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Selling-off-Britain - Channel 4

AfghanAndy

On ROPS
On ROPs
#21
“ Will Hutton argues that selling off Britain's best companies for quick profits has created a dumbed-down, low-wage Britain, and that we must act quickly for the UK to remain a wealthy nation ”.

A subject of great national importance.

However, Hutton asks the wrong questions . . and . . fails to mention “Preference shares”, and “Voting shares”, with omitting to mention the option, possible use, of (none-voting), “Debentures” to raise capital.

Hutton fails to “extrapolate” how the (seemingly) admirable corporate structure of Welsh Water, could and should be applied to other established (and start-up), UK companies.

Hutton mentions the concern of retaining Manchester as “a centre for” Graphene, but fails to point-out, that importantly such knowledge needs to be maintained, developed and retained in the UK, rather than being bought-up and “exported” by other nationals.

Hutton criticises the City of London’s “short-termism”, and implies that if national restrictions were to be applied to UK corporate and company structures, share capital and ownership, then the City of London’s “traders” would move elsewhere. Why? Where else would they move to, when the unique opportunist environment in which they speculate and thrive, does not exist anywhere else. And . . would it be such a loss to the long-term prosperity and future security of the UK, if the City of London’s “traders” did move elsewhere?

Thames Water has accumulated huge debts. It apparently pays out to shareholders, more in dividends than it earns in profits. If not illegal, such practice must be unwise. It must be for those who are proponents of such practises to establish and explain why such practises are not made illegal.

The “enemy” - those that should be taken outside and shot in front of their families - are easy to identify when they are prepared to attempt to justify their perverse, opportunistic, logic (with a self-satisfied, smug, grin on their face), as was the former Government “Advisor”.

http://www.channel4.com/programmes/selling-off-britain/episode-guide
I was invited to a talk many years ago by one ignoring the cabdury family who discussed similar issues. He placed the blame on a move away from business and banking moving away from their quake roots.(a bit odd I agree but quaker methodology promotes long term stability and enhanced benefits for the employees and society in general.)

I think some of the these issues is how company's decide to dance themselves. Do you go the traditional route of borrow money from the bank or do gonthe joint stock method. Sadly if you go for the joint stock method and loose control of the company to its shareholders, in quite a few cases the shareholders become big hedge funds who are only interested in short term gains from sales of stocks and shares from the secondary market and not the traditional dividend payements of old.

I'm not a big fan of government legislation. We should let a few big businesses fail to get messages through to shareholders. For example, had the back bail out not happened and a few bans went bump, shareholders may learn to think longer term. However as the bulk of shares aren't held by pension funds, Joe public will always back somebody else (the taxpayer bailing them out)


One idea I thought may help is a bonus payement to the city where by instead of being given cash, they get given shares in regional development funds that they can't sell for a period of a few years. Regional development fund for example is used to promote business, industry and commerce in say the NE of England, you may start seeing business decisions being made to benefit that region longer term until their shares can be sold on.
 
#22
The country has been bankrupted by an entirely unsustainable welfare bill. The population cannot/ will not understand that their lifestyle is not affordable, and so politicians have no option but to asset-strip the country for every last penny in order to pay the credit card charges. Hence the selling off of everything that isnt nailed down, and the endless cuts to defence, borders and other bottom priority departments.
100% agree.. not only are we burning off assets to sustain an unachievable welfare goal, but we are strangling our ability to earn those assets through over regulation and restrictive work practices. The financial system, which is supposed to provide the working fluid to enable the economy to operate has morphed into a vampirical entity dedicated to sucking the lifeblood out of the economy.

We need as a country to evolve into something where risk and value are better understood, and that individuals and organisations have to be kept within the boundaries of their worth and ability. We have to achieve an environment where consequences follow from actions and where power comes with responsiblity.

Much of the blame, I believe, lies with the media who have totally failed in carrying out their role in society to speak truth to power. Instead of supporting the structure of society, their approach for the past fifty years has been to trivialise and sensationalise in pursuit of headlines. They have managed both to undermine legitimate authority whilst at the same time totally fail to support the long term interests of society.

As a result, we have ended up with a society that does not know if it is punched, bored or countersunk.. We have "industries" that are simply shell organisations for financial scams, Politicians that have no power or authority to carry out their mandated roles, Police that believe they have unfettered power over the community and members of society that think they are owed an existence for no contribution..

...where to begin?


..maybe getting out of the EU is a start?
 
#23
100% agree.. not only are we burning off assets to sustain an unachievable welfare goal, but we are strangling our ability to earn those assets through over regulation and restrictive work practices. The financial system, which is supposed to provide the working fluid to enable the economy to operate has morphed into a vampirical entity dedicated to sucking the lifeblood out of the economy.

We need as a country to evolve into something where risk and value are better understood, and that individuals and organisations have to be kept within the boundaries of their worth and ability. We have to achieve an environment where consequences follow from actions and where power comes with responsiblity.

Much of the blame, I believe, lies with the media who have totally failed in carrying out their role in society to speak truth to power. Instead of supporting the structure of society, their approach for the past fifty years has been to trivialise and sensationalise in pursuit of headlines. They have managed both to undermine legitimate authority whilst at the same time totally fail to support the long term interests of society.

As a result, we have ended up with a society that does not know if it is punched, bored or countersunk.. We have "industries" that are simply shell organisations for financial scams, Politicians that have no power or authority to carry out their mandated roles, Police that believe they have unfettered power over the community and members of society that think they are owed an existence for no contribution..

...where to begin?


..maybe getting out of the EU is a start?
Go on stand for office. I'd vote for you.

Most of those problems can be fixed by a few determined politicians, but no, they are too busy forming human daisychains to blow smoke up each others arrses.

- Politicians are in it for what they can get out of it.

- And the politicians (backhanders in the form of non-exe directorships) in it for themselves is what has caused the problem with industry.

- Plod needs reminding that they are public servants - citizens, locally appointed by the crown.

- Wasters need slapping and telling that either they attend voluntary road building, or hospital duty, or litter-picking, or they will not get a cheque that week.

The problem would be that anyone standing on the ticket to sort that out would sound as if he were related to Genghis Kahn and had attended the Adolf Hitler School of International Studies.
 
#24
Pertinent to this thread . . . .

" Berlin: Germany wants to acquire the legal means to take a closer look at bids from Chinese companies to acquire German and European companies in order to better protect technologies, a German minister told newspaper Welt am Sonntag.

Matthias Machnig, state secretary in Germany's economics ministry, said it was urgent that proposed Europe-wide measures to police surging Chinese investment be adopted by the end of this year.

"It is essential that we get a tougher law in the European Union this year to resist takeover fantasies or outflows of technology or know-how," he said in an interview, excerpts of which were made available on Saturday".

German minister seeks fast passage of EU law on Chinese takeovers
 
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Flight

LE
Book Reviewer
#25
The financial system, which is supposed to provide the working fluid to enable the economy to operate has morphed into a vampirical entity dedicated to sucking the lifeblood out of the economy.
Quite literally...

Whilst RBS's losses have been staggering they would have been far worse without the 16,000 companies they have asset stripped and liquidated since 2008. These are almost entirely SME's who were, in the main, defrauded out of their businesses by GRG. Supposedly an arm of RBS to turnaround struggling businesses it seems their actual aim was to make them struggle and then liquidate their assets. Some of those liquidated were transferred to GRG's tender mercies due to a threat of moving their business away from RBS.

In other words a zombie bank that has literally eaten it's customers. The effects nationwide must have been both catastrophic and economically significant. 1600 SME's a year hitting the wall is clearly significant, probably about 3 businesses in each constituency, which would have to be large enough to have significant assets to strip. Hence not one of the 99% of businesses which are sole traders etc.

One does wonder how many of the other zombie banks have been up to similar shenanigans.

Quite ironic that we are all apparently share holders in RBS, bailed them out to the tune of almost £50Bn. They then post losses of over £50Bn all the while causing economic destruction and unemployment and get huge bonuses for doing so.

Meanwhile the government effectively turns a blind eye as RBS is too big to fail and they want to sell it eventually. Question is whether their activities in this regard, which were global, will result in huge fines abroad before the government manages to offload them.
 
#26
It's not just banks, some insolvency companies make a nice living out of asset stripping companies and buying capital items at knock down prices

But for banks it's easier, they loan you an overdraft, they know your financial situation and can see your bank statements and can call in it that overdraft when it's to their advantage and ripe for asset striping

I know other banks do it, I assume they probably all do as there's nothing illegal in what they do, it's just immoral
 

skid2

LE
Book Reviewer
#27
This has been going on since the early 80s and will continue to go on until there are widespread riots and a breakdown of social order.

And that won't happen whilst there is sport to watch on Sky, beer is readily available and the Jeremy Kyle show is still being shown.

Britain is as corrupt as most Third World banana republics.
A banana monarchy, is that the post Brexit look?
 

Flight

LE
Book Reviewer
#28
It's not just banks, some insolvency companies make a nice living out of asset stripping companies and buying capital items at knock down prices

But for banks it's easier, they loan you an overdraft, they know your financial situation and can see your bank statements and can call in it that overdraft when it's to their advantage and ripe for asset striping

I know other banks do it, I assume they probably all do as there's nothing illegal in what they do, it's just immoral
Which has always been the case..

Big difference between this, which has always happened, and one of the largest banks in the world deliberately destroying their own customers.
 
#29
Meanwhile the government effectively turns a blind eye as RBS is too big to fail and they want to sell it eventually. Question is whether their activities in this regard, which were global, will result in huge fines abroad before the government manages to offload them.
Well there's little alternative at the moment given the doings of 2008, It's cost us a packet.
I know other banks do it, I assume they probably all do as there's nothing illegal in what they do, it's just immoral
the ultimate in insider trading really
 

Flight

LE
Book Reviewer
#30
Well there's little alternative at the moment given the doings of 2008, It's cost us a packet.
I can think of a few alternatives... Equality under the law, the rule of law and watchdog institutions which aren't in the pocket of the very industries they supposedly regulate. Maybe I'm one of these silly utopian types...

Interesting question though, what would have been the contribution of those 16,000 mainly medium sized companies to employment, tax and GDP had they not been sacrificed on the altar of too big to fail?

Difficult to speculate but I rather suspect we are talking about at least similar figures.
 
#31
The other society destroying virus that I have come across recently is "Private Equity"..

Private equity - Wikipedia

At first glance, this is simply people investing directly in organisations and enterprises without going through public stock or share trading. Looks innocent enough, and does not show up in published finance records or other indicators - however all is not all it seems..

Although a percentage of Private Equity is made up from private individuals with assets loaning to borrowers, which is what is supposed to happen and how the activity is regulated, this term is used to describe much more convoluted and less obvious activity. In many cases the assets used by those conducting Private Equity trading simply does not exist, and the activity is being powered by debt financing... This is yet another mechanism being used to attack and asset strip going concerns with no reference to the long term value to the economy. Being Private, it is difficult to detect and even more difficult to control...
 

Flight

LE
Book Reviewer
#32
So in shorthand, lending borrowed money and then calling it in? Pretty sneaky..
 
#33
I can think of a few alternatives... Equality under the law, the rule of law and watchdog institutions which aren't in the pocket of the very industries they supposedly regulate. Maybe I'm one of these silly utopian types...

Interesting question though, what would have been the contribution of those 16,000 mainly medium sized companies to employment, tax and GDP had they not been sacrificed on the altar of too big to fail?

Difficult to speculate but I rather suspect we are talking about at least similar figures.
Ah you're touching a nerve there but hey if you got nothing at all you can get legal aid. :-x
 
#34
Which has always been the case..

Big difference between this, which has always happened, and one of the largest banks in the world deliberately destroying their own customers.
It's not new though, I'm aware of RBS doing this as far back as the 80s in a few instances

I don't think it was that widespread though, certainly last decade there were a lot of press reports of it happening so perhaps they've ramped it up and made it policy rather opportunism
 
#35
The other society destroying virus that I have come across recently is "Private Equity"..

Private equity - Wikipedia

At first glance, this is simply people investing directly in organisations and enterprises without going through public stock or share trading. Looks innocent enough, and does not show up in published finance records or other indicators - however all is not all it seems..

Although a percentage of Private Equity is made up from private individuals with assets loaning to borrowers, which is what is supposed to happen and how the activity is regulated, this term is used to describe much more convoluted and less obvious activity. In many cases the assets used by those conducting Private Equity trading simply does not exist, and the activity is being powered by debt financing... This is yet another mechanism being used to attack and asset strip going concerns with no reference to the long term value to the economy. Being Private, it is difficult to detect and even more difficult to control...
One example of this the emergency services tetra system, the company with the contract got bought out by a private equity company and then the pressure was on to really fleece the taxpayer leading to the government trying to rush headline into moving it over to 4G without any real planning
 
#37
We're just a country that happens to have a lot of rich people and profitable private enterprises residing here. That's a critical distinction to grasping why we are where we are.
This leaves us critically exposed as brexit car crash rumbles on.

There is literally nothing to stop our largely foreign owned industries to move over to Europe if they deem it more competitive to do so.

We are in a situation where the party of business (Tories) were recently usurped by a party led by a lifelong socialist as being industry friendly

CBI welcomes Labour announcement on customs union - CBI
 

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