Who or What should I believe?

BustinAround

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I've had the pleasure of meeting the prince of darkness in person, and I'm sure you won't be suprised to hear he came across as moderately deranged, borderline insane. He kept going on about how he wanted Britain to be more like America?? I can't think of any other country that we should inspire so greatly to NOT be like /forums/images/graemlins/confused.gif /forums/images/graemlins/confused.gif and he simply refused to answer when I questioned it.

Anyone who actually *likes* baseball should be sectioned.
 

cardinal_mark

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Similarly, my wife met him many years ago whilst she was working in a drug re-hab in London and he was a govt minister... he stormed out ranting about how helping such low lifes was a complete waste of time and money.

Seems like a nice rational guy, lets put him in charge!

Mark
 

jimi

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Absolute bollox .. the point is middle earners have a deteriorating standard of living due to whacking great increases in national & local taxes at source, on expenditure, increases in all sorts of cost (educating offspring comes to mind).

And what do we get for it

1) massive wastage by an ever burgeoning public sector and a decrease in quality of service and life.
2) A war funded by me, as a taxpayer, that I never wanted part of in order to stroke Tony's ego


It makes me furious .. and never mind the lies and deception.


2 small recent things

proposed liberalisation of gambling and licencing laws .. that nobody wanted .. why ?
 

Bergman

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"Firstly the complaint about the government propping up its own pensions with taxes. I'm not sure why or how you think that is the case, a large proportion of civil servants had their pensions with the equitable and the final salary scheme is being (has been?) abolished."

No

The scheme has not been abolished and it is financed from taxation

"People who have already saved are in trouble, but the reason you're being told you will have to work till you drop or "pay more" is because if you are the average person you *aren't saving*.

How are people supposed to save more in the face of increases in Council Tax, fuel duty etc. etc. etc.

If you agree that the decision to tax pension funds was wrong why defend his continuing to do so?

"If we're talking about the iraq war, then thats because the tories supported it more than labour. Have they said anything about the chipping away of our civil liberties too? No they certainly haven't!"

How can you possibly blame the Tories. They are the opposition.
Govnt has a huge majority.
With a little deeper thought you may realise that HM's loyal opposition is bound to support the military once it is decided to go to war. The military act on behalf of the state and owe loyalty to the Crown to who the opposition also owe loyalty.

Iraq war was based on lies - why try to hide the facts. What Blairs motives were we can only guess but there is now way he can evade responsibility however hard he may try.

As for quangos by whatever name you call them. What possible use are they to anyone.

I defy anyone to name 5 without seeking reference somewhere.

As for sitting on one, you most certainly cannot "just go ahead and do it" you may apply but that does not by any means say you will be accepted.

Perhaps thats another Labour half truth.
 

jhr

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Pensions

[ QUOTE ]
The scheme has not been abolished and it is financed from taxation

[/ QUOTE ]

Not entirely so. I can't remember quite where they've got to on this (I'm in the private sector, so no axe to grind) but I believe that it's proposed that public sector pension schemes change from being "final salary" - i.e. a pension calculated on the basis of (a) salary at or near retirement, and (b) length of service, to a pension calculated on average career earnings and length of service. Thus the scheme remains a "Defined Benefit" arrangement as opposed to a "Defined Contribution" scheme (normally known as a "Money Purchase" scheme), but with significantly reduced benefits and lower funding costs.

Most public sector pension funds offered an Additional Voluntary Contribution (or "AVC") facility - for making extra contributions to enhance pension - with Equitable Life, with the inevitable recent effect on fund values. People have lost out big time.

Like all pension schemes, public sector pensions are financed by a combination of member's contributions, deducted from salary, and an employer's contribution to top it up. The Employer's contribution will always depend on the overall level of the pension fund and may, in the past, have been zero. Ultimately, for the public sector, that money comes from taxation, but in a private company, it comes from money that presumably otherwise would have gone to shareholders, either as dividends or to invest in the business and enhance share values. Not really so different, imho.

Everyone asleep now? Good!

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BustinAround

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I'd be interested to know if you've got any quantitative evidence that quality of life is *actually* decreaseing.

With regards to decreasing quality of service from the public sector, are you aware that under this government nobody waits more than 12 months for NHS treatment any more, and that the number waiting more than six months has halved? And that soon you'll be able to choose your hospital and appointment time at referral?

As I've said before, you can't use the iraq war as a reason to change government, the conservatives voted for it in a higher proportion than labour. 90% of tories voted aye, compared to only 62% for labour.

i don't agree with it, but you can't pin this one on labour!
 

TheBoatman

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Here\'s why Jimi!

Call me a cynic, but if you got as much tax/duty from booze and gambling as HMG does wouldn’t it be a good idea to have those places open 24/7 instead of having them closed half the day. You could double your tax/duty take in one go?

Also, if HMG started a campaign before hand (I believe it’s already started) saying that you want the clubs, pubs and bars to finance the extra policing necessary to deal with all the drunks, HMG can then reduce the amount of cash given to the police forces, thus increasing HMG coffers.

If you think about it, it’s a brilliant plan, HMG are paying 10 billion to finance the police forces. The pubs/clubs are paying 22 billion in tax and duties, add on (say) another 2 billion for the extra workload for policing the new 24/7 regs, deduct the 2 billion from HMG policing budget (i.e. Gordon only gives the police 8 billion).
The pubs and clubs have to increase their prices to their customers (you & me) increasing HMG’s the taxable take from them, Gordon gains more tax take.

The words double whammy spring to mind!

It’s another case of we will “pay more”.
 

sorehead

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Whether you're Labour MP or not, doesn't every citizen have a moral duty to challenge the decisions of any government - especially decisions the affect their lives. Now the problem is that there is no method of doing this and that would force Tony B.Liar to be the listening President that he promised he would be.
 

BustinAround

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Yes, I agree with that entirely, but not as much as I believe that it is a citizens duty to be informed. You can't question anything if you don't have the all the facts.

Hence my comments about iraq: The iraq war can't be seen as a reason to change government because the opposition supported it more than the party in power did.

You are right, when the only option for change is an undesirable one, there isn't much we can do, thats a major problem with the party political system. I think a better system (although in practice it would be completely unworkable) would be to have one where there are no parties. You should be able to vote for someone who is going to stand up for YOUR interests, not those of a party.
 

AlexL

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Actually I've seen some of the NHS statistics, and having recently had a minor shoulder operation myself I can vouch for exactly how the waiting lists have been shortened.
Firstly there is a waiting list to get on the waiting list - so the official waiting list is 6months, 12 months - whatever, but the "consultation list" is still ages. secondly "being seen" does not mean having the operation done. I was "seen" by no fewer than 4 different doctors about 3 months apart before having my out-patient operation. Technically I didn't wait longer that a couple of months before "being seen" but I waited ages to have the op.
Been to A&E lately? government stats say that everyone is seen within an hour. Go to A&E - wait 5 hours just like before. About every 55 minutes someone will pop out to check you are still alive, and start the clock ticking back at zero again. Some people have even been left in ambulances outside A&E for ages as that time does not "count"
Anyway I'm sure most people want better public services and some are better now, but as they cost over twice as much as they did in 1997 they bloody well better be! The general complaint here is that there is an enormous amount of wastage and beurocracy being funded by our taxation. the Public secto are paid, by me and everyone else to deliver a service. I have every right to expect that service. I don't care about 'staffing levels' or 'morale' or 'working conditions'. I pay my money - they should give me a service. period.
Private sector industries have a concept called efficiency and cannot just spend twice as much to get a little bit more done.

As for the war - The even if 100% of tories had voted Nay the government still had a massive majority and the government are responsible for taking us to war. Trying to blame anyone else is laughable - who actaully runs the country? the army didn't just fancy a day out did they!
 

jimi

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With regards to decreasing quality of service from the public sector, are you aware that under this government nobody waits more than 12 months for NHS treatment any more, and that the number waiting more than six months has halved? And that soon you'll be able to choose your hospital and appointment time at referral?

Thats bollox as well, they've changed the rules so that the waiting lists seem shorter. eg a waiting list is now counts from seeing a consultant until the operation and does not include the wait time for the consultant!

My quality of life has gone down:

I see money wasted right left and centre but the f#cking roads are full of potholes,my eldest daughter travels 25 miles to a school for mainstream A levels because the local authority shut the 6th form in the local school so they could turn it into a friggin sports college (with no friggin sports facilities I may add) there are few civic amenities .. visit some foreign countries and see what they achieve with less money!

No I wo'nt be voting friggin labour , I'd vote for anything to get these tossers out!
 

BustinAround

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Its not necessarily the elected party who "runs the country", it depends how all the elected MP's vote. I'm not trying to blame anyone else, 62% of labour MP's voted for war. My point is that if it were the opposition in power, we'd still have gone to war. Surely in looking at the percentages closely you can deduce that the conservative party supported the war more than labour? Or was it *just* the tory MPs who have a habit of warmongering that happened to get elected?

With regards to the NHS, surely its just the nature of medicine that you might need to see several specialists before you can have an operation? Imagine that you had to wait upwards of 18 months for each of those consultations like in the "good old days".
 

cardinal_mark

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[ QUOTE ]
My quality of life has gone down

[/ QUOTE ]

That's odd, mine has shot through the roof. I am seriously better off than I ever have been and happy as Larry. What you have to appreciate is the man Tony knows everything... you only benefit if you vote for him. Trouble is Jimi he knows you dont like him so he's picking on you!!
 

BustinAround

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Which countries exactly? I was under the impression that our tax burden was actually lower than most other western countries, perhaps I am mistaken.

Central government isn't in charge of how local authorities spend money unfortunately.
 
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