Discussion of the UK Government
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By Arnold
Membership Days Posts
#208431
new puritan wrote:What I can't understand is the Tory line that this will apparently encourage government bodies to relocate jobs to poorer regions

The first such large Inland Revenue office was in Bootle in 1965, and I worked there for most of 1966.
It was a practice that worked then because -
a) Jobs in London were plentiful, and the Inland Revenue had a problem recruiting and retaining staff.
b) Office property was cheaper in poorer regions.
Fast forward 50 years, and all the work that can be exported up North has already gone, and there are no jobs for those down South whose jobs have been exported.
 
By Tubby Isaacs
Membership Days Posts
#208435
new puritan wrote:It's almost as if they want to Balkanise the entire country. Despite Cameron's misty-eyed proclamations of unionism, more or less everything this government does appears to be vindictively targeted at those areas that won't bow down and vote Tory. Taking money (and therefore purchasing power) out of weak regional economies at a time of prolonged slump merely makes things worse - even blinkered ideologues like Osborne must surely be able to see that, which makes me think there's a deliberate policy of managed decline going on here.


Osborne might have something up his sleeve- he's leaked this part of the budget, and probably did it for a reason. We could all chase after the aggregate demand argument, and he could pull some infrastructure out of the hat. For instance, Tyneside might see a load of civil servants lose money, but get some promise of the Leamside Line reopening. Osborne could tie that in with his "Chinese funds are investing" thing, and look quite clever- though of course they're not giving any money for free. I expect there's some project in most areas like that he could make noises about supporting.

Of course these promises could be dumped later. And he could re-announce stuff like the extension of Manchester Metrolink, which is happening anyway.

Don't underestimate him.
 
By Tubby Isaacs
Membership Days Posts
#208436
Arnold wrote:Fast forward 50 years, and all the work that can be exported up North has already gone, and there are no jobs for those down South whose jobs have been exported.


I don't know about that. The Prison Service was once to be exported (to Derby, possibly). It's still in Victoria.

It's hard in practice to move stuff out of London. Though London houseprices are very high, they weren't up to the end of the nineties, and plenty of career civil servants will have bought places already. And there will always be young people who want to work in London and are happy living in shared houses.
By new puritan
Membership Days Posts
#208437
Tubby Isaacs wrote:Osborne might have something up his sleeve- he's leaked this part of the budget, and probably did it for a reason. We could all chase after the aggregate demand argument, and he could pull some infrastructure out of the hat. For instance, Tyneside might see a load of civil servants lose money, but get some promise of the Leamside Line reopening. Osborne could tie that in with his "Chinese funds are investing" thing, and look quite clever- though of course they're not giving any money for free. I expect there's some project in most areas like that he could make noises about supporting.

Of course these promises could be dumped later. And he could re-announce stuff like the extension of Manchester Metrolink, which is happening anyway.

Don't underestimate him.


Yep, I dare say there's an element of expectations management in all this. I'm fully expecting a fuel duty cut or some other populist measure to take the heat off.
 
By Tubby Isaacs
Membership Days Posts
#208440
Maybe, but I reckon they'll be saved for nearer the election.

The genius (as I modestly call it) of the transport stuff is that there's a bit of Lib Demmy stuff- look, we got him to invest in public transport! And I think the aggregate demand point will really gain traction without it.

There will be plenty of areas that get fuck all extra stuff back, of course. But hey, look at <insert northern city>!
 
By Andy McDandy
Membership Days Posts
#208445
Looks like they're fast tracking Royal Mail privatisation.

Woo hoo, shit service about to get shitter and then fold. Still, at least we may be spared the annual "They're not doing proper Christmas stamps" ritual.
 
By Tubby Isaacs
Membership Days Posts
#208448
It's quite good here, apart from the pick-up for mail you miss being a person short- the two who do work there work their arses off, and there are still massive queues.
#208455
There's a difference between an expensive education and intelligence...
 
By Tubby Isaacs
Membership Days Posts
#208466
But you don't need to be highly intelligent to anticipate the opposition point in the budget debate, especially when you've given them days to prepare it.

He's actually talked quite a lot about infrastructure, starting from his first budget, and he's sensibly funded a few small projects like the Todmorden Curve and the East West Rail Link. It's visible stuff, and the private sector middle classes use it (which Blair didn't understand). It's not like support for poor people's kids which can be slashed, out of sight and mind.

And of course, infrastructure can be solid rightwing stuff like roads. New bypass for all, or extra wages for civil servants? Eh? Eh?
By new puritan
Membership Days Posts
#208722
Samanfur wrote:Looks as though the roads could be next up for privatisation.

And Cameron's even referencing the Victorians. :?


The Ragged Trousered Philanthropists comes to mind.

If it were possible to construct huge gasometers and to draw together and compress within them the whole of the atmosphere, it would have been done long ago, and we should have been compelled to work for them in order to get money to buy air to breathe. And if that seemingly impossible thing were accomplished tomorrow, you would see thousands of people dying for want of air – or of the money to buy it – even as now thousands are dying for want of the other necessities of life. You would see people going about gasping for breath, and telling each other that the likes of them could not expect to have air to breathe unless the had the money to pay for it.
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