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Despite the publicity for the anti cuts march, it's what people support.

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We cant avoid, we are skint.

Maybe next time the questions could be more specific. Do you support the closure of your local library? Do you support the closure of your local surestart scheme? Do you support the reduction in local respite care? Do you support the reduction in local frontline police numbers? Do you support the cut in local school building projects? etc etc

 

It's all very well people agreeing to a cuts agenda in general terms. it's not so great when they are directly affected.

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But these are the people who get to vote which is why their opinion counts.

 

But should an uneducated opinion still count? Even if its completely wrong?

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These credit users and abusers share just as much of the blame as the bankers. And there's a hell of lot more of them than bankers (and still more than 'bankers-that-needed-rescuing').

 

Amen to that. Imagine the shrieks of dismay if the BoE out the base rate up to 2.5% :o

 

The Samaritans would be on overtime.

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It's easy to blame consumers for being too stupid or naive to understand taking on more than they can afford, but they are not the ones that control the ease of credit and it's availability. Banks are not so stupid or naive as the consumer, but they do control those things.
Where did I "blame consumers for being too stupid or naive to understand taking on more than they can afford" :huh:

 

Regardless, in what context does the above not equate to joint responsibility :huh:

Amen to that. Imagine the shrieks of dismay if the BoE out the base rate up to 2.5%
It fully explains the 'too big to fail' expression/moniker.

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It's easy to blame consumers for being too stupid or naive to understand taking on more than they can afford, but they are not the ones that control the ease of credit and it's availability. Banks are not so stupid or naive as the consumer, but they do control those things.

 

It's equally easy to blame bankers for everything. The reality of the situation is, as usual, somewhere in the middle. There were some greedy, nasty bankers and there were some naive and fraudulent consumers. Ladling all the blame on one side or the other is stupid as it's both inaccurate and ensures that you can't actually tackle the real problem as you are blindly focussed on just one side of it.

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I don't remember being asked by The Guardian or any other rag what I thought about the cuts.

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Maybe next time the questions could be more specific. Do you support the closure of your local library? Do you support the closure of your local surestart scheme? Do you support the reduction in local respite care? Do you support the reduction in local frontline police numbers? Do you support the cut in local school building projects? etc etc

 

It's all very well people agreeing to a cuts agenda in general terms. it's not so great when they are directly affected.

 

Even asking individual questions doesn't explain any of the issues though.

Simply asking the question "do you support stopping the building of schools in your local area?" is an emotive one and will get an emotive answer.

 

If you first explain about the Building Schools for the Future programme and how it was beset with massive overspend, beurocracy, delays, poor construction and doesn't offer value for money, and then ask people if they'd still support building schools in teh local area under BSF, you'd probably get a different answer.

 

Explain about PFI and that many PFI projects will end up costing the taxpayer around 5 times as much as originally anticipated, and then ask if they still support building new hospitals, prisons, schools etc using PFI? You might get a less emotional answer.

 

If you ask the question "do you support scrapping an organisation designed to buy IT goods and services for schools and save them money", in principle I'm sure most would say no. But how about if you first explain that such a quango did exist and it actually cost the taxpayer more to run than it actually saved, again you'd get a different answer.

 

It's all in the detail which simplistic questions hide.

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It's equally easy to blame bankers for everything. The reality of the situation is, as usual, somewhere in the middle. There were some greedy, nasty bankers and there were some naive and fraudulent consumers. Ladling all the blame on one side or the other is stupid as it's both inaccurate and ensures that you can't actually tackle the real problem as you are blindly focussed on just one side of it.

 

I agree it's not all the bankers fault, and consumers/borrowers who default are partly to blame.

 

However I do think that banks spend £millions on marketing etc in order to get people to use their product. I remember getting letters from banks headlined with "Pre-approved for a loan of up to £10,000", not to mention almost weekly letters offering various credit cards with pre-approved limits many times my monthly salary.

 

The point I'm making is, no, nobody was frog-marched into signing credit agreements, nobody had a gun put to their head.

But banks had their products to sell, and sell is what they did. And they sold it aggressively. And they had they final say on credit afforded to people. IMO banks bare a larger proportion of the blame, but I agree with what you say, not all of it.

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I agree it's not all the bankers fault, and consumers/borrowers who default are partly to blame.

 

However I do think that banks spend £millions on marketing etc in order to get people to use their product. I remember getting letters from banks headlined with "Pre-approved for a loan of up to £10,000", not to mention almost weekly letters offering various credit cards with pre-approved limits many times my monthly salary.

 

The point I'm making is, no, nobody was frog-marched into signing credit agreements, nobody had a gun put to their head.

But banks had their products to sell, and sell is what they did. And they sold it aggressively. And they had they final say on credit afforded to people. IMO banks bare a larger proportion of the blame, but I agree with what you say, not all of it.

 

 

But neither do most people go to a hotel or a restaurant with no idea how they are going to pay the bill when they leave. It is similar in business where lines of credit are established or even people working for a weekly wage. We all rely on someone being able to pay us at the end of the day.

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However I do think that banks spend £millions on marketing etc in order to get people to use their product.<etc.>
That's the supply side, catering to demand: the £millions spent by banks on marketing pale into insignificance, compared to the £billions spent in lifestyle advertisement since the late 90s by -collectively- mass media (soaps, series, lifestyle programs and even dedicated channels), FMCG manufacturers/distributors/retailers and the previous Gvt (leading all by example, lest we forget).

 

I believe it's more a cultural issue, mj.

 

The UK (and the US and Ireland) have so much to cut, because they allowed so much of their respective economies to eventually rely upon credit-fuelled consumption. Not so in e.g. Germany or France, where credit is less 'socially acceptable'. That's not a criticism, just a fact of life. Which I'm quite certain the relevant Gvts were very well aware of, at the material time. The "Cassandras" were plentiful and plenty authoritative enough, for those who paid a little attention, years before the crash.

 

They could have "done something" (officially cap the APR, impose strict liability on banks for consequences of irresponsible lending, etc.) They didn't, so the "deal" -and it's eventual consequences- befall entirely the lenders and receivers, in equal measure.

Edited by L00b

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Even asking individual questions doesn't explain any of the issues though.

Simply asking the question "do you support stopping the building of schools in your local area?" is an emotive one and will get an emotive answer.

 

If you first explain about the Building Schools for the Future programme and how it was beset with massive overspend, beurocracy, delays, poor construction and doesn't offer value for money, and then ask people if they'd still support building schools in teh local area under BSF, you'd probably get a different answer.

 

Yep, that's precisely my expertise.

 

When I was first asked "Do you want to see new schools built?" I instantly thought "yes".

 

But then when we looked at the details, it was absolutely terrible.

 

First of all, the operating costs would rocket. Air conditioning needed to be on all the time. Repairs much more expensive.

 

They could be up to five times the current costs. A school doesn't work like a business so can't generate extra income to pay for that. So where does that money come from?

 

Then there was the cost of the equipment. Absolutely no choice on suppliers, so you can't play one off against the other. And that's when you find that £300 networking switch costing £800.

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Then there was the cost of the equipment. Absolutely no choice on suppliers, so you can't play one off against the other. And that's when you find that £300 networking switch costing £800.
Are you therefore saying, that the current Gvt drive to get all current and potential private suppliers/contractors to tender (supply2gov and similar), the registration fees for some of the public tender platforms and the veritable industry of paying seminars on "how to write and improve your public tenders" is a massive con :huh:

 

(PS: it's a rethorical question, don't answer :D)

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