Good news, bad news, and more of the same

 

            First, the good news. The Chancellor, published in the Telegraph this morning, states he will now produce an autumn policy to promote growth. This needs to include many of the ideas we have been discussing on this site to free the UK  economy to perform better.

           Next the bad news. Looting and rioting in London is bad for jobs, business and investment. You can make a poor area poorer by criminal behaviour.

          Last night the ECB came up with more of the same. If markets persist in thinking Italy and Spain are borrowing too much, the ECB is going to have to  buy a lot of bonds. They are being driven towards the QE route, as the ECB already has a strained balance sheet. The bond buying decision is helpful, but does not solve the problems. The Ministers need to meet and to answer the list of questions posted here on Sunday.

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47 Comments

  1. lojolondon
    Posted August 8, 2011 at 8:01 am | Permalink

    1. Hooray for the Chancellor!

    2. I have no sympathy with the government over the looting, rioting, etc. because it is one of the easiest things to deal with. More rights for the policemen, less for the hooded animals who are rioting. STIFF sentences, no early release. Deportation if you were not born in England. Simples. Truth is – government is too weak to implement such measures.

    • Mike Stallard
      Posted August 8, 2011 at 6:26 pm | Permalink

      I totally agree with this statement. London used to be safe and a real model of the rule of law.
      Thanks to years of nodding at ridiculous immigration and pretending, we are now faced with a capital where rioting, looting and fire are as bad as anywhere in the world.
      (words left out-ed)

    • outsider
      Posted August 8, 2011 at 6:35 pm | Permalink

      1)Hooray for the Chancellor? Mr Osborne writes that the crisis “provides the opportunity to make difficult trade-offs” that are normally “too difficult”. Does this mean getting rid of some pretentious liberal/bureaucratic nonsense or does it mean that anyone who cares about anything worthwhile will be overridden in the interest of well-connected lobbies? Let’s see.

      2) Yes, there should be a deterrent sentence for anyone who is actually caught and found guilty. But why are they rioting and looting? In the 1890s, my great grandfather had a shop in London’s Oxford Street (demolished to build Selfridges) and had to put up with periodic riots and looting from the old East End. It was a combination of the unemployed underclass and “revolutionaries”. Plus ca change…

      We then took action on many fronts – education, social security,police crackdowns, slum clearance etc. Social mobility is vital but not enough. This is a reminder that we cannot afford to have an underclass, whatever its members’ colour, race or religion. Nothing I hear suggests that our politicians have the faintest idea what to do, except to hope that occasional summer outbursts will go away.

  2. lifelogic
    Posted August 8, 2011 at 8:07 am | Permalink

    A growth policy should start with getting rid of redundancy payments above one month, most employment laws, reducing the 50% rate to 40% (at least), putting the IHT (£1M limit?) promise made in place, reducing CGT and IHT rates and getting banks to lend rather than claw again, and getting rid of the nonsense “green” energy policy.

    Perhaps he should resign too – for having wasted well over a year and probably lost the next election as a result. Doubtless it with be tinkering with the liquor chocolate licence rules or similar.

    He could, at least, even now stop the banks (government owned RBS and Lloydstsb) from clawing money back from businesses that need it to invest and from hugely over charging too. Perhaps get them to lend a little again too to productive industry for once.

    The rioting is doubtless caused by Labours policy of generation after generation of benefit payments and vote buying of the feckless – paid for by taxing the not feckless and productive. Encouraging a benefit dependent underclass with little to loose well done Blair and Brown.

    ECB still idiotically kicking the can down the road a few yards at a time – and to no good effect I see. Just how stupid are they?

    • lifelogic
      Posted August 8, 2011 at 3:05 pm | Permalink

      Perhaps Osbourne and this socialist big state government should make it a summer statement and make it now before (as reported today) Barclays and perhaps HSBC both decide to move HQ’s from 50%+ base London.

      As a stakeholder I certainly would encourage them both to move to give best shareholder value and lower their employment and property costs.

    • Yonks
      Posted August 8, 2011 at 5:18 pm | Permalink

      Are you really sure you don’t want to re-introduce ‘climbing boys’ too? Or perhaps it would be easier to simply stop all social payments and deport all recent, in the last 300 years, immigrants.

      • lifelogic
        Posted August 8, 2011 at 5:51 pm | Permalink

        No just sensible encouragement from the tax and social system to get a job and have stable, responsible, self sufficient households, where ever practical.

        As opposed to the direct opposite position as currently pertains.

        • Bazman
          Posted August 8, 2011 at 9:11 pm | Permalink

          That assumes there are jobs to be got. Making desperate people more desperate by making them work for food money is not an option. The Immigrants are more young and more desperate than the native population your ideas to make them as desperate are completely flawed and unacceptable.
          It has been consistently pointed out by me to you how low legal minimum redundancy payments are, with a link to the governments own website calculator showing these payments. Yet you still choose to push these myths and lies about how the high costs and difficulty of hiring and firing people which can already be done pretty much at will.

          • lifelogic
            Posted August 9, 2011 at 10:07 am | Permalink

            Jobs are not available they are made through hard work and ingenuity. This is subverted by over large parasitic government and payments not to work. People need to start somewhere and learn on the job. Paying them to do nothing helps no one.

            If you think hire and fire is at will in the UK is easy you are wrong.

      • Mike Stallard
        Posted August 8, 2011 at 6:23 pm | Permalink

        Too clever by half.
        We really do face a serious choice.
        Either we go on paying out to everyone who wants a freebie or else we cut back on everyone. This is going to lead to a lot of hardship, serious professional lobbying and publicity with a lot of bleeding stumps and special cases and the Labour party offering to pay up.
        If they get their way, then you,I and everyone else in the country of whatever creed, colour and whatever will be bankrupted. Do you really want that?

        You see, governments, like dinosaurs, are incapable of dealing with individual cases, so they have to act by vast inhuman rules.

  3. Antisthenes
    Posted August 8, 2011 at 8:15 am | Permalink

    Italy and Spain’s bonds are in the short term going to rise in value. So if you are holding any now is a good time to cut your loses and dump them on the ECB before the ECB electronic money printing press runs out of it’s virtual ink. Come to think about it the Western Nations economies are now more virtual than real. Soon it will be only virtual bread that will be available in the shops and virtual petrol at the pumps.

    • Denis Cooper
      Posted August 8, 2011 at 9:00 am | Permalink

      Can the ECB run out of virtual ink?

      It seems to me that the ECB is constrained by the EU treaties, but those constraints can be disregarded without any comeback, and a long way beyond that it could be constrained by the market reaction to its balance sheet – but then there are those who claim that with correct accounting it would be found that the ECB is already bust, yet it carries on.

    • javelin
      Posted August 8, 2011 at 3:36 pm | Permalink

      The current strategy is for the ECB to keep supporting (buying) Italian and Spanish bonds until their price comes to a level that institutional investors. So what happens when the Stablity Fund runs out of its Eu500bn. I think the politicians will go back to the Germans and French and say “oh just another few hundred billion.” – then when that fails “oh just another few hundred billion.” and so on.

      The Germans and the French will just keep getting fleeced for “just another few hundred billion” by the ECB until they have either bought the PIGS debts, or they think “what the heck we’ve spent this much lets just pay the debt off”, or an election ends the spend-fest prematurely. Every time the PIGS will make a few more concessions to the ECB (and not the Germans or French). The Germans and French will wake up wondering their trillion Euros went. The PIGS will just carry on spending.

    • outsider
      Posted August 8, 2011 at 6:57 pm | Permalink

      There is a lot of myopia/Emperors new clothes illusion about bond yields. Why is Italy’s 5.5 per cent (or the previous 6.2 per cent) unreasonable and unsustainable? From 2000 to the 2008 crash, UK 10 year government bond yields averaged 5 per cent when inflation was mostly below target.

      Today, UK 10 year bonds yield 2.7 per cent while inflation is 4.2 per cent. Is that sustainable? US Treasury bonds yield 2.5 per cent while inflation is 3.5 per cent. Is that sustainable? German bonds yield 2.4 per cent while eurozone inflation is 2.5 per cent. Is that sustainable? Are these bond rates sustainable even if inflation returns to 2 per cent in a couple of years time?

      These rates only make sense if the world is headed for deflation. Yet the global economy is being driven by China, where consumer price inflation is running at 6.5 per cent.

      The speculative attacks on weak countries are just preliminary skirmishes. In a world of high and rising developed world debt, it is not obvious why lenders should provide money to governments at a loss, as the Chinese administration has belatedly but crucially noticed.

  4. Brian Tomkinson
    Posted August 8, 2011 at 8:37 am | Permalink

    We have politicians who are more interested in their own political calculations than sorting out the problem. They keep failing to grasp the nettle. Brown claimed that he had saved the world after Lehman in 2008 but he merely transferred the problem and planted the seeds of the current financial crisis.

  5. javelin
    Posted August 8, 2011 at 8:59 am | Permalink

    Just back from St Tropes (well St Maxime) managed to post on this site but had a lot of quality thinking time.

    One thing I’ve realised is that 20th century economics have failed. Moneterism has failed – interest rates are close to zero. Fiscal Stimulus has failed – the Government has no more money. Keynes and Greenspan have both been proven magicians – when we need engineers.

    The only way now is to compete on the global economy – and that means economic realism. It means leaving the expensive EU pipe dreams, it means tax cuts (and rises) targeted at growth. It means realistic interest rates and realistic house prices. It means tougher education and work. It means less red tape. More jobs for UK natives. It means ditiching human rights laws and replacing them with laws that advocate more responsibility.

    Its time to stop pretending accountants can fix the economy and time to start making the real economy work.

    • Robert
      Posted August 8, 2011 at 10:18 am | Permalink

      Totally agree, though some people have been advocating this for a decade or two at least – all they got were smiles and a patronising ‘yes dear’!

    • MickC
      Posted August 8, 2011 at 12:07 pm | Permalink

      Yes, that’s what is needed-but won’t happen.

    • lifelogic
      Posted August 8, 2011 at 3:34 pm | Permalink

      Nothing wrong with accountants (I am not one) far more useful and cheaper than often self serving Lawyers. Good ones could, for example, very quickly show, Huhne what an absurd investment PV panels and wind farms are or HS2 and most other government “investments” are.

      Mind you many others could given an envelope, a pencil and ten minutes to think it through.

      Just a shame none seem to be in the Cabinet.

      Honest accountants and solid engineers are perhaps what is needed most in the UK.

      Just a shame none seem to be in the Cabinet.

  6. Anne Palmer
    Posted August 8, 2011 at 9:24 am | Permalink

    What punishment will the rioters have? When they have set people’s homes on fire, a life-time of hopes and dreams and all past memories gone-in flames? Those that set alight those homes should be made to set alight their own homes-with everything they possess still in them. I grieve for what this Country has come to today and I grieve for all those that gave their lives fighting for its freedom in two World Wars.

    I’m sorry John, but we do not even have a Government that can actually govern without looking over their shoulder to make sure any punishment is not contrary to the person guilty of such wickedness, is against their ‘unman rights.

    • Mike Stallard
      Posted August 8, 2011 at 6:19 pm | Permalink

      I am very angry too.

  7. Martin
    Posted August 8, 2011 at 9:30 am | Permalink

    If the present government wants to really help the country then please implement Ms Vorderman’s report on Maths teaching.

    • lifelogic
      Posted August 8, 2011 at 3:49 pm | Permalink

      I tend to agree maths is really the key to all things (though I understand she did only get a third and in Engineering). The only things I used much from my Physics/Maths/Engineering education was:

      Probability, Compound Interest (and the effect of tax on it), game theory, trial and error (or Darwinian evolution), logic and a bit of common sense, chaos theory, a healthy scepticism of everyone – especially experts (and climate change ones in particular ) a distrust of any appeals to basic emotions (like poor polar bears on ice rafts). It did not do me too badly, though perhaps I should just have written a Harry Potter Novel or two.

    • Bob
      Posted August 8, 2011 at 5:45 pm | Permalink

      Exam Question.
      If you trashed Tottenham on Saturday, Enfield on Sunday and Hackney on Monday, then how many town centres have you trashed in total?
      (You may use your calculator or the new iphone you somehow acquired over the weekend).

      • forthurst
        Posted August 8, 2011 at 8:52 pm | Permalink

        None, because the centre of London is in the suburbs, furthermore, what you are seeing are no more than rehearsals for the new Olympic events of: brick-a-bobby, torch-a-tescos, and the new triathalon of drive-by-shooting, 50 yards dash and stab, and the interview on Newsnight explaining ‘like disaffection, innit?’

      • Martin
        Posted August 8, 2011 at 8:53 pm | Permalink

        Being green and or old fashioned can I use a slide rule please?

  8. Caterpillar
    Posted August 8, 2011 at 10:28 am | Permalink

    1. On crime and punishment: perhaps sentencing should take necssity into consideration. It may be necessary to steal a loaf of bread, nappies or whatever essential; it cannot be necessary to steal a 52″ TV or to let one’s dog defecate on the street. If there is no plausible reason, i.e. the criminal could have just not carried out the crime then …
    2. On UK recovery: we never allowed the dip to clear out businesses and mortgagees that were only marginal in the cheap money boom. The ZIRP has been protecting these whilst preventing appropriate reallocation of capital to allow growth to recover. The UK needs an increase in rates to allow the reallocation to occur. Politicians/MPC artificially stimulating out of the first dip, and not wanting to be associated with a second is fight against the reallocation that the micro economy is continuing to signal. Continue with this view of macro managing and we will see it all again in hte future.
    3. I would hypothesise that racing to the bottom with exchange rates has already damaged the international perception of high end British brands. A basic error by the BoE/MPC.

  9. zorro
    Posted August 8, 2011 at 10:46 am | Permalink

    Good to see that David Blair has his priorities right. Photo opportunities with an Italian waitress who he didn’t tip initially and then cones with his daughter to tip later. Tells you all you need to know about him…..I am gradually losing any respect I ever had for him.

    A real summer of discontent may be brewing…(Notting Hill later this month)….economic problems and I suspect that the rioting classes may sense some weakness. They may be right with wavy Davy.

    I also see that he never had any intention of granting any referendum whatsoever. Apparently, we voted to join an authoritarian EU superstate 36 years ago…..they just left out a few details.

    Zorro

  10. Ross J Warren
    Posted August 8, 2011 at 12:45 pm | Permalink

    “The Ministers need to meet and to answer the list of questions posted here on Sunday.”

    Indeed they do, and I would hope that it will be sooner rather than later. We also need a full meeting of the G20, and quick. I agree that the ECB isn’t solving the problem, although the markets seem a little calmer right now, but how often have we seen that?The Clever money will see an opportunity to make a fast buck, then get out. It may not quite be a dead cat bounce, but it along the same lines.

    There really is only three solutions. Either Full fiscal union effectively turning PIIGS debt into an internal transfer, a break up of the Euro into two or more Zones, or expelling some of the Nations from the Euro, and reestablishing one or more of the pre-Euro currencies.

    The First solution will be the most difficult to sort out, given the time constraints of a jittery market. The 2nd is in my opinion the most likely, with a southern Euro quickly being allowed to devalue easing some of the problems. The third would be the most difficult for the Euro-zone nations, as it would be an admission of defeat.

    Of course had there been full fiscal union in the first place, this would not have happened.

  11. zorro
    Posted August 8, 2011 at 1:10 pm | Permalink

    http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/politics/georgeosborne/8688080/George-Osborne-warns-Europe-pull-together-or-face-ruin.html

    Good God, Mr Osborne must have been reading your blog whilst on his holidays……almost word for word……

    Zorro

  12. javelin
    Posted August 8, 2011 at 1:35 pm | Permalink

    So … is the Euro going to move forward or backward?

    Well the only way forward is to impose Eurowide, bonds, budgets and fiscal control in the next few months. And that ain’t gonna happen because there is not a democratic mandate and there wont be. I know you have been calling for closer integration John … but it’s not going to happen.

    Looking at the Bloomberg screens in front of me I think it will dawning on even the most Machivellian EU politician their plans to seduce Germany by fear into a fiscal union is now dead. It is time to run to the hills. What’s coming is going to be far worse than Lehmans – but comic never the less.

    Surely we will be seeing defaults across Europe before the end of the year – the question is when not if. Following your excellent post last month John – I now think the citizens of Europe will very rapidly become familliar with the national icons on their own coins and those of other countries.

    I think we are going to enter a 6 month Python-esque period when everybody in Europe will be checking their Euro coins in the shops, until the new notes are printed. Banks and shops in Northern European countries will display laminated posters indicating which coins they accept. Of course in Southern Europe they will accept Northern European coins and notes – if you are stupid enough to pay by D-Marks why not. But I believe a law will need to be passed because at the moment it’s illegal to refuse Euros from another Eu country.

    German children will be crying when they break their piggy banks open and realise they have worthless Euro Drachmas. FX trading systems will fail to work overnight – rates will have to be fixed. It will be euro-chaos, but we will all be here doing business in 6 months time.

    • sm
      Posted August 8, 2011 at 4:45 pm | Permalink

      Who is responsible for the ECB and its actions?
      What would the UK stand to lose if the ECB needs more money from its founders? Can we say no thankyou?
      and would that be wise?

      Reply: The UK is a small shareholder as a non Euro member. I would suggest the UK declines to put any more capital into the Bank. I have put this point strongly in the past, when reminding Ministers that the ECB now has a very stretched balance sheet by private sector standards. All the time the “sovereigns” stand behind the ECB, of course, it does not matter how stretched the balance sheet is. It can always print some more.

    • forthurst
      Posted August 8, 2011 at 8:33 pm | Permalink

      “I know you have been calling for closer integration John … but it’s not going to happen.”

      I think JR has been playing Devil’s advocate.

      (ed: please delete duplicate of this post at the end)

  13. Bernard Otway
    Posted August 8, 2011 at 3:13 pm | Permalink

    Debt is government Alcoholism,until that fact is grasped NOTHING they do will stop Armageddon financially,and I mean nothing.Money will go to safe havens like the lions follow the Wildebeast on the Masai Mara,and the crocodiles wait in the river for the stragglers.While these fools of politicians think they can stop tectonic plates from moving
    we are all doomed to have to start again,BUT it will have to be constitutionally GUARANTEED that no government can spend more than it raises in taxes,therefore fools errands like asylum seekers in houses costing more than £100,00 a year or Aid anywhere while we cannot afford it,or education being a political tool for social engineering rather than to prepare the next generation adequately for life,all these and many many more are FORBIDDEN,maths is 2+2=4,2×2=4,2-2=0,2+2=1,%’s are easy,english is easy,teach common sense,teach Geography especially show why earthquakes happen,volcanoes grow
    and explode, tidalwaves happen ,What rivers mean and do,HOW weather happenns and Why. as another poster said SIMPLES.John if I was you I would divorce your fellow party
    members barring a few just like I did my first two wives,luckily for me 3rd time lucky 27 years ago.

    • nemesis
      Posted August 8, 2011 at 9:49 pm | Permalink

      And like alcoholism the alchoholic has to hit rock bottom before he sees the error of his ways and start on the road to a full recovery.
      I think that the fiscal situation will get a whole lot worse before we can clear out the dead wood and start again.

  14. English Pensioner
    Posted August 8, 2011 at 3:20 pm | Permalink

    You didn’t mention the worst news.
    According to the Daily Mail, the Prime Minister has decided that there is no way we will have a vote on the EU, because we had our say 36 years ago.
    So now we know! Because our Brussels bureaucrats have done ‘useful work’ on climate change and global poverty, we must stay in.
    I’d prefer to know what they’ve done for this country.

  15. Matt
    Posted August 8, 2011 at 3:48 pm | Permalink

    The Euro zone leaders aren’t giving the impression that they have a workable plan.

    The market seems to endorse this view.
    Buying Euro bonds to reduce the rates borrowed in the “delinquent” countries can’t be a long term solution.

    If the leaders do pull together a plan, will the voters of France and Germany go with it?

  16. Winston Smith
    Posted August 8, 2011 at 4:32 pm | Permalink

    Last night I was kept awake by sirens and helicopters. The looting and rioting over the weekend (troubles and protests according to the BBC) deserves some attention. The stories I am hearing today from colleagues and the non-MSM are very worrying. Many parts of London, last night, experienced a show of strength from youths involved in criminality. A lot more went on than is being reported. There was widespread looting and violence directed at the Police and authority. The images of burning buildings and unchallenged looting were reminiscent of Hurricane Katrina. Yet this was no natural disaster.

    I see and hear very few voices of reason in the media. Instead, its wall to wall left-wing drivel. Its not just the BBC, I’ve watched unchallenged State academics and youth workers blaming the cuts, the economy, the Police – everyone bar the looters themselves – on Sky News. They even call it an “uprising”. The only pragmatic voices are those of the public on talk radio shows, but they have no power, they are just dismissed by the chattering classes and political/media elite.

    People act like this when they sense weakness. They know the prisons are full, they know sentencing is weak and prison is no hardship, they know the conviction rate is one of the worst in Europe, they know they can hide within their ‘community’ and they know they can behave with impunity because the likely hood of getting caught is slim. This Country is seriously losing control, the Socialists have won. The future is bleak.

    • Mike Stallard
      Posted August 8, 2011 at 6:17 pm | Permalink

      I couldn’t agree more. Well said!

  17. Yonks
    Posted August 8, 2011 at 5:23 pm | Permalink

    Just remind me again, exactly how much are we in ‘hock’ to the ECB?

  18. forthurst
    Posted August 8, 2011 at 5:59 pm | Permalink

    Sharia law enforcement areas and rioting and looting on our streets are both entirely predictable consequence of the globalists’ agenda of mixing the racial pot to create a miscegenated lumpen proletariat throughout Europe for rule under their intended one world government. Some matters are not of political opinion, but of patriotism versus treason. It is very disappointing that the (unflattering description ofprevious government-ed) that ruled this country for 13 years having secretly imported the ammunition for this public disorder are still able to plot further instalments of the same in the future.

    It is entirely predicatable that while the USA has received a well deserved downgade for its bonds issued to pay for the fiat currency issued by the FED private secret bank, that the globalists infesting Europe are equally intent on weakening the only other strong major fiat currency in the world in order not to have to backtrack on their progress towards a EUSSR. As a consequence, there is a real possibility that a total breakdown of belief in ‘paper’ might occur with very grave consequences for the global economy and those with savings in ‘paper’ money.

  19. Mike Stallard
    Posted August 8, 2011 at 6:15 pm | Permalink

    If you go to Leeds, you will find exactly the same thing – a lovely area of old stone Victorian houses with porches and bay windows burned out too. Guess what? (sentence left out-ed)
    Personally I hope that London will remain in exactly the same state for several years.
    Last time, they got a free swimming pool.
    Oh – and I do hope Mr Kenneth I love you all Livingstone goes to live in left wing Harringey as the riots spread all over the capital of our once proud nation.

  20. RB
    Posted August 8, 2011 at 7:19 pm | Permalink

    The number of “Disgusted from Tunbridge Wells” comments I have read over the last few days about the rioting are nauseating. All from people who decry big government, EU illegality in bail outs and now the ECB buying up Italian and Spanish debt, the police state, interventionist government. In short, those who support small government, personal responsibility, personal decision making, personal autonomy. And so when a section of society says, for whatever reason, that enough is enough, they rise and say it in the only way that matters now. Letters to their MP? Petitions to government? Left believing what the corrupt Met Police tell them? The IPCC? A government inquiry? You must be joking. Whatever you may all blog about “feral” this or that – people are not idiots and they have seen enough over the last ten years from those that rule them to see that they have no voice – none of us do unless we are a government supported quango or a privately funded corporate lobby group.

    And yet the line is drawn by all of you when some who have had little control or input over the situation they are in (mmm reminds me of all those posts about the EU) decide to do what they have always done to survive – take matters into their own hands.

    They live in a world created for them by others – liberal left of centre politicos over the last 30 years. They have much less opportunity, I imagine, than commentators here. They are responsible for their own actions, but please do not go all Pontious Pilate on them when we all sat back whilst the “elite” created the welfare traps and appalling state education system that let many of these people down.

    And yet all I read is how you are all “disgusted” at what our country has become. Who made it like this – them? Stop sitting in your slippers moaning how the world was better in years gone by, hiding behind a cup of tea and a sniffily superior outlook. You could have made a difference 20 odd years ago, but you didn’t.

    Tories throughout the nineties and early 2000s nodded through almost all of the spending, statist, big government, welfare dependency creating policies of Labour. Our politicians are responsible for the situation we are all in today.

    I have no political affiliation – (and I do not comment on the reasons or cause of these riots at present) – but what I do know is that this shows what I have always taught my children. Power rests with the people and they can take it anytime they choose. The big government that ignores your reasonable concerns about issues from wars to illegal EU baillouts to whatever is powerless when you take matters into your hands. Good.

    By the way many of those present at Tottenham were not “feral” youths – but people in their 30s and 40s, many of them white – on the Sky News video you can even see a group of about ten variously aged orthodox jews running from the police.

    Yes there will always be criminal elements who take advantage of this – but the ludicrous BBC and Theresa May narrative that this is just a few self interested criminals is utter rubbish. If you fall for it then more fool you. Thersa May now pops up from her bunker wagging her tax funded finger to tell us that all will pay the price for their criminality. Shame we don’t have anyone to do the same for the corrupt EU illegaly stealing money from all of us and our children – and yet you all decry the theft of a few trainers and trollies full of lager. Pathetic.

    • Richard
      Posted August 8, 2011 at 9:47 pm | Permalink

      You might be right but I dont see many honourable Fidels and Che. types trying to make a change in society or their voices heard when Im looking at my TV.
      What I see are youths dragging plasma TV’s and boxes of trainers off back home having smashed their way in to someones business premises.
      I think you give them more depth of thought and motivation than they deserve.

      • RB
        Posted August 9, 2011 at 1:17 am | Permalink

        Hi Richard,

        Maybe so.

        Maybe they are there, spreading to Birmingham and Liverpool now, becuase they are the ones with least to lose. Maybe they are doing what we will all be doing soon. Who knows.

        And many thanks Mr Redwood for publishing my comment at all. I doubt that it would have got through on so many blogs. I have always thought (even thougjh I may not always have agreed with you, although I almost always do) that you are a true democrat. You have always stated your case – you have never shied away from challenges or discussions and you have been true to yourself and your ability for independent thought as one must expect and indeed require from a well educated MP representing actual real people – you are one of the few that we can admire and respect in public life.

  21. REPay
    Posted August 8, 2011 at 7:39 pm | Permalink

    The fiction is that the Euro area is not a transfer union. When you have one currency you are de facto a transfer union! Have the politicians (particualrly Sarkozy and Merkel) not understood yet? If they have they need to level with the voters what the euro is.

  22. uanime5
    Posted August 9, 2011 at 1:08 am | Permalink

    In my opinion to make the UK better we need to do the following.

    1) Introduce laws that prohibit any wage difference between the highest and lowest paid in a company if greater than 20:1. So if the lowest paid employee earns £11,000 per year the highest annual salary allowed will be £220,000. Wage includes base salary, bonus, and perks but not expenses. This law will only apply to those employed in the UK and not employees working for this company in other countries.

    2) Set up a bank to provide loans to small businesses. If the large banks won’t lend the Government must step in and fill the gap.

    3) Introduce the Single Transferable Vote for Parliamentary elections. Under First Past the Post many people feel that their vote doesn’t count, which cause them to lose faith in the electoral system. When people feel that there is no democracy they don’t use diplomacy, they use violence.

  • About John Redwood


    John Redwood won a free place at Kent College, Canterbury, and graduated from Magdalen College Oxford. He is a Distinguished fellow of All Souls, Oxford. A businessman by background, he has set up an investment management business, was both executive and non executive chairman of a quoted industrial PLC, and chaired a manufacturing company with factories in Birmingham, Chicago, India and China. He is the MP for Wokingham, first elected in 1987.

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