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Started by col2001 on May 2, 2022 11:21:33 AM
2020 Hindsight

What we could and should have done since 1979.

North Sea gas investment fund? Housing insulation? Investment in FE? Rail?

What's your favourite 40-year missed opportunity?

angelico - 02 May 2022 12:42:36 (#1 of 47)

Good question, col.

It made me think about our culture. The worst of it, for me, is the grotesque inequality. Was there anything that might have tempered this? What were the root causes (accepting for the moment that causality isn't linear; maybe we could say "contributing factors").

bailliegillies - 02 May 2022 13:52:35 (#2 of 47)

Set up a sovereign wealth fund as Norway did.

col2001 - 02 May 2022 13:18:04 (#3 of 47)

our culture

Yeah, angelico, more I think about it, all of the desirable things I reckon we might have done are big-active-state things which benefit everyone.

I guess I'm stuck with the idea that we can and should do big things, through the state, the social democratic way.

I guess Tories see it differently: individualism and all that. The market will provide.

But the past forty-odd years in general - and the past two in particular - have tested that proposition. It failed. There are indeed many things that individualism and the marketcannot address.

Which makes the Tories an interesting breed of patriots.

bailliegillies - 02 May 2022 14:32:22 (#4 of 47)

Interesting article I read earlier today by Richard D Wolff about the difference between western and Chinese capitalism and why one is gaining ground while the other is failing.

Tagyourit - 02 May 2022 14:36:40 (#5 of 47)

Have a quiet word about contraception with Ed Sheeran's mum and dad.

Snarlygog - 02 May 2022 15:18:08 (#6 of 47)

Better quality housing.

JohnIlly - 02 May 2022 15:20:18 (#7 of 47)

Not sold off council housing, or at least invest the money received in building more.

Tadagee - 02 May 2022 19:01:53 (#8 of 47)

Not signing Erling Haaland.

barkis - 02 May 2022 19:47:29 (#9 of 47)

Two years before 1979, but implemented the Bullock Rweport.

jayemdee - 02 May 2022 20:46:27 (#10 of 47)

I wish I'd bought shares in Amazon and Apple, though I'm guessing I couldn't have afforded them anyway back then.

carterbrandon - 02 May 2022 21:49:34 (#11 of 47)

Apple would have been possible, not Amazon.

Shadrack22 - 02 May 2022 22:08:39 (#12 of 47)

What we could and should have done since 1979.

Ditching FPFP in favour of proportional representation - arguably would have meant more pragmatic, less divisive, governments. Francis Pym got sacked by Thatcher for warning against governments with large majorities. A smaller majority would arguably have reined in the hubris that derailed New Labour

Devolution of power out of Westminster

Investment in public housing - amazed that young people without access to the Bank of Mum and Dad aren’t rioting about its unaffordability

Investment in green energy

Investment in transport infrastructure - not just stuff like the lack of trams/metros in many big cities, but also the bizarre train ticket prices and inability to get on a train in the provinces and end up in mainland Europe without a colossal headache negotiating the Byzantine process of getting from A to B.

col2001 - 03 May 2022 06:25:27 (#13 of 47)

barkis, thanks for that one.

whitbreadtrophy - 03 May 2022 08:45:29 (#14 of 47)

In January 2015 I would have made a large treble bet that in 2016 Britain would leave the EU, Trump would be elected president and Leicester City would win the premiership.

Lento_ - 03 May 2022 09:48:54 (#15 of 47)

I'm pretty sure that one day scientists will realise that an experiment in the Large Hadron Collider pushed us all in to a more crazy parallel dimension sometime around 2016.

Oldbathrobe1 - 03 May 2022 10:45:34 (#16 of 47)

without a colossal headache negotiating the Byzantine process of getting from A to B

Don't dis the Byzantines, blood. It's all just jealousy. Charlemagne, ruler of most of Europe, was forced to send to Ireland and Northumbria to find enough literate men to run his court. Alfred the Great may have been literate, but his people weren't. The Byzantines still had literacy, a sophisticated administration and maintained a gold- based currency for 800 years. They didn't need feudalism because they had a cash economy, could raise tax and recruit, train and equip cavalry units.

That sort of thing only looked unnecessarily complicated from the west.

and.... breathe.

whitbreadtrophy - 04 May 2022 15:32:33 (#17 of 47)

Fucking smug Byzantines, always giving it that about vanquishing the Bulgarians. I've shit 'em.

staticgirl - 04 May 2022 16:23:35 (#18 of 47)

Not selling off council housing or at the very least allowing the councils to reinvest the money in brand new modern decent housing for anyone who wanted it.

Stopping the Gambling Act. Saving and investing the North Sea gas money like Norway did.

Not gone quite so full on with Care in the Community so that people could live independent lives if they were able but there was still better care available for those who couldn't.

Not closed SureStart and Remploy...

JohnIlly - 04 May 2022 16:55:38 (#19 of 47)

Not deregulating the building societies. They only used to lend money their members had invested with them. This sometimes led to a "mortgage famine" but it kept a lid on house prices. So much money now is tied up in property that the rest of the economy is stunted.

Oldbathrobe1 - 04 May 2022 17:34:39 (#20 of 47)

Fucking smug Byzantines, always giving it that about vanquishing the Bulgarians.

Basil the Bulgar Slayer didn't actually slay all those Bulgars. He just blinded them.

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