Updated: Jun 8, 2018
Now then, business. The be all and end all of our very existences. The most important single issue of them all. The alter upon which millions of working lives are sacrificed in the name of generating profit, or in other words making money. Stocks and shares, the FTSE , Nasdaq, we see important suited people ringing that bell across the pond, then ant like people scurry about shouting and bawling in a frenzy like teenagers do at pop concerts. Invisible transfers shift vast quantities of reserves around whilst anonymous moguls ponder which hedge fund to plough it all into. Business.
Business very definitely calls the shots. Sets the standards by which millions of people right across the globe live. To be big in business is to tread where angels hover, to be saint like, to enjoy a gold plated life with every possible extravagance at your finger tips.
Without a successful environment within which business can thrive the whole fabric of modern life would collapse and we would all be hurriedly transported back to the stone age. All those faceless heroes of the modern business world are indeed carrying the weight of the whole human race upon their broad shoulders. We really should be naming churches after them, offering up prayers of thanks at every given opportunity.
When Flashman became UK PM in 2010 total nationwide adulation of business took off like a scared bat escaping the gates of hell. Gideon became the central figure in orchestrating this "total love in" of all things financial. Every news bulletin, every column inch in our awful print media was totally focused on pushing the absolute need for business to trample all over all other things. It was not even subtle. All we got battered with on a 24/7 basis was the need for all of us to be willing to endure depressing lives whilst our heroic business leaders coined it in. Asset after asset was sold off to help these paragons of acumen to forge ahead with generating vast sums of money. Money which usually trickled down into offshore bank accounts. Thereby avoiding being put to any positive use on behalf of the United Kingdom.
In the case of business the definition of "acumen" became the ability to spirit away these huge sums then sit back and consider the next available avenue for piling up even more astronomical amounts of cash. The establishment became the conduit through which these heroes of business schemed and colluded to spread all this wealth amongst themselves. Dodging tax, crashing pensions schemes, running businesses into the ground (Carillion) , all perfectly timed to allow them to scarper and lay around on yachts off the coast of Greece (Philip Green will tell you all about it). Just consider the current fiasco with our rail companies.
The "successful environment" I hinted at earlier has been with us for quite some time now. The car industry ransoms the government when ever it wants to carry on it's habit of over producing vehicles in the UK. Sure enough these companies do provide employment, families exist due to the wage they bring home from these huge factories, whole areas would be devastated if the car makers pulled out. Just take a look around the North East and see the total devastation that rules there. Look around large areas of Wales, I could go on, there is no need. The entire UK is now a wasteland. One or two areas manage, but at a huge price. This is where those "faceless moguls" actually play a large part in running the UK. Let me put that another way, the city now runs the government, not the other way round.
The retail industry employs many people. Awful jobs providing not much at all for those carrying out the actual making of the money. Just how many of the thousands and thousands of those who have those jobs have what could be called a decent living wage? How many of them get to enjoy weekends off? How many of them are paid so poorly that they claim inwork benefits? How is it that so many of these huge retail chains manage to be in such a parlous state? Paying out the least they can legally get away with yet still struggling. Think of Tesco and their antics when openly fibbing about profit, the pension deficit they carry is said to have ballooned to £5Bn. Just exactly where is the "acumen" in all of this? All of this ignores the ongoing shame that is the NHS.
Employers have actually never had it so good. Wages are generally an insult to those who are unfortunate enough to find themselves with no option but to work in ordinary jobs. The state tops it up, one consequence of that being that they do not then earn enough to contribute much to the tax pot, yet take from it via the benefits they are rightly entitled to. Yet still these companies scream about not being able to make enough money. Maybe we should look at employees chipping in by working for free and just give them food vouchers. Year after year we see the figures being released, it usually says that profits are down by such and such an amount. Maybe I have got my view of this wrong, that tells me that they are actually still making money, just not as much as the previous year. So, are there actually any of them who are NOT making money? I rather doubt that. If I am correct, why are the Govt subsidising them via the benefits they pay the unlucky employees? What is this rubbish?
Unions and workers rights have been roundly hammered now for getting on for a decade. Despite what you are told via our media the hoops which have to be jumped through to take any sort of industrial action are huge and very long in process. You can't just walk off the job to make your point. Representation of employees these days usually consists of "works councils" or some other pointless and useless lip service joke.
Youngsters are leaving school and going into this Victorian environment and thinking that this is the way it should be. If you ever go into one of our burger chain shops (I never do) spend a few seconds observing what goes on behind the counter, when the young girl flashes you the compulsory smile as she says "have a nice day" ask yourself how much she is being recompensed for trying to "have a nice life".
Brexit is very much the topic at the moment. To be very honest I am sick and tired of it all. I do not want to know what your particular leaning is re this issue. I do not understand why so any people with large mouths and small brains see it as being absolutely critical that they make as many people as humanly possible aware of their own particular leaning. What I have noticed during all this is the amount of business leaders who are all bleating again. All you get is business business business. Screaming and crying, issuing dire warnings of how bad it will be if things do not go their way. This stuns me to my soul. You have to ask, what exactly would they have if they could have their perfect world ?
I have used the word "acumen" in this piece. Seems to me that too many of these business people do not actually have much of it. They can't make it work under the current paradise they enjoy, they wet their pants at the thought of having to cope without state subsidies, they run scared at the thought of their employees having decent rights. God forbid that they ever have to actually pay a fair amount of tax or maintain their pension schemes properly. It seems that the mighty Brexit would be an enormous shock to their systems.