467 comments posted · 6 followers · following 0

10 years ago @ http://www.belfasttele... - Peter Robinson at odds... · 10 replies · +8 points

He' one of their most moderate members to be fair - not that that says much.

10 years ago @ http://www.belfasttele... - Flimsy sex abuse alleg... · 1 reply · +6 points

My dad felt that way when he was a factory manager regarding the secretaries but I think it's unfounded. At that time I worked with abused young people, most of them female. Initially the male staff were accompanied with a female when with the clients but when more and more disclosures came out of abuse by females it seemed pointless. Either we always made sure more than one staff member was present, not realistic financially, or we took the risk. Thankfully it worked out okay. I take the view that if you are a good person things will work out. I know that's naive. Do the right thing and if circumstances mess you up at least you know you did right.

10 years ago @ http://www.belfasttele... - Flimsy sex abuse alleg... · 3 replies · +5 points

Thanks for the reply. It would be a shame to resort to cameras but it would keep everyone honest and I take your point. Regarding the celebrity cases the ones that were found not guilty are owed a presumption of innocence so I'll not comment. I'm just concerned that victims will be even more reluctant to come forward and more perpetrators will remain at large. Sexual abuse is a massive problem, I suspect it plays a major role in mental health statistics and offending rates. It's a grey area though - there is usually no forensic evidence in historical cases. I hope the authorities don't over-react, every complaint must be investigated - maybe the police need to improve their sensitivity to all parties involved. Malicious accusations do happen but I suspect they make up a small minority. This is not a comment on accusations of physical abuse accusations in schools by the way, on that subject I'll bow to your greater expertise. Take care.

10 years ago @ http://www.belfasttele... - Flimsy sex abuse alleg... · 5 replies · +4 points

Hi TJ, I worked with sexually abused young people for five years and the hardest thing is to get them to make a complaint. I'd approximate that I worked with a thousand adolescents but in that time only one perpetrator was convicted. Naturally there needs to be a balance but so far it has not been on the side of the victim. When you say 'many' how many allegations do you mean? Also what approximate ratio are sexual? I've never taught and am sure it is challenging but there are a room full of witnesses. I'd be interested in your views.

10 years ago @ http://www.belfasttele... - North of Ireland needs... · 0 replies · -1 points

They were threatened with being thrown out of the eurozone, EU grants being withheld etc. I'm not defending their pre-crash policies but the troika were more than complicit.

10 years ago @ http://www.belfasttele... - North of Ireland needs... · 0 replies · 0 points

Apart from what I said in my reply to bigchiefally I'd add that only the Tory backbenchers and UKIP object to membership of the EU - an imperialist hangover. We never hear big business calling for withdrawal and Cameron makes the occasional right noises to placate the anti-EU brigade. Strange you should mention the rights of the consumer and the individual as these have been central to capitalism since the 18th century.

The source of British tension with the EU is that Frankfurt and Paris would like to regulate the 'city' whereas the UK right wing want it to continue to run amok.

10 years ago @ http://www.belfasttele... - North of Ireland needs... · 2 replies · 0 points

It's hardly socialist to it's core bigchiefally, it's not socialist at all. They bullied the PIGs into bailing out the banks (so the rich were ensured their return) lending them the money to do so on the understanding they cut their public service spending. The economic policies of the PIGs and other EU and western countries were reckless yet fully endorsed by the EU, ECB and IMF. The UK was no different, they all deregulated the financial sector to create a credit boom that soon went bust. Inequality increased at a horrifying rate - hardly socialism. The EU/US trade deal is an attempt to prevent EU countries from using nationalised services as all service provision will have to be put out to tender.

10 years ago @ http://www.belfasttele... - Gerry Adams \'pulled t... · 0 replies · +2 points

Hi crownesq,

"I don't agree with any Marxist thinking..."

Be more specific, Marx critique of capitalism is even used by capitalists. Do you disagree with his philosophical works, his economic theory or his political analysis? Assuming you mean communism Marx did not specify how a communist state should function but I would say Cuba and Venezuela apply Marxist theories successfully and the Soviet Union and China did in the past. Corruption brought down the USSR as we can see with the oil and gas magnates.

"The financial sector may well have caused the crisis but individual greed did not help."

The greed was monopolised by the bankers and global corporations. The government could have stepped in at any point and regulated to minimize the risk. No matter how greedy ordinary people were they could not have bankrupt the country. Thatcher claimed that 'greed is good' and 'buy to let mortgages encouraged and abetted greed and led to the housing boom and bust.

"Don't know how you make money from cutting public services must be a new economic concept I haven't heard about!!!"

Tax cuts and bank bailouts for the rich funded by public service cuts.

"Since around 90% of people are still working it is difficult to see how a massive public works programme would work but then it works in North Korea so why not give it a go. Irrespective of what government spends it's money on and do remember it does keep a lot of people in jobs the choices between right and left wing governments does not differ alot."

Those two sentences contradict each other and North Korea is not Marxist or communist it's a dictatorship. Furthermore I would rank the Tories and new Labour as right of centre. A publicly funded house building programme would reduce house prices by its effect on the supply side. It would also reduce rents but personally I'd like to see them capped.

"The main thing about social welfare reform is that after Gordon Brown's failed programme of redistribution we have ended up with a disproportionate number of people claiming benefits, trapped in poverty and no alternatives. UK and Ireland are still paying well above the European average and that is a level set by countries who are predominantly socialist or social democratic."

Sixty per cent of benefits go to pensioners of the rest most is paid to people in work. Tax credits are a subsidy to employers and housing benefit is a subsidy to landlords. Funny how real income has to be subsidised when the trade unions have been dis-empowered. UK and Irish benefit payments are lower than Germany, other central European and the Nordic countries. Can you show your evidence?

"After working more than thirty years in government I am afraid your marxist path is not the way out of this problem."

After the global financial sector has been bailed out to the tune of trillions of dollars I'll not take your word for it.

Take care.

10 years ago @ http://www.belfasttele... - No \'amnesia\' about U... · 0 replies · +10 points

"Who's oppressing the likes of the fleggers right now?"

The DUP and OUP - feeding their sectarian paranoia while starving them of a real future. Deprived protestants have more in common with deprived catholics than with these self serving frauds. Divide and rule has worked a treat here. :(

"We might be able to argue that no one is helping them..."


10 years ago @ http://www.belfasttele... - No \'amnesia\' about U... · 0 replies · +4 points

"The working classes do and always did the bidding of their political masters when push comes to shove. For example doing their dirty work fighting in other peoples countries where they have no right to be, thus oppressing other working classes."

I call that economic conscription but you're right there is a lack of class consciousness.

PS ...I thumbed you up too.