Number of Students Going to University Rises

In a surprising turn of events, initial UCAS figures out this morning have shown that 358,860 students have been accepted on to UK degree courses this year, representing a rise of 2.9% on the same point last year. Far from a predicted lack of students off to university, or missing out due to unfair grades, the botched and rushed ‘triple lock’ system does not appear to have prevented a slightly larger number of students going to university than the year before. Who’d have thunk it?

That didn’t, however, stop Gavin Williamson flailing this morning, telling LBC’s Nick Ferrari that he thinks scrapping AS Levels was the right thing to do, before appearing to perform a screeching u-turn in seconds saying “I have to confess I probably would have liked the AS system that they’ve got in Wales today.” No, but yeah, but…

Clear as mud…

mdi-timer 13 August 2020 @ 08:5813 Aug 2020 @ 08:58 mdi-twitter mdi-facebook mdi-whatsapp mdi-telegram mdi-linkedin mdi-email mdi-comment View Comments
OECD Indicators: UK Bouncing Back Faster Than Euro Area

Cutting through the political Twitter noise, economist Daniel Lacalle has pointed out that the UK’s bounce back appears to be faster than the Euro-area and OECD countries as a whole. The OECD’s Composite Leading Indicator index for last month showed impressively strong trends for the UK – much stronger than Spain, France, and Italy, and just a hair’s breadth above Germany. Guido suspects some commentators will be biting their tongues next quarter…

mdi-timer 12 August 2020 @ 17:0012 Aug 2020 @ 17:00 mdi-twitter mdi-facebook mdi-whatsapp mdi-telegram mdi-linkedin mdi-email mdi-comment View Comments
Dodds Last Month: Large Service Sector Makes UK More Vulnerable to Recession
Shadow Chancellor Anneliese Dodds has been out today being performatively shocked by today’s widely predicted poor GDP figures, both with a viral tweet and stating in a press release “The Prime Minister will say there’s only so much he could do during a global pandemic, but that doesn’t explain why our economy is tanking so badly compared to other countries.” Except everyone could see all the data showed this was coming. Not least Dodds herself…
Just one month ago, Dodds revealed herself to be fully aware of explanations as to why the UK’s GDP might be hit worse than other countries. Speaking to the Fabian Society in July, she said:
It’s quite an interesting report produced by the OECD which looked at the hit from one wave or two waves of coronavirus on different national economies, and it quite interestingly suggested that the hit on the UK’s economy could be one of the most intense from a single wave, and also from more than one wave…
…I do wonder whether, and in fact the UK Chancellor himself has acknowledged this, the very, very service-heavy nature of the UK economy has meant that it’s particularly difficult for us to weather this crisis compared to many other nations.”
Pretending to be shocked today doesn’t work when there’s video evidence you’ve known the reasons to expect this for over a month…
mdi-timer 12 August 2020 @ 16:3012 Aug 2020 @ 16:30 mdi-twitter mdi-facebook mdi-whatsapp mdi-telegram mdi-linkedin mdi-email mdi-comment View Comments
Sir Edward Leigh Suggests Re-Taking Calais

Tory grandee Sir Edward Leigh has posed a novel suggestion as to one possible route to solving the migrant crisis, ensuring the channel is properly policed even in the French waters that surround the beaches that illegal migrants are setting off from. Re-taking Calais…

“Problem with cross-Channel migrants? We should never have lost Calais in 1558.

Why not take it back?

On second thoughts, cheaper to pay the French a few million to stop them on the beaches.”

Perhaps envisioning backlash, within the same tweet, Sir Edward back-peddled into backing the Government’s position. A classic reductio ad absurdum, that makes paying the French coastguard millions more just to do their job a little more reasonable…

mdi-timer 12 August 2020 @ 16:0012 Aug 2020 @ 16:00 mdi-twitter mdi-facebook mdi-whatsapp mdi-telegram mdi-linkedin mdi-email mdi-comment View Comments
More Countries Expected to be Added to Quarantine List

Sources close to Government are increasingly expecting a fresh wave of quarantine measures, potentially closing travel corridors with some of the UK’s nearest neighbours. Guido hears a new travel announcement is likely by the end of the week, as continental cases rise far beyond the rate in the UK. Government sources are tight lipped on which countries will be affected, although France is the country being discussed the most.

This afternoon The Telegraph listed the countries the UK has a corridor with that have higher infection rates than France, which currently stands at 18.1 per 100,000. The other countries and their rates are:

  • Netherlands (23.1)
  • Gibraltar (35.6)
  • Monaco (38.2)
  • Malta (46.7)
  • San Marino (53.0)
  • the Faroe Islands (198.5)
  • Turks and Caicos (278.9)
  • Aruba (547.9)

Guido is holding off booking his trip to Amsterdam…

mdi-timer 12 August 2020 @ 15:2012 Aug 2020 @ 15:20 mdi-twitter mdi-facebook mdi-whatsapp mdi-telegram mdi-linkedin mdi-email mdi-comment View Comments
Sturgeon Slaps Down Davidson’s Call for John Swinney to Resign

There were feisty scenes at First Minister’s Questions in Holyrood today, where unlike MPs, MSPs are already back from holiday. Ruth Davidson called for the SNP’s Education Minister and Deputy First Minister John Swinney to resign over failures in education. When Davidson called on Swinney to go, she made a point about Sturgeon’s loyalty:

“the First Minister’s loyalty to her colleague may be commendable but her real loyalty should be to the parents and pupils of Scotland. They deserve new leadership.”

To which Sturgeon clapped back with:

“I’m not sure loyalty to colleagues is a strong suit for Ruth Davidson.”

Ouch. Impressive deflection…

mdi-timer 12 August 2020 @ 13:4812 Aug 2020 @ 13:48 mdi-twitter mdi-facebook mdi-whatsapp mdi-telegram mdi-linkedin mdi-email mdi-comment View Comments
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