Tuesday, 29 November 2011

My brief return to the football world

Following the loss of football professional Gary Speed, I came across this sensitive tribute on David Connor's Coethica blog My comment on David's blog was as follows
Even though I never met Gary Speed, he always struck me as a very genuine, grounded professional in a sport which I have turned away from due to what I consider to be obscene amounts of money and over-inflated self-importance of most of its participants. I was surprised at how shocked I was when I heard the news and even more so hearing the cause. 
At a much lower level, I have experienced the lonely darkness of separation, running a struggling business, the spiralling, deepening abyss of its failure and the consequences which continue today 2 years later. If I’d had a heart attack or a stroke, I’m sure those around me would have found it easier to deal with. And maybe I too would have found it easier to ask for and obtain ongoing support. 
But the fact is that, being of a certain social and educational background, the expectation (from others and possibly from myself) is to “just get on with it”. It is this expectation which turns most of us into “human doings” rather than “human beings”, all for the sake of surviving in a monetary-based system in which sensitivity, empathy and co-operation are diminishing values.
RIP Gary Speed

Monday, 10 October 2011

We The People - We all have an Occupation

The "Occupy" movement is certainly moving something and I just wanted to share some recent resources and links (with thanks to an old university friend, @jazzcatlesly)

OccupyBritain and 15th October
Details of various activist events around the UK, especially for the worldwide Occupations on 15th October

Why I agree and disagree with #Occupy Wall Street #ows
An interesting article from Brian Culkin: a senior consultant for the Open Mind Training Institute, consulting businesses and organizations around the world. He is also a yoga teacher and the owner of Jai Yoga, a small studio outside of Boston. Prior to his life as a Yogi and consultant he formerly played professional basketball in Europe and a had short career in finance.

globalrevolution on Livestream.
Global Revolution brings you live streaming video coverage from independent journalists on the ground at nonviolent protests around the world.

Howard Zinn: Civil Disobedience is not our problem. Our problem is Civil Obedience


Sunday, 9 October 2011

OccupyWallSt #ows Important Issues

The OccupyWallSt #ows movement continues to ruffle more than a few very big feathers in the US.  This is a movement which is following the principle of no leaders and no defined politics or solution but it is prompting responses from both sides of the political fence.  These responses seem to be falling into two distinct camps - pure antagonism and condemnation on one side (as exemplified by Peter King below), and attempts to co-opt the movement for political gain.


Those involved in the movement are well aware of both and have been savvy enough to avoid the trap of siding with anyone.

The aim of the movement is to expand the space of what is now being discussed as remedies and in the statement below, it is clear that "We The People" do not intend flying any one set of colours. It is this which should be applauded, celebrated and promoted through whatever means are at your disposal.


Welcome to the #OWS 99% Movement “We Will NOT Be Co-Opted” Working Group


This comes from David DeGraw's AmpedStatus Knowledge is Power site and was reproduced on Washington's Blog
This is not an official statement from the #OWS 99% Movement. As a decentralized leaderless movement, in our opinion, there is no one group, organization, website or individual who can speak for the movement as a whole. 
We, a working group of people currently occupying Liberty Park and many other locations throughout the US, are growing increasingly concerned about divide and conquer attempts being made to co-opt the movement. In the following message, we are issuing our first proposed statement. If you agree with the statement, please post it to your website and/or spread it throughout your social networks, both online and offline at occupations throughout the country. If you would like to read this statement at your local GA meetings and vote or edit it, feel free. If you disagree with the statement, please air your disagreements – this is what democracy looks like. 
We appreciate, respect and encourage endorsements from individuals and organizations. We invite them. However, just because an individual or organization endorses our movement, does not mean that they in any way have a leadership role in deciding the future direction of this movement. We will not be co-opted by hierarchical organizations. No matter how wonderful their cause may be. 
There are many people, organizations and media outlets within both the Democratic and Republican parties who are trying to label us as the Democrat’s version of the Tea Party. In this working groups opinion, not only is this incorrect, but in labeling us this way, you are, whether you realize it or not, undermining the very essence of this movement with your obsolete divide and conquer groupthink propaganda. Just as the mainstream media and both political parties aided and abetted the co-option of the Tea Party by the Republican Party, there is an attempt being made to do the same to us within the Democratic Party. 
We the People, We the 99%, are not the pawns of either wing of the two-party oligarchy.
We emphatically reject the attempted leadership of any political party, organization or individual. If there are elected officials or organizations who endorse our movement, we welcome them. 
However, they must do so knowing this: Your voice will be just as loud as any other voice. We are led by no one. You cannot co-opt We The People. 
Respect Us.





Friday, 7 October 2011

The World vs Wall Street

Stand with the Wall Street occupiers and demand real democracy - sign up at Avaaz.org here

Thousands of Americans have non-violently occupied Wall St -- an epicentre of global financial power and corruption. They are the latest ray of light in a new movement for social justice that is spreading like wildfire from Madrid to Jerusalem to 146 other cities and counting, but they need our help to succeed.

As working families pay the bill for a financial crisis caused by corrupt elites, the protesters are calling for real democracy, social justice and anti-corruption. But they are under severe pressure from authorities, and some media are dismissing them as fringe groups. If millions of us from across the world stand with them, we'll boost their resolve and show the media and leaders that the protests are part of a massive mainstream movement for change. 

This year could be our century's 1968, but to succeed it must be a movement of all citizens, from every walk of life. Click to join the call for real democracy -- a giant live counter of every one of us who signs the petition will be erected in the centre of the occupation in New York,, and live webcasted on this web page. Sign up now 

Wednesday, 5 October 2011

What has The Channel or The Atlantic got to do with the NHS?

Besides, The Channel and The Atlantic, this post reveals what Barons and Baronesses have got to do with the NHS...

Here is my letter to Baroness Morgan regarding the House of Lords vote (11th October 2011) on huge, dangerous changes to the NHS - this is part of the 38 Degrees campaign to save the NHS. See the end of this post for more information.
Dear Baroness Morgan 
I trust that you will reflect carefully on the proposed changes to the NHS which could mean people's lives coming second to private company profits and their shareholders. 
I believe that Britain is a society emerging out of the best traditions of European values of diversity, tolerance and consideration of others. We should be looking across the Channel and North Sea for our inspiration for solving problems of the 21st century rather than looking across the Atlantic.  Having experienced life on the continent, I am convinced that our health, both physical and mental, responds best to co-operation and consideration rather than competition and coercion. 
Please ensure that any changes to the NHS allow Britain to continue valuing the quality of life of all its citizens over the quantity of shares of a few.
So please read the email below which prompted this aristocratic interaction and then check out 38Degrees' new “contact a lord” tool, to write your own message now: https://secure.38degrees.org.uk/contact-a-lord

And, if you are able to contribute to 38Degrees campaign, please do so at this link
https://secure.38degrees.org.uk/page/contribute/nhs-lords-donate

Email from 38Degrees

Most of us don’t contact Lords or Baronesses all that often. But this time, we need them to listen. Next week the House of Lords starts voting on huge, dangerous changes to the NHS. [1]

It’s up to us to persuade the Lords to properly look at the NHS plans - and to vote to protect our health service. And thanks to the rapid donations of 38 Degrees members, we have a brand new tool which makes it easy to get in touch with them.

Just today, 400 Public Health experts wrote to the Lords warning that the plans "will do irreparable harm to the NHS, to individual patients and to society as a whole." [2] The more people Lords hear from the better - let's send our own personal messages now.

Check out our new “contact a lord” tool, and write your message now:
https://secure.38degrees.org.uk/contact-a-lord

Contacting a Lord or Baroness is a bit like contacting your MP. We don’t elect Lords, but it’s still their job to look carefully at new laws and rein in the more extreme whims of the government of the day. They have the power to propose big changes to the NHS plans, or even to throw them out altogether. [3]

Sincere, polite messages from informed members of the public are crucial to persuading the House of Lords to block the threats to our health service.

Working together, we can remind the Lords that we never voted to open up vast swathes of the NHS to private companies. It wasn't in any election manifesto to scrap the government’s duty to provide health services. [4] We didn't vote for our health service to become more like America's - let's persuade the Lords they shouldn’t vote for this either!

It will only take five minutes or so to contact a Lord. Click here to get started:
https://secure.38degrees.org.uk/contact-a-lord

By all working together, we've already held up the government's dangerous plans for our NHS and forced them to make some positive changes. But there's still so much more to do. Imagine the impact we can have if we send thousands of messages to the House of Lords from 38 Degrees members up and down the country.

Please take five minutes to send your message to a Lord or Baroness now:
https://secure.38degrees.org.uk/contact-a-lord


Thanks for being involved,

Johnny, Cian, Becky, Marie, David, Hannah and the 38 Degrees team


P.S. These kind of web tools usually take months to build. This one has been built in a hurry because the Lords start voting next week. So please be one of the first to try it and let us know if you have any feedback once you have:
https://secure.38degrees.org.uk/contact-a-lord

NOTES

[1]The 'Second Reading' in the House of Lords is expected to be next Tuesday 11th October.

[2] http://www.independent.co.uk/news/uk/politics/david-cameron-defends-coalition-nhs-reforms-2365331.html The letter warns that Lansley's plan "ushers in a significantly heightened degree of commercialisation and marketisation that will fragment patient care; aggravate risks to individual patient safety; erode medical ethics and trust within the health system; widen health inequalities; waste much money on attempts to regulate and manage competition; and undermine the ability of the health system to respond effectively and efficiently to communicable disease outbreaks and other public health emergencies."

[3] E.g. In 2008 the Lords forced the government to abandon plans to allow police to hold some suspects without charge for 42 days after massive public outcry and opposition to the plans: http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/uk_politics/7666022.stm

[4] For more on this see 38 Degrees' legal advice on the implications of the changes:
https://secure.38degrees.org.uk/page/content/NHS-legal-advice/

Friday, 30 September 2011

Shocking BBC interview with arrogant US trader

I had to reproduce the petition request below from Avaaz.org after watching this shocking BBC interview with an arrogant US trader who offers no solution to potential economic problems other than "look out for number one". Attitudes from such "See U Next Tuesday"s will perpetuate the cycle of bank/speculator-driven misery we have seen over the last few years.


Surely time for another approach?  Here's the Avaaz.org request in full - sign the petition here.

Europe: People vs. Banks

Right now, our jobs and services are under threat as speculators gamble and politicians squabble. But in four days Europe's finance ministers are poised to make drastic decisions that could threaten our economy for years to come. Only a mass public outcry now for a cooperative economic approach can protect our future.

Everyday we read headlines: 'Eurozone crisis, turmoil, grim outlook'. Now, some fear a return to the mass unemployment of the 1930s. And to appease the banks, our indebted governments are cutting social spending to save money, triggering riots and recession. But they know we elect them, so if we build a massive European movement now to defend our welfare states and end the cuts we could force them to change course.

Europe's finance ministers meet in Luxembourg on Monday. Let’s ensure our voices overwhelm the self-serving calls of the big banking lobbies. Join the urgent call for a new economic order, based on long-term, people-focused spending, and strong measures to tackle and regulate speculation and profiteering. We’ll deliver it to the finance ministers meeting next Monday. Sign now and circulate this campaign to everyone.

To European leaders:
As citizens concerned about the economic crisis and massive austerity cuts, we urge you to take bold action to save our economies. Europe must face down the banking lobbies, stop the cuts and urgently introduce the people-centred spending and regulation policies that will secure our future.
Sign now and circulate this campaign to everyone.

Monday, 19 September 2011

Jimmy Reid's Glasgow Address - Still Relevant After All These Years

From The Independent - "Jimmy Reid, the Clydeside trade union activist who died August 2010, was an inspiring orator. This speech, delivered on his inauguration as rector of Glasgow University in 1972, was compared at the time to the Gettysburg Address. It has lost little of its relevance."

I have decided to reprint this here to ensure that I have it under my resources should it ever be deleted from the Independent. I came across it when it was posted on a LinkedIn Group "21st Century Network"

My response to the post was
"Thank you for posting this Francis. I'd heard about his death and, thanks to a soft spot for Billy Connolly and hearing on the radio that he was a friend of Jimmy's, had begun to wonder about his role. I find this ignorance sad, given that as a 50 year old, my 70s education lacked inspiration from such home-grown speeches. I'm asking myself why I find myself becoming increasingly politicised when I should be more accepting of "plus ├ža change" but as the speech states "It is my sincere contention that anyone who can be totally adjusted to our society is in greater need of psychiatric analysis and treatment than anyone else." IMHO, the mistake of the 70s/80s was that the UK was looking across the Atlantic rather looking across the Channel for inspiration on quality of life."
Enjoy and be inspired....

Alienation is the precise and correctly applied word for describing the major social problem in Britain today. People feel alienated by society. In some intellectual circles it is treated almost as a new phenomenon. It has, however, been with us for years. What I believe is true is that today it is more widespread, more pervasive than ever before. Let me right at the outset define what I mean by alienation. It is the cry of men who feel themselves the victims of blind economic forces beyond their control. It's the frustration of ordinary people excluded from the processes of decision-making. The feeling of despair and hopelessness that pervades people who feel with justification that they have no real say in shaping or determining their own destinies.

Many may not have rationalised it. May not even understand, may not be able to articulate it. But they feel it. It therefore conditions and colours their social attitudes. Alienation expresses itself in different ways in different people. It is to be found in what our courts often describe as the criminal antisocial behaviour of a section of the community. It is expressed by those young people who want to opt out of society, by drop-outs, the so-called maladjusted, those who seek to escape permanently from the reality of society through intoxicants and narcotics. Of course, it would be wrong to say it was the sole reason for these things. But it is a much greater factor in all of them than is generally recognised.

Society and its prevailing sense of values leads to another form of alienation. It alienates some from humanity. It partially de-humanises some people, makes them insensitive, ruthless in their handling of fellow human beings, self-centred and grasping. The irony is, they are often considered normal and well-adjusted. It is my sincere contention that anyone who can be totally adjusted to our society is in greater need of psychiatric analysis and treatment than anyone else. They remind me of the character in the novel, Catch 22, the father of Major Major. He was a farmer in the American Mid-West. He hated suggestions for things like medi-care, social services, unemployment benefits or civil rights. He was, however, an enthusiast for the agricultural policies that paid farmers for not bringing their fields under cultivation. From the money he got for not growing alfalfa he bought more land in order not to grow alfalfa. He became rich. Pilgrims came from all over the state to sit at his feet and learn how to be a successful non-grower of alfalfa. His philosophy was simple. The poor didn't work hard enough and so they were poor. He believed that the good Lord gave him two strong hands to grab as much as he could for himself. He is a comic figure. But think – have you not met his like here in Britain? Here in Scotland? I have.

It is easy and tempting to hate such people. However, it is wrong. They are as much products of society, and of a consequence of that society, human alienation, as the poor drop-out. They are losers. They have lost the essential elements of our common humanity. Man is a social being. Real fulfilment for any person lies in service to his fellow men and women. The big challenge to our civilisation is not Oz, a magazine I haven't seen, let alone read. Nor is it permissiveness, although I agree our society is too permissive. Any society which, for example, permits over one million people to be unemployed is far too permissive for my liking. Nor is it moral laxity in the narrow sense that this word is generally employed – although in a sense here we come nearer to the problem. It does involve morality, ethics, and our concept of human values. The challenge we face is that of rooting out anything and everything that distorts and devalues human relations.

Let me give two examples from contemporary experience to illustrate the point.

Recently on television I saw an advert. The scene is a banquet. A gentleman is on his feet proposing a toast. His speech is full of phrases like "this full-bodied specimen". Sitting beside him is a young, buxom woman. The image she projects is not pompous but foolish. She is visibly preening herself, believing that she is the object of the bloke's eulogy. Then he concludes – "and now I give...", then a brand name of what used to be described as Empire sherry. Then the laughter. Derisive and cruel laughter. The real point, of course, is this. In this charade, the viewers were obviously expected to identify not with the victim but with her tormentors.

The other illustration is the widespread, implicit acceptance of the concept and term "the rat race". The picture it conjures up is one where we are scurrying around scrambling for position, trampling on others, back-stabbing, all in pursuit of personal success. Even genuinely intended, friendly advice can sometimes take the form of someone saying to you, "Listen, you look after number one." Or as they say in London, "Bang the bell, Jack, I'm on the bus."

To the students [of Glasgow University] I address this appeal. Reject these attitudes. Reject the values and false morality that underlie these attitudes. A rat race is for rats. We're not rats. We're human beings. Reject the insidious pressures in society that would blunt your critical faculties to all that is happening around you, that would caution silence in the face of injustice lest you jeopardise your chances of promotion and self-advancement. This is how it starts, and before you know where you are, you're a fully paid-up member of the rat-pack. The price is too high. It entails the loss of your dignity and human spirit. Or as Christ put it, "What doth it profit a man if he gain the whole world and suffer the loss of his soul?"

Profit is the sole criterion used by the establishment to evaluate economic activity. From the rat race to lame ducks. The vocabulary in vogue is a give-away. It's more reminiscent of a human menagerie than human society. The power structures that have inevitably emerged from this approach threaten and undermine our hard-won democratic rights. The whole process is towards the centralisation and concentration of power in fewer and fewer hands. The facts are there for all who want to see. Giant monopoly companies and consortia dominate almost every branch of our economy. The men who wield effective control within these giants exercise a power over their fellow men which is frightening and is a negation of democracy.

Government by the people for the people becomes meaningless unless it includes major economic decision-making by the people for the people. This is not simply an economic matter. In essence it is an ethical and moral question, for whoever takes the important economic decisions in society ipso facto determines the social priorities of that society.

From the Olympian heights of an executive suite, in an atmosphere where your success is judged by the extent to which you can maximise profits, the overwhelming tendency must be to see people as units of production, as indices in your accountants' books. To appreciate fully the inhumanity of this situation, you have to see the hurt and despair in the eyes of a man suddenly told he is redundant, without provision made for suitable alternative employment, with the prospect in the West of Scotland, if he is in his late forties or fifties, of spending the rest of his life in the Labour Exchange. Someone, somewhere has decided he is unwanted, unneeded, and is to be thrown on the industrial scrap heap. From the very depth of my being, I challenge the right of any man or any group of men, in business or in government, to tell a fellow human being that he or she is expendable.

The concentration of power in the economic field is matched by the centralisation of decision-making in the political institutions of society. The power of Parliament has undoubtedly been eroded over past decades, with more and more authority being invested in the Executive. The power of local authorities has been and is being systematically undermined. The only justification I can see for local government is as a counter- balance to the centralised character of national government.

Local government is to be restructured. What an opportunity, one would think, for de-centralising as much power as possible back to the local communities. Instead, the proposals are for centralising local government. It's once again a blue-print for bureaucracy, not democracy. If these proposals are implemented, in a few years when asked "Where do you come from?" I can reply: "The Western Region." It even sounds like a hospital board.

It stretches from Oban to Girvan and eastwards to include most of the Glasgow conurbation. As in other matters, I must ask the politicians who favour these proposals – where and how in your calculations did you quantify the value of a community? Of community life? Of a sense of belonging? Of the feeling of identification? These are rhetorical questions. I know the answer. Such human considerations do not feature in their thought processes.

Everything that is proposed from the establishment seems almost calculated to minimise the role of the people, to miniaturise man. I can understand how attractive this prospect must be to those at the top. Those of us who refuse to be pawns in their power game can be picked up by their bureaucratic tweezers and dropped in a filing cabinet under "M" for malcontent or maladjusted. When you think of some of the high flats around us, it can hardly be an accident that they are as near as one could get to an architectural representation of a filing cabinet.

If modern technology requires greater and larger productive units, let's make our wealth-producing resources and potential subject to public control and to social accountability. Let's gear our society to social need, not personal greed. Given such creative re-orientation of society, there is no doubt in my mind that in a few years we could eradicate in our country the scourge of poverty, the underprivileged, slums, and insecurity.

Even this is not enough. To measure social progress purely by material advance is not enough. Our aim must be the enrichment of the whole quality of life. It requires a social and cultural, or if you wish, a spiritual transformation of our country. A necessary part of this must be the restructuring of the institutions of government and, where necessary, the evolution of additional structures so as to involve the people in the decision-making processes of our society. The so-called experts will tell you that this would be cumbersome or marginally inefficient. I am prepared to sacrifice a margin of efficiency for the value of the people's participation. Anyway, in the longer term, I reject this argument.

To unleash the latent potential of our people requires that we give them responsibility. The untapped resources of the North Sea are as nothing compared to the untapped resources of our people. I am convinced that the great mass of our people go through life without even a glimmer of what they could have contributed to their fellow human beings. This is a personal tragedy. It's a social crime. The flowering of each individual's personality and talents is the pre-condition for everyone's development.

In this context education has a vital role to play. If automation and technology is accompanied as it must be with a full employment, then the leisure time available to man will be enormously increased. If that is so, then our whole concept of education must change. The whole object must be to equip and educate people for life, not solely for work or a profession. The creative use of leisure, in communion with and in service to our fellow human beings, can and must become an important element in self-fulfilment.

Universities must be in the forefront of development, must meet social needs and not lag behind them. It is my earnest desire that this great University of Glasgow should be in the vanguard, initiating changes and setting the example for others to follow. Part of our educational process must be the involvement of all sections of the university on the governing bodies. The case for student representation is unanswerable. It is inevitable.

My conclusion is to re-affirm what I hope and certainly intend to be the spirit permeating this address. It's an affirmation of faith in humanity. All that is good in man's heritage involves recognition of our common humanity, an unashamed acknowledgement that man is good by nature. Burns expressed it in a poem that technically was not his best, yet captured the spirit. In "Why should we idly waste our prime...":

"The golden age, we'll then revive, each man shall be a brother,

In harmony we all shall live and till the earth together,

In virtue trained, enlightened youth shall move each fellow creature,

And time shall surely prove the truth that man is good by nature."

It's my belief that all the factors to make a practical reality of such a world are maturing now. I would like to think that our generation took mankind some way along the road towards this goal. It's a goal worth fighting for.

Friday, 12 August 2011

UK Riots Consequences

I got kicked out of Liverpool One last night at 8pm as the police were putting a "ring of steel" around the city centre, advising all shops, restaurants to close. Oh dear, oh dear, could it be martial law!

I found this to be an excellent summary of the general situation at http://www.meetup.com/21stCent​uryNetwork/boards/view/viewthr​ead?thread=14694001

For many respectable city-dwellers, it can't feel very comfortable. Feeling too old, too comfortable and too much of a coward to get out on the streets, it is difficult with the responsibilities of family etc to even try to make a difference. Defeatist I know, but I suspect that is the stance of many, many people - politically unaware, and equally politically inactive.

If only the energy of protest could be directed more constructively into non-violent civil disobedience a la Thoreau/Ghandi to avoid giving "them" the circumstances "they" want to bolster security company profits etc. But that requires a certain amount of insight from those working in education etc and when the TES forums are full of Daily Mail/Express shouts of "scum", it is rather depressing. I'm not politically active either and it is scary (but less so for me as I've got nothing to lose now, so I can relate to a very small degree) as well as knowing that this has been building up with very little real opposition for a long time - watch the film Network from 1976 - incredible!  Alternatively, it would be nice if everyone could try the "F*ck It Way"

Tuesday, 2 August 2011

Eyes, over, pulled, wool, your... more fear factor

A French blogger has a page comparing the French and American debt... in real time!
See http://beaugency.over-blog.com/article-les-dettes-fran-aises-et-americaines-comparees--43250165.html

The counters and graphs on the page are scary but only if you are sucked into believing this money is real. I laughed when I saw it because it's another display of "blinding us with science" - the debt is created artificially and could be destroyed artificially by resetting all those counters back to zero and stopping them. But no, people will enjoy being impressed by the obscene amounts being projected, be suckered into the drama of last minute, tenter hook deals to save us from financial meltdown. As the beautiful Bill Hicks said, it's just a ride. And, furthermore to paraphrase the words of Woody Allen in the Front
Fellas, I don't recognise the right of these authorities to impose these sort of burdens on us, and furthermore, you can all go £'$k yourselves


Sunday, 24 July 2011

Expat Explorer Survey

Not completely related to business but veeerryyy interesting seeing how your place of residence matches up to your values in HSBC's Expat Explorer Survey

If you were moving abroad, what would you want to know? Find out the results from the largest ever global independent survey of expats. Gain a unique insight into how expat life differs across the globe.

Expat Explorer is the world's largest global survey of expats. In 2010 more than 4,000 expats answered questions relating to their finances, quality of life and even what it's like to raise children abroad. This tool allows you to see how countries perform based on the criteria that are important to you.

Wednesday, 8 June 2011

Overcommitment to failing goals or failing commitment?

Is depression about overcommitment to failing goals rather than failing commitment? Interesting argument.
For depression, read business failure? Much in the article below can be applied to entrepreneurship
Read more at
Psychology Today: Why do depressed people lie in bed? A surprising theory

Patriotic Retirement Plan - Never a truer word said in jest?

Dear Mr. Cameron,

Please find below our suggestion for fixing the UK 's economy.

Instead of giving billions of pounds to banks that will squander the money on lavish parties and unearned bonuses, use the following plan.

You can call it the Patriotic Retirement Plan:

There are about 10 million people over 50 in the work force.

Pay them £1 million each severance for early retirement with the following stipulations:

1) They MUST retire.
Ten million job openings - unemployment fixed

2) They MUST buy a new British car.
Ten million cars ordered - Car Industry fixed

3) They MUST either buy a house or pay off their mortgage -
Housing Crisis fixed

4) They MUST send their kids to school/college/university -
Crime rate fixed

5) They MUST buy £100 WORTH of alcohol/tobacco a week .....
And there's your money back in duty/tax etc

It can't get any easier than that!

P.S. If more money is needed, have all members of parliament pay back their falsely claimed expenses and second home allowances

If you think this would work, please forward to everyone you know.

Also.....
Let's put the pensioners in jail and the criminals in a nursing home.

This way the pensioners would have access to showers, hobbies and walks.

They'd receive unlimited free prescriptions, dental and medical treatment, wheel chairs etc and they'd receive money instead of paying it out.

They would have constant video monitoring, so they could be helped instantly, if they fell, or needed assistance.

Bedding would be washed twice a week, and all clothing would be ironed and returned to them.

A guard would check on them every 20 minutes and bring their meals and snacks to their cell.

They would have family visits in a suite built for that purpose.

They would have access to a library, weight room, spiritual counselling, pool and education.

Simple clothing, shoes, slippers, PJ's and legal aid would be free, on request.

Private, secure rooms for all, with an exercise outdoor yard, with gardens.

Each senior could have a PC a TV radio and daily phone calls.

There would be a board of directors to hear complaints, and the guards would have a code of conduct that would be strictly adhered to.

The criminals would get cold food, be left all alone and unsupervised. Lights off at 8pm, and showers once a week. Live in a tiny room and pay £600.00 per week and have no hope of ever getting out.

Think about this (more points of contention):

COWS
Is it just me, or does anyone else find it amazing that during the mad cow epidemic our government could track a single cow, born in Appleby almost three years ago, right to the stall where she slept in the county of Cumbria?

And, they even tracked her calves to their stalls. But they are unable to locate 125,000 illegal immigrants wandering around our country. Maybe we should give each of them a cow.

Also;
Think about this ... If you don't want to forward this for fear of offending someone -- YOU ARE PART OF THE PROBLEM! It is time for us grumpy old folk of Britain to speak up!

Sunday, 30 January 2011

Zeitgeist: Moving Forward

Can you spare 2.5 hours with an open mind to watch an analysis of where we are and an alternative for getting out of our global mess? Will our children and children's children look back at our continuing insistence on hydro-carbons in the same way we look back at the slave system?

Watch on YouTube now or see below for the synopsis and trailer

Zeitgeist: Moving Forward, by director Peter Joseph, is a feature length documentary work which will present a case for a needed transition out of the current socioeconomic monetary paradigm which governs the entire world society. This subject matter will transcend the issues of cultural relativism and traditional ideology and move to relate the core, empirical "life ground" attributes of human and social survival, extrapolating those immutable natural laws into a new sustainable social paradigm called a "Resource-Based Economy".




Zeitgeist Movement: Moving Forward Trailer on YouTube