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Thursday, June 1, 2017

Emmanuel Macron, How the UK will become poorer with fewer EU migrants, A Riddle for you, Manchester, Quote of the Month

Congratulations to the people of France for electing the only sensible candidate for President in an initial list of eleven. The global trend for rejecting the establishment continues. Emmanuel Macron’s party ‘En Marche’ didn’t exist a year ago when he resigned his ministerial role in the Hollande government and recruited a small army of young people equally disillusioned with the last 37 years of Socialism and Republicanism (the last 5 under Hollande were possibly the worst) and had them march into ‘sane’ towns across the country and do in-depth interviews with thousands of people to get a deep understanding of their views. Within 12 months, he grew his new party from nothing to win the Presidential election in the world’s number 5 economy. I doubt that could have happened without social media and deep discontent with the status quo! He recruited 40,000 individuals who funded his campaign to the tune of about €220 each on average.

President Emmanuel Macron
Macron made two elegant acceptance speeches on the evening after the polls closed. The first was in his party HQ in the 15th arrondissement in Paris. It was short, very serious, presidential, paying tribute to his opponent Marine Le Pen who attracted one third of the votes. The second took place in front of a huge crown at the Louvre, in front of the glass pyramid, symbols of France’s past and its present. He walked on stage to the EU national anthem (Beethoven’s 9th), not the Marseillaise, and delivered a great speech designed in part to try to re-unite a divided people. He mentioned the word ‘immense’ at least 5 times in reference to the size of the task in front of him. He is in no doubt as to how hard it will be to fix France. His first task is immediate: the legislative elections in June will need to deliver him a majority of députés (270) or at least enough to from a working coalition; today he does not have a single one. Polls say he could win 250 seats which sounds extraordinary, but even this would not give him a majority. He would be forced to form some type of coalition with others. And if the French people don’t vote him a majority, his ‘immense’ task will suddenly become far greater and failure a more likely outcome. This would lead to a more probable Le Pen or other extremist victory in 5 years time. 

Perhaps his biggest task is to reform the labour rules to make employing people in France more attractive. He will have a fight on his hands with the main unions who are against reform. In France the unions are referred to as ‘les partenaires sociaux’ although I fail to see any partnership with progress. It will be a Thatcher moment and I am very interested to see how the centre-left Macron will manage it. 

It is a shame the UK does not have an Emmanuel Macron standing at our forthcoming election. I would vote for him. If I were French, I would be really proud of my new president. Probably for the first time ever.

How the UK will become poorer with fewer EU migrants

“EU immigrants make up about 5% of English NHS staff and about 5% of the English population, according to the best available data. Across the UK, EU immigrants make up 10% of registered doctors and 4% of registered nurses. Immigrants from outside the EU make up larger proportions. Restrictions on non-EU immigrants have affected NHS recruitment, suggesting that the same could happen if there were limits on EU immigration. However, these restrictions did not trigger a process of existing healthcare workers fleeing the UK” This is a quote from:

The latest immigration figures, released a few days ago, show that following the Brexit vote there has been a marked drop in net immigration. However, when you look deeper into the figures, the reasons and worrying: the main drop is EU workers in the UK returning home. I am sure this will include NHS employees and that perhaps the trigger referred to in the quote above has now been released. Another sector massively affected already is the hospitality sector, See this piece from the Guardian:

“The shortage of British workers in UK hotels and restaurants is now so severe that chains such as Prêt a Manger will need 10 years to replace EU staff after Brexit, the British Hospitality Association (BHA) has warned.

Days after Pret’s human resources director told MPs that just one in 50 applicants for jobs at the company were British, the BHA predicted that hotels and restaurants would go bust unless ministers allowed EU migrants to continue to work in low-skilled jobs after the UK leaves the bloc.

Pret a Manger: just one in 50 job applicants are British, says HR boss

“It is going to be very, very tough indeed,” says Ufi Ibrahim, the BHA’s chair. “It will be a very long time for businesses like Pret a Manger to replace EU staff because they are largely based in the south-east,” she added. “I think it will take 10 years to build a future talent pipeline.”

With its cosmopolitan young workforce, free food, paid breaks – and what the company itself describes as “legendary” staff parties – the question raised in the House of Lords this week was: why don’t Brits want to work at Pret a Manger?

Pret’s head of HR, Andrea Wareham, told the economic affairs committee on Wednesday that 65% of the company’s staff were from EU countries not including the UK. Raising wages, she said, would not attract more British staff.

“It really is a case of do people want to work in our industry? We are not seen always as a desirable place to work,” she told peers when challenged about why so few Britons work alongside the 109 other nationalities in Pret’s 330 stores.”

The Guardian March 11th 2017

Can you solve the riddle?

A man and his father are involved in a very serious car accident. The father dies and the son is rushed to hospital. The surgeon is just about to start emergency surgery but stops and declares, “I can’t operate on this man as he is my son”.

A Riddle for you
Can you explain this?

Like most people, I considered the possibility that the son had two fathers, maybe a step father, maybe they were gay. But the answer to the riddle is much simpler. The surgeon was his mother. Simples. I was so cross with myself when the answer was revealed! This is a brilliant example of ‘Unconscious Bias’. Most of us are biased in various ways without meaning to be just because of our upbringing. This riddle has changed my outlook on life and I now know I am not as unbiased as I thought I was.


The Uk's third largest city by population size

Initially it sounded just like all the other cowardly daesh inspired terrorist attacks on our way of living, aimed at a bunch of innocent people from all walks of life, killed indiscriminately and non-sensically. But then it emerged that the 22 dead were mostly teenagers and their parents and that the youngest victim was an 8 year old girl and that the terrorist has caused maximum death and destruction by cramming his bomb with nuts and bolts to maim and kill as many teenage girls, who were the fan base of US singer Ariana Grande, as possible. These killers are disgusting, deranged, brain-washed morons who will stop at nothing to leave their trademark of life-long pain and anguish on hundreds of innocent families whose lives will now change forever. Many victims remain in intensive care. 
My University City
But in the days following the attack, Mancunians and Brits alike gathered together in the streets and in pre-organised events to make it clear that we will not change our way of life, more determined than ever to show these daesh inspired crazed losers that we are going to beat them. A few days later, another attack in Egypt on Coptic Christians left another couple of dozen dead. The Coptic Christians represent about 10% of the Egyptians population, so they are not going away either. 

We need to expect more of these attacks, targeting vulnerable people as it is far easier for these cowardly pieces of trash to get near a teenage girls' concert than it is a heavily guarded airport. Pray for them to fail, prepare for them to have some further successes before they are finally wiped out. We need to be patient, think clearly, and not start to beat up our innocent Muslim neighbours; for that is exactly what daesh want us to do.

"I am prepared for the worst, but hope for the best"
Benjamin Disraeli

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