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Sunak sees huge “Next PM” betting boost after his budget – politicalbetting.com

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  • SelebianSelebian Posts: 1,246
    Leon said:

    #first post
    Please allow me to introduce myself...
    Been lurking on here since mid-2020 when I was reading all sorts of stuff anywhere and everywhere about US Presidential candidates, then the election itself. I'm not a betting man but I did find that betting sites like this plus ofc 538.com were good at giving background information; most of it interesting. [I did bet on Biden winning WH21 and turned a tiny stake of £100 into £141 :-) ]
    Me? Born and educated in Scotland; spent most of my working life in [in order] England, Germany, Belgium, Switzerland. Moved back to Edinburgh when semi-retirement beckoned. Staunchly pro-EU [both my kids live and work in Europe], fervently pro-independence for Scotland. So on both counts in a massive minority on here.
    My reading of the site here after about a year is that most contributors are in the main Tory-leaning, pro-Brexit, pro-Union, cricket-lovers. Way to stereotype, right?
    With the run-up to Holyrood '21 things will get more interesting / catty. Looking forward to it. Might even wager a small bet on the performance of the pro-Indy parties.
    ...pleased to meet you

    Welcome.

    Not sure you're entirely right on your characterisation of PB. It definitely leans more right than left - at the moment. But there was a time when it was all Lib Dems. As Tim says it changes.
    To be fair, national prevalence of Lib Dems has fallen somewhat in the past few years, so it's no surprise that should be reflected here too!
  • maaarshmaaarsh Posts: 1,781
    MaxPB said:

    MaxPB said:

    Have we covered this? It is VERY good news (although only temporary for the moment, not a final resolution of the problem):

    https://twitter.com/trussliz/status/1367444525870968832

    Well done, Liz.

    But Liz is only good for replicating EU deals? How is this possible? The UK can't do independent trade policy, its impossible.
    Well, let's not exaggerate. This is not a trade deal, it's a ceasefire in a dispute in which we no longer should really be involved. It's the very bare minimum of what we should be able to agree with the US. But it's very welcome nonetheless: credit where credit is due.
    My point is that people who bought into the idea that the UK would be unable to operate an independent trade policy need to have a rethink. Just as the EU seeks to dilute the value of the UK-EU deal with retaliatory tariffs the UK is shifting its own trade to face away from the EU. I've probably said this about a thousand times, this sequence of events probably isn't going to work out for the benefit of the EU as we move further away from them rather than closer.
    Almost certainly duff figures, but Scott reposting a tweet about German exports to the UK being down 30% made me smile. We've been due a fall in imports for a while, and it's about as far from an EU win as you could get.
  • Scott_xPScott_xP Posts: 12,698
    Leon said:

    I LOVE the American deserts. Spellbinding. I would happily see out my days in one of the nicer bits. Sedona? Southern Utah?

    But yes the declining small towns can be depressing in a way that makes Welsh mining villages look vibrant and upbeat

    There is a show (Netflix IIRC) called something like Abandoned where a skater dude visits abandoned places (natch) and in one of them he does Route 66.

    Bleak
  • LeonLeon Posts: 5,036
    edited March 4

    rcs1000 said:

    Leon said:

    TOPPING said:

    Leon said:

    IanB2 said:

    Cookie said:

    Pulpstar said:

    Cookie said:

    felix said:

    Nice to know Starmer's views on Darlington - does he post on here as Roger?


    Is that real? That looks like a faked-up image of the sort of thing right wingers like me assume Keir thinks.
    It is a highly selective quoting, only the gullible fall for it.

    The full quote is

    "Moving parts of the Treasury to Darlington, creating a few freeports and re-announcing funding. That isn't levelling up, that is giving up."
    The full quote isn't much better.
    In the wider context it is.

    The Chancellor’s one nominally long-term policy was his references to “levelling up.”

    But what does this actually look like? It’s not the transformative shift in power, wealth and resources we need to rebalance our economy.

    It’s not the bold, long-term plan we need to upskill our economy, to tackle educational attainment or to raise life-expectancy.

    It certainly isn’t a plan to focus government’s resources on preventative services and early years. For the Chancellor “levelling up” seems to mean moving some parts of the Treasury to Darlington, creating a few freeports and re-announcing funding.
    That isn’t levelling up: it’s giving up.

    And instead of putting blind faith in freeports, the Chancellor would be better served making sure the Government’s Brexit deal actually works for Britain’s manufacturers, who now face more red-tape when they were promised less.

    For our financial services – still waiting for the Chancellor to make good on his promises.

    For the small businesses and fishing communities whose goods and produce are now left unsold in warehouses. And for our artists and performers who just want to be able to tour.
    Ooh, goody. Does this mean we're going to have a moratorium on taking tiny snippets of what a politician has said without the context?
    I live in Hope, well I live in Dore which is ten miles from Hope.

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hope,_Derbyshire
    Fancy living ten miles from hope; can things get any worse?
    11 miles from hope?
    Two years ago I did a roadtrip around the SW USA. We passed through a bleak, tiny town in the desert called Hope. As we drove through, and exited, there was a sign saying You Are Now Beyond Hope
    Any good restaurants?
    No. It was indescribably bleak, in the way that only small town, derelict America can be. In a town called Hope I have never felt such Hopelessness.
    There's a lot of that in Arizona. The reservations are the worst. Yet the American Dream somehow lives on.

    And Phoenix - probably the least sustainable city in the world - keeps on growing.

    I like Phoenix!

    Indeed, I like all of Arizona, from the impoverished small towns with the gun racks and the Trump banners, to the gleaming office buildings of Scottsdale.
    Grand Canyon. Painted Desert. Meteor Crater. Winslow - for Route 66 and Eagles lyrics.
    .... Monument Valley.

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


    I once galloped on a mustang - no helmet, no nothing - half the length of that Valley. One of the most gloriously foolish moments of my life. Pure adrenaline. Took me several days to come down from the high
  • malcolmgmalcolmg Posts: 32,220

    Fantastic advert on the radio just now. Telling cow and sheep farmers that brilliant new trade deals will help them export their products around the world. Yes - lets ignore the catastrofuck that has been imposed on their existing EU market, and instead shine a light on the no new deals signed that bring about no changes from the old deals.

    And we're paying for this! Farmers know that its bollox which means that its not aimed at them. We are spending £lots advertising something that isn't true so that people who don't know or care about reality can be impressed about how brilliantly Brexit has been for cow and sheep farmers.

    You live in Scotland now, so get used to it. This is the capital of constant political advertising disguised as public information campaigns. It's almost half the advertising I see on YouTube at times.
    What is the betting it was a Westminster advert
  • BluestBlueBluestBlue Posts: 4,204
    kinabalu said:

    MrEd said:

    Stocky said:

    There is still some 3.3 available with BF to lay Sunak for next Tory leader.

    I say this half in jest but also with some seriousness that, for those backing Sunak, it's worth bearing in mind that he is only 5'5" and always looks dwarfed when he stands next to almost all male counterparts (and some female ones). There are enough studies out there to show that height - at least for a man - seems to have some effect on how a leader is perceived. I suspect it might be more of an issue within the internal Conservative electorate for the leadership.
    Yes, good point. We've come a fair way in ditching the old prejudices about who can be PM - e.g. the last but one was not an Old Etonian - but is the country ready for a midget?
    Why, how very progressive of you! :lol:

    Rishi has two immutable characteristics: (1) he fits handily into decorative niches around the house; (2) he'll squash the Opposition as flat as a pancake...
  • AnabobazinaAnabobazina Posts: 8,171
    Leon said:

    I'm calling bollocks on the height thing. Both Thatcher and HMQ are tiny.

    Most of the public never see them in the flesh and those that do, whilst they might be surprised at their height, don't find it anything more than a curiosity.

    It might be a problem for him if he was on the pull in a nightclub. But most politicians seeking the office of PM don't do that.

    But if he ever became PM he would be constantly photographed meeting other world leaders who would be about twice the size.

    Remember the photos of the Obamas meeting the Queen. It was jarring. On a visceral level it will affect Sunak's chances. It shouldn't but it will.

    He is obviously sensitive about it hence the weirdly-angled photos
    Boris is quite short too – I'm on the short side of 5' 11" and towered over him when I met him. He's only about 5' 8" – not very tall. I'm not sure it really matters that much.
  • turbotubbsturbotubbs Posts: 1,712
    maaarsh said:

    Cookie said:

    DougSeal said:
    Another day in which 80+ is lower than 60-79.
    Though ONLY JUST. We're three months into vaccinations now. It feels like 80+ deaths should be much lower by now.
    The reporting of deaths is massively lagged and there were still plenty of unvaccinated 80 year olds up to the 2nd half of Jan - with a 3 week lag for protection, and a 2-4 weel lag from infection to death, then a 0-4 week lag on the death being officially reported, we've a while to go yet before you'd expect them to be out of the figures.
    Good point. I'd forgotten how laggy the deaths data can be.
  • StuartinromfordStuartinromford Posts: 2,520
    Leon said:

    Theory: Covid has rendered Brexit pointless, indeed self harming.

    I voted to Leave (and it was a close call: I decided on the day) because I really did think we would move to a lower tax, more deregulated economy. Not Singapore-on-Thames, that was always a pipe-dream, but definitely something more nimble.

    We are not getting that, because Covid. Instead, we are getting a high tax, low growth economy, essentially a European economy, but without the benefits of the European Single Market, Customs Union or Freedom of Movement. We will be a kind of particularly isolated France, minus the sunshine and vasty fields.

    Meanwhile we have destabilised Northern Ireland, fuelled Scottish indy (maybe even Welsh indy), we have divided the nation bitterly and we face a decade of austerity. The future will be dominated by bitter quarrels with Brussels, from which we gain very little.

    It is most unfortunate. Brexit could have worked. It might still work in 10-20 years. But in the short-medium term, Covid has turned Brexit into a nightmare. The worst case scenario

    Fair enough. What do we do next?
  • DougSealDougSeal Posts: 4,922

    DougSeal said:
    Not quite beaten in Wales - but getting damned close.
    There was a doctor on BBC Wales yesterday who is expecting another big Welsh Covid wave in a few months, and the Welsh NHS will again be under strain.

    Drakeford has really made a dog's breakfast of Covid hasn't he?
    Did he/she say why? Vaccine suggests otherwise.
    Dr Richard Pugh, Chairman of the Welsh Intensive Care group. It's on BBC Wales online.
    He didn't say there was necessarily going to be a third "big" wave though. I looked up the quote and he said "As these measures get released it's the timing and the peak of that wave that we've got some potential to influence.". I think that's a majority view.

    There is a data modeller in the US called Youyang Gu. His model in 2020 was almost uncannily correct (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Youyang_Gu_COVID_model) even predicting deaths within a couple of thousand. There's a chap called James Ward who has tried to use Yougang's model in the UK. His thoughts are in this thread -

    https://twitter.com/JamesWard73/status/1367138240524918790
  • LostPasswordLostPassword Posts: 3,172
    Cookie said:

    DougSeal said:
    Another day in which 80+ is lower than 60-79.
    Though ONLY JUST. We're three months into vaccinations now. It feels like 80+ deaths should be much lower by now.
    When you factor in that deaths are reported some time after they happen, that people die some time after they contract the disease, that, in particular the Oxford/Asteazeneca vaccine takes some time to develop full effectiveness - it's not really that surprising.

    You also have the problem of different areas vaccinating different ages when you look at under/over-80s, which muddies the comparison. I think it's the FT which is comparing over-80s with under-60s and sees a clear divergence there, with that much cleaner comparison.
  • SforzandoSforzando Posts: 18
    Just spoken to someone who lives in Keswick (the heart of the Lake District). He's just tried to use the portal and the nearest vaccine centre is in Morecambe which is 1hr 15m drive away. Anyone know whether this sort of thing is common?

    Anyway that's further than he's prepared to drive so I advised him to just wait on the basis that if he didn't make an appointment using the portal then sooner or later his GP surgery would get in touch to arrange a jab closer to home. I hope that was correct?

    Sorry, I know it may be bad manners to ask an off topic question like this.
  • PulpstarPulpstar Posts: 65,172
    We've passed 40% of all adults in England receiving a first dose today.
  • SelebianSelebian Posts: 1,246
    IanB2 said:

    Germany’s vaccine commission has now recommended the AstraZeneca/Oxford Covid-19 vaccine for people over the age of 65.

    “The vaccine commission now recommends the AstraZeneca vaccine for people over 65 as well. This is good news for older people who are waiting for a jab,” said the health minister, Jens Spahn.

    Germany had previously said it lacked sufficient data to approve the vaccine for older people, but has changed its position following recent studies. “The new data also shows that the vaccine is even more effective when the first and second jabs are administered 12 weeks apart,” said Spahn.

    Remember that quote from Merkel about not having the AZN vaccine as she was above the approved age group? Assuming she hasn't been Pfizered in the meantime, she'd do well to publicly get the AZN as soon as possible to encourage take up.
  • Casino_RoyaleCasino_Royale Posts: 40,996
    Leon said:

    I'm calling bollocks on the height thing. Both Thatcher and HMQ are tiny.

    Most of the public never see them in the flesh and those that do, whilst they might be surprised at their height, don't find it anything more than a curiosity.

    It might be a problem for him if he was on the pull in a nightclub. But most politicians seeking the office of PM don't do that.

    But if he ever became PM he would be constantly photographed meeting other world leaders who would be about twice the size.

    Remember the photos of the Obamas meeting the Queen. It was jarring. On a visceral level it will affect Sunak's chances. It shouldn't but it will.

    He is obviously sensitive about it hence the weirdly-angled photos
    Thatcher was 5'5", and Reagan was 6'1", and they looked good together and had one of the most successful partnerships in history.

    I don't doubt Rishi might look a bit short next to some other leaders too; I just don't think it will be a big deal provided he has the gravitas and character to be PM.
  • Casino_RoyaleCasino_Royale Posts: 40,996
    Selebian said:

    I'm calling bollocks on the height thing. Both Thatcher and HMQ are tiny.

    Most of the public never see them in the flesh and those that do, whilst they might be surprised at their height, don't find it anything more than a curiosity.

    It might be a problem for him if he was on the pull in a nightclub. But most politicians seeking the office of PM don't do that.

    HMQ had the advantage of not having to win an election, so I'm not sure how relevant that is!

    (Was she particularly short anyway, for a woman, when she took the crown?)
    The point is that she's a hugely respected leader - worldwide.
  • MaxPBMaxPB Posts: 27,195
    Selebian said:

    IanB2 said:

    Germany’s vaccine commission has now recommended the AstraZeneca/Oxford Covid-19 vaccine for people over the age of 65.

    “The vaccine commission now recommends the AstraZeneca vaccine for people over 65 as well. This is good news for older people who are waiting for a jab,” said the health minister, Jens Spahn.

    Germany had previously said it lacked sufficient data to approve the vaccine for older people, but has changed its position following recent studies. “The new data also shows that the vaccine is even more effective when the first and second jabs are administered 12 weeks apart,” said Spahn.

    Remember that quote from Merkel about not having the AZN vaccine as she was above the approved age group? Assuming she hasn't been Pfizered in the meantime, she'd do well to publicly get the AZN as soon as possible to encourage take up.
    Yes, hopefully someone in the German media asks her again. Wonder whether she'd say yes and have one live on air or come up with some excuse. The latter would be a disaster.
  • AnabobazinaAnabobazina Posts: 8,171
    Cookie said:

    DougSeal said:
    Another day in which 80+ is lower than 60-79.
    Though ONLY JUST. We're three months into vaccinations now. It feels like 80+ deaths should be much lower by now.

    Not really, as of Aug 2020, total 80+ deaths were 40% higher than 60-79 years, despite it being a much smaller cohort. So these are big swings.




  • DougSealDougSeal Posts: 4,922
    Leon said:

    Theory: Covid has rendered Brexit pointless, indeed self harming.

    I voted to Leave (and it was a close call: I decided on the day) because I really did think we would move to a lower tax, more deregulated economy. Not Singapore-on-Thames, that was always a pipe-dream, but definitely something more nimble.

    We are not getting that, because Covid. Instead, we are getting a high tax, low growth economy, essentially a European economy, but without the benefits of the European Single Market, Customs Union or Freedom of Movement. We will be a kind of particularly isolated France, minus the sunshine and vasty fields.

    Meanwhile we have destabilised Northern Ireland, fuelled Scottish indy (maybe even Welsh indy), we have divided the nation bitterly and we face a decade of austerity. The future will be dominated by bitter quarrels with Brussels, from which we gain very little.

    It is most unfortunate. Brexit could have worked. It might still work in 10-20 years. But in the short-medium term, Covid has turned Brexit into a nightmare. The worst case scenario

    Thanks but it's a little bit late for this now.
  • MaxPBMaxPB Posts: 27,195

    Leon said:

    I'm calling bollocks on the height thing. Both Thatcher and HMQ are tiny.

    Most of the public never see them in the flesh and those that do, whilst they might be surprised at their height, don't find it anything more than a curiosity.

    It might be a problem for him if he was on the pull in a nightclub. But most politicians seeking the office of PM don't do that.

    But if he ever became PM he would be constantly photographed meeting other world leaders who would be about twice the size.

    Remember the photos of the Obamas meeting the Queen. It was jarring. On a visceral level it will affect Sunak's chances. It shouldn't but it will.

    He is obviously sensitive about it hence the weirdly-angled photos
    Thatcher was 5'5", and Reagan was 6'1", and they looked good together and had one of the most successful partnerships in history.

    I don't doubt Rishi might look a bit short next to some other leaders too; I just don't think it will be a big deal provided he has the gravitas and character to be PM.
    It's different for women, the expectation is to be short. I don't think it's a big deal tbh, but I can see why some are putting into their betting calculation. Same as having a bald leader in the TV era.
  • maaarshmaaarsh Posts: 1,781
    Sforzando said:

    Just spoken to someone who lives in Keswick (the heart of the Lake District). He's just tried to use the portal and the nearest vaccine centre is in Morecambe which is 1hr 15m drive away. Anyone know whether this sort of thing is common?

    Anyway that's further than he's prepared to drive so I advised him to just wait on the basis that if he didn't make an appointment using the portal then sooner or later his GP surgery would get in touch to arrange a jab closer to home. I hope that was correct?

    Sorry, I know it may be bad manners to ask an off topic question like this.

    I know someone who had a similar issue, and was booked in closer to home the next week.
  • turbotubbsturbotubbs Posts: 1,712
    Sforzando said:

    Just spoken to someone who lives in Keswick (the heart of the Lake District). He's just tried to use the portal and the nearest vaccine centre is in Morecambe which is 1hr 15m drive away. Anyone know whether this sort of thing is common?

    Anyway that's further than he's prepared to drive so I advised him to just wait on the basis that if he didn't make an appointment using the portal then sooner or later his GP surgery would get in touch to arrange a jab closer to home. I hope that was correct?

    Sorry, I know it may be bad manners to ask an off topic question like this.

    I'd defo ring the surgery and check. They should be able to advise on when it will be. (And I know they keep saying wait to be called, but sometimes you need sharp elbows with the NHS).
  • maaarshmaaarsh Posts: 1,781

    Leon said:

    I'm calling bollocks on the height thing. Both Thatcher and HMQ are tiny.

    Most of the public never see them in the flesh and those that do, whilst they might be surprised at their height, don't find it anything more than a curiosity.

    It might be a problem for him if he was on the pull in a nightclub. But most politicians seeking the office of PM don't do that.

    But if he ever became PM he would be constantly photographed meeting other world leaders who would be about twice the size.

    Remember the photos of the Obamas meeting the Queen. It was jarring. On a visceral level it will affect Sunak's chances. It shouldn't but it will.

    He is obviously sensitive about it hence the weirdly-angled photos
    Thatcher was 5'5", and Reagan was 6'1", and they looked good together and had one of the most successful partnerships in history.

    I don't doubt Rishi might look a bit short next to some other leaders too; I just don't think it will be a big deal provided he has the gravitas and character to be PM.
    Not sure how he'd look in Maggie's heels though
  • LostPasswordLostPassword Posts: 3,172
    Leon said:

    Theory: Covid has rendered Brexit pointless, indeed self harming.

    I voted to Leave (and it was a close call: I decided on the day) because I really did think we would move to a lower tax, more deregulated economy. Not Singapore-on-Thames, that was always a pipe-dream, but definitely something more nimble.

    We are not getting that, because Covid. Instead, we are getting a high tax, low growth economy, essentially a European economy, but without the benefits of the European Single Market, Customs Union or Freedom of Movement. We will be a kind of particularly isolated France, minus the sunshine and vasty fields.

    Meanwhile we have destabilised Northern Ireland, fuelled Scottish indy (maybe even Welsh indy), we have divided the nation bitterly and we face a decade of austerity. The future will be dominated by bitter quarrels with Brussels, from which we gain very little.

    It is most unfortunate. Brexit could have worked. It might still work in 10-20 years. But in the short-medium term, Covid has turned Brexit into a nightmare. The worst case scenario

    That's excuse-making.

    There's no absolute level of taxes that qualifies as low or high - it's the relative level compared to your competitors that counts.

    So, taking your argument at face value, it's still possible for the UK to be lower tax/regulation than Europe, despite Covid, because they will also have to pay for Covid.

    If that doesn't happen it will be because Johnson is a crowd-pleasing spendaholic, or because it's not something the UK public will wear - not because Covid wrecked Brexit.
  • kinabalukinabalu Posts: 20,024
    Stocky said:

    kinabalu said:

    Cookie said:

    felix said:

    Nice to know Starmer's views on Darlington - does he post on here as Roger?


    Is that real? That looks like a faked-up image of the sort of thing right wingers like me assume Keir thinks.
    It is a highly selective quoting, only the gullible fall for it.

    The full quote is

    "Moving parts of the Treasury to Darlington, creating a few freeports and re-announcing funding. That isn't levelling up, that is giving up."
    Nonetheless it's certainly cheering up the Johnsonian Conservatives.
    Nah, this is what's cheering up the Johnsonian Conservatives, mainly because it spells electoral death for Labour:

    https://twitter.com/SavantaComRes/status/1367187418340851724
    That's going to change when things get bleak - which will be before the election.
    Is it possible that the CP gets complacent and arrogant again as May`s CP did in calling the 2017 election?
    They certainly did. But I think whatever happens, Johnson will be hard to beat. People like the guy and feel they know him. He's the uncle who gets the table laughing at Christmas, jovially making a fool of himself. It's worth a lot of votes imo.
  • AnabobazinaAnabobazina Posts: 8,171
    edited March 4

    DougSeal said:
    Not quite beaten in Wales - but getting damned close.
    There was a doctor on BBC Wales yesterday who is expecting another big Welsh Covid wave in a few months, and the Welsh NHS will again be under strain.

    Drakeford has really made a dog's breakfast of Covid hasn't he?
    Did he/she say why? Vaccine suggests otherwise.
    Dr Richard Pugh, Chairman of the Welsh Intensive Care group. It's on BBC Wales online.
    Did he give reasons? Fine to make predictions, but I'd love to know his thinking
    "When you look at critical care, the average age of people that come to critical care as a result of Covid is late-50s and these are people who are not going to be seeing the benefits of the vaccination programme that soon, so I am concerned about the potential of a third wave."



    It's an odd thing to say because, at least in England, these people are now indeed being vaccinated. Is Pugh aware of the rapidity of the rollout?

    Puzzling.
  • CookieCookie Posts: 2,520
    kinabalu said:

    Leon said:

    Theory: Covid has rendered Brexit pointless, indeed self harming.

    I voted to Leave (and it was a close call: I decided on the day) because I really did think we would move to a lower tax, more deregulated economy. Not Singapore-on-Thames, that was always a pipe-dream, but definitely something more nimble.

    We are not getting that, because Covid. Instead, we are getting a high tax, low growth economy, essentially a European economy, but without the benefits of the European Single Market, Customs Union or Freedom of Movement. We will be a kind of particularly isolated France, minus the sunshine and vasty fields.

    Meanwhile we have destabilised Northern Ireland, fuelled Scottish indy (maybe even Welsh indy), we have divided the nation bitterly and we face a decade of austerity. The future will be dominated by bitter quarrels with Brussels, from which we gain very little.

    It is most unfortunate. Brexit could have worked. It might still work in 10-20 years. But in the short-medium term, Covid has turned Brexit into a nightmare. The worst case scenario

    For me, forgetting about Brexit good or bad, it's just been a monumental waste of time if we don't now do some serious things (other than border controls and trade deals) we couldn't have done as EU members. Like you, I sense we are not going to, regardless of who wins the next election.
    Like, for example, vaccinate our population?
    (And yes I know we COULD have done that independently within the EU - but would we? Seriously?

    To me, Brexit wasn't about leaving the EU as it was in 2016, it was about not being in the EU as it might be in 2025. There is a very strong chance that the EU in 2025 will be considerably more integrated than it was in 2016, in a way that would be very much to the UK's disadvantage. There is a fair chance that it will be an utter shitstorm driven by ongoing North-South Euro crises and East-West constitutional wrangles.
    I don't think we will change as much as we might like - any change is exhausting and eats up political capital. But I think Europe will change away from us, and we will be increasingly glad we are not part of it.
  • kinabalukinabalu Posts: 20,024
    TOPPING said:

    #first post
    Please allow me to introduce myself...
    Been lurking on here since mid-2020 when I was reading all sorts of stuff anywhere and everywhere about US Presidential candidates, then the election itself. I'm not a betting man but I did find that betting sites like this plus ofc 538.com were good at giving background information; most of it interesting. [I did bet on Biden winning WH21 and turned a tiny stake of £100 into £141 :-) ]
    Me? Born and educated in Scotland; spent most of my working life in [in order] England, Germany, Belgium, Switzerland. Moved back to Edinburgh when semi-retirement beckoned. Staunchly pro-EU [both my kids live and work in Europe], fervently pro-independence for Scotland. So on both counts in a massive minority on here.
    My reading of the site here after about a year is that most contributors are in the main Tory-leaning, pro-Brexit, pro-Union, cricket-lovers. Way to stereotype, right?
    With the run-up to Holyrood '21 things will get more interesting / catty. Looking forward to it. Might even wager a small bet on the performance of the pro-Indy parties.
    ...pleased to meet you

    Great to have you here. Welcome.

    What's your 2-line take on the Salmond vs Sturgeon thing?
    You're censoring him to 2 lines until he's proved himself?
  • maaarshmaaarsh Posts: 1,781

    Leon said:

    Theory: Covid has rendered Brexit pointless, indeed self harming.

    I voted to Leave (and it was a close call: I decided on the day) because I really did think we would move to a lower tax, more deregulated economy. Not Singapore-on-Thames, that was always a pipe-dream, but definitely something more nimble.

    We are not getting that, because Covid. Instead, we are getting a high tax, low growth economy, essentially a European economy, but without the benefits of the European Single Market, Customs Union or Freedom of Movement. We will be a kind of particularly isolated France, minus the sunshine and vasty fields.

    Meanwhile we have destabilised Northern Ireland, fuelled Scottish indy (maybe even Welsh indy), we have divided the nation bitterly and we face a decade of austerity. The future will be dominated by bitter quarrels with Brussels, from which we gain very little.

    It is most unfortunate. Brexit could have worked. It might still work in 10-20 years. But in the short-medium term, Covid has turned Brexit into a nightmare. The worst case scenario

    That's excuse-making.

    There's no absolute level of taxes that qualifies as low or high - it's the relative level compared to your competitors that counts.

    So, taking your argument at face value, it's still possible for the UK to be lower tax/regulation than Europe, despite Covid, because they will also have to pay for Covid.

    If that doesn't happen it will be because Johnson is a crowd-pleasing spendaholic, or because it's not something the UK public will wear - not because Covid wrecked Brexit.
    Sunak has set a budget which balances the books without doing anything particularly overtly painful to most people. But it's 4 years to get there, and 2 years to the corporation tax hike. Personally I'm both hoping and expecting the growth forecast to end up looking very conservative, and some of the edges can be taken off this package.

    As for Brexit, I too regret that we are missing out on the full suite of membership benefits, including centrally controlled, world leading vaccine procurement, and a nice tarrif war with the US.
  • TOPPINGTOPPING Posts: 27,641
    kinabalu said:

    TOPPING said:

    #first post
    Please allow me to introduce myself...
    Been lurking on here since mid-2020 when I was reading all sorts of stuff anywhere and everywhere about US Presidential candidates, then the election itself. I'm not a betting man but I did find that betting sites like this plus ofc 538.com were good at giving background information; most of it interesting. [I did bet on Biden winning WH21 and turned a tiny stake of £100 into £141 :-) ]
    Me? Born and educated in Scotland; spent most of my working life in [in order] England, Germany, Belgium, Switzerland. Moved back to Edinburgh when semi-retirement beckoned. Staunchly pro-EU [both my kids live and work in Europe], fervently pro-independence for Scotland. So on both counts in a massive minority on here.
    My reading of the site here after about a year is that most contributors are in the main Tory-leaning, pro-Brexit, pro-Union, cricket-lovers. Way to stereotype, right?
    With the run-up to Holyrood '21 things will get more interesting / catty. Looking forward to it. Might even wager a small bet on the performance of the pro-Indy parties.
    ...pleased to meet you

    Great to have you here. Welcome.

    What's your 2-line take on the Salmond vs Sturgeon thing?
    You're censoring him to 2 lines until he's proved himself?
    Until he's proved to me that he is over 5'10" he gets two lines.
  • Casino_RoyaleCasino_Royale Posts: 40,996
    DougSeal said:

    Leon said:

    Theory: Covid has rendered Brexit pointless, indeed self harming.

    I voted to Leave (and it was a close call: I decided on the day) because I really did think we would move to a lower tax, more deregulated economy. Not Singapore-on-Thames, that was always a pipe-dream, but definitely something more nimble.

    We are not getting that, because Covid. Instead, we are getting a high tax, low growth economy, essentially a European economy, but without the benefits of the European Single Market, Customs Union or Freedom of Movement. We will be a kind of particularly isolated France, minus the sunshine and vasty fields.

    Meanwhile we have destabilised Northern Ireland, fuelled Scottish indy (maybe even Welsh indy), we have divided the nation bitterly and we face a decade of austerity. The future will be dominated by bitter quarrels with Brussels, from which we gain very little.

    It is most unfortunate. Brexit could have worked. It might still work in 10-20 years. But in the short-medium term, Covid has turned Brexit into a nightmare. The worst case scenario

    Thanks but it's a little bit late for this now.
    What we're getting is the median (or maybe modal) view of the British electorate.

    That is, decent spending on public services, responsible taxation, fiscal rectitude (but not austerity), immigration control, political independence, environmental stewardship, and popular regulation.

    A deregulated low-tax model wouldn't garner much support, unless it delivered the goods in terms of high-growth and at little cost to everyday people in terms of public services.

    FWIW, I think we will reform but it will be slowly and gently as our economy recalibrates. Not "big bang".
  • StockyStocky Posts: 5,471
    Endillion said:

    kinabalu said:

    MrEd said:

    Stocky said:

    There is still some 3.3 available with BF to lay Sunak for next Tory leader.

    I say this half in jest but also with some seriousness that, for those backing Sunak, it's worth bearing in mind that he is only 5'5" and always looks dwarfed when he stands next to almost all male counterparts (and some female ones). There are enough studies out there to show that height - at least for a man - seems to have some effect on how a leader is perceived. I suspect it might be more of an issue within the internal Conservative electorate for the leadership.
    Yes, good point. We've come a fair way in ditching the old prejudices about who can be PM - e.g. the last but one was not an Old Etonian - but is the country ready for a midget?
    That's racist. He's comfortably above average height for a man of Indian origin.
    Naughty @kinabalu.

    (Reminds me of bimbo-gate.)
  • turbotubbsturbotubbs Posts: 1,712

    DougSeal said:
    Not quite beaten in Wales - but getting damned close.
    There was a doctor on BBC Wales yesterday who is expecting another big Welsh Covid wave in a few months, and the Welsh NHS will again be under strain.

    Drakeford has really made a dog's breakfast of Covid hasn't he?
    Did he/she say why? Vaccine suggests otherwise.
    Dr Richard Pugh, Chairman of the Welsh Intensive Care group. It's on BBC Wales online.
    Did he give reasons? Fine to make predictions, but I'd love to know his thinking
    "When you look at critical care, the average age of people that come to critical care as a result of Covid is late-50s and these are people who are not going to be seeing the benefits of the vaccination programme that soon, so I am concerned about the potential of a third wave."



    It's an odd thing to say because, at least in England, these people are now indeed being vaccinated. Is Pugh aware of the rapidity of the rollout?

    Puzzling.
    I think thats right. We may see a rise in cases with the schools and then a bit of rule of six outside, but should be suppressed by other factors. By the time we are really opening up I think the over 50's (and indeed the over 40's) will have been vaccinated at least once, so we shouldn't fear a large 4th wave. Unless its just defined by cases, not deaths, in which case the youths may indeed catch it.
  • Casino_RoyaleCasino_Royale Posts: 40,996
    maaarsh said:

    Leon said:

    I'm calling bollocks on the height thing. Both Thatcher and HMQ are tiny.

    Most of the public never see them in the flesh and those that do, whilst they might be surprised at their height, don't find it anything more than a curiosity.

    It might be a problem for him if he was on the pull in a nightclub. But most politicians seeking the office of PM don't do that.

    But if he ever became PM he would be constantly photographed meeting other world leaders who would be about twice the size.

    Remember the photos of the Obamas meeting the Queen. It was jarring. On a visceral level it will affect Sunak's chances. It shouldn't but it will.

    He is obviously sensitive about it hence the weirdly-angled photos
    Thatcher was 5'5", and Reagan was 6'1", and they looked good together and had one of the most successful partnerships in history.

    I don't doubt Rishi might look a bit short next to some other leaders too; I just don't think it will be a big deal provided he has the gravitas and character to be PM.
    Not sure how he'd look in Maggie's heels though
    I think he's 5' 7", so that's Maggie with heels.

    He's tall enough - bear in mind most men are 5'10-5'11-ish, with only the tall ones > 6ft - and I don't think 4 inches is going to be a dealbreaker.

    It might be if he was at Peter Dinklage or Warwick Davis levels, but he's not.
  • BluestBlueBluestBlue Posts: 4,204

    maaarsh said:

    Leon said:

    I'm calling bollocks on the height thing. Both Thatcher and HMQ are tiny.

    Most of the public never see them in the flesh and those that do, whilst they might be surprised at their height, don't find it anything more than a curiosity.

    It might be a problem for him if he was on the pull in a nightclub. But most politicians seeking the office of PM don't do that.

    But if he ever became PM he would be constantly photographed meeting other world leaders who would be about twice the size.

    Remember the photos of the Obamas meeting the Queen. It was jarring. On a visceral level it will affect Sunak's chances. It shouldn't but it will.

    He is obviously sensitive about it hence the weirdly-angled photos
    Thatcher was 5'5", and Reagan was 6'1", and they looked good together and had one of the most successful partnerships in history.

    I don't doubt Rishi might look a bit short next to some other leaders too; I just don't think it will be a big deal provided he has the gravitas and character to be PM.
    Not sure how he'd look in Maggie's heels though
    I think he's 5' 7", so that's Maggie with heels.

    He's tall enough - bear in mind most men are 5'10-5'11-ish, with only the tall ones > 6ft - and I don't think 4 inches is going to be a dealbreaker.

    It might be if he was at Peter Dinklage or Warwick Davis levels, but he's not.
    Winston Churchill was 5'6". He should have known that he'd never amount to anything to life.
  • tlg86tlg86 Posts: 17,055

    maaarsh said:

    Leon said:

    I'm calling bollocks on the height thing. Both Thatcher and HMQ are tiny.

    Most of the public never see them in the flesh and those that do, whilst they might be surprised at their height, don't find it anything more than a curiosity.

    It might be a problem for him if he was on the pull in a nightclub. But most politicians seeking the office of PM don't do that.

    But if he ever became PM he would be constantly photographed meeting other world leaders who would be about twice the size.

    Remember the photos of the Obamas meeting the Queen. It was jarring. On a visceral level it will affect Sunak's chances. It shouldn't but it will.

    He is obviously sensitive about it hence the weirdly-angled photos
    Thatcher was 5'5", and Reagan was 6'1", and they looked good together and had one of the most successful partnerships in history.

    I don't doubt Rishi might look a bit short next to some other leaders too; I just don't think it will be a big deal provided he has the gravitas and character to be PM.
    Not sure how he'd look in Maggie's heels though
    I think he's 5' 7", so that's Maggie with heels.

    He's tall enough - bear in mind most men are 5'10-5'11-ish, with only the tall ones > 6ft - and I don't think 4 inches is going to be a dealbreaker.

    It might be if he was at Peter Dinklage or Warwick Davis levels, but he's not.
    And anyway, he'll look fairly tall when he's up against Patel in the final two.
  • TimTTimT Posts: 3,334

    maaarsh said:

    Leon said:

    I'm calling bollocks on the height thing. Both Thatcher and HMQ are tiny.

    Most of the public never see them in the flesh and those that do, whilst they might be surprised at their height, don't find it anything more than a curiosity.

    It might be a problem for him if he was on the pull in a nightclub. But most politicians seeking the office of PM don't do that.

    But if he ever became PM he would be constantly photographed meeting other world leaders who would be about twice the size.

    Remember the photos of the Obamas meeting the Queen. It was jarring. On a visceral level it will affect Sunak's chances. It shouldn't but it will.

    He is obviously sensitive about it hence the weirdly-angled photos
    Thatcher was 5'5", and Reagan was 6'1", and they looked good together and had one of the most successful partnerships in history.

    I don't doubt Rishi might look a bit short next to some other leaders too; I just don't think it will be a big deal provided he has the gravitas and character to be PM.
    Not sure how he'd look in Maggie's heels though
    I think he's 5' 7", so that's Maggie with heels.

    He's tall enough - bear in mind most men are 5'10-5'11-ish, with only the tall ones > 6ft - and I don't think 4 inches is going to be a dealbreaker.

    It might be if he was at Peter Dinklage or Warwick Davis levels, but he's not.
    Winston Churchill was 5'6". He should have known that he'd never amount to anything to life.
    Remind me, how tall was Napolean?
  • rcs1000rcs1000 Posts: 36,532
    maaarsh said:

    MaxPB said:

    MaxPB said:

    Have we covered this? It is VERY good news (although only temporary for the moment, not a final resolution of the problem):

    https://twitter.com/trussliz/status/1367444525870968832

    Well done, Liz.

    But Liz is only good for replicating EU deals? How is this possible? The UK can't do independent trade policy, its impossible.
    Well, let's not exaggerate. This is not a trade deal, it's a ceasefire in a dispute in which we no longer should really be involved. It's the very bare minimum of what we should be able to agree with the US. But it's very welcome nonetheless: credit where credit is due.
    My point is that people who bought into the idea that the UK would be unable to operate an independent trade policy need to have a rethink. Just as the EU seeks to dilute the value of the UK-EU deal with retaliatory tariffs the UK is shifting its own trade to face away from the EU. I've probably said this about a thousand times, this sequence of events probably isn't going to work out for the benefit of the EU as we move further away from them rather than closer.
    Almost certainly duff figures, but Scott reposting a tweet about German exports to the UK being down 30% made me smile. We've been due a fall in imports for a while, and it's about as far from an EU win as you could get.
    While I agree with your general point that we import too much, it was also a stupid tweet for two reasons:

    1. Neither the UK nor Germany has released January trade numbers yet, so it was based on somebody's estimate, and therefore could be completely wrong. Heck, UK imports from Germany could be up 50%. We just don't know.

    2. January's numbers - when they are released next week - are probably not that meaningful anyway. There was, after all, a global pandemic raging. And businesses did substantial stockpiling in December. Plus, comparing January to December numbers is silly: there's always going to be substantial season volatility.
  • CookieCookie Posts: 2,520

    eek said:

    Oh it seems that the Chancellor will be spending part of the week in Darlington

    https://www.thenorthernecho.co.uk/news/19135921.chancellor-exchequer-will-based-darlington-part-week-rishi-sunak-confirms-visit/

    I'd be curious as to what the plan is when the Chancellor isn't the MP for Richmond or elsewhere in the Tees Valley.

    And remember this is the point - the Treasury needs to know how the rest of the country works so that policies reflect the needs of all the UK not just London.

    Or indeed the next time we have a government with a tiny (or no) majority, and ministers are tied to Westminster.
    Genius move of Rishi though.
    All George Osborne did was plan a really expensive high speed railway to primarily benefit people commuting between North Cheshire and London and who don't need to worry to much about the onward journeys at each end. Rishi has actually moved work to home.
  • Morris_DancerMorris_Dancer Posts: 55,317
    Mr. T, Napoleon wasn't tiny.

    That people think he was is a great triumph of British cartoonists.
  • StockyStocky Posts: 5,471

    Mr. T, Napoleon wasn't tiny.

    That people think he was is a great triumph of British cartoonists.

    Rats - a whole complex shot down in flames.
  • kinabalukinabalu Posts: 20,024

    #first post
    Please allow me to introduce myself...
    Been lurking on here since mid-2020 when I was reading all sorts of stuff anywhere and everywhere about US Presidential candidates, then the election itself. I'm not a betting man but I did find that betting sites like this plus ofc 538.com were good at giving background information; most of it interesting. [I did bet on Biden winning WH21 and turned a tiny stake of £100 into £141 :-) ]
    Me? Born and educated in Scotland; spent most of my working life in [in order] England, Germany, Belgium, Switzerland. Moved back to Edinburgh when semi-retirement beckoned. Staunchly pro-EU [both my kids live and work in Europe], fervently pro-independence for Scotland. So on both counts in a massive minority on here.
    My reading of the site here after about a year is that most contributors are in the main Tory-leaning, pro-Brexit, pro-Union, cricket-lovers. Way to stereotype, right?
    With the run-up to Holyrood '21 things will get more interesting / catty. Looking forward to it. Might even wager a small bet on the performance of the pro-Indy parties.
    ...pleased to meet you

    Hello there. The tone of the board has imo changed recently. Not so much the relative numbers of different persuasions but more the volume and confidence levels. GE19 gave a big fillip to posters who are both Tory and Leavers and just as this was fading with the bleakness of the pandemic it was turbocharged again by the UK's vaccine success c.f. the hated Europe. The effect is that Tory Leave posters have become quite juiced up and leery - and prolific - and Tory Leave has thus become the dominant strain.
  • rcs1000rcs1000 Posts: 36,532

    maaarsh said:

    Leon said:

    I'm calling bollocks on the height thing. Both Thatcher and HMQ are tiny.

    Most of the public never see them in the flesh and those that do, whilst they might be surprised at their height, don't find it anything more than a curiosity.

    It might be a problem for him if he was on the pull in a nightclub. But most politicians seeking the office of PM don't do that.

    But if he ever became PM he would be constantly photographed meeting other world leaders who would be about twice the size.

    Remember the photos of the Obamas meeting the Queen. It was jarring. On a visceral level it will affect Sunak's chances. It shouldn't but it will.

    He is obviously sensitive about it hence the weirdly-angled photos
    Thatcher was 5'5", and Reagan was 6'1", and they looked good together and had one of the most successful partnerships in history.

    I don't doubt Rishi might look a bit short next to some other leaders too; I just don't think it will be a big deal provided he has the gravitas and character to be PM.
    Not sure how he'd look in Maggie's heels though
    I think he's 5' 7", so that's Maggie with heels.

    He's tall enough - bear in mind most men are 5'10-5'11-ish, with only the tall ones > 6ft - and I don't think 4 inches is going to be a dealbreaker.

    It might be if he was at Peter Dinklage or Warwick Davis levels, but he's not.
    Winston Churchill was 5'6". He should have known that he'd never amount to anything to life.
    To be fair, the average age of men has been rising for about 200 years, so that's not necessarily a killer point.
  • MarqueeMarkMarqueeMark Posts: 39,776

    kinabalu said:

    MrEd said:

    Stocky said:

    There is still some 3.3 available with BF to lay Sunak for next Tory leader.

    I say this half in jest but also with some seriousness that, for those backing Sunak, it's worth bearing in mind that he is only 5'5" and always looks dwarfed when he stands next to almost all male counterparts (and some female ones). There are enough studies out there to show that height - at least for a man - seems to have some effect on how a leader is perceived. I suspect it might be more of an issue within the internal Conservative electorate for the leadership.
    Yes, good point. We've come a fair way in ditching the old prejudices about who can be PM - e.g. the last but one was not an Old Etonian - but is the country ready for a midget?
    Why, how very progressive of you! :lol:

    Rishi has two immutable characteristics: (1) he fits handily into decorative niches around the house; (2) he'll squash the Opposition as flat as a pancake...
    Rishi's height isn't much of an issue against Starmer, whose purpose seems to be as a doormat....
  • SforzandoSforzando Posts: 18

    Sforzando said:

    Just spoken to someone who lives in Keswick (the heart of the Lake District). He's just tried to use the portal and the nearest vaccine centre is in Morecambe which is 1hr 15m drive away. Anyone know whether this sort of thing is common?

    Anyway that's further than he's prepared to drive so I advised him to just wait on the basis that if he didn't make an appointment using the portal then sooner or later his GP surgery would get in touch to arrange a jab closer to home. I hope that was correct?

    Sorry, I know it may be bad manners to ask an off topic question like this.

    I'd defo ring the surgery and check. They should be able to advise on when it will be. (And I know they keep saying wait to be called, but sometimes you need sharp elbows with the NHS).
    Thanks both. Ringing the surgery you just get a recorded message saying don't call us about jabs, hold for any other matter, but on jabs we'll call you.

    Sounds like they should be in touch based on what maaarsh said. Thanks.
  • FlatlanderFlatlander Posts: 1,049
    edited March 4
    That 130% tax relief to build facilities in the UK might come in useful...
  • TOPPINGTOPPING Posts: 27,641
    Sforzando said:

    Sforzando said:

    Just spoken to someone who lives in Keswick (the heart of the Lake District). He's just tried to use the portal and the nearest vaccine centre is in Morecambe which is 1hr 15m drive away. Anyone know whether this sort of thing is common?

    Anyway that's further than he's prepared to drive so I advised him to just wait on the basis that if he didn't make an appointment using the portal then sooner or later his GP surgery would get in touch to arrange a jab closer to home. I hope that was correct?

    Sorry, I know it may be bad manners to ask an off topic question like this.

    I'd defo ring the surgery and check. They should be able to advise on when it will be. (And I know they keep saying wait to be called, but sometimes you need sharp elbows with the NHS).
    Thanks both. Ringing the surgery you just get a recorded message saying don't call us about jabs, hold for any other matter, but on jabs we'll call you.

    Sounds like they should be in touch based on what maaarsh said. Thanks.
    First rule of the NHS: sharpen your elbows and don't take no for an answer. They say don't call? Call.
  • turbotubbsturbotubbs Posts: 1,712
    Sforzando said:

    Sforzando said:

    Just spoken to someone who lives in Keswick (the heart of the Lake District). He's just tried to use the portal and the nearest vaccine centre is in Morecambe which is 1hr 15m drive away. Anyone know whether this sort of thing is common?

    Anyway that's further than he's prepared to drive so I advised him to just wait on the basis that if he didn't make an appointment using the portal then sooner or later his GP surgery would get in touch to arrange a jab closer to home. I hope that was correct?

    Sorry, I know it may be bad manners to ask an off topic question like this.

    I'd defo ring the surgery and check. They should be able to advise on when it will be. (And I know they keep saying wait to be called, but sometimes you need sharp elbows with the NHS).
    Thanks both. Ringing the surgery you just get a recorded message saying don't call us about jabs, hold for any other matter, but on jabs we'll call you.

    Sounds like they should be in touch based on what maaarsh said. Thanks.
    The will eventually call you. I was offered by my surgery at the end of a consult (another issue), but I had already been jabbed via work.
  • OldKingColeOldKingCole Posts: 21,966

    maaarsh said:

    Leon said:

    I'm calling bollocks on the height thing. Both Thatcher and HMQ are tiny.

    Most of the public never see them in the flesh and those that do, whilst they might be surprised at their height, don't find it anything more than a curiosity.

    It might be a problem for him if he was on the pull in a nightclub. But most politicians seeking the office of PM don't do that.

    But if he ever became PM he would be constantly photographed meeting other world leaders who would be about twice the size.

    Remember the photos of the Obamas meeting the Queen. It was jarring. On a visceral level it will affect Sunak's chances. It shouldn't but it will.

    He is obviously sensitive about it hence the weirdly-angled photos
    Thatcher was 5'5", and Reagan was 6'1", and they looked good together and had one of the most successful partnerships in history.

    I don't doubt Rishi might look a bit short next to some other leaders too; I just don't think it will be a big deal provided he has the gravitas and character to be PM.
    Not sure how he'd look in Maggie's heels though
    I think he's 5' 7", so that's Maggie with heels.

    He's tall enough - bear in mind most men are 5'10-5'11-ish, with only the tall ones > 6ft - and I don't think 4 inches is going to be a dealbreaker.

    It might be if he was at Peter Dinklage or Warwick Davis levels, but he's not.
    Winston Churchill was 5'6". He should have known that he'd never amount to anything to life.
    I'm the same height. Some years ago I was bemoaning my lack of inches and a nearly 6ft colleague remarked that he'd never thought of me as short.
    And no, he didn't mean tiny!

    Could be a problem with in my dancing days with girls almost the same height but in high heels.
  • TheWhiteRabbitTheWhiteRabbit Posts: 11,097

    maaarsh said:

    Leon said:

    I'm calling bollocks on the height thing. Both Thatcher and HMQ are tiny.

    Most of the public never see them in the flesh and those that do, whilst they might be surprised at their height, don't find it anything more than a curiosity.

    It might be a problem for him if he was on the pull in a nightclub. But most politicians seeking the office of PM don't do that.

    But if he ever became PM he would be constantly photographed meeting other world leaders who would be about twice the size.

    Remember the photos of the Obamas meeting the Queen. It was jarring. On a visceral level it will affect Sunak's chances. It shouldn't but it will.

    He is obviously sensitive about it hence the weirdly-angled photos
    Thatcher was 5'5", and Reagan was 6'1", and they looked good together and had one of the most successful partnerships in history.

    I don't doubt Rishi might look a bit short next to some other leaders too; I just don't think it will be a big deal provided he has the gravitas and character to be PM.
    Not sure how he'd look in Maggie's heels though
    I think he's 5' 7", so that's Maggie with heels.

    He's tall enough - bear in mind most men are 5'10-5'11-ish, with only the tall ones > 6ft - and I don't think 4 inches is going to be a dealbreaker.

    It might be if he was at Peter Dinklage or Warwick Davis levels, but he's not.
    Winston Churchill was 5'6". He should have known that he'd never amount to anything to life.
    I'm the same height. Some years ago I was bemoaning my lack of inches and a nearly 6ft colleague remarked that he'd never thought of me as short.
    And no, he didn't mean tiny!

    Could be a problem with in my dancing days with girls almost the same height but in high heels.
    Like my own, I do wonder about his voice.
  • OldKingColeOldKingCole Posts: 21,966
    rcs1000 said:

    maaarsh said:

    Leon said:

    I'm calling bollocks on the height thing. Both Thatcher and HMQ are tiny.

    Most of the public never see them in the flesh and those that do, whilst they might be surprised at their height, don't find it anything more than a curiosity.

    It might be a problem for him if he was on the pull in a nightclub. But most politicians seeking the office of PM don't do that.

    But if he ever became PM he would be constantly photographed meeting other world leaders who would be about twice the size.

    Remember the photos of the Obamas meeting the Queen. It was jarring. On a visceral level it will affect Sunak's chances. It shouldn't but it will.

    He is obviously sensitive about it hence the weirdly-angled photos
    Thatcher was 5'5", and Reagan was 6'1", and they looked good together and had one of the most successful partnerships in history.

    I don't doubt Rishi might look a bit short next to some other leaders too; I just don't think it will be a big deal provided he has the gravitas and character to be PM.
    Not sure how he'd look in Maggie's heels though
    I think he's 5' 7", so that's Maggie with heels.

    He's tall enough - bear in mind most men are 5'10-5'11-ish, with only the tall ones > 6ft - and I don't think 4 inches is going to be a dealbreaker.

    It might be if he was at Peter Dinklage or Warwick Davis levels, but he's not.
    Winston Churchill was 5'6". He should have known that he'd never amount to anything to life.
    To be fair, the average age of men has been rising for about 200 years, so that's not necessarily a killer point.
    Don't you mean height? The 'average' younger Dutch male is now over 6ft.
  • AnabobazinaAnabobazina Posts: 8,171

    DougSeal said:
    Not quite beaten in Wales - but getting damned close.
    There was a doctor on BBC Wales yesterday who is expecting another big Welsh Covid wave in a few months, and the Welsh NHS will again be under strain.

    Drakeford has really made a dog's breakfast of Covid hasn't he?
    Did he/she say why? Vaccine suggests otherwise.
    Dr Richard Pugh, Chairman of the Welsh Intensive Care group. It's on BBC Wales online.
    Did he give reasons? Fine to make predictions, but I'd love to know his thinking
    "When you look at critical care, the average age of people that come to critical care as a result of Covid is late-50s and these are people who are not going to be seeing the benefits of the vaccination programme that soon, so I am concerned about the potential of a third wave."



    It's an odd thing to say because, at least in England, these people are now indeed being vaccinated. Is Pugh aware of the rapidity of the rollout?

    Puzzling.
    I think thats right. We may see a rise in cases with the schools and then a bit of rule of six outside, but should be suppressed by other factors. By the time we are really opening up I think the over 50's (and indeed the over 40's) will have been vaccinated at least once, so we shouldn't fear a large 4th wave. Unless its just defined by cases, not deaths, in which case the youths may indeed catch it.
    Agreed – but as a side point this obsession with cases over deaths has to stop. I mean, who cares if you contact covid if it doesn't affect you? In what sense does that matter beyond some arbitrary statistic?
  • kinabalukinabalu Posts: 20,024
    Endillion said:

    kinabalu said:

    MrEd said:

    Stocky said:

    There is still some 3.3 available with BF to lay Sunak for next Tory leader.

    I say this half in jest but also with some seriousness that, for those backing Sunak, it's worth bearing in mind that he is only 5'5" and always looks dwarfed when he stands next to almost all male counterparts (and some female ones). There are enough studies out there to show that height - at least for a man - seems to have some effect on how a leader is perceived. I suspect it might be more of an issue within the internal Conservative electorate for the leadership.
    Yes, good point. We've come a fair way in ditching the old prejudices about who can be PM - e.g. the last but one was not an Old Etonian - but is the country ready for a midget?
    That's racist. He's comfortably above average height for a man of Indian origin.
    Well he's five five, which is not actually that short. It's more the overall dinkiness. But he is big on another metric - sex appeal to gay men.
  • CookieCookie Posts: 2,520

    kinabalu said:

    MrEd said:

    Stocky said:

    There is still some 3.3 available with BF to lay Sunak for next Tory leader.

    I say this half in jest but also with some seriousness that, for those backing Sunak, it's worth bearing in mind that he is only 5'5" and always looks dwarfed when he stands next to almost all male counterparts (and some female ones). There are enough studies out there to show that height - at least for a man - seems to have some effect on how a leader is perceived. I suspect it might be more of an issue within the internal Conservative electorate for the leadership.
    Yes, good point. We've come a fair way in ditching the old prejudices about who can be PM - e.g. the last but one was not an Old Etonian - but is the country ready for a midget?
    Why, how very progressive of you! :lol:

    Rishi has two immutable characteristics: (1) he fits handily into decorative niches around the house; (2) he'll squash the Opposition as flat as a pancake...
    Rishi's height isn't much of an issue against Starmer, whose purpose seems to be as a doormat....
    One of the side-effects of lockdown has been neutralise Starmer's USP of really great hair.

    Of course, it's still better hair than Boris's, who looks like he's wearing a Boris Johnson comedy wig. But bad hair is priced in for Boris. But Keir really needs the barbers to reopen.
  • MexicanpeteMexicanpete Posts: 9,999

    DougSeal said:
    Not quite beaten in Wales - but getting damned close.
    There was a doctor on BBC Wales yesterday who is expecting another big Welsh Covid wave in a few months, and the Welsh NHS will again be under strain.

    Drakeford has really made a dog's breakfast of Covid hasn't he?
    Did he/she say why? Vaccine suggests otherwise.
    Dr Richard Pugh, Chairman of the Welsh Intensive Care group. It's on BBC Wales online.
    Did he give reasons? Fine to make predictions, but I'd love to know his thinking
    "When you look at critical care, the average age of people that come to critical care as a result of Covid is late-50s and these are people who are not going to be seeing the benefits of the vaccination programme that soon, so I am concerned about the potential of a third wave."



    It's an odd thing to say because, at least in England, these people are now indeed being vaccinated. Is Pugh aware of the rapidity of the rollout?

    Puzzling.
    Forgive me, but I am more inclined to take the word of an ICU specialist doctor, rather than Mark Drakeford and the PB Brains Trust.
  • SelebianSelebian Posts: 1,246
    edited March 4
    kinabalu said:

    #first post
    Please allow me to introduce myself...
    Been lurking on here since mid-2020 when I was reading all sorts of stuff anywhere and everywhere about US Presidential candidates, then the election itself. I'm not a betting man but I did find that betting sites like this plus ofc 538.com were good at giving background information; most of it interesting. [I did bet on Biden winning WH21 and turned a tiny stake of £100 into £141 :-) ]
    Me? Born and educated in Scotland; spent most of my working life in [in order] England, Germany, Belgium, Switzerland. Moved back to Edinburgh when semi-retirement beckoned. Staunchly pro-EU [both my kids live and work in Europe], fervently pro-independence for Scotland. So on both counts in a massive minority on here.
    My reading of the site here after about a year is that most contributors are in the main Tory-leaning, pro-Brexit, pro-Union, cricket-lovers. Way to stereotype, right?
    With the run-up to Holyrood '21 things will get more interesting / catty. Looking forward to it. Might even wager a small bet on the performance of the pro-Indy parties.
    ...pleased to meet you

    Hello there. The tone of the board has imo changed recently. Not so much the relative numbers of different persuasions but more the volume and confidence levels. GE19 gave a big fillip to posters who are both Tory and Leavers and just as this was fading with the bleakness of the pandemic it was turbocharged again by the UK's vaccine success c.f. the hated Europe. The effect is that Tory Leave posters have become quite juiced up and leery - and prolific - and Tory Leave has thus become the dominant strain.
    But, given the large and longstanding immunity the country seems to have built up to Labour, there should be strong evolutionary pressure for the electable mutation to thrive if/when it occurs?
  • TOPPINGTOPPING Posts: 27,641
    kinabalu said:

    Endillion said:

    kinabalu said:

    MrEd said:

    Stocky said:

    There is still some 3.3 available with BF to lay Sunak for next Tory leader.

    I say this half in jest but also with some seriousness that, for those backing Sunak, it's worth bearing in mind that he is only 5'5" and always looks dwarfed when he stands next to almost all male counterparts (and some female ones). There are enough studies out there to show that height - at least for a man - seems to have some effect on how a leader is perceived. I suspect it might be more of an issue within the internal Conservative electorate for the leadership.
    Yes, good point. We've come a fair way in ditching the old prejudices about who can be PM - e.g. the last but one was not an Old Etonian - but is the country ready for a midget?
    That's racist. He's comfortably above average height for a man of Indian origin.
    Well he's five five, which is not actually that short.
    Bottled it, I see.
  • StockyStocky Posts: 5,471
    edited March 4
    Anyone heard from @nichomar ?

    He`s not posted for six weeks. And he was in hospital.
  • EndillionEndillion Posts: 3,380
    kinabalu said:

    Endillion said:

    kinabalu said:

    MrEd said:

    Stocky said:

    There is still some 3.3 available with BF to lay Sunak for next Tory leader.

    I say this half in jest but also with some seriousness that, for those backing Sunak, it's worth bearing in mind that he is only 5'5" and always looks dwarfed when he stands next to almost all male counterparts (and some female ones). There are enough studies out there to show that height - at least for a man - seems to have some effect on how a leader is perceived. I suspect it might be more of an issue within the internal Conservative electorate for the leadership.
    Yes, good point. We've come a fair way in ditching the old prejudices about who can be PM - e.g. the last but one was not an Old Etonian - but is the country ready for a midget?
    That's racist. He's comfortably above average height for a man of Indian origin.
    Well he's five five, which is not actually that short. It's more the overall dinkiness. But he is big on another metric - sex appeal to gay men.
    He is undoubtedly short for a top-level politician in an Anglo country, certainly in recent times. But I was wondering (genuinely; I'm not just taking the piss) as to whether in your view, just as gravitas can sometimes be code for "has deep commanding voice" which is in turn code for "is male", "tall" could be similarly code for "is male AND Caucasian"?
  • TOPPINGTOPPING Posts: 27,641

    DougSeal said:
    Not quite beaten in Wales - but getting damned close.
    There was a doctor on BBC Wales yesterday who is expecting another big Welsh Covid wave in a few months, and the Welsh NHS will again be under strain.

    Drakeford has really made a dog's breakfast of Covid hasn't he?
    Did he/she say why? Vaccine suggests otherwise.
    Dr Richard Pugh, Chairman of the Welsh Intensive Care group. It's on BBC Wales online.
    Did he give reasons? Fine to make predictions, but I'd love to know his thinking
    "When you look at critical care, the average age of people that come to critical care as a result of Covid is late-50s and these are people who are not going to be seeing the benefits of the vaccination programme that soon, so I am concerned about the potential of a third wave."



    It's an odd thing to say because, at least in England, these people are now indeed being vaccinated. Is Pugh aware of the rapidity of the rollout?

    Puzzling.
    Forgive me, but I am more inclined to take the word of an ICU specialist doctor, rather than Mark Drakeford and the PB Brains Trust.
    That's strange. PB Brains Trust I get it. But First Minister vs some random doctor?

    Who do you think has the better access to the bigger picture and advice?
  • Philip_ThompsonPhilip_Thompson Posts: 52,719
    Cookie said:

    DougSeal said:
    Another day in which 80+ is lower than 60-79.
    Though ONLY JUST. We're three months into vaccinations now. It feels like 80+ deaths should be much lower by now.
    Remember it takes up to 2 about months for vaccines to prevent deaths though.

    3 weeks for the vaccine to start working and preventing infections
    Plus two weeks to go from infected to symptomatic to hospitalised.
    Plus potentially another week or two to go from hospitalised to died.

    There are ~11,000 people in hospital. Very few of them will have been 3 weeks post-vaccine when first infected.
  • BluestBlueBluestBlue Posts: 4,204
    edited March 4
    rcs1000 said:

    maaarsh said:

    Leon said:

    I'm calling bollocks on the height thing. Both Thatcher and HMQ are tiny.

    Most of the public never see them in the flesh and those that do, whilst they might be surprised at their height, don't find it anything more than a curiosity.

    It might be a problem for him if he was on the pull in a nightclub. But most politicians seeking the office of PM don't do that.

    But if he ever became PM he would be constantly photographed meeting other world leaders who would be about twice the size.

    Remember the photos of the Obamas meeting the Queen. It was jarring. On a visceral level it will affect Sunak's chances. It shouldn't but it will.

    He is obviously sensitive about it hence the weirdly-angled photos
    Thatcher was 5'5", and Reagan was 6'1", and they looked good together and had one of the most successful partnerships in history.

    I don't doubt Rishi might look a bit short next to some other leaders too; I just don't think it will be a big deal provided he has the gravitas and character to be PM.
    Not sure how he'd look in Maggie's heels though
    I think he's 5' 7", so that's Maggie with heels.

    He's tall enough - bear in mind most men are 5'10-5'11-ish, with only the tall ones > 6ft - and I don't think 4 inches is going to be a dealbreaker.

    It might be if he was at Peter Dinklage or Warwick Davis levels, but he's not.
    Winston Churchill was 5'6". He should have known that he'd never amount to anything to life.
    To be fair, the average age of men has been rising for about 200 years, so that's not necessarily a killer point.
    Sure, but it's just an illustration of how little relevance height can have in politics when more salient factors intervene. If the political discussion over Rishi becomes something like this, then's the Opposition's in serious trouble:

    Con: So our Chancellor's vision is so broad that 58% of Jeremy Corbyn's own 2019 voters now trust him to run the British economy. Meanwhile they couldn't pick your Shadow Chancellor out of an identity parade of one.

    Lab: But he's, he's ... he's a shortarse!

    Con: In a break with the Cameron-Osborne years, we're going to ask big business to help balance the books, instead of putting the full weight of fixing the deficit on raising taxes and cutting services for individuals and families. A one-nation, people-first economic policy, you might call it.

    Lab: Did we mention he's short?
  • felixfelix Posts: 12,607

    I'm calling bollocks on the height thing. Both Thatcher and HMQ are tiny.

    Most of the public never see them in the flesh and those that do, whilst they might be surprised at their height, don't find it anything more than a curiosity.

    It might be a problem for him if he was on the pull in a nightclub. But most politicians seeking the office of PM don't do that.

    I'm calling bollocks on the height thing. Both Thatcher and HMQ are tiny.

    Most of the public never see them in the flesh and those that do, whilst they might be surprised at their height, don't find it anything more than a curiosity.

    It might be a problem for him if he was on the pull in a nightclub. But most politicians seeking the office of PM don't do that.

    Depends - it gave Bercow [ remember him] quite the complex and we mustn't forget Napoleon :smiley:
  • StockyStocky Posts: 5,471
    Apologies if this has been posted, but there is a petition opposed to vaccine passports which is gaining momentum:

    petition.parliament.uk/petitions/569957
  • kinabalukinabalu Posts: 20,024
    Stocky said:

    Endillion said:

    kinabalu said:

    MrEd said:

    Stocky said:

    There is still some 3.3 available with BF to lay Sunak for next Tory leader.

    I say this half in jest but also with some seriousness that, for those backing Sunak, it's worth bearing in mind that he is only 5'5" and always looks dwarfed when he stands next to almost all male counterparts (and some female ones). There are enough studies out there to show that height - at least for a man - seems to have some effect on how a leader is perceived. I suspect it might be more of an issue within the internal Conservative electorate for the leadership.
    Yes, good point. We've come a fair way in ditching the old prejudices about who can be PM - e.g. the last but one was not an Old Etonian - but is the country ready for a midget?
    That's racist. He's comfortably above average height for a man of Indian origin.
    Naughty @kinabalu.

    (Reminds me of bimbo-gate.)
    Oh god, what a nightmare that was. @ydoethur gave me merry hell.

    Thing is, I get judged by higher standards than others. It's fair enough.
  • PulpstarPulpstar Posts: 65,172
    edited March 4
    Stocky said:

    Apologies if this has been posted, but there is a petition opposed to vaccine passports which is gaining momentum:

    petition.parliament.uk/petitions/569957

    Is there one in favour ?
    I signed the petition in favour of May's Brexit deal. So you've got a good chance.
  • StockyStocky Posts: 5,471
    kinabalu said:

    Stocky said:

    Endillion said:

    kinabalu said:

    MrEd said:

    Stocky said:

    There is still some 3.3 available with BF to lay Sunak for next Tory leader.

    I say this half in jest but also with some seriousness that, for those backing Sunak, it's worth bearing in mind that he is only 5'5" and always looks dwarfed when he stands next to almost all male counterparts (and some female ones). There are enough studies out there to show that height - at least for a man - seems to have some effect on how a leader is perceived. I suspect it might be more of an issue within the internal Conservative electorate for the leadership.
    Yes, good point. We've come a fair way in ditching the old prejudices about who can be PM - e.g. the last but one was not an Old Etonian - but is the country ready for a midget?
    That's racist. He's comfortably above average height for a man of Indian origin.
    Naughty @kinabalu.

    (Reminds me of bimbo-gate.)
    Oh god, what a nightmare that was. @ydoethur gave me merry hell.

    Thing is, I get judged by higher standards than others. It's fair enough.
    You do. You are very teasable on such matters. Light-hearted ribbing is needed rather than a grump-puss monstering a la Topping.
  • No_Offence_AlanNo_Offence_Alan Posts: 2,280
    maaarsh said:

    Leon said:

    Theory: Covid has rendered Brexit pointless, indeed self harming.

    I voted to Leave (and it was a close call: I decided on the day) because I really did think we would move to a lower tax, more deregulated economy. Not Singapore-on-Thames, that was always a pipe-dream, but definitely something more nimble.

    We are not getting that, because Covid. Instead, we are getting a high tax, low growth economy, essentially a European economy, but without the benefits of the European Single Market, Customs Union or Freedom of Movement. We will be a kind of particularly isolated France, minus the sunshine and vasty fields.

    Meanwhile we have destabilised Northern Ireland, fuelled Scottish indy (maybe even Welsh indy), we have divided the nation bitterly and we face a decade of austerity. The future will be dominated by bitter quarrels with Brussels, from which we gain very little.

    It is most unfortunate. Brexit could have worked. It might still work in 10-20 years. But in the short-medium term, Covid has turned Brexit into a nightmare. The worst case scenario

    That's excuse-making.

    There's no absolute level of taxes that qualifies as low or high - it's the relative level compared to your competitors that counts.

    So, taking your argument at face value, it's still possible for the UK to be lower tax/regulation than Europe, despite Covid, because they will also have to pay for Covid.

    If that doesn't happen it will be because Johnson is a crowd-pleasing spendaholic, or because it's not something the UK public will wear - not because Covid wrecked Brexit.
    Sunak has set a budget which balances the books without doing anything particularly overtly painful to most people. But it's 4 years to get there, and 2 years to the corporation tax hike. Personally I'm both hoping and expecting the growth forecast to end up looking very conservative, and some of the edges can be taken off this package.
    Err, if the economy grows more than expected shouldn't that mean more scope for tax rises?
    You know, when the sun is shining, fix the roof, and the plumbing?
  • turbotubbsturbotubbs Posts: 1,712

    DougSeal said:
    Not quite beaten in Wales - but getting damned close.
    There was a doctor on BBC Wales yesterday who is expecting another big Welsh Covid wave in a few months, and the Welsh NHS will again be under strain.

    Drakeford has really made a dog's breakfast of Covid hasn't he?
    Did he/she say why? Vaccine suggests otherwise.
    Dr Richard Pugh, Chairman of the Welsh Intensive Care group. It's on BBC Wales online.
    Did he give reasons? Fine to make predictions, but I'd love to know his thinking
    "When you look at critical care, the average age of people that come to critical care as a result of Covid is late-50s and these are people who are not going to be seeing the benefits of the vaccination programme that soon, so I am concerned about the potential of a third wave."



    It's an odd thing to say because, at least in England, these people are now indeed being vaccinated. Is Pugh aware of the rapidity of the rollout?

    Puzzling.
    I think thats right. We may see a rise in cases with the schools and then a bit of rule of six outside, but should be suppressed by other factors. By the time we are really opening up I think the over 50's (and indeed the over 40's) will have been vaccinated at least once, so we shouldn't fear a large 4th wave. Unless its just defined by cases, not deaths, in which case the youths may indeed catch it.
    Agreed – but as a side point this obsession with cases over deaths has to stop. I mean, who cares if you contact covid if it doesn't affect you? In what sense does that matter beyond some arbitrary statistic?
    Totally agree with this, but it will take someone with balls/guts to face down the 'experts' in the media (Peston, I'm looking at you), who start to panic in three weeks when cases rises (schools back with lots of lateral flow tests - its inevitable).
  • EndillionEndillion Posts: 3,380
    kinabalu said:

    Stocky said:

    Endillion said:

    kinabalu said:

    MrEd said:

    Stocky said:

    There is still some 3.3 available with BF to lay Sunak for next Tory leader.

    I say this half in jest but also with some seriousness that, for those backing Sunak, it's worth bearing in mind that he is only 5'5" and always looks dwarfed when he stands next to almost all male counterparts (and some female ones). There are enough studies out there to show that height - at least for a man - seems to have some effect on how a leader is perceived. I suspect it might be more of an issue within the internal Conservative electorate for the leadership.
    Yes, good point. We've come a fair way in ditching the old prejudices about who can be PM - e.g. the last but one was not an Old Etonian - but is the country ready for a midget?
    That's racist. He's comfortably above average height for a man of Indian origin.
    Naughty @kinabalu.

    (Reminds me of bimbo-gate.)
    Oh god, what a nightmare that was. @ydoethur gave me merry hell.

    Thing is, I get judged by higher standards than others. It's fair enough.
    Certainly higher than Sunak, amirite?
  • turbotubbsturbotubbs Posts: 1,712

    DougSeal said:
    Not quite beaten in Wales - but getting damned close.
    There was a doctor on BBC Wales yesterday who is expecting another big Welsh Covid wave in a few months, and the Welsh NHS will again be under strain.

    Drakeford has really made a dog's breakfast of Covid hasn't he?
    Did he/she say why? Vaccine suggests otherwise.
    Dr Richard Pugh, Chairman of the Welsh Intensive Care group. It's on BBC Wales online.
    Did he give reasons? Fine to make predictions, but I'd love to know his thinking
    "When you look at critical care, the average age of people that come to critical care as a result of Covid is late-50s and these are people who are not going to be seeing the benefits of the vaccination programme that soon, so I am concerned about the potential of a third wave."



    It's an odd thing to say because, at least in England, these people are now indeed being vaccinated. Is Pugh aware of the rapidity of the rollout?

    Puzzling.
    Forgive me, but I am more inclined to take the word of an ICU specialist doctor, rather than Mark Drakeford and the PB Brains Trust.
    And thats fair comment too. I guess I'd like to know more about his thinking though, not that I am doubting his opinion, as it seems to run counter to other opinion.
  • StockyStocky Posts: 5,471
    Endillion said:

    kinabalu said:

    Stocky said:

    Endillion said:

    kinabalu said:

    MrEd said:

    Stocky said:

    There is still some 3.3 available with BF to lay Sunak for next Tory leader.

    I say this half in jest but also with some seriousness that, for those backing Sunak, it's worth bearing in mind that he is only 5'5" and always looks dwarfed when he stands next to almost all male counterparts (and some female ones). There are enough studies out there to show that height - at least for a man - seems to have some effect on how a leader is perceived. I suspect it might be more of an issue within the internal Conservative electorate for the leadership.
    Yes, good point. We've come a fair way in ditching the old prejudices about who can be PM - e.g. the last but one was not an Old Etonian - but is the country ready for a midget?
    That's racist. He's comfortably above average height for a man of Indian origin.
    Naughty @kinabalu.

    (Reminds me of bimbo-gate.)
    Oh god, what a nightmare that was. @ydoethur gave me merry hell.

    Thing is, I get judged by higher standards than others. It's fair enough.
    Certainly higher than Sunak, amirite?
    Sunak sets a low bar.
  • PulpstarPulpstar Posts: 65,172
    DougSeal said:
    Lol it's a de facto census for 75-79
  • OldKingColeOldKingCole Posts: 21,966
    felix said:

    I'm calling bollocks on the height thing. Both Thatcher and HMQ are tiny.

    Most of the public never see them in the flesh and those that do, whilst they might be surprised at their height, don't find it anything more than a curiosity.

    It might be a problem for him if he was on the pull in a nightclub. But most politicians seeking the office of PM don't do that.

    I'm calling bollocks on the height thing. Both Thatcher and HMQ are tiny.

    Most of the public never see them in the flesh and those that do, whilst they might be surprised at their height, don't find it anything more than a curiosity.

    It might be a problem for him if he was on the pull in a nightclub. But most politicians seeking the office of PM don't do that.

    Depends - it gave Bercow [ remember him] quite the complex and we mustn't forget Napoleon :smiley:
    TBH it's one of the reasons I like going to Thailand; at 5'6", as I've said, I'm about, or a bit above, average height.

    I once had to do something in Newmarket and it was noticeable that a lot..... and there were a LOT about ..... of 'horsey-looking men were shorter than me.

  • malcolmgmalcolmg Posts: 32,220
    DougSeal said:
    FPT
    Just what I would expect from you , nasty snide Little Englander with a chip on his shoulder

    malcolmg said:

    Not sure who you mix with Burgessian, I am sure there are a good few low lifes that are anti - English but it is a very very small minority. Scotland as a whole is welcoming and especially to the English.
    PS: I would say anti Westminster sentiment is far more accurate.

    Dougseal
    Give me a break. The last time my wife and I were in Scotland we both noticed the anti-English jibes that came about when she spoke with her American accent (typically "don't go to Edinburgh during the Festival, it's full of English" type of thing). Awful, awful place to visit if you are English.
  • Luckyguy1983Luckyguy1983 Posts: 14,625
    malcolmg said:

    Fantastic advert on the radio just now. Telling cow and sheep farmers that brilliant new trade deals will help them export their products around the world. Yes - lets ignore the catastrofuck that has been imposed on their existing EU market, and instead shine a light on the no new deals signed that bring about no changes from the old deals.

    And we're paying for this! Farmers know that its bollox which means that its not aimed at them. We are spending £lots advertising something that isn't true so that people who don't know or care about reality can be impressed about how brilliantly Brexit has been for cow and sheep farmers.

    You live in Scotland now, so get used to it. This is the capital of constant political advertising disguised as public information campaigns. It's almost half the advertising I see on YouTube at times.
    What is the betting it was a Westminster advert
    It's usually the Scottish Government, with stuff like helpful adverts letting me know 'It's wintertime, and it can be a bit bleak, so why not light a candle and get cosy in the evening? And visit 'Clearyourhead.scot' for more helpful hints.'.
  • kinabalukinabalu Posts: 20,024

    kinabalu said:

    MrEd said:

    Stocky said:

    There is still some 3.3 available with BF to lay Sunak for next Tory leader.

    I say this half in jest but also with some seriousness that, for those backing Sunak, it's worth bearing in mind that he is only 5'5" and always looks dwarfed when he stands next to almost all male counterparts (and some female ones). There are enough studies out there to show that height - at least for a man - seems to have some effect on how a leader is perceived. I suspect it might be more of an issue within the internal Conservative electorate for the leadership.
    Yes, good point. We've come a fair way in ditching the old prejudices about who can be PM - e.g. the last but one was not an Old Etonian - but is the country ready for a midget?
    Why, how very progressive of you! :lol:

    Rishi has two immutable characteristics: (1) he fits handily into decorative niches around the house; (2) he'll squash the Opposition as flat as a pancake...
    Disagree with (2). If he leads the Cons into the next GE there will be no landslide. The absolute best they can hope for is a tiny majority.
  • maaarshmaaarsh Posts: 1,781

    maaarsh said:

    Leon said:

    Theory: Covid has rendered Brexit pointless, indeed self harming.

    I voted to Leave (and it was a close call: I decided on the day) because I really did think we would move to a lower tax, more deregulated economy. Not Singapore-on-Thames, that was always a pipe-dream, but definitely something more nimble.

    We are not getting that, because Covid. Instead, we are getting a high tax, low growth economy, essentially a European economy, but without the benefits of the European Single Market, Customs Union or Freedom of Movement. We will be a kind of particularly isolated France, minus the sunshine and vasty fields.

    Meanwhile we have destabilised Northern Ireland, fuelled Scottish indy (maybe even Welsh indy), we have divided the nation bitterly and we face a decade of austerity. The future will be dominated by bitter quarrels with Brussels, from which we gain very little.

    It is most unfortunate. Brexit could have worked. It might still work in 10-20 years. But in the short-medium term, Covid has turned Brexit into a nightmare. The worst case scenario

    That's excuse-making.

    There's no absolute level of taxes that qualifies as low or high - it's the relative level compared to your competitors that counts.

    So, taking your argument at face value, it's still possible for the UK to be lower tax/regulation than Europe, despite Covid, because they will also have to pay for Covid.

    If that doesn't happen it will be because Johnson is a crowd-pleasing spendaholic, or because it's not something the UK public will wear - not because Covid wrecked Brexit.
    Sunak has set a budget which balances the books without doing anything particularly overtly painful to most people. But it's 4 years to get there, and 2 years to the corporation tax hike. Personally I'm both hoping and expecting the growth forecast to end up looking very conservative, and some of the edges can be taken off this package.
    Err, if the economy grows more than expected shouldn't that mean more scope for tax rises?
    You know, when the sun is shining, fix the roof, and the plumbing?
    What an utterly bizarre opinion.

    This plan already fixes the roof. The budget is balanced and debt as a share of GDP falls. Faster growth means we get there quicker and can "share the proceeds of grrowth" by mitigating some of the less pleasant elements - safe bet we'll get a personal allowance increase ahead of schedule.
  • Nigel_ForemainNigel_Foremain Posts: 6,440

    maaarsh said:

    Leon said:

    I'm calling bollocks on the height thing. Both Thatcher and HMQ are tiny.

    Most of the public never see them in the flesh and those that do, whilst they might be surprised at their height, don't find it anything more than a curiosity.

    It might be a problem for him if he was on the pull in a nightclub. But most politicians seeking the office of PM don't do that.

    But if he ever became PM he would be constantly photographed meeting other world leaders who would be about twice the size.

    Remember the photos of the Obamas meeting the Queen. It was jarring. On a visceral level it will affect Sunak's chances. It shouldn't but it will.

    He is obviously sensitive about it hence the weirdly-angled photos
    Thatcher was 5'5", and Reagan was 6'1", and they looked good together and had one of the most successful partnerships in history.

    I don't doubt Rishi might look a bit short next to some other leaders too; I just don't think it will be a big deal provided he has the gravitas and character to be PM.
    Not sure how he'd look in Maggie's heels though
    I think he's 5' 7", so that's Maggie with heels.

    He's tall enough - bear in mind most men are 5'10-5'11-ish, with only the tall ones > 6ft - and I don't think 4 inches is going to be a dealbreaker.

    It might be if he was at Peter Dinklage or Warwick Davis levels, but he's not.
    Winston Churchill was 5'6". He should have known that he'd never amount to anything to life.
    In his era that was a reasonable, in fact, above average height. I seem to remember reading that the average height for a man in the late 1800s was 5'5''. Anyway, comparing Sunak to Churchill is just as ludicrous as comparing WSC to the Fat Clown. Sunak is more comparable to John Major, which is not necessarily a bad thing.
  • GardenwalkerGardenwalker Posts: 6,568
    Leon said:

    Theory: Covid has rendered Brexit pointless, indeed self harming.

    I voted to Leave (and it was a close call: I decided on the day) because I really did think we would move to a lower tax, more deregulated economy. Not Singapore-on-Thames, that was always a pipe-dream, but definitely something more nimble.

    We are not getting that, because Covid. Instead, we are getting a high tax, low growth economy, essentially a European economy, but without the benefits of the European Single Market, Customs Union or Freedom of Movement. We will be a kind of particularly isolated France, minus the sunshine and vasty fields.

    Meanwhile we have destabilised Northern Ireland, fuelled Scottish indy (maybe even Welsh indy), we have divided the nation bitterly and we face a decade of austerity. The future will be dominated by bitter quarrels with Brussels, from which we gain very little.

    It is most unfortunate. Brexit could have worked. It might still work in 10-20 years. But in the short-medium term, Covid has turned Brexit into a nightmare. The worst case scenario

    You *were* warned.
  • Richard_NabaviRichard_Nabavi Posts: 28,363
    TOPPING said:


    That's strange. PB Brains Trust I get it. But First Minister vs some random doctor?

    Who do you think has the better access to the bigger picture and advice?

    PB Brains Trust, obv.
  • DougSealDougSeal Posts: 4,922
    malcolmg said:

    DougSeal said:
    FPT
    Just what I would expect from you , nasty snide Little Englander with a chip on his shoulder

    malcolmg said:

    Not sure who you mix with Burgessian, I am sure there are a good few low lifes that are anti - English but it is a very very small minority. Scotland as a whole is welcoming and especially to the English.
    PS: I would say anti Westminster sentiment is far more accurate.

    Dougseal
    Give me a break. The last time my wife and I were in Scotland we both noticed the anti-English jibes that came about when she spoke with her American accent (typically "don't go to Edinburgh during the Festival, it's full of English" type of thing). Awful, awful place to visit if you are English.
    Not sure how quoting the vaccination stats relates to my alleged status as a "Little Englander". Still, keep dreaming.
  • StockyStocky Posts: 5,471
    @malcolmg when you said "north of the highland line" OPT what did you mean?
  • PulpstarPulpstar Posts: 65,172
    edited March 4
    The EU is going to have it's reputation in tatters as a reliable part of any supply chain with stopping these Australian vaccines.
  • BluestBlueBluestBlue Posts: 4,204
    kinabalu said:

    kinabalu said:

    MrEd said:

    Stocky said:

    There is still some 3.3 available with BF to lay Sunak for next Tory leader.

    I say this half in jest but also with some seriousness that, for those backing Sunak, it's worth bearing in mind that he is only 5'5" and always looks dwarfed when he stands next to almost all male counterparts (and some female ones). There are enough studies out there to show that height - at least for a man - seems to have some effect on how a leader is perceived. I suspect it might be more of an issue within the internal Conservative electorate for the leadership.
    Yes, good point. We've come a fair way in ditching the old prejudices about who can be PM - e.g. the last but one was not an Old Etonian - but is the country ready for a midget?
    Why, how very progressive of you! :lol:

    Rishi has two immutable characteristics: (1) he fits handily into decorative niches around the house; (2) he'll squash the Opposition as flat as a pancake...
    Disagree with (2). If he leads the Cons into the next GE there will be no landslide. The absolute best they can hope for is a tiny majority.
    Maybe, but we'll see. He's bright, meticulous, quicker on his feet than most politicians, and ruthless: he just took decades of Conservative orthodoxy and shot it in the back of the head because he knows that despite what we Tories like to pretend, there's little love in this country for big business, and none at all for cutting their taxes while raising those of individuals and families. He's had it relatively easy so far, but his cross-party appeal is immense and he seems to be doing everything he can to cultivate it.
  • AnabobazinaAnabobazina Posts: 8,171
    What on God's Green Earth is bimbo-gate??
  • TimTTimT Posts: 3,334
    edited March 4
    Endillion said:

    kinabalu said:

    Endillion said:

    kinabalu said:

    MrEd said:

    Stocky said:

    There is still some 3.3 available with BF to lay Sunak for next Tory leader.

    I say this half in jest but also with some seriousness that, for those backing Sunak, it's worth bearing in mind that he is only 5'5" and always looks dwarfed when he stands next to almost all male counterparts (and some female ones). There are enough studies out there to show that height - at least for a man - seems to have some effect on how a leader is perceived. I suspect it might be more of an issue within the internal Conservative electorate for the leadership.
    Yes, good point. We've come a fair way in ditching the old prejudices about who can be PM - e.g. the last but one was not an Old Etonian - but is the country ready for a midget?
    That's racist. He's comfortably above average height for a man of Indian origin.
    Well he's five five, which is not actually that short. It's more the overall dinkiness. But he is big on another metric - sex appeal to gay men.
    He is undoubtedly short for a top-level politician in an Anglo country, certainly in recent times. But I was wondering (genuinely; I'm not just taking the piss) as to whether in your view, just as gravitas can sometimes be code for "has deep commanding voice" which is in turn code for "is male", "tall" could be similarly code for "is male AND Caucasian"?
    I doubt it. I think you'd find if you researched national level studies across nations and ethnic groups, leaders within each group will tend to be taller and more attractive (on average, not in every instance) than the general populace of their national/ethnic group.
  • RochdalePioneersRochdalePioneers Posts: 9,508
    malcolmg said:

    DougSeal said:
    FPT
    Just what I would expect from you , nasty snide Little Englander with a chip on his shoulder

    malcolmg said:

    Not sure who you mix with Burgessian, I am sure there are a good few low lifes that are anti - English but it is a very very small minority. Scotland as a whole is welcoming and especially to the English.
    I can vouch for this. Been a Scottish resident now for 3 weeks here in central Buchan. Everyone has been lovely - we're by no means the only English family in the village and there's other nationalities too.
  • kinabalukinabalu Posts: 20,024
    Endillion said:

    kinabalu said:

    Endillion said:

    kinabalu said:

    MrEd said:

    Stocky said:

    There is still some 3.3 available with BF to lay Sunak for next Tory leader.

    I say this half in jest but also with some seriousness that, for those backing Sunak, it's worth bearing in mind that he is only 5'5" and always looks dwarfed when he stands next to almost all male counterparts (and some female ones). There are enough studies out there to show that height - at least for a man - seems to have some effect on how a leader is perceived. I suspect it might be more of an issue within the internal Conservative electorate for the leadership.
    Yes, good point. We've come a fair way in ditching the old prejudices about who can be PM - e.g. the last but one was not an Old Etonian - but is the country ready for a midget?
    That's racist. He's comfortably above average height for a man of Indian origin.
    Well he's five five, which is not actually that short. It's more the overall dinkiness. But he is big on another metric - sex appeal to gay men.
    He is undoubtedly short for a top-level politician in an Anglo country, certainly in recent times. But I was wondering (genuinely; I'm not just taking the piss) as to whether in your view, just as gravitas can sometimes be code for "has deep commanding voice" which is in turn code for "is male", "tall" could be similarly code for "is male AND Caucasian"?
    I can't say I've ever detected that. But now you mention it - gosh what a minefield.
  • FishingFishing Posts: 1,997

    DougSeal said:

    Leon said:

    Theory: Covid has rendered Brexit pointless, indeed self harming.

    I voted to Leave (and it was a close call: I decided on the day) because I really did think we would move to a lower tax, more deregulated economy. Not Singapore-on-Thames, that was always a pipe-dream, but definitely something more nimble.

    We are not getting that, because Covid. Instead, we are getting a high tax, low growth economy, essentially a European economy, but without the benefits of the European Single Market, Customs Union or Freedom of Movement. We will be a kind of particularly isolated France, minus the sunshine and vasty fields.

    Meanwhile we have destabilised Northern Ireland, fuelled Scottish indy (maybe even Welsh indy), we have divided the nation bitterly and we face a decade of austerity. The future will be dominated by bitter quarrels with Brussels, from which we gain very little.

    It is most unfortunate. Brexit could have worked. It might still work in 10-20 years. But in the short-medium term, Covid has turned Brexit into a nightmare. The worst case scenario

    Thanks but it's a little bit late for this now.
    What we're getting is the median (or maybe modal) view of the British electorate.

    That is, decent spending on public services, responsible taxation, fiscal rectitude (but not austerity), immigration control, political independence, environmental stewardship, and popular regulation.

    A deregulated low-tax model wouldn't garner much support, unless it delivered the goods in terms of high-growth and at little cost to everyday people in terms of public services.

    FWIW, I think we will reform but it will be slowly and gently as our economy recalibrates. Not "big bang".
    I think one way to shift public opinion in favour of lower taxes would be to abolish PAYE, so that people received their gross salaries each year, but then had to pay the government the taxes at the end of it. Having money, then having to give it back is always more noticeable than never having it in the first place.

    Another way would be to have VAT not included in most marked prices so that it's extra when you pay it, like sales tax in the US.
  • AnabobazinaAnabobazina Posts: 8,171

    DougSeal said:
    Not quite beaten in Wales - but getting damned close.
    There was a doctor on BBC Wales yesterday who is expecting another big Welsh Covid wave in a few months, and the Welsh NHS will again be under strain.

    Drakeford has really made a dog's breakfast of Covid hasn't he?
    Did he/she say why? Vaccine suggests otherwise.
    Dr Richard Pugh, Chairman of the Welsh Intensive Care group. It's on BBC Wales online.
    Did he give reasons? Fine to make predictions, but I'd love to know his thinking
    "When you look at critical care, the average age of people that come to critical care as a result of Covid is late-50s and these are people who are not going to be seeing the benefits of the vaccination programme that soon, so I am concerned about the potential of a third wave."



    It's an odd thing to say because, at least in England, these people are now indeed being vaccinated. Is Pugh aware of the rapidity of the rollout?

    Puzzling.
    Forgive me, but I am more inclined to take the word of an ICU specialist doctor, rather than Mark Drakeford and the PB Brains Trust.
    And thats fair comment too. I guess I'd like to know more about his thinking though, not that I am doubting his opinion, as it seems to run counter to other opinion.
    The story is based on a single conversation with Pugh where he says he is worried about a third wave because the over 50s aren't being vaccinated. Yet the over-50s demonstrably are being vaccinated, unless there is some particular issue in Wales of which I am unaware?

    So the quote and the resultant story is rather puzzling, and it's perfectly valid not to accept it unthinkingly at face value. This is PB, after all.
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