£100 of spending cuts is justified if it cuts the debt by at least

> £100   0 votes - 0 %
> £80   0 votes - 0 %
> £60   1 vote - 50 %
> £40   0 votes - 0 %
> £20   0 votes - 0 %
> £0   0 votes - 0 %
< £0 (i.e. still justified if it increases the debt)   1 vote - 50 %
 
2 Total Votes
Soderbergh by lm (4.00 / 1) #1 Fri Mar 22, 2013 at 05:54:20 PM EST
I don't know that either Solaris or Contagion counts among Soderbergh's best work. His critical success is due more from films like Traffic and Sex, Lies, and Videotape. Commercially, his success comes from Erin Brockovich and Ocean's 11 + sequels.

Interesting bit about Contagion, it was made as a pedagogical device. My wife and I went to a viewing with a discussion afterwards led by a couple of epidemiologists as part of the National Institute of Health's summer film series. It was pretty interesting.


There is no more degenerate kind of state than that in which the richest are supposed to be the best.
Cicero, The Republic
Austerity by jimgon (4.00 / 1) #2 Fri Mar 22, 2013 at 07:11:50 PM EST
The big thing about austerity is that it's something you do when the economy is strong and not weak.  When you already have weakened demand, then removing government demand makes it worse.  If you have strong private demand then cutting government demand is more than offset.  So it's not so much that the austerity is bad, but the timing is bad.  Do it when the economy is stronger. 




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Technician - "We can't even get decent physical health care. Mental health is like witchcraft here."
I like to make an analogy to the Old Testament by lm (4.00 / 1) #3 Fri Mar 22, 2013 at 07:26:39 PM EST
You, know, the Pharaoh and Joseph story. Crank up the taxes in times of plenty so that you've got enough to tide you through times of famine.

There is no more degenerate kind of state than that in which the richest are supposed to be the best.
Cicero, The Republic
[ Parent ]
Old Testament by jimgon (4.00 / 1) #4 Sat Mar 23, 2013 at 06:23:57 AM EST
There's an awful lot of wisdom there.  I guess that happens when you take a couple hundred years of verbal wisdom and write them down as stories.




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Technician - "We can't even get decent physical health care. Mental health is like witchcraft here."
[ Parent ]
Welfare scroungers by Scrymarch (4.00 / 1) #5 Sat Mar 23, 2013 at 10:07:41 AM EST
I dunno, "20% of long term unemployed haven't worked at all" sounds like a Daily Mail headline to me. I suspect the argument is right but I'd look for a better stat.

Iambic Web Certified

The issue might be by Herring (4.00 / 1) #6 Sun Mar 24, 2013 at 03:36:20 PM EST
the definition of "long term".

If, as seems to be the case, very few people are unemployed for longer than a year, then 20% of "very few" is "bugger all". Factor in the percentage of people in the population with mental health problems of who are, to all intents and purpose useless then the number doesn't look so surprising.

I suppose I should read the article now.

You can't inspire people with facts
- Small Gods

[ Parent ]
Ok, you pushed me to skim the report by Scrymarch (4.00 / 1) #7 Sun Mar 24, 2013 at 06:51:48 PM EST
It is a nice piece of empirical civil service analysis, and skimming it doesn't take much more than reading the article, really.

Going by the summaries on page 6, it looks to me like there is a group of very long term unemployed claiming benefits. You could call these "welfare scroungers", or permanently unemployable, or whichever is the preferred term depending on who you are. However the group is quite small - a few thousand per age cohort analysed here. That might number at worst be a few tens of thousands? - in a population of sixty million.

It means the tabloid attention is utterly out of proportion hounding of a small minority, but enough of these people exist that there is plentiful anecdata around that people have an example to confirm the headline when they see it.

Based on a quick skim, anyway. They don't do a direct length of unemployment stint breakout.

Iambic Web Certified

[ Parent ]
Not really surprising by Herring (4.00 / 1) #8 Mon Mar 25, 2013 at 04:34:11 AM EST
The tabloids want their bogeymen.

The big ticket items in the welfare budget are pensions and in-work benefits such as housing benefit and tax credits. The fact that we (taxpayers) have to top-up wages so that people can live is the biggest scandal IMO. This needs to be fixed either by raising wages or reducing the cost of housing - something that's not happening.

You can't inspire people with facts
- Small Gods

[ Parent ]
Can you explain by Scrymarch (4.00 / 1) #9 Mon Mar 25, 2013 at 09:55:51 AM EST
Why there is a push to build on greenfield sites instead of high rises in London? Is it because of failed high rise council housing in UK 20th century?

Iambic Web Certified

[ Parent ]
It probably is by Herring (4.00 / 3) #10 Mon Mar 25, 2013 at 11:01:42 AM EST
IIRC, London has far lower population density than, say Paris. But high-rises are now forever associated with squalor in the minds of the British public. It's a problem.


You can't inspire people with facts
- Small Gods

[ Parent ]