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markreed

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About markreed

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  1. Let GO of It. Happiness is the best revenge. What may seem that he has it all, well, give it a few years. What goes around, comes around.
  2. Do you know where the biggest waste of public money is? Defence. Ask how much a submarine or a nuclear missle costs, and consider that, as Eisenhower said "every penny spent on every weapon fired is food taken from the mouths of the starving." Second biggest waste? Defence contract underwriting. In simple terms if Nukehavistan decide they can't pay for their shiny new jet fighters, The Taxpayer pays for them.
  3. There's the right number of Public Sector workers, but they're in the wrong place. Too many quangos!
  4. They were not poor, at all. Their mortgages hadn't increased, and in fact, had in real terms fallen to at least half what we were paying. It was pure profiteering.
  5. Interesting Debate. The fundamentalist basis of almost everything society at the moment is that someone, somewhere can make a profit out of it. Your food, your clothes, everything you wear, drink, eat, see is produced by a company designed to charge more than it costs to make for absolutely everything. Things that are unprofitable would simply cease to exist without a state appartus : most people would complain if health care were privatised (see the US, which is inhuman in how it treats illness as something to make money out of), if roads repair, rail links, and rubbish delivery stopped or was billed at a profit. I'm not saying nationalisation would cure anything, but a completely capitalist society with no state would be a desperate and ugly society. Any pay increases in the Public Sector are generally under the rate of inflation - by around 1.25% where I work. Nobody gets rich in the public sector apart from those who are either Chief Execs or world authorities on brain surgery or liver transplants. A starting nurse earns just £11,000 a year. Consultants are massively overused : where I used to work they frequently brought in consultants at £1100 a day, yet laid off hundreds of people at at least a years salary : and this happened in the past TWO years. Before I left the consultants would ring me up all the time picking my brain because they clearly didn't know the difference between an **** and an elbow. Calling public sector workers 'parasites' is an absolute ignorant insult. The parasites are those in The Square Mile, with their half-million quid bonuses. All they do is transfer money from the poor to the rich. The so called Public Sector parasites work to maintain the quality of life YOU take for granted. They arrest the criminals, save lives, defend our country, keep the rubbish collected and the roads paved : they are heroes compared to Joe Bloggs from British Tobacco or Making Weapons That Kill People Better Industries or Mr Selling Debt To The Poor At 444.3% Per Annum. When I worked in Central Government, I was paid HALF the market rate of my equivalent role in the Private Sector. I was negotating multi million pound deals and having to borrow money on credit cards to pay my gas bill. That's why I left the job there. Any clever employer will know the cost of low staff retention in failed productivity, adverts, and interviewing time : a seniorish post will take approx 9 months to fill, cost about £15k in advert and processing, not to mention the lack of work done or a consultant drafted in at £££££ to do the job in the meantime. I can't speak for any other public sector worker, but I know that in my office, they are keenly aware of every pound and every penny. I could lecture you about value, about Total Cost Of Ownership, about logistics, Just In Time delivery methods, consumable costs, product offset, and so on and so forth, but I'd prefer to do it this way : in my time in the Public Sector I've saved the taxpayer around £30,000,000 (or approximately 6,000 Hip Replacements) and improved the quality of the service delivered per pound by around 17% overall. When it comes to top end Public Sector salaries, consider that it all public servants, and ALL employees are human. Therefore, if say Mr NHS Chief Exec gets offered twice his salary by GlobalMegaUberCorp, the temptation is to take it. The Public Scetor has to compete with The Tescos, The Asdas, and The Microsofts of this business universe. True talent isn't cheap and if the Public Sector wants some of the talent required, it has to compete with GlobalMegaUberCorp. Talent goes where the money is.
  6. My wedding cost us about £800. Everyone had a great time. You don't need to make stupid,. ostentatious displays of imagined wealtht o show the value of your commitment. I couldn't give a toss about how other people's weddings are : its YOUR day, you do it YOUR way, and my way wasn't to piss money away - we had a great time (apart from my brothers hangover, the daft twit). I don't care about impressing anyone else - if I was rich I wouldn't give a damn how rich other people think I am. That's not what inspires me.
  7. I'd buy outright somewhere cheap - not necessarily in the UK, and live on the interest if needs be. I'm sick of renting. Renting is not a long term affordable option L a mortgage has an end - I'm not going to be renting at 80, there are more important things in life than money at that age. We had a landlady try to charge us for a new fridge because their 10 year old model had a crack. I did the sums and said it had probably been opened 30,000 times since they got it, so it was reasonable wear and tear. The handle on the cooker fell off (the cooker was a Jurassic era model) and she tried to charge us for a new cooker. They tried to raise the rent after they put in expensive new windows we didn't want (and I had to take time off to let the workmen install). They tried to charge us for rewashing a carpet that they themselves had stored in a cupboard - and they said it was dirty and hadn't been stored acceptably. They let themselves in hours before an agreed appointment and didn't understand why we didn't like that. One time the bank screwed up the rent payment and she drove over and demanded a cheque from us for the rent instantly. Needless to say we withheld the last months rent as they already had it in the form of deposit and we knew they had no intention of returning it. Damn amateurs give landlords a bad name.
  8. You could always go back to the Landlord and say that since he's making a profit, he should drop the rates? If he makes money or loses on the renting situation, that's only his business. He won't be refunding or lowering rents if he's making "too much" profit so he shouldn't raise rents when he's losing money. Sounds like he planned it poorly. M
  9. I always move on principle if the landlord puts the rent up. Why should the rent go up? They have fixed mortgages : those mortgages don't get more expensive but remain fixed and therefore, the value goes down in real terms aftre inflation. If the mortgage goes up when interest rates rise then I think that's a sign of a poorly managed mortgage : there should always be a reasonable profit margin to accomodate the gap between the rent paid and the mortgage cost. That said, any good Landlord knows that the cost of a vacant property is considerable and that renters have options. I've moved judt to spite landlords who have raised rents. In one case, they wanted to put up the rent by £50 a month because we had new windows fitted. New windows we didn't ask for or want and I had to take time off work so the workmen could access the property. As a rule, don't mess with your renters. The landlords need them a lot more than they realise.
  10. The exception is not the rule. I know a lot of people in TV and print, they're generally struggling as much as anyone, and often put in these articles because it concerns them too.
  11. There are 14,000 Post offices in the UK. With the closures 90% of the population will still be within one mile of a Post Office. The ones being closed are those that have sometimes as little as 16 customers a week. No other business could survive on just 16 customers a week, unless it was a Porsche dealership in Dubai. Everyone's forgetting the Deregulation of the market : the RM is being forced to provide downstream access to it's coimpetitors for 'the final mile', whereby TNT/ETC etc will do all but the final mile of the delivery. TNT/ETC will drop bags off at RM Sorting/Delivery offices, and the RM is obligated by law to deliver it's competitors mail at "X"p per item : it is being forced by law to subsidise the competition, as the final mile costs an awful lot more than "X"p. The competition don't have the infrastructure in place to deliver. That's where the problem is. If the competition had to deliver the final mile as well, you'd see the true cost of post rise. In the UK, post costs around half what it does in the rest of Europe. if you wanted rid of teh RM, you'd be paying at least double for your post.
  12. I'm as paranoid as anyone, but the first post is a bit tinfoil hat by any standards. It's far more likely that the PR/editors (who it is implied here are corrupt and have a vested interest in property prices rising - no more corrupt than anyone else) are putting out stories about housing because that's what an awful lot of people are actually interested in reading. Heavens above! Who'd've thought that the media reflects and defines the interests of people? Oh well. FTB's will never go on strike, society is too fragmented.
  13. Yes, the overall volume of mail has gone down, but the rise of electronic business has meant that there are a lot more parcels and mail order than before (Ebay and Amazon are prime examples of this). Mass mailings are going down, albeit they are better targeted now. You personally may not see so much junk mail, people in subprime markets and without access to the internet may see an awful lot more. It's worth remembering that whilst 50% of the UK has Internet access, 50% doesn't - and that 50% may never do so at home. So emails are all well and good but 1) millions of people don't use email and 2) people want physical product when they order something - not just a string of bits and bytes. The Regulator needs to take its hands off the RM as it is tying the hands of a business that could perform excellently were it not bound by legislation : we would see price rises, but then again, these prices rioses are long overdue. The price of post didn't rise for something like 5 years between 1998-2003 - where else would you have seen that kind of market stasis? Not many places I imagine.
  14. I work for the Royal Mail - and not as a postie. Postmen are worth more than they are paid - it's gruelling, miserable work, I know - I've done it. The reason the Post Office is in such a state is simple : PostComm. The Royal Mail needs to get approval from PostComm before it can raise prices. Any other industry where they were losing money they'd just raise prices. With PostComm, the actual Price of mail has halved in the past decade. Also, have you looked at how much letters cost elsewhere in the world? They are about twice as much, and service is MUCH MUCH worse. If you want to know what the competition are like - use competitors. They piggy back on the RM network and pay a pittance to do so - and PostComm have compelled the Royal Mail to allow them to do so. The competition are OK are getting post through your front door because they use the Royal Mail for 'The Final Mile'. Take the RM out of that equasion and you'd have to pick up your post from their offices, which are always on industrial estates at the far end of town, normally barely manned, and under-efficient. The Post Office loses 7 letters per 10,000. It really needs to sort out the Posties on the rob, as there are actually very few of them, and generally that's because they can barely make a living.. the normal cause of any thieving employee is that they are underpaid or, if they work for a megacorp, dumb and greedy. 27% is too much, but they are underpaid as it is.
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