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  #16  
Old 14th June 2019
Jim Ford Jim Ford is offline
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Re: 10 Hour Working Week

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Originally Posted by wornish View Post
This really proves our politicians have lost the plot.

https://metro.co.uk/2019/06/10/plan-...abour-9878450/
Not the way I read it:

"unprecedented decrease in the economic activity" means to me that a 10 hour week could be forced on whichever party is in government.

Jim
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Old 14th June 2019
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Re: 10 Hour Working Week

I can see the wider point that the report's authors are trying to make.

In the developed world the average person lives about 80 years and during that time consumes more resources and produces more pollution than the planet can sustain in the longer term. If we do nothing then the biosphere will at some point collapse to the point where human habitation becomes marginalised or even impossible. That will be very bad news for anyone who has to live through it.

So what do we do? We could carry on as we are and just let it happen. Leave it as a problem for future generations and let events take their course. Given how short-term humans can be (especially politically), maybe that's what'll happen.

But we could try to change our behaviour and avert the catastrophe. What would that mean? Well, we need to change our behaviour - and behaviour of human populations at large is called economics. Work is a product of how we run our economic system and right now the economic system measures lots of things but it cares nothing for the long-term survival of our biosphere. Probably the only way to fix the environmental car crash we're heading for is to change our economics to look at things differently.

Our current economic system incentivises us to work. But the work we do is consuming the planet's resources and producing pollution and greenhouse gases in large quantities. Why is it "a priori" wrong to look at how we might make a new economic system where work is not like this? There's nothing sacred about work - it's something most of us do for 40 years or so of our lives and we do it partly to put food on the table and a roof over our heads, but a bigger part of the reason we do it is because the economic machine tells us we need more - cars, cameras, holidays, jewellery, ... But do we really need those things to fulfill our 80 years?

I understand that this sort of thinking sounds very pie in the sky, but carrying on as we are is not sustainable. Either we figure out a way to change it in a controlled way, or the geophysics/chemistry/biology will force us to do it in a very unpleasant way.
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  #18  
Old 15th June 2019
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Re: 10 Hour Working Week

Could not agree more...………..

Alas, we are at the point of no return. Its going to be very difficult to halt the onward march of need and greed. We in the "West" could just possibly do without new luxurious objects, but those of a poorer way of life want the cars, washing machines, indeed cameras.

As a human race, we are ignoring the needs of the biodiversity around us, we have lost 40 million birds in the last 50 years, 75% of insects in the last 30 years. Habitat and climate change are largely responsible. The former we know for certain, and whatever you believe is the cause of the latter, its definitely on its way...…….

We have an exhibit at the WWT Llanelli at the moment, especially commissioned by WWT, a bell encased in several glass cubes. When it tolls, warning us humans, the casing dulls the sound, an analogy of our disconnect from the needs of our environment...……….



Climate change warning bell




Bouke Groen and the warning bell


(The Dutch artist who designed the bell)

by Mark Johnson, on Flickr

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  #19  
Old 16th June 2019
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Re: 10 Hour Working Week

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Originally Posted by pdk42 View Post
I can see the wider point that the report's authors are trying to make.

Our current economic system incentivises us to work. But the work we do is consuming the planet's resources and producing pollution and greenhouse gases in large quantities. Why is it "a priori" wrong to look at how we might make a new economic system where work is not like this? There's nothing sacred about work - it's something most of us do for 40 years or so of our lives and we do it partly to put food on the table and a roof over our heads, but a bigger part of the reason we do it is because the economic machine tells us we need more - cars, cameras, holidays, jewellery, ... But do we really need those things to fulfill our 80 years?

I understand that this sort of thinking sounds very pie in the sky, but carrying on as we are is not sustainable. Either we figure out a way to change it in a controlled way, or the geophysics/chemistry/biology will force us to do it in a very unpleasant way.
I agree 100% with your analysis Paul. The concept of working just ten hours a week is perhaps rather too extreme, and would only really apply to manufacturing industry, but the point is well made nonetheless.

I cannot see, for example, how the medical profession, teachers, electricity generation and so forth could ever work for just ten hours a week. And how would that fit in with those in manufacturing industries effectively losing at least half of their income?

That said, why do we all work in the way that we do? Most people in the western world have roofs over their heads and certainly more than enough to eat. In fact many could be described as money rich and time poor, so what are we all working for?

ďIt is not the creation of wealth that is wrong, but the love of money for its own sake

There is greed, and the love of money for its own sake, but in the main I would say that most people work to feed the insatiable 'needs' and desires created by clever marketing of consumer goods and an increasingly throwaway society.

I am sure that many of those working 'at the coal face' as it were would be happy to work fewer hours in return for more free time, but their management and shareholders have only one goal, and that is to maximise wealth even though they have no need for it.

Whatever happens, if we do drastically reduce industrial output to save the planet, we will need to be more creative in funding those whose work and income will be reduced as a result. Simply paying for the shortfall out of the public purse can only be a very short term option. I wonder what Jeremy's plan would be?
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  #20  
Old 16th June 2019
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Re: 10 Hour Working Week

Sounds a bit fake, to me. Coming from the Metro, itís actually a bit worrying. Itís a strange world we live in. The formerly quite Orwellian Sky News is now my most trusted news source in terms of the balance it presents.

That said, I donít see how a Corbyn government would work. He is very much the flip side of the Tories: everything for those who voted for me; nothing for the rest.
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Old 16th June 2019
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Re: 10 Hour Working Week

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Sounds a bit fake, to me. Coming from the Metro, itís actually a bit worrying. Itís a strange world we live in. The formerly quite Orwellian Sky News is now my most trusted news source in terms of the balance it presents.

That said, I donít see how a Corbyn government would work. He is very much the flip side of the Tories: everything for those who voted for me; nothing for the rest.
"The problem with socialism is that you eventually run out of other people's money."

We have seen that happen many times in the past, but I fear a Corbyn government could take that concept to a whole new level of fiscal incompetence.
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Old 16th June 2019
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Re: 10 Hour Working Week

Corbyn promises free everything if you would just vote for him. He has a free money tree in his allotment so we will all be fine.

Oh and he also said Venezuela had a great socialist model !
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Re: 10 Hour Working Week

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Originally Posted by Naughty Nigel View Post
"The problem with socialism is that you eventually run out of other people's money."

We have seen that happen many times in the past, but I fear a Corbyn government could take that concept to a whole new level of fiscal incompetence.
Tell that to the Tories. Theyíve become one of Socialismís greatest practitioners, in their own way.
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Re: 10 Hour Working Week

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Corbyn promises free everything if you would just vote for him. He has a free money tree in his allotment so we will all be fine.

Oh and he also said Venezuela had a great socialist model !
I seem to recall May also had a money tree to give a good shake, when she needed extremists to prop up her minority government.
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Re: 10 Hour Working Week

May leaves her job with the biggest spending commitment of any PM since WW2. It's estimated that to be carbon neutral will cost the UK 1 Trillion pounds and as usual, that will be an underestimate. Shame the rest of the world won't be following but at least we can be proud that we tried.

Good job we will only be working 10 hours a week will need the rest of the time to walk to work making windmills and tending our allotments.
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Old 16th June 2019
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Re: 10 Hour Working Week

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I am sure that many of those working 'at the coal face' as it were would be happy to work fewer hours in return for more free time
My experience in industry was that for many a shorter working week meant more opportunity to work overtime!

Jim
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Re: 10 Hour Working Week

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Tell that to the Tories. They’ve become one of Socialism’s greatest practitioners, in their own way.
I agree with that. You really couldn't make it up. But a Corbyn led government could be even worse if that is possible.

At least we do still have a defence industry I suppose.

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My experience in industry was that for many a shorter working week meant more opportunity to work overtime!

Jim
Well yes; there is always that opportunity. Every cloud and all that.

Do you remember 'the good old days' when strikes were often planned immediately before bank holidays?
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Re: 10 Hour Working Week

On the subject of shorter working weeks, disposable income and all that, we made the mistake of wandering into John Lewis on Saturday in search of a new electric kettle to replace our Kenwood which has packed up and cannot be repaired. (Elements are no longer replaceable I'm told.)

Anyhow, I naively thought that a kettle was a kettle and that its sole purpose was to boil water to make a brew. It is around six years since we bought the Kenwood, which cost about £40 on special offer from Sainsbury's, so I was quite taken aback to see Smeg kettles amongst others selling for £130 plus.

So much for boiling the water to make tea, or letting it cool a moment to make coffee, many of these new machines had multiple temperature settings with digital displays for green tea, white tea, black tea, coffee and something else I cannot even pronounce!

We enjoy a coffee so we ended up spending £80 on one of the less elaborate examples that lets us set 85, 90, 95 Centigrade and boiling; but it did leave me wondering quite what the point of all this is. Has the kitchen become some kind of fashion parade for the nouveau-riche and others with more money than sense?

In case you are wondering I was more swayed by the JL five year warranty than any particular Features and Benefits.
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  #29  
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Re: 10 Hour Working Week

I would be interested to hear what you think of the various temperature settings for making coffee, I always use the "boil it and wait a bit" method but it would be nice to be a bit more scientific. And I'm sure my binary kettle (if it isn't on, it's off) will die some time.

John
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Old 4 Weeks Ago
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Re: 10 Hour Working Week

We have one of these:

https://www.argos.co.uk/product/9016710

It cost £8, but is now down to £5.

Makes perfect boiled water!

Jim
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