On Thu 26 Oct at 9:12am Green Sleeves wrote:
"That is interesting about the coverage on unions in recent years but as I don't read papers it has had no influence on my view. If the train cleaners were to get a bit raise them it would not hugely surprise me if the train drivers redoubled their efforts to maintain their differentials. That is what the train drivers Union is paid by it's members to do."
More right-wing talking points and myths re unions, long debunked, and pretending to care for the cleaners while attempting to undermine train drivers. Also, you reading, or not reading newspapers is not merely what i was referring to. Media coverage of course extends to the likes of the BBC, which i know does influence you, and although they have strived to be more "impartial" than others, they have slipped up in such standards on plenty of occasions and been held accountable for it. Newspapers and the print media generally set the tone, and news agenda and often the likes of the BBC will follow it. Most newspapers are owned by right-wing oligarchs and push out misinformation regularly to undermine our society.
Defence spend on Iraq and Afghanistan amounted to over £40bn, this was money that didn't have to be spent on that and you know it. The justification based on military spending based on gdp is weak, as the economy grew, and instead of using it on almost anything else, he decided to spend it on trying to impress his Conservative american mates and killing millions of brown people. It was wholly unnecessary, and utterly devastating to the middle east, and the UKs reputation. I'm pretty sure that £40bn would have at least helped plug some of the deficit caused by a reckless banking sector that the government and its opposition enabled and toasted.
On Thu 26 Oct at 9:15am Green Sleeves wrote:
David Cameron, Tony Blair and Boris Johnson have all been caught out lying. I'd also call them all charlatans, as they appear to have fooled people into electing them and thinking they were competent. They all bungled it in the end, just some more obvious than others.
On Thu 26 Oct at 10:20am Nevillman wrote:
"myths re unions, long debunked". That might be what your main media influences, the morning star and socialist worker, say but it is not debunked from my observation. Incidentally I don't watch any TV news or news related programmes either on any channel. If I hear of something happening I am sufficiently interested to learn more about I use a wide variety of internet sites before forming my opinion if I decide I want to have an opinion.
I've really got nothing further to say about Blair and the middle East. I am happy to accept that I have not persuaded you to my viewpoint but I didn't want or expect to in the first place. I've even agreed that in retrospect it might have been better not to go into Iraq even if it did remove a vile, murdering tyrant although we don't know what would have happened had we not.
I'm not qualified to discuss the figures you suggest but I don't think you are either. Having a standing army costs a lot of money that in an ideal world could be far better spent on parties and pretty flowers. There is an additional cost in deploying them in action. How that is calculated I don't know and not highly interested in.
Your last post demonstrates your customary political naivety. Blair and Cameron have at times to spin statements. They may in many people's opinion show extreme incompetence and stupidity but I don't think either of them were fundamentally dishonest. As for the charlatan bit....... Aren't we all?
Keep digging. You have actually missed most of my main criticisms of Blair which I have no intention of sharing with you.
On Thu 26 Oct at 10:37am Green Sleeves wrote:
Lol "I use a wide range of Internet sites" good grief, from your opinions so far, I think they're probably far more cringe, eccentric and naff than even the morning star or daily socialist etc! Why don't you just let Alastair Campbell form all your views and be done with pretending you have any principles!
What are your main criticisms of Blair if its not his numerous biggest blunders I've mentioned so far? And no, Blair and Cameron did more than just 'spin', and that word in itself is frankly a playful euphemism for lying. Was it Blairs haircut? Did he have an affair with your wife? Being responsible for the deaths of innocent civilians is not sufficient to loathe the guy....apparently. Ghoul.
On Thu 26 Oct at 11:20am Nevillman wrote:
At least the personal abuse of me is new on your post. Not particularly good or hard hitting but new, unlike all the other points you make which I have already responded to. I don't even want to repeat that I don't like to repeat myself on here but you have forced me to.
Your inability to believe that someone can fully investigate something and come up with a different conclusion to you is yet another example of your naivety.
What lies have Blair and Cameron said?
On Thu 26 Oct at 1:11pm Green Sleeves wrote:
Lol "fully investigate" you don't appear to even grasp how to use Google. Perhaps stick to asking your boomer Facebook group buddies what is going on for news and updates. You being this shielded from mainstream media has gone too far!
On Thu 26 Oct at 3:56pm Nevillman wrote:
Too far for what? You can now add ageism to your list of methods of attacking harmless correspondents. I would strongly recommend giving up news. You can waste a lot of time not learning very much from it at all. Look at how much actual news there is in the average paper or news programme. Most of it is speculation or analysis by people whose opinion you don't trust or wish to hear. Try using the time you have saved to study and actually learn something more interesting.
You may well find that a lifetime of continual opposition doesn't bring you the satisfaction or gratitude that you feel you self righteously deserve either.
On Thu 26 Oct at 5:57pm Green Sleeves wrote:
Rather than a lifetime of thinking you are in opposition for most of it and then when you really think you have "won" and your precious red team are briefly in power, only to realise it was more or less just an illusion of choice and rehashing the same policies. I suppose "things can only get better" right? Barney Rubble will come up with some progressive policies that people may remember, eventually....if he's not too busy bending the knee for Israel.
On Thu 26 Oct at 6:25pm Nevillman wrote:
Sounds like you will only be happy once the socialist Republic has been declared and you are appointed as commissar for internet forums deciding what can be authorised for publishing and who is able to read it. I bet you'll get a uniform with a big cap and a badge and everything as well as those calf length boots.
On Thu 26 Oct at 8:16pm Green Sleeves wrote:
Lame Grandpa jokes aside, our democracy is deeply flawed, and I am a republican and a socialist.....so yeah a more democratic socialist country and society sounds like a vast improvement over what we have now.
On Fri 27 Oct at 8:42am Nevillman wrote:
Our democracy is flawed. I'm not sure I'd call it deeply so. Why do you think it is? What do you mean by a democratic socialist country? Who would own the means of production? How would the rewards be distributed?
On Fri 27 Oct at 9:10am Green Sleeves wrote:
Cute question. Its deeply flawed in that we don't have proportional representation for starters, and we end up ultimately with a two-party system that fails to deliver any sort of change or progress. Its almost stuck in a stalemate. The likes of the Green Party, and even Reform and other right-wing parties can achieve millions of votes, yet return 1, or even no, representatives to parliament. That sounds pretty flawed to me, and i appreciate as a softy centrist who fears ANY change to the status quo, will be saying thats a good thing as all other parties aside from the Tories and Labour are extremists of course, but its totally undemocratic. Many people can't be bothered to vote because they know it makes almost little difference for this precise reason.
A democratic socialist country would simply be one that elects a left-wing government that actually acts on such principles, rather than pretending to be left-wing and carrying out watered-down or the same old policies that continue to fail this country parliament after parliament. Stop pandering to the elites, re-distribute the wealth by progressive taxation, protect consumers and workers, bring in progressive and bold policies such as universal basic income (essential as AI begins to reduce the need for human labour), build council homes, and have the public own industries that have taken the pish for decades now under Thatcherite policies. Or we could just continue down the same old centrist-establishment path of reactionary politics and fear of change.
On Fri 27 Oct at 10:09am Nevillman wrote:
I totally agree on proportional representation. You still end up with governments that are compromises between different parties but they could negotiate specific improvements and people like you and I would not have to be shoehorned into the same party, each faction trying to take control of it. It's not a panacea of course as we see in many countries that have it and struggle to get stable government. I think you will still mostly get quite centrist government as it needs to be a compromise. Could be a better choice of prime minister though. A possible flaw is that it becomes harder to have a system of personal representatives in parliament so we would probably not have an MP for our area. Good personal dig by the way. Very subtle. A grain of truth in it as I no longer think revolutionary change is usually a good thing. Presumably I will go up against a wall sometime as a running dog.
I am disappointed by your definition of democratic socialism with a list of things ranging from the sensible through the unachievable to the stupid. The job market still seems remarkably good and while universal basic income may be necessary at some point and will need a good left leaning government to implement, we don't seem anywhere near it at the moment. I don't see any benefit to the government being a landlord or spending billions buying back the utilities. Yes it would have been better if they had not been sold off and I refused on principle to buy any shares in any of them. In retrospect I realise that just made me a double loser. I lost the public utility and the chance to profit from its sale. They need to be regulated much better and chief executives need to run the risk of severe punishment.
I'm totally in favour of progressive taxation with the rich paying more but it is a fact that if it is too progressive then the tax revenue from the wealthy falls as they avoid it in more imaginative ways.
Anyway. Thank you for a direct answer to my question.
On Fri 27 Oct at 11:07am Green Sleeves wrote:
Governments being landlords is a lot better than private landlords, particularly in terms of literal housing. At least at the end of it the country still holds the physical assets. It seems that you just accept there is no turning back from Thatcherism due to the costs but can't see the long term benefits from the short term cost of reversing the prior insanity.
None of the other policies I mentioned were extreme or unachievable. UBI is already being trialed successfully in regions around the world with positive effects. AI will be there to ensure humans don't have to do menial jobs and won't have the pressure of finding other menial jobs etc and can contribute to society in more productive ways than just making a few quid for corporations who are trying their best to avoid paying tax.
On Fri 27 Oct at 2:39pm Nevillman wrote:
You are obviously an old school socialist who sees it simply as private ownership bad, state ownership good. Capitalism may have drawbacks including equality but state ownership has drawbacks including lack of incentive to work, lack of innovation and reliance on taxes for investment. I think the equality issue facing capitalism is easier to deal with than the issues facing state ownership. Capitalism also deals with the issue of deciding what should be produced and for whom. State ownership relies on the state making all sorts of decisions regarding production and consumption. Please look at case studies on every country that has tried to follow the state ownership model to see how that has always turned out.
The simple fact is that when the chips are down despite all the wonderful attributes of members of our species enough people are selfish, corrupt and nasty to ruin it for everyone else.
Over 75% of people aged 16 to 65 in the UK are in work. UBI would have to go to them as well. Why should they then continue working and who is going to pay the billions and billions it will require. I can't see how putting 100% tax on the top earners is going to cover it. All you have done is taken away their incentive to work. UBI may well make sense when AI has taken most of the jobs but none at all when the vast majority of the workforce are able to work.
On Fri 27 Oct at 3:54pm Green Sleeves wrote:
I think you're making some wild generalisations and echoing quite old fashioned right-wing talking points when it comes to socialism. I don't advocate that we should have an entire planned economy based on predominantly public ownership, just several key industries that have no place under private/corporate control (or little justification for not being nationalised). Its common sense, and is not unusual in other parts of the world....we know many of our former public companies are now owned by multinationals, both private and state-controlled companies now. Plenty of case studies of success there in other countries when it comes to these. Also case studies on UBI, including how people weren't giving up work despite being given a basic income from the state, in fact they often become more productive, less stressed, healthier, and often sought out to do less menial jobs instead and do more creative or useful work, as they weren't under pressure to just scrape by and pay the bills.
I appreciate the cynicism regarding the human-race, but throughout human history we have radically changed the way we live, work, survive and communicate, and these things will continue to change dramatically, particularly in light of automation and AI. This could be a very bad thing if we don't prepare for it, but it also is likely to be the thing that can free millions of people from low-paid crappy worthless jobs that they're stuck in the capitalist systems rat-race. Being "able to work" shouldn't just mean doing anything for the sake of it. Governments just need to be ahead of the curve so that they can shape it in a way that overall helps society.
On Fri 27 Oct at 6:49pm Nevillman wrote:
When we discuss huge topics like socialism and capitalism it is inevitable there will be generalisations in a small forum response. Please indicate if you wish further detail on any aspect. I don't spend much time talking with old fashioned right wingers so have no idea what talking points of theirs I have echoed. Please enlighten and point out where you think I (and they) have gone wrong.
I have no objection to renationalising the industries except for the huge cost. We would still need to buy energy on the world market. The councils like Nottingham which set up energy companies in competition with the private suppliers ended up costing the rate payers a fortune. Similarly the ratepayers of Croydon with the building company their council formed. If the government think they can set up new nationalised suppliers to prevent the shareholders of the private companies taking their cut and are confident they will not cost the taxpayer further then fine.
I would love to see water in public hands but that would cost near enough the entire NHS budget for a year. The government would then need to massively invest in the infrastructure so further expense. I know you realise that there isn't a "magic money tree" but can you really expect the top 5% of taxpayers to fund that?
There are huge changes coming for humanity that we can't foresee. It will be nice if many of the "low paid, crappy worthless jobs" are replaced by automation but I spent all my working life as a wage slave, earning enough to pay for the rest of my life. It's not the worst thing in the world. I'm glad for you that you have such a rewarding and fulfilling career as part of your life. Lots of people are quite happy just being wage slaves despite your elitist attitude towards them.
I have nothing against UBI but I really can't see how it can be justified now. It will be very expensive and let's see how AI plans out. I have expected huge job losses due to automation for several years and it hasn't happened yet. I just see no need for it at the moment and you haven't explained why it is needed apart from your vague belief that it is "progressive" and therefore must be a good thing, especially if starmer is against it.
On Fri 27 Oct at 7:45pm Green Sleeves wrote:
The "huge cost" would be to not invest in public owned key industries, and instead carry on with the status quo and muddling through tory and new Labour policies. Its that kind of short term planning and thinking that might win elections based on misinformation and fear of change, but everyone ultimately loses out. Its the red scare excuse for doing nothing by saying "we could instead pay for 1m nurses" implying you can only do one thing rather than both. We hear this time and time again from politicians that ultimately don't want change. We need to look at the costs instead for NOT making changes.
I wasn't being "elitist", I'm sure we all have had to do jobs that we don't want to do to pay the bills, the point is that is it always the best use of humanity's time if it can be done instead by automation and free their time to bettering themselves and giving back more in return to society than "wage slaving" 40 hours+ a week just to pay for the basics. I'm not implying we all get a fat chunk of money each month and sit on the beach. I'm also not suggesting that these policies are rolled out on day 1, but in a sensible and phased approach. We have weekends now as a result of progress, and we know that from various studies that you can often reduce the hours people work and increase efficiency as a result. Companies are trialling 4 day weeks for good reasons. People being happier often has positive outcomes without any drawbacks....despite what some greedy capitalists might tell us.
On Fri 27 Oct at 10:21pm Nevillman wrote:
No the "huge cost" is the taxpayer's money it will cost. A consequence of that is to have the same filthy rivers. Better to just try to regulate them better. The reality is you can only hope the next government will be a bit better than the previous. It really can't be worse. Maybe one day we'll reach the promised land but I may not get there with you.
I'm afraid you really do have to have a wealthy country because you really can only spend it once in the long run. It is naive to pretend you can do it all.
I agree about the potential massive life improving opportunities offered by AI and technological improvements. Will lead to massive social change that we definitely need the right government for. At the back of my mind is always the thought that we live at the moment in a time of massive prosperity paid for by future generations in terms the share of resources we have used ourselves. We have bred and rewarded ourselves with great lifestyles not thinking about the future. We can only hope that technology will find a way to maintain it. This will most likely be achieved by capitalist businesses. Government must incentivise them.
On Fri 27 Oct at 11:00pm Green Sleeves wrote:
You're talking about the water utilities industry as if privatisation has been a roaring success. Ok not quite a success, but assuming it's too late to go back. Despite it being an essential service that I think it's fair to say is safer in public hands where profits are less critical over public safety. Yes, we have to Re-invest in it, but the experiment failed after 30 years. I think you will be more than keen to return back to the EU by 2050 if brexit has proven to be a policy failure. I suspect long before that 30 year period ends as well....
On Sat 28 Oct at 10:12am Nevillman wrote:
Posting at 11 on a Friday night might not be the most sensible thing green. I'm not sure I got away with it 40 minutes earlier. I can't tell if you thought you were having a wind up or just a little too out of it. Maybe both.
Just to be clear. I deplored privatising water when it happened in the certain knowledge that you should not sell off the water industry for private gain. I have deplored it ever since. It really hasn't taken 30 years for the penny to drop for me and I can't think what I have written that gave you the impression I ever thought it was a roaring success. I'm afraid the reality is that it is too late to buy it back. You think it can still be bought back and I wish you well in your pursuit. Maybe some kind of public subscription scheme to rebuy it or have you thought of raising tax on the top 5% of taxpayers.
I have also been keen to return to the EU and desperately wish we had never left. It was a catastrophic mistake despite what Corbyn thought. It is very unlikely I will be having any thoughts at all in 2050 and your amazing subject prediction will have happened. My burial will be appropriate.
On Sat 28 Oct at 12:35pm Green Sleeves wrote:
LOL i was exaggerating your approval and enthusiasm for continued water privatisation of course for comic effect, but you say its too late to buy it back, which is nuts. Regulations have done little to deter the private companies from poisoning our water supplies and polluting our seas, meanwhile making a fat profit for their shareholders. Levying additional taxes on the top 5% of earners is no wild far-left policy. Even Sir Tony Starmer has advocated for tax increases....although his idol Sir Kier Blair isn't as keen. Probably doesn't want to pay any more tax himself.
Yes, i agree with you that leaving the EU has had devastating consequences. Not Corbyns fault, as much as you'd like to blame him and his apathy, this is all on those that voted brexit and campaigned for it, and the ones that put forward such an insanely divisive and risky referendum in the first place (this is almost entirely down on the Tories/UKIP, so at least you have managed to get me to admit a difference between the parties now). My point last night about the EU, was that we've been out of the EU for just a few years now, how long should we wait till we can reverse such a epic policy mistake? 5 years? 25 years? Same with re-nationalising, no one is saying do it all in one go, but we have to consider reversing insane policies that have failed. Brexit and privatisating being two of them. Slowly re-integrating back into the EU (by "stealth" i'm sure some brexit headbangers will say) bit by bit, just as with re-nationalising. I know its different, but with the rail companies, Corbyns Labour were planning on just waiting for those private contracts to run out and then have the state run them from then on, which would of course reduce any massive initial outlay. I do appreciate that is just one example, where as it might be hugely different for water etc with the figures you have raised. The point is, bit by bit, you start to re-nationalise key industries, and it gets easier to implement such policies in the future.
On Sat 28 Oct at 6:58pm Nevillman wrote:
To be fair I don't know anyone apart from you who accuses the water companies of poisoning our water supplies. I'm more concerned about our rivers. If we're just talking vague commitments to buy it back eventually, sign me up. Given the extreme unlikeliness of you ever supporting a party that will ever get into power you might as well sign up to everything. How about legislation that the sun must shine every day as well as us all getting enough to live on without having to lift a finger which you call UBI. I'd prefer to support a party that offers realistic policies. There's more chance of getting elected for one thing as although the electorate are as we know stupid, they're not that stupid as you pal Corbyn discovered.
I'm in favour of raising the top rates of tax as I think unequal societies are not good things. You've spent that several different ways already though green and there won't be that much of it. Most people would put spending on health and education way above rebuying water companies. How you could do that bit by bit I have no idea.
All in favour of doing everything possible to realign ourselves with the EU. It's a shame it's not a manifesto pledge then leavers cannot complain we're going back in by stealth contrary to the referendum. I think everyone is just sick to death of the whole subject.
Totally in favour of not giving out any more rail franchises as I've said on here several times. None come up for over 5 years though.
On Sat 28 Oct at 8:13pm Green Sleeves wrote:
Ok apologies, as far as I know they haven't poisoned our drinking water yet but have contaminated our seas and rivers, as well as wasted vast quantities of water via leaks. Sorry they haven't been quite as bad as I thought. Even some of the nazis were decent people.......
Your arguments are extreme and the very same we hear time and time again from right wingers. No one says UBI would be given out for free and that we could all live a life of leisure. Its about creating a base existence that doesn't require people to do naff tedious, and pointless work just to keep food on the table. You find that humans can do more productive things than just spending 9 hours a day making someone else rich via menial tasks. You invest in society and it more than pays itself back. Its like having the NHS, the healthier the population the more likely we can be more productive as a society. Its about diverting wealth from the exorbitantly rich and ensuring that no one needs to go hungry or homeless in the 21st century in one of the richest countries in the world. Wealth we acquired mostly from inhumane colonisation. The least we could do is put that to good causes than pandering to oligarchs.
On Sat 28 Oct at 9:06pm Nevillman wrote:
I believe the U in UBI stands for universal meaning it goes to everyone. If you want to talk about extending discretionary benefits then that is different.
I once read the Nazis come up within 5 or 6 posts so well come for delaying it for so long.
I have read my last post again and looked hard for the extreme argument. I am interested that you hear right wingers make them all the time. I don't. Where do you hear them?
I'm afraid capitalism relies on the business getting more in value from any worker than they put. What system do you want? Centrally planned?
As for the last few sentences it looks like you started a bit earlier today.
On Sat 28 Oct at 9:58pm Green Sleeves wrote:
Its fair to say that the exact same right-wing arguments crop up when you discuss rational policies such as re-nationalisation and UBI etc. Progressive policies always seem to be unrealistic, too expensive or abhorrent to centrists and right-wingers....until they ultimately pass it off as their own policy in a future manifesto. Progressives just want to cut the losses early, to protect its people, rather than being cheap and hoping the free-market does wonderful things. You make the precise same arguments as my right wing father, uncle etc etc and other fellow Conservative lifelong tory voters. Almost verbatim. If i hear about Thatcher "smashing the unions" one more time.....
I was only using Godwins Law in jest, but i think its fair enough to use it when trying to justify a flawed policy. Not all nazis were baddies, they just fell for the propaganda.
Advocating for capitalism is cute and again, i hear the same arguments from right-wingers. Capitalism will likely use AI and automation to reduce the need for labour and to increase their profits. Capitalism and free markets can't be relied on entirely ever, so we need responsible governance that can use technology for good rather than just profit. You are fine with it creating predominantly "wage slaves" and a few oligarchs, but i think there can be more to our future than that.
On Sat 28 Oct at 10:07pm Green Sleeves wrote:
Which bits did you find concerning in my previous posts' last couple of sentences? The bit about how much of Britains wealth was stolen from colonisation? Or that investing in society reaps rewards? Which bit was crazy enough for you to imply if i've "started early" (which i presume you are implying drugs/alcohol!)
I often read back my posts, and even if i was blazed or drunk at the time of writing, i tend to pat myself on the back upon reflection. In fact, i might just "like" all my own posts just cos no one else bloody will.
On Sun 29 Oct at 10:33am Nevillman wrote:
I can't decide if you're deliberately trying to wind me up and just having a laugh or subscribing to the Tom pain method of forum participation. Quickly skim the previous thread (if that) and then just say what ever cobblers comes into your head while trying to be offensive to the previous writer.
It may be something else entirely of course and your post does also come over as a big cry for help.
Please look up UBI. I don't think you fully grasp that it goes to all adults. What is the point of it while most people are working and who will do the jobs once the state is paying them anyway. It will be a while before AI and automation take them away.
It would also be helpful if you could explain how nationalising the water companies could be afforded and achieved. It will require tax, borrowing which must be repaid or less spending on something else.
As I was only saying to rishi, Maria, Jacob, your family and all my other pals at the conservative club the other day, they think there's a magic money tree. We then got on to smashing the unions because we talk about that all the time.
I'm sorry that my outlining on the surplus labour theory of capitalism came as such a big shock to you. It really is no secret but they will also introduce AI and automation wherever they can because they want to reduce their costs as much as they can to increase their profits. Increasing profits is what they are all trying to do. It is the job of the government to regulate the capitalist bosses to protect employees and consumers from harm and ensure that their profits are taxed and redistributed. It is not the job of government to introduce that AI and automation into private industry but they should try to help them become as efficient as possible.
I'm not sure if it's completely accurate to say Britain's wealth was stolen from colonization. We were wealthy so could become a colonial power. Exactly what benefits we got from that from that I need to think about more.
Anyway I'll give you a couple of likes as I shouldn't really have referred to you starting early like that. The second half of the rugby was about to begin and I couldn't be bothered to try to deal with your points. As I've said before whatever you put into your body is completely your business. I realise you would have just ignored my points if the situation was reversed.
On Sun 29 Oct at 11:42am Green Sleeves wrote:
The country doesn't have to do any favours to the existing privately owned water companies, and neither does the state. Estimates of £15bn to nationalise the water companies is on the low estimate but affordable and fair, given the failures of the private water companies over the decades, who have managed to end up with £50bn in debts, meanwhile paying more than £50bn out in dividends and ripping off its customers. Yes, you raise taxes and borrow to achieve it - something which should have been done ages ago when borrowing was cheap, but we kept kicking the can down the road.
I know what UBI stands for and what it means, you're just being pedantic for the sake of stringing out a discussion. The entire point of it is that it will become an inevitability at some stage in the future, so we have to look at UBI trials and continue the ones currently going on in the UK, as i think they will potentially be a significant net contributor to society. So far, when it has been introduced, it has shown promising results, in terms of the quality of life, and tax revenues it raises as a result of it. Of course some people will take the piss, thats with all kind of benefits (and again, is a predominantly TORY argument against benefits, picking on minority worst cases essentially), but having an ultimate safety net that stops being from being homeless or destitute is something we can strive for in the 21st century. Lowering crime would be an obvious additional perk, which would be nice, and again, can be factored into costing such a policy.
The colonisation of India alone saw Britain take around $40tn during those centuries of occupation. Britain colonised India when India was a rich land, with enormous resources and wealth, and high literacy levels and by the time they left in 1947 they were poor and literacy rates had fallen. This was the thanks they got, despite Indian troops effectively saving Britain in both WW1 and WW2 with its enormous army, and of the Bengal famine being a direct result of a Churchill policy, that killed almost 3m indians. Lets not even get started what we did to Ireland, Palestine and the ethnic cleansing "we" participated in throughout our wonderful proud history. We got there by being the school bully. Sadly that mentality hasn't quite worn off for some Britons.
On Sun 29 Oct at 11:44am Green Sleeves wrote:
I'm not sure where my "cry for help" is though?
Just don't leave me though.....promise you will keep replying....don't leave me alone here, not with that lurker Tom. He makes me feel uneasy when we're alone together.
On Sun 29 Oct at 1:04pm Nevillman wrote:
The implications of AI and automation on society are potentially massive. We really cannot forsee them. Theoretically it should mean that everything is produced at low cost and we all have masses of leisure time. Others are more pessimistic. Try reading homo Deux by harari (the guy who wrote sapiens) for a particularly bleak view of it. I don't see how you can have a useful trial of UBI without knowing how it will pan out. Having a safety net is something completely different. It's not being pedantic. Just trying to be clear what we are talking about. UBI would go to everyone because hardly any of us have paid employment. People are just paid to be consumers. We are not in that situation at the moment. You cannot possibly trial UBI at the moment. Just trialling new benefit systems is totally different.
It's interesting you talk about reduced crime. Since technology bought the cost of new TVs down and made recorders redundant, home break ins has also declined as there is no point breaking into a house to nick a DVD player to sell. Thieves would only take jewellery and bikes now. When all "stuff" costs next to nothing then crime will change further.
Historians spend lifetimes discussing the pros and cons of colonisation. It's handy to reduce it to figures like 40tn but not at all accurate. It's easy to reflect and see the aspects of it that were cruel, unjust and immoral. The same can be said of any times in history to any people. I refuse to feel guilty for something I had no influence on but please feel free to revel in that guilt yourself. I wish it hadn't happened but you can say that about many things in history. I'm pretty sure I've spent more time in India than you have and have met Indians who think it was a good thing.
Historians and economists also endlessly discuss the causes of wealth and historical reasons for Britain's early industrialization ( which actually started before the main colonial period). I certainly wouldn't reduce it to a belief that it came about because we stole it from the Indians.
As for Ireland, Oliver Cromwell was dug up and hung after he died when the monarchy was restored. What more would you like to happen?
I'm not sure Tom is lurking anymore. His silence is interesting. I was surprised he didn't have something to say about Blair or thatch. It leads me to think he was really only interested in sabotaging other people debates.
On Sun 29 Oct at 2:23pm Green Sleeves wrote:
Come on nevillman, using personal anecdotes is hardly reliable - yes, I'm sure you have spent more time in India than I have, and the Indians you met all said how wonderful Britain was to them, and how nice the Queen was etc etc. I do wonder what they said about you after you left though.... I'd be happy to see what the opinion polls on Indian support for British rule would say, but i'm guessing its more accurate and predictable than what polite Indian friends of yours might say to you.
You say the figures are inaccurate, i presume you mean the $40tn figure. I think that figure has been widely used for a while now because these things can be fairly easily calculated. In fact, just googling it now, its estimated that between 1765 to 1938 Britain drained $45tn. Please don't tell me how we gave them British values and railways, as that is again the classic Tory ignorance. Their sacrifice in ww1 and ww2 cannot be exaggerated, some military experts have suggested without Indian participation in both those wars, Britain would have potentially lost. I guess what i'm saying is that we got a LOT more out of that colonial transaction than they did.
Its not about "guilt", its about accepting reality and when the bad guys are the bad guys, you call it out, and "we" have been the baddies on a significant scale across history. I think Britain could have probably helped our Irish brethren a bit more during the potato famine....but they were our subjects, so screw 'em. We aren't the only bad guys either, by the way.
On Sun 29 Oct at 3:23pm Nevillman wrote:
The figure is disputed but I'm not sufficiently interested to find an exact figure. There's lots to be ashamed of in British history including India but what is your point? Arguably all the British dead of ww1 and 2 as well as the Indian and commonwealth dead were propping up the British ruling class.
I try to accept reality and that is there have been many awful things happen throughout history and we are very lucky to live in a period of massive prosperity and unparalleled peace thanks to pillaging the planet. I hope it lasts.
You can focus on exceptions like Gaza it you wish green. I can do nothing at all about it and can't see a solution. Aren't we a very strange species.
On Sun 29 Oct at 3:48pm Green Sleeves wrote:
Exceptions like Gaza? I don't know what you mean, and it seems that most people don't give that much of a hoot about the people of Gaza, in power at least in the west. Only the SNP leader Hamza Yousaf, who has family in Gaza, seems to show any compassion, while the rest spend all their time condemning Hamas and backing Israel to inflict ethnic cleansing. Spineless, in fear of saying something wrong.
Israel has received the most foreign aid from America than any other country on earth. Billions upon billions, to make them a nuclear superpower and police the middle east. This is the result of such an experiment/investment. And "powers" like Britain of course started it all off.
On Sun 29 Oct at 4:15pm Nevillman wrote:
I meant that Gaza was an exception to the generally peaceful state of the world compared with any other time in history.
Very happy to learn your solution to the problem in that part of the world.
On Sun 29 Oct at 4:58pm Green Sleeves wrote:
I think that perspective applies more to the West than the whole world in general. Sure, there are no "GLOBAL" wars like WW2 impacting the UK at a direct level (perhaps aside from reputation and terrorism), although the Russia/Ukraine conflict seems to feel like a precursor to WW3, and clearly there have been multiple conflicts across the world over the past few decades, not just in Israel and Palestine. Many proxy wars fought between global powers/superpowers as well across South, Central America, Africa and of course the middle east displacing millions. Relative peace, perhaps, but that really does depend on who's eyes you are seeing it through.
Peace between Israel and Palestine won't happen until they have a two-state solution and the end of occupation, apartheid and the siege of Gaza, and have leadership that are serious about that, particularly on the Israeli side, who are the ones with the leverage and power. Netanyahu over his long term in power has ensured that has been impossible, and western leaders have just given this guy a pass for far too long. Particularly in the UK and US. The UN seems to care somewhat, but the key players in the west want to turn a blind eye and let Israel continue its ethnic cleansing. We should be holding our government to account to pressure Israel into a ceasefire as a bare minimum.
On Sun 29 Oct at 10:10pm Nevillman wrote:
To be honest I can't really get the Israel stuff. No point in me even having an opinion on it.
Across the whole world armed conflict is on a declining trend. Also far fewer people are classified as being in absolute poverty, the standard of living across the world is higher, life expectancy across the world is way up, infant mortality is lower, everyone has a far lower chance of being killed than ever. Check out Steven Pinker, enlightenment now if you want facts and figures.
Great while the world consumes everything and there is no shortage of anything. It will require huge innovation to get out of this without conflict.