Britain in decline

cortez
#1
*
Britain's Industrial Decline: Adding Insult to Injury
William R. Hawkins
Tuesday, January 30, 2001

The British Royal Navy is planning to build two new aircraft carriers to be delivered in 2012 and 2015, at a cost of $3.3 billion. This has been a controversial decision because defense spending in the UK has been tight and the military across the board has been withering away.

This reflects the underlying long-term decline of British industry on the world stage. Nothing better demonstrates the sad plight of the country whose fleet was once called "the bulwark of the island" by the great William Blackstone than that the new warships may be built by a French corporation.

Lord Horatio Nelson, who beat the combined French and Spanish navies at Trafalgar in 1805 to assure London's global dominance, must be spinning in his grave.

In contrast, the ghost of Napoleon is undoubtedly smiling at this latest invasion effort. The French corporation is Thales, the formerly state-owned firm Thomson-CSF. It was privatized in 1996 and then changed its name after purchasing the British firm Racal Defence Electronics Ltd. Thales had also acquired Shorts Missile Systems in Belfast and Pilkington Optronics Ltd. in Glasgow to establish itself as a major contender in the UK.

Indeed, the British defense industry has declined to only one major native player: BAE SYSTEMS, which had been created by the merger of British Aerospace with Marconi Electronic Systems. As a result, the British government is actually helping position the French Thales as a prime contractor for the carrier construction program in order to maintain competition for the bid.

A hundred years ago Great Britain was the world's only Superpower. It had led the Industrial Revolution. Its empire ruled a quarter of the human race. London was the financial capital of the world. Most people still believed the popular lyric "We don't want to fight, but, by jingo, if we do; we've got the ships, we've got the men, we've got the money too!"

But some looked below the surface. The prominent commercial lawyer Lord Penzance warned in 1886 that "The advance of other nations into those regions of manufacture in which we used to stand either alone or supreme, should make us alive to the possible future. Where we used to find customers, we now find rivals....prudence demands a dispassionate inquiry into the course we are pursuing, in place of a blind adhesion to a discredited [free trade] theory."

A great debate took place as the 20th century dawned, and the British trade deficit in manufactured goods grew. There were some hopeful "protectionist" stirrings within the Conservative Party. However, the 1906 Liberal Party landslide kept the country committed to "free trade" and the deficits continued.

Not until after the shock of World War I would England adopt new trade and industrial strategies. A system of imperial preferences meant "to make the Empire independent of other countries in respect of food supplies, raw materials and essential industries" were adopted. But by then too much ground had been lost, England could not pull out of its industrial decline.

Yale Historian Paul Kennedy has summarized the factors that led to England's fall: "a failure to invest sufficiently in new plant and laboratories, and in entire new industries; an inadequately trained work-force, and an insufficient supply of engineers and scientists as compared with foreign rivals;...a social culture which accorded far greater prestige to the professions and service industries (law, medicine, merchant banking,
stockbroking) that to the business of building ships, turbines, machine tools and other manufactures."

We cannot allow the debate over trade policy to be lost again; not if we want the United States to fare better in the 21st century than England did in the 20th century.
 
darkbeaver
Republican
#2
John Bull and Uncle Sam can go to hell together.
 
jimmoyer
#3
Your theroy is crazy, but not crazy enough to be true.
Bertold Brecht 1898-1956
-------------------------------darkbeaver-------------------

Could you at least correct your spelling for your
signature quote ??

Shheeeessh.

Sorry, all the other mis-spelling and syntax errors
are okay, but dammmit, that's your signature quote
repeatedly under your name. Methinks you're a
worse speller than George Bush.
 
cortez
#4
what talking aboot eror you
 
darkbeaver
Republican
#5
It's spelled artisticly, I are good, you are bad.
 
Finder
#6
Well that would put the UK into at least a regional power status for sure. They still don't come close to the USA though.
 
jimmoyer
#7
If you ever ran for political office, the press would
make a cartoon out of you, saying you're too stupid
to spell correctly and too stupid to speak well, just
like they say of some other notorious leader.

Like I say, if we can't drive down a two-way street
without collision, we are no better than our leaders
and politicians and in many instances we the people
are far worse than the politicians and leaders we elect.

Look at this forum.

Our leaders and politicians reflect we the people.

And we think they should be better ?

We're the couch critics, the couch hypocrites.
 
darkbeaver
Republican
#8
I am ready to negotiate.
 
jimmoyer
#9
LOL !!!
 
Finder
#10
I take pride in my typos.
 
jimmoyer
#11
So does Bush in his appallingly rare impromptu off-the-cuff speeches.
 
Sassylassie
#12
Welcome to the club Finder, if I can't sit back and feel comfortable typing a post then what's the point. Typo's there's no such thing, it's a faulty key board.
 
Finder
#13
Sassylassie and Jimm, I never fault people for typos. I often write so fast, wild and in a rush I don't have enough time to correct my spelling, typos and grammer.

One of the best writers here who I've rarely seen make any mistakes would be fiveparadox, now he's a grammer nazi.
 
dumpthemonarchy
Free Thinker
#14
The moderators should eliminate most of the ridiculous posts above. They are way off the subject matter.

The US is in decline, not even being able to control a third rate country like Iraq. along with changing their reasons monthly for being there.

The UK is respectably in the middle of the pack. A major decision they have in the future is whether to drop the pound and select the Euro, then the US and it's buck may go in steep decline.

Why does the UK need two aircraft carriers?
 
cortez
#15
Quote: Originally Posted by dumpthemonarchy


Why does the UK need two aircraft carriers?

to help give them the necessary illusion of still having global reach--- and if argentina should decide to exert their rights to the malivinas-- they may come in handy

and also they would make GREAT target practice for those ultracool superfast Iranian torpedos
 
cortez
#16
zoooooooooooooooom
BANG

oh blimey!!!
 
Finder
#17
Quote: Originally Posted by dumpthemonarchy

The moderators should eliminate most of the ridiculous posts above. They are way off the subject matter.

The US is in decline, not even being able to control a third rate country like Iraq. along with changing their reasons monthly for being there.

The UK is respectably in the middle of the pack. A major decision they have in the future is whether to drop the pound and select the Euro, then the US and it's buck may go in steep decline.

Why does the UK need two aircraft carriers?

boo on you...


Anyhow the British have been in decline for the past 80 years. They are so far down the only place they can go is up and it looks like they are taking one last shoot right now at it. But really I don't see them being anymore then a regional power.
 
The Gunslinger
#18
en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Royal_N...e_21st_century (external - login to view)

And here's the whole story on the two carriers.
 
Blackleaf
#19
Quote: Originally Posted by cortez

*
in order to maintain competition for the bid.

A hundred years ago Great Britain was the world's only Superpower. It had led the Industrial Revolution. Its empire ruled a quarter of the human race. London was the financial capital of the world. Most people still believed the popular lyric "We don't want to fight, but, by jingo, if we do; we've got the ships, we've got the men, we've got the money too!"

.

And soon it will be the financial capital of the world again.

Also, foreign companies taking over British companies is a GOOD thing for Britain. It shows how OPEN our economy is.

Whereas the French, Germans, Italians and Spanish have all been slammed by experts around the world for their closed borders and too much protectionism, Britain has been praised for its open economy.

It's one of the things that puts the Great into Great Britain.
 
Blackleaf
#20
[quote="Finder"]
Quote: Originally Posted by dumpthemonarchy



Anyhow the British have been in decline for the past 80 years. They are so far down the only place they can go is up and it looks like they are taking one last shoot right now at it. But really I don't see them being anymore then a regional power.

Where is Britain in the world compared to Canada?

The world's 4th largest economy compared to Canada's 7th or 8th, and will soon overtake Germany to become the largest economy in Europe for the first time since 1959. A population of 61 million compared to Canada's poxy 33 million. The world's 2nd most pwoerful navy and the EU's most powerful armed forces. A capital city that is soon to overtake New York as the world's financial capital. The world's largest mobile phones company (Vodaphone), 4 of the world's 10 largest tobacco companies, and is the ONLY country in the G7 (which includes Canada) that has NOT had a recession since 1997.
 
Blackleaf
#21
Quote: Originally Posted by dumpthemonarchy

The moderators should eliminate most of the ridiculous posts above. They are way off the subject matter.

The US is in decline, not even being able to control a third rate country like Iraq. along with changing their reasons monthly for being there.

The UK is respectably in the middle of the pack. A major decision they have in the future is whether to drop the pound and select the Euro, then the US and it's buck may go in steep decline.

Why does the UK need two aircraft carriers?

You have to remember that only the US Navy is more powerful than the Royal navy.

Britain currently has 3 aircraft carriers - that's more than the rest of the EU combined. France has 1 (and that has a tendency to always break down and spends most of its time in refit), Italy has 1 and Germany doesn't have any at all.
 
darkbeaver
Republican
#22
Quote: Originally Posted by Blackleaf

Quote: Originally Posted by cortez

in order to maintain competition for the bid.

A hundred years ago Great Britain was the world's only Superpower. It had led the Industrial Revolution. Its empire ruled a quarter of the human race. London was the financial capital of the world. Most people still believed the popular lyric "We don't want to fight, but, by jingo, if we do; we've got the ships, we've got the men, we've got the money too!"

.

And soon it will be the financial capital of the world again.

Also, foreign companies taking over British companies is a GOOD thing for Britain. It shows how OPEN our economy is.

Whereas the French, Germans, Italians and Spanish have all been slammed by experts around the world for their closed borders and too much protectionism, Britain has been praised for its open economy.

It's one of the things that puts the Great into Great Britain.

The last time Britain was the financial capital of the world it lost it's empire, one of the leading causes of empirial decline is a reliance on financial services instead of manufacturing. Your second point of pride an (open economy) is also a leading indicator of national decline. There are five indicators of decline commonally thought to be primarily responsible for all imperial decline you are ingaged in three of them. If you don't wake up you'll snuff yourselves for good this time.
 
Blackleaf
#23
London to become financial capital of the world.


The Sunday Times March 12, 2006


London to steal Wall St crown
Richard Fletcher and David Smith



LONDON could overtake New York as the financial capital of the world, according to one of Wall Street’s most respected bankers.

James “Jimmy” Cayne, chairman of Bear Stearns, makes the prediction in today’s Sunday Times.

“London is no longer the second city. Right now it is up there with New York,” he said. “Could it overtake New York as the financial centre of the world? It has a shot.”

Bear Stearns’ international revenues — the vast majority of which are generated in London — have almost doubled over the past two years, increasing from £501m to £970m.

“The numbers speak for themselves. The last two years were sensational,” said Cayne, a Wall Street veteran.

He argues that London has stolen a march on other European rivals. “There are many, many successful people in this town. Nobody minds getting on a plane to London these days. It’s exciting and the restaurants are great.”

His comments come as the London Stock Exchange is fending off bid interest from New York. On Friday it rejected a £2.4 billion bid from the Nasdaq exchange, which valued it at 950p a share. The New York Stock Exchange, Nasdaq’s rival, is expected to launch a counter-bid.

London is rated ahead of New York in a recent survey of market participants, and outscores the Big Apple in turnover in many markets, including foreign exchange. New York’s strength mainly rests on domestic US equity and bond trading, but that is being eroded. Treasury officials hinted that Gordon Brown, who made a speech in the City last month, would be bringing forward measures in his March 22 budget to ensure London’s continued rise and that it benefits from the growing importance of China, India and Middle East oil wealth.

Meanwhile, one of America’s principal providers of cash settlements to victims of last year’s devastating hurricane Katrina in New Orleans is floating in London later this year.

Peachtree Settlement Funding, which awards lump-sum payments to clients in exchange for a share of their expected future cashflows, is understood to have appointed Bear Stearns and Collins Stewart to lead an initial public offering on the Alternative Investment Market. The float is expected to value the firm at up to £400m.

thetimesonline.com
------------------------------------------------------
And, just in time for the 2012 Olympics and London becoming the world's financial capital, it is building many skyscrapers that put the rest of Europe to shame (Paris's only "skyscraper" is the 19th Century Eiffel Tower).




Another view - http://www.skyscrapernews.com/lbt10a.jpg

London Bridge Tower (or the Shard of Glass) - completion 2008 and will be Europe's tallest skyscraper.


Even a BENT skyscraper is to be built. It is on the far right of the picture. The Vinoly Tower












London's futuristic skyline in around 2012 once some of the skyscrapers are up.


And most of these skyscrapers are not even standing yet, so they are being built in quick time. In just a few years, the whole skyline of the great city will be transformed.
 
Blackleaf
#24
Britain could really be proud of its widely open, free-market economy.

More UK firms in foreign hands


Ruth Sunderland, Daiy Mail Deputy City Editor
30 January 2006


The stock market is convulsed by a mania for mergers that is likely to result in a whole swathe of our industrial heritage passing into foreign hands.

Our big companies are considered so desirable by overseas players that they are fighting over them. A knockabout bid battle built up last week for ports and shipping group P&O - whose history dates back to the days of Empire - with suitors from Dubai and Singapore vying for control.

Even the engine of Anglo-Saxon capitalism itself, the London Stock Exchange, is fending off a £1.5billion bid from Australian investment bank Macquarie and a proposal from Paris-based Euronext is on the back burner.

Gases firm BOC, one of our last remaining big industrial companies, is also under siege, fending off a £7.6billion overture from German counterpart Linde last week.

Unlike other countries, Britain does not put up barriers against foreign bidders - in fact, quite the reverse.

As a result, overseas predators with bulging wallets have been only too keen to come here on shopping trips.

In the first three quarters of last year alone, foreign firms splashed out £33bn on buying British rivals - up from £29.9bn the year before. The attractions of UK firms include respected corporate regulation, an acceptable tax regime and relatively flexible labour laws - though the last two factors are diminishing under New Labour. FTSE company shares are also attractively valued compared to foreign markets.


A clutch of other big names are also about to be swallowed up. They include mobile phones group O2, taken over by Telefonica of Spain, and glass maker Pilkington, whose bosses are about to capitulate to Japan's Nippon Sheet Glass.

Many in the City would argue foreign takeovers are good for Britain - though dealmakers may just be influenced by the boost to their bonuses from increased merger activity. The swarm of predators is certainly pushing share values skywards. Takeover fever sent the FTSE 100 index of leading shares up more than 114 points to end on 5786.8 last week.

That is good news in the short term for all of us with money in pension funds and endowment policies. But the more important question for UK plc is how well the new owners will manage the business in the long term.

Most deals are constructed for the benefit of big City fund managers, not mere Sids. As small shareholders in Abbey National found when the British mortgage bank was taken over by Spain's Grupo Santander, overseas ownership can mean being landed with tax hassles and inconvenient handfuls of shares in a foreign currency.

And how many private investors could afford to attend the annual meeting if the shindig is held in Madrid, not Manchester? Employees and pension fund members might have good cause to worry. A foreign parent company is far more likely to shed jobs and cut pension costs in Britain than at home.

Of course, it is not all one way traffic. British companies like HSBC, Barclays, BP, GlaxoSmithKline and Unilever have also been big buyers abroad. But while we do nothing to prevent outsiders snaffling our prime industrial assets, the French, Germans and Italians disdain foreign bidders.

France shields its 'strategic' companies and has been given a month to justify its stance or face legal action from Brussels. The EU has been forced to take action against Italy over an attempt by the central bank to block foreign bank bids and in Germany, prominent politician Franz Muntefering last year described overseas financiers as 'locusts'.

In the US - the home of free markets - protectionist politicians helped scupper a bid from China's state oil company CNOOC for California's Unocal. By contrast, when Chinese automaker Nanjing took over collapsed car maker MG Rover, our government welcomed them.

One of the great strengths of our economy is its openness.
But we must have reservations about the wholesale pillaging of our stock market. And if we are to be open, so should other countries.


thisismoney.co.uk
 
Blackleaf
#25
Quote: Originally Posted by darkbeaver



The last time Britain was the financial capital of the world it lost it's empire, one of the leading causes of empirial decline is a reliance on financial services instead of manufacturing..

That means every European and North American country is in decline, as every European and North American is roughly two-thirds services and one-third manufacturing. And Britain has a larger manufacturing sector than the US and France, and isn't far behind Canada -

Canada -
industry: 29.1%
services: 68.7% (2005 est.)

Germany -
industry: 28.6%
services: 70.3% (2005 est.)

Britain -
industry: 26%
services: 72.9% (2005 est.)

France -
industry: 21.4%
services: 76.1% (2005 est.)

United States -
industry: 20.7%
services: 78.3% (2005 est.)

Source: CIA World Factbook
 
darkbeaver
Republican
#26
Your source is unreliable and inaccurate BlackLeaf, the US manufacturing is below 10%. And we are all in decline.
 
darkbeaver
Republican
#27
Your source is unreliable and inaccurate BlackLeaf, the US manufacturing is below 10%. And we are all in decline. Why would you believe the CIA's information about anything, they are the planets foremost liars
 
The Gunslinger
#28
And where are your stats Darkbeaver? At least Blackleaf posts his.
 
Jay
#29
Do we really need them though Gunslinger?
 
The Gunslinger
#30
Quote:

Do we really need them though Gunslinger?

Excellent point. Your right, we probably don't.
 

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