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Methinkshe

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Everything posted by Methinkshe

  1. But weren't these "bone-crushing depressions" a necessary mechanism to prevent inflation? And unless Gordon really has "ended boom and bust" are we not still experiencing, or likely to experience "bone-crushing depressions" but at a greater intensity and with a greater destruction of legitimate wealth (work-earned wealth) than would have been the case under a gold standard?
  2. I have some sympathy with your POV, Injin. The whole concept of government arose from marauding tribes, raping and pillaging small agricultural settlements on a regular basis, that eventually agreed to stop the raping and pillaging and allow the settlements to live in peace, and protect them from other marauders, in return for a share of the crops (tax, in other words). I don't see that we have moved very far from that module, in essence.
  3. My generation (50 +) may nominally own wealth in the form of housing, but a huge number have MEWED to pay for private education in the face of wretched standards in state ed and to help our children get on the housing ladder. My guess is that an awful lot of the wealth that appears tpo be held by the boomer generation is predicated on the value of the property and not the equity that remains. Could be wrong, but I know too many people who have MEWED to help their kids get a decent educaation, go to uni, buy their first property etc (i.e. not just to go on a credit card of consumer consumption) that I suspect there is less wealth locked up in the boomer generation than might be assumed just by looking at HPI.
  4. Correct me if I have misunderstood, but wasn't the whole purpose of a gold-backed currency predicated on the requirement that any medium of exchange was backed by work and that therefore the money supply was limited. The only physical way to produce more money was to mine more gold which required an investment from those countries that already owned gold to invest in mining more of the stuff. Meanwhile, those countries that didn't possess gold as a natural resource, or that did, but couldn't afford to mine it, had to exchange labour/man-hours for gold. The point being that the supply was limited and predicated on work done. Gold acted like a regulator, in other words, and therefore inflation didn't occur - at least, only short-term in line with availability/non-availability of gold at the time, but because of its scarcity acted as a self-regulating mechanism on currency inflation. In the long run all that inflation represents is debt postponed, or worse still, transferred to the next generation. Edited for typos.
  5. Historically the property market has always been cyclical (at least since records began) but the intervals between cycles have shortened with excess money supply/inflation. Thus, property prices remained stable for 100 years preceding the 1920's boom and bust, when sterling kept its value, but thereafter the cycle shortened as inflation began to erode the value of money. Probably something to do with coming off the gold standard, but I'm no economist. One thing I remember reading somewhere is that when a housing bubble bursts, historically house prices give up all their inflationary gains since the previous bust. But I'm not sure how one measures what were inflationary gains and what were attributable to, say, economic growth or other factors.
  6. I've always understood it to refer to the generation born post-war - i.e. 1945 - 1966 when the first of them came of age at 21. But I could be wrong. Anyone got any other opinion?
  7. I haven't yet noticed that governments keep promises. I wouldn't bet a single penny on any promise this or any other government makes. However, as one of the baby-boomer generation I can only apologise to the students of today for the iniquitous imposition of student loans instead of grants - talk about climbing the ladder at the taxpayers' expense then swiftly pulling it up after oneself. The concept of burdening uni students who are just begininning to make their way in life, with 10K upwards of debt is reprehensible. Far better to fund the few who are truly university material and make available apprenticeships or other work related training for those who are happier to learn in a non-academinc climate.
  8. Sorry, but with an answer like this I can only conclude that you are a part of the problem. Education is like any other service, it is only as good as the market dictates and political intereference is more likely to cause depredation than improvement. What you are proposing is akin to suggesting that because a cheap hamburger joint is churning out food-poisoning on a daily basis, and another more expensive one is producing well-fed, satisfied customers, the way to solve the problem of the crap joint is to force the patrons of the good restaurant to dine in the crap place. You call that a solution? I suppose you could say that at least they all share in the food-poisoning, and the poisonous envy that propels socialist thinking - if I can't have it, why should you - is satisfied by the resulting across-the-board sickness.
  9. I may be old but I am not yet in my dotage! I remember enough to know that what I could do at 10 or 11 my 16 years olds could not - neither in Maths nor English. Moreover, I cannot believe that today's students are allowed to take annotated texts into exams. We had to learn by heart anything we wished to quote. Edited for typo.
  10. I have to disagree with you. We are not talking about property prices per se, we are taking about a speculative asset bubble and property just happens to be the vehicle. It could have been tulips, for instance..... Value in a speculative asset bubble is determined by nothing more than sentiment backed up by the availability of excess funds. Once the funding source runs dry, it is only a matter of time before the greater fool theory becomes evident through the lack of any more greater fools. Honest FTBers have long since been priced out of the pyramid style scam. And when speculative asset bubbles burst they do so spectacularly. Okay, there is an underlying value in the land and bricks and mortar within property that one could argue is not present in tulips, nevertheless, it is absolutely vital to understand that current property prices represent a SPECULATIVE value and not a fundamental investment value.
  11. I wish I could deny but my experience is that what you say is all too true....... But just in case anyone thinks I am totally anti state education, my disabled daughter has been incredibly well served in a small village primary school and latterly in a state special needs school - but I didn't half have to fight hard to get her into it - they wanted to put her into a 1500 strong comp within a special unit where she would have ended up like an exhibition at a zoo! Integration sounds good in theory but in practice it can be horrible once one has taken into account all the special requirements for a disabled child. Separate meal times, playgrounds with 6ft high fences to keeo 'em in, you name it.....yeuch! I much preferred that my daughter would be with similarly physically disabled children than be made an exhibition in a "normal" school. Anyway, she loves it there, in her special needs school, so that's all that matters. Except to say: "I told you so" to the so-called experts who would have had me do otherwise....
  12. Got a brother who is a deputy head in a school in Hackney - but me, I wouldn't do his job. I just take up the baton and educate my children myself in as much as I am able and for as long as I can. Thereafter they have to sink or swim within the system, but at least I have tried to educate them rather than leave them to the mercy of a state education system that is so unconducive (if there be such a word) to the inculcation of knowledge that children are more likely to learn bad habits and aggressive behaviour than aquire the skills to read or write never mind additional knowledge.
  13. GCSEs are equivalent to (or maybe even lower than) the 11 plus that I took in 1964. I know because I have since helped 6 of my children through GCSEs and the preliminaries and have been able to compare. I also know that, these days, unless either teachers or parents cheat on GCSE coursework, children are at a disadvantage. I have also home educated 6 of my 9 children for a period (between 3 and 5 years), have had them in private and state school and home education according to what we could afford and what we deemed best at the time, in both the UK and Eire, and have observed, whatever anyone might protest, a massive decline in standards whatever stats our present government may pull from the hat. My eldest is 30 and my youngest is 12. State School Education in the UK is so poor as to be detrimental to a child's natural progress. Schools are more a hindrance than a help. It is a harder job for a parent these days to PREVENT a child from BECOMING illiterate and innumerate due to state school education than it is to inculcate the basics oneself. Which is why I opted for Home Ed for my children at the critical stage of learning foundational literacy and numeracy.
  14. Thanks again. We've pretty much done all the rounds with the G.Ps but necessity required that Mater move back with me to convalesce because I had already spent too long away from my own family for their good. Chest X-=rays have been done since CABG but to look for ceongestive heart failure (fluid on the lungs) and not for any misplaced wiring! I know from previous expreience that those who look at chest X-rays can be very single-minded so perhaps a re-examination of those already done could reveal a problem with sternum wiring. Having said that, I've already gone through the morning when Mother woke up so congested that she thought she would die yet refusing to go back to hospital. Just wanted to die with family around her. Fortunately GP arrived quickly and put her back on diuretics which was all that was needed. Part-ex sounds like an interesting possibiltiy- may be worth a try. Thanks for the tip. All one wants to do for a much loved mother is to give comfort and care and security in old age in part return for the massive care and love one has received as a daughter and that has also been given to grandchildren - without any thought of recompense. I would do anything to get the best for my mother.....she really IS the best. I still cannot believe that during the course of her hospital stays she recieved well over 100 get well cards - I'm not the only one who adores her! Thanks for the advice. Especially since have just spoken on phone to brother who thinks Norwich Union loss of £3000 is just a blip and my suggestion to sell and cut losses while still possible is stark raving loony! I guess I'll just end up having to say: I told you so.....
  15. Thanks for the advice. We've already had complication on complication - that's why I was away 9 weeks - first a sub-clavial thrombosis (should have been expected since she has had two previous DVTs and is Lieden Factor 5) followed by congestive heart failure because taken off digoxin and diuretics (due to atrial fibrillation) too early. Resulted in two additional stays in hospital following CABG. Present problem is terrible stabbing pains in chest - mother is sure that surgeons have left a sharp instrument in place (!!) or that the titanium wiring that is used to re-connect the sternum has some sharp point that stabs every time she moves in a certain way. Presently she is on Warfarin which in itself is problematic if living alone and experiencing a fall, say. Which is why I would prefer to have her 2 miles away from me instead of 200. Problem is, what is the best way financially to achieve this. Edited for typos.
  16. Old stock market saw: Lend long and borrow short The quickest way to the debtors' court. Perhaps some of our fancy-pants young bankers should have listened to their elders.
  17. I'm willing to offer the care - but from a 2 mile distance not a 200 mile distance! I've just spent 9 weeks away from my family giving 200 mile distant care to mother, and I can't do it again - I have children with their own needs. However, I think mother still has some independent living ability within her and I would be the last to deny that to her. Perhaps I ought to start negotiating with the developers and see if I can get a discount. However, that is problematic in that she doesn't have the cash to buy the house until she has sold the one she is presently living in. Maybe put that house on market first and see what transpires. But do we pay to reserve the house near us that she is interested in or just wait and hope that HPC will ensure that it remains on sale? Or perhaps I just ought to forget altogether an possible future downturns and make the transaction at the declared prices. Maybe trying to steal a march is more inhibiting that exhilarating....
  18. Either desparation - got to invest cash somewhere and property is looking dodgy so let's do equities - and/or sheer bleeding ignorance!
  19. Thanks for your reply. I'm thinking that North Cornwall could devaluse quicker and greater than Sussex Coast. But maybe you are right - just do the job and stop trying to seek a financial advantage. If it weren't for those pesky Norwich Union Bonds.......
  20. She's 80 and although could still live independently once recovered from surgery (she is currently convalescing with us until after Christmas) should not be too far away from relatives who care. Re finances, she's just taken a £3000 hit on a Norwich Union investment this year (arranged by my brother, I might add, not me - brother is a financial director of a Financial Leasing Company so why would he listen to me) so I'm trying to help rebuild her finances from which she gets a little additional income to her OAP. I quite agree that her comfort is the prime consideration, but if while securing that I could do something towards repairing her losses (I'm trying to get my brother to cash in the Norwich Union Bonds because I think that they have nowhere else to go but burn in money hell) I'd be happy.
  21. My mother owns a 3 bed semi on the Sussex coast - value at April 2007 approx £250,000. We are going to have to move her nearer to us in North Cornwall. There is a new development just a couple of miles from us where she has seen a smaller end terrace bungalow - brand new - with a very, very small garden, which suits her because she has just had heart by-pass surgery. It's up for £210,000 - not made any enquiry about discounts yet, largely because out of a development of 36 properties only 2 or 3 are still available - they're nice builds, for a change. I'm wondering how to achieve the best transaction for her. She wants to buy (no mortgage required) because she would feel insecure renting and doesn't need the stress. Is there a differential devaluation between North Cornwall properties and Sussex Coast properties that could be exploited does anyone know? I have at the back of my mind the possibility that prices will fall faster in Cornwall than in Sussex and that it might be possible if, say, she lived with us for a few months, to exploit such a differential devaluation.
  22. I, too, have been wondering about the potential for mass bankruptcy. I think it is highly likely. The social stigma that used to be attached to bankruptcy no longer exists and new bankruptcy laws mean that a debtor can be discharged in just one year. Now, imagine the BTL who cannot afford interest repayments and has maxed out credit cards before admitting same. What is he going to do? Spend the next 10 years in negative equity with a bunch of CCJ's to boot, or dump his debts by going bankrupt? A bit of careful planning - judicially transferring any valuables to relatives, for instance - and within a year he's up and running again. Okay, so he may have a problem getting credit or even a bank account but that's nothing like the problem of repaying thousands and thousands of ££s of debt for the forseeable future. Will banks be able to prevent it? I doubt it. It would take a reversal of relaxation of bankruptcy laws to even begin to prevent it, and even then people could still choose to dump their debt and hang it if their reputation goes with it.
  23. Shoot! This has unlocked a memory of something I read (probably a newspaper) in the past couple of months whereby there was a legal confusion concerning bank repossessions on a defaulted mortgage when the mortgage had been re-securitised and sold on in the form of a CDO. Can't remember the details, but as far as I can remember it went along the lines of, if the bank that provided the mortgage has since sold on the loan, then they no longer have a right to recall the loan and seek repossession... Can anyone else remember and/or elaborate?
  24. My memory: Bought a five-bed house with extensive outbuildings in Lincs in 1981 for £28,000 - it had been on the market for several years. Sold in 1988 for £165,00 with OPP for nursing home use. Had worked out the effect of MIRAS withdrawal was going to be detrimental to housing market. Later discovered our buyer had to sell for £95,000 just 12 months later when his plans for a nursing home went belly-up due to housing downturn. Meanwhile I purchased a house for cash and rode out worst of downturn, only selling in 1992 due to a move to Ireland but at little more than we had purchased for.
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