It’s a cute argument, no?

Women affected by changes to the state pension age are due to hear the outcome of their high court fight against the government.

Nearly 4 million women born in the 1950s have been affected by the changes, which have raised the state pension age from 60 to as high as 66. It has been increased by successive governments in an attempt to ensure “pension age equalisation”, so that women’s state pension age matches that of men.

Julie Delve, 61, and Karen Glynn, 63, have taken the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) to court, arguing that raising their pension age “unlawfully discriminated against them on the grounds of age, sex, and age and sex combined”.

Removing discrimination in favour of is discrimination now?

A certain amount of woo here

Healthcare systems don’t just include hospitals and clinics. They also include the educational institutions that teach our health professionals. Hence, there is also a need to see change and innovation in the academy for medical and other health professionals’ curriculum.

As a doctor, I have embraced disruption and have chosen to reject conventional medical training pathways. I have been drawn to the public health space because I recognised a need to look at health at a systemic level.

Just as there is a strong need for doctors to be “on the ground” disrupting systems in health services, there is an equally persistent need to be disrupting systems through education, research and advocacy.

We are beginning to see universities championing First Peoples’ leadership in these areas, allowing for a process of decolonising medical curriculum and the way medicine is presented to future doctors. This type of disruptive innovation follows one simple principle. Equity.

Equity in healthcare is providing care that meets the needs of all and is inclusive of individual circumstances and values of health.

It’s not pneumonia, you’re just not properly connected to the Dreamtime.

Wonder if Rupert knows his money is being used this way? Yes, she does work for the Murdoch Children’s Research summat and yes, Rupes did fund it.

This gets Greta Thunberg about right

Or at least the people abusing her while pulling the puppet strings:

Is this democracy’s death spiral? Are we, in this country and others, falling into a lethal cycle of fury and reaction, that blocks the reasoned conversation on which civic life depends?

The Guardian view on language in politics: playing with fire
Read more
In every age there have been political hucksters using aggression, lies and outrage to drown out reasoned argument. But not since the 1930s have so many succeeded.

Amazingly that’s not what George Monbiot is talking about.

Interesting thought

Bombardier has struck a deal worth €100m (£89m) to power trains with lithium batteries, in a major milestone that could cut the cost of a multibillion-pound government commitment to fully electrify Britain’s railways by a third.

The train maker has picked Swiss battery specialist Leclanché as its preferred supplier for the next five years.

The deal comes after 18 months of testing and will see the first commercial operation of lithium battery-powered trains on Britain’s railways.

Fewer than half of Britain’s train lines have electrified rails or overhead wires installed, meaning large sections of the network are reliant on more dirty diesel-powered locomotives.

Does the cost of hauling the – heavy – batteries around beat the cost of adding the wires or rails to electrify the line?

I can imagine it does on some very lightly used line crossing some howling wasteland in the middle of fuck all. Say, Cardiff to Newport. And quite possibly not on a major route in London’s suburbs. Say.

But then are the extra costs of the batteries, over diesel, worth the reduction in emissions? Probably not, eh?

Centralised bureaucracies work so well, don’t they?

“Little progress” has been made improving patient safety in the NHS over the past 20 years, the top health service watchdog has said.

Serious accidents such as surgery on the wrong part of the body remain commonplace due to an “insidious” culture of defensiveness and blame, the Chief Inspector of Hospitals at the Care Quality Commission (CQC) said.

Professor Ted Baker yesterday revealed he receives between 500 and 600 reports of “never events” a year, incidents that are wholly preventable whatever the circumstances.

This includes an occasion where surgeons operated on the wrong eye of a patient.

He told a safety conference at The King’s Fund that hospital managers routinely hide evidence from the CQC, because they regard the organisation as out to blame them.

You knew they’d say this, didn’t you?

Alima Batchelor, head of policy at PDA said: “Whilst these shortages cannot be ascribed to Brexit, they do show the need for concerted action to ensure that leaving the EU will not exacerbate an already unacceptable level of drug shortages.”

What’s the problem?

Pharmacists have warned of shortages of every major type of medicine – including HRT, antidepressants and blood pressure pills.

Drugs for diabetes, epilepsy and skin problems are among the treatments in short supply, along with common contraceptives, a survey suggests.

So, being inside the EU system allows these problems to happen. But we must be careful about leaving because these problems?

Isn’t it actually an argument that we want to leave the current regulatory system?

Doubt it really

Jacob Rees-Mogg’s niece, Theo Clarke, has been selected as the Tory candidate for Stafford, following Jeremy Lefroy’s announcement that he will be standing down at the next election. With Jacob, Annunziata and now Theo, the Rees-Mogg dynasty has almost taken over…

Theo – who previously described her uncle as “a well-spoken mortician, come to collect the corpse of compassion” – is the daughter of Jacob’s wife,

The daughter of your wife is not your niece…..

What’s that about organisations not expressly right wing?

As secretary of the think tank the Centre for Policy Studies, under Hugh Thomas — later Lord Thomas of Swynnerton (obituary, May 9, 2017) — she relished being at the heart of political debate during the Thatcher era, and held the organisation together as Thomas steered it away from the right-wing policies of its founders, Keith Joseph and Alfred Sherman, towards the centre ground. At a critical point, Thomas succeeded in ousting Sherman from his office. “Do you think we should change the locks?” he asked Brooke. “I already have,” she said firmly.


Many years ago (before the death of Castro) I had a holiday in Cuba. There was a severe fuel shortage, due to the US blockade.

The US was, from at least the 1960s up until very recently indeed – after the death of Fidel at least – a net importer of oil. So, how could the US embargo – no exports from the US to Cuba – cause an oil shortage in Cuba?

On the subject of shorting

Yes and no. Clearly some of the positions taken by Odey and Marshall Wace will pay off if there is a crash-out Brexit and UK-facing stocks are hit hard. Fund managers say the sectors most vulnerable to a no-deal Brexit are companies that make most of their profits in the UK rather than abroad – such as housebuilders and retailers – and Odey is in a lot of them.

Odey has big short positions against Intu Properties, which runs 17 shopping centres across the UK, the retailer Debenhams, and the housebuilders Berkeley Group and Cairn Homes.

Being short Intu and Debenhams as the High Street crumbles under the internet is a bet on Brexit now, is it?

Ohm yeah, we forgot to tell you about that red meat thing

Uproar after research claims red meat poses no health risk
One expert says findings by international experts represent ‘egregious abuse of evidence’


Others said Johnston and colleagues were wrong to exclude environmental concerns about damage to the planet from clearing forests and animal farming from their work.

The lead author of the EAT-Lancet Commission, which in January advocated a plant-based diet for both environmental sustainability and health, excoriated the new work.

“This report has layers of flaws and is the most egregious abuse of evidence that I have ever seen,” said Walter Willett, professor of epidemiology and nutrition at the Harvard TH Chan School of Public Health, himself a vegan.

Just who was it you were saying was egregiously abusing the evidence?

The one who is conflating the health of Gaia with that of our gut or not?

Fair enough

If you were Chancellor what would you do?

Reduce income tax rates for everyone. I think they’re too high at the moment.

Higher earners should carry on paying a bit more than lower earners, but I think all taxpayers should pay less.

Bruce Foxton of The Jam.

The twats don;t understand their own poll

New polling from Tax Justice UK and Oxfam, conducted by YouGov, shows widespread public support from across the political spectrum for increasing taxes on wealth.

The organisations say this would help to tackle inequality and raise revenue that could be used to fund public services and fight poverty.

The poll, published ahead of Conservative Party Conference, shows that more than two-thirds (69 per cent) of Brits thought that earnings from wealth should be taxed at the same level as, or more heavily than, earnings from income.

Taxing the income from wealth is taxing income, not wealth.


And isn’t this a lovely non-sequitur?

Currently, wealth is often under-taxed compared to taxes on income from work. In the UK, tax raised from wealth remains low at about 4 per cent of GDP compared to 15 per cent from taxes on income and 11 per cent from consumption.

Taxation of helium balloons is low too.

Just think what could be done!

Andrea Leadsom announced £1bn of extra government spending for the Green New Deal before the Tory party conference.

The sum involved is one-fiftieth of that needed. The Green New Deal Group think we need at last £50 billion a year for the next decade.


It takes some effort to get Green New Deal spending pretty much wrong at every level, given the quantum onwards, and when there is so much to do. But Leadsom has managed it. Which is staggering.

Put me in charge and I’ll piss away 50 times as much!

Which does lead us to that problem for these grand plans to go spend the hell out of everyone else’s money. Politics just isn’t a very good system of doing so, is it?

Talking his own book or actual believer?

One of the interesting problems out there is that we do get cases like this. Where if the guy’s a crook he’ll be doing the one thing and if he’s honest as the length of an Icelandic summer day he’ll be doing exactly the same thing. So, how to decide which he’s being?

A Hargreaves Lansdown investment expert who held shares in Sirius Minerals urged savers to stick with the mining business just months before it was plunged into a financial crisis that saw 75% wiped off its share price.

In an article on the website of Britain’s largest do-it-yourself investment service, Nick Hyett urged people to be patient as Sirius scrabbled to secure finance for its mine in Yorkshire, which will extract the fertiliser polyhalite.

Hyett said that although 2018 had been a “painful year”, with Sirius’s share price dropping, the company had had “significant successes” and “construction was well under way” on the mine. He added that thanks to research showing the benefits of polyhalite in agriculture, there “should be plenty of demand for what Sirius will eventually be producing”.

The share price jumped 2.7% on May 14 — the day the article was published. Since then it has plunged 75%, and closed last week at 2.9p. At their height, the shares were worth 15 times as much.

So, was he just talking his own book? Or did he really believe and have his money where his mouth was?

An interesting way to tell would be to ask what’s his position in the stock today….

It’s great, innit?

The main message from both organisations was directed at governments, which they believe must be prepared to step up their spending now that the private sector has seen the warning signs of recession and stopped investing.

The last time the global economy dealt with a shock, governments played a part in the rescue. That was in the days when leaders such as Gordon Brown could command the attention of his peers in arguing for a comprehensive and costly lifeboat. Then, after the 2008 crash, the job of rebuilding crisis-hit economies was left to central banks. Hence the era of ultra-low interest rates.

The justified fear is that the next crisis will be characterised by governments pleading poverty to justify inaction. Either they will argue they are bereft of the necessary funds or that borrowing is already too high.

Georgieva knows central banks have little firepower left after a decade of providing cheap money, which is why she is right to call on governments to open their wallets now, and not wait until it’s too late

When we have a recession then governments must spend lot,s lots, more. When we don;t have a recession then governments must spend lots, lots, more.

Why not just admit that you’re not doing macroeconomics about the business cycle any more you’re just shouting that there must be more government?