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#1030531 - 11th Feb 2017 10:04am Lobbying the council
Excoriator Online   content
Guardian

Registered: 21st Jan 2010
Posts: 908
Loc: wirral
We are invited, on another thread, to lobby the council's budget meeting.

I see little point in this. The cuts are not their fault. Ultimately, they have only the money that the government allocates to them, and it it is not enough. If you want to lobby anyone, lobby the government. They mistakenly embarked on their 'Austerity' program for no good reason and it has not worked. They are now officially abandoning it in preference for simply not spending money!

I would remind people that they embarked on it to cut government debt, which stood at about 65% of GDP after Gordon Brown had supported the banks. In the 1940s - after the war - our debt was about 250% of GDP, but the Atlee government ignored this and embarked on widespread nationalisation and setting up the welfare state - both hugely expensive programmes. None of the post-war debt was ever paid back. In fact, the amount of money owed increased enormously, but the GDP of the country grew so that as a percentage, the debt fell to about 30% just before the banking crash.

The austerity programme managed to cut the GDP so much that our debt has now gone up to about 90% of GDP. It will get worse with brexit.

However, it is worth considering who are the creditors for this debt. Got any national savings? Or Premium Bonds? Or a pension fund? Then YOU are amongst the creditors. As a country, we are largely in debt to ourselves! Cutting spending in hard times is an appropriate response if you are an individual, or a family or even a company or a local council. For a country that prints its own money, it is probably the worst thing you can do!

This may seem counterintuitive nonsense, but it was fully explained by John Maynard Keynes and has been tested and shown to work time after time. The government - who seem not to have heard of it - has proved once again that austerity doesn't work. It never has and never will. It can't!

So if you want to lobby anyone, lobby the government not local councils who generally trying to do their best with an inadequate budget.

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#1030532 - 11th Feb 2017 10:33am Re: Lobbying the council [Re: Excoriator]
venice Offline

Forum Master

Registered: 21st Jul 2011
Posts: 2748
Loc: Wirral
Quote Ex
"So if you want to lobby anyone, lobby the government not local councils who generally trying to do their best with an inadequate budget."

Shouldn't the answer be 'both' though? Our councillors are always saying they need the weight of complaints from constituents, to help influence the government themselves.

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#1030540 - 11th Feb 2017 2:08pm Re: Lobbying the council [Re: Excoriator]
jeffrey Offline
Newbeee

Registered: 11th Jan 2012
Posts: 20
Loc: Wallasey
The council has buggered up the finances for years and years, we trust them to handle our money and they haven't got a bloody clue. If you want to talk about who ultimately is to blame for all this debt, then look no further than the Rothschilds/Federal Reserve/City of London.

But this is a local issue and the parking proposals they want to push on us all will devestate the Wirral, another example of their incompetence.

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#1030565 - 11th Feb 2017 7:25pm Re: Lobbying the council [Re: jeffrey]
starakita Online   content

Forum Master

Registered: 1st Oct 2009
Posts: 2251
Loc: between heaven & hell
what about the newspaper everyone is supposed to get,I've never received one.
_________________________
no1s gonna keep me from u

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#1030585 - 11th Feb 2017 11:37pm Re: Lobbying the council [Re: Excoriator]
Excoriator Online   content
Guardian

Registered: 21st Jan 2010
Posts: 908
Loc: wirral
Well, I've no liking for councils or councillors, but I think in this case it is really not their fault. You can blame the government, but we voted them in (no I didn't either!) and in the end we have to take some of the blame for the stupid and selfish lot we now have running the country.

I looked into the tory 'party' some time back. You may not be aware that their membership has fallen so much they haven't published figures since 2013. It is probably under 100,000 by now as they are dying off faster than new recruits can join. Moreover, as only 2% of their income comes from the membership, and 98% comes from 'donations' - i.e. big business - that calling themselves a 'political party' is stretching things more than a bit. 'Political Lobby Group' is more like it. He who pays the piper calls the tune!

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#1030587 - 12th Feb 2017 12:46am Re: Lobbying the council [Re: Excoriator]
diggingdeeper Offline

Wiki Master

Registered: 9th Jul 2008
Posts: 10279
Loc: Birkenhead
If you add up the membership of all the other UK political parties apart from Labour, it is still less than Labour party membership (515,000).

Around 1948 the Tories had roughly 3,000,000 members and Labour had 1,000,000 and the population was about 20% smaller than now, it just shows how p'eed off with the political parties people have become.
_________________________
In a time of universal deceit - telling the truth is a revolutionary act. George Orwell

When the debate is lost, slander becomes the tool of the loser. Socrates

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#1030590 - 12th Feb 2017 10:10am Re: Lobbying the council [Re: jeffrey]
MikeT Online   content
Smartchild

Registered: 23rd Apr 2010
Posts: 563
Loc: Canary Islands
Originally Posted By: jeffrey
The council has buggered up the finances for years and years, we trust them to handle our money and they haven't got a bloody clue
withthat withthat withthat withthat withthat

Wirral Council are a bunch of incompetent, greedy tossers on the take. Anyone who wants to know what they're doing with OUR money should read Wirral Leaks. Latest scandal is 300m of council taxpayer's money given to Egerton House that has gone missing. And what about this abortion that is Wirral Golf Resort ? 1m of our money spent so far on a project for rich fat cats to play golf with a lucrative sideline of "executive dwellings" for wealthy people built on greenbelt land. You can bet your bottom dollar our councillors won't have to pay a penny to join up.

Latest: agreeable jollies for councillors to Cannes

If a campaign ever gets underway for mass refusal to pay council tax I'll gladly sign up. Filthy, potholed roads, fly tipping everywhere, bins that get emptied if you're lucky, feral kids, massive cuts in police numbers, traffic "wardens" paid commission according to the number of cars they book, dodgy dealings with dodgy Chinese entrepreneurs, millions loaned out to other councils, millions borrowed on the q.t. which we'll eventually have to repay through our council tax bills, councillors convicted for sending death threats, etc. etc.

Cut housing benefit by 50% instead of imposing parking charges. Why should I subsidise those that won't work and have 14 kids to clothe, feed, educate and medicate, all on benefits, which come from the taxes I pay?

/rant


Edited by MikeT (12th Feb 2017 10:12am)

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#1030591 - 12th Feb 2017 10:25am Re: Lobbying the council [Re: diggingdeeper]
Excoriator Online   content
Guardian

Registered: 21st Jan 2010
Posts: 908
Loc: wirral
Originally Posted By: diggingdeeper
If you add up the membership of all the other UK political parties apart from Labour, it is still less than Labour party membership (515,000).

Around 1948 the Tories had roughly 3,000,000 members and Labour had 1,000,000 and the population was about 20% smaller than now, it just shows how p'eed off with the political parties people have become.


I suspect the tories have well under 100,000 members by now. They are increasingly an old-age lot and are dying off, young people avoid it like the plague!

And I am not sure how active its 'members' are. I grew up in a South Wales mining valley where the Conservative candidate got hundreds of votes as opposed to tens of thousands of labour ones. Yet there were many thousands of conservative 'members' because the beer in the conservative club was cheaper than in the Labour one! Our labour councillor played darts there!


Edited by Excoriator (12th Feb 2017 10:26am)

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#1030594 - 12th Feb 2017 1:06pm Re: Lobbying the council [Re: MikeT]
diggingdeeper Offline

Wiki Master

Registered: 9th Jul 2008
Posts: 10279
Loc: Birkenhead
Originally Posted By: MikeT
If a campaign ever gets underway for mass refusal to pay council tax I'll gladly sign up.


But the first people that would be hit by lack of money would be those in care as those are the big regular payments, next would be the refuse service .... you can guarantee the councillor's generous allowance would be last on the list.

Originally Posted By: MikeT
Cut housing benefit by 50% instead of imposing parking charges. Why should I subsidise those that won't work and have 14 kids to clothe, feed, educate and medicate, all on benefits, which come from the taxes I pay?


Because you live in a society that believes in a benefits system, would you prefer a society with people sleeping/dying rough everywhere and crime on an unbelievable scale?

Because America has lots of areas like that is why America has the gun laws it does.

Our Government's job is to distribute wealth, they have sadly failed at that for a long time. It is better to employ people rather than give them money when they are unemployed - how clean could our parks be!
_________________________
In a time of universal deceit - telling the truth is a revolutionary act. George Orwell

When the debate is lost, slander becomes the tool of the loser. Socrates

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#1030630 - 12th Feb 2017 7:24pm Re: Lobbying the council [Re: diggingdeeper]
locomotive Online   content
Addict

Registered: 18th Dec 2013
Posts: 258
Loc: Upton, Wirral
Wirral Council is so well off that they can afford to lend Millions to other councils at silly interest rates. Surely any surplus they have,should be used to lower the tax, instead of increasing it, we paid it in we should get some benefit out of it, but no doubt our useless 66 councillors have some excuse.

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#1030635 - 12th Feb 2017 8:13pm Re: Lobbying the council [Re: locomotive]
diggingdeeper Offline

Wiki Master

Registered: 9th Jul 2008
Posts: 10279
Loc: Birkenhead
Originally Posted By: locomotive
Wirral Council is so well off that they can afford to lend Millions to other councils at silly interest rates.


What is worse is they were buying loan options at the same time which were more expensive. They have been so vague about the whole of the lending they were doing that I've never seen why that was done, in my opinion there should be people prosecuted for doing it.

2m to Doncaster at 0.8%
6m to Lancashire at 0.75%
6m to Northumberland at 0.75%
5m to Stockport at 1%
2m to Fife at 1.3%
5m to Halton at 1.4%
3m to Kingston-Upon-Hull at 1.5%
4.5m to Newcastle-Upon-Tyne at 1.37%
2 Newcastle-Upon-Tyne at 1.8%

Inflation at that time (2012) was about 2.75%, all those loans were for about 2 years and presumably paid back - I don't know if they have issued others since then, one would hope not unless they were nearer market rates.

As I have said before, it would be better to invest in its own community such as issuing council mortgages which would have given a better return and given people cheaper mortgages as well as improving the local housing market - win all round within Wirral.



Edited by diggingdeeper (12th Feb 2017 8:16pm)
_________________________
In a time of universal deceit - telling the truth is a revolutionary act. George Orwell

When the debate is lost, slander becomes the tool of the loser. Socrates

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#1030673 - 13th Feb 2017 12:15pm Re: Lobbying the council [Re: diggingdeeper]
venice Offline

Forum Master

Registered: 21st Jul 2011
Posts: 2748
Loc: Wirral
Off course a bit, but Since the topic is talking about Councils' investment decisions -- not relevant to Wirral, but as an aside, does anyone have any knowledge of Northern Ireland starved council/s offering long term investment bonds to British public during some period presumably after the war? Im just curious since I remember years ago that my father and friends had all invested for the ridiculously high double figure interest .I would have thought it might have raised Irish eyebrows at the time?

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#1030674 - 13th Feb 2017 12:56pm Re: Lobbying the council [Re: Excoriator]
diggingdeeper Offline

Wiki Master

Registered: 9th Jul 2008
Posts: 10279
Loc: Birkenhead
Many councils issued Council Bonds and some were still doing it into this century.

Some councils have issued them again in the last few years but in these times of vicious Governments and variable finance it is a bit of risk without some sort of insurance backing - nobody is sure what happens when a few Councils go bankrupt.

The Treasury is looking into to doing Treasury Backing for Council Bonds which would create some stability and reduce risk in this market but if a Council is deeply in debt there is no way the Treasury will back them so its a little pointless in many cases.
_________________________
In a time of universal deceit - telling the truth is a revolutionary act. George Orwell

When the debate is lost, slander becomes the tool of the loser. Socrates

Top
#1030724 - 13th Feb 2017 10:37pm Re: Lobbying the council [Re: Excoriator]
venice Offline

Forum Master

Registered: 21st Jul 2011
Posts: 2748
Loc: Wirral
Thanks DD

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#1030773 - 14th Feb 2017 6:56pm Re: Lobbying the council [Re: venice]
locomotive Online   content
Addict

Registered: 18th Dec 2013
Posts: 258
Loc: Upton, Wirral
In 1988 Chester Council was offering 15% interest if you loaned them money, my Uncle lent them as much as he could and made a few bob.

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