Paul Mason, hmm…..

He doesn’t seem to realise that blast furnaces are the problem.

” We don’t know whether it’s losing money”.

19 thoughts on “Paul Mason, hmm…..”

  1. he’s been reading Murphy’s trope “no-one’s seen the books so no-one’s sure if it’s really losing money”. Because as we all know businesses often pretend that profitable bits of the company are losing money so that they can be closed down.

    Looks like the processing/manufacturing/milling side is likely to survive – as you say, the blast furnaces are dead ducks though, just like Redcar. Why? Because recycling.

  2. Came across as an agitated and angry class warrior rather than someone with points to make and mostly just blustered about Javid. Suggested – surely he didn’t mean this? – that there was no option but for HMG to nationalise. Yeah, right.

  3. I loved his reference to the Tories being biggest friends of Chinese WORKERS ( my emphasis).

    So immigrants are good except for Chinese? Chinese workers don’t count as workers because… of their slitty eyes?

    All that broadcast journalist reserve is gone; lefty nut job inhabits his body. If I didn’t know better I’d have said he’d been down the pub.

  4. I read this article and thought for a moment that it was the Guardian’s Aprill Fool joke. It uses the word “democratic” as if it means “authoritarian” and is just a wildly confused mishmash of semi-digested ideas.

    Perhaps Tim should start a “Piss-take on Paul” category.

  5. Mason is an imbecile; right up there with Murphy.

    @Ironman – CiF comments on this subject are full of bile about the evil of the Chinese, like they’re channeling the guy who wrote the Fu Manchu stories.

  6. diogenes

    He talks about debt-pooling, humanitarianism (let all the migrants in) and a common “social” Europe. Yet his answer to today’s headlines is explicit defying of treaty obligations, gov’t subsidies of chosen pet industries and tariff barriers. Incoherent just isn’t a good enough word for him, doesn’t nearly do him justice.

  7. Ironman

    The one thing that is constant is that everything bad is the result of “market-failure”, whatever he means by that, including the humanitarian “crisis”.

  8. And everything is a crisis, which of course requires their special crisis measures. The normal rules simply must be suspended for this crisis.

  9. I was going to defend the blast furnaces but then I stopped and asked myself, “How hard is it to make a new blast furnace?” Since every time I need to fix something there is a video I decided to ask youtube for a video of how to build a blast furnace. It turns out to be relatively simple. Part 2 has to be my favorite in the series so far.

  10. Bloke in Costa Rica

    It’s not much fun losing your job. But I imagine it’s something pretty much all of us have been through at some point. Why all the hullabaloo about one tiny segment of the UK workforce? It can’t just be nostalgia for the 60’s. I think the default state of humans is to favour artarky, which is why every generation needs to be persuaded anew that it’s a really fucking stupid idea.

  11. I’m in two minds on this.

    British steel currently doesn’t opperate on a level playing field, and this is mostly the government’s fault. If you abolished all the stupid enviromental surcharges etc, and did something about union power, then we might be able to compete.

    Obviously the answer isn’t nationalisation, but a subsidy to offset the surcharges doesnt strike me as unreasonable.

  12. BiCR>

    To be fair to the workers – rather than those trying to exploit their position, as Mason does – it’s definitely harder than a regular case of losing your job. In this situation you have people who possess what were very marketable skills (and decades of experience), but which are now all but worthless.

    To take an example, Tim used to write for Pando. He no longer does so, but he still writes much the same articles for others. Imagine if we’d all stopped speaking English, though: he’d have had a much harder time of it. That’s akin to the situation blast-furnace operators find themselves in.

    Really it’s only right and proper that the workers here get some pretty hefty help to retrain or relocate. They’re losing out big-time while everyone else benefits. That’s precisely the kind of situation we want to avoid, for the good of the economy as a whole, because as we all know small numbers of people affected greatly tend to have a much bigger voice in politics than a large number affected slightly.

  13. Dave says it well, I think.
    We should not be subsidising people to produce stuff we don’t really want; but it is right to subsidise those people to enable them to retrain / do something else.

  14. I dunno – there may be a pragmatic argument for government intervention, because 40,000 income tax paying jobs suddenly becoming 40,000 doles is probably expensive for the exchequer. So the Government, knowing full well it will lose money in any sort of nationalisation, may actually save itself some money from its various other unemployment interventions later.

    That’s obviously not a long term game, mind – it will cost more eventually making steel at a loss, so you need some sort of out. Wind down the unprofitable parts? Make redundancies at a slow pace so the job market can more easily absorb the numbers?

  15. BiM>

    I think the point about a few people with loud voices still stands. Having started down that road, it’ll be very hard to stop.

    Of course there must be some moment in time where the kind of subsidy you suggest would make sense – but I suspect that a) it’s a pretty short-lived moment and b) at that stage the owner is probably still holding on, taking a slight loss in the hope of things picking up, so there’s no cost to the government yet anyway.

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