Friday Links

Happy Friday! Last day of the week, I’m pretty much alone in the office, all the others are on leave due to sick parents, hen weekends and weddings, so it’s going to be a quiet day!

Here are this weeks links…

1) Paying everyone a basic wage would kill off low paid and menial jobs. It’s an interesting idea.

2) An explanation of the planned Marvel films. This is really for Ma, so I don’t have to explain it when we go and see them (and we will, Ma has never come across a Marvel film she didn’t like!)

3) On the removal of the affordable housing levy. Find me a politician with the sense to sort housing out, please. It isn’t difficult and if the market worked, then we wouldn’t have a housing crisis.

The story seems familiar: a crisis is growing, while the government still tells us to put our faith in the market. But housing is more visible than finance – if your neighbours are evicted, you’ll see; if social housing is demolished to build luxury flats, you’ll see. For the thousands who joined the March for Homes on Saturday, the solutions were straightforward. No one proposed letting luxury developers run roughshod over the metropolis, trousering wads of cash.

Their demands have been unchanged for years: more council housing and rent controls, secure tenancies, and a halt to evictions. All these proposals, especially rent controls, are popular and, most importantly, something the government can deliver. They’re simple, manageable and achievable. There’s no point waiting for the invisible hand of the market to sort out the housing crisis when property speculation is one of the main causes of the country’s wildly unequal and increasingly unaffordable housing market.

4) Kitchen Disasters. The comments are great, I have had many kitchen mishaps, the boiled eggs that I complete forgot about (I left the house – they were cremated) . The pan of oil also forgotten about and left on the hob as I went to answer the door which erupted into flames. I also have a bad habit of setting tea towels on fire. Also worth an honourable mention are disaster that was my attempt at key lime pie and the several failed attempts at meringue (although I have that sorted now!)

5) Giles Fraser nails what I found so wrong about Stephen Fry’s (and indeed all atheists arguments about God and His existence). Also why so bloody angry with a God you don’t believe exists?

6) The different portrayals of Thomas Cromwell by Ben Miles and Mark Rylance. I haven’t seen the RSC plays but I’m completely surprised by how good Rylance is (I was dubious about the casting). I love the slowness of him, when he’s around situations that are dangerous and the lightness when he’s at home. I also love the lighting and the pace of the series so far and the way that the actors are showing us character with actions. I loved last week, when Henry just holds his arm  out and expects Cromwell to sort out his sleeve. This is a man who always gets what he wants and who generally never has to ask. You understand why it’s a shock to him that the Church isn’t giving him the divorce he wants. And I need to go and read the the books again…

7) Linda Grant on housing prices.

8) Money, family spending and explaining it to the kids. It’s interesting to see how people do this. I don’t think we knew how much money was coming into the house ever. We knew when things were difficult and we knew that Ma was the one carrying it but we didn’t ever have a sense of what money went where.

About nicdempsey

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