Tuesday, February 17, 2009

And let's all live in cloud cuckoo land

Interesting to see the Department of Children, Schools and Families (DCSF- or Dept for Cushions and Soft Furnishings) to the Children's Society survey into young people's experience and understanding of the recession - according to their spokesperson, we it's "disappointing" that children should be worried, going on to say, rather obviously that
"Parents are clearly best placed to talk to their children about their worries, but schools also play an important role in teaching young people the skills they need to become healthy, happy and confident individuals."

How can they be "confident" if we keep them in the dark: confidence comes from having the ability and the knowledge to make informed decisions and have an awareness of the world around them; not by being cosseted and deluded - that way we create a generation of happy morons.

Monday, February 09, 2009

Follow the banker

According to David Buik in the Guardian (of all places) bankers deserve their bonuses and to refuse them
"will discourage quality people from contributing to the wealth of the country and to our emergence from this terrible recession"

But surely it was the self-same "quality people" that got us into this mess by following the orders of their leaders - the former "masters of the universe" who didn't understand what they were driving their underlings to sell and acquire on markets bloated by securitised debt.

As for the argument that runs: "we have to pay them because it's in their contract" - has Parliament forgotten that it's supreme: contract law is common law, statute law changes it at a stroke and can be retrospective. Have a look at the Law Reform (Frustrated Contracts) Act 1943 to see how far Parliament has intervened in the past. Those two were desperate times - we were at war then, and the Act prevented claims being lost for goods that were supplied to countries subsequently conquered by the Nazis.

Thursday, February 05, 2009

Special relationship - good job the judges are realists

As expected, Miliband bottled it at the dispatch box. Let's hope the comments by Lord Justice Thomas and Mr Justice Lloyd Jones in the Binyamin Mohamed case don't get swept away in a tide of Foreign Office mush. And why does the US allow openness at home but prevent it here - Clive Stafford-Smith, once again, has a very pertinent take on the nature of the relationship - and the supine behaviour of our politicos, to whom it seems to matter more than that most cherished of democratic freedoms: parliamentary supremacy.