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Everything posted by mormont

  1. Then why do I keep hearing this stuff about how it can't be done now? How you can't change leaders in wartime because, uh, everyone knows you can't change leaders in wartime? He needs to be kicked out immediately if there is to be any hope of salvaging something from the aftermath. If he is not, then that, too, will be a humanitarian disaster.
  2. As far as I can see, the lack of a plan is the plan. Netanyahu, as I've observed before, would be quite happy if Gaza was not reconstructed at all. If Gazans have no government to speak for them, no functioning state to care for them, and no infrastructure to keep them alive, Netanyahu and his government would be quite happy with that. If you truly believe a good plan is needed for after the war, you need to be in favour of removing Netanyahu immediately. Not after the war, when it's too late. He should've gone on the 8th October. He can't be given another day in office.
  3. At least come up with something original, Michelle. Or believable. https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-scotland-scotland-politics-67674683 Note the weasel use of the word 'error', implying that this self-serving lie wasn't done on purpose but was some sort of momentary lapse of concentration, and the 'blame it on the lawyers' defence. Could it get weaker? It can. I didn't make a penny, it all went to... my husband, which is exactly what you're being prosecuted for, in fact. Gove's in there lying as well, of course. Shame he won't wind up in the dock for this too.
  4. It's increasingly difficult to make this claim credibly, unfortunately. There's the treatment of Palestinian captives reported above. There's the collateral damage to both lives and buildings. There's the documented incidents of IDF soldiers destroying food and water. There's the utter absence of, and refusal to talk about, plans to rebuild. There's the attacks in the West Bank. And there's the public statements from many prominent Israelis making clear that they believe this is retaliation, and making no distinction between Hamas and Gazans in general (statements that we are constantly being told to pay no attention to - as if Israelis aren't paying attention to them). And honestly, it would be psychologically astonishing if this was not present in their minds. Israelis feel grief, threat, anger. Retaliation would be a normal desire. It shouldn't be bleeding into the military mission, but it clearly is. There's no longer any reasonable question, I believe, that while one aim of the operation is certainly to damage Hamas' capacity to attack Israel, there is also an unstated aim of retaliation against the populace of Gaza for the October 7 attacks. Collective punishment, in other words. At this point, if you're not willing to admit that retaliation is a motive in the minds of Israeli politicians, soldiers, and parts of the Israeli populace, it's not because you see the matter clearly but because you refuse to.
  5. To be technically accurate, historically wine and ale would not usually be stored in cellars but in a room near the great hall called the 'buttery' (because they were stored in large barrels called butts). The person in charge of the buttery was, of course, the butler. But anyway. Yes, the Great Houses in ASOIAF are hugely wealthy and wine is a staple household good. They would have huge quantities of good wine on hand at all times.
  6. No. It’s quite rare, attracts condemnation and is against the rules of war, which protect enemy combatants from(among other things) degradation, intimidation, public curiousity, and cruel or inhumane treatment. Any of those would apply to the treatment in the pictures above.
  7. https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-politics-67656220 Meanwhile we put forward 'emergency legislation' (there is no emergency here) that directs judges to ignore facts and ignore international law, wrecking the principles of our legal system and compromising the independence of our judges. And why are we doing this? At this point, solely because the Tories said they'd do this and now refuse to back down for political reasons. Not because it is a good idea, or because there is any shred of evidence that this policy will even do what it's supposed to do. Just pure bloody-mindedness and internal Tory infighting. It's emblematic of what this government has become: they value nothing except their own power.
  8. Well, in Florida at least, that's not true. https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2023/nov/10/florida-republican-michelle-salzman-palestine
  9. OK, two things I want to put down now. And yes, I will be speaking as a moderator here. First, atrocities. I've spoken before about getting into an 'atrocity contest'. Which atrocity was worse? is not a game we're going to play here, for the following reasons: - it is not respectful to the victims of said atrocities to diminish what they suffered by comparisons with others, and any comparison inevitably does that to some degree. - it encourages more detailed accounts, and it is similarly not respectful to use these sorts of details to 'win' an argument on a fantasy fiction message board, as if such an argument could ever in any meaningful sense be 'won'. - it gets people, understandably, quite emotional to read these traumatic accounts and this contributes to misunderstandings, insults, and other things that create heat but not light. So. No atrocity contests. No who-died-worse. If I see it happening, I will delete it. Second thing. Yes, you are going to chill with said shit, I'm afraid, at least on these threads. The point has been made. Making it over and over when others have asked you to refrain isn't OK. Not with this kind of remark. Please knock it off.
  10. What makes you think that? I read it before that link was even posted, for example. A good rule for discussions here (and I'm saying this in general, not just about this specific instance) is never to make inferences at all from the fact that a post someone made hasn't been commented on or discussed. It might mean that people didn't read the post, or that they agreed with it but had nothing to add, or that they disagreed with it but weren't able to articulate a response, or that they were away from their computer for a while, or that they find the topic traumatising, or that they otherwise just don't want to talk about it or don't see any need to comment. It might mean various of these things, or other things that don't come to mind right now. It could mean anything or nothing. Drawing inferences, especially negative ones, from a lack of response is not really a helpful contribution to any discussion, let alone a very charged one like this. I would ask that people don't do it.
  11. Notable, perhaps, that none of us are even commenting on the COVID enquiry evidence even with Johnson testifying today. Possibly because absolutely none of it is coming as a surprise?
  12. Referring back to the links from the previous thread, it's worth noting that of the reasons given for not wanting to work in care, while it's true that pay and conditions was the biggest reason (42%), that's only just true. At 41%, we have the fact that the work is 'emotionally challenging'. That is just inherent to the work and it won't change. You can and should give support to workers who do emotionally challenging work, but you can't change the fact that a lot of people just don't want their job to be emotionally challenging to that extent. If you're not up for that, putting you in that job anyway will be harmful to everyone involved. Anyway, Sunak now seems to have given Tory rebels the green light by saying they will not be disciplined for rebelling on the legislation. So look forward to a massive rebellion.
  13. On what basis? It's not the position of anyone who's commented here. Everyone wants pay and conditions to be better, including most of the people in those surveys. They agree that care work should be respected more - even while saying that they, personally, don't want to do it. A parallel can be drawn with apprenticeships. Everyone agrees we desperately need more of those, and that they lead to work that is essential and respected. But nobody wants their own children to do an apprenticeship instead of going to university, even people who think there are too many kids doing the latter and not enough doing the former. There's things people are in favour of, and things they personally are prepared to do, and the two are not the same. You're advocating here for higher pay for care work and so on - but would you change careers and be a nurse if it was? Not looking for an actual answer, but just saying that of those reading this thread, not many would say yes. I wouldn't. Some of my best friends are nurses, and I respect what they do enormously, but I wouldn't want to do it, even if it paid more than I get now.
  14. To begin with, there's the well described increase in economically inactive adults of workforce age. https://www.statista.com/statistics/1388245/uk-sick-leave-figures/ Health and social care jobs are physically and mentally demanding and making accommodations for disability is not easy. As the number of economically inactive people due to disability increases, the recruitment poll shrinks. The recruitment troubles of health and social care jobs are under-studied, but well known. Increasing demand for staff but high turnover, poor retention, high vacancy rates, existing staff looking to leave, and insufficient applications. https://www.skillsforcare.org.uk/Adult-Social-Care-Workforce-Data/Workforce-intelligence/publications/national-information/The-state-of-the-adult-social-care-sector-and-workforce-in-England.aspx https://www.health.org.uk/news-and-comment/blogs/social-care-workforce-crisis The majority of the population (67% - 78%) wouldn't consider a career in care, and while that is partly due to pay, it's also due to the nature of the work, including perceived low status, high mental and physical demands, few opportunities for career progression, the perception that it's 'woman's work', and the fact that bluntly, not everyone wants to work in a job that involves caring for others. https://www.charecruitment.com/blog/2018/07/the-perception-of-social-care-and-the-workforce-crisis?source=google.com https://www.totaljobs.com/recruiter-advice/overcoming-the-challenges-facing-social-care-employers https://www.gov.scot/publications/implications-national-local-labour-markets-social-care-workforce-report-scottish-government-cosla/pages/1/ There's no magic bullet here. Increasing pay would help but it would need to be by a lot. The current government does not intend to do that. And it would address only a part of the problem. You would also need to improve training, career development, and diversity, all of which are expensive, and you still would only be catching up to where we needed to be before we decided to tell a giant chunk of the existing workforce they were no longer welcome because they had the audacity to think that caring for our most vulnerable might entitle them to be with their own kids.
  15. Do we? The problem with recruiting domestic nurses and carers is not what you think it is. The evidence (and again, policy should be supported by evidence!) is that most of those people you refer to are either incapable of doing these jobs, for various reasons, or personally not interested in doing that type of work, and that enhancing the pay and conditions (which is much needed) would not solve those issues. Having nurses and carers in post who do not actually want to do the job is not going to help anyone. The labour market is more complicated than 'we have unemployed people and vacancies and the one can solve the other'.
  16. No, the reverse will happen, surely. Assuming Trump could be persuaded to accept a female running mate, he won't want anyone to think he's sharing the limelight. He'll need to assuage his ego by reminding everyone of her subordinate position all the time. He won't be able to stop himself from speaking of her in such patronising and disparaging ways that those suburban women will be constantly reminded of how bad a Trump presidency will be for them, personally.
  17. The wage requirements aren't the problem. The 'dependents thing' is. Not being able to bring your children is going to put health and social care workers off, reducing the supply when all the data shows we need to increase it. This is not evidence led policy: it's a party damaging the country in a desperate attempt to cling to power. I'd note also that the idea that 120,000 dependents for 100,000 workers (source?) shows 'something is really off' strikes me as a statement made without any reflection. How many dependents do you think the average working age person has? The other aspects of this announcement are just as bad. Having forced universities to rely on attracting overseas students, for example, the government is now going to drastically reduce that income stream and then disclaim any responsibility for the funding crisis that will follow. If you marry someone from overseas, they now have to earn at least £38,700 p.a. to get a spouse visa. And none of this has any evidence behind it showing any benefit to the country at all.
  18. Tory immigration policy is something, isn't it? We're utterly dependent on immigration to staff the NHS and social care but the Tory policy is, what if we just pretend really hard that we're not? ETA - just to be scrupulously fair, the 'salary discount' was always bullshit and I'm glad it's gone. But it was a Tory idea to start with, so.
  19. As we've discussed before, I'm sure, the 'Red Wall' voters are an odd bunch in that they suffered a great deal from Tory (particularly Thatcherite) policies but nevertheless aren't like your stepfather - they don't seem to feel resentment towards the Tories in the way that, say, urban Scottish voters tend to. And for quite a few of them, it's because they personally did benefit in some ways from Thatcher. Please do bear in mind - these 'Red Wall' voters are moderately well off older property owners. That generation, remember, were able to buy their council houses at an enormous discount and sell at a massive profit: and then invest the proceeds in privatisation shares and sell those at a profit too. Did those same policies ruin their communities and wreck their kids' future? You won't get any argument from me. I don't think anybody could be in any doubt about how I personally feel about Thatcher, and have done since 1979. But it would be daft to pretend that the 'Red Wall' voters who defected to the Tories are more bothered about Starmer namechecking her than they are about Sunak and his party constantly invoking her and aping her policies. If they were willing to switch to her party, they aren't going to be put off by a Labour politician talking about her. ETA: McTernan's main argument, though, about the pool of swing voters being exhausted, I would agree with.
  20. Nor should they be. I know Netanyahu and the rest regard this as the war aim in practice, but it's not. The aim is to defeat Hamas, which is quite different. That's an enormous 'if'. They haven't succeeded in decades of trying previously. I see no reason to think they can succeed now.
  21. These are the exact voters he's appealing to by mentioning her.
  22. I don’t know how there could conceivably be any on this topic, since I believe independent reporters are not permitted by the IDF to enter Gaza.
  23. There's an assumption that the US can control Israel, certainly, but Netanyahu appears inclined to test that assumption.
  24. I kind of feel that if Charles wants to make a point about returning things to their rightful owners, a more powerful way would be to hand back significant bits of the Crown Jewels. https://www.cosmopolitan.com/entertainment/celebs/a43538153/stolen-jewels-india-royal-collection/
  25. No, Boris, the bombs were dropped from B-52s. Concorde's a different kind of plane entirely.
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