Sunday, 2 October 2022

The Sunday Ishmael 2/10/2022

 A Useful Idiot

On an earlier thread, we learned from a regular correspondent that Pretty-but-Dim Kwasi has a prestigious academic record, from which it might be thought that he would have realised that the optics, as we say nowadays, would not play well with the poor, hungry and cold, of attending a private champagne reception in Chelsea on the 23rd September with hedge fund managers following his mini-budget. The Sunday Times tells us that P-B-D Kwasi was "egged on" to pursue his plan of £45 billion of unfunded tax cuts. The hedge fund managers present stood to gain from the collapse of the pound. Why isn't anyone in custody for treason?
Like a Valkyrie riding the Economic Winds, the belligerent Mrs.Truss is not for turning as she swoops down upon the Tory Party Conference in Birmingham, a city described by Young Tory Daniel Grainger this week as a dump, and in April as "firmly the worst city in the UK." However, whilst holding staunchly to her principles, the Unelected Prime Minister did kind of hint that P-B-D Kwasi could make a useful scapegoat should a slight course adjustment be needed. She told Laura Kuenssberg this morning that she certainly did not manage Kwasi's diary - therefore had nowt to do with his champagne swigging with those clever fellows who manage and manipulate the nation's money to their own advantage and bugger the rest of you. And that she was certainly not a party to his decision to remove the 45% tax band for those earning over £150,000 (but not in Scotland, where the tax band of 46% will remain in place.) And neither were her Cabinet. But it is a good idea and will help Britain's growth. Probably. And if not, then it's under the bus with you, Kwasi - you're just another failed Economics Experiment.
Do any of them have the slightest idea what they are doing, as they shoulder each other aside, shouting, My Turn, My Turn? Here's mr ishmael:

Mr. Mervyn King, Governor, Bank of England (prop. People's Republic of China)
"One two is three, two twos are seven, three twos are, no, don't tell it twenty-seven ?"

Families face years of pain, says Bank.

"Families must steel themselves for years of hardship even though the recession is all but over, the governor of the Bank of England has warned."  By Edmund Conway, Economics Editor Published: 10:12PM GMT 19 Jan 2010
Families will see their standard of living fall over the next two years as salary freezes and rising inflation eat into incomes, Mervyn King said.
“The patience of UK households is likely to be sorely tried over the next couple of years,” Mr King said, dashing hopes that Britain could recover quickly from the deepest slump in post-war history. "But not as much as mine has been sorely tried by this cunt-lunatic of a prime minister and his chum, Badgerman."
His comments are likely to infuriate Downing Street, which had hoped to campaign in the election on having set Britain back on the road to prosperity. Downing Street has been in a state of constant infuriation for, oh, ages. The remarks also included a warning of interest rate rises. Hours before the governor’s speech, official statistics showed that the annual rate of inflation had surged by an unprecedented 1 per cent last month, pushing the Consumer Price Index up to 2.9 per cent."If inflation went up by one per cent every month that wouldn't just mean fifteen per cent by the end of the year, fuck me, no, but by lots more because it's compound, you see, no, I can't explain it, it takes arithmetic and I don't do that."
"The, uh, the uh, the uh, rise, the rise in inflation proves that I know exactly what I am, I am, I am uh,uh doing and it is the right thing for the uh, country." said the prime minister, Mr Gordon Snot, the horrible fucking bastard. "We have, uh, successfully, uh burnt, burnt, burnt, burnt all the money, given away all the gold, fucked up the roads and the trains, turned the hospitals into death camps, the schools into killing grounds, the streets into no-go areas peopled with half-naked, drink-crazed totties in high heels and sent the armed forces to certain death in a war which cannot be won, even though they get a right good send-off down in Wootton Bassett, all that remains for the complete success of my project to destroy the country is for inflation to reach double and preferably triple figures. It is the right thing for the country and I will now start getting up at two-thirty in the morning, thinking of even better ways to bring total Ruin to this nation which no-one elected me to be in charge of, much less bugger and bankrupt. I might not have much time left"
Inflation is now rising almost twice as quickly as average earnings and the figures do not reflect the recent end to the VAT tax cut. With consumers facing even higher prices as a result of rising VAT in January, CPI is likely to go well above 3 per cent in the coming months, Mr King suggested.
"As, uh, uh, as, uh prices rise this is exactly the right time for us to cut wages" said Mr Snot " For it is only by fucking the people at both ends as it were, what the footballers call spit-roasting, that we can be certain of wrecking their lives completely. By, uh, by, uh allowing prices to rise and uh,uh,uh cutting wages and of course encouraging employers to send jobs overseas we or rather I can hasten the day, the day, the day of ArmaGordon."
Meanwhile, workers have seen salaries contract at an unprecedented rate. Although unemployment has not risen as high as in previous slumps, this has been at the cost of a significant reduction in household pay, with many staff accepting pay cuts, or voluntarily working part-time, to hang on to their jobs.
Mr King said that, although the recession was soon likely to be over in technical terms “there is little scope for growth in real take-home pay, which may remain weak even as output recovers”.
“It is clear that inflation is likely to pick up markedly in the first half of this year, a message reinforced by this morning’s news that CPI inflation reached 2.9 per cent in December . . . the rise in VAT back to 17.5 per cent means that CPI inflation is likely to rise to over 3 per cent for a while, or even higher for even longer were energy prices or indirect taxes to increase further.”
Although he said that inflation should eventually come back down, it might also just keep on going up, like in Zimbabwe. The increase prompted speculation that the Bank will start to raise interest rates in months.

1st  -  Boris Johnson confirms that the government will provide £700 million in funding for the Sizewell C nuclear power station
2nd - A Cabinet minister and a senior Downing Street aide in the Johnson Government face allegations of sexual misconduct following claims made by two women at Westminster.  Buckingham Palace confirms the Queen will miss the 2022 Braemar Games, which she was scheduled to attend the following day. Prince Charles will attend instead. Extinction Rebellion stage a protest in the House of Commons, with three people gluing themselves together next to the Speaker's chair and demanding a "citizens' assembly" to discuss the climate crisis
5th  - Liz Truss is elected as the leader of the Conservative Party, winning 57.4% of the final vote to Rishi Sunak's 42.6%.
6th - Liz Truss becomes Prime Minister of the United Kingdom, and forms the Truss ministry. For the first time in British political history, no white men hold positions in the Great Offices of State.
8th - The Queen dies “of old age”. Charles becomes King of the United Kingdom and head of the Commonwealth. The RMT and ASLEF rail unions suspend strikes planned for 15 and 17 September. A Royal Mail strike planned for the following day is also suspended.
9th - A man is arrested at Birmingham Airport in connection with the 1996 Manchester IRA bombing.
10th – King Charles III loses his temper.  Senior MPs, including Prime Minister Liz Truss, and First Minister Nicola Sturgeon, swear an Oath of Allegiance to Charles III in a special session of Parliament. Cases of COVID-19 are at their lowest since October 2021, with fewer than a million people (about one in 70) with the virus in the last week of August
13th - A 22-year-old man is charged with a breach of the peace after the Duke of York was heckled as he walked behind the Queen's coffin in Edinburgh the previous day. Margaret Ferrier, the MP who travelled by train from London to Scotland after receiving a positive COVID test in September 2020, is given 270 hours of community service after previously pleading guilty at Glasgow Sheriff Court to culpably and recklessly exposing the public to the virus.
14th Inflation falls slightly, from 10.1% the previous month to 9.9%. Food price inflation continues to be rapid, reaching a 14-year high of 13.1%, but is outweighed in the annual index by a drop in the cost of motor fuels.
16th - A man is arrested under the Public Order Act after running up the steps to the catafalque and touching the Queen's coffin. The pound falls more than 1% against the U.S. dollar and reaches a new 37-year low of $1.13.
18th - Large-scale disorder breaks out in Leicester, amid tensions involving mainly young men from sections of the Muslim and Hindu communities.
19th – State funeral of Elizabeth II. Bank Holiday.
21st – The government announces it will freeze wholesale gas and electricity prices for businesses for six months from 1 October.
22nd - The government reverses the ban on fracking in England. UK interest rates rise from 1.75 to 2.25%, the biggest increase in 27 years, as the Bank of England attempts to curb inflation. The Government announces the scrapping of the1.25% rise in National Insurance contributions and the Health and Social Care Levy.
23rd - Chancellor Kwasi Kwarteng delivers an emergency mini-budget, announcing the biggest tax cuts in the UK since 1972. The 45% top rate of income tax, paid by only the highest earners in England, Wales and Northern Ireland, will be scrapped, while the basic rate in England, Wales and Northern Ireland will be reduced from 20% to 19%. The cap on bankers' bonuses and a planned rise in corporation tax are scrapped. An increase in National Insurance is reversed, while the threshold before stamp duty is paid in England and Northern Ireland is raised to £425,000 for first time buyers and £250,000 for everyone else. Scotland's First Minister, Nicola Sturgeon, describes the mini-budget as "reckless". Pound sterling falls sharply in response to the government's planned tax cuts, losing 3% against the dollar and dropping below $1.09.
Data for the week up to 14 September indicates the first rise in COVID-19 infections since mid-July
26th -  Pound sterling falls again, briefly hitting an all-time low against the dollar of $1.03, before recovering slightly to $1.27
28th - The International Monetary Fund criticises UK fiscal policy, urging the government to re-evaluate the mini-budget. In a bid to prevent the collapse of the country's pension funds, whose investments are in government bonds that have become volatile since the announcement of the mini-budget, the Bank of England announces that it will purchase £65 billion of government bonds in order to restore their stability. More than 1,000 mortgage products are withdrawn from the market, the highest figure ever recorded by Moneyfacts Group, with many borrowers unable to secure loans or having provisional offers declined.
30th – Human remains are discovered on Saddleworth Moor, which Greater Manchester Police believe could be the body of Moors murderers victim Keith Bennett, killed by Ian Brady and Myra Hindley in 1964.

So, a busy month in the United Kingdom. In International News, we're doomed. A purported FSB whistleblower called "Wind of Change" has been advising the West that Putin never has had any intention of deploying nuclear weapons against Ukraine, and, upon this intelligence, NATO has felt pretty secure in pumping conventional weaponry into Ukraine and training Ukrainian soldiery. We'll see how that turns out. Let's hope that Kwasi and his money-chums have left us enough champagne to toast the nuclear sunset.
Now Available

Should you need something  to cheer you up, look no further than  Ishmael’s Blues - which is now published, in both paperback and hardback editions; both editions are immediately available from  The paperback is also listed on amazon. Honest Not Invent and Vent Stack, the first two books in the sequence are also available from Lulu and Amazon. If you buy from Amazon, it would be nice if you could give a review on their website.
Ishmaelites wishing to buy a copy from lulu should follow these steps :
 Unless you’ve done this already, please register an account first, at This is advisable because otherwise paypal seems to think it's ok to charge in dollars, and they then apply their own conversion rate, which might put the price up slightly for a UK buyer. Once the new account is set up, follow one of the links below (to either paperback or hardback) or type "Ishmael’s Blues" into the Lulu Bookstore search box.  Click on the “show explicit content” tab, give the age verification box a date of birth such as 1 January 1960, and proceed.
The book’s full title is "Ishmael’s Blues – further Chronicles of Ruin", and the cover you'll see is red with white titles and a picture of blogdog Buster retiring from the fray, cat gloating from a safe distance. The cover is the same for both editions.
Link for Hardcover :

Link for Paperback :
At checkout, try WELCOME15 in the coupon box, which (for the moment) takes 15% off the price before postage.  If this code has expired by the time you reach this point, try a google search for " voucher code" and see what comes up.  
With the 15% voucher, PB (including delivery to a UK address) should be £16.84; HB £27.04.
What d'you think? Back by Christmas?


Mike said...

Soon the Brown Terror will seem like a halcyon summer compared to what is coming. This time its different (heard that before?) because this time there is simply no solution. There is no way to fix systemic supply issues by raising demand. Its total stupidity. The only possibly way out for Europe is to ditch the US and Nato and join with Russia and China (real economies not paper economies).

kwasi quidbang said...

yes, well chaps...

i'm afraid to report that the pound did a bit of a banana...ha ha

but i've got it all straightened out now...

and liz is extremely satisfied with the upshot

ultrapox said...

some fear that our new chancellor is only superficially 'black', but having endured a prime minister who's superficially intelligent and trustworthy, i really cannot regard kwarteng's lack of afro-centricity as posing too great a problem.

boris-economics are dead, long live banana-economics

mongoose said...

Superficially, one could say that these people are crap at politics. It's not that difficult. "We want to do X and Y, Boss, but they both give the opposition an opportunity to say A and B. Our counter positions are F and G but the buggers at the Beeb will still shred us for a week and the parasites in the City will short the pound for a week or two and make a few bob out of our discomfort."

So you either do it and stand your ground, or you don't do it. What you don't do is do it and then take it back a week later because like a child bullied in the playground, you are now easy meat. The Beeb could have been neutered by adding the notion of privatisation and a sale of the back catalogue to fund blah, blah. They'd have run around weeping and wailing and never given a thought to anything else.

Or they could have been really smart and announced something properly outlandish as an idea they were considering blah, blah and then let it drop and let the silly buggers appear to have won their fish. (It's how we used to negotiate with the mongoslings. "Bedtime is 4pm but if you're good..." It took years for them to notice that bedtime occurred every day of the year at the same time regardless of any mayhem they undertook.) Perhaps this is what has happened but I doubt it.

So yet another example, I reckon, of a stupid clever person, and poor Kwasi has been sawn off at the knees his forst week. What is wrong with them?

ultrapox said...

when british media report the financial markets to be 'spooked', what they actually mean is that the racially regressive labour party, its cia-masters, and cia-compliant hedge-fund-managers all believe king kong to have clambered into his majesty's treasury and started playing with the levers of national monetary power.

the drastic drop in the pound was certainly no accident - but rather the result of an extremely dirty market-trashing trick.

such is the - rogue - state of neo-liberal politics these days

mongoose said...

Indeed, mr ultrapox. Listening to them on the radio just now - Naga Manchutney and some Tory loser - it is entirely clear how an artificial crisis is being manufactured. "How long have they got?", she enquired earnestly. "Err, err. They have listened..."

Alas, the political skills are not there to manage the narrative. One has to lead not follow or all is lost. "A better question, Naga, might be: why has the glorious Labour movement of which are so unashamedly a champion, why has it produced just one election winner born in the last 100 years? What's wrong with them, Naga?"