Friday 23 February 2007

A message from Bill Cunningham

He's the Labour candidate for the Edinburgh City Centre ward and I've just received a leaflet from him.

According to Bill:

Labour Helping Every Family
Like this:
Low and stable mortgage rates
But interest rates are being held artificially low and this will eventually lead to a financial crisis. Those who've paid off their mortgages and folk like pensioners relying on their savings are being ripped off. So much for "every" family.
Record rise in Child benefit for all
Not everyone has children. So much for "every" family.
A new child trust fund for the future.
I refer readers to my previous answer.
Longer and better maternity leave.
I refer readers to my previous answer. And of course Bill doesn't mention the inevitable job losses that will ensue.
Two weeks paternity leave for the working dads.
I refer readers to my previous answer.
The right to flexible working hours
Bill means whether your employer can afford it or not. Another job-destroying piece of nonsense.
For everyone in work, a national minimum wage
But not for those kept out of work by precisely the same minimum wage policy.


David Farrer said...

John b
Just by the by - if "the stores now self-clean", doesn't that imply that 450 replacement jobs have been created at more than £5.35?

15 March 2007, 12:15:35 GMT
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Neil Craig
Ted tour assumption that losing their jobs was not bad for them is based on the belief that they will get as much on the dole as working - in which case the government ie taxpayer ie everybody loses. 
" A side benefit to the minimum wage policy is driving out such Victorian employers to the basket case countries where they belong." 
No. Real basket case countries like Zimbabwe can't attract them because, like you, they are antipathetic to enterprise. Such jobs tend to go to countries which grow up to be Hong Kong & Singapore. 
It appears from your not answering my last question that you, like Shotgun's brother, don't employe anybody here, the difference being that you don't want to.

1 March 2007, 14:23:23 GMT
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Speaking of the CBI, I'm reminded of another vociferous opponent to the minimum wage, Sir Clive Thompson. Thommo was, amongst other things, the Farepak chairman - picking up £100k for his part-time job. For Sir Clive, being chairman of a company that banked money from the poorest in society whilst being technically insolvent wasn't bad for the economy but paying people more than £5 an hour, well, that would be bad for the economy. Oh aye, it's a crufty old tune alright.

28 February 2007, 13:57:36 GMT
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I support legitimate business but do not support the exploitation of poor people. It's interesting that you view the two as mutually exclusive. Then again, it's not me that views the world through the nostrils of Digby Jones so that might explain it.

28 February 2007, 13:48:00 GMT
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Simon Jester
Your agenda is showing... 
Why not just admit you don't give a fig for business, comrade?

28 February 2007, 12:19:34 GMT
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David Farrer said...

"Who presumably could get by on the money they were paid, or wouldn't have taken the jobs." 
The acceptance of a job by the poor is clearly not an endorsement of all terms and conditions. That's why it's called exploitation, y'know. The State, for one, can, and does, withhold benefits from poor people who it deems are 'not available for work' - irrespective of the low wages on offer or whether said individuals can actually live on those wages. Turning down a job can be construed by State officials as making yourself 'not available for work'. So, the people least able to defend themselves and least able to select the most attractive employment are, in your view, happy to be working for £2.50, or whatever Shotgun's benevolent brother deemed fit, because they 'can get by on it'. Aye, right, stroll on. 
"Meanwhile, Shotgun's brother (apparently) has a business in Bulgaria." 
A low wage economy would, as I said, be his dream, I suspect. If the workers get too chippy there's a plentiful supply of slave labour to undercut any mouthy workers. Worker against worker - I mean, that's living the dream, isn't it? 
"it was clearly bad for his business and for all his employees." 
It's not been demonstrated that it was bad for his employees. They lost jobs that were so poorly paid that they could not have lived on them without additional funds from the State, if possible, or resorting to black market trading. I mean, is this the libertarian 'vision' for the British people? ROTFLMAO! What's more likely is that a good number, if not all, will have gained employment elsewhere at a signficantly higher rate because of, er, the minimum wage policy. 
So, the only person that has lost out is...Shotgun's brother who has had to move to a low wage, low value economy with few worker rights to ply his grubby business. A side benefit to the minimum wage policy is driving out such Victorian employers to the basket case countries where they belong. 
The Labour Party should include this in its manifesto, I admit.

28 February 2007, 09:20:30 GMT
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Neil Craig
Ted I would be interested to know how many people you are giving full time employemt to at £5 an hour? 
If the answer is none - why not?

27 February 2007, 19:15:17 GMT
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David Farrer said...

Simon Jester
"450 jobs at less than a fiver an hour ... Good riddance." 
Charming. Do you live on a trust fund, Ted? To most people who don't, a poorly-paid job is better than none - particularly since it's easier to get a better-paid job if you're in some sort of employment, rather than unemployed. 
No-one forced Henry Ford to pay his minimum wage. Presumably, all his employees made more money for him than they cost him. 
"If [Shotgun's] brother couldn't run his business on living wages for his employees then that's a shame for him..." - I would have said it was more of a shame for his employees. Who presumably could get by on the money they were paid, or wouldn't have taken the jobs. Meanwhile, Shotgun's brother (apparently) has a business in Bulgaria. 
"...nor do I regard it as proof that the minimum wage is 'bad for business'." Leaving aside the fact that you've changed your request for an explanation to a demand for proof, it was clearly bad for his business and for all his employees.

27 February 2007, 17:43:56 GMT
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"The minimum wage cost 450 jobs." 
450 jobs at less than a fiver an hour. What a loss to the British economy. Is that really it? Your brother underpaid people, discovered he couldn't afford to pay them proper wages, sold up and now lives in another low-wage economy where no doubt he is in his element - it sounds like the feel-good story of the year. Are we meant to be full of regret that some employers can't afford to pay British people more than £5 an hour? Sorry, I don't. Good riddance. 
Tbh, this is the kind of guff they came out with 100 years ago when Henry Ford brought in his $5 a day or whatever it was. "It'll ruin the American economy", "it'll cost thousands of jobs", they said. See, Ford making a profit wouldn't cost the economy or jobs but Ford using that profit to fund a decent minimum wage, well, that would be damaging and would cost jobs. Whatever happened to the Ford company? More importantly, whatever happened to Ford's competitors who predicted his minimum wage would ruin the industry? 
If your brother couldn't run his business on living wages for his employees then that's a shame for him but I can't bring myself to have any sympathy for him nor do I regard it as proof that the minimum wage is 'bad for business'.

27 February 2007, 09:19:56 GMT
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Nope, you'll have to explain it to me. 
I'll explain it to you in practical and real life ways. 
Mt brother...go that? He owned a large national cleaning that? He hired almost 450 people, mostly part-timers working 3 hours a day, in large shops and that? 
The minimum wage came in, and he found he couldn't afford to pay them, so he cut the hours of those working to two hours, and in some stores he cut the amount of that? He did this to make ends meet. In the end he was working just to pay wages at the min wage. 
He was paying more than ten quid a person a day, for two hours shoving a mop. 
With natural wastage he ended up selling the business and is currently in Bulgaria. 
All 450 jobs gone and the business gone, and the stores now do self-clean. 
The minimum wage cost 450 jobs. 
Is that simple enough?

27 February 2007, 00:10:58 GMT
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David Farrer said...

Am surprised there was any mention of Labour at all. I believe they have other candidates putting out leaflets a la Mary Scanlon with only the imprint to denote which party it came from.

26 February 2007, 22:42:44 GMT
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Nope, you'll have to explain it to me. Paying someone less than £5.35 an hour was good for them - and the economy, presumably. And employers are now being reduced to tears because they can't afford to hire people at more than £5 an hour. Dearie me. Wouldn't it be possible for them to simply hire these people anyway and still train them for the lucrative 'better employment'? Wouldn't that work? Or did it only work if they were earning less than £5 an hour?

26 February 2007, 09:28:26 GMT
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David Farrer
No mention of Jack. 
Sarah Boyack was on the reverse of the leaflet.

25 February 2007, 12:31:21 GMT
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World of Jack
Did he not mention how great Jack is?

24 February 2007, 14:41:25 GMT
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The minimum wage law will be particularly pernicious next time we're trying to get out of a recession. People won't be able to price themselves back into work.

23 February 2007, 20:19:56 GMT