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Snigger

In a court filing released on Tuesday, Mr Bankman-Fried’s lawyers claimed the FTX founder should only serve up to six years for his role in the fraud.

This is in response to a recommendation from government officials who have called for Mr Bankman-Fried to spend 100 years behind bars.

Umm, why?

In a legal filing, Mr Bankman-Fried’s lawyer, Marc Mukasey, urged the judge to implement a more lenient sentence because of his client’s autism, mental health and philanthropic endeavours.

So, because he spent the stolen cash on vanity and ego projects his sentence should be reduced?

Aha, aha.

The idea of being liberal seems to have vanished

Meal deals are to be stripped of crisps and fizzy drinks in Scotland under SNP plans to tackle an obesity crisis.

Proposals unveiled on Tuesday state that the popular supermarket offers, as well as temporary price reductions on unhealthy food and drink, will fall within the scope of a new junk food crackdown north of the border.

Options in a consultation for “rebalancing meal deals towards healthier options” include banning any food or drink classed as being high in fat, sugar or salt from the promotions in meal deals. These typically consist of a sandwich, snack and drink for a set price.
….
As well as lunchtime meal deals, evening “dine in” offers, in which consumers can purchase a main dish, side and pudding, would also face being banned if they included unhealthy components.

There’s gotta be a point at which we tell the cunts to fuck off. Sure, I’m well past it, but when is the general population going to do so?

No, it’s not the illegality that is the thing here

Sir Keir Starmer’s campaign manager failed to declare £700,000 in donations amid concern that some of the funds came from a Jewish donor who needed to be protected from anti-Semitism in the Labour Party, The Telegraph has learned.

Morgan McSweeney’s think tank was investigated by the Electoral Commission after he failed to register donations received by Labour Together, an organisation he ran until 2020, when he became Sir Keir’s chief of staff.

Now The Telegraph has learnt that during the time Mr McSweeney failed to register support from millionaire venture capitalists and businessmen, concerns had been raised about protecting a high-profile Jewish donor.

Well-placed sources said that senior figures at the think tank wanted to ensure that Sir Trevor Chinn, who is a director of the organisation and a regular donor, kept a low profile because of “growing” anti-Semitism in the Labour Party.

It’s that they were worried enough about their own party’s antisemitism to actu illegally.

Another Tosser then

And this requires another kind of realism – understanding what might appeal to the greatest number of people globally, from peasants in the global south to farmers in the global north. It’s unlikely, he says, that we’ll get communism or socialism in the next 10 years – a small farmer in Iowa “doesn’t want to obliterate private property”. But we can get “some pretty good stuff” through “decommodifying many of the key pillars of socioeconomic life and creatively working within ecological constraints”, even if “we’ll probably still have basic market mechanisms for some things”.

If some of this sounds like triangulation, he insists it isn’t. “In between meaningless reform and impossible revolution,” he writes, “we find mixed existing and historical models of formal state, civil, and guerrilla strategies.

Another of those idea sets clearly produced by frotting over Das Kapial in Mom’s basement.

Cute, but doesn’t actually work

Travelling by train on Britain’s busiest business routes generates less than half the carbon emissions of a battery electric car, according to detailed analysis from the rail industry.

Certain journeys on the greenest, fullest electric trains produce as little as one-fifteenth of the CO2 per person compared with the footprint of a sole occupancy petrol or diesel car, the data shows.

The Rail Delivery Group (RDG) claimed the data is the industry’s most accurate and granular yet, incorporating train types and occupancy, and said it hopes it will allow businesses to make the greenest travel choices.

The train system is an integrated whole. Emissions have to be counted over the whole. After all, sure, we can say that the full train going into Liverpool St at 8 am hsa low per passenger emissions. But that last train out at 11 pm is also necessary to reposition the carriages to come back in the next morning.

In English English dictionaries are positive, not normative

This is less so in American Englsih and obviously, both vastly less so than bleedin’ French:

It’s fine to end a sentence with a preposition, according to a shock ruling from the American dictionary publisher. But is it OK to recklessly split infinitives?

It is an observation that these things are now OK, not a decision that they are. Just because that’s how the English language works. We do it, they then write up the apparent rules of what we do.

Not just aspiring rappers then

Both Washington and Jordan were well known to Mizell, who prosecutors said was killed in a business dispute over a lucrative deal to distribute cocaine in Baltimore, Maryland.

Washington was a childhood friend, and Jordan was Mizell’s godson. All of them grew up in the same neighbourhood in the New York City borough of Queens.

In the 1980s, Mizell and his Run-DMC bandmates helped usher hip hop into the mainstream with hits including It’s Tricky and Walk This Way, with rock group Aerosmith.

In their lyrics and stage shows, they were known to advocate against illegal narcotics. The group even recorded a “Just Say No!” anti-drug public service announcement in the late 1980s for the US Drug Enforcement Administration.

My Word. Really?

Then there is this in the FT:

A lack of available loans from traditional UK lenders is pushing vulnerable consumers towards unregulated credit products as they struggle financially in the cost of living crisis, according to a study.

The UK nonprime lending market — which offers loans to riskier customers with average to low credit scores — has shrunk by more than a third since 2019.

In contrast, unsecured loans from unregulated lenders, such as those offering buy now, pay later (BNPL) products, have jumped in recent years, according to research from credit-checking platform ClearScore and consultancy EY.

The result is that the most vulnerable people in the UK who need to borrow to meet unexpected costs because they have little, or usually no, savings are being forced into the highest cost, most abusive, arrangements.

You mean that closing down, through price regulation and caps, the regulated lending industry like Wonga, Amigo and Morses, wasn’t, in fact, all that good an idea?

My word, that is a surprise.

Geography ain’t it, Honey

Cambridge admissions are “skewed” towards students from London and the south east, the university’s vice-chancellor has said as she launches a diversity drive.

Prof Deborah Prentice said she wants to encourage more students from “all backgrounds” to apply to the university, including from across the north west of England.

Cambridge tends – tends – to admit from certain socioeconomic classes. Which are concentrated in London and the SE. That’s where the successful professional classes are, after all, that’s where their kids will grow up.

It’s not that Cambridge (or Oxford) has a geographic bias, it’s that the target classes are biased in their geography.

That means that it’s not getting more students from different geographies that matters, it’s getting them from different classes.

Well, no, not really

As the Sussexes build their brand in America, they appeal to a young, diverse, liberal-leaning constituency.

They’re trying, but not doing very well. Either at the brand building or with whom. They seem to be stuck with shrieking 13 year olds who want to marry a Prince as their support group.

Anyone with a memory?

Richard Murphy says:
February 26 2024 at 6:26 pm
This is fiscal drag at work

A Sunak production

Back two decades I – along with other neoliberals – insisted that the personal allowance should rise, substantially, to makeup for the fiscal drag of previous decades. We won.

The biggest opposition came from Murphy and the likes who insisted that richer people gained the greater amount of tax relief from reversing fiscal drag. So therefore don’t do it.

I really do despise those who change their tune dependent upon what is opportune.

Shouldn’t an accountant have a grasp of numbers?

Investment advisers Hargreaves Lansdown issued a press release this morning saying:

Debts cost an average of £406 a month – as arrears mount

The average household spends £406 on monthly debt repayments, excluding the mortgage. Those with mortgages spend an average of £814 on top of this.

Almost one in ten households (9%) are in arrears. Among the lowest fifth of earners this rises to 27%.

One in five people are concerned about their debt position.

Credit card debt is up 12.7% in a year to £68.9 billion and other consumer debt (including loans, overdrafts and car finance) is up 6.7% to £150.4 billion (Bank of England).

The arrears data worries me, as does the increase in credit. But so too does the bigger picture.

There are about 27 million households in the UK. Around £132 billion is being paid by those households a month to service debt interest, exclusion mortgage costs. That is a staggering upward annual redistribution of wealth. And you wonder why I want interest rates to be as low as possible? That’s the reason why. Those without wealth are being exploited by those with it, and that is a recipe for an unstable society, which is exactly where we are heading.

Umm, if households are paying £132 billion a month then those debts are going to be paid off in about 6 weeks. And if the debt burden is 6 weeks of repayments then the debt burden isn’t, not really, something of any great import.

Oh, and of course, the HL numbers are “debt repayment” not interest on debt.

But then I guess the move from accountant to political economist means you don’t have to pay attention to actual numbers any more. Or even reality.

This is one of those joys, isn’t it?

The head of Britain’s trade union movement and the boss of a leading retailer have joined forces to demand the government takes tougher action to catch wealthy tax dodgers.

Paul Nowak, general secretary of the Trades Union Congress (TUC), and Julian Richer, founder of the Richer Sounds hi-fi chain, said the public were losing out on up to £36bn a year in taxes owed by companies and individuals that were not being collected.

In a joint intervention before next week’s budget – when the chancellor, Jeremy Hunt, is expected to prioritise pre-election tax giveaways – they warned HM Revenue and Customs lacked the necessary funding to chase down businesses and the super-rich for non-payment, avoidance and evasion.

Avoidance. Structuring your affairs so as to reduce your tax bill. A reasonable enough definition, yes?

Mr. Richer sold Richer Sounds to an employee trust. One of the effects of that is to leave him with no CGT bill. And, if I’ve read the issue right – and there’s no guarantee I have – the funds received also will not form part of his estate for inheritance tax purposes. That last sounds so unbelievable that I’m sure I’ve misunderstood in fact but that is as far as I understand it right now.

This is, of course, wholly, entirely and completely legal. But it’s a bit much to be lectured on tax avoidance by the man, no?

Umm, yeah

A faultline has opened in Keir Starmer’s pragmatic politics – and this time none of the usual fixes will work
Nesrine Malik

Gaza is an issue that Labour cannot simply finesse away. It is about real life, real death and the sympathies of millions

So’s the situation in your neck of the woods, Sudan and over into Darfur – we’re hearing reports of slaving expedictions by Arabs against Blacks.

Amazin’ how Britain’s leading Arab Sudanses commentator says nothing about the subject, no?

Doesn’t ring right really

Calmette and Guérin could have never imagined that their research would inspire scientists investigating an entirely different kind of disease more than a century later. Yet that is exactly what is happening, with a string of intriguing studies suggesting that BCG can protect people from developing Alzheimer’s disease.

If this is true then those who have had the BCG should be protected against Alz. Yet all those in the care homes are of an age where they would have had the BCG in childhood…..

What’s the bit I’m missing here? Attenuation (right word?) of the effect over time?

The Guardian gets everything wrong. Again

Portugal’s two-week general election campaign has officially begun with centre-right and centre-left parties leading in the polls, but a far-right populist forecast to collect almost a fifth of the vote is a further sign of Europe’s nativist drift.

Everyone in politics in this country is a thieving bastard. Further, the entire place is run for the benefit of the haute bourgeois professions – notaries, VAT accountants, bank managers and the like. The fiscal oppression of the actual working people is immense. So too is the lack of power of anyone not inside that gilded ring of those of the right job and position.

It’s a lovely place to live but God Forbid you should ever try to make a living here.

That there’s a party shrieking a pox on all their houses – and doing well by doing so – is not all that much of a surprise. Actually, it’s welcome.