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A wilding

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Everything posted by A wilding

  1. My impression is that they think that they are better off than they are relatively, and that they are already part of the elite. Plus being lied to about how the tax works (they are quoted the headline threshold of 325K without understanding that that is per person and that there is a partial exemption for their homes). And not realising that they are likely to spend a good deal of their savings during retirement and for end of life care. Basically most people in the UK seem to think they are middle class these days.
  2. And of those 4%, I wonder how many pay a significant amount? For example, children inheriting 1.2M from their parents will have to pay 90K in tax, 13%, which does not exactly feel onerous.
  3. Your home is partially exempt from inheritance tax. Also a couple's inheritance tax thresholds can be combined. It is a bit complex but in basically the first £1m a couple leave to their children is generally already tax free. And there are some dodges available to push that threshold up further. Inheritance tax is a typical right wing con. They whip up anger over it amongst people who are unlikely to pay very much, if any, as a cover for giving the wealthy further tax breaks. (I suppose it works especially well in this case as people are dead by the time the inheritance tax rate of their estates is actually calculated.) And they are successful enough that Sunak apparently thinks scrapping it entirely would be popular. I agree that the ultra rich avoid it, and that other ways would need to be found to target their wealth, but lets not let the perfect be the enemy of the good.
  4. Unless you are an MP sadly. It is really annoying to hear corrupt MPs whinging about "due process" and "fairness" when they get consequences for misdeeds that would get any of us get immediately fired by our employers.
  5. My city (in all but name) has an excellent bus service, in contrast with many others. It is run by a company wholly owned by the local council. The government has been trying on and off to force its privatisation for years.
  6. He failed with this audience. I started skimming about 1/3 of the way into Heroes Die because I found Caine such an unlikeable character. I have no desire to try the sequels.
  7. I would suggest not going too far from London. It is, for example, a 5 - 6 hour drive to the Lakes, a big ask for a 3-4 day trip with a single driver who has never driven in the UK before (though Keswick is an excellent place to visit for a gentle Lakes holiday). So perhaps the Cotswolds via Oxford? Bath is worth seeing also. If they want bigger hills, then the Wye valley is worth a look and is only 2 hours down the M4.
  8. Also saw it when it came out. I was in my mid teens I think. A weekday afternoon in the school holidays. It blew me away My first experience in a cinema of a really good film.
  9. Monbiot's article on deer is a rushed confused take on a complex subject. He talks about munjac deer, but they are mostly found in southern and eastern England where there is definitely no space for wild wolves. In fact deer are a serious issue mostly in the Scottish Highlands. While it is widely agreed that something needs to be done about them there, reintroducing wolves is definitely not an uncontroversial idea. Indeed some of the strongest proponents are big landowners who think it will deter hill walkers and the like from going onto their estates - one guy wants not only to introduce wolves on his estate, but to fence it all off and not allow any access.
  10. There is also the interesting experience of rereading a book that you last read 40 years ago, and having a different experience than the first time. It helps triangulate how much you have changed since you were younger.
  11. You have to laugh. It is costing the taxpayer more to house these people than if you gave them a holiday on a cruise liner, and they still can't get it right.
  12. Yes, stay away from the Scottish Highlands in particular at this time of year. The midgies can be horrific. Out of your list, I would go for the N coast of Cornwall and Devon, or the SW coast of Ireland (the latter is of course not in the UK and has a quite different feel - remote, timeless and a little primitive). Though most of the others have their points as well. Sewage can be an issue, but you won't notice it hiking except sometimes walking along beaches. Just be careful if you want to try going swimming
  13. Struggling a bit with those numbers. 561 years is apparently 6 lifetimes? A quick google gives US life expectancy as 76 years. So six lifetimes should be 456 years. Trump's minion appears to think it is 93 years?
  14. It is mostly poor Brits that eat badly, and they have some excuse. Unhealthy food is marked heavily, relentlessly and sometimes deceptively. Healthy food is generally more expensive. The knowledge, time and effort required to prepare and cook healthy food can all also be an issue.
  15. To continue with the thread derail, I personally am finding the posts of our friend distinctly interesting. They do seem to be giving a real insight into what Russian propaganda wants people to think, and what many Russians presumably do think. There is a lot to pick out of them e.g.: Russia's unique culture entitles it to act like a 19th century expansionist power. It is faced by existential enemies who are simultaneously decadent (with a special emphasis on them tolerating LGBT people) and a deadly threat. Any setback in Russia's escalating series of military adventures will lead to a Gotterdammerung that will destroy Russia forever. Whatever the Ukrainians might think, they are not a separate people and have zero right to not be ruled from Moscow. In any case, most Ukrainians want Russian rule, apart from a small minority who have been brainwashed. The deaths of cannon fodder Russian conscripts are to be ignored, the deaths of soldiers fighting Russia are solely the fault of those resisting Russia or the shadowy powers behind them. Russian armies and occupying forces do not commit atrocities. Any apparent exceptions are caused by enemy combatants hiding amongst civilians, or some equally good justification. Obviously, there is a fair amount from the fascist playbook in the above. Perhaps more interestingly though, I am picking up echoes of the 5 stages of grief. Mostly denial and anger, but also touches of depression. The grief presumably relating to an image of Russia as a world bestriding Great Power having been destroyed.
  16. I can't read Twitter stuff any longer, but ... As I understand it, approximately 10% of every Thames Water water bill everyone in its area has to pay goes straight offshore to pay the debts Thames Water owes to assorted offshore companies. These debts were run up not to maintain or improve Thames Water's infrastructure or processes, but to pay out huge dividends. (There is even a suggestion that previous recipients of those dividends have an interest in the offshore creditors, i.e. they gave Thames Water money that Thames Water then gave back to them, and those debt payments are pure profit.) With such a millstone round Thames Water's neck is it really likely that there is "really no adverse relationship between privatisation and quality"? All the evidence of what has happened to the UK water companies in the 30 years since privatisation seems to show the opposite to me. Certainly all the anecdotal evidence I have from both customers and employees of Thames Water seems to point that way.
  17. A very disappointing match. It could have been a classic between two players who do much more than just hit the ball hard. Instead Jabeur was way off her game, even taking into account that she was obviously unsettled by playing an opponent very different to the ones she beat to reach the final.
  18. That phrase struck me as well. It sounds good in a film, and I can believe that Oppenheimer used it to impress people, and I suppose it is one way of visualising what happens in fission. But you could equally well say that it was unleashing E equals em cee squared - the point being that the speed of light squared is a very large number. (The mass of the particles of a broken uranium nucleus sums to less than the mass of the uranium nucleus itself. The difference is converted into energy using that formula.)
  19. That said, there is the weird business that it it the parents of the (alleged) first victim who complained, while they themselves seem to be fine with it, which is not really from the metoo playbook. However allegations that there were other victims as well has definitely tipped the balance for me. (Disclaimer: I may be biased by anecdotal experience of the parents of young adults claiming that the sexual decisions of young adults "is not them" and that some form of coercion must be going on.)
  20. Well we don't know do we? There is obviously something there, but exactly what remains to be seen, as does the mother's motives. But the current BBC management would certainly suspend someone just on an allegation, especially when the government has been leaning on them about it and there is a tabloid outcry. They suspended Gary Linneker for example.
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