Author Topic: Current Events  (Read 4670 times)

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Offline 6pairsofshoes

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Re: Current Events
« Reply #60 on: October 22, 2020, 06:32:50 AM »
"Bail-outs" are so full of euphemisms (e.g. "government money") that it is difficult to see what is going on.

Boris (the PM) doesn't have any money that he didn't get - either directly or indirectly - from the tax payer (ie me and you). Sadiq equivalently only has money from Boris (ie me and you) and additional money from Londoners taxes (ie you).

So when Sadiq asks Boris for money, he is really asking me for money. Why would I give him money to benefit TfL? TfL isn't run for my benefit. It is Sadiq's job to figure out where to spend your money, not my money. So when Sadiq wants more money, it should come from the people that elected him. The fundamental problem with representative democracy, though, is that the people he represents didn't all choose him, and he has to spend money that disproportionately benefits a portion of the people that he represents. (in this case TfL users). But that doesn't make TfL Gosport's problem.

I am curious about the distribution of tax monies in the UK, and if I correctly understand your argument, chris, it seems to echo something I hear frequently in US political debates.  For example, there are conservatives who decry "Big Government" and many of the most vociferous opponents of this "BG" issue are from states that rely a good deal on tax monies for everything from healthcare to schools and physical infrastructures (roads and bridges in particular).  Many of these so called "red states" are predominantly rural, like Wyoming or Idaho.  They have sparse populations and in simple fiscal terms often receive more money from the Federal Government than they actually contribute in income taxes.

At the same time, there are some states, like California, which has, IIRC, the world's 5th largest economy (due to agribusiness, big tech, and the film industry) and contributes much more in Federal Taxes than it receives back.  Essentially, the demonization of this big "blue state" by the conservatives is a bit skewed from reality, given that it ultimately produces a surplus in tax incomes for the Fed. Gov't.

It's not clear if this is close to your argument, since I'm utterly ignorant of Gosport, its economy, or its contributions to the National tax coffers.  But perhaps this example might help:  I attended a university that has a series of different undergraduate and professional schools, each of which was regarded as a separate fiscal entity with its own endowment, scholarships, and development staff.  The philosophy of the school was "every tub on its own bottom."  This meant that if the medical school or the law school wanted to build a new classroom building, it had to come up with the money on its own.  Some of the professional schools were more successful and richer than others, but generally, the funds for such expansions were generally raised by the individual school, rather than coming from a big central fund.

It sounds like you are a proponent of the "every tub on its own bottom" school of thought?  And I wonder if you or smokes could comment on how that works with a municipality like the greater London metro area.  Certainly it produces revenues, but does it consume more than it produces?  And is your complaint that a region like Gosport is being asked to contribute to a city from which it receives little to no benefit?
« Last Edit: October 22, 2020, 06:35:14 AM by 6pairsofshoes »

Offline 8ullfrog

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Re: Current Events
« Reply #61 on: October 22, 2020, 06:45:05 PM »
I'm seeing good mask compliance in my town, it was getting bad, but then everyone got scared when the county was threatened with more restrictions. Businesses are failing, but I wonder about some of them. For instance, one bar was whining on their facebook about COVID killing them, and an employee revealed they stopped paying staff in January and had just been slowly liquidating items in the bar like a piggy bank.

little c, you and my grandfather would have got on famously. He always told me to read the fiscal impact portion of a ballot measure first, as the rest has been massaged.

For instance, if they're getting 5 billion dollars of magic money, where does this magic money come from? Space?

My personal hatred are the yes means no ballot measures, where it's worded in a way you can't actually tell if you're voting for or against.

The bless'ed Ghouls are going after Kidney Dialysis centers FOR THE SECOND bless'ed TIME!  The ads are pretty stark, they're having actual patients in them say "Please vote no, I don't want to die."

It crushes me that we're this bless'ed far gone, as a nation, as a people, where a bless'ed SERVICE UNION is more concerned with money than lives.

The Cold Equations was FICTION!

Also not liked in this latest round of voting, All of the real estate ones. They claim to benefit seniors and fire victims. From what I can find, they all benefit Realtors primarily.

But once again, the real estate measures are worded in such a way you can scarcely tell what the golly you are voting upon.

My Grandpa always told me to be proud to serve on a Jury or to Vote, that those are our duties as a Citizen. He'd drop everything to drive me to Jury Duty when I had no car, and he actually was proud. Called me "Citizen Grandson" those days.

I miss him like crazy.
just one little time change so a draft board in 1968 turns down the bribe to accept "bone spurs" and we are home-free.

Offline 6pairsofshoes

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Re: Current Events
« Reply #62 on: October 23, 2020, 06:05:14 AM »
8ully, those League of Women Voters pamphlets are essential to getting the inside information on the multiple numbered propositions on every ballot.  Like your grandfather, I look carefully at the financial aspects of the proposals and ask, "wouldn't this be more appropriately expensed out of the general tax fund?  Why should there be a special binding allocation via a separate law?" I often vote No because I figure that's a reason we have elected representatives, to determine the best use of taxpayer funds.  I also get tired of the multiple special assessments that are appended onto our property taxes.  Many of the Proposition laws end up appearing there, with the expectation that owners of real property have more of an obligation to pay for stuff like schools, parks, etc.  It seems that, if the state were governed properly, the tax structure should be set up so that prosperous people and businesses would bear the brunt of supporting the infrastructures that directly benefit them.

Anyway, I'm sorry about your grandfather.  Mine was a really active Democrat and a Union member.  I fear he may have been a Trump supporter by this juncture, but who can say?  He worked in a factory his whole life but managed to own a home and raise a family on his wages.  I don't think he would be able to manage that today.

Offline smokester

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Re: Current Events
« Reply #63 on: October 23, 2020, 03:11:28 PM »
"Bail-outs" are so full of euphemisms (e.g. "government money") that it is difficult to see what is going on.

Boris (the PM) doesn't have any money that he didn't get - either directly or indirectly - from the tax payer (ie me and you). Sadiq equivalently only has money from Boris (ie me and you) and additional money from Londoners taxes (ie you).

So when Sadiq asks Boris for money, he is really asking me for money. Why would I give him money to benefit TfL? TfL isn't run for my benefit. It is Sadiq's job to figure out where to spend your money, not my money. So when Sadiq wants more money, it should come from the people that elected him. The fundamental problem with representative democracy, though, is that the people he represents didn't all choose him, and he has to spend money that disproportionately benefits a portion of the people that he represents. (in this case TfL users). But that doesn't make TfL Gosport's problem.

I always thought that TfL was primarily funded by the fares generated from the various transport systems in London and parts of the south east. This is why I thought it odd that the means to prop up TfL would be at the expense of motorists. But I don't know why I think anything to be odd in this thick soup of madness.

By the time this is all over, I'll be over it.
Don't put off until tomorrow, what you can put off until the day after.

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Offline 8ullfrog

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Re: Current Events
« Reply #64 on: October 23, 2020, 10:05:48 PM »
I finally got my ballot.  Much later than my mom, who has already had her vote mailed and confirmed. At the very least, her vote is locked.

They tried to use the fiscal impact statement. :(

Prop 17, which restores voting rights to prisoners who have completed their sentence
I voted yes. Few people understand the prison system more than people who have experienced it.

The fiscal impact statement said it would cost money to print them voter registration cards. True, but that is some expert level petty accounting.

For the other ones, the fiscal impact statements are SHREDDING the campaign ads. Flat out stating exactly what the wording is trying to hide.

Hell, the kidney dialysis thing is still bless'ed evil, but at least I understand it now.  It establishes more oversight over the clinics at the state level and requires them to have a doctor on staff, instead of just on paper, which is what they're doing now.

Still an against, that's not a hot potato to play with. 

I did gleefully vote against the bless'ed uber measure. Apparently the drivers are currently being harassed every time they pick up a passenger, they have to agree that they're going to vote YES on the measure.
just one little time change so a draft board in 1968 turns down the bribe to accept "bone spurs" and we are home-free.

Offline smokester

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Re: Current Events
« Reply #65 on: October 24, 2020, 12:19:49 PM »
I was re-reading the first 2 pages of this thread which are coincidentally about the 2016 U.S election. I'd forgotten how popular Trump seemed back then compared to Hilary (not with christ tho' - but don't forget he knows a thing or 3) and I wondered if any of those opinions had changed now that the big man's been in office for a term? I don't suppose Schmoogsley or brickbatz will be back to comment before November the 3rd, but I find it incredible that there's a possibilty that Trump could win after all his bad press.

Mind you, Thatcher won 3 General Elections ...
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Offline 8ullfrog

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Re: Current Events
« Reply #66 on: October 24, 2020, 03:20:43 PM »
I forgot it was all Seth Myers fault.

I was trying to track down when Joe Biden was introduced to Old Dirty scallywag's "I like it raw".

I found the 2011 White House Correspondent's dinner.

Trump is bless'ed STATIONARY through the entire thing. Everyone dunks on him. Seth Dunks on him, THE PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES dunked on him.

And I swear to god, Seth Meyers made him go from joke candidate to "golly this Hollywood elite, I'm gonna run for realsies."

I looked it up, the current President does, in fact, hate Seth Meyers.

Thatcher and Reagan used the same PR firm, and it shows if you look back at their material.

There was a bless'ed fantastic documentary on that, but I can't track it down.

The Joe Biden having ODB entrance music can be found here:

https://obamawhitehouse.archives.gov/blog/2011/05/01/president-s-speech-white-house-correspondents-dinner


I just walked back through this thread, and I mentioned the Thatcher Reagan thing already. I'm embarrassed.
« Last Edit: October 24, 2020, 03:26:28 PM by 8ullfrog »
just one little time change so a draft board in 1968 turns down the bribe to accept "bone spurs" and we are home-free.

Offline 6pairsofshoes

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Re: Current Events
« Reply #67 on: October 24, 2020, 03:46:16 PM »
That's ok, 8ully.  I have a mind like a sieve and cannot remember you posting it.  Trump's popularity is kind of like those kids who vote for the bad boy to be class president.  He says all the ugly stuff they feel, and so, they think he's one of them, but, in reality, I think Trump actually despises the people who vote for him.  That's the one poignant irony of his presidency.  The people whose good opinions he values, or would value if he could win them, are the very people who find him utterly repugnant.

Suppressing votes in poor and minority districts also helps throw the win to him.  I'm not at all sure that Biden really has this thing sewn up.  I'm seriously considering staying away for the coming 4 years if the incumbent is re-elected.  The damage to our democracy seems as if it may be permanent.  And there's plenty of other countries that treat their citizens with greater care.  If I've learned anything from being away for the past three months, it's that "American exceptionalism" is a myth that crumbles under any sustained scrutiny.

It's telling that I can get a COVID PCR test with results back the same day for free in France, but if I can get a COVID test in the U.S. at all, the results usually take as much as two weeks.  It's absurd.  But there you have it.  American democracy has taken a distinctly Hobbesian turn.  If you have money, fine.  If not, you get sick, suck it up.  Go find a tree somewhere and die under it.

Offline smokester

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Re: Current Events
« Reply #68 on: November 07, 2020, 09:32:56 AM »
Go Biden!

So, rumour has it that Trump could run again in 4 years. Let's hope he has too much of a criminal record by then.
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Offline dweez

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Re: Current Events
« Reply #69 on: November 07, 2020, 10:09:40 AM »
Go Biden!

So, rumour has it that Trump could run again in 4 years. Let's hope he has too much of a criminal record by then.

I was thinking the same thing.
--dweez

Offline smokester

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Re: Current Events
« Reply #70 on: November 07, 2020, 10:43:53 AM »
It's not great news for the U.K's negotiation process with Europe regardless of of whether you were/are for or against Brexit. The city had predicted a huge trade deal with the U.S under Trump and uncertain how trade would be under Biden. That said, most bankers that I know were far more in favour of Biden and preferred some uncertainty in the short term as Trump would always create a volatile marketplace.

Personally, Trump's normalising racism to the point of acceptability is an act I find unforgivable.
Don't put off until tomorrow, what you can put off until the day after.

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Offline 6pairsofshoes

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Re: Current Events
« Reply #71 on: November 07, 2020, 02:43:44 PM »
He's a nasty piece of work.  I think the Southern District of NY (a division of the Federal Court system) has had some cases warming on the back burner, just waiting for him to leave office.  So far, the idea that you can't try a sitting president for crimes has prevented the courts from going after him for any number of offenses.  Let's hope they can act when they are no longer restrained when Trump leaves office in late January.

I'm also hoping that the IRS prevails in demanding the repayment of a fraudulently claimed $72.9m tax refund that was based on undervalued assets and inflated claims of business losses.  As for the sad fact that he could run again in 4 years, I was hoping that, if he's convicted of a felony, it would prevent his second run, but no. You can be a convicted felon and still run for President.  You just have to be 35 years old or more, a natural born citizen of the U.S., and a resident of the U.S. for 14 years or more.

On his taxes:  https://www.nytimes.com/interactive/2020/09/27/us/donald-trump-taxes.html

Offline smokester

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Re: Current Events
« Reply #72 on: November 07, 2020, 03:08:12 PM »
I can't think of a single thing that Trump initiated that I find forgivable.

... and I really, really hope that Biden doesn't pardon him.

American politics are really none of my business but I didn't want to seem that my dislike for Trump was jumping on the bandwagon. Of course, there is much that he has/hasn't done that warrants criticism, but I was personally incensed by all this as these are the sorts of views that put the world back 50 years.
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Offline dweez

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Re: Current Events
« Reply #73 on: November 07, 2020, 03:43:36 PM »
I can't think of a single thing that Trump initiated that I find forgivable.

... and I really, really hope that Biden doesn't pardon him.

Ah man, I didn't even consider that as a possibility.
--dweez

Offline 8ullfrog

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Re: Current Events
« Reply #74 on: November 07, 2020, 07:27:30 PM »
Well, this scared me:


I don't think Biden would pardon anyone in the cabinet, but I had no idea the bag of tricks described in the video even existed. It's terrifyingly plausible.
just one little time change so a draft board in 1968 turns down the bribe to accept "bone spurs" and we are home-free.