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  • Sean_FSean_F Posts: 35,789
    Taz said:

    Dura_Ace said:

    Sean_F said:

    If Ukraine can keep fighting for 2-3 years, then it will likely win, as Russia runs out of resources.


    We've heard that one a few times before. Although 2-3 years is a fresh new twist on it.
    Russia have supposed to have been a couple of years from running out of resources for the last 18 months.
    But, then plenty of people have been saying Ukraine is on the point of defeat throughout that period.

    There's no reason (in the light of their history) to suppose that Ukrainians are any less willing to endure hardship than their fellow East Slavs.
  • DecrepiterJohnLDecrepiterJohnL Posts: 24,137
    edited February 8

    Selebian said:

    Carnyx said:

    Carnyx said:

    Leon said:

    Leon said:

    TOPPING said:

    Leon said:

    Carnyx said:

    Leon said:

    Much of urban Britain is now completely dystopian. That queue for the dentists in St Paul's

    https://x.com/uk8qnzl/status/1754997596521734573?s=20

    Er, you haven't noticed that we have discussed it several times on PB, including Labour's modification of the photo to a Britain Isn't Working-style election poster. But it is always good to remind ourselves that that is the way in which current government policy drills down to the ordinary punter on the street.
    But the obvious BME over-representation in that queue
    This is where you fucked up.
    No, it isn't

    It will be newcomers seeking dentists. Settled citizens (of any stripe) will already have dentists, in the main

    For the last eight years the vast majority of migration into Britain - since Brexit - has been non-white, non-EU. You would therefore expect a queue of new people, presumably seeking a dentist, to be non-white
    Not really. People move around, and will need a new dentist. Existing dental practices shut down and their patients need a new dentist. Plenty of people simply don't have a dentist because NHS dentists in their area won't take new patients. You just looked at a queue of non white people and said "they must be immigrants" on the basis of no information. Given that you live in Camden you have a surprisingly provincial and outdated view of British society.
    St Paul's, Bristol, has one of the higher levels of non-UK-born inhabitants in the country. So, no, I didn't just presume, I looked at the data
    St Paul's has had a large African/Caribbean population since the 1950s (it has had a carnival since the early 1960s and was where the Bristol Bus Boycott started) so will also be home to a significant non white population who are not immigrants and certainly not recent arrivals. I just don't know how one can judge whether the crowd outside the dental practice are recent immigrants or not based on their appearance.
    It all reminds me of some friends of my grandparents who congratulated my then girlfriend, now wife, on her beautiful English. Her parents are Sri Lankan but she was born in Margate and was studying at Cambridge University at the time so her English language skills were not really that surprising.
    People who attended the University of Cambridge speak the best. Fact.

    We also write the best.
    If the young lady was brought up in Margate I’m surprised she spoke good English!
    The thought did occur to me, but I instantly dismissed it on consideration, as essexist.
    You’re not a man of Kent I take it.
    No, nor even a Kentish man - geography a bit hazy.

    [Edit] Quite right to correct that slip, so ignore the attempted joke. But doesn't the local dialect sound the same on both sides of the Estuary, as a matter of interest?
    There's a whole range of accents in Essex - from the stereotypical TOWIE accent close to London to something quite different out towards the Suffolk borders. I grew up in Chelmsford (more or less in the middle of Essex) and most people through my life have not thought I have an Essex accent. I take more after my dad, who grew up near the Suffolk border, than my mum who grew up near Brentwood (more TOWIE-esque). People at school thought I sounded very posh (oddly enough as I was from one of the poorer families).

    Kent is a pretty flat estuary accent, but mostly not the stereotypical Essex sound.

    Of course, in both, as you get close to London it gets more similar, to my ears at least.
    I lived much of my life on the North bank of the Thames, with two short periods in the North East and North West.
    In retirement I moved North of Chelmsford and although quite a few people still speak ‘Essex’ as described by Mr Selebian most of the younger folk sound as though they’re from Southend.
    Sadly.
    Estuary English? Accents are moving East as old-fashioned London accents are being replaced by MLE (Multicultural London English).
  • kinabalukinabalu Posts: 39,002

    kinabalu said:

    Leon said:

    kinabalu said:

    Leon said:

    malcolmg said:

    There is something missing in what @leon is saying.

    The political set telling people that darkies are responsible for a lack of NHS dentistry are the same political set who continually cut funding to NHS dentistry.

    The solution to a lack of NHS provision for dentists and GPs and hospital beds isn't less foreigners. Its more money spent on provision.

    Where is the money coming from then, is it all those extra imaginary benefits that immigration brings in that it has transformed our economy in the last 25 years to a basket case.
    That Dutch report - linked earlier - on the enormous net drain of non western migrants, on an economy rather like ours (but healthier) makes for very sobering reading

    And of course PB has completely ignored it. Too awkward
    Bit too nerdy for my taste.
    God, it's so easy being on the Left. Any awkward evidence, simply ignore it. Sorted

    Enviable, in a way. Just spend your intellectual life in some kind of mediocre Tenerife of the mind, maybe on an outdoor terrace bar of stupidity, listening to the muzak of meh I don't want to think about it
    It just looked a bit sweaty - plus it's unHerd which is a further push factor.

    Anyway I see '148' is on it and those are capable (and progressive) hands. So we're all good. It's getting dealt with.
    Outsourcing your thinking and moral compass. Interesting.
    Ooo no. Just prioritisation of sources and application of judgement. We all do it. There is no other practical way.
  • MalmesburyMalmesbury Posts: 44,042

    DavidL said:

    Sean_F said:

    DavidL said:

    Sean_F said:

    O/T I went to a dinner/seminar last night at which defence/ Ukraine issues were discussed at length by top analysts. The key takeaways were:-

    1. Tactically, the performance of the Russian army is dreadful, no better than two years ago. But, it has always been. Operationally, it is a lot more capable, and it is getting artillery shells in much greater numbers than Ukraine. There are precisely two European companies that manufacture artillery shells. However, Ukraine has the advantage in terms of possession and production of drones.

    2. Russians are willing to suffer hardship, to achieve military success, in ways we don’t fully appreciate in the West.

    3. But even Russia can’t defy economic gravity for ever. Soviet oil exports have been hit hard in recent months, partly due to drone attacks, and the regime is burning through foreign exchange reserves at an incredible speed. If Ukraine can keep fighting for 2-3 years, then it will likely win, as Russia runs out of resources.

    4. Germany’s commitment to Ukraine is now of vital importance. As well as aid, Germany is now training twice as many Ukrainian soldiers as the UK is.

    5. The reduction of the UK’s military capability, starting in 2010, is of real concern, throughout NATO. Cameron, Osborne and their successors have acted as if the world is growing safer, rather than more dangerous.

    6. Contrary to press reports, there is no shortage of people wishing to join the armed forces. The real problem is with Capita, taking up to 14 months to process applications, by which time, they’ve taken other jobs.

    On point 5 I do think, in fairness, that they were right that the conventional risks had substantially reduced with the collapse of the old Soviet bloc and the backwatering of Europe. I don't think that even Ukraine has fundamentally changed that analysis. Rather it has shown that the risk of a conventional Russian attack was substantially overstated by those with a vested interest in defence spending.

    What has changed, and is new, is the significance of drone technology in warfare. We are in a similar position in that respect to when ironclad ships made our large wooden navy redundant almost over night. The result of this development is that we are going to need a lot of new kit, to get rid of a lot of old kit and train our armed forces to fight in very different ways. That is going to cost significant money. The timing isn't great but there may well come a point when Ukraine is training the armies of western Europe rather than the other way around.
    Yes. Massed tank attacks are now possibly suicidal, and half the Russian Black Sea fleet has been destroyed by a side with almost no navy.
    Its fascinating to contemplate how differently the Gulf wars would have been fought with today's kit. Large scale tank battles would almost certainly not have happened.
    The technology development is lopsided and evolving. Equally could be that only vehicles with point defence systems (which already exist) can survive on the battle field. With unprotected individuals being doomed.
    Drones are available in such numbers now that there are lots of videos of FPV drones being flown into single infantry soldiers. An armoured vehicle might not be great protection against a drone, but it's still a damn sight better than being out in the open.

    Not sure there's much point in buying masses of new kit for the British Army, though. A bit hard to predict how things will shake out. The important things are to be able to rapidly develop new systems, and to produce them in large numbers - both of which Western military procurement is uniformly awful at doing.
    A semi-automatic shotgun set up as an automated point defence system would deal with most such drones. Exiting active defence systems have been tested for this, but the ammunition cost would probably be too high.

    For real fun, laser systems are on the way.
  • MalmesburyMalmesbury Posts: 44,042

    Sean_F said:

    O/T I went to a dinner/seminar last night at which defence/ Ukraine issues were discussed at length by top analysts. The key takeaways were:-

    1. Tactically, the performance of the Russian army is dreadful, no better than two years ago. But, it has always been. Operationally, it is a lot more capable, and it is getting artillery shells in much greater numbers than Ukraine. There are precisely two European companies that manufacture artillery shells. However, Ukraine has the advantage in terms of possession and production of drones.

    2. Russians are willing to suffer hardship, to achieve military success, in ways we don’t fully appreciate in the West.

    3. But even Russia can’t defy economic gravity for ever. Soviet oil exports have been hit hard in recent months, partly due to drone attacks, and the regime is burning through foreign exchange reserves at an incredible speed. If Ukraine can keep fighting for 2-3 years, then it will likely win, as Russia runs out of resources.

    4. Germany’s commitment to Ukraine is now of vital importance. As well as aid, Germany is now training twice as many Ukrainian soldiers as the UK is.

    5. The reduction of the UK’s military capability, starting in 2010, is of real concern, throughout NATO. Cameron, Osborne and their successors have acted as if the world is growing safer, rather than more dangerous.

    6. Contrary to press reports, there is no shortage of people wishing to join the armed forces. The real problem is with Capita, taking up to 14 months to process applications, by which time, they’ve taken other jobs.

    It's insane that the West has failed so badly to ramp up production of artillery shells.
    It takes time to expand the production of shell bodies - complex heat treatment/machining steps.

    This is why Russia is buying crap shells from North Korea - they can't produce many.
  • TazTaz Posts: 10,929
    kyf_100 said:

    Taz said:

    Sandpit said:

    Eabhal said:

    Sandpit said:

    148grss said:

    Leon said:

    Leon said:

    Leon said:

    Carnyx said:

    Leon said:

    Much of urban Britain is now completely dystopian. That queue for the dentists in St Paul's

    https://x.com/uk8qnzl/status/1754997596521734573?s=20

    Er, you haven't noticed that we have discussed it several times on PB, including Labour's modification of the photo to a Britain Isn't Working-style election poster. But it is always good to remind ourselves that that is the way in which current government policy drills down to the ordinary punter on the street.
    That isn't what that video says to any sane person

    Now, don't get me wrong,. every person in that queue deserves free dental care, that is our national policy, that is their right. And dentistry in the UK has been SHITE for decades, and getting worse (I get all mine in Bangkok)

    But the obvious BME over-representation in that queue (compared to national average) does suggest that part of the problem with our NHS (and much else) is the fact we are allowing in immigrants at an historically unprecedented rate - 1.3m in two years, more, per capita, than ever entered the USA - and that is going to fuck up a free heath service, and much else, unless the economy explodes with growth (which it has not done)

    Of course, much of the blame lies with the Tories, they've been in power 14 years and demonstrably screwed this up. Fie on them
    It demonstrates a longstanding truth, that NHS services are worse in poorer areas. The paucity of the services owes nothing to immigration and everything to a government policy of underfunding the NHS and public services more broadly. Immigration is just the convenient excuse Tory stooges wheel out to cover for the government's failings, lapped up by the week minded.
    Do you really honestly believe that adding 10m people to our population, in a few short years - an influx so vast it is greater (per capita) than America experienced during the era of Ellis Island - has NOT put pressure on our NHS, infra, sewage, education, etc?

    I mean, to me this is so ridiculous it is not debatable. It is blindingly obvious. But if you demur I'm kinda impressed
    Of course, if the government chooses not to fund the necessary expansion of public services. But that is a choice.
    And what if the government literally can't afford to fund this necessary expansion. What then? The obvious answer is: end immigration

    Would you agree with that?
    Even if we accept your premise (I don't) the question is a) how and b) how much does that cost?

    If you end immigration we have to increase spending on borders and visa checks and policing people who do and don't have documentation. We have to have more raids and deportations and such. All this requires infrastructure, training, staff, legal battles, boats etc. that the state does not currently have.

    Whereas, again, the government could spend more on infrastructure that benefits everyone (including immigrants) and do some Keynesian economics at the same time. But the government doesn't want to do that because it is wedded to austerity and only the private sector being able to deliver things.

    Whether it's a new Garden City somewhere or appropriate developments on the edges of existing urban areas - I think we both agree new development wouldn't be bad. It's just that the governments answer to new development will be "let a private company do it and build loads of 4-5 bedroom houses that only well off people can afford, as well as a few luxury flats, and let them be overpriced and sold to landlords or investment companies and therefore not alleviate the pressure on the market at all". And that won't solve the underlying issues of rent and house prices being too high. We need council housing to create a base line of affordable homes of acceptable quality.
    I don't see why a shift in immigration policy to, say, cut the current immigration numbers by 80% would require any significant change in spending on borders and visa checks. We already spend on those. If the government wanted, they could just give out fewer visas.

    There are other reasons why that might not be a good idea. I work in the university sector and we'd be f****d if there was a large drop in overseas student numbers.
    If the universities want to attract more foreign students, then perhaps they should be building somewhere for them to live?
    They are doing, contributing to the housing crisis in university cities and towns. They are far more profitable for developers than standard flats, and they eat up what space is available.

    The only way they’d be contributing to a crisis, is if the student numbers (including their dependents), are going up faster than the new housing. You need to tie the numbers together, so that it’s on the university to make sure they have enough accommodation for the numbers enrolling. Want more students, then first build more housing.
    I think the current presumption is that capitalism works. Students need accommodation, so demand is increased, so supply will increase.
    Definitely happening. Just look at Newcastle or Durham over the last few years. Student digs are increasing.

    Whether it is enough or not, is another matter.
    Definitely not enough in Durham. I know it's a small town, but... https://www.thenorthernecho.co.uk/news/23073781.durham-university-student-housing-crisis-worsens-students-queue-overnight/
    Interesting although there is also Newton Hall, Framwellgate Moor, Gilesgate, Neville's Cross (traffic is shit mind) and other places just outside the city.

    I don't know where else they can build in the city (we're not a town, we have a cathedral !!!) save knocking down more bars, restaurants and shops like the stretch Oldfields used to be on just up from the Gala Theatre.
  • LostPasswordLostPassword Posts: 14,956
    edited February 8

    Sean_F said:

    O/T I went to a dinner/seminar last night at which defence/ Ukraine issues were discussed at length by top analysts. The key takeaways were:-

    1. Tactically, the performance of the Russian army is dreadful, no better than two years ago. But, it has always been. Operationally, it is a lot more capable, and it is getting artillery shells in much greater numbers than Ukraine. There are precisely two European companies that manufacture artillery shells. However, Ukraine has the advantage in terms of possession and production of drones.

    2. Russians are willing to suffer hardship, to achieve military success, in ways we don’t fully appreciate in the West.

    3. But even Russia can’t defy economic gravity for ever. Soviet oil exports have been hit hard in recent months, partly due to drone attacks, and the regime is burning through foreign exchange reserves at an incredible speed. If Ukraine can keep fighting for 2-3 years, then it will likely win, as Russia runs out of resources.

    4. Germany’s commitment to Ukraine is now of vital importance. As well as aid, Germany is now training twice as many Ukrainian soldiers as the UK is.

    5. The reduction of the UK’s military capability, starting in 2010, is of real concern, throughout NATO. Cameron, Osborne and their successors have acted as if the world is growing safer, rather than more dangerous.

    6. Contrary to press reports, there is no shortage of people wishing to join the armed forces. The real problem is with Capita, taking up to 14 months to process applications, by which time, they’ve taken other jobs.

    It's insane that the West has failed so badly to ramp up production of artillery shells.
    It takes time to expand the production of shell bodies - complex heat treatment/machining steps.

    This is why Russia is buying crap shells from North Korea - they can't produce many.
    Unless the contingency plan was that any full-scale war with a peer adversary to the West would escalate to nuclear annihilation before a shortage of artillery shells became relevant, I'm surprised that there doesn't seem to be any contingency plan for expanding armaments production in wartime. And we are nearly two years in now.
  • noneoftheabovenoneoftheabove Posts: 20,544

    Selebian said:

    Carnyx said:

    Carnyx said:

    Leon said:

    Leon said:

    TOPPING said:

    Leon said:

    Carnyx said:

    Leon said:

    Much of urban Britain is now completely dystopian. That queue for the dentists in St Paul's

    https://x.com/uk8qnzl/status/1754997596521734573?s=20

    Er, you haven't noticed that we have discussed it several times on PB, including Labour's modification of the photo to a Britain Isn't Working-style election poster. But it is always good to remind ourselves that that is the way in which current government policy drills down to the ordinary punter on the street.
    But the obvious BME over-representation in that queue
    This is where you fucked up.
    No, it isn't

    It will be newcomers seeking dentists. Settled citizens (of any stripe) will already have dentists, in the main

    For the last eight years the vast majority of migration into Britain - since Brexit - has been non-white, non-EU. You would therefore expect a queue of new people, presumably seeking a dentist, to be non-white
    Not really. People move around, and will need a new dentist. Existing dental practices shut down and their patients need a new dentist. Plenty of people simply don't have a dentist because NHS dentists in their area won't take new patients. You just looked at a queue of non white people and said "they must be immigrants" on the basis of no information. Given that you live in Camden you have a surprisingly provincial and outdated view of British society.
    St Paul's, Bristol, has one of the higher levels of non-UK-born inhabitants in the country. So, no, I didn't just presume, I looked at the data
    St Paul's has had a large African/Caribbean population since the 1950s (it has had a carnival since the early 1960s and was where the Bristol Bus Boycott started) so will also be home to a significant non white population who are not immigrants and certainly not recent arrivals. I just don't know how one can judge whether the crowd outside the dental practice are recent immigrants or not based on their appearance.
    It all reminds me of some friends of my grandparents who congratulated my then girlfriend, now wife, on her beautiful English. Her parents are Sri Lankan but she was born in Margate and was studying at Cambridge University at the time so her English language skills were not really that surprising.
    People who attended the University of Cambridge speak the best. Fact.

    We also write the best.
    If the young lady was brought up in Margate I’m surprised she spoke good English!
    The thought did occur to me, but I instantly dismissed it on consideration, as essexist.
    You’re not a man of Kent I take it.
    No, nor even a Kentish man - geography a bit hazy.

    [Edit] Quite right to correct that slip, so ignore the attempted joke. But doesn't the local dialect sound the same on both sides of the Estuary, as a matter of interest?
    There's a whole range of accents in Essex - from the stereotypical TOWIE accent close to London to something quite different out towards the Suffolk borders. I grew up in Chelmsford (more or less in the middle of Essex) and most people through my life have not thought I have an Essex accent. I take more after my dad, who grew up near the Suffolk border, than my mum who grew up near Brentwood (more TOWIE-esque). People at school thought I sounded very posh (oddly enough as I was from one of the poorer families).

    Kent is a pretty flat estuary accent, but mostly not the stereotypical Essex sound.

    Of course, in both, as you get close to London it gets more similar, to my ears at least.
    I lived much of my life on the North bank of the Thames, with two short periods in the North East and North West.
    In retirement I moved North of Chelmsford and although quite a few people still speak ‘Essex’ as described by Mr Selebian most of the younger folk sound as though they’re from Southend.
    Sadly.
    Estuary English? Accents are moving East as old-fashioned London accents are being replaced by MLE (Multicultural London English).
    Safe, my G.
  • DavidLDavidL Posts: 50,978
    Leon said:

    DavidL said:

    Sean_F said:

    DavidL said:

    Sean_F said:

    O/T I went to a dinner/seminar last night at which defence/ Ukraine issues were discussed at length by top analysts. The key takeaways were:-

    1. Tactically, the performance of the Russian army is dreadful, no better than two years ago. But, it has always been. Operationally, it is a lot more capable, and it is getting artillery shells in much greater numbers than Ukraine. There are precisely two European companies that manufacture artillery shells. However, Ukraine has the advantage in terms of possession and production of drones.

    2. Russians are willing to suffer hardship, to achieve military success, in ways we don’t fully appreciate in the West.

    3. But even Russia can’t defy economic gravity for ever. Soviet oil exports have been hit hard in recent months, partly due to drone attacks, and the regime is burning through foreign exchange reserves at an incredible speed. If Ukraine can keep fighting for 2-3 years, then it will likely win, as Russia runs out of resources.

    4. Germany’s commitment to Ukraine is now of vital importance. As well as aid, Germany is now training twice as many Ukrainian soldiers as the UK is.

    5. The reduction of the UK’s military capability, starting in 2010, is of real concern, throughout NATO. Cameron, Osborne and their successors have acted as if the world is growing safer, rather than more dangerous.

    6. Contrary to press reports, there is no shortage of people wishing to join the armed forces. The real problem is with Capita, taking up to 14 months to process applications, by which time, they’ve taken other jobs.

    On point 5 I do think, in fairness, that they were right that the conventional risks had substantially reduced with the collapse of the old Soviet bloc and the backwatering of Europe. I don't think that even Ukraine has fundamentally changed that analysis. Rather it has shown that the risk of a conventional Russian attack was substantially overstated by those with a vested interest in defence spending.

    What has changed, and is new, is the significance of drone technology in warfare. We are in a similar position in that respect to when ironclad ships made our large wooden navy redundant almost over night. The result of this development is that we are going to need a lot of new kit, to get rid of a lot of old kit and train our armed forces to fight in very different ways. That is going to cost significant money. The timing isn't great but there may well come a point when Ukraine is training the armies of western Europe rather than the other way around.
    Yes. Massed tank attacks are now possibly suicidal, and half the Russian Black Sea fleet has been destroyed by a side with almost no navy.
    Its fascinating to contemplate how differently the Gulf wars would have been fought with today's kit. Large scale tank battles would almost certainly not have happened.
    Our extremely expensive aircraft carriers (which don'twork) are about to be rendered valueless by hypersonic missiles and drone attack

    They will never leave port as they are too expensive to lose and too easily lost. Great

    We shoulda spent that money on AI warfare. And drones
    I think the effectiveness and implications of drones have really only become apparent in the last 18 months. I also believe the carriers will be able to operate but they will need a shield of destroyers and frigates around them to protect them from drone attacks. Even developing that against hypersonic weapons is not going to be cheap though.

    Russia, who have been running out of missiles for 18 months now, launched their largest attack of 2024 yesterday. It was made up of a package of drones and more sophisticated cruise missiles.

    This report shows the result:
    "Ukrainian air defense managed to shoot down the majority of the Kh-101/555/55 cruise missiles and Shahed drones, which may suggest that Russian forces fired the Kh-101 series missiles and Shaheds in order to distract Ukrainian air defense. Ukrainian forces did not shoot down any of the Kh-22 cruise missiles, Iskander-M ballistic missiles, or S-300 surface-to-air missiles, by contrast."
    https://www.dailykos.com/stories/2024/2/7/2222088/-Ukraine-Invasion-Day-715-too-much-smoking-in-Izhevsk?pm_campaign=front_page&pm_source=trending&pm_medium=web

    It is more that somewhat troubling, and not just for aircraft carriers, that a defence bolstered by Patriot missile systems had this level of effectiveness. War is evolving fast. If we had spent that money on drones before 2000 they would almost certainly be redundant by now.
  • MalmesburyMalmesbury Posts: 44,042

    Sean_F said:

    O/T I went to a dinner/seminar last night at which defence/ Ukraine issues were discussed at length by top analysts. The key takeaways were:-

    1. Tactically, the performance of the Russian army is dreadful, no better than two years ago. But, it has always been. Operationally, it is a lot more capable, and it is getting artillery shells in much greater numbers than Ukraine. There are precisely two European companies that manufacture artillery shells. However, Ukraine has the advantage in terms of possession and production of drones.

    2. Russians are willing to suffer hardship, to achieve military success, in ways we don’t fully appreciate in the West.

    3. But even Russia can’t defy economic gravity for ever. Soviet oil exports have been hit hard in recent months, partly due to drone attacks, and the regime is burning through foreign exchange reserves at an incredible speed. If Ukraine can keep fighting for 2-3 years, then it will likely win, as Russia runs out of resources.

    4. Germany’s commitment to Ukraine is now of vital importance. As well as aid, Germany is now training twice as many Ukrainian soldiers as the UK is.

    5. The reduction of the UK’s military capability, starting in 2010, is of real concern, throughout NATO. Cameron, Osborne and their successors have acted as if the world is growing safer, rather than more dangerous.

    6. Contrary to press reports, there is no shortage of people wishing to join the armed forces. The real problem is with Capita, taking up to 14 months to process applications, by which time, they’ve taken other jobs.

    It's insane that the West has failed so badly to ramp up production of artillery shells.
    It takes time to expand the production of shell bodies - complex heat treatment/machining steps.

    This is why Russia is buying crap shells from North Korea - they can't produce many.
    Unless the contingency plan was that any full-scale war with a peer adversary to the West would escalate to nuclear annihilation before a shortage of artillery shells became relevant, I'm surprised that there doesn't seem to be any contingency plan for expanding armaments production in wartime. And we are nearly two years in now.
    The Americans have expanded production and South Korea are doing so. I think there have been some efforts in Europe, but not sure of the status.

    The traditional plan for WWIII was "Fight for 2 weeks. Then blow up the world."

    Also, did you know that small towns/villages in Germany are generally 2 kilotons apart?
  • TazTaz Posts: 10,929
    edited February 8
    Sean_F said:

    Taz said:

    Dura_Ace said:

    Sean_F said:

    If Ukraine can keep fighting for 2-3 years, then it will likely win, as Russia runs out of resources.


    We've heard that one a few times before. Although 2-3 years is a fresh new twist on it.
    Russia have supposed to have been a couple of years from running out of resources for the last 18 months.
    But, then plenty of people have been saying Ukraine is on the point of defeat throughout that period.

    There's no reason (in the light of their history) to suppose that Ukrainians are any less willing to endure hardship than their fellow East Slavs.
    Just as there is no reason to suppose, aside from wish fulfilment, the Russians will fold like a pack of cards in a couple of years due to lack of resources. Especially as their economy is doing rather well

    https://www.ft.com/content/21a5be9c-afaa-495f-b7af-cf937093144d
  • JosiasJessopJosiasJessop Posts: 38,772
    Sean_F said:

    Taz said:

    Dura_Ace said:

    Sean_F said:

    If Ukraine can keep fighting for 2-3 years, then it will likely win, as Russia runs out of resources.


    We've heard that one a few times before. Although 2-3 years is a fresh new twist on it.
    Russia have supposed to have been a couple of years from running out of resources for the last 18 months.
    But, then plenty of people have been saying Ukraine is on the point of defeat throughout that period.

    There's no reason (in the light of their history) to suppose that Ukrainians are any less willing to endure hardship than their fellow East Slavs.
    Perhaps they are more willing (generally), as they realise what losing to Russia means for them personally. For the average Muscovite (and they, along with a few in St Pete, are all that matter in Russia) losing to Ukraine might mean a political embarrassment - but perhaps also an economic renewal. For a Ukrainian, it might mean Bucha.
  • LostPasswordLostPassword Posts: 14,956

    Sean_F said:

    O/T I went to a dinner/seminar last night at which defence/ Ukraine issues were discussed at length by top analysts. The key takeaways were:-

    1. Tactically, the performance of the Russian army is dreadful, no better than two years ago. But, it has always been. Operationally, it is a lot more capable, and it is getting artillery shells in much greater numbers than Ukraine. There are precisely two European companies that manufacture artillery shells. However, Ukraine has the advantage in terms of possession and production of drones.

    2. Russians are willing to suffer hardship, to achieve military success, in ways we don’t fully appreciate in the West.

    3. But even Russia can’t defy economic gravity for ever. Soviet oil exports have been hit hard in recent months, partly due to drone attacks, and the regime is burning through foreign exchange reserves at an incredible speed. If Ukraine can keep fighting for 2-3 years, then it will likely win, as Russia runs out of resources.

    4. Germany’s commitment to Ukraine is now of vital importance. As well as aid, Germany is now training twice as many Ukrainian soldiers as the UK is.

    5. The reduction of the UK’s military capability, starting in 2010, is of real concern, throughout NATO. Cameron, Osborne and their successors have acted as if the world is growing safer, rather than more dangerous.

    6. Contrary to press reports, there is no shortage of people wishing to join the armed forces. The real problem is with Capita, taking up to 14 months to process applications, by which time, they’ve taken other jobs.

    It's insane that the West has failed so badly to ramp up production of artillery shells.
    It takes time to expand the production of shell bodies - complex heat treatment/machining steps.

    This is why Russia is buying crap shells from North Korea - they can't produce many.
    Unless the contingency plan was that any full-scale war with a peer adversary to the West would escalate to nuclear annihilation before a shortage of artillery shells became relevant, I'm surprised that there doesn't seem to be any contingency plan for expanding armaments production in wartime. And we are nearly two years in now.
    The Americans have expanded production and South Korea are doing so. I think there have been some efforts in Europe, but not sure of the status.

    The traditional plan for WWIII was "Fight for 2 weeks. Then blow up the world."

    Also, did you know that small towns/villages in Germany are generally 2 kilotons apart?
    I did not know that, no.
  • LeonLeon Posts: 46,461
    kinabalu said:

    kinabalu said:

    Leon said:

    kinabalu said:

    Leon said:

    malcolmg said:

    There is something missing in what @leon is saying.

    The political set telling people that darkies are responsible for a lack of NHS dentistry are the same political set who continually cut funding to NHS dentistry.

    The solution to a lack of NHS provision for dentists and GPs and hospital beds isn't less foreigners. Its more money spent on provision.

    Where is the money coming from then, is it all those extra imaginary benefits that immigration brings in that it has transformed our economy in the last 25 years to a basket case.
    That Dutch report - linked earlier - on the enormous net drain of non western migrants, on an economy rather like ours (but healthier) makes for very sobering reading

    And of course PB has completely ignored it. Too awkward
    Bit too nerdy for my taste.
    God, it's so easy being on the Left. Any awkward evidence, simply ignore it. Sorted

    Enviable, in a way. Just spend your intellectual life in some kind of mediocre Tenerife of the mind, maybe on an outdoor terrace bar of stupidity, listening to the muzak of meh I don't want to think about it
    It just looked a bit sweaty - plus it's unHerd which is a further push factor.

    Anyway I see '148' is on it and those are capable (and progressive) hands. So we're all good. It's getting dealt with.
    Outsourcing your thinking and moral compass. Interesting.
    Ooo no. Just prioritisation of sources and application of judgement. We all do it. There is no other practical way.
    You’re retired and you play golf
  • MalmesburyMalmesbury Posts: 44,042
    DavidL said:

    Leon said:

    DavidL said:

    Sean_F said:

    DavidL said:

    Sean_F said:

    O/T I went to a dinner/seminar last night at which defence/ Ukraine issues were discussed at length by top analysts. The key takeaways were:-

    1. Tactically, the performance of the Russian army is dreadful, no better than two years ago. But, it has always been. Operationally, it is a lot more capable, and it is getting artillery shells in much greater numbers than Ukraine. There are precisely two European companies that manufacture artillery shells. However, Ukraine has the advantage in terms of possession and production of drones.

    2. Russians are willing to suffer hardship, to achieve military success, in ways we don’t fully appreciate in the West.

    3. But even Russia can’t defy economic gravity for ever. Soviet oil exports have been hit hard in recent months, partly due to drone attacks, and the regime is burning through foreign exchange reserves at an incredible speed. If Ukraine can keep fighting for 2-3 years, then it will likely win, as Russia runs out of resources.

    4. Germany’s commitment to Ukraine is now of vital importance. As well as aid, Germany is now training twice as many Ukrainian soldiers as the UK is.

    5. The reduction of the UK’s military capability, starting in 2010, is of real concern, throughout NATO. Cameron, Osborne and their successors have acted as if the world is growing safer, rather than more dangerous.

    6. Contrary to press reports, there is no shortage of people wishing to join the armed forces. The real problem is with Capita, taking up to 14 months to process applications, by which time, they’ve taken other jobs.

    On point 5 I do think, in fairness, that they were right that the conventional risks had substantially reduced with the collapse of the old Soviet bloc and the backwatering of Europe. I don't think that even Ukraine has fundamentally changed that analysis. Rather it has shown that the risk of a conventional Russian attack was substantially overstated by those with a vested interest in defence spending.

    What has changed, and is new, is the significance of drone technology in warfare. We are in a similar position in that respect to when ironclad ships made our large wooden navy redundant almost over night. The result of this development is that we are going to need a lot of new kit, to get rid of a lot of old kit and train our armed forces to fight in very different ways. That is going to cost significant money. The timing isn't great but there may well come a point when Ukraine is training the armies of western Europe rather than the other way around.
    Yes. Massed tank attacks are now possibly suicidal, and half the Russian Black Sea fleet has been destroyed by a side with almost no navy.
    Its fascinating to contemplate how differently the Gulf wars would have been fought with today's kit. Large scale tank battles would almost certainly not have happened.
    Our extremely expensive aircraft carriers (which don'twork) are about to be rendered valueless by hypersonic missiles and drone attack

    They will never leave port as they are too expensive to lose and too easily lost. Great

    We shoulda spent that money on AI warfare. And drones
    I think the effectiveness and implications of drones have really only become apparent in the last 18 months. I also believe the carriers will be able to operate but they will need a shield of destroyers and frigates around them to protect them from drone attacks. Even developing that against hypersonic weapons is not going to be cheap though.

    Russia, who have been running out of missiles for 18 months now, launched their largest attack of 2024 yesterday. It was made up of a package of drones and more sophisticated cruise missiles.

    This report shows the result:
    "Ukrainian air defense managed to shoot down the majority of the Kh-101/555/55 cruise missiles and Shahed drones, which may suggest that Russian forces fired the Kh-101 series missiles and Shaheds in order to distract Ukrainian air defense. Ukrainian forces did not shoot down any of the Kh-22 cruise missiles, Iskander-M ballistic missiles, or S-300 surface-to-air missiles, by contrast."
    https://www.dailykos.com/stories/2024/2/7/2222088/-Ukraine-Invasion-Day-715-too-much-smoking-in-Izhevsk?pm_campaign=front_page&pm_source=trending&pm_medium=web

    It is more that somewhat troubling, and not just for aircraft carriers, that a defence bolstered by Patriot missile systems had this level of effectiveness. War is evolving fast. If we had spent that money on drones before 2000 they would almost certainly be redundant by now.
    Yup - they saved up a month's worth of production and fired that, along with a collection of old junk and some Iranian drones.

    The low production rate is why these attacks are much rarer than at the start of the war.
  • kinabalukinabalu Posts: 39,002
    edited February 8
    Sean_F said:

    O/T I went to a dinner/seminar last night at which defence/ Ukraine issues were discussed at length by top analysts. The key takeaways were:-

    1. Tactically, the performance of the Russian army is dreadful, no better than two years ago. But, it has always been. Operationally, it is a lot more capable, and it is getting artillery shells in much greater numbers than Ukraine. There are precisely two European companies that manufacture artillery shells. However, Ukraine has the advantage in terms of possession and production of drones.

    2. Russians are willing to suffer hardship, to achieve military success, in ways we don’t fully appreciate in the West.

    3. But even Russia can’t defy economic gravity for ever. Soviet oil exports have been hit hard in recent months, partly due to drone attacks, and the regime is burning through foreign exchange reserves at an incredible speed. If Ukraine can keep fighting for 2-3 years, then it will likely win, as Russia runs out of resources.

    4. Germany’s commitment to Ukraine is now of vital importance. As well as aid, Germany is now training twice as many Ukrainian soldiers as the UK is.

    5. The reduction of the UK’s military capability, starting in 2010, is of real concern, throughout NATO. Cameron, Osborne and their successors have acted as if the world is growing safer, rather than more dangerous.

    6. Contrary to press reports, there is no shortage of people wishing to join the armed forces. The real problem is with Capita, taking up to 14 months to process applications, by which time, they’ve taken other jobs.

    With (2) were the analysts saying it's something in the Russian 'soul' (or whatever) that makes them tolerate great hardship for the sake of military glory? Because I've heard that a lot and I'm a bit skeptical. Isn't it more that the people there are repressed under a dictatorship and subject to vast amounts of propaganda? Meaning they are (i) more likely to keep on believing in the cause and (ii) less likely to play up even if they don't.
  • CatManCatMan Posts: 2,747
    Cookie said:

    Eabhal said:

    Eabhal said:
    Curious timing. No official report out yet on the iPad use.

    Something else going on?
    I wonder if Yousaf will offer the Health Secretary job to Kate Forbes.
    Don’t see how that would work with her support of those ghouls hanging about outside NHS abortion clinics.

    Gives me the opportunity for one of* my vasectomy anecdotes.
    At the end of the whole escapade, as, in my loose-fitting trousers, sympathetic wife at my side, feeling not exactly tip-top either physically or mentally, I shuffled uncomfortably out of the door and down the steps to the car park, I was heckled by a gang. I was puzzled by this to start with: I’m no stranger to the odd angry mob, but these were an incongruous angry mob; older, more conservatively dressed, more accessorised by the accoutrements of street Christianity than most angry mobs I had hitherto come across. British Christians, in my experience, very rarely tend to be angry. What were these people doing at a discreet vasectomy clinic in suburban south Manchester? And why were they so cross at me? They were too pathetic and I was too preoccupied with the pain in my penis for me too feel particularly frightened. But I gradually became aware – they were looking slightly to my left, not directly at me, which I also thought odd, given my rather self-absorbed frame of mind: clearly in my head I was the main player in this drama at that moment – that it was not me but my wife they were heckling, and my hackles rose. Clearly they were under the impression that we’d been in for an abortion. Maybe that place did abortions on other days? Who knows.
    Anyway. Not having superstitious nutjobs shout at my wife like that, erroneously or not. The sheer scale of wrongness made a pithy and cutting retort quite challenging, but I rallied. Probably fortuitously, by the time I managed to get the words in order – it was quite a good rant, and I think concluded with the word ‘fuckwits’ – my wife had managed to pilot me into the car, past the still-angry mob and, actually, several miles away. So it was only really her who got the benefit of my wit.
    A pity, but probably for the best.

    * Only one vasectomy, but a few anecdotes. It was an interesting experience.
    All Kemi Badenoch approved
  • MalmesburyMalmesbury Posts: 44,042

    Sean_F said:

    O/T I went to a dinner/seminar last night at which defence/ Ukraine issues were discussed at length by top analysts. The key takeaways were:-

    1. Tactically, the performance of the Russian army is dreadful, no better than two years ago. But, it has always been. Operationally, it is a lot more capable, and it is getting artillery shells in much greater numbers than Ukraine. There are precisely two European companies that manufacture artillery shells. However, Ukraine has the advantage in terms of possession and production of drones.

    2. Russians are willing to suffer hardship, to achieve military success, in ways we don’t fully appreciate in the West.

    3. But even Russia can’t defy economic gravity for ever. Soviet oil exports have been hit hard in recent months, partly due to drone attacks, and the regime is burning through foreign exchange reserves at an incredible speed. If Ukraine can keep fighting for 2-3 years, then it will likely win, as Russia runs out of resources.

    4. Germany’s commitment to Ukraine is now of vital importance. As well as aid, Germany is now training twice as many Ukrainian soldiers as the UK is.

    5. The reduction of the UK’s military capability, starting in 2010, is of real concern, throughout NATO. Cameron, Osborne and their successors have acted as if the world is growing safer, rather than more dangerous.

    6. Contrary to press reports, there is no shortage of people wishing to join the armed forces. The real problem is with Capita, taking up to 14 months to process applications, by which time, they’ve taken other jobs.

    It's insane that the West has failed so badly to ramp up production of artillery shells.
    It takes time to expand the production of shell bodies - complex heat treatment/machining steps.

    This is why Russia is buying crap shells from North Korea - they can't produce many.
    Unless the contingency plan was that any full-scale war with a peer adversary to the West would escalate to nuclear annihilation before a shortage of artillery shells became relevant, I'm surprised that there doesn't seem to be any contingency plan for expanding armaments production in wartime. And we are nearly two years in now.
    The Americans have expanded production and South Korea are doing so. I think there have been some efforts in Europe, but not sure of the status.

    The traditional plan for WWIII was "Fight for 2 weeks. Then blow up the world."

    Also, did you know that small towns/villages in Germany are generally 2 kilotons apart?
    I did not know that, no.
    As in, if you hid in the cellars, you could survive a tactical nuke on the next village....

    Hence the grim joke about spacing/yield.
  • LeonLeon Posts: 46,461

    Nayib Bukele's speech after winning reelection is worth watching. El Salvador has become the country with the lowest muder rate in the western hemisphere:

    https://x.com/nayibbukele/status/1755411561575817340

    The decline in murder rate is impressive but 7.8 per 100,000 is not the lowest. El Salvador has 6.5 million people, roughly the same population as Scotland which had 52 homicides for the whole country and that is without suspending habeus corpus and rounding up everyone remotely gang-adjacent.
    https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/articles/cqv9vzqvddwo
    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/El_Salvador
    I suspect he’s using ‘western hemisphere’ as shorthand for The Americas, as many do

    Otherwise the claim is absurd. Switzerland or Norway are incredibly safe
  • kinabalukinabalu Posts: 39,002
    Leon said:

    kinabalu said:

    kinabalu said:

    Leon said:

    kinabalu said:

    Leon said:

    malcolmg said:

    There is something missing in what @leon is saying.

    The political set telling people that darkies are responsible for a lack of NHS dentistry are the same political set who continually cut funding to NHS dentistry.

    The solution to a lack of NHS provision for dentists and GPs and hospital beds isn't less foreigners. Its more money spent on provision.

    Where is the money coming from then, is it all those extra imaginary benefits that immigration brings in that it has transformed our economy in the last 25 years to a basket case.
    That Dutch report - linked earlier - on the enormous net drain of non western migrants, on an economy rather like ours (but healthier) makes for very sobering reading

    And of course PB has completely ignored it. Too awkward
    Bit too nerdy for my taste.
    God, it's so easy being on the Left. Any awkward evidence, simply ignore it. Sorted

    Enviable, in a way. Just spend your intellectual life in some kind of mediocre Tenerife of the mind, maybe on an outdoor terrace bar of stupidity, listening to the muzak of meh I don't want to think about it
    It just looked a bit sweaty - plus it's unHerd which is a further push factor.

    Anyway I see '148' is on it and those are capable (and progressive) hands. So we're all good. It's getting dealt with.
    Outsourcing your thinking and moral compass. Interesting.
    Ooo no. Just prioritisation of sources and application of judgement. We all do it. There is no other practical way.
    You’re retired and you play golf
    Neither of those today though.
  • 148grss148grss Posts: 3,630
    Leon said:

    148grss said:

    Leon said:

    I’ll give PBers a second chance to contemplate it

    ‘A team led by mathematician Jan H. van de Beek at the University of Amsterdam estimates that the Dutch government spent approximately €17 billion per year on migration in the period between 1995 and 2019, meaning that more than one billion euros went to migration-related issues every month.

    The study digs deeper still: annual net costs of non-Western immigration amount to €17 billion and the annual net benefits of Western immigration total one billion euros. Distinguishing between Western and non-Western migration patterns, the study comes to a startling conclusion: if immigration remains at 2015-2019 levels, the annual budget burden will increase from €17 billion in 2016 to about €50 billion. This is an increase that the welfare state would most likely not survive.

    The Dutch findings are mirrored in a similar study conducted by the Danish Finance Ministry, which concludes that non-Western immigrants are most likely to remain lifelong recipients of public finances compared to their Western or native Danish peers. Meanwhile, the picture in Germany is not much different: about 45% of those who receive unemployment benefits are not German citizens, costing the taxpayers around €20 billion per year. Austria shows similar numbers, with almost 60% of recipients having a “migrant background”.

    Van de Beek sees parts of the problem in the structure of the welfare state… [snip - see the link],

    The emerging picture is a complex one that includes both cultural and economic factors, but the overall conclusion remains the same: the current conditions under which migration to Europe takes place are not sustainable and will bring the welfare systems ever closer to collapsing. The idea promoted by Folkerts-Landau and others turned out to be far too optimistic, and what makes matters worse is that politicians still refuse to face the facts.

    Placing one’s head in the sand is, unfortunately, not the same as actual policymaking. Europe has ignored these issues for too long, and voters will make their discontent heard at the voting booth’

    https://unherd.com/thepost/dutch-study-immigration-costs-state-e17-billion-per-year/

    So the only actual report I can find (other than pieces in right wing media about the report) are in Danish, and I can't find anything discussing the report in English other than right wingers hailing it as the evidence they've always needed that immigrants are bad actually. That's not to say it is wrong, just that as someone who doesn't speak Danish I can't verify the actual findings of the report outside of places like unherd, who are not a source I trust.

    I have found an OpenDemocracy article detailing essentially the argument I put forth yesterday - how if immigrants are a "drain" on an economy it is most likely the practices of the employers who abuse those workers and use them to under cut labour rights and labour costs, but I accept that could have nothing to do with what this report was exploring. If you have a link directly to the report in English, I'd be very interested to look at it, the methodology and such.

    https://www.opendemocracy.net/en/beyond-trafficking-and-slavery/the-danish-model-of-exploiting-migrant-workers/
    Mate, it's Dutch. lol

    Not a good start to your research


    Here's the report. In English


    https://demo-demo.nl/wp-content/uploads/2023/06/Borderless_Welfare_State-2.pdf
    So looking at the report and a couple of academic book reviews of the report (there isn't a lot in English because it seems the English translation only came out last year?) I have a few thoughts.

    From one of the book reviews summarising the report: https://www.academia.edu/85011302/Book_Review_i_Borderless_Welfare_State_The_Consequences_of_Immigration_on_Public_Finances_Grenzeloze_verzorgingsstaat_De_gevolgen_van_immigratie_voor_de_overheidsfinanciën_i_

    For example, the authors show that labor migrants have a positive net contribution, but study migration, family migration, and asylum migration lead to substantial negative net contributions. For instance, asylum migration costs on average almost half a million euros per immigrant; an important reason is the low-level of labor force participation, partially caused by restrictions on work permits while the migrants are waiting for decision about their status.

    Already this carves out a distinction between those who are workers migrating and those who aren't. Study migration and family migration would obviously be net negative - that is a non working population, typically in education -and the exploration of that as a net negative seems somewhat persuasive. Although it only looks at Gens 1 and 2. I remember, anecdotally, something about how most immigrant populations tend to be fully integrated by the third generation and after a quick google scholar another Dutch paper which concludes

    "Thus, this study has presented novel empirical evidence that the ethnic disparities in income among Dutch citizens born to second-generation migrant parents from various immigrant groups are fading"
    https://docs.iza.org/dp13855.pdf

    This report does note that this does not reach parity with Dutch natives, including for groups who have been in the country longer (such as Germans) - but it may mean that they will make up the net losses of the previous generations.

    As for asylum seekers being a net drain - there's a part of me which is like "duh", they are more likely to have come from somewhere war torn or traumatic and, therefore, will have lower levels of education. But, interestingly, the report does note that the restrictions on work whilst applying for permits also adds to the issue. Which begs the question - surely a way to make those people less of a "drain" would be to a) reduce the government scrutiny on their asylum application or b) allow them to work whilst waiting for their status to come through (arguably under closer scrutiny to make sure they aren't just being abused by employers who may not afford them the same rights as other workers).

    That's just a very quick scan during my lunch hour - I do find this interesting, though.
  • DavidLDavidL Posts: 50,978
    kinabalu said:

    Sean_F said:

    O/T I went to a dinner/seminar last night at which defence/ Ukraine issues were discussed at length by top analysts. The key takeaways were:-

    1. Tactically, the performance of the Russian army is dreadful, no better than two years ago. But, it has always been. Operationally, it is a lot more capable, and it is getting artillery shells in much greater numbers than Ukraine. There are precisely two European companies that manufacture artillery shells. However, Ukraine has the advantage in terms of possession and production of drones.

    2. Russians are willing to suffer hardship, to achieve military success, in ways we don’t fully appreciate in the West.

    3. But even Russia can’t defy economic gravity for ever. Soviet oil exports have been hit hard in recent months, partly due to drone attacks, and the regime is burning through foreign exchange reserves at an incredible speed. If Ukraine can keep fighting for 2-3 years, then it will likely win, as Russia runs out of resources.

    4. Germany’s commitment to Ukraine is now of vital importance. As well as aid, Germany is now training twice as many Ukrainian soldiers as the UK is.

    5. The reduction of the UK’s military capability, starting in 2010, is of real concern, throughout NATO. Cameron, Osborne and their successors have acted as if the world is growing safer, rather than more dangerous.

    6. Contrary to press reports, there is no shortage of people wishing to join the armed forces. The real problem is with Capita, taking up to 14 months to process applications, by which time, they’ve taken other jobs.

    With (2) were the analysts saying it's something in the Russian 'soul' (or whatever) that makes them tolerate great hardship for the sake of military glory? Because I've heard that a lot and I'm a bit skeptical. Isn't it more that the people there are repressed under a dictatorship and subject to vast amounts of propaganda? Meaning they are (i) more likely to keep on believing in the cause and (ii) less likely to play up even if they don't.
    We watched the latest Storyville last night about escaping from North Korea. Harrowing but compelling. And the north Korean family showed all too clearly how humans can be bullied into believing almost anything. As Sting sang many years ago "Russians love their children too" but the concept of duty and protection of the motherland is ground in from a very early age.

    And then there is fear, of course.
  • eekeek Posts: 24,866
    edited February 8
    kyf_100 said:

    Taz said:

    Sandpit said:

    Eabhal said:

    Sandpit said:

    148grss said:

    Leon said:

    Leon said:

    Leon said:

    Carnyx said:

    Leon said:

    Much of urban Britain is now completely dystopian. That queue for the dentists in St Paul's

    https://x.com/uk8qnzl/status/1754997596521734573?s=20

    Er, you haven't noticed that we have discussed it several times on PB, including Labour's modification of the photo to a Britain Isn't Working-style election poster. But it is always good to remind ourselves that that is the way in which current government policy drills down to the ordinary punter on the street.
    That isn't what that video says to any sane person

    Now, don't get me wrong,. every person in that queue deserves free dental care, that is our national policy, that is their right. And dentistry in the UK has been SHITE for decades, and getting worse (I get all mine in Bangkok)

    But the obvious BME over-representation in that queue (compared to national average) does suggest that part of the problem with our NHS (and much else) is the fact we are allowing in immigrants at an historically unprecedented rate - 1.3m in two years, more, per capita, than ever entered the USA - and that is going to fuck up a free heath service, and much else, unless the economy explodes with growth (which it has not done)

    Of course, much of the blame lies with the Tories, they've been in power 14 years and demonstrably screwed this up. Fie on them
    It demonstrates a longstanding truth, that NHS services are worse in poorer areas. The paucity of the services owes nothing to immigration and everything to a government policy of underfunding the NHS and public services more broadly. Immigration is just the convenient excuse Tory stooges wheel out to cover for the government's failings, lapped up by the week minded.
    Do you really honestly believe that adding 10m people to our population, in a few short years - an influx so vast it is greater (per capita) than America experienced during the era of Ellis Island - has NOT put pressure on our NHS, infra, sewage, education, etc?

    I mean, to me this is so ridiculous it is not debatable. It is blindingly obvious. But if you demur I'm kinda impressed
    Of course, if the government chooses not to fund the necessary expansion of public services. But that is a choice.
    And what if the government literally can't afford to fund this necessary expansion. What then? The obvious answer is: end immigration

    Would you agree with that?
    Even if we accept your premise (I don't) the question is a) how and b) how much does that cost?

    If you end immigration we have to increase spending on borders and visa checks and policing people who do and don't have documentation. We have to have more raids and deportations and such. All this requires infrastructure, training, staff, legal battles, boats etc. that the state does not currently have.

    Whereas, again, the government could spend more on infrastructure that benefits everyone (including immigrants) and do some Keynesian economics at the same time. But the government doesn't want to do that because it is wedded to austerity and only the private sector being able to deliver things.

    Whether it's a new Garden City somewhere or appropriate developments on the edges of existing urban areas - I think we both agree new development wouldn't be bad. It's just that the governments answer to new development will be "let a private company do it and build loads of 4-5 bedroom houses that only well off people can afford, as well as a few luxury flats, and let them be overpriced and sold to landlords or investment companies and therefore not alleviate the pressure on the market at all". And that won't solve the underlying issues of rent and house prices being too high. We need council housing to create a base line of affordable homes of acceptable quality.
    I don't see why a shift in immigration policy to, say, cut the current immigration numbers by 80% would require any significant change in spending on borders and visa checks. We already spend on those. If the government wanted, they could just give out fewer visas.

    There are other reasons why that might not be a good idea. I work in the university sector and we'd be f****d if there was a large drop in overseas student numbers.
    If the universities want to attract more foreign students, then perhaps they should be building somewhere for them to live?
    They are doing, contributing to the housing crisis in university cities and towns. They are far more profitable for developers than standard flats, and they eat up what space is available.

    The only way they’d be contributing to a crisis, is if the student numbers (including their dependents), are going up faster than the new housing. You need to tie the numbers together, so that it’s on the university to make sure they have enough accommodation for the numbers enrolling. Want more students, then first build more housing.
    I think the current presumption is that capitalism works. Students need accommodation, so demand is increased, so supply will increase.
    Definitely happening. Just look at Newcastle or Durham over the last few years. Student digs are increasing.

    Whether it is enough or not, is another matter.
    Definitely not enough in Durham. I know it's a small town, but... https://www.thenorthernecho.co.uk/news/23073781.durham-university-student-housing-crisis-worsens-students-queue-overnight/
    Good job too - the house twin A bought would have been twice the price except for the schedule D restrictions that have stopped the rest of Durham being transformed into student housing.

    On the other side though the lowest rent this year is more than a student receiving the maximum loan gets as a loan.

    And no local business employs students
  • SirNorfolkPassmoreSirNorfolkPassmore Posts: 6,234
    edited February 8
    Taz said:

    Sean_F said:

    Taz said:

    Dura_Ace said:

    Sean_F said:

    If Ukraine can keep fighting for 2-3 years, then it will likely win, as Russia runs out of resources.


    We've heard that one a few times before. Although 2-3 years is a fresh new twist on it.
    Russia have supposed to have been a couple of years from running out of resources for the last 18 months.
    But, then plenty of people have been saying Ukraine is on the point of defeat throughout that period.

    There's no reason (in the light of their history) to suppose that Ukrainians are any less willing to endure hardship than their fellow East Slavs.
    Just as there is no reason to suppose, aside from wish fulfilment, the Russians will fold like a pack of cards in a couple of years due to lack of resources. Especially as their economy is doing rather well

    https://www.ft.com/content/21a5be9c-afaa-495f-b7af-cf937093144d
    I agree with what you say to an extent, although you need to be careful looking at GDP changes for a country at war.

    In general, if the war is being fought on another country's territory, you're essentially giving a big, Keynesian, demand side boost by pumping money into armament production (rather than, say, new hospitals and roads as Keynes really had in mind). But that's relatively short term (the old criticism of Keynesian economics) and people don't really feel the benefits if it's shells being sent to the front line rather than resurfacing their street - it's basically growth on paper rather than reflecting standard of living.

    Because it's on someone else's territory, in general that boost isn't outweighed by destruction of your own fixed capital (relatively few sites in Russia have been hit) while the men being sent aren't terribly productive so their absence from the home front isn't a big economic strain (a lot of prisoners and people from high-unemployment, under-developed bits of Russia).

  • LeonLeon Posts: 46,461
    DavidL said:

    kinabalu said:

    Sean_F said:

    O/T I went to a dinner/seminar last night at which defence/ Ukraine issues were discussed at length by top analysts. The key takeaways were:-

    1. Tactically, the performance of the Russian army is dreadful, no better than two years ago. But, it has always been. Operationally, it is a lot more capable, and it is getting artillery shells in much greater numbers than Ukraine. There are precisely two European companies that manufacture artillery shells. However, Ukraine has the advantage in terms of possession and production of drones.

    2. Russians are willing to suffer hardship, to achieve military success, in ways we don’t fully appreciate in the West.

    3. But even Russia can’t defy economic gravity for ever. Soviet oil exports have been hit hard in recent months, partly due to drone attacks, and the regime is burning through foreign exchange reserves at an incredible speed. If Ukraine can keep fighting for 2-3 years, then it will likely win, as Russia runs out of resources.

    4. Germany’s commitment to Ukraine is now of vital importance. As well as aid, Germany is now training twice as many Ukrainian soldiers as the UK is.

    5. The reduction of the UK’s military capability, starting in 2010, is of real concern, throughout NATO. Cameron, Osborne and their successors have acted as if the world is growing safer, rather than more dangerous.

    6. Contrary to press reports, there is no shortage of people wishing to join the armed forces. The real problem is with Capita, taking up to 14 months to process applications, by which time, they’ve taken other jobs.

    With (2) were the analysts saying it's something in the Russian 'soul' (or whatever) that makes them tolerate great hardship for the sake of military glory? Because I've heard that a lot and I'm a bit skeptical. Isn't it more that the people there are repressed under a dictatorship and subject to vast amounts of propaganda? Meaning they are (i) more likely to keep on believing in the cause and (ii) less likely to play up even if they don't.
    We watched the latest Storyville last night about escaping from North Korea. Harrowing but compelling. And the north Korean family showed all too clearly how humans can be bullied into believing almost anything. As Sting sang many years ago "Russians love their children too" but the concept of duty and protection of the motherland is ground in from a very early age.

    And then there is fear, of course.
    I am reminded of this typically profound and enlightening article by ex-PBer SeanT in the Spectator, where he met wealthy young Russians hiding from the war, in Armenia. In particular, this exchange


    “‘They don’t really like Russians in Tbilisi. I’m sorry.’

    Mikhail sighed. ‘There are Ukrainian flags everywhere?’

    ‘Yes. Loads of them. And lots of anti-Russian graffiti.’

    ‘Why? Why do they dislike us?!’

    ‘Because you invaded them, like you invaded Ukraine. Maybe you should stop invading places?’

    Mikhail looked my way and laughed. Like I had a point, but it was beyond the wit of man to make it better. Ludmila was now gazing at the empty vodka bottle disconsolately. The mountain air was still and warm. Mikhail disappeared, then somehow returned with another vodka bottle.

    ‘This one is really homemade,’ he said, chuckling. With refilled glasses, we toasted each other, we toasted peace, and we watched the stars glittering over Nakhchivan, the hostile Azeri exclave. Then Mikhail said: ‘You know, I hate the war, but we have to win it. I am scared that Putin will order a mobilisation, but if he does, I will fight. Russia is my country. Russia must win the war.’”

    How many rich young Brits would say that stuff? ‘Britain is my country. Britain must win the war’

    Very few, sadly

    https://www.spectator.co.uk/article/an-existential-war-even-wealthy-emigres-are-prepared-to-fight-for-russia/

    God that guy gets around. A truly enviable life
  • eekeek Posts: 24,866
    Remember by post yesterday about our lack of investment in Mini nuclear power stations.

    Well the US company is now in a position to start selling and installing them and have found a site in the uk

    https://www.telegraph.co.uk/business/2024/02/08/britains-first-private-nuclear-power-station-teesside-2030s/?utm_medium=Social&utm_campaign=Echobox&utm_source=Twitter#Echobox=1707382430-1
  • kyf_100kyf_100 Posts: 3,917
    Taz said:

    kyf_100 said:

    Taz said:

    Sandpit said:

    Eabhal said:

    Sandpit said:

    148grss said:

    Leon said:

    Leon said:

    Leon said:

    Carnyx said:

    Leon said:

    Much of urban Britain is now completely dystopian. That queue for the dentists in St Paul's

    https://x.com/uk8qnzl/status/1754997596521734573?s=20

    Er, you haven't noticed that we have discussed it several times on PB, including Labour's modification of the photo to a Britain Isn't Working-style election poster. But it is always good to remind ourselves that that is the way in which current government policy drills down to the ordinary punter on the street.
    That isn't what that video says to any sane person

    Now, don't get me wrong,. every person in that queue deserves free dental care, that is our national policy, that is their right. And dentistry in the UK has been SHITE for decades, and getting worse (I get all mine in Bangkok)

    But the obvious BME over-representation in that queue (compared to national average) does suggest that part of the problem with our NHS (and much else) is the fact we are allowing in immigrants at an historically unprecedented rate - 1.3m in two years, more, per capita, than ever entered the USA - and that is going to fuck up a free heath service, and much else, unless the economy explodes with growth (which it has not done)

    Of course, much of the blame lies with the Tories, they've been in power 14 years and demonstrably screwed this up. Fie on them
    It demonstrates a longstanding truth, that NHS services are worse in poorer areas. The paucity of the services owes nothing to immigration and everything to a government policy of underfunding the NHS and public services more broadly. Immigration is just the convenient excuse Tory stooges wheel out to cover for the government's failings, lapped up by the week minded.
    Do you really honestly believe that adding 10m people to our population, in a few short years - an influx so vast it is greater (per capita) than America experienced during the era of Ellis Island - has NOT put pressure on our NHS, infra, sewage, education, etc?

    I mean, to me this is so ridiculous it is not debatable. It is blindingly obvious. But if you demur I'm kinda impressed
    Of course, if the government chooses not to fund the necessary expansion of public services. But that is a choice.
    And what if the government literally can't afford to fund this necessary expansion. What then? The obvious answer is: end immigration

    Would you agree with that?
    Even if we accept your premise (I don't) the question is a) how and b) how much does that cost?

    If you end immigration we have to increase spending on borders and visa checks and policing people who do and don't have documentation. We have to have more raids and deportations and such. All this requires infrastructure, training, staff, legal battles, boats etc. that the state does not currently have.

    Whereas, again, the government could spend more on infrastructure that benefits everyone (including immigrants) and do some Keynesian economics at the same time. But the government doesn't want to do that because it is wedded to austerity and only the private sector being able to deliver things.

    Whether it's a new Garden City somewhere or appropriate developments on the edges of existing urban areas - I think we both agree new development wouldn't be bad. It's just that the governments answer to new development will be "let a private company do it and build loads of 4-5 bedroom houses that only well off people can afford, as well as a few luxury flats, and let them be overpriced and sold to landlords or investment companies and therefore not alleviate the pressure on the market at all". And that won't solve the underlying issues of rent and house prices being too high. We need council housing to create a base line of affordable homes of acceptable quality.
    I don't see why a shift in immigration policy to, say, cut the current immigration numbers by 80% would require any significant change in spending on borders and visa checks. We already spend on those. If the government wanted, they could just give out fewer visas.

    There are other reasons why that might not be a good idea. I work in the university sector and we'd be f****d if there was a large drop in overseas student numbers.
    If the universities want to attract more foreign students, then perhaps they should be building somewhere for them to live?
    They are doing, contributing to the housing crisis in university cities and towns. They are far more profitable for developers than standard flats, and they eat up what space is available.

    The only way they’d be contributing to a crisis, is if the student numbers (including their dependents), are going up faster than the new housing. You need to tie the numbers together, so that it’s on the university to make sure they have enough accommodation for the numbers enrolling. Want more students, then first build more housing.
    I think the current presumption is that capitalism works. Students need accommodation, so demand is increased, so supply will increase.
    Definitely happening. Just look at Newcastle or Durham over the last few years. Student digs are increasing.

    Whether it is enough or not, is another matter.
    Definitely not enough in Durham. I know it's a small town, but... https://www.thenorthernecho.co.uk/news/23073781.durham-university-student-housing-crisis-worsens-students-queue-overnight/
    Interesting although there is also Newton Hall, Framwellgate Moor, Gilesgate, Neville's Cross (traffic is shit mind) and other places just outside the city.

    I don't know where else they can build in the city (we're not a town, we have a cathedral !!!) save knocking down more bars, restaurants and shops like the stretch Oldfields used to be on just up from the Gala Theatre.
    I suspect the problem is that Durham the city is just too small compared to the outsized university it supports. Student numbers have risen from 15k in 2016 to 20k in 2022. So the population there is presumably around 40% students.

    Students need HMOs (which landlords often don't want to provide, due to extra costs and regulatory burdens) in walking distance or with good public transport, which puts the brakes on a lot of out of town areas or residential developments. Plus given the low prices up north, I'm guessing a lot of those areas are owner/occupier rather than rented out.

    But at a really essential level, my guess is number of beds in a small place like Durham simply hasn't kept pace with the 25% expansion of the university in the last 5 years. If, say, Newcastle university expanded at the same rate, I'm guessing there's a lot more rooms and space for new development to keep pace.
  • turbotubbsturbotubbs Posts: 15,057
    Pulpstar said:

    Amazing that the police don't seem to have caught Ezedi hiding in plain sight in the likes of Tescos. Does everyone just assume someone else has called the police in situations like that ?

    My assumption is that he has killed himself (jumped of a bridge into the Thames), hence the trail going cold on the evening of the attack.
  • tlg86tlg86 Posts: 25,182

    Pulpstar said:

    Amazing that the police don't seem to have caught Ezedi hiding in plain sight in the likes of Tescos. Does everyone just assume someone else has called the police in situations like that ?

    My assumption is that he has killed himself (jumped of a bridge into the Thames), hence the trail going cold on the evening of the attack.
    He may have succumbed to his injuries. Alternatively, he's being protected by someone.
  • HarperHarper Posts: 197
    kinabalu said:

    Sean_F said:

    O/T I went to a dinner/seminar last night at which defence/ Ukraine issues were discussed at length by top analysts. The key takeaways were:-

    1. Tactically, the performance of the Russian army is dreadful, no better than two years ago. But, it has always been. Operationally, it is a lot more capable, and it is getting artillery shells in much greater numbers than Ukraine. There are precisely two European companies that manufacture artillery shells. However, Ukraine has the advantage in terms of possession and production of drones.

    2. Russians are willing to suffer hardship, to achieve military success, in ways we don’t fully appreciate in the West.

    3. But even Russia can’t defy economic gravity for ever. Soviet oil exports have been hit hard in recent months, partly due to drone attacks, and the regime is burning through foreign exchange reserves at an incredible speed. If Ukraine can keep fighting for 2-3 years, then it will likely win, as Russia runs out of resources.

    4. Germany’s commitment to Ukraine is now of vital importance. As well as aid, Germany is now training twice as many Ukrainian soldiers as the UK is.

    5. The reduction of the UK’s military capability, starting in 2010, is of real concern, throughout NATO. Cameron, Osborne and their successors have acted as if the world is growing safer, rather than more dangerous.

    6. Contrary to press reports, there is no shortage of people wishing to join the armed forces. The real problem is with Capita, taking up to 14 months to process applications, by which time, they’ve taken other jobs.

    With (2) were the analysts saying it's something in the Russian 'soul' (or whatever) that makes them tolerate great hardship for the sake of military glory? Because I've heard that a lot and I'm a bit skeptical. Isn't it more that the people there are repressed under a dictatorship and subject to vast amounts of propaganda? Meaning they are (i) more likely to keep on believing in the cause and (ii) less likely to play up even if they don't.
    From what ive seen of Russians on holiday they are generally tougher. They have to be living in a cold climate in a relatively poor country that has been subject to invasions and brutal dictatorships. With regards to propaganda we in the west are too subject to constant propoganda to justify a model that vastly benefits a privileged few but impoverishes many.
  • algarkirkalgarkirk Posts: 10,455
    edited February 8
    Cookie said:

    Eabhal said:

    Eabhal said:
    Curious timing. No official report out yet on the iPad use.

    Something else going on?
    I wonder if Yousaf will offer the Health Secretary job to Kate Forbes.
    Don’t see how that would work with her support of those ghouls hanging about outside NHS abortion clinics.

    Gives me the opportunity for one of* my vasectomy anecdotes.
    At the end of the whole escapade, as, in my loose-fitting trousers, sympathetic wife at my side, feeling not exactly tip-top either physically or mentally, I shuffled uncomfortably out of the door and down the steps to the car park, I was heckled by a gang. I was puzzled by this to start with: I’m no stranger to the odd angry mob, but these were an incongruous angry mob; older, more conservatively dressed, more accessorised by the accoutrements of street Christianity than most angry mobs I had hitherto come across. British Christians, in my experience, very rarely tend to be angry. What were these people doing at a discreet vasectomy clinic in suburban south Manchester? And why were they so cross at me? They were too pathetic and I was too preoccupied with the pain in my penis for me too feel particularly frightened. But I gradually became aware – they were looking slightly to my left, not directly at me, which I also thought odd, given my rather self-absorbed frame of mind: clearly in my head I was the main player in this drama at that moment – that it was not me but my wife they were heckling, and my hackles rose. Clearly they were under the impression that we’d been in for an abortion. Maybe that place did abortions on other days? Who knows.
    Anyway. Not having superstitious nutjobs shout at my wife like that, erroneously or not. The sheer scale of wrongness made a pithy and cutting retort quite challenging, but I rallied. Probably fortuitously, by the time I managed to get the words in order – it was quite a good rant, and I think concluded with the word ‘fuckwits’ – my wife had managed to pilot me into the car, past the still-angry mob and, actually, several miles away. So it was only really her who got the benefit of my wit.
    A pity, but probably for the best.

    * Only one vasectomy, but a few anecdotes. It was an interesting experience.
    There really are moments in life when "I disapprove of what you say, but I will defend to the death your right to say it" is not the first thought that comes to mind.

    BTW perhaps those people were superstitious - who can tell - but the question of the rights of the unborn (there is a more or less universal intuition that they have some, the question is their boundaries) in themselves have no relation whatever to superstition, religion or science, which between them offer little or no useful guidance as to the balance of rights and interests as between the unborn and the mother.
  • MalmesburyMalmesbury Posts: 44,042
    DavidL said:

    kinabalu said:

    Sean_F said:

    O/T I went to a dinner/seminar last night at which defence/ Ukraine issues were discussed at length by top analysts. The key takeaways were:-

    1. Tactically, the performance of the Russian army is dreadful, no better than two years ago. But, it has always been. Operationally, it is a lot more capable, and it is getting artillery shells in much greater numbers than Ukraine. There are precisely two European companies that manufacture artillery shells. However, Ukraine has the advantage in terms of possession and production of drones.

    2. Russians are willing to suffer hardship, to achieve military success, in ways we don’t fully appreciate in the West.

    3. But even Russia can’t defy economic gravity for ever. Soviet oil exports have been hit hard in recent months, partly due to drone attacks, and the regime is burning through foreign exchange reserves at an incredible speed. If Ukraine can keep fighting for 2-3 years, then it will likely win, as Russia runs out of resources.

    4. Germany’s commitment to Ukraine is now of vital importance. As well as aid, Germany is now training twice as many Ukrainian soldiers as the UK is.

    5. The reduction of the UK’s military capability, starting in 2010, is of real concern, throughout NATO. Cameron, Osborne and their successors have acted as if the world is growing safer, rather than more dangerous.

    6. Contrary to press reports, there is no shortage of people wishing to join the armed forces. The real problem is with Capita, taking up to 14 months to process applications, by which time, they’ve taken other jobs.

    With (2) were the analysts saying it's something in the Russian 'soul' (or whatever) that makes them tolerate great hardship for the sake of military glory? Because I've heard that a lot and I'm a bit skeptical. Isn't it more that the people there are repressed under a dictatorship and subject to vast amounts of propaganda? Meaning they are (i) more likely to keep on believing in the cause and (ii) less likely to play up even if they don't.
    We watched the latest Storyville last night about escaping from North Korea. Harrowing but compelling. And the north Korean family showed all too clearly how humans can be bullied into believing almost anything. As Sting sang many years ago "Russians love their children too" but the concept of duty and protection of the motherland is ground in from a very early age.

    And then there is fear, of course.
    Christopher Hitchens wrote, that in every ex-dictatorship he went to, people described how they didn't believe, but kept it inside their heads. Hence the moments when *someone* broke the line and then everyone joined in the new revolution.
  • MalmesburyMalmesbury Posts: 44,042

    Pulpstar said:

    Amazing that the police don't seem to have caught Ezedi hiding in plain sight in the likes of Tescos. Does everyone just assume someone else has called the police in situations like that ?

    My assumption is that he has killed himself (jumped of a bridge into the Thames), hence the trail going cold on the evening of the attack.
    He's hiding with a friend.
  • kinabalukinabalu Posts: 39,002
    DavidL said:

    kinabalu said:

    Sean_F said:

    O/T I went to a dinner/seminar last night at which defence/ Ukraine issues were discussed at length by top analysts. The key takeaways were:-

    1. Tactically, the performance of the Russian army is dreadful, no better than two years ago. But, it has always been. Operationally, it is a lot more capable, and it is getting artillery shells in much greater numbers than Ukraine. There are precisely two European companies that manufacture artillery shells. However, Ukraine has the advantage in terms of possession and production of drones.

    2. Russians are willing to suffer hardship, to achieve military success, in ways we don’t fully appreciate in the West.

    3. But even Russia can’t defy economic gravity for ever. Soviet oil exports have been hit hard in recent months, partly due to drone attacks, and the regime is burning through foreign exchange reserves at an incredible speed. If Ukraine can keep fighting for 2-3 years, then it will likely win, as Russia runs out of resources.

    4. Germany’s commitment to Ukraine is now of vital importance. As well as aid, Germany is now training twice as many Ukrainian soldiers as the UK is.

    5. The reduction of the UK’s military capability, starting in 2010, is of real concern, throughout NATO. Cameron, Osborne and their successors have acted as if the world is growing safer, rather than more dangerous.

    6. Contrary to press reports, there is no shortage of people wishing to join the armed forces. The real problem is with Capita, taking up to 14 months to process applications, by which time, they’ve taken other jobs.

    With (2) were the analysts saying it's something in the Russian 'soul' (or whatever) that makes them tolerate great hardship for the sake of military glory? Because I've heard that a lot and I'm a bit skeptical. Isn't it more that the people there are repressed under a dictatorship and subject to vast amounts of propaganda? Meaning they are (i) more likely to keep on believing in the cause and (ii) less likely to play up even if they don't.
    We watched the latest Storyville last night about escaping from North Korea. Harrowing but compelling. And the north Korean family showed all too clearly how humans can be bullied into believing almost anything. As Sting sang many years ago "Russians love their children too" but the concept of duty and protection of the motherland is ground in from a very early age.

    And then there is fear, of course.
    I'll probably watch that. North Korea is darkly fascinating, isn't it.

    Re these 'personalized' national characteristics such as 'brave' or 'stoic' - or their opposites of 'cowardly' or 'feeble' - I personally barely believe in them. They tend to be massively overused because they're an easy and vivid way of talking about geopolitical matters.

    But fwiw on the Ukraine/Russia war, and specifically on the resilience/motivation of the respective populations, I'd say the Russians have the advantage of being repressed and brainwashed, but the Ukrainians have the advantage of it being a defence of their own country.
  • kamskikamski Posts: 4,203

    Nayib Bukele's speech after winning reelection is worth watching. El Salvador has become the country with the lowest muder rate in the western hemisphere:

    https://x.com/nayibbukele/status/1755411561575817340

    The decline in murder rate is impressive but 7.8 per 100,000 is not the lowest. El Salvador has 6.5 million people, roughly the same population as Scotland which had 52 homicides for the whole country and that is without suspending habeus corpus and rounding up everyone remotely gang-adjacent.
    https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/articles/cqv9vzqvddwo
    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/El_Salvador
    El Salvador murder rate supposedly 2.4 per 100,000 in 2023. That is low by American standards but it is going to be way higher than Ireland, Iceland, Portugal and probably other countries that are definitely in the western hemisphere.

    Maybe it's the lowest in the Americas? No - Canada had 2.25 (2022). Might be differences in reporting of course.
  • DavidLDavidL Posts: 50,978

    DavidL said:

    kinabalu said:

    Sean_F said:

    O/T I went to a dinner/seminar last night at which defence/ Ukraine issues were discussed at length by top analysts. The key takeaways were:-

    1. Tactically, the performance of the Russian army is dreadful, no better than two years ago. But, it has always been. Operationally, it is a lot more capable, and it is getting artillery shells in much greater numbers than Ukraine. There are precisely two European companies that manufacture artillery shells. However, Ukraine has the advantage in terms of possession and production of drones.

    2. Russians are willing to suffer hardship, to achieve military success, in ways we don’t fully appreciate in the West.

    3. But even Russia can’t defy economic gravity for ever. Soviet oil exports have been hit hard in recent months, partly due to drone attacks, and the regime is burning through foreign exchange reserves at an incredible speed. If Ukraine can keep fighting for 2-3 years, then it will likely win, as Russia runs out of resources.

    4. Germany’s commitment to Ukraine is now of vital importance. As well as aid, Germany is now training twice as many Ukrainian soldiers as the UK is.

    5. The reduction of the UK’s military capability, starting in 2010, is of real concern, throughout NATO. Cameron, Osborne and their successors have acted as if the world is growing safer, rather than more dangerous.

    6. Contrary to press reports, there is no shortage of people wishing to join the armed forces. The real problem is with Capita, taking up to 14 months to process applications, by which time, they’ve taken other jobs.

    With (2) were the analysts saying it's something in the Russian 'soul' (or whatever) that makes them tolerate great hardship for the sake of military glory? Because I've heard that a lot and I'm a bit skeptical. Isn't it more that the people there are repressed under a dictatorship and subject to vast amounts of propaganda? Meaning they are (i) more likely to keep on believing in the cause and (ii) less likely to play up even if they don't.
    We watched the latest Storyville last night about escaping from North Korea. Harrowing but compelling. And the north Korean family showed all too clearly how humans can be bullied into believing almost anything. As Sting sang many years ago "Russians love their children too" but the concept of duty and protection of the motherland is ground in from a very early age.

    And then there is fear, of course.
    Christopher Hitchens wrote, that in every ex-dictatorship he went to, people described how they didn't believe, but kept it inside their heads. Hence the moments when *someone* broke the line and then everyone joined in the new revolution.
    I would urge you to watch the documentary. If they had disbelief inside them it was a long way inside. I don't want to give spoilers because it is as much a drama as a documentary but, wow.
  • HarperHarper Posts: 197
    Fishing said:

    Sean_F said:

    O/T I went to a dinner/seminar last night at which defence/ Ukraine issues were discussed at length by top analysts. The key takeaways were:-

    1. Tactically, the performance of the Russian army is dreadful, no better than two years ago. But, it has always been. Operationally, it is a lot more capable, and it is getting artillery shells in much greater numbers than Ukraine. There are precisely two European companies that manufacture artillery shells. However, Ukraine has the advantage in terms of possession and production of drones.

    2. Russians are willing to suffer hardship, to achieve military success, in ways we don’t fully appreciate in the West.

    3. But even Russia can’t defy economic gravity for ever. Soviet oil exports have been hit hard in recent months, partly due to drone attacks, and the regime is burning through foreign exchange reserves at an incredible speed. If Ukraine can keep fighting for 2-3 years, then it will likely win, as Russia runs out of resources.

    4. Germany’s commitment to Ukraine is now of vital importance. As well as aid, Germany is now training twice as many Ukrainian soldiers as the UK is.

    5. The reduction of the UK’s military capability, starting in 2010, is of real concern, throughout NATO. Cameron, Osborne and their successors have acted as if the world is growing safer, rather than more dangerous.

    6. Contrary to press reports, there is no shortage of people wishing to join the armed forces. The real problem is with Capita, taking up to 14 months to process applications, by which time, they’ve taken other jobs.

    5. Absolutely. A national scandal, but the rot began long before Cameron and Osborne - arguably John Major, though I think much of the slimming down in the 90s was inevitable, but certainly Blair and Brown, who not only reduced the budget as a share of GDP but also used the armed forces frenetically.

    I think 3. is probably unduly optimistic. I don't think it will be a lack of foreign exchange reserves that does for Russia. Putin's regime seems strong enough, and the Russian muzhik is apathetic enough, that they will take significant declines in their living standards rather than stop the war.

    What I think might do for Russia in the end is when it finally runs through all the Soviet-era tanks and artillery pieces in about 1-2 years - less if the vast stocks still available have mostly rotted away. Ukraine is not really fighting Russia at the moment, it's fighting the Soviet Union's military legacy (and fighting that WITH part of that legacy, since so much of its kit is still Soviet), and T-55s have been identified on the front lines. That's what I'm most optimistic about in the current situation.
    Ukraine fighting for 2 ro 3 more years is a big ask to be fair. They are really struggling round Avdeevka now and seem on the brink of losing it.

    This on X
    The Battle for Avdeevka is lost for Ukrainians - but the battle is not over yet.
    AFU will either try to fight its way out of the city - or hold on to the last man to gain time for a better line of defense further in the West.
    One is clear - Russian forces won't make it easy for AFU - no matter what they will try.
    Artillery and aviation is working - RF is pinning down AFU on the outskirts - making it harder to leave post - and moving deeper into the center to split the cake for good.


    https://x.com/GeromanAT/status/1755303947856748795?s=20
  • numbertwelvenumbertwelve Posts: 5,416
    Sunak refusing to apologise gives us a glimpse of what the Tory GE strategy is going to be (as suspected for some time).

    Number 10 have clearly decided it is more important to paint Starmer as an unprincipled flip flopper than it is to mitigate the potential damage caused by Sunak’s remarks.

    It is going to be a very dirty GE campaign.
  • MalmesburyMalmesbury Posts: 44,042
    148grss said:

    Leon said:

    148grss said:

    Leon said:

    I’ll give PBers a second chance to contemplate it

    ‘A team led by mathematician Jan H. van de Beek at the University of Amsterdam estimates that the Dutch government spent approximately €17 billion per year on migration in the period between 1995 and 2019, meaning that more than one billion euros went to migration-related issues every month.

    The study digs deeper still: annual net costs of non-Western immigration amount to €17 billion and the annual net benefits of Western immigration total one billion euros. Distinguishing between Western and non-Western migration patterns, the study comes to a startling conclusion: if immigration remains at 2015-2019 levels, the annual budget burden will increase from €17 billion in 2016 to about €50 billion. This is an increase that the welfare state would most likely not survive.

    The Dutch findings are mirrored in a similar study conducted by the Danish Finance Ministry, which concludes that non-Western immigrants are most likely to remain lifelong recipients of public finances compared to their Western or native Danish peers. Meanwhile, the picture in Germany is not much different: about 45% of those who receive unemployment benefits are not German citizens, costing the taxpayers around €20 billion per year. Austria shows similar numbers, with almost 60% of recipients having a “migrant background”.

    Van de Beek sees parts of the problem in the structure of the welfare state… [snip - see the link],

    The emerging picture is a complex one that includes both cultural and economic factors, but the overall conclusion remains the same: the current conditions under which migration to Europe takes place are not sustainable and will bring the welfare systems ever closer to collapsing. The idea promoted by Folkerts-Landau and others turned out to be far too optimistic, and what makes matters worse is that politicians still refuse to face the facts.

    Placing one’s head in the sand is, unfortunately, not the same as actual policymaking. Europe has ignored these issues for too long, and voters will make their discontent heard at the voting booth’

    https://unherd.com/thepost/dutch-study-immigration-costs-state-e17-billion-per-year/

    So the only actual report I can find (other than pieces in right wing media about the report) are in Danish, and I can't find anything discussing the report in English other than right wingers hailing it as the evidence they've always needed that immigrants are bad actually. That's not to say it is wrong, just that as someone who doesn't speak Danish I can't verify the actual findings of the report outside of places like unherd, who are not a source I trust.

    I have found an OpenDemocracy article detailing essentially the argument I put forth yesterday - how if immigrants are a "drain" on an economy it is most likely the practices of the employers who abuse those workers and use them to under cut labour rights and labour costs, but I accept that could have nothing to do with what this report was exploring. If you have a link directly to the report in English, I'd be very interested to look at it, the methodology and such.

    https://www.opendemocracy.net/en/beyond-trafficking-and-slavery/the-danish-model-of-exploiting-migrant-workers/
    Mate, it's Dutch. lol

    Not a good start to your research


    Here's the report. In English


    https://demo-demo.nl/wp-content/uploads/2023/06/Borderless_Welfare_State-2.pdf
    So looking at the report and a couple of academic book reviews of the report (there isn't a lot in English because it seems the English translation only came out last year?) I have a few thoughts.

    From one of the book reviews summarising the report: https://www.academia.edu/85011302/Book_Review_i_Borderless_Welfare_State_The_Consequences_of_Immigration_on_Public_Finances_Grenzeloze_verzorgingsstaat_De_gevolgen_van_immigratie_voor_de_overheidsfinanciën_i_

    For example, the authors show that labor migrants have a positive net contribution, but study migration, family migration, and asylum migration lead to substantial negative net contributions. For instance, asylum migration costs on average almost half a million euros per immigrant; an important reason is the low-level of labor force participation, partially caused by restrictions on work permits while the migrants are waiting for decision about their status.

    Already this carves out a distinction between those who are workers migrating and those who aren't. Study migration and family migration would obviously be net negative - that is a non working population, typically in education -and the exploration of that as a net negative seems somewhat persuasive. Although it only looks at Gens 1 and 2. I remember, anecdotally, something about how most immigrant populations tend to be fully integrated by the third generation and after a quick google scholar another Dutch paper which concludes

    "Thus, this study has presented novel empirical evidence that the ethnic disparities in income among Dutch citizens born to second-generation migrant parents from various immigrant groups are fading"
    https://docs.iza.org/dp13855.pdf

    This report does note that this does not reach parity with Dutch natives, including for groups who have been in the country longer (such as Germans) - but it may mean that they will make up the net losses of the previous generations.

    As for asylum seekers being a net drain - there's a part of me which is like "duh", they are more likely to have come from somewhere war torn or traumatic and, therefore, will have lower levels of education. But, interestingly, the report does note that the restrictions on work whilst applying for permits also adds to the issue. Which begs the question - surely a way to make those people less of a "drain" would be to a) reduce the government scrutiny on their asylum application or b) allow them to work whilst waiting for their status to come through (arguably under closer scrutiny to make sure they aren't just being abused by employers who may not afford them the same rights as other workers).

    That's just a very quick scan during my lunch hour - I do find this interesting, though.
    It should be fairly obvious and not especially controversial that Delivroo bike riders contribute less to the economy than they require in services.

    Since the whole point of the welfare state is to support poor people.

    It is interesting to see how high up the income scale you go, before you are a net contributor to the economy. Hence, for example the startling stats about the number of net tax payers in poorer areas of the UK.

    The debate then moves to "high economic value immigrants"
  • Chris said:

    AlsoLei said:

    Chris said:

    I see the Right are pushing back over Rishi's PMQs controversy yesterday. The alternative narrative is that Sir Keir put on a mawkish, insincere display that milked a tragic murder for his own grubby political ends. Which narrative will gain supremacy?

    For most people, the one that was prevalent at the time it was reported, not the one presented later to people still discussing it on social media.
    Sunak now saying it was "sad and wrong" to have linked anti-trans comments to Brianna Ghey... but he's still refusing to apologise for having done so.

    https://metro.co.uk/2024/02/08/brianna-gheys-dad-calls-rishis-transgender-comment-dehumanising-20244380
    As Sunak seems to be lacking in political instinct across the board, should we be surprised that he lacks the instinct to stop digging when he's in a hole?
    Sunak is making the Davey mistake on this one, I think.

    Both felt, not totally without justification, that they were being slightly harshly criticised, and that some of that criticism was rather performative by political opponents who saw a chance at a free hit. But it just isn't a sensible strategy to respond to that by complaining people have been a bit unfair to you, when the story involves jailed postmasters in one case and the family of a murdered child in the other. It inevitably looks as if you're saying "I'm the real victim here" and that's a dreadful look.
  • noneoftheabovenoneoftheabove Posts: 20,544
    kamski said:

    Nayib Bukele's speech after winning reelection is worth watching. El Salvador has become the country with the lowest muder rate in the western hemisphere:

    https://x.com/nayibbukele/status/1755411561575817340

    The decline in murder rate is impressive but 7.8 per 100,000 is not the lowest. El Salvador has 6.5 million people, roughly the same population as Scotland which had 52 homicides for the whole country and that is without suspending habeus corpus and rounding up everyone remotely gang-adjacent.
    https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/articles/cqv9vzqvddwo
    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/El_Salvador
    El Salvador murder rate supposedly 2.4 per 100,000 in 2023. That is low by American standards but it is going to be way higher than Ireland, Iceland, Portugal and probably other countries that are definitely in the western hemisphere.

    Maybe it's the lowest in the Americas? No - Canada had 2.25 (2022). Might be differences in reporting of course.
    Or populist politican tells fibs......surely not?
  • david_herdsondavid_herdson Posts: 17,417
    Taz said:

    kyf_100 said:

    Taz said:

    Sandpit said:

    Eabhal said:

    Sandpit said:

    148grss said:

    Leon said:

    Leon said:

    Leon said:

    Carnyx said:

    Leon said:

    Much of urban Britain is now completely dystopian. That queue for the dentists in St Paul's

    https://x.com/uk8qnzl/status/1754997596521734573?s=20

    Er, you haven't noticed that we have discussed it several times on PB, including Labour's modification of the photo to a Britain Isn't Working-style election poster. But it is always good to remind ourselves that that is the way in which current government policy drills down to the ordinary punter on the street.
    That isn't what that video says to any sane person

    Now, don't get me wrong,. every person in that queue deserves free dental care, that is our national policy, that is their right. And dentistry in the UK has been SHITE for decades, and getting worse (I get all mine in Bangkok)

    But the obvious BME over-representation in that queue (compared to national average) does suggest that part of the problem with our NHS (and much else) is the fact we are allowing in immigrants at an historically unprecedented rate - 1.3m in two years, more, per capita, than ever entered the USA - and that is going to fuck up a free heath service, and much else, unless the economy explodes with growth (which it has not done)

    Of course, much of the blame lies with the Tories, they've been in power 14 years and demonstrably screwed this up. Fie on them
    It demonstrates a longstanding truth, that NHS services are worse in poorer areas. The paucity of the services owes nothing to immigration and everything to a government policy of underfunding the NHS and public services more broadly. Immigration is just the convenient excuse Tory stooges wheel out to cover for the government's failings, lapped up by the week minded.
    Do you really honestly believe that adding 10m people to our population, in a few short years - an influx so vast it is greater (per capita) than America experienced during the era of Ellis Island - has NOT put pressure on our NHS, infra, sewage, education, etc?

    I mean, to me this is so ridiculous it is not debatable. It is blindingly obvious. But if you demur I'm kinda impressed
    Of course, if the government chooses not to fund the necessary expansion of public services. But that is a choice.
    And what if the government literally can't afford to fund this necessary expansion. What then? The obvious answer is: end immigration

    Would you agree with that?
    Even if we accept your premise (I don't) the question is a) how and b) how much does that cost?

    If you end immigration we have to increase spending on borders and visa checks and policing people who do and don't have documentation. We have to have more raids and deportations and such. All this requires infrastructure, training, staff, legal battles, boats etc. that the state does not currently have.

    Whereas, again, the government could spend more on infrastructure that benefits everyone (including immigrants) and do some Keynesian economics at the same time. But the government doesn't want to do that because it is wedded to austerity and only the private sector being able to deliver things.

    Whether it's a new Garden City somewhere or appropriate developments on the edges of existing urban areas - I think we both agree new development wouldn't be bad. It's just that the governments answer to new development will be "let a private company do it and build loads of 4-5 bedroom houses that only well off people can afford, as well as a few luxury flats, and let them be overpriced and sold to landlords or investment companies and therefore not alleviate the pressure on the market at all". And that won't solve the underlying issues of rent and house prices being too high. We need council housing to create a base line of affordable homes of acceptable quality.
    I don't see why a shift in immigration policy to, say, cut the current immigration numbers by 80% would require any significant change in spending on borders and visa checks. We already spend on those. If the government wanted, they could just give out fewer visas.

    There are other reasons why that might not be a good idea. I work in the university sector and we'd be f****d if there was a large drop in overseas student numbers.
    If the universities want to attract more foreign students, then perhaps they should be building somewhere for them to live?
    They are doing, contributing to the housing crisis in university cities and towns. They are far more profitable for developers than standard flats, and they eat up what space is available.

    The only way they’d be contributing to a crisis, is if the student numbers (including their dependents), are going up faster than the new housing. You need to tie the numbers together, so that it’s on the university to make sure they have enough accommodation for the numbers enrolling. Want more students, then first build more housing.
    I think the current presumption is that capitalism works. Students need accommodation, so demand is increased, so supply will increase.
    Definitely happening. Just look at Newcastle or Durham over the last few years. Student digs are increasing.

    Whether it is enough or not, is another matter.
    Definitely not enough in Durham. I know it's a small town, but... https://www.thenorthernecho.co.uk/news/23073781.durham-university-student-housing-crisis-worsens-students-queue-overnight/
    Interesting although there is also Newton Hall, Framwellgate Moor, Gilesgate, Neville's Cross (traffic is shit mind) and other places just outside the city.

    I don't know where else they can build in the city (we're not a town, we have a cathedral !!!) save knocking down more bars, restaurants and shops like the stretch Oldfields used to be on just up from the Gala Theatre.
    A cathedral is neither necessary nor sufficient for a settlement to style itself a city (though the two usually go together, leading to the urban myth implicitly quoted above.

    What it really needs is a Charter that enables it to style itself such.

    (When I was a student in Durham, I lived in Ushaw Moor. £23/wk rent in the mid-1990s. I imagine prices have gone up a bit since.
  • Dura_AceDura_Ace Posts: 12,946
    kinabalu said:

    Sean_F said:

    O/T I went to a dinner/seminar last night at which defence/ Ukraine issues were discussed at length by top analysts. The key takeaways were:-

    1. Tactically, the performance of the Russian army is dreadful, no better than two years ago. But, it has always been. Operationally, it is a lot more capable, and it is getting artillery shells in much greater numbers than Ukraine. There are precisely two European companies that manufacture artillery shells. However, Ukraine has the advantage in terms of possession and production of drones.

    2. Russians are willing to suffer hardship, to achieve military success, in ways we don’t fully appreciate in the West.

    3. But even Russia can’t defy economic gravity for ever. Soviet oil exports have been hit hard in recent months, partly due to drone attacks, and the regime is burning through foreign exchange reserves at an incredible speed. If Ukraine can keep fighting for 2-3 years, then it will likely win, as Russia runs out of resources.

    4. Germany’s commitment to Ukraine is now of vital importance. As well as aid, Germany is now training twice as many Ukrainian soldiers as the UK is.

    5. The reduction of the UK’s military capability, starting in 2010, is of real concern, throughout NATO. Cameron, Osborne and their successors have acted as if the world is growing safer, rather than more dangerous.

    6. Contrary to press reports, there is no shortage of people wishing to join the armed forces. The real problem is with Capita, taking up to 14 months to process applications, by which time, they’ve taken other jobs.

    With (2) were the analysts saying it's something in the Russian 'soul' (or whatever) that makes them tolerate great hardship for the sake of military glory? Because I've heard that a lot and I'm a bit skeptical. Isn't it more that the people there are repressed under a dictatorship and subject to vast amounts of propaganda? Meaning they are (i) more likely to keep on believing in the cause and (ii) less likely to play up even if they don't.
    They have a cultural obsession with war and dying in large numbers that makes the English undying fixation on WW2 look like a passing fancy.

    Understanding of Russian culture, with a few exceptions, by Western commentators is meagre. It's impossible to have anything other than superficial, and probably erroneous, grasp on it if all you have is English language sources curated by Western media. Hence, the smug and staggering ignorance that our resident Russophobes wear with such pride as if it were the Order of Lenin.
  • mwadamsmwadams Posts: 3,132

    a

    Carnyx said:

    ..

    Leon said:

    Leon said:

    TOPPING said:

    Leon said:

    Carnyx said:

    Leon said:

    Much of urban Britain is now completely dystopian. That queue for the dentists in St Paul's

    https://x.com/uk8qnzl/status/1754997596521734573?s=20

    Er, you haven't noticed that we have discussed it several times on PB, including Labour's modification of the photo to a Britain Isn't Working-style election poster. But it is always good to remind ourselves that that is the way in which current government policy drills down to the ordinary punter on the street.
    But the obvious BME over-representation in that queue
    This is where you fucked up.
    No, it isn't

    It will be newcomers seeking dentists. Settled citizens (of any stripe) will already have dentists, in the main

    For the last eight years the vast majority of migration into Britain - since Brexit - has been non-white, non-EU. You would therefore expect a queue of new people, presumably seeking a dentist, to be non-white
    Not really. People move around, and will need a new dentist. Existing dental practices shut down and their patients need a new dentist. Plenty of people simply don't have a dentist because NHS dentists in their area won't take new patients. You just looked at a queue of non white people and said "they must be immigrants" on the basis of no information. Given that you live in Camden you have a surprisingly provincial and outdated view of British society.
    St Paul's, Bristol, has one of the higher levels of non-UK-born inhabitants in the country. So, no, I didn't just presume, I looked at the data
    St Paul's has had a large African/Caribbean population since the 1950s (it has had a carnival since the early 1960s and was where the Bristol Bus Boycott started) so will also be home to a significant non white population who are not immigrants and certainly not recent arrivals. I just don't know how one can judge whether the crowd outside the dental practice are recent immigrants or not based on their appearance.
    It all reminds me of some friends of my grandparents who congratulated my then girlfriend, now wife, on her beautiful English. Her parents are Sri Lankan but she was born in Margate and was studying at Cambridge University at the time so her English language skills were not really that surprising.
    Suggesting that British born BAMEs aren’t really British is Goodwin’s latest slippery little trick. I suppose they’re an easy visible target towards which to direct the torch wielding mob.
    "The Scots are as British as anyone," isn't your usual line.
    We’re as British as any other person born in the UK. Polling suggests we don’t feel as strong an attachment to that identity as BAME folk, despite the best efforts of Goodwin and his fellow travellers to put them off.
    Nicely delphic, especially the UK bit.

    kinabalu said:

    kinabalu said:

    boulay said:

    Leon said:

    Leon said:

    TOPPING said:

    Leon said:

    TOPPING said:

    Leon said:

    Carnyx said:

    Leon said:

    Much of urban Britain is now completely dystopian. That queue for the dentists in St Paul's

    https://x.com/uk8qnzl/status/1754997596521734573?s=20

    Er, you haven't noticed that we have discussed it several times on PB, including Labour's modification of the photo to a Britain Isn't Working-style election poster. But it is always good to remind ourselves that that is the way in which current government policy drills down to the ordinary punter on the street.
    But the obvious BME over-representation in that queue
    This is where you fucked up.
    No, it isn't

    It will be newcomers seeking dentists. Settled citizens (of any stripe) will already have dentists, in the main

    For the last eight years the vast majority of migration into Britain - since Brexit - has been non-white, non-EU. You would therefore expect a queue of new people, presumably seeking a dentist, to be non-white
    I didn't see you travelling down this path tbh. What does it matter what colour people are. Plus I've no idea whether your "stat" is true. I haven't yet come across a black Polish plumber or Romanian bricklayer or indeed Albanian chippie but I'm sure some exist.

    Or are you feeling a bit besieged on PB atm and are doubling down.
    I am merely saying that the video is - arguably - a visual representation of the pressure mass migration is putting on the UK's public services and infra. This is hardly a new point from me, I am hardly going off on a new Nazi tangent, am I? I expect you've heard me make the point before

    And yet there are PB-ers who deny this is an issue. Who deny that mass migration might be at least part of the reason we see such pressure on UK health, education, sewage, roads, &c

    See below

    i do feel slightly beseiged, but I quite enjoy it (for now). With @Casino_Royale gone I am like the last redcoat in Zulu, the drunken malingerer in the sick bay turned hero, shooting up at the thatch as the lefty hordes overwhelm the Drift. Hooky. That was his name. Hooky. Got a VC didn't he?
    The drunken malingerer thing was bullshit, incidentally. He was a lay Methodist preacher and an exemplary soldier, IIRC.

    Also, IIRC, his descendants protested at his portrayal
    Great movie, tho. Really really great

    I imagine it is barely showable now, as it is quite non-Woke
    Apart from it being on woke Channel 4 at new year and on 4OD (maybe still is) it’s barely showable.
    Yep. You can't get away from it. If you want to not watch it you have to make that a priority.
    But if you change channel (to the only other channel), they are showing The Dam Busters on a loop. With the name of the dog* unbleeped.

    *Dog not included for scale.
    Time for a good book then, preferably one without any 'heroic' war nonsense. Eg I'm into a Japanese magical realist epic atm. I pick it up whenever I'm tempted to do something reprehensible.
    Or fire up The Cruel Sea.

    "Snorkers! Good oh!"
    Train smash as it was known to my father, albeit when served with tomatoes.
    Snorkers = very dubious tinned sausages
    Train Smash = everything available cooked together.

    I *thought*
    "It's the war. The whole, bloody war." <= favourite Cruel Sea quote. Hawkins delivers it immaculately.
  • maxhmaxh Posts: 818
    malcolmg said:

    Roger said:

    Roger said:

    Dura_Ace said:

    Pulpstar said:

    rcs1000 said:

    With all the caveats - this is one case, it’s the Daily Mail (so may be at least half true), etc etc this is a good example of why ordinary people get frustrated by the asylum system

    * Fled Syria in 2014 to avoid being called up. Ok, seems reasonable
    * Settled in Germany where he had family. Makes sense
    * 3 years ago he rowed with his family because he drinks and smokes and they said that means he’s not a good Muslim. Hmmh. Seems unlikely… may be @TheScreamingEagles can comment
    * To quote him: 'I thought the UK would be a good place to find work in the construction industry, I am a talented plasterer,'

    In what world is someone who was settled for 5+ years in Germany and has admitted that they are coming to the UK to find work a potential asylum claimant. And how has it taken 3 years to make that determination?

    This isn’t a comment on the level of immigration or the need for people to do jobs. It’s a comment on the breakdown is the asylum process. If you want legal immigration that should be separate


    https://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-13058261/why-wont-police-let-leave-britain-ilegal-channel-migrant-living-rowing-boat.html

    Quite: this should have been a 48 hour determination at most.
    We must have the only police force in the world that actively tried to stop someone who admits, and is actively trying to go stop leaving !
    But, what can they do with this boat-dwelling arsehole? They can't deport him to Syria. They can't deport him to Germany because of our hard won BREXIT FREEDOMS. The Old Bill can't just not enforce the law that says you can't blag your way onto ferries.
    Stick him on a train to Dublin.
    Brutal! I remember aged 18 going to Spain for a week just before taking up my first job. On the beach I met an English guy about the same age as me with a battered boat and 'Joe's Speedboat' daubed on the side.

    He had a bevy of girls around him and every now and then someone would turn up wanting a ski he'd give them a spin round the bay. I spent most of the week with him and I spent the next several years wondering why I was working like a dog in London and wasn't doing what Joe was doing with his bevvy of girls not a care in the world driving his speedboat.

    When did we become this morose place where we worry about someone from another country sleeping under a boat or
    even buying one if he wants to? What's wrong with foreigners being here? When did this obsession start?
    Because he broke the rules
    Do you remember when we used to think we lived in a 'free country'? When most lived by the philosophy of 'live and let live'? '

    I don't think many feel that anymore
    Leon said:

    TOPPING said:

    Leon said:

    TOPPING said:

    Leon said:

    Carnyx said:

    Leon said:

    Much of urban Britain is now completely dystopian. That queue for the dentists in St Paul's

    https://x.com/uk8qnzl/status/1754997596521734573?s=20

    Er, you haven't noticed that we have discussed it several times on PB, including Labour's modification of the photo to a Britain Isn't Working-style election poster. But it is always good to remind ourselves that that is the way in which current government policy drills down to the ordinary punter on the street.
    But the obvious BME over-representation in that queue
    This is where you fucked up.
    No, it isn't

    It will be newcomers seeking dentists. Settled citizens (of any stripe) will already have dentists, in the main

    For the last eight years the vast majority of migration into Britain - since Brexit - has been non-white, non-EU. You would therefore expect a queue of new people, presumably seeking a dentist, to be non-white
    I didn't see you travelling down this path tbh. What does it matter what colour people are. Plus I've no idea whether your "stat" is true. I haven't yet come across a black Polish plumber or Romanian bricklayer or indeed Albanian chippie but I'm sure some exist.

    Or are you feeling a bit besieged on PB atm and are doubling down.
    I am merely saying that the video is - arguably - a visual representation of the pressure mass migration is putting on the UK's public services and infra. This is hardly a new point from me, I am hardly going off on a new Nazi tangent, am I? I expect you've heard me make the point before

    And yet there are PB-ers who deny this is an issue. Who deny that mass migration might be at least part of the reason we see such pressure on UK health, education, sewage, roads, &c

    See below

    i do feel slightly beseiged, but I quite enjoy it (for now). With @Casino_Royale gone I am like the last redcoat in Zulu, the drunken malingerer in the sick bay turned hero, shooting up at the thatch as the lefty hordes overwhelm the Drift. Hooky. That was his name. Hooky. Got a VC didn't he?
    When did casino go?
    Nowhere. He's lurking. Last active 09:50 this morning...
    Deciding whether to come out of his flounce no doubt
    On the basis he’s lurking, @casino_royale please do return - we rarely agree but your perspective is interesting.
  • kinabalukinabalu Posts: 39,002
    Harper said:

    kinabalu said:

    Sean_F said:

    O/T I went to a dinner/seminar last night at which defence/ Ukraine issues were discussed at length by top analysts. The key takeaways were:-

    1. Tactically, the performance of the Russian army is dreadful, no better than two years ago. But, it has always been. Operationally, it is a lot more capable, and it is getting artillery shells in much greater numbers than Ukraine. There are precisely two European companies that manufacture artillery shells. However, Ukraine has the advantage in terms of possession and production of drones.

    2. Russians are willing to suffer hardship, to achieve military success, in ways we don’t fully appreciate in the West.

    3. But even Russia can’t defy economic gravity for ever. Soviet oil exports have been hit hard in recent months, partly due to drone attacks, and the regime is burning through foreign exchange reserves at an incredible speed. If Ukraine can keep fighting for 2-3 years, then it will likely win, as Russia runs out of resources.

    4. Germany’s commitment to Ukraine is now of vital importance. As well as aid, Germany is now training twice as many Ukrainian soldiers as the UK is.

    5. The reduction of the UK’s military capability, starting in 2010, is of real concern, throughout NATO. Cameron, Osborne and their successors have acted as if the world is growing safer, rather than more dangerous.

    6. Contrary to press reports, there is no shortage of people wishing to join the armed forces. The real problem is with Capita, taking up to 14 months to process applications, by which time, they’ve taken other jobs.

    With (2) were the analysts saying it's something in the Russian 'soul' (or whatever) that makes them tolerate great hardship for the sake of military glory? Because I've heard that a lot and I'm a bit skeptical. Isn't it more that the people there are repressed under a dictatorship and subject to vast amounts of propaganda? Meaning they are (i) more likely to keep on believing in the cause and (ii) less likely to play up even if they don't.
    From what ive seen of Russians on holiday they are generally tougher. They have to be living in a cold climate in a relatively poor country that has been subject to invasions and brutal dictatorships. With regards to propaganda we in the west are too subject to constant propoganda to justify a model that vastly benefits a privileged few but impoverishes many.
    This was not my experience in Tenerife. The toughest guests in our hotel were the Germans. Then after that (but a long way back) the Chinese.
  • williamglennwilliamglenn Posts: 47,940
    Talking of foreign students:

    https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-england-northamptonshire-68230189

    A student has been jailed for a minimum of 21 years for the murder of a fellow undergraduate in a drugs dispute.

    Melvin Lebaga-Idubor, 20, stabbed 19-year-old Kwabena Osei-Poku - known as Alfred - near the University of Northampton in April.


    https://www.northantstelegraph.co.uk/news/people/murderer-20-jailed-for-21-years-for-fatal-stabbing-of-university-of-northampton-student-4509389

    The night of the incident, Lebaga-Idubor had arranged to meet Kwabena under the pretence of wanting to buy cannabis from him. His real intention, however, was to steal Kwabena’s drugs and warn him off dealing on his patch.
  • bondegezoubondegezou Posts: 7,443
    DavidL said:

    Leon said:

    DavidL said:

    Sean_F said:

    DavidL said:

    Sean_F said:

    O/T I went to a dinner/seminar last night at which defence/ Ukraine issues were discussed at length by top analysts. The key takeaways were:-

    1. Tactically, the performance of the Russian army is dreadful, no better than two years ago. But, it has always been. Operationally, it is a lot more capable, and it is getting artillery shells in much greater numbers than Ukraine. There are precisely two European companies that manufacture artillery shells. However, Ukraine has the advantage in terms of possession and production of drones.

    2. Russians are willing to suffer hardship, to achieve military success, in ways we don’t fully appreciate in the West.

    3. But even Russia can’t defy economic gravity for ever. Soviet oil exports have been hit hard in recent months, partly due to drone attacks, and the regime is burning through foreign exchange reserves at an incredible speed. If Ukraine can keep fighting for 2-3 years, then it will likely win, as Russia runs out of resources.

    4. Germany’s commitment to Ukraine is now of vital importance. As well as aid, Germany is now training twice as many Ukrainian soldiers as the UK is.

    5. The reduction of the UK’s military capability, starting in 2010, is of real concern, throughout NATO. Cameron, Osborne and their successors have acted as if the world is growing safer, rather than more dangerous.

    6. Contrary to press reports, there is no shortage of people wishing to join the armed forces. The real problem is with Capita, taking up to 14 months to process applications, by which time, they’ve taken other jobs.

    On point 5 I do think, in fairness, that they were right that the conventional risks had substantially reduced with the collapse of the old Soviet bloc and the backwatering of Europe. I don't think that even Ukraine has fundamentally changed that analysis. Rather it has shown that the risk of a conventional Russian attack was substantially overstated by those with a vested interest in defence spending.

    What has changed, and is new, is the significance of drone technology in warfare. We are in a similar position in that respect to when ironclad ships made our large wooden navy redundant almost over night. The result of this development is that we are going to need a lot of new kit, to get rid of a lot of old kit and train our armed forces to fight in very different ways. That is going to cost significant money. The timing isn't great but there may well come a point when Ukraine is training the armies of western Europe rather than the other way around.
    Yes. Massed tank attacks are now possibly suicidal, and half the Russian Black Sea fleet has been destroyed by a side with almost no navy.
    Its fascinating to contemplate how differently the Gulf wars would have been fought with today's kit. Large scale tank battles would almost certainly not have happened.
    Our extremely expensive aircraft carriers (which don'twork) are about to be rendered valueless by hypersonic missiles and drone attack

    They will never leave port as they are too expensive to lose and too easily lost. Great

    We shoulda spent that money on AI warfare. And drones
    I think the effectiveness and implications of drones have really only become apparent in the last 18 months. I also believe the carriers will be able to operate but they will need a shield of destroyers and frigates around them to protect them from drone attacks. Even developing that against hypersonic weapons is not going to be cheap though.

    Russia, who have been running out of missiles for 18 months now, launched their largest attack of 2024 yesterday. It was made up of a package of drones and more sophisticated cruise missiles.

    This report shows the result:
    "Ukrainian air defense managed to shoot down the majority of the Kh-101/555/55 cruise missiles and Shahed drones, which may suggest that Russian forces fired the Kh-101 series missiles and Shaheds in order to distract Ukrainian air defense. Ukrainian forces did not shoot down any of the Kh-22 cruise missiles, Iskander-M ballistic missiles, or S-300 surface-to-air missiles, by contrast."
    https://www.dailykos.com/stories/2024/2/7/2222088/-Ukraine-Invasion-Day-715-too-much-smoking-in-Izhevsk?pm_campaign=front_page&pm_source=trending&pm_medium=web

    It is more that somewhat troubling, and not just for aircraft carriers, that a defence bolstered by Patriot missile systems had this level of effectiveness. War is evolving fast. If we had spent that money on drones before 2000 they would almost certainly be redundant by now.
    I think the effectiveness and implications of drones became apparent a bit earlier, in 2019/20, with their use by Turkey in Syria and their use in the second Nagorno-Karabakh War.
  • TazTaz Posts: 10,929
    edited February 8

    Taz said:

    kyf_100 said:

    Taz said:

    Sandpit said:

    Eabhal said:

    Sandpit said:

    148grss said:

    Leon said:

    Leon said:

    Leon said:

    Carnyx said:

    Leon said:

    Much of urban Britain is now completely dystopian. That queue for the dentists in St Paul's

    https://x.com/uk8qnzl/status/1754997596521734573?s=20

    Er, you haven't noticed that we have discussed it several times on PB, including Labour's modification of the photo to a Britain Isn't Working-style election poster. But it is always good to remind ourselves that that is the way in which current government policy drills down to the ordinary punter on the street.
    That isn't what that video says to any sane person

    Now, don't get me wrong,. every person in that queue deserves free dental care, that is our national policy, that is their right. And dentistry in the UK has been SHITE for decades, and getting worse (I get all mine in Bangkok)

    But the obvious BME over-representation in that queue (compared to national average) does suggest that part of the problem with our NHS (and much else) is the fact we are allowing in immigrants at an historically unprecedented rate - 1.3m in two years, more, per capita, than ever entered the USA - and that is going to fuck up a free heath service, and much else, unless the economy explodes with growth (which it has not done)

    Of course, much of the blame lies with the Tories, they've been in power 14 years and demonstrably screwed this up. Fie on them
    It demonstrates a longstanding truth, that NHS services are worse in poorer areas. The paucity of the services owes nothing to immigration and everything to a government policy of underfunding the NHS and public services more broadly. Immigration is just the convenient excuse Tory stooges wheel out to cover for the government's failings, lapped up by the week minded.
    Do you really honestly believe that adding 10m people to our population, in a few short years - an influx so vast it is greater (per capita) than America experienced during the era of Ellis Island - has NOT put pressure on our NHS, infra, sewage, education, etc?

    I mean, to me this is so ridiculous it is not debatable. It is blindingly obvious. But if you demur I'm kinda impressed
    Of course, if the government chooses not to fund the necessary expansion of public services. But that is a choice.
    And what if the government literally can't afford to fund this necessary expansion. What then? The obvious answer is: end immigration

    Would you agree with that?
    Even if we accept your premise (I don't) the question is a) how and b) how much does that cost?

    If you end immigration we have to increase spending on borders and visa checks and policing people who do and don't have documentation. We have to have more raids and deportations and such. All this requires infrastructure, training, staff, legal battles, boats etc. that the state does not currently have.

    Whereas, again, the government could spend more on infrastructure that benefits everyone (including immigrants) and do some Keynesian economics at the same time. But the government doesn't want to do that because it is wedded to austerity and only the private sector being able to deliver things.

    Whether it's a new Garden City somewhere or appropriate developments on the edges of existing urban areas - I think we both agree new development wouldn't be bad. It's just that the governments answer to new development will be "let a private company do it and build loads of 4-5 bedroom houses that only well off people can afford, as well as a few luxury flats, and let them be overpriced and sold to landlords or investment companies and therefore not alleviate the pressure on the market at all". And that won't solve the underlying issues of rent and house prices being too high. We need council housing to create a base line of affordable homes of acceptable quality.
    I don't see why a shift in immigration policy to, say, cut the current immigration numbers by 80% would require any significant change in spending on borders and visa checks. We already spend on those. If the government wanted, they could just give out fewer visas.

    There are other reasons why that might not be a good idea. I work in the university sector and we'd be f****d if there was a large drop in overseas student numbers.
    If the universities want to attract more foreign students, then perhaps they should be building somewhere for them to live?
    They are doing, contributing to the housing crisis in university cities and towns. They are far more profitable for developers than standard flats, and they eat up what space is available.

    The only way they’d be contributing to a crisis, is if the student numbers (including their dependents), are going up faster than the new housing. You need to tie the numbers together, so that it’s on the university to make sure they have enough accommodation for the numbers enrolling. Want more students, then first build more housing.
    I think the current presumption is that capitalism works. Students need accommodation, so demand is increased, so supply will increase.
    Definitely happening. Just look at Newcastle or Durham over the last few years. Student digs are increasing.

    Whether it is enough or not, is another matter.
    Definitely not enough in Durham. I know it's a small town, but... https://www.thenorthernecho.co.uk/news/23073781.durham-university-student-housing-crisis-worsens-students-queue-overnight/
    Interesting although there is also Newton Hall, Framwellgate Moor, Gilesgate, Neville's Cross (traffic is shit mind) and other places just outside the city.

    I don't know where else they can build in the city (we're not a town, we have a cathedral !!!) save knocking down more bars, restaurants and shops like the stretch Oldfields used to be on just up from the Gala Theatre.
    A cathedral is neither necessary nor sufficient for a settlement to style itself a city (though the two usually go together, leading to the urban myth implicitly quoted above.

    What it really needs is a Charter that enables it to style itself such.

    (When I was a student in Durham, I lived in Ushaw Moor. £23/wk rent in the mid-1990s. I imagine prices have gone up a bit since.
    Brandon, nearby, is pretty reasonable. Yes prices have gone up a little since then.
  • Sunil_PrasannanSunil_Prasannan Posts: 49,116
    darkage said:

    With all the caveats - this is one case, it’s the Daily Mail (so may be at least half true), etc etc this is a good example of why ordinary people get frustrated by the asylum system

    * Fled Syria in 2014 to avoid being called up. Ok, seems reasonable
    * Settled in Germany where he had family. Makes sense
    * 3 years ago he rowed with his family because he drinks and smokes and they said that means he’s not a good Muslim. Hmmh. Seems unlikely… may be @TheScreamingEagles can comment
    * To quote him: 'I thought the UK would be a good place to find work in the construction industry, I am a talented plasterer,'

    In what world is someone who was settled for 5+ years in Germany and has admitted that they are coming to the UK to find work a potential asylum claimant. And how has it taken 3 years to make that determination?

    This isn’t a comment on the level of immigration or the need for people to do jobs. It’s a comment on the breakdown is the asylum process. If you want legal immigration that should be separate


    https://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-13058261/why-wont-police-let-leave-britain-ilegal-channel-migrant-living-rowing-boat.html

    Insight from from 'redballs' in the comment section:

    "Where is the leftist loonys demanding that the government step in immediately to help this poor man leave."
    Loonies!
  • LeonLeon Posts: 46,461
    It’s quite strange being in a country as young as Cambodia. Everyone seems to be in their twenties BECAUSE THEY ARE. Median age is 27

    Even stranger is that absolutely everyone is slim. Healthy looking. I’ve been here a month (and was here last year as well) and I’m not sure I’ve seen a single fat person. I’ve seen some portly-ish old people, but they are stout in the way older people can be or even should be. A bit of a tummy (men), chunky around the arse (the women) - I have not seen a single overweight person under 40, let alone obese. It means even average looking women are kinda sexy, due to being slender as a reed

    And I’m not imagining it. Cambodia is the 4th least obese nation on Earth. 3.9%

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_countries_by_obesity_rate

    Did Britain look like this in the 1930s or 1970s? What have we done to ourselves? It is disgusting

    I hope Cambodia bans all processed food and any foodstuff made in America
  • MexicanpeteMexicanpete Posts: 24,919
    Listening to RGBC (Robbie Gibb Broadcasting Corporation) WATO. Sarah Montague hates the Labour Party.

    Give her a peerage. Oh wait she's already got one (via her husband).
  • kamskikamski Posts: 4,203

    kamski said:

    Nayib Bukele's speech after winning reelection is worth watching. El Salvador has become the country with the lowest muder rate in the western hemisphere:

    https://x.com/nayibbukele/status/1755411561575817340

    The decline in murder rate is impressive but 7.8 per 100,000 is not the lowest. El Salvador has 6.5 million people, roughly the same population as Scotland which had 52 homicides for the whole country and that is without suspending habeus corpus and rounding up everyone remotely gang-adjacent.
    https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/articles/cqv9vzqvddwo
    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/El_Salvador
    El Salvador murder rate supposedly 2.4 per 100,000 in 2023. That is low by American standards but it is going to be way higher than Ireland, Iceland, Portugal and probably other countries that are definitely in the western hemisphere.

    Maybe it's the lowest in the Americas? No - Canada had 2.25 (2022). Might be differences in reporting of course.
    Or populist politican tells fibs......surely not?
    Murder rate in Iceland, Ireland and Portugal all comfortably under 1 per 100,000 but I'm willing to give whoever it is (Bukele or WGlenn?) the benefit of the doubt on not knowing where the western hemisphere is, and maybe the 2023 Canada figures will be higher? Of course there's going to be a few microstates - eg Montserrat - where the murder rate is often going to be 0, but I'll let them off that too.
  • MalmesburyMalmesbury Posts: 44,042
    a
    mwadams said:

    a

    Carnyx said:

    ..

    Leon said:

    Leon said:

    TOPPING said:

    Leon said:

    Carnyx said:

    Leon said:

    Much of urban Britain is now completely dystopian. That queue for the dentists in St Paul's

    https://x.com/uk8qnzl/status/1754997596521734573?s=20

    Er, you haven't noticed that we have discussed it several times on PB, including Labour's modification of the photo to a Britain Isn't Working-style election poster. But it is always good to remind ourselves that that is the way in which current government policy drills down to the ordinary punter on the street.
    But the obvious BME over-representation in that queue
    This is where you fucked up.
    No, it isn't

    It will be newcomers seeking dentists. Settled citizens (of any stripe) will already have dentists, in the main

    For the last eight years the vast majority of migration into Britain - since Brexit - has been non-white, non-EU. You would therefore expect a queue of new people, presumably seeking a dentist, to be non-white
    Not really. People move around, and will need a new dentist. Existing dental practices shut down and their patients need a new dentist. Plenty of people simply don't have a dentist because NHS dentists in their area won't take new patients. You just looked at a queue of non white people and said "they must be immigrants" on the basis of no information. Given that you live in Camden you have a surprisingly provincial and outdated view of British society.
    St Paul's, Bristol, has one of the higher levels of non-UK-born inhabitants in the country. So, no, I didn't just presume, I looked at the data
    St Paul's has had a large African/Caribbean population since the 1950s (it has had a carnival since the early 1960s and was where the Bristol Bus Boycott started) so will also be home to a significant non white population who are not immigrants and certainly not recent arrivals. I just don't know how one can judge whether the crowd outside the dental practice are recent immigrants or not based on their appearance.
    It all reminds me of some friends of my grandparents who congratulated my then girlfriend, now wife, on her beautiful English. Her parents are Sri Lankan but she was born in Margate and was studying at Cambridge University at the time so her English language skills were not really that surprising.
    Suggesting that British born BAMEs aren’t really British is Goodwin’s latest slippery little trick. I suppose they’re an easy visible target towards which to direct the torch wielding mob.
    "The Scots are as British as anyone," isn't your usual line.
    We’re as British as any other person born in the UK. Polling suggests we don’t feel as strong an attachment to that identity as BAME folk, despite the best efforts of Goodwin and his fellow travellers to put them off.
    Nicely delphic, especially the UK bit.

    kinabalu said:

    kinabalu said:

    boulay said:

    Leon said:

    Leon said:

    TOPPING said:

    Leon said:

    TOPPING said:

    Leon said:

    Carnyx said:

    Leon said:

    Much of urban Britain is now completely dystopian. That queue for the dentists in St Paul's

    https://x.com/uk8qnzl/status/1754997596521734573?s=20

    Er, you haven't noticed that we have discussed it several times on PB, including Labour's modification of the photo to a Britain Isn't Working-style election poster. But it is always good to remind ourselves that that is the way in which current government policy drills down to the ordinary punter on the street.
    But the obvious BME over-representation in that queue
    This is where you fucked up.
    No, it isn't

    It will be newcomers seeking dentists. Settled citizens (of any stripe) will already have dentists, in the main

    For the last eight years the vast majority of migration into Britain - since Brexit - has been non-white, non-EU. You would therefore expect a queue of new people, presumably seeking a dentist, to be non-white
    I didn't see you travelling down this path tbh. What does it matter what colour people are. Plus I've no idea whether your "stat" is true. I haven't yet come across a black Polish plumber or Romanian bricklayer or indeed Albanian chippie but I'm sure some exist.

    Or are you feeling a bit besieged on PB atm and are doubling down.
    I am merely saying that the video is - arguably - a visual representation of the pressure mass migration is putting on the UK's public services and infra. This is hardly a new point from me, I am hardly going off on a new Nazi tangent, am I? I expect you've heard me make the point before

    And yet there are PB-ers who deny this is an issue. Who deny that mass migration might be at least part of the reason we see such pressure on UK health, education, sewage, roads, &c

    See below

    i do feel slightly beseiged, but I quite enjoy it (for now). With @Casino_Royale gone I am like the last redcoat in Zulu, the drunken malingerer in the sick bay turned hero, shooting up at the thatch as the lefty hordes overwhelm the Drift. Hooky. That was his name. Hooky. Got a VC didn't he?
    The drunken malingerer thing was bullshit, incidentally. He was a lay Methodist preacher and an exemplary soldier, IIRC.

    Also, IIRC, his descendants protested at his portrayal
    Great movie, tho. Really really great

    I imagine it is barely showable now, as it is quite non-Woke
    Apart from it being on woke Channel 4 at new year and on 4OD (maybe still is) it’s barely showable.
    Yep. You can't get away from it. If you want to not watch it you have to make that a priority.
    But if you change channel (to the only other channel), they are showing The Dam Busters on a loop. With the name of the dog* unbleeped.

    *Dog not included for scale.
    Time for a good book then, preferably one without any 'heroic' war nonsense. Eg I'm into a Japanese magical realist epic atm. I pick it up whenever I'm tempted to do something reprehensible.
    Or fire up The Cruel Sea.

    "Snorkers! Good oh!"
    Train smash as it was known to my father, albeit when served with tomatoes.
    Snorkers = very dubious tinned sausages
    Train Smash = everything available cooked together.

    I *thought*
    "It's the war. The whole, bloody war." - favourite Cruel Sea quote. Hawkins delivers it immaculately.
    Yes - the comment from many Battle of The Atlantic veterans was that it was the film that spoke for them.

    When I worked in the oil industry, they called in an ancient Norwegian retired tanker captain for some consultations. In the pub, afterwards, he reminisced a bit on WWII - he'd been a crewman on the Murmansk run. His stories put me in mind of this -


    Some say the world will end in fire,
    Some say in ice.
    From what I’ve tasted of desire
    I hold with those who favor fire.
    But if it had to perish twice,
    I think I know enough of hate
    To say that for destruction ice
    Is also great
    And would suffice.
  • TOPPINGTOPPING Posts: 41,082
    kinabalu said:

    Harper said:

    kinabalu said:

    Sean_F said:

    O/T I went to a dinner/seminar last night at which defence/ Ukraine issues were discussed at length by top analysts. The key takeaways were:-

    1. Tactically, the performance of the Russian army is dreadful, no better than two years ago. But, it has always been. Operationally, it is a lot more capable, and it is getting artillery shells in much greater numbers than Ukraine. There are precisely two European companies that manufacture artillery shells. However, Ukraine has the advantage in terms of possession and production of drones.

    2. Russians are willing to suffer hardship, to achieve military success, in ways we don’t fully appreciate in the West.

    3. But even Russia can’t defy economic gravity for ever. Soviet oil exports have been hit hard in recent months, partly due to drone attacks, and the regime is burning through foreign exchange reserves at an incredible speed. If Ukraine can keep fighting for 2-3 years, then it will likely win, as Russia runs out of resources.

    4. Germany’s commitment to Ukraine is now of vital importance. As well as aid, Germany is now training twice as many Ukrainian soldiers as the UK is.

    5. The reduction of the UK’s military capability, starting in 2010, is of real concern, throughout NATO. Cameron, Osborne and their successors have acted as if the world is growing safer, rather than more dangerous.

    6. Contrary to press reports, there is no shortage of people wishing to join the armed forces. The real problem is with Capita, taking up to 14 months to process applications, by which time, they’ve taken other jobs.

    With (2) were the analysts saying it's something in the Russian 'soul' (or whatever) that makes them tolerate great hardship for the sake of military glory? Because I've heard that a lot and I'm a bit skeptical. Isn't it more that the people there are repressed under a dictatorship and subject to vast amounts of propaganda? Meaning they are (i) more likely to keep on believing in the cause and (ii) less likely to play up even if they don't.
    From what ive seen of Russians on holiday they are generally tougher. They have to be living in a cold climate in a relatively poor country that has been subject to invasions and brutal dictatorships. With regards to propaganda we in the west are too subject to constant propoganda to justify a model that vastly benefits a privileged few but impoverishes many.
    This was not my experience in Tenerife.
    Great line.
  • JosiasJessopJosiasJessop Posts: 38,772
    Dura_Ace said:

    kinabalu said:

    Sean_F said:

    O/T I went to a dinner/seminar last night at which defence/ Ukraine issues were discussed at length by top analysts. The key takeaways were:-

    1. Tactically, the performance of the Russian army is dreadful, no better than two years ago. But, it has always been. Operationally, it is a lot more capable, and it is getting artillery shells in much greater numbers than Ukraine. There are precisely two European companies that manufacture artillery shells. However, Ukraine has the advantage in terms of possession and production of drones.

    2. Russians are willing to suffer hardship, to achieve military success, in ways we don’t fully appreciate in the West.

    3. But even Russia can’t defy economic gravity for ever. Soviet oil exports have been hit hard in recent months, partly due to drone attacks, and the regime is burning through foreign exchange reserves at an incredible speed. If Ukraine can keep fighting for 2-3 years, then it will likely win, as Russia runs out of resources.

    4. Germany’s commitment to Ukraine is now of vital importance. As well as aid, Germany is now training twice as many Ukrainian soldiers as the UK is.

    5. The reduction of the UK’s military capability, starting in 2010, is of real concern, throughout NATO. Cameron, Osborne and their successors have acted as if the world is growing safer, rather than more dangerous.

    6. Contrary to press reports, there is no shortage of people wishing to join the armed forces. The real problem is with Capita, taking up to 14 months to process applications, by which time, they’ve taken other jobs.

    With (2) were the analysts saying it's something in the Russian 'soul' (or whatever) that makes them tolerate great hardship for the sake of military glory? Because I've heard that a lot and I'm a bit skeptical. Isn't it more that the people there are repressed under a dictatorship and subject to vast amounts of propaganda? Meaning they are (i) more likely to keep on believing in the cause and (ii) less likely to play up even if they don't.
    They have a cultural obsession with war and dying in large numbers that makes the English undying fixation on WW2 look like a passing fancy.

    Understanding of Russian culture, with a few exceptions, by Western commentators is meagre. It's impossible to have anything other than superficial, and probably erroneous, grasp on it if all you have is English language sources curated by Western media. Hence, the smug and staggering ignorance that our resident Russophobes wear with such pride as if it were the Order of Lenin.
    But you know what? If it comes to a choice between being a 'russophobe' in your eyes and being a full-on Russia apologist, please forgive me for choosing the former.

    Have you considered that the Russian media that you slurp up might be even worse than ours for accuracy?
  • Pulpstar said:

    Amazing that the police don't seem to have caught Ezedi hiding in plain sight in the likes of Tescos. Does everyone just assume someone else has called the police in situations like that ?

    My assumption is that he has killed himself (jumped of a bridge into the Thames), hence the trail going cold on the evening of the attack.
    I'd have thought it'd be pretty difficult to jump off a bridge in London without that being captured on CCTV. Finding the body may be trickier in such a case, but bridges in big cities are pretty heavily monitored for traffic and crime reasons.

    I agree there is a pretty high chance he's dead, although also possible he has an accomplice.
  • mwadamsmwadams Posts: 3,132
    Leon said:

    DavidL said:

    kinabalu said:

    Sean_F said:

    O/T I went to a dinner/seminar last night at which defence/ Ukraine issues were discussed at length by top analysts. The key takeaways were:-

    1. Tactically, the performance of the Russian army is dreadful, no better than two years ago. But, it has always been. Operationally, it is a lot more capable, and it is getting artillery shells in much greater numbers than Ukraine. There are precisely two European companies that manufacture artillery shells. However, Ukraine has the advantage in terms of possession and production of drones.

    2. Russians are willing to suffer hardship, to achieve military success, in ways we don’t fully appreciate in the West.

    3. But even Russia can’t defy economic gravity for ever. Soviet oil exports have been hit hard in recent months, partly due to drone attacks, and the regime is burning through foreign exchange reserves at an incredible speed. If Ukraine can keep fighting for 2-3 years, then it will likely win, as Russia runs out of resources.

    4. Germany’s commitment to Ukraine is now of vital importance. As well as aid, Germany is now training twice as many Ukrainian soldiers as the UK is.

    5. The reduction of the UK’s military capability, starting in 2010, is of real concern, throughout NATO. Cameron, Osborne and their successors have acted as if the world is growing safer, rather than more dangerous.

    6. Contrary to press reports, there is no shortage of people wishing to join the armed forces. The real problem is with Capita, taking up to 14 months to process applications, by which time, they’ve taken other jobs.

    With (2) were the analysts saying it's something in the Russian 'soul' (or whatever) that makes them tolerate great hardship for the sake of military glory? Because I've heard that a lot and I'm a bit skeptical. Isn't it more that the people there are repressed under a dictatorship and subject to vast amounts of propaganda? Meaning they are (i) more likely to keep on believing in the cause and (ii) less likely to play up even if they don't.
    We watched the latest Storyville last night about escaping from North Korea. Harrowing but compelling. And the north Korean family showed all too clearly how humans can be bullied into believing almost anything. As Sting sang many years ago "Russians love their children too" but the concept of duty and protection of the motherland is ground in from a very early age.

    And then there is fear, of course.
    I am reminded of this typically profound and enlightening article by ex-PBer SeanT in the Spectator, where he met wealthy young Russians hiding from the war, in Armenia. In particular, this exchange


    “‘They don’t really like Russians in Tbilisi. I’m sorry.’

    Mikhail sighed. ‘There are Ukrainian flags everywhere?’

    ‘Yes. Loads of them. And lots of anti-Russian graffiti.’

    ‘Why? Why do they dislike us?!’

    ‘Because you invaded them, like you invaded Ukraine. Maybe you should stop invading places?’

    Mikhail looked my way and laughed. Like I had a point, but it was beyond the wit of man to make it better. Ludmila was now gazing at the empty vodka bottle disconsolately. The mountain air was still and warm. Mikhail disappeared, then somehow returned with another vodka bottle.

    ‘This one is really homemade,’ he said, chuckling. With refilled glasses, we toasted each other, we toasted peace, and we watched the stars glittering over Nakhchivan, the hostile Azeri exclave. Then Mikhail said: ‘You know, I hate the war, but we have to win it. I am scared that Putin will order a mobilisation, but if he does, I will fight. Russia is my country. Russia must win the war.’”

    How many rich young Brits would say that stuff? ‘Britain is my country. Britain must win the war’

    Very few, sadly

    https://www.spectator.co.uk/article/an-existential-war-even-wealthy-emigres-are-prepared-to-fight-for-russia/

    God that guy gets around. A truly enviable life
    You're quite right that it is a really interesting piece; we are lucky you stumbled across it.

    I'm not sure I *entirely* agree with your "Very few, sadly" addendum.

    In this context of a pointless war of aggression, I'd say a genuinely great thing about Britain is that hardly anyone would fight for "my country, right or wrong" any more.

    However, if Britain were in a geographically different location, and invaded by a neighbour, I think the willingness to fight would be somewhat closer to that we see in Ukraine (which is far from universal). But we are unlikely to see that put to the test.
  • TOPPINGTOPPING Posts: 41,082
    On the Ukraine war I saw @Sean_F's commentary of his meeting.

    "If Ukraine could only keep fighting for another 2-3 [or four, five, 10] years"...

    Seems a big ask and supposes that the Russian state is fixed in its resources, etc. Who the hell knows what will happen over the next 36 months.

    I have always said it is up to Ukraine to determine when is the right time to negotiate, if ever, but this is quite a bleak outlook.
  • TOPPINGTOPPING Posts: 41,082
    Leon said:

    It’s quite strange being in a country as young as Cambodia. Everyone seems to be in their twenties BECAUSE THEY ARE. Median age is 27

    Even stranger is that absolutely everyone is slim. Healthy looking. I’ve been here a month (and was here last year as well) and I’m not sure I’ve seen a single fat person. I’ve seen some portly-ish old people, but they are stout in the way older people can be or even should be. A bit of a tummy (men), chunky around the arse (the women) - I have not seen a single overweight person under 40, let alone obese. It means even average looking women are kinda sexy, due to being slender as a reed

    And I’m not imagining it. Cambodia is the 4th least obese nation on Earth. 3.9%

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_countries_by_obesity_rate

    Did Britain look like this in the 1930s or 1970s? What have we done to ourselves? It is disgusting

    I hope Cambodia bans all processed food and any foodstuff made in America

    Seems you are going full on lefty self hatred of your mother country here, young lad.
  • SouthamObserverSouthamObserver Posts: 38,901
    Leon said:

    It’s quite strange being in a country as young as Cambodia. Everyone seems to be in their twenties BECAUSE THEY ARE. Median age is 27

    Even stranger is that absolutely everyone is slim. Healthy looking. I’ve been here a month (and was here last year as well) and I’m not sure I’ve seen a single fat person. I’ve seen some portly-ish old people, but they are stout in the way older people can be or even should be. A bit of a tummy (men), chunky around the arse (the women) - I have not seen a single overweight person under 40, let alone obese. It means even average looking women are kinda sexy, due to being slender as a reed

    And I’m not imagining it. Cambodia is the 4th least obese nation on Earth. 3.9%

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_countries_by_obesity_rate

    Did Britain look like this in the 1930s or 1970s? What have we done to ourselves? It is disgusting

    I hope Cambodia bans all processed food and any foodstuff made in America

    Remember Buster Bloodvessel, the lead singer of Bad Manners? His big schtick was being massive and bouncing around on stage like a lunatic, dripping with sweat. He'd be a pretty normal looking bloke these days.

  • kamskikamski Posts: 4,203
    Leon said:

    DavidL said:

    kinabalu said:

    Sean_F said:

    O/T I went to a dinner/seminar last night at which defence/ Ukraine issues were discussed at length by top analysts. The key takeaways were:-

    1. Tactically, the performance of the Russian army is dreadful, no better than two years ago. But, it has always been. Operationally, it is a lot more capable, and it is getting artillery shells in much greater numbers than Ukraine. There are precisely two European companies that manufacture artillery shells. However, Ukraine has the advantage in terms of possession and production of drones.

    2. Russians are willing to suffer hardship, to achieve military success, in ways we don’t fully appreciate in the West.

    3. But even Russia can’t defy economic gravity for ever. Soviet oil exports have been hit hard in recent months, partly due to drone attacks, and the regime is burning through foreign exchange reserves at an incredible speed. If Ukraine can keep fighting for 2-3 years, then it will likely win, as Russia runs out of resources.

    4. Germany’s commitment to Ukraine is now of vital importance. As well as aid, Germany is now training twice as many Ukrainian soldiers as the UK is.

    5. The reduction of the UK’s military capability, starting in 2010, is of real concern, throughout NATO. Cameron, Osborne and their successors have acted as if the world is growing safer, rather than more dangerous.

    6. Contrary to press reports, there is no shortage of people wishing to join the armed forces. The real problem is with Capita, taking up to 14 months to process applications, by which time, they’ve taken other jobs.

    With (2) were the analysts saying it's something in the Russian 'soul' (or whatever) that makes them tolerate great hardship for the sake of military glory? Because I've heard that a lot and I'm a bit skeptical. Isn't it more that the people there are repressed under a dictatorship and subject to vast amounts of propaganda? Meaning they are (i) more likely to keep on believing in the cause and (ii) less likely to play up even if they don't.
    We watched the latest Storyville last night about escaping from North Korea. Harrowing but compelling. And the north Korean family showed all too clearly how humans can be bullied into believing almost anything. As Sting sang many years ago "Russians love their children too" but the concept of duty and protection of the motherland is ground in from a very early age.

    And then there is fear, of course.
    I am reminded of this typically profound and enlightening article by ex-PBer SeanT in the Spectator, where he met wealthy young Russians hiding from the war, in Armenia. In particular, this exchange


    “‘They don’t really like Russians in Tbilisi. I’m sorry.’

    Mikhail sighed. ‘There are Ukrainian flags everywhere?’

    ‘Yes. Loads of them. And lots of anti-Russian graffiti.’

    ‘Why? Why do they dislike us?!’

    ‘Because you invaded them, like you invaded Ukraine. Maybe you should stop invading places?’

    Mikhail looked my way and laughed. Like I had a point, but it was beyond the wit of man to make it better. Ludmila was now gazing at the empty vodka bottle disconsolately. The mountain air was still and warm. Mikhail disappeared, then somehow returned with another vodka bottle.

    ‘This one is really homemade,’ he said, chuckling. With refilled glasses, we toasted each other, we toasted peace, and we watched the stars glittering over Nakhchivan, the hostile Azeri exclave. Then Mikhail said: ‘You know, I hate the war, but we have to win it. I am scared that Putin will order a mobilisation, but if he does, I will fight. Russia is my country. Russia must win the war.’”

    How many rich young Brits would say that stuff? ‘Britain is my country. Britain must win the war’

    Very few, sadly

    https://www.spectator.co.uk/article/an-existential-war-even-wealthy-emigres-are-prepared-to-fight-for-russia/

    God that guy gets around. A truly enviable life
    Yes - and unfortunately for you I have heard calls for an EU travel ban for Putin propagandist 'Leon', so you won't be able to follow him everywhere any more. Still it's the first definite Brexit bonus I've come across (for the EU, at least).
  • mwadamsmwadams Posts: 3,132

    a

    mwadams said:

    a

    Carnyx said:

    ..

    Leon said:

    Leon said:

    TOPPING said:

    Leon said:

    Carnyx said:

    Leon said:

    Much of urban Britain is now completely dystopian. That queue for the dentists in St Paul's

    https://x.com/uk8qnzl/status/1754997596521734573?s=20

    Er, you haven't noticed that we have discussed it several times on PB, including Labour's modification of the photo to a Britain Isn't Working-style election poster. But it is always good to remind ourselves that that is the way in which current government policy drills down to the ordinary punter on the street.
    But the obvious BME over-representation in that queue
    This is where you fucked up.
    No, it isn't

    It will be newcomers seeking dentists. Settled citizens (of any stripe) will already have dentists, in the main

    For the last eight years the vast majority of migration into Britain - since Brexit - has been non-white, non-EU. You would therefore expect a queue of new people, presumably seeking a dentist, to be non-white
    Not really. People move around, and will need a new dentist. Existing dental practices shut down and their patients need a new dentist. Plenty of people simply don't have a dentist because NHS dentists in their area won't take new patients. You just looked at a queue of non white people and said "they must be immigrants" on the basis of no information. Given that you live in Camden you have a surprisingly provincial and outdated view of British society.
    St Paul's, Bristol, has one of the higher levels of non-UK-born inhabitants in the country. So, no, I didn't just presume, I looked at the data
    St Paul's has had a large African/Caribbean population since the 1950s (it has had a carnival since the early 1960s and was where the Bristol Bus Boycott started) so will also be home to a significant non white population who are not immigrants and certainly not recent arrivals. I just don't know how one can judge whether the crowd outside the dental practice are recent immigrants or not based on their appearance.
    It all reminds me of some friends of my grandparents who congratulated my then girlfriend, now wife, on her beautiful English. Her parents are Sri Lankan but she was born in Margate and was studying at Cambridge University at the time so her English language skills were not really that surprising.
    Suggesting that British born BAMEs aren’t really British is Goodwin’s latest slippery little trick. I suppose they’re an easy visible target towards which to direct the torch wielding mob.
    "The Scots are as British as anyone," isn't your usual line.
    We’re as British as any other person born in the UK. Polling suggests we don’t feel as strong an attachment to that identity as BAME folk, despite the best efforts of Goodwin and his fellow travellers to put them off.
    Nicely delphic, especially the UK bit.

    kinabalu said:

    kinabalu said:

    boulay said:

    Leon said:

    Leon said:

    TOPPING said:

    Leon said:

    TOPPING said:

    Leon said:

    Carnyx said:

    Leon said:

    Much of urban Britain is now completely dystopian. That queue for the dentists in St Paul's

    https://x.com/uk8qnzl/status/1754997596521734573?s=20

    Er, you haven't noticed that we have discussed it several times on PB, including Labour's modification of the photo to a Britain Isn't Working-style election poster. But it is always good to remind ourselves that that is the way in which current government policy drills down to the ordinary punter on the street.
    But the obvious BME over-representation in that queue
    This is where you fucked up.
    No, it isn't

    It will be newcomers seeking dentists. Settled citizens (of any stripe) will already have dentists, in the main

    For the last eight years the vast majority of migration into Britain - since Brexit - has been non-white, non-EU. You would therefore expect a queue of new people, presumably seeking a dentist, to be non-white
    I didn't see you travelling down this path tbh. What does it matter what colour people are. Plus I've no idea whether your "stat" is true. I haven't yet come across a black Polish plumber or Romanian bricklayer or indeed Albanian chippie but I'm sure some exist.

    Or are you feeling a bit besieged on PB atm and are doubling down.
    I am merely saying that the video is - arguably - a visual representation of the pressure mass migration is putting on the UK's public services and infra. This is hardly a new point from me, I am hardly going off on a new Nazi tangent, am I? I expect you've heard me make the point before

    And yet there are PB-ers who deny this is an issue. Who deny that mass migration might be at least part of the reason we see such pressure on UK health, education, sewage, roads, &c

    See below

    i do feel slightly beseiged, but I quite enjoy it (for now). With @Casino_Royale gone I am like the last redcoat in Zulu, the drunken malingerer in the sick bay turned hero, shooting up at the thatch as the lefty hordes overwhelm the Drift. Hooky. That was his name. Hooky. Got a VC didn't he?
    The drunken malingerer thing was bullshit, incidentally. He was a lay Methodist preacher and an exemplary soldier, IIRC.

    Also, IIRC, his descendants protested at his portrayal
    Great movie, tho. Really really great

    I imagine it is barely showable now, as it is quite non-Woke
    Apart from it being on woke Channel 4 at new year and on 4OD (maybe still is) it’s barely showable.
    Yep. You can't get away from it. If you want to not watch it you have to make that a priority.
    But if you change channel (to the only other channel), they are showing The Dam Busters on a loop. With the name of the dog* unbleeped.

    *Dog not included for scale.
    Time for a good book then, preferably one without any 'heroic' war nonsense. Eg I'm into a Japanese magical realist epic atm. I pick it up whenever I'm tempted to do something reprehensible.
    Or fire up The Cruel Sea.

    "Snorkers! Good oh!"
    Train smash as it was known to my father, albeit when served with tomatoes.
    Snorkers = very dubious tinned sausages
    Train Smash = everything available cooked together.

    I *thought*
    "It's the war. The whole, bloody war." - favourite Cruel Sea quote. Hawkins delivers it immaculately.
    Yes - the comment from many Battle of The Atlantic veterans was that it was the film that spoke for them.

    When I worked in the oil industry, they called in an ancient Norwegian retired tanker captain for some consultations. In the pub, afterwards, he reminisced a bit on WWII - he'd been a crewman on the Murmansk run. His stories put me in mind of this -


    Some say the world will end in fire,
    Some say in ice.
    From what I’ve tasted of desire
    I hold with those who favor fire.
    But if it had to perish twice,
    I think I know enough of hate
    To say that for destruction ice
    Is also great
    And would suffice.
    i had a great uncle in the merchant navy on those Baltic convoys. He didn't have all his fingers.
  • MalmesburyMalmesbury Posts: 44,042
    edited February 8

    Pulpstar said:

    Amazing that the police don't seem to have caught Ezedi hiding in plain sight in the likes of Tescos. Does everyone just assume someone else has called the police in situations like that ?

    My assumption is that he has killed himself (jumped of a bridge into the Thames), hence the trail going cold on the evening of the attack.
    I'd have thought it'd be pretty difficult to jump off a bridge in London without that being captured on CCTV. Finding the body may be trickier in such a case, but bridges in big cities are pretty heavily monitored for traffic and crime reasons.

    I agree there is a pretty high chance he's dead, although also possible he has an accomplice.
    Sadly, people fall/jump in the river, often from near or on bridges, a far bit in London. The drunk younguns... "Last seen near x bridge"

    They don't seem to get caught on CCTV.

    EDIT: I haven't seen a body, but most of the rowing coaches in the club have seen them or even found them, over the years.
  • NigelbNigelb Posts: 62,041
    edited February 8
    Leon said:

    148grss said:

    Leon said:

    I’ll give PBers a second chance to contemplate it

    ‘A team led by mathematician Jan H. van de Beek at the University of Amsterdam estimates that the Dutch government spent approximately €17 billion per year on migration in the period between 1995 and 2019, meaning that more than one billion euros went to migration-related issues every month.

    The study digs deeper still: annual net costs of non-Western immigration amount to €17 billion and the annual net benefits of Western immigration total one billion euros. Distinguishing between Western and non-Western migration patterns, the study comes to a startling conclusion: if immigration remains at 2015-2019 levels, the annual budget burden will increase from €17 billion in 2016 to about €50 billion. This is an increase that the welfare state would most likely not survive.

    The Dutch findings are mirrored in a similar study conducted by the Danish Finance Ministry, which concludes that non-Western immigrants are most likely to remain lifelong recipients of public finances compared to their Western or native Danish peers. Meanwhile, the picture in Germany is not much different: about 45% of those who receive unemployment benefits are not German citizens, costing the taxpayers around €20 billion per year. Austria shows similar numbers, with almost 60% of recipients having a “migrant background”.

    Van de Beek sees parts of the problem in the structure of the welfare state… [snip - see the link],

    The emerging picture is a complex one that includes both cultural and economic factors, but the overall conclusion remains the same: the current conditions under which migration to Europe takes place are not sustainable and will bring the welfare systems ever closer to collapsing. The idea promoted by Folkerts-Landau and others turned out to be far too optimistic, and what makes matters worse is that politicians still refuse to face the facts.

    Placing one’s head in the sand is, unfortunately, not the same as actual policymaking. Europe has ignored these issues for too long, and voters will make their discontent heard at the voting booth’

    https://unherd.com/thepost/dutch-study-immigration-costs-state-e17-billion-per-year/

    So the only actual report I can find (other than pieces in right wing media about the report) are in Danish, and I can't find anything discussing the report in English other than right wingers hailing it as the evidence they've always needed that immigrants are bad actually. That's not to say it is wrong, just that as someone who doesn't speak Danish I can't verify the actual findings of the report outside of places like unherd, who are not a source I trust.

    I have found an OpenDemocracy article detailing essentially the argument I put forth yesterday - how if immigrants are a "drain" on an economy it is most likely the practices of the employers who abuse those workers and use them to under cut labour rights and labour costs, but I accept that could have nothing to do with what this report was exploring. If you have a link directly to the report in English, I'd be very interested to look at it, the methodology and such.

    https://www.opendemocracy.net/en/beyond-trafficking-and-slavery/the-danish-model-of-exploiting-migrant-workers/
    Mate, it's Dutch. lol

    Not a good start to your research

    Here's the report. In English

    https://demo-demo.nl/wp-content/uploads/2023/06/Borderless_Welfare_State-2.pdf
    The comparison doesn't really work for a country whose average income is about 70% of that in the Netherlands.

    The percentage of those on benefit who are not UK citizens was around 16% in 2019 (I can't quickly find a more recent figure); and migrants are more likely to be in work that native born Brits.

    So whatever your feelings about the levels of immigration, the comparison with the Netherlands (assuming the capacity of your article) is anyway complete bunk.
  • kinabalukinabalu Posts: 39,002
    Dura_Ace said:

    kinabalu said:

    Sean_F said:

    O/T I went to a dinner/seminar last night at which defence/ Ukraine issues were discussed at length by top analysts. The key takeaways were:-

    1. Tactically, the performance of the Russian army is dreadful, no better than two years ago. But, it has always been. Operationally, it is a lot more capable, and it is getting artillery shells in much greater numbers than Ukraine. There are precisely two European companies that manufacture artillery shells. However, Ukraine has the advantage in terms of possession and production of drones.

    2. Russians are willing to suffer hardship, to achieve military success, in ways we don’t fully appreciate in the West.

    3. But even Russia can’t defy economic gravity for ever. Soviet oil exports have been hit hard in recent months, partly due to drone attacks, and the regime is burning through foreign exchange reserves at an incredible speed. If Ukraine can keep fighting for 2-3 years, then it will likely win, as Russia runs out of resources.

    4. Germany’s commitment to Ukraine is now of vital importance. As well as aid, Germany is now training twice as many Ukrainian soldiers as the UK is.

    5. The reduction of the UK’s military capability, starting in 2010, is of real concern, throughout NATO. Cameron, Osborne and their successors have acted as if the world is growing safer, rather than more dangerous.

    6. Contrary to press reports, there is no shortage of people wishing to join the armed forces. The real problem is with Capita, taking up to 14 months to process applications, by which time, they’ve taken other jobs.

    With (2) were the analysts saying it's something in the Russian 'soul' (or whatever) that makes them tolerate great hardship for the sake of military glory? Because I've heard that a lot and I'm a bit skeptical. Isn't it more that the people there are repressed under a dictatorship and subject to vast amounts of propaganda? Meaning they are (i) more likely to keep on believing in the cause and (ii) less likely to play up even if they don't.
    They have a cultural obsession with war and dying in large numbers that makes the English undying fixation on WW2 look like a passing fancy.

    Understanding of Russian culture, with a few exceptions, by Western commentators is meagre. It's impossible to have anything other than superficial, and probably erroneous, grasp on it if all you have is English language sources curated by Western media. Hence, the smug and staggering ignorance that our resident Russophobes wear with such pride as if it were the Order of Lenin.
    And I duly have none. Happy to fess to that. But I'm definitely not a Russophobe. I put the war down to Putin not 'Russia'. It's just I have a general skepticism about national characteristics. Not all of them, and not in all contexts, but particularly those imputing 'personal type' qualities to a whole people. So things like diligent/lazy or brave/cowardly or jolly/dour. This sort of thing. It's largely bollocks imo.
  • NigelbNigelb Posts: 62,041
    TOPPING said:

    Leon said:

    It’s quite strange being in a country as young as Cambodia. Everyone seems to be in their twenties BECAUSE THEY ARE. Median age is 27

    Even stranger is that absolutely everyone is slim. Healthy looking. I’ve been here a month (and was here last year as well) and I’m not sure I’ve seen a single fat person. I’ve seen some portly-ish old people, but they are stout in the way older people can be or even should be. A bit of a tummy (men), chunky around the arse (the women) - I have not seen a single overweight person under 40, let alone obese. It means even average looking women are kinda sexy, due to being slender as a reed

    And I’m not imagining it. Cambodia is the 4th least obese nation on Earth. 3.9%

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_countries_by_obesity_rate

    Did Britain look like this in the 1930s or 1970s? What have we done to ourselves? It is disgusting

    I hope Cambodia bans all processed food and any foodstuff made in America

    Seems you are going full on lefty self hatred of your mother country here, young lad.
    He's just lamenting his lost youth.
    Give him a break.
  • LeonLeon Posts: 46,461
    Dura_Ace said:

    kinabalu said:

    Sean_F said:

    O/T I went to a dinner/seminar last night at which defence/ Ukraine issues were discussed at length by top analysts. The key takeaways were:-

    1. Tactically, the performance of the Russian army is dreadful, no better than two years ago. But, it has always been. Operationally, it is a lot more capable, and it is getting artillery shells in much greater numbers than Ukraine. There are precisely two European companies that manufacture artillery shells. However, Ukraine has the advantage in terms of possession and production of drones.

    2. Russians are willing to suffer hardship, to achieve military success, in ways we don’t fully appreciate in the West.

    3. But even Russia can’t defy economic gravity for ever. Soviet oil exports have been hit hard in recent months, partly due to drone attacks, and the regime is burning through foreign exchange reserves at an incredible speed. If Ukraine can keep fighting for 2-3 years, then it will likely win, as Russia runs out of resources.

    4. Germany’s commitment to Ukraine is now of vital importance. As well as aid, Germany is now training twice as many Ukrainian soldiers as the UK is.

    5. The reduction of the UK’s military capability, starting in 2010, is of real concern, throughout NATO. Cameron, Osborne and their successors have acted as if the world is growing safer, rather than more dangerous.

    6. Contrary to press reports, there is no shortage of people wishing to join the armed forces. The real problem is with Capita, taking up to 14 months to process applications, by which time, they’ve taken other jobs.

    With (2) were the analysts saying it's something in the Russian 'soul' (or whatever) that makes them tolerate great hardship for the sake of military glory? Because I've heard that a lot and I'm a bit skeptical. Isn't it more that the people there are repressed under a dictatorship and subject to vast amounts of propaganda? Meaning they are (i) more likely to keep on believing in the cause and (ii) less likely to play up even if they don't.
    They have a cultural obsession with war and dying in large numbers that makes the English undying fixation on WW2 look like a passing fancy.

    Understanding of Russian culture, with a few exceptions, by Western commentators is meagre. It's impossible to have anything other than superficial, and probably erroneous, grasp on it if all you have is English language sources curated by Western media. Hence, the smug and staggering ignorance that our resident Russophobes wear with such pride as if it were the Order of Lenin.
    Aren’t you teetotal?

    I’m impressed you can understand Russian culture without joining in the drinking and the drinking culture. That’s when they truly reveal themselves, in my experience. And I’ve been all over Russia - and drunk with them

    However you do speak Russian? Which is certainly an impressive advantage
  • SouthamObserverSouthamObserver Posts: 38,901

    Sunak refusing to apologise gives us a glimpse of what the Tory GE strategy is going to be (as suspected for some time).

    Number 10 have clearly decided it is more important to paint Starmer as an unprincipled flip flopper than it is to mitigate the potential damage caused by Sunak’s remarks.

    It is going to be a very dirty GE campaign.

    Ironically, it's Sunak who is the flip flopper on this. He says that a woman cannot have a penis yet refers to Brianna as she and her. Obviously, to do otherwise would be immensely cruel and disrespectful. Why? Because it is a difficult, complex issue with many shades of grey. Maybe it's not one for soundbites and catch-all simplisms.

  • kamskikamski Posts: 4,203
    TOPPING said:

    kinabalu said:

    Harper said:

    kinabalu said:

    Sean_F said:

    O/T I went to a dinner/seminar last night at which defence/ Ukraine issues were discussed at length by top analysts. The key takeaways were:-

    1. Tactically, the performance of the Russian army is dreadful, no better than two years ago. But, it has always been. Operationally, it is a lot more capable, and it is getting artillery shells in much greater numbers than Ukraine. There are precisely two European companies that manufacture artillery shells. However, Ukraine has the advantage in terms of possession and production of drones.

    2. Russians are willing to suffer hardship, to achieve military success, in ways we don’t fully appreciate in the West.

    3. But even Russia can’t defy economic gravity for ever. Soviet oil exports have been hit hard in recent months, partly due to drone attacks, and the regime is burning through foreign exchange reserves at an incredible speed. If Ukraine can keep fighting for 2-3 years, then it will likely win, as Russia runs out of resources.

    4. Germany’s commitment to Ukraine is now of vital importance. As well as aid, Germany is now training twice as many Ukrainian soldiers as the UK is.

    5. The reduction of the UK’s military capability, starting in 2010, is of real concern, throughout NATO. Cameron, Osborne and their successors have acted as if the world is growing safer, rather than more dangerous.

    6. Contrary to press reports, there is no shortage of people wishing to join the armed forces. The real problem is with Capita, taking up to 14 months to process applications, by which time, they’ve taken other jobs.

    With (2) were the analysts saying it's something in the Russian 'soul' (or whatever) that makes them tolerate great hardship for the sake of military glory? Because I've heard that a lot and I'm a bit skeptical. Isn't it more that the people there are repressed under a dictatorship and subject to vast amounts of propaganda? Meaning they are (i) more likely to keep on believing in the cause and (ii) less likely to play up even if they don't.
    From what ive seen of Russians on holiday they are generally tougher. They have to be living in a cold climate in a relatively poor country that has been subject to invasions and brutal dictatorships. With regards to propaganda we in the west are too subject to constant propoganda to justify a model that vastly benefits a privileged few but impoverishes many.
    This was not my experience in Tenerife.
    Great line.
    kinabalu sizing up the Russian and German tourists in Tenerife so we don't have to!
  • NigelbNigelb Posts: 62,041
    Dura_Ace said:

    kinabalu said:

    Sean_F said:

    O/T I went to a dinner/seminar last night at which defence/ Ukraine issues were discussed at length by top analysts. The key takeaways were:-

    1. Tactically, the performance of the Russian army is dreadful, no better than two years ago. But, it has always been. Operationally, it is a lot more capable, and it is getting artillery shells in much greater numbers than Ukraine. There are precisely two European companies that manufacture artillery shells. However, Ukraine has the advantage in terms of possession and production of drones.

    2. Russians are willing to suffer hardship, to achieve military success, in ways we don’t fully appreciate in the West.

    3. But even Russia can’t defy economic gravity for ever. Soviet oil exports have been hit hard in recent months, partly due to drone attacks, and the regime is burning through foreign exchange reserves at an incredible speed. If Ukraine can keep fighting for 2-3 years, then it will likely win, as Russia runs out of resources.

    4. Germany’s commitment to Ukraine is now of vital importance. As well as aid, Germany is now training twice as many Ukrainian soldiers as the UK is.

    5. The reduction of the UK’s military capability, starting in 2010, is of real concern, throughout NATO. Cameron, Osborne and their successors have acted as if the world is growing safer, rather than more dangerous.

    6. Contrary to press reports, there is no shortage of people wishing to join the armed forces. The real problem is with Capita, taking up to 14 months to process applications, by which time, they’ve taken other jobs.

    With (2) were the analysts saying it's something in the Russian 'soul' (or whatever) that makes them tolerate great hardship for the sake of military glory? Because I've heard that a lot and I'm a bit skeptical. Isn't it more that the people there are repressed under a dictatorship and subject to vast amounts of propaganda? Meaning they are (i) more likely to keep on believing in the cause and (ii) less likely to play up even if they don't.
    They have a cultural obsession with war and dying in large numbers that makes the English undying fixation on WW2 look like a passing fancy.

    Understanding of Russian culture, with a few exceptions, by Western commentators is meagre. It's impossible to have anything other than superficial, and probably erroneous, grasp on it if all you have is English language sources curated by Western media. Hence, the smug and staggering ignorance that our resident Russophobes wear with such pride as if it were the Order of Lenin.
    You make it sound a pretty sick society.
  • LeonLeon Posts: 46,461
    Nigelb said:

    Leon said:

    148grss said:

    Leon said:

    I’ll give PBers a second chance to contemplate it

    ‘A team led by mathematician Jan H. van de Beek at the University of Amsterdam estimates that the Dutch government spent approximately €17 billion per year on migration in the period between 1995 and 2019, meaning that more than one billion euros went to migration-related issues every month.

    The study digs deeper still: annual net costs of non-Western immigration amount to €17 billion and the annual net benefits of Western immigration total one billion euros. Distinguishing between Western and non-Western migration patterns, the study comes to a startling conclusion: if immigration remains at 2015-2019 levels, the annual budget burden will increase from €17 billion in 2016 to about €50 billion. This is an increase that the welfare state would most likely not survive.

    The Dutch findings are mirrored in a similar study conducted by the Danish Finance Ministry, which concludes that non-Western immigrants are most likely to remain lifelong recipients of public finances compared to their Western or native Danish peers. Meanwhile, the picture in Germany is not much different: about 45% of those who receive unemployment benefits are not German citizens, costing the taxpayers around €20 billion per year. Austria shows similar numbers, with almost 60% of recipients having a “migrant background”.

    Van de Beek sees parts of the problem in the structure of the welfare state… [snip - see the link],

    The emerging picture is a complex one that includes both cultural and economic factors, but the overall conclusion remains the same: the current conditions under which migration to Europe takes place are not sustainable and will bring the welfare systems ever closer to collapsing. The idea promoted by Folkerts-Landau and others turned out to be far too optimistic, and what makes matters worse is that politicians still refuse to face the facts.

    Placing one’s head in the sand is, unfortunately, not the same as actual policymaking. Europe has ignored these issues for too long, and voters will make their discontent heard at the voting booth’

    https://unherd.com/thepost/dutch-study-immigration-costs-state-e17-billion-per-year/

    So the only actual report I can find (other than pieces in right wing media about the report) are in Danish, and I can't find anything discussing the report in English other than right wingers hailing it as the evidence they've always needed that immigrants are bad actually. That's not to say it is wrong, just that as someone who doesn't speak Danish I can't verify the actual findings of the report outside of places like unherd, who are not a source I trust.

    I have found an OpenDemocracy article detailing essentially the argument I put forth yesterday - how if immigrants are a "drain" on an economy it is most likely the practices of the employers who abuse those workers and use them to under cut labour rights and labour costs, but I accept that could have nothing to do with what this report was exploring. If you have a link directly to the report in English, I'd be very interested to look at it, the methodology and such.

    https://www.opendemocracy.net/en/beyond-trafficking-and-slavery/the-danish-model-of-exploiting-migrant-workers/
    Mate, it's Dutch. lol

    Not a good start to your research

    Here's the report. In English

    https://demo-demo.nl/wp-content/uploads/2023/06/Borderless_Welfare_State-2.pdf
    The comparison doesn't really work for a country whose average income is about 70% of that in the Netherlands.

    The percentage of those on benefit who are not UK citizens was around 16% in 2019 (I can't quickly find a more recent figure); and migrants are more likely to be in work that native born Brits.

    So whatever your feelings about the levels of immigration, the comparison with the Netherlands (assuming the capacity of your article) is anyway complete bunk.
    And there we have it. Britain is so violently different to Netherlands none of this applies. Of course

    That is, until a comparison with an eu country comes along of which you approve, then it totally applies

    Honestly, this level of argumentation is quite depressing
  • isamisam Posts: 40,848

    Sunak refusing to apologise gives us a glimpse of what the Tory GE strategy is going to be (as suspected for some time).

    Number 10 have clearly decided it is more important to paint Starmer as an unprincipled flip flopper than it is to mitigate the potential damage caused by Sunak’s remarks.

    It is going to be a very dirty GE campaign.

    Sunak would be a fool to cave in and apologise, he didn’t do anything wrong. Good on him for listing Sir Keir’s broken promises and U-Turns, keep at it
  • viewcodeviewcode Posts: 18,531

    a

    mwadams said:

    a

    Carnyx said:

    ..

    Leon said:

    Leon said:

    TOPPING said:

    Leon said:

    Carnyx said:

    Leon said:

    Much of urban Britain is now completely dystopian. That queue for the dentists in St Paul's

    https://x.com/uk8qnzl/status/1754997596521734573?s=20

    Er, you haven't noticed that we have discussed it several times on PB, including Labour's modification of the photo to a Britain Isn't Working-style election poster. But it is always good to remind ourselves that that is the way in which current government policy drills down to the ordinary punter on the street.
    But the obvious BME over-representation in that queue
    This is where you fucked up.
    No, it isn't

    It will be newcomers seeking dentists. Settled citizens (of any stripe) will already have dentists, in the main

    For the last eight years the vast majority of migration into Britain - since Brexit - has been non-white, non-EU. You would therefore expect a queue of new people, presumably seeking a dentist, to be non-white
    Not really. People move around, and will need a new dentist. Existing dental practices shut down and their patients need a new dentist. Plenty of people simply don't have a dentist because NHS dentists in their area won't take new patients. You just looked at a queue of non white people and said "they must be immigrants" on the basis of no information. Given that you live in Camden you have a surprisingly provincial and outdated view of British society.
    St Paul's, Bristol, has one of the higher levels of non-UK-born inhabitants in the country. So, no, I didn't just presume, I looked at the data
    St Paul's has had a large African/Caribbean population since the 1950s (it has had a carnival since the early 1960s and was where the Bristol Bus Boycott started) so will also be home to a significant non white population who are not immigrants and certainly not recent arrivals. I just don't know how one can judge whether the crowd outside the dental practice are recent immigrants or not based on their appearance.
    It all reminds me of some friends of my grandparents who congratulated my then girlfriend, now wife, on her beautiful English. Her parents are Sri Lankan but she was born in Margate and was studying at Cambridge University at the time so her English language skills were not really that surprising.
    Suggesting that British born BAMEs aren’t really British is Goodwin’s latest slippery little trick. I suppose they’re an easy visible target towards which to direct the torch wielding mob.
    "The Scots are as British as anyone," isn't your usual line.
    We’re as British as any other person born in the UK. Polling suggests we don’t feel as strong an attachment to that identity as BAME folk, despite the best efforts of Goodwin and his fellow travellers to put them off.
    Nicely delphic, especially the UK bit.

    kinabalu said:

    kinabalu said:

    boulay said:

    Leon said:

    Leon said:

    TOPPING said:

    Leon said:

    TOPPING said:

    Leon said:

    Carnyx said:

    Leon said:

    Much of urban Britain is now completely dystopian. That queue for the dentists in St Paul's

    https://x.com/uk8qnzl/status/1754997596521734573?s=20

    Er, you haven't noticed that we have discussed it several times on PB, including Labour's modification of the photo to a Britain Isn't Working-style election poster. But it is always good to remind ourselves that that is the way in which current government policy drills down to the ordinary punter on the street.
    But the obvious BME over-representation in that queue
    This is where you fucked up.
    No, it isn't

    It will be newcomers seeking dentists. Settled citizens (of any stripe) will already have dentists, in the main

    For the last eight years the vast majority of migration into Britain - since Brexit - has been non-white, non-EU. You would therefore expect a queue of new people, presumably seeking a dentist, to be non-white
    I didn't see you travelling down this path tbh. What does it matter what colour people are. Plus I've no idea whether your "stat" is true. I haven't yet come across a black Polish plumber or Romanian bricklayer or indeed Albanian chippie but I'm sure some exist.

    Or are you feeling a bit besieged on PB atm and are doubling down.
    I am merely saying that the video is - arguably - a visual representation of the pressure mass migration is putting on the UK's public services and infra. This is hardly a new point from me, I am hardly going off on a new Nazi tangent, am I? I expect you've heard me make the point before

    And yet there are PB-ers who deny this is an issue. Who deny that mass migration might be at least part of the reason we see such pressure on UK health, education, sewage, roads, &c

    See below

    i do feel slightly beseiged, but I quite enjoy it (for now). With @Casino_Royale gone I am like the last redcoat in Zulu, the drunken malingerer in the sick bay turned hero, shooting up at the thatch as the lefty hordes overwhelm the Drift. Hooky. That was his name. Hooky. Got a VC didn't he?
    The drunken malingerer thing was bullshit, incidentally. He was a lay Methodist preacher and an exemplary soldier, IIRC.

    Also, IIRC, his descendants protested at his portrayal
    Great movie, tho. Really really great

    I imagine it is barely showable now, as it is quite non-Woke
    Apart from it being on woke Channel 4 at new year and on 4OD (maybe still is) it’s barely showable.
    Yep. You can't get away from it. If you want to not watch it you have to make that a priority.
    But if you change channel (to the only other channel), they are showing The Dam Busters on a loop. With the name of the dog* unbleeped.

    *Dog not included for scale.
    Time for a good book then, preferably one without any 'heroic' war nonsense. Eg I'm into a Japanese magical realist epic atm. I pick it up whenever I'm tempted to do something reprehensible.
    Or fire up The Cruel Sea.

    "Snorkers! Good oh!"
    Train smash as it was known to my father, albeit when served with tomatoes.
    Snorkers = very dubious tinned sausages
    Train Smash = everything available cooked together.

    I *thought*
    "It's the war. The whole, bloody war." - favourite Cruel Sea quote. Hawkins delivers it immaculately.
    Yes - the comment from many Battle of The Atlantic veterans was that it was the film that spoke for them.

    When I worked in the oil industry, they called in an ancient Norwegian retired tanker captain for some consultations. In the pub, afterwards, he reminisced a bit on WWII - he'd been a crewman on the Murmansk run. His stories put me in mind of this -


    Some say the world will end in fire,
    Some say in ice.
    From what I’ve tasted of desire
    I hold with those who favor fire.
    But if it had to perish twice,
    I think I know enough of hate
    To say that for destruction ice
    Is also great
    And would suffice.
    Robert Frost if I remember correctly. One of the few snatches of poetry I memorized in my youth, along with "to stand, to seek...", "we are the pilgrims, master,...", "for the ashes of his fathers...", and the one with the fork in the wood. Forgotten now, but I remember remembering them, the ghost of a ghost.
  • maxhmaxh Posts: 818

    148grss said:

    Leon said:

    148grss said:

    Leon said:

    I’ll give PBers a second chance to contemplate it

    ‘A team led by mathematician Jan H. van de Beek at the University of Amsterdam estimates that the Dutch government spent approximately €17 billion per year on migration in the period between 1995 and 2019, meaning that more than one billion euros went to migration-related issues every month.

    The study digs deeper still: annual net costs of non-Western immigration amount to €17 billion and the annual net benefits of Western immigration total one billion euros. Distinguishing between Western and non-Western migration patterns, the study comes to a startling conclusion: if immigration remains at 2015-2019 levels, the annual budget burden will increase from €17 billion in 2016 to about €50 billion. This is an increase that the welfare state would most likely not survive.

    The Dutch findings are mirrored in a similar study conducted by the Danish Finance Ministry, which concludes that non-Western immigrants are most likely to remain lifelong recipients of public finances compared to their Western or native Danish peers. Meanwhile, the picture in Germany is not much different: about 45% of those who receive unemployment benefits are not German citizens, costing the taxpayers around €20 billion per year. Austria shows similar numbers, with almost 60% of recipients having a “migrant background”.

    Van de Beek sees parts of the problem in the structure of the welfare state… [snip - see the link],

    The emerging picture is a complex one that includes both cultural and economic factors, but the overall conclusion remains the same: the current conditions under which migration to Europe takes place are not sustainable and will bring the welfare systems ever closer to collapsing. The idea promoted by Folkerts-Landau and others turned out to be far too optimistic, and what makes matters worse is that politicians still refuse to face the facts.

    Placing one’s head in the sand is, unfortunately, not the same as actual policymaking. Europe has ignored these issues for too long, and voters will make their discontent heard at the voting booth’

    https://unherd.com/thepost/dutch-study-immigration-costs-state-e17-billion-per-year/

    So the only actual report I can find (other than pieces in right wing media about the report) are in Danish, and I can't find anything discussing the report in English other than right wingers hailing it as the evidence they've always needed that immigrants are bad actually. That's not to say it is wrong, just that as someone who doesn't speak Danish I can't verify the actual findings of the report outside of places like unherd, who are not a source I trust.

    I have found an OpenDemocracy article detailing essentially the argument I put forth yesterday - how if immigrants are a "drain" on an economy it is most likely the practices of the employers who abuse those workers and use them to under cut labour rights and labour costs, but I accept that could have nothing to do with what this report was exploring. If you have a link directly to the report in English, I'd be very interested to look at it, the methodology and such.

    https://www.opendemocracy.net/en/beyond-trafficking-and-slavery/the-danish-model-of-exploiting-migrant-workers/
    Mate, it's Dutch. lol

    Not a good start to your research


    Here's the report. In English


    https://demo-demo.nl/wp-content/uploads/2023/06/Borderless_Welfare_State-2.pdf
    So looking at the report and a couple of academic book reviews of the report (there isn't a lot in English because it seems the English translation only came out last year?) I have a few thoughts.

    From one of the book reviews summarising the report: https://www.academia.edu/85011302/Book_Review_i_Borderless_Welfare_State_The_Consequences_of_Immigration_on_Public_Finances_Grenzeloze_verzorgingsstaat_De_gevolgen_van_immigratie_voor_de_overheidsfinanciën_i_

    For example, the authors show that labor migrants have a positive net contribution, but study migration, family migration, and asylum migration lead to substantial negative net contributions. For instance, asylum migration costs on average almost half a million euros per immigrant; an important reason is the low-level of labor force participation, partially caused by restrictions on work permits while the migrants are waiting for decision about their status.

    Already this carves out a distinction between those who are workers migrating and those who aren't. Study migration and family migration would obviously be net negative - that is a non working population, typically in education -and the exploration of that as a net negative seems somewhat persuasive. Although it only looks at Gens 1 and 2. I remember, anecdotally, something about how most immigrant populations tend to be fully integrated by the third generation and after a quick google scholar another Dutch paper which concludes

    "Thus, this study has presented novel empirical evidence that the ethnic disparities in income among Dutch citizens born to second-generation migrant parents from various immigrant groups are fading"
    https://docs.iza.org/dp13855.pdf

    This report does note that this does not reach parity with Dutch natives, including for groups who have been in the country longer (such as Germans) - but it may mean that they will make up the net losses of the previous generations.

    As for asylum seekers being a net drain - there's a part of me which is like "duh", they are more likely to have come from somewhere war torn or traumatic and, therefore, will have lower levels of education. But, interestingly, the report does note that the restrictions on work whilst applying for permits also adds to the issue. Which begs the question - surely a way to make those people less of a "drain" would be to a) reduce the government scrutiny on their asylum application or b) allow them to work whilst waiting for their status to come through (arguably under closer scrutiny to make sure they aren't just being abused by employers who may not afford them the same rights as other workers).

    That's just a very quick scan during my lunch hour - I do find this interesting, though.
    It should be fairly obvious and not especially controversial that Delivroo bike riders contribute less to the economy than they require in services.

    Since the whole point of the welfare state is to support poor people.

    It is interesting to see how high up the income scale you go, before you are a net contributor to the economy. Hence, for example the startling stats about the number of net tax payers in poorer areas of the UK.

    The debate then moves to "high economic value immigrants"
    Anecdata within school supports the report’s claim that asylum seekers are a significant drain on public sector resources, largely on the basis of translation requirements for non-English speakers (I can squeeze a few Ukrainians in my classroom, but if they don't speak any English I lose many, many hours of my life figuring out how to teach them maths effectively).

    I do think it would be a healthier, more-light-less-heat debate if we considered asylum seekers separately from economic migrants. The former we might accept for moral reasons, the latter for economic (and largely selfish) ones.

    That the report tries to do this is useful. Hard to know whether it is a trustworthy source but it is a useful counterpoint to the prevailing view that migrants are economically beneficial but culturally challenging.

    That said, I struggled to make sense of the section about immigration not being a solution for an ageing population:

    Immigration is not a solution to population ageing. If the percentage of those over the age of 70 is to be kept constant with immigration, the Dutch population will grow extremely quickly to approximately 100 million at the end of this century. Population ageing is mainly dejuvenation. Far fewer children are being born than is necessary to maintain the population. And immigration does not solve the dejuve-nation. The only structural solution is an increase in the average number of children.

    Surely having more children will put far greater strain on a country's resources (childcare, education etc) for a much delayed return in terms of economic productivity by comparison with an economic migrant of working age (even if they need some training and lessons in Dutch)? And surely having more kids has the same iimpact on population growth? Am I missing something?
  • TOPPINGTOPPING Posts: 41,082

    Dura_Ace said:

    kinabalu said:

    Sean_F said:

    O/T I went to a dinner/seminar last night at which defence/ Ukraine issues were discussed at length by top analysts. The key takeaways were:-

    1. Tactically, the performance of the Russian army is dreadful, no better than two years ago. But, it has always been. Operationally, it is a lot more capable, and it is getting artillery shells in much greater numbers than Ukraine. There are precisely two European companies that manufacture artillery shells. However, Ukraine has the advantage in terms of possession and production of drones.

    2. Russians are willing to suffer hardship, to achieve military success, in ways we don’t fully appreciate in the West.

    3. But even Russia can’t defy economic gravity for ever. Soviet oil exports have been hit hard in recent months, partly due to drone attacks, and the regime is burning through foreign exchange reserves at an incredible speed. If Ukraine can keep fighting for 2-3 years, then it will likely win, as Russia runs out of resources.

    4. Germany’s commitment to Ukraine is now of vital importance. As well as aid, Germany is now training twice as many Ukrainian soldiers as the UK is.

    5. The reduction of the UK’s military capability, starting in 2010, is of real concern, throughout NATO. Cameron, Osborne and their successors have acted as if the world is growing safer, rather than more dangerous.

    6. Contrary to press reports, there is no shortage of people wishing to join the armed forces. The real problem is with Capita, taking up to 14 months to process applications, by which time, they’ve taken other jobs.

    With (2) were the analysts saying it's something in the Russian 'soul' (or whatever) that makes them tolerate great hardship for the sake of military glory? Because I've heard that a lot and I'm a bit skeptical. Isn't it more that the people there are repressed under a dictatorship and subject to vast amounts of propaganda? Meaning they are (i) more likely to keep on believing in the cause and (ii) less likely to play up even if they don't.
    They have a cultural obsession with war and dying in large numbers that makes the English undying fixation on WW2 look like a passing fancy.

    Understanding of Russian culture, with a few exceptions, by Western commentators is meagre. It's impossible to have anything other than superficial, and probably erroneous, grasp on it if all you have is English language sources curated by Western media. Hence, the smug and staggering ignorance that our resident Russophobes wear with such pride as if it were the Order of Lenin.
    But you know what? If it comes to a choice between being a 'russophobe' in your eyes and being a full-on Russia apologist, please forgive me for choosing the former.

    Have you considered that the Russian media that you slurp up might be even worse than ours for accuracy?
    Have you considered it's possible to try to look at the situation dispassionately. We try to understand the motivations for actions and to avoid historical inevitablism. We don't want the Russians to succeed so they will fail. Why not look at facts on the ground.

    And appreciate that we are a long way from knowing what on earth is going to happen but the old "one last push, this is it" PB mantra has not coincided with those facts on the ground, now, has it.
  • MalmesburyMalmesbury Posts: 44,042
    kinabalu said:

    Dura_Ace said:

    kinabalu said:

    Sean_F said:

    O/T I went to a dinner/seminar last night at which defence/ Ukraine issues were discussed at length by top analysts. The key takeaways were:-

    1. Tactically, the performance of the Russian army is dreadful, no better than two years ago. But, it has always been. Operationally, it is a lot more capable, and it is getting artillery shells in much greater numbers than Ukraine. There are precisely two European companies that manufacture artillery shells. However, Ukraine has the advantage in terms of possession and production of drones.

    2. Russians are willing to suffer hardship, to achieve military success, in ways we don’t fully appreciate in the West.

    3. But even Russia can’t defy economic gravity for ever. Soviet oil exports have been hit hard in recent months, partly due to drone attacks, and the regime is burning through foreign exchange reserves at an incredible speed. If Ukraine can keep fighting for 2-3 years, then it will likely win, as Russia runs out of resources.

    4. Germany’s commitment to Ukraine is now of vital importance. As well as aid, Germany is now training twice as many Ukrainian soldiers as the UK is.

    5. The reduction of the UK’s military capability, starting in 2010, is of real concern, throughout NATO. Cameron, Osborne and their successors have acted as if the world is growing safer, rather than more dangerous.

    6. Contrary to press reports, there is no shortage of people wishing to join the armed forces. The real problem is with Capita, taking up to 14 months to process applications, by which time, they’ve taken other jobs.

    With (2) were the analysts saying it's something in the Russian 'soul' (or whatever) that makes them tolerate great hardship for the sake of military glory? Because I've heard that a lot and I'm a bit skeptical. Isn't it more that the people there are repressed under a dictatorship and subject to vast amounts of propaganda? Meaning they are (i) more likely to keep on believing in the cause and (ii) less likely to play up even if they don't.
    They have a cultural obsession with war and dying in large numbers that makes the English undying fixation on WW2 look like a passing fancy.

    Understanding of Russian culture, with a few exceptions, by Western commentators is meagre. It's impossible to have anything other than superficial, and probably erroneous, grasp on it if all you have is English language sources curated by Western media. Hence, the smug and staggering ignorance that our resident Russophobes wear with such pride as if it were the Order of Lenin.
    And I duly have none. Happy to fess to that. But I'm definitely not a Russophobe. I put the war down to Putin not 'Russia'. It's just I have a general skepticism about national characteristics. Not all of them, and not in all contexts, but particularly those imputing 'personal type' qualities to a whole people. So things like diligent/lazy or brave/cowardly or jolly/dour. This sort of thing. It's largely bollocks imo.
    The Japanese and the Germans, in their time, were considered (by some) to be incredibly resilient and far more capable of fighting to the death than "lesser breeds".

    Turned out the death worship wasn't actually innate. Funny that.

    Any more than ¡Viva la Muerte! is how Spaniards feel about pretty much anything.
  • TOPPINGTOPPING Posts: 41,082
    kamski said:

    TOPPING said:

    kinabalu said:

    Harper said:

    kinabalu said:

    Sean_F said:

    O/T I went to a dinner/seminar last night at which defence/ Ukraine issues were discussed at length by top analysts. The key takeaways were:-

    1. Tactically, the performance of the Russian army is dreadful, no better than two years ago. But, it has always been. Operationally, it is a lot more capable, and it is getting artillery shells in much greater numbers than Ukraine. There are precisely two European companies that manufacture artillery shells. However, Ukraine has the advantage in terms of possession and production of drones.

    2. Russians are willing to suffer hardship, to achieve military success, in ways we don’t fully appreciate in the West.

    3. But even Russia can’t defy economic gravity for ever. Soviet oil exports have been hit hard in recent months, partly due to drone attacks, and the regime is burning through foreign exchange reserves at an incredible speed. If Ukraine can keep fighting for 2-3 years, then it will likely win, as Russia runs out of resources.

    4. Germany’s commitment to Ukraine is now of vital importance. As well as aid, Germany is now training twice as many Ukrainian soldiers as the UK is.

    5. The reduction of the UK’s military capability, starting in 2010, is of real concern, throughout NATO. Cameron, Osborne and their successors have acted as if the world is growing safer, rather than more dangerous.

    6. Contrary to press reports, there is no shortage of people wishing to join the armed forces. The real problem is with Capita, taking up to 14 months to process applications, by which time, they’ve taken other jobs.

    With (2) were the analysts saying it's something in the Russian 'soul' (or whatever) that makes them tolerate great hardship for the sake of military glory? Because I've heard that a lot and I'm a bit skeptical. Isn't it more that the people there are repressed under a dictatorship and subject to vast amounts of propaganda? Meaning they are (i) more likely to keep on believing in the cause and (ii) less likely to play up even if they don't.
    From what ive seen of Russians on holiday they are generally tougher. They have to be living in a cold climate in a relatively poor country that has been subject to invasions and brutal dictatorships. With regards to propaganda we in the west are too subject to constant propoganda to justify a model that vastly benefits a privileged few but impoverishes many.
    This was not my experience in Tenerife.
    Great line.
    kinabalu sizing up the Russian and German tourists in Tenerife so we don't have to!
    Maybe Gran Canaria next year.
  • If Mr Sunak wants to fight the next GE on the personalities of the two leaders then the Cons are really in trouble. Can he really think he is still popular? Doesn't he understand that once you spend that public goodwill it does not come back.

    To rescue his party Sunak had to govern efficiently, quietly and with a deft touch. Even if the penny dropped now at No 10 it is much too late.

    None of this week's events will move the needle much but if Mr Sunak repeats errors like this in a GE campaign then it will go very badly for the Cons, perhaps more badly than even they currently fear
  • SirNorfolkPassmoreSirNorfolkPassmore Posts: 6,234
    edited February 8

    Pulpstar said:

    Amazing that the police don't seem to have caught Ezedi hiding in plain sight in the likes of Tescos. Does everyone just assume someone else has called the police in situations like that ?

    My assumption is that he has killed himself (jumped of a bridge into the Thames), hence the trail going cold on the evening of the attack.
    I'd have thought it'd be pretty difficult to jump off a bridge in London without that being captured on CCTV. Finding the body may be trickier in such a case, but bridges in big cities are pretty heavily monitored for traffic and crime reasons.

    I agree there is a pretty high chance he's dead, although also possible he has an accomplice.
    Sadly, people fall/jump in the river, often from near or on bridges, a far bit in London. The drunk younguns... "Last seen near x bridge"

    They don't seem to get caught on CCTV.

    EDIT: I haven't seen a body, but most of the rowing coaches in the club have seen them or even found them, over the years.
    I've always kind of assumed in these cases that there is CCTV and that Police are pretty confident as to what has happened - otherwise they'd not say "last seen near X bridge" - I mean, just about everywhere in central London is near a bridge.

    But CCTV quality isn't brilliant, so you're not 100% whether it's the person who has been reported missing or some random person who happened to choose that night, and it doesn't tell you state of mind - so they still want a body and any witnesses to tie up loose ends and bring closure to the family. No family is really going to settle for, "there's a guy who might be your son dropping off a bridge on this grainy CCTV footage, so we're closing the file and going out for coffee and doughnuts".
  • noneoftheabovenoneoftheabove Posts: 20,544
    kamski said:

    kamski said:

    Nayib Bukele's speech after winning reelection is worth watching. El Salvador has become the country with the lowest muder rate in the western hemisphere:

    https://x.com/nayibbukele/status/1755411561575817340

    The decline in murder rate is impressive but 7.8 per 100,000 is not the lowest. El Salvador has 6.5 million people, roughly the same population as Scotland which had 52 homicides for the whole country and that is without suspending habeus corpus and rounding up everyone remotely gang-adjacent.
    https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/articles/cqv9vzqvddwo
    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/El_Salvador
    El Salvador murder rate supposedly 2.4 per 100,000 in 2023. That is low by American standards but it is going to be way higher than Ireland, Iceland, Portugal and probably other countries that are definitely in the western hemisphere.

    Maybe it's the lowest in the Americas? No - Canada had 2.25 (2022). Might be differences in reporting of course.
    Or populist politican tells fibs......surely not?
    Murder rate in Iceland, Ireland and Portugal all comfortably under 1 per 100,000 but I'm willing to give whoever it is (Bukele or WGlenn?) the benefit of the doubt on not knowing where the western hemisphere is, and maybe the 2023 Canada figures will be higher? Of course there's going to be a few microstates - eg Montserrat - where the murder rate is often going to be 0, but I'll let them off that too.
    He has certainly done something different and noteworthy in El Salvador. Worth following how it develops.
  • viewcodeviewcode Posts: 18,531
    maxh said:

    148grss said:

    Leon said:

    148grss said:

    Leon said:

    I’ll give PBers a second chance to contemplate it

    ‘A team led by mathematician Jan H. van de Beek at the University of Amsterdam estimates that the Dutch government spent approximately €17 billion per year on migration in the period between 1995 and 2019, meaning that more than one billion euros went to migration-related issues every month.

    The study digs deeper still: annual net costs of non-Western immigration amount to €17 billion and the annual net benefits of Western immigration total one billion euros. Distinguishing between Western and non-Western migration patterns, the study comes to a startling conclusion: if immigration remains at 2015-2019 levels, the annual budget burden will increase from €17 billion in 2016 to about €50 billion. This is an increase that the welfare state would most likely not survive.

    The Dutch findings are mirrored in a similar study conducted by the Danish Finance Ministry, which concludes that non-Western immigrants are most likely to remain lifelong recipients of public finances compared to their Western or native Danish peers. Meanwhile, the picture in Germany is not much different: about 45% of those who receive unemployment benefits are not German citizens, costing the taxpayers around €20 billion per year. Austria shows similar numbers, with almost 60% of recipients having a “migrant background”.

    Van de Beek sees parts of the problem in the structure of the welfare state… [snip - see the link],

    The emerging picture is a complex one that includes both cultural and economic factors, but the overall conclusion remains the same: the current conditions under which migration to Europe takes place are not sustainable and will bring the welfare systems ever closer to collapsing. The idea promoted by Folkerts-Landau and others turned out to be far too optimistic, and what makes matters worse is that politicians still refuse to face the facts.

    Placing one’s head in the sand is, unfortunately, not the same as actual policymaking. Europe has ignored these issues for too long, and voters will make their discontent heard at the voting booth’

    https://unherd.com/thepost/dutch-study-immigration-costs-state-e17-billion-per-year/

    So the only actual report I can find (other than pieces in right wing media about the report) are in Danish, and I can't find anything discussing the report in English other than right wingers hailing it as the evidence they've always needed that immigrants are bad actually. That's not to say it is wrong, just that as someone who doesn't speak Danish I can't verify the actual findings of the report outside of places like unherd, who are not a source I trust.

    I have found an OpenDemocracy article detailing essentially the argument I put forth yesterday - how if immigrants are a "drain" on an economy it is most likely the practices of the employers who abuse those workers and use them to under cut labour rights and labour costs, but I accept that could have nothing to do with what this report was exploring. If you have a link directly to the report in English, I'd be very interested to look at it, the methodology and such.

    https://www.opendemocracy.net/en/beyond-trafficking-and-slavery/the-danish-model-of-exploiting-migrant-workers/
    Mate, it's Dutch. lol

    Not a good start to your research


    Here's the report. In English


    https://demo-demo.nl/wp-content/uploads/2023/06/Borderless_Welfare_State-2.pdf
    So looking at the report and a couple of academic book reviews of the report (there isn't a lot in English because it seems the English translation only came out last year?) I have a few thoughts.

    From one of the book reviews summarising the report: https://www.academia.edu/85011302/Book_Review_i_Borderless_Welfare_State_The_Consequences_of_Immigration_on_Public_Finances_Grenzeloze_verzorgingsstaat_De_gevolgen_van_immigratie_voor_de_overheidsfinanciën_i_

    For example, the authors show that labor migrants have a positive net contribution, but study migration, family migration, and asylum migration lead to substantial negative net contributions. For instance, asylum migration costs on average almost half a million euros per immigrant; an important reason is the low-level of labor force participation, partially caused by restrictions on work permits while the migrants are waiting for decision about their status.

    Already this carves out a distinction between those who are workers migrating and those who aren't. Study migration and family migration would obviously be net negative - that is a non working population, typically in education -and the exploration of that as a net negative seems somewhat persuasive. Although it only looks at Gens 1 and 2. I remember, anecdotally, something about how most immigrant populations tend to be fully integrated by the third generation and after a quick google scholar another Dutch paper which concludes

    "Thus, this study has presented novel empirical evidence that the ethnic disparities in income among Dutch citizens born to second-generation migrant parents from various immigrant groups are fading"
    https://docs.iza.org/dp13855.pdf

    This report does note that this does not reach parity with Dutch natives, including for groups who have been in the country longer (such as Germans) - but it may mean that they will make up the net losses of the previous generations.

    As for asylum seekers being a net drain - there's a part of me which is like "duh", they are more likely to have come from somewhere war torn or traumatic and, therefore, will have lower levels of education. But, interestingly, the report does note that the restrictions on work whilst applying for permits also adds to the issue. Which begs the question - surely a way to make those people less of a "drain" would be to a) reduce the government scrutiny on their asylum application or b) allow them to work whilst waiting for their status to come through (arguably under closer scrutiny to make sure they aren't just being abused by employers who may not afford them the same rights as other workers).

    That's just a very quick scan during my lunch hour - I do find this interesting, though.
    It should be fairly obvious and not especially controversial that Delivroo bike riders contribute less to the economy than they require in services.

    Since the whole point of the welfare state is to support poor people.

    It is interesting to see how high up the income scale you go, before you are a net contributor to the economy. Hence, for example the startling stats about the number of net tax payers in poorer areas of the UK.

    The debate then moves to "high economic value immigrants"
    Anecdata within school supports the report’s claim that asylum seekers are a significant drain on public sector resources, largely on the basis of translation requirements for non-English speakers (I can squeeze a few Ukrainians in my classroom, but if they don't speak any English I lose many, many hours of my life figuring out how to teach them maths effectively).

    I do think it would be a healthier, more-light-less-heat debate if we considered asylum seekers separately from economic migrants. The former we might accept for moral reasons, the latter for economic (and largely selfish) ones.

    That the report tries to do this is useful. Hard to know whether it is a trustworthy source but it is a useful counterpoint to the prevailing view that migrants are economically beneficial but culturally challenging.

    That said, I struggled to make sense of the section about immigration not being a solution for an ageing population:

    Immigration is not a solution to population ageing. If the percentage of those over the age of 70 is to be kept constant with immigration, the Dutch population will grow extremely quickly to approximately 100 million at the end of this century. Population ageing is mainly dejuvenation. Far fewer children are being born than is necessary to maintain the population. And immigration does not solve the dejuve-nation. The only structural solution is an increase in the average number of children.

    Surely having more children will put far greater strain on a country's resources (childcare, education etc) for a much delayed return in terms of economic productivity by comparison with an economic migrant of working age (even if they need some training and lessons in Dutch)? And surely having more kids has the same iimpact on population growth? Am I missing something?
    Childcare and education can be really cheap if you cut it to the bone, especially if you are breeding for elderly care. But the point they may be missing is that immigrants bought in to look after the old are young and hence have more kids.
  • MalmesburyMalmesbury Posts: 44,042
    a

    Pulpstar said:

    Amazing that the police don't seem to have caught Ezedi hiding in plain sight in the likes of Tescos. Does everyone just assume someone else has called the police in situations like that ?

    My assumption is that he has killed himself (jumped of a bridge into the Thames), hence the trail going cold on the evening of the attack.
    I'd have thought it'd be pretty difficult to jump off a bridge in London without that being captured on CCTV. Finding the body may be trickier in such a case, but bridges in big cities are pretty heavily monitored for traffic and crime reasons.

    I agree there is a pretty high chance he's dead, although also possible he has an accomplice.
    Sadly, people fall/jump in the river, often from near or on bridges, a far bit in London. The drunk younguns... "Last seen near x bridge"

    They don't seem to get caught on CCTV.

    EDIT: I haven't seen a body, but most of the rowing coaches in the club have seen them or even found them, over the years.
    I've always kind of assumed in these cases that there is CCTV and that Police are pretty confident as to what has happened - otherwise they'd not say "last seen near X bridge" - I mean, just about everywhere in central London is near a bridge.

    But CCTV quality isn't brilliant, so you're not 100% whether it's the person who has been reported missing or some random person who happened to choose that night, and it doesn't tell you state of mind - so they still want a body and any witnesses to tie up loose ends and bring closure to the family.
    Much of CCTV is unusable crap. Tons of people go missing in Central London - it's not Minority Report.
  • TOPPINGTOPPING Posts: 41,082
    Leon said:

    Nigelb said:

    Leon said:

    148grss said:

    Leon said:

    I’ll give PBers a second chance to contemplate it

    ‘A team led by mathematician Jan H. van de Beek at the University of Amsterdam estimates that the Dutch government spent approximately €17 billion per year on migration in the period between 1995 and 2019, meaning that more than one billion euros went to migration-related issues every month.

    The study digs deeper still: annual net costs of non-Western immigration amount to €17 billion and the annual net benefits of Western immigration total one billion euros. Distinguishing between Western and non-Western migration patterns, the study comes to a startling conclusion: if immigration remains at 2015-2019 levels, the annual budget burden will increase from €17 billion in 2016 to about €50 billion. This is an increase that the welfare state would most likely not survive.

    The Dutch findings are mirrored in a similar study conducted by the Danish Finance Ministry, which concludes that non-Western immigrants are most likely to remain lifelong recipients of public finances compared to their Western or native Danish peers. Meanwhile, the picture in Germany is not much different: about 45% of those who receive unemployment benefits are not German citizens, costing the taxpayers around €20 billion per year. Austria shows similar numbers, with almost 60% of recipients having a “migrant background”.

    Van de Beek sees parts of the problem in the structure of the welfare state… [snip - see the link],

    The emerging picture is a complex one that includes both cultural and economic factors, but the overall conclusion remains the same: the current conditions under which migration to Europe takes place are not sustainable and will bring the welfare systems ever closer to collapsing. The idea promoted by Folkerts-Landau and others turned out to be far too optimistic, and what makes matters worse is that politicians still refuse to face the facts.

    Placing one’s head in the sand is, unfortunately, not the same as actual policymaking. Europe has ignored these issues for too long, and voters will make their discontent heard at the voting booth’

    https://unherd.com/thepost/dutch-study-immigration-costs-state-e17-billion-per-year/

    So the only actual report I can find (other than pieces in right wing media about the report) are in Danish, and I can't find anything discussing the report in English other than right wingers hailing it as the evidence they've always needed that immigrants are bad actually. That's not to say it is wrong, just that as someone who doesn't speak Danish I can't verify the actual findings of the report outside of places like unherd, who are not a source I trust.

    I have found an OpenDemocracy article detailing essentially the argument I put forth yesterday - how if immigrants are a "drain" on an economy it is most likely the practices of the employers who abuse those workers and use them to under cut labour rights and labour costs, but I accept that could have nothing to do with what this report was exploring. If you have a link directly to the report in English, I'd be very interested to look at it, the methodology and such.

    https://www.opendemocracy.net/en/beyond-trafficking-and-slavery/the-danish-model-of-exploiting-migrant-workers/
    Mate, it's Dutch. lol

    Not a good start to your research

    Here's the report. In English

    https://demo-demo.nl/wp-content/uploads/2023/06/Borderless_Welfare_State-2.pdf
    The comparison doesn't really work for a country whose average income is about 70% of that in the Netherlands.

    The percentage of those on benefit who are not UK citizens was around 16% in 2019 (I can't quickly find a more recent figure); and migrants are more likely to be in work that native born Brits.

    So whatever your feelings about the levels of immigration, the comparison with the Netherlands (assuming the capacity of your article) is anyway complete bunk.
    And there we have it. Britain is so violently different to Netherlands none of this applies. Of course

    That is, until a comparison with an eu country comes along of which you approve, then it totally applies

    Honestly, this level of argumentation is quite depressing
    You first said "BME" which I believe stands for "Black [and] Minority Ethnic".

    That was your error. You brought race into it. Many (most? who knows) black Britons have roots here that go back decades. But you fell into the trap (to put it kindly) of identifying people by their race, not their economic status.

    Plus how many times do I have to tell you. The UK simply does not want fewer immigrants.
  • noneoftheabovenoneoftheabove Posts: 20,544

    If Mr Sunak wants to fight the next GE on the personalities of the two leaders then the Cons are really in trouble. Can he really think he is still popular? Doesn't he understand that once you spend that public goodwill it does not come back.

    To rescue his party Sunak had to govern efficiently, quietly and with a deft touch. Even if the penny dropped now at No 10 it is much too late.

    None of this week's events will move the needle much but if Mr Sunak repeats errors like this in a GE campaign then it will go very badly for the Cons, perhaps more badly than even they currently fear

    So he should fight on his governments record rather than leaders personalities? Damn that wont work either so:

    Fight on character and standards in public life? Nah

    Unified party with a clear direction to take the country in? Nah

    Quality of the cabinet team? Err lets not even go there.

    They are more than in trouble.

  • NigelbNigelb Posts: 62,041
    Leon said:

    Nigelb said:

    Leon said:

    148grss said:

    Leon said:

    I’ll give PBers a second chance to contemplate it

    ‘A team led by mathematician Jan H. van de Beek at the University of Amsterdam estimates that the Dutch government spent approximately €17 billion per year on migration in the period between 1995 and 2019, meaning that more than one billion euros went to migration-related issues every month.

    The study digs deeper still: annual net costs of non-Western immigration amount to €17 billion and the annual net benefits of Western immigration total one billion euros. Distinguishing between Western and non-Western migration patterns, the study comes to a startling conclusion: if immigration remains at 2015-2019 levels, the annual budget burden will increase from €17 billion in 2016 to about €50 billion. This is an increase that the welfare state would most likely not survive.

    The Dutch findings are mirrored in a similar study conducted by the Danish Finance Ministry, which concludes that non-Western immigrants are most likely to remain lifelong recipients of public finances compared to their Western or native Danish peers. Meanwhile, the picture in Germany is not much different: about 45% of those who receive unemployment benefits are not German citizens, costing the taxpayers around €20 billion per year. Austria shows similar numbers, with almost 60% of recipients having a “migrant background”.

    Van de Beek sees parts of the problem in the structure of the welfare state… [snip - see the link],

    The emerging picture is a complex one that includes both cultural and economic factors, but the overall conclusion remains the same: the current conditions under which migration to Europe takes place are not sustainable and will bring the welfare systems ever closer to collapsing. The idea promoted by Folkerts-Landau and others turned out to be far too optimistic, and what makes matters worse is that politicians still refuse to face the facts.

    Placing one’s head in the sand is, unfortunately, not the same as actual policymaking. Europe has ignored these issues for too long, and voters will make their discontent heard at the voting booth’

    https://unherd.com/thepost/dutch-study-immigration-costs-state-e17-billion-per-year/

    So the only actual report I can find (other than pieces in right wing media about the report) are in Danish, and I can't find anything discussing the report in English other than right wingers hailing it as the evidence they've always needed that immigrants are bad actually. That's not to say it is wrong, just that as someone who doesn't speak Danish I can't verify the actual findings of the report outside of places like unherd, who are not a source I trust.

    I have found an OpenDemocracy article detailing essentially the argument I put forth yesterday - how if immigrants are a "drain" on an economy it is most likely the practices of the employers who abuse those workers and use them to under cut labour rights and labour costs, but I accept that could have nothing to do with what this report was exploring. If you have a link directly to the report in English, I'd be very interested to look at it, the methodology and such.

    https://www.opendemocracy.net/en/beyond-trafficking-and-slavery/the-danish-model-of-exploiting-migrant-workers/
    Mate, it's Dutch. lol

    Not a good start to your research

    Here's the report. In English

    https://demo-demo.nl/wp-content/uploads/2023/06/Borderless_Welfare_State-2.pdf
    The comparison doesn't really work for a country whose average income is about 70% of that in the Netherlands.

    The percentage of those on benefit who are not UK citizens was around 16% in 2019 (I can't quickly find a more recent figure); and migrants are more likely to be in work that native born Brits.

    So whatever your feelings about the levels of immigration, the comparison with the Netherlands (assuming the capacity of your article) is anyway complete bunk.
    And there we have it. Britain is so violently different to Netherlands none of this applies. Of course

    That is, until a comparison with an eu country comes along of which you approve, then it totally applies

    Honestly, this level of argumentation is quite depressing
    You were arguing figures, and giving a hard time to those who wouldn't address them.
    Now I've done so, you suddenly don't like figures.
  • LeonLeon Posts: 46,461
    kamski said:

    Leon said:

    DavidL said:

    kinabalu said:

    Sean_F said:

    O/T I went to a dinner/seminar last night at which defence/ Ukraine issues were discussed at length by top analysts. The key takeaways were:-

    1. Tactically, the performance of the Russian army is dreadful, no better than two years ago. But, it has always been. Operationally, it is a lot more capable, and it is getting artillery shells in much greater numbers than Ukraine. There are precisely two European companies that manufacture artillery shells. However, Ukraine has the advantage in terms of possession and production of drones.

    2. Russians are willing to suffer hardship, to achieve military success, in ways we don’t fully appreciate in the West.

    3. But even Russia can’t defy economic gravity for ever. Soviet oil exports have been hit hard in recent months, partly due to drone attacks, and the regime is burning through foreign exchange reserves at an incredible speed. If Ukraine can keep fighting for 2-3 years, then it will likely win, as Russia runs out of resources.

    4. Germany’s commitment to Ukraine is now of vital importance. As well as aid, Germany is now training twice as many Ukrainian soldiers as the UK is.

    5. The reduction of the UK’s military capability, starting in 2010, is of real concern, throughout NATO. Cameron, Osborne and their successors have acted as if the world is growing safer, rather than more dangerous.

    6. Contrary to press reports, there is no shortage of people wishing to join the armed forces. The real problem is with Capita, taking up to 14 months to process applications, by which time, they’ve taken other jobs.

    With (2) were the analysts saying it's something in the Russian 'soul' (or whatever) that makes them tolerate great hardship for the sake of military glory? Because I've heard that a lot and I'm a bit skeptical. Isn't it more that the people there are repressed under a dictatorship and subject to vast amounts of propaganda? Meaning they are (i) more likely to keep on believing in the cause and (ii) less likely to play up even if they don't.
    We watched the latest Storyville last night about escaping from North Korea. Harrowing but compelling. And the north Korean family showed all too clearly how humans can be bullied into believing almost anything. As Sting sang many years ago "Russians love their children too" but the concept of duty and protection of the motherland is ground in from a very early age.

    And then there is fear, of course.
    I am reminded of this typically profound and enlightening article by ex-PBer SeanT in the Spectator, where he met wealthy young Russians hiding from the war, in Armenia. In particular, this exchange


    “‘They don’t really like Russians in Tbilisi. I’m sorry.’

    Mikhail sighed. ‘There are Ukrainian flags everywhere?’

    ‘Yes. Loads of them. And lots of anti-Russian graffiti.’

    ‘Why? Why do they dislike us?!’

    ‘Because you invaded them, like you invaded Ukraine. Maybe you should stop invading places?’

    Mikhail looked my way and laughed. Like I had a point, but it was beyond the wit of man to make it better. Ludmila was now gazing at the empty vodka bottle disconsolately. The mountain air was still and warm. Mikhail disappeared, then somehow returned with another vodka bottle.

    ‘This one is really homemade,’ he said, chuckling. With refilled glasses, we toasted each other, we toasted peace, and we watched the stars glittering over Nakhchivan, the hostile Azeri exclave. Then Mikhail said: ‘You know, I hate the war, but we have to win it. I am scared that Putin will order a mobilisation, but if he does, I will fight. Russia is my country. Russia must win the war.’”

    How many rich young Brits would say that stuff? ‘Britain is my country. Britain must win the war’

    Very few, sadly

    https://www.spectator.co.uk/article/an-existential-war-even-wealthy-emigres-are-prepared-to-fight-for-russia/

    God that guy gets around. A truly enviable life
    Yes - and unfortunately for you I have heard calls for an EU travel ban for Putin propagandist 'Leon', so you won't be able to follow him everywhere any more. Still it's the first definite Brexit bonus I've come across (for the EU, at least).
    The weird thing is, I have actually been to Gnishik in the high Caucasus of Armenia. It looks like this and it is completely wonderful








  • JosiasJessopJosiasJessop Posts: 38,772
    TOPPING said:

    Dura_Ace said:

    kinabalu said:

    Sean_F said:

    O/T I went to a dinner/seminar last night at which defence/ Ukraine issues were discussed at length by top analysts. The key takeaways were:-

    1. Tactically, the performance of the Russian army is dreadful, no better than two years ago. But, it has always been. Operationally, it is a lot more capable, and it is getting artillery shells in much greater numbers than Ukraine. There are precisely two European companies that manufacture artillery shells. However, Ukraine has the advantage in terms of possession and production of drones.

    2. Russians are willing to suffer hardship, to achieve military success, in ways we don’t fully appreciate in the West.

    3. But even Russia can’t defy economic gravity for ever. Soviet oil exports have been hit hard in recent months, partly due to drone attacks, and the regime is burning through foreign exchange reserves at an incredible speed. If Ukraine can keep fighting for 2-3 years, then it will likely win, as Russia runs out of resources.

    4. Germany’s commitment to Ukraine is now of vital importance. As well as aid, Germany is now training twice as many Ukrainian soldiers as the UK is.

    5. The reduction of the UK’s military capability, starting in 2010, is of real concern, throughout NATO. Cameron, Osborne and their successors have acted as if the world is growing safer, rather than more dangerous.

    6. Contrary to press reports, there is no shortage of people wishing to join the armed forces. The real problem is with Capita, taking up to 14 months to process applications, by which time, they’ve taken other jobs.

    With (2) were the analysts saying it's something in the Russian 'soul' (or whatever) that makes them tolerate great hardship for the sake of military glory? Because I've heard that a lot and I'm a bit skeptical. Isn't it more that the people there are repressed under a dictatorship and subject to vast amounts of propaganda? Meaning they are (i) more likely to keep on believing in the cause and (ii) less likely to play up even if they don't.
    They have a cultural obsession with war and dying in large numbers that makes the English undying fixation on WW2 look like a passing fancy.

    Understanding of Russian culture, with a few exceptions, by Western commentators is meagre. It's impossible to have anything other than superficial, and probably erroneous, grasp on it if all you have is English language sources curated by Western media. Hence, the smug and staggering ignorance that our resident Russophobes wear with such pride as if it were the Order of Lenin.
    But you know what? If it comes to a choice between being a 'russophobe' in your eyes and being a full-on Russia apologist, please forgive me for choosing the former.

    Have you considered that the Russian media that you slurp up might be even worse than ours for accuracy?
    Have you considered it's possible to try to look at the situation dispassionately. We try to understand the motivations for actions and to avoid historical inevitablism. We don't want the Russians to succeed so they will fail. Why not look at facts on the ground.

    And appreciate that we are a long way from knowing what on earth is going to happen but the old "one last push, this is it" PB mantra has not coincided with those facts on the ground, now, has it.
    Yes, it is perfectly possible to view the situation dispassionately. The problem is, when he uses ethnic slurs against Ukrainians (e.g. Moskal from memory), DA isn't being dispassionate.

    "Why not look at facts on the ground."

    Indeed. But you know what? DA often reminds us of Ukrainian 'lies' - such as the Ghost of Kyiv. The problem is: Russia lies as well, and the 'facts on the ground' are rather thin on both sides.

    As doe your last line, ISTR comments from the negativists in autumn 2022, just before Ukraine took back vast swathes of territory. Or a few months later, just before they took back most of Kherson.

    If you accuse PB pro-Ukrainians of being too positive, I'd argue you're the other way.
  • DavidLDavidL Posts: 50,978

    a

    Pulpstar said:

    Amazing that the police don't seem to have caught Ezedi hiding in plain sight in the likes of Tescos. Does everyone just assume someone else has called the police in situations like that ?

    My assumption is that he has killed himself (jumped of a bridge into the Thames), hence the trail going cold on the evening of the attack.
    I'd have thought it'd be pretty difficult to jump off a bridge in London without that being captured on CCTV. Finding the body may be trickier in such a case, but bridges in big cities are pretty heavily monitored for traffic and crime reasons.

    I agree there is a pretty high chance he's dead, although also possible he has an accomplice.
    Sadly, people fall/jump in the river, often from near or on bridges, a far bit in London. The drunk younguns... "Last seen near x bridge"

    They don't seem to get caught on CCTV.

    EDIT: I haven't seen a body, but most of the rowing coaches in the club have seen them or even found them, over the years.
    I've always kind of assumed in these cases that there is CCTV and that Police are pretty confident as to what has happened - otherwise they'd not say "last seen near X bridge" - I mean, just about everywhere in central London is near a bridge.

    But CCTV quality isn't brilliant, so you're not 100% whether it's the person who has been reported missing or some random person who happened to choose that night, and it doesn't tell you state of mind - so they still want a body and any witnesses to tie up loose ends and bring closure to the family.
    Much of CCTV is unusable crap. Tons of people go missing in Central London - it's not Minority Report.
    You may be a bit out of date there. When I was working as a procurator fiscal 20 odd years ago that was certainly true and we used to have a pretrial viewing to see if anyone could ID the accused from the video. All too often the answer was no.

    My experience more recently, particularly with the police CCTV around city centres, is that it is astonishingly sharp with a powerful zoom capacity on anything of interest. The technology has really come on.
  • Sunil_PrasannanSunil_Prasannan Posts: 49,116
    Got a VM from @Anabobazina :smile:

    "Afternoon gents. I hope you are all keeping well. I remain banned, for reasons unknown. Can one or more of you ask why on the forum? If it's merely a technical issue, can @TheScreamingEagles or @rcs1000 please release me from this purgatory."
  • LeonLeon Posts: 46,461
    Nigelb said:

    Leon said:

    Nigelb said:

    Leon said:

    148grss said:

    Leon said:

    I’ll give PBers a second chance to contemplate it

    ‘A team led by mathematician Jan H. van de Beek at the University of Amsterdam estimates that the Dutch government spent approximately €17 billion per year on migration in the period between 1995 and 2019, meaning that more than one billion euros went to migration-related issues every month.

    The study digs deeper still: annual net costs of non-Western immigration amount to €17 billion and the annual net benefits of Western immigration total one billion euros. Distinguishing between Western and non-Western migration patterns, the study comes to a startling conclusion: if immigration remains at 2015-2019 levels, the annual budget burden will increase from €17 billion in 2016 to about €50 billion. This is an increase that the welfare state would most likely not survive.

    The Dutch findings are mirrored in a similar study conducted by the Danish Finance Ministry, which concludes that non-Western immigrants are most likely to remain lifelong recipients of public finances compared to their Western or native Danish peers. Meanwhile, the picture in Germany is not much different: about 45% of those who receive unemployment benefits are not German citizens, costing the taxpayers around €20 billion per year. Austria shows similar numbers, with almost 60% of recipients having a “migrant background”.

    Van de Beek sees parts of the problem in the structure of the welfare state… [snip - see the link],

    The emerging picture is a complex one that includes both cultural and economic factors, but the overall conclusion remains the same: the current conditions under which migration to Europe takes place are not sustainable and will bring the welfare systems ever closer to collapsing. The idea promoted by Folkerts-Landau and others turned out to be far too optimistic, and what makes matters worse is that politicians still refuse to face the facts.

    Placing one’s head in the sand is, unfortunately, not the same as actual policymaking. Europe has ignored these issues for too long, and voters will make their discontent heard at the voting booth’

    https://unherd.com/thepost/dutch-study-immigration-costs-state-e17-billion-per-year/

    So the only actual report I can find (other than pieces in right wing media about the report) are in Danish, and I can't find anything discussing the report in English other than right wingers hailing it as the evidence they've always needed that immigrants are bad actually. That's not to say it is wrong, just that as someone who doesn't speak Danish I can't verify the actual findings of the report outside of places like unherd, who are not a source I trust.

    I have found an OpenDemocracy article detailing essentially the argument I put forth yesterday - how if immigrants are a "drain" on an economy it is most likely the practices of the employers who abuse those workers and use them to under cut labour rights and labour costs, but I accept that could have nothing to do with what this report was exploring. If you have a link directly to the report in English, I'd be very interested to look at it, the methodology and such.

    https://www.opendemocracy.net/en/beyond-trafficking-and-slavery/the-danish-model-of-exploiting-migrant-workers/
    Mate, it's Dutch. lol

    Not a good start to your research

    Here's the report. In English

    https://demo-demo.nl/wp-content/uploads/2023/06/Borderless_Welfare_State-2.pdf
    The comparison doesn't really work for a country whose average income is about 70% of that in the Netherlands.

    The percentage of those on benefit who are not UK citizens was around 16% in 2019 (I can't quickly find a more recent figure); and migrants are more likely to be in work that native born Brits.

    So whatever your feelings about the levels of immigration, the comparison with the Netherlands (assuming the capacity of your article) is anyway complete bunk.
    And there we have it. Britain is so violently different to Netherlands none of this applies. Of course

    That is, until a comparison with an eu country comes along of which you approve, then it totally applies

    Honestly, this level of argumentation is quite depressing
    You were arguing figures, and giving a hard time to those who wouldn't address them.
    Now I've done so, you suddenly don't like figures.
    I have linked to the actual and entire report. Read it
  • squareroot2squareroot2 Posts: 6,302

    Selebian said:

    Carnyx said:

    Carnyx said:

    Leon said:

    Leon said:

    TOPPING said:

    Leon said:

    Carnyx said:

    Leon said:

    Much of urban Britain is now completely dystopian. That queue for the dentists in St Paul's

    https://x.com/uk8qnzl/status/1754997596521734573?s=20

    Er, you haven't noticed that we have discussed it several times on PB, including Labour's modification of the photo to a Britain Isn't Working-style election poster. But it is always good to remind ourselves that that is the way in which current government policy drills down to the ordinary punter on the street.
    But the obvious BME over-representation in that queue
    This is where you fucked up.
    No, it isn't

    It will be newcomers seeking dentists. Settled citizens (of any stripe) will already have dentists, in the main

    For the last eight years the vast majority of migration into Britain - since Brexit - has been non-white, non-EU. You would therefore expect a queue of new people, presumably seeking a dentist, to be non-white
    Not really. People move around, and will need a new dentist. Existing dental practices shut down and their patients need a new dentist. Plenty of people simply don't have a dentist because NHS dentists in their area won't take new patients. You just looked at a queue of non white people and said "they must be immigrants" on the basis of no information. Given that you live in Camden you have a surprisingly provincial and outdated view of British society.
    St Paul's, Bristol, has one of the higher levels of non-UK-born inhabitants in the country. So, no, I didn't just presume, I looked at the data
    St Paul's has had a large African/Caribbean population since the 1950s (it has had a carnival since the early 1960s and was where the Bristol Bus Boycott started) so will also be home to a significant non white population who are not immigrants and certainly not recent arrivals. I just don't know how one can judge whether the crowd outside the dental practice are recent immigrants or not based on their appearance.
    It all reminds me of some friends of my grandparents who congratulated my then girlfriend, now wife, on her beautiful English. Her parents are Sri Lankan but she was born in Margate and was studying at Cambridge University at the time so her English language skills were not really that surprising.
    People who attended the University of Cambridge speak the best. Fact.

    We also write the best.
    If the young lady was brought up in Margate I’m surprised she spoke good English!
    The thought did occur to me, but I instantly dismissed it on consideration, as essexist.
    You’re not a man of Kent I take it.
    No, nor even a Kentish man - geography a bit hazy.

    [Edit] Quite right to correct that slip, so ignore the attempted joke. But doesn't the local dialect sound the same on both sides of the Estuary, as a matter of interest?
    There's a whole range of accents in Essex - from the stereotypical TOWIE accent close to London to something quite different out towards the Suffolk borders. I grew up in Chelmsford (more or less in the middle of Essex) and most people through my life have not thought I have an Essex accent. I take more after my dad, who grew up near the Suffolk border, than my mum who grew up near Brentwood (more TOWIE-esque). People at school thought I sounded very posh (oddly enough as I was from one of the poorer families).

    Kent is a pretty flat estuary accent, but mostly not the stereotypical Essex sound.

    Of course, in both, as you get close to London it gets more similar, to my ears at least.
    I lived much of my life on the North bank of the Thames, with two short periods in the North East and North West.
    In retirement I moved North of Chelmsford and although quite a few people still speak ‘Essex’ as described by Mr Selebian most of the younger folk sound as though they’re from Southend.
    Sadly.
    Estuary English? Accents are moving East as old-fashioned London accents are being replaced by MLE (Multicultural London English).
    ... and is barely comprehensible.
  • noneoftheabovenoneoftheabove Posts: 20,544

    Pulpstar said:

    Amazing that the police don't seem to have caught Ezedi hiding in plain sight in the likes of Tescos. Does everyone just assume someone else has called the police in situations like that ?

    My assumption is that he has killed himself (jumped of a bridge into the Thames), hence the trail going cold on the evening of the attack.
    I'd have thought it'd be pretty difficult to jump off a bridge in London without that being captured on CCTV. Finding the body may be trickier in such a case, but bridges in big cities are pretty heavily monitored for traffic and crime reasons.

    I agree there is a pretty high chance he's dead, although also possible he has an accomplice.
    Plenty of places around there he could just walk into the Thames and swim for a bit before drowning without the jumping off the bridge bit.
  • 148grss148grss Posts: 3,630
    Leon said:

    It’s quite strange being in a country as young as Cambodia. Everyone seems to be in their twenties BECAUSE THEY ARE. Median age is 27

    Even stranger is that absolutely everyone is slim. Healthy looking. I’ve been here a month (and was here last year as well) and I’m not sure I’ve seen a single fat person. I’ve seen some portly-ish old people, but they are stout in the way older people can be or even should be. A bit of a tummy (men), chunky around the arse (the women) - I have not seen a single overweight person under 40, let alone obese. It means even average looking women are kinda sexy, due to being slender as a reed

    And I’m not imagining it. Cambodia is the 4th least obese nation on Earth. 3.9%

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_countries_by_obesity_rate

    Did Britain look like this in the 1930s or 1970s? What have we done to ourselves? It is disgusting

    I hope Cambodia bans all processed food and any foodstuff made in America

    I mean that is kinda what happens when your country gets bombed to bits by the US and then have a long civil war and genocide at the hands of the Khmer Rouge.
  • noneoftheabovenoneoftheabove Posts: 20,544

    Got a VM from @Anabobazina :smile:

    "Afternoon gents. I hope you are all keeping well. I remain banned, for reasons unknown. Can one or more of you ask why on the forum? If it's merely a technical issue, can @TheScreamingEagles or @rcs1000 please release me from this purgatory."

    Got a VM from @Anabobazina :smile:

    "Afternoon gents. I hope you are all keeping well. I remain banned, for reasons unknown. Can one or more of you ask why on the forum? If it's merely a technical issue, can @TheScreamingEagles or @rcs1000 please release me from this purgatory."

    Guessing he refused to pay the monthly subscription in cash and was trying it on with one of these new fangled e-payment thingymajigs?
  • LeonLeon Posts: 46,461
    TOPPING said:

    Leon said:

    Nigelb said:

    Leon said:

    148grss said:

    Leon said:

    I’ll give PBers a second chance to contemplate it

    ‘A team led by mathematician Jan H. van de Beek at the University of Amsterdam estimates that the Dutch government spent approximately €17 billion per year on migration in the period between 1995 and 2019, meaning that more than one billion euros went to migration-related issues every month.

    The study digs deeper still: annual net costs of non-Western immigration amount to €17 billion and the annual net benefits of Western immigration total one billion euros. Distinguishing between Western and non-Western migration patterns, the study comes to a startling conclusion: if immigration remains at 2015-2019 levels, the annual budget burden will increase from €17 billion in 2016 to about €50 billion. This is an increase that the welfare state would most likely not survive.

    The Dutch findings are mirrored in a similar study conducted by the Danish Finance Ministry, which concludes that non-Western immigrants are most likely to remain lifelong recipients of public finances compared to their Western or native Danish peers. Meanwhile, the picture in Germany is not much different: about 45% of those who receive unemployment benefits are not German citizens, costing the taxpayers around €20 billion per year. Austria shows similar numbers, with almost 60% of recipients having a “migrant background”.

    Van de Beek sees parts of the problem in the structure of the welfare state… [snip - see the link],

    The emerging picture is a complex one that includes both cultural and economic factors, but the overall conclusion remains the same: the current conditions under which migration to Europe takes place are not sustainable and will bring the welfare systems ever closer to collapsing. The idea promoted by Folkerts-Landau and others turned out to be far too optimistic, and what makes matters worse is that politicians still refuse to face the facts.

    Placing one’s head in the sand is, unfortunately, not the same as actual policymaking. Europe has ignored these issues for too long, and voters will make their discontent heard at the voting booth’

    https://unherd.com/thepost/dutch-study-immigration-costs-state-e17-billion-per-year/

    So the only actual report I can find (other than pieces in right wing media about the report) are in Danish, and I can't find anything discussing the report in English other than right wingers hailing it as the evidence they've always needed that immigrants are bad actually. That's not to say it is wrong, just that as someone who doesn't speak Danish I can't verify the actual findings of the report outside of places like unherd, who are not a source I trust.

    I have found an OpenDemocracy article detailing essentially the argument I put forth yesterday - how if immigrants are a "drain" on an economy it is most likely the practices of the employers who abuse those workers and use them to under cut labour rights and labour costs, but I accept that could have nothing to do with what this report was exploring. If you have a link directly to the report in English, I'd be very interested to look at it, the methodology and such.

    https://www.opendemocracy.net/en/beyond-trafficking-and-slavery/the-danish-model-of-exploiting-migrant-workers/
    Mate, it's Dutch. lol

    Not a good start to your research

    Here's the report. In English

    https://demo-demo.nl/wp-content/uploads/2023/06/Borderless_Welfare_State-2.pdf
    The comparison doesn't really work for a country whose average income is about 70% of that in the Netherlands.

    The percentage of those on benefit who are not UK citizens was around 16% in 2019 (I can't quickly find a more recent figure); and migrants are more likely to be in work that native born Brits.

    So whatever your feelings about the levels of immigration, the comparison with the Netherlands (assuming the capacity of your article) is anyway complete bunk.
    And there we have it. Britain is so violently different to Netherlands none of this applies. Of course

    That is, until a comparison with an eu country comes along of which you approve, then it totally applies

    Honestly, this level of argumentation is quite depressing
    You first said "BME" which I believe stands for "Black [and] Minority Ethnic".

    That was your error. You brought race into it. Many (most? who knows) black Britons have roots here that go back decades. But you fell into the trap (to put it kindly) of identifying people by their race, not their economic status.

    Plus how many times do I have to tell you. The UK simply does not want fewer immigrants.
    Because most new migrants into the UK, since Brexit, have been BME. St Paul’s has a major chunk of non UK born citizens. It will be incomers who desperately need a new dentist, not settled citizens of whatever ethnicity

    I was using logic and combining these facts. I understand you’d prefer to resort to irrationality and call me a Nazi or whatever. I really don’t give a fuck and THIS IS BECOMING QUITE TIRESOME
  • williamglennwilliamglenn Posts: 47,940

    TOPPING said:

    Dura_Ace said:

    kinabalu said:

    Sean_F said:

    O/T I went to a dinner/seminar last night at which defence/ Ukraine issues were discussed at length by top analysts. The key takeaways were:-

    1. Tactically, the performance of the Russian army is dreadful, no better than two years ago. But, it has always been. Operationally, it is a lot more capable, and it is getting artillery shells in much greater numbers than Ukraine. There are precisely two European companies that manufacture artillery shells. However, Ukraine has the advantage in terms of possession and production of drones.

    2. Russians are willing to suffer hardship, to achieve military success, in ways we don’t fully appreciate in the West.

    3. But even Russia can’t defy economic gravity for ever. Soviet oil exports have been hit hard in recent months, partly due to drone attacks, and the regime is burning through foreign exchange reserves at an incredible speed. If Ukraine can keep fighting for 2-3 years, then it will likely win, as Russia runs out of resources.

    4. Germany’s commitment to Ukraine is now of vital importance. As well as aid, Germany is now training twice as many Ukrainian soldiers as the UK is.

    5. The reduction of the UK’s military capability, starting in 2010, is of real concern, throughout NATO. Cameron, Osborne and their successors have acted as if the world is growing safer, rather than more dangerous.

    6. Contrary to press reports, there is no shortage of people wishing to join the armed forces. The real problem is with Capita, taking up to 14 months to process applications, by which time, they’ve taken other jobs.

    With (2) were the analysts saying it's something in the Russian 'soul' (or whatever) that makes them tolerate great hardship for the sake of military glory? Because I've heard that a lot and I'm a bit skeptical. Isn't it more that the people there are repressed under a dictatorship and subject to vast amounts of propaganda? Meaning they are (i) more likely to keep on believing in the cause and (ii) less likely to play up even if they don't.
    They have a cultural obsession with war and dying in large numbers that makes the English undying fixation on WW2 look like a passing fancy.

    Understanding of Russian culture, with a few exceptions, by Western commentators is meagre. It's impossible to have anything other than superficial, and probably erroneous, grasp on it if all you have is English language sources curated by Western media. Hence, the smug and staggering ignorance that our resident Russophobes wear with such pride as if it were the Order of Lenin.
    But you know what? If it comes to a choice between being a 'russophobe' in your eyes and being a full-on Russia apologist, please forgive me for choosing the former.

    Have you considered that the Russian media that you slurp up might be even worse than ours for accuracy?
    Have you considered it's possible to try to look at the situation dispassionately. We try to understand the motivations for actions and to avoid historical inevitablism. We don't want the Russians to succeed so they will fail. Why not look at facts on the ground.

    And appreciate that we are a long way from knowing what on earth is going to happen but the old "one last push, this is it" PB mantra has not coincided with those facts on the ground, now, has it.
    Yes, it is perfectly possible to view the situation dispassionately. The problem is, when he uses ethnic slurs against Ukrainians (e.g. Moskal from memory), DA isn't being dispassionate.
    Moskal is a slur used by Ukrainians against Russians...
  • TOPPINGTOPPING Posts: 41,082

    TOPPING said:

    Dura_Ace said:

    kinabalu said:

    Sean_F said:

    O/T I went to a dinner/seminar last night at which defence/ Ukraine issues were discussed at length by top analysts. The key takeaways were:-

    1. Tactically, the performance of the Russian army is dreadful, no better than two years ago. But, it has always been. Operationally, it is a lot more capable, and it is getting artillery shells in much greater numbers than Ukraine. There are precisely two European companies that manufacture artillery shells. However, Ukraine has the advantage in terms of possession and production of drones.

    2. Russians are willing to suffer hardship, to achieve military success, in ways we don’t fully appreciate in the West.

    3. But even Russia can’t defy economic gravity for ever. Soviet oil exports have been hit hard in recent months, partly due to drone attacks, and the regime is burning through foreign exchange reserves at an incredible speed. If Ukraine can keep fighting for 2-3 years, then it will likely win, as Russia runs out of resources.

    4. Germany’s commitment to Ukraine is now of vital importance. As well as aid, Germany is now training twice as many Ukrainian soldiers as the UK is.

    5. The reduction of the UK’s military capability, starting in 2010, is of real concern, throughout NATO. Cameron, Osborne and their successors have acted as if the world is growing safer, rather than more dangerous.

    6. Contrary to press reports, there is no shortage of people wishing to join the armed forces. The real problem is with Capita, taking up to 14 months to process applications, by which time, they’ve taken other jobs.

    With (2) were the analysts saying it's something in the Russian 'soul' (or whatever) that makes them tolerate great hardship for the sake of military glory? Because I've heard that a lot and I'm a bit skeptical. Isn't it more that the people there are repressed under a dictatorship and subject to vast amounts of propaganda? Meaning they are (i) more likely to keep on believing in the cause and (ii) less likely to play up even if they don't.
    They have a cultural obsession with war and dying in large numbers that makes the English undying fixation on WW2 look like a passing fancy.

    Understanding of Russian culture, with a few exceptions, by Western commentators is meagre. It's impossible to have anything other than superficial, and probably erroneous, grasp on it if all you have is English language sources curated by Western media. Hence, the smug and staggering ignorance that our resident Russophobes wear with such pride as if it were the Order of Lenin.
    But you know what? If it comes to a choice between being a 'russophobe' in your eyes and being a full-on Russia apologist, please forgive me for choosing the former.

    Have you considered that the Russian media that you slurp up might be even worse than ours for accuracy?
    Have you considered it's possible to try to look at the situation dispassionately. We try to understand the motivations for actions and to avoid historical inevitablism. We don't want the Russians to succeed so they will fail. Why not look at facts on the ground.

    And appreciate that we are a long way from knowing what on earth is going to happen but the old "one last push, this is it" PB mantra has not coincided with those facts on the ground, now, has it.
    Yes, it is perfectly possible to view the situation dispassionately. The problem is, when he uses ethnic slurs against Ukrainians (e.g. Moskal from memory), DA isn't being dispassionate.

    "Why not look at facts on the ground."

    Indeed. But you know what? DA often reminds us of Ukrainian 'lies' - such as the Ghost of Kyiv. The problem is: Russia lies as well, and the 'facts on the ground' are rather thin on both sides.

    As doe your last line, ISTR comments from the negativists in autumn 2022, just before Ukraine took back vast swathes of territory. Or a few months later, just before they took back most of Kherson.

    If you accuse PB pro-Ukrainians of being too positive, I'd argue you're the other way.
    I would be seriously worried if DA didn't use the vernacular to describe anyone. You should see how he describes Tories.

    I am not accusing PB pro-Ukrainians of being too positive. I am accusing them of confusing what they want to happen with what might happen. They are engaging in historical inevitablism. Russia are the bad guys, bad guys lose, so Russia _will_ lose, and moreover if you don't also think Russia will lose you are a Putin apologist. It's bizarre.

    Right from Day One people on here were showing youtube clips of platoon dismounts and crowing how this was proof if proof were needed of an imminent Ukrainian victory. Likewise talking about the "Spring Push". Likewise zillions of posts about this HIMARS deployment or that new Leopard 2 tank in theatre.

    I understand that we in the UK are not used to losing (or we erase our losses from our history books, more usually - I mean how much does every schoolchild really know about 1776) but on PB it has grown into some bizarre psychological displacement process that "the good guys" can't lose and the bad guys must lose because (our own, highly selective) history.
  • MalmesburyMalmesbury Posts: 44,042
    DavidL said:

    a

    Pulpstar said:

    Amazing that the police don't seem to have caught Ezedi hiding in plain sight in the likes of Tescos. Does everyone just assume someone else has called the police in situations like that ?

    My assumption is that he has killed himself (jumped of a bridge into the Thames), hence the trail going cold on the evening of the attack.
    I'd have thought it'd be pretty difficult to jump off a bridge in London without that being captured on CCTV. Finding the body may be trickier in such a case, but bridges in big cities are pretty heavily monitored for traffic and crime reasons.

    I agree there is a pretty high chance he's dead, although also possible he has an accomplice.
    Sadly, people fall/jump in the river, often from near or on bridges, a far bit in London. The drunk younguns... "Last seen near x bridge"

    They don't seem to get caught on CCTV.

    EDIT: I haven't seen a body, but most of the rowing coaches in the club have seen them or even found them, over the years.
    I've always kind of assumed in these cases that there is CCTV and that Police are pretty confident as to what has happened - otherwise they'd not say "last seen near X bridge" - I mean, just about everywhere in central London is near a bridge.

    But CCTV quality isn't brilliant, so you're not 100% whether it's the person who has been reported missing or some random person who happened to choose that night, and it doesn't tell you state of mind - so they still want a body and any witnesses to tie up loose ends and bring closure to the family.
    Much of CCTV is unusable crap. Tons of people go missing in Central London - it's not Minority Report.
    You may be a bit out of date there. When I was working as a procurator fiscal 20 odd years ago that was certainly true and we used to have a pretrial viewing to see if anyone could ID the accused from the video. All too often the answer was no.

    My experience more recently, particularly with the police CCTV around city centres, is that it is astonishingly sharp with a powerful zoom capacity on anything of interest. The technology has really come on.
    The police CCTV for actual monitoring of stuff (social order in city centres, for example) is pretty good. The rest of the "festoon the place with cameras" is often security theatre
  • maxhmaxh Posts: 818
    Leon said:

    TOPPING said:

    Leon said:

    Nigelb said:

    Leon said:

    148grss said:

    Leon said:

    I’ll give PBers a second chance to contemplate it

    ‘A team led by mathematician Jan H. van de Beek at the University of Amsterdam estimates that the Dutch government spent approximately €17 billion per year on migration in the period between 1995 and 2019, meaning that more than one billion euros went to migration-related issues every month.

    The study digs deeper still: annual net costs of non-Western immigration amount to €17 billion and the annual net benefits of Western immigration total one billion euros. Distinguishing between Western and non-Western migration patterns, the study comes to a startling conclusion: if immigration remains at 2015-2019 levels, the annual budget burden will increase from €17 billion in 2016 to about €50 billion. This is an increase that the welfare state would most likely not survive.

    The Dutch findings are mirrored in a similar study conducted by the Danish Finance Ministry, which concludes that non-Western immigrants are most likely to remain lifelong recipients of public finances compared to their Western or native Danish peers. Meanwhile, the picture in Germany is not much different: about 45% of those who receive unemployment benefits are not German citizens, costing the taxpayers around €20 billion per year. Austria shows similar numbers, with almost 60% of recipients having a “migrant background”.

    Van de Beek sees parts of the problem in the structure of the welfare state… [snip - see the link],

    The emerging picture is a complex one that includes both cultural and economic factors, but the overall conclusion remains the same: the current conditions under which migration to Europe takes place are not sustainable and will bring the welfare systems ever closer to collapsing. The idea promoted by Folkerts-Landau and others turned out to be far too optimistic, and what makes matters worse is that politicians still refuse to face the facts.

    Placing one’s head in the sand is, unfortunately, not the same as actual policymaking. Europe has ignored these issues for too long, and voters will make their discontent heard at the voting booth’

    https://unherd.com/thepost/dutch-study-immigration-costs-state-e17-billion-per-year/

    So the only actual report I can find (other than pieces in right wing media about the report) are in Danish, and I can't find anything discussing the report in English other than right wingers hailing it as the evidence they've always needed that immigrants are bad actually. That's not to say it is wrong, just that as someone who doesn't speak Danish I can't verify the actual findings of the report outside of places like unherd, who are not a source I trust.

    I have found an OpenDemocracy article detailing essentially the argument I put forth yesterday - how if immigrants are a "drain" on an economy it is most likely the practices of the employers who abuse those workers and use them to under cut labour rights and labour costs, but I accept that could have nothing to do with what this report was exploring. If you have a link directly to the report in English, I'd be very interested to look at it, the methodology and such.

    https://www.opendemocracy.net/en/beyond-trafficking-and-slavery/the-danish-model-of-exploiting-migrant-workers/
    Mate, it's Dutch. lol

    Not a good start to your research

    Here's the report. In English

    https://demo-demo.nl/wp-content/uploads/2023/06/Borderless_Welfare_State-2.pdf
    The comparison doesn't really work for a country whose average income is about 70% of that in the Netherlands.

    The percentage of those on benefit who are not UK citizens was around 16% in 2019 (I can't quickly find a more recent figure); and migrants are more likely to be in work that native born Brits.

    So whatever your feelings about the levels of immigration, the comparison with the Netherlands (assuming the capacity of your article) is anyway complete bunk.
    And there we have it. Britain is so violently different to Netherlands none of this applies. Of course

    That is, until a comparison with an eu country comes along of which you approve, then it totally applies

    Honestly, this level of argumentation is quite depressing
    You first said "BME" which I believe stands for "Black [and] Minority Ethnic".

    That was your error. You brought race into it. Many (most? who knows) black Britons have roots here that go back decades. But you fell into the trap (to put it kindly) of identifying people by their race, not their economic status.

    Plus how many times do I have to tell you. The UK simply does not want fewer immigrants.
    Because most new migrants into the UK, since Brexit, have been BME. St Paul’s has a major chunk of non UK born citizens. It will be incomers who desperately need a new dentist, not settled citizens of whatever ethnicity

    I was using logic and combining these facts. I understand you’d prefer to resort to irrationality and call me a Nazi or whatever. I really don’t give a fuck and THIS IS BECOMING QUITE TIRESOME
    It’s rather twee that you think only newcomers to this country desperately need a dentist.
This discussion has been closed.