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 Post subject: Tuesday 13th March 2018
PostPosted: Tue 13 Mar, 2018 7:13 am 
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Morning all.


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PostPosted: Tue 13 Mar, 2018 8:40 am 
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I'm sure I said this the other day ;-)

https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfr ... esa-may-eu
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Since Theresa May lost her majority, her government has struggled to create legislation. Leaving the EU makes it look busy


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PostPosted: Tue 13 Mar, 2018 8:41 am 
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Hence there is nothing to discuss beyond listing the serial failures.


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PostPosted: Tue 13 Mar, 2018 8:45 am 
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Sounds like the interview with a Russian MP on Toady was, as MsChin said on Twitter, "interesting".

Did anyone catch it?


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PostPosted: Tue 13 Mar, 2018 8:46 am 
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Good morning

The whole situation everywhere is quite depressing

A narcissistic fool in the White House
A narcissistic thug in the Kremlin
A UK Government devoid of any form of competence but safe in position due to a bribed DUP and craven backbenches

The whole political discourse has descended into accusations and counter-accusations of 'bullying' which say a lot about how people get to be successful in our society (from experience I would say only 25% of people get to high positions on merit, the others tend to do so on being aggressive and ruthless)

I am not sure what will need to give to move us on - and, no, the Royal Wedding is not what I was thinking of here!


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PostPosted: Tue 13 Mar, 2018 9:42 am 
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Or delusion,speaking as the Supreme Being of both the known and unknown universe.


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PostPosted: Tue 13 Mar, 2018 10:57 am 
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https://amp.theguardian.com/voluntary-s ... ssion=true

Quote:
One million children could go hungry under new plans for free school meals


I'm still unsure what the current and historic criteria for receiving school meals is. I thought this article from Patrick Butler might help as he's usually very good on these topics, but there's very little:

Quote:
One of the barriers we have faced with our ongoing campaign has been that many people, including MPs, wrongly believe that all children in poverty already get free school meals. In fact, before universal credit was introduced, it was only children in families claiming out of work benefits who qualified, meaning hundreds of thousands of children in struggling working families missed out.


So why have I got it in my head that there was an income level attached? Am I going back a bit or just wrong? It's very frustrating not having the facts. May have to do more digging.

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PostPosted: Tue 13 Mar, 2018 11:00 am 
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Got it. I just had to go local:

http://www.bathnes.gov.uk/services/scho ... hool-meals

Qualifying benefits for Free School Meals:

Income Support
Income Based Jobseekers Allowance
Income Related Employment and Support Allowance
Child Tax Credit, without any Working Tax Credit, and an annual household income (as assessed by Her Majesty's Revenue and Customs) that is not more than £16,190
Run-on Working Tax Credit which is only paid for 4 weeks after you STOP qualifying for Working Tax Credit
Guaranteed Element of State Pension Credit
Support under part VI of the Immigration and Asylum Act 1999
Universal Credit

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PostPosted: Tue 13 Mar, 2018 11:08 am 
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It certainly seems very few people who are not on jobseekers or ESA would currently qualify for free school meals.
The fact people on working tax credits don't qualify is odd to me. Does anyone understand what that's about?

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PostPosted: Tue 13 Mar, 2018 11:17 am 
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howsillyofme1 wrote:
Good morning

The whole situation everywhere is quite depressing

A narcissistic fool in the White House
A narcissistic thug in the Kremlin
A UK Government devoid of any form of competence but safe in position due to a bribed DUP and craven backbenches

The whole political discourse has descended into accusations and counter-accusations of 'bullying' which say a lot about how people get to be successful in our society (from experience I would say only 25% of people get to high positions on merit, the others tend to do so on being aggressive and ruthless)

I am not sure what will need to give to move us on - and, no, the Royal Wedding is not what I was thinking of here!


One depressing feature of yesterday was the "sensible centrist" tendency in Labour - both inside and outside the HoC - rushing to prostrate itself at May's feet.


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PostPosted: Tue 13 Mar, 2018 1:16 pm 
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https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/201 ... nald-trump


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PostPosted: Tue 13 Mar, 2018 1:31 pm 
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Trump didn't like his comments last night, maybe?


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PostPosted: Tue 13 Mar, 2018 1:37 pm 
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A mate of mine just posted this on FB...

Quote:
Strewth , being in Trumps administration is what it must have been like , being a member of The Fall


:D

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PostPosted: Tue 13 Mar, 2018 1:42 pm 
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Re my above comment, rumours that he actually got the chop on Friday.


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PostPosted: Tue 13 Mar, 2018 2:07 pm 
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Quote:
George Eaton
‏Verified account
@georgeeaton
3m3 minutes ago
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For the first time in modern history, GDP growth is forecast to be below 2% every year. #SpringStatement


:roll:

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PostPosted: Tue 13 Mar, 2018 2:11 pm 
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I must say that it is a huge relief that our EU partners will there for us in the future...oh wait...

Quote:
Guy Verhofstadt
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We stand shoulder to shoulder with the British people. It must be made clear that an attack against one EU & NATO country is an attack on all of us.

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PostPosted: Tue 13 Mar, 2018 2:17 pm 
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Of course, that was very much the point he wanted to make.


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PostPosted: Tue 13 Mar, 2018 2:28 pm 
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Looks like someone has realised that their "autonomy for schools" has run out of steam...

Ministers only speak to 'a few favoured academy CEOs' - school autonomy leader

https://www.tes.com/news/school-news/breaking-news/ministers-only-speak-a-few-favoured-academy-ceos-school-autonomy

Quote:
Chief exec of Fasna tells members of her plan to transform it into the voice of the academy sector
Ministers must to listen to the voice of the academy sector, the leader of a group that plans to become its representative has said.

Leora Cruddas, chief executive of Fasna, Freedom and Autonomy for Schools – National Association, today told its members how she wants to transform the organisation into “the leading voice for the school system’s leaders in England”.

And she told them that, as well as a taking a new direction, it should adopt a new name – which is yet to be decided.

Ms Cruddas, who took over as Fasna chief executive in September, first outlined her plans to transform it into the voice of the academy sector in Tes earlier this month.


Yes, I guess Freedom and Autonomy for Schools is kinda embarrassing given that the vast majority of schools in a MAT don't have any freedom...

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PostPosted: Tue 13 Mar, 2018 2:38 pm 
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Good-afternoon, everyone


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PostPosted: Tue 13 Mar, 2018 2:41 pm 
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Willow904 wrote:
It certainly seems very few people who are not on jobseekers or ESA would currently qualify for free school meals.
The fact people on working tax credits don't qualify is odd to me. Does anyone understand what that's about?

I suspect it's purely idealogical, tried to find a reason but ended up going in circles back to:
http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/education-41983610
which was a report on consultation to make rules stricter under universal credit, justification being that families receiving working tax credits were already exempt, so not having restrictions under u.c. would cause increase in free school meal provision. Which allowed this (almost) logic defying, spin statement:
Quote:
The government is now proposing that households will stop being eligible for FSM when they are earning £7,400 a year (excluding benefits).
It says that will mean an extra 50,000 pupils will be eligible.


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PostPosted: Tue 13 Mar, 2018 2:57 pm 
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Interesting that the emphasis seems to have quietly switched from "the deficit" to "day to day spending". Wonder why?

https://news.sky.com/story/back-in-the- ... g-11287659

I might be mistaken but I'm sure I remember that's the line that the Shadow Chancellor was taking a while back.

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PostPosted: Tue 13 Mar, 2018 3:10 pm 
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RogerOThornhill wrote:
Interesting that the emphasis seems to have quietly switched from "the deficit" to "day to day spending". Wonder why?

https://news.sky.com/story/back-in-the- ... g-11287659

I might be mistaken but I'm sure I remember that's the line that the Shadow Chancellor was taking a while back.
Quote:
Aberdeen Standard Investments chief economist Lucy O’Carroll...
Quote:
It’s...true that for the first time since the financial crisis the UK is borrowing only to invest, rather than to fund day-to-day spending."

https://www.theguardian.com/business/li ... c2e5bc5bd6
This stood out for me. Is that accurate? The financial crisis was in 2008. Does investment mean something different depending on source? Did today's budget include 'borrowing for investment'? What is government investing in now?


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PostPosted: Tue 13 Mar, 2018 3:10 pm 
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tinybgoat wrote:
Willow904 wrote:
It certainly seems very few people who are not on jobseekers or ESA would currently qualify for free school meals.
The fact people on working tax credits don't qualify is odd to me. Does anyone understand what that's about?

I suspect it's purely idealogical, tried to find a reason but ended up going in circles back to:
http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/education-41983610
which was a report on consultation to make rules stricter under universal credit, justification being that families receiving working tax credits were already exempt, so not having restrictions under u.c. would cause increase in free school meal provision. Which allowed this (almost) logic defying, spin statement:
Quote:
The government is now proposing that households will stop being eligible for FSM when they are earning £7,400 a year (excluding benefits).
It says that will mean an extra 50,000 pupils will be eligible.


Thanks for the reply. I think by excluding working tax credits, eligibility for free school meals was already far more restricted than the vast majority of people actually realised, as Patrick Butler said in his article. Bizarrely, by trying to reflect current conditions (erring on the side of meanness)the new limit for UC has managed to draw attention to an already very stingy system. Good!

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PostPosted: Tue 13 Mar, 2018 3:37 pm 
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Quote:
"David Cameron and Osborne had hoped originally to use their time in office to quash once and for all the perception that Tories are wicked foes of the health service and state education. Their intention was to “share the proceeds of growth” between tax cuts and public services – an ambition thwarted by the ballooning of the deficit before 2010."

- Matthew d'Ancona
Philip Hammond can’t ignore the anger caused by austerity
https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfr ... e-meltdown

Disingenuous manipulation of meaning, government spending and investment and 'blame Labour' inaccuracy. I'm not necessarily blaming economist Lucy O’Carroll from whom I've quoted up the thread. I don't know her affiliations. Mistaken tales run through news failing to inform and transmit inaccurate information. How can people be expected to make appropriate decisions without correct information?


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PostPosted: Tue 13 Mar, 2018 3:39 pm 
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RogerOThornhill wrote:
Interesting that the emphasis seems to have quietly switched from "the deficit" to "day to day spending". Wonder why?

https://news.sky.com/story/back-in-the- ... g-11287659

I might be mistaken but I'm sure I remember that's the line that the Shadow Chancellor was taking a while back.

Tory government have thoroughly screwed the pooch since May 2010


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PostPosted: Tue 13 Mar, 2018 3:41 pm 
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Paul Johnson from the OBR on the chancellor's statement

Quote:
Not that much to be Tiggerish about here. Growth forecasts dreadful compared with what we thought in March 2016, dreadful by historical standards and dreadful compared with most of the rest of the world.

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PostPosted: Tue 13 Mar, 2018 3:54 pm 
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Eight local council byelections last week:

Bolton - Labour's poor recent record here continued as they lost this seat to a recently formed localist group, the Farnworth/Kearsley Residents. Whilst this ward has been reliably Labour ever since returning three members for them in the 2004 all out elections, it hasn't always been totally safe - the LibDems were often competitive in the pre-coalition years, and UKIP ran Labour close come their 2014 high point and still posted a strong second place in both 2015 and 2016. Much of that vote appears to have gone straight over to the Residents this time as they secured approaching half the vote in their first outing, whilst Labour dropped 10 points from a similar position two years ago. UKIP "at least" managed third place still, but dropped fully 30 points on last time - just ahead of the Tories whose 6% was also slightly down. LibDems just edged out the Greens in the wooden spoon battle, though both dropped to under 1%.

Harlow DC - Labour hold with over 60% of the vote, beating the Tories by almost exactly 2 to 1. This ward returned 3 Labour councillors in the 2002 all out elections here, and with the exception of a Tory gain come their 2008 high point has always voted for them ever since. It has not always been by safe margins, however, and in 2014 UKIP had another near miss in their first ever outing here. Their vote had dropped to a (still significant) 20% by 2016, however, and now it fell from that by over two thirds to just 6% - both Tories and Labour benefiting, but there was a small pro-Labour swing overall.

Tameside - Labour hold in a ward that had previously gone to the polls in a previous by-election only last October. As related then, Labour councillors have been returned here without fail since the 2004 all-outs - but the main opposition has often come from the "right of Tory" parties - firstly the BNP and then UKIP, who got yet another good second in 2014. Unusually, the Tories did not even stand the following year and were nowhere in 2016 - though the subsequent UKIP absence meant they polled over 30% in both the by-elections. This time round, though, Labour with over 60% beat them by two to 1 - and there was a small pro-Labour swing since last year. Greens improved to 6% since then, meaning they overtook the LibDems who saw their already meagre share halved.

Dacorum DC - a very different story from the LibDems here, though, as they stormed to victory - taking this single member ward from the Tories with nearly 60% of the vote and a swing of over 35% since GE day three years ago. This seat has been unchanged since 1979 and has voted Tory every single time - often by big margins - but another common factor is that the LibDems and their previous incarnations have always been in second place - and they made full use of that now as both Labour (down slightly) and the Greens - losing three quarters of their 2015 share in last place with 2% - got duly squeezed.

East Hampshire DC - Independent gain from Tory in a fragmented contest in which their winning share was less than a third of the vote. This single member ward had previously voted Tory in every election since 2003, though the LibDems were competitive in the earlier contests and doubled their vote this time to 28%, narrowly ahead of the Tories who were pushed into third place. Labour - who came second here, albeit very distantly, in the most recent election in 2015 - also down by 5 points; whilst UKIP - who had got the runners up spot in a previous 2014 by-election - dropped by fully 10 points now to just 2% and last place.

Medway - Labour gain from Tory with a share in the high forties and a swing of 14%. This ward has returned two Tory members ever since the first election on these boundaries in 2003, and usually very safely (though Labour got vaguely close to challenging for one of the seats in 2011) This is part of the Rochester parliamentary seat that saw a UKIP win in 2014, and though they lost it the following year their performance was strong enough in the locals come GE day that both their candidates here outpolled the second Labour hopeful. This time round, they collapsed to just 4% - and on this occasion, the large bulk of that seems to have gone to Labour. Such was the scale of the UKIP collapse that they were beaten into last by both the LibDems (up slightly) and the Greens (even though their own share was halved on 2015)

Rutland - Independent gain from Tory in a straight fight, by a margin of nearly 3 to 2. Back in 2003 this two member ward was unopposed with the Tories getting both seats, a by-election the following year saw them easily beat the LibDems and in 2007 the Tories easily saw off a sole UKIP opponent. It was after that things started to get more interesting, LibDems running the Tories quite close in 2011 and then in 2015 the seats for the first time being shared with the first-placed Independent just edging out the successful Tory for top spot (though the Tories still had a narrow lead in the "overall" vote) LibDems still scored decently then, their absence now appears to have enabled the Indies taking the second seat here.

Nottingham - Labour gain from Tory in what has historically been the latter's best ward here - they safely took all 3 seats here come 2003 and 2007 and were only slightly less comfortable in 2011. But then a previous 2013 by-election saw a Labour breakthrough, and that successful candidate topped the poll here in 2015 - though they ran well ahead of the other Labour candidates, meaning the Tories still held the other two seats in relative comfort. This time round, though, a Labour share of almost half the vote - a significant swing to them using the "average" vote method if more modestly on the "top" vote score - was enough to gain them a second seat here. LibDems down slightly, Greens down from over 10% three years ago to less than 2% now. The local perennial "novelty" candidate in Nottingham by-elections - Bus Pass Elvis - last with just 1%

Three contests this week.


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PostPosted: Tue 13 Mar, 2018 4:36 pm 
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PostPosted: Tue 13 Mar, 2018 4:48 pm 
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https://www.surveymonkey.co.uk/r/bankclosures


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PostPosted: Tue 13 Mar, 2018 5:39 pm 
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HindleA wrote:
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Way to go, Tory chancellors
UK median wage forecasts down year after year with you lot in government


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PostPosted: Tue 13 Mar, 2018 6:05 pm 
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Annual economic growth set to average under 2% for the forseeable, apparently. Yay the Tories, yay Brexit.


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PostPosted: Tue 13 Mar, 2018 7:11 pm 
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Evening folks,
I rather enjoyed this article from the Indie, about why Corbyn was right to politicise the Russian assassination programme and their financing of the Tories.
http://www.independent.co.uk/voices/corbyn-russia-sergei-skripal-money-laundering-magnitsky-act-understands-foreign-policy-a8253446.html


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PostPosted: Tue 13 Mar, 2018 7:11 pm 
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@AnatolyKasparov
Thank you for the report


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PostPosted: Tue 13 Mar, 2018 7:19 pm 
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55DegreesNorth wrote:
Evening folks,
I rather enjoyed this article from the Indie, about why Corbyn was right to politicise the Russian assassination programme and their financing of the Tories.
http://www.independent.co.uk/voices/corbyn-russia-sergei-skripal-money-laundering-magnitsky-act-understands-foreign-policy-a8253446.html

I thought Corbyn's criticisms appropriate but I read the transcript and didn't watch it


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PostPosted: Tue 13 Mar, 2018 7:26 pm 
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If people are frightened of something else, physical border infrastructure going up might not seem as sinister


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PostPosted: Tue 13 Mar, 2018 8:01 pm 
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citizenJA wrote:
RogerOThornhill wrote:
Interesting that the emphasis seems to have quietly switched from "the deficit" to "day to day spending". Wonder why?

https://news.sky.com/story/back-in-the- ... g-11287659

I might be mistaken but I'm sure I remember that's the line that the Shadow Chancellor was taking a while back.

Tory government have thoroughly screwed the pooch since May 2010


I particularly liked this bit -- " Moreover, some economists point out that in some senses, the UK's sustainable level of debt is well beyond that.

They point out that about a quarter of the Government's debt is now owned by the Bank of England."


The Magic Money Tree in operation :-)


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PostPosted: Tue 13 Mar, 2018 9:58 pm 
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Crace
https://www.theguardian.com/politics/20 ... better-fit


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PostPosted: Tue 13 Mar, 2018 11:17 pm 
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Internet acting up
goodnight, everyone
love,
cJA


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