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    (Original post by Aph)
    No!!! When I'm PM I'll let you move to the Netherlands if you want:yep:
    The lower taxes sell it for me. If you pay my moving fees I'll go tomorrow for ya.
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    (Original post by Ruitker)
    The lower taxes sell it for me. If you pay my moving fees I'll go tomorrow for ya.
    So you don't want my 60% income tax?
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    (Original post by Aph)
    So you don't want my 60% income tax?
    You're having a laugh right?
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    (Original post by The Financier)
    You're having a laugh right?
    No:no: I look at the Norse contries which ate the happiest on earth with large income taxes and feel that that's the most sustainable model.
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    (Original post by Aph)
    No:no: I look at the Norse contries which ate the happiest on earth with large income taxes and feel that that's the most sustainable model.
    I too find the Nordic Model an interesting proposal, but there is a reason it works for them and its not because of high taxes. Their public sector is more efficient and better quality than most others, so the public are actually getting their money's worth and therefore willing to fork up more than us.

    Without this confidence and trust in the government's ability to use the tax revenue effectively to benefit the nation, just increasing tax is doomed to fail. If you want to look for an example of what increasing taxes without much improvement in efficiency will do, just glance over the channel.
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    (Original post by The Financier)
    I too find the Nordic Model an interesting proposal, but there is a reason it works for them and its not because of high taxes. Their public sector is more efficient and better quality than most others, so the public are actually getting their money's worth. If you want to look for an example of what increasing taxes without much improvement in efficiency will do, just glance over the channel.
    Agreed France isn't a good example and I think the difference if culture, and our culture is more similar to the Nordic ones I belive.
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    (Original post by Aph)
    Agreed France isn't a good example and I think the difference if culture, and our culture is more similar to the Nordic ones I belive.
    Whilst we're more willing to pay more in taxes in return for our public services compared to somewhere like the US, Britain is usually more libertarian. We're not going to see the same level of trust in government for a long time.
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    (Original post by The Financier)
    Whilst we're more willing to pay more in taxes in return for our public services compared to somewhere like the US, Britain is usually more libertarian. We're not going to see the same level of trust in government for a long time.
    We'll considering the huge parties control government and often the people that got in aren't really those that people want in it's no wonder there is little trust. Once we get a PR system we should see more trust.
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    Rochester and Stroud question time :woo:
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    (Original post by Aph)
    Agreed France isn't a good example and I think the difference if culture, and our culture is more similar to the Nordic ones I belive.
    Not applicable to England without a culture change.

    The Norwegian wealth is largely based around exploiting a high resource to population ratio (no different to Scotland) with the caveat that they also tax everything that moves allowing to fund a large public sector that pays very well. Now unless you'll drop your objections to mining and oil/gas/fracking then this is simply not going to happen.

    (Original post by Aph)
    No:no: I look at the Norse contries which ate the happiest on earth with large income taxes and feel that that's the most sustainable model.
    Scotland and Ireland have a culture typical of northern Europe but England's is much more akin to north eastern US state than a European one.
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    (Original post by Rakas21)
    Not applicable to England without a culture change.

    The Norwegian wealth is largely based around exploiting a high resource to population ratio (no different to Scotland) with the caveat that they also tax everything that moves allowing to fund a large public sector that pays very well. Now unless you'll drop your objections to mining and oil/gas/fracking then this is simply not going to happen.



    Scotland and Ireland have a culture typical of northern Europe but England's is much more akin to north eastern US state than a European one.
    Yes but we all agnolage that British culture is a big problem as it is.
    and fossil fuels aren't our only resource.
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    (Original post by Aph)
    Yes but we all agnolage that British culture is a big problem as it is.
    and fossil fuels aren't our only resource.
    True, but mineral wealth is still the most valuable resource a country can produce. England is simply too populous for that model to work, heck, i'm not even sure Wales and NI have enough to be beneficial.

    With a change in culture and strategy we could follow the northern Europe export model but it would be based on hard manufacturing rather than mineral wealth.
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    (Original post by Rakas21)
    True, but mineral wealth is still the most valuable resource a country can produce. England is simply too populous for that model to work, heck, i'm not even sure Wales and NI have enough to be beneficial.

    With a change in culture and strategy we could follow the northern Europe export model but it would be based on hard manufacturing rather than mineral wealth.
    Currently yes, although I wouldn't support mining in the uk again
    We used to be manufacturer's I see no reason why we couldn't go back.

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    (Original post by Rakas21)
    Not applicable to England without a culture change.

    The Norwegian wealth is largely based around exploiting a high resource to population ratio (no different to Scotland) with the caveat that they also tax everything that moves allowing to fund a large public sector that pays very well. Now unless you'll drop your objections to mining and oil/gas/fracking then this is simply not going to happen.



    Scotland and Ireland have a culture typical of northern Europe but England's is much more akin to north eastern US state than a European one.
    Well maybe if the UK supported the Norwegian system of establishing a public drilling company, thus retaining all of its revenue, the undecideds could be convinced. Rather than a private, international firm making the profits while we earn a pitiful fraction and pay the environmental consequences.
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    (Original post by That Bearded Man)
    Well maybe if the UK supported the Norwegian system of establishing a public drilling company, thus retaining all of its revenue, the undecideds could be convinced. Rather than a private, international firm making the profits while we earn a pitiful fraction and pay the environmental consequences.
    I'd agree to a public company for drilling and fracking.

    It would prevent exploitation of resources and might drive down prices for the consumer.
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    (Original post by Green_Pink)
    Really sorry to hear that I was just saying my experience, which is completely different to that. I think there probably are a whole different set of issues for, in particular, young Muslim women who don't hold traditional values - but being white I'm lucky enough not to experience that. I don't know what it's like for mixed-race people in similar situations but that does sound pretty vile.

    Labour used to be complacent but they're definitely not know, having been through Galloway/Respect and now Lutfur Rahman. Problem with them is that the national party has had them in practically permanent special measures and keeps make pretty disastrous decisions for them, the local activists are pretty decent but they have no chance of being allowed to respond to local issues. Lutfur's administration hasn't been that bad to me really - he's no angel, that's for sure, but he's pretty in touch with local people and is actually willing to fight for them too. The Tories as you said actually have more presence than you'd think, it's not exclusively in the Canary Wharf areas, and we had a pretty active Green campaign too. Certainly more engaged than loads of other authorities which are going to go to one party every time without fail.
    Sorry if my original comment came across as unduly harsh or offensive- reading your response I feel as if I was a bit too blunt in expressing my view/experiences.

    I found what you said about Lutfur interesting. You said that he was in touch with local people, what kind of things were you referring to?

    The impression I get about the Tories is that they are either very strong in a ward or literally unable to poll over 5%. A rather "all or nothing" situation. Is that accurate?
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    (Original post by jenkinsear)
    Sorry if my original comment came across as unduly harsh or offensive- reading your response I feel as if I was a bit too blunt in expressing my view/experiences.

    I found what you said about Lutfur interesting. You said that he was in touch with local people, what kind of things were you referring to?

    The impression I get about the Tories is that they are either very strong in a ward or literally unable to poll over 5%. A rather "all or nothing" situation. Is that accurate?
    No worries at all, nothing more than a different perspective

    Well, I think part of it is no more than good fortune on his part - as our first directly elected mayor, he's a face people recognise rather than just another bureaucratic council where the vast majority of people couldn't even name their local representative. Love him or loathe him (and it's normally one of those two extremes!), everyone knows Lutfur. Apart from that, for young people in particular he's been a Godsend. He introduced a bursary scheme to replace our EMA when it was scrapped which really saved a lot of people from dropping out of education. It's probably more important here than in most of the country, because there's quite a strong culture of local family-run businesses, markets etc - the bursary meant young people I knew were able to continue education and do things as simple as fund their own lunches and textbooks, rather than be coerced into "helping the family" instead. There's also now a similar grant for Tower Hamlets residents going to University, which has been helpful to those who's family income is too high to get much support, but too low for their family to really support them - a problem magnified because of the trend of large households and lots of siblings, factors not taken into account by student finance. And he's been able to engage with every school and all their students, free from the politicking of Labour throwing a strop about Free Schools and Academies. It says a lot that we were far less hit by rioting youth than similar communities in Haringey, Hackney or Newham.

    It was also a pretty symbolic moment when he and his affiliated councillors took to the streets to oppose the EDL when they tried to come here, march "past" (yeah right) the Mosque and wreck havoc on Whitechapel High Street. I know UAF aren't generally popular, but everyone here is pretty fed up of the EDL. Labour's advice was to close your business and hide in your home while they quietly marched the racists through our streets, which understandably didn't go down so well.

    Regarding the Tories, that's fairly accurate regarding their poll ratings but doesn't paint the whole picture. They have a local leader here called Peter Golds who's pretty high profile as far as local politics goes. He's actually done a better job of opposing Lutfur than Labour has: rather than what are seen, rightly or wrongly, as racist smear campaigns, he's criticised him for turning a blind eye to bigoted supporters, dropped the Muslims vs Whites nonsense and portrayed quite a liberal idea of what the borough should be. As a gay, Jewish Tory in the middle of Tower Hamlets he's not afraid to stand out, and he actually has quite a lot of friends even amongst those with other party loyalties: so they probably have more influence than the electoral results would suggest and can always be a threat to stop anyone getting complacent in a particular ward.
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    (Original post by Green_Pink)
    No worries at all, nothing more than a different perspective

    Well, I think part of it is no more than good fortune on his part - as our first directly elected mayor, he's a face people recognise rather than just another bureaucratic council where the vast majority of people couldn't even name their local representative. Love him or loathe him (and it's normally one of those two extremes!), everyone knows Lutfur. Apart from that, for young people in particular he's been a Godsend. He introduced a bursary scheme to replace our EMA when it was scrapped which really saved a lot of people from dropping out of education. It's probably more important here than in most of the country, because there's quite a strong culture of local family-run businesses, markets etc - the bursary meant young people I knew were able to continue education and do things as simple as fund their own lunches and textbooks, rather than be coerced into "helping the family" instead. There's also now a similar grant for Tower Hamlets residents going to University, which has been helpful to those who's family income is too high to get much support, but too low for their family to really support them - a problem magnified because of the trend of large households and lots of siblings, factors not taken into account by student finance. And he's been able to engage with every school and all their students, free from the politicking of Labour throwing a strop about Free Schools and Academies. It says a lot that we were far less hit by rioting youth than similar communities in Haringey, Hackney or Newham.

    It was also a pretty symbolic moment when he and his affiliated councillors took to the streets to oppose the EDL when they tried to come here, march "past" (yeah right) the Mosque and wreck havoc on Whitechapel High Street. I know UAF aren't generally popular, but everyone here is pretty fed up of the EDL. Labour's advice was to close your business and hide in your home while they quietly marched the racists through our streets, which understandably didn't go down so well.

    Regarding the Tories, that's fairly accurate regarding their poll ratings but doesn't paint the whole picture. They have a local leader here called Peter Golds who's pretty high profile as far as local politics goes. He's actually done a better job of opposing Lutfur than Labour has: rather than what are seen, rightly or wrongly, as racist smear campaigns, he's criticised him for turning a blind eye to bigoted supporters, dropped the Muslims vs Whites nonsense and portrayed quite a liberal idea of what the borough should be. As a gay, Jewish Tory in the middle of Tower Hamlets he's not afraid to stand out, and he actually has quite a lot of friends even amongst those with other party loyalties: so they probably have more influence than the electoral results would suggest and can always be a threat to stop anyone getting complacent in a particular ward.
    He introduced a bursary scheme to replace our EMA when it was scrapped which really saved a lot of people from dropping out of education
    If it's a college bursary scheme then that's country wide. All the coalition did really was make it so that you had to be a bit poorer to get what is in effect a new EMA that pays a little more.
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    (Original post by Rakas21)
    If it's a college bursary scheme then that's country wide. All the coalition did really was make it so that you had to be a bit poorer to get what is in effect a new EMA that pays a little more.
    The thing the coalition introduced - the "16 to 19 Bursary Fund" - had a much smaller pot to go round than EMA, £180M compared to around £500M. Each local authority decided how to allocate their share, but had to give it to vulnerable students. Unfortunately, the amount given to each authority didn't really reflect how many vulnerable or low-income students they had - the result being that in Tower Hamlets it actually ended up covering two textbooks per year, rather than £30 a week from EMA! Lutfur introduced however the Mayor's Education Award out of local authority funds which gave £400 a year to students from low-income families which, while not completely replacing EMA, was actually a lifesaver for many and a big incentive to others.
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    Philae has landed!

    Worth the €3.50 yearly contribution to the ESA!

    Now to increase our input to the fund!
 
 
 
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