In the Daily Telegraph, Matthew Lynn explains what happens when the coffers start to run dry across Europe:
[Last Tuesday] was the day when France ran out of money. As of Nov 7, all the money the government raises through its taxes – and this being France, there are literally dozens of them – had been spent. The rest of the year is financed completely on tick [credit].
In other words, for the French government to continue to function, the rest of November and all of December requires that they borrow money — i.e. run a current account deficit.
Most governments these days do the same, of course: the article goes on to point out that Spain likewise ran out of money on Saturday Nov 11, Romania on Nov 13, Poland will be broke on Nov 21, and Italy on Nov 26. The UK, astonishingly, will run out of money on December 7, while of the other large numbers, only Germany (duh) and Sweden (!!!) will be funded into the new year from their current tax incomes.
So, you may ask, how does the U.S.A. stack up against these spendthrift Euro countries?
Feel free to write to your Congressweasel, or else sharpen the pitchforks, pluck the chickens and heat up the tar. Guess which action I prefer.
Given the history of Communism’s brutality, the headline could be regarded as a truism, but in this case it’s simply an insult. Red Robbo has died, and sadly, far too long after he should have. Leo McKinstry describes it perfectly:
Leyland had inherited great motoring marques such as Austin and Rover but, in large part because of Robinson’s malign influence and that of others in his thrall, quality and innovation rapidly declined.
Increasingly synonymous with shoddiness, the company struggled to compete in the marketplace — not that Robinson cared. As a far Left ideologue, he did not believe in the market. [emphasis added]
But his gospel of permanent workplace revolt exposed a fundamental paradox of Robinson’s career: the man who constantly prattled about the protection of workers’ rights was the greatest destroyer of jobs in the UK motor sector.
But there’s a bright side to this bastard Commie’s activities, as McKinstry notes:
Through his spectacular recklessness, he ultimately repelled the British public and paved the way for the election of Margaret Thatcher — she described him in her memoirs as a ‘notorious agitator’ — with a mandate to tackle the unions. His very name was a vote-winning weapon for the Conservatives in 1979.
It is a rich irony that, in his communist fervour, Red Robbo was inadvertently one of the Tories’ strongest allies as they embarked on ending Labour’s disastrous experiment in trades union domination.
Needless to say, the death of this ghastly pustule has had all the current Commies in the Labour Party lauding his career because that’s what Commies do, the fuckheads.
Wherever Robinson is now, I hope the temperature is set to “Broil”…
Oh boo fucking hoo. A bunch of tatted-up, pierced and hairstyle-challenged kids are having difficulty landing jobs, and of course it’s all The Man’s fault:
In 2017, individuality and creativity are widely regarded as desirable traits in an potential employee.
But it seems some firms still judge prospective hires on appearance, as well as experience.
Jobseekers have been revealing the pettiest reasons they’ve ever been overlooked for a position on the anonymous secret-sharing app Whisper – and tattoos feature heavily in the surprising confessions.
One man with dreadlocks who was turned down for a job said it was not a coincidence that all the other staff members had ‘preppy hair’.
Another woman who had the word ‘hope’ tattooed on her wrist to cover a self-harm scar was informed she was out of the running as a result.
Here’s a pro tip to the author of this piece: employers are looking for individuality and creativity in employees, all right — but self-mutilation and peacocking attitudes aren’t that.
One commenter had the perfect response: “Make a statement about yourself with a tattoo, and be prepared to be judged by it.”
I note that a large number of these jobs involve interaction with the public, and surprise, surprise: people are turned off by freaky-looking employees.
And then, of course, comes the classic whine of the narcissist: “We shouldn’t have to change our appearance (no matter how freakish); you should change your attitudes because insensitivity.”
Fuck off, the lot of you. Enjoy your welfare existence.
They come to your country, build successful multi-million-dollar companies while still in high school*… as I remarked to Mr. Free Market, he’ll probably end up marrying into the Royal Family.
Most teenagers of his age spend their school lunch breaks playing football or chatting to girls.
But Akshay Ruparelia used every spare moment to sell houses.The young entrepreneur – nicknamed Alan Sugar by his friends – set up an online estate agency while still at sixth form.
The teenager started his business after persuading family members to lend him £7,000 and already employs 12 people.
And his clever business model has been such a hit that his company doorsteps.co.uk has been valued at £12 million in just over a year.
Now aged 19, Akshay has had to put plans of studying economics and management at Oxford University on hold because the firm he set up at school is expanding so rapidly.
I’m curious as to why he’d bother with university at all, seeing as he seems to be doing quite well without the academic drag of “theory” (as opposed to actual, you know, stuff that works in the real world).
Good for him.
*For my Murkin Readers: “sixth form” is the equivalent to an extra year of high school — thirteenth grade, as it were — as a preparatory step towards university. It is one of my deepest regrets that I didn’t stay on for the Sixth myself; my life would have been considerably different had I done so.
My body can best be described as a compact, stocky frame. In other words, I’m a tubby short-ass. I will also acknowledge that my dimensions don’t fit into the sizing scale used by most clothing outlets. My current waist measures 41 inches (give or take a half-inch or so) and my inseam leg measurement is [sigh] 29½ inches. For some reason, U.S. trousers measured at 40/30 fit me fine, but in the U.K., Marks & Spencer’s offerings require me to pick the 42/29 in order to fit me properly. Don’t ask; I have no idea why the two countries’ inches are of different length, and why I should have to go up a size at the waist, and down a size in the length in the U.K. (The same is true of shirts, by the way: U.S. XXL shirts fit me perfectly, but I have to get XXXL shirts at M&S to accommodate my 51-inch chest and 18-inch neck.)
I should also point out that M&S is pretty much the only place I buy clothes in Britishland, and the only place I buy underwear, period. (Cliff Notes reasons for the latter: comfortable, durable and quality workmanship.) One of the reasons I like M&S so much is that their materials feel wonderful: I have very sensitive skin, and clothing that most people seem to wear without complaint drives me crazy with itching/scratching.
I’ve told you all that so I could tell you this.
Via Insty, I note that Nordstrom is testing a “new” kind of store in California (where else?) that features “personal stylists” who will guide customers in their purchase decisions, advising them on fitting and such — and then having the customer order their final choices online, to be delivered later (I guess) either to the store for pick-up, or direct to their homes. Stephen Green says:
“That might be a smart move, given that expensive floorspace and (especially) carried inventory costs are two huge disadvantages of traditional retail versus e-commerce,”
…and I agree.
I’m not going to go into a critique of this methodology, because Nordstrom generally does things right and they are, if nothing else, keenly aware of their customers’ wishes and wants. All I can say is that if they’re going to offer tailoring services (as the article suggests), they’d better have their logistics ducks in a row.
Marks & Spencer has sort of gone this route, except that they now encourage people to look at what’s available in-store; if you can’t find your exact size, then order it online at one of the many kiosks in the store, and M&S will then deliver it to any M&S location you choose — even their food-only stores and gas station outlets — if those are closer to you than the department store. It makes sense, I guess, but it also drove me scatty a while ago when I went to shop for some trousers at the Salisbury branch.
I found not only one style of trousers I liked, but three — except that only one was available in 42/29. So I asked a clerk if they might have any 42/29s in the stock-room, only to be told that M&S no longer has any stock-rooms — what’s on the floor is what you get. So I asked whether they were getting any deliveries in the near future, and was told that one was expected in a couple days’ time. Would this delivery include more of the 42/29 trousers, I asked, and was assured that their stock re-ordering system would probably handle the shortcoming.
You can guess what’s coming, right? I went back a week later, credit card clutched in my sweaty little hand, only to find that nope, their re-ordering system had obviously missed the out-of-stock situation. So I gave up, and reassured myself that in a couple weeks’ time, I’d be able to go to M&S’s giant flagship store on Oxford Street in London to get the two missing items.
Once again, you can guess what’s coming: not only did M&S not have that size in stock, but they didn’t carry that style of trousers at all. The Oxford Street branch did have some excellent shirts in XXXL, which I bought, but not the trousers I was seeking.
Never mind, I told myself: in a week’s time I’d be going to Bath, and surely I’d find my chosen trousers — which were now becoming something of an obsession — in Somerset. I’d also find some more of those excellent XXXL shirts in Bath (I’d cleaned out Oxford Street’s miniscule supply of the XXXL), so I could, finally, get all the clothing I wanted.
Not quite. Bath stocked the 42/29 trousers, which I snapped up greedily, but not that style of XXXL shirts — which they didn’t carry at all, and never had.
So when people ask me about going shopping, and why retail outlets are losing business to online shopping, I can give several reasons why. Because next time, I’m going to find the clothing I like at Marks & Spencer, not bother with looking for the sizes I need, and order them online.
But if I’m only in town for a short while and the delivery won’t be quick enough, I just won’t bother shopping there at all — which bugs the hell out of me because I love Marks & Spencer.
I love shopping at Nordstrom too, so I hope that someone there reads this and learns the appropriate lesson(s).