Tuesday, 1 January 2013

2013: Direction of Travel

Well, here it is and as we look behind us and look before us we shouldn't be too pessimistic. We haven't arrived anywhere yet, but the helm is on generally the correct heading. On the positive side:-

Public spending; Still a long way to go to claw-back the insane tsunami of money we didn't have that was thrown into the pot by mentally-challenged Brown and Balls but welfare changes, particularly to HB and the end of tax credits to come in 2013 will start to put the bite on. Capital investment to keep the construction sector intact and competitive would be welcome in areas other than housing. More pressure needed on civil service numbers and the NHS still needs to cut its bad cholesterol and cut down on excessive paying.

Banks; The government need to maintain a hard line on the retail-investment banking split and advance the programme. Fines and penalties for wrongdoing are good where these eat heavily into bonuses, but bankers still need to be in prison in significant numbers. As more and more retail customers flee the big five the assets of smaller competitors unencumbered by hidden liabilities will grow and help free us from the sclerotic lending ability of the big five.

Europe; The realisation that the UK's relationship with the Eurozone needs radical reform is now general and we are entering the debate phase during which there will be much heat and noise generated. The prospect of UKIP sweeping the board at the 2014 Euro election will paradoxically aid Cameron enormously in negotiations. And I wouldn't get too stuck on Article 50 and the in/out or nothing argument; we're playing big boys games here. 

Energy; Still an incredible mess but a dawning comprehension that bloody windmills aren't the answer is gaining traction. A free for all on shale gas with an investment bubble in the small innovative exploiters who will bear the risk and most of which will go bust will get the thing going before the big boys step in to take over. 

Education; Gove's work with schools can't be faulted, the fake colleges are also rapidly being wound-up and with them the overseas fake students and Blair's lunatic university boom is starting to settle back to sustainable levels. Both apprenticeships and entry via Articles to law and accountancy are rightly experiencing a rebirth. 

Devolution & Localism; With the welcome prospect of a 'No' from Scotland in 2014 to outright independence we'll be into 'Devo Max' country - and the rest of the UK may have to thank the Scots for leading the way into real and meaningful Localism.After Scotland, Wales - and then Devo Max for the English regions. 

Policing; The battle is now on between the supporters of a national police service under the Home Secretary, long promoted by ACPO, formed of an elite of specially selected and highly rewarded officers living separate lives from the rest of us, and local police forces under civilian control with local pay and rewards and officers who are part of the local communities. Again, the debate will generate much heat and sound. 

On the less positive side, areas of concern include:-

Defence;  Maintaining an expeditionary force, a reserve army, and naval strength to defend the sea-lanes and support expeditionary operations is an absolute defence minimum. We are at real risk of failing, and with no prospect of change

Personal Liberty; Nannying shows no sign of abating. The bonfire of the quangos hasn't happened and the fake charities that campaign to restrict personal liberty are still being funded by government. Computer snooping is back on the agenda and no doubt they are looking for a way in which to reintroduce ID cards. We need to cull more civil servants, more environmental health officers and all of the fake charities to have an impact here - with no sign of a willingness to do so from Cameron's government. 

Anyway, 2013 promises to be an interesting year. May it be a good one for all of you.


BrianSJ said...

Gove won't win on schools till the lunacy of Ofsted is dealt with.
In fact, most of the regulators need sorted.

Barnacle Bill said...

Happy New Year Raedwald to you and yours'.

G. Tingey said...

Public spending - slow & sure is the way to go.
Just don't replace some as they retire.
Takes longer, but very effective.

Banks - easier said than done.
They're STILL screwing people trying to set up new businsses, though!

Europe: - may change compeltely - the "offer" of "OK if you're like that, you can have 2nd-class" will provake a furious increase in the "OUT" camp, I think.

Nuclear, water (both watermills & tidal) & PV (getting cheaper all the time) combined - again there is a cartel problem, shutting out small (domestic) suppliers with rigged charges.

Devolution: Yes - let's ALL have "Devo-Max" & get the Irish back inside ....
We'll need it, bacause defence is already way too weak.
RN should be over 50 ships, minimum.

Policing - going to be interesting, but this ties in with the nannying.
I predict the new reg on child admissions to hospital will result in an increase in child mortality, since people just won't take their children in, unless at death's door - by which time it'll be too late.

DeeDee99 said...

On the downside, immigration is going to go through the roof when the poor and unemployable of Romania and Bulgaria have free access to the UK's welfare state.

And the BBC will get ever more shrill as the "savage cuts" start to bite.

Happy New Year to you Raedwald. Thanks for such an interesting and entertaining blog in 2012 and please don't stop in 2013.

We're winning the arguements, even if progress sometimes seems slow.

lilith said...

It's End of Days, Raedwald. Thank goodness you have a boat....Happy New Year!

Mr Ecks said...

Bankers to jail--ok-but not without political/senior bureaucratic scum to keep them company.

The bankers stand in the same relationship to the political scum as Igor stands in relation to Baron Frankenstein. They follow on and take advantage of, conditions created by the state, and the state was happy with that until reality caught up with them. It can't all be passed of on the bankers.

meltemian said...

Καλή Χρονιά Happy New Year Raedwald. Here's to another year of informed opinion.

Blue Eyes said...

Good post. I tried to write something similar but couldn't get it right...!

Wishing you a happy and fruitful new year.

Scrobs... said...

I read a story about a man with 10 children, and over fifty grand p.a. in benefits, because he gets headaches.

I reckon something must be done about these headaches.

Span Ows said...

Scrobs, no silver bullet, perhaps any bullet would do?

Cascadian said...

That's a piece of wishful thinking, the country is on the wrong heading, running out of fuel, overloaded and the drag is causing negative climb.

You need to ditch a lot of the cargo accumulated in the last 60 years before you crash spectacularly.

Banks moving out by stealth, electrical energy situation hopeless, productive generation retired or pushed aside, present generation quite hopeless, next generation worse. Infrastructure falling apart, killing off pensioners to balance the budget, public finance can only survive at 0% interest-not a place for old men or women.

Land fit for heroes-spit. 2013 will be disastrous. Prepare to bail-out.

Anonymous said...

GDP dependent upon speculative financial products, that produce little and cost lots in the long-run.
Let natural wastage reduce the public servants: Fail, the pensions are the true, and largely hidden, costs.
I see no way out. Practically everything we use, both domestic and industrial, is made elsewhere. If "it" isn't, its parts are.
Capital investment for construction is another problem. Nobody invests in making or building things that can't, or won't sell. That goes for factories/industrial premises as it does for housing. Housing is creeping along on the basis of 110% for your old house and various other ways of getting something for less than nothing.
The banks, having been given hundreds of billions to increase lending, instead reduced lending and kept the money. Not really abnormal since they have been lending us money they didn't have for decades. Now they're not lending us money even though we've given them loads to lend to us.
Now it is time for a new comedy show: 2013.


Anonymous said...

"and then Devo Max for the English regions. "

No, No, No! That is part of the EU recipe for the break up of England into small digestible chunks. When that happens, we will have lost irretrievably!

Back to District (Urban or Rural) and County Councils for local accountability.

Wildgoose said...

By all means let's have some more localism, but Devo-Max all round should mean the removal of the Scots, Welsh and Northern Irish from our English Parliament in Westminster.

They've got their own Parliaments, they've got Secretaries of State for their respective nations and they are in the House of Lords. They don't need any more and should be removed from their ability to maliciously interfere with the governance of England.

Steve said...

Interesting round up. I just hope the economy improves this year. Perhaps regulating the banks will help, although you can't help thinking that whatever measures the government introduces, the crafty bankers will always find a way around it.

Anonymous said...

I 100% agree with Wildgoose.

Happy New Year Raedwald and thanks for all your efforts.

G. Tingey said...

Cascadian & Lilith
Get your heads out of your own arseholes ...
It is NOT that bad ... not anything that can't be fixed, anyway.
Now bloody grow up!

Cascadian said...

Nobody could accuse Greg of serious commentary.

"Nothing that can't be fixed"...Haha, not by the present mob, or the socialists waiting in the wings, nor the governments of the previous sixty years.

Continual decline is your fate, "managed" so that savings lose 5% per year, not the governments fault they say-world economic circumstances, and morons like Greg lap it up.

Please sir, can I have some more?