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Old 10-11-2011, 08:19 PM   #31 (permalink)
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Now if they'd only do the same here.

Go figure, us pawns go ahead and conserve like the kings of industry and politics told us to, and the kings get mad since their fuel taxes/revenues go down. The Emperor has no clothes anymore!

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Old 10-11-2011, 08:50 PM   #32 (permalink)
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In general, politicians don't tell us to conserve, or really do anything else that the public at large would not like to hear. US gov't and culture has steadily been shifting the onus of responsibility away from the individual and towards institutions (gov't).

We have failed to create and enforce laws that hold big business accountable, and the public is reacting by demanding increasing socialism. The pendulum is swinging from big business that is not held accountable, to big government that is not held accountable. Little does the public know that these are 2 sides of the same coin.

The solution is to elect representatives that refuse to sacrifice future well-being and liberty for immediate gratification and gimmickry. We are doomed because instant gratification is human nature, and Americans are the kings of it.

On a very tangent thought, let me pose these premises followed by a question:

1. Nothing is infinitely sustainable
2. The worlds usable resources will be depleted
3. The universes usable resources will be depleted

Why should one conserve when everything is clearly vanity?

I ask this question because my assumption is that many people who come on a site like this feel a moral obligation to conserve resources, and I'm curious how that obligation is derived.
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Old 10-12-2011, 01:59 AM   #33 (permalink)
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Arragonis -

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Originally Posted by Arragonis View Post
Agreed, but the problem is reducing or removing that debt.

At the moment we have reduced the "growth of spending" via "cuts", but not actually "reduced spending" overall yet.
My Dad was studying national debts of different countries and his conclusion was that all democratic countries go into debt. If you want to get elected, you're not going to promise more taxes.

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Old 10-12-2011, 07:11 AM   #34 (permalink)
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Arragonis -

My Dad was studying national debts of different countries and his conclusion was that all democratic countries go into debt. If you want to get elected, you're not going to promise more taxes.

CarloSW2
Our current government did just that, albeit temporary ones to allow them time to implement public sector spending cuts. This has been enough to stop us losing our AAA rating and not even being at risk of losing it so far.

Temporary taxes tend to end up being permanent (income tax was introduced in the UK to fund a war against Napoleon, and its been there ever since) and the cuts are not reducing our debt, just slowing down it's rate of increase. Arguably also the cuts are in the wrong places.

Despite what I tapped earlier about behaviour being unchanged, one thing I have noticed from a few days travelling around is more people travelling slower - following trucks and so on. Its almost as if you need to fight to get a place just behind the truck However overall traffic levels seem no lower.
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Old 10-12-2011, 07:30 AM   #35 (permalink)
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Our current government did just that, albeit temporary ones to allow them time to implement public sector spending cuts. This has been enough to stop us losing our AAA rating and not even being at risk of losing it so far.

Temporary taxes tend to end up being permanent (income tax was introduced in the UK to fund a war against Napoleon, and its been there ever since) and the cuts are not reducing our debt, just slowing down it's rate of increase. Arguably also the cuts are in the wrong places.

Despite what I tapped earlier about behaviour being unchanged, one thing I have noticed from a few days travelling around is more people travelling slower - following trucks and so on. Its almost as if you need to fight to get a place just behind the truck However overall traffic levels seem no lower.
Lets not get all party politic on this

Are there cultural or social shifts that have affected:

a- Demand for goods?
b- Available work choices (subsistance vs consumer)?

Re the traffic- same volumes, same speeds, but smaller cars- lots of "Bluemotion this" "Hybrid that" getting hoored up the motorway at 80+mph..
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Old 10-12-2011, 08:50 AM   #36 (permalink)
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Lets not get all party politic on this

Are there cultural or social shifts that have affected:

a- Demand for goods?
b- Available work choices (subsistance vs consumer)?

Re the traffic- same volumes, same speeds, but smaller cars- lots of "Bluemotion this" "Hybrid that" getting hoored up the motorway at 80+mph..
Apologies - not trying to be party biased one way or the other. Politicians seem to be in a bubble on their own and oblivious to it all, so a pox on all of them

a- Figures from retailers make you think people are spending less, banks and CC companies say people are reducing debt. But for the contrast go to the places of consumer worship and you know thats not the case - full carparks, crowded shops, beeping tills, everyone still craving the latest iPhone or Android number and willing to sign up to years of contract to get it, still the full package of pay TV. Maybe this is where some of the petrol money is going ?

b- Job availability depends a lot of skills. I'm still getting the same 20-30 jobs per day via email from the job sites I signed up to. The pay is about the same as it was in 2007 but they are there. Jobs for the unskilled or those without experience are harder to come by, the only openings there, apart from general labour type work, seem to be retail and not manufacturing.

Traffic/Cars - The SMMT say that sales are down in 2011 compared to a small rise in 2010 (scrappage scheme ?). Fleet sales are higher, but this could also be the increase in courtesy cars from accidents as anything else.

I haven't found a breakdown by size or type. SUVs seem to have taken a hammering, more and more non-X5 BMWs with "X5" on the number plate, perhaps an ex X-5 owner downsizing ? And far fewer Range Rover Sports. EDIT - The crew cabs beloved of the thick of neck and short of hair are still around though, probably bought as company vehicles for tax reasons.

As I tapped earlier I have noticed more people sitting in the left (slow) lane where I normally have it to myself and the trucks. Not on the bypass much but on the M8 and M9 over the past few days. All the others boing along at PSL + 10-15, max brakes and max acceleration, traffic light GPs are still normal too.

Maybe insurance costs or insurance companies have tightened up controls on modified cars, but the number of boy racers (aka Ricers) has dropped a lot - the baked bean can exhaust industry must be in decline.
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Old 10-14-2011, 08:44 AM   #37 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Arragonis View Post
a- Figures from retailers make you think people are spending less, banks and CC companies say people are reducing debt. But for the contrast go to the places of consumer worship and you know thats not the case - full carparks, crowded shops, beeping tills, everyone still craving the latest iPhone or Android number and willing to sign up to years of contract to get it, still the full package of pay TV. Maybe this is where some of the petrol money is going ?

That’s Fair comment- Everywhere seems busy enough TBH, but it depends how much is sbeing spent, as opposed to “Window shopping”..people can be creatures of habit, so may still go to the shops on a Saturday, but just look, or buy less?

Quote:
b- Job availability depends a lot of skills. I'm still getting the same 20-30 jobs per day via email from the job sites I signed up to. The pay is about the same as it was in 2007 but they are there. Jobs for the unskilled or those without experience are harder to come by, the only openings there, apart from general labour type work, seem to be retail and not manufacturing.
Amen to that- the lack of full time, permanent jobs within the manufacturing (and to a lesser extent, the service sector) is scary!

Retail sector jobs really worry me- so many shops, so much stuff for sale, and no “home” manufacturing industry to provide the items for sale..we’re at the point where we consume what other countries create.

Like many other “developed” countries, we’re heavily reliant on others.
If the “Eurozone” crisis grows, we’re in a fair old pickle!

Quote:
Traffic/Cars - The SMMT say that sales are down in 2011 compared to a small rise in 2010 (scrappage scheme ?). Fleet sales are higher, but this could also be the increase in courtesy cars from accidents as anything else.
I haven't found a breakdown by size or type. SUVs seem to have taken a hammering, more and more non-X5 BMWs with "X5" on the number plate, perhaps an ex X-5 owner downsizing ? And far fewer Range Rover Sports. EDIT - The crew cabs beloved of the thick of neck and short of hair are still around though, probably bought as company vehicles for tax reasons.
This can only be a good thing. I have no concern with “real” 4x4’s (landcruisers/Landrovers etc) but I have many many bones to pick regarding “lifestyle 4x4s”..

Not to mention abominations like Nissan Jukes/any other too tall 2wd useless booted piece of crap..

Quote:
As I tapped earlier I have noticed more people sitting in the left (slow) lane where I normally have it to myself and the trucks. Not on the bypass much but on the M8 and M9 over the past few days. All the others boing along at PSL + 10-15, max brakes and max acceleration, traffic light GPs are still normal too.
Maybe insurance costs or insurance companies have tightened up controls on modified cars, but the number of boy racers (aka Ricers) has dropped a lot - the baked bean can exhaust industry must be in decline.
The m8 is like an accordion- lots of squeezing on the brakes, then stretching out under acceleration..

I’ve managed to stop my car share colleague ducking and diving between lanes- seems she wasn’t aware that this is probably 50% of the reason why brakes are slammed on in the first instance.

As for Ricers- they’re generally not insured!
Problem is that now, £5 of Asda’s finest “Sans Plomb” hardly gets you the length of yourself
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Old 10-14-2011, 12:56 PM   #38 (permalink)
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That’s Fair comment- Everywhere seems busy enough TBH, but it depends how much is sbeing spent, as opposed to “Window shopping”..people can be creatures of habit, so may still go to the shops on a Saturday, but just look, or buy less?
The tills were a'beepin when I went. I agree though, I think everyone now goes for deals when they can - except for the latest tech stuff which they absolutely must have. I have finally got a smartphone that works (I don't count my dead Blackberry because BB is obviously rubbish) and I can see why, but this one will keep me happy until it dies. And being something 'open' I should be able to hack about with it when it needs upgrading.

But whenever there is a Football thing or a Rugby thing the huge crates of beer are on their way out of the supermarkets.

Quote:
Originally Posted by 320touring View Post
Amen to that- the lack of full time, permanent jobs within the manufacturing (and to a lesser extent, the service sector) is scary!
In the period from the war to the 1970s we had a manufacturing sector which meant that the unskilled "layer" of the workforce had somewhere to go. We don't now except for retail, and not everyone is suited to that.

And in the 1980s Thatch's ministers were happy to ship the unemployed out onto medical benefits so that they were not counted as unemployed - which is something that needs tackling. But in there of course there are genuine cases which will ge caught up in the nation's (aka the Daily Mail's) anger which is sad.

At the same time there are those who are happy to live on whatever they are given. As Noel Gallagher recently said "When I was growing up we were the working class and we were the lowest [in society], there's a level underneath that now, the 'can't be bothered working class' who've grown into a culture of benefits."

We don't seem to know how to move on from this.

Quote:
Originally Posted by 320touring View Post
Like many other “developed” countries, we’re heavily reliant on others.
If the “Eurozone” crisis grows, we’re in a fair old pickle!
We shouldn't be, but thats another political argument. The Euro is a dead duck kept alive with taxpayer's money from Germany, and some of ours we could spend on more valuable projects.

Quote:
Originally Posted by 320touring View Post
I have no concern with “real” 4x4’s (landcruisers/Landrovers etc) but I have many many bones to pick regarding “lifestyle 4x4s”..

Not to mention abominations like Nissan Jukes/any other too tall 2wd useless booted piece of crap..
Farmers and workers who need 4x4s and trucks are squeezed by fuel too, especially in remote areas. And yes, they do need to use fuel - a lot of fuel.

A guy at work is trying to suggest to me that the Juke R will be good, I suggested R stood for Repulsive.

Quote:
Originally Posted by 320touring View Post
As for Ricers- they’re generally not insured!
I'm amazed at how many people just wander into Halfords and leave with a wheel and tyre set and assume its OK, and have no idea what it means for their insurance. My Fabia had non-standard wheels and it was a PITA making sure the insurance included them, but I wanted the cover to be legit.

Quote:
Originally Posted by 320touring View Post
The m8 is like an accordion- lots of squeezing on the brakes, then stretching out under acceleration

...

Problem is that now, £5 of Asda’s finest “Sans Plomb” hardly gets you the length of yourself
Bypass and M9 are just the same. As for £5 of petrol, well, it does for us - either because we are EM'ers or just not very tall

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