Our new Chancellor should not try to find a new fiscal rule. He should have an economic rule instead. He should target full employment at low inflation. Only government spending can deliver that. Turn it on.

That’s actually what the Bank of England’s target is. One they’re currently hitting.

43 thoughts on “Err, yes”

  1. If I had the patience or inclination, I would go back to his posts from the time the election was called and all the politicians were outvying each other in the spending stakes. Was captain potato giving the same message then?

  2. If we really had full employment, wages ought to go up sharply, but wage growth has slowed. Earnings are still lower than prior to 2008. In 2000 11.7% of those employed set up businesses on their own. That is now 15.2 %- that and a range of uncertain shit jobs are the answer .Fucking hellski , if the point of getting out of the EU was to ditch Labour rights (lets not even bother mentioning the massive lies told on this score) what on earth they want ..slavery? It gets shit done I guess.
    The IFS believe that even with anorderly no-deal scenario debt would climb to almost 90% of GDP . Brexit extremists are screeching for lower interest rate more QE and more borrowing so as to dump the Brexit Bill on the future. (Pretending the fiscal rules of Maastricht applied to is which they do not …all too bloody obviously )
    I was amused to see that Richard Murphy and John Redwood are as one on this, there is a magic money tree!

  3. Newmania, I could have sworn that within the last two or so weeks you were complaining that wages were going up too much (due to Brexit) …

  4. Dennis, He Who Made His High School Typing Team

    If we really had full employment, wages ought to go up sharply, but wage growth has slowed.

    You really are a moron. Wage growth slowing has nothing to do with full employment and everything to do with a reduction in the demand for labor. Full employment and demand for labor are two different things… Look it up.

  5. Dennis, Bullshit Detector

    In 2000 11.7% of those employed set up businesses on their own. That is now 15.2 %- that and a range of uncertain shit jobs are the answer.

    Can you site anything beyond the little voices in your head to back up the contention that the growth in these small businesses are solely in “a range of uncertain shit jobs”?

    Let me answer the question for you, as you’re bound to get confused by the keyboard (yet again): No, you can’t.

  6. PF

    The latest official ONS weekly earnings figures show average regular pay before tax for employees came in at £511 a week in November.

    But in real terms pay is still £1 a week lower than its pre-downturn peak in 2008. Average British workers have seen one of the biggest squeezes on pay in decades since the financial crisis.

    That was end of Jan – there is clearly not much in it but it is hardly a happy story- I do not understand your subsequent comment to be honest

  7. Dennis
    In addition to the rise in “self employed” figures I quoted in the middle of 2018, there were 781,000 people on zero-hours contracts. There are now 974,000….its all part of the picture .The same period has seen the final destruction of Trade Unions outside the Public sector (already massively smaller post Thatch but with another step change reduction)
    A demand for Labour and a lot of people being employed are not ,entirely unrelated they are function of demand in the economy. You can either have unemployment or you can have lower salaries shit conditions part time work and fiddled figures
    Thats what i have got
    What have you got you mewing tart ?
    Nuffin.

  8. Poor old Violet Elizabeth Newmoania. Having to pull double shifts sweeping up to make ends meet?

    Some of your colleagues have told me that you aren’t fit to shovel shit. I think you are.

  9. Dennis, He Who Made His High School Typing Team

    But in real terms pay is still £1 a week lower than its pre-downturn peak in 2008.

    Again, you are a moron. The figures are only comparable if the composition of jobs across the economy has remained the same. The addition of jobs at the lower end of the wage scale can lower the average paycheck. Is that a bad thing? Not if you’re relatively unskilled and want to get off the dole.

    You keep cherry-picking facts (that you clearly don’t understand) in support of your Brexit Bad narrative and then can’t understand why you keep getting your ass handed to yourself around here.

    And of course you don’t understand PF’s comment. If you did, you wouldn’t be trying to pass off shit arguments in the first place.

  10. Dennis, CPA to the Gods

    A demand for Labour and a lot of people being employed are not ,entirely unrelated they are function of demand in the economy. You can either have unemployment or you can have lower salaries shit conditions part time work and fiddled figures

    Bwahahahahahahahaha… So let me get this straight: A demand for Labour (just Corbyn, or all of Labour?) is a function of demand. Brilliant! You learn that in Spud’s economics class, or did you figure it out all by yourself?

    And speaking of full employment, your shift at McDonald’s awaits you.

  11. In the light of Newmy’s ravings, isn’t it comforting that the ONS reports

    “self-assessed Income Tax receipts in January 2020 were £16.2 billion, an increase of £1.5 billion compared with January 2019; this is the highest January on record (records began in January 2000)”

  12. Dennis: Oppressor, Warmonger, Capitalist and Consumer of Petroleum Products

    What have you got you mewing tart ?

    1 wife, 3 dogs, 20 guns, 40 watches, a Volvo, a Toyota, a house that’s been paid off for a decade, no debt and $2.3 million in the bank.

    That’s what I fucking got, loser.

    Oh yeah, I also have certification in a profession and my own business.

    You?

  13. From the same source

    “In the year to December 2019, nominal total pay (not adjusted for change in prices) grew by 2.9% to £544. Nominal regular pay grew by 3.2% to £512 over the same period. The recorded growth rates show that wage growth is decelerating.”

    The growth might be slowing but there has been growth

  14. We can get, indeed we have, fullish employment without upward pressure on wages by keeping our pool of labour offshore. In Krakow and Bucharest and such places. Post-Brexit that will need to change, but I don’t see a problem with higher wage levels, they tend to increase productivity. And they are good for working people.

  15. Dennis, He Who Made His High School Typing Team

    How impressive Dennis and might I ask what gender this wife might be ?

    Very clever. You should be tweeting for Mike Bloomberg. It’d be a short-term gig, but probably pays better than what you’re doing now.

    And as usual, when you get facts you don’t like and can’t process you move on to your Next Stupid Thing.

  16. How impressive Dennis and might I ask what gender this wife might be ?

    Huh?
    Surely a wife is by definition, female?

    And why does it matter? Even if he is as gay as the day is long, maintaining a relationship, transforming it into a marriage and maintaining said marriage are things worthy of respect.

    In addition to the rise in “self employed” figures I quoted in the middle of 2018, there were 781,000 people on zero-hours contracts. There are now 974,000….its all part of the picture

    And this is bad because…?

  17. @ Newmania
    Obviously you are only going to trade insults with Dennis, so perhaps I can distract you with some facts.
    The ONS stated 6 days ago that average wages in December were at their highest level since their series began: £512 vs £511 before the financial crisis – not the other way round. So it is £1 *higher* not lower.
    The average is misleading because firstly, a lot of people have come into work at pay levels higher than unemployment benefit but lower than the average wage. A better comparator would be to dilute the 2008 figure with 2% of the JSA rate. Secondly the mean is a less useful figure than the median since it is distorted by a few very high salaries (and this had more effect in 2008 than in 2019). Since the top quintile of incomes have suffered a fall in real terms since 2008 while the other four quartiles have each enjoyed a growth in real incomes it should be obvious that the large majority are better-off. All your doom and gloom pronouncements relate primarily to bankers.

  18. Dennis, Crusher of Fools

    Obviously you are only going to trade insults with Dennis, so perhaps I can distract you with some facts…

    The average is misleading because firstly, a lot of people have come into work at pay levels higher than unemployment benefit but lower than the average wage.

    I’ve already pointed that out to him, John. The subsequent deterioration in his typing suggests he didn’t take it well. But, since we’re talking about a foot thick skull here, repetition will be a necessity.

    Nice to see he got the one fact he latched onto ass-backwards, though. Much like Spud, the boy rarely disappoints.

  19. Not all self-employed jobs pay badly, though it may be that many of the best paid are disguised as little companies that pay the worker/director. As long as he doesn’t mind losing the right to sick pay, holiday pay, severance pay, and employer pension contributions, the worker might reckon himself better off because of the lower burden of income tax, national insurance, and interfering company bureaucracy.

    One of the young things in my extended family set up such a company after spotting a market niche. It’s gone well. The niche is so good that I’m not going to report it, though.

  20. @Newmonia

    Which EU Labour rights we’re going to ditch are you referring to?

    @Dennis

    What’s the going rate for a gold rectangular face men’s Cartier Santos?

  21. This constant sneering at “zero hours contracts” pisses me off most greatly. It’s an expression made up by the Guardian. These are the people have the gumption to take responsibility for their own lives rather than cowering in salaried slavery. The blokes worked for me would have been on “zero hour contracts” if we’d bothered about the formality of contracts.* They were grafters & were taking home well above the normal for the industry. Some weeks it was more like 60 hours than zero at top hourly rates. If I’d offered them salaried employment with sick pay, holidays & a pension scheme they’d have laughed at me. What? On half the money? Security’s for the people can’t hack the edge & the rewards the edge brings.
    Who does actually get zero hours? The sort of tosser no-one would want to employ any other way. The barrel scrapings you fall back on when you have no alternative.
    *Contracts are for the untrustworthy. Mutual self interest is far more binding.

  22. Most of the people I’ve known on those sort of work arrangements are people with more than one string to their bow. They work when work’s available & it suits them. Earn good money. Go back to doing one of their other things, when it isn’t. They’re not the sort of people willing to be unproductive clockwatchers, ruled by other people.

  23. Dennis, Tiresome Denizen of Central Ohio

    What’s the going rate for a gold rectangular face men’s Cartier Santos?

    The last time I looked it was mid-30s with the gold bracelet down to high teens with a leather strap. Don’t know if the high teens is steel or gold case though. Beautiful, beautiful watches.

  24. Especially as most Guardian staff are on zero-hours contracts. Oh wait, they call themselves freelancers, so that makes it fine.

  25. Back when I was a student (2009 to 2012) a lot of the students preferred zero hour contracts.
    They work both ways – you have an assignment coming up and need to get it done this weekend, you turn down the shifts you are being offered.

    Many of my friends among the students had zero hour contracts – some were doing 20 to 30 hours a week.
    My younger brother had a zero hours contract while he was at college, worked when he was able and chose not to work without using up annual leave when he was busy with other things.

    My wife was ill a few years back. If I had been able to at the time I would have taken a zero hours contract job – rather than use up 90% of my annual leave in a month when she didn’t need my help all day every day. Good days in a run, relapse, good days again and so on.

    From a business owner point of view, zero hour contracts are great – avoids the need to pay a temp agency £15 an hour for someone’s minimum wage service when work is somewhat variable.
    Disadvantage of them was the staff member turning down work – and multiple people all having the same reason to turn down the same shift!

    Nothing in itself wrong with zero hours contract. There is something wrong with trying to force everyone on to a full time employment contract when the real world does intrude. Carers, students, parents – one size does not fit all.

  26. Never seen the attraction of these high end watches. Ask any watchmaker. There’s very little difference in the movements from watches a fraction of the price. You’re paying for the case & primarily the name. As far as the case is concerned, it’s just small scale, mass production bling. The gold’s hardly a large proportion of the price If you want the name, buy one of those cheap far-east knock offs. No-one will ever be any the wiser.
    There are some craftsmen make incredible watch cases. Like good jewellery, they’re artworks & sought after for that. And that’s real class.

  27. BiS

    In spades – it’s akin to the the self employed mentality.

    There is another analogy for this – private sector versus public. Private sector, responsible for your career / job and all the risks; public sector, “have an afternoon nap between 2 and 3 and can’t ever get sacked”.

  28. Newmania
    if the point of getting out of the EU was to ditch Labour rights
    What if the point of leaving was that the decision on what entitlements we impose on each other is taken by us, and not centralised to Brussels. What if we get the balance of greedy bosses vs recalcitrant lazy workers wrong and recognise that and we don’t have to simultaneously change the law in 27 other countries to change the regulations here.
    Fuck – I’d devolve to local authorities if the question was on the ballot, but what a way to miss the point of Brexit.
    If you were a football manager you’d be looking up the Opta rankings of strikers with the most shots off target.

  29. @ Dennis
    Yes, I knew that you had already mentioned that but in my post it made more sense to include it to work up to my point that we should use the median, not the mean, if he wants to talk about “the average British worker” since it is only the top quintile who have been squeezed.

  30. when you get facts you don’t like and can’t process you move on to your Next Stupid Thing

    Sad but true. I don’t know what’s more pathetic, his lame attempts at insults and ad hom or when he scrabbles to engage with facts and arguments.

  31. Never seen the attraction of these high end watches.

    If you have no interest in watches, then a solar-powered Casio will cost $50 and last a lifetime. But if you are, there’s a whole world out there and it’s not just about brand. Same goes for wine; the law of diminishing returns kicks in pretty quick, but spending more gets you better wine, without question.

    I don’t care about cars, so don’t own one. But I wouldn’t argue that there’s no point to a nice shiny new Merc, when a Lada does all the same stuff for a fraction of the price.

  32. @MC They’re a Veblen good. There’s no functional difference between them & a cheap watch. I can get enthusiastic over a case craftsman made to a unique design. Not over mass produced toot. Jewellery’s the same. The g/f’s been after a flashy ring. The diamond turned up in the post last week. You’d be surprised how cheap loose diamonds are, particularly if you’re not bothered about flaws & inclusions are only visible under a magnifying glass. Wouldn’t say this one would hurt if you dropped it on your foot, but you’d notice. Off the shelf setting in 9 white & knock up a shank. The gold price plus a tad & postage. The result? 25grand at a Bond Street jeweller paying about 22 for the box it comes in.

  33. There’s no functional difference between a watch with a hand-crafted case and a cheap watch. There’s plenty of watch makers who offer significant hand-finishing and interesting movements.

    Luxury watches are also not Veblen goods, except wank like Richard Mille. Run of the mill luxury brands offer well-made run of the mill luxury products with a high margin and brand recognition. People buy them because there’s a big brand story and they’re not a massive chunk of change to indulge in either, which is why Rolex, Omega, Tag etc sell millions of them.

    Jewellery I guess is the same, although I guess the branding is not as important most of the time.

  34. “There’s no functional difference between a watch with a hand-crafted case and a cheap watch. ”
    There’s no functional difference between the ceiling of the Sistine Chapel & two coats of vinyl emulsion.
    When I was in the business, we used to do outwork for one of the West End jewellers. There’ll be no difference between the g\f’s ring & one comes with the royal warrant on the box. Made with the same hands out of the same materials. But without the box.
    I do currently have a gold Rolex. Got it off a guy wanted to raise some cash in a hurry. Never worn it. Too aware of what they say in our business. “The bigger & more expensive the watch the less significant the equipment.”

  35. Dennis, Stickler For Detail

    BiS –

    Clearly watches don’t mean anything to you, and that’s fine. But please don’t pretend you know enough about horology and watches to justify that lack of interest empirically.

    There are significant differences (to put it mildly) between a Seiko 7S26 movement, a recently discontinued 25+ year old mass produced movement, and Vacheron Constantin’s Reference 57260, a movement of 2,800 components and 57 complications (the most ever in a watch movement). The VC 57260 costs in the neighborhood of $5 million. You aren’t paying for gold, or case, or finishing, or name: You’re paying for the peak of technical accomplishment and artistry in the field.

    In watches by the Holy Trinity (Patek Philipe, Vacheron Constantin, Audemars Piguet), it is the movement that drives the cost, not the case or its materials. Same goes for brands like JLC, Piaget and a host of others.

    If watches don’t mean anything to you, just say so and leave it at that. Going beyond that exposes your level of actual knowledge on the subject, which does you no favors. And if you have a watchmaker telling there’s no difference, he’s either a hack or doesn’t want to talk to you. Good watchmakers get excited by good watch movements.

  36. I have to admit that while I have very little interest in fancy watches, I have always rather hankered after a Patek Phillipe. The simpler the better. If I was to wear a watch costing £50k I’d want it to look like it was a just a normal one.

  37. @bis, jgh, Martin

    +1

    All our part-time hotel staff were on ‘zero hour contracts’, but nobody thought it was bad

    Tour bus suddenly turns up: phone ‘zero hour contracts’ – “Can you come in?”

    imo Left’s objection is because they’re not in closed shop union paying their dues

  38. @Dennis February 24, 2020 at 7:21 pm

    It’s gold bracelet, still have original box & receipt too. Thanks

    @February 25, 2020 at 2:22 pm

    +1

    Audemars Piguet – Royal Oak is the one I’d like

    Clock I admire: Jaeger-LeCoultre Atmos

    Chap who restored my auction bought C19 glass dome clock, he used a filed down (thinned) watch spring to replace wrong rotating pendulum spring – met him on a French Polishing course:

    https://www.scotsman.com/lifestyle-2-15039/archie-over-moon-at-solving-300-year-old-tidal-problem-1-1333872
    https://www.scotsman.com/news-2-15012/master-clockmaker-brassed-off-as-unique-timepiece-is-stolen-1-1275224
    https://www.heraldscotland.com/news/17858261.scotlands-old-father-time-archie-mcquater-clock-maker-still-ticking-along-91/

    @bis February 24, 2020 at 8:48 pm

    Investment – a Gold Santos (solid 18k) is heavy and appreciates quickly, it’s also a discreet status symbol unlike those ghastly huge sleb watches. Some Rolex models have a waiting list and BNIB sell for above SRP, although not the Steel & Gold Datejust

    @Jim

    +1 imo subtle beats bling

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