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36 weeks ago @ http://www.conservativ... - Ranil Jayawardena: A s... · 2 replies · +1 points

Why is this controversial?

India is on a path to become the leading pillar of the democratic world. Its geographic position makes it a natural ally to NATO and Japan (when considering where future threats are likely to emerge from).

Of course we should have strong links with it - and we should encourage its alignment with the Western world and its rise as a top-flight power (with a permanent seat on the Security Council, etc.).

India is the star around which the rest of the world will one day orbit. Anyone with sense would want to build a deep friendship.

37 weeks ago @ http://www.conservativ... - O'Brien and his critic... · 1 reply · +1 points

Is there actually any evidence that the Kent variant is 70% more transmissible? I notice when scientists discuss this, they say that it 'may be', but when government or the media do - it is stated as a cast-iron truth.

It seems to be responding to the lockdown in a similar way to the previous variant (even though nurseries are open and the current lockdown is generally being adhered to more laxly).

37 weeks ago @ http://www.conservativ... - Nick Maughan: After Co... · 0 replies · +1 points

If by 'after school clubs' you mean 'youth clubs' - I'm not sure these are helpful at all. When I was at school, all the worst behaved kids seemed to go to youth clubs - where they could get access to drugs and drink from a young age (from the older kids who also went there).

Would it not be better to give every child a voucher which can be spent on out of school educational or sporting activities (I'd include Scouts and Guides in this)? People can then vote with their feet over which activities they want their kids doing - rather than funding being pushed to the latest politically correct fad that is preferred by whoever happens to be making decisions.

This feels like a more market-driven solution. The nanny state should be minimised in determining people's hobbies!

37 weeks ago @ http://www.conservativ... - John Bald: Teachers mu... · 0 replies · +1 points

I also think that having to ask yourself 'am I correct' is the essence of deeper learning. This is central to giving feedback obviously.

We really do no learn how to give feedback at all at school. Maybe why so much training is devoted to the topic in the workplace?

37 weeks ago @ http://www.conservativ... - John Bald: Teachers mu... · 0 replies · +1 points

We sometimes find this when we recruit more experienced people.

I get a sense that people are used to covering up uncertainty / lack of knowledge with verbiage!

37 weeks ago @ http://www.conservativ... - John Bald: Teachers mu... · 6 replies · +1 points

I had no idea about grammar when I left school. I had to learn at work.

Since then, I find that younger people starting go through the same journey.

I think the key is reviewing other people's work and providing feedback. This helps to understand at a deeper level what is right and wrong. Maybe getting kids to review each others' work as part of their learning (with teachers providing feedback on both the original document and the review) would be helpful... As I say, this is the only way I picked it up - and seems to be the only way many new recruits (all with MScs or PhDs) pick it up.

38 weeks ago @ http://www.conservativ... - Vaccines. The United K... · 0 replies · +1 points

Of course the government's first responsibility is to its own people.

However, there is such a vast gulf between the risk faced by vulnerable groups, and that faced by younger people. Is it ethical to take a vaccine for a disease which has a 1/1000 chance of killing me, if doing so delays the day someone with a 1/8 chance of dying from it gets theirs?

As I say, not everyone may feel this way.

38 weeks ago @ http://www.conservativ... - Vaccines. The United K... · 2 replies · +1 points

I would like to see an economic counterpart to NATO established.

The benefits of free trade should go to our military allies first and foremost...

A free trade zone covering the USA/Canada, EU and UK would be an excellent way to draw a line under the last four years (including other 5 eyes members would be even better). We share a common civilisation - and together we will always have the weight to stand up to the emerging giants of this world.

38 weeks ago @ http://www.conservativ... - Vaccines. The United K... · 4 replies · +1 points

The reality is that we all freeload off of the USA - just to differing degrees.

If it wasn't for the US market, there wouldn't really be pharmaceutical industry worth the name. None of the rest of us pay enough to fund the innovation that streams from it.

38 weeks ago @ http://www.conservativ... - Vaccines. The United K... · 0 replies · +1 points

When they are run by separatists, I think it is fair to say that they absolutely will not be seeking to make the central government look good. This is a major argument against devolution based on the borders of wannabe nation states.

Federalism based on regions that don't align with historic political boundaries would have been a much more sensible solution. Is it possible to backtrack now though?