Posts Tagged ‘BBC news’

Britain is Now a(n) (Under)Developing Country

December 12, 2013

Aditya Chakrabortty writes in the Guardian that Britain is now a developing country.

He says some Brits may have iPads and broadband – but there are also oversubscribed foodbanks in Britain. He says Britain’s economy is no longer zooming along unchallenged in the fast lane, but is a clapped-out motor.

Chakrabortty writes that “elite economic debate” (or what passes for it in Britain) boils down to this: a man in a tie stands at a dispatch box and reads out some numbers for the years ahead, along with a few micro-measures he’ll take to improve those projections. His opposite number scoffs at the forecasts and promises his tweaks would be far superior. For a few hours, perhaps even a couple of days, afterwards, commentators discuss What It All Means. He says that last Thursday’s autumn statement from George Osborne was merely the latest enactment of this twice-yearly ritual, which most have already forgotten.

Mr. Chakrabortth calls on readers to compare Osborne’s dumb forecasts and fossicking with Britain’s fundamental problems, which are not going away any time soon, whatever the bogus “growth” numbers. You should start with last week’s Pisa educational yardsticks, which show British teenagers trailing their Vietnamese counterparts at science, and behind the Macanese at maths. Or you should look at this year’s World Economic Forum (WEF) competitiveness survey of 148 countries, which ranks British pot-holed roads below Chile’s, and Britain’s ground-transport system as being worse than that of Barbados.

He goes on as follows:

Whether Blair or Brown or Cameron, successive prime ministers and their chancellors pretend that progress is largely a matter of trims and tweaks – of capping business rates and funding the A14 to Felixstowe. Yet those Treasury supplementary tables and fan charts are no match for the mass of inconvenient facts provided by the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development, the WEF or simply by going for a wander. Sift through the evidence and a different picture emerges: Britain’s economy is no longer zooming along unchallenged in the fast lane, but an increasingly clapped-out motor regularly overtaken by Asian Tigers such as South Korea and Taiwan.

Gender equality? The WEF ranks us behind Nicaragua and Lesotho. Investment by business? The Economist thinks we are struggling to keep up with Mali.

Let me put it more broadly, Britain is a rich country accruing many of the stereotypical bad habits of a developing country.

I began thinking about this last week, while reporting on graphene, the wonder material discovered by Manchester scientists and held up by cabinet ministers as part of our new high-tech future. Graphene is also the point at which Treasury dreaminess is harshly interrupted by the reality of our national de-development.

 Briefly, the story goes like this: Osborne funnelled a few tens of millions into research on the substance. It’s the kind of public-sector kickstart that might work in a manufacturing economy such as Germany – but which in Britain, with its hollowed-out industry and busted supply chains, has proved the equivalent of pouring money down a hole. One university physicist described how this was part of a familiar pattern of generating innovations for the rest of the world to capitalise on, then sighed: “One day, we’ll stop thinking of ourselves as a major economic power, and realise we’re more like South Korea in the early 60s.” South Korea, by way of comparison, has already put in over 20 times as many graphene patents as the country that discovered it.

How can any nation that came up with the BBC and the NHS be considered in the same breath as India or China? Let me refer you to one of the first lines of The Great Indian Novel by Shashi Tharoor, in which a wise old man warns International Monetary Fund officials and foreign dignatories: “India is not, as people keep calling it, an underdeveloped country, but rather, in the context of its history and cultural heritage, a highly developed one in an advanced state of decay.”

He goes on to say that we should stop thinking of development as a process that only goes in one direction, or which affects a nation’s people equally, and it becomes much easier to see how Britain is going backwards.

He also says there is a comparison to be made between banana republics and the nothing monarchy of Britain. Banana republics at least have bananas and their future is therefore assured, quite unlike the nothing monarchy of Britain which has nothing because it is good at nothing in particular and has no bananas, i.e. resources (apart from pigs’ sperm — more about it later in the article, or maybe breeding record numbers of pedophiles or the world’s most prolific serial murderers; but the latter two can hardly be leveraged to give Britain an economic advantage even in the this day and age of freedumb and democrazy). Banana republics have cash too: it just ends up in the hands of a very few people – ask the bank managers of Switzerland or the hotel concierges of Paris. And in this one aspect they are very similar — in Britain, the craven and subdued general populace have also become used to having their depleting resources skimmed off by a small cadre of the international elite, who often don’t feel obliged to leave much behind for British tax officials. An Africa specialist could look at the City and recognize in it a 21st-century version of a resource curse: something generating oodles of money for a tiny group of people, often foreign, yet whose demands distort the rest of the economy. Sure, Britain has iPads and broadband – but it also has oversubscribed foodbanks. And the concept of the working poor that has dominated political debate since the crash is also something straight out of development textbooks.

And he concludes:

Nobel laureate Amartya Sen defined development as “the removal of various types of unfreedoms that leave people with little choice and little opportunity of exercising their reasoned agency”. Yet when it comes to social mobility, Britain now has the worst record of all advanced countries – and will soon be overtaken by the newly rich countries of east Asia.

 And it’s when wealth is concentrated in too few hands that the forces of law and order get used as a militia for the elite – and peaceful dissent gets stamped upon. That’s why police are now a presence on our business-friendly university campuses; it also explains why Theresa May had the front to try to deport Trenton Oldfield for disrupting a student rowing competition (sorry, the Boat Race).

This isn’t a sub-Rhodesian moan about Britain going to the dogs. But as my colleague Larry Elliott said in his most recent book, Going South, the sooner we puncture our own complacency at having created a rich economy for the few, and think of ourselves as in dire need of a proper economic development plan, the better.

 Otherwise, we’re well set to corner the world market in pig semen. The United Kingdom of spoink.


Environmental Disasters Loom Large in Britain this Summer

August 3, 2010

Britain is becoming an environmental disaster zone this summer. Even more so than usual.

First, there is not enough good quality water for drinking or other household purposes or even for industrial purposes.

Hose-pipe bans are now in effect almost all over Britain. Soil waters are seriously depleted and even this year’s humid summer has so far done nothing to restore subsurface water levels. This is bad news for Britain as it means that the human waste matter that its bloated population produces (which is about the only thing that it can produce in abundance) can no longer naturally dissolve and contaminates both surface and sub-surface water bodies. Concentrations of fecal bacteria are especially high in British potable water this summer as well in the soil and even on the hands of Brits or visitors to their unhealthy country.

Extreme over-population in Britain does nothing to improve the situation. Most major rivers in Britain are literally clogged with human waste matter as well as human hair and other by-products of humanity.

Coastal waters around Britain and in the Channel are also polluted, with a high concentration of poisonous British sewage observed spreading in many areas. In fact, British sewage may have spread as far as deep into the Atlantic ocean and way down to the Mediterranean putting the livelihoods of Dutch, Danish, French and even Spanish fishermen under threat.

At least 68 people have died so far this summer from minor scratches and insect bites which, in the polluted environment of Britain, can and do lead quickly to blood poisoning, meningitis and other dangerous conditions.

Moderate and humid almost throughout the year without major temperature fluctuations, the climate on the British Isles is very good for the reproduction of dangerous bacteria even at the best of times, and so even a minor scratch can become your last if left untreated.

Many children are also at risk as their families cannot afford foreign holidays this summer at safer locations abroad and are forced to go on “staycations” in Britain instead — with its host of overwhelming ecological, epidemiological and other problems.

No improvement in the overall situation is expected this summer (or any other time of the year, really).

Paradoxically, the depletion of water resources in Britain may be coupled with the danger of extreme flooding expected to occur later in the current month (August) or later in the year which is expected to be very wet.

Out of control

The government is reluctant to acknowledge that the situation in Britain is out of control because it can do nothing to improve it. Nor does the British Government have any funds left to invest in any serious life-saving or environmental protection effort.

Overall the situation with public and environmental health and safety is dangerously unpredictable in Britain, and this even not taking into account various social ills.

Anyone should think (at least) twice before deciding to visit Britain.

C’mon David, as ugly as you are (especially in the face), do you really have to pull faces?

Horrorscope Britain: Body in British Kebab Shop

January 1, 2010

The “noughties” decade had no shortage of horrible crimes. But my vote for the most gruesome crime of the noughties worldwide goes to a crime that was committed in Britain (where else?) — and went unpunished.

Three British men raped and killed a 14-year-old girl and then disposed of her body.

An informant later told the court that one of the men had admitted the girl’s body went “into the kebabs” at a kebab shop which he then owned and ran in Blackpool.

It was not immediately clear if any customers had been served.

The men were arrested by the police and charged with rape, murder and disposal of a body but were never convicted because of a botched police investigation.

Read more

British Economic Slide Worsening

May 27, 2009

Britain’s economy contracted sharply in April – shrinking by some 4% from the same month a year ago – the British government admits.

The data came as officials were quoted as saying Britain would have a budget deficit of 78 billion pounds (other experts estimate it more likely to be at a staggering 88 billion pounds) which is equivalent to at least 40% of GDP in 2009.

The auto sector was particularly badly hit, with car production down by 50% in April from the same month a year ago, the BBC reported.

Britain’s economy has been overwhelmingly dependent on financial scams perpetrated by the City deceiving and sucking dry foreign investors.

But since the financial crisis struck, Britain’s City has found it more difficult to find new victims to sell financial services to — services they would have done much better without.

Next on the horizon is a mass exodus of Britain-based foreign millionaires after they have discovered that they are about to be hit with a 50% income tax. Who wants to make money only to hand half of it over to the British exchequre? Only in your wet dream, Mr. Darling, will that happen.

Statistics — even statistics liberally doctored by the British government — show that Britain’s industrial output continues to fall.

Most investors have withdrawn or are about to withdraw from Britain.

There are fears that poverty levels are rising – particularly among children, the elderly, pensioners, working people, white- and blue color workers, office staff, self-employed people and civil servants. Even the City has been hit with a 70% reduction in bonuses. British prostitutes (both male and female) are also reporting falling sales which is the most reliable indicator in Britain of a continuing slump in economic activity.

Some have called for sharp cutbacks in government spending. The British government has dispatched senior officials to various countries all over the world in an effort to find new investors (read: economic donors and cash cows) for Britain. Forsooth, Britain is fast becoming an economic parasite feasting on the tender flesh of the world.

Poverty in britain

Britain: children in poverty

Brits Worried By Global Crisis

April 25, 2009

A half of Brits polled by the BBC are concerned by falling living standards and rising financial problems due to the British economic crisis.

Some 50% of those polled said a falling standard of living was the single biggest issue facing the country.

A significant number also mentioned low interest rates, as a result of which their savings get rapidly devalued.

According to the latest official figures almost two million Brits are now without jobs.

It has been reported that this means unemployment hit almost 5% in March, the worst figure for many years.

This combination of rising unemployment and rising financial problems is what some analysts believe could lead to unrest but the situation in Britain is unlikely to improve in the medium to long-term future.

To make matters even worse, the crisis might encourage those who seek to restart the “troubles” in the North of Ireland. Also, other British-occupied territories, such as Gibraltar and the Malvinas, are getting more anxious — they know that, at times of economic crises, it is more likely that they will be reclaimed by their rightful owners while the prospects of getting help from Britain proper become uncertain.

Despite the increasing nervousness about the economic crisis, half of those who responded to the BBC say that they still believe whatever the British government tells them. Well, keep believing and hoping!


Britain: depressed & miserable

Help Britain Collapse

January 31, 2009

Shock waves are just beginning to be felt around the world from the global financial crisis, but nowhere will the impact be more direct or more destructive than in the small island nation of Britain.

This week, angry xenophobic protests have erupted in Britain — thousands protested over jobs going to “foreign” workers (although they are from the EU). How long will it be before angry British citizens turn against the government for its inability to handle the country’s mounting economic troubles? Not too long I recon.

What’s significant in all of this is that Britain is a “leading indicator” of what is to come in the current financial perfect storm.

It took on this role because Britain’s economy was over reliant on its financial sector which was — with the North Sea oil running out and manufacturing petering down to a trickle — Britain’s only viable industry until it was hit so severely. What’s more, it has now been exposed for what it really is — one giant Ponzi scheme as is Britain, p.l.c. itself. This is so because Britain only survives on what it can fraudulently attract as “investments” from overseas (try taking those investments back and see what a huge stink they will raise). This really means that Britain is more vulnerable than most, which also means that it has to collapse first.

If you look at the history of Britain’s troubles recently it’s always a bit ahead of the U.S. and other European countries on many points: Northern Rock for example was the first bank in the world that failed and was nationalized in the current crisis, and there were many other similar forerunner events.

That’s why Britain holds a lot of prominence as a bellwether. Experts believe that the British will soon “kick the government rascals” out over the financial crisis. The same thing has already started in young “democracies” in the middle of Europe, such as Bulgaria and the Baltic countries — they have also seen violent protests recently related to the economy. But Britain’s situation is more dire. It has virtually no manufacturing left, the North Sea oil is running out and it’s financial sector is now a cripple. And it has over 70 million people to feed and look after but the British government is broke. No wonder the British pound has fallen so spectacularly.

Considering the ongoing and spreading British protests against foreign workers, parallels must now be drawn not just with the nasty events in Europe of 1968, but — much more tellingly — with the horrible demonstrations (including multiple lynchings) that broke out during the Great Depression in the United States.

In sum, Britain is a leading indicator of what is going to happen in the financial economic crisis. First come, first served. So Britain (which started it all) must collapse before things start to get better.

The world will only be able to breathe a little easier after Britain’s economy has collapsed. Only then will the global economy turn the corner and only then will economic growth resume.

In view of the above, it is therefore imperative to help Britain collapse. And each of us can do his or her part. You don’t have to actually do much, just little things. The British don’t produce much and don’t sell much abroad but what little they sell must not be bought. Don’t buy British, buy only American, as President Obama says, listen to him. One should also develop a healthy immunity to crafty British propaganda which is spread through a huge number of outlets from the BBC World Service to the toilet paper broadsheet of the Times of London (not forgetting The evil Economist which doesn’t have a clue — read it and do exactly the opposite).

Britain might also try to avoid collapse by exploiting British pop acts, so the obvious suggestion is not to buy CDs, other recorded media, downloads etc. featuring British artists and performers. Haven’t we had enough of those ugly British faces & voices (ever since the ugly & untalented phat four) anyway?

Help Britain collapse, save the global economy.


Crisis in Britain, set to culminate in a systemic collapse, experts believe

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