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About Ballyk

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  1. Finally after 40 years of conservative governments, a proper socialist in power! Who'd have thought it would come in the form of billionaire Sunak?
  2. His analysis is correct if you ignore people working in the public sector and retirees, and all those businesses unaffected by the crisis, and all the businesses without a huge amount of debt or rent which can if necessary just 'switch off' in a lockdown (which is a lot of small businesses, thanks to banks not actually lending to them any more). There are a lot of folk who are receiving a fixed income with nothing actually to spend it on, and a lot more cash than normal sloshing around in bank accounts. Including my retired parents. Plus me personally, I left London fairly early in the
  3. My experience was the smarter ones ended up becoming doctors or drifted into the public sector. The overall 'package' for graduates in the private sector didn't seem that great in NI, at least 20 years ago, when pension, security and other benefits were factored in, and that doesn't seem to have changed much. Although post 2010 it has possibly reversed a bit, given public sector pay freezes, etc. But it's impossible to ignore the fact that the NI public sector is totally unsupportable by the level of private sector economic activity. If wages / budgets were aligned to the local tax
  4. The problem with Northern Ireland is that the public sector is far too generous. Salaries are much higher than in the private sector so, quite rationally, the best people aim for jobs in the public sector. There's a private sector 'brain drain' and it's not as competitive. The Republic of Ireland has done so well because it's had to live off its own wits and resources. It has no gushing umbilical cord of money coming in from Westminster on a daily basis. If you're a teacher or civil servant in NI your quality of life is ridiculously high compared with counterparts in London
  5. I find it hilarious that the DUP-supported Brexit has done more to bring North and South together - and divide the North from GB - than 30 years of IRA violence ever did!
  6. Protectionism and trade barriers are not good for consumers, this is an obvious consequence of Brexit. But if you have a small local monopoly with reduced competition, then you have better pricing power. I'm already seeing more orders from UK customers. They cannot get EU shops to send them items, or if they do they are much delayed and with charges added.
  7. I hope it works out well for you, it sounds like you have a very good strategy. What I found running a small business in London was the exodus of well paid EU professionals, and a somewhat shrinking London economy in 2019, led to a significant decline in demand for our services. When I left for N Ireland towards the start of the Covid situation in 2020, I felt like I was fleeing a sinking ship. I lost a lot of EU customers, also some very good EU employees. But with less work / income for them, it meant they made a perfectly rational choice to move home. It was a good prompt to in
  8. As a anecdotal - 2 years ago I was living in a houseshare in London with a Swedes, a Dane, an Latvian and an Englishman. The Englishman is still there. I have moved to Northern Ireland. The Swede and Latvian have moved to Sweden and the Dane has returned to Denmark. They have been replaced by two Romanians, a second Englishman and a Lithuanian. We're going to see a widespread replacement of the EU population in the UK with others, probably less well educated, from further afield. Or a continued population decline.
  9. I'd have to say most of the richest people I've known through work / university / sport have been pretty decent. Especially those who've been to Eton and other very top schools. Generally hard working, good manners, good values, not in the least bit snobbish. Actually the last people I could imagine getting very expensive cars.
  10. It's a little known fact that Northern Ireland makes some pretty decent sausages. But the point is valid, and there'll be big problems importing food from mainland UK to Northern Ireland. For UK supermarkets operating in Northern Ireland (and not the Republic) there will be big issues, especially with delivery trucks with mulitple different lines of food. Each individual item will require documentation. For supermarkets with very large 'all island' operations, such as Tesco and Lidl, there will not be such massive issues as they have pretty big depots in Ireland, where a truck full
  11. The public sector hasn't seen anything yet. Taxes coming in over the next couple of years are going to be pitiful. The small business I run will be contributing 25% less in VAT and probably 90% less in corporation tax. Plus personally I'll be paying about 50% less in income tax. But this won't properly hit the national accounts in 'cashflow' terms until 2022. Multiply this across the country and it's going to be a bloodbath.
  12. The answer to this is whack up interest rates to 5%, capital value of houses plummets, housing suddenly doesn't look too unreasonable.
  13. Wrong Wellesley! The one currently in trouble is the 8th Earl Cowley. The Earls Cowley and Dukes of Wellington are both descendants of the 1st Earl of Mornington (died 1781) and not very closely related.
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