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Mick Harper
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Folks use food banks when they have no income for (err) food.

You must know this is rubbish, Wiley. People who have no income for food die of (err) starvation. Nobody has died of starvation in Britain (not Ireland) since Mrs Clarice Arbuthnott in 1559.

This is not the same as living in poverty.

Too right, sparrer, this is the same as living in a famine. Or a siege. Poverty doesn't come into it.

In a society where increasingly you have more jobs for shorter periods, you have more gaps in income. More gaps mean more trips to the food bank for those in lower paid work.

I agree wholeheartedly with this statement if the word 'supermarket' is substituted for the phrase 'food bank'.

(Those permanently on benefits only have gaps when they get sanctioned). These income shocks used to be covered by the DWP, by the somewhat emotively named Crisis Loans. The Government localised these loans in 2013 as they were becoming increasingly costly, as (Err) many more folks were claiming.

This is all true, if selectively exaggerated.

Councils worked out that this was not good news for their finances and also the cheapest local welfare provision were not crisis loans but subsidising food banks.

This is news to me. More, please.

The Government was very happy as it had got rid of costly Crisis loans. Everybody else was happy as they could blame the government for the rise in the use of food banks. It's really a win win situation.

Not quite win-win. It's a lose for the government, surely. I don't know of any government since the birth of time that trades tiddly sums of money for big time unpopularity.
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Wile E. Coyote


In: Arizona
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Mick Harper wrote:

Wiley. People who have no income for food die of (err) starvation. Nobody has died of starvation in Britain (not Ireland) since Mrs Clarice Arbuthnott in 1559.


No, people without income for short periods do not starve. They beg, borrow, steal or live off charity. Take away crisis loans that plug the gaps, and build in waits for benefits, then these things happen.
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Mick Harper
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Well, I suppose it comes down to a statistical exercise. Have the people in this category grown fifty-fold (or whatever it is) in the last ten years (or whatever it is) or is the growth in foodbanks better explained by another factor. This brings us on to the wellsprings of charity. Specifically, does charity expand to meet a need or does the need expand to keep pace with the charity? And if the latter, with what consequences?

Clearly, foodbanks are a relatively unimportant matter, even in the British landscape (anyone got any info on how international the phenomenon is, by the way?) but when it comes to Third World Aid and now its extension into international medical/rescue work, it becomes of urgent global concern. In the AE sense of questioning it of course, not urging it on willy nilly as self-evidently a 'good thing' which is currently the orthodox position. Which, AE also says, it may be.
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Wile E. Coyote


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Spare a thought for the Journos. They all have to travel to Workington, learn the rules of Rugby League, and then tweet, or write articles about it without appearing condescending.

Still, it's only once every five years.
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Mick Harper
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And, remember, while there find a Labour Leaver that is thinking of voting Conservative, a Conservative Remainer who is thinking of voting Lib Dem, a Labour-all-their-lifer who is worried about Jeremy Corbyn, a rugby player complaining that London-based toffee-nosed public schoolboy television producers are ignoring League and pushing Union, a taxi-driver who knows where they can find a decent etc etc
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Mick Harper
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Both major parties are promising improvements to infrastructure in the north. And about time too. The M25 between High Barnet and Edgware is still six lanes. If it means higher taxes, so be it.
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Wile E. Coyote


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The end of Speaker Bercow, he ran the commons as Catchphrase when it was meant to be Pointless. The show where the more arcane knowledge wins.

The new Speaker, Sir Lindsay Hoyle, is planning to bring back the wig and ban clapping. Skullion is replacing Sir Godber, tradition reinstated.
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Mick Harper
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Did you know the Americans have a phrase "According to Hoyle" meaning an appeal to higher authority, and stemming from a book by a gentleman of that name setting out rules and advice about card games? Expect it to enter the British lexicon of journalistic clichés early in the next Parliament.
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Boreades


In: finity and beyond
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Mick Harper wrote:
Both major parties are promising improvements to infrastructure in the north. And about time too. The M25 between High Barnet and Edgware is still six lanes. If it means higher taxes, so be it.

That reminds me, seen elsewhere:

HS2 will be the sacrificial cow to the Cross Rail cost overrun plus the funding for Cross Rail 2 that BoJo was a proposer of. No point building a line beyond Watford, they don't vote for us, neither do those liberals in the southwest.

Some say the proponents of HS2 have just been dumb amateurs. The old-school British Rail were much more adept at playing their political masters. That's why BR started the first West Coast Electrification scheme at Manchester and Liverpool. Knowing it was under-funded but no politician would stop a Big Scheme reaching London. Whereas schemes that start in London barely get beyond the M25.
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Mick Harper
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Did British Rail exist in 1830?
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Mick Harper
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"Mr President, what's your reaction to the leaking of Donald Trump Junior's emails about Ukraine?"
"I barely knew the guy."
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Mick Harper
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Dominic Grieve Condemns Prime Minister Lead item on British news round-up

I'm pretty sure general elections used to be more exciting. I expect Newsnight will do a piece on it.
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Mick Harper
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The current humourless left, whether in the UK or the USA, have no sense of political theatre. The Democrats intend to paralyse the entire political process in order to establish that Trump tried to pressure the Ukrainians into investigating Biden, his maybe 2020 opponent. This was established to everybody's satisfaction in the first five minutes. The left have been going into paroxysms of triumph every time they get somebody else to testify he did what everyone knew he did, and will continue to do so for another month. They did all this with the Russian influence stuff and the Muller Report, and it will have exactly the same outcome i.e.nothing and then, maybe, a second term for Trump. The British Left are doing exactly the same with Boris Johnson. OMG he's done something unforgiveable. Again. And again. And again. With the same result except, not maybe, but probably a second term for Boris Johnson.

But it sure does make 'em happy. It's the Dick Emery school of political theatre: Ooh, you are awful.
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Boreades


In: finity and beyond
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Mick Harper wrote:
This was established to everybody's satisfaction in the first five minutes.


Everyone, that is, who thinks hearsay (from TLA moles) counts as evidence.

Actual evidence? Such a nuisance!

Ambassador Bill Taylor

.@Jim_Jordan: You didn’t listen in on President Trump & Zelensky’s call?
Taylor: I did not.
Jordan: You’ve never talked with Chief of Staff Mulvaney?
Taylor: I never did.
Jordan: You’ve never met the President?
Taylor: That’s correct.
Jordan: And you’re their star witness.
pic.twitter.com/ebZ6jsEjeB


State Department official George Kent

I did not witness any effort by any U.S. official to shield Burisma from scrutiny. In fact, I and other U.S. officials consistently advocated reinstitution a scuttled investigation of Zlochevsky, Burisma’s founder, as well as holding the corrupt prosecutors who hold the closed the case to account.

In early 2015, I raised questions with the deputy prosecutor general about why the investigation of Mr. Zlochevsky had been terminated based on our belief that prosecutors had accepted bribes to close the case. After, I became aware that Hunter Biden was on the board of Burisma. Soon after that in a briefing call with the national security staff of the office of the Vice President in February 2015, I raised my concern that Hunter Biden’s status as a board member could create the perception of a conflict of interest.


Some might say, the Democrats are busy screaming "Nothing to see here - move along please" or distraction tactics, to avoid anyone opening the case of worms that is the Bidens' real involvement, at board level, in strange Ukrainian companies.

Speaker Adam Schiff (D-CA) and his fellow Democrats spent much of the day trying to coax damning testimony out of Ambassador Bill Taylor and top State Department official George Kent - only to come up empty handed over whether President Trump conditioned US military aid to Ukraine on an investigation into former Vice President Joe Biden and his son Hunter.

What we did learn is that US officials, including Kent, "constantly" pushed Ukraine to reopen a "scuttled investigation" into the owner of a Ukrainian gas company, Burisma Holdings, which was hired then-Vice President Joe Biden's son to sit on their board in 2014.
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Boreades


In: finity and beyond
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Anyway, shouldn't this topic be in the "Meetings with Remarkable Forgeries" forum?

To expand:

Hearsay = Rumour.

You may be familiar with phrases like "Plausible Deniability". You should also be aware of phrases like "Parallel Construction".

Parallel construction is a process of building a parallel (or separate) evidentiary basis for a criminal investigation in order to conceal how an investigation actually began.


The most common method with TLA agencies is, allegedly, to "induce" another agency to produce a Dodgy Dossier (WOMD, Steele, etc), which is than leaked to a pliable member of the press (eager for any juicy story, regardless of provenance). The first agency can then be a whistleblower and say "It's not us (honest), but we have just heard that...(whatever)"

You might say this is a SOP (standard operating procedure), I couldn't possibly comment.

https://www.independent.co.uk/news/uk/politics/chilcot-report-author-of-dodgy-dossier-accuses-uk-of-systematic-failure-a7123136.html
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