Boris Nikolayevich Yeltsin, 1931-2007

April 24th, 2007 § 0 comments § permalink

Not really a tosser in the same sense as the others, I don’t think anyway.
Not so much an evil dictator or a bigoted shit, more of an incompetent twat.

He had a colourful life at the top of Russian politics, coming to power in 1991 as the first President of the Russian Federation after the dissolution of the Soviet Union.
As President of the Russian Federation, Yeltsin was committed to opening up the country and taking it from a centrally-planned communist system to a market economy.
Due to various power struggles, which included a coup, which Boris famously defied with a speech stood atop a tank, and another instance of unrest where Yeltsin ordered a the shelling of the Russian White House, the economy was in extremely bad shape as a fool-hardy strategy of market liberalisation called the Washington Consensus, otherwise known as ‘Shock Therapy’, was embarked upon, on the advise of The USA IMF, World bank and US treasury..
From Wikipedia:

In January 1992, Gaidar convinced Yeltsin to introduce a program of “shock therapy” in Russia. On January 2, Yeltsin, acting as his own prime minister, ordered the liberalization of foreign trade, prices, and currency. At the same time, Yeltsin followed a policy of ‘macroeconomic stabilization,’ a harsh austerity regime designed to control inflation. Under Yeltsin’s stabilization program, interest rates were raised to extremely high levels to tighten money and restrict credit. To bring state spending and revenues into balance, Yeltsin raised new taxes heavily, cut back sharply on government subsidies to industry and construction, and made steep cuts to state welfare spending.

In early 1992, prices skyrocketed throughout Russia, and deep credit crunch shut down many industries and brought about a protracted depression. Many state enterprises shut down as they found themselves without orders or financing. The living standards of much of the population were devastated. In the 1990s Russia suffered an economic downturn more severe than the United States or Germany had undergone six decades earlier in the Great Depression.

In 1992, Yeltsin began another round of privatisations and to give it a boost, issued every one with a 10,000 ruble voucher to spend on shares of select Russian enterprises, but with most people having nothing and needing to food, clothing and heating, most of these vouchers were sold immediately ending up in a few hands, rather than the many.
Again in 1995, more privatisations came as the mounting Russian debt forced Boris to exchange stock shares for bank loans, which also bought him support for the elections that were approaching in Spring 1996. This gave valuable state assets, telecoms, energy, finance etc, the Russian Oligarchs, became some of Yeltsins most major backers of the election.

Boris Yeltsin. Sold Russia down the Swanny.

Labels: Dead Tossers

April 23rd, 2007 § 0 comments § permalink

Labels: United Kingdom

April 23rd, 2007 § 0 comments § permalink


Turkey Swizzler

April 19th, 2007 § 0 comments § permalink

Bernard Matthews, the Don of all things turkey is going to be receiving nearly £600,000 compensation for the loss of the healthy birds the company had to cull after the H5N1 Avian Flu virus was found at its Suffolk Farm.

Bernard Matthews will be receiving the money, which is calculated according to the market value of the birds, from the government.
From the fucking government.
What? Didn’t he have any insurance? Is he a not-for-dividend company like Network Rail?
No. Bernard Matthews Limited is a private company that produces over 7 million turkeys a year, so is the 160,000 it had to cull going to make dent so big that the company is going to go to the wall if it isn’t recompensed for the loss? I fucking doubt it.

This £600k is designed to act as an incentive to do the right thing and report a disease early.
Well, how about not getting a big suitcase full of case as a sweetener to do what a company is obligated to do and have the chairman and maybe the whole board do a stint of porridge if they don’t raise the alarm in good time? That would save a bucket load of taxpayers cash going to companies that should and can stand up on their own or shouldn’t have any trouble persuading the bank to extend its overdraft and at the same time it is easier to send directors to gaol, it might make the Captains of Industry behave a bit better, but I doubt it. It’ll probably only make them more devious.


Public Private Information

April 18th, 2007 § 0 comments § permalink

The Land Registry Online.

If you’re buying or selling a house or are just interested in property, you’ll be glad you visited Land Register Online

Oh. Why?

For properties you are interested in, you can download for only £3 each:

  • a title plan defining the property

Do go on…

  • a title register where you can find out who owns the house or land, price paid/value stated information if sold since April 2000 and any rights of way or restrictions on the land

Really! Anything else?

For properties you are interested in, you can also download:

  • all leases relating to the property (if referred to in the Register and available electronically) for £10 each
  • all other documents relating to the property (if referred to in the Register and available electronically) for a total of £5

That’s good isn’t it? For a few quid, anyone can find out all the details of a property.
On the Guide to Service we see what info it gives away:

What property details can I obtain?
The title register information will generally include:

* a description of the property
* who owns it
* mortgage Lender (if any)
* price paid/value stated (if registered since 1st April 2000)
* rights of way (not public rights of way) or other rights affecting the property
* restrictions or other conditions

But why should all this information be made publicly available? Call me paranoid, but the only reason I can think of, that is not a negative one, for someone to try and find out who owns a particular property is to buy it. But then if somebody wants to contact the owner of a property then write to the address. One doesn’t need to know the name of the owner to make an offer.
Whos business is it of what the property consists of, unless a dispute needs settling, like rights of way? If the property is involved in a dispute then the relevent people will have a copy of the registry details,or will be entitled to abtain a copy. If someone wants to buy it the they will find
The Land Register will TELL ANYBODY WHO YOUR MORTGAGE LENDER IS!! I am open to suggestions as to why various organisations would want to know (I can’t actually think of any right now, except maybe credit reference agencies(?)) but then if they have a valid reason, they can apply stating and proving why they need that info. But what use is this info to anybody? It is nothing to do with anybody.

But why would private information be made available for anybody?
Again on the Guide to Service link the reasons are given:

Why is this information useful to me?
Typically, you…

* want to look at the title register, title plan and/or a document referred to in the register of a property you own
* want to find out who owns a specific property
* want to discover the extent of a property
* are interested in buying an unoccupied property you have noticed and wish to approach the owner
* lease or rent a property and need to contact the landlord

Wouldn’t a better system, that keeps details private, be that the Land Register would forward the request to the owner?
Example of what you get for your money here.
I am all for freedom of information for the government and various departments of state, but would the NHS give out private details? No. Why are the details about a property one owns any less private?

Labels: Privacy

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