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#21
Off the Record / Re: The Off Topic Topic
Last post by crazy canuck - July 24, 2024, 04:45:42 PM
Quote from: Josquius on July 24, 2024, 12:53:36 PMDude. You're like. 100.

1980s not the 1880s - thats Grumbler  :D
#22
Off the Record / Re: 2024 US Presidential Elect...
Last post by crazy canuck - July 24, 2024, 04:44:19 PM
Quote from: FunkMonk on July 24, 2024, 11:47:51 AMI don't think it's "conspiracy theory" to suggest senior leaders in an organization have had discussions for weeks on an important issue and then made a consensus decision.

Conspiracy theory is when a person connects falling off their bike to INFLATIONARY BIDENOMICS and Canada doing well in Copa America.

When is the last time you can remember the Democrats making a consensus decision about anything.  For the moment forget about all the divisions within the party and focus on the degree of organizational planning and foresight that would have required.

And then tell me again how reasonable it is to assume that talks went on for weeks and a consensus decision was made.
#23
Off the Record / Re: Songs you don't like to ad...
Last post by Norgy - July 24, 2024, 04:36:02 PM
I'm supposed to be more punk than my playlist shows.  :blush:
#24
Off the Record / Re: Songs you don't like to ad...
Last post by Admiral Yi - July 24, 2024, 04:30:16 PM
I'm proud of my dorky play list.

Saturday Night by the Bay City Rollers.

Most of the Carpenters play list.

My Sharona.
#25
Off the Record / Songs you don't like to admit ...
Last post by Norgy - July 24, 2024, 04:28:03 PM
 :ph34r:  :uffda:

Ava March "All out of salt"
Bee Gees "Massachusetts"
Manfred Mann's Earth Band "Davy's on the road again"
#26
Off the Record / Re: Brexit and the waning days...
Last post by Josquius - July 24, 2024, 04:26:42 PM
Don't worry. This will all be used as proof that the very idea of hs2 was stupid and it was right to cancel it.

I distinctly remember moans about how it was going to just be a commuter line to Birmingham were common amongst the anti hs2 brigade. Along with the price increases they revealed their plan rather than what they opposed.
#27
Off the Record / Re: Brexit and the waning days...
Last post by Sheilbh - July 24, 2024, 04:16:15 PM
On HS2 lots in the National Audit Office that's incredible. Faisal Islam summarising it:
https://x.com/faisalislam/status/1815731973731787144

Some key points (via Islam) from the report:
QuoteThe majority of the platforms (4 out of 7) at the £570m Birmingham Curzon St station are now not required, but they will be completed but wont be fitted out....

So on a specialist viaduct with four decks spanning 65m, more than half will be ghost platforms
(Apparently because it is cheaper to build them and not use them than to change the design and not build them.

This project was supposed to be good for the North but because of the cancellation of the work north of Birmingham that phase of the journey will have slower trains than present, a reduction in capacity and it may be necessary to "manage demand":
QuoteAs a result of establishing HS2 phase 1, but canning phase 2...

🔥 between MAnchester and Birmingham there could be a 17% reduction in capacity
🔥 HS2 trains "likely run slower than existing trains on West Coast main line" between MCR & BHM as they can't tilt (on the bendy line)
... while thru trains from Manc to London (Acton??), could be quicker (as the higher speed south of Brum makes up for the lower speed in the north) not only could the trains be more crowded, they might be priced out of travelling to "manage demand", which "may constrain growth"

And even on the southern wing it won't get into central London but Acton for several years (and subject to government decisions which need to be made this summer or there'll be significant cost increases):
QuoteTo sum up...

The entire project was only commissioned and recommissioned on wider economic benefits to the north ie this was the totem of "Levelling Up..." a decade and a half cross party consensus.

BUT the trains can only travel high speed south of Birmingham, (and only then for a few minutes) and partly because so much was spent on this straight and hidden line (in tunnels and verges in the shires), the experience actually in the North, will be slower trains, either with a fifth less capacity, or made expensive enough to disincentivise travel, or a bit of both... and if travelling to Birmingham, over half of the the viaduct built station spanning 65 metres, will be built but mothballed from inception... and you'll for several years be getting off at Acton, as that is how long they say it will take even to set up the development corporation to secure the private finance to build it.

It looks like it'll basically be a very nice, quite fast, expensive commuter line to Birmingham (which may boost Birmingham in fairness). We built the most expensive bit that delivers least of the wider economic benefits - while the bit that was cheapest to build (less requirement for tunnels and verges etc) and delivered the most economic benefits has been shelved :bleeding:

Also on the Treasury, saw via Duncan Robinson (Bagehot columnist) that basically costs fall on HS2 - an arm's length body I think owned by the Transport Department. But all profits from oversite development goes to the Treasury. Which just seems like a really really bad way to allocate risk/return - but is possibly good for Treasury accounting/balance sheet :hmm:

It also apparently led to far higher costs on the structural side to maximise capacity for further private sector construction (Treasury profits) later.

Edit: And I wonder if that's another difference between HMT and other finance ministries - the ROTW they may be tight but they're more honest/less addicted to balance sheet chincanery?
#28
Off the Record / Re: 2024 US Presidential Elect...
Last post by Norgy - July 24, 2024, 02:59:55 PM
Quote from: Valmy on July 24, 2024, 01:48:55 PMIn the 80s we had a senile old man in the office who couldn't remember he was selling weapons to the Iranians to fund death squads in Nicaragua.

I think he remembered very well what he was agreeing to. I am almost disappointed Ollie North hasn't become a GOP veep nominee.

But the circumstances of a bipolar (in so many ways) world were different. What was done during the Cold War, well, it is sort of a "What happens in Vegas, stays in Vegas".
You supported airdropping some Ukrainian war criminals like Stepan Bandera into the USSR, for crying out loud.
Reagan was a figure me and much of the European left despised. There was a Cuban missile crisis, Goldwater proposing to make Vietnam into a parking lot, Soviet troops on our borders, and crushing both the Hungarian 1956 uprising and the Czech "summer" of 1968. A lot, and I mean a lot, of under-handed shit went down. But if you guys manage to keep that con artist felon out of office, we forgive you. For everything. I think we will even thank you profoundly and profusely.
#29
Off the Record / Re: Youtube Recommendations
Last post by grumbler - July 24, 2024, 02:43:39 PM
A fun little exploration of "fossil words."  Don't click if you have a tooth phobia.  :lol:

#30
Off the Record / Re: 2024 US Presidential Elect...
Last post by viper37 - July 24, 2024, 02:32:17 PM
Quote from: HVC on July 24, 2024, 01:54:27 PM
Quote from: Valmy on July 24, 2024, 01:48:55 PMIn the 80s we had a senile old man in the office who couldn't remember he was selling weapons to the Iranians to fund death squads in Nicaragua.

He was also a bad actor in mediocre films. I await Kevin Sorbo's presidential career.


Fuck, no.  :lol:

We already had one martyr has US President, not another one.