Report paints UK as the sick man of Europe


#1

Originally published at: http://boingboing.net/2016/10/03/report-paints-uk-as-the-sick-m.html


#2

Interesting… last time this language was employed:


#3

At this point, I see no reason to ever go back.


#4

“Lets remove regulation on products so we can’t sell them where the regulation exists!”
-Said no one ever.


#5

That was the first time this term was used. Nearly every european country has been called “sick man of Europe” at least once.


#6

I think the UK was poorly run, especially by all that Peerage, for centuries. The only thing that kept it from crashing and burning was all the tribute coming from the colonies.


#7

Fair enough point there…


#8

Comparing nations in different stages of economic development by gdp growth is one of my stranger pet peeves. I mean, look, the UK is clearly no Slovakia or Malta, but maybe starting out as the second largest economy in Europe makes it harder to grow as fast?

I was curious about the data, Wikipedia only goes back to 2005, but 2005-2015 the UK was middle of the pack for GDP growth, ahead of that other economic laggard Germany. The only reason I can think that pushing that range back 5 years hurts the UK so much would be the dotcom bust. That’s another pet peeve of mine, the tops of bubbles and the depths of depressions seem to be particularly inaccurate measures of underlying economic health, why do we insist on measuring everything in relation to them?

(I don’t actually have particularly strong opinions on Brexit or Britain’s economy, but I did get a overwhelming urge of “someone’s wrong on the internet” looking at the statistics cited)


#9

It’s Brexit Bullshit, but brought to you by the products our finest private schools so it must be good. Floreat Etonia!


#10

In fact I believe this to be a mistake. In the end the Empire was unsupportable. As with banking, housing and the stock market, the Empire was basically a means of wealth transfer from the poor to the rich, filtered through the colonies and the rest of the Empire. The poor paid taxes to fund the Army and the Navy, and bought the products, while the rich profited.
In relative terms Britain may have been at its richest in the last decade of the 19th century and the first decade of the 20th - when it provided so much of the world’s shipping capacity and exported so much technology. But the profits of the sugar plantations, the cotton, jute, gold and diamonds went to settlers and a relatively small number of aristocratic families.
Perhaps coincidentally this was the time of the great marine engineers.


#11

Shrinkage is hard for a country, but, unless they go through a panicky fascist stage where they blame others for their declining fortunes, they might turn into The Shire… A happy simple people wearing colorful local costumes and doing ring-dances on special holidays. Or it could turn into Saruman’s perversion of the Shire, with cinder-block housing, a stifling bureaucracy, and children singing patriotic songs in school.


#12

UK apparently being the empire of tax havens does not pay for the country and only serves a minority with the ignoble royals at the top, really quite disgusting.


#13

Yeah, I agree something is odd with that economic analysis. If the UK economy is so sick, then why is unemployment so low at 4.9%? Compare with the Euro zone, where average unemployment is over twice as high and where GDP only recently surpassed the previous top in 2008 (it only took 8 years!).


#14

Sadly, this perfectly reflects what I’m seeing every day here.


#15

Always, always, always check the definitions and calculations before you believe.

And then, remember that politicians always, always, always lie and manipulate to get what they want.


#16

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