Print Story Turkeys and Christmas.
By Breaker (Mon Jan 26, 2009 at 07:34:05 AM EST) (all tags)
In some parts of the country we are now officially a proper client state.

Well done, Labour Apologists!  Every day brings us closer to the Socialist Utopia, comrades!
< Friggin' finger | Why, er... >
Turkeys and Christmas. | 22 comments (22 topical, 0 hidden)
Whoa 60-70% parasite by spacejack (4.00 / 1) #1 Mon Jan 26, 2009 at 08:09:02 AM EST
You're running out of hosts...

parasite? by codemonkey uk (4.00 / 1) #2 Mon Jan 26, 2009 at 08:37:34 AM EST
That's a bit harsh.  Do you really think every public sector service is "parasitic"?  The NHS may not be efficient, and nor may refuse collection services, but to describe those organisations as parasites on the private sector is, well, a bit short sighted, isn't it?

We pay taxes, and we get a service in return, you may quibble about the quality or value for money you get from that service, but to compare it to work-dodging dole collection is unreasonable.

--- Thad ---
Almost as Smart As you.

[ Parent ]
Very true by Breaker (2.00 / 0) #3 Mon Jan 26, 2009 at 09:07:31 AM EST
But I'd be interested in seeing how many of those on the state payroll are teachers, nurses, police etc, and how many are five a day coordinators, street play advisors and other assorted makework positions.

[ Parent ]
About the same percentage as on private payrolls by ambrosen (2.00 / 0) #8 Mon Jan 26, 2009 at 10:34:14 AM EST
I'd have thought.

Ditto the percentage who are incompetent. Trouble is, incompetence will always exist.

[ Parent ]
Except that by spacejack (4.00 / 1) #9 Mon Jan 26, 2009 at 10:39:44 AM EST
Incompetents in private business aren't living off your taxes*. And if they're too incompetent, they'll get run out of business by a competitor.

* Except in cases of "state capitalism" noted by Theo below.

[ Parent ]
I've seen a lot of incompetence in private firms. by ambrosen (4.00 / 2) #10 Mon Jan 26, 2009 at 10:44:46 AM EST
That said, barely any private sector company I've worked for still exists.

[ Parent ]
what's up with your website? by garlic (2.00 / 0) #11 Mon Jan 26, 2009 at 09:16:45 PM EST says it's gone...

[ Parent ]
Not really by spacejack (4.00 / 1) #4 Mon Jan 26, 2009 at 09:31:51 AM EST
It was supposed to be funny.

Q: How many socialists does it take to screw in a lightbulb?
A: That's not funny.

Anyway, the comment may have been triggered in part by having done work for about a dozen or so public organizations over the past few years, which, once we got a look into what they were actually doing, none them seemed to be doing anything remotely useful. But everyone working there all had great benefits, excellent downtown offices, better job security than one can usually expect in the real world, etc.

It's one thing to read abstract ideological arguments for large public sector, it's another to actually see where the money is actually going and how it's being used (or wasted.)

Still, I'm not calling for the abolishment public health care or homeless shelters.

[ Parent ]
That'd be by Breaker (4.00 / 0) #5 Mon Jan 26, 2009 at 09:58:37 AM EST
One of the "energy efficient" lightbulbs though.  Which are now the only ones you can buy as shops are "voluntarily" phasing out incandescent bulbs.  The new bulbs have to be disposed of by special treatment plants as they have mercury in them.

Curiously, a Labour peer has a directorship on the board of a lightbulb treatment firm...

[ Parent ]
I'm hoarding incandecents by spacejack (4.00 / 1) #7 Mon Jan 26, 2009 at 10:02:41 AM EST
At least until I can get decent LED bulbs.

[ Parent ]
Really need more information by TheophileEscargot (4.00 / 2) #6 Mon Jan 26, 2009 at 10:00:08 AM EST
On the "Soviet Britain"/"Client State" thing.

Now I'm normally in favour of reducing the size of the state apparatus. If you remember my manifesto I wanted to shut down the DWP entirely and privatize all but a rump of the NHS.

But the comparisons in that article seem a bit odd. It's comparing particular regions to entire nations like Hungary and Slovakia. But a more useful comparison would be to how the state-dependent regions of the UK compare to state-dependent regions in other countries. Or, how the overall state-dependence of the UK compares to other nations. The fact they don't bother quoting any overall figures for the size of the UK state sector, suggests to me they're trying to be scary.

For instance, it would be handy to know if, corresponding with the UK regions with exceptionally large state sectors, there are some regions with exceptionally small state sectors, averaging out to a fairly normal-sized state sector.

I'd also be quite interested in the methodology. One of the things that concerns me most about recent UK spending is the intertwining of the govermment with big business into a kind of state capitalism, more like Mussolini's Corporatism than a free market. So for the NHS, the state increasingly delivers services by outsourcing them to private companies. With PFI, private capital finances development for the state. So how has that study tried to disentangle them?

Finally, both Conservative and Labour governments, over a long period, have made a conscious effort to move state bureaucracies away from the capital and into the provinces, to boost employment there. As far as I know, most other countries don't do this very much. So I'm wondering if that could be responsible, and if it's such a bad thing compared with the alternatives.
It is unlikely that the good of a snail should reside in its shell: so is it likely that the good of a man should?

Voting blocks though by Breaker (2.00 / 0) #13 Tue Jan 27, 2009 at 02:44:22 AM EST
Hence the Turkeys.

[ Parent ]
Well by R Mutt (2.00 / 0) #14 Tue Jan 27, 2009 at 03:18:37 AM EST
This graph seems to show the percentage of workers in the public sector declining slightly overall betweeen 1992 and 2004, and this seems to show the trend continuing as far as 2006.

Remember that the "Soviet Britain" article is judging the relative influence of the state by money spent, not by number of jobs.

I know you like the theory that Labour is creating a vast army of Labour-voting non-jobs, but I'm not seeing a lot of actual evidence towards it.

[ Parent ]
Ah you see by Breaker (4.00 / 0) #15 Tue Jan 27, 2009 at 03:54:28 AM EST
Even one 5 a day counsellor is one too many.  Partly from a cost perspective but mostly from a quit-fucking-meddling-in-my-life angle.

[ Parent ]
Even if she's... by R Mutt (4.00 / 1) #16 Tue Jan 27, 2009 at 04:08:43 AM EST
Oh my word! by Breaker (4.00 / 1) #17 Tue Jan 27, 2009 at 09:15:36 AM EST
"Melinda Messenger reveals what counts as a portion."

And she'd like to make sure I get 5 portions a day?  I'm sure I could manage that for her but I'd need to up my fruit, vegetable and zinc intake.

[ Parent ]
The problem is by Herring (4.00 / 1) #18 Tue Jan 27, 2009 at 12:06:51 PM EST
there are people who think it's OK to put coke on a baby bottle and feed it to their 10 month old kid. There are people who think it's OK to feed their kids burgers and chips for every meal. Somebody needs to sort that out. Maybe you ought to think for once that this whole government thing is not just about you, it's also about those people without the education or the opportunities.

You can't inspire people with facts
- Small Gods

[ Parent ]
No, the problem is by Breaker (4.00 / 0) #19 Tue Jan 27, 2009 at 02:28:24 PM EST
People like you who want intervention into people's lives to meddle uselessly with no tangible social benefit, only wave their hands and make the right noises.  Oh and tick a few Government mandated checkboxes along the way, of course.

Some people are irredeemingly stupid and selfish and you cannot legislate against that. 

It's interesting to juxtapose your post with your sig: "Ignorance more frequently begets confidence than does knowledge - Charles Darwin"

[ Parent ]
Who is expressing confidence in their opinions? by Herring (2.00 / 0) #20 Tue Jan 27, 2009 at 02:53:58 PM EST
You opinion seems to be "I'm not having a heart attack, why should my tax money go on ambulances?" "I'm not old, why should my tax money go on care homes and pensions?". At some point, you just have to admit that you're a selfish tory wanker.

You can't inspire people with facts
- Small Gods

[ Parent ]
Bad hair day, Darling? by Breaker (2.00 / 0) #23 Wed Jan 28, 2009 at 12:47:17 AM EST
What I don't want is busybodies in nonjobs part paid for by me that want to interfere in my life for no benefit.

Where do I say I don't want ambulances and geriatric care?  Or indeed things that are of tangible benefit to society like schools and firefighters?

At some point, you just have to admit that you're pushing your own prejudice on me and you're utterly wrong.  Your style is weak, young padawan.

[ Parent ]
Not really news by Phage (4.00 / 1) #12 Mon Jan 26, 2009 at 10:32:23 PM EST
Since the destruction of the manufacturing base and the closure of the mines, there isn't much left. Followed on by the rise in public payrolls, it's the obvious result.

Actually, if you review recent events by TheophileEscargot (2.00 / 0) #22 Tue Jan 27, 2009 at 09:40:50 PM EST
I think you'll find the rest of the UK has just borrowed billions and billions of pounds, to be repaid over decades, to fund the City boys snorting of cocaine, swilling of champagne, and wrapping of Ferraris round trees.

The rest of the UK would probably be better off forgetting London and just getting its finance from Frankfurt instead.
It is unlikely that the good of a snail should reside in its shell: so is it likely that the good of a man should?

Turkeys and Christmas. | 22 comments (22 topical, 0 hidden)