August 2016

Is the lithium shortage really this bad?

Elon Musk has taken it all so there’s none left for mental treatments?

What that means is that when these appeals happen, as surely they will, what will really be on trial will be goibalisation itself. Globalisation is the market based expression of the ideology of the Washington Consensus. It was always intended to favour a few, increase inequality, buy favour wherever it could find it, capture legislatures for its own purposes when that was necessary and create spaces veiled in secrecy where the rule of law that applied to the little people could be circumvented by the few. This is precisely why tax havens had to exist: they are not an accident in their modern form. They are instead a deliberate part of a design.

That’s right, we all conspired to increase inequality and nick all the dosh for the rich by engineering the largest reduction in absolute poverty in the history of the species.

So here’s an interesting question about Apple and tax

We’re going to have a parade of numpties saying they were right all along. And it’s obvious that I, myself, was wrong.

The thing is, can anyone find any of those numpties identifying the specific bit that the EU used here?

Yes, we’ve had Murphy shouting that tax should be where the sales are. But that was a line specifically rejected by the Commission’s report. We’ve had Murphy again shouting that IP shouldn’t be allowable and all that. And yet the Commissions specifically said that that was just fine. And if Apple paid more to the US for IP then their tax bill in Ireland would fall.

Is there anyone at all among those campaigners who got the excuse the Commission used correct? TJN? Sikka, Murhp, anyone?

Quite so Mr Flynn, this should happen

Parliamentary expenses should be scrapped and MPs trusted with an allowance because the current procedure is a time consuming “unnecessary chore”, one of Jeremy Corbyn’s most senior allies has said.

Paul Flynn, the shadow leader of the House of Commons, who responds for Labour on expenses, said that the parliamentary watchdog was a “bureaucratic ornament” which should be scrapped and MPs sent automatic payments without having to submit expense claims.

Because we should be able to expect those who rule us not to take the piss.

However, given past experience about the sort of scumbag maggots who actually get elected, this doesn’t work, does it?

Well, it would be swift at least

Two senior North Korean officials were executed with an anti-aircraft gun in early August on the orders of Kim Jong-un, South Korea’s JoongAng Ilbo newspaper reported, citing people it did not identify.

Ri Yong Jin, a senior official in the education ministry — possibly minister — was arrested for dozing off during a meeting with Kim and charged with corruption before being killed, the paper said. Former Agriculture Minister Hwang Min was purged over a proposed project seen as a direct challenge to Kim’s leadership, it said.

Goddamit, these people!

Apple is facing a public relations disaster and a bill that could run to billions of euros because the European Commission is set to rule that it enjoyed an illegal tax deal in Ireland.

The California company will be ordered by Brussels to pay back the taxes it avoided through the use of loopholes to hide profits worth tens of billions of dollars with the connivance of Dublin.

No, that’s simply not what can happen. The Commission can order the Irish Government to recover illegal state aid. Seriously, this is the fucking newspaper of record. Can’t they get this right?

Over on the same paper’s Irish pages :

The European Commission is expected to order today that the government recover hundreds of millions of euros in back-taxes from Apple,

Nearly right. Better, at least.

David O’Sullivan, the EU ambassador, told The Times. “It’s a very precise issue of whether there was subsidised aid given to Apple via a special deal on the tax . . . That’s what the commission will decide on and I think the issue will be limited to that,” he said.

It ain’t about the basic structure.

There’s a reason they’re single up North

Being sent to Coventry may not be such a bad thing after all – it’s supposedly the best place to live if you are single.
With the highest concentration of lone people, dating experts said the city offered the highest chance of finding a partner.
Hull, Sunderland, Hartlepool and Glasgow came next in the matchmaking league.

Northerners, you know. They’re Northerners.

And yes, Coventry is North of the Marylebone Road.

Quite remarkable

Standards in elderly care could fall following the introduction of the National Living Wage for care workers unless the government is able to help plug the shortfall in funding, a think tank has warned.

The Resolution Foundation said over half of young workers have received a £7.20 an hour rate pay rise, even though it only legally applies to over 24-year-olds.

The study found no evidence of employers cutting back on shifts to finance the new wage rise and warned local authorities could use the excuse of higher wages to “ration” care services.

You mean that raising wages will lead to less labour being employed?

A quite astonishing result. We really ought to set up some sort of scientific study of these sorts of things. Such a pity we didn’t know this before, eh?

Ritchie’s still stuck in 1948

A Tory MP has suggested the solution to the NHS crisis is to increase National Insurance. It is staggering how wrong such a person can be.

That is because there are three solutions to the NHS crisis. The first is to reduce demand. The best way, by far, to do that is to improve the lives of those making the biggest demands on it. The most certain way to do that is by increasing the incomes of those least well off in our communities and to reduce inequality.

As they believed back then – the costs of the NHS would fall as people were treated, became healthier and lived longer lives.

This isn’t how it works out. People who live longer consume more health care. The greatest consumers of health and or social care are of course those who didn’t die of poverty, fags or booze but survived to spend a decade with Alzheimer’s.

So The Murphaloon is entirely ignorant of the basics of health economics too then.

I dunno, I think not even

Sir Philip Green is trying to end the threat of legal action against him over the sale of BHS by writing a cheque for more than £300 million that would help to plug a hole in the company’s pension fund.

The problem with these sorts of stories is that you never know who is doing the briefing.

Is this Green saying that everyone should shut up, he’ll sort it out? Or is it someone putting pressure on Green to up his offer?

And what if, when interest rates rise again? And large parts of that funding deficit disappear. Does he get his settlement back again?

Excellent, so that’s socialism dead then

The audit will be updated annually. There are reasons to be sceptical, principally the simultaneous announcement of huge cuts to NHS services, which makes a mockery of the language. It’s no good becoming more equal just because everybody’s access to healthcare has worsened. Yet the fact is, she has done something exceptional.

Given that it only delivers equality of poverty Zoe.

This is as it should be

Up to 30 Labour seats could disappear altogether, says Lord Hayward, an analyst widely regarded as an expert on the boundary review, while the rest will see their composition altered in some form.

Although the changes will also affect the Conservatives, Hayward, a Tory peer, said his analysis of demographics in the UK concluded that Labour is over-represented.

“The party that will suffer most is the Labour party because such a high proportion of their current seats are well below the required quota, particularly in Wales, the north-east and parts of the M62 corridor,” he said.

From memory we didn’t have the last boundary review, did we? Meaning that the long term departure from the inner cities, the Labour strongholds, hasn’t been taken account of. That is, far from this being gerrymandering, this is just catching up with population change?