Wednesday, 8 February 2012

Galatians 6:7

Hit 'em with yer hand bag
Britain had to plead with US to take part in Iran flotilla
Britain The illegal junta that occupies Britain had to "beg" the US to allow the Royal Navy to be part of a task force to the Persian Gulf.  The American's contribution is a nuclear carrier group with a heavy cruiser, destroyers and full fighter cover.  This is only one of three groups the US Navy have in the area

Britain's mammoth contribution? HMS Argyll, a Type 23 frigate.

That's right: One frigate.

What a stinking end consecutive British governments and the current junta have led us to. In my father's day, we had the largest, most powerful navy in the world.  In my day, it was still a respectable second.  Today?  It's damn joke.  Now that traitor Mr Cameron is acting all surprised when Britain isn't being taken seriously any longer.

Well, sunshines, you had a choice between defending the realm and paying a load of chavs to sit on their backsides all day drinking lager while jumped up town clerks draw down fat pensions for the last three decades of their lives and you chose the latter.

I hope you're all proud.

Update: Now we couldn't even fight Libya.  Pathetic.


Ironmistress said...

Easy solution: Reinstate conscription, draft those chavs and send them fighting somewhere.

You get rid of most of them for good, and those who return aren't likely to have grown up. And as conscripts are paid no salary, getting rid of useless surplus males becomes cheap.

That is the reason why my country will not give up conscription, no matter what. There is no better way to treat young men than crush their oversized egos, give them military training and put them obey military discipline. No problem with chavs anymore.

Sergej said...

I had this thought a few years ago, when looking at a very tame river in Upstate New York, that the river and the human soul have a lot in common. Both end up digging themselves into a rut if confined too much, but if allowed to run with no channel, they turn into swampy, unhealthy things. And if given a place to flow and well maintained banks to confine them, both make their surroundings a garden. Since most of the thoughts I have tend to be even dumber, I remembered this one.

Seems that the scourge of chavdom is in the same general category. If one stroke of bad luck is enough to ruin a man, people will not take risks and will be generally miserable, but making life on the dole a comfortable lifestyle is also wrong. It's been what, 70 years since Attlee? Looks like that's how long it took Britain to eat all the wealth it won from its colonies and created by being the first place in the world to industrialize, and it is now chowing down on seed corn. I hope this can still be reversed.

Ironmistress said...

Sergei, that was really wisely said.

I have been thinking of the social security system of my own country: why isn't chavdom rampant here and why Finns rather seek out of unemployment compensation than dwell on it.

One reason is the Lutheran legacy. Lutheranism sees work rather as form of vocation rather than curse, and considers work as form of sermon rather than a curse. Freeriders have always been frowned here - the social peer pressure may be enormous.

Another reason is that the KELA, Finnish Social Insurance organization, is very strict on controlling the unemployment benefits. Everyone who gets unemployed is made an employment plan, and KELA may assign the unemployment to go for a specific job or employment course. Refusal without goor reason leads into loss of compensations. Studying for acquiring occupational skills or profession is allowed (and encouraged) while on unemployment compensation.

Human life is miserable when it is too risky - and when it is wanton and completely riskless. The former will lead into complete avoidance of any risk-taking and effort, and the latter into gross negligence.

Sergej said...

A coworker (from Eastern Europe) spent several years working in Finland, and has nothing but good to say about the country. Taciturn people, honest to a fault, and extensive social services can about work there because the people themselves want to get off government assistance. Also, a thriving devil-rock culture, for some reason. Makes me miss Minnesota every time he talks about it. Also observed: Lenin spent his time in Finland learning socialism. In which case, he could have stayed a few years longer. For instance, forever. Russia wasn't particularly missing him or anything.

Anonymous said...

The real reasons why UK is flat broke is not the NHS nor chavs nor Brussels.

The real reasons are irresponsible banksters and clueless politicians who shovel money to patch up the messes the big boys' Monopoly games have caused.

The situation is same everywhere in Europe. Money is siphoned from social security, national defence and maintaining the infrastructure to support banks, corporations and financial institutions which have messed their affairs on completely irresponsible financial operations.

What the states should so is to terminate supporting ailing financial institutions altogether and let them go bankrupt. If the states play white knight and go saving failing banks, insurance corporations and financial institutions, it is a signal that irresponsible behavior is permissible since states will bail them anyway.

Failing banks should go bankrupt like any other corporations. That is how capitalism works - or should work anyway.

David said...

Anonymous: Bollocks. Look at what Whitehall spends. Defence is a miserable pittance (7 percent) and the vast majority of what's spent goes to the NHS, pensions and other "entitlements" (51 percent) and it's been that way for decades. Not to mention that we send enough money to Brussels to buy a supercarrier every year

As for the current crisis, the bankers did act irresponsibly, but the real culprit is a Mr Gordon Brown who put the country into hock and claimed he'd eliminated recessions for all time. Going after the bankers is like getting caught in a forest fire and complaining that someone is smoking.

Ironmistress said...

Hmm. The UK budget can be found here.

Compared to Finnish budget (here) the difference is quite striking: most of the tasks assigned in UK for the national government are in Finland tasks of the municipalities (towns, boroughs and parishes), like social security and health care. In Finland the maintenance of public infrastructure is the greatest single spending. That is understandable: the location of the country in North sets certain demands for the infrastructure. For example, Finland does not have one single iceless harbour. [USSR annexed Petsamo in 1944.] UK does not need icebreakers.

Finland allocates some 2% of its national budget for defence. That is the European average. With that budget we are to keep both the Russians and NATO away from this country. The answer is conscription: basically each and every Finnish male and a lot of females (like me) is a soldier. We also have the best air force in the world with possible exception of Israeli Air Force.

What strikes my eyes on the UK budget is gross inefficiency. Why aren't the UK defence forces able to make up a credible military might with almost twenty times our budget? Why aren't UK forces twenty times more powerful than ours?

Likewise, UK spends the same proportional amount of the national education as we do. Why aren't UK pupils and students at the top of PISA reports? Why the inefficiency? Why all Finns are fully literate and most speak two or three foreign languages (I speak six) but it is possible to pass through the UK educational system without learning to read?

Both countries spend the same proportional amount on national debt and its interests. Why does Finland have national debt of 63% of the annual GNP, but UK has over 430%?

Questions without answers.

Finland has actually been able to lower the burden of taxation of the average citizen for almost 10% from 1994 to 2012, from 44% to 35% (national tax some 12%, communal average 23%). Yet we can afford decent public health care, excellent education and national defence. Why such inefficiency in UK? I doubt the Britons were corrupt or outright con-men like the Greeks are. Is it just that large units are more rigid and inefficient than smaller - and the responsibility should be distributed lower in the hierarchy, to counties, towns and parishes?

[And in my opinion, Greece is in the need of a blanket party treatment.]

Sergej said...

Ironmistress: your questions are interesting. Please tell me if this sounds like an answer. Talking with my coworker---the one who's lived in Finland---I get the impression that Finns have a certain uniformity that makes their society possible. There is no "us" and "them" within the country, but only "us" and "more of us". Coworker thinks it's because it's about 200 miles to the nearest neighbor, so when a Finn sees another human being, he is happy. Between desiring to contribute to the common good ("ours") and fear of the bad opinion of one's neighbors ("my neighbors!"), Finns do the right thing, even if there isn't anything in it for them personally. Just as it seems strange to me when families pay their children for doing chores, only on a national scale. The opposite understanding is: "the world is full of them, and I'll do well if I can grab something for myself without working too hard."

This kind of arrangement can't work for countries that aren't either Finland or Japan. One of its weaknesses for instance, is that it can't absorb many immigrants---US is built on immigration, and so could not begin to reorganize along such lines. Perhaps another requirement, is a homogeneity of understanding of what is acceptable. If one neighbor in America likes to keep his lawn clipped neatly and another lets it go for a while between mowings, there may be friction. But I have the impression that if both neighbors are Finns or Japanese, they will both at least agree that either the one neighbor spends too much time on his grass or the other neglects his, and which one is being a bit eccentric. Again, country like the US, which was built by people who did not agree with people ever since colonial times, would find this difficult to pull off.

As for pluses and minuses, I've sometimes thought that my life is missing the Japanese sense of belonging, formally, to some set of societies and duties. But I remember a story about a man with the interestingly old-timey name of Lafcadio Hearn, who decided to actually become a Japanese subject, and had some problems with boundaries. The comfortable river banks around the lifestyle were also walls that prevented any other lifestyle, and that took some getting used to. I'd say that you Finns have something there, but it might not be for everyone (but I hope you wouldn't mind if I came and backpacked some summer---I promise I'll pick up my trash!).

Not sure whether this applies to Britain as well, but this is the country I know about.

Long post. And it's time to go to work. I look forward to your thoughts.