happen when a *real* killer pandemic shows up.

    Everyone in Sweden will die. Because you will continue to believe that what you did last time was the right way to go.
    You see, this is where you have *totally* misunderstood Swedish society, stamina and respect for independent governmental agencies.

    Covid = take care

    Real killer pandemic (2035?) = lockdown max = unpleasant, but hey we survived

    Swedes will manage both. No probs.

    Whereas I suspect that for most countries:

    Covid = headless chicken lockdown

    Real killer pandemic (2035?) = headless chicken disrespect for government = all fall down


    Quite possibly right.

    Once bitten, twice shy. I for one won't be prepared to show respect to a future government wanting to strip us of our liberties again. I'm sure others feel the same.
    Maybe they will. Much as I despise this government I think they probably made okay calls on lockdown and I will continue to follow public health advice in pursuit of our common national interest in the future.
    The most mask-keen mates of mine now laugh at the way they sheepishly followed the herd.

    I haven't worn one since Freedom day 2021. Not a single day lost to illness in that time.
    It it quite remarkable that you still haven't grasped the reason for wearing masks.
    Cloth masks that are being reused all the time?

    The reason is virtue signalling bullshit to pretend you're taking the pandemic seriously.
    The freedom-loving chill-out libertine Italians are totally fascist about mask wearing on trains. FFP2 all the time or you’re kicked off

    They need Georgia Meloni to sort them out
    If she appoints a deputy called Prosciutto the pair of them would be Prosciutto e Meloni.

    I'd enjoy that if it happens - fascism or no fascism.


  • kinabalu said:

    MISTY said:

    kinabalu said:

    Driver said:

    kinabalu said:

    Driver said:

    TOPPING said:

    1. Diseases will always kill us and if they don't then I have bad news about life in any case.
    2. I can totally understand that the government, looking as we all did at those pictures from Italy of people dying in the corridors, had to do something and lockdowns was it.
    3. The whole point of society is a balance. Tragically it is not to keep every Archie alive at the expense of others who would benefit from those resources.

    Once the NHS was in no danger of "collapsing" as in real collapse, not the collapse that the Graun and the various health unions call every other week, then there should absolutely have been no more lockdowns.

    There should have been compensation for pubs if they wanted to close and teachers if they wanted to stay home but no mandate.

    Our freedoms are so precious and the great and good of PB dismiss them instantly and soil themselves at the first real test of freedom that we in the UK have had for 80 years. Doesn't bode well for the future.

    Which is a greater threat to Freedom: a temporary measure in the face of a novel pandemic, or a sustained campaign by government to restrict political protest and dissent? Is the collapse of the Court system due to chronic neglect perhaps a more pernicious threat? Is the drive to ban freedom of speech under the guise of Fighting Wokery more problematic? Are restrictions on the right to strike actually more consequential? I think one can debate whether temporary lockdowns were really the "first real test of freedom that we in the UK have had for 80 years".

    But, sure, lockdowns should be avoided. The way to avoid lockdowns is with better public health measures. We can look at a country like Japan that never had a national lockdown and had far fewer COVID cases. A better Test & Trace system, with more support for people self-isolating, would have been a huge help in the UK. A better funded primary health care system would have helped.

    This ain't rocket science. If you don't want lockdowns, do public health better.
    No, it isn't rocket science. If you don't want lockdowns, don't implement lockdowns.
    How would you have hampered the spread of the virus at those critical times then?

    It spread via close contact between people remember - not by black magic.
    Strong advice, not legislation. And this would have included strong advice to organisations and companies to stop doing counterproductive things, like supermarkets cutting their hours, which merely ensured that the average number of people in their shops at any given time was higher than it needed to be.
    Ok so Muscly goes "You MUST stay at home etc etc" but no laws are changed.

    Why is that so much better iyo?

    And what happens if people don't respond to the extent necessary to ward off a public health catastrophe?
    It isn't warding off anything, its just changing the emphasis of risk. You assume these measures, even short term, are risk free, but they aren't.

    Every kind of restriction is a swings and roundabouts calculation. Not how it was presented at the time (it was 'saving lives'), but we now know that is true.

    At best lockdown was sacrificing some lives to save others. At best. What's the balance? who knows?
    I never assumed the NPIs were cost free. However there was a train about to run us over and it had to be slowed down. The idea of somebody configuring and running a super-complex, multi-level cost/benefit model and trying to incorporate and quantify things like impact on mental health before we did anything is for the birds. We were too late acting as it is and found it hard enough just to model the spread of the virus and hospitalisations and deaths.
    You're absolutely right that there wasn't a time to analyse it in advance, but there is time to do so in hindsight and in hindsight lockdown was a mistake.

    It was certainly not "too late".
    In hindsight paying my home insurance last year was a mistake. My house didn't burn down after all. What a waste of money!

    (That's only one argument, of course. It is not at all clear, even in hindsight, that not locking down would have had lower social and economic costs than locking down did.)
    If your home insurance only cost a few quid then it was probably worthwhile to have. If your home insurance cost more than your home and required your children to be out of school for months etc then it probably wasn't.
    The risk at the time of the first lockdown was that the hospitals would be overwhelmed and that tens of thousands of people would die unnecessarily. Giving the kids a couple on months off school and paying an economic cost was indeed the equivalent of a few quid when compared to the horrifying possible alternative.

    The case for the later lockdowns is not quite so clear, but in general locking down more quickly would have meant locking down for a shorter time.
    Tens of thousands dying doesn't justify millions losing their education.

    Would you sacrifice 100 people's education to prolong a single person's life? If not, why sacrifice millions for tens of thousands?

    The only way to justify millions losing education, is if millions were going to die.
    Telling outright lies - particularly when they are so easily refuted - doesn't help your argument at all.

    There were not 'millions losing their education' There was a small scale disruption for a few months.

    Your hyperbole does you no credit.
    There was large scale disruption for months on end for millions of people. That is millions losing their education, that time was valuable and won't be returned to them.

    Yes some will cope with it, but that doesn't make it OK. The law treats education as so serious that you can be fined for taking kids out of school for a few days for a vacation during term time, but you consider shutting down schools for months on end to be no biggy because you sold your soul to Covid death league tables being the only metric that matters to the exclusion of absolutely everything else.
    What about 9 weeks disruption to save half a million lives? Including many parents?

    EDIT: tried to fix a blockquote issue
    If only we had 9 weeks disruption instead of two years of it. And Sweden etc didn't have proportionately half a million more deaths than us, or their neighbours.

    But doing the maths, 9 weeks (we had more) disruption is approximately quarter of a year's disruption. Which is approximately 2.5 million years worth of education lost nationwide. Which valuing education at only 1:1 with an adults lifespan and using the fallacious claim of ten years per death would be equivalent to 250k deaths.

    Since I consider a year of a child's education as more valuable than a year of life for an adult, your figures would be approaching a break even point if only education were affected and if your figures were accurate.

    But your figures aren't accurate and there was more than just education at stake, so no is my answer. Not worthwhile.
  • Luckyguy1983Luckyguy1983 Posts: 20,505
    ...
    kinabalu said:

    Leon said:

    Mortimer said:

    The key reason Sweden did better during the pandemic is little to do with population density or that we are incorrigibly anti-social.

    It is to to with the independence of government agencies and the innate respect that most of the population has for the state, regional and local governments and other public agencies.

    On the schools point, it was only children 15+ who were, relatively briefly, prohibited from attending school physically. Children suffered *much* less than in the rest of Europe. That we favour our young over our old is one of the greatest triumphs, and the greatest tragedies, of modern Swedish society.

    You didn't do better. Compared to your neighbours you did far worse. Now extremists like Bart - typical of those who know the price of everything and the value of nothing - seem to think this was a price worth paying but most reasonable people would disagree with him.
    Depends on what you mean by “better”?

    If you mean minimising the long term damage to society and the economy, then yes, Sweden did better. A lot better.

    Sweden was playing the long game. Most of the rest of the world was running about like a headless chicken.

    One shudders to think what’s going to happen when a *real* killer pandemic shows up.

    Everyone in Sweden will die. Because you will continue to believe that what you did last time was the right way to go.
    You see, this is where you have *totally* misunderstood Swedish society, stamina and respect for independent governmental agencies.

    Covid = take care

    Real killer pandemic (2035?) = lockdown max = unpleasant, but hey we survived

    Swedes will manage both. No probs.

    Whereas I suspect that for most countries:

    Covid = headless chicken lockdown

    Real killer pandemic (2035?) = headless chicken disrespect for government = all fall down


    Quite possibly right.

    Once bitten, twice shy. I for one won't be prepared to show respect to a future government wanting to strip us of our liberties again. I'm sure others feel the same.
    Maybe they will. Much as I despise this government I think they probably made okay calls on lockdown and I will continue to follow public health advice in pursuit of our common national interest in the future.
    The most mask-keen mates of mine now laugh at the way they sheepishly followed the herd.

    I haven't worn one since Freedom day 2021. Not a single day lost to illness in that time.
    It it quite remarkable that you still haven't grasped the reason for wearing masks.
    Cloth masks that are being reused all the time?

    The reason is virtue signalling bullshit to pretend you're taking the pandemic seriously.
    The freedom-loving chill-out libertine Italians are totally fascist about mask wearing on trains. FFP2 all the time or you’re kicked off

    They need Georgia Meloni to sort them out
    If she appoints a deputy called Prosciutto the pair of them would be Prosciutto e Meloni.

    I'd enjoy that if it happens - fascism or no fascism.
    If she appoints an Irish deputy called Moloney, they'll be Meloni and Moloney.
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