Archive for Illadvised ventures into politics

The North South Divide

Posted in Tenuous Link of the Day, Your cut-out-and-keep Guide with tags , , , , , , on May 20, 2014 by awickerman

Two very large development plans have recently been announced, on in the North and one in the South;

Exhibit A – Liverpool announces a £1.5 billion regeneration plan to improve the area around Liverpool station and one of the docks.

Exhibit B – Oxford University confirms it will be spending £1.8 billion on increasing the size of it’s estate by another ~30%.

No real point to this beyond the fact I found it an interesting contrast. I suppose it also proves there is more to this North-South divide than just government spending all the money on the south and it’s going to take more than a high speed railway link to fix the problem.

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Link of the day

Posted in And thus the Mystery was solved Watson!, Irregular Features, Tenuous Link of the Day, Your cut-out-and-keep Guide with tags , , , on September 24, 2010 by awickerman

A masterful summary of the Labour leadership election odds from Mr E.

Continue reading

Poverty Saves Lives

Posted in Irregular Features, Rantings, Tenuous Link of the Day with tags , , , , on September 11, 2010 by awickerman

Less people are dying on US roads, a marvellous result no doubt, however the explanation given by the government bod in charge, Ray LaHood, is somewhat unusual;

LaHood said the weak economy was a contributing factor as many Americans chose not to go out to bars and restaurants after work or on the weekend.

So because people are too poor to got out they’re not dying on the roads. Frankly I think the millions of unemployed people would say that’s cratering the economy to make the roads marginally safer is an over-reaction, but who’s going to listen to them? Probably not LaHood who also said;

“While we’ve come a long way,” he said, “we have a long distance yet to travel.”

Expect further economic destruction in the name of safety, better to be unemployed and homeless than have a fractionally  higher chance of dying in a car accident.

A looming problem

Posted in Even Stevie Wonder Saw That Coming, Irregular Features with tags , , , on May 24, 2010 by awickerman

I think the ConDems will soon encounter their first real problem over these spending cuts. Not over the cuts themselves (though I doubt that will go smoothly) but over the language. After all if £6 billion is “Draconian” and sends “Shockwaves” through government how will they describe the remaining £150 billion of cuts? “Real very draconian” just sounds silly.

I fear they have wasted a great deal of their literary firepower too early, what language do they have left for larger cuts? A foolish error, probably due to inexperience. Look at the civil service, they’ve limited themselves to talking of ‘axes’ and the like, that still leaves open a vast array of escalation such as ‘savage axing’ and of course ‘blood soaked chainsawing’.

Normal engineering coverage will resume soon, as will the Wicker Man with a bit of luck

A Comparison

Posted in And thus the Mystery was solved Watson!, Irregular Features, Your cut-out-and-keep Guide with tags , , , , , , on May 23, 2010 by awickerman

The new Construction Minister has been announced, a fact I realise is probably of negative interest to most readers, but hey it’s a risk you take reading this blog. First off it should be noted Construction is never actually considered importance enough to get a full time minister, it’s normally combined with a few other areas and then given to a second string Minister of State (or worse an Under Secretary which I believe ranks below ‘tea boy’ in terms of importance)

However let us now compare the current chap and his predecessors and see what we can learn;

Looking over the last few years construction has rejoiced under;

  • Baroness Vadera – Investment Banker who saw ‘Green shots of recovery’ in January 2009. So not even a good banker.
  • Stephen Timms – ex-phone consultant for Logica who is probably most famous for thinking IP address stood for “intellectual property address” despite being Minister for Digital Britain). That or recently being stabbed by a nutter in a Burkha. One or the other anyway.
  • Most recently, Ian Lucas – a personal injury lawyer who has done a lot to work on producing documents on de-carboning construction. Sod all to stop the collapse in orders or haemorrhaging jobs, but maybe I’m being uncharitable. Perhaps he worked out the paperwork wasn’t helping so realised only by decimating UK construction can he cut carbon. No jobs = No carbon.

If these seem unimpressive idiots who know nothing about their brief don’t worry, with nine ministers in less than eight years they don’t have any time to do much serious damage. That also means they can’t do any good either, but that was only ever a theoretical possibility.

So who is the new chap? Well it’s Mark Prisk. He’s been shadowing the job for years, he’s a qualified survey and has actually has worked on construction sites and even ran his own surveying consultancy. Therefore there is massive pressure on his shoulders, should he fail the case for ‘Employing ministers who have had real jobs and who know about their subject’ will take a hefty blow.

Good luck Mr Prisk, a great deal rests on you not being an idiot.

What is the point of a Deputy Prime Minister?

Posted in Alas the Mystery Remains Holmes with tags , , on May 12, 2010 by awickerman

Without getting into the politics of it I do wonder what the point of a Deputy Prime Minister is. Past DPMs have generally had real jobs to go along side the nice title, Nick Clegg (at the moment) doesn’t have one. This does not auger well for him as it does bring back memories of John Prescott, stripped of his other offices in 2001 he was allowed to stay as DPM but had nothing to do, hence he spent his time shagging the staff and playing croquet.

Something tells me Senor Clegg has slightly higher hopes for his time in power, but damned if I can see what he’s going to do.

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