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  1. #1
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    Default How are the Tories doing?

    We've been living with the new Government for a few months now... so how do you think they're doing?

    Is David Cameron a good Prime Minister or a bit of an arse? What do you think?

    Si xx

    I've just got my handcuffs and my truncheon and that's enough.

  2. #2
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    On the home front I'd say nothing's really 'kicked in' yet - so although we've had lots of announcements of cuts, and changes, I'm not sure any of it is really in place yet. On the overseas front, I'd say he's put his foot in it both in Pakistan and particularly in the US, so I'm not sure he's done himself any favours there.

    On the other hand, no major crises... yet!

  3. #3

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    Blair and Brown started going grey (Blair especially) and Cameron appears to be going bald? Often wonder what the Prime Minister gets told about the country that brings on this sort of change? The pressures of the job? Possibly, John Major actually looked more pink AFTER leaving No.10!

    As for the Coalition... history in the making and all that.
    Conservatives annouce something, Lib Dems go "We never signed up to that?!?" Conservatives back down. Sometimes... Slightly...
    It will be interesting to see how Labour can get a word in edgeways?
    But I think it's curtains for the Lib Dems at the next election from what I've read and heard other people say.
    Not drank since Februray and yet Cameron in power hasn't driven me to the drink like I thought it would?

    I'm interested to see the upcoming Party conferences? Cabinet members can "hold each others hand"... but rank and file members? Sit back and wait for the fireworks!
    I wish the Coalition well through it's five year term... but when it collapses it's going to be spectacular! (Britain doesn't make or own much anymore anyway? 100% Guilt free spectator sport!)

  4. #4
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    But I think it's curtains for the Lib Dems at the next election from what I've read and heard other people say.
    There's the constant complaint that they're not standing up to the Conservatives enough, but given that they have such a small handfull of seats they haven't got a huge amount to bargain with. It would be unrepresentative for them to have too much influence.

    As far as I can tell, they're hitting the public sector with a big stick. This might be to give more leeway to private companies, but I'm not sure.

    What I find irritating about new Governments is their desire to kick over all the anthills. This is paticularly visible in education, where every time there's a change of power they invent a new system for educating children. It must be totally bewildering for those involved.
    Pity. I have no understanding of the word. It is not registered in my vocabulary bank. EXTERMINATE!

  5. #5
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    They are doing okay.
    There are some gaps appearing between Lib Dems and the Conservatives, but they are just about holding it together.
    Assume you're going to Win
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  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rob McCow View Post
    This is paticularly visible in education, where every time there's a change of power they invent a new system for educating children.
    This is nothing new - I think both the Communists and Nazis decided that their first acts in power was kids should be taught the "right facts" about the world.
    Remember, just because Davros is dead doesn't mean the Dalek menace has been contained ......

  7. #7
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    Government ? You mean there's someone actually running the country at the moment ? You'd be hard pressed to tell.

    Like all new governements, we're still in the 'everything is the previous government's fault' period, but clearly the defecit is going to be used as the excuse to do what they always want to do - cut public spending and try to privatise everything. The biggest sneaky wrinkle on this idea is to try to fool us into running things for them with their 'Big Society' , so that it will be our fault when things are crap, not theirs.

    On the whole they seem too happy to be quiet - only Gove has stuck his neck out, several times now, and if he doesn't buck his ideas up he may be the first casualty. The rest are still a bunch of faceless nobodies - look how quiet Cable and Norman Baker have been, given how strident they were in opposition. We've had major announcements on bank profits etc and not a peep.

    More worrying is Cameron himself - for a man who has apparently spent his life training to be PM he's done some pretty crap things - sucking up to the US when he was supposed to be being tough (and pissing off almost every other WW2 ally in the process), and then sticking the knife into Pakistan only weeks before a UK visit. Now he's come over all dictator over the 'milk crisis' just because he doesn't want to replace Maggie as the 'milk snatcher'

    Somehow you get the impression they're all sitting on their hands, not wanting to be the first to announce how shitty things will be under their spending cuts. Hardly the 'decisive government' we were promised.

    This is paticularly visible in education, where every time there's a change of power they invent a new system for educating children. It must be totally bewildering for those involved.
    Teachers long gave up giving a toss what government thinks. The wheel just keeps turning ....
    Bazinga !

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jon Masters View Post
    Somehow you get the impression they're all sitting on their hands, not wanting to be the first to announce how shitty things will be under their spending cuts. Hardly the 'decisive government' we were promised.
    The government's problem is that they can be too Conservative - 'cos that will piss of the Lib Dems, and they can't be too Lib Dem as that would piss off the Tories. They can't win - and, neither can the UK because the Government has to strike the middle ground in order to keep both sides happy.
    Assume you're going to Win
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  9. #9

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    Well... think we all spoke to soon lol!
    Although if some prisons close due to the cuts... does this mean benefit cheats won't be going to prison anyway?

  10. #10
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    Are the coalition doing quite badly today? Probably not actually. From the Independent:

    Benefits for the elderly, including the winter fuel allowance and free bus travel, are being targeted by ministers in the hunt for spending cuts.

    The Government is also considering whether to scrap child benefit payments to better-off families to help fund an overhaul of the welfare state.

    As ministers grapple with politically unpalatable decisions, George Osborne, the Chancellor, said that the coalition's actions would help to build a "fairer" Britain. And Nick Clegg, the Deputy Prime Minister, will this morning try to reassure voters that the coalition is about more than cuts by promising to boost the prospects of youngsters from the most disadvantaged families.

    But, as the Coalition reaches its 100th day in office today, the need to agree huge savings has sent tensions soaring between Cabinet colleagues.

    The biggest flashpoint is between the Department for Work and Pensions and the Treasury over where the axe will fall on the benefits bill. Iain Duncan Smith, the Work and Pensions Secretary, has been told by Mr Osborne that he must identify further deep savings in his budget if he is to realise his ambition of fundamentally reforming welfare.

    Mr Duncan Smith's problem is that redesigning the benefits system to make it simpler will cost up to an estimated £3bn. The Chancellor has told him to identify savings of £13bn, on top of benefit cuts already announced in the Budget, to justify the expenditure.

    Mr Duncan Smith is considering ways of limiting winter fuel allowances for older people, which last year were £250 per household, or £400 where at least one partner is 80 years old.

    Critics say the £2.7bn bill is impossible to defend – particularly as many middle-class pensioners use it as an annual windfall once they reach the age of 60.

    One possibility is raising the qualification age to 75, the same age that free television licences are issued. Alternatively, winter fuel allowances could cease to be paid to over-60s and instead targeted only at the worst-off pensioners.

    Ministers are also examining the £1bn-plus cost of providing free off-peak travel from the age of 60.

    The qualification age could be raised to 65 or 70 or the benefit could be means-tested under proposals being studied by the DWP. Restricting benefits to older people would embarrass David Cameron, who before the election denounced as "lies" claims that the Tories planned to cut them.

    Mr Osborne said yesterday: "The commitment on the winter fuel payments is there in the coalition agreement and was made during the election campaign and is there for all to see." However, the agreement promises only that the Coalition will "protect key benefits for older people", and fails to rule out restricting the number of people who qualify for them.

    Mr Duncan Smith is also known to be sceptical about the merits of retaining child benefit as a universal entitlement. Restricting it to less well-off families could save £5bn, but provoke a backlash from middle-class voters. Mr Osborne has warned that means-testing the benefit would mean setting up a "massively complex new system".

    The Chancellor said yesterday that the decisions in the spending review, to be announced on 20 October, would "lay the foundations for future growth and for a fairer society".
    Once again, they've vaguely said they're going to do something with their cuts, but there are no details. Knees are jerking across the country! Will pensioners freeze this year? Will children be sent back to poverty without any dinner? Or is this war on the middle classes?
    Pity. I have no understanding of the word. It is not registered in my vocabulary bank. EXTERMINATE!

  11. #11
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    Iain Duncan Smith really does get screwed over by his own party on a regular basis.

    I'm sure his party will back him faithfully ... and then a week later ...
    Remember, just because Davros is dead doesn't mean the Dalek menace has been contained ......

  12. #12
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    The problem is that people are getting benefits who don't need them. Child benefit is left to build up for a few months and they collect enough to buy little Zackq a Playstation or Davinella a new set of fingernails with spiritual runes on them. People don't refuse free money even though they must know there are plenty of people who need it more than they do.

    But the other way of doing it is via tax credits which have to be applied for and are means tested. This was a Labour plank and it really doesn't work. It's much too complicated, people don't know what's there and what they're entitled to, and there have been enough horror stories of overpayments and demands for money back that those who most need them are often too scared to apply for them.

    Any reforms which get what money is left to those who need it most must be a good thing. I'm just not sure any party has any idea how to actually achieve it.
    Dennis, Francois, Melba and Smasher are competing to see who can wine and dine Lola Whitecastle and win the contract to write her memoirs. Can Dennis learn how to be charming? Can Francois concentrate on anything else when food is on the table? Will Smasher keep his temper under control?

    If only the 28th century didn't keep popping up to get in Dennis's way...

    #dammitbrent



    The eleventh annual Brenty Four serial is another Planet Skaro exclusive. A new episode each day until Christmas in the Brenty Four-um.

  13. #13
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    The thing is, these benefits are very emotive but there must, in the six months or so between a woman finding out that she's pregnant and giving birth, be enough time to get a reasonably good idea of how much is coming into the household from the amount of income tax being paid and whether there are any existing benefits being claimed.

    My problem with the winter heating allowance is that it's essentially a bribe to the privatised and foreign-owned utility companies not to cut pensioners off when they can't pay their bills. There'd be no need for a big payout in winter if older folk could be cajoled into paying their bills by Direct Debit and averaging the cost over the year, but perhaps economies could be achieved by paying a lump sum directly to the utility companies based on the number of elderly customers they serve, rather than paying it into thousands of bank accounts and pension books.

  14. #14
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    Is Vincey Boy Cable trying to out-Tory the Tories ?

    He's certainly picked up their line in bulls#!t - interviewed today he couldn't give a reason why private investment in Royal Mail was inherently better than government money, and he claimed that the Governemnt hanging on to the pensions black hole for the company was 'to safeguard pension payments' rather than what we all know - coz no-one would touch RM with a barge pole if they didn't.

    I'm no economist but surely trying to sell a nationalised industry when it's falling apart through lack in support, and in a recession seems unlikely to get a good price for it
    Bazinga !

  15. #15
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    I didn't know if it was worth starting a dedicated thread, so I'm asking here....

    Can anyone explain the unemployment figures to me?

    I've been following these, being one of them. In August the figure I read on the news was 2.47m. In September they announced an 8,000 drop to....erm....2.47m.

    Today's figures in the news announce a drop of 20,000 to a new magical figure of 2.45m (reported by the BBC) or 2.44m if you get your news from $ky.

    Huh?
    “If my sons did not want wars, there would be none.” - Gutle Schnaper Rothschild

  16. #16
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    I think that's what they call seasonal adjustments- unemployment will go up a bit in June/July as school leavers and graduating students enter the job market, while in the autumn places start recruiting their Christmas staff so there are temporary jobs on offer.

  17. #17
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    I've been following these, being one of them. In August the figure I read on the news was 2.47m. In September they announced an 8,000 drop to....erm....2.47m.

    Today's figures in the news announce a drop of 20,000 to a new magical figure of 2.45m (reported by the BBC) or 2.44m if you get your news from $ky.

    Huh?
    It's just rounding, isn't it... 2,473,000 would round down to 2.47. Subtract 8,000 and you would still have 2,465,000 which would round up to 2.47 instead of rounding down. Subtract another 20,000 on top of that and you have 2,445,000 which would round up 2.45, and if the actual numbers were a bit higher than 8,000 and 20,000 the actual numbers could be lower than 2,445,000 which would round down to 2.44.

  18. #18
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    Raising the state pension for everyone seems an oddly popular thing for the government to slip into the headlines now. Why was it not used as a sweetener last week when all the bad news came out? It all seems very odd.

    First Nick Clegg outs himself as a bit of a smoker and now Vince Cable is being nice to his fellow old people. The Lib Dems are trying to get their edge back.
    Dennis, Francois, Melba and Smasher are competing to see who can wine and dine Lola Whitecastle and win the contract to write her memoirs. Can Dennis learn how to be charming? Can Francois concentrate on anything else when food is on the table? Will Smasher keep his temper under control?

    If only the 28th century didn't keep popping up to get in Dennis's way...

    #dammitbrent



    The eleventh annual Brenty Four serial is another Planet Skaro exclusive. A new episode each day until Christmas in the Brenty Four-um.

  19. #19
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    Raising the state pension for everyone seems an oddly popular thing for the government to slip into the headlines now. Why was it not used as a sweetener last week when all the bad news came out? It all seems very odd.
    A cynic might suggest that they have to do something positive in order to keep any kind of popularity right now...

    Si xx

    I've just got my handcuffs and my truncheon and that's enough.

  20. #20
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    First Nick Clegg outs himself as a bit of a smoker
    I've found it interesting that they've been prominently putting Clegg's face forward in the immediate aftermath of the cuts. He was on the Andrew Marr show and he went on the offensive against the think tank that declared the cuts a disaster. It's almost as though they were making it look as though it was all Clegg's idea.

    Where the hell is Cameron? On holiday?
    Pity. I have no understanding of the word. It is not registered in my vocabulary bank. EXTERMINATE!

  21. #21
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    Yeah seems like a bit of scapegoating.

    I know I find myself disliking the LidDems more than the Tories. For all their talk of 'Compassionate Conservatism' this is die hard 'savage and ill thought cuts' we remember from Thatcherism.

    However these are the kind of cuts the LibDems used to fight tooth and nail.
    Remember, just because Davros is dead doesn't mean the Dalek menace has been contained ......

  22. #22
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    Hey - there's nothing wrong with Thatcherite economic policies - they worked last time. It's a simple formula -

    (1) Make cuts to the public sector

    (2) Reduce borrowing and get inflation under control

    (3) Start getting the huge revenues of North Sea oil

    (4) Have a popular war so people will ignore the homeless.
    Dennis, Francois, Melba and Smasher are competing to see who can wine and dine Lola Whitecastle and win the contract to write her memoirs. Can Dennis learn how to be charming? Can Francois concentrate on anything else when food is on the table? Will Smasher keep his temper under control?

    If only the 28th century didn't keep popping up to get in Dennis's way...

    #dammitbrent



    The eleventh annual Brenty Four serial is another Planet Skaro exclusive. A new episode each day until Christmas in the Brenty Four-um.

  23. #23
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    "They are not workhouses, they are youth vocational training centres ..."
    Remember, just because Davros is dead doesn't mean the Dalek menace has been contained ......

  24. #24

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    http://uk.news.yahoo.com/18/20101120...r-a7ad41d.html

    New social housing tenants could be evicted after as little as two years under government plans to be formally announced on Monday.
    In a move that will anger some Liberal Democrat MPs, coalition moves to put an end to lifetime tenancies will go even further than previously indicated.

    Prime Minister David Cameron has already said he wants an end to council tenancies for life and the introduction of fixed-term contracts of "five or 10 years".

    But, under reforms to be detailed on Monday, councils and housing associations will be able to offer contracts of just two years.

    Tenants whose financial circumstances have improved could then be evicted, although they would be entitled to at least six months' notice.

    Councils and housing associations will also be able to charge rent of up to 80 percent of the market rate so that they can raise money to buy new properties.

    The changes will only apply to new tenants - those already on lifetime tenancies and social rents will keep their current contracts.

    Ministers will insist the moves will make the system fairer, by giving social housing landlords more flexibility in trying to accommodate people with the greatest need. There are five million people on waiting lists for social housing.

    But the plans are likely to inflame coalition tensions. Lib Dem deputy leader Simon Hughes insisted the move to introduce fixed term tenancies was the policy of neither the coalition nor his party when it was raised by Mr Cameron in August.

    It is thought that the Government wants to implement the changes - which apply to England only - as early as next year.
    "Controller of Bespin, Lando Calrissian, insisted the move to introduce fixed term tenancies wasn't part of the deal when it was raised by Darth Vader in August."

    If the Lib Dems roll over and don't vote against this, I think you can condemn (geddit?) the Coalition to a one sided "experiment".

  25. #25
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    Interesting comment this morning from Vince Cable, saying that the Lib-Dems didn't break any binding pledge on tuition fees and that the reversal doesn't mean his party is untrustworthy. Regardless of where you stand on the tuition fees issue, it's hard to see how signing a pledge to oppose a rise in fees, claiming to be ideologically opposed to it, and then doing exactly the opposite, doesn't make you untrustworthy.

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