I originally left a small housing construction company in 2000 where I was a carpenter/joiner as the company was sold off by its board of directors to its competitor. At that time Carpenters were in demand and after a holiday and a infill job I began looking for my next job and I dropped into working for a council via an agency. Most of the guys were reliable and done a good job as we generally dealt with domestic properties. But what I did find disturbing was the "services” that were requested often fly tipping was done by known residents which left our litter picking guys having to collect broken TV’s and other attempted repairs that were dumped outside the guys flat. Or maybe the drug addict that had burnt his name in the ceiling of his flat who constantly kicked in his front door and smashed all his windows who required repairs constantly were a drain on local resources. How do they do it you wonder why do people get away with it for decades because they know the system and are taught the system by people within it. E.g. destroy own apartment call Police state break in get a crime number then report that to the local council suddenly you don’t have to pay for the repairs.
Many years before that I worked as security/fire alarm installer for a company in Worcester. A year after I left my boss and several of the other major alarm installers were caught in a local price fixing scandal which sent my boss to Jail for six months and the contracts manager for Hereford and Worcester council for a year. There was a system in place where you were told what bids to put in above a price then the excess was given to the contract manager. I wasn’t involved in it but it was common knowledge of how the system worked and this sort of thing goes on all over the country. As sayings go many a decision is played out on a golf course and if you work within these sectors you realise that people change between companies regular so its more like one large group than individual companies as you get to know everyone from those who will be requesting bids to everyone who is bidding. I often wonder if they only thing that has separated the UK from the rest of the world is purely that we had money as there doesn’t seem to be any other differences involved politically or corruption wise.
There is so many misplaced funds and its why I am so anti-labour government because it seems to have gotten 10 times worse while they were in power. Look at the Qwango’s boards of people who are politically active for the party given jobs that aren’t really jobs with high salaries and not doing a lot for it.
Why am I anti civil servant as well because its all tarred with the same brush I spent some time at Worcester NHS and was amazed at the setup initially it was setup with one maintenance guy to take over the maintenance of the new hospital aswell as the Newtown hospital and the hospital across the road that is now gone. What actually happened was 6 workers (people on tools) with 2 supervisors and an administrator. Above them was another manager and a PA who sat alongside a contracts manager with his assistant. Yes that’s right 7 people to manage 6 and a repair cost of £40 per item. That is £40 for putting a screw in a lock to pretty much any five minute job. Larger ones are quotes. Now maybe its just me but a small local company could have 5 guys on site with a working foreman like the old days? I could easily see the £40 drop down to £15 or less as on average I repaired 19 items a day = £760 PER DAY so even at £15 they would cover the same amount of work and be paid = £285 bearing in mind a local craftsman is around £10 (especially now the recession is back) on an eight hour day the company would be making over £185 profit per site operative (as the extra £20 on the day would cover any perishables and small materials as anything larger would be extra). So how do people get into this mess then wonder why a Trust that should be easily manageable gets run into the ground? Reason is poor management as partnering at this level with people who have no background in commercial and industrial maintenance are promoted within the group. Same happened at Redditch council when I left there for a new contract they had promoted someone in charge of waste and refuse into overseeing and managing the maintenance and repairs sector. What business in their right mind would do that in any other sector?
You could cut around 30% of staff in the Civil servants easily as although people use “frontline staff” as a defence they forget its not those people we are talking about we are talking about the thousands of people that sit above them that aren’t needed. Its a culture that has come into the UK from the end of the last conservative government that was heavily expanded with the labour government. Who is to blame all of them as they encourage it, I see it also in the Philippines as you will find most work in a doctors surgery done by an assistant. Same as the UK when a lot of the work is offloaded to a nurse, big question though how often do you see a doctor after 2pm these days in the UK? Where are they because I doubt its at work.
I am a strong supporter of workers who do work. I support anyone who gets out of bed everyday to earn a living. But at the same time its about equality and fairness, I don’t live in a communist country and I have spent 10 years studying and 20 years experience to get where I am today so although the guy sweeping the streets works hard and turns up every day I do expect to get paid more purely because I have spent my money, time and life getting to where I am today. At the same time I respect people who can do the same job day in day out until they retire because I know I couldn’t do it. But at the same time I am used to dealing with huge companies with huge problems and rectifying them decisions made at the level I work affects hundreds if not thousands of people purely because I am normally brought in when there are problems that nobody has even started to rectify. I know I am popular with the staff that have seen dead weight in companies for years and glad to see me shifting as much of it as I can which also leaves me hated by many as they don’t welcome change either.
Same reason I didn’t shed a tear went Rover Group finally closed its doors with its Union mentality and at least a decade behind its competition it had no interest in success and just wanted to limber along the way it had always done. A 1950s company in a new century it just wasn’t going to happen. It couldn’t survive it had run itself into the ground for many years previously and didn’t welcome the changes that were needed. There were very obvious ones such as the conveyor belt that joined the two sides of the factory that limited the entire production process the factory would have needed to move. I have met many people from Rover over the years in various roles and they have all got the same mentality the union way has been inbred into them so asking them to do something that isn’t specific to their role is often ignored or dummy thrown out of the pram to avoid doing it. People complain about Thatcher dismantling a lot of the industries but has anyone ever looked at what the Unions done to them? British Steel, Mining, Ship building…
Speaking of ship building which is something my family come from there was a contract on the Clyde that was in competition with a yard in Australia. One of my uncles was still at the Clyde Yard and the unions were in talks over the contract and pay. The news came “We have told them they can keep the contract.. we are not going to take salary cuts just to get a contract”. Well done the union you got the Yard closed and hundred of people out of work wonder how the dole cheque works compared to having a salary?
What is my vie
w on taxation ? Personally it should be Fair which is a bit different to what others describe as fair. Fair to me is the fact I pay 25% and so does everyone else and that is it. Not because you earn more you pay more as simply the fact you earn more means that you are paying more anyway because 25% of £100 is £25 but 25% of £1000 is £250 that is fair as its right across the board. It currently works out that I lose around 76% of my earnings in taxes of some description in the UK where is the fair in that? Ok I earn a good salary when I am working upto £2500 per week but my week isn’t 40 hours its generally 112 hours and sometimes more. Should I have an assistant to work alongside me? should I employ maybe another 2 people? Let me check.. well the reason I do 112 hours is the fact most people cannot do my role or be trusted to do it properly. Its time sensitive aswell as having to be accurate I don’t ask for overtime when I go in at night instead of the day I work a fixed amount regardless. I don’t get paid overtime for those long working weekends either. Is that fair?? Difference is I don’t rely on the state, I don’t expect a hand out I don’t want anything from the UK government except to be left alone and to my own devices. I have left the UK because the recession was coming otherwise I would have trusted my future in the UK and brought my wife and children to the UK. But I can’t and although the Philippines is a country with a lot of problems one thing that is fair is a lot of the taxation in comparison to the UK as well as the services. You get what you pay for not you pay for everyone’s services then get complained at because your fed up with so many people with their hand in your wallet.
How would I change things if I know so much? (because no doubt some of you are thinking that by reading the post). Firstly there are thousands of school leavers that not only need education and training but also discipline and respect brought back into their lives. Single parents and drug abuse has done a lot of damage in the UK and most of these people lack positive roll models. Developing training and education that not only can lead to jobs but inspire people to start their own businesses needs to start at a lower level and on top of this encouraging businesses to take on younger staff as well as not just leaving them to a day a week in college but actually get them interested in wanting to create a career path is paramount to helping the country change. At the same time the forgotten which are the older generation retired and the out of work 40+ could be encouraged to setup and develop business workshops to develop new skills aswell as teach theirs to youths. Doing this would also be part of a business enterprise if its successful they can take it as their own business as nobody should be penalised for having a good idea.
The UK has always been at the front when it comes to inventing and its about time we started taking the reins again to put the UK back on the map. There is nothing wrong with being smart or having ideas. Its that what makes us human we need to embrace it more and get more inventors developing with likeminded people to get things moving. Which also goes back to the workshops and enterprise.
Throughout history, the British have been responsible for many great inventions and are still commonly acknowledged to be among the best in the world when it comes to inventing. Over the past 50 years, according to Japanese research, more than 40 per cent of discoveries taken up on a worldwide basis originated in the United Kingdom.
As regards social care its the pensions that need sorting out in the Civil service first as well as putting the unions into a realistic place otherwise its bite the bullet and start firing people. There is more than enough funds if the Pensions were in line with the rest of the countries general populous. Salary scales would also need to be matched to localised industries in essence “job matching” to as near as possible to someone in general work would be needed that includes all perks to give a real salary amount rather than what people “like”. If this is done you will see the social system improve but at the same time people within it should reduce into schemes and employment to reduce the burden on the taxpayer. Where will we find all this money and the jobs? I have heard already today. People forget the UK is over valued the housing prices are too high and generally we pay too much for goods and import too much. I would introduce a 5% tax on goods bought in the UK that are manufactured in the country instead of 17.5% to encourage companies to invest here. I would also look to reduce imports on a country to country basis. E.g. if we are exporting more than we import to a country then they will be given an easier ride. If for example like China we heavily import then I would look to help develop a lot of our clothing industry internally as well as quality production of goods such as electronics and generate zones which are specifically reduced in taxes to combat this tide of imports and to make the UK more competitive as well as reducing imported goods. The UK’s solutions are within its borders the same as its problems we can ignore it and await or demise or start being more aggressive with these hostile take over’s of our industries and companies by foreign countries.