Saturday, February 19, 2011

"He That Will Not When He May, When He Will He Shall Have Nay"

I confess that I haven't a clue why Cameron suddenly pronounced the death of multiculturalism - which death took place on 7/7 and has been previously announced by Labour (and even Trevor Phillips). A problem - maybe the problem - with David Cameron is that when he makes a pronouncement on pretty much any subject, the first thought is not 'what's in it for me?' or 'what's in it for us/Britain?' but 'what's in it for him?'.

A/c/t the Green Party "Mr Cameron’s aim is simple as it is crude - to deflect the anger against his government’s cuts from the bankers and onto the Muslim community" - a theory rather undermined by the following "The prime minister is aping attacks by other European leaders like France's Nicolas Sarkozy, who passed legislation banning the veil, and Angela Merkel, who has also made statements denouncing multiculturalism in Germany." Now call me naive, but thought Germany was doing rather well in the credit crunch, and didn't need to deflect anything onto anybody. The French haven't done too badly either - their main economic worry being the performance of the Euro periphery. Maybe they had reasons which weren't concerned with finding scapegoats.

Three observations from a look at the transcript:

1) Cameron (or his speech-writer) is completely signed up to the post-Cultural Revolution settlement.

"So we should properly judge these organisations: do they believe in universal human rights – including for women and people of other faiths?"

"Frankly, we need a lot less of the passive tolerance of recent years and a much more active, muscular liberalism. A passively tolerant society says to its citizens, as long as you obey the law we will just leave you alone. It stands neutral between different values. But I believe a genuinely liberal country does much more; it believes in certain values and actively promotes them. Freedom of speech, freedom of worship, democracy, the rule of law, equal rights regardless of race, sex or sexuality. It says to its citizens, this is what defines us as a society: to belong here is to believe in these things."
Hmm. So if you're a Christian couple running a bed-and-breakfast, you should get back wherever it was you came from.

2) It's a funny old liberalism that says "to belong here is to believe in these things". Even in the days of Good Queen Bess, when practicing the wrong religion could lead to the stake or the block, she made no windows into men's souls regarding their beliefs. I thought that "as long as you obey the law we will just leave you alone" was pretty much the contract that Old England made with the subjects of the Crown, saving only times of national emergency - almost the definition of what it was to live in a free country .

3) the rest of the speech was pretty anodyne, once you've swallowed Cameron's remarkable insights into where Islam ends and political ideology begins. I had no idea he had studied these issues so deeply. The man's a second Hazel Blears ! Only a far-left or Green Party activist could take serious issue with most of it. You never know, he may even believe some of it, and be (as some in the Labour Party appear to be) genuinely concerned for social cohesion.

IMHO it's a bit late for that. All the Cameronian Highlanders aren't going to undo the work of the last 13-odd years, let alone the 30 before that. Over large areas of our cities (and smaller areas of our towns) there's no native culture left to assimilate to. If Cameron thinks that Human Rights Culture aka 'The Religion Set Forth By The Prime Minister' is going to unite anyone when push comes to shove, I fear he's sadly mistaken. The chances of developing a new, over-arching culture, inclusive enough to include a myriad subcultures and ethnicities, is long gone. That's why Trafalgar Square, heart of what was formerly the capital city of England, was full of Kosovans stabbing each other on Thursday afternoon :

"Violence broke out when rival groups of Albanian-Kosovans, armed with knives and hockey sticks, began to fight in one of London's most popular tourist destinations. Officers arrived at the scene on Thursday to discover running brawls between what is thought to have been Albanian-Kosovan gangs, gathered to "celebrate" the third anniversary of Kosovo's independence.

Groups of Albanian-Kosovan teenagers have met on Kosovo National Day as a "show of force" for the last couple of years. "It usually results only in fist fights rather than stabbings but it is hard to concede that this event was spontaneous because it seems that people came armed with necessary tools to commit a serious assault," said a source."

Hmm. Does that come under 'equality for all before the law', or 'equal rights regardless of race, sex or sexuality', Mr Cameron ? I can't but think the bar has come down on the Cameronian dream, if dream it be - and it came down a good many years ago.

"He that will not when he may, when he will he shall have nay".

We had a perfectly good British culture once, half a century back and before, which covered three-and-a-half nationalities - but as the half (Ireland) could witness, it was not a perfect relationship even when all components were Christian and all looked pretty much the same. And, imperfect as it was (although it was functionally pretty effective), it was forged over centuries of dispute and struggle. The results of future disputes and struggles are IMHO unlikely to look like Cameron's script. How long did Gordon Brown's script last?

Compare And Contrast

Yazza on Cameron's evil (delivered at Munich!) rejection of multiculturalism:

"in both nations, millions of their own natives rigidly hold on to their languages and cultures"

The swine ! How dare they !

The BBC on the perfectly reasonable desires of young refugees in England:

The children of the first wave of refugees fleeing conflict in Sri Lanka, Somalia, Turkey and Iraq are coming of age now and are confronted with the expectations of their parents and their peers.

The first imperative is to preserve their cultural and ethnic identity, to engage with their homeland.

Friday, February 18, 2011

"I don't know whether to laugh or cry at people's complete lack of financial savvy"

I was looking up some old work notes last night, and with them I found a few old letters - obvious circulars - that I'd failed either to open or throw away. One, dated 2005, was an invitation from a company called Inside Track to attend a free seminar as my first step in becoming a property millionaire :

Start From Scratch - Live on Easy Street Instead of Struggling For a Living!

Dear Friend,

Are you sick of the daily grind? Tired of working hard for little reward and sick of never having enough to make ends meet? At last there is a way out...

Have you noticed how ordinary people are quietly getting wealthy through property? How even your taxi driver and window cleaner mention their 'buy to let flat'? Ever thought "Huh? How did he manage to buy investment property?

They discovered the way out ...

Have you ever felt you were being left behind? Isn't it your turn to get rich?

My name is Jim Moore. Eleven years ago, I was broke, toiling for a pittance, massively in debt (credit cards, bank loans, HP you name it, I had it). I was utterly sick and tired of the daily grind. Sure, my job was okay in parts. I even liked some bits of it, but I knew that I could work there until my dying day and never make any serious money.
Nobody else thought like me.They seemed content to be drifting into old age and poverty. But I was different - I wonder if you are too? Do you think the purpose of life is to slave for 65 years, pay off a mortgage on some pitiful little house and then huddle in front of a 1 - bar electric fire, struggling to make ends meet on a government pension ?

No ?

Neither did I - and swore that I would do something about it. I didn't want fantasy riches. Like you, I'm not a greedy person. Heck, What is the point in rolling in a gleaming heap of gold - more than you can spend in ten lifetimes? No, I didn't want that, But what I did want .... Freedom. Freedom from worrying over money - can I pay this bill, or that debt? I've had that - never again! Now I can pay any bill of any amount instantly it becomes due. That's a great feeling, let me tell you.

I wanted freedom from debt - crippling month on month debt - Visa, bank overdraft, HP interest being piled upon interest, final demands for payment, threats of CCJs. You know the situation, I'm sure. Now I am debt free (apart from commercial loans to fund portions of my property portfolio - those are not the sort of debts I am talking about). I am using the awesome power of OPM - Other People's Money to make myself incredibly wealthy. You could do this with our help.) It is hard to believe that just a few short years ago I was a humble wage slave with zero prospects. Now 1 have transacted millions of pounds worth of property deals and amassed a private fortune. I even buy and sell entire football grounds!

Now I have the car of my dreams, a wonderful private house (worth £1 million+) and all the cash I could ever spend. More importantly, I am FREE free from the daily grind, the commuting, the bosses the mind numbing routine. I 'work' about 3 hours a day (visiting properties, doing deals) and I travel extensively. I have never looked back. Would you? I cannot believe that I sat in that office all those years, taking orders; doing menial, pointless work; watching the clock... and for what? £7 an hour, I seem, to recall! Ha! Recently I made £30,000 for an hour's work (of course, I cannot do that 40 hours a week I wish!) Ten of those is a cool £300,000 in my pocket.

I made my fortune just dealing in property (some of which I have never even seen).

I am living proof that property is the fastest and safest way for the ordinary person to become wealthy. And by 'wealthy' let me state exactly what I mean. I mean at least £1,000,000 in property assets within 3 to 5 years of you starting. And that's just step one, of course. You can go on from there if you want £3 million, £10 million it's up to you. My own goal is £50 million by the time 1 am 50 (£1 million for each year of my life).

Property wealth is not some fantasy. Take a look at The Times list of the 500 richest people. It is boring in its repetitiveness property, property, retail, property, property, property, brewing, properly, leisure, property... you get the idea!

Take a look at property prices over the years. I have shown the graph on the next page. It just keeps going up and up and up... Sure there have been a few minor little dips - hardly what you would call a crash, merely a blip in an ever rising graph. People often say to me - "Jim, haven't prices peaked out? Aren't we in for a crash? I read in the paper that... " Yawn! They said that to me in 1996, 1997, 1998, 1999, 2000, 2001, 2002, 2003, 2004 and they are still saying it in 2005! Boy, did they miss out.

I don't know whether to laugh or cry at people's complete lack of financial savvy. They are heading for a lifetime of drudgery and lack, and a poverty stricken miserable old age.

Let me ask you some questions: Do you see any of Britain's richest dumping their property portfolios? Uh... no. They are quietly accumulating more. Do you see any crash in house prices, bearing in mind that there is an estimated shortfall of 4 million homes in the UK? Remember what you know about supply and demand - huge demand, little supply means... Price rise. In 1901 there were 4.7 people, per household on average. Now it is 2.1 and falling. People want more space. They want to live alone. They are getting divorced and swapping one home for two.

Property has risen on average 11.3% year on year in the UK since 1948.

I'm sure you know enough about compound interest to realise that 11.3% looks unexciting by itself, but compounded over even a few years can bring very decent gains. (Just £50,000 invested at this rate returns half a million pounds in 20 years!)

I have had people walk out of my workshop and make their first deal within a few days. One man bought a brand new home for which he outlayed the grand total of £350 from his own bank account and then promptly received a £10,000 cash back! He is now on his fifth property.

And this man was a novice before hearing about Inside Track. These were his first property deals. He admits to being nervous doing the first one. He felt like a fish out of water. But after receiving the £ 10,000 cash back, he became a believer. Why not come and learn exactly how ordinary people are getting steadily wealthy by accumulating a tidy property portfolio? These are people with no experience, no training and little or no money (let's face it, it isn't hard to make a million in property if you have half a million sitting in the bank already!).

Look, I do not have the space to convince you here. So what I have done is put together a superb (and what's more FREE) 2 hour session where I will begin to explain these wealth generating principles to you in person. This letter is my personal invitation to you to come along and see for yourself. For the last four years I have been teaching thousands of ordinary people the astonishing money making secrets of residential and commercial property. Secrets which you can apply for yourself. Secrets which can make you independently wealthy. The Inside Track programme (as it is called) has helped many to achieve their financial dreams.

How to retire completely debt free in 3 to 5 years.

How to buy lucrative UK property with little or no deposits.

Simple formulas used by the wealthy to create income.

How to make money from property in good times (easy) AND BAD (even easier!).

Buy as many as you wish and access the very best mortgage rates.

Build and grow a successful rental property portfolio in record time.

Buy property and get paid tax free cash on certain transactions.

Locate the best, most profitable transactions which are never advertised.

Get 'hands on' assistance from top property professionals.

Aside: Perhaps you are wondering why I am happy to pay for this workshop? The answer is simple. We provide in depth property investment education proven to make you wealthy. Only when you start making deals and getting rich do we make a small commission from properties we introduce to you. Take this small percentage on hundreds of deals and it adds up to a sizeable amount. (Obviously you are under no obligation at all to purchase this property, we just think the deals we introduce to clients provide the very best revenue potential, and we'll prove it).That sounds a fair exchange, I hope you will agree. Our knowledge for a small commission when you make a deal. I hope also that has put your mind at rest.

Any averagely bright and hungry person could build a £1 million portfolio, from scratch in five years or less.

What other plans do you have to make £1,000,000 and retire? If you do not do something right now, you will fritter away the next few years and be in exactly the same situation you are in now or worse. Not nice. Not nice at all.

Finally, let me ask you a question. Are you going to carry on exactly as you have for the last five years? Or are you going to seize control of your destiny, right now, today? The cost is trivial (travel expenses plus some of your time) so if you don't do it now, 1 think it is fair to say you never will. As this is a free introductory workshop, the places tend to be grabbed fairly quickly so please call right now to reserve your place.

Years ago, I came to a crossroads like this. I chose the right path - the one that led me to the good life. Why not give yourself the same break?

Best regards

Jim Moore

I looked at this and thought - I bet a pound to a pinch of poo that they're bust - and that there are a lot of unhappy (and poorer) wannabe millionaires.

Yes, they were bust (humble wage slave Jim failed to mention above the multi-million pound bankruptcy of a previous venture, L'Arome) - and yes, there are indeed some unhappy clients. It's bad enough borrowing to bet on price rises on off-plan (i.e. you buy before they're built) city flats - let alone Spanish property.

After hearing that buying property could help them wipe out their mortgage before they retired and attracted by claims that Spanish property prices were set to rise by 30% a year, the couple signed up to buy an offplan three-bedroom house for €253,000 (£171,000). The deal was struck by mortgage broker Anson Bailey, say Steve and Cate. Its representative then persuaded them to buy a second off-plan three-bedroom house for €230,000. They planned to sell both homes before they were completed. The 30% deposits were financed by switching the couple's £65,000 repayment mortgage on their four-bedroom house in Telford, Shropshire, to interest only and raising it to £162,000.
Oh dear.

Inside Track received 10% of the sales price from the developer.
Inside Track indeed.

They got the money for one house refunded after it was sold to someone else and they were offered a poorer replacement.

But the Biddles have been saddled with the second property, which they have been unable to sell despite all the assurances. As a result, they have a Spanish interest-only mortgage for €190,000 while the mortgage on their Telford home, where they have lived for 14 years, stands at £112,000 after the refund of the deposit on the first property. The couple had owed £65,000 on their UK house before buying the Spanish properties.
Ho hum. I guess a man sees what he wants to see and disregards the rest when it comes to deals like this. Doesn't anyone ask why, if property dealing is so lucrative (and it has been, for many people - right up until the time when it wasn't), and you have inside contacts that can find the best deals, you should want to share it with the world, even for a fee ? The answer I guess is that if you get the fees and a cut of each sale, you can make money without putting any capital at risk. That's you the introducer, not you the punter, of course.

Still, you can't keep a humble wage-slave down - remember how it was EVEN EASIER to make money from property in bad times ? - Jim Moore is back with a new venture - IAP Global.

IAP Global's presenter Kevin O'Connor addressed a room of 50 investors, most of whom were respectable middle-class professionals. He didn't waste any time explaining the nature of the opportunity on offer.

"Distress is the reason we're here," he said. "The developer is being pressured by the bank. If he wants to get out, we're happy to deal with him. We then negotiate a discount for you."

Claiming that IAP Global sources property from "distressed developers and individual landlords" who are desperate to sell, a minimum of £25,000 "instant equity" is reflected in the price. He goes on to explain: "If you walked into an estate agents and were talking about £100,000 for a property, we'd get it for £75,000."

Hmm. This appears to be Inside Track in reverse. I wonder if by any chance they get a cut of the price ? And I wonder how you could put together a list of distressed individual landlords, desperate to sell ?

Would it - could it ? - bear any resemblance to the Inside Track client list ?

It has to be said that the Inside Track sell was good - hitting just the right note about being able to pay the bills. My degenerate (and poor) youth gave me a great distrust of people who write about 'the poor' for a living yet have never in their lives been afraid to open the electric bill.

Indeed the sell was so good that it has not died with Inside Track. Here is the opening, word for word, being used by one Brian Watson to sell his online opportunity (with a company called Global Domains International - caveat emptor).

"Whiteness Is All"

Yazza, in her rightful home of the Daily Mail, not for the first time bemoans the female hierarchy of skin colour, as exemplified by the recent lightening of one Beyonce Knowles, apparently a popular singer renowned for her shapely rump (or 'booty') :

"Black and Asian parents work hard to give their children a positive self-image and confidence in their appearance, despite the cultural forces stacked against them. But when black celebrities appear to deny their heritage by trying to make themselves look white, I despair for the youngsters who see those images. "

Hmm. She's certainly not getting any darker, although digital processing can do a lot of that. Mind you, at one stage of his life it was becoming increasingly difficult to tell Michael Jackson from Gloria Estefan. Beyonce has way to go.

I’m sure I’ve posted this before, but the anthropologist Peter Frost, in ‘Fair Women, Dark Men’, pointed out that paleness in women has been prized for centuries, even in cultures with little Western exposure such as medieval Japan – or ancient Israel.

“I am black, but comely, O ye daughters of Jerusalem, as the tents of Kedar, as the curtains of Solomon.”

Why ? Maybe because women do tend to have lighter skin than men, due to subcutaneous fat.

Frost notes that a preference for paler women will have the effect of lightening the upper classes in any society – as they tend to get the women considered most attractive.

“Since higher-ranking men marry the more attractive women, the upper classes tend to lighten in color with each passing generation, as in India.”

By contrast paleness in males is not prized – “tall, dark and handsome” is required. Aryan blonde males like Rutger Hauer or Max von Sydow tended to play bad guys. Note the stick Julian Assange is getting for his looks – remarks to the effect that he looks like a classic movie villain who should have a white cat on his lap. In movie casting, the love interest woman is nearly always lighter than the love interest man.

Link to Peter Frost’s site.

Graph of skin relectivity (i.e. lightness) vs age for men and women in India and Spain, showing that females in both countries have on average lighter skin than the males. It appears that lightness is associated with femininity both in fact and in culture.

While Yazza may actually have a (smallish) point here (she also gets into Black Dolly, White Dolly territory), she's also yet again invoking Sailer's Law Of Female Journalism :

"The most heartfelt articles by female journalists tend to be demands that social values be overturned in order that, Come the Revolution, the journalist herself will be considered hotter-looking."