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    As Ken Livingstone once said of democracy changed anything they would abolish it. That never used to apply in the UK of course - but our politicians seem to have done an excellent job of not delivering what they promise in the last 20 years. Brexit in name only being a prime example. As for Putin he would win anyway - most Russians hated Gorbachev as he was seen as weak. Russia has never been much of a democracy anyway,The vote rigging just increases his win. And who are the parties who come second and third - the Communists and Fascist Liberal Democratic Party.
  2. New Zealand bans foreign buyers

    I was merely quoting the poll. I agree few Canadians will want to leave Canada to live and work or retire in the UK or indeed NZ or Australia - but they might of course say they would like to have the right to when asked.
  3. The help to eat scheme perhaps?. You get an interest free loan for five years to buy food - and then you get hit with the costs with interest.
  4. New Zealand bans foreign buyers

    CANZUK commissioned a poll on attitudes to freedom of movement between the four nations. 80 per cent of Kiwis polled, 75 per cent of Canadians and 72 per cent of Aussies supported the idea but only 56 per cent of Brits. The people with most to gain - on the tiny crowded island with more residents than the other 3 combined - wanted it least! Given there is already FOM between Australia and New Zealand I presume the attraction for two of the three was the right to settle and work in the UK? We of course effectively had all this prior to joining the Common Market - and then we abandoned it to get the right to move to Romania and Slovakia!
  5. The vast majority of the seats are sideways facing - probably 80 per cent plus with only a few scattered ones facing forwards or backwards. So as well as having little or no cushioning in the seat your back also faces the outer steel of the train. This makes the lack of cushioning worse. Even at Liverpool Street it's hard to get a seat if you arrive just before departure even on off peak services - there was no problem getting a seat on the old TfL rail/Greater Anglia train where the vast majority of seats face forwards or backwards and have good cushioning. i purposefully avoid the new trains - the old ones are quieter and more comfortable because you have segregated carriages. They are by far and away the noisiest trains and most uncomfortable train seats I have sat on. Not bad for £14 billion!
  6. Crossrail is a bit overrated IMHO. The new trains have a few issues - I have used them on the TfL line. Possibly the most uncomfortable seats ever with no cushioning - like sitting on a plank of wood. You would probably need to see an osteopath if you travelled all the way from Shenfield to Reading. There are also far fewer seats than the existing TfL rail trains - the services will be standing room only after a couple of years. The beep beep noise when the doors open is deafening. At Liverpool Street they don't keep the doors open so every 15 seconds the doors open to a 5 second loud beep and then close after 15 seconds with another beep beep. If you have a migraine - avoid! If you travel on the TfL rail line journey times will be longer as you have an extra stop at Whitechapel. The passenger experience pernaps wasn't the top priority.
  7. £650k and you don't even get a parking space! In zone 6 too. Why are we subsidising anyone to buy £600k properties with taxpayer funds? Since the Tories introduced the 40 per cent scheme in London their vote has collapsed. People just want a decent home to live in with security of tenure - not a life time of debt slavery. i wouldn't be surprised as well if the 40 per cent scheme isn't extended to the rest of England. It will probably have to reach 80 per cent if they are to sustain the bubble of ever rising prices. Of course they are often in blocs with affordable social rent housing - so many of your neighbours won't work and will get to live there for free! Enjoy!

    5 Star were an anti EU party and wanted a referendum to ditch the euro - but that is no longer their policy. They are populist and into direct democracy - but their ideology is quite fluid. In the European parliament they have tried to ally with the Greens/SNP and Lib Dems - but currently sit with UKIP. Lega - the largest party in the centre right grouping (along with Berlusconi's Forza Italia) which won most seats is anti immigration but does not support leaving the EU or Euro either. The vote was as much about austerity, mass youth unemployment and immigration as about the EU - although the EU may have contributed towards these outcomes.
  9. Where is the ensuite and fitted wardrobe? I expect it will be gone by Monday - sold subject to melting.
  10. Lidl supermarket destroyed 'by looters' after snow storm

    By the looks of the videos most of them werent exactly Dublin born and bred Irish.
  11. Help to buy getting more funds

    As anyone can observe the headline is misleading. The money isn't going to the homebuyers - it is going to boost the profits, the bonuses and the dividends of the major housebuilders. The CEO of Persimmon has got a £75m bonus this year - it was cut from £110m following an outcry. Why this isn't seen as a major public scandal is beyond me. If you provide a 40% interest free loan to buy a product backed by the government - well the product providers are going to put their prices up 40% and make bigger profits and have higher bonuses for bosses. Its plain obvious.
  12. This is an odd story in many ways. Neither the councils nor the park authority have the power to introduce higher multiples on council tax on second homes. This would need primary legislation and an act of parliament. It would therefore need the agreement of the Government and the power would need to be made available to every council in England. All that was being done was agreeing to ask the Government to grant the power - and the Govt would have said no. Councils can offer discounts on second homes - of up to 50% - but not apply premiums. The only premiums allowed are on empty homes which are unfurnished and have been empty for at least two years.
  13. Luckily its late in the winter - so we are hardly going to get a 3 month freeze 1962-63 style. Two weeks of arctic weather with significant risk of snow next week - well it is February!
  14. New Zealand bans foreign buyers

    This change is of course only being introduced because New Zealand First - the NZ equivalent of UKIP whose leader Winston Peters is as charismatic as Farage - are in coalition with Labour. They are a historically anti immigration party. In terms of residency this means people who have been granted permanent residency on skills or investor or other visas. They aren't citizens - yet - but have the right to reside permanently. They get voting rights so why would they be stopped from buying homes. The problem of course is mainly an Auckland, Christchurch and Wellington problem. Housing is more affordable in remoter parts – although still crazy. I don't see this happening in the UK - because there are too many vested interests in the London prime market to stop it. Who on earth would otherwise buy those £750,000 new build flats in Elephant and Castle. Harlesden and Bow? Only overseas investors that have never visited the areas.
  15. Nice. Until of course it's your elderly mum or grandad that needs adult social care....