POLITICS CORNER

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Re: POLITICS CORNER

Post by PanBiker » 18 Jan 2018, 09:39

Your link actually opens an Excel spreadsheet which in turn lists the links to the PDF's. Short of downloading them all yourself and then adding them to a post as attachments I cant see a better way of doing it either. :extrawink: :biggrin2:
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Re: POLITICS CORNER

Post by Stanley » 19 Jan 2018, 04:48

P, I have never been taken in by the accountant's cunning wheeze of PFI to move capital expenditure off the current balance sheet. The private sector can't borrow money as cheaply as the government and in addition they are taking fees and profits out as well. The argument has often been used that they are more efficient, I don't buy that either. Can you imagine what would have happened if the NHS had been set up under PFI?
I heard a good discussion on R4 about the May/Macron meetings yesterday and the point was made that with Angela Merkel disabled (And they can't get a government in place before the meeting of the 27 even if all goes well with coalition building) Macron is taking the European lead and pressing home France's case. Don't be taken in by the show of good will (The Bayeux Tapestry), he is a hard line Brexiteer and believes that the UK should not get any favours.
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Re: POLITICS CORNER

Post by Tizer » 19 Jan 2018, 10:42

What makes PFI an even more sad affair is that all the governments since John Major have employed it.

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Re: POLITICS CORNER

Post by plaques » 19 Jan 2018, 13:01

Carillion, Listened to Chris Grayling defending the contract to Carillion for part of the HS2 rail project. He said there was no problem because Carillion was part of a consortium and the others would take up the slack. He didn't say what percentage Carillion had in its part contract. I suppose 2% is no problem but 90% could pose a problem.
Some features of the overall project are shown.

Euston Tunnels and Approaches – SCS JV (Skanska Construction UK Ltd, Costain Ltd, STRABAG AG)

Northolt Tunnels – SCS JV (Skanska Construction UK Ltd, Costain Ltd, STRABAG AG)

Area Central

Chiltern Tunnels and Colne Valley Viaduct – Align JV (Bouygues Travaux Publics, VolkerFitzpatrick, Sir Robert McAlpine)

North Portal Chiltern Tunnels to Brackley – CEK JV (Carillion Construction Ltd, Eiffage Genie Civil SA, Kier Infrastructure and Overseas Ltd)
Lot C2 – ‘North Portal Chiltern Tunnels to Brackley’ (£800m – £1.3bn);


Brackley to South Portal of Long Itchington Wood Green Tunnel – CEK JV (Carillion Construction Ltd, Eiffage Genie Civil SA, Kier Infrastructure and Overseas Ltd)
Lot C3 – ‘Brackley to Long Itchington Wood Green Tunnel South Portal’ (£600m – £900m);

Area North

Long Itchington Wood Green Tunnel to Delta Junction and Birmingham Spur – BBV JV (Balfour Beatty Group Ltd, VINCI Construction Grands Projets, VINCI Construction UK Ltd, VINCI Construction Terrassement)

Delta Junction to WCML Tie-In – BBV JV (Balfour Beatty Group Ltd, VINCI Construction Grands Projets, VINCI Construction UK Ltd, VINCI Construction Terrassement)

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Re: POLITICS CORNER

Post by Stanley » 20 Jan 2018, 03:36

If Grayling says there is no problem what could possibly go wrong? Perhaps what he meant was none as far as he could see.....
I listened to May debating with Corbyn in PMQs. She seems to have got a fresh head of steam. There is no credible alternative to soldiering on with her so she is feeling safer I think. Again, what could possibly go wrong.
Regarding big infrastructure contracts.... Notice how quiet Hinkley Point has gone. Old Sparky in PE says there is nothing happening on site apart from cosmetic ground works. Meanwhile the technology moves on and more industry experts are saying that multiple smaller units is the way to go.
Boris has a cunning wheeze for a Channel Bridge. I listened to engineers saying it's quite feasible.....
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Re: POLITICS CORNER

Post by plaques » 20 Jan 2018, 09:06

Stanley wrote:
20 Jan 2018, 03:36
There is no credible alternative to soldiering on with her so she is feeling safer I think.
I think we entered the 'Punch and Judy' mode. with the roles reversed. Punch,= Boris, makes some outlandish statement, Judy, = Mrs May, hits him over the head. Which all goes to show how strong and stable she is. Expect a few more episodes of this nonsense to keep the plebs happy.
Meanwhile at the other side of the pond, the American government has just reached shut down over their budget failure. In a political system run for the few rather than the many it looks like a lot of the Senators have got concerned than the recent big hand outs have hit some of the poorest in society a bit too hard. Also President Trump's penchant for building walls, deporting immigrants, cut backs on social programmes and generally upsetting everyone who doesn't fit in with his way of thinking is getting their backs up. Thank god its over there and not here, isn't it? (Brexit springs to mind)

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Re: POLITICS CORNER

Post by Tripps » 20 Jan 2018, 11:04

plaques wrote:
20 Jan 2018, 09:06
I think we entered the 'Punch and Judy' mode. with the roles reversed. Punch,= Boris, makes some outlandish statement, Judy, = Mrs May, hits him over the head.
Very good - it may take some for me to get this image out of my head today. :smile:
Born to be mild. . .

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Re: POLITICS CORNER

Post by Tizer » 20 Jan 2018, 12:17

Stanley wrote:
20 Jan 2018, 03:36
Notice how quiet Hinkley Point has gone. Old Sparky in PE says there is nothing happening on site apart from cosmetic ground works.
It might have gone quiet in the last month for all I know but if all that's done is `cosmetic ground works' then I don't know what will happen to al the stuff that's been transported there. Bridgwater councillors are up in arms because EDF proposes to raise the number of large lorries going through the town to 250 a day. The company has had to promise £4 million of extra funding to mitigate HGV movements. This was the state of play last September: LINK

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Re: POLITICS CORNER

Post by Stanley » 21 Jan 2018, 03:54

I heard a US political commentator giving an interesting take on the first year of Trump yesterday. His line was that Trump was actually being very effective in changing US politics because his policies are so outrageous they force people to think and oppose. He cited various examples, one of these was the rise of protest around abuse by those in power. This could be what you have picked up P. I found his thesis quite attractive. He made the point that he didn't think Trump had the slightest inkling of this happening.
Tiz, I think Old Sparky's point was that there has been no construction on the reactors, only the infrastructure.
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Re: POLITICS CORNER

Post by Tizer » 21 Jan 2018, 11:18

It's a bit worrying at times to hear how well people can impersonate Trump - there was an impersonator on the BH programme this morning and he had all the Trump jargon as well as the voice and the attitude. I wonder how the White House make sure they're speaking to the genuine Trump on the phone from Mar a Lago?
Stanley wrote:
21 Jan 2018, 03:54
Tiz, I think Old Sparky's point was that there has been no construction on the reactors, only the infrastructure.
What? You expected a reactor as well? That's not in the budget, you should have mentioned it at the beginning, guv. That'll be another £10 billion and we can do you one by 2050 if the Chinese get their finger out. :extrawink:

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Re: POLITICS CORNER

Post by PanBiker » 21 Jan 2018, 11:30

The good news in Barlick is that the superstructure for the new Aldi is going up. Sorry to digress but it's relevant, when completed it will have more use than Hinkley. :extrawink: :biggrin2:
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Re: POLITICS CORNER

Post by Stanley » 22 Jan 2018, 04:30

That'll be right Ian and instead of selling expensive goods it will be price-cutting and have an influence on the Co-op. This could be it's greatest effect in money terms..... I remember when nuclear powered leccy was going to be too cheap to meter......
Again from the commanding heights of old age..... I can remember a time when every Tory election manifesto claimed that they were the natural party of power because of their superiority in the management of the economy, law and order, the NHS and defence. We have enough evidence at the moment to disregard their claims about the first three and this morning we have news that the chief of the general staff, sir Nick Carter is to make a speech declaring that our defence capacity is deficient and must be increased. (LINK) Remember that this speech must have been approved by the Minister of Defence. The question arises, are the Tories 'the natural party of power' in any field?
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Re: POLITICS CORNER

Post by Stanley » 23 Jan 2018, 06:13

Downing Street continues to obfuscate about the NHS crisis churning out statistics on investment. They make no mention of the fact that historically funding has fallen steadily. They also refuse to recognise that despite the statistics not enough is being done. At the moment all that is holding the A&E service together is the dedication of the staff, this is finite and recruitment figures show that staffing is being eroded. Even further, no mention of the funding that is needed to enable local authorities to improve social care in the community which is at the heart of the bed-blocking.
How long can they carry on burying their collective heads in the sand? Do they realise
that in electoral terms this is the longest suicide note in history?
I see Boris has jumped on the bandwagon (true to form!) and in Cabinet today is expected to demand £5billion additional funding annually...... Add to this the attacks on defence funding and ask yourself how long it will be before the other government departments realise that austerity has failed, the government is on the back foot, and now is the time to demand more funding? Watch this space......
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Re: POLITICS CORNER

Post by Tizer » 23 Jan 2018, 10:02

Boris is blatantly making a play for power. If he became PM it would be a game of `Snap!' with America. Trump & Boris, the special relationship.

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Re: POLITICS CORNER

Post by PanBiker » 23 Jan 2018, 10:11

The Chancellor has just told Boris that it's not his place as Foreign Secretary to demand money for the Health Service and that he has already provided funding to the Health Secretary, sod off in other words.
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Re: POLITICS CORNER

Post by plaques » 23 Jan 2018, 11:35

More "Sod Off" detail. Link.. Always some caveat to Boris's statement. The £100M per week is after the Brexit. It is not clear if this is before any transition period roughly another three years or immediately should we crash out with no transition. ITV ref. Chancellor Philip Hammond has reminded Boris Johnson he is not the health secretary after it was reported he would use a Cabinet meeting to call for an extra £100 million a week for the NHS after Brexit.

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Re: POLITICS CORNER

Post by Stanley » 24 Jan 2018, 03:41

Remember what I said yesterday about the other departments? I see defence have won the turf war to present their own budget demands instead of it being controlled by the national defence committee. Police next?
If May had any power she would sack Boris. Deathly hush on Brexit front..... (As in so much else). This government is just going through the motions.
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Re: POLITICS CORNER

Post by Stanley » 25 Jan 2018, 06:34

Can anyone tell me clearly what is going on HERE, is it Rees Mogg raising his profile, part of the search for an agreed policy on Brexit or simply one more example of the government thrashing about trying to make sense of what they have got us into.
I suspect it's the latter, the original 'red lines' seem to be redundant but there is no agreement on where the new ones should be drawn as more and more complications and consequences emerge. Not very reassuring.
Much is being made of the rise of Sterling on the markets but note that a policy seems to be emerging in the US to drop the price of the US$ to stimulate the economy. It strikes me that the two could be linked.
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Re: POLITICS CORNER

Post by Tizer » 25 Jan 2018, 10:31

In that Rees Mogg link the Express story seems garbled to me, but maybe the whole Brexit issue is now garbled.

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Re: POLITICS CORNER

Post by Stanley » 25 Jan 2018, 11:06

I noticed that as well Tiz.
I've just heard an announcement on the news that reported violent crime and deaths is up. A large part of this is knife crime and it reminded me of a Sky News interview I saw on Youtube in which a retired police officer forecast that this would happen. He said that the inner cities are no longer controlled by the police as they are so short of manpower and they aren't getting the information from the streets via Community Officers that is essential. May will say that it's all fine......
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Re: POLITICS CORNER

Post by chinatyke » 25 Jan 2018, 23:10

Stanley wrote:
21 Jan 2018, 03:54
I heard a US political commentator giving an interesting take on the first year of Trump yesterday. His line was that Trump was actually being very effective in changing US politics...
The dear old 'US of A' take a gander at this:- increase of +3.8% in GDP, a $1.2 trillion tax cut, 2.2 million new jobs, Dow fastest rise in history breaking 26,000 points, lowest layoffs since the nineties, all unemployment at a 17 year low, African American and Hispanic unemployment lowest ever recorded since records began, manufacturing indexes at a 20 year high, Apple repatriating $286 Billion and paying $38 Billion in Tax and building a new manufacturing complex in the US costing $500 million, US border authorities state Illegal Immigration reduced by 64%, ISIS nearly defeated in Syria.

Not too shabby for a first year. Now what do you think of the 'The Donald'?

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Re: POLITICS CORNER

Post by Stanley » 26 Jan 2018, 03:44

The same as I did before. That's just one side of the balance sheet.
The EU is to publish it's agreed negotiating position. Will we do the same? Have we even got one and if so what is our 'agreed position'?
See THIS for the latest evidence of lack of agreement on Brexit strategy. As I write Jeremy Hunt is on Today defending Theresa May and poo pooing any suggestion that the Cabinet is in chaos. Uphill battle after May has to discipline Hammond and Johnson.
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Re: POLITICS CORNER

Post by plaques » 26 Jan 2018, 12:41

chinatyke wrote:
25 Jan 2018, 23:10
Not too shabby for a first year. Now what do you think of the 'The Donald'?
Don't forget we are constantly being told that with any new governments the sins of the past one will take five years to work through the system. But when things appear to be going with some degree of success especially in the first year then they claim all the credit. Can't have it both ways.
Brexit. Mrs May can huff and puff as much as she likes but America has already sussed out that that when we leave the EU the UK ceases to be a doorway for their access into this market. Suddenly France has become top dog for America to get pals with. It wasn't all that long ago they were at daggers drawn with each other. America is getting ready to cast us adrift and we will just have to accept any trade deal they offer up.

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Re: POLITICS CORNER

Post by Stanley » 27 Jan 2018, 02:32

Quite right P. Trump is not to be taken at face value, he's a weathercock. His schmoozing at Davos is him tailoring his behaviour to what is good for him. He gains nothing by antagonising the UK.
Mind you, much rejoicing in Belfast as Bombardier gets news that the trade authorities in the US have thrown out the proposed 300% punitive import tax on their airplanes. But, Boeing have intimated that they will return to the attack when the next US deal come in....
Isn't that bloke Davies an annoying bugger.....
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Re: POLITICS CORNER

Post by Tizer » 27 Jan 2018, 12:17

The Peter Brookes cartoon in The Times today has Rees-Mogg and Farage as two cloned monkeys. :smile:

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