UK Whinings, a third rate power?

Discussion in 'Europe and Russia' started by Ray, Mar 17, 2012.

  1. Tianshan

    Tianshan Regular Member

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    i don't know what gyan is, and clearly debt does not weaken a country as much as you think. the usa for example has the biggest actual debt yet is still the only superpower in the world.

    all i will say is that i consider the "old powers" still far ahead of the "emerging powers" in comprehensive national strength (which is the sum of all types of power).

    though maybe india is an exception.
     
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  2. civfanatic

    civfanatic Retired Moderator

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    India has the world's second largest agricultural output. It is the third largest producer and consumer of electricity. It is the fourth largest producer of steel, and the second largest producer of cement.

    These are "hard" statistics which tell much more about a country's "hard" power than a meaningless, intangible statistic like nominal GDP, which should not even be used to compare economic outputs of two countries. In total purchasing power, as well as in the statistics mentioned above, Britain is nowhere near India.
     
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  3. Tianshan

    Tianshan Regular Member

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    so i guess you agree with ray that britain is a "third-rate power" and far behind china and india.

    i do not. underestimating other powers is possibly the most dangerous thing you can do.

    anyway, china and india are clearly not friends. so if you think it's fine to underestimate other powers, then ok.
     
  4. The Messiah

    The Messiah Bow Before Me! Elite Member

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    power ?

    more like a lapdog of the yanks.
     
  5. trackwhack

    trackwhack Tihar Jail Banned

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    again, little knowledge, bad thing. The USA's national debt is a comfortable 300% when compared to the UK. And we are talking about the UK. So dont dilute the discussion with tripe. Just two posts back you were all perked up that you were right. what happenned now? shirking back into your hole?

    regarding the impact of debt. Understand, beyond a point servicing the debt becomes more expensive than paying off principal. there is only one solution to such a situation. DEVALUING your currency. and when that happens .... shudder!

    I am tired of explaining this to mental midgets like you. sigh!:hair:
     
    Last edited: May 16, 2012
  6. civfanatic

    civfanatic Retired Moderator

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    Yeah, I do. Glad that we've clarified that.


    This is not the 19th century. The Royal Navy can no longer sail to Calcutta or Hong Kong, land a few troops, and expect to win a war. We live in a new world, and some of us have woken up.
     
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  7. Tianshan

    Tianshan Regular Member

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    unlike you guys, i respect the fact that you are the hosts here and we are the guests. unlike your forrays onto ARRSE, or your treatment of the chinese on this forum.

    so trackwhack can continue saying things about "retarded" or "shirking" or "mental" when he has no other argument, but the facts are clear. britain is not a third-rate power.
     
    Last edited: May 16, 2012
  8. trackwhack

    trackwhack Tihar Jail Banned

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    thats weak man. you are the one who started questioning the numbers that I put down. when you got found out your face goes red. let me pass you a hanky. :pound:
     
  9. Tianshan

    Tianshan Regular Member

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    good, then i will agree that india is a true power.

    while countries such as britain are third-rate powers and countries like china are on the verge of collapse and breaking up.

    happy dreaming.
     
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  10. LurkerBaba

    LurkerBaba Staff Administrator

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    I agree with English Media, you missed another extremely important point - Control over protestant Christianity.

    Ability to pull in immigrants is due to their economic status, important thing is the ability to digest and "Americanize" those immigrants.

    However, Euros may completely "Americanize" overtime, but for Indians 'phir be dil hai hindustani' :p
     
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  11. Adux

    Adux Senior Member Senior Member

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    Trackwhack,

    I dont understand the use of debating with the people who have no base level understanding of the topic at hand. Wether it is economics, science or realities of a countries like India, I have lost patience with such lot more times than I count or like. They know a little or rather heard of something here and there, and a little bit of wikipedia, we have a genius and arm-chair whatever. I really like your replies, but I rather you concentrated your efforts in more posts about your own thoughts on the subject than educating an idiot.
     
  12. trackwhack

    trackwhack Tihar Jail Banned

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    I try to base my debates on numbers/data. Most people cant handle that. I will try to refrain from educating others. :)
     
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  13. Ray

    Ray The Chairman Defence Professionals Moderator

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    India is plagued by corruption and horrid citizenship and all that and so we must learn (implied) from the worthies of the first world.

    How about this?

    Call that governance?

    And such worthy citizens and an example for us all in nations that are so horrid, right?
     
  14. Ray

    Ray The Chairman Defence Professionals Moderator

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    And what about this?

    DWP 'did not do enough to stop fraud among welfare-to-work companies'

    National Audit Office finds Department for Work and Pensions knew risk of fraud but did not introduce checks


    Total losses to fraud since 2006 averaged £129,000 a year, compared with a total spend of £829m on employment schemes in 2011-2012, the report found.


    The National Audit Office has said the Department for Work and Pensions did "not do enough" to stem hundreds of thousands of pounds worth of fraud among private companies administering back-to-work schemes, even though it knew the risks.

    The 44-page report found that fraudulent behaviour by several companies engaged in multimillion-pound contracts had cost taxpayers £773,000, of which £365,000 had still not been returned to the government.

    The NAO said more than half of all documented fraudulent activity had occurred under Labour's new deal programmes, which ended in 2011, and the newer flagship scheme called the work programme had "largely addressed the main weaknesses" in previous programmes.

    But it warned that "some risks still remain" for smaller current programmes such as mandatory work activity because it had no means for "systematic independent checks".

    The DWP has announced it has cancelled a £1m work contract with the embattled company A4e. In a statement to parliament it said that after its own investigation into practices at the company, it had found "no evidence of fraud" but felt it was "too risky" to allow the contract for organising mandatory work placements in the south-east region to continue. A4e says it still operates 16 other contracts for several back-to-work schemes and these will remain in place.

    However, the NAO heavily criticised the investigation, saying the DWP's investigatory team "did not see vital evidence" before coming to its conclusions.

    "The team did not request relevant internal audit reports including the A4e internal audit paper later passed to the chair of the committee of public accounts, setting out evidence of nine possible cases of fraud and seven of improper practice by A4e's staff."

    The NAO said A4e's own internal audit had uncovered that during a spot check around 7.5% of cases involved potential fraud. In February Thames Valley police made a number of arrests of A4e staff at its office in Windsor and are currently investigating fraud. The company's multimillionaire owner, Emma Harrison, has recently resigned as chair.

    Margaret Hodge, chair of the House of Commons public accounts committee, said she was "truly shocked by the glaring holes in the department's detection and prevention of fraud in its employment programmes".

    She said: "The department knew fraud was a problem, but missed looking at the obvious sources of evidence. They didn't even look at the internal audit reports which point to the real risk of systematic fraud and bad practice in A4e."

    She added: "For too long, the department has buried its head in the sand and it now needs to complete and publish a full investigation. My committee will not rest until we are satisfied that officials are committed to exposing and stamping out fraud and bad practice in its employment programmes."

    Fraud, the report said, was also apparent in other companies as allegations against A4e represented just under 10% of cases where fraud was substantiated.

    Over 40 cases occurred in other back-to-work companies, representing total losses since 2006 of a quarter of a million pounds.

    Out of a total of 126 reported cases of potential fraud the DWP concluded that there was no case to answer in 75 cases. Of the remaining cases, the NAO report said, "24 were of false representation [fraud], 22 of non-compliance" and five were still under investigation. The total losses to fraud since 2006 averaged £129,000 a year, which it described as a "small" loss in comparison to a total expenditure of £829m on employment schemes in 2011-2012 alone.

    In a damning paragraph the NAO said: "The department [DWP] did not do enough to quantify and address the fraud risks in the design of new deal and other legacy programmes. The department knew of the fraud risks in programmes, including new deal, but did not introduce compensating controls. In particular, there were no checks with employers to verify claims that people had been placed into work."

    The NAO also published a sample of current complaints of alleged fraud centred around the work programme, which included:

    • Jobseekers being bullied into signing agreements to supply prospective employers' details for the provider to claim a job outcome payment.

    • Providers pursuing claimants for the contact details of their new employer despite the claimant gaining work without a provider's help.

    • Providers compelling claimants to work in inappropriate, unpaid placements.

    • Providers sending clients covertly to non-work programme charities for free help without paying the charity for it.

    • Providers attaching claimants to the work programme who have found employment since being referred to the programme by Jobcentre Plus but did not notify the provider of that prospective employment.

    The employment minister, Chris Grayling, said: "It's good to hear the National Audit Office confirm that the work programme has strong controls in place.

    "Previous schemes like the new deal lacked strong enough controls and taxpayers didn't get value for money. We have learned those lessons and won't allow public money to be wasted.

    "Our providers are required to have stringent controls to guard against fraud, and we have a thorough system of checks covering every provider in every contract. When providers fall below the standards of governance we require we will take appropriate action – that is why we have terminated our mandatory work activity contract with A4e and will consider what else we can do to address any remaining risks.

    "The report shows that levels of reported fraud are low, but we will always consider what more we can do to protect taxpayers' money."

    A spokesperson for the department added that it had "acted in an appropriate and proportionate way" with regards to its A4e investigation.

    DWP 'did not do enough to stop fraud among welfare-to-work companies' | Politics | The Guardian
     
  15. Ray

    Ray The Chairman Defence Professionals Moderator

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    Forgive me for disagreeing.

    Those from Blighty here are not idiots by any shade of comparison.

    To see idiots you have to visit their Forum!

    Those on that forum is what the Americans would say - The Real McCoy! ;)


    When you feel real down in the dumps, visit them and have a good laugh!

    It will make your day laughing at how illiterate and ignorant people can be.

    They have a goldfish bowl existence knowing nothing about the world!

    They prove education is indeed at a premium up there in their land!

    It will cheer you up that even such types proliferate the world!
     
    Last edited: May 16, 2012
  16. ajtr

    ajtr Veteran Member Veteran Member

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    Deny the British empire's crimes? No, we ignore them
    New evidence of colonial atrocities has not changed the U.K.'s ability to disregard it.

    There is one thing you can say for the Holocaust deniers: at least they know what they are denying. In order to sustain the lies they tell, they must engage in strenuous falsification. To dismiss Britain's colonial atrocities, no such effort is required. Most people appear to be unaware that anything needs to be denied.


    The story of benign imperialism, whose overriding purpose was not to seize land, labour and commodities but to teach the natives English, table manners and double-entry bookkeeping, is a myth that has been carefully propagated by the right-wing press. But it draws its power from a remarkable national ability to airbrush and disregard our past.

    The recent revelations, that the British government systematically destroyed the documents detailing mistreatment of its colonial subjects, and that the Foreign Office then lied about a secret cache of files containing lesser revelations, is by any standards a big story. But it was either ignored or consigned to a footnote by most of the British press. I was unable to find any mention of the secret archive on the Telegraph's website. The Mail's only coverage, as far as I can determine, was an opinion piece by a historian called Lawrence James, who used the occasion to insist that any deficiencies in the management of the colonies were the work of “a sprinkling of misfits, incompetents and bullies,” while everyone else was “dedicated, loyal and disciplined.”

    RESEARCH BY ELKINS

    The British government's suppression of evidence was scarcely necessary. Even when the documentation of great crimes is abundant, it is not denied but simply ignored. In an article for the Daily Mail in 2010, for example, the historian Dominic Sandbrook announced that “Britain's empire stands out as a beacon of tolerance, decency and the rule of law … Nor did Britain countenance anything like the dreadful tortures committed in French Algeria.” Could he really have been unaware of the history he is disavowing?

    Caroline Elkins, a professor at Harvard, spent nearly 10 years compiling the evidence contained in her book Britain's Gulag: the Brutal End of Empire in Kenya. She started her research with the belief that the British account of the suppression of the Kikuyu's Mau Mau revolt in the 1950s was largely accurate. Then she discovered that most of the documentation had been destroyed. She worked through the remaining archives, and conducted 600 hours of interviews with Kikuyu survivors — rebels and loyalists — and British guards, settlers and officials. Her book is fully and thoroughly documented. It won the Pulitzer prize. But as far as Sandbrook, James and other imperial apologists are concerned, it might as well never have been written.

    Elkins reveals that the British detained not 80,000 Kikuyu, as the official histories maintain, but almost the entire population of one-and-a-half million people, in camps and fortified villages. There, thousands were beaten to death or died from malnutrition, typhoid, tuberculosis and dysentery. In some camps almost all the children died.

    The inmates were used as slave labour. Above the gates were edifying slogans, such as “Labour and freedom” and “He who helps himself will also be helped.” Loudspeakers broadcast the national anthem and patriotic exhortations. People deemed to have disobeyed the rules were killed in front of the others. The survivors were forced to dig mass graves, which were quickly filled. Unless you have a strong stomach I advise you to skip the next paragraph.

    DETAILS OF INTERROGATION, TORTURE

    Interrogation under torture was widespread. Many of the men were anally raped, using knives, broken bottles, rifle barrels, snakes and scorpions. A favourite technique was to hold a man upside down, his head in a bucket of water, while sand was rammed into his rectum with a stick. Women were gang-raped by the guards. People were mauled by dogs and electrocuted. The British devised a special tool which they used for first crushing and then ripping off testicles. They used pliers to mutilate women's breasts. They cut off inmates' ears and fingers and gouged out their eyes. They dragged people behind Land Rovers until their bodies disintegrated. Men were rolled up in barbed wire and kicked around the compound.

    Elkins provides a wealth of evidence to show that the horrors of the camps were endorsed at the highest levels. The Governor of Kenya, Sir Evelyn Baring, regularly intervened to prevent the perpetrators from being brought to justice. The Colonial Secretary, Alan Lennox-Boyd, repeatedly lied to the House of Commons. This is a vast, systematic crime for which there has been no reckoning. No matter. Even those who acknowledge that something happened write as if Elkins and her work did not exist. In the Telegraph, Daniel Hannan maintains that just 11 people were beaten to death. Apart from that, “1,090 terrorists were hanged and as many as 71,000 detained without due process.”

    The British did not do body counts, and most victims were buried in unmarked graves. But it is clear that tens of thousands, possibly hundreds of thousands, of Kikuyu died in the camps and during the round-ups. Hannan's is one of the most blatant examples of revisionism I have ever encountered.

    Without explaining what this means, Lawrence James concedes that “harsh measures” were sometimes used, but he maintains that “while the Mau Mau were terrorising the Kikuyu, veterinary surgeons in the Colonial Service were teaching tribesmen how to deal with cattle plagues.” The theft of the Kikuyu's land and livestock, the starvation and killings, the widespread support among the Kikuyu for the Mau Mau's attempt to reclaim their land and freedom: all vanish into thin air. Both men maintain that the British government acted to stop any abuses as soon as they were revealed.

    What I find remarkable is not that they write such things, but that these distortions go almost unchallenged. The myths of the empire are so well-established that we appear to blot out countervailing stories even as they are told. As evidence from the manufactured Indian famines of the 1870s and from the treatment of other colonies accumulates, British imperialism emerges as no better and in some cases even worse than the imperialism practised by other nations. Yet the myth of the civilising mission remains untroubled by the evidence. (A fully referenced version of this article can be found at George Monbiot) — © Guardian Newspapers Limited, 2012
     
  17. LurkerBaba

    LurkerBaba Staff Administrator

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    Old article, but a good assessment:

    For 300 years Britain has outsourced mayhem. Finally it's coming home | George Monbiot | Comment is free | The Guardian



    Why now? It's not as if this is the first time Britain's representatives have been caught out. The history of governments in all countries is the history of scandal, as those who rise to the top are generally the most ambitious, ruthless and unscrupulous people politics can produce. Pushing their own interests to the limit, they teeter perennially on the brink of disgrace, except when they fly clean over the edge. So why does the current ballyhoo threaten to destroy not only the government but also our antediluvian political system?

    The past 15 years have produced the cash-for-questions racket, the Hinduja and Ecclestone affairs, the lies and fabrications that led to the invasion of Iraq, the forced abandonment of the BAE corruption probe, the cash-for-honours caper and the cash-for-amendments scandal. By comparison to the outright subversion of the functions of government in some of these cases, the is small beer. Any one of them should have prompted the sweeping political reforms we are now debating. But they didn't.

    The expenses scandal, by contrast, could kill the Labour party. It might also force politicians of all parties to address our unjust voting system, the unelected Lords, the excessive power of the executive, the legalised blackmail used by the whips, and a score of further anachronisms and injustices. Why is it different?

    I believe that the current political crisis has little to do with the expenses scandal, still less with Gordon Brown's leadership. It arises because our economic system can no longer extract wealth from other nations. For the past 300 years, the revolutions and reforms experienced by almost all other developed countries have been averted in Britain by foreign remittances.

    The social unrest that might have transformed our politics was instead outsourced to our colonies and unwilling trading partners.
    The rebellions in Ireland, India, China, the Caribbean, Egypt, South Africa, Malaya, Kenya, Iran and other places we subjugated were the price of political peace in Britain. After decolonisation, our plunder of other nations was sustained by the banks. Now, for the first time in three centuries, they can no longer deliver, and we must at last confront our problems.

    There will probably never be a full account of the robbery this country organised, but there are a few snapshots. In his book Capitalism and Colonial Production, Hamza Alavi estimates that the resource flow from India to Britain between 1793 and 1803 was in the order of £2m a year, the equivalent of many billions today. The economic drain from India, he notes, "has not only been a major factor in India's impoverishment … it has also been a very significant factor in the industrial revolution in Britain". As Ralph Davis observes in The Industrial Revolution and British Overseas Trade, from the 1760s onwards India's wealth "bought the national debt back from the Dutch and others … leaving Britain nearly free from overseas indebtedness when it came to face the great French wars from 1793".

    In France by contrast, as Eric Hobsbawm notes in The Age of Revolution, "the financial troubles of the monarchy brought matters to a head". In 1788 half of France's national expenditure was used to service its debt: the "American War and its debt broke the back of the monarchy".

    Even as the French were overthrowing the ancien regime, Britain's landed classes were able to strengthen their economic power, seizing common property from the country's poor by means of enclosure. Partly as a result of remittances from India and the Caribbean, the economy was booming and the state had the funds to ride out political crises. Later, after smashing India's own industrial capacity, Britain forced that country to become a major export market for our manufactured goods, sustaining industrial employment here (and avoiding social unrest) long after our products and processes became uncompetitive.

    Colonial plunder permitted the British state to balance its resource deficits as well. For some 200 years a river of food flowed into this country from such places as Ireland, India and the Caribbean.
    In The Blood Never Dried, John Newsinger reveals that in 1748 Jamaica alone sent 17,400 tons of sugar to Britain; by 1815 this had risen to 73,800. It was all produced by stolen labour.

    Just as grain was sucked out of Ireland at the height of its great famine, so Britain continued to drain India of food during its catastrophic hungers. In Late Victorian Holocausts, Mike Davis shows that between 1876 and 1877 wheat exports to the UK from India doubled as subsistence there collapsed, and several million died of starvation. In the North-Western provinces famine was wholly engineered by British policy, as good harvests were exported to offset poor English production in 1876 and 1877.

    Britain, in other words, outsourced famine as well as social unrest.
    There was terrible poverty in this country in the second half of the 19th century, but not mass starvation. The bad harvest of 1788 helped precipitate the French revolution, but the British state avoided such hazards. Others died on our behalf.

    In the late 19th century, Davis shows, Britain's vast deficits with the United States, Germany and its white dominions were balanced by huge annual surpluses with India and (as a result of the opium trade) China. For a generation "the starving Indian and Chinese peasantries … braced the entire system of international settlements, allowing England's continued financial supremacy to temporarily co-exist with its relative industrial decline". Britain's trade surpluses with India allowed the City to become the world's financial capital.

    Its role in British colonisation was not a passive one. The bankruptcy, and subsequent British takeover, of Egypt in 1882 was hastened by a loan from Roths-child's bank whose execution, Newsinger records, amounted to "fraud on a massive scale". -Jardine Matheson, once the biggest narco-trafficking outfit in history (it dominated the Chinese opium trade), later formed a major investment bank, Jardine Fleming. It was taken over by JP Morgan Chase in 2000.

    We lost our colonies, but the plunder has continued by other means. As Joseph Stiglitz shows in Globalisation and its Discontents, the capital liberalisation forced on Asian economies by the IMF permitted northern traders to loot hundreds of billions of dollars, precipitating the Asian financial crisis of 1997-98. Poorer nations have also been strong-armed into a series of amazingly one-sided treaties and commitments, such as trade-related investment measures, bilateral investment agreements and the EU's economic partnership agreements. If you have ever wondered how a small, densely populated country which produces very little supports itself, I would urge you to study these asymmetric arrangements.

    But now, as John Lanchester demonstrates in a fascinating essay in the London Review of Books, the City could be fatally wounded. The nation that relied on financial services may take generations to recover from their collapse. The great British adventure – three centuries spent pillaging the labour, wealth and resources of other countries – is over. We cannot accept this, and seek gleeful revenge on a government that can no longer insulate us from reality.
     
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  18. LurkerBaba

    LurkerBaba Staff Administrator

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    Posts moved
     
  19. Scalieback

    Scalieback Defence Professionals Defence Professionals

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    If you want to buy Russian, that's up to you. Brit Armd Divns were under US Comd but they never 'rolled together as a pack'

    The only thing to have destroyed a C2 is another C2, 'blue on blue'. M1's have been disabled by RPG's etc unlike C2's.

    Maybe we'd go back to what the Romans used? Times move on and it's the most commonly used language, albeit second language in a lot of cases. All languages have their common routes as do numerals etc.
     
  20. Scalieback

    Scalieback Defence Professionals Defence Professionals

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    A 'power' that's prepared to defend it's global interests such as a group of islands thousands of miles away? By itself btw. At the same time deploying 9k troops not far from you, supporting them and bringing them back for R&R etc?

    Unlike a country that's giving up part of their sovereign territory to a northern aggressor.

    We may be called 'American Poodles' but we don't give up territory :taunt:
     

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