On Wed 4 Oct at 9:09pm Green Sleeves wrote:
" Sometimes you have to change your mind. It is politics." - Say what you have to, to get into power, in other words. He made a lot of pledges and promises to get into power as Labour leader, only to row back on many of those to get into power as Prime Minister next? I suspect with the tory implosion, it was highly unnecessary he even had to do that, but it shouldn't give anyone particular confidence he is a genuine or authentic guy....
Karma tends to collect. You throw enough people under the bus, its going to catch up with you eventually.
On Thu 5 Oct at 8:45am Nevillman wrote:
I don't follow the news or the speeches of starmer so I have no idea what policies he's dropped or adopted. Please let me know any that particularly upset you. Who has he thrown under a bus?
I do try these days to be a little more accommodating though. I don't expect a prime minister (even labour) to enact everything I desire or to be able to enact everything they may want. Politics is the art of achieving what you can. If Corbyn as prime minister had just tried to enact all his policies he's would soon find he couldn't.
On Thu 5 Oct at 9:10am Green Sleeves wrote:
Again, you should really be doing your own due diligence on these politicians instead of making assumptions about how "pragmatic" they are just by their suit and tie.
I'll keep it brief - while running for labour leadership (and winning it on that platform, incidentally), he pledged to bring public services back under common ownership, including rail, energy, mail and water. 2021 saw him ruling out nationalising the 6 energy companies, and in 2022 they dropped any committments to nationalise more public services.
He vowed to defend free movement as we leave the EU. Then ever since, he has ruled out crossing the "red line" of accepting the return of free movement for EU citizens.
Scrapping of Universal credit that he said was insufficient and too complex. Then later on actually agreeing with the concept behind Universal credit.
Tuition Fees - reiterated that pledge from Corbyn as he became leader, to abolish tuition fees, only to drop the policy this year blaming Britains economic situation.
Pledge to increase the tax of the top 5% earners.....3 years later, hes now saying his principle is to lower taxes and that he "isn't looking to the lever of taxation".
He's so "pragmatic", that he also has decided to take a break from trying to abolish the House of Lords, despite a pledge as recently as last November.
Rent controls - dropped. Seemed a good idea he was behind, but once again, its gone.
“Heinous”, “inhuman” and “obscene.” Labour’s top team is no fan of the Conservatives’ two child benefit cap, which prevents British parents from claiming welfare benefits for more than two children, and have made that clear. Keir Starmer too had promised to scrap the policy when he ran for leader. But fast forward to July 2023 and Starmer’s new position is that a Labour government is “not changing that policy.”
I shall stop at this point just in case the post doesn't get published, but you catch my drift, and i can continue with many more u-turns should it be required and you are still not interested in doing any research yourself on our next Prime Minister.
At this stage though, I'm not quite sure what Kier Starmer stands for anymore, other than just trying to get into power to continue broadly the same policies in place now.
On Thu 5 Oct at 11:21am Nevillman wrote:
Thank you. Useful to have it summarised. Some of the u turns I agree with, others not. Particularly disappointed about freedom of movement. We shall just have to see what he does in power. In the meantime I have no intention of upsetting myself over it all and will do all I can which appears to be vote tactically at the next election to kick out Caulfield.
On Thu 5 Oct at 11:37am Green Sleeves wrote:
Did you have access to free university tuition? Or perhaps your children did? Was this something you would have preferred you had paid for instead? I don't get how some people are resigned to tuition fees always remaining when its not the case in many other countries, and was a reality not so long ago here.....and erm of course still is in Scotland.
We just seem to accept that things can't be changed or we can't return to sensible policies from the past. And yet you seem fully keen on rolling back on the things we lost from exiting the EU. I blame the arbitrary "once in a generation" style referendum promises. Guess that means we are stuck till 2050.
On Thu 5 Oct at 12:22pm Nevillman wrote:
I received a grant for higher education while my children had to get loans. It was nice getting a grant but I accept that you can only spend money once. Was I more deserving than many of the other causes my grant could have been spent on? Not really for me to say. My degree helped me to eventually earn more and I think it would have been fair enough for me to repay my grant out of that additional income.
My children would prefer not to have to repay but they only do so when they earn enough and as I said before it does not appear onerous or place then in a difficult financial position.
I'm sorry that you seem to accept things can't be changed or that you can't go back to successful past policies. I try to keep a more open mind eg on freedom of movement.
On Thu 5 Oct at 1:39pm Green Sleeves wrote:
It doesn't need therefore a daft loan, when it could just be paid back in via taxation to those that can afford it. I think it was cynically added as a deterrant. Its just complicating something that was never necessary. As I said, its done elsewhere including Scotland so seems daft that we have to accept the English tuition fees way is the only way forward.
Freedom of movement is unlikely to return unless we go back into the single market. While I hope we do one day, its not something either parties are pledging as they deem brexit way too hot to handle. Boris won by "getting brexit done" remember, and even if that was a disaster, its kind of put it out of reach for a while. You won't hear Starmer pushing for reintegration as it's too risky for someone as terrified of losing as he is.
On Thu 5 Oct at 1:42pm Green Sleeves wrote:
Just to add on brexit, even the Liberal Democrats are now distancing themselves from the whole EU/Brexit issue.
I don't think remainers are particularly well catered for by any political party at this point.
On Thu 5 Oct at 4:39pm Nevillman wrote:
I think that the hope was that by making students paying customers they would push to increase the quality of their higher education. No idea if that has happened. I don't think this is a big issue for most people but you would know. I can't see taxpayers being told they should fund people to earn more as a vote winner. One interesting consequence has been that vice chancellors of universities have started seeing themselves as big bosses and paying themselves accordingly. What to do about the discrepancy in pay generally is a huge issue for me. I'm certainly in favour of raising the top rates of tax.
That is disappointing about brexit. I guess everyone is fed up to the back teeth with it. Hopefully it will become a bigger issue in time. Sounds like you accept a pragmatic approach on this occasion. Corbyn was no help on this issue at all and helped to ensure a leave vote by his indifference. He could also have voted for the may deal and ensured a much softer brexit. He played into Johnson's hands.
On Thu 5 Oct at 7:05pm Green Sleeves wrote:
Raise the top rates of tax (we all agree on that), and you can fund tuition fees for all anyway, and not have to create stupid loan agreements which ultimately come out of the taxpayers purse anyway. Its just a way to further discourage people from going to University, especially those on lower incomes. It was never a good idea when introduced at 3k, and now at over 9k its just crazy when you can go over the border to Scotland for free. Well actually you can't even do that if you're English/Welsh so they pay for tuition no matter where they decide to go. Also, students start paying loans back when they start earning just £25k a year. That doesn't leave an awful lot of room for rents, bills or trying to save. Its a deeply flawed system, that some English people have seemed to have accepted as a given now. Norway, Scotland, Germany, Sweden, Austria, Finland, Belgium, Spain, Denmark, Greece, Czech Republic all seem to manage free higher education.
As for blaming Corbyn (how original of you!) for Brexit and his indifference. I doubt he would have had any sway on the matter even if the media gave him any spotlight on the matter (which they didn't). We had all the big hitters on our remainer side.....the suit and tie snake oil salesman combinations of former Prime Ministers such as John Major, David Cameron and of course the serial winner Tony Blair (actually, Major is the one that commands the most respect out of those). Fear ultimately prevailed, as that message is easier to communicate...."take back control" - the same BS that Boris and co used time and time again to essentially brainwash people into their lies. Theresa Mays deal was still deeply flawed, and the fact is that no deal would have ever worked - as "the will of the people" wanted Brexit, and "brexit means brexit". You must have heard these tedious slogans time and time again, but somehow we still result in blaming poor old Jeremy Corbyn for what transpired.
I am pragmatic on Brexit, in so far as its a waiting gam at this point. We all know (apart from the true brexit headbangers) its counter-productive to be outside the EU, but we have to allow those consequences to fully bed in so that we can have a pro-EU policy that people won't go "oh no, not this again", and instead feel like its vitally important that we rejoin. Its just a lost cause at the moment due to us only leaving in 2020 or whenever it was. We unfortunately need more time for this policy to fall apart before we can bring forward the case again for re-joining.
On Thu 5 Oct at 9:02pm Nevillman wrote:
"Free higher education". Someone has to pay for it.
I know. The top 5% of taxpayers. Or the NHS. Good for the countries that do provide it for free. I doubt if a majority of people in this country think it should be even if you and I think it would be good.
Disagree on the possible success of may deal. No reason why we couldn't have had a much softer deal under her that reflected the wishes of the 48 per cent who voted remain as well. If Corbyn had backed her it's highly possible Johnson would never have got to PM. Corbin could have stayed on and fought may again in the next election.
You might sadly be right in your last paragraph.
On Thu 5 Oct at 9:43pm Green Sleeves wrote:
I wish we had the same mindset as those other countries. I've not checked the polling on tuition fees, but yeah, its probably not that big of a deal for most people here for its effective budget to be significantly increased to cover it. Which is a pity, and short-sighted....and good heavens the UK spaffs so much money on far worse causes, or waives economic opportunities away for political motives (brexit). We'll get there in the end, just slower than others.....
As for the brexit deal - they were both lousy deals ultimately, and the opposition parties rejected both. You wanted Corbyn and Labour to tactically vote for May's crappy deal with the benefit of hindsight. It seems it was almost inevitable that that blond twit Boris de Pfeffel was going to become Prime Minister and destroy the country at some point.....his timing spectacular as ever, with the coronavirus. Quite an absurd turn of events in Britains often ridiculous history. It does often lead me to consider that we are all just part of a wacky simulation.
I'll make an easy prediction (based on my assumption we live in a sim). Donald J Trump will win the next election.
On Fri 6 Oct at 8:08pm Nevillman wrote:
It was totally obvious that voting for the may deal would be the softer brexit option and if she didn't get it then we had Johnson. I'm sorry that you and Corbyn only see it if I'm hindsight although it wouldn't surprise me if Corbyn had calculated it as the best way to get a proper brexit and really give the bosses market what for.
History teaches us that absolutely anything can happen.
On Sat 7 Oct at 7:58am Green Sleeves wrote:
LOL Corbyn is now a secret genius, who wanted a hard brexit all along, and Boris Johnson in power. Who knows. I think any Brexit deal was probably only going to get adequate support if it were at the hands of the architects of this mess (i.e BoJo, Farage and the other brexit headbangers). Theresa May was a remainer, arguably more so than Jeremy Corbyn - she lacked the fundamental support from those that voted to leave the EU. Brexiteers created and voted for brexit, so they can deal with it....at least its failure can't be pinned on remainers who weren't leading on it, and thus the case in future for rejoining can be made without hypocrisy or failure on their hands.
There sadly was no compromise it would seem. I kind of get it, as any half-way house solution would be almost meaningless. Farage before the referendum was talking about a "Norway style deal", but as soon as they won the referendum, the hard-brexit, total outsider 3rd country status to the EU, was on the cards. The referendum was a zero-sum, winner-takes-all game.....as much as the 48% of us who lost would like to admit. Had remain won, "we" (as in the remain establishment Tory party in government) wouldn't have done anything for them, that is the stark reality. It would have been much easier of course had that happened, but it didn't. Hence why we're all still talking about it 7 years later.
On Sat 7 Oct at 10:44am Nevillman wrote:
The country was split. 52 48. A brexit deal could and should have reflected that ambivalence and I think Mays deal looked like it could. She was put there by the Tories to do that but Corbyn ruined it.
In retrospect knowing now how Corbyn would behave, Johnson should have become PM in 2016. Any deal would have had to be much softer than the hard deal he struck after he had ensured the new Tory intake was very brexit.
On Sat 7 Oct at 11:16am Green Sleeves wrote:
You read Mays deal? It would still have ended freedom of movement, and the UK still would have to yield a lot of powers to Brussels, it was unsatisfactory, particularly for the brexit winners who demanded we crash out. You can't just vote something you don't like in the fear you will get something potentially slightly worse. Although speaking of that, Kier starmer voted against May's deal, then voted for Johnsons oven ready deal when he became leader. We can all point fingers and play the blame game. This is a collective screw-up...but one that should have been avoided way before Corbyn and May were on the scene. Maybe if Tony Blair had never resigned.....he would be the 2nd longest serving dictator in Europe after Lukashenko!
On Sat 7 Oct at 5:05pm Nevillman wrote:
I think you need to check the definition of dictator.
On Sat 7 Oct at 7:41pm Green Sleeves wrote:
I was exaggerating for comedic effect, although if you judged a leader by the number of avoidable deaths caused under their direction, then Lukashenko is less of a villain than Blair!
On Sat 7 Oct at 8:46pm Nevillman wrote:
I agree about the collective screw up. Basically down to Cameron's weakness initially.
On Sun 8 Oct at 10:20am Nevillman wrote:
It depends how many deaths you think Saddam would have caused had he remained in power.
On Sun 8 Oct at 11:13am Green Sleeves wrote:
We can argue stats, and i'm sure there are more, but between 1979 and 2003 under Saddams rule, there were 250,000 deaths/disappeareances that could be attributed to his rule. Between 2003 and 2011, approx 500,000 Iraqis have died as a result of the invasion by the US/UK including directly and indirectly due to chaos and instability created, and factoring in military and civilian casualties.
Now i'm no mathematician.......but that would suggest that the invasion caused more havoc than Saddam just being Saddam the dictator. It also totally de-stabilised the entire region, created a humanitarian crisis and far more mass-migration and caused Britain and America to lose enormous credibility on the world stage due to dishonesty and deception. Something which the likes of Russia can use against us today as they launch their illegal invasions. I suspect Iraq wouldn't have also become hotbed for Daesh/ISIS. 20 years on and have they recovered?
I disagree with Blairs continual denial/assessment that the world and Iraq was better off with that invasion and without Saddam. I suspect he is only saying that because the alternative is to just accept he is a war criminal. The invasion of Iraq was a catastrophic failure of foreign policy that will have lasting consequences well after Blair finally croaks. I suspect had it been a Conservative leader, you would feel more comfortable to criticise it. Just a quick note on costs.....the UK defence budget combined spend on both Iraq and Afghanistan reached £30bn. Thats if the deaths and chaos weren't enough on all sides.
On Sun 8 Oct at 5:14pm Nevillman wrote:
There's no evidence that the invasion of Iraq lead to destabilising the region. The Arab Spring was a widespread dissatisfaction with autocratic leadership in the region and each country has its own local reasons.
Who knows if Iraq would have been better off without the invasion. I wish Blair hadn't done it but I don't see the invasion as blatantly as wrong as you clearly think it was before it happened.
I realise that apologists for Saddam like you think it was obvious but I don't think so.
On Sun 8 Oct at 7:16pm Green Sleeves wrote:
LOL "apologists for Saddam", nice try, but i'm not the one whos gonna die on that hill for Tony Blair!
If you don't think that America and Britain occupying Iraq didn't destabilise the region, or there is insufficient evidence to support that simple and widely accepted hypothesis, then I feel you haven't quite grasped how to use Google yet, and perhaps also struggle how to boil an egg. Blair will always been seen as GW Bush's loyal and obedient Poodle. It must have seemed such a good idea at the time....
On Sun 8 Oct at 7:46pm Nevillman wrote:
I did Google Arab Spring and don't recall seeing wiki saying that Iraq set it off. I think you are partly right in that Blair did want to strongly ally with America and did get in with Bush. Basically be seen as America's ally so that they might help us out if required. Presidents change and whether it ever will be a chip who knows? Maybe you're right and it only did seem a good idea at the time. We elect and pay someone to make those decisions and sadly it's only us who have hindsight.