Sunday, November 30, 2008

throwing money away

What on earth is wrong with the US and UK? Both countries are planning to throw state (our) money at ailing car companies.


This is 70s style socialism (remember British Leyland?)

Sometimes you need to remind Bush and Brown how capitalism works. Companies that start to fail - no matter for what reason - should be allowed to do just that. Tinkering with the market to avoid closure does no good at all, in fact it does harm. The most essential part of successful capitalism is creative destruction - as a crap company fails good ones step in to take their place. Otherwise we get frozen into a moment of time where nothing changes or develops.

Let GM go to the wall. Let them all go to the wall.

Nobody will be buying cars - or certainly not the lumbering fuel-inefficient monsters Detroit seems to favour - in 20 years time. We expect our car to last us at least another 10 to 15 years (if diesel's still available of course), hopefully after that we'll be sussed enough to no longer need one. Kids today will never drive, they'll walk, cycle and use public transport - and be happier and healthier for it.

Why on earth waste a single moment on bailing out companies that will no longer have any role in a modern world? What are the socialists Bush and Brown thinking of?
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Thursday, November 27, 2008


Woolworths and MFI go bust on the same day. Mad allahs go on the rampage in Mumbai deliberately targeting UK and US citizens. What's going on?

Gold and silver look like they are starting their staggering climb as money floods out of equities and into real cash.

Suddenly in the US and Europe the suburbs are beginning to die, their shops dying, their businesses collapsing and the social fabric, once held together by the glue of rising house prices, easy credit, conspicuous consumption and cultural marxism, falling apart quicker than one can document it.

And this is only the beginning. But is it the REAL beginning? Has the 'economic' crisis cloaked the real crisis that we all know is coming. We expected the end of consumerism and easy living (socialism) to be heralded by oil shortages and/or terrible climatic disasters. But the economy, in all its subtlety and cold-bloodedness, is calling the first shots, the 'externalities' ignored by your middle class shits manifesting themselves like this (looming depression) rather than through the glamour of fist fights on the forecourts or hurricanes in the home counties. They are coming, it's just we'll be more shabbily dressed than I was expecting ...
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Monday, November 24, 2008

horseshit politics

Oh dear. All day the telly pundits have been going on about 'a momentous day for the UK economy' 'cos prize tosspot Darling was presenting a pre-budget thing.

And what a load of crap it is. Gordon Brown softened us up this morning with a rambling speech about the new order (more borrowing, globalization etc etc), then his sidekick wooed us all with the staggering offer of a 2½% reduction in VAT to 15% (I remember when it was 5%!) - to be financed by an increase in NI in 2011 (as if Labour will still be in power then!!).

But the real crime (a capital one to my mind) is the total stupidity of this 'government' thinking it can BORROW itself out of this recession! Er - wasn't it borrowing that caused all this trouble in the first place?

In a way the pundits were right. Today has been a momentous one - the death of New Labour. We'll get a tory government by default even without an apology for Thatcher.

In reality the death of the globalized economy and the debt economy is now intricately intertwined with the two real crises - Peak Oil and Climate Change. But these buggers haven't figured that out yet ...
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Monday, November 17, 2008

feral kids

Barnardos have just come out with a report that claims 50% of adults think kids are 'like animals'.

Fucking morons.

Did they ask anyone that actually HAS kids? Did they ask anyone that actually lives on the rough estates where these so-called feral kids live? Highly unlikely. We have the odd nutter here, but most of the kids are great - far more civilized and well-behaved than we were back in the 60s and 70s.

I reckon they only asked Mail and Guardian readers! Talk about biased.

And as for adults being 'scared' of kids - what a pile of drivel! Why would any burly and street-wise adult be frightened of some beanpole borderline divvy in a twat hat?
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Friday, November 14, 2008

portishead railway - about time!!

As you may have seen in the local media FOSBR is running a postcard campaign to reopen the rail line to Portishead and the line between Avonmouth and Bristol Parkway via Henbury. Funding will become available from the government for transport priorities in the South West region in the new year. We want the West of England Partnership (ex-Avon authorities) to include them in the bid. Only items high up the regional list will receive funding. Previous funding bids have been exclusively road-based. Since the government have refused to allow Network Rail to fund these schemes, this is the only way. We think that we have a good chance, but need your support.
The postcard is now available on the FOSBR website here.

Please print it from the website, fold it in half and tape it together before you send it to the West of England Partnership. Sorry, but you'll need to provide a stamp!

Besides getting people out of their cars and into quick and efficient public transport, there are several good reasons to support the campaign

These rail links would provide a cross-city service and a new link between the Severn Beach line and Bristol Parkway.

There has been much talk about Rapid Transit. This is the original rapid transit: Filton Abbeywood to Temple Meads in 8 minutes & Parson St to Stapleton Rd in 12 minutes!

Greater Bristol rail stations have seen passenger numbers double in the ten years to 2004/5. There have been further significant increases since then. Since Bristol City Council put money into the Severn Beach line to increase the service in May, numbers increased by 30% in three months. The demand is there.

Portishead's traffic and that into Bristol along the A370 is notorious. The Henbury line runs close to major employers including Rolls Royce, Airbus and Royal Mail at Filton and would provide a public transport alternative where none may exist at present.
Road accidents!

The West of England Partnership (representing ex-Avon authorities) estimate that congestion costs local businesses £350 million a year.

Government funding will be allocated for new transport schemes in the new year but our local decision-makers must submit a bid for it prioritising the schemes they want. This gives local councillors the chance to show that they are interested in schemes other than roads and buses.

For those who see such things as important, at roughly £20 million this proposal compares very well with road schemes.

What you can do:

Please send the postcard to the West of England Partnership.

If you want physical (rather than electronic) cards to send or to give to other people please let me know and I will arrange to get them to you. The more people who are involved the better.

Please foward this email to your friends and anyone who may be interested.

If you are involved with trade unions or other organisations please would you ask your colleagues to send cards and if the organisation will issue a statement of support as that would be wonderful!

For those interested, there is a Facebook group about the Portishead Railway campaign which can be found here. There is a copy of the postcard available here too.

Originally posted on somerset and dorset
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modern transport plans for Norfolk

(Photos Salhouse on Sheringham BR branch, 30.7.1984)

If you think restoring Bath to Bournemouth has some issues for the future spare a thought for the Norfolk Orbital Railway which plans to link the BR Norwich-Sheringham line to the North Norfolk and Mid-Norfolk Railways. This will create a huge loop around northern Norfolk, bringing modern transport back to this neglected corner of England and operating both commuter and heritage trains. I can foresee that their biggest problem will be line capacity.

There was a programme on TV about this last night. Most were in support of it, but amazingly Peak Oil was only mentioned once!

Originally posted on somerset and dorset
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Wednesday, November 12, 2008

strange days

I'm a third of the way into a course of 6 injections which will replenish my B12 - my diabetes medicine has basically destroyed my ability to get this any other way. So after the 6 it will be an injection every 3 months to stop me getting dementia!

Out there things are getting madder by the day, with the Bank of England determined to destroy the pound - I reckon we'll be using the Euro within two years, though hopefully local currencies will flourish as well. The election of Obama is a bright point, but more because power in the US has switched to my generation rather than in any hope that he'll be able to solve the big financial problems. Suddenly, at least in the US, politics is cool again, and climate change and peak oil will now be firmly on the agenda, even if a little late!

Our next trip away is to St Moritz at the start of December. We're flying to Geneva, then taking the train (first class of course!) right across Switzerland. The snow's already down so it should be nice and yuley! I've got this really cute little mini-laptop so, providing we can load the software, I'll be able to report and blog from St Moritz! Fortunately I foresaw the fall in the pound so got our Swiss Francs at a good price!
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Saturday, November 08, 2008

police state advances

Look at this, received today. The first sentence is the telling one.

If you doubted you were living in a Stalinist state this should open your eyes. How dare Tesco, a PRIVATE company, give PRIVATE information to a government organisation.

How did this happen? Through a so-called 'loyalty' card. Loyalty to whom? Certainly not its customers.

The stupidest thing is that we've always had a TV license. The 'misunderstanding' comes from the fact that Debs has changed her name since getting married. This is the one good thing that comes out of this - Brown's attempts to become Big Brother will always be scuppered by the sheer stupidity of the sort of people that would not feel ashamed of doing such 'work'!

Needless to say Tesco will no longer get a penny of our money.
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boris loses it

Poor Boris Johnson. The one person further to the left than Ken Livingstone ... and poor London's stuck with him.

What's the duffer gone and done now? Only cancelled nearly 3bn quid's worth of tramway development in London. What is he thinking of? And to replace these superb schemes - more buses (LOL!) and more provision for walking and cycling (cheap).

It's simple. A city isn't a city without trams. It's a joke. The problem was the plans just scrapped by Boris were nowhere near ambitious enough. London doesn't need a few km of tramways here and there, but a huge network reaching every corner of the city, plus extensions into commuterland, to totally replace the road network. Perhaps backwards-looking Boris simply doesn't get it.

London WILL get its trams, or die. It's just going to take a few more years than expected.

Bye bye Boris. You were fun for a week or two ...

Also posted to transition transport UK and future economics
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interesting times

What the fuck is going on? How could apparently professional people, some with an economics background, drop interest rates by 1½%? It's madness - and here's why.

The banks are cash poor, that's why they are not lending to each other, let alone anyone else. To increase their balance sheets they need to draw in cash - and lots of it. To get that cash they need to offer high interest rates. Interest rates should be going UP, not down.

The second part of the equation is that the world is in an economic mess because of cheap credit. Yet our idiot government's cure is - make credit cheaper.

This is a potent moment of danger for the UK.

Those companies that depend on cheap credit, rather than cash reserves, should GO TO THE WALL, not be bailed out by this weak government.

Again, to flourish, hold gold, silver, oil shares with value, land, skills, seeds and friends. This is going to get a LOT worse.

Also posted to future economics
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Wednesday, November 05, 2008


Well, despite the diabetes and B12 problems I can still manage an all-nighter on election night!

We stocked up with apple pie, pretzels, popcorn and Bud and celebrated the end of socialism in the USA.

What a night! Has there ever been such a political contrast in the US? Dipstick old-money socialist Bush being replaced by the urbane and charismatic Obama. Obama v McCain was never going to be a fair contest, particularly after McCain amazingly brought in the practically Mongoloid Sarah Palin as running mate. What a total joke she was - the Obama camp must have laughed all night when she started spouting her commie rot.

What an example to the world too. The US from being a pariah state and bully can now transform itself into a world leader. Who would ever have thought that of the US? Obama's plans for a Green Energy transformation is a first step in allowing the US to survive the 21st century. The end of dependence on oil and a genuine desire to tackle climate change are the two main pillars on which the US transformation need to be built. If Obama starts talking about citizens learning new skills and crafts and wiping out the debt economy who knows where the US will end up? And how about tying the dollar to gold again - that would be a stroke of genius.

Who knows ... one day even the UK may get a black prime minister, or even its first woman one!
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