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Paul Mason's Report On Newsnight


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#1 Ash4781

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Posted 30 March 2010 - 08:25 AM

Did anyone else watch Paul Mason's report on Newsnight last night?
http://www.bbc.co.uk...itain_part.html
www.bbc.co.uk/iplayer/newsnight/

"All items of value have been removed," reads the sign on the boarded-up Flag and Whistle pub, the first thing you see when you leave Margate railway station. For large parts of Britain the phrase sums up the state of things.

I have been on the road for the best part of two weeks trying to look beyond the financial crisis at the structural problems affecting the real economy - travelling from Margate in south-east England to St David's in west Wales - and back.Along the way I have been asking people - what is wrong with Britain and how do we fix it?


I found it an interesting report touching on the rebalancing that is needed.

Edited by Ash4781, 30 March 2010 - 08:29 AM.


#2 gimble

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Posted 30 March 2010 - 09:05 AM

Did anyone else watch Paul Mason's report on Newsnight last night?
http://www.bbc.co.uk...itain_part.html
www.bbc.co.uk/iplayer/newsnight/


I found it an interesting report touching on the rebalancing that is needed.


I particularly liked when he pointed out that many politicians and journalists are based in metropolitan centres (usually London, obviously) where the hustle and bustle of city life seems largely unchanged, but out in the towns all the factories have gone and all there is for young blokes to do in places like Stoke is to join a boxing club and punch each other in the head.

#3 Lone_Twin

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Posted 30 March 2010 - 09:15 AM

I particularly liked when he pointed out that many politicians and journalists are based in metropolitan centres (usually London, obviously) where the hustle and bustle of city life seems largely unchanged, but out in the towns all the factories have gone and all there is for young blokes to do in places like Stoke is to join a boxing club and punch each other in the head.


I did crack a wry smile when the voice-over said something like: "if we could harness this creativeness and energy then stoke could be...."
The image overlayed was just a room full of young men punching inanimate objects (punch bags) repeatedly as though it mattered.

All the Vox-pops "We need them to give us some jobs" who "them" are that will rain employment from the sky into the laps of these people i have no idea.
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#4 Mugwump Boy

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Posted 30 March 2010 - 09:16 AM

I particularly liked when he pointed out that many politicians and journalists are based in metropolitan centres (usually London, obviously) where the hustle and bustle of city life seems largely unchanged, but out in the towns all the factories have gone and all there is for young blokes to do in places like Stoke is to join a boxing club and punch each other in the head.


+1

It was a really insightful, thoughtful piece. I loved his take on the metropolitan "bubble" - where baristas go out and shop in their lunch breaks, eat a takeaway and believe they're part of some cool Britannia effect in exchange for earning minimum wage.

Mason was also very smart in detailing the way that Britain gambled everything on a financial service economy concentrated largely around London - and somone made the point that this was a regional economy standing in for a national one. The shots of Stoke's empty industrial wasteland and people on the seafront in Margate (railing against immigrants) rammed it home. Britain is in decline after 13 years of stupidity in which Labour have cut almost all our productive ties. It was a really bearish report, I thought - quite depressing in its sense of how the UK is no longer a world leader in anything except debt. The talking head who pointed out that social mobility was collapsing and that only law and banking were careers that could promise "success" was particularly downbeat.

Tonight's follow-up report - judging by the trailer - looked a lot more happy clappy, pulling ourselves up by our bootstraps kind of thing... But anyone with iPlayer should definitely watch the first.

#5 The Masked Tulip

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Posted 30 March 2010 - 09:51 AM

His blog is well worth reading... 85 comments on last night's item

http://www.bbc.co.uk...ight/paulmason/
The success or failure of your deeds does not add up to the sum of your life. Your spirit cannot be weighed. Judge yourself by the intention of your actions and by the strength you faced the challenges that have stood in your way.

The people closest to you have been trying to tell you that you have made a difference. That you did change things for the better. The Universe is vast and we are so small. There is really only one thing that we can ever truly control - whether we are good or evil.


The political triumph of the American Right has been to advance relentlessly the economic interests of the country's richest people, while emphasising a swath of moral, social and foreign policy issues that motivate and certainly distract middle-class and poor voters.

#6 aSecureTenant

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Posted 30 March 2010 - 09:52 AM

I did crack a wry smile when the voice-over said something like: "if we could harness this creativeness and energy then stoke could be...."
The image overlayed was just a room full of young men punching inanimate objects (punch bags) repeatedly as though it mattered.

All the Vox-pops "We need them to give us some jobs" who "them" are that will rain employment from the sky into the laps of these people i have no idea.


You seem to have ignored the central point ( in order to make a silly patronising comment about ordinary Stoke people) that one "think tank" bod made.

He constrasted the industrial revolution with its decentralised capital, a period during which people were prepared to take a risk on "making and developing things." The UK became a world leader. So industrially we had the equivalent of the Star Ship enterprise, whilst everyone else was still at the donkey and cart stage.

Also our 18th century forebears only had pamphlets to find out "what worked and what didn't" whereas today we have the internet and can find out "what works" even faster.

Now capital seems to be more centralised in the hands of crony capitalists and City Bankers., the result is that social mobility has ground to a halt and money no longer goes into the hands of thousands (millions) of entrepreneurs who are prepared to risk all. Also an over reliance in mini bubble economies that only occur in big city's such as London. The so called "Starbucks" phenomenon.

Looking forward to tonights follow up, though not hopeful on the solutions, until the "too big to fail" types are bankrupted and failed and capitalism is allowed to work properly again.

And of course no politician is prepared to engage with the voter as to where the jobs for their children are going to come from. Just about everyone I speak to with kids is concerned about this. Most effective routes to the "top" being through the City or legal profession. The result is that the next generation will almost certainly be poorer than the previous.

Paul Mason is a rarity amongst BBC reporters. He actually "gets it." As he pointed out we can't survive alone on "supermarkets" and "call centres."

Edited by SirStirlingSlumlord, 30 March 2010 - 09:57 AM.

"Capitalism has defeated communism. It is now well on its way to defeating democracy" ~ David Korten

“To think output and income can be raised by increasing the quantity of money, is like trying to get fat by buying a larger belt” ~ John Maynard Keynes 

 

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#7 Ponzi

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Posted 30 March 2010 - 10:01 AM

The UK has deeply rooted structural unemployment, and I have no idea how we re-skill to get create wealth again...

Apologies if this vid was posted before, sums up the causes and effect on our once great industrial cities.


I tell you, it is because with Bank of England independence, cutting debt, fiscal discipline and the New Deal this Labour government has shown the strength to take the tough long-term decisions, that inflation is low, interest rates are low, growth has been sustained in every year, and we are closer than ever to the goal which drives us forward: the goal of full employment for our generation.

Labour, the natural party for economic strength in our country today. (Gordon Brown, 2007)


The boom produces impoverishment. But still more disastrous are its moral ravages. It makes people despondent and dispirited. The more optimistic they were under the illusory prosperity of the boom, the greater is their despair and their feeling of frustration. The individual is always ready to ascribe his good luck to his own efficiency and to take it as a well-deserved reward for his talent, application, and probity. But reverses of fortune he always charges to other people, and most of all to the absurdity of social and political institutions. He does not blame the authorities for having fostered the boom. He reviles them for the inevitable collapse. In the opinion of the public, more inflation and more credit expansion are the only remedy against the evils which inflation and credit expansion have brought about. (Von Mises)

#8 Fudge

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Posted 30 March 2010 - 10:05 AM

Yes Paul Masons reports are heads and shoulder above everything else being reported at present.
This is the real Britain and its very scary. What jobs will there be for our kids?
Nobody knows.
This is globalisation and the consequences of 20 years of neo liberal policies.
But its not what we were told was going to happen.
We were told we were going to benefit from neo liberalism and globalisation but the reality looks very different.
The politicians have been seriously mistaken beliving that high finance and the knowledge economy was going to provide everyone
with a living and they have no plan B. They can only keep on trying plan A again and again and again because they cant admit they were wrong.
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#9 shindigger

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Posted 30 March 2010 - 10:14 AM

You seem to have ignored the central point ( in order to make a silly patronising comment about ordinary Stoke people) that one "think tank" bod made.

He constrasted the industrial revolution with its decentralised capital, a period during which people were prepared to take a risk on "making and developing things." The UK became a world leader. So industrially we had the equivalent of the Star Ship enterprise, whilst everyone else was still at the donkey and cart stage.

Also our 18th century forebears only had pamphlets to find out "what worked and what didn't" whereas today we have the internet and can find out "what works" even faster.

Now capital seems to be more centralised in the hands of crony capitalists and City Bankers., the result is that social mobility has ground to a halt and money no longer goes into the hands of thousands (millions) of entrepreneurs who are prepared to risk all. Also an over reliance in mini bubble economies that only occur in big city's such as London. The so called "Starbucks" phenomenon.

Looking forward to tonights follow up, though not hopeful on the solutions, until the "too big to fail" types are bankrupted and failed and capitalism is allowed to work properly again.

And of course no politician is prepared to engage with the voter as to where the jobs for their children are going to come from. Just about everyone I speak to with kids is concerned about this. Most effective routes to the "top" being through the City or legal profession. The result is that the next generation will almost certainly be poorer than the previous.

Paul Mason is a rarity amongst BBC reporters. He actually "gets it." As he pointed out we can't survive alone on "supermarkets" and "call centres."


Yes. Absolutely.
If you want a cheaper house, vote Labour in 2015.

#10 Si1

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Posted 30 March 2010 - 10:29 AM

I did crack a wry smile when the voice-over said something like: "if we could harness this creativeness and energy then stoke could be...."
The image overlayed was just a room full of young men punching inanimate objects (punch bags) repeatedly as though it mattered.

All the Vox-pops "We need them to give us some jobs" who "them" are that will rain employment from the sky into the laps of these people i have no idea.



a job is something you get yourself and do, not have given to you

#11 TwoWolves

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Posted 30 March 2010 - 10:30 AM

You seem to have ignored the central point ( in order to make a silly patronising comment about ordinary Stoke people) that one "think tank" bod made.

He constrasted the industrial revolution with its decentralised capital, a period during which people were prepared to take a risk on "making and developing things." The UK became a world leader. So industrially we had the equivalent of the Star Ship enterprise, whilst everyone else was still at the donkey and cart stage.

Also our 18th century forebears only had pamphlets to find out "what worked and what didn't" whereas today we have the internet and can find out "what works" even faster.

Now capital seems to be more centralised in the hands of crony capitalists and City Bankers., the result is that social mobility has ground to a halt and money no longer goes into the hands of thousands (millions) of entrepreneurs who are prepared to risk all. Also an over reliance in mini bubble economies that only occur in big city's such as London. The so called "Starbucks" phenomenon.

Looking forward to tonights follow up, though not hopeful on the solutions, until the "too big to fail" types are bankrupted and failed and capitalism is allowed to work properly again.

And of course no politician is prepared to engage with the voter as to where the jobs for their children are going to come from. Just about everyone I speak to with kids is concerned about this. Most effective routes to the "top" being through the City or legal profession. The result is that the next generation will almost certainly be poorer than the previous.

Paul Mason is a rarity amongst BBC reporters. He actually "gets it." As he pointed out we can't survive alone on "supermarkets" and "call centres."


+1

That's an accurate assessment. What happened to all those entrepreneurs that started those factories? What happened to their children? I think most left the country, certainly most of my old school chums left in the mid/late 90s. Wish I'd done the same now.

#12 aSecureTenant

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Posted 30 March 2010 - 10:32 AM

a job is something you get yourself and do, not have given to you


Well Paul Mason interviewed a Stoke lady. She started work at the potteries and then did the full cycle of employers including a stint at Creda which also failed. Its now pound shop work for her I guess.

"Capitalism has defeated communism. It is now well on its way to defeating democracy" ~ David Korten

“To think output and income can be raised by increasing the quantity of money, is like trying to get fat by buying a larger belt” ~ John Maynard Keynes 

 

Ignoring ALL UKIP and 'Election' threads on HPC until further notice


#13 R K

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Posted 30 March 2010 - 10:45 AM

+1

It was a really insightful, thoughtful piece. I loved his take on the metropolitan "bubble" - where baristas go out and shop in their lunch breaks, eat a takeaway and believe they're part of some cool Britannia effect in exchange for earning minimum wage.

Mason was also very smart in detailing the way that Britain gambled everything on a financial service economy concentrated largely around London - and somone made the point that this was a regional economy standing in for a national one. The shots of Stoke's empty industrial wasteland and people on the seafront in Margate (railing against immigrants) rammed it home. Britain is in decline after 13 years of stupidity in which Labour have cut almost all our productive ties. It was a really bearish report, I thought - quite depressing in its sense of how the UK is no longer a world leader in anything except debt. The talking head who pointed out that social mobility was collapsing and that only law and banking were careers that could promise "success" was particularly downbeat.

Tonight's follow-up report - judging by the trailer - looked a lot more happy clappy, pulling ourselves up by our bootstraps kind of thing... But anyone with iPlayer should definitely watch the first.


Truly excellent stuff.

One of the best, if not THE best, the BBC have got.

His reports should be going out primetime just before and after party political broadcasts. He gets straight to the heart of the problem and his delivery is laced with an implicit disdain for our ruling classes. (I'm actually a little suprised Baron Mandelschild allows the BBC to let him go to air).

Britain needs to bulldoze Canary Wharf, implement capital controls and trade tariffs with Asia punto pronto and kick-start factories making sh1t again for our own consumption and to put all these young kids back to work.


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#14 Mugwump Boy

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Posted 30 March 2010 - 11:00 AM

Truly excellent stuff.

One of the best, if not THE best, the BBC have got.

His reports should be going out primetime just before and after party political broadcasts. He gets straight to the heart of the problem and his delivery is laced with an implicit disdain for our ruling classes. (I'm actually a little suprised Baron Mandelschild allows the BBC to let him go to air).


Memo to Paul Mason - don't go hill-walking or take your dog for a run in the woods...

#15 efdemin

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Posted 30 March 2010 - 11:12 AM

Well Paul Mason interviewed a Stoke lady. She started work at the potteries and then did the full cycle of employers including a stint at Creda which also failed. Its now pound shop work for her I guess.


Exactly. I grew up in a town near Stoke - it has been utterly devastated over the last couple of decades. It used to have a big British Steel plant -gone. It used to have numerous pottery and fine china manufacturers (Wedgwood, Royal Doulton, just about any well-known British brand). But they outsourced all of their mass production to Asia/Indonesia. Then they started to consolidate as profit margins went down. Now none of them are British owned and there's hardly anything left in the UK apart from the name. That happened just over the last decade during the mass private equity / M&A binge.

I don't know what it was like for the mining towns in the early 80's but I imagine it is similar to what has happened to Stoke. The local businesses have collapsed faster than new ones have arrived to replace them so there almost literally are no jobs for people to do.

Telling people to 'get on your bike' just doesn't cut it I'm afraid.




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