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The Blogger Himself

So, just so you know….

The new place.

That town name really is “St John of the Little Blacks” although there’s a rumour that in the Beja version of Portuguese that really means “Elm Trees”.

We faced a couple of interrelated problems. We wanted a garden. But a house in town with a garden isn’t really a Portuguese thing. Townhouses are like Bath – they’re townhouses. And everyone, historically and still to a large extent, has access to the countryside in Granny’s country cottage etc. But we didn’t want to be out in the country, we wanted walking distance to fresh milk, bread, and that quick and common snack meal, the bitoque (minute steak, fried egg, chips, rice, small salad, costs €7/€8 anywhere in the country). We’d, previously, been in the country with 4 bedrooms and a garden, but country without the walking distance. We’d also more recently been in town in a flat, big one, no garden.

We wanted what this country does really do, the suburban desres that is.

Interrelated, we didn’t have as much money as we thought, expected or wanted. The flat didn’t sell well – but then another way of looking at this is that a flat you cannot actually bear to live in has a near zero value, so anything above that is a bonus.

To gain our compromise – all is tradeoffs, as we know – we had to accept living out in the boonies of the Alentejo. So we’re on the last line before the country of a 2k people town, a house with a garden, outbuildings etc. A 5k people town is 10km away, the regional capital (25k people) 40km. But we’re “in town” in that milk, bread and bitoque sense.

Which is the best we could do – looking forward to completion (and the writing of a large cheque) next week…..

#Now the game is to find some €15k of work from somewhere so that I can extend that pool to proper swimming length…..

No, no, not me

Samuel Pearson assaults police officer with hammer

45-year-old Samuel Eugene Pearson swung a hammer at the residents of a Rock Creek Trace Drive home on January 29th. Officers arrived and tried to speak with Pearson, but he was uncooperative. He opened the door, saw the police officers, and tried to close the door quickly. Officer Worstall attempted to keep the door open when Pearson hit Worstall’s right index finger with a hammer. Pearson was taken into custody for the assault of an officer.

One of the Nashville Worstalls. Possibly a cadet branch descended from the clan based upon the Ohio/Pennsylvania border.

So, should I apply for this job?

We are looking for an author to join the Financial Stability Report team. This role might be for you if you enjoy: (i) a fast-paced, fun and supportive environment; (ii) turning complex information and data into a coherent narrative; and (iii) writing clearly for external communication. As the successful candidate, your main responsibilities will be to write sections of the Financial Stability Report and related publications. The ideal candidate would be interested in a broad range of financial stability issues, and also in communicating effectively to key audiences for the Financial Policy Committee (FPC) and the Bank of England.

The FSR is the flagship product of the Financial Policy Committee (FPC). It sets out the FPC’s view of the risks faced by the financial system, the resilience of the financial system to those risks, and any action it is taking to remove or reduce those risks. Effective communication via the FSR is a key way through which the FPC can make its policies more effective; and through it the FPC is accountable to Parliament and the public. A team of FSR authors (two more senior authors – this process is to recruit one of those, and two more junior authors) collectively draft the Report. The steady state team model is for the senior authors to line manage the more junior authors.

In non-FSR quarters, the authors will rotate between working on FPC publications and working in relevant FSSR divisions, or in FSSR project teams, to develop analysis to assess the outlook for financial stability and policy options for the FPC. FSR authors can often choose between working on projects related to the chapters they draft and working on separate topics to expand the breath of chapters they can cover in future.

The successful candidate can expect to:

Deliver high quality sections of the FSR, or other FPC publications.
Generate ideas for how to communicate the FPC’s chosen narrative and develop the content.
Be tuned into the views of FPC members and discuss issues with them when receiving their comments on draft chapters.
Contribute to preparing the Governor’s brief for the FSR press conference.
Presenting the main messages of FPC publications to internal and external stakeholders.
Helping coordinate with key stakeholders and ensuring the FSR process runs smoothly.
Work in relevant FSSR divisions or in FSSR project teams to develop analysis to assess the outlook for financial stability and policy options for the FPC. Lead on such workstreams when appropriate.
Contribute to the FPC’s communication strategy, including but not limited to, preparing visual summaries of the FSR for the webpage, and contributing to social media content.
Line manage a more junior author on the team.

Joining the team provides an excellent opportunity to broaden your understanding of a range of financial stability issues and the challenges faced by policymakers in communicating their messages externally.

D’ye think they’d allow me to take my mot9or powered Mileisaw into the office?

George seems very pissed about the Atlas Network

What links Rishi Sunak, Javier Milei and Donald Trump? The shadowy network behind their policies
George Monbiot

No, really. The Atlas Network is, apparently, the method by which all that is Holy in political life is attacked.

Just wait ’till someone tells ‘im about the Communist International. You know, international network of folk who try to influence domestic policies?

Atlas is so evil it even funded me for a bit. Me and a laddie inside Iran, we co-produced a column each week for the local economics magazine. It’s such a terror that someone might suggest slightly more sensible economic policies than those of the Mullahs, right? Laddie ended up in jail for three days as a result of one column too. We’d quoted Shakespeare.

Reviving the substack

Yes, agreed, it’s a pretty weird theory. And I’d not try to insist that it explains all. But I would insist that it explains some. A whole country proved that the revolution called for at Tooting Broadway does not, in fact, work. Is not what humans living their actual lives gravitate to – and proves this after the best damn try anyone’s ever given the ideas.

Wolfie wouldn’t hate Jews after this but others? I’m sure it’s a part of it.

Not to replace this. Too much fun being snide etc. But the Substack, I think, for the newspaper articles I want to write but aren’t actually comissioned. Sign up, do, it’s free for the moment at lesat.

So, that’s done then

That hopelessly noisy flat has now been sold. Didn’t get as much as we’d hoped, but probably more than we could rationally expect. Sold to a Dutch bloke who, I think, is getting it as a party pad for his teenage sone. And good luck.

Phew.

Solar and swimming pools

Something for background information.

A swimming pool needs both heating and also electricity for pumping. To filter the water etc.

OK.

This is not something that is particularly time dependent. Has to be for x hours a day, no more than that.

Sounds like something that a solar panel would be useful for. And, possibly, just a small one. There’s enough insolation in a day to pump the water through the filters and heat it as well. On a, you know, just think out loud basis.

My assumption is that it could also be pretty small, that panel. Thus pretty cheap. Because one is not trying to produce enough to run an oven, just a pump and heater.

Now, as you all know, I know fuck all about this sort of thing. So, looking to be corrected here.

The other thing I misunderstand about this sort of stuff is that solar produces DC. You need an inverter to get AC. Inverters, these days, are the exdpensive bit of a solar system.

Hmm. So, do DC pumps and heaters exist for swimming pools? Can one whack up a cheap solar panel, gain filtration and heating, with a dedicated, small and cheap system? That isn’t connected to anything else etc?

Or is this me – as usual when talking machines – being stupid?

Lordy be

Just spent an hour trying to make Substack speak to Stripe.

Nope, can’t do it. Stripe seems to want to know the owner of an LLC, also my social security number, plus my Portuguese NIF. Also, there is no way to reach a human at either company.

Have to go with an unpaid Substack then, I guess.

The unions are trying it on of course

Despite being a major supplier of clothing to fast fashion brands, Bangladesh has one of the lowest minimum wages for garment workers in the world, which has remained set at 8,000 taka (£60) since 2018.

The Bangladeshi Ministry for Labour and Employment is proposing a new minimum wage of 12,500 taka (£92) a month, which is significantly lower than the 23,000 taka (£170) a month that workers’ unions say is the minimum needed to cover basic living costs amid spiralling inflation and a cost of living crisis.

Teachers make less than 23,000 Tk a month.

A more direct example. The paper I write for there is about the equiv of a national title here. Roughly, about. A national title here will be £250 to £600 for a column (depends which and what length). I get paid* 2,000 Tk per column in Bangladesh. That makes 8k Tk about the same as doing a national newspaper column once a week. Roughly, you understand. For entry level factory work that sounds -ish right, no? And 3x a newspaper columnist sounds a little much perhaps, yes?

*Yes, it goes to charity.

So job offer

Or, alternatively, guide me to where I can find the right person.

I’ve got a nascent little business that should be making a few k € a month. In fact, with a bit of aid from someone who knows what they’re doing, would be. There’s also the possibility of it making near €10k a month – that’s something dependent. And I know what I want to do as the next stage, which if successful would be €10k’s (note plural) a month.

So, defnit something, possibly something actually interesting.

It doesn’t require money. Sweat all the way. This line is there not to insist that I’ll not pay someone, but to insist that I’m not looking for money.

Now, to do this next stage I have found someone, someone I know, has the right skills. But they’re ill. Seriously. Like 6 weeks delay already and I need to carry on. Not going to dump them but I do need someone else to come in and do what I don’t know how to do. Also not about to dump whoever comes in. We’ll manage it over time.

So, the idea is simple enough. Create some online traffic that advertisers like – ie, that they’re willing to pay for. Once that exists then get them to advertise, cash the cheques. The basic traffic is created. Enough to be producing those few €k at current ad rates.

Now what I need is someone who grasps how ad code on web pages works. I know which companies to hit for the ads themselves (have a rough agreement etc, rates and so on, they’ll feed ads in, an agency). I’ve the traffic already.

The site running my content has programmers, I have an interface with them. But it’s difficult for me as a resolutely non-technical person to impose my will upon them. For when they say “that’s difficult” I don’t know whether they mean it is, or they’re lazy.

So, someone who knows ad code for websites. To be my enforcer on the site. To be telling those coders “Here’s how you do this, it’s easy”.

Stage 1 is simply to get traffic numbers together, talk to the agency I already know and get those ads on the site.

Stage 2 is that there are some more direct affiliate ads that should also be running. Conversion ratios currently are zero. OK, so sort that – make it more exciting, summat – so that conversion rates rise. We know they should be positive for people run entire websites off only those affiliate ads.

Stage 3 is to beat the coders over the head to change page layout. In order to up traffic (I know, in theory, how to do this. It’s the details of code that escape).

Stages 4 and on are to be revealed. But once I’ve got this sorted as a set and a proposition – CPM ads, affiliate, content, traffic, revenue – there’s an obvious way to ship this out as an offering to others and so multiply that initial content input (hint, languages).

So, anyone here into that sort of thing?

And perhaps the next stage. I’ve never really gone out and hired anyone. I’ve worked with all sorts of people and much of it has been happenstance. I don’t actually know where to look. Or even how. So, anyone know how to go looking for these sorts of skills? Sure, there’re programming skills required in there. But they’re not extreme, this is webpages after all. It’s, perhaps, more knowing what to do than how.

So, if not someone who reads here who wants to join in but perhaps someone who knows someone who would? Or even where and how to find?

My initial thought is that this really isn’t about the code at all, it’s about being a greybeard who knows how to get stuff done. jgh sorta stuff maybe…..

Hmm. Might keep quiet about this

Holidaymakers have been warned to expect flight chaos until the end of the week following “a network-wide failure” of the UK’s air traffic control system on one of the busiest days of the year.

Thousands of passengers were stranded at departure gates after a fault at National Air Traffic Services (Nats) forced controllers to manually process flight plans on Monday morning.

More than 500 flights were cancelled by early afternoon and hundreds more delayed, leaving passengers stuck abroad with no flights back to the UK for up to a week.

The grandkiddies leave at crack of sparrowfart Thurs morning. Well, hopefully they do…..

Bloody typical of Google

So I’ve gained access to Google Analtics for the site I want to look at.

And of course there’s entirely bugger all to tell you how to navigate it. Typical damn Google – assuming that everyone’s competent. Tchah! Tech products for the technically incompetent, that’s what we want!

A specific little problemette

The web team has told me that if the alternatives for GA operate in the same way that GA does, then it wont work.
It’s a bit technical, but basically GA has the code placed in the tag of the website’s html file and this allows it to work and collect data domain wide, ie, www.dhakatribune.com.
If we can find one’s that can instead be placed in the tag, then it could work only for Finance pages, but our web team doesn’t know of any such alternatives. If you have any suggestions please let me know and I’ll relay the info over.

Anyone know of such a stats counter?

Anyone know Google Analytics well?

I’ve a little problem here. Doing a project and I can;t get access to hte Google Analytics. Which seems to have just changed in some manner. And the reports that I’m being sent make little to no sense. Which I think is a function of how the others are compiling those reports. That is, they’re not using G Analytics right.

Anyone really know this system and can advise?

In more detail, there are up to 1500 or so pages I’m interested in on a larger site. All in “one section”. I get a daily report of traffic to that section. But the numbers are ludicrous.

I th9ink I know aht’s wrong but I’ve no idea how to tell the people to actually look up the correct info.

So, anyone really know this new G Analytics?

It would seem that Bard requires a little more work then

Tim Worstall is a British-born writer, blogger, and Senior Fellow of the Adam Smith Institute. He writes on the subjects of environmentalism and economics, particularly corporate tax, his contributions having appeared in the business press. In 2010 his blog was listed as one of the top 100 UK political blogs by Total Politics.

Worstall was born in Torquay, England, in 1963. He studied economics at the London School of Economics and Political Science, graduating with a Master of Science degree in 1985. After graduating, he worked as an economist for a number of companies, including the Bank of England and the European Commission.

In 2003, Worstall began writing for the Adam Smith Institute, a libertarian think tank. He has also written for a number of other publications, including Forbes, The Times, and The Spectator. Worstall’s writings have focused on a variety of topics, including the economics of climate change, the future of the European Union, and the role of government in the economy.

Worstall is a self-described “classical liberal” and a supporter of the UK Independence Party (UKIP). He is a critic of environmentalism, arguing that it is often based on flawed economic reasoning. He is also a critic of the European Union, arguing that it is an undemocratic and bureaucratic institution.

Worstall’s writings have been praised by some for their clarity and wit. However, they have also been criticized by others for their lack of nuance and their tendency to oversimplify complex issues.

Despite the criticism, Worstall remains a well-known and respected figure in the world of economics and politics. His writings continue to be read and debated by people from all walks of life.

Here are some of Tim Worstall’s notable works:

Chasing Rainbows: Environmentalism and the Failure of the Left (2009)
The Case Against the Financial Transactions Tax (2011)
The Death of Europe (2014)
The Myth of the Rational Voter (2017)
Tim Worstall is a controversial figure, but there is no doubt that he is a highly intelligent and articulate writer. His work has had a significant impact on the debate about environmentalism, the European Union, and the role of government in the economy.

Umm, yeah.

Academia can be weird

Worstall, T. (2013). ‘With all of Apple’s cash, why is it issuing bonds?’. Forbes, 30 April 2013. Available at https://www.forbes.com/sites/timworstall/2013/04/30/with-all-of-apples-cash-why-is-it-issuing-bonds/?sh=44f3d0c05bad (accessed 20 July 2023).
Google Scholar

Quite why bits of penny a page (that’s what I was paid, penny a page view) journalism get used as academic references I’m not sure. But such is modern academia:

I Want to Marry Rich: Why Cash Makes You a Desirable Partner
Christina Matz Carnes, Palash Deb, Jonathan O’Brien
First published: 25 July 2023 https://doi.org/10.1111/joms.12980

Shrug.