Three card trick. 🙂

Rishi announces that the public sector can give themselves self funded pay increases. What a devious creep.

I encouraged the junior doctor (Freddy) to bale out last Saturday and I sent this photo to my daughter in Oz…


IMO the teachers unions (possibly :roll_eyes: behind closed doors) have stuffed their public sector colleagues. Schools being closed is a significant leverage which has now been removed.

Yes, but divide and rule isn’t going to work.

There are far more Tory voters concerned about NHS access than there are young Tory voters worried about state schools.


Thing is Mark you only realise the NHS is in trouble when you need it. When you can’t drop the kids off at school and head into work it brings the message home immediately.

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The thing is, like petrol price rises, increased cost in public sector really feeds inflation because it’s a huge part of the economy. (Petrol price feeds into so many other costs eg in industry so it’s slightly different but if you want to knacker your economy, just give an unfunded cross-public service pay rise).

The real elephant in the room is stopping the largely still unfunded Defined Benefit pensions in the public sector which everyone has to fund but which have 90% disappeared from the private sector 20 years or more ago due to lack of affordability. He should be looking for a quid pro quo on that here.

Many in the private sector aren’t getting even 6 or 7% either.

Yes, I’m normally very hot on keeping the public sector wage bill under control and the DB pension is an enormous benefit (and cost) that has to be taken into account. My problem is that the Tories and their austerity fetish have driven public sector pay into the ground over the last thirteen years, so they stored up this problem for themselves. Furthermore they, through Brxit and other daft policies, have ended up with the most persistent inflation around. Normally in such circumstances I’d be all for wage constraint, but given how we got here and who’s responsible I think it’s every man, woman and child for themselves until the Tories are chucked out. It’s like lancing a boil, the more strikes and more disruption the better IMO.

And then what, Starmer isn’t going to deviate much from the path the Tories have taken so the pay disputes will continue.

Average wage growth in the UK is running at 7%+ which will keep inflation high, compare that to the US where it’s just over 3% and inflation is close to being under control again. I’ve no doubt that Brexit and the war in Ukraine is having an effect but continual pay demands close to the inflation rate will ensure that the UK suffers far longer than other major economies.

It won’t though.

Inflation in the UK is due to external pressures and the idiots at the bank of England who think that increasing interest rates will get it back down - when all it will do is increase poverty.


If you’re in a burning house Tim the priority should be getting out, not planning the rebuild. Because all the ministers are third rate dross with no vision, no plan, no integrity and no credibility everything they touch becomes a disaster. To be honest, I’ve little confidence in Starmer and most of his front bench, but a purge of the current crowd is an imperative. At least Labour might provide a kinder, more caring form of incompetence :slightly_smiling_face:

You’ve picked an “interesting” time to return to the fold. It’ll be interesting to read your reports from “our own correspondent”.

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The initial drivers for inflation in the UK were supply chain issues and material shortages caused by the pandemic. This drove up prices due to shortages. Brexit just made it much worse because of the shortages of labour in the UK and lowered productivity. After the supply chain shortages eased, prices were kept artificially high and generated excess profits for industry. This caused inflation to be kept artificially high. Wage growth is certainly a component driving inflation, but it is by no means the biggest and has a much smaller effect than you may think.


The collapse in the UK Pound is a core cause. It collapsed because the worldwide money markets perceived fiscal incompetence of the government and poorer future prospects for the UK.

Raising interest rates is one of the few tools available for the UK gov to try to uphold the £’s value or slow its decline but this may not always succeed, and it has devastating consequences through the economy.

It’s not just supply chain issues and labour shortage.

I don’t think wage growth is driving inflation at all just now - it is lagging behind and driven by increased prices much more than the other way around. Indeed it’s questionable how much wage growth ever  drove inflation.

Thatcher indoctrinated everyone to believe that high wages fuelled inflation and that a government’s finances work like domestic finances. Neither is true.


Drawing on my fifty-odd year old ‘A’ level Economics I tend to think of the relationship between inflation and wage growth as a reciprocal one, rather than one ‘driving’ the other.

Also why does everyone in the UK now use ‘wages’ when today virtually everyone is salaried?

And do well meaning people in the UK still refer to ‘the unwaged’

Questions, questions… but unfortunately


Middle English: from Anglo-Norman French and Old Northern French, of Germanic origin; related to “gage” and “wed”.
Oxford Dictionary

Comes from old Germanic via Old (Normans!) French.

The origins of so many English words come from both our history of invasion and, um, voyage. Quite plastic, even still.

It seems you know very little of being paid a wage :wink:

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Normally that would be true, but in post brexit Britain this lever is much weaker than it has been previously and so is pretty ineffective.

A salary indicates a fixed amount for a working period, a wage is usually based on an hourly rate. I’d say millions are still paid a wage in the UK.


Considering the number of people who work on minimum wage, I’d say the majority of working people are waged rather than salaried.

Mark’s comment seems to come from a position of privilege. As you say, the “minimum wage”, calculated on an hourly basis, is the reality for millions of workers in the UK and in France who would be paid even less could their employers get away with it.
Izzy x


A bit rude!

‘Wages’ refers to payments on a daily or hourly rate, which connotes more ‘blue collar’.

The word is widely used in UK but less in other English speaking countries, where ‘salary’, in English from Latin via old French, based on an annual amount paid monthly, is used in preference for ‘white collar’ jobs.

There is no call for reverse snobbery in a discussion of philology.