• Tim3003
    224
    Have you noticed that Johnson in the House of Commons and all the government ministers who were on the media today are saying 36 billion for the NHS and that it's a big increase in spending and 40 new hospitals. That it will be easy to negotiate a trade deal with the EU in 11 months, because we are in perfect alignment on tariffs and regulations etc. All which have been proven to be untruthful by analysts and fact checkers.Punshhh

    You can't say these claims have been proven to be untruthful simply because fact checkers dispute them. These are doubtless the same people who said Boris could not get a Brexit deal.. Anyway, no claim about future events can be called 'untruthful' any more than 'a lie'; 'absurd' or 'implausible' yes.

    Re the care crisis: I think it is acute now. Part of the cause of the chronic shortage of beds and nurses in the NHS is the use of faciltiites on the long term care needs of those who cannot survive alone at home, and for whom no care provider beds are avialable. The problem is that whatever system the govt comes up with to address the crisis will be a vote loser, because it entails taking extra money either by general taxes or from those directly needing care - meaning they have to sell their houses, give up their childrens' inheritances etc. The piftfalls any govt faces were shown by Theresa May's attempt - it immediately became labelled as the dementia tax, although it was a viable idea, and quickly got buried. So the only way through is a cross-party agreement on the basic strategy, that way all parties take any hit in popularity and the 'political football' aspect of the issue is removed. As we face more unpopular decisions in future this cross-party approach will be more needed: most immediate example; to tackle climate change by a rapid de-carbonisation programme.
  • unenlightened
    5k
    So the only way through is a cross-party agreementTim3003

    When there was no overall majority, that was a possibility, but not now. The tories have their majority, they can damn well take the responsibility with it.
  • Punshhh
    2k
    What about " there will be no checks in the Irish Sea"? Or a five week prorogation seven weeks before a crash out of the EU is "its business as usual"? I could go on. It's certainly fast and loose while vehemently claiming that its normal behaviour.

    About working cross party, before this administration I would have agreed with you, although Theresa May wouldn't have been much better. But now, no way. The government has demonstrated that they will sell anyone under the bus to keep power. Not simply to remain in No10, but to rubbish the opposition at every opportunity so that they can never be seen as a viable government.

    Regarding the NHS, this is what I was discussing with my son earlier,

    The trouble is if Johnson gets into a pickle while negotiating trade deals with the EU and the US at the same time (which seems inevitable), he will reach a point of desperation where the stakes become so high that his government becomes at risk. When he fears this he will play fast and loose and the hard nosed capitalists in the US will get their foot in the door. We will become a piggy in the middle between the US and the EU. The US will see us as a lever into the EU and the EU will see us as a shield against the US. This is when Johnson and his right wing backers will bring out the populist tactics again. As long as we have the Labour Party up and running again with an outspoken leader, they can be ready to pick up the pieces when it collapses.

    There is an interesting film made by John Pilger on this, I will link it later.
  • Tim3003
    224
    I would start a thread on climate change, but I'm no expert on it.Punshhh

    I did some weeks ago, entitled: 'Is climate change too large a problem for mankind to solve'. Depressingly, the unanimous view seems to be 'yes'..

    Oh and we won't know if he actually addresses it, rather than just claiming to have done so.Punshhh

    He mentioned setting up a cross-party Social Care group, which would presumably produce a report. Admittedly he could ignore that report, but unless he has a better alternative he'll look pretty stupid. Besides, the small increases in NHS funding he's announced won't do more than plug some holes in the dyke for long. Five years is a long time to keep making excuses with a big majority. That is of course unless Brexit proves a big economic problem.. I still think it's odds on he'll end up hoist by one of his many own petards..
  • Punshhh
    2k

    Yes Johnson has already called for a charge to see your GP, or call an ambulance. This should be a sharp petard, but it can only become one if the media promote it, most of them won't, it will be "nothing to see here". But sooner or later an event will happen which will pierce the media curtain and they will turn on him.

    Thanks for pointing out the climate change thread, I could find one before, I'll give it a look.
  • Punshhh
    2k
    Well Johnson will be back from his champagne fuelled celebrations on the Island of Mustique with his billionaire friends tomorrow.

    Presumably he will have been doing some thinking. Will he now put any effort into preventing Scotland leaving the UK? I doubt he will want to be the last Prime Minister of the United Kingdom and go down as the PM who presided over the break up of the Union.

    But how will he achieve this? Surely the only way is to deliver a soft Brexit, but he has sold a hard Brexit. So what does he do?

    Or perhaps he doesn't give two hoots about Scotland.
  • Tim3003
    224
    Will he now put any effort into preventing Scotland leaving the UK? I doubt he will want to be the last Prime Minister of the United Kingdom and go down as the PM who presided over the break up of the Union.

    But how will he achieve this? Surely the only way is to deliver a soft Brexit, but he has sold a hard Brexit. So what does he do?
    Punshhh

    His indyref strategy to date has been: 'Just say no'. Perhaps he hopes his 'One nation' post Brexit UK will be so successful the majority of Scots will not want to leave it. His New Year resolution seems to be to stoke up Project Positive. This will be fine for say 6 months, but then the honeymoon period will be over and he'll have to start producing. Luckily the opposition are effectively dead..
  • Punshhh
    2k
    Well "just say no" is going to go well with a hard Brexit, with the inevitable brinkmanship we are going to see towards the end of the year when Johnson starts to behave recklessly with the EU again. Whenever Johnson responds to questions about indyref2 from Scottish representatives, they become incensed as he rubs them up the wrong way, with his petulant arrogance.

    Well, regarding the honeymoon period, he has already been overtaken by events. I expect he will support Trump in secret while, while pretending to stand up to him in the British media. Facing both ways as before the election. I expect he will not appear on the media much, basically hiding from any kind of exposure or accountability.

    He means it when he says the word Brexit will be banned, we won't hear anything about the negotiations, it will all be done in secret, with a policy of encouraging the media and public to only discuss other issues. Nothing to see here.

    If the US goes to war, it might become a bit tricky, again he will face both ways, deceiving the public, while sending British troops anyway.
  • iolo
    227
    Well, regarding the honeymoon period, he has already been overtaken by events. I expect he will support Trump in secret while, while pretending to stand up to him in the British media. Facing both ways as before the election. I expect he will not appear on the media much, basically hiding from any kind of exposure or accountability.Punshhh

    I think the nearest he'll get to a middle position (to judge by his comments on the murder of General Suleimani) as if he limits himself in public to kissing his Great Maters feet, at least in public!
  • iolo
    227
    I think the nearest he'll get to a middle position (to judge by his comments on the murder of General Suleimani) as if he limits himself in public to kissing his Great Maters feet, at least in public!iolo

    'Master's', of course. I suppose he did have a Mother, despite my prejudices!
  • ssu
    3k
    If the US goes to war, it might become a bit tricky, again he will face both ways, deceiving the public, while sending British troops anyway.Punshhh
    I don't think that's likely.

    Remember that the British already said "No" to US when Obama wanted to bomb Syria. Remember that "red line" Obama draw and then didn't do anything? That was because of a firm NO from other countries on that occasion.

    Boris would not win absolutely anything by supporting Trump with engaging the British military in the fight.
  • Punshhh
    2k
    Boris would not win absolutely anything by supporting Trump with engaging the British military in the fight.
    He might loose something, if he doesn't remember that he is about to go grovelling on his knees to Trump for his trade deal which is going to save our economy when he gets his high tariff, regulatory divergent trade deal with the EU.
  • Punshhh
    2k
    Will the Iran war expose the weakness of an independent UK, soon to be Little England.
  • Tim3003
    224
    when he gets his high tariff, regulatory divergent trade deal with the EU.Punshhh

    He's probably not going to get that in a year, as the new EU President reiterated today. If he wants a quick deal it will need to be by keeping the 'level playing field' - which seems to be the EU's new favourite phrase. It remains to be seen how much Boris will threaten with the no-deal option to bully the EU into a quick agreement. But will they back down? Given that the UK has far more to lose in a no-trade deal scenario it seems unlikely. Expect the Brexiteers to pipe up too, about the money we're still paying in - for no say, if the Dec 31st deadline looks to be slipping..

    Interesting too that the Iran flare-up shows the govt firmly siding with Europe in response, and having had no prior warning of the assasination from Trump, there seems no other option - Boris could not get away with adopting the loyal Trump-poodle stance..
  • Punshhh
    2k
    I agree with the first paragraph. With the second it shows that johnson is still running scarred of appearing with, or endorsing Trump. He is probably on the phone to Trump making excuses.

    More importantly Trump will be waiting for Johnson's endorsement, especially if there is an escalation in tension. If Johnson wants his trade deal he has to get into bed with Trump, which will require committing UK soldiers in any crackpot wars Trump gets involved in. If he commits troops, the protests will dwarf the stop the war march we had the last time.

    I expect the Johnson has been begging Trump to hold off any escalation until after leaving Day on January 31st. Once we're past that point Johnson will come out of hiding and get into bed with Trump, because Brexit will be done and there will be nothing anyone can do about it.
  • Tim3003
    224
    I expect the Johnson has been begging Trump to hold off any escalation until after leaving Day on January 31st. Once we're past that point Johnson will come out of hiding and get into bed with Trump, because Brexit will be done and there will be nothing anyone can do about it.Punshhh

    But Brexit won't be done. The trade deal is the main part. Regardless of Iran I think Johnson has to tread a fine line between keeping close enough to the EU for a speedy trade deal, and close enough to Trump for a deal the US will go for. Anyway, with it now looking like the Iranians are militarily inept enough to shoot down passenger jets in their own skies I suspect they will want to 'de-escalate' as quick as they can, leaving Trump to crow about the US's surgical precision in contrast.
  • Punshhh
    2k
    When I say Brexit will be done, I mean we will have legally left the EU on that date. Before that date we are still members and could in theory revoke article 50. After that day, our membership is history and to remain in any sense of the word is impossible.

    You may be right about the next stage and Iran, but I don't think Trump is going to back down. The problem with Iran is that they are now going to get a nuclear bomb, which the US will not allow under any circumstances. The reasons for this are complex and include the paranoia of Israel. In fact I expect that Israel will probably launch a preemptive strike on Iran before the US if it looks like the Iranians are close to acquiring the bomb. So in such scenarios, it is not Iran who starts the war, all they do is continue with their ambition to acquire the bomb and I see no sign that they are going to stop in that.
  • Punshhh
    2k
    ↪Brett

    The trouble with Brexit bias, many of us don't know if it is right, or wrong. Was it the right thing to do, is it better for our country, is the EU going to collapse in debt, or are we. When one is so uncertain to then have xenophobic populism etc shoved down your throat doesn't feel right either way.

    Well unless you're certain it was the right thing to do, in which case everything is rosy. But that can be nothing more than a wing and a prayer, because no one really knows if it was the right thing to do and if they think it was they are being deceitful in some way.

    ↪Brett
    "And yet you argue against what Johnson has done. With what knowledge do you do that?"

    That's easy, it's politics. But with Brexit, no one knows what the long consequences are either of staying in the EU, or leaving, it hasn't been done before and in a world in such flux no one really knows what's going to happen. It reminds me of captain Oates, on captain Scott's expedition to the South Pole. Who left the tent at a point of crisis in a ferocious blizzard saying, "I am just going outside and may be some time" and was never seen again. It is a haunting image of a person somewhere between life and death choosing oblivion. I get this sense of foreboding about Brexit, as do many others. Are we in a hipnotic state, blind folded, walking towards the clifftop?

    I will paste this post into the Brexit thread, it should be there rather than here.
  • Tim3003
    224
    That's easy, it's politics. But with Brexit, no one knows what the long consequences are either of staying in the EU, or leaving, it hasn't been done before and in a world in such flux no one really knows what's going to happen.Punshhh

    No-one knows, but economic forecasts predict something like a .5% annual hit to UK GDP going forward due to increased hassle trading with Europe from outside its single market and customs union. The Lib Dems forecasted it at £10 billion per year in their election manifesto. I've not heard the Leave campaign assert the 'gains' from new trade deals outside the EU will make up even in part for this loss. They centre on emotive feel-better effects and greater freedoms and control over UK decisions.
  • alcontali
    1.3k
    With the ongoing Brexit apparently never coming to a conclusion, are we now also witnessing a Megxit in the British Isles? It looks like we can already give to Prince Harry the 2020 "cuck of the year" trophy!
  • Punshhh
    2k
    With the ongoing Brexit apparently never coming to a conclusion, are we now also witnessing a Megxit in the British Isles? It looks like we can already give to Prince Harry the 2020 "cuck of the year" trophy!
    Yes it's going to happen.
    I don't know if you are aware of the nature of the British media. But Harry and Meghan have been hit by a tsunami of racist hatred and personal attacks from the right wing Zenophobic newspapers. Who have raised a campaign of hatred amongst their loyal readers, this has also spilled out occasionally onto the mainstream media.

    The debate at the moment, is about the problem of hate news and persecution of royalty in the UK. A topic which rarely comes to the surface, as criticism of the media, is avoided by the media.
  • alcontali
    1.3k
    But Harry and Megan have been hit by a tsunami of racist hatred and personal attacks from the right wing Zenophobic newspapers.Punshhh

    Not sure that it is about race, really.

    There has been a hundred times more talk about racist remarks than any actual racist remarks. I am sure that you can find such remarks, if you diligently dig for them. You can always find someone who makes them, if you look hard enough.

    Still, these "racist remarks" seems to be much more of a convenient excuse used to draw the attention away from the fact that Mrs. "Strong and Independent" has bailed out, dragging the royal child in tow, several continents away from where the child is supposed to be, i.e. at the royal palace, under the watchful eye of her majesty the queen. Furthermore, isn't a married woman supposed to be living with her husband? Since she can apparently do as she pleases, whenever she pleases, I wonder what that marriage was supposed to be about?

    The next step will obviously be a divorce, after which her already non-existent obligations completely cease, while his (financial) obligations will be made to continue. He has signed a rotten contract, with obnoxious terms and conditions, with an even more rotten person. Prince Harry is an idiot. Sorry to say.
  • Tim3003
    224
    The debate at the moment, is about the problem of hate news and persecution of royalty in the UK. A topic which rarely comes to the surface, as criticism of the media, is avoided by the media.Punshhh

    That's because it's an impossible situation. The concept of a Royal family, wealthy and influential, but with no achievements and abilities to give any weight to their views - nor any right to express them, is absurd. It leaves them wide open to tabloid hatred. That unexceptional individuals cannot cope with the pressure the media puts on them to satisfy the public appetite for this living soap opera is totally unsurprising, so I don't blame them at all for flouncing off in a huff. The whole institution is anachronistic, and impossibly hard on the Royal family members if they have any individuality. Once the Queen is gone I expect this will become more obvious.
  • Punshhh
    2k
    Yes, I agree with every point except the one that they don't achieve anything. They do achieve a lot, certainly enough to justify their privelidge. Harry has for example created the Invictus games and the whole veteran rehabilitation programme around it. Also he has picked up the batton in campaigning against land mines started by Diana. There are many other good causes. I think we can only judge their privelidge in terms of monetary advantage, because the celebrity aspect of it is these days as much a curse as a privelidge, as it was in the past.

    Take Prince Charles for example, the contribution he has personally made to the country would amount to a list more than a page in length.
  • Punshhh
    2k
    I wasn't expecting that bile from you. I didn't find much in your post which I can agree with. And I repeat the barrage of abuse she has received from the press is unbearable. Yes she may be a bit self obsessed and can't understand what Royal duties are about, but I am sure she would have made a success of it had the press attacks not been so overbearing.
  • alcontali
    1.3k
    es she may be a bit self obsessed and can't understand what Royal duties are about,Punshhh

    Agreed.
  • Punshhh
    2k
    I don't think anyone can understand what it is like to be a Royal in the public eye unless you are born into it. Also Meghan did not know the extent of press scrutiny in the UK before she got married. She was perhaps a little naive, but no one's perfect.
  • alcontali
    1.3k
    Also Megan did not knowPunshhh

    A wife who has naturally pair-bonded with her husband would not deliberately choose to live two continents away separate from him. It's not that they "grew apart" barely one year after their wedding. Someone who has lost her natural ability to pair bond, does not really "grow apart", because a real bond simply never forms.

    Of course, she could not have known beforehand that she would deem the daily presence of the prince, or any other husband for that matter, to be suffocating -- maybe she actually did know from experience -- and that she would prefer to be on her own, two continents away, but the royal family should have advised the prince that this behaviour was to be expected, given the fact that she has a long and well-documented personal-life history of doing exactly that.
  • Tim3003
    224
    They do achieve a lot, certainly enough to justify their privelidge. Harry has for example created the Invictus games and the whole veteran rehabilitation programme around it. Also he has picked up the batton in campaigning against land mines started by Diana.
    Take Prince Charles for example, the contribution he has personally made to the country would amount to a list more than a page in length.
    Punshhh

    That may sound fine to you, but why should these individuals be able so powerfully to promote the good causes that they personally support? We all have our pet causes, but don't have the money or influence to raise their profiles in the way the Royal family can. For anyone to be in a position of this power, they should - in my opinion, have earned the success and influence they exert over public money, not just happen to be born or marry a Windsor..

    btw: aren't we getting off topic again?
  • Punshhh
    2k
    They have the misfortune to be born into the role, the're just making the best of a rum deal. I would'nt wish it on anyone.

    Anyway back to Brexit, Stormont is back, I didn't see Johnson's speech, but I expect he will be encouraging them to rejoin Ireland, intentionally, or not.
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