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  • Pretty sure we're an extension of Russia these days.

  • I don’t agree that more regional power/federalism is the way to go, it creates massive inequality between regions. We already have that with London and the north east and devolution in Scotland and Wales.

  • Why would it create more inequality in England itself?

    There are often historical reasons for economic inequality and the £ bit is hard to figure out.

    The UK countries though don't control their own budget but get £ allocated from Westminster, have too few seats to drive policy and with Brexit got ignored.

  • https://www.theguardian.com/politics/201­9/nov/12/dominic-cummings-honed-strategy­-2004-vote-north-east?CMP=Share_AndroidA­pp_Other

    Cummings also had a hand in a negative campaign with a lie about £ for healthcare in the NE devolution campaign.

  • it creates massive inequality between regions.

    Disagree. Inequality between regions occurs for entirely different reasons. Federalism creates local power/admin/economic bases which at least raise the base level in each region and guarantee that a certain amount of money circulates in the local economy, with a faster and shorter feedback loop and a proportionally greater impact of the individual's vote/actions. It doesn't prevent inequality if central government is incompetent or indifferent, but the kind of centralism we have gives much more scope for inequality and pretty much guarantees it won't be fixed.

  • Fair points but I think a federal system means that different regions are pitched against each other to ‘win’ money from the one pot. Also I have serious concerns over the competence and corruption of the people making policy at regional level. Whitehall civil servants get a bashing but I’ve been one and hold those guys in high regard.

  • Perhaps it is better to start with smaller regions to govern, and a "regional development" fund with central oversight but local spending input to improve inequality?

    The EU regional development fund is a fund you need to apply for and there are all sorts of rules, but it bought trains for Ireland, tourism centre for NI etc. It is not devolution, but helped.

    Because yep the money part will be hard as regions will fight for it. Perhaps some sort of metrics can be agreed upon to prevent most of that... IDK, it will be hard.

    This doesn't really work though.

  • The UK is the most fiscally centralised country in all of Europe with the smallest proportion of cash and decision making devolved to its regions.

  • Fair points but I think a federal system means that different regions are pitched against each other to ‘win’ money from the one pot.

    The whole point of federalism is that there isn't just one pot. There's a local pot and a central one; the local pot doesn't need to be fought for and there's a formal basis for the fight over the central pot. In contrast, what we get is central government politicos lying about how much they spend on the regions and no proper measurement to show that one way or the other.

    Also I have serious concerns over the competence and corruption of the people making policy at regional level.

    Some countries with federal systems have failed at that, others have done well. The U.S. is a very mixed story. But this is not an endemic problem of federalism; it's a cultural problem in some countries. The problem you do actually have with federalism is consistency of administrative practices and standards across the whole country.

    The idea you can't trust local authorities in this country and it's all better run from the centre is quite a Thatcherite one. She had an unwarranted reputation as a deregulator when what she mostly did was hugely centralise power in the U.K, removing power from local authorities, legislating to dictate how they spent their money, moving things like education and health from local to central control. At the end, we had a worse system and more corruption in both local and central government, not less, because there was much less accountability. Central control is not the anti-corruption panacea you seem to think it is.

    Whitehall civil servants get a bashing but I’ve been one and hold those guys in high regard.

    Nobody was bashing the civil service here.

  • At the end, we had a worse system and more corruption in both local and central government, not less, because there was much less accountability.

    This is a pretty bold claim. Not to be that guy, but where is the evidence for a shift in corruption levels across the last 70yrs?

    My 2p is people a being pretty basic about the reality of how a more federal system would play out vs a hypothetical ideal.

  • This is a pretty bold claim. Not to be that guy, but where is the evidence for a shift in corruption levels across the last 70yrs?

    Would really need a whole separate thread, for people actually interested, to develop that.

    My 2p is people a being pretty basic about the reality of how a more federal system would play out vs a hypothetical ideal.

    I thought the debate was growing from simple openings to something more complex and nuanced and doesn't merit that dismissive judgement.

  • Some of the deals the govt has been exposed on around Brexit (ferry company with no ferries) and Covid (£150M PPE contracts to 30 day old businesses) have lifted the skirt on the sort of organised corruption that is fucking rife in this country.

    Corruption has been institutionalised over the last 3-4 generations and that institutionalisation has grown it monstrously.

  • Thanks to @itsbruce for saying it better than I could. Of course it's possible to have a rubbish federalism that fails to deliver, but it's by far and away the best form of government for delivering more even distribution if it's done right. It would definitely take the UK some time to regain the administrative nous required (i.e., regions need to be underpinned by good local authorities, which in turn should be underpinned by sub-local authorities), but over-centralisation is much worse, as has been shown in the UK in so many ways that it brooks no argument.

  • What's the correct size for a federal region?

  • 5000 pieces of string square.

  • "I don't recollect anything that would formally be a dildo"

    Q. Did you ever have a relationship with him? (Epstein)

    A. Define relationship.

    Q. Did you take pictures of nude females?

    A. Nude you mean with no clothing on?

    A. So it is possible that I took pictures of people that were somehow semi orhad some clothing on or no clothes on but at no time were any of these pictures remotely inappropriate. The types of -- first, I took very few and they were always by request, this was a picture you could put on your -- gift to your parent or to your grandparents to put on their mantel piece. I know where you are headed with this and it's nowhere appropriate and it's really unattractive.

    MS. McCAWLEY: I am going to put on the record, Ms. Maxwell very inappropriately and very harshly pounded our law firm table in an inappropriate manner. I ask she take a deep breath, and calm down.

    Q. Is it an obvious lie you had sex toys in Jeffrey Epstein's Palm Beach house?

    A. Can you repeat the question?

    Q. Is it an obvious lie that you had sex toys in Jeffrey Epstein's Palm Beach house?

    A. I don't recall any sex toys.

    Q. If someone said had you sex toys, would that be an obvious lie?

    A. What's a sex toy?

    Q. Are you aware of , in your experience with Jeffrey Epstein, of any interstate or international transportation of women aged 18 to 28, for the purposes of prostitution?

    A. What do you mean by prostitution?

    https://assets.documentcloud.org/documen­ts/7274479/Maxwell-Deposition-2016.pdf

  • If this goes away I reckon she has a bright future in politics.

  • if she walks free i doubt she has a future for very long doing anything.

  • She's probably a shoo in to work with Boris......

  • Activist, lefty lawyers do HMRC's job for them and win a claim for unpaid VAT of £1.5bn (yes billion) against uber
    https://goodlawproject.org/update/hmrc-t­o-collect-1-5bn-uber/?utm_source=twitter­&utm_campaign=uber&utm_medium=social%20m­edia

  • Surely they will negotiate it down, like tons of other big corporates?

    Plus almost endless appeals.

  • Still better than zero though, right? And you would imagine what ever value they settle on would of been worth HMRC's time

  • They'll negotiate it down to a £15,000 donation to the Tory party.

  • Still better than zero though, right? And you would imagine what ever value they settle on would of been worth HMRC's time

    Definitely. I just can't seem to shift my cynic hat at the moment.

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