Wednesday, January 28, 2009


One or Two Reasons to be Cheerful

[Sorry to be blogging somewhat lightly recently but I am unusually busy, writing lectures and updating books into nhew editions]

I thought I'd pick out some interesting Social Attitude trends identified in the annual survey by John Carvel today as some of them inspire that elusive sentiment, optimism, albeit of the cautious variety.

1. From 36% in 2004 49% now think 'the price of an air ticket should reflect the environmental damage that flying causes, even if it makes air travel more expensive.' The government might like to consider that before it plunges ahead with that 3rd Terminal. Also it suggests the message about carbon emissions if finally getting through.

2. 51% said they were satisfied with the NHS compared to 34% in 1997 and 42% in 2000. Evidence all that cash has been appreciated by patients. Take note ye who have decided to give Dave a chance next time. You have been warned and you know what happens to the NHS under the Tories.

3. Only 17% want an English parliament and less than 20% are opposed to the Scottish parliament. Devolution has been more or less acepted, though with reservations.

4. International surveys show that generous benefits do not make people lazy. In fact the higher the benefits- eg in Sweden and Norway, the higher the desire to work and the lower they are- as in US, UK, Canada and Australia- the lower the work ethic. A moral there somewhere?

5. Finally, it seems all that telly watching doesn't really make people happy. Only 37% said they derived a 'great deal of enjoyment' while 23% said they got none or not much. So why watch the sodding stuff then?

1. So 51% don't think it should reflect the so called environmental damage. And even this foolish 49%. They talk a good game, but would they vote for it? Rather like the British public. They claim love for the NHS but have never voted for a party pledged to increase taxes to pour into the service.
2. I only wish the ridiculous Dave had such malevolent intent. I suspect the charade will continue under his premiership. Presumably the solid majorities unhappy with the NHS have had their ranks depleted by the MRSA pandemic.
3. But surveys show that the vast majority of British citizens think the current constitutional arrangement(the Scottish Raj and the Jockroach MPs) is unfair. Ignore them at your peril.
4. I mean really? You are an intelligent man. Are you seriously suggesting that giving people vast sums of money not to work has no effect on their propensity to seek work?! Are you sure?
5. I'll give you 5. I think Orwell called it Prolefeed. He was right.
1. Until they book their holidays

2. It can't be denied that the NHS is better but the cost in PFI/PPI, doctors contracts etc means that the money spent is way in excess of the benefits gained.

3. So they were asked about the West Loathian question? I doubt it.

4. A moral there somewhere? Surveys / statistics can prove anything.

5. So why watch the sodding stuff then? Good question but when you are forced to pay for it I guess you want your money's worth.
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