I don't know the detailed substance of the Tesco/British Land sale and leasebank transaction that the Guardian is exposing with glee as a sign of Great Evilness. But I do know some basic things about UK company and tax law, which suggest that the claim that Tesco will be able to avoid paying non-trivial amounts … Continue reading On tax and Tesco
It's generally a good rule of thumb to oppose anything that's favoured by the Daily Mail, assuming you have the slightest interest in economics or liberty, even if it doesn't obviously sound like a bad idea. Sunny at Liberal Conspiracy would've done well to follow the rule: In one stroke the Daily Mail has put … Continue reading Plastic bags are great – don’t ban them
Apparently, 40% of 14-year-old boys perform below the level expected for their age group in national tests, and this is a Terrible Thing. In other equally shocking news, which also comes as a devastating indictment of the government's failed education policies [etc etc ad nauseam], nearly 50% of people are of below-average intelligence.
John Lennon once spiked Jimmy Tarbuck's drink with amphetamines.
The hot drinks vending machine currently has a sign on it saying 'no tea'. Obviously, that made me think of this. I didn't try and get any 'no tea', though.
Sorry, has this man actually ever been to London or New York? At present we are offered a 'choice' between an oligopoly of three or four chains, all spending so much money on advertising and formulaic minimalist interiors, that they haven't got enough left over to spend on a filling, so have to make up … Continue reading The problem is you, not the sandwiches
[Sorry, it's a forward so I can't link the original...] "Munich Re has launched a bond programme under which $1.5bn in extreme mortality risk will be transferred to the capital markets.... Munich Re said that the programme would protect it against an exceptional rise in mortality after a major pandemic or similar event in the … Continue reading SPV of the week
If the Northern Rock debacle has done nothing else, it's certainly given a lot of people a great opportunity to rant about things they don't understand. The latest example is Granite, the name used for a collection of Special Purpose Vehicles [*] and associated companies [**] used by Northern Rock. According to hard-left MP John … Continue reading Northern Rock again: why Granite isn’t that hard
There's an occasional debate on whether photography is allowed on the Tube, generally sparked when a staff member harrasses someone for doing it. The answer is crystal clear: photography is indeed permitted on the Tube without express permission, as long as you don't do anything dangerous like using a flash, or sell the pictures you … Continue reading Photography on London Underground is permitted
A surprisingly large number of commentators seem to believe that Northern Rock's shareholders should be eligible for some kind of compensation, following the bank's nationalisation. To me, this seems utterly bizarre. According to the Merril/Citi/Blackstone plan to sell Northern Rock in October 2007 (which was leaked by Bad People, and which certainly can't be found … Continue reading Am I missing something here?