In yesterday’s FT magazine interesting, perceptive and depressingly true article by Simon Kuper who is long term FT correspondent in Paris…also writes books on footie.
He is in the deep shit again with his own MP’s regarding the social costs for healthcare, which will adversely affect poorer people.
Why pick on Doris the buffoon, the whole lot are incompetent.
N.H.S WAITING TIMES.
ILLEGAL IMMIGRANTS ( They can travel thousands of miles yet arrive at UK with no money just an I phone)
The list is endless what a shame there is not a decent opposition.
BoJo might get the Spanish Archer in the next year or so, but a lack of any opposition and the other parties being even more unelectable makes another 10 years of Tory government highly likely.
That article is paywalled John - can you summarise?
On the other hand there’s an interesting article in The Guardian today (by a professor of politics, not a Westminster-bubble journalist) arguing that the current Tory Party election-winning alliance between ‘red wall’ seats in the Midlands and North and ‘remain wall’ seats in the South-East is unwieldy and unsustainable.
The Tories will lose all their Northern support if they don’t show the region so love soon.
If you just register Geof you can read a certain number of article a week.
David we need 4 separate maladministration entries on your list for Pensions. Not jusr the one:
UK government’s sustained refusal to give any annual pension increase to any pensioner that earned their pension in the UK, but dared to spend their later years in another country (except for very few countries where they do pay the increases and this does not include Australia).
UK governments sustained refusal to inform widows they were until ~2008, entitled to a minimum of 60% of their husband’s earned pension. ~140,000 entitled peoplel did not receive this. 90% of whom were women, 40,000 of whom are estimated to have already died. As of 2021 when the government has finally been forced to address it.
In 2021 the UK government has also been forced to admit many pensions have been underpaid. Due to DWP miscalculations particularly affecting people whose working periods have been shorter or with gaps.
Equalisation of pension ages for men and women was fair enough. But the UK government did not mitigate the effect of being born 1 day too late meaning losing 6 years of pension, for anyone. And did not bother to ensure all the people with this surprise coming had enough time and support to prepare.
So that’s 4 pension entries due on that list David. Noting that they all hit women particularly. Perhaps that’s why - after all women don’t matter.
- The bonus one. Not strictly pensions, but the 2.5% (1.25% from employer as well as employee) for ‘funding social care/nhs extra N.i. levy’ on earnings. Not announced in the budget, so clearly not important to taxpayers? That’s an extra £1 in every £40 earmed going to the government now for this. Additional to all other taxes.
And yet the cap on care costs payable by an individual in exchange, only applies to a fraction of care costs. If your home/assets is worth over £20,000 you’ll still be paying towards your own care costs and all of them if your home/assets is worth over £120,000. As well as having paid the extra 2.5% NI just introduced on your earnings.
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Hi John - Yes I read the article you linked above (and several others you sent - thanks).
I have to say I didn’t get the same takeaways as you (I think I’m more of a hard evidence rather than interesting opinions kind of person) - the article only talked about the Tories winning the next election - ie. being in power for another 5 years max - and the only actual evidence it presented was the current bookies’ odds!
I also found it narrow in focus (though this is a problem with most UK political reporting - including The Guardian). It talks about the way the Tory Party has moved (eg. incorporating Kippers) as if this is some kind of Johnsonian strategy - it wasn’t. (a) It was the only way for the Tory party to survive at all (had the Brexit Party continued to stand against Tories Labour would have demolished them); and (b) it’s what’s happening all over the developed world - nothing to do with any political strategy - Johnson is just the UK Trump or any other tin-pot populist you care to mention - same mix of nationalism, the inevitable accompanying scapegoating of minorities and immigrants, culture-war idiocy, combined with move away from neoliberalism towards more economic interventionism. Carbon copy of Trump’s republican realignment, Truth & Justice, LePen or any of them.
It’s international - and what it is in fact is not any ‘Johnsonism’ (which is why nobody has been able to articulate it) or political reshaping of the Tory party - it’s simply a response to the collapse of neoliberalism. The core consensus of western politics (that the market knows best and the state should not intervene much) collapsed after the 2008 crash and failure to recover from it, and it’s obvious to everybody now that it cannot come back in the face of climate/ecological breakdown. The world has moved on - and this is a huge identity crisis for all centre-right parties, which have bet everything on '‘the market’ for 40 years. They don’t really have any coherent policy direction - just a rag-bag of odd and mainly old right-wing hang-ups and sleaze.
The real issue is not whether the Tories can stay in power by picking fights with the EU etc - the electorate will be bored by that by 2022 - it’s whether non-pensioner age groups will vote in sufficient numbers. I doubt if Starmer can inspire them (or anybody really), but the Tories might just let things get so bad younger people might turn out in desperation. If they do, Johnson loses…
Big boost for Johnson as he reveals his new advisor…
Did she mess up his script
Likely to be less bitter when dumped than Cummings.
Good eyesight too, by all accounts.
Johnson is bad enough but imagine this man taking the job.
I’ve just put my hand in my pocket again for this most worthy cause.
In economic terms (ie leaving aside small matters like avoiding future European wars) the central purpose of the EU is to preserve the European Social Model by creating a big enough single market to avoid the race to the bottom that is globalisation.
By leaving the EU, the UK has already made the choice to try to compete on the basis of a deregulated, unprotected economy - it is simply not big enough to preserve its welfare state or the employment and living standards of most of its people in the face of global competition.
For brexit to be a ‘success’ (in Tory terms) it must go for that US-model highly unequal, insecure, unregulated economy - and most Brits will find that they hate it.
And even then will not admit they were successfully conned.
Brexiters with strong feelings, yes - but others have already realised the mistake, and more will do so.
And remember the demographics… In 2016 about three-quarters of young people supported remain, and there is a lot of evidence that this generation (indeed all under 35s) is becoming increasingly anti-Tory; there was a majority for ‘leave’ only among over-50s, and a large majority only among over 65s - people who are now of course well into their 70s, 80s and 90s. A lot of them soon won’t be in a position to admit or regret anything!
The slight counter to that being that significant labour support in 1997 amongst the 20-40 year-olds did *not* translate to significant labour support among the 40-60 year olds in 2019. Possibly this is because there is a tendency for political views to shift rightward as we age.
I don’t think Labour will win the next election - the Tories might lose but that is something different entirely (and the cause of much of the political malaise in the UK).