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We've gone

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  1. He has sensibly said he will not be drawn - as discussed by previous posters. And he has used the same aspirational fluff as Tony, just better grounded in the principles Tories believe in. He does not have to and should not say more - unless as I think he ought to lose next time still. Labour have used up: - We're new and whiter than white - We're doing a great job but there's more to do - We're doing a great job, and even if we're not, the other lot would do worse - We may be a bit sleazy, but think how much worse the others would be Labour can and do still use negative campaigning
  2. I hope that Labour win until the coming crisis breaks and they are clearly held responsible by the electorate. I hope that the Conservative Party that then gets in has the courage to do all the necessary and right things and gets enough time to turn the supertanker round. I think Cameron is saying sensible things (give or take a hoodie). I fear that the Tories will carry the can for Labour's failures if they get in next time. I hope Labour win next time. I fear that while Margaret Thatcher was ahead of her time, any equivalent would now find her/himself behind the times so not able to do m
  3. In London: (2) is not true when times get tough - as we found in mid 2004, when we had to guarantee costs as sellers with well known, reputable EAs for their marketing material. (4) varies from 2% to 3% on a huge amount of money. When the market really falls apart let's see how many EAs still market for free.
  4. By the standards of the other reality programmes this is a good and worthy one. Of course that does not mean that you are going to get anything other than attention-seeking people trying to get on TV. But at least the challenges (eg the catering one) involved real work as well as merely the 'look at me I'm going to be famous' stuff. Qualifications are important and deriding them is foolish. But surely this programme sends a good message overall and most of the people who do well on it are reasonable role models?
  5. I hate debt, and have avoided it like the plague. Nevertheless, I would be better off and have had a better life if I had embraced the concept of leverage. That was in the high inflation 80s and asset bull markets of the 90s of course. Will this be equally true in future? Perhaps not, but there is still nothing wrong with moderate debt based on time of life etc. Is this moderate debt? Doesn't sound like it, and the trend is worrying.
  6. More info required really, but on the balance of probabilities, with assumed 2 earners, no real provision for kids growing up etc, maybe the ability to cut back some spending but a big risk of losing one salary - I think they will be in trouble.
  7. When we bought in 1996 the seller took all the light fittings and bulbs. I am not sure whether this is generally the legal position, but we were entitled to working lights, so after a stiff letter an electrician fixed bare bulbs at their expense. I have only bought twice in the UK, and in the one case, the seller was the soul of honour, removing nothing but furniture and best light fittings (all scrupulously recorded). The above case was the other, and frankly that was the worst of it - so my experience has been of fair sellers and little hassle. And I hasten to add that we too left everythin
  8. The other thing NuLab do well is fiddle the national accounts. They can borrow for a good while yet.
  9. Actually I got this wrong - if Easter was indeed in late March 05 and after 6 April 06 then there are 2 extra business days in fiscal 2006, so the decrease in VAT looks even worse. Maybe fraud is an issue, but would that not also be true for the previous year?
  10. I will not. But it has to be said - Nick Griffin was far more articulate and sounded more sensible on Sky this morning than the minister for local government something or other who was interviewed after him. If the established parties do themselves any more damage (most egregiously the cases against the BNP and the resulting free publicity) I can see the BNP becoming a factor locally in more than just the worst immigration hot spots.
  11. Presumably there may have been an issue with the Easter dates in those years. Still, a big blow to Gordon.
  12. I genuinely thought this could never happen in the UK. Now I believe that Labour are indeed capable of anything, either bad or incompetent or both. Maybe you and I are too cynical - but at the least it proves that Tony and co have done irreparable damage to the system of checks and balances and to our trust in standards in public life.
  13. The UK has many good companies and shows a decent level of innovation. But we know that the Soviet Union had arguably the best space programme, made scientific breakthroughs and provided a good level of elite education in mathematical sciences. I think that the picture in the UK as a whole is poor and deteriorating. No developed country of x million inhabitants will be all good or bad - so we can all argue about what the stats really show. I would argue that the visible return on current investment in infrastructure, the NHS etc is so poor that it provides a good indication of the malaise of
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