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Starmer is still struggling to win Tory converts – politicalbetting.com

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    TheScreamingEaglesTheScreamingEagles Posts: 114,285

    Campunt said:

    Farooq said:

    Farooq said:

    malcolmg said:

    Farooq said:

    malcolmg said:

    malcolmg said:

    DavidL said:

    pigeon said:

    rcs1000 said:

    pigeon said:

    These VI polls are, and always have been, very unreliable. The Conservative Party will likely end up with no less than 35% of the popular vote come the next election, because well-to-do older people will shuffle back to them, and there'll be a Hung Parliament. My guesstimate of the outcome remains Lab 300, Con 260, SNP 40, LD 25.

    If it's 42 Lab, 35 Con, then with the SNP down to 38-40% in Scotland, we can probably expect a small Labour majority.

    Simply, Lab will pick up 20-25 in Scotland, and a little more than 100 in England and Wales.

    Now, this is far from nailed on, but one only has to look at 2005 to see how hammered the Conservatives can be, when the anti-Tory vote is well organised.
    The SNP aren't in as much trouble as is generally assumed. The Blue Woad Brigade has, after all, nowhere else to go. Labour will be doing very well to pick up a dozen seats.

    Tactical voting might move the dial a bit more, though OTOH it doesn't do to overestimate the enthusiasm for an incoming Labour administration. I might begin to believe that the majority is on if Labour offers an appealing alternative vision of its own, rather than relying on being "Not Tories" and doing as little as possible to upset the minted codger vote. There have been a few encouraging noises about confronting the Nimbies this week, but whether this translates into workable policy remains to be seen.
    No, they are in trouble and they do have somewhere else to go. I recommend reading some of the excellent threads on Wings over Scotland* and then dipping below the line there for as long as you can thole. Campbell is a good writer, witty and with a finely developed sense of the absurd but his readers are the sort of people whom we used to call cybernats and they now hate the SNP with a passion.

    My expectation is that the SNP will lose roughly half of their Westminster seats at the next election, mainly to Labour. It may well give Labour a majority.

    https://wingsoverscotland.com/ Try Full ahead Backwards as a good sample.
    I don't see them going to Labour David, that is out of frying pan into the fire. More likely to not vote or go to any other independence party.
    Personally it would be good to see them hammered and for us to be shafted by Labour to waken up the idiots who still think they are anything other than London sockpuppets. Westminster is not important for Scotland, it needs people with backbone in Holyrood and Labour shafting us would stiffen some of the spineless.
    Will Alba be standing candidates against the SNP? Indeed will their two MPs - originally elected as SNP - be standing for re-election?
    I would hope they stand a few but their focus will be Holyrood. Westminster is not important other than to disrupt, current mob have gone native thanks to the money poured at them. It is in Holyrood or Scotland at large by Convention . where Independence will be decided. Westminster is a sideshow.
    I don't think Alba will exist in a meaningful way in a few years' time. They are seen as extremist weirdos in most quarters.
    Can you name some of these quarters. They are all the long term Independence supporters who have left SNP. Just spouting shite is pretty dumb even for you.
    Yeah, I'll name two: unionists and separatists.

    And sorry, the polling entirely supports this. Alba are bumping along the bottom. Two percent. Three percent. When 5% is the outlier on the upside, you know that something drastic needs to happen. And, honestly, given drastic things HAVE been happening and there's still no breakthrough suggests that I am spot on.
    Politics is a bitch, and Alba are probably doomed. I can't see any evidence to the contrary, only wishful thinking.
    Problem for Alba is that Salmond draws attention to them and gives them a voice, but he's so personally unpopular that he imposes a low ceiling on their potential vote. A conundrum.
    BBC QT was interesting last Thursday. The reaction to Alex Salmond improved markedly during the programme as people realised he talked sense and wasn’t the ogre depicted by the media. I was particularly intrigued that he was invited onto QT. Is the SNP’s control of the media weakening?
    Does the SNP control the media??
    In the same way the bbc is a branch of uk intelligence services
    Sadly you’ve been banned, but you’ve excelled yourself here, linking the BBC and intelligence in one sentence…
    Well Guy Burgess, the country’s most famous intelligence officer, worked for the BBC
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    TimSTimS Posts: 9,459

    I know it’s the Daily Star, but today’s headline is excellent!
    https://ichef.bbci.co.uk/news/976/cpsprodpb/7772/production/_129787503_mediaitem129787502.jpg.webp

    The Star has been very good at front pages recently. The only remaining tabloid that doesn’t take itself too seriously. Great one about dunking sausage rolls this week.
  • Options
    FarooqFarooq Posts: 10,775
    edited May 2023
    TimS said:

    That one certainly made the most of his or her half hour or so of trolling. Quite an output.

    It is actually interesting to get a look in on the lines being taken by Moscow. I assume most efforts are directed at US social media hence the right wing themes and homophobia, as well as the mention of how much the support is costing (which is a very US isolationist style argument).

    The focus seems to be on demoralising people and appealing to “realism” to draw an end to the war. In other words Russia already knows it can’t win so is trying to limit losses by engineering compromise. Expect some fanfare about ceasefire announcements when the counteroffensive gets going.

    A stark contrast to early in the war, when it was all about trying to portray Ukrainians as Nazis, and mid-war when they were trying to scare Europeans about freezing to death.

    The homophobia is real. Russia is fascist in a very real sense of the word, and seeks to erase lifestyles that, in its view, do not match the virtues of tradition, conformity, and obedience. A large part of the anti-Western propaganda it churns out for domestic as well as foreign consumption is around immoral decadence harming the fabric of the pure and innocent nation.
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    another_richardanother_richard Posts: 25,046

    Campunt said:

    Incredible losses": the West will not be able to make up for the losses of the Ukrainian army Former adviser to the head of the Pentagon, Douglas McGregor, said that since the beginning of the Russian special operation, the Armed Forces of Ukraine have lost about 10,000 armored vehicles. Such losses are incredible and cannot be replenished.

    https://twitter.com/djuric_zlatko/status/1658009191879933955?s=20

    I'll actually feed the troll in this case. 10,000 seems like an *incredible* amount, and it is certainly a grand claim. However, if we look back, we can see claims that Ukraine 'lost' 2,500 armoured vehicles in two years in the Donbass. Even with the larger scale of this conflict, 10,000 seems a bit of a stretch for the defenders. (1). A lot will depend on the classification of 'armoured vehicle'.

    However, Douglas MacGregor has apparently been making lots of claims during this war that have not exactly panned out. E.g, from three days after the war started:

    "The battle in eastern Ukraine is really almost over," and predicted "If [Ukraine] don't surrender in the next 24 hours, I suspect Russia will ultimately annihilate them." ".

    And a few days later:
    " "The first five days Russian forces I think frankly were too gentle. They've now corrected that. So, I would say another 10 days this should be completely over... I think the most heroic thing he could do right now is come to terms with reality. Neutralize Ukraine."

    He seems to be rather optimistically pro-Russian; but his previous quotes and predictions appear to be far off-base. I'd class him as yet another ex-military bod desperately trying to remain relevant.

    (1): https://www.rferl.org/a/ukraine-armored-vehicles-significantly-damaged-2-years-of-donbas-conflict/30429979.html
    (2): https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Douglas_Macgregor
    Douglas Macgregor seems to have a residency at this deranged channel:

    https://www.youtube.com/@BeginYourJourneyy/videos
  • Options
    Casino_RoyaleCasino_Royale Posts: 55,267
    Nobody does it better.

    Makes me feel sad for the rest.
  • Options
    ChrisChris Posts: 11,097
    Chris said:

    Chris said:

    Campunt said:

    After the hardest fighting in Europe since WW2 Wagner Group stands victorious. A highly trained enemy with hundreds of billions of dollars and the best mercenaries the NATO world can offer. Blood! Honor! Motherland! Courage! still wins in the end. Be True to Yourself!

    https://twitter.com/JamesPorrazzo/status/1659672458482294787?s=20

    I just think the whole war is a tragic mistake that arose because Putin has the hots for Zelensky, who can play the piano with his penis:
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2-UiadUOrfk

    If Zelensky had only been willing to play the piano with Putin's penis, the whole thing could have been avoided.
    If only Zelensky had been willing to give Putin just one little kiss, all this could have been avoided:
    image
    I just worry that when Putin sees this picture he is going to feel even more frustrated and things will escalate even more:
    image
  • Options
    FarooqFarooq Posts: 10,775

    Nobody does it better.

    Makes me feel sad for the rest.

    You are Alan Partridge and I claim my free pint of Directors
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    OnlyLivingBoyOnlyLivingBoy Posts: 15,055
    Campunt said:

    I think many people who are gay in the uk are not really gay but just want to be fashionable.

    When I was growing up, if you wanted to be fashionable people would have assumed you were gay anyway. This was before David Beckham wore a sarong and the decline of the West really began.
    Can't believe I missed this guy BTW.
  • Options
    FarooqFarooq Posts: 10,775

    Campunt said:

    I think many people who are gay in the uk are not really gay but just want to be fashionable.

    When I was growing up, if you wanted to be fashionable people would have assumed you were gay anyway. This was before David Beckham wore a sarong and the decline of the West really began.
    Can't believe I missed this guy BTW.
    Tune in next Saturday for more Fash Fun.
  • Options
    NigelbNigelb Posts: 62,352
    edited May 2023
    The Netherlands cancelled a deal to sell its remaining F-16s to Draken International, so yeah, easy to guess where they will actually end up.
    https://twitter.com/oryxspioenkop/status/1659875567712325633
  • Options
    OnlyLivingBoyOnlyLivingBoy Posts: 15,055
    Farooq said:

    TimS said:

    That one certainly made the most of his or her half hour or so of trolling. Quite an output.

    It is actually interesting to get a look in on the lines being taken by Moscow. I assume most efforts are directed at US social media hence the right wing themes and homophobia, as well as the mention of how much the support is costing (which is a very US isolationist style argument).

    The focus seems to be on demoralising people and appealing to “realism” to draw an end to the war. In other words Russia already knows it can’t win so is trying to limit losses by engineering compromise. Expect some fanfare about ceasefire announcements when the counteroffensive gets going.

    A stark contrast to early in the war, when it was all about trying to portray Ukrainians as Nazis, and mid-war when they were trying to scare Europeans about freezing to death.

    The homophobia is real. Russia is fascist in a very real sense of the word, and seeks to erase lifestyles that, in its view, do not match the virtues of tradition, conformity, and obedience. A large part of the anti-Western propaganda it churns out for domestic as well as foreign consumption is around immoral decadence harming the fabric of the pure and innocent nation.
    Thank God we don't have anyone pedalling those kinds of lines here, eh?
  • Options
    Casino_RoyaleCasino_Royale Posts: 55,267

    Campunt said:

    I think many people who are gay in the uk are not really gay but just want to be fashionable.

    When I was growing up, if you wanted to be fashionable people would have assumed you were gay anyway. This was before David Beckham wore a sarong and the decline of the West really began.
    Can't believe I missed this guy BTW.
    Now, of course, it's fashionable to be seen to be vociferously opposed to homophobia and to sneer at patriotism as a bit parochial, which of course sums up @Farooq all over.

    Fortunately, we both oppose Russia's authoritarianism despite our differences.
  • Options
    FarooqFarooq Posts: 10,775
    Farooq said:

    Nobody does it better.

    Makes me feel sad for the rest.

    You are Alan Partridge and I claim my free pint of Directors
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TC8dWWImNzU&t=160s
  • Options
    another_richardanother_richard Posts: 25,046
    Nigelb said:

    TimS said:

    That one certainly made the most of his or her half hour or so of trolling. Quite an output.

    It is actually interesting to get a look in on the lines being taken by Moscow. I assume most efforts are directed at US social media hence the right wing themes and homophobia, as well as the mention of how much the support is costing (which is a very US isolationist style argument)...

    The strategy (such as it is) seems to be twofold.
    Get some sort of result in Bakhmut that can be presented as a win, and then attempt to stalemate and hold out for a Trump presidency.

    The culture war stuff is definitely targeted at the US right - several of whose leaders are directly echoing some of the Russian lines (presented here in somewhat absurd exaggeration this morning by the lamented Campunt).

    Its been a steady decline in ambition;

    February 2022 - 'All over in three days' - fail
    Spring 2022 - encircle eastern Ukraine - fail
    Summer 2022 - occupy Donbass - fail
    Winter 2023 - freeze Europe, destroy Ukraine's infrastructure - fail
    Summer 2023 - hold on for 18 months with infantry
  • Options
    Casino_RoyaleCasino_Royale Posts: 55,267
    Farooq said:

    Nobody does it better.

    Makes me feel sad for the rest.

    You are Alan Partridge and I claim my free pint of Directors
    I can drive to Vladivostok in my underpants eating a lot of Toblerone and you'd never know.

    At night, I'd look damn fine in black tie and beat all-comers at blackjack, vingt-et-un and poker, make superb puns and have all the Russian women throwing themselves at me begging to work for Britain.
  • Options
    HYUFDHYUFD Posts: 116,938
    Trudeau calls out Meloni on LGBT rights at a meeting between the Canadian and Italian PM at the G7
    https://www.ctvnews.ca/politics/trudeau-calls-out-italy-on-lgbtq2s-rights-during-meeting-with-meloni-at-g7-summit-1.6405482
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    NickPalmerNickPalmer Posts: 21,319
    Nigelb said:

    TimS said:

    That one certainly made the most of his or her half hour or so of trolling. Quite an output.

    It is actually interesting to get a look in on the lines being taken by Moscow. I assume most efforts are directed at US social media hence the right wing themes and homophobia, as well as the mention of how much the support is costing (which is a very US isolationist style argument)...

    The strategy (such as it is) seems to be twofold.
    Get some sort of result in Bakhmut that can be presented as a win, and then attempt to stalemate and hold out for a Trump presidency.

    The culture war stuff is definitely targeted at the US right - several of whose leaders are directly echoing some of the Russian lines (presented here in somewhat absurd exaggeration this morning by the lamented Campunt).

    There's also still some dissent on the near-pacifist left like me, who totally dislike Putin's invasion and see it as neo-imperialism, but who aren't comfortable with how we're escalating step by step in order to get an outright win. The Guardian piece from Mariupol (https://www.theguardian.com/world/2023/may/18/its-like-the-ussr-residents-on-life-in-mariupol-a-year-since-russian-occupation ) is entirely pro-Ukrainian in sentiment, but concedes that a large majority of the people now living there are either pro-Russian or neutral. Are we justified in encouraging Ukraine to fight until they've overrun places like this?

    There are several counter-arguments. First, that Ukraine is indivisible, and we must encourage them to fight for every inch of its soil. Second, that the invasion must be punished by total defeat. And finally, that most of the pro-Ukrainian part of the population has simply fled - I don't think there has been explicit ethnic cleansing, but that's been the effect.

    On the first point, I don't think Ukrainian nationalism with its ongoing sympathy for Bandera et al is so wonderful that we should be assisting its most militant claims - if a segment of the country doesn't want to be run by Kyiv, we should hesitate to help kill people until they're forced to accept it. On the second point, the invasion has obviously failed in its objectives at enormous cost, and Putin won't fool anyone if he claims that a ceasefire on current lines or worse is a victory. The history of enforcing total victory (cf. WW1) isn't always encouraging in the aftermath, and we want Putin's successor to be more sensible, not more revanchist. The third point is the strongest, but I wonder if it's worth indefinitely continuing the war to insist that people who used to live in X are able to return and displace anyone now living there.

    It's not a popular view, and I hesitate to even express it (not least because I don't want to side with idiot far-right trolls), but I'd argue that there should be limits to how committed to total victory at any cost that we want to be.
  • Options
    Luckyguy1983Luckyguy1983 Posts: 25,306
    Nigelb said:

    According to a joint statement issued by the G7 leaders on the eve of the summit in Hiroshima, Japan, the G7 leaders have pledged to ensure that Russia is defeated in its war against Ukraine and to support a just peace based on respect for international law.

    The G7 countries reaffirmed their commitment to provide the financial, humanitarian, military and diplomatic support Ukraine needs "for as long as necessary".

    https://twitter.com/Hromadske/status/1659871471114629120


    Troll fun aside, I think the G8 used to have a point as a forum for countries who often vehemently disagreed. With the EU being invited and now the country du jour in the form of Ukraine, it seems more of a choreographed publicity exercise, and therefore of less value.
  • Options
    WhisperingOracleWhisperingOracle Posts: 8,503
    edited May 2023

    Nigelb said:

    TimS said:

    That one certainly made the most of his or her half hour or so of trolling. Quite an output.

    It is actually interesting to get a look in on the lines being taken by Moscow. I assume most efforts are directed at US social media hence the right wing themes and homophobia, as well as the mention of how much the support is costing (which is a very US isolationist style argument)...

    The strategy (such as it is) seems to be twofold.
    Get some sort of result in Bakhmut that can be presented as a win, and then attempt to stalemate and hold out for a Trump presidency.

    The culture war stuff is definitely targeted at the US right - several of whose leaders are directly echoing some of the Russian lines (presented here in somewhat absurd exaggeration this morning by the lamented Campunt).

    There's also still some dissent on the near-pacifist left like me, who totally dislike Putin's invasion and see it as neo-imperialism, but who aren't comfortable with how we're escalating step by step in order to get an outright win. The Guardian piece from Mariupol (https://www.theguardian.com/world/2023/may/18/its-like-the-ussr-residents-on-life-in-mariupol-a-year-since-russian-occupation ) is entirely pro-Ukrainian in sentiment, but concedes that a large majority of the people now living there are either pro-Russian or neutral. Are we justified in encouraging Ukraine to fight until they've overrun places like this?

    There are several counter-arguments. First, that Ukraine is indivisible, and we must encourage them to fight for every inch of its soil. Second, that the invasion must be punished by total defeat. And finally, that most of the pro-Ukrainian part of the population has simply fled - I don't think there has been explicit ethnic cleansing, but that's been the effect.

    On the first point, I don't think Ukrainian nationalism with its ongoing sympathy for Bandera et al is so wonderful that we should be assisting its most militant claims - if a segment of the country doesn't want to be run by Kyiv, we should hesitate to help kill people until they're forced to accept it. On the second point, the invasion has obviously failed in its objectives at enormous cost, and Putin won't fool anyone if he claims that a ceasefire on current lines or worse is a victory. The history of enforcing total victory (cf. WW1) isn't always encouraging in the aftermath, and we want Putin's successor to be more sensible, not more revanchist. The third point is the strongest, but I wonder if it's worth indefinitely continuing the war to insist that people who used to live in X are able to return and displace anyone now living there.

    It's not a popular view, and I hesitate to even express it (not least because I don't want to side with idiot far-right trolls), but I'd argue that there should be limits to how committed to total victory at any cost that we want to be.
    A lot of worthwhile points here. I support continuing to provide backing for the Ukrainians, but that doesn't mean we should have the expectation that the war will realistically end in total victory for them.

    The effects on that for the destabilisation of Russia could also be damaging for the West, and not in our own long-term interests.
  • Options
    ChrisChris Posts: 11,097

    Nigelb said:

    According to a joint statement issued by the G7 leaders on the eve of the summit in Hiroshima, Japan, the G7 leaders have pledged to ensure that Russia is defeated in its war against Ukraine and to support a just peace based on respect for international law.

    The G7 countries reaffirmed their commitment to provide the financial, humanitarian, military and diplomatic support Ukraine needs "for as long as necessary".

    https://twitter.com/Hromadske/status/1659871471114629120


    Troll fun aside, I think the G8 used to have a point as a forum for countries who often vehemently disagreed. With the EU being invited and now the country du jour in the form of Ukraine, it seems more of a choreographed publicity exercise, and therefore of less value.
    Typically stupid.
  • Options
    pingping Posts: 3,731
    edited May 2023

    Campunt said:

    I think many people who are gay in the uk are not really gay but just want to be fashionable.

    When I was growing up, if you wanted to be fashionable people would have assumed you were gay anyway. This was before David Beckham wore a sarong and the decline of the West really began.
    Can't believe I missed this guy BTW.
    Now, of course, it's fashionable to be seen to be vociferously opposed to homophobia and to sneer at patriotism as a bit parochial, which of course sums up @Farooq all over.

    Fortunately, we both oppose Russia's authoritarianism despite our differences.
    I do think the British right deserves some credit wrt to Russia. Watching them flip was quite a sight to behold.

    However, I’m not sure, without litvineko, Salisbury, MH17 etc, the right would have turned on Putin in ‘22

    Putin is a shit intelligence officer and a reckless gambler. An idiot.
  • Options
    Luckyguy1983Luckyguy1983 Posts: 25,306
    Chris said:

    Nigelb said:

    According to a joint statement issued by the G7 leaders on the eve of the summit in Hiroshima, Japan, the G7 leaders have pledged to ensure that Russia is defeated in its war against Ukraine and to support a just peace based on respect for international law.

    The G7 countries reaffirmed their commitment to provide the financial, humanitarian, military and diplomatic support Ukraine needs "for as long as necessary".

    https://twitter.com/Hromadske/status/1659871471114629120


    Troll fun aside, I think the G8 used to have a point as a forum for countries who often vehemently disagreed. With the EU being invited and now the country du jour in the form of Ukraine, it seems more of a choreographed publicity exercise, and therefore of less value.
    Typically stupid.
    I wouldn't go so far as to say that, but certainly a junket where the press release could quite happily be written at the beginning.
  • Options
    Casino_RoyaleCasino_Royale Posts: 55,267

    Nigelb said:

    According to a joint statement issued by the G7 leaders on the eve of the summit in Hiroshima, Japan, the G7 leaders have pledged to ensure that Russia is defeated in its war against Ukraine and to support a just peace based on respect for international law.

    The G7 countries reaffirmed their commitment to provide the financial, humanitarian, military and diplomatic support Ukraine needs "for as long as necessary".

    https://twitter.com/Hromadske/status/1659871471114629120


    Troll fun aside, I think the G8 used to have a point as a forum for countries who often vehemently disagreed. With the EU being invited and now the country du jour in the form of Ukraine, it seems more of a choreographed publicity exercise, and therefore of less value.
    If you look at the photos, though, the EU normally lurks awkwardly in the background or, if in the foreground, is simply humoured.

    The really remarkable thing is how they managed to negotiate themselves a third wheel role in the first place.
  • Options
    AnabobazinaAnabobazina Posts: 19,902

    TimS said:

    Pulpstar said:

    On the water, borrowing to pay dividends when you're a monopoly provider should have been completely illegal

    Indeed. But the prevailing view was that any regulation of this was bad, and New Labour was also complicit in this, as we saw in the artlcle below.

    Ofwat is also still basically toothless compared to any comparable regulator in any neighbouring, or major European countries. We need to get out of this very strange , and uniquely and inflexibly , ultra-laissex faire approach to all these kind of issues, before they get worse. It also what happens when "the market" is lazily and undifferentiatedly described as inherently wise for 30 years.
    There was quite a convincing debunking of the sewage story on Twitter this morning. By a Tory supporting brexiteer, but nobody has yet debunked the debunking so he may well have a point. One of those threads that contradicts my deeply held beliefs and changes my mind. Any experts out there able to tell me if he’s missing something?

    https://twitter.com/loftussteve/status/1659637753158545414?s=46
    I'm afraid this strikes me almost as pure government and water industry publicity, painting such a Panglossian and simple picture of progress that the almost overt spokesmanship for the government, towards the end, comes as not much surprise.

    Here's what looks like a more independent approach, quoted by the Charted Institute of Waste and Environmental Management

    "By Professor at University of Greenwich Public Services International Research Unit, (PSIRU) David Hall"

    "Privatisation of water was deeply unpopular and remains so. In July 1989, as the private companies took over, a poll showed 79 per cent of people opposed. In 2017, after more than a quarter of a century’s experience, 83 per cent wanted water returned to public ownership.

    The economic rationale offered for privatisation was that private companies would finance the investments required by EU standards without the burden of public borrowing, bringing their own money and greater efficiency into the system.

    But after 25 years, water prices had risen by 40 per cent above the general rate of inflation, and the amount of shareholder money in the companies has reduced in real terms.

    Despite acquiring the companies debt-free, the owners have accumulated debt of more than £50 billion, effectively used to finance dividends of over £50 billion. The annual cost of these dividends and interest on the debt is £2.3 billion a year more expensive than it would be under public ownership.

    The companies’ performance has been equally poor. Sewage flooding remains a major problem, with repeated problems and fines. Thames Water has been a repeat offender, but the new super sewer being constructed to deal with the problem is another economic problem. As Thames refused to finance it by itself, the super sewer is financed by government loans and by an extra charge on consumers even before it is finished.

    There is underinvestment in water-resource management, with too-easy recourse to hosepipe bans, while water leakage runs at 3.1 billion litres per day – between 15 per cent and 30 per cent of water produced.

    The system also lacks effective public accountability. Southern Water is being investigated for breaching its statutory duties by Ofwat, the Environment Agency, and reportedly could face a Serious Fraud Office investigation.

    But the ineffectiveness of Ofwat is another failed aspect of the system. Companies have been able to repeatedly game the price-regulation formulae to boost profits and extract dividends without critical scrutiny. They rely on Ofwat to act publicly as their defender – rather than a protector of consumer rights.

    The privatised water system is leaking sewage, water and money. Renationalisation is a popular option and would bring England and Wales back into line with the rest of the world, including Scotland.

    The law on compensation means that could cost £14.5 billion, according to Moody’s; the savings of £2 billion per year would provide a very good public return."

    Yes. Privatisation was a moronic act of gross negligence. Thus, one should be unsurprised it has led to a series of moronic acts of gross negligence.

    Nationalise it. And the trains. And the gas board.
  • Options
    ChrisChris Posts: 11,097
    edited May 2023

    Nigelb said:

    TimS said:

    That one certainly made the most of his or her half hour or so of trolling. Quite an output.

    It is actually interesting to get a look in on the lines being taken by Moscow. I assume most efforts are directed at US social media hence the right wing themes and homophobia, as well as the mention of how much the support is costing (which is a very US isolationist style argument)...

    The strategy (such as it is) seems to be twofold.
    Get some sort of result in Bakhmut that can be presented as a win, and then attempt to stalemate and hold out for a Trump presidency.

    The culture war stuff is definitely targeted at the US right - several of whose leaders are directly echoing some of the Russian lines (presented here in somewhat absurd exaggeration this morning by the lamented Campunt).

    There's also still some dissent on the near-pacifist left like me, who totally dislike Putin's invasion and see it as neo-imperialism, but who aren't comfortable with how we're escalating step by step in order to get an outright win. The Guardian piece from Mariupol (https://www.theguardian.com/world/2023/may/18/its-like-the-ussr-residents-on-life-in-mariupol-a-year-since-russian-occupation ) is entirely pro-Ukrainian in sentiment, but concedes that a large majority of the people now living there are either pro-Russian or neutral. Are we justified in encouraging Ukraine to fight until they've overrun places like this?

    There are several counter-arguments. First, that Ukraine is indivisible, and we must encourage them to fight for every inch of its soil. Second, that the invasion must be punished by total defeat. And finally, that most of the pro-Ukrainian part of the population has simply fled - I don't think there has been explicit ethnic cleansing, but that's been the effect.

    On the first point, I don't think Ukrainian nationalism with its ongoing sympathy for Bandera et al is so wonderful that we should be assisting its most militant claims - if a segment of the country doesn't want to be run by Kyiv, we should hesitate to help kill people until they're forced to accept it. On the second point, the invasion has obviously failed in its objectives at enormous cost, and Putin won't fool anyone if he claims that a ceasefire on current lines or worse is a victory. The history of enforcing total victory (cf. WW1) isn't always encouraging in the aftermath, and we want Putin's successor to be more sensible, not more revanchist. The third point is the strongest, but I wonder if it's worth indefinitely continuing the war to insist that people who used to live in X are able to return and displace anyone now living there.

    It's not a popular view, and I hesitate to even express it (not least because I don't want to side with idiot far-right trolls), but I'd argue that there should be limits to how committed to total victory at any cost that we want to be.
    Probably you have to decide whether you don't want to support Ukraine because on the one hand you're a "near-pacifist" so you don't think people should defend themselves, or on the other you think anti-Kiev minorities within Ukraine have a valid case. It doesn't help much to muddle those two things together.
  • Options
    Casino_RoyaleCasino_Royale Posts: 55,267

    TimS said:

    Pulpstar said:

    On the water, borrowing to pay dividends when you're a monopoly provider should have been completely illegal

    Indeed. But the prevailing view was that any regulation of this was bad, and New Labour was also complicit in this, as we saw in the artlcle below.

    Ofwat is also still basically toothless compared to any comparable regulator in any neighbouring, or major European countries. We need to get out of this very strange , and uniquely and inflexibly , ultra-laissex faire approach to all these kind of issues, before they get worse. It also what happens when "the market" is lazily and undifferentiatedly described as inherently wise for 30 years.
    There was quite a convincing debunking of the sewage story on Twitter this morning. By a Tory supporting brexiteer, but nobody has yet debunked the debunking so he may well have a point. One of those threads that contradicts my deeply held beliefs and changes my mind. Any experts out there able to tell me if he’s missing something?

    https://twitter.com/loftussteve/status/1659637753158545414?s=46
    I'm afraid this strikes me almost as pure government and water industry publicity, painting such a Panglossian and simple picture of progress that the almost overt spokesmanship for the government, towards the end, comes as not much surprise.

    Here's what looks like a more independent approach, quoted by the Charted Institute of Waste and Environmental Management

    "By Professor at University of Greenwich Public Services International Research Unit, (PSIRU) David Hall"

    "Privatisation of water was deeply unpopular and remains so. In July 1989, as the private companies took over, a poll showed 79 per cent of people opposed. In 2017, after more than a quarter of a century’s experience, 83 per cent wanted water returned to public ownership.

    The economic rationale offered for privatisation was that private companies would finance the investments required by EU standards without the burden of public borrowing, bringing their own money and greater efficiency into the system.

    But after 25 years, water prices had risen by 40 per cent above the general rate of inflation, and the amount of shareholder money in the companies has reduced in real terms.

    Despite acquiring the companies debt-free, the owners have accumulated debt of more than £50 billion, effectively used to finance dividends of over £50 billion. The annual cost of these dividends and interest on the debt is £2.3 billion a year more expensive than it would be under public ownership.

    The companies’ performance has been equally poor. Sewage flooding remains a major problem, with repeated problems and fines. Thames Water has been a repeat offender, but the new super sewer being constructed to deal with the problem is another economic problem. As Thames refused to finance it by itself, the super sewer is financed by government loans and by an extra charge on consumers even before it is finished.

    There is underinvestment in water-resource management, with too-easy recourse to hosepipe bans, while water leakage runs at 3.1 billion litres per day – between 15 per cent and 30 per cent of water produced.

    The system also lacks effective public accountability. Southern Water is being investigated for breaching its statutory duties by Ofwat, the Environment Agency, and reportedly could face a Serious Fraud Office investigation.

    But the ineffectiveness of Ofwat is another failed aspect of the system. Companies have been able to repeatedly game the price-regulation formulae to boost profits and extract dividends without critical scrutiny. They rely on Ofwat to act publicly as their defender – rather than a protector of consumer rights.

    The privatised water system is leaking sewage, water and money. Renationalisation is a popular option and would bring England and Wales back into line with the rest of the world, including Scotland.

    The law on compensation means that could cost £14.5 billion, according to Moody’s; the savings of £2 billion per year would provide a very good public return."

    Yes. Privatisation was a moronic act of gross negligence. Thus, one should be unsurprised it has led to a series of moronic acts of gross negligence.

    Nationalise it. And the trains. And the gas board.
    Really?

    Compelling case here that it was Labour who shat the bed:

    https://moneyweek.com/why-uk-equity-market-is-shrinking
  • Options
    ChrisChris Posts: 11,097

    Chris said:

    Nigelb said:

    According to a joint statement issued by the G7 leaders on the eve of the summit in Hiroshima, Japan, the G7 leaders have pledged to ensure that Russia is defeated in its war against Ukraine and to support a just peace based on respect for international law.

    The G7 countries reaffirmed their commitment to provide the financial, humanitarian, military and diplomatic support Ukraine needs "for as long as necessary".

    https://twitter.com/Hromadske/status/1659871471114629120


    Troll fun aside, I think the G8 used to have a point as a forum for countries who often vehemently disagreed. With the EU being invited and now the country du jour in the form of Ukraine, it seems more of a choreographed publicity exercise, and therefore of less value.
    Typically stupid.
    I wouldn't go so far as to say that, but certainly a junket where the press release could quite happily be written at the beginning.
    Obviously I mean you're being typically stupid. And even more stupid for pretending to misunderstand.
  • Options
    CorrectHorseBatCorrectHorseBat Posts: 1,761
    If one is rational, there are some things that are better privatised and other things not better privatised.

    Railways and water strike me as too things that should never have been privatised - and the end results have been at best pointless, at worst catastrophic for the environment and the economy.

    One should be able to make these points without being called a communist. Nationalisation of these things is one of the least ideological things we could do, it clearly makes sense.
  • Options
    stodgestodge Posts: 12,822
    Afternoon all :)

    Once again I’m respectfully going to disagree with the key premise of this thread. I recognise for OGH and others the experience of 1992 casts a long shadow.

    The polling in England continues to show a 13-17% swing from Conservatives to Labour - more than enough to guarantee a substantial Labour majority. As for Reform, there’s no polling evidence to show they would switch en bloc to the Conservatives. A quarter would vote Tory if there were no Reform candidate but I think Tice is determined to put up a full slate.

    As for the 2019 Conservative vote, between 15-18% of that vote is going Labour if the polls are right. That’s not a small number given the size of the vote. One sixth of 45 equals seven and a half so that’s 7.5% moving directly with about the same peeling off to Reform, Greens and LDs.

    That’s where we are right now - Labour in the mid 40s, Conservatives just south of 30% and the LDs just north of 10%.

    That may be where we are in May or October next year - it may not. Historical evidence is mixed - it may already be game over for the Conservatives after what would be 14 years in Government.

    History rarely follows symmetrically - this may not be 1997 or 1992 but perhaps 1964 but again it’s more likely, as with the sentiments of a growing number of voters, to be none of the above.


  • Options
    turbotubbsturbotubbs Posts: 15,116

    Nigelb said:

    TimS said:

    That one certainly made the most of his or her half hour or so of trolling. Quite an output.

    It is actually interesting to get a look in on the lines being taken by Moscow. I assume most efforts are directed at US social media hence the right wing themes and homophobia, as well as the mention of how much the support is costing (which is a very US isolationist style argument)...

    The strategy (such as it is) seems to be twofold.
    Get some sort of result in Bakhmut that can be presented as a win, and then attempt to stalemate and hold out for a Trump presidency.

    The culture war stuff is definitely targeted at the US right - several of whose leaders are directly echoing some of the Russian lines (presented here in somewhat absurd exaggeration this morning by the lamented Campunt).

    There's also still some dissent on the near-pacifist left like me, who totally dislike Putin's invasion and see it as neo-imperialism, but who aren't comfortable with how we're escalating step by step in order to get an outright win. The Guardian piece from Mariupol (https://www.theguardian.com/world/2023/may/18/its-like-the-ussr-residents-on-life-in-mariupol-a-year-since-russian-occupation ) is entirely pro-Ukrainian in sentiment, but concedes that a large majority of the people now living there are either pro-Russian or neutral. Are we justified in encouraging Ukraine to fight until they've overrun places like this?

    There are several counter-arguments. First, that Ukraine is indivisible, and we must encourage them to fight for every inch of its soil. Second, that the invasion must be punished by total defeat. And finally, that most of the pro-Ukrainian part of the population has simply fled - I don't think there has been explicit ethnic cleansing, but that's been the effect.

    On the first point, I don't think Ukrainian nationalism with its ongoing sympathy for Bandera et al is so wonderful that we should be assisting its most militant claims - if a segment of the country doesn't want to be run by Kyiv, we should hesitate to help kill people until they're forced to accept it. On the second point, the invasion has obviously failed in its objectives at enormous cost, and Putin won't fool anyone if he claims that a ceasefire on current lines or worse is a victory. The history of enforcing total victory (cf. WW1) isn't always encouraging in the aftermath, and we want Putin's successor to be more sensible, not more revanchist. The third point is the strongest, but I wonder if it's worth indefinitely continuing the war to insist that people who used to live in X are able to return and displace anyone now living there.

    It's not a popular view, and I hesitate to even express it (not least because I don't want to side with idiot far-right trolls), but I'd argue that there should be limits to how committed to total victory at any cost that we want to be.
    I think you are slightly mistaken re WW1. One of the biggest issues was that many many Germans felt that they had not lost the war, but that the army had been stabbed in the back. Even at the armistice the German army was mostly outside of Germany, on foreign soil. Was Versailles and the other treaties too harsh? I think it’s arguably so, yet it’s a mistake to separate German behaviour in WW1 from that in WW2. The Germans were pretty awful in 1914-1918 too, and had imperial ambitions just as much as the Nazis.

    On your other points, any outcome after an invasion that rewards the aggression, even if only partially, cannot be right. Why should Ukraine not aim for total victory? They will not seek to invade Russia, but they should demand all Russian troops leave, reparations for the harms caused and lives taken and somehow find guarantees that Russia can never invade again. Anything less is ridiculous.
  • Options
    FF43FF43 Posts: 15,692

    FF43 said:

    TimS said:

    Pulpstar said:

    On the water, borrowing to pay dividends when you're a monopoly provider should have been completely illegal

    Indeed. But the prevailing view was that any regulation of this was bad, and New Labour was also complicit in this, as we saw in the artlcle below.

    Ofwat is also still basically toothless compared to any comparable regulator in any neighbouring, or major European countries. We need to get out of this very strange , and uniquely and inflexibly , ultra-laissex faire approach to all these kind of issues, before they get worse. It also what happens when "the market" is lazily and undifferentiatedly described as inherently wise for 30 years.
    There was quite a convincing debunking of the sewage story on Twitter this morning. By a Tory supporting brexiteer, but nobody has yet debunked the debunking so he may well have a point. One of those threads that contradicts my deeply held beliefs and changes my mind. Any experts out there able to tell me if he’s missing something?

    https://twitter.com/loftussteve/status/1659637753158545414?s=46
    Debunk it a bit. On the comparative data on water quality that he points to, the bad boys are England, Germany and the Netherlands. So not uniquely bad, but bad compared with Europe as a whole. The concern that I don't know if is the case and which he doesn't address, is that England could be slipping further behind comparatively, possibly in part because of Brexit.
    So the countries rated the worst are those most likely to be doing the most reporting ?
    No.

    The data comes from here I think

    https://www.eea.europa.eu/publications/state-of-water/

    In general water in England, Netherlands and Germany is in the.worst state. Water quality damage also comes from chemical run off from industrial and agricultural processes as well as sewerage leakage. The UK controls its chemical run off.quite well, which might imply England has a particular problem with sewerage.

  • Options
    HYUFDHYUFD Posts: 116,938
    stodge said:

    Afternoon all :)

    Once again I’m respectfully going to disagree with the key premise of this thread. I recognise for OGH and others the experience of 1992 casts a long shadow.

    The polling in England continues to show a 13-17% swing from Conservatives to Labour - more than enough to guarantee a substantial Labour majority. As for Reform, there’s no polling evidence to show they would switch en bloc to the Conservatives. A quarter would vote Tory if there were no Reform candidate but I think Tice is determined to put up a full slate.

    As for the 2019 Conservative vote, between 15-18% of that vote is going Labour if the polls are right. That’s not a small number given the size of the vote. One sixth of 45 equals seven and a half so that’s 7.5% moving directly with about the same peeling off to Reform, Greens and LDs.

    That’s where we are right now - Labour in the mid 40s, Conservatives just south of 30% and the LDs just north of 10%.

    That may be where we are in May or October next year - it may not. Historical evidence is mixed - it may already be game over for the Conservatives after what would be 14 years in Government.

    History rarely follows symmetrically - this may not be 1997 or 1992 but perhaps 1964 but again it’s more likely, as with the sentiments of a growing number of voters, to be none of the above.


    Based on the local elections England might be a hung parliament with the LDs having the balance of power, however Welsh and Scottish Labour MPs could give Labour a small UK wide majority as in 1964
  • Options
    FarooqFarooq Posts: 10,775

    Nigelb said:

    TimS said:

    That one certainly made the most of his or her half hour or so of trolling. Quite an output.

    It is actually interesting to get a look in on the lines being taken by Moscow. I assume most efforts are directed at US social media hence the right wing themes and homophobia, as well as the mention of how much the support is costing (which is a very US isolationist style argument)...

    The strategy (such as it is) seems to be twofold.
    Get some sort of result in Bakhmut that can be presented as a win, and then attempt to stalemate and hold out for a Trump presidency.

    The culture war stuff is definitely targeted at the US right - several of whose leaders are directly echoing some of the Russian lines (presented here in somewhat absurd exaggeration this morning by the lamented Campunt).

    There's also still some dissent on the near-pacifist left like me, who totally dislike Putin's invasion and see it as neo-imperialism, but who aren't comfortable with how we're escalating step by step in order to get an outright win. The Guardian piece from Mariupol (https://www.theguardian.com/world/2023/may/18/its-like-the-ussr-residents-on-life-in-mariupol-a-year-since-russian-occupation ) is entirely pro-Ukrainian in sentiment, but concedes that a large majority of the people now living there are either pro-Russian or neutral. Are we justified in encouraging Ukraine to fight until they've overrun places like this?

    There are several counter-arguments. First, that Ukraine is indivisible, and we must encourage them to fight for every inch of its soil. Second, that the invasion must be punished by total defeat. And finally, that most of the pro-Ukrainian part of the population has simply fled - I don't think there has been explicit ethnic cleansing, but that's been the effect.

    On the first point, I don't think Ukrainian nationalism with its ongoing sympathy for Bandera et al is so wonderful that we should be assisting its most militant claims - if a segment of the country doesn't want to be run by Kyiv, we should hesitate to help kill people until they're forced to accept it. On the second point, the invasion has obviously failed in its objectives at enormous cost, and Putin won't fool anyone if he claims that a ceasefire on current lines or worse is a victory. The history of enforcing total victory (cf. WW1) isn't always encouraging in the aftermath, and we want Putin's successor to be more sensible, not more revanchist. The third point is the strongest, but I wonder if it's worth indefinitely continuing the war to insist that people who used to live in X are able to return and displace anyone now living there.

    It's not a popular view, and I hesitate to even express it (not least because I don't want to side with idiot far-right trolls), but I'd argue that there should be limits to how committed to total victory at any cost that we want to be.
    I sympathise with where you're coming from, but I think you are completely wrong.
    Not only that, I think some of the terms you're using are really questionable. "Overrun", for example. "Retaken" would be a neutral word here, since this is Ukrainian territory that was invaded by Russia.

    Invasions should be punished by total defeat. The best deterrence to aggression is the idea that it won't profit you. If you allow Russia to take by force X and then it gets to keep half of that, what's the lesson to the rest of the world? What then, the prospects of peace in the future?

    Another point is the stability of the international system. We have an organising principle of sovereignty which is inviolable except in terms of uncoerced agreement or in the case of egregious abuses. The latter should be tested in forums like the United Nations which, whilst they could be much better than they currently are, are still better than unilaterally deciding that these people are "ours" to protect even when they live there.
    If we want to thrown away that organising principle, we have to have a sense of what system would be better. Might is Right ain't an option, that way lies paleo-imperialism and wars of extermination. So without proposing a better system, we'd better be ready to defend this one.

    Some of your points are contradictory. You can't have an indefinite war and an aftermath.

    You can't make comparisons with WW1 when there's very little to no appetite for occupying Russia and destroying its economy. Most people who want Russia to lose want the scope of that defeat to mean their removal from all Ukrainian territory. Not to take more land than was Ukraine's 10 years ago. Not to hobble Russia past the time of hostilities.

    We mustn't get stuck in the rut of assuming the worst from Western motives. Even in the light of Iraq, which is commonly seen as aggressive misadventure, our governments aren't all bad. Ours is certainly are much better than Russia's government. We should judge actions and episodes separately and be ready to say that there we were wrong, here we are right.
  • Options
    turbotubbsturbotubbs Posts: 15,116

    If one is rational, there are some things that are better privatised and other things not better privatised.

    Railways and water strike me as too things that should never have been privatised - and the end results have been at best pointless, at worst catastrophic for the environment and the economy.

    One should be able to make these points without being called a communist. Nationalisation of these things is one of the least ideological things we could do, it clearly makes sense.

    The issue with both railways and water is that there is no competition at the point of service. Most of the time if you want to get a train from A to B there is only one option. Competition only occurs at the time of tendering for contracts, which then need to be enforced by the regulator.
    It’s the same for water. I cannot choose whose water I recieve out of my tap.
    So yes, both seem poor example for privatisation.
  • Options
    Richard_TyndallRichard_Tyndall Posts: 30,918
    FF43 said:

    FF43 said:

    TimS said:

    Pulpstar said:

    On the water, borrowing to pay dividends when you're a monopoly provider should have been completely illegal

    Indeed. But the prevailing view was that any regulation of this was bad, and New Labour was also complicit in this, as we saw in the artlcle below.

    Ofwat is also still basically toothless compared to any comparable regulator in any neighbouring, or major European countries. We need to get out of this very strange , and uniquely and inflexibly , ultra-laissex faire approach to all these kind of issues, before they get worse. It also what happens when "the market" is lazily and undifferentiatedly described as inherently wise for 30 years.
    There was quite a convincing debunking of the sewage story on Twitter this morning. By a Tory supporting brexiteer, but nobody has yet debunked the debunking so he may well have a point. One of those threads that contradicts my deeply held beliefs and changes my mind. Any experts out there able to tell me if he’s missing something?

    https://twitter.com/loftussteve/status/1659637753158545414?s=46
    Debunk it a bit. On the comparative data on water quality that he points to, the bad boys are England, Germany and the Netherlands. So not uniquely bad, but bad compared with Europe as a whole. The concern that I don't know if is the case and which he doesn't address, is that England could be slipping further behind comparatively, possibly in part because of Brexit.
    So the countries rated the worst are those most likely to be doing the most reporting ?
    No.

    The data comes from here I think

    https://www.eea.europa.eu/publications/state-of-water/

    In general water in England, Netherlands and Germany is in the.worst state. Water quality damage also comes from chemical run off from industrial and agricultural processes as well as sewerage leakage. The UK controls its chemical run off.quite well, which might imply England has a particular problem with sewerage.

    We certainly don't control our nitrate pollution from agriculture well at all.
  • Options
    FarooqFarooq Posts: 10,775

    Campunt said:

    I think many people who are gay in the uk are not really gay but just want to be fashionable.

    When I was growing up, if you wanted to be fashionable people would have assumed you were gay anyway. This was before David Beckham wore a sarong and the decline of the West really began.
    Can't believe I missed this guy BTW.
    Now, of course, it's fashionable to be seen to be vociferously opposed to homophobia and to sneer at patriotism as a bit parochial, which of course sums up @Farooq all over.

    Fortunately, we both oppose Russia's authoritarianism despite our differences.
    I hope you don't think my opposition to homophobia is a case of being fashionable. It's actually deeply personal and a core belief for me.
  • Options
    NigelbNigelb Posts: 62,352

    Nigelb said:

    TimS said:

    That one certainly made the most of his or her half hour or so of trolling. Quite an output.

    It is actually interesting to get a look in on the lines being taken by Moscow. I assume most efforts are directed at US social media hence the right wing themes and homophobia, as well as the mention of how much the support is costing (which is a very US isolationist style argument)...

    The strategy (such as it is) seems to be twofold.
    Get some sort of result in Bakhmut that can be presented as a win, and then attempt to stalemate and hold out for a Trump presidency.

    The culture war stuff is definitely targeted at the US right - several of whose leaders are directly echoing some of the Russian lines (presented here in somewhat absurd exaggeration this morning by the lamented Campunt).

    There's also still some dissent on the near-pacifist left like me, who totally dislike Putin's invasion and see it as neo-imperialism, but who aren't comfortable with how we're escalating step by step in order to get an outright win. The Guardian piece from Mariupol (https://www.theguardian.com/world/2023/may/18/its-like-the-ussr-residents-on-life-in-mariupol-a-year-since-russian-occupation ) is entirely pro-Ukrainian in sentiment, but concedes that a large majority of the people now living there are either pro-Russian or neutral. Are we justified in encouraging Ukraine to fight until they've overrun places like this?

    There are several counter-arguments. First, that Ukraine is indivisible, and we must encourage them to fight for every inch of its soil. Second, that the invasion must be punished by total defeat. And finally, that most of the pro-Ukrainian part of the population has simply fled - I don't think there has been explicit ethnic cleansing, but that's been the effect.

    On the first point, I don't think Ukrainian nationalism with its ongoing sympathy for Bandera et al is so wonderful that we should be assisting its most militant claims - if a segment of the country doesn't want to be run by Kyiv, we should hesitate to help kill people until they're forced to accept it. On the second point, the invasion has obviously failed in its objectives at enormous cost, and Putin won't fool anyone if he claims that a ceasefire on current lines or worse is a victory. The history of enforcing total victory (cf. WW1) isn't always encouraging in the aftermath, and we want Putin's successor to be more sensible, not more revanchist. The third point is the strongest, but I wonder if it's worth indefinitely continuing the war to insist that people who used to live in X are able to return and displace anyone now living there.

    It's not a popular view, and I hesitate to even express it (not least because I don't want to side with idiot far-right trolls), but I'd argue that there should be limits to how committed to total victory at any cost that we want to be.
    Some fair(ish) points there, Nick.

    Except that we're a very long way off that debate, I think. Without some form of permanent defeat for the invasion (which is not the same as 'total defeat'), it will happen again.

    And it's very unclear to me that the Ukraine government (or any likely democratic successor) is interested in visiting the sort of "kill people until they accept it" treatment on the populace of eastern Ukraine that the Russian puppet administrations have certainly visited on the parts of the populace who didn't want to be part of Russia.

    Arriving at any prospective postwar settlement is going to be a complicated process - but absolutely necessary to any settlement is a secure Ukraine. Freezing the current lines would certainly not provide for that.

  • Options
    MexicanpeteMexicanpete Posts: 25,043
    ...

    Is there a betting market on when Vladimir Putin will come out of the closet?

    He’s so deep in the closet he’s having adventures in Narnia.




    What is your name?

    Don't tell him Pike!
  • Options
    WhisperingOracleWhisperingOracle Posts: 8,503
    edited May 2023

    If one is rational, there are some things that are better privatised and other things not better privatised.

    Railways and water strike me as too things that should never have been privatised - and the end results have been at best pointless, at worst catastrophic for the environment and the economy.

    One should be able to make these points without being called a communist. Nationalisation of these things is one of the least ideological things we could do, it clearly makes sense.

    The issue with both railways and water is that there is no competition at the point of service. Most of the time if you want to get a train from A to B there is only one option. Competition only occurs at the time of tendering for contracts, which then need to be enforced by the regulator.
    It’s the same for water. I cannot choose whose water I recieve out of my tap.
    So yes, both seem poor example for privatisation.
    The thinking does show a lot, though ; even a situation of no competition, which, together with regulation, is what actually allows markets to function, shareholder and private ownership, in the form of extracting money from the public to go to private equity, is always preferable. Stronger or reasonable regulation is also apparently against this "market" principle ; it sullies its purity.

    The origin of this is a mysterious idea of the "market" that extends to any private interests coming before public ones, and is part of why Britain and the US are where they are. Mystifying ideology.
  • Options
    MexicanpeteMexicanpete Posts: 25,043
    HYUFD said:

    stodge said:

    Afternoon all :)

    Once again I’m respectfully going to disagree with the key premise of this thread. I recognise for OGH and others the experience of 1992 casts a long shadow.

    The polling in England continues to show a 13-17% swing from Conservatives to Labour - more than enough to guarantee a substantial Labour majority. As for Reform, there’s no polling evidence to show they would switch en bloc to the Conservatives. A quarter would vote Tory if there were no Reform candidate but I think Tice is determined to put up a full slate.

    As for the 2019 Conservative vote, between 15-18% of that vote is going Labour if the polls are right. That’s not a small number given the size of the vote. One sixth of 45 equals seven and a half so that’s 7.5% moving directly with about the same peeling off to Reform, Greens and LDs.

    That’s where we are right now - Labour in the mid 40s, Conservatives just south of 30% and the LDs just north of 10%.

    That may be where we are in May or October next year - it may not. Historical evidence is mixed - it may already be game over for the Conservatives after what would be 14 years in Government.

    History rarely follows symmetrically - this may not be 1997 or 1992 but perhaps 1964 but again it’s more likely, as with the sentiments of a growing number of voters, to be none of the above.


    Based on the local elections England might be a hung parliament with the LDs having the balance of power, however Welsh and Scottish Labour MPs could give Labour a small UK wide majority as in 1964
    ...and then as Guto Harri suggests, in this order. Sunak resigns, Johnson becomes LOTO, Starmer falls to a VONC, Johnson PM, some die!
  • Options
    Richard_TyndallRichard_Tyndall Posts: 30,918

    If one is rational, there are some things that are better privatised and other things not better privatised.

    Railways and water strike me as too things that should never have been privatised - and the end results have been at best pointless, at worst catastrophic for the environment and the economy.

    One should be able to make these points without being called a communist. Nationalisation of these things is one of the least ideological things we could do, it clearly makes sense.

    Railways could (and should) be privatised but not in the way it was done. The biggest problem with railways is that they were subject to the separation of infrastructure and service. This meant each could blame the other for failings and ultimately no one is held responsible.

    Also worth noting that the biggest source of issues on the railways is still Network Rail - which is in public not private hands.

    As always though, the issue is not privatisation per se but the regulation that is attached to it. You can run pulic services very well in the private sector if you have strict regulation, high minimum standards for investment and tight controls on maximum allowable profit. It happens all across Europe in other sectors including the holy cow of health provision and it could work here if we had politicians who understood and had the desire to make private companies work for the public good rather than just laisse faire.
  • Options
    TresTres Posts: 2,208

    Nigelb said:

    TimS said:

    That one certainly made the most of his or her half hour or so of trolling. Quite an output.

    It is actually interesting to get a look in on the lines being taken by Moscow. I assume most efforts are directed at US social media hence the right wing themes and homophobia, as well as the mention of how much the support is costing (which is a very US isolationist style argument)...

    The strategy (such as it is) seems to be twofold.
    Get some sort of result in Bakhmut that can be presented as a win, and then attempt to stalemate and hold out for a Trump presidency.

    The culture war stuff is definitely targeted at the US right - several of whose leaders are directly echoing some of the Russian lines (presented here in somewhat absurd exaggeration this morning by the lamented Campunt).

    There's also still some dissent on the near-pacifist left like me, who totally dislike Putin's invasion and see it as neo-imperialism, but who aren't comfortable with how we're escalating step by step in order to get an outright win. The Guardian piece from Mariupol (https://www.theguardian.com/world/2023/may/18/its-like-the-ussr-residents-on-life-in-mariupol-a-year-since-russian-occupation ) is entirely pro-Ukrainian in sentiment, but concedes that a large majority of the people now living there are either pro-Russian or neutral. Are we justified in encouraging Ukraine to fight until they've overrun places like this?

    There are several counter-arguments. First, that Ukraine is indivisible, and we must encourage them to fight for every inch of its soil. Second, that the invasion must be punished by total defeat. And finally, that most of the pro-Ukrainian part of the population has simply fled - I don't think there has been explicit ethnic cleansing, but that's been the effect.

    On the first point, I don't think Ukrainian nationalism with its ongoing sympathy for Bandera et al is so wonderful that we should be assisting its most militant claims - if a segment of the country doesn't want to be run by Kyiv, we should hesitate to help kill people until they're forced to accept it. On the second point, the invasion has obviously failed in its objectives at enormous cost, and Putin won't fool anyone if he claims that a ceasefire on current lines or worse is a victory. The history of enforcing total victory (cf. WW1) isn't always encouraging in the aftermath, and we want Putin's successor to be more sensible, not more revanchist. The third point is the strongest, but I wonder if it's worth indefinitely continuing the war to insist that people who used to live in X are able to return and displace anyone now living there.

    It's not a popular view, and I hesitate to even express it (not least because I don't want to side with idiot far-right trolls), but I'd argue that there should be limits to how committed to total victory at any cost that we want to be.
    I think you are slightly mistaken re WW1. One of the biggest issues was that many many Germans felt that they had not lost the war, but that the army had been stabbed in the back. Even at the armistice the German army was mostly outside of Germany, on foreign soil. Was Versailles and the other treaties too harsh? I think it’s arguably so, yet it’s a mistake to separate German behaviour in WW1 from that in WW2. The Germans were pretty awful in 1914-1918 too, and had imperial ambitions just as much as the Nazis.

    On your other points, any outcome after an invasion that rewards the aggression, even if only partially, cannot be right. Why should Ukraine not aim for total victory? They will not seek to invade Russia, but they should demand all Russian troops leave, reparations for the harms caused and lives taken and somehow find guarantees that Russia can never invade again. Anything less is ridiculous.
    Problem was the German Empire was basically Prussia, and Prussia orthodoxy meant the monarch was in control of the armed forces. So the Germans were too busy arranging for the Kaiser to bugger off than to negotiate a better post war outcome.
  • Options
    MightyAlexMightyAlex Posts: 1,440

    If one is rational, there are some things that are better privatised and other things not better privatised.

    Railways and water strike me as too things that should never have been privatised - and the end results have been at best pointless, at worst catastrophic for the environment and the economy.

    One should be able to make these points without being called a communist. Nationalisation of these things is one of the least ideological things we could do, it clearly makes sense.

    Railways could (and should) be privatised but not in the way it was done. The biggest problem with railways is that they were subject to the separation of infrastructure and service. This meant each could blame the other for failings and ultimately no one is held responsible.

    Also worth noting that the biggest source of issues on the railways is still Network Rail - which is in public not private hands.

    As always though, the issue is not privatisation per se but the regulation that is attached to it. You can run pulic services very well in the private sector if you have strict regulation, high minimum standards for investment and tight controls on maximum allowable profit. It happens all across Europe in other sectors including the holy cow of health provision and it could work here if we had politicians who understood and had the desire to make private companies work for the public good rather than just laisse faire.
    Strict regulation will incur a cost though. does the benefit of privatisation really overcome the cost of the regulation body?
  • Options
    NickPalmerNickPalmer Posts: 21,319
    Chris said:

    Nigelb said:

    TimS said:

    That one certainly made the most of his or her half hour or so of trolling. Quite an output.

    It is actually interesting to get a look in on the lines being taken by Moscow. I assume most efforts are directed at US social media hence the right wing themes and homophobia, as well as the mention of how much the support is costing (which is a very US isolationist style argument)...

    The strategy (such as it is) seems to be twofold.
    Get some sort of result in Bakhmut that can be presented as a win, and then attempt to stalemate and hold out for a Trump presidency.

    The culture war stuff is definitely targeted at the US right - several of whose leaders are directly echoing some of the Russian lines (presented here in somewhat absurd exaggeration this morning by the lamented Campunt).

    There's also still some dissent on the near-pacifist left like me, who totally dislike Putin's invasion and see it as neo-imperialism, but who aren't comfortable with how we're escalating step by step in order to get an outright win. The Guardian piece from Mariupol (https://www.theguardian.com/world/2023/may/18/its-like-the-ussr-residents-on-life-in-mariupol-a-year-since-russian-occupation ) is entirely pro-Ukrainian in sentiment, but concedes that a large majority of the people now living there are either pro-Russian or neutral. Are we justified in encouraging Ukraine to fight until they've overrun places like this?

    There are several counter-arguments. First, that Ukraine is indivisible, and we must encourage them to fight for every inch of its soil. Second, that the invasion must be punished by total defeat. And finally, that most of the pro-Ukrainian part of the population has simply fled - I don't think there has been explicit ethnic cleansing, but that's been the effect.

    On the first point, I don't think Ukrainian nationalism with its ongoing sympathy for Bandera et al is so wonderful that we should be assisting its most militant claims - if a segment of the country doesn't want to be run by Kyiv, we should hesitate to help kill people until they're forced to accept it. On the second point, the invasion has obviously failed in its objectives at enormous cost, and Putin won't fool anyone if he claims that a ceasefire on current lines or worse is a victory. The history of enforcing total victory (cf. WW1) isn't always encouraging in the aftermath, and we want Putin's successor to be more sensible, not more revanchist. The third point is the strongest, but I wonder if it's worth indefinitely continuing the war to insist that people who used to live in X are able to return and displace anyone now living there.

    It's not a popular view, and I hesitate to even express it (not least because I don't want to side with idiot far-right trolls), but I'd argue that there should be limits to how committed to total victory at any cost that we want to be.
    Probably you have to decide whether you don't want to support Ukraine because on the one hand you're a "near-pacifist" so you don't think people should defend themselves, or on the other you think anti-Kiev minorities within Ukraine have a valid case. It doesn't help much to muddle those two things together.
    The latter, up to a point. But I do want to support Ukraine - I've helped organise and spoke at a public rally after the invasion to urge support. If there was the slightest sign that the Russians were going to make a breakthrough, we should certainly increase support for the defence. I'm just reluctant to encourage them to push it to total victory at any cost.

    But I'll leave it there - I know it's a minority view, and I'm not particularly sure of it myself.
  • Options
    Sean_FSean_F Posts: 35,789
    How many minutes before the ban hammer strikes.
    HYUFD said:

    Campunt said:

    After the hardest fighting in Europe since WW2 Wagner Group stands victorious. A highly trained enemy with hundreds of billions of dollars and the best mercenaries the NATO world can offer. Blood! Honor! Motherland! Courage! still wins in the end. Be True to Yourself!

    https://twitter.com/JamesPorrazzo/status/1659672458482294787?s=20

    Thanks Vlad but Kyiv is still in Zelensky's hands
    Wagner is the modern equivalent of Sturmbrigade Dilrlewanger, and about as effective, once it starts fighting soldiers, rather than civilians.
  • Options
    Sean_FSean_F Posts: 35,789

    Nigelb said:

    TimS said:

    That one certainly made the most of his or her half hour or so of trolling. Quite an output.

    It is actually interesting to get a look in on the lines being taken by Moscow. I assume most efforts are directed at US social media hence the right wing themes and homophobia, as well as the mention of how much the support is costing (which is a very US isolationist style argument)...

    The strategy (such as it is) seems to be twofold.
    Get some sort of result in Bakhmut that can be presented as a win, and then attempt to stalemate and hold out for a Trump presidency.

    The culture war stuff is definitely targeted at the US right - several of whose leaders are directly echoing some of the Russian lines (presented here in somewhat absurd exaggeration this morning by the lamented Campunt).

    There's also still some dissent on the near-pacifist left like me, who totally dislike Putin's invasion and see it as neo-imperialism, but who aren't comfortable with how we're escalating step by step in order to get an outright win. The Guardian piece from Mariupol (https://www.theguardian.com/world/2023/may/18/its-like-the-ussr-residents-on-life-in-mariupol-a-year-since-russian-occupation ) is entirely pro-Ukrainian in sentiment, but concedes that a large majority of the people now living there are either pro-Russian or neutral. Are we justified in encouraging Ukraine to fight until they've overrun places like this?

    There are several counter-arguments. First, that Ukraine is indivisible, and we must encourage them to fight for every inch of its soil. Second, that the invasion must be punished by total defeat. And finally, that most of the pro-Ukrainian part of the population has simply fled - I don't think there has been explicit ethnic cleansing, but that's been the effect.

    On the first point, I don't think Ukrainian nationalism with its ongoing sympathy for Bandera et al is so wonderful that we should be assisting its most militant claims - if a segment of the country doesn't want to be run by Kyiv, we should hesitate to help kill people until they're forced to accept it. On the second point, the invasion has obviously failed in its objectives at enormous cost, and Putin won't fool anyone if he claims that a ceasefire on current lines or worse is a victory. The history of enforcing total victory (cf. WW1) isn't always encouraging in the aftermath, and we want Putin's successor to be more sensible, not more revanchist. The third point is the strongest, but I wonder if it's worth indefinitely continuing the war to insist that people who used to live in X are able to return and displace anyone now living there.

    It's not a popular view, and I hesitate to even express it (not least because I don't want to side with idiot far-right trolls), but I'd argue that there should be limits to how committed to total victory at any cost that we want to be.
    One can have an argument over Crimea, but as for the rest, I think it’s reasonable for Ukraine to restore its boundaries.
  • Options
    StuartinromfordStuartinromford Posts: 14,360

    If one is rational, there are some things that are better privatised and other things not better privatised.

    Railways and water strike me as too things that should never have been privatised - and the end results have been at best pointless, at worst catastrophic for the environment and the economy.

    One should be able to make these points without being called a communist. Nationalisation of these things is one of the least ideological things we could do, it clearly makes sense.

    Railways could (and should) be privatised but not in the way it was done. The biggest problem with railways is that they were subject to the separation of infrastructure and service. This meant each could blame the other for failings and ultimately no one is held responsible.

    Also worth noting that the biggest source of issues on the railways is still Network Rail - which is in public not private hands.

    As always though, the issue is not privatisation per se but the regulation that is attached to it. You can run pulic services very well in the private sector if you have strict regulation, high minimum standards for investment and tight controls on maximum allowable profit. It happens all across Europe in other sectors including the holy cow of health provision and it could work here if we had politicians who understood and had the desire to make private companies work for the public good rather than just laisse faire.
    The theory was that private companies won't want to offer a rubbish service because they would lose custom and that would hit them in the long term.

    Unfortunately it hasn't worked like that- partly because customers haven't had much of a choice, but also because owners have taken an attitude of "extract profits now for in the long term we all die."

    Both of which are perfectly rational, so you need to regulate the bejesus out if these firms, and that hasn't really happened.
  • Options
    FarooqFarooq Posts: 10,775

    If one is rational, there are some things that are better privatised and other things not better privatised.

    Railways and water strike me as too things that should never have been privatised - and the end results have been at best pointless, at worst catastrophic for the environment and the economy.

    One should be able to make these points without being called a communist. Nationalisation of these things is one of the least ideological things we could do, it clearly makes sense.

    Railways could (and should) be privatised but not in the way it was done. The biggest problem with railways is that they were subject to the separation of infrastructure and service. This meant each could blame the other for failings and ultimately no one is held responsible.

    Also worth noting that the biggest source of issues on the railways is still Network Rail - which is in public not private hands.

    As always though, the issue is not privatisation per se but the regulation that is attached to it. You can run pulic services very well in the private sector if you have strict regulation, high minimum standards for investment and tight controls on maximum allowable profit. It happens all across Europe in other sectors including the holy cow of health provision and it could work here if we had politicians who understood and had the desire to make private companies work for the public good rather than just laisse faire.
    Very good post, but I don't know if I agree with all the points (pun not intended).
    People sometimes forget what a total shitshow Railtrack was. It really didn't work and I don't think it's clear that having infra under private ownership is better.
    Having it integrated with the service seems to make some sense to me, since it's impossible for the service to infrastructure market to function anything like a free market; it's a natural monopoly even more than the customer to service market is.

    It seems to me that services should be privately owned, infrastructure should be publicly owned, and that the two should exist in the same ownership structures. That's a contradiction, meaning there has to be a compromise somewhere. I come down on the "renationalise" side but it's a difficult choice.
  • Options
    WhisperingOracleWhisperingOracle Posts: 8,503
    edited May 2023

    If one is rational, there are some things that are better privatised and other things not better privatised.

    Railways and water strike me as too things that should never have been privatised - and the end results have been at best pointless, at worst catastrophic for the environment and the economy.

    One should be able to make these points without being called a communist. Nationalisation of these things is one of the least ideological things we could do, it clearly makes sense.

    Railways could (and should) be privatised but not in the way it was done. The biggest problem with railways is that they were subject to the separation of infrastructure and service. This meant each could blame the other for failings and ultimately no one is held responsible.

    Also worth noting that the biggest source of issues on the railways is still Network Rail - which is in public not private hands.

    As always though, the issue is not privatisation per se but the regulation that is attached to it. You can run pulic services very well in the private sector if you have strict regulation, high minimum standards for investment and tight controls on maximum allowable profit. It happens all across Europe in other sectors including the holy cow of health provision and it could work here if we had politicians who understood and had the desire to make private companies work for the public good rather than just laisse faire.
    I certainly agree we have to ditch this ultra-laissez faire approach, even if all these renationalisations can't be done.

    This includes nor only the idiotic "self-regulation" that you've mentioned, but also the ludicrous refusal to contemplate any form of long-term industrial policy, to the extent that we're now out on our own among our neighbours, in crucial national-strategic issues like not even being in control of our own nuclear power.
  • Options
    mwadamsmwadams Posts: 3,136

    Campunt said:

    Incredible losses": the West will not be able to make up for the losses of the Ukrainian army Former adviser to the head of the Pentagon, Douglas McGregor, said that since the beginning of the Russian special operation, the Armed Forces of Ukraine have lost about 10,000 armored vehicles. Such losses are incredible and cannot be replenished.

    https://twitter.com/djuric_zlatko/status/1658009191879933955?s=20

    I'll actually feed the troll in this case. 10,000 seems like an *incredible* amount, and it is certainly a grand claim. However, if we look back, we can see claims that Ukraine 'lost' 2,500 armoured vehicles in two years in the Donbass. Even with the larger scale of this conflict, 10,000 seems a bit of a stretch for the defenders. (1). A lot will depend on the classification of 'armoured vehicle'.

    However, Douglas MacGregor has apparently been making lots of claims during this war that have not exactly panned out. E.g, from three days after the war started:

    "The battle in eastern Ukraine is really almost over," and predicted "If [Ukraine] don't surrender in the next 24 hours, I suspect Russia will ultimately annihilate them." ".

    And a few days later:
    " "The first five days Russian forces I think frankly were too gentle. They've now corrected that. So, I would say another 10 days this should be completely over... I think the most heroic thing he could do right now is come to terms with reality. Neutralize Ukraine."

    He seems to be rather optimistically pro-Russian; but his previous quotes and predictions appear to be far off-base. I'd class him as yet another ex-military bod desperately trying to remain relevant.

    (1): https://www.rferl.org/a/ukraine-armored-vehicles-significantly-damaged-2-years-of-donbas-conflict/30429979.html
    (2): https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Douglas_Macgregor
    You have to ask who is wining and dining him.
  • Options
    StuartinromfordStuartinromford Posts: 14,360

    If one is rational, there are some things that are better privatised and other things not better privatised.

    Railways and water strike me as too things that should never have been privatised - and the end results have been at best pointless, at worst catastrophic for the environment and the economy.

    One should be able to make these points without being called a communist. Nationalisation of these things is one of the least ideological things we could do, it clearly makes sense.

    Railways could (and should) be privatised but not in the way it was done. The biggest problem with railways is that they were subject to the separation of infrastructure and service. This meant each could blame the other for failings and ultimately no one is held responsible.

    Also worth noting that the biggest source of issues on the railways is still Network Rail - which is in public not private hands.

    As always though, the issue is not privatisation per se but the regulation that is attached to it. You can run pulic services very well in the private sector if you have strict regulation, high minimum standards for investment and tight controls on maximum allowable profit. It happens all across Europe in other sectors including the holy cow of health provision and it could work here if we had politicians who understood and had the desire to make private companies work for the public good rather than just laisse faire.
    Strict regulation will incur a cost though. does the benefit of privatisation really overcome the cost of the regulation body?
    Potentially- and there's a decent moral case that government can't be trusted to mark its own homework. Separating provision and regulation is good.

    But it needs a business culture that's cool with a reliable five percent return forever, and the UK is a bit too keen on get rich quick. I don't know how we change that.
  • Options
    Casino_RoyaleCasino_Royale Posts: 55,267
    Sean_F said:

    How many minutes before the ban hammer strikes.

    HYUFD said:

    Campunt said:

    After the hardest fighting in Europe since WW2 Wagner Group stands victorious. A highly trained enemy with hundreds of billions of dollars and the best mercenaries the NATO world can offer. Blood! Honor! Motherland! Courage! still wins in the end. Be True to Yourself!

    https://twitter.com/JamesPorrazzo/status/1659672458482294787?s=20

    Thanks Vlad but Kyiv is still in Zelensky's hands
    Wagner is the modern equivalent of Sturmbrigade Dilrlewanger, and about as effective, once it starts fighting soldiers, rather than civilians.

    "Presumably, Steiner will bring it all under control.."
  • Options
    CorrectHorseBatCorrectHorseBat Posts: 1,761
    If market ideology was correct, we'd have the best public services in the world.

    The fact we don't suggests that privatisation is not the solution. Perhaps it's running them properly and not into the ground as the Tories like to do?
  • Options
    Casino_RoyaleCasino_Royale Posts: 55,267
    Sean_F said:

    Nigelb said:

    TimS said:

    That one certainly made the most of his or her half hour or so of trolling. Quite an output.

    It is actually interesting to get a look in on the lines being taken by Moscow. I assume most efforts are directed at US social media hence the right wing themes and homophobia, as well as the mention of how much the support is costing (which is a very US isolationist style argument)...

    The strategy (such as it is) seems to be twofold.
    Get some sort of result in Bakhmut that can be presented as a win, and then attempt to stalemate and hold out for a Trump presidency.

    The culture war stuff is definitely targeted at the US right - several of whose leaders are directly echoing some of the Russian lines (presented here in somewhat absurd exaggeration this morning by the lamented Campunt).

    There's also still some dissent on the near-pacifist left like me, who totally dislike Putin's invasion and see it as neo-imperialism, but who aren't comfortable with how we're escalating step by step in order to get an outright win. The Guardian piece from Mariupol (https://www.theguardian.com/world/2023/may/18/its-like-the-ussr-residents-on-life-in-mariupol-a-year-since-russian-occupation ) is entirely pro-Ukrainian in sentiment, but concedes that a large majority of the people now living there are either pro-Russian or neutral. Are we justified in encouraging Ukraine to fight until they've overrun places like this?

    There are several counter-arguments. First, that Ukraine is indivisible, and we must encourage them to fight for every inch of its soil. Second, that the invasion must be punished by total defeat. And finally, that most of the pro-Ukrainian part of the population has simply fled - I don't think there has been explicit ethnic cleansing, but that's been the effect.

    On the first point, I don't think Ukrainian nationalism with its ongoing sympathy for Bandera et al is so wonderful that we should be assisting its most militant claims - if a segment of the country doesn't want to be run by Kyiv, we should hesitate to help kill people until they're forced to accept it. On the second point, the invasion has obviously failed in its objectives at enormous cost, and Putin won't fool anyone if he claims that a ceasefire on current lines or worse is a victory. The history of enforcing total victory (cf. WW1) isn't always encouraging in the aftermath, and we want Putin's successor to be more sensible, not more revanchist. The third point is the strongest, but I wonder if it's worth indefinitely continuing the war to insist that people who used to live in X are able to return and displace anyone now living there.

    It's not a popular view, and I hesitate to even express it (not least because I don't want to side with idiot far-right trolls), but I'd argue that there should be limits to how committed to total victory at any cost that we want to be.
    One can have an argument over Crimea, but as for the rest, I think it’s reasonable for Ukraine to restore its boundaries.
    In an ideal world, they'd fuck off out of Crimea too.
  • Options
    mwadamsmwadams Posts: 3,136
    Sean_F said:

    Nigelb said:

    TimS said:

    That one certainly made the most of his or her half hour or so of trolling. Quite an output.

    It is actually interesting to get a look in on the lines being taken by Moscow. I assume most efforts are directed at US social media hence the right wing themes and homophobia, as well as the mention of how much the support is costing (which is a very US isolationist style argument)...

    The strategy (such as it is) seems to be twofold.
    Get some sort of result in Bakhmut that can be presented as a win, and then attempt to stalemate and hold out for a Trump presidency.

    The culture war stuff is definitely targeted at the US right - several of whose leaders are directly echoing some of the Russian lines (presented here in somewhat absurd exaggeration this morning by the lamented Campunt).

    There's also still some dissent on the near-pacifist left like me, who totally dislike Putin's invasion and see it as neo-imperialism, but who aren't comfortable with how we're escalating step by step in order to get an outright win. The Guardian piece from Mariupol (https://www.theguardian.com/world/2023/may/18/its-like-the-ussr-residents-on-life-in-mariupol-a-year-since-russian-occupation ) is entirely pro-Ukrainian in sentiment, but concedes that a large majority of the people now living there are either pro-Russian or neutral. Are we justified in encouraging Ukraine to fight until they've overrun places like this?

    There are several counter-arguments. First, that Ukraine is indivisible, and we must encourage them to fight for every inch of its soil. Second, that the invasion must be punished by total defeat. And finally, that most of the pro-Ukrainian part of the population has simply fled - I don't think there has been explicit ethnic cleansing, but that's been the effect.

    On the first point, I don't think Ukrainian nationalism with its ongoing sympathy for Bandera et al is so wonderful that we should be assisting its most militant claims - if a segment of the country doesn't want to be run by Kyiv, we should hesitate to help kill people until they're forced to accept it. On the second point, the invasion has obviously failed in its objectives at enormous cost, and Putin won't fool anyone if he claims that a ceasefire on current lines or worse is a victory. The history of enforcing total victory (cf. WW1) isn't always encouraging in the aftermath, and we want Putin's successor to be more sensible, not more revanchist. The third point is the strongest, but I wonder if it's worth indefinitely continuing the war to insist that people who used to live in X are able to return and displace anyone now living there.

    It's not a popular view, and I hesitate to even express it (not least because I don't want to side with idiot far-right trolls), but I'd argue that there should be limits to how committed to total victory at any cost that we want to be.
    One can have an argument over Crimea, but as for the rest, I think it’s reasonable for Ukraine to restore its boundaries.
    If I used military force to bus all the Spanish out of the Costa del Sol and just left the English ex-pats it wouldn't make it legitimately British - unless we want a return to colonial norms.

    I respect a personal pacifist position, but I'm with Bill Hartnell when it comes to Peace Loving Thals v. Daleks. Collectively, you have to stand up to the aggressor or it only gets worse.
  • Options
    kinabalukinabalu Posts: 39,090
    TimS said:

    That one certainly made the most of his or her half hour or so of trolling. Quite an output.

    It is actually interesting to get a look in on the lines being taken by Moscow. I assume most efforts are directed at US social media hence the right wing themes and homophobia, as well as the mention of how much the support is costing (which is a very US isolationist style argument).

    The focus seems to be on demoralising people and appealing to “realism” to draw an end to the war. In other words Russia already knows it can’t win so is trying to limit losses by engineering compromise. Expect some fanfare about ceasefire announcements when the counteroffensive gets going.

    A stark contrast to early in the war, when it was all about trying to portray Ukrainians as Nazis, and mid-war when they were trying to scare Europeans about freezing to death.

    And the Bomb of course. That got quite some traction actually.
  • Options
    Dura_AceDura_Ace Posts: 12,981


    It's not a popular view, and I hesitate to even express it (not least because I don't want to side with idiot far-right trolls), but I'd argue that there should be limits to how committed to total victory at any cost that we want to be.

    Some people on here get genuinely angry if you don't hew to the party line on the Malorussia situation.
  • Options
    GardenwalkerGardenwalker Posts: 20,845
    There is a spectrum of public to private ownership models.

    I always thought the railway stations themselves in the UK should be managed by local community trusts.
  • Options
    ChrisChris Posts: 11,097

    Chris said:

    Nigelb said:

    TimS said:

    That one certainly made the most of his or her half hour or so of trolling. Quite an output.

    It is actually interesting to get a look in on the lines being taken by Moscow. I assume most efforts are directed at US social media hence the right wing themes and homophobia, as well as the mention of how much the support is costing (which is a very US isolationist style argument)...

    The strategy (such as it is) seems to be twofold.
    Get some sort of result in Bakhmut that can be presented as a win, and then attempt to stalemate and hold out for a Trump presidency.

    The culture war stuff is definitely targeted at the US right - several of whose leaders are directly echoing some of the Russian lines (presented here in somewhat absurd exaggeration this morning by the lamented Campunt).

    There's also still some dissent on the near-pacifist left like me, who totally dislike Putin's invasion and see it as neo-imperialism, but who aren't comfortable with how we're escalating step by step in order to get an outright win. The Guardian piece from Mariupol (https://www.theguardian.com/world/2023/may/18/its-like-the-ussr-residents-on-life-in-mariupol-a-year-since-russian-occupation ) is entirely pro-Ukrainian in sentiment, but concedes that a large majority of the people now living there are either pro-Russian or neutral. Are we justified in encouraging Ukraine to fight until they've overrun places like this?

    There are several counter-arguments. First, that Ukraine is indivisible, and we must encourage them to fight for every inch of its soil. Second, that the invasion must be punished by total defeat. And finally, that most of the pro-Ukrainian part of the population has simply fled - I don't think there has been explicit ethnic cleansing, but that's been the effect.

    On the first point, I don't think Ukrainian nationalism with its ongoing sympathy for Bandera et al is so wonderful that we should be assisting its most militant claims - if a segment of the country doesn't want to be run by Kyiv, we should hesitate to help kill people until they're forced to accept it. On the second point, the invasion has obviously failed in its objectives at enormous cost, and Putin won't fool anyone if he claims that a ceasefire on current lines or worse is a victory. The history of enforcing total victory (cf. WW1) isn't always encouraging in the aftermath, and we want Putin's successor to be more sensible, not more revanchist. The third point is the strongest, but I wonder if it's worth indefinitely continuing the war to insist that people who used to live in X are able to return and displace anyone now living there.

    It's not a popular view, and I hesitate to even express it (not least because I don't want to side with idiot far-right trolls), but I'd argue that there should be limits to how committed to total victory at any cost that we want to be.
    Probably you have to decide whether you don't want to support Ukraine because on the one hand you're a "near-pacifist" so you don't think people should defend themselves, or on the other you think anti-Kiev minorities within Ukraine have a valid case. It doesn't help much to muddle those two things together.
    The latter, up to a point. But I do want to support Ukraine - I've helped organise and spoke at a public rally after the invasion to urge support. If there was the slightest sign that the Russians were going to make a breakthrough, we should certainly increase support for the defence. I'm just reluctant to encourage them to push it to total victory at any cost.

    But I'll leave it there - I know it's a minority view, and I'm not particularly sure of it myself.
    The trouble with this kind of thing is that it gives the impression that you think the Ukrainians should cede the territory currently occupied by Russia. Despite the fact that when a referendum was held every single part of Ukraine, including Crimea, voted for independence from Russia.

    Perhaps OK if you're putting forward a coherent case that people's rights to decide for themselves should be sacrificed for the sake of peace, but I'm not seeing that level of clarity from you.
  • Options
    pingping Posts: 3,731
    edited May 2023
    Sean_F said:

    Nigelb said:

    TimS said:

    That one certainly made the most of his or her half hour or so of trolling. Quite an output.

    It is actually interesting to get a look in on the lines being taken by Moscow. I assume most efforts are directed at US social media hence the right wing themes and homophobia, as well as the mention of how much the support is costing (which is a very US isolationist style argument)...

    The strategy (such as it is) seems to be twofold.
    Get some sort of result in Bakhmut that can be presented as a win, and then attempt to stalemate and hold out for a Trump presidency.

    The culture war stuff is definitely targeted at the US right - several of whose leaders are directly echoing some of the Russian lines (presented here in somewhat absurd exaggeration this morning by the lamented Campunt).

    There's also still some dissent on the near-pacifist left like me, who totally dislike Putin's invasion and see it as neo-imperialism, but who aren't comfortable with how we're escalating step by step in order to get an outright win. The Guardian piece from Mariupol (https://www.theguardian.com/world/2023/may/18/its-like-the-ussr-residents-on-life-in-mariupol-a-year-since-russian-occupation ) is entirely pro-Ukrainian in sentiment, but concedes that a large majority of the people now living there are either pro-Russian or neutral. Are we justified in encouraging Ukraine to fight until they've overrun places like this?

    There are several counter-arguments. First, that Ukraine is indivisible, and we must encourage them to fight for every inch of its soil. Second, that the invasion must be punished by total defeat. And finally, that most of the pro-Ukrainian part of the population has simply fled - I don't think there has been explicit ethnic cleansing, but that's been the effect.

    On the first point, I don't think Ukrainian nationalism with its ongoing sympathy for Bandera et al is so wonderful that we should be assisting its most militant claims - if a segment of the country doesn't want to be run by Kyiv, we should hesitate to help kill people until they're forced to accept it. On the second point, the invasion has obviously failed in its objectives at enormous cost, and Putin won't fool anyone if he claims that a ceasefire on current lines or worse is a victory. The history of enforcing total victory (cf. WW1) isn't always encouraging in the aftermath, and we want Putin's successor to be more sensible, not more revanchist. The third point is the strongest, but I wonder if it's worth indefinitely continuing the war to insist that people who used to live in X are able to return and displace anyone now living there.

    It's not a popular view, and I hesitate to even express it (not least because I don't want to side with idiot far-right trolls), but I'd argue that there should be limits to how committed to total victory at any cost that we want to be.
    One can have an argument over Crimea, but as for the rest, I think it’s reasonable for Ukraine to restore its boundaries.
    The situation could look very different, once Putin goes.

    Think Ethiopia/Eritrea.

    In the most hopeful scenario, Crimea just ceases to be an issue.

    It all looks unlikely, now, but in a decade or so? Just possibly…
  • Options
    viewcodeviewcode Posts: 18,619
    Campunt said:

    Wagnerites will take Bakhmut very soon indeed. "Bakhmut has fallen!" - the militants of the Armed Forces of Ukraine are demoralized and say goodbye to loved ones Ukrainian militants began to record panic videos, where they have already come to terms with the defeat and loss of the city. One of the soldiers in the video under the shelling of the Wagner PMC says that "Bakhmut has fallen," and asks "not to commemorate dashingly." A couple of hours earlier, E. Prigozhin said that the Armed Forces of Ukraine had only 0,6 sq km left on the southwestern outskirts of the city, and the Wagner PMC was already close to fulfilling its task of capturing this enemy stronghold.

    https://twitter.com/TVajrayana/status/1659674673796243458?s=20

    ...aaaand time of banning 11:48am with 29 posts. Congrats to anybody who came close.
  • Options
    mwadamsmwadams Posts: 3,136

    TimS said:

    Pulpstar said:

    On the water, borrowing to pay dividends when you're a monopoly provider should have been completely illegal

    Indeed. But the prevailing view was that any regulation of this was bad, and New Labour was also complicit in this, as we saw in the artlcle below.

    Ofwat is also still basically toothless compared to any comparable regulator in any neighbouring, or major European countries. We need to get out of this very strange , and uniquely and inflexibly , ultra-laissex faire approach to all these kind of issues, before they get worse. It also what happens when "the market" is lazily and undifferentiatedly described as inherently wise for 30 years.
    There was quite a convincing debunking of the sewage story on Twitter this morning. By a Tory supporting brexiteer, but nobody has yet debunked the debunking so he may well have a point. One of those threads that contradicts my deeply held beliefs and changes my mind. Any experts out there able to tell me if he’s missing something?

    https://twitter.com/loftussteve/status/1659637753158545414?s=46
    I'm afraid this strikes me almost as pure government and water industry publicity, painting such a Panglossian and simple picture of progress that the almost overt spokesmanship for the government, towards the end, comes as not much surprise.

    Here's what looks like a more independent approach, quoted by the Charted Institute of Waste and Environmental Management

    "By Professor at University of Greenwich Public Services International Research Unit, (PSIRU) David Hall"

    "Privatisation of water was deeply unpopular and remains so. In July 1989, as the private companies took over, a poll showed 79 per cent of people opposed. In 2017, after more than a quarter of a century’s experience, 83 per cent wanted water returned to public ownership.

    The economic rationale offered for privatisation was that private companies would finance the investments required by EU standards without the burden of public borrowing, bringing their own money and greater efficiency into the system.

    But after 25 years, water prices had risen by 40 per cent above the general rate of inflation, and the amount of shareholder money in the companies has reduced in real terms.

    Despite acquiring the companies debt-free, the owners have accumulated debt of more than £50 billion, effectively used to finance dividends of over £50 billion. The annual cost of these dividends and interest on the debt is £2.3 billion a year more expensive than it would be under public ownership.

    The companies’ performance has been equally poor. Sewage flooding remains a major problem, with repeated problems and fines. Thames Water has been a repeat offender, but the new super sewer being constructed to deal with the problem is another economic problem. As Thames refused to finance it by itself, the super sewer is financed by government loans and by an extra charge on consumers even before it is finished.

    There is underinvestment in water-resource management, with too-easy recourse to hosepipe bans, while water leakage runs at 3.1 billion litres per day – between 15 per cent and 30 per cent of water produced.

    The system also lacks effective public accountability. Southern Water is being investigated for breaching its statutory duties by Ofwat, the Environment Agency, and reportedly could face a Serious Fraud Office investigation.

    But the ineffectiveness of Ofwat is another failed aspect of the system. Companies have been able to repeatedly game the price-regulation formulae to boost profits and extract dividends without critical scrutiny. They rely on Ofwat to act publicly as their defender – rather than a protector of consumer rights.

    The privatised water system is leaking sewage, water and money. Renationalisation is a popular option and would bring England and Wales back into line with the rest of the world, including Scotland.

    The law on compensation means that could cost £14.5 billion, according to Moody’s; the savings of £2 billion per year would provide a very good public return."

    Yes. Privatisation was a moronic act of gross negligence. Thus, one should be unsurprised it has led to a series of moronic acts of gross negligence.

    Nationalise it. And the trains. And the gas board.
    Really?

    Compelling case here that it was Labour who shat the bed:

    https://moneyweek.com/why-uk-equity-market-is-shrinking
    That's a strangely incoherent piece.

    It's not that I don't agree with some of the arguments. Brown *was* hugely unfriendly to pension funds and that had serious long term impact on the economy; on the other hand the business environment they fostered was generally beneficial to SMEs - the backbone of the economy.

    The last 10 years have been an absolute nightmare for business owners, though - large and small. Partly due to environment, yes. But substantially down to the Tories having inexplicably become the "F*** Business" party.
  • Options
    TimSTimS Posts: 9,459
    Chris said:

    Chris said:

    Nigelb said:

    TimS said:

    That one certainly made the most of his or her half hour or so of trolling. Quite an output.

    It is actually interesting to get a look in on the lines being taken by Moscow. I assume most efforts are directed at US social media hence the right wing themes and homophobia, as well as the mention of how much the support is costing (which is a very US isolationist style argument)...

    The strategy (such as it is) seems to be twofold.
    Get some sort of result in Bakhmut that can be presented as a win, and then attempt to stalemate and hold out for a Trump presidency.

    The culture war stuff is definitely targeted at the US right - several of whose leaders are directly echoing some of the Russian lines (presented here in somewhat absurd exaggeration this morning by the lamented Campunt).

    There's also still some dissent on the near-pacifist left like me, who totally dislike Putin's invasion and see it as neo-imperialism, but who aren't comfortable with how we're escalating step by step in order to get an outright win. The Guardian piece from Mariupol (https://www.theguardian.com/world/2023/may/18/its-like-the-ussr-residents-on-life-in-mariupol-a-year-since-russian-occupation ) is entirely pro-Ukrainian in sentiment, but concedes that a large majority of the people now living there are either pro-Russian or neutral. Are we justified in encouraging Ukraine to fight until they've overrun places like this?

    There are several counter-arguments. First, that Ukraine is indivisible, and we must encourage them to fight for every inch of its soil. Second, that the invasion must be punished by total defeat. And finally, that most of the pro-Ukrainian part of the population has simply fled - I don't think there has been explicit ethnic cleansing, but that's been the effect.

    On the first point, I don't think Ukrainian nationalism with its ongoing sympathy for Bandera et al is so wonderful that we should be assisting its most militant claims - if a segment of the country doesn't want to be run by Kyiv, we should hesitate to help kill people until they're forced to accept it. On the second point, the invasion has obviously failed in its objectives at enormous cost, and Putin won't fool anyone if he claims that a ceasefire on current lines or worse is a victory. The history of enforcing total victory (cf. WW1) isn't always encouraging in the aftermath, and we want Putin's successor to be more sensible, not more revanchist. The third point is the strongest, but I wonder if it's worth indefinitely continuing the war to insist that people who used to live in X are able to return and displace anyone now living there.

    It's not a popular view, and I hesitate to even express it (not least because I don't want to side with idiot far-right trolls), but I'd argue that there should be limits to how committed to total victory at any cost that we want to be.
    Probably you have to decide whether you don't want to support Ukraine because on the one hand you're a "near-pacifist" so you don't think people should defend themselves, or on the other you think anti-Kiev minorities within Ukraine have a valid case. It doesn't help much to muddle those two things together.
    The latter, up to a point. But I do want to support Ukraine - I've helped organise and spoke at a public rally after the invasion to urge support. If there was the slightest sign that the Russians were going to make a breakthrough, we should certainly increase support for the defence. I'm just reluctant to encourage them to push it to total victory at any cost.

    But I'll leave it there - I know it's a minority view, and I'm not particularly sure of it myself.
    The trouble with this kind of thing is that it gives the impression that you think the Ukrainians should cede the territory currently occupied by Russia. Despite the fact that when a referendum was held every single part of Ukraine, including Crimea, voted for independence from Russia.

    Perhaps OK if you're putting forward a coherent case that people's rights to decide for themselves should be sacrificed for the sake of peace, but I'm not seeing that level of clarity from you.
    I think the trouble now with any kind of face saving compromise is that Putin and Russian ultra nationalism is the problem. It’s a combination of ideology and organised crime. While his mafia still retain power and some sort of functioning military they’ll keep destabilising the region, because that’s what they do.
  • Options
    kinabalukinabalu Posts: 39,090

    Chris said:

    Nigelb said:

    TimS said:

    That one certainly made the most of his or her half hour or so of trolling. Quite an output.

    It is actually interesting to get a look in on the lines being taken by Moscow. I assume most efforts are directed at US social media hence the right wing themes and homophobia, as well as the mention of how much the support is costing (which is a very US isolationist style argument)...

    The strategy (such as it is) seems to be twofold.
    Get some sort of result in Bakhmut that can be presented as a win, and then attempt to stalemate and hold out for a Trump presidency.

    The culture war stuff is definitely targeted at the US right - several of whose leaders are directly echoing some of the Russian lines (presented here in somewhat absurd exaggeration this morning by the lamented Campunt).

    There's also still some dissent on the near-pacifist left like me, who totally dislike Putin's invasion and see it as neo-imperialism, but who aren't comfortable with how we're escalating step by step in order to get an outright win. The Guardian piece from Mariupol (https://www.theguardian.com/world/2023/may/18/its-like-the-ussr-residents-on-life-in-mariupol-a-year-since-russian-occupation ) is entirely pro-Ukrainian in sentiment, but concedes that a large majority of the people now living there are either pro-Russian or neutral. Are we justified in encouraging Ukraine to fight until they've overrun places like this?

    There are several counter-arguments. First, that Ukraine is indivisible, and we must encourage them to fight for every inch of its soil. Second, that the invasion must be punished by total defeat. And finally, that most of the pro-Ukrainian part of the population has simply fled - I don't think there has been explicit ethnic cleansing, but that's been the effect.

    On the first point, I don't think Ukrainian nationalism with its ongoing sympathy for Bandera et al is so wonderful that we should be assisting its most militant claims - if a segment of the country doesn't want to be run by Kyiv, we should hesitate to help kill people until they're forced to accept it. On the second point, the invasion has obviously failed in its objectives at enormous cost, and Putin won't fool anyone if he claims that a ceasefire on current lines or worse is a victory. The history of enforcing total victory (cf. WW1) isn't always encouraging in the aftermath, and we want Putin's successor to be more sensible, not more revanchist. The third point is the strongest, but I wonder if it's worth indefinitely continuing the war to insist that people who used to live in X are able to return and displace anyone now living there.

    It's not a popular view, and I hesitate to even express it (not least because I don't want to side with idiot far-right trolls), but I'd argue that there should be limits to how committed to total victory at any cost that we want to be.
    Probably you have to decide whether you don't want to support Ukraine because on the one hand you're a "near-pacifist" so you don't think people should defend themselves, or on the other you think anti-Kiev minorities within Ukraine have a valid case. It doesn't help much to muddle those two things together.
    The latter, up to a point. But I do want to support Ukraine - I've helped organise and spoke at a public rally after the invasion to urge support. If there was the slightest sign that the Russians were going to make a breakthrough, we should certainly increase support for the defence. I'm just reluctant to encourage them to push it to total victory at any cost.

    But I'll leave it there - I know it's a minority view, and I'm not particularly sure of it myself.
    That we shouldn't encourage and arm Ukraine for total victory at any cost - is this really a minority view? I'm very much pro Ukraine and anti Putin but that's my view.
  • Options
    WhisperingOracleWhisperingOracle Posts: 8,503
    edited May 2023
    Farooq said:

    Nigelb said:

    TimS said:

    That one certainly made the most of his or her half hour or so of trolling. Quite an output.

    It is actually interesting to get a look in on the lines being taken by Moscow. I assume most efforts are directed at US social media hence the right wing themes and homophobia, as well as the mention of how much the support is costing (which is a very US isolationist style argument)...

    The strategy (such as it is) seems to be twofold.
    Get some sort of result in Bakhmut that can be presented as a win, and then attempt to stalemate and hold out for a Trump presidency.

    The culture war stuff is definitely targeted at the US right - several of whose leaders are directly echoing some of the Russian lines (presented here in somewhat absurd exaggeration this morning by the lamented Campunt).

    There's also still some dissent on the near-pacifist left like me, who totally dislike Putin's invasion and see it as neo-imperialism, but who aren't comfortable with how we're escalating step by step in order to get an outright win. The Guardian piece from Mariupol (https://www.theguardian.com/world/2023/may/18/its-like-the-ussr-residents-on-life-in-mariupol-a-year-since-russian-occupation ) is entirely pro-Ukrainian in sentiment, but concedes that a large majority of the people now living there are either pro-Russian or neutral. Are we justified in encouraging Ukraine to fight until they've overrun places like this?

    There are several counter-arguments. First, that Ukraine is indivisible, and we must encourage them to fight for every inch of its soil. Second, that the invasion must be punished by total defeat. And finally, that most of the pro-Ukrainian part of the population has simply fled - I don't think there has been explicit ethnic cleansing, but that's been the effect.

    On the first point, I don't think Ukrainian nationalism with its ongoing sympathy for Bandera et al is so wonderful that we should be assisting its most militant claims - if a segment of the country doesn't want to be run by Kyiv, we should hesitate to help kill people until they're forced to accept it. On the second point, the invasion has obviously failed in its objectives at enormous cost, and Putin won't fool anyone if he claims that a ceasefire on current lines or worse is a victory. The history of enforcing total victory (cf. WW1) isn't always encouraging in the aftermath, and we want Putin's successor to be more sensible, not more revanchist. The third point is the strongest, but I wonder if it's worth indefinitely continuing the war to insist that people who used to live in X are able to return and displace anyone now living there.

    It's not a popular view, and I hesitate to even express it (not least because I don't want to side with idiot far-right trolls), but I'd argue that there should be limits to how committed to total victory at any cost that we want to be.
    I sympathise with where you're coming from, but I think you are completely wrong.
    Not only that, I think some of the terms you're using are really questionable. "Overrun", for example. "Retaken" would be a neutral word here, since this is Ukrainian territory that was invaded by Russia.

    Invasions should be punished by total defeat. The best deterrence to aggression is the idea that it won't profit you. If you allow Russia to take by force X and then it gets to keep half of that, what's the lesson to the rest of the world? What then, the prospects of peace in the future?

    Another point is the stability of the international system. We have an organising principle of sovereignty which is inviolable except in terms of uncoerced agreement or in the case of egregious abuses. The latter should be tested in forums like the United Nations which, whilst they could be much better than they currently are, are still better than unilaterally deciding that these people are "ours" to protect even when they live there.
    If we want to thrown away that organising principle, we have to have a sense of what system would be better. Might is Right ain't an option, that way lies paleo-imperialism and wars of extermination. So without proposing a better system, we'd better be ready to defend this one.

    Some of your points are contradictory. You can't have an indefinite war and an aftermath.

    You can't make comparisons with WW1 when there's very little to no appetite for occupying Russia and destroying its economy. Most people who want Russia to lose want the scope of that defeat to mean their removal from all Ukrainian territory. Not to take more land than was Ukraine's 10 years ago. Not to hobble Russia past the time of hostilities.

    We mustn't get stuck in the rut of assuming the worst from Western motives. Even in the light of Iraq, which is commonly seen as aggressive misadventure, our governments aren't all bad. Ours is certainly are much better than Russia's government. We should judge actions and episodes separately and be ready to say that there we were wrong, here we are right.
    I partly agree with this. I think the West has been wrongly blamed for Libya, for instance, but, in a separate area, is wrongly avoiding scrutiny for what is now emerging about the leaders of the Kosovo Liberation Army, a movement that the West backed with a bombing campaign.

    A key issue, though, is that there is the rules-based order you're describing, and I agree should tend to be defended, and then the complexities and fallibilities of the West, which has sometimes set itself up as the incarnation of the defence of that rules-based order.

    While I think Putin should be strongly resisted, it's important to note that his public attitude to Western statements on such an order changed considerably after Iraq.

    He thinks the order is meaningless because the West has often acted hypocritically in this area ; this isn't quite correct, but it bears more scrutiny and self-examination in the West that it has sometimes received in the last year, partly understandbly, as it faces an adversary clearly more authoritarian than itself.
  • Options
    williamglennwilliamglenn Posts: 48,011
    Apologies for linking to a MAGA account but this clip of a State Senator from Nebraska chanting about trans people has to be seen to be believed.

    https://twitter.com/4mischief/status/1659751709743169537
  • Options
    FishingFishing Posts: 4,560

    If one is rational, there are some things that are better privatised and other things not better privatised.

    Railways and water strike me as too things that should never have been privatised - and the end results have been at best pointless, at worst catastrophic for the environment and the economy.

    One should be able to make these points without being called a communist. Nationalisation of these things is one of the least ideological things we could do, it clearly makes sense.

    Railways could (and should) be privatised but not in the way it was done. The biggest problem with railways is that they were subject to the separation of infrastructure and service. This meant each could blame the other for failings and ultimately no one is held responsible.

    Also worth noting that the biggest source of issues on the railways is still Network Rail - which is in public not private hands.

    As always though, the issue is not privatisation per se but the regulation that is attached to it. You can run pulic services very well in the private sector if you have strict regulation, high minimum standards for investment and tight controls on maximum allowable profit. It happens all across Europe in other sectors including the holy cow of health provision and it could work here if we had politicians who understood and had the desire to make private companies work for the public good rather than just laisse faire.
    I certainly agree we have to ditch this ultra-laissez faire approach, even if all these renationalisations can't be done.

    This includes nor only the idiotic "self-regulation" that you've mentioned, but also the ludicrous refusal to contemplate any form of long-term industrial policy, to the extent that we're now out on our own among our neighbours, in crucial national-strategic issues like not even being in control of our own nuclear power.
    The Office for Nuclear Regulation, Ofgem and the Civil Nuclear Police would be surprised to hear that we're not in control of our own nuclear power.

    Ownership and control are different in regulated sectors like water or energy. One means you take the profits from your invested capital, the other means you have people with guns who have the physical power over the infrastructure.
  • Options
    WhisperingOracleWhisperingOracle Posts: 8,503
    edited May 2023
    Fishing said:

    If one is rational, there are some things that are better privatised and other things not better privatised.

    Railways and water strike me as too things that should never have been privatised - and the end results have been at best pointless, at worst catastrophic for the environment and the economy.

    One should be able to make these points without being called a communist. Nationalisation of these things is one of the least ideological things we could do, it clearly makes sense.

    Railways could (and should) be privatised but not in the way it was done. The biggest problem with railways is that they were subject to the separation of infrastructure and service. This meant each could blame the other for failings and ultimately no one is held responsible.

    Also worth noting that the biggest source of issues on the railways is still Network Rail - which is in public not private hands.

    As always though, the issue is not privatisation per se but the regulation that is attached to it. You can run pulic services very well in the private sector if you have strict regulation, high minimum standards for investment and tight controls on maximum allowable profit. It happens all across Europe in other sectors including the holy cow of health provision and it could work here if we had politicians who understood and had the desire to make private companies work for the public good rather than just laisse faire.
    I certainly agree we have to ditch this ultra-laissez faire approach, even if all these renationalisations can't be done.

    This includes nor only the idiotic "self-regulation" that you've mentioned, but also the ludicrous refusal to contemplate any form of long-term industrial policy, to the extent that we're now out on our own among our neighbours, in crucial national-strategic issues like not even being in control of our own nuclear power.
    The Office for Nuclear Regulation, Ofgem and the Civil Nuclear Police would be surprised to hear that we're not in control of our own nuclear power.

    Ownership and control are different in regulated sectors like water or energy. One means you take the profits from your invested capital, the other means you have people with guns who have the physical power over the infrastructure.
    But no other European countries have followed our model on this that I know of, and not even the Americans.

    It's simply not in anyone's interests to have so many national-strategic assets owned abroad.
  • Options
    RobDRobD Posts: 58,961
    Dammit, I missed the weekly troll.
  • Options
    StuartinromfordStuartinromford Posts: 14,360
    Weapons grade nerdery here, but relevant- the TLDR is Labour getting non-uniform swings and doing a pretty efficient job of getting what they need where they need it;

    https://twitter.com/lewis_baston/status/1659898517815525382


    Interestingly, swing is much higher in seats with a Labour history of some sort - most formerly safe seats lost in 2017/19 swung back hugely, as did some marginals held in 1997-2010, while some of the misses were in first-time targets (Altrincham, Macclesfield, Worthing West)...


    https://twitter.com/lewis_baston/status/1659899698419736576
  • Options
    RobDRobD Posts: 58,961

    Weapons grade nerdery here, but relevant- the TLDR is Labour getting non-uniform swings and doing a pretty efficient job of getting what they need where they need it;

    https://twitter.com/lewis_baston/status/1659898517815525382


    Interestingly, swing is much higher in seats with a Labour history of some sort - most formerly safe seats lost in 2017/19 swung back hugely, as did some marginals held in 1997-2010, while some of the misses were in first-time targets (Altrincham, Macclesfield, Worthing West)...


    https://twitter.com/lewis_baston/status/1659899698419736576

    It would have been interesting to see the second half of this plot, in the seats they are defending.
  • Options
    SeaShantyIrish2SeaShantyIrish2 Posts: 15,489
    HYUFD said:

    Campunt said:

    After the hardest fighting in Europe since WW2 Wagner Group stands victorious. A highly trained enemy with hundreds of billions of dollars and the best mercenaries the NATO world can offer. Blood! Honor! Motherland! Courage! still wins in the end. Be True to Yourself!

    https://twitter.com/JamesPorrazzo/status/1659672458482294787?s=20

    Thanks Vlad but Kyiv is still in Zelensky's hands
    NO THANKS TO YOU. HYPOCRITE.
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    StillWatersStillWaters Posts: 6,977
    Campunt said:

    This is what im worried about.

    An official declaration of Russian victory for the Battle for Bakhmut is expected within the coming days. Given the depletion of reportedly 300,000+ Ukrainian forces combined with their inadequate air defense capabilities, this is expected to be a watershed moment in the war.

    https://twitter.com/WarClandestine/status/1659646546068029440?s=20

    How’s the weather in St. Pete’s

    Ukraine has pushed Russia back significantly in the last few days. Russia has had to commit a substantial portion of their reserves to hold the line. In a sector of limited strategic value but lots of political value to Russia.

    And you are linking to a known Russian partisan
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    pingping Posts: 3,731
    Oh dear spurs
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    viewcodeviewcode Posts: 18,619

    Apologies for linking to a MAGA account but this clip of a State Senator from Nebraska chanting about trans people has to be seen to be believed.

    https://twitter.com/4mischief/status/1659751709743169537

    It's a filibuster @williamglenn. The artform requires continuing speech, not rhetoric
    https://www.vogue.com/article/machaela-cavanaugh-nebraska-senator-filibuster-trans-rights

    As for apologising for linking to a MAGA account, well either don't apologise or don't read them. There's no point in sending a link and saying "This link is bad". :smiley:
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    SeaShantyIrish2SeaShantyIrish2 Posts: 15,489
    viewcode said:

    Apologies for linking to a MAGA account but this clip of a State Senator from Nebraska chanting about trans people has to be seen to be believed.

    https://twitter.com/4mischief/status/1659751709743169537

    It's a filibuster @williamglenn. The artform requires continuing speech, not rhetoric
    https://www.vogue.com/article/machaela-cavanaugh-nebraska-senator-filibuster-trans-rights

    As for apologising for linking to a MAGA account, well either don't apologise or don't read them. There's no point in sending a link and saying "This link is bad". :smiley:
    Such faux "apology" is the heart of sophistry.
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    viewcodeviewcode Posts: 18,619

    Weapons grade nerdery here, but relevant- the TLDR is Labour getting non-uniform swings and doing a pretty efficient job of getting what they need where they need it;

    https://twitter.com/lewis_baston/status/1659898517815525382


    Interestingly, swing is much higher in seats with a Labour history of some sort - most formerly safe seats lost in 2017/19 swung back hugely, as did some marginals held in 1997-2010, while some of the misses were in first-time targets (Altrincham, Macclesfield, Worthing West)...


    https://twitter.com/lewis_baston/status/1659899698419736576

    Isn't that a "tell": a good sign for Labour? If it's getting bigger swings where it needs it, then it's maximising its chances.
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    SeaShantyIrish2SeaShantyIrish2 Posts: 15,489
    RobD said:

    Dammit, I missed the weekly troll.

    Soon to be Wagner's newest morale officer on the Bakhmut front.
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    MalmesburyMalmesbury Posts: 44,220

    Nigelb said:

    A warning for @Leon - your weight loss pill might remove your joie de vivre.

    Ozempic doesn't just suppress your appetite.

    I talked to patients who took the drug to lose weight— only to also effortlessly stop biting their nails, compulsively shopping, drinking alcohol, and so on.

    https://twitter.com/sarahzhang/status/1659590361952538624

    I'd be interested to learn about the side effect profile. What about libido, energy levels etc? I can't believe such an effective drug would be without them. This all sounds too good to be true.
    What percentage stop doing everything and due?

    What percentage have a contrary reaction and become hyperactive face eating cannibals?

    Asking for an Operative of The Parliament.
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    kjhkjh Posts: 10,573
    kjh said:

    HYUFD said:

    kjh said:

    rcs1000 said:

    pigeon said:

    These VI polls are, and always have been, very unreliable. The Conservative Party will likely end up with no less than 35% of the popular vote come the next election, because well-to-do older people will shuffle back to them, and there'll be a Hung Parliament. My guesstimate of the outcome remains Lab 300, Con 260, SNP 40, LD 25.

    If it's 42 Lab, 35 Con, then with the SNP down to 38-40% in Scotland, we can probably expect a small Labour majority.

    Simply, Lab will pick up 20-25 in Scotland, and a little more than 100 in England and Wales.

    Now, this is far from nailed on, but one only has to look at 2005 to see how hammered the Conservatives can be, when the anti-Tory vote is well organised.
    The anti-Tory vote will be well organised.

    The bigger problem for Rishi is actually getting the Tory vote to show up.

    If both happen, he's in real trouble.
    Until the locals I was not convinced your first sentence was correct, but after those results I do think you are right. The LDs were polling really quite low but had spectacular results in their areas. Since then several polls have shown a slight increase in their ratings and a slight lowering of Labour. I have chosen (whether correct or not) to believe that is a reflection of tactical voting rather than a change in support for these parties. If it continues and nothing else changes I think it could be a slaughter with Labour taking their targets and the LDs taking theirs. It could be the LDs do spectacularly well. @HYUFD has already pointed out the situation in Henley and you only have to look at Gove's Surrey Heath seat to look at what the LDs did there. It is a seat I am very familiar with from the past and which used to have 100% Tory Council control. The issue for the LDs will be resources. They could also do with getting that national poll rating up more. That needs by elections and a greater awareness of tactical voting.
    In contrast to 1997 the Tories now do better with the skilled working class but worse with the upper middle class. That was shown in the local elections where the Tories lost control of every council in Surrey, Hertfordshire and Oxfordshire except Reigate and Broxbourne but held Dudley, Harlow, Dartford, Basildon and Walsall all of which voted for Blair in 1997.

    So I expect the Tories to lose seats like Henley, Wantage and Esher and Walton and Surrey SW potentially to the LDs which Major held but hold some seats like Harlow, Basildon and Dudley which Blair won
    Agree (getting worried I am doing too much of that recently @HYUFD ).

    Around my way all the local seats are now vulnerable and I know them all pretty well, namely Guildford, SW Surrey (which will split in two, both of which will be vulnerable), Mole Valley, Guildford and Esher and Walton. And even Surrey Heath although I would put SH in the same category as Henley in that the local election results say it is vulnerable, but I will be shocked if it falls.

    Obviously good news for my side, although targeting every seat in the area is a challenge. In the last election we were moved several times as the target list shrank and shrank.

    As you say the Tories may hold seats Labour won off the Tories previously. If both scenarios happen I will be very happy.
    It would appear that I think Guildford is doubly vulnerable!!!! What I meant was Woking instead of the 2nd Guildford. I do type some tripe sometimes.
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    CorrectHorseBatCorrectHorseBat Posts: 1,761
    viewcode said:

    Weapons grade nerdery here, but relevant- the TLDR is Labour getting non-uniform swings and doing a pretty efficient job of getting what they need where they need it;

    https://twitter.com/lewis_baston/status/1659898517815525382


    Interestingly, swing is much higher in seats with a Labour history of some sort - most formerly safe seats lost in 2017/19 swung back hugely, as did some marginals held in 1997-2010, while some of the misses were in first-time targets (Altrincham, Macclesfield, Worthing West)...


    https://twitter.com/lewis_baston/status/1659899698419736576

    Isn't that a "tell": a good sign for Labour? If it's getting bigger swings where it needs it, then it's maximising its chances.
    It does seem good but is this really surprising?

    The stupid thing the Tories believed - and I said so at the time - was that the seats that went Tory had somehow changed and would never vote Labour again. Despite the fact they'd voted Labour under Brown, Ed M and even Corbyn the first time.

    It was Corbyn that lost those seats and presented the Tories with a chance to keep them. They have failed and because Starmer is not Corbyn and more like Blair, it is not surprising to me at all that seats that used to vote Labour are now voting Labour again.
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    CorrectHorseBatCorrectHorseBat Posts: 1,761
    kjh said:

    It would appear that I think Guildford is doubly vulnerable!!!! What I meant was Woking instead of the 2nd Guildford. I do type some tripe sometimes.

    Guildford is the kind of seat that is probably okay to lose if you can win the Red Wall but the Tories aren't so they are facing a double whammy of destruction.

    The woke wars do not matter in Guildford, they actively are put off by the Tories going on about them and lines like "fuck business" have not helped either.
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    DougSealDougSeal Posts: 11,111
    Anyone got any tips for generalised anxiety? Mine's off the chart today. Was thinking about getting out in the sun to the driving range but I'm not sure a few bad swings would do me much good.
  • Options
    MalmesburyMalmesbury Posts: 44,220
    Campunt said:

    According to one of the NATO officers who provided headquarters support for counterattacks on the flanks of the Bakhmut group on May 12, Ukraine suffered one of the biggest losses since 2014 - 1,725 ​​people were killed. The strikes of the 2nd Azov brigade on the southern flank and two mechanized brigades and one motorized rifle battalion on the northern flank were stopped, and the losses amounted to one regiment. The rapid withdrawal of Russian troops to the plain and the shelling of Russian tanks, artillery and Russian aircraft on the line of defense prepared at high altitudes led to heavy losses. A large number of foreign mercenaries and far-right groups are stuck in Bakhmut. The Armed Forces of Ukraine have been trying for several days to ease the pressure on the group so that it can be withdrawn, but Russia nullifies these attempts with a massive bombardment.

    https://twitter.com/vicktop55/status/1658519723653332998?s=20

    The Questions

    1) pineapple on pizza - warcrime or not?
    2) a plane crashes on the Ukraine /Republic Of China border. On which side do you bury the survivors?
    3) Why is Nick Palmer an actual God?
    4) How many SeanTs are there?
  • Options
    ClippPClippP Posts: 1,679

    viewcode said:

    Weapons grade nerdery here, but relevant- the TLDR is Labour getting non-uniform swings and doing a pretty efficient job of getting what they need where they need it;

    https://twitter.com/lewis_baston/status/1659898517815525382


    Interestingly, swing is much higher in seats with a Labour history of some sort - most formerly safe seats lost in 2017/19 swung back hugely, as did some marginals held in 1997-2010, while some of the misses were in first-time targets (Altrincham, Macclesfield, Worthing West)...


    https://twitter.com/lewis_baston/status/1659899698419736576

    Isn't that a "tell": a good sign for Labour? If it's getting bigger swings where it needs it, then it's maximising its chances.
    It does seem good but is this really surprising?

    The stupid thing the Tories believed - and I said so at the time - was that the seats that went Tory had somehow changed and would never vote Labour again. Despite the fact they'd voted Labour under Brown, Ed M and even Corbyn the first time.

    It was Corbyn that lost those seats and presented the Tories with a chance to keep them. They have failed and because Starmer is not Corbyn and more like Blair, it is not surprising to me at all that seats that used to vote Labour are now voting Labour again.
    Ditto... Ditto... Ditto.... but Lib Dem.
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    CorrectHorseBatCorrectHorseBat Posts: 1,761
    ClippP said:

    viewcode said:

    Weapons grade nerdery here, but relevant- the TLDR is Labour getting non-uniform swings and doing a pretty efficient job of getting what they need where they need it;

    https://twitter.com/lewis_baston/status/1659898517815525382


    Interestingly, swing is much higher in seats with a Labour history of some sort - most formerly safe seats lost in 2017/19 swung back hugely, as did some marginals held in 1997-2010, while some of the misses were in first-time targets (Altrincham, Macclesfield, Worthing West)...


    https://twitter.com/lewis_baston/status/1659899698419736576

    Isn't that a "tell": a good sign for Labour? If it's getting bigger swings where it needs it, then it's maximising its chances.
    It does seem good but is this really surprising?

    The stupid thing the Tories believed - and I said so at the time - was that the seats that went Tory had somehow changed and would never vote Labour again. Despite the fact they'd voted Labour under Brown, Ed M and even Corbyn the first time.

    It was Corbyn that lost those seats and presented the Tories with a chance to keep them. They have failed and because Starmer is not Corbyn and more like Blair, it is not surprising to me at all that seats that used to vote Labour are now voting Labour again.
    Ditto... Ditto... Ditto.... but Lib Dem.
    It's a proxy vote though. These people are implicitly voting for a Labour Government. The Tories seem to think that idea is unpopular - but this isn't 2015 anymore.
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    MalmesburyMalmesbury Posts: 44,220
    edited May 2023
    DougSeal said:

    Anyone got any tips for generalised anxiety? Mine's off the chart today. Was thinking about getting out in the sun to the driving range but I'm not sure a few bad swings would do me much good.

    Take up rowing.

    Actually, just make yourself do *something* - otherwise you spiral into being more miserable and doing nothing. Making you more anxious.
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    CorrectHorseBatCorrectHorseBat Posts: 1,761
    Running is how I cope with anxiety.
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    kinabalukinabalu Posts: 39,090

    viewcode said:

    Weapons grade nerdery here, but relevant- the TLDR is Labour getting non-uniform swings and doing a pretty efficient job of getting what they need where they need it;

    https://twitter.com/lewis_baston/status/1659898517815525382


    Interestingly, swing is much higher in seats with a Labour history of some sort - most formerly safe seats lost in 2017/19 swung back hugely, as did some marginals held in 1997-2010, while some of the misses were in first-time targets (Altrincham, Macclesfield, Worthing West)...


    https://twitter.com/lewis_baston/status/1659899698419736576

    Isn't that a "tell": a good sign for Labour? If it's getting bigger swings where it needs it, then it's maximising its chances.
    It does seem good but is this really surprising?

    The stupid thing the Tories believed - and I said so at the time - was that the seats that went Tory had somehow changed and would never vote Labour again. Despite the fact they'd voted Labour under Brown, Ed M and even Corbyn the first time.

    It was Corbyn that lost those seats and presented the Tories with a chance to keep them. They have failed and because Starmer is not Corbyn and more like Blair, it is not surprising to me at all that seats that used to vote Labour are now voting Labour again.
    Corbyn, yes, and Brexit too. Johnson did a great job at GE19 of consolidating the Leave vote, which was heavy in those seats. This factor has gone now, as has Johnson, as has Corbyn. This is why GE19 is a false baseline for assessing the next one. The 'mountain' Labour need to climb is nothing like as high as it appears.
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    gettingbettergettingbetter Posts: 476

    DougSeal said:

    Anyone got any tips for generalised anxiety? Mine's off the chart today. Was thinking about getting out in the sun to the driving range but I'm not sure a few bad swings would do me much good.

    Take up rowing.

    Actually, just make yourself do *something* - otherwise you spiral into being more miserable and doing nothing. Making you more anxious.
    Do a job that needs doing, like weeding the garden. When finished reward yourself with a beer.
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    RogerRoger Posts: 18,891
    Incidentally if anyone hasn't watched the interview with Kwasi Kwarteng and Cathy Neuman it's a classic. Well worth watching

    Neuman who usually specialises in Ch4 sex stories asks with a knowing smile 'Don't you feel a little uncomfortable losing £40 billion of the country's money in a matter of weeks'

    Kwarteng looking like he's being quizzed by an admiring first year GCSE student 'Come on Kathy. Every Minister makes mistakes'

    https://www.channel4.com/news/kwasi-kwarteng-refuses-to-apologise-over-his-time-in-office
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    RobDRobD Posts: 58,961
    Roger said:

    Incidentally if anyone hasn't watched the interview with Kwasi Kwarteng and Cathy Neuman it's a classic. Well worth watching

    Neuman who usually specialises in Ch4 sex stories asks with a knowing smile 'Don't you feel a little uncomfortable losing £40 billion of the country's money in a matter of weeks'

    Kwarteng looking like he's being quizzed by an admiring first year GCSE student 'Come on Kathy. Every Minister makes mistakes'

    https://www.channel4.com/news/kwasi-kwarteng-refuses-to-apologise-over-his-time-in-office

    Where does this £40bn figure come from? The BoE made a £4bn profit.
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    Casino_RoyaleCasino_Royale Posts: 55,267
    DougSeal said:

    Anyone got any tips for generalised anxiety? Mine's off the chart today. Was thinking about getting out in the sun to the driving range but I'm not sure a few bad swings would do me much good.

    I've just cooked a bbq and drunk a lot of beer?

    Not sure it's in the self-help books but feel pretty amazing, to be honest.
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    Stark_DawningStark_Dawning Posts: 9,287
    kinabalu said:

    viewcode said:

    Weapons grade nerdery here, but relevant- the TLDR is Labour getting non-uniform swings and doing a pretty efficient job of getting what they need where they need it;

    https://twitter.com/lewis_baston/status/1659898517815525382


    Interestingly, swing is much higher in seats with a Labour history of some sort - most formerly safe seats lost in 2017/19 swung back hugely, as did some marginals held in 1997-2010, while some of the misses were in first-time targets (Altrincham, Macclesfield, Worthing West)...


    https://twitter.com/lewis_baston/status/1659899698419736576

    Isn't that a "tell": a good sign for Labour? If it's getting bigger swings where it needs it, then it's maximising its chances.
    It does seem good but is this really surprising?

    The stupid thing the Tories believed - and I said so at the time - was that the seats that went Tory had somehow changed and would never vote Labour again. Despite the fact they'd voted Labour under Brown, Ed M and even Corbyn the first time.

    It was Corbyn that lost those seats and presented the Tories with a chance to keep them. They have failed and because Starmer is not Corbyn and more like Blair, it is not surprising to me at all that seats that used to vote Labour are now voting Labour again.
    Corbyn, yes, and Brexit too. Johnson did a great job at GE19 of consolidating the Leave vote, which was heavy in those seats. This factor has gone now, as has Johnson, as has Corbyn. This is why GE19 is a false baseline for assessing the next one. The 'mountain' Labour need to climb is nothing like as high as it appears.
    I think the Tories were relying upon some strange psycho-cultural event taking place amongst the Red Wallers: having voted Tory once, and felt the warm water and the invigorating breeze, they would continue, untroubled, in their Tory-voting nirvana for ever. Personally I always thought that the 'Did it once, nivver again' mentality would prevail. (And I'm usually right.)
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    viewcodeviewcode Posts: 18,619


    4) How many SeanTs are there?

    As many as there needs to be. Your SeanT is a randy puppy who will generate as many instances as is required to solve a problem then dissolve them, leaving only the winner. This technique is I think well-known in genetic and parallel computing. The problem is with genetic drift, as the SeanT used to spawn the copies becomes gradually degraded over time. Geneticians have posited a SeanT Runaway, where the original becomes unable to fly due to excession

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    ydoethurydoethur Posts: 67,109

    DougSeal said:

    Anyone got any tips for generalised anxiety? Mine's off the chart today. Was thinking about getting out in the sun to the driving range but I'm not sure a few bad swings would do me much good.

    I've just cooked a bbq and drunk a lot of beer?

    Not sure it's in the self-help books but feel pretty amazing, to be honest.
    Why would you cook a bbq? The tradition is that you use it to cook meat rather than cook it directly.
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    Andy_JSAndy_JS Posts: 26,446
    edited May 2023
    DougSeal said:

    Anyone got any tips for generalised anxiety? Mine's off the chart today. Was thinking about getting out in the sun to the driving range but I'm not sure a few bad swings would do me much good.

    It would be swimming for me.
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    Casino_RoyaleCasino_Royale Posts: 55,267
    DougSeal said:

    Anyone got any tips for generalised anxiety? Mine's off the chart today. Was thinking about getting out in the sun to the driving range but I'm not sure a few bad swings would do me much good.

    Bondathon.
  • Options
    StuartinromfordStuartinromford Posts: 14,360

    kinabalu said:

    viewcode said:

    Weapons grade nerdery here, but relevant- the TLDR is Labour getting non-uniform swings and doing a pretty efficient job of getting what they need where they need it;

    https://twitter.com/lewis_baston/status/1659898517815525382


    Interestingly, swing is much higher in seats with a Labour history of some sort - most formerly safe seats lost in 2017/19 swung back hugely, as did some marginals held in 1997-2010, while some of the misses were in first-time targets (Altrincham, Macclesfield, Worthing West)...


    https://twitter.com/lewis_baston/status/1659899698419736576

    Isn't that a "tell": a good sign for Labour? If it's getting bigger swings where it needs it, then it's maximising its chances.
    It does seem good but is this really surprising?

    The stupid thing the Tories believed - and I said so at the time - was that the seats that went Tory had somehow changed and would never vote Labour again. Despite the fact they'd voted Labour under Brown, Ed M and even Corbyn the first time.

    It was Corbyn that lost those seats and presented the Tories with a chance to keep them. They have failed and because Starmer is not Corbyn and more like Blair, it is not surprising to me at all that seats that used to vote Labour are now voting Labour again.
    Corbyn, yes, and Brexit too. Johnson did a great job at GE19 of consolidating the Leave vote, which was heavy in those seats. This factor has gone now, as has Johnson, as has Corbyn. This is why GE19 is a false baseline for assessing the next one. The 'mountain' Labour need to climb is nothing like as high as it appears.
    I think the Tories were relying upon some strange psycho-cultural event taking place amongst the Red Wallers: having voted Tory once, and felt the warm water and the invigorating breeze, they would continue, untroubled, in their Tory-voting nirvana for ever. Personally I always thought that the 'Did it once, nivver again' mentality would prevail. (And I'm usually right.)
    And there weren't as many Red Wall New Conservative Voters as hyped. The shift in votes 2017-9 was much more Labour losing votes than Conservatives gaining them.
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    TazTaz Posts: 11,053
    Todays wordle, for those who still do it, is a tribute to @Heathener
This discussion has been closed.