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1  General Community / Chit Chat / Re: The future of British politics on: November 21, 2017, 12:37 pm

Worth a read if you have the time.

Tom Brake Liberal Democrat Spokesperson (Foreign Affairs), Liberal Democrat Chief Whip, Liberal Democrat Shadow Leader of the House of Commons 

Returning to the possible trade deal with the US, the Americans have already said that a condition of doing a trade deal with the UK is that we do not sign up to the EU’s animal welfare standards.
2  General Community / Chit Chat / Re: The future of British politics on: November 17, 2017, 09:12 am
You're not entitled to "fair and balanced" coverage from each individual media source. The National has a slant, the BBC has a (slight) slant, the Express has a slant, the Guardian has a slant. In aggregate the media covers a gamut of different perspectives.

It's when a media source goes from slanted to outright lying and misrepresentation that we have a problem. Especially when it's coupled to a sophisticated social media disinformation and trolling campaign. Thankfully we have a good level of broadcast regulation, and a reasonable level of printed press regulation so the MSM tends to keep within reasonable bounds.

Can't find a copy of the Express, but the unit alcohol price does threaten jobs. There were a number of very concerned independent retailers from the Borders on Radio 4 this morning. It's certainly an interesting additional wrinkle in what is already a highly regressive and likely ineffective plan.

I have a friend who works for a Brewer - he's been in that industry for years.

First thing he said when this was raised years ago was that it would cost jobs. He's high enough up the chain to feel relatively secure, but he reckons there's whole companies that will go under due to this.

The debate around this has been more "can they do it?" and not enough of "should they do it?" in my opinion.
3  General Community / Chit Chat / Re: The future of British politics on: September 18, 2017, 11:06 am
You spoke of state funded bigotry and I was trying to point out that it exists and doesn't need state funding.    As for paying for what you don't want, we all do that.    I pay for Trident.   And as for segregation, I was educated at a Catholic school, had Catholic school friends, but my playmates at home were the other kids in the street.    The segregated kids were 3 children who went to private schools and who were not allowed out to play with the riff raff!

Of course it exists - it always will. That's human nature for you.

But the minute anyone in this country suggests that the school system may be contributing to that, they're quickly shot down. It's not even discussed.

As for the Trident comment, that's not a great example. Like it or not, that benefits everyone in the country. There's arguments about whether it's needed, but as a deterrent it has a 100% success rate. We can't say the same for the way our schools work just now.
4  General Community / Chit Chat / Re: The future of British politics on: September 18, 2017, 11:02 am
One problem though is that there are no secular schools. All are meant to provide Christian acts of worship, and only specific faith schools e.g. Jewish, are allowed to be exempt.

I'd get rid of that as well, if given the choice.

But at least a non-denominational school doesn't have that sort of hiring practice, or won't exclude kids from activities if they're not saying their prayers.
5  General Community / Chit Chat / Re: The future of British politics on: September 16, 2017, 11:54 am
So bigotry can exist among those who have not been educated at a Catholic school.     If Catholic schools disappeared would bigotry disappear?    Interesting.

Never said that.

And I'm of the belief that things aren't a tenth as bad as the media and government make out in Scotland, despite there being some issues.

But anyone who just ignores the influence of splitting kids into "us and them" with a state-funded school who will only hire or promote teachers if a priest tells them it's ok is dodging a big part of the debate, in my opinion.

If Catholic schools weren't funded by the government, I'd have no real issues with it. I wouldn't say parents shouldn't have the choice, even if my personal preference would be that no schools involve religion in that way. I just don't think we should be paying for that.

I'll be accused of bigotry or bias. I think that's an unfair assessment, but such is life.
6  General Community / Chit Chat / Re: The future of British politics on: September 15, 2017, 10:12 am
Have you ever sung any anti-Catholic songs?

In the past, yeah. Now that I understand it all a bit better, I don't. I'm a Rangers fan, can't be bothered with the rest of it.

The problem I have with Catholic schools (and it would apply to any religion if it's state funded rather than private) is their hiring practices and the way they'll force kids who attend to adhere to their religion, regardless of what they were born into. I don't think a priest should be able to tell a school whether or not a teacher is of sufficient stock to be hired, for example.
7  General Community / Chit Chat / Re: The future of British politics on: September 14, 2017, 09:19 am
Ok but you should be angry and concerned about falling education standards in state schools. The obvious answer is to get the good teachers and facilities back from the private sector where they are mostly to be found. No other country in Europe has a two tier system like UK. where your life chances are determined by your parental financial status. It is obviously wrong. We sent three children to private school they all got first class honours degrees and all now have good jobs. All children should get these chances and I would have expected Corbyn to aspire to the abolition of private schools instead of just accepting a social divide which begins at age 5.

No matter what school you go to, your life chances are heavily influenced by parental financial status.

From my experience, the only major difference between state and private schooling is in life skills. Private school kids get to go on more trips, or do more outside of the education part of things, which develops them more and adds confidence in those situations where you're on your own.

However, I'd say Aileen is correct. If a kid just doesn't have an academic mind, neither private nor state schooling will really change that. And a kid who is determined to do well and smart enough to excel won't be held back by a state school either.

Social divides start before the age of 5. In Scotland, it's made even worse by state-funded bigotry in the form of Catholic schools.
8  General Community / Chit Chat / Re: The future of British politics on: September 07, 2017, 09:54 am
In a word, Brexit.  Unless May can really pull something out of the hat on access to the single market, and avoid naked contempt for the devolution settlement in the Great Repeal Bill then Indyref 2 will be back on rocket boosters for those who recognise that it's the economy stupid.

But how does independence answer any of the economy questions? I get that many feel Scotland is being ignored here (not a sentiment I agree with, but I can see why it's felt), but if Brexit ends up going as horribly as expected, an Independent Scotland will be even further from a reality because of finances.

I can't see where the support you're suggesting comes from?
9  General Community / Chit Chat / Re: The future of British politics on: September 07, 2017, 09:48 am
This man is, apparently, a Tory contender for the leadership  Rolling Eyes  The acceptable face of bigotry?

Thankfully, this is a view so out of touch that it won't make anything more than headlines. That will never be policy.

And if he was given the Tory Leadership, it would cost them a fair amount of votes.
10  General Community / Chit Chat / Re: The future of British politics on: September 05, 2017, 12:29 pm
Never been stronger.

That's something measurable, yeah?

As such, I'm curious to know how the various opinion polls and the likes lead to that conclusion? Surely it was stronger around the time of the referendum and just afterwards?

Just curious really. I can't see the evidence of this at all.
11  General Community / Chit Chat / Re: MW Health & Fitness Club on: August 02, 2017, 09:55 pm
I studied Psychology in Uni. One of my modules was Psychology of Will.

Almost paradoxically, willpower is easier to maintain in any situation if you have sufficient glucose in your system! Very Happy

I clearly don't want it enough just now. I can't blame the depression (anti-depressants are dealing with that well enough, and I function in most other areas). I used to find myself feeling really low after workouts, rather than better, so that was a factor in me slowing down.

Fact is, though, I've allowed myself to get into this mess. The knowledge that I could never get to where I wanted to be was enough to see me make excuses. I'll either snap out of it or embrace the hugeness.

Aileen - the crash diets are a real pet hate of mine. A symptom of believing that calories in being less than calories out is enough to be healthy, or that the scales are a measurement worth taking seriously.
12  General Community / Chit Chat / Re: MW Health & Fitness Club on: July 31, 2017, 10:35 am
Thanks all - I'll have a look at this. I need to make some serious changes all round.

Also should get back on the DDP Yoga, which was making a bit of a difference last year when I could find the time. I would advise anyone to have a look at that, it's brilliant.
13  General Community / Chit Chat / Re: MW Health & Fitness Club on: July 28, 2017, 12:28 pm
Really wishing I hadn't opened this thread! Very Happy

In the past 3 years, I've put on 3 stone (probably more in truth, been a while since I weighed myself). Given that my muscle mass isn't changing much, you can guess where it's all went!

Not seen the inside of a gym since October. I went on a Stag Do to Prague then, felt like an old, fat man and just lost any motivation to care. Despite hating how much of a mess I am now, and how much I struggle with fitness when playing football, I still can't get myself moving.

Good to hear so many are keeping themselves in good shape and motivated, though. Hopefully I can take some inspiration from it all soon.
14  General Community / Chit Chat / Re: The future of British politics on: July 27, 2017, 04:16 pm
^   Are you saying discipline doesn't work?

I'm saying it's impossible to know either way.

I wasn't really disciplined, and never really got into trouble. Just my character, rather boring that way.

Wouldn't be unknown for someone with a normal, disciplined upbringing to become an absolute psycho, or someone from a massively broken home to go on and do well etc.

Genetics is as big a factor as lifestyle. Some people are just born to be rebellious or the likes.
15  General Community / Chit Chat / Re: The future of British politics on: July 27, 2017, 01:10 pm
That's a big jump from discipline in the classroom to National Service.

 Now there's a leap of logic. A benefit is clearly something which provides a positive outcome for the individual concerned, and while it might not be perceived as such at the time of receipt, ultimately proves of value. But everybody is different, and what would work in some cases, might be counterproductive in others. A good teacher or parent who understands the kids they are responsible for  should know what is appropriate.

100% it is.

But the idea that better discipline in the classroom will work is akin to that. The argument is exactly the same. More discipline, teach them more respect etc etc.

What you describe as a benefit is so intangible, and so unable to be linked to a more disciplined classroom, that it's impossible to measure.
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