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Guardian: The UK economy must take a long, hard look at itself

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2 minutes ago, winkie said:

Tax credits are the consequences of growing inequality, the wealthy have got even wealthier because of them......agree there are not enough full time worthwhile jobs that add value to anything, tax credits subsidising low pay that benefits  employers that pay low pay....bit like saying housing benefits benefit landlords.......anyway almost all tax credit money goes straight back into the community almost instantly, spent as tax and most probably back into the hands of the same employer that pays them, it is not hoarded......agree with what you say, perhaps printed money should be redistributed more equally throughout society, always been against CI but can see how something will have to change or back to poor houses, servants, greater numbers of homelessness and hungry, and unrest....not good.;)

Not quite.Tax credits are due to the left pushing family breakdown,and both parties refusing to have an industrial policy.We will have one soon though after the deflationary crash we are going to get.

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1 minute ago, durhamborn said:

Not quite.Tax credits are due to the left pushing family breakdown,and both parties refusing to have an industrial policy.We will have one soon though after the deflationary crash we are going to get.

Globalisation means easier to import cheaply from other places, and give out cash handouts than build up own industries. ;)

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18 minutes ago, winkie said:

Globalisation means easier to import cheaply from other places, and give out cash handouts than build up own industries. ;)

Yes exactly right.Not for much longer though.I think we will get a full blooded industrial policy in a few years.

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8 hours ago, jonb2 said:

IMO, there is only one true way for a country's wealth to increase - that's to make things that the rest of the world wants and will pay for.

So if there was only one country in the world, it could never get more prosperous no matter how much technological progress it enjoyed, no matter how many new natural resources it discovered, no matter how much infrastructure and physical capital it built up etc?

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41 minutes ago, zugzwang said:

And 3x the Poles.

All for about 20% of the hours. Plus free thus, better shops.

Im glad ive seen the odd comment blaming EE hordes for causing Brexit. Thus time it was an interview with Macron.

Brown you stupid stupid tnuc.

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1 hour ago, Dorkins said:

So if there was only one country in the world, it could never get more prosperous no matter how much technological progress it enjoyed, no matter how many new natural resources it discovered, no matter how much infrastructure and physical capital it built up etc?

D - there isn't just one country with all those things. So the question is does not serve this argument.

There are divides of nation states. We, the UK, don't have any worthy natural resources left - I agree if we did, your point would add that income to the list. But capital comes from money which pays for infrastructure. There is no point in having infrastructure if there is no money (borrowed) - as it is unsustainable. It's a result of wealth, not the wealth itself.

Now if you were an African country, with plenty of minerals (there are a few) - you would be exploited by a western company whose earnings most people in the west will never see. So that's no good.

So, perhaps I should have premised it as the UK. But it still applies when you see the wealthy countries like Japan, Germany and now China (despite their internal problems). You do indeed have middle-eastern countries with great natural wealth - but they export it and then build their hideous desert Vegas copy cities.
 

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48 minutes ago, Peter Hun said:

As per usual, thread turns into an anti-immigration rant.

That sentiment has been floating around since the 50's... that's the feeling of being left behind.

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1 minute ago, maverick73 said:

That sentiment has been floating around since the 50's... that's the feeling of being left behind.

 

Its been floating around a lot longer than that...

 

Blaming the "other" for your woes (perceived or real) seems to be an enduring trait of humans

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13 hours ago, spyguy said:

Nope.

Anti TCs.

Ive no problem with self-funding migrants. Wifes one.

I was listening to R4 on the way to work. There was a hand wringing piece on 'the gig economy' and several interviews with Uber drivers. They were lamenting that they were on less than the minimum wage. I couldn't help but wonder if that was actually their income (as the program implied) and whether they would also receive a chunk of working tax credits, housing benefits etc.  But sadly the beeb journalist didn't ask that question.

I would also have like them to ask if there was clearly an oversupply of taxi drivers, why didn't they get a job elsewhere? I assume benefits are keeping it worthwhile earning £6 an hour? Not sure though, the beeb didn't dig further than a hit piece on the 'gig economy'. 

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17 hours ago, scottbeard said:

There are two very separate points here:

- Is the total number of jobs reducing due to technological progress?  I take issue with this.  Yes, particular jobs disappear.  And yes in some individual cases you can't necessarily move from one to the other (for example, a 57-year-old shopkeeper can't necessarily suddenly become a web designer overnight because we're all shopping online).  But humans are insatiable.  No matter how much we have we always want more.  So it follows that we can ALWAYS find something to do with our 40 hours a week that someone else will be prepared to pay for.  There is no point at which technology can satisfy our every whim, as if it satisfies today's whims we just increase what we want.  That's why we aren't all working 2 days a week like the 1950s sci fi films envisaged: we aren't satisfied with a 1950s lifestyle anymore.

- Should we have some way of redistributing wealth, and what should that method be?  Yes indeed 99% would agree.  Citizen's Income at the right level ENCOURAGES work, tax credits DISCOURAGE work.  So I think Citizen's Income is better, even though I don't agree with the view that jobs are disappearing.

 

On the first para, I was only repeating what most commentators are now saying.  Yes it was said in the past that tech creates more jobs than it destroys.  But that view is going out the window -the consensus view is full employment is finished.

Everyone who drives a vehicle for a living is out of a job for starters.

High street retail was used to mop up some of the displaced from manufacturing years ago, but even that is finished now.

On second para, yes TCs are not ideal way of redistributing wealth, and of course that was not the real reason for their existence.  The point is, wealth inequality is growing all round the world and something is going to have to change.

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41 minutes ago, kzb said:

On the first para, I was only repeating what most commentators are now saying.  Yes it was said in the past that tech creates more jobs than it destroys.  But that view is going out the window -the consensus view is full employment is finished.

When the new technology is doing something that couldn't be done before it creates, or at least moves, jobs. Doing the new thing may supersede an old one to a greater or lesser extent, but more as a side effect. Technology that only aims to replace people with machines is a different matter altogether. For an old example railways did what couldn't be done before, to much of a practical extent - move large volumes of goods. That had some knock-on effect on industries that managed to do some of that, e.g. canals, but basically it was the coming of railways that made moving those goods practical just about everywhere, i.e something new (and that was their impact, rather than getting anything moved quickly). A more modern example is the internet. Lots of new jobs doing things that couldn't be done to a great extent before it, even though it's thrown out some others, such as quite a few shops due to largely coincidental overlap. Developing automation on the other hand just gets rid of people, at least when you're not using it for very specialist systems such as space probes where sending people simply isn't possible.

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On 7/10/2017 at 9:43 AM, spyguy said:

Well ....

A quick summary of why he UK economy is in trouble:

~30% of working age people not working, paying tax. A large number are drawing benefits much higher than the minimum.

- Another 30% of the working age population working for the state, some in totally made up jobs.

- About 6M migrants living i nthe UK. At best they mgith pay some tax to ocover the public services they use. At worse, they are being aid ~20K/year to drive up housing cost and consume UK public services.

 

Spot on. 

I lived in an ex-council semi in Surrey. Woman opposite banged out 4 daughters, the latest 2 each pregnant at 15/16 and each also had 3 kids by 20. Each given effectively free homes costing £400K on open market. Thats 1.2 million houses for the 3 of them and probably add another 800K for the other 2. So call it £2 million not including benefits, and costs to NHS and schooling. Of course this is also modus operandi of a large section of the immigrant community also. 

People have been banging on about how the welfare state is over -generous. In fact my ex Yugo friends coud not believe it - even under communist Tito, people who didnt work could survive just about on bread and milk and a few things. We are more socialist than ex Commie bloc. Why do you think people queueing up at Calais?? But nothing has changed in 40 years and nothing will until UK goes bankrupt which is INEVITABLE. Why I am out of £ assets

 

 

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11 hours ago, kzb said:

the consensus view is full employment is finished.

Everyone who drives a vehicle for a living is out of a job for starters.

I do not share that "consensus view".  Yes, Taxi drivers might soon be out of a job, but that just frees them up to do something else instead, just as many jobs of the past have completely disappeared too - slavedrivers, blacksmiths, arrow-makers, steam train coal shovellers etc etc.  In today's society we don't have hundreds of people sitting around unemployed because anachronistic careers don't exist anymore, and similarly 10 years from now we won't have people lying idle because driverless cars have replaced taxis.

11 hours ago, Riedquat said:

When the new technology is doing something that couldn't be done before it creates, or at least moves, jobs....Developing automation on the other hand just gets rid of people

This logic doesn't stack up for me - given how much automation has happened over the last 100 years, we would have virtually no-one in employment at all if that logic were true, yet we actually have quite low unemployment.  

In practice, automation is done because it allows things to be done cheaper.  If I can book a holiday online myself for £300 that years ago would have needed a travel agent, but cost £330 to cover the agent's fee, not only is the travel agent out of a job....but I have £30 extra in my pocket.  So I will spend that £30 on something else, probably some goods or services that are provided by a person who 25 years ago might have trained as a travel agent, but is now a cleaner, or a maker of artisan bread, or whatever.

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20 hours ago, newbonic said:

I was listening to R4 on the way to work. There was a hand wringing piece on 'the gig economy' and several interviews with Uber drivers. They were lamenting that they were on less than the minimum wage. I couldn't help but wonder if that was actually their income (as the program implied) and whether they would also receive a chunk of working tax credits, housing benefits etc.  But sadly the beeb journalist didn't ask that question.

I would also have like them to ask if there was clearly an oversupply of taxi drivers, why didn't they get a job elsewhere? I assume benefits are keeping it worthwhile earning £6 an hour? Not sure though, the beeb didn't dig further than a hit piece on the 'gig economy'. 

I listened to that and thought exactly the same about the tax credits.  Before I found this site I had absolutely no idea how tax credits and housing benefits were practically propping up the entire economy.  A lot of things suddenly started making sense to me.  Horrible sense.  I've not really quite got over it to be honest.

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10 hours ago, scottbeard said:

I do not share that "consensus view".  Yes, Taxi drivers might soon be out of a job, but that just frees them up to do something else instead, just as many jobs of the past have completely disappeared too - slavedrivers, blacksmiths, arrow-makers, steam train coal shovellers etc etc.  In today's society we don't have hundreds of people sitting around unemployed because anachronistic careers don't exist anymore, and similarly 10 years from now we won't have people lying idle because driverless cars have replaced taxis.

This logic doesn't stack up for me - given how much automation has happened over the last 100 years, we would have virtually no-one in employment at all if that logic were true, yet we actually have quite low unemployment.  

In practice, automation is done because it allows things to be done cheaper.  If I can book a holiday online myself for £300 that years ago would have needed a travel agent, but cost £330 to cover the agent's fee, not only is the travel agent out of a job....but I have £30 extra in my pocket.  So I will spend that £30 on something else, probably some goods or services that are provided by a person who 25 years ago might have trained as a travel agent, but is now a cleaner, or a maker of artisan bread, or whatever.

My Bold:  Yes we do !  Or perhaps underemployment is nearer the truth.   This is being covered up by benefits and the Ponzi property economy, but the truth is we have never really recovered from the loss of productive industry.

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11 hours ago, scottbeard said:

I do not share that "consensus view".  Yes, Taxi drivers might soon be out of a job, but that just frees them up to do something else instead, just as many jobs of the past have completely disappeared too - slavedrivers, blacksmiths, arrow-makers, steam train coal shovellers etc etc.  In today's society we don't have hundreds of people sitting around unemployed because anachronistic careers don't exist anymore, and similarly 10 years from now we won't have people lying idle because driverless cars have replaced taxis.

This logic doesn't stack up for me - given how much automation has happened over the last 100 years, we would have virtually no-one in employment at all if that logic were true, yet we actually have quite low unemployment.  

In practice, automation is done because it allows things to be done cheaper.  If I can book a holiday online myself for £300 that years ago would have needed a travel agent, but cost £330 to cover the agent's fee, not only is the travel agent out of a job....but I have £30 extra in my pocket.  So I will spend that £30 on something else, probably some goods or services that are provided by a person who 25 years ago might have trained as a travel agent, but is now a cleaner, or a maker of artisan bread, or whatever.

 

New jobs created by automation taking someone's job are usually low wage.. 

 

The unemployment figures are manipulated to include part time staff(and zero hour contracts?). 2 part time staff are replacing 1 full time hence the low unemployment.  Also as per the ONS site seems unemployed as those without a job who have "ACTIVELY SEEKED WORK IN THE PAST 4 WEEKS"... and if your not looking for work.... i.e. Benefits (not jsa). It's all manipulated you need to look beyond the headline figures. 

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On 11/07/2017 at 10:58 AM, newbonic said:

I was listening to R4 on the way to work. There was a hand wringing piece on 'the gig economy' and several interviews with Uber drivers. They were lamenting that they were on less than the minimum wage. I couldn't help but wonder if that was actually their income (as the program implied) and whether they would also receive a chunk of working tax credits, housing benefits etc.  But sadly the beeb journalist didn't ask that question.

I would also have like them to ask if there was clearly an oversupply of taxi drivers, why didn't they get a job elsewhere? I assume benefits are keeping it worthwhile earning £6 an hour? Not sure though, the beeb didn't dig further than a hit piece on the 'gig economy'. 

I think your suspicions are well-founded. I'm sure they asked them on the BBC yesterday. One of them said they couldn't get a job elsewhere that's why he was driving taxis for a living. I think it really is different this time as people can't seem to amass enough money (after living expense) to get into worthwhile careers or there is just too much competition. Despite low unemployment the truth is more towards underemployment.

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13 hours ago, scottbeard said:

I do not share that "consensus view".  Yes, Taxi drivers might soon be out of a job, but that just frees them up to do something else instead, just as many jobs of the past have completely disappeared too - slavedrivers, blacksmiths, arrow-makers, steam train coal shovellers etc etc.  In today's society we don't have hundreds of people sitting around unemployed because anachronistic careers don't exist anymore, and similarly 10 years from now we won't have people lying idle because driverless cars have replaced taxis.

This logic doesn't stack up for me - given how much automation has happened over the last 100 years, we would have virtually no-one in employment at all if that logic were true, yet we actually have quite low unemployment.  

In practice, automation is done because it allows things to be done cheaper.  If I can book a holiday online myself for £300 that years ago would have needed a travel agent, but cost £330 to cover the agent's fee, not only is the travel agent out of a job....but I have £30 extra in my pocket.  So I will spend that £30 on something else, probably some goods or services that are provided by a person who 25 years ago might have trained as a travel agent, but is now a cleaner, or a maker of artisan bread, or whatever.

According to official statistics - but if all the unemployment underlying those statistics is taken into account then real unemployment is very high.  

Like everything else at some stage everything comes to an end - even the concept of job renewal and job replacement.

While not disagreeing with your underlying idea on eventual job replacement (given time) I question how long that sort of continual reinvention can continue and the trend - could it continue to infinity for example - and apart from that even if it's to infinity it won't always be on a straight line and it's quite possible that we are in or about to start one of the periods when for a significant period there won't be sufficient real replacement jobs until things catch up which might even be decades or even centuries.

There seems to be no sensible plan in the meantime apart from stuff like mass immigration and other ponzi stuff along with printing money - and hoping for the best.

Edited by billybong

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2 hours ago, kzb said:

My Bold:  Yes we do !  Or perhaps underemployment is nearer the truth.   This is being covered up by benefits and the Ponzi property economy, but the truth is we have never really recovered from the loss of productive industry.

Agree yes we do have underemployment, although are benefits covering it up or actually causing it?  This whole discussion started because people are deliberately limiting their work to 16 hours as it's in their financial interest to do so.

2 hours ago, Money Frugality said:

New jobs created by automation taking someone's job are usually low wage.. 

Agreed yes that's a totally fair observation although a slightly different point.  I said (and still believe) that automation does not reduce the number of jobs, because there is always an opportunity for people to be productive in another role or industry when their current role is automated, however it is true that jobs in a post-automation world are not necessarily as satisfying or as well paid.

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2 hours ago, Money Frugality said:

The unemployment figures are manipulated ...you need to look beyond the headline figures. 

 

5 minutes ago, billybong said:

According to official statistics - but if all the unemployment underlying those statistics is taken into account then real unemployment is very high.  

I think the official unemployment statistics are a red herring anyway - as you say there's a myriad of ways that they can be misleading (or manipulated if you prefer) and it varies wildly over time from about 4% to 12% depending upon whether we're in recession or not, which is just a cyclical issue an nothing to do with automation.

If you look at instead at employment or "how many of the people aged 16 to 64 are being paid to do something" then that is currently about 75%, which is similar to (in fact slightly higher than) it was in the 1970s, and yet clearly there has been massive automation since then.  That is what is behind my point that automation only destroys jobs temporarily - yes they may have to retrain, and actually some older people may never work again - but in the long run the economy continues to find new roles for us all.

https://www.ons.gov.uk/employmentandlabourmarket/peopleinwork/employmentandemployeetypes/timeseries/lf24/lms

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Even if you cut tax credits, benefits and the deficit to zero, you will stand have problem of private debt strangling the economy.

Private banks create 97% of our money supply which primarily goes into the financial sector and pumps up asset prices in the stock markets and housing. 

If the banks would of failed during the financial crisis a good portion of the money supply would of disappeared, including peoples savings. 

By the time newly created money trickles down to us it's lost it's purchasing power.

Most people (including MP's) naively assume government creates money and a government budget is like a household.  

The problems of today are in large part due to the debt based financial system we have and until that is looked at, your only tinkering around the edges. 

The banks hold all the cards as they create pretty much all the money supply but most seemed obsessed with the public debt as the neo-classical economic models tell them too. 

Edited by Assume The Opposite

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