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Wednesday 17 March 2010

Verity Murphy | 11:26 UK time, Wednesday, 17 March 2010

UPDATE - MORE DETAILS ON TONIGHT'S PROGRAMME:

Tonight, we have the latest in Mark Urban's extraordinary series of films following the men of A Company, 2nd Battalion The Yorkshire Regiment (Green Howards) during their tour in Sangin - the most dangerous place in the world for UK troops.

For nearly six months the men have been facing the daily threat of IEDs and snipers, and the strain is starting to tell.

Although mercifully no-one in the regiment has been killed, there have been casualties, and as Mark sees firsthand, there are is also the emotional toll on both the men and their families to deal with.

Also, another fall in unemployment looks like good news for the government.

But as they say, the devil is in the detail. Our Economics editor Paul Mason is poring over the fine print right now, and will be giving us his assessment tonight.

And Richard Watson is in Teesside, where the community is bracing itself for the closure of the region's last steel works and job losses in the public sector.

Can Teesside rebuild itself as a centre for enterprise in the "new economy" as it proposes?

In the studio we will be joined by senior figures from the main parties to debate which of them has the best plan for leading the country to economic recovery.

ENTRY FROM 1126GMT:

We have the third film in our series following the progress of the 2nd Battalion The Yorkshire Regiment (Green Howards) on their tour in one of the grimmest parts of Afghanistan - Sangin in Helmand Province.

Mark Urban went to visit the troops on the ground last month and has again been talking to their families in the UK.

The film gives a rare insight into the emotional toll the daily threat of IEDs and insurgent activity takes and the strain on those waiting at home.

And Richard Watson is in Teesside, where the community is bracing itself for the closure of the region's last steel works and job losses in the public sector.

Can Teesside rebuild itself as a centre for enterprise in the "new economy" as it proposes?

More details later.

Comments

  • Comment number 1.

    ..the emotional toll the daily threat..

    in this short talk the war correspondent Christopher Hedges: War is a Force That Gives Us Meaning explores the myths behind war and how they are reported. how it is a drug.

    http://forum-network.org/lecture/christopher-hedges-war-force-gives-us-meaning

  • Comment number 2.

    I am standing at the next general election. I've had some flyers printed up.

    here is what is said..a message to you all:

    When ever I hear the name 'Maggie Thatcher'...I stand up. The Tories today sadly are too soft for my liking; I'm a hardliner. I'm an Anti-socialist. And when I rule the world the first thing I'm gonna do is introduce a sterility programme aimed specifically at the criminal inclined - current inmates will be all hung -and post office buggie pushers will be pushed off the nearest cliff. I will take the Stalin, chairman Mao and hitler blue print and improve on it. My slogan is "dictators unite"...would you like to join my Dictator party ?...membership is free but you will be required to wear leather boots and go to lots of meeting and you must have a strong desire to see the tyranny end..the tyranny that is paternity and maternity leave.

  • Comment number 3.

    I await each day the latest troop casualties from Afghanistan and dread it when they are announced and I think of the devastation of the families involved and their tragic loss, this is a madness that cannot continue as each day that passes the reasons for being there seem ever more remote, the rules for being there seem to change as time passes. We must have a change of policy as 63 per cent of us say we should come out before Xmas and 69 per cent say the war is unwinnable. Why do none of the three main parties reflect this view?

  • Comment number 4.

    AT LAST THE ANTIDOTE TO THE BLAIR DOCTRINE

    Thanks Jaunty. I am less than ten minutes into the talk, and already roused, and marching, in support of the War on War. How's that for revelatory irony?

  • Comment number 5.

    #77

    I can see now there are errors but the message is more important than a few mistakes in language, unless you're too thick to understand

  • Comment number 6.

    #67

    If you only you realised, singie, how silly and insignificant most of your posts are!

    mim

  • Comment number 7.

    2. kevseywevsey 'membership is free but you will be required to wear leather boots'

    Doesn't that discriminate against vegetarians?

  • Comment number 8.

    5

    yes there is some nice language. its a talk by someone whose been there. he was talking before the iraq invasion and seems to predict some of the aftermath.

    you can hear the sound of the drug in Dan Snow's voice in the historical tv shows on bbc including the latest one about quebec. Don't know why the bbc is promoting empire like it is some great good. given the constant drip drip of foreign defeats and inevitable futility its perhaps an attempt at 'morale'? delaying the end we all know has to come?

  • Comment number 9.

    8

    curiously they removed the video [ i watched it not long ago] and only left the audio.

    i've not reviewed his other talks on there.

  • Comment number 10.

    #8 Funny you should pick up on that JC

    Don't know why the bbc is promoting empire like it is some great good. given the constant drip drip of foreign defeats and inevitable futility its perhaps an attempt at 'morale'? delaying the end we all know has to come?

    I think there's something going on as well, we keep getting all sorts of propaganda dribbled out to us lately, as I said on yesterdays blog.

  • Comment number 11.

    8

    the 5 should be barrie's 4.

  • Comment number 12.

    10. ecolizzy 'I think there's something going on as well, we keep getting all sorts of propaganda dribbled out to us lately, as I said on yesterdays blog.'

    Yes, jauntycyclist is quite good on that score. The 'our boy and family from Oldham' is a bit too hammy too. Especially the school footage.


  • Comment number 13.

    #8

    The end of your 'cycling trip' you mean, januty?

  • Comment number 14.

    Ecolizzy - In fact (following on from yesterday) I'd go as far as to suggest that mean differences in group height, muscular strength and cognitive ability is natural selection tilting matters in a direction which in the past ensured species survival. It is only in recent decades that this natural process has been over-ridden, in my view, at all our cost across the 'liberal-democracies'. Whether it's been done through political malevolence or just stupidity doesn't make any difference, the consequences are dire, for some of the world's populations.

  • Comment number 15.

    13. mimpromptu 'The end of your 'cycling trip' you mean, januty?'

    You're being very naughty today - do you long to be scolded?

  • Comment number 16.

    A FEW MORE CHOICES AVAILABLE - SURELY? (#14)

    "Whether it's been done through political malevolence or just stupidity"

    What about INEVITABILITY? Inevitability due to our evolution in cleverness having gone a 'synapse too far'? Might one reasonably chart the evolution of religion (an aspect of man's cleverness) from ancestors and nature spirits, through to monotheism and world dominance? An unsustainable trend.

    Prior to the arrival of a gentle climate, we probably needed all our cleverness to survive. If we now exterminate ourselves, in these balmy days, it will most assuredly mimic many species extinctions before us; we, ironically, caught out by the PREVIOUS climate change, on this ever-changing planet, rather than the next one!

  • Comment number 17.

    ...Family of Nick Smith: "He thought it was a legal drug, so it must be safe"....

    nearly all plants and fungi are legal. deadly nightshade and aconite are legal but if you smoke it you gonna be dead. or fry up toadstools what's going to happen?

    did he take it because he was prescribed it or wanted 'a high'? responsibility lies with the person misusing drugs. the internet is full of warnings.

    ...Brown admits mistake on defence spending evidence ...

    i still wonder how some of those who gave 'evidence' could sign it 'true, fair and accurate'.

  • Comment number 18.

    The Huffington Post is the coolest and most switched on news online. Its free of the paranoia that were all potential perverts or bomber terrorists of this country or the Beebs referral to moderators with the wait outside teachers office in full view of class before ritual humiliation of a returned ejaculation and god knows what else. There is something about the BBC that makes us want to be naughty, offensive and bloody minded. Arianna is switched on to what is the most important at this time - to bring about a change with the banks by the only people who can do it at present - the public. Such a contrast to the bleak and some times petty obsessions of our politicians and the media on here. There is much that makes me go else where.

  • Comment number 19.

    16. ' Inevitability due to our evolution in cleverness having gone a 'synapse too far'?'

    That's pretty much what I meant by 'stupidity'. As I said to ecolizzy, all we can do (here) is get our classes sorted out, and discriminate to the best of our collective ability. Our major problem in the liberal-democracies (East and West) is that too many clever(ish) women are going out to work - and for what?

  • Comment number 20.

    17. jauntycyclist 'did he take it because he was prescribed it or wanted 'a high'? responsibility lies with the person misusing drugs. the internet is full of warnings.'

    Your point is basically sound to a point, but there you go with that word 'responsibility' in a magically explanatory position. It's akin to saying that someone who is terminally ill with cancer has 'given in' to it, or that someone who is still 'holding on' is 'fighting' it. It's attributed to something you don't understand, and which is really just a description of ignorance is it not? 'Why did so and so do that?' - 'oh, because he wanted to' - and why didn't so and so 'oh, she didn't want to'.

    I know this makes analysis of events much harder, but try...and you'll see we have moved on from the Greeks etc.

  • Comment number 21.

    18. flicks 'There is something about the BBC that makes us want to be naughty, offensive and bloody minded.'

    Is it because they try so hard to be even handed/fair and legal? Not all media portals/vendors do. Is it this fairness (like a parent) which drives some people to push boundaries?

  • Comment number 22.

    #21 and everyone else on the planet with a big bank account

    Its not important
    This is :

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Icqrx0OimSs&feature=player_embedded#

    When you realise that banks not only allowed ponzi scammers and money laundering criminals to deposit with them (its pretty much unbelievable that they didn't know what was going on) and then use that money including yours (yes that's you lot reading this with a bank account) to bet on the destruction of companies and countries and our leaders do nothing but lie after lie after lie and have petty arguments that are inane. Stop being pathetic and gutless - move your money.

  • Comment number 23.

    Mim,

    Your comments as ever are fascinating, insightful and extra-ordinarily helpful.
    I wish you would do more posts on any given thread.

    Brilliant as ever.

  • Comment number 24.

    17

    i understand the moderns hate the word responsibility. that is why they are moderns.

    maybe he too is a 'victim' of [tick all that apply] govt/society/media/school/parents/capitalism/other. or maybe its even 'genetic'? anything but responsible over their own power. after all that would be 'discrimination'. against people with self destructive philosophies?

    the definition of good is not greek in my dictionary. have you looked it up yet?

  • Comment number 25.

    actually the legal drug story blows a hole in the theory that legalising drugs makes them 'safe' and that no one will die.

  • Comment number 26.

    Response to ....

    At 12:39pm on 17 Mar 2010, Statist wrote:


    L.O.L. ..... Ah!

    Not only .... But also ....

    Part of the evolutionary process includes putting up walls. More often than not the intellectual ‘ones’ are the hardest to demolish.

    Doesn’t mean we shouldn’t try.



    ecolizzy ....

    Interesting link at No 74 yesterday, thanks. Seek out Hard talk as per my post No 55. yesterday if you can via iPlayer. Sadly the Nu Con approach to the issue isn’t any better, arguably worse. Nice comedy script you’ve linked at No. 83 as well. Well worth reading the comments. Why is that it would seem that the GBP don’t trust politicians any more? (Now there’s an idea for a documentary series sic) Also .... All the recent programming you mention ... Rather than an ulterior motive ... I suspect .... ‘coz it’s cheap!


    The current defence of those Honourable MP’s sic ‘traveling’ on the expenses Charabanc appears to be a variant of “We were just obeying orders.”

    Nice one!



    According to a new survey - not sought by me yet, will do soon though - it says that immigration is the second most important issue for the GBP in this election behind the economy.

    So ....

    Can we look forward to a Nn pre-election special being on the cards then?

    And, if yes, preferably without the ‘talk about immigration and you’re racist’ lobby - self appointed or editorial policy ‘required’ - Representative?

    One has to ask .....

    If we weren’t in this international financial mess

    .... would it take over the Number One slot?

    And

    Assuming it were actually that popular ....

    Would it get more air play?

    or

    “Look Ma! I made it to the top of the world!”

  • Comment number 27.

    2. flicks Good link. But here's something else worth thinking through. In the traditional Jewish tradition, lending at interest is proscribed within the community, but it's not to outsiders. Wall Street, like New York, is largely Jewish in terms of its elite. This point is very easily overlooked, as is being a minority group in a much larger lower ability group amongst which one settles, and within which one encourages more low skilled immigration and promiscuity. Telling nice stories doesn't quite compensate. Making these facts a taboo serves some very well. :-(

    24. Jauntycyclist' i understand the moderns hate the word responsibility. that is why they are moderns.'

    You don't... you just think you understand and it's a very popular delusion. If you follow these instructions you will learn something useful....

    On the other hand, if you don't, just note that prejudices are recalcitrant critters....;-)

  • Comment number 28.

    'Chris Huhne, the Liberal Democrats' home affairs spokesman, said: "The criminalisation of a generation of young people should be a source of shame to Labour.'

    The Independent 17 March 2010

    In other words, try as they have to keep the lid on growth of perpetrators of offending, their policies (like 'education, education, education') have done exactly the opposite, and probably as a consequence of their not having understood the implications of the scientific evidence of what drives/controls behaviour (largely because it's at odds with their dogmatic political prejudices/ideology).....or are they malevolent?

    Now, how many reading this have a clue what I am asserting here?

  • Comment number 29.

    @ Jaunty #25 - If all drugs are legalised, then at least people taking drugs will know what is in them, unlike now, where anything can be mixed in. It will also stop drugs being sold at high prices, and therefore cut crime, and drug dealers will be out of business. Oh and the government can also make money on it by taxing it.......

  • Comment number 30.

    i see NN made it to wikileaks

    Recently released documents
    15 march

    ...English libel law has once again allowed the wrong side to claim victory. The law is an ass and needs urgent reform...

  • Comment number 31.

  • Comment number 32.

    29

    you know fake drugs have been found in the medicines you can only get by prescription from chemists? the national chemist warehouse system has been penertrated. or that there are shortages of some drugs in the uk because they are being sold abroad in markets that fetch a higher price? so the fakes and dealers exist in legal drugs too.

    the misuse of drugs for recreation is a failure of philosophy. where there are failures of philosphy people die.

    actually from a darwinian point of view drugs should be legal as it will quickly weed out those with a self destructive philosphy?

  • Comment number 33.

    32. jauntycyclist 'actually from a darwinian point of view drugs should be legal as it will quickly weed out those with a self destructive philosphy?'

    Alas, the 'drugs of abuse' tend to be abused precisely because they work on the reinforcement systems (monoamines and opioids) of the brain, i.e the very systems which tell us what is 'good' and 'bad'. Once one starts thinking and talking this way it's prima facie evidence that one has learned which are the self-destructive philosophies. Not that doing so renders one immune to the effects (or attractions) of drugs (or behaviours) of abuse, alas.

  • Comment number 34.

    #7 Statist

    LOL!

  • Comment number 35.

    #25

    Paul Clifford

    Thank you.

    I hope you're not pulling my leg. The only nice, and someties even lovely, compliments I get is for my glidin, twirling and waving my arms on ice. I kind of had to get used to the fact that virtually no one would give me any credit for the expressions of my mind. Quite the contrary, what I frequently get instead is derision and telling off although I sometimes think that people in the real world quote me but this could be pure coincidence.

    mim

  • Comment number 36.

    31 juantycyclist From the article: '“News is moving into the entertainment world,” said Adie, “It is becoming friendly, cosy and appealing and you have newsreaders empathising.

    “Why are all the women in TV news the way they are? It is the insistence on the young, the fluffy. It is becoming more showbizzy, to be perfectly honest.”


    Well said Kate Adie... Whilst they are nice to look at (eye-candy), at the same time, it's annoying as it's sexual presentation, and that's not what the job is really all about. The logic is to capture viewers/keep them by whatever means, and ironically, it works best on women. It's what the recnet Oxbridge 'Naked News' stunt was all about.

  • Comment number 37.

    28. At 7:47pm on 17 Mar 2010, Statist wrote:

    "Now, how many reading this have a clue what I am asserting here?"

    -----------------------

    I do!...but that's probably because i'm an engineer (i.e. educated to degree level before the dumbing down started)

    I honestly believe that the 'average' person CAN be made to understand...with a bit of time and explanation.

    I now often see the partial influence from your posts on many, many others' posts in recent times. Not just on this blog.

    Don't you dare stop posting!

    The truth will out! (a crap phrase i know...but adequate)

  • Comment number 38.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 39.

    35. mimpromptu 'what I frequently get instead is derision and telling off'

    Whilst being told off can be good for one (it shows someone cares), derision tends not to be good for anyone, if it's just hurtful.

    You should look into why Diogenes said "other dogs bite their enemies, I bite my friends to save them.".

    You need to change some of your ways... not all of them. :-)

  • Comment number 40.

    my post #38 containend a two word truth statement only. bbc censcorship is alive and well!

  • Comment number 41.

    ..Biggest Asda meat supplier excludes English speakers as 'all instructions are in Polish'..

    http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-1257784/Biggest-Asda-meat-supplier-excludes-English-speakers-instructions-given-Polish.html

    british jobs for...

    i wanted to be a judge but i never had the latin....

  • Comment number 42.

    :o) ha ha ha @ Jeremy's killer end line - the dead starfish "were literally s**ged out."

    Top notch discussion by Jeremy with Theresa May et al too.
    Very moving report by Mark on the brave soldiers out in Afghanistan.

    @ Jaunty #41 - you don't need Latin anymore ;o)

  • Comment number 43.

    #26 Thanks for this JAPerson
    http://www.bbc.co.uk/iplayer/episode/b00rl5kw/HARDtalk_Phil_Woolas_MP_British_Immigration_Minister/

    I don't believe a word this man says. He spins, and spins and spins, keeps talking about asylum seekers, as the publics main problem, what rot, there are only a few thousand of them. It's the economic ones that bother us the most, who are going to settle and make this isle even more crowded.

    And why am I always reminded of a bus driver when watching him

  • Comment number 44.

    #42

    Mistress76uk

    That's what often happens to stars. They either get 'sh...dout', like Marilyn Monroe, or drugged up, like Michael Jackson, or abused some other way by vultures and parasites. They tried to get Nina Simone but she largely succeeded to fend them off.

    mim

  • Comment number 45.

    'FIRST UP AGAINST THE WALL WHEN THE REVOLUTION COMES' (#43)

    Now you know why I didn't even bother to follow the link Lizzy. Woolas is just one more party-chosen cipher, with all the attributes of the soulless Westminster performer. The terrible triumph, in the minds of such individuals, as they dissemble, obfuscate and deceive, must sound like all the brass bands of Hell playing discords simultaneously. As each of his ilk came on TV, performing in the same vile manner, I used to jot down their names to get some idea how widespread the disgrace ran. I ran out of room on my paper . . .

    Those poor Afghanis. We might yet bring them democracy, as dispensed from the 'mother' of all Parliaments.

  • Comment number 46.

    #44. Addendum

    There must be something about stars that attracts shineless sponges, I should imagine.

    You know, M76 uk, the soft pink scarf I'm knitting for the 7-year old girl has a bit of shine in it.

    mim

  • Comment number 47.

    What transpired from today's PMQs and confirmed by Newsnight was that Gordon Brown is a liar and cannot be trusted. He only admits to mistakes when pushed right to the wall. Otherwise everything, he always claims, is honcky dory until such a time...

  • Comment number 48.

    BYT

    Are you and yours all right? We haven't heard from you for some time now. Or are you bored with posting here?

    mim

  • Comment number 49.

    seems nn missed another story .. usa vs israel not quite the 'braek-up we're being made to believe.

    according to the scottish paper the herald:

    "Hundreds of powerful US "bunker-buster" bombs are being shipped from California to the British island of Diego Garcia in the Indian Ocean ahead of a possible attack on Iran"

    "The cargo includes 195 smart, guided, Blu-110 bombs and 192 massive 2000lb Blu-117 bombs"

  • Comment number 50.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 51.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 52.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 53.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 54.

    Gordon Brown looked visibly disturbed during the PMQs. I wonder why? Perhaps his hopes for a Nobel Prize in Science is not going all that well?

  • Comment number 55.

    I see that even Vladmir Putin is now clenching his left fist. Apparently he's nearing to officially admitting the truth about the massacre of thousands of Polish Officers in Katyn and Smolensk by the Soviets. The Russian press has been talking about in recent days.

  • Comment number 56.

    #54

    should read 'his hopes are not going all that well

  • Comment number 57.

    Something about an amazing and brave woman who's being admitted this afternoon as one of the eternals to the French Academy /L'Academie Francaise/. Her name is Simone Veil. She is of Jewish origin and spent a few years in Auschwitz. For a long time she has been the most favourite French lady and still is.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Simone_Veil

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Acad%C3%A9mie_fran%C3%A7aise

  • Comment number 58.

    #25 & #35

    Paul Clifford

    I've just checked up on you on the BBC Blog Network.
    One day my posts are 'inane' and another 'brilliant'. Interesting.

    mim

  • Comment number 59.

  • Comment number 60.

    I know this is from The Sun, but,

    http://www.thesun.co.uk/sol/homepage/features/2896850/Battle-against-the-rising-toll-of-post-traumatic-stress-in-soldiers.html

    it shows that even after 50 years from serving in a war, soldiers are still affected by their harrowing experiences, and here an 86 year old ex-soldier tried to commit suicide recently :o(

  • Comment number 61.

    #60

    And yet, Mistress76uk, many of them did manage or have managed to live to their grand old age. And Aushwitz survives as well, for example. I should imagine it depends on one's personality and circumstances one finds oneself in after such terrible ordeals.

  • Comment number 62.

    45. barriesingleton 'Woolas is just one more party-chosen cipher, with all the attributes of the soulless Westminster performer. The terrible triumph, in the minds of such individuals, as they dissemble, obfuscate and deceive, must sound like all the brass bands of Hell playing discords simultaneously. As each of his ilk came on TV, performing in the same vile manner, I used to jot down their names to get some idea how widespread the disgrace ran. I ran out of room on my paper . . .'

    And thus you display your error (again), I suggest.

    Yes, they are party members, so they try to sing from the same hymn-sheet, they try to represent the party policy line and not play personalities. You, on the other hand, mistakenly assert that they should behave like Independents. But if they behaved that way, they would not be doing their jobs, as they weren't elected as Independents, nor to express their personalities or personal points of view, but for their policies. Politics is about policies not personalities, especially party politics (but even Independents have to toe this line). Your character analyses are irrelevant, if not unkind and offensive as a consequence, because they are largely irrelevant unless those behaviors are evidence of them not doing their jobs, i.e toeing the party line ironically..

    Imagine a school where 70 staff were trying to maintain discipline or rules with 1200 pupils. What would happen if the pupils had to learn the personal ways of 70 staff rather than the school rules and the staff colluded? What if each teacher applied the rules as s/he thought fit instead of representing school policy? The same happens in the faceless bureaucracies of Government (that's why they are 'faceless, it's posts not people!), yet you keep acting as if it's personalities that matter.

    This is not a defence of Phil Woolas or New Labour's immigration policies.

    You are, I suggest, labouring under a misconception barriesingleton, and I hope, in your own interest, this spoils your party games. ;-)

  • Comment number 63.

    "The AIFM directive – which seeks to regulate hedge funds and private equity across Europe – has been bitterly opposed by Britain which has seen it as an attack on the status of London as a financial centre where 70pc of funds are based.

    However, despite Mr Brown's actions earning a postponement, Britain remains very isolated on the issue in Europe. Those lobbying for change within the UK Government admit they will almost certainly fail to win all the changes they want in the legislation and that proposals for tougher regulation and transparency, being championed by France and Germany, could yet be adopted."

    http://www.telegraph.co.uk/finance/newsbysector/banksandfinance/ditch-the-directive/7459377/EU-hedge-fund-curbs-delayed-after-the-intervention-of-Gordon-Brown.html

    Why doesn't the BBC investigate the above. Peston et al ?

    Hedge funds and banks using Credit Default Swaps and god knows what ever else deluded lunacy the financial mad men have dreamt up = your money being used to line the pockets of the already mega rich, now that doom mongering and destruction is a method to incentive; massive profit = destruction. Ask yourself why is Brown going un-challenged on this here in the UK - hell its got to be the most important of all issues they almost destroyed everything. Browns first mega mistake - risk based regulation. Guess what he was and still is the risk.

    The BBC acts in its own interests of self preservation and the Tories = BBC destruction. Well guess what your pall Gordon will bring your end sooner if he manages to swing another 5 years of madness through sheer deluded financial lunacy. Yes that's you lot the wealthy 'name' presenters, producers and higher management who have bank accounts.

  • Comment number 64.

    No wonder peoples Council rates keep rising.....

    http://new.wales.gov.uk/news/latest/100316inclusionfunding/?lang=en

    http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/england/bristol/8573204.stm

    And then we're told immigration isn't costing us a penny, and is of great benefit to us all. And don't tell me the immigrants pay council rates and taxes, they've only paid for a very short time, and will never pay the full cost of the infrastructure they take full advantage of. They'll go home or move on to another country, so never contribute fully.

    Why aren't the figures broken down? Why don't they state that so many children have not gone to private school, and birth rates etc. Perhaps we wouldn't like the real truth of the situation. Just how many kids do go to private school, I don't imagine it's a huge number.

  • Comment number 65.

    #60 Yes Mistress you could be talking of my father there, never talked of his war experiences until recently. My son has been researching the family tree, and got my father talking. It breaks his heart all the good friends he lost, but he's proud to say he never fired a gun in anger. He was saving lives by laying torpedo nets. His ship (laying a mulberry harbour) was also sunk under him at D Day landings, only 6 - 7 saved out of 120 crew, (it was lunch time, all the men were below and he was on watch) a sonar mine got them. Then he was court martialed for abandoning ship without the captains say so. But the case was dismissed.

    My grandfather was in the Somme, and never spoke to anyone about it, except to say it was horrific. He was gassed, but survived and went back. He also got two oak leaves, one for rescuing a man under fire, the other for getting the horses to pull a gun carriage out of the mud. He was a waggoner in civvie life.

  • Comment number 66.

    64. ecolizzy 'And then we're told immigration isn't costing us a penny, and is of great benefit to us all.'

    Part of the problem here is that lots of people (including Council officials) opearte on beliefs which they hold to be true, when in fact they are false. Alas, they don't discriminate! If one points out the nature of this, they just defend what they hold to be true, instead of questioning the veracity of their beliefs. Sometimes they'll say 'it's our policy.', which brings rational discussion to an end. I'm sure we have all had this experience. The problem is that one is highly likely to be talking to someone so junior in the chain of command that even though they can and should only implement policy, in practice, they don't, they often make it up there and then! Some careful questining with most people as to why they hold some proposition to be true is usually quite revealing (and embarassing) - but shame comes out as rage in the not-too-well adjusted, and we seem to have more and more of them these days (as we keep reading about on the media re: skills).

    As I keep saying, and trying to suprt with evidence and logic, we now have a major problem with skills (aka intelligence) in our society. The older one gets, the more scary or Kafkaesque this becomes. :-(

    I think Newsnight should look into this in depth, but then again, a lot of things should happen, but never do :-(

  • Comment number 67.

    In a nutshell: If you collectively promote/reinforce a way of life primarily orientated towards looking and sounding good/attractive rather than being accurate/skilled, what you'll end up with is a society formed in vanity, deceit, confusion and emotional tantrums. An infantile society - a decadent, regressive one. This is the cost of feminising liberal-democracies (see unemployment figures and what generally dominates the news, cf. Kate Adie).

    Most people just don't understand the nature of 'reinforcement', it is not synonymous with affect, i.e 'pleasure' or 'pain'. It's about changes in rates of productive labour (behaviour/action).

  • Comment number 68.

    67. 'a society formed in' was originally 'a society mired in'

  • Comment number 69.

    Old world, skills from the past, all the old cliches. Why not go the whole hog and say industry from the dark age's, Catherine Cookson stories, out of date, not needed. The truth is, these are the most relevant industries, and importing so many manufactured products has increased our problems. look at India, and China to see thier digital industries. The knowledge economy is something that was discused 20 years ago. It's not new, and why is banking not seen as old world. A very poor item, and reflects BBC attitudes to industry. I think a look at the BBC itself is needed. Heavy industry is always needed. TCP was making a lot of money for that consortium, and doing well, up until the financial sector led recession. It should be benifiting from new clean technology, has highly computerised technology also, but it is not reported by newsnight.

    Britain is always looking for the next in thing. It never works out like that. A balanced economy on Teesside as well as Britain means service, digital etc, and Proper industry which uses the first two, and in which the first two benifit from anyway. So called new jobs means people in their 50s to 60s not having the skill because they may of spent 4 to 6 years being an apprentice in something else, but parents children will have the skill to design things for mobile phone's, but parents children not having the high skills to make steel is decline. In the end it could end up with most Teessiders working in retail selling gadgets made in another country, but in which a few locals had a hand in working on the design. Not good.

 

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