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 Post subject: Friday 12th March 2021
PostPosted: Fri 12 Mar, 2021 6:38 am 
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PostPosted: Fri 12 Mar, 2021 9:49 am 
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Good morning.


Exports to EU plunge by £5.6bn in first month since Brexit

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UK exports of goods to the EU plunged by 40.7% in January during the first month since Brexit and the toughest Covid lockdown since the first wave of the pandemic, contributing to the biggest monthly decline in British trade for more than 20 years.

Teething problems, though.

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PostPosted: Fri 12 Mar, 2021 9:56 am 
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We're doing the opposite of protectionism by making imports easy and exports hard, commentators used to worry about the balance of trade but it doesn't seem to be an issue now. :?


Another thing commentators here don't worry about is the discrepancy between the UK budget and what the US is doing. As I understand it anyone with an income less than $75k is getting a cheque for $1400 but the US might as well be in a different universe, judging by the lack of interest this side of the pond.

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PostPosted: Fri 12 Mar, 2021 10:05 am 
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Interesting to note that GDP was boosted by approximately 1% in January by test-and-trace (and, to a lesser extent, vaccines).

Test and trace alone is now twice as large a share of the economy as the entire automotive industry (by GVA).

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PostPosted: Fri 12 Mar, 2021 10:10 am 
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Some initial thoughts on how to interpret the January data

First, the fall in exports is unprecedented & bigger than I'd expected. Whatever the cause, this is a major shock to UK trade.

Second, although other factors are at play, Brexit is likely to be the primary explanation


Third, these falls are too big to be permanent. Expect a bounce back in February's data. We won't get a clear idea of the size of the Brexit effect until later in the year

Fourth, Brexit is destroying Agriculture & Food exports to the EU. These industries face big problems ahead

https://twitter.com/thom_sampson/status ... 1448965121

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PostPosted: Fri 12 Mar, 2021 12:04 pm 
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gilsey wrote:
We're doing the opposite of protectionism by making imports easy and exports hard, commentators used to worry about the balance of trade but it doesn't seem to be an issue now. :?


Another thing commentators here don't worry about is the discrepancy between the UK budget and what the US is doing. As I understand it anyone with an income less than $75k is getting a cheque for $1400 but the US might as well be in a different universe, judging by the lack of interest this side of the pond.


Oh, there's lots of interest in what Biden is doing - just not so much from our government and (largely fictional) "red wall" obsessed punditry.


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PostPosted: Fri 12 Mar, 2021 1:27 pm 
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gilsey wrote:
We're doing the opposite of protectionism by making imports easy and exports hard, commentators used to worry about the balance of trade but it doesn't seem to be an issue now. :?


Another thing commentators here don't worry about is the discrepancy between the UK budget and what the US is doing. As I understand it anyone with an income less than $75k is getting a cheque for $1400 but the US might as well be in a different universe, judging by the lack of interest this side of the pond.


It's not the first time the US has done so either. There were similar payments to support the economy after the global financial crash. In Australia too, I think. European countries with more generous welfare benefits have less need for such one off payments as the safety net acts as an automatic stabiliser. Is the UK more like other European countries, though, or more like the US?

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PostPosted: Fri 12 Mar, 2021 1:43 pm 
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Somewhere in between, I suppose.
I think there was a payment last year under Trump, as well.

The thing is, there were no stimulus measures in the budget AFAICS. Not withdrawing pandemic support yet is all there is?
They're expecting us to boost growth by going out and spending our savings, those of us who have any, so it'll be our fault if the economy doesn't recover?
Rather like it's our fault if virus infections rise.

The US approach is eye-catching and the point you make is worthy of wider discussion, in my dreams.

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PostPosted: Fri 12 Mar, 2021 1:56 pm 
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Incidentally, after the financial crash, PPI mis-selling payments in the UK probably worked in a similar, but much less fair and evenly distributed, way to one off payments. Nearly £38bn since 2011 has been paid out by banks. It's a sneaky, underhand way to support the economy without seeming to and only went to people in a financial position to have borrowed money from banks or on credit cards in the first place and well off enough to have afforded to pay out large sums of money at some point on insurance they didn't need or couldn't use. How much would £38bn be each if shared out between 66 million people? £500?

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PostPosted: Fri 12 Mar, 2021 2:19 pm 
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Both lacking in fairness and stingy.

Sums up the Tories all round, really.

No wonder we keep ending up with the deepest recessions and longest recoveries.

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PostPosted: Fri 12 Mar, 2021 2:42 pm 
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Assuming that what the US is currently doing brings results (and I think it will) then we will start to take more notice over here.

Which should help the opposition parties.


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PostPosted: Fri 12 Mar, 2021 5:31 pm 
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Labour have the bones of a perfectly good response but they're far too timid.

Higher welfare payments - but only £20/week for all

No public sector pay freeze - but frightened to say >2% for NHS staff

More money for LAs - but only so that they don't need to put up council tax.

Put some big numbers on those 3 things and don't be afraid to say that they'd boost the general economy. I did hear a Labour MP say that about the nurses pay rise on WATO last week, had to look him up as I'd never heard of him. Alex Norris, Nottingham North. Possibly he'll have been told off by the leadership.

As someone said recently, it isn't only the Royal Family running scared of the tabloid press.

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PostPosted: Fri 12 Mar, 2021 5:32 pm 
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So, there is racism is the British press, but not at the Mail. At least according to DFH :toss:
https://twitter.com/Femi_Sorry/status/1 ... 25857?s=20


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PostPosted: Fri 12 Mar, 2021 5:37 pm 
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The other thing that boosted the economy after the GFC, to offset Osborne's austerity, was the Olympics. I was very sceptical about the London bid but in the end it was perfectly timed to keep some public spending going.

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PostPosted: Fri 12 Mar, 2021 6:58 pm 
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Marina Hyde is well worth reading today (hint - its not her usual knockabout stuff)


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PostPosted: Fri 12 Mar, 2021 10:23 pm 
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https://twitter.com/Hemmch/status/1370436894857789464

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PostPosted: Fri 12 Mar, 2021 10:28 pm 
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refitman wrote:
So, there is racism is the British press, but not at the Mail. At least according to DFH


Dan has now sniffily qualified that to 'not at the Mail on Sunday'. Apparently the Mail being racist for the rest of the week is not his concern.

I'm so glad I forgot about Question Time last night.


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PostPosted: Fri 12 Mar, 2021 10:46 pm 
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gilsey wrote:
The other thing that boosted the economy after the GFC, to offset Osborne's austerity, was the Olympics. I was very sceptical about the London bid but in the end it was perfectly timed to keep some public spending going


Gidiot getting roundly booed by the crowd there remains a extremely satisfying moment.


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PostPosted: Fri 12 Mar, 2021 11:34 pm 
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AnatolyKasparov wrote:
Marina Hyde is well worth reading today (hint - its not her usual knockabout stuff)


I seem to spend half my life at the moment wandering around urban woodlands on my own and as a largeish middle aged bloke with a shaved head I'm acutely aware I could seem threatening to women when they're out walking their dog on their own and there's nobody else around. I can't cross the street because I'm mostly on narrow paths hemmed in by trees, so my only option when I see a woman on her own approaching is to appear as friendly as possible. This almost exclusively takes the form of me grinning like an idiot in an attempt to exude an aura of harmlessness which I'm pretty sure must make me look like a deranged simpleton. I really wish I didn't have to do this but unfortunately some men are complete fucking arseholes and the rest of us have to compensate for their inadequacies.

The lockdown hasn't helped. My friend's ex was walking home a month ago and was hassled by some dickhead on a deserted street. Thankfully she was carrying one of those personal alarms and the noise spooked him but she's said she's no going out at night alone again until the lockdown is over and there are more people around.


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PostPosted: Fri 12 Mar, 2021 11:38 pm 
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AnatolyKasparov wrote:
Gidiot getting roundly booed by the crowd there remains a extremely satisfying moment.


Who'd have thought a man who cut disability benefits would bet booed at the Paralymics?



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PostPosted: Sat 13 Mar, 2021 12:35 am 
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A belated response to TC2

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What's the genre? "Terror" sounds a bit grim.


It's a fictional account of the search for the NorthWest Passage. The Terror was one of the ships. And also it's based on a horror novel which I didn't know so was somewhat surprised when a monster turned up. It's excellent with some really good actors, half the cast of Rome and Jared Harris from Chernobyl.

Granted there's not a lot of laughs but PF seems to be enjoying it apart from the Arctic setting.


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PostPosted: Sat 13 Mar, 2021 1:31 am 
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Am I the only one uncomfortable about seeing that poor dead young woman's face wherever I go online?

Twitter, Youtube, The Guardian, the Independent, she's everywhere I go being exploited for clicks. For that tiny slice of advertising revenue.

If she'd been fat and ugly I doubt we'd be seeing so many pointless articles rehashing the same stuff over and over again cynically for money. Or if she'd been old or disabled. But because she was cute let's have a free for all and exploit her death for all we can get.

It was ever thus I suppose, newspapers did the same before the internet came along to make things worse.

Pamphleteers in Victorian London profited from Jack the Ripper.

Doesn't make it right though.


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PostPosted: Sat 13 Mar, 2021 2:25 am 
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PostPosted: Sat 13 Mar, 2021 2:45 am 
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