* Posts by endorendil

11 posts • joined 20 Mar 2014

Drugs, vodka, Volvo: The Scandinavian answer to Britain's future new border


Single market, low crime

Those are the things the Norway-Sweden border has that the NI border doesn't. Because both sides are in the single market, to export from Norway to Sweden you only have to provide "rules of origin" documentation, which essentially proves that the goods were mainly made in Norway. British products will also have to provide proof that the goods conform to EU regulations, which is then randomly tested.

Ulster regrettably still has functioning criminal cross-border groups, which currently eke out a living trafficking diesel. There is no doubt that there will be more opportunities after Brexit, and we can expect a resurgence of these criminal networks, covered - as before - by the flag of unification and drenched in ethnoreligious patriotism.

UK will be 'cut off' from 'full intelligence picture' after Brexit – Europol strategy man


Re: A new term for you...

You will consider reasoned arguments?

Ok, of what kind? You know that in the end the economy will be slightly worse off, about 50 to 100 billion 2016 pounds per year, just based on additional trade friction. You probably know that there will be an additional cost before we get to that "in the end" phase. I assume none of that sways you.

Integration into a regional block has a lot of benefits, but most of those have been mentioned so I assume they don't sway you either.

What if I told you that there is a realistic chance that the UK will actually be able to set its own tariffs however it likes? Would that help?


Re: to our 40% that will surely come

No, the UK will leave the WTO when it leaves the EU, unless the great powers force (EU/US/China) the WTO to ignore the rules. Considering that the WTO is absolutely crucial to world trade and especially important at a time when that trade is under scrutiny, I doubt that they are willing to do so.

Under the rules, the UK cannot trade with WTO members as it has no agreed quota (it trades under EU quota). So it has to leave the WTO until it negotiates an agreed quota schedule with every single WTO member. But while it is outside the WTO, no WTO member can make a trade deal with it that would give it better access than WTO members get. So while it at least gets to trade, it cannot actually make trade deals.


Re: Bloody hell.

Xenophobism is not racism. There's really nothing racist about the English rejecting French, German and Dutch workers. It's xenophobia - the fear of anything foreign/different.


That is certainly a good outcome for the likes of Europol and the EU governments: the US will now have to work with the EU directly.


Re: Okay, riddle me this

He said that operational data could still be shared. But it will lose full access to the internal databases and - obviously - not be a part of the priority-setting mechanism. Sovereignty goes both ways.

THE DEATH OF ECONOMICS: Aircraft design vs flat-lining financial models


Fundamental requirement for growth

"<cynical suggestion that political considerations are the only reason for growth>. If there is another fundamental requirement for growth, I don’t know what it is."

There are two. One is population growth. Historically this is a big factor, and for countries where populations still grow, it should be taken into account. The second is rising living standards, and before you get all huffy about raping the planet, living standards include have breathable air, lots of green spaces, good education and ever-improving healthcare.

Oxfam, you're full of FAIL. Leave economics to sensible bods


Re: Unless they're from the lucky sperm club they've got negative wealth

Poppycock. The problem is not equality of outcome, but equality of opportunity. For a couple of decades we thought that it might be possible to create a society where success is mostly determined by your innate ability and you willingness to work on discovering and cultivating that ability. It is pretty obvious that we fell short (some countries more than others), and that a large part of the problem is that opportunities are still not spread very equally. Unfortunately, all current research points to equality of opportunity being impossible to achieve when the wealth gap is too large.


Re: Deiberately missing the point???

"We all have the chance to get there, or part-way at least. Not everyone could be bothered to try."

LOL. Seriously? Are you one of those people that believe that earning 100K pounds a year will get them in the top 1%? Do you believe that the wealthy become very wealthy by having high earnings?

Owning a house is meaningless. You can buy a house in Detroit for less than it costs to buy a car. Tell me you own an apartment in central London, or at least that you can afford the rent there. That would be meaningful: it would indicate that you have at least a (tiny) shot at getting to the top of the UK wealth distribution.


Re: Erm... really?

I guess you were wrong in your youth, but of course, we all were at some point. It's called growing up. In your case, you must have realized by now that globalisation means that things like global trade agreements and working conditions at the other side of the world affect your local situation. Now, if you think that unions are not the place to study this and find answers, that's one thing. But if you believe that the political class (or worse, the very rich themselves) are going to even *want* to find answers, you have not lost your youthful naivety. Good for you!


Completely misunderstanding

"It's obvious that the top five families will have more than 20 per cent of all Britons. Do they think we all just got off the turnip truck or something?"

Actually, this is not obvious. In fact, if the Lorentz distributions that Gini uses were correct, this would certainly not be the case. For a Gini of 0.33, the bottom 20% owns/earns 4% of the total wealth/income. For the top 5 families of the UK (~ the top 0.00001%) to earn more than that, the Gini coefficient would have to be very close to 1.

That is the point of the Credit Suisse report that the Oxfam numbers are based on. The Lorentz curves heavily underestimate actual discrepancies in the wealth and income distribution. This goes a fortiori for the after-tax distributions. This is what all the recent hubbub is about: there is a top echelon in our societies that is extremely rich, and hence extremely powerful. There is more than a whiff of ancient regime here, and it is dangerous. It is dangerous for the rich, who may find themselves targeted. It is dangerous for the politicians, who may find themselves stuck between assuaging populist anger and preserving the financial backing they need. It is dangerous for our economies, because - unlike the ancient regime - the rich are globally mobile, so their interests are even less aligned with those of their local economies.

In short, you don't understand why there is an issue because, well, you either don't read the reports or you fail to grasp what they mean. Oxfam may be a peculiar champion for equality in developed nations, but it makes some sense: they know very well how wealth disparity on a global scale can keep vast swathes of the world in dire poverty. Maybe they should focus on fixing the global problem rather than the local one, but perhaps they concluded that developed countries are too much in thrall to those who benefit most from the global inequality. In any case, if you don't understand the message, don't shoot the messenger.


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