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Everything posted by StuartMc

  1. I was under the impression that if you go bankrupt your debts don't carry over after you have exhausted all of your assets. In any case, I think that zero deposit mortgages would require a surprisingly big jump in cost. In any sort of deal it's much easier if thinks go wrong if you have money in hand, rather than having to go to the the expense, time and uncertainty of chasing debts through the courts, even though apparently it's and obvious and simple thing. Also, requiring a deposit protects buyers from negative equity, which makes it difficult to re-locate or remortgage at a better rate.
  2. Burying your head in the sand and hoping for a miracle is what the government has been doing this whole time, so why shouldn't everyone else do it? But that's probably a wise course in this case. I expect from past performance that when the time comes for the government to face awkward decisions coming out of furlough, rather than making the difficult correct choice to make companies stand on their own two feet, they will instead bail them out with yet more money borrowed from the future. Or maybe screw over the employees by excusing some of obligations due to the workers. Stuart
  3. I think the whole thing is summarised thusly: The EU uses rhetorical descriptions that may not be strictly and technically accurate to the nth degree UK government goes crying to the public about how mean the EU are to the UK Everyone debates the minutiae of the issue Everyone in the country forgets that the UK government and it's tame media routinely uses rhetorical descriptions as bad as this and much worse - as well as distortions, outright lies, threats and insults - and concentrates on the details of this one issue TBH I don't care whether the EU description of the situation was or was not slightly overblown - as a nation we have much bigger issues to deal with, life changing economic threats in many sectors - and as long as the government is allowed to distract the nation in this way they are never going to seriously tackle the real problems.
  4. I noticed a few new build properties suddenly reduced - by the exact amount of stamp duty that would have been saved on each one in the stamp duty holiday (within £5)! Is there a possibility that developers have been using SD holiday to simply pocket the £15,000 of government (i.e. our) money - and giving no help at all to buyers!? No wonder they are so keen on it to continue! Stuart
  5. Very similar totals at the end of the year, but a different story since then: https://www.worldometers.info/coronavirus/country/uk/ https://www.worldometers.info/coronavirus/country/italy/ 31st Dec: UK 73,512 Italy: 74,159 03 Feb: UK 109,335 Italy: 89,920 I wonder if this is the "Boris Saving Christmas" "bounce" the tabloids were so happy about?
  6. That sounds like the computer equivalent of a milometer on a car going from 99999 to 000000, but in reverse so going from 0000000 to 99999. More technical detail - most computer languages require you to explicitly indicate whether a number is always positive, or if it can be positive or negative. This is a throwback to the days when computer capacity was very limited and positive (unsigned) numbers could hold larger values in the same space. E,g, using 16 bits of data, you can count to 32,000 odd if you are holding a number that can be positive or negative, but this goes up to 65,000 if you know it is always a positive number (this would be similar to imagining that the 7 digit milometer above used the 1st digit to indicate +/-. In this case you would similarly have less "space" for the number you are displaying +9,999 max rather than 99,999 max).
  7. Totally agree, I am also saddened at the amount of glee felt by some people here when someone, who has done nothing wrong (other than buying a house) ends up in hardship. The people who set up and maintain the distorted system must be absolutely laughing all the way to the bank with their millions spilling out of their pockets when they hear that the people who are having difficulty buying a house are shifting the blame from those that set up the machine and have the real power to fix it, onto homeowners, estate agents etc who participate in the system but have no real way control the way it works.
  8. 5% down is hardly freefall if ~5% up has been normal for the last 20 years...
  9. Worse, the current government, even when they do have a clue (and examples to show what's about to happen) they still always take the easy way out. They knew Madrid was in a partial lockdown when they invited thousands over for a Liverpool match because they took the easy way out of doing nothing rather than the difficult decision to cancel the match. I am 100% convinced that the government will absolutely not take the correct action at the right time (when it might be less painful for the country as a whole) but will instead selfishly avoid their short term politician pain by kicking the can down the street over and over again until their hand is forced and the result is unnecessary suffering and hardship for all.
  10. ...was briefly rich for the 2 minutes between getting the money from their house sale and handing over the cash for their new one. ...was briefly rich until they spent it all on long end of life care. ...died quite wealthy, but only on paper.
  11. That's like saying you've driven whilst drunk many times without running over a pedestrian... ... so I think the road safety experts are behind the curve. Whilst it's tempting to extrapolate from "It didn't happen to me" anecdotal stories to "it's not happening to anyone at all" is tempting, it's just faulty reasoning. Even during the black death when about half of people in Europe died, not everyone got it, even in the most affected areas.
  12. ...or until they try and sell the fish and realise we've cut ourselves off from the lion's share of fish buying customers!. https://www.thisismoney.co.uk/money/news/article-4043758/EU-trade-key-success-UK-fish-industry-75-home-caught-fish-exported-majority-fish-eaten-Britons-imported.html
  13. They are already saying that with their "we simply want to be exempt from the rules the other 27 member states follow, but get all the benefits they do - the unreasonable EU won't be flexible enough to meet our demands and needs to be more realistic" line.
  14. I believe that is the case. Their whole attitude has been to run the most important diplomatic trade negotiation in a generation with the the same approach as they've been using so successfully to stitch up British politics; deny the truth, put off till tomorrow, promise the moon on a stick and rely on slogans in the right wing press to hold it all together.
  15. ...or in the left during the 1970s the unions which became obsessed with their own goals not the interests of the workers they are supposed to be representing.
  16. I would say that in the modern (post 1970s) context: Right Wing: aims to enable everyone to stand on their own two feet Left Wing: aims to support everyone who can't stand on their own two feet I think the main problem is that we have a history of adversarial resolution of problems, so each side pushes for 100% of their idealogy, but to have a functioning society for all we actually need the correct balance between the two. So; abolishing social housing in the 80's caused long standing and avoidable desperate hardship for many that is still unresolved - but equally, banning private housing provision entirely is not the solution either. Another problem we have is that both sides attract idiots (most dangerously in current times free market billionaires/disaster capitalists who corrupt the Conservative goals of self sufficiency and the Thatcherist ideal of quiet pride in a good job well done into greed and every man for himself).
  17. The great thing about having easy access to the countryside is that it's not like a holiday where you have effectively decided what you'll do weeks in advance by booking certain dates; on the contrary you can get up in the morning look out the window and go out or stay in depending on how the weather looks or even how you feel that day... and if you don't go today there's always next week!
  18. A bit of a myopic proposal. If we effectively don't have any school leavers this year, and the school system is already a full capacity, how do we accommodate this year's intake on top of all the pupils from last year if they are all staying in the system to retake? Of course, under this plan the 1st year of universities would have no students, so I guess they could use that capacity to take in the 5 year olds
  19. Renown socialist Margaret Thatcher had 60% rate at the top rate tax, and in addition an 15% surcharge on top of that on investment income, so 85% for some incomes.
  20. In contrast, we had our first outing since the lockdown, to a local backstreet pub (the landlord had been kind enough to arrange food boxes at cost price for nearby residents at the start of the lockdown and so that particular place was on our minds). The pub was fairly quiet, well ordered and the whole experience was very enjoyable. I don't know what to make of this; maybe all the crazy demand described above is focussed on a few high-profile venues? Or in larger cities?
  21. The current government can't even plan a few months ahead (who could have possibly predicted that A level results would be due in the summer!?) so any apparently Macheovellian moves are more likely just gross incompetence that hasn't revealed its folly yet.
  22. Nice analysis; that illustrates why the price changes tend to be in slow motion behind (and overshooting) the actual fundamentals.
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