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Is the minimum wage a living wage? If not, why not?

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Is the minimum wage a living wage? If not, why not?

Post by sickchip on Wed Jan 04, 2012 2:40 pm

First topic message reminder :

It seems companies don't pay a living wage so the state tops it up with various benefits - this in effect boosts companies profits (government doling out our tax to their profiteer friends?). So just who are the real benefit leeches.....I would suggest the employers using the state to top up the meagre wages they pay - not the employee who has no choice but to claim these benefits in order to survive.

Therefore the benefits system is there to make companies, and the rich, richer!
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Re: Is the minimum wage a living wage? If not, why not?

Post by blueturando on Mon Feb 13, 2012 10:27 pm

blue. Unless you get written permission first, please restrict anything you lift from newspaper articles in future to no more than 14-15 lines, or we could get into trouble for breaching copyright laws. If I edit your message, you’ll think I’m trying to censor you, and I have no wish to do that.

Ivan....I give up with you guys!!!! There is a fair amount of copied and pasted articles that end on here with nothing said....so I led to believe it's not a level playing field. If you want a board just containing your cronies, say so and I will f*ck off

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Re: Is the minimum wage a living wage? If not, why not?

Post by blueturando on Mon Feb 13, 2012 10:44 pm

Yes, no doubt all politicians tell lies, but some tell more than others. I remember the outrage from Tories at MSN when Brown claimed to have increased defence spending in real terms for ten successive years, and it turned out that in one of those years the spending only increased in money terms. How does that compare to Cameron's weekly lying binge at PMQT?.

Ivan....we could go on giving examples of lieing on both sides for weeks...Blairs promise of a referendum in Europe and the introduction of tuition fees are just two I can think of off the top of my head. I'm sure there are plenty more if I was to look it up....but what's the point? We all know ALL politicians lie to us constantly

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Re: Is the minimum wage a living wage? If not, why not?

Post by oftenwrong on Mon Feb 13, 2012 10:51 pm

Life isn't fair, but if you have a point to make it's worth making convincingly, and it's even more effective in the face of determined opposition.

So it's only necessary to produce the evidence for a Statement, "The latest figures show that the £1.8bn surplus in 1997 became a £7.1bn deficit in 1998 and the red ink has flowed more plentifully in every year since."

It looks like a misprint, but maybe everybody else is wrong.


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Re: Is the minimum wage a living wage? If not, why not?

Post by blueturando on Mon Feb 13, 2012 11:20 pm

You may remember the case of a UKIP member bringing a court case against Gordon Brown...and this is what he had to say. I guess this answers your point on lieing politicians

"In the court case brought against Brown for breach of contract over a referendum on the EU Constitution, Brown's personal barrister has just told the court that "manifesto pledges are not subject to legitimate expectation".
Oh yes, Gordon Brown, the Prime Minister, has just told an open court that we shouldn't expect him to be telling the truth with his promises, and that no manifesto pledge can be considered to be binding in anyway.

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Re: Is the minimum wage a living wage? If not, why not?

Post by Stox 16 on Tue Feb 14, 2012 3:25 am

blueturando wrote:Well I have no problem getting onto it.....


Britain plagued by worst trade deficit since 1697· Government statistician admits UK is £56bn in red
· Figures have deteriorated every year since 1997

Share 10 reddit this Angela Balakrishnan and Larry Elliott
The Guardian, Saturday 10 February 2007 00.01 GMT Article history

Crowning the worst year for the trade deficit since figures for imports and exports were first collected in Stuart times, the government admitted yesterday that Britain was just under £56bn in the red in 2006.

Data from the Office for National Statistics showed that under Tony Blair, Britain's trading performance has been worse than under any of his Labour predecessors.

ETC, ETC

Neoconservative ideology that is based on 30 years of failed Neoconservative economic policy of 1983 city big bang. As pointed out too them by the Governor of the Bank of England in his interview given to the Times Newspaper in 2011. its clear that the Neoconservative economic policies of the Thatcher years saw the whole UK economy move away from buying our own manufacturing goods too buying in more consumer goods.

There was a record surplus on trade in services of £18.3 billion
But the highest ever recorded deficit of £57.6 billion on trade in goods.
Exports of goods and services were up by two per cent while imports rose by five and a half per cent to reach a record annual level
We ran a large net investment income surplus (of nearly £20 billion) partly offset by a negative transfers balance approaching £8 billion
Taken as a whole, the current account deficit was over £26 billion – just over 2.5% of national income
What does the current account deficit tell us about the UK ?

Consumption: Partly the deficit is the result of a period of sustained economic growth and strong consumer demand for goods and services – our manufacturing sector is not large enough to meet all of the demand for consumer goods and durables, so we must import to satisfy this excess demand
This was a direct result of the Tory policy from the 1980s to shift our economy away from manufacturing.

UK consumers have a high marginal propensity to import as income rises
Many imported manufacturing goods are relatively cheaper than UK substitutes - this causes a substitution effect towards overseas output
The long run decline of manufacturing limits the choice of domestic supplier for us to choose lets just look at what was the top selling car in 1983 and what was the top selling cars in 2010? yet in 1979 the biggest selling car was the 1,800,000 Cavaliers sold in three generations and a 20-year production run, making it the fifth most popular car ever sold in Britain.


1983
Ford Escort
Ford Sierra
Austin/MG Metro
Vauxhall Cavalier
Ford Fiesta
Austin/MG Maestro
Vauxhall Astra
Triumph Acclaim
Nissan Sunny Japan
Volvo 340 Sweden

As you will note only two of the top ten cars where made overseas in 1983, but look how this has change after 2010?

2010
Ford Fiesta 103,013
Vauxhall Astra 80,646
Ford Focus 77,804
Vauxhall Corsa 77,398
Volkswagen Golf 58,116 Germany
Volkswagen Polo 58,116 Germany
Peugeot 207 42,185 France
BMW 3 Series 42,020 Germany
MINI 41,883 Germany
Nissan Qashqai 39,048 Japan


Sterling : The trade deficit in goods has been affected by the strength of the UK exchange rate e.g. the appreciation in the value of sterling against the US dollar and against the Chinese Yuan (we are running an £8 billion trade deficit with the Chinese)
Other economies: Two major export markets (the USA and the Euro Zone) have both experienced technical recessions at points in the last four years. The slow growth in the Euro Zone which account for over half of our merchandise exports is a problem for UK firms exporting to Western Europe
In contrast China accounts for only 1.2% of our exports, and eastern Europe only 2%

OUR best hope for now? but its too small to lift our GDP
Services: Our trade surplus in services is improving – good news – reflecting our comparative advantage in many service industries
The UK is the second largest exporter of services in the world with an 8% world market share
Surpluses include: Architecture (£4 bn); legal services (£1.5 bn);

Investment Income: This is quite volatile from year to year – but our surplus reflects a large amount of overseas investment by UK businesses over recent years (including investing in new plant, retail outlets and acquisitions of foreign owned businesses). This helps to stabilise our balance of payments, without it the current account deficit would be much more of a problem
Day to day the current account deficit is not a major problem for the UK

It is now easier to finance a current account deficit because of globalisation and international financial market liberalisation. Even if a country is running a current account surplus, provided there is a capital account surplus, there is no fundamental economic constraint.

[b]The UK has found it fairly easy to attract these capital flows



Interest rates: Short term interest rates are higher than in for example the Euro Zone and the United States . This attracts inflows of money into our banking system seeking a favourable rate of interest
FDI: Britain’s economy remains a favoured venue for inflows of foreign direct investment – supply side reasons including a more flexible labour market and low cost and wage inflation help explain this
Investment in markets: Foreign investors are keen to buy into competitive UK product markets including communication industries, transport, and financial services
The current account deficit is not afundamental problem for Britain – not when it is only 2 – 2.5% of our GDP. Yet our problem is we only have 0.9% GDP

And

Slower to know real growth: with weaker consumer spending – this will dampen down the demand for imported goods and services while hitting our exports. For example there is already widespread evidence of a slowdown in the housing market following the recent series of small increases in official interest rates by the Bank of England

A lower pound: The exchange rate may start to depreciate in the coming years providing a boost those UK industries exposed to competition in international markets
But ………. there are grounds for worrying about the current account deficit

The deficit reflects an unbalanced economy with consumers spending beyond their means
The deficit reflects a loss of cost and price competitiveness in export sectors – some of which is the result of a poor supply side performance in terms of low productivity, insufficient research and development and a lack of innovation and other forms of non-price competitiveness

A rising current account deficit may lead to increasing import penetration in domestic markets, which threatens jobs and living standards in the medium term
There is no guarantee that the free flow of capital into a country will continue – this will then create a “financing problem” for the UK . It is a bit like the bank deciding to stop lending you money when you keep going back to them to ask them to give you another extension to your overdraft or loan!
The economic history of Britain has been heavily influenced by its balance of payments position. Nowadays, it's quite possible to run current account deficits for a long time, reflecting a country's ability to attract the world's increasingly mobile capital. The problem, though, is that the same capital can swiftly head for the exit at the first sign of trouble.

Stephen King, Independent, December 2004

Now things are different for the United States – where the current account is much larger. Alan Greenspan recently commented that he wasn’t worried too much about it because US interest rates are heading upwards and the declining dollar will boost US exports. But there is not much that the USA can do about its trade deficit with China because of the current fixed exchange rate with the Yuan. But Greenspan may be too optimistic. America is financing its current account deficit by getting foreign investors to buy US government debt (and real estate in Manhattan !).

Within the next ten years, foreign owned assets in the USA may account for nearly 100% of their GDP. And the US government may be paying up to 3% of her GDP each year just in interest payments on foreign-owned government debt. That is a pretty hefty bill to pay for US consumers spending more on imports than the nation can afford.

Sooner or later, all governments have to do something to correct a large current account deficit. They cannot simply sit back and expect a lower exchange rate and the different phases of the economic cycle to do the job for them!

Blue
Tory policy from the 1980s saw a very shape shift away from home manufacturing with the Thatcher polices leading to a boom in buying overseas goods. what is overlooked by Tory supporters is you had 18 years in power before the Labour party even set foot in government. in that time the Tory party told the UK people that we would become a finance service sector economy. you opened up the housing market that triggered a boom in cheap credit spending while at the same time selling off manufacturing to any country that would buy it. The Tory party rubbed every ones noses in it who said this would not work at the time. As a Labour party supporter I believed we made our biggest mistake in not re-balancing the UK economy after 1997. you could well say the leadership took the Tory floored economic model hook line and sinker. The mess we are in today is a direct result of policies put in place in the 1980s. now you may not like that. but its just a fact of economic life. only know do the Tory party understand how important manufacturing is to the economy. but still fails to address this today. it was summed up by Cameron himself. when he used his so-called EU veto. Did he use it for the whole UK economy? No...he told the whole world he would use it to protect just the CITY of London. So while Germany will manufacture her way out of her problems. we are stuck with only 17% manufacturing with all our eggs stuck in a floored baking and finance service sector. that could take years to recover. great. Not
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Re: Is the minimum wage a living wage? If not, why not?

Post by sickchip on Tue Feb 14, 2012 9:20 am

Inequality has risen dramatically over the past few decades since the late 1970s. The pay gap between the boardrooms of Britain’s top companies and the shop floor nearly doubled between 2000 and 2009. Executive pay is continuing on a sharp upwards curve, and the gap between the rich and the poor continues to grow. - how was that allowed to happen? Who decided it was a good idea? All under the watch of a supposedly Labour government!!

Do you think that there is a link between pay and performance?
Over the past 10 years FTSE100 chief executive remuneration has quadrupled while share prices have declined, suggesting little or no link between rewards, performance and shareholder value.

Inequality does not make us more economically successful or competitive. At the bottom, potential is wasted and spending power reduced. In wider terms, a more stressed workforce, the perpetual pressures for wage increases to keep up with the top earners, and higher externality costs all have a negative impact. As other countries prove, you can have growth without being so unequal.
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Re: Is the minimum wage a living wage? If not, why not?

Post by witchfinder on Tue Feb 14, 2012 9:41 am

Re: Minimum Wage

I served breakfast to a young couple from Cheshire this morning, at a guess I would say they are both around 19 years of age, the young man is just out of trainning in the army, and the young girl struggled to find any work but has managed to get a job in a shoe shop.

The position which the young girl filled at Shoezone is an apprenticeship, the scheme which the government is so proud of, the lady who previously had the same position worked a 16 hour week for £100.00, but the young girl must work double those hours for the same money.

This particular young couple are guests of mine at my B&B, they decided to come for a Valentine break to this part of North Yorkshire, the young girl was told by her employer (Shoezone) that she is not entitled to holliday pay, but as a special favour she could go straight back to work after going home on Thursday to earn some extra cash - £3.00 per hour.

THE CONSERVATIVES ARE BACK IN GOVERNMENT
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Re: Is the minimum wage a living wage? If not, why not?

Post by sickchip on Tue Feb 14, 2012 9:59 am

Witchfinder

A brilliant protest would be (allow a fellow to fantasize)...

....if every working person in this country who is entitled to housing benefit and tax credits refused to claim them on the grounds that they felt ashamed and it went against their morals to be claiming benefit whilst working. The resulting chaos of millions not being able to meet rent demands and basic living costs through refusal to accept state aid might lead to a review of our economic priorities in terms of paying a 'living wage' and providing affordable social housing. Such a protest would also be two fingers to the 'Daily Mail' brigade who chastise 'spongers'......in a kind of calling their bluff way - saying 'ok we agree....but let's see things fall apart when we decline state aid'.
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Re: Is the minimum wage a living wage? If not, why not?

Post by oftenwrong on Tue Feb 14, 2012 10:40 am

But there's usually somebody worse off. Part of the austerity measures forced upon the Greek government by their Eurozone pals requires their statutory minimum wage to be equivalent to HALF what it is in Britain.
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Re: Is the minimum wage a living wage? If not, why not?

Post by astra on Tue Feb 14, 2012 12:34 pm

The 10% tax debacle seems determined to chace me

Just recieved a demand for underpaid tax - from year 2007-2008.

The reason? The ministry effed up the calculations, and kept the tax on my incapacity benefit (OH yus folks, some benefits ARE taxed. DLA is not however) at 10% for the whole year, and did not adjust to nice Gordon's 22%.
The letter said "You had two EMPLOYMENTS" so I had to check that. the letter is kosher (1 employment was my work pension fund, the other - the ministry and incapacity benefit.
So a bill for £450 comes through the letterbox.

Hope the Daily Wail brigade feel better!
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Re: Is the minimum wage a living wage? If not, why not?

Post by sickchip on Tue Feb 14, 2012 12:53 pm

astra wrote:The 10% tax debacle seems determined to chace me

Just recieved a demand for underpaid tax - from year 2007-2008.

The reason? The ministry effed up the calculations, and kept the tax on my incapacity benefit (OH yus folks, some benefits ARE taxed. DLA is not however) at 10% for the whole year, and did not adjust to nice Gordon's 22%.
The letter said "You had two EMPLOYMENTS" so I had to check that. the letter is kosher (1 employment was my work pension fund, the other - the ministry and incapacity benefit.
So a bill for £450 comes through the letterbox.

Hope the Daily Wail brigade feel better!

Astra - why don't you explain your situation to the inland revenue and try to do a deal with them like those corporations and multi-millionaires do?
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Re: Is the minimum wage a living wage? If not, why not?

Post by astra on Tue Feb 14, 2012 1:00 pm

Chip, Hello,


I did!

The first "Operative" could hardly speak English!

The second "Operative" must have been experiencing "PMT"

3rd Operative was normal, sounded sympathetic and purrrfeshnull
Will recieve a letter in two weeks on decision whether I may not be charged.

3 hours on 0845 number, the gubmint have nearly GOT the money as of now!!
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Re: Is the minimum wage a living wage? If not, why not?

Post by Ivan on Tue Feb 14, 2012 1:09 pm

blueturando wrote:-
In the court case brought against Brown for breach of contract over a referendum on the EU Constitution, Brown's personal barrister has told the court that "manifesto pledges are not subject to legitimate expectation".
You haven’t chosen a very good example. There was a geezer at MSN called Dr Appleton who would constantly remind us that Blair promised a referendum on an EU Constitution in 2005, but that it was killed off when two countries vetoed it. A referendum on something which was already dead would have been pointless and a waste of money.

In the minds of many simple souls – the sort of people who can be conned into thinking that voting Tory can ever be in their interest – the Lisbon Treaty (not conceived until 2007) was the same as the proposed EU Constitution of 2005. It did have many similarities, but as it was an ‘add-on’ treaty rather than the replacement of all the former treaties with a new one, no lawyer would have had difficulty in arguing that the government hadn’t broken its promise. However, I do remember the then Leader of the Opposition giving us a “cast-iron” guarantee of a referendum specifically on the Lisbon Treaty, a promise he reneged on before he wormed his way into Downing Street with Clegg’s assistance.

If manifesto commitments were legally binding, no government would ever be out of the courts, but there should be some way in which politicians can be stopped from doing irreversible damage when they have no mandate. The Tory plans for the NHS were hidden from the electorate and certainly weren’t in the Tory manifesto in 2010, and Cameron was giving us assurances that the NHS was safe with him. The changes weren’t even in the shabby Coalition Agreement, cobbled together with the Lib Dems in less than four days.

If we had an elected Head of State, with a few limited powers (maybe like the Presidents of Ireland and Germany) - and preferably a person who has never been a member of any political party - perhaps such an outrageous abuse of power could be addressed. Someone needs to have the democratic legitimacy to be able to tell a government such as this one that before it can make such major changes it must get a mandate, and that it must either drop the Bill or call an election. One thing the NHS debacle does show us is that the Queen is utterly powerless and pointless, and that Lansley has treated her with contempt by awarding contracts to Tory donors and forcing GPs to implement his changes before the necessary legislation has received the Royal Assent.

My apologies to sickchip for prolonging this deviation from the subject of his thread.
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Re: Is the minimum wage a living wage? If not, why not?

Post by bobby on Tue Feb 14, 2012 2:24 pm

Hello V. Whilst talking to the inland revenue, tell them you are a multi millionair and they will probably give you a refund.

Joking aside my friend, Good luck with your fight. As though someone with a disability needs all that sort of shit on top of all else.
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Re: Is the minimum wage a living wage? If not, why not?

Post by bobby on Tue Feb 14, 2012 2:56 pm

In ancient Rome, particularly the Republican era, No Consul was supposed to be in power for more than 1 year. Each year they had 2 Consuls, both elected from the senate and both from opposing camps within the senate. The plus for this is that you are never in power long enough to do too much damage and second Consul could also veto anything he didn‘t like, but the down side is, you are not in office long enough to get on with anything major, and if you try, your fellow Consul or a tribune of the plebs will veto you.

When we end up with a Coalition, especially one from two party’s who over the years have been totally opposed, then those 2 party’s end up fully dishonest and agree almost everything together, what chance do the plebs have. Perhaps an answer might be to follow Rome’s example and have a series of 1 year Coalitions, where nothing meaningful gets done, but is not long enough to phuck up things like the NHS, another thing that could be done is to make them (the politicians) personally responsible for what emits from their gobs. What we cant do, is to allow this practice of bare faced lies to take over Parliament.

If I was as dishonest as them, I doubt I would be in business much longer as who would trust me, also I would end up in the courts on a regular basis, so why do we allow them to lie day in day out for no other reason than to enjoy power for powers sake. No one in their right mind could say that this Tory led Coalition are in power to cure the Country’s ills, when all they have so far is to make matters worse. They lie, they cheat and they steal, yet still manage to find some support, it really makes me wonder just what is going on in these supporters brains (assuming they have one). I can understand the likes of Ashcroft and co giving their support as they have much to gain, but when I see someone who is either a slave to a company or a slave to themselves (the self employed) I really fear for this Country as these idiots have a vote, and will do their bit to try and keep a bunch of lying, cheating shitbags ruling this Country

Blueturando has pointed out repeatedly that all politicians lie, and I must concur with that, but non have ever lied like this present lot, and I challenge blueturando to prove me wrong.

By the way blue I dont see an answer to the 18 years between James Callaghan and Tony Blair.
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Re: Is the minimum wage a living wage? If not, why not?

Post by jackthelad on Tue Feb 14, 2012 4:35 pm

The beauty of Ancient Rome, failure meant you fell on your sword, by ancient Rome rules, there should be a lot of blood on the carpets of Westminister. Also a lot of vacant seats on the side of the Tories and Lib/Dem's. What happen to to Julius Ceaser, happened to Edward Heath, (not literally) he was stabbed in the back by so called friends and colleagues.
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Re: Is the minimum wage a living wage? If not, why not?

Post by oftenwrong on Tue Feb 14, 2012 5:22 pm

astra wrote:The 10% tax debacle seems determined to chace me

Just recieved a demand for underpaid tax - from year 2007-2008.

The reason? The ministry effed up the calculations, and kept the tax on my incapacity benefit (OH yus folks, some benefits ARE taxed. DLA is not however) at 10% for the whole year, and did not adjust to nice Gordon's 22%.
The letter said "You had two EMPLOYMENTS" so I had to check that. the letter is kosher (1 employment was my work pension fund, the other - the ministry and incapacity benefit.
So a bill for £450 comes through the letterbox.

Hope the Daily Wail brigade feel better!

This may be relevant: http://www.telegraph.co.uk/finance/personalfinance/consumertips/tax/7984853/PAYE-tax-error-HMRC-may-be-too-late-to-demand-money-back.html
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Re: Is the minimum wage a living wage? If not, why not?

Post by Phil Hornby on Tue Feb 14, 2012 5:27 pm

To assess just what it must be like, I once decided to try and live on the minimum wage.

It was the toughest 20 minutes of my life, I can tell you...
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Re: Is the minimum wage a living wage? If not, why not?

Post by astra on Tue Feb 14, 2012 6:12 pm

Thanks for that OW, on the ball as usual TA. At least it was not for the £1428 figure, or more!! There is always someone worse off than yourself, I can hear my late father in law saying those words now!

PH, I remember a programme in which Mikey Portillo tried to live on benefits in a cinq estate for, was it a week or a month. I do remember he found the experience "trying"

Funny how quick he forgets that experience.

When he came to Newcastle with that railway prog he did, he said it was the FIRST time he had been to the North of England and commented on how much he enjoyed the experience! joy of joys. What was going through this guy's head when he was a cabinet minister?
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Re: Is the minimum wage a living wage? If not, why not?

Post by bobby on Tue Feb 14, 2012 7:04 pm

With respects to people saying "i'm not paying that" what we have in reality is people saying "buy it now before the price goe's up"
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Re: Is the minimum wage a living wage? If not, why not?

Post by bobby on Tue Feb 14, 2012 7:18 pm

Watcha V. I remember that farcical programme. It was only 1 week he spent with the Family, and wasn’t it funny, he was there on a week where the kids didn’t need new shoe’s or coats, all he had to budget for was food, also the weather wasn’t at all cold so didn’t have to worry about heating bills either. The poof took the piss out of Britain’s unemployed, As they said in “Full Metal Jacket” he could talk the talk, but can he walk the walk.

Another thing that gets up my nose with Pooftillo is the programme he presents, its based around someone’s experiences of travelling Britain by rail. Why on earth did they pick a geezer from the political party that destroyed much of our Railways at the instructions from one of the dirtiest Tory’s Ever Ernest Marples, based on a report written by Dr Beeching.
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Re: Is the minimum wage a living wage? If not, why not?

Post by oftenwrong on Tue Feb 14, 2012 7:45 pm

I was fascinated by a newspaper article about the Chairman of the enormously successful contracting company Wates. That's his name too, but his youngsters aren't going to be allowed straight in to ponce about making a mess of everything they touch. Instead they will have to find jobs elsewhere for a year or so gaining general experience of commerce. Only after that will they be permitted to make tea for the people really running the Company.

What's the message there for those who move directly from Uni into Government departments?
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Re: Is the minimum wage a living wage? If not, why not?

Post by Stox 16 on Wed Feb 22, 2012 1:09 am

jackthelad wrote:The beauty of Ancient Rome, failure meant you fell on your sword, by ancient Rome rules, there should be a lot of blood on the carpets of Westminister. Also a lot of vacant seats on the side of the Tories and Lib/Dem's. What happen to to Julius Ceaser, happened to Edward Heath, (not literally) he was stabbed in the back by so called friends and colleagues.

Jackthelad
If the Tory party had to follow Ancient Romans and fall on the sword for failure, it my view they would miss 100 times out of 100...then blame the Labour party for failing to fall on there swords. ha ha ha
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Re: Is the minimum wage a living wage? If not, why not?

Post by Ivan on Thu Mar 22, 2012 3:55 pm

The minimum wage certainly isn't a living wage if, like Tory minister David Gauke, you don't pay it. In fact he pays nothing, despite the fact that earlier this month, the Independent Parliamentary Standards Authority increased the staffing budget for MPs by over £20,000.



The BBC News website has the details:-

Treasury minister David Gauke has defended his decision to advertise a six-month unpaid internship. He is in charge of HM Revenue and Customs, which recently threatened the fashion industry with prosecution if it failed to pay interns the minimum wage. Gus Baker, from campaign group ‘Intern Aware’, accused Mr Gauke of hypocrisy.

In December, the HMRC wrote to fashion houses involved in London fashion week warning them they must pay the minimum wage - currently £6.08 an hour - to anyone aged aged 21 and over. Michelle Wyer, from HMRC, said at the time those not complying could face a penalty and prosecution, adding: "Non-payment of the national minimum wage is not an option." The crackdown was welcomed by Deputy Prime Minister Nick Clegg, who last year vowed to outlaw unpaid internships in Westminster.

'Intern Aware' said it was reporting Mr Gauke to the HMRC Pay and Work Helpline for non-payment of the minimum wage. Mr Baker said: "Revenue and Customs have set up a hit squad to enforce the minimum wage for interns and yet the minister in charge is refusing to pay the people in his own office."


For the full story:-
http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-politics-17443200
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Re: Is the minimum wage a living wage? If not, why not?

Post by astradt1 on Thu Mar 22, 2012 4:20 pm

Ivan, just another example of one law for us and another one for them.......
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Re: Is the minimum wage a living wage? If not, why not?

Post by witchfinder on Fri Mar 23, 2012 7:40 pm

Reference: Trade defecits / balance of trade

I believe that I stated earlier that the balance of trade is pretty much irelevant as an economic indicator, and I briefly explained why, but to go further I can point to several extremely successful economies which have permanant trade defecits, worse ones than the UK.

Take for example Canada, Australia, the United States or New Zealand, all have a worse trade defecit ( as a percentage of GDP ), hardly poor nations.

Other nations like for example Trinidad & Tobago have a superb trade surplus that the UK can only dream of, yet Trinidad & Tobago has a standard of living a long way below that of the United Kingdom, so I repeat what I originaly stated - that your balance of trade as a nation is pretty meaningless.

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Re: Is the minimum wage a living wage? If not, why not?

Post by astra on Fri Mar 23, 2012 9:46 pm

3rd Operative was normal, sounded sympathetic and purrrfeshnull
Will recieve a letter in two weeks on decision whether I may not be charged
.


Been charged, had to pay!!!! Sad Sad Sad Sad Sad Sad Sad Sad Sad Sad Sad Sad
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Re: Is the minimum wage a living wage? If not, why not?

Post by witchfinder on Mon Mar 26, 2012 10:24 am

Last week saw the annual conference of the Federation of Small Businesses, and this year it was held here in North Yorkshire at Scarborough, but what is very suprising is that Vince Cable, who was representing the government got a very hostile reception, whilst on the other hand, Ed Balls was greeted with, dare I say it "warmth" - at a conference of business people ?, surely this is prime Tory territory.

The members of the Federation of Small Businesses were asking questions that could have come directly from the lips of Gordon Brown, Alistair Darling or even Barak Obama.

"surely a cut in VAT would boost sales, trade, turnover, and help to kick start the economy"

"surely halting or postponing the rise on fuel duty could boost such a wide cross section of business, allowing it to go ahead will further dampen activity"

Who would have believed it ?, a federation of business people thinking along the same lines as official Labour policy, it makes you wonder what will happen next - perhaps the Royal College of Nurses may affiliate to the Tory Part........ on second thoughs NO



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Re: Is the minimum wage a living wage? If not, why not?

Post by Stox 16 on Sun Apr 01, 2012 2:55 am

witchfinder wrote:Last week saw the annual conference of the Federation of Small Businesses, and this year it was held here in North Yorkshire at Scarborough, but what is very suprising is that Vince Cable, who was representing the government got a very hostile reception, whilst on the other hand, Ed Balls was greeted with, dare I say it "warmth" - at a conference of business people ?, surely this is prime Tory territory.

The members of the Federation of Small Businesses were asking questions that could have come directly from the lips of Gordon Brown, Alistair Darling or even Barak Obama.

"surely a cut in VAT would boost sales, trade, turnover, and help to kick start the economy"

"surely halting or postponing the rise on fuel duty could boost such a wide cross section of business, allowing it to go ahead will further dampen activity"

Who would have believed it ?, a federation of business people thinking along the same lines as official Labour policy, it makes you wonder what will happen next - perhaps the Royal College of Nurses may affiliate to the Tory Part........ on second thoughs NO




you know witchy...many small business people are feed up with this economic policy that see all the economic pain hit them. while not hitting the City of London...you just need to walk in any high street to see who is paying the price.
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Re: Is the minimum wage a living wage? If not, why not?

Post by sickchip on Thu May 10, 2012 11:40 am

Article in the Guardian today:

http://www.guardian.co.uk/commentisfree/2012/may/10/large-companies-living-wage

....as many here will know this is a topic I continuously bring up - but maybe such persistence is the key?
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Re: Is the minimum wage a living wage? If not, why not?

Post by oftenwrong on Thu May 10, 2012 5:32 pm

Context is everything when trying to understand wage-scales.

The British minimum wage of around £200 a week is riches beyond the dreams of avarice to a chinese facory worker on £50 a week.

That's why everything we buy is imported from China.
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Re: Is the minimum wage a living wage? If not, why not?

Post by sickchip on Thu May 10, 2012 6:17 pm

oftenwrong wrote:Context is everything when trying to understand wage-scales.

The British minimum wage of around £200 a week is riches beyond the dreams of avarice to a chinese facory worker on £50 a week.

That's why everything we buy is imported from China.

Surely the context here is the division of the spoils within the UK workforce. The wage differentials in the UK.

You're comparing low rates of pay around the globe entirely misses the point. It's about how money is shared, in the UK, from boardrooms, through middle management, to skilled workers, to unskilled workers.

Since Thatcher there has been a redistribution of wealth from the bottom to the top; and it's time that trend was reversed - society needs balancing...we need more reasonable levels of inequality.

At present a gargantuan Billy Buster sits up at the table scoffing cake after cake, whilst malnourished minions fight over whatever crumbs he might spill. Gross!

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Re: Is the minimum wage a living wage? If not, why not?

Post by oftenwrong on Thu May 10, 2012 7:11 pm

Every time we import an article, we are exporting the job of a British worker, sickchip.
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Re: Is the minimum wage a living wage? If not, why not?

Post by sickchip on Thu May 10, 2012 7:49 pm

oftenwrong wrote:Every time we import an article, we are exporting the job of a British worker, sickchip.

oftenwrong,

I appreciate that point and it is a very good one; but it is a different topic from that of our national wealth distribution....how the wagemasters decide who gets what. If we have £100 to share between ten persons, do we give £90 to one person, split £8 between two persons, and leave £2 for the remaining seven persons to fight over.

I do acknowledge that global economics has impacted on wages here, and that there is a danger of driving wages/living standards down here in order to compete. Although this again should not relate to how we in the UK decide to share the spoils of industry/work.
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Re: Is the minimum wage a living wage? If not, why not?

Post by oftenwrong on Thu May 10, 2012 7:55 pm

No man is an Island,
entire unto itself

John Donne
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Re: Is the minimum wage a living wage? If not, why not?

Post by Mel on Thu May 10, 2012 8:35 pm

"Since Thatcher there has been a redistribution of wealth from the bottom to the top; and it's time that trend was reversed - society needs balancing...we need more reasonable levels of inequality."

I concur entirely with that statement sickchip.
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Re: Is the minimum wage a living wage? If not, why not?

Post by astradt1 on Thu May 10, 2012 9:35 pm

When people start to compare wages between different countries, they always forget to mention the cost of living in each of the counrties they are comapring.......

When I was in Denmark a few years ago I was horrified to see the price of cars advertised in the papers, they bing twice the cost of the same cars in Britain but on asking a local i found out that their wages were roughly about twice the level of ours.......
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Re: Is the minimum wage a living wage? If not, why not?

Post by oftenwrong on Thu May 10, 2012 10:49 pm

NATO "aid" to Afghanistan included assistance in building a factory in Khabul for the manufacture of boots and shoes.

Unfortunately, the production was severely undercut by Chinese imports, and the factory has closed.

Anyone want to buy a few tons of top-quality leather?
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Re: Is the minimum wage a living wage? If not, why not?

Post by Stox 16 on Sun May 20, 2012 4:37 am

sickchip wrote:
oftenwrong wrote:Every time we import an article, we are exporting the job of a British worker, sickchip.

oftenwrong,

I appreciate that point and it is a very good one; but it is a different topic from that of our national wealth distribution....how the wagemasters decide who gets what. If we have £100 to share between ten persons, do we give £90 to one person, split £8 between two persons, and leave £2 for the remaining seven persons to fight over.

I do acknowledge that global economics has impacted on wages here, and that there is a danger of driving wages/living standards down here in order to compete. Although this again should not relate to how we in the UK decide to share the spoils of industry/work.

Hi Sickchip
a very good and fair reply and what's more totally right too
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Re: Is the minimum wage a living wage? If not, why not?

Post by oftenwrong on Wed May 30, 2012 7:42 pm

To anybody actually in business, the reality is that the greatest expense is usually the cost of employing staff. Material costs, rent, rates, bank charges and taxes pale into insignificance compared to the cost of wages.

Employers must aim at a productivity level of 8x pay in order to make it profitable to employ a person. Because of all the other calls on the income of that business.

It's the reason why "staff" are the first casualty of a business downturn.
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Re: Is the minimum wage a living wage? If not, why not?

Post by Mel on Thu May 31, 2012 8:33 am

Good point OW.

This is one of the very reasons why bank lending is stifled at present. Not many businesses who require bank loans work on the basis of what you say "Employers must aim at a productivity level of 8x pay in order to make it profitable to employ a person. " Difficult but necessary for a business to survive let alone gain access to bank lending facilities, especially in this particular poor economic climate.
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Re: Is the minimum wage a living wage? If not, why not?

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