* Posts by TheTick

90 posts • joined 6 Aug 2009

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That thing we do in the UK? Should be ILLEGAL in the US, moans ex-State monopoly BT

TheTick
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Competition

“There is not sufficient regulation to create competition"

Or in other words:

"We can't compete - government please help us!!!"

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Microsoft replaces Windows 10 patch update, isn't saying why

TheTick
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Me too

After being pleasantly surprised that X-Com Enemy Unknown and Civ V both have Linux ports that work flawlessly through Steam for Linux...I'm out too!

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Hey, folks. Meet the economics 'genius' behind Jeremy Corbyn

TheTick

Gold isn't for the bad times, it's for the rebuilding period afterwards.

The most important assets for bad times are family, friends and community, and a little bit of arable land near fresh water doesn't hurt either.

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'Sunspots drive climate change' theory is result of ancient error

TheTick

Re: Deniers?

@RIBrsiq

"http://theconsensusproject.com/"

That whole website has zero evidence for anything. Just a bunch of links to articles saying "we're right and that's that!". It peddles the discredited 97% of scientists statistic as if it's not completely and utterly bogus. If I remember they counted any paper that even mentioned climate as though they agreed with the "consensus". They also counted those who believed mankind has an effect on the environment but did not think it would be very significant.

That website is more like a bunch of kids stamping their feet shouting "IT IS IT IS IT IS!!!".

So I repeat my question: Is there any solid, proven evidence of *anthropogenic* global climate change? I'll add significant climate change to that question, as me farting adds to climate change, though only the missus notices that much.

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TheTick

Re: Deniers?

"Because at this point in time, I cannot fathom what else can make any sane person deny anthropogenic global climate change."

Is there any solid, proven evidence for anthropogenic global climate change? Serious question.

And yes the "denier" tag is disgraceful as it attempts to link skeptics with holocaust deniers (don't even think about "denying" that!).

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Cause of Parliamentary downtime on Microsoft Office 364½ revealed

TheTick
Facepalm

I'm a raging libertarian capitalist, but even I see the problems of having all the emails of our Parliamentarians on the servers of a foreign company, no matter how much they say they will never, ever take a little peek...

Why on earth hasn't the government set up an IT division to provide public sector organisations, including Parliament, with an internally managed email solution/file services etc? An NHSMail for government.

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Stop forcing benefits down my throat and give me hard cash, dammit

TheTick

"The problem is the UK's welfare spending is an order of magnitude bigger than that"

I couldn't agree more, it's a huge problem that the UK govt spends so much on welfare. I'm fairly sure that both of us can think of instances where govt welfare spending is not, shall we say, efficient?

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TheTick

As per my response to Mark #255 above - it's not a liberty for you to have an employment contract, it's an imposition forced on businesses by the government.

I don't think Tim is suggesting that you be unable to voluntarily write a contract with an employer that matches the current state of affairs, so long as both sides agree.

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TheTick

People in the UK give over £10 billion a year to charity, despite also being taxed. Lots of people are nice and charitable. I've lived and worked with all sorts of people in my life (except the significantly rich) and I've found most people will give someone a hand when they are in need. It's just p*ss-takers they have a problem with. The vast majority of people are NOT selfish jerks.

Welfare was initially a few shillings for people over 70 (something like the equivalent of over 100 in life expectancy now), who would complain about that eh? But it quickly expanded as soon as politicians realised they could buy votes with it. Now we have a permanent benefits culture trapping millions in poverty with marginal tax rates higher than the top tax band (haven't kept up with this though, perhaps the Tories have sorted it?) and all these people will vote for the parties that keep them down on benefits street rather than give them a hand up to main street. State welfare has nothing to do with people's welfare.

Zero hour contracts are desired by quite a few people. Why would you take that flexibility away from them just because you don't like the thought of it?

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TheTick

Re: hmmmm

"extra "flexibility" imposed on us."

Erm, it wouldn't be imposing anything on you, I think he's suggesting that current impositions on employers are removed. Whether you think that's a good idea or not is another issue, but he's suggesting less impositions, not more.

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TheTick

Of course in a free market if you feel you are being treated badly as an employee or contractor you can look elsewhere for work and find somewhere better, or start a better company yourself. As a contractor this is nice and easy as you simply don't renew the contract which is much less hassle than resigning.

I've never heard of a company off-shoring to temporarily push up share prices, they do it to reduce costs and have a more flexible workforce without so many govt regulations weighing them down. Now if everyone was a contractor it's a million times easier to reduce the workforce by, again, simply not renewing contracts. That may sound bad to you that companies can just let people go without issue, but it also means companies are less reticent to hire contractors when they know there's no chance of a tribunal if they forget to cross their t's on the redundancy notice.

Unions have a bit of a history of their "collective negotiations" being little more than blackmail with things like the closed shop and the coal miners bringing down Ted Heath. Thatcher was right to stamp it out. Unions helping their members is no bad thing, but some use their members for their own political aims.

Companies restructuring themselves to pay less tax? Well so do I, and so probably do you (got an ISA?).

I'd love to see a more flexible workforce like Tim suggests, even though in my personal case I'd probably be worse off (currently on a pretty high wage for what I do which they don't have much choice about thanks to some TUPE arrangements a couple of years ago). Companies would be so much more inclined to hire people for work without all the bullcr*p that comes with employees, and wage renegotiations will be much easier for contractors; done a good job and they are asking you to renew? Ask for 20% more!

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Windows 10 marks the end of 'pay once, use forever' software

TheTick

Re: Linux

After a particularly annoying evening trying to simply get into safe mode and do a system restore after a dodgy install borked my Win8.1 system, I am going to finally install Linux Mint Mate edition and give it a proper trial as my main day to day system.

Apparently my OS drive was "locked" which meant the recovery usb couldn't do either a system restore or repair and didn't tell me how to unlock it either. Eventually I found the command to re-enable the F8 menu on boot and got it done (FYI it's "bcdedit /set {default} bootmenupolicy legacy" from an elevated command prompt).

The above kerfuffle has just added weight to my concerns abouts Win 10's Cortana, the mandatory auto-updates, the pushing towards a Microsoft account and OneDrive and mostly the fact there's no straight answer on whether this will change my retail Win 7/8.1 keys into OEM ones yet.

Win 10 makes me uneasy, Linux deserves a shot.

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So what the BLINKING BONKERS has gone wrong in the eurozone?

TheTick

Re: Sorry for the rant, but...

@Arnaut the less

In the period of the classical gold standard to which I was referring, the British pound was no longer a pound in weight of sterling silver, it was about 7.32g of gold minted into gold sovereigns along with a little copper.

While I'm certainly not an expert I have struggled through a few economics books in the past thank you for your concern. But as I said in my last post, I was not advocating a return to the gold standard, merely comparing it with the unfettered fiat currency expansion of today.

In fact the gold standard suffers from fractional reserve banking as well, with banks producing more notes backed by gold than the gold they actually have. But at least there was a limit to the amount they could print because at some point people want to see the shiny metal itself.

Since 1971 however there has been no link to gold at all, and inflation took off like a rocket. Debtors consider this state of affairs to be wonderful, savers less so.

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TheTick

Re: Sorry for the rant, but...

@Tim

Oh don't get me wrong I'm a fan of Friedman since first picking up Capitalism and Freedom and agree with him on a range of issues.

But I'm just also a fan of F.A.Hayek and lean more towards his thinking that an expansion of credit (money supply) fuelled by artificially low interest rates leads to mis-allocations of capital, a boom, followed by a bust. 2008 seems to bear that out a little bit more than the Chicago school. Although I admit I'm no expert at all.

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TheTick

Re: Sorry for the rant, but...

@Arnaut the less

You will build a house now, because you then have a house to live in. Otherwise you will presumably be out on the street or giving your money to a landlord for the rest of the year.

My mortgage is 3.29% fixed, so I am, right now, losing 3.29% on interest payments. That's actually worse than waiting a single year and building a house for 3.29% less cost, because I am paying 3.29% for 5 years followed by the lenders SVR for the remaining 20, not just paying one single time over the odds.

As for the seed you are right, the farmer would not. But if every farmer stopped planting the price of the crops would rise pretty sharpish, making it profitable again. Food on average will always make a profit up to the point everyone is stuffed full.

As for your "gold standard idiots" remark, firstly insulting people loses the argument immediately, secondly I did not advocate a gold standard, merely compared it to the present system. I'm with the Austrians on this one; whatever people freely and voluntarily use as money is money, and the thing that performs the function of money the best (whether gold/dollars/pounds/bitcoins) will become the de facto money.

Incidentally, the late 19th/early 20th centuries under that horrible old gold standard was probably the greatest period of economic expansion in human history. Just a thought.

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TheTick

Re: Sorry for the rant, but...

Well there is gold mining to expand the supply, but I'm not too taken by the theory that we absolutely need an expanding money supply at all. Sounds like a bankers/politicians excuse for eternal inflation which allows them to continue borrowing and buying votes public spending.

A static money supply in an expanding economy means things will simply get cheaper as time goes by, rather than more expensive like now. Not so great for debtors, but savers will be rewarded for once, and as someone who is leaning towards the Austrian side of the economics debate savings are what are needed for proper growth, not debts.

And to head off the inevitable argument "But if savings can buy more stuff a year later (price deflation) people will stop spending and the economy will crash!!!" I would like someone to give me an example of a product that you desire but would NOT buy today if you knew it would be 1-3% cheaper next year?

Food - nope

Housing - nope

Clothing - nope

Home electronics - nope

Car - People buy cars brand new right now and lose 20% of the value as soon as they drive out of the showroom so nope

Perhaps there are some business investment reasons that price deflation would be horrendous but that's out of my area of expertise. I can't think of anything that would stop people spending with price deflation of 1-3% a year.

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TheTick

Sorry for the rant, but...

I've slowly been coming to the view over the last few years since the crash that the whole intellectual basis for modern day economics is deeply flawed, and that is the root cause of the economic problems we see around the world.

Take GDP for instance. Does anyone really believe all of the needs/wants/labour/trades of the 65 million people in the UK can be distilled into a single number with a pound sign in front of it?

I remember even as far back as A-Level economics being told that GDP (or might have still been GNP back in the mid-90's) was not considered an accurate measure of the economy and has many flaws. Yet the GDP figure is what is used to determine whether the economy "grew" or "shrank" and even a figure of -0.1% is enough to get politicians hot under the collar and enact policies to try and grow that number - policies that will have unintended consequences like everything politicians do.

GDP does not distinguish between voluntary economic activity between willing participants to produce things that they actually truly value, or government spending to get labourers to dig holes and fill them in again. Though the former is real economic activity boosting prosperity and the latter is not.

And as for the money supply BobRocket above seems to have hit the nail on the head in his strangely downvoted post. Money supply is debt, which is a multiple of "base money" which is itself a fiction in the minds of the people as it is just paper or binary digits.

Mr Worstall mentions the dread the economists have of "deflation" (which I believe he is using in the correct fashion - the reduction in the supply of money), and that this can happen when banks go bust. But that only happens when banks go bust because the money supply is all a load of hot air!

If gold was the basis of the money supply (and was not used in a fractional reserve system), there would be no reduction of the money supply because it would all be real, physical stuff sat there in the vaults. You can't reduce the money supply of gold unless it is destroyed or lost.

So our economists and politicians are all working off a false premise, and manipulating the economy in order to tweak the virtual dials. Why do they do this? I suspect it is because the false narrative of GDP in a fiat currency system is actually very helpful to their political aims. They can manipulate GDP by borrowing and spending more on crap before the election, whether that boosts real prosperity or not, and GDP will rise ("Ooh look GDP up we are all rich - horray!"), despite the fact that prices have risen commensurately with GDP so people can't actually buy any more real stuff with the extra cash in their pockets.

To illustrate the smoke and mirrors the central banks and politicians use we actually have three separate measures of inflation. Most of us have heard about the CPI and the RPI (with RPI including housing and energy if I remember correctly and is therefore higher than the CPI, which is why G.Brown got rid of it to hide his real inflation). But there is the little known "GDP deflator" as well, which is used to convert absolute GDP "growth" to real GDP adjusted for the fact prices are going up as well.

Except of course this GDP deflator is invariably lower than both the CPI and RPI, making it look like the economy grew when in fact it shrank - smoke and bloody mirrors.

We seriously need to have a good hard think about how the economy is measured, or in fact if it even needs to be at all. We could do worse than take a leaf out of Sir John Cowperthwaite's book, the Financial Secretary of Hong Kong in the 60's:

"As for the paucity of economic statistics for the colony, Cowperthwaite explained that he resisted requests to provide any, lest they be used as ammunition by those who wanted more government intervention."

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/obituaries/1508696/Sir-John-Cowperthwaite.html

Worth taking a few minutes to read his quotes as well, a real free market hero: https://en.wikiquote.org/wiki/John_James_Cowperthwaite

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Beaten blokes HATE the women who frag them in online games

TheTick

Re: Missing

Or, indeed, how do women respond to winning and losing?

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The US taxman thinks Microsoft owes billions. Prove it, says Microsoft

TheTick

Re: I hope this will be useful

"No. Try going to the third world and you'll see how much good charity and a lack of cohesive government structure does. Put simply, people die...A LOT"

I have been, I've seen families in rags living in shacks by the side of the highway in the Philipines where my better half comes from. What these countries are is POOR. The *proven* solution to poverty is free market capitalism and a society that protects peoples property and businesses not one that removes it from them.

And the reason charity does poorly in places like Africa is not because of a lack of state power, but because of it. Bastards with guns and corrupt politicians siphoning off the charity of good people. Less state-backed violence is necessary not more.

Protection rackets? Are you the same Anonymous Coward above with horror stories about there being no roads/hospitals/welfare if the state couldn't tax us?

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TheTick

Re: I hope this will be useful

@Anonymous Coward

Roads - so you agree with me that roads will still be provided. Good. (Note I did not advocate private provision, merely noted that it would be provided - it would).

Hospitals - Normally no way to afford it? Normally? No, the only real concern is for those who have no means to pay, whether by their own fault or bad luck. The answer to this is, once again, private charity. Perhaps a fund set up to fund A&E access for anyone who needs it, I know I would pay into that. It's not hard to imagine a circumstance where I end up in A&E unconscious and without my insurance documents so I would want A&E available to everyone (real A&E, not stubbing your toe).

Welfare - Being at the mercy of charity is better than starving in the street, after all charities are staffed and funded by...merciful people! What little faith you have in humanity if you think the only way the truly needy will be helped is by putting a gun to the head of peaceful people and taking their wealth.

I have to laugh at all the downvotes, do you all truly think none of these things would be provided if the state didn't threaten us with violence to take our wealth? Or do you just not like that fact that what I said was true?

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TheTick

Re: I hope this will be useful

"but without taxes there would be no hospitals, no roads, and no welfare."

Don't be ridiculous, we would have all three without taxes.

Roads - probably a touch difficult to arrange compared to state provision but there is a demand for them so they would be there.

Hospitals - huge demand so they will be provided.

Welfare - Both Brits and Yanks give billions to charity every year even with a massive welfare state, so in the absence of a welfare state private charity would step in to help people (and probably only help those who really need it, rather than scroungers, so a distinct improvement).

You can make the argument that the state would do a better job of things, but you can't argue they would cease to exist.

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UK TV is getting worse as younglings shun the BBC et al, says Ofcom

TheTick

Re: As a 20 something

"How do you think all those companies who advertise on TV pay for it? We are *ALL* paying for it because the cost of the advertising is built into what we pay for their products!"

What an utterly ridiculous statement. All companies will advertise through whatever medium is available. If there was no TV then the price of the product wouldn't go down, they would just find another way to get the message across to you. Probably one that is far more expensive such as junk mail and the price of the product would be higher than without TV advertising.

Not to mention the most obvious point that no one forces you to buy anything that is advertised on telly, and competition between brands keeps prices down. Whereas a state-enforced tax has no such restrictions.

And as another poster said, I don't need to wait 15 years for those 47 different versions of cruddy programs they are already here - that's why I dropped the BBC in the first place and am a happy tax-free streamer. :D

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TheTick

"Methinks you don't know much about the history of broadcasting"

Enlighten me - which regulations enabled Game of Thrones to be made where it otherwise would not have been?

Or House of Cards, or Lillehammer..etc...etc...

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TheTick

Re: As a 20 something

Seem to be a lot of beeboids on here today judging from your downvotes and Just Enough's upvotes.

What you said, Brenda, was completely sensible and accurate and as a 30-something-almost-40 I completely concur with your view.

All you gits wanting other people to be forced to pay for your preferred viewing need to get a grip on reality. The telly tax will be history within 15 years and good riddance.

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TheTick

Hang on, what?

High quality programming only occurred because of regulations imposed by the government?

Methinks this is bovine faeces.

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Cisco gobbles OpenDNS, sorts out cloud security portfolio

TheTick

Re: On behalf of OpenDNS users...

"hateful corporate monolith" - really?

Any evidence for this hatred? And hatred to whom?

Or is it you that hates it? If so for what reason?

Sigh.

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EU: Explain your tax affairs. Google, Amazon, Facebook: Mmm... nah

TheTick

I'll agree with you that lobbying is (badly) disguised bribery as you say.

My solution would be to remove the power from the politicians to make laws and regulations that gives these firms the advantages they lobby for.

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TheTick

So if they are not going to show up to a show trial, then the politicians should not let them bribe them anymore, is that what you are saying?

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Chill, luvvies. The ‘unsustainable’ BBC Telly Tax stays – for now

TheTick

Re: Auntie forever

So presumably you would willingly pay for it if it was a subscription based model?

Then why are so many people afraid of that ever happening?

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TheTick

"I'm don't drive. Why should I fund roads?"

Err...you don't - car and fuel taxes do

"I'm not a woman. Why should I fund maternity services?"

Because maternity services are far more important and useful than Strictly Come Dancing

"I don't take trains. Why should I fund the railways?"

You shouldn't (I'm no expert, but you probably don't)

"I don't like foreigners. Why should I fund the aid budget?"

Charity should not be forced upon us by the state, it's not charity then. And we all know "aid" goes mainly into the pockets of kleptocrats and bureaucrats.

"I'm not disabled. Why should I fund disability benefits?"

Because helping the truly disadvantaged is a sign of civilization, and far better than the aforementioned Strictly.

Your comparisons are ridiculous. The BBC is a media organisation not an emergency service. And as you are so keen on it, surely you would be willing to voluntarily pay for it, wouldn't you? Or is it just that you want *other people* to pay for your stuff as well?

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Ubuntu 15.04 to bring 'Vivid' updates for cloud, devices this week

TheTick

"instead of on a single, unified menu bar at the top of the screen (like OS X)"

Like Amiga Workbench.

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Sony tells hacked gamer to pay for crooks' abuse of PlayStation account

TheTick

And this is exactly why the move to cloud storage, digital accounts for games/books/films/taxes/banking etc are so worrying. The power is now with governments and organisations with their own agendas, values and interests at heart - not yours. They have the off switch, just like Aaron Russo prophesied in America: Freedom to Facism.

"Convenience will be how the world will lose the freedoms it took millenia to gain". I can't remember where I read that and it's probably mis-quoted but sums it up.

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Adobe Flash fix FAIL exposes world's most popular sites

TheTick

Re: Last week I finally uninstalled Flash across our office

Recently did the same at home, now I'm feeling justified today.

Surprisingly few websites are broken as a result so quite happy with the decision.

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O2 notifies data cops 'for courtesy' ... AFTER El Reg intervenes in email phish dustup

TheTick

Had the same with William Hill, signed up with williamhill@mydomain, got spam addressed to williamhill@mydomain.

Didn't report it, they are just on my never deal with again list.

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SCIENTIFIC CONSENSUS that 2014 was record HOTTEST year? NO

TheTick

Re: Well

"so if the 3 warmest years since the 1800s are in the last decade, that sort of supports the global warming thing right? "

It supports global warming from the 1800's (the end of the little ice age or thereabouts), it doesn't support anthropogenic global warming. Presumably something stopped the little ice age and I doubt there was enough CO2 released in the 18th & 19th centuries to be the cause of that temperature rise.

Up until the late 90's there was a correlation between increased CO2, due to mankind's industry, and temperature, but that correlation between the two appears to have broken down in the last 15 years.

My conclusion is that no one knows yet but that further study is warranted before governments start taxing the crap out of us and telling us how to live.

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Heavy VPN users are probably pirates, says BBC

TheTick

"So you don't like the BBC".

I suspect the problem is not that he doesn't like the BBC, but that he is forced on pain of fines/prison to pay for it if he likes OTHER channels and watches them.

Also, people are free to make comments on related matters even if it doesn't "address the matter at hand" as you put it. Or would you like to ban that?

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Listen: WORST EVER customer service call – Comcast is 'very embarrassed'

TheTick

Re: Three

@wowfood

I don't know if it was too long ago for you to do this, but I had a similar experience with Vodafone and ended up taking them through the small claims court process at which point they coughed up for both my costs and my time (I settled for less mainly because I originally put my time at £50/hour which was my current contract rate).

They also put a black mark on my credit record, previously I couldn't care less what they did but when they did that it got serious (I was looking into getting a mortgage at the time).

If you can gather up provable costs incurred by their mistake, and a reasonable estimate of the amount of time spent messing about with it, then you can write to them to bill them. If they don't respond or refuse after a couple of attempts (give them a reasonable chance to make good on their error) then put in a small claims action at https://www.moneyclaim.gov.uk.

It may sound like a lot of hassle but it's really just a couple of letters and an online form and the courts sort the rest out for you. You might be surprised at how quickly they jump once the court letter comes through the door...

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Man FOUND ON MOON denies lunar alien interface

TheTick

"both the theory of evolution and non-earth life are both unproven"

However, the Theory of Evolution has gargantuan piles of evidence supporting it from a variety of separate fields such as biology and geology, and not one single piece of evidence to my knowledge has ever been found that would invalidate the theory. And it only takes one piece of solid verifiable evidence to blow the entire theory to bits.

Therefore the Theory of Evolution has not been dis-proven, which is more important.

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Fix capitalism with floating cities on Venus says Charles Stross

TheTick

Re: So this capitalism thing

Name me one single thing socialism stands for, separate from any other ideology, that does not involve, at some level, taking things from others or ordering others about backed up by the threat of force?

Healthcare? - Taxes/Inflation/Debt

Welfare? - Taxes/Inflation/Debt

Education? - Taxes/Inflation/Debt

Union rights? - Backed up by force

Some of these might be argued to be good things, but the socialist method of providing them is by threatening others to provide the resources to do them, not by encouraging free and volutary exchange like Capitalism does.

State Capitalism is a better name for Crony Capitalism thank you.

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TheTick

Re: So this capitalism thing

No, it's nothing like that at all.

Capitalism is the free and voluntary exchange of goods and services whereby both parties gain value from the trade.

Socialism is where people with guns force capitalists to give them some or all of the stuff they have produced and traded.

Crony-Capitalism is where scumbags get the aforementioned state to fix the rules in their favour so that everyone except them gets stolen from, in exchange for throwing a few smaller bungs to a few key people in the state as sweetners.

What you were describing was Crony-Capitalism and should have a different name because real Capitalism is the polar opposite of it.

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Middle England's allotments become metric battlefield

TheTick
Thumb Down

I would be more likely to consider those who need numbers to be based on their finger count as imbeciles than those who can count in a variety of bases in their heads.

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MtGox MELTDOWN: Quits Bitcoin Foundation board, deletes Twitter

TheTick

Re: Saved by my own laziness

I managed to overcome my laziness about a month ago after procrastinating about a year and have now lost it all (well, all 0.54 bitcoins anyway which I mined then made a profit on selling the asic miner so effectively free).

I was robbed!

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SCRAP the TELLY TAX? Ancient BBC Time Lords mull Beeb's future

TheTick

Re: @Graham Dawson - Leave it out

There's nothing ethical about taxes at all. Just because a majority of people agree that it's ok to force a minority of people to give them money, under threat of force, doesn't make it right.

Tax avoidance and evasion are our moral duty. I've done the first but not the last, because I'm afraid of the government and what it would do to me. Terrorist B*stards.

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A BBC-by-subscription 'would be richer', MPs told

TheTick

It's not the cost, it's the method of funding. If it's so great then why are they so afraid of selling their product rather than having the government force people to buy it?

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TheTick

Quality

"However, Hewlett warned of "perverse incentives" for the BBC if subscriptions were introduced - it would seek to maximise revenue rather than maintain quality."

Does the concept of maximising revenue *by* maintaining quality not occur to them. I'm not an Apple fan but you can't deny they have done well by producing quality products for example.

Overall it's about damn time these things were being looked at. There's a few good BBC programs I watch but there's an awful lot I object to being forced to pay for if I dare to watch Sky Atlantic.

Join the free market - thrive or fall like the rest of us have to.

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Former 2e2 workers WIN case for protective award

TheTick

Did you get the letter from a company called Payco shortly after the administration telling you how to claim from the national insurance? They sent a form RP1 or RP2 I believe. If you moved house shortly after you might have missed these.

You might want to get in touch with FTI Consulting and get them to re-send documents, or failing that get in touch with National Insurance directly.

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Herschel boffins spot fat dwarf Ceres in TEARS over astro-identity crisis

TheTick

Re: How sublime . . .

I was thinking Venus. I read somewhere once that water precipitation helps scrub co2 from the atmosphere so Ceres could be all that's needed to terraform our red-hot sister if we could split it up and chuck it at Venus.

Although I imagine there's a little more to it than that...

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Tech titan Bill Gates: Polio-free India one of the 'most impressive accomplishments' ever

TheTick
Thumb Up

Private vs State charity

This is a nicely timed article as I was wondering recently exactly how much Bill Gates spent to eradicate polio in India compared to the £16 billion-odd the UK takes from it's people and unborn children every year and spends on "International Development". I can't think of anything so significant that our aid money has achieved, and you can be pretty sure if there was the politicians would have blown the trumpets to the high heavens to tell us about it...

This is a sterling example of why the state should not take it upon itself to be the conscience of the country. Just leave our money in our pockets and we will support charities far better than they will!

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Light, fast ... and pricey: Toshiba's Portégé Z30 – now THIS is an Ultrabook

TheTick

Re: 1366 x 768

Same here, I bought an Acer Travelmate 8103WLMi for about £700 with Radeon graphics and a 1680x1050 resolution back in 2004ish.

What the hell is going on nowadays?

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Joke no more: Comedy virty currency Dogecoin gets real in big Xmas heist

TheTick

Re: Hmm... (A.C. 11:38)

"but a 2014 one will cost you 450 quid."

Find a different dealer chap, I get them for less than £200 at today's prices. Bullionbypost for example.

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