Lordy, Lordy

So we\’ve a protectionist as Business Secretary then:

Foreign ownership of British companies could be a \”disadvantage\” to the country over a long period of time, according to Lord Mandelson.

As one of Britain\’s best-known companies, Cadbury, fights off a takeover bid by US food giant Kraft, the business secretary said the country must be \”mindful\” of the potential impact of foreign companies buying up large chunks of UK industry.

\”I am keeping a weather eye on this area, because I have started to become concerned that over a lengthy period of time, certainly not overnight, UK manufacturing could be a loser,\” he was quoted as saying in the Wall Street Journal.

On the one hand, he says that we need more investment in British industry. On the other, that it had better not be any Johnny Foreigner who invests in British industry.

Quite apart from the idiocy of that logic there\’s a second problem.

Who in fuck is he to decide who someone might sell their own private property to? Companies belong to their shareholders. Not to the government and not to the nation. If JC Bamford decided to sell out to Caterpillar then that\’s a decision for the owners of JC Bamford, not for anyone else.

Or do we no longer agree that private property is indeed private?

8 comments on “Lordy, Lordy

  1. There is no such thing as private property. Didn’t you know?

    Sometimes certain favoured individuals are permitted to keep things where this is convenient for the state. But if more resources should be needed for important things like the Olympic Games or more Investment in Education, or Health, then naturally those things will be redirected to that use by the wise and benevolent government.

  2. “Or do we no longer agree that private property is indeed private?”

    That hasn’t really been the case for a long time; it’s a short journey from state regulation to total state control. If I can’t decide whether customers can smoke in my pub, or who I can employ in my business, or who can stay in my hotel, or who I can serve in my shop, effectively my private property isn’t private.

  3. You do. I do.

    Socialists do not. That’s why all left wing governments confiscate things. It’s why they tax people mercilessly. It’s why Barack Obama pursues his redistributionist agenda. It’s why Gordon Brown stole and spent everybody’s pension.

  4. Btw Tim this is a strange post from someone who (also in the context of Lord Mandelson) was wailing the other day about nasty foreigners buying car companies and stripping their intellectual property.

  5. Matthew, he did it by introducing advanced corporation tax to replace advance corporation tax. Spot the sleight of hand here?

    They were quite different things, but the naming of the replacement was a quite deliberate attempt at deception, which was largely successful.

    This meant that non-tax payers could no longer recover the tax deducted on their dividends.

    This had the dual effect of directly reducing their income – estimated at £5 billion a year – and also of suppressing share prices because they were less attractive investments. Nobody quantified the latter effect, but until QE, share prices had pretty much fallen taking inflation into account.

    So, Brown, to date has removed £80 billion (compunded) from pension funds, plus the lack of capital growth in the funds investments. Endowment policy holders have likewise seen their policies switched from 9-12% growth to fixed interest investments growing at 0.1% pa.

    THis means that people in their 50s, having invested all their lives will be left with tiny pensions or mortgages that they cannot repay.

    This is good socialism because it equalises them with idle layabouts who have lived on benefits all their lives.

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