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LJAR

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About LJAR

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  1. A Large part of it is that the productivity of the public sector is measured by their pay levels, and those have not been increasing for a while.
  2. spot on, we should let people see lots of different things and help them choose what works for them.
  3. simply repeal the town and country planning act and you're done. Maybe keep some restrictions in AONBs (though probably not) Cheaper houses for everyone, benefit bill goes down, construction industry boom, unemployment down, GDP up, living standards rise, and everyone realised that "concreting over the countryside" was complete and utter ********. Some issues to sort out negative equity for those who bought at sky high prices. edit - we also repeal all the climate levies and affordable housing levies etc on new properties then the price will fall even further.
  4. Well, a pretty big difference was that cutting expenditure in 1945 was pretty easy as a sizable war had just ended and the troops were sent home. Your comment about the 1% seems to have roots in the "fixed pie" fallacy of the economy and the idea that the 1% are a fixed unchanging group of people at the top, they aren't the people in the 1% change every year, in fact people's income changes throughout their life. People tend to hit the 1% when they sell up their business that they have worked for a lifetime to build, when they get lucky on a stock investment or sell their house and downsize. It really isn't made up of a cabal of capitalist robber barons crushing the poor beneath their boot heels. The economy has also grown enormously since 1945, if we wanted to have a 1950s "Beveridge report" style welfare system we could afford it no problem, the issue is that we don't have that sort of welfare system, we are a richer country and now have a much more generous system as we ought to. Unfortunately we are not willing, it seems, as a country to have the kind of regulatory and tax environment required to raise the revenue for such a welfare system. The Scandanavians get this pretty well. They have really high state spending, but they also have very "laissez faire" economic environments since you have to generate the wealth before it can be spread around. They have things like free schools, privatised fire departments and hostpitals (as well as insurance funded for all by the taxpayer). Public spending is also much more devolved than in the UK.
  5. hmm, their economic growth is based on very massaged GDP numbers due to massive state sponsored spending on infrastructure projects that have little real value, so economically they will slow down. Remember when Russia and then Japan were "about to overtake the US"? Socially they are going to have very big problems once people get rich enough to really start caring about corruption, lack of a democratic voice, etc. That could be a trigger for war, but realistically they don't have the domestic economy to be able to fight a big war they would end up against the US, UK, Canada, South Korea, Japan, Taiwan etc all at the same time. Economically and militarily outgunned. In response to Lambie I would say get them to learn spanish, I think south and central america will be a bigger player than China in the long run and they speak English in India.
  6. that is mainly because firing people is so hard it makes sense to invest in capital machinery instead of hiring more people to increase output.
  7. spot on. Or the fact that it is perfectly legitimate, and no abusive to claim benefits for a "disability" that does not prevent you from working or have any impact on your earning potential.
  8. there were many in the roosevelt administration that would disagree with you, and in fact if you look at the private part of the US economy, it didnt start growing until 1949ish when the public spending taps were turned off and people were allowed to invest without restrictions again. true enough - japan hasn't been as much of a disaster as the press they get but for they are an example of how to dig yourself into a really deep hole. I would argue that it hasn't competely played out yet that one. On the other hand they certainly are not growing like they used to. greece and spain etc are an example of the kind of problems you get when you need to devalue, but don't have a floating currency. The the market has to clear through unemployment and falling wages, which is much much more painful true, but then I dont think there were ever any "real" Keynesians. No politician wants to run a surplus during the good times. scandinavian coutries are actually pretty lightly regulated compared to the UK. Really, and they certainly have a much more localised mix of spending, which leads to less corruption and waste - all other things being equal.
  9. the joke is on you if you think that capitalism has produced rather than reduced inequalities...... people used to starve regularly in the UK each year many used to be actual or little more than slaves tied to the land nobody used to retire except the idle rich many didn't have houses, let alone ones with double glazing and central heating. Free market capitalism has leveled people like no other force in human history, and it continues to do the same thing on a global scale today. The countervailing force has always been concentrations of power in the governments and rent seekers that they support, trying to get something for nothing by leeching off the productive. (and I don't mean benefit recipients - think big landowners) the rule of law and property rights protect the little man from being trampled by the powerful, free trade stops him from being exploited by the government sanctioned monopolist, free markets and low regulation mean he is free to set up any business he wants without paying someone else for a license to practice. In short he is free to do what he wants and keep what he earns provided he doesn't hurt anybody. Capitalism isn't about justice, but any other system in the end isn't just either, capitalism merely replacespatronage with luck and work - which is an improvement.
  10. LJAR

    Democracy?

    will help explain.basically a "democracy" is rule of the mob and eventually devolves into an oligarchic type of government. (the elite at the top of the pile have all the positions of power in all the parties and they run the country for their benefit and that of their friends) the only alternative is a legally restricted government that isn't allowed to do very much, but that requires a population in constant vigilance, and may actually be impossible to sustain for more that 100-150 years or so (at least it hasn't lasted longer that that before) Not sure where to go in the world to escape these days.
  11. LJAR

    Tony Benn - Why?

    Many are I wouldn't go so far as to say all. (you could consider Benn to be one since he hasn't voluntarily given away his fortune in order to decrease inequality in this country) But there are not many who think that they wont be the ones "in charge" when we are all "equal" - in essence it boils down to wanting to arrange people to suit their own desires, not to arrange people so that those same people are as well off as they can be. either that or they seem to want to punish people for being lucky, or talented, or hardworking. I fail to see the benefit that comes of this. If all they wanted was to make people more equal then you only need one tax and one benefit. Income tax above a certain threshold (say median income) and then a citizens income doling it out to everybody below that threshold. But they dont do that, they want to control how it is doled out, according to their preferences rater than those who are actually the poor. So yes many of them are hypocrites.
  12. Nope - there is case law in the US stating that sales tax is not due on items sold over the internet in different states. if you sell over the internet in the same state, then tax is due. Otherwise, no. @ durhamborn - spot on.
  13. you clearly plan to alter the population from human beings then?
  14. how about build more houses so the locals can live there too? it all comes down to market restrictions in the end.
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