Here are the mid-week polls so far:

Kantar – CON 45%(+8), LAB 27%(nc), LDEM 16%(-1), BREX 2%(-7)
YouGov/Times/Sky – CON 42%(-3), LAB 30%(+2), LDEM 15%(nc), BREX 4%(nc)
ICM/Reuters – CON 42%(+3), LAB 32%(+1), LDEM 13%(-2), BREX 5%(-3)
Survation/GMB – CON 42%, LAB 28%, LDEM 13%, BREX 5%

A few things to note. Kantar and ICM have now removed the Brexit party as an option in the seats where they are not standing, which will have contributed to the increase in Conservative support and decrease in Brexit party support (YouGov had already introduced this change last week).

The Survation poll is the first telephone poll that they’ve conducted in this election campaign (all their other recent polls have been conducted online), hence they’ve recommended against drawing direct comparisons with their previous poll. The fourteen point Tory lead in this poll is substantially larger than in Survation’s previous poll, which had a lead of only six points, but it’s impossible to tell whether that’s down to an increase in Conservative support or the different methodology. At the last election their two approaches produced similar results, with their final poll being conducted by phone.

Finally, Kantar’s polling has received some criticism on social media for their approach to turnout weighting, with “re-weighted” versions of their figures doing the rounds. The details of this criticism are wrong on almost every single measure. It’s very easy for people to retweet figures claiming they show the turnout figures from Kantar, but it takes rather longer to explain why the sums are wrong Matt Singh did a thread on it here, and RSS Statistical Ambassador, Anthony Masters, has done a lengthier post on it here.

In short, the claims confuse normal demographic weights (the ones Kantar use to ensure the proportion of young and old people in the samples matches the figures the ONS publish for the British population as a whole) with their turnout model. Secondly, they compare youth turnout to early estimates straight after the 2017 election, when there have been subsequent measures from the British Election Study that were actually checked against the marked electoral register, so are almost certainly more accurate. Compared to those figures, Kantar’s turnout levels look far more sensible. The figures do imply a small increase in turnout among older voters, a small drop amongst younger votes, but nowhere near the level that has been bandied about on social media.

However, if we leave aside the specific criticisms, it is true to say that turnout has different impacts on different pollsters. In the 2017 election many pollsters adopted elaborate turnout models based on demographic factors. These models largely backfired, so pollsters dropped them. Most polling companies are now using much simpler turnout models, that have much less of an impact, and which are based primarily on how likely respondents to the poll say they will vote.

Kantar is the exception – in 2017 they used a model that predicted people’s likelihood to vote based on both how likely they said they were to vote, but also their past voting and how old they are. Unlike many other companies this worked well for them and they were one of the more accurate polling companies, so they kept it. That does mean that Kantar now have a turnout model that makes more difference than most.

Looking at the polls at the top of this post, factoring in turnout made no difference to the lead in YouGov’s poll (it was a 12 point Tory lead before turnout weighting, a 12 point Tory lead afterwards). The same is true of Survation – their poll would have had a 14 point lead before turnout was factored in, and a 14 point lead afterwards. In ICM’s poll, without turnout the lead would have been 7 points, with turnout it grows to 10 points. With Kantar’s latest poll, the tables suggest that the turnout weighting increased the Tory lead from 10 points to 18 points.

Hence, while the specific claims about Kantar are nonsense, it is true to say their turnout model has more impact than that of some other companies. That does not, of course, mean it is wrong (turnout is obviously a significant factor in elections). However, before going off on one about how important turnout weighting is to the current polls, it’s rather important to note that for many companies it is contributing little or nothing to the size of the Tory lead.


1,091 Responses to “Latest voting intention and the impact of turnout”

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  1. @Redrich

    Be careful. Rentoul is viscerally anti-Corbyn and it would be very easy for any of us on UKPR to post a link to an article by, say Owen Jones, on how dreadful Johnson was last night. Remember, Corbyn wasn’t looking to convince people like Rentoul, or Johnson Jones for that matter, neither of them ever could, he was/they were talking to a completely different audience.

    Certainly not political polemicists. They write the equivalent of political p*rnography for their fellow believers.

  2. Danny,

    You are right that if a majority of MPs won the election on a revoke manifesto, they would be entitled to revoke A50 in government: that is democracy.

    The problem with this policy is that it leaves the 2016 referendum mandate on the table. So a future government, winning another general election on a brexit platform, could simply restart A50 again.

    The only way to take the 2016 mandate off the table is to cancel it by winning another referendum. That’s why the LD policy is mistaken.

  3. @ PTRP – Project your own opinion but Remain could have won this in at least two ways.

    1/ Hindsight: Back in Sep they needed to kick Boris out and agree on a new PM whose sole purpose was to get an extension long enough for a ref (or a GE then a ref) – FAILED

    2/ More recent: Having decided to pin their hopes on Farage splitting the Leave vote they needed:

    – SNP to take X seats from SCON
    – LDEM to take Y seats from CON
    – LAB to only lose Z seats to CON

    Starting at 318 then they’d probably hoped for:

    X = 10+
    Y = 15+
    Z = near 0 (maybe even LAB net wins!!)

    So CON would be on 293 or less and unable to form a govt. They then probably hoped Swinson would fold an back PM Corbyn provided he then did #1 (ie what they should have done in Sep)

    Ideally they needed formal of semi-formal pacts to ensures they could carve up CON seats between then but they f**ked that up.

    X: SNP went “YES-NOW” which means X is more like 3 now

    Y: LAB wouldn’t agree a pact and the “Unite to Remain” pact was neutered by Farage’s “unilatarlal” pact. Then Corbyn finished LDEM off by moving to Neutral on Remain v Remain. Y is more like max 5 now

    Z: Since your the expert then tell me how many CON-LAB marginals Corbyn can win by moving to Remain and how may LAB-CON marginals are now easier for CON to win – roughly. Is Z now higher or lower than it was had Corbyn at least kept up the pretence that he might back his own deal.

    So, as I said several months ago this GE would not be so much WON by the best team but LOST by the team that failed to unite it’s side of the vote and divide the other won. Remain even had a head start with SNP benefitting from FPTP in Scotland and Boris having thrown DUP under the bus.

    PS Now if you want to say Corbyn+McDonnell (ie McCluskey and Momentum) never wanted Remain then win then that does actually fit the events very well. I’m not saying I predicted that but LAB members voted for a Eurosceptic leader, not once but twice!!! SNP?? We’ll they win either way. Brexit helps them with the YES vote and had Corbyn not thrown the towel in then they’d have had a Remain v Remain ref so could then push for Indy knowing they’d be able to stay in CU with their largest trading partner – rUK!!

    I hope folks remember who actually voted for the GE that Boris had desperately wanted from day1 on the job. A reminder of that one:

    https://commonsvotes.digiminster.com/Divisions/Details/734

    Boris and CCHQ send their thanks to the SNP ;)

  4. last post a grammar and spelling nightmare. i’m too tight (and too green) to turn the heating up so my fingers a bit slower in the cold.

    i’m sure folks can the gist of the post – ie blame the SNP ;)

  5. @John33

    Well he never quite got over Blair leaving office.

  6. @Danny/PTRP

    Re 737 Max and MCAS, I think you may find all the detail and explanation you need here:

    http://avherald.com/h?article=4bf90724/0009&opt=0
    http://avherald.com/h?article=4c534c4a/0065&opt=0

    Essentially, as far as I recall from reading through all this stuff some time ago, it seems to boil down to MCAS relying on info from one sensor, so if it went wrong the system would go crazy. There was then no easy way to switch it off, and fighting it manually just became physically impossible when human strength was exhausted. That was exacerbated in the Ethiopian case by the pilots keeping speed up (presumably attempting to gain height) which made the aerodynamic loads on the elevators too high for manual trim adjustment.

  7. Alec

    I happened to be involved in the evaluation of the nationalisation of a particular company in Italy by the Commission.

    It was very explicit – there is no problem as long as by legal terms there is no restriction of free market. So, while the set up was such that no mindful private business would enter, the nationalisation legislation has to be amended allowing competitors’ entry (as I said, there was no chance (and nothing changed in the last 15 years there.

    As to the National Grid – it is a monopoly, but it is managed by different private companies in different regions under like-minded contracts.

  8. like-minded meant to be time limited…

  9. @ Old Nat

    The irony of it…..

    We leave the EU on Jan 31st and Scotland play Ireland in Dublin the very next day! Who could have thunk it up!

  10. Sorry, posted before final bit added, which was:

    That was exacerbated in the Ethiopian case by the pilots keeping speed up (presumably attempting to gain height) which made the aerodynamic loads on the elevators too high for manual trim adjustment….The only way to regain power assistance for manual trim adjustment was to turn MCAS back on, which immediately made the plane dive again. It was a one step forward, two steps back process which could only have one ending.

  11. Frustrated with the absence of any numbers on Public Finances in the Lab Manifesto I looked again at their three “Fiscal Credibility” Rules-none of which relate to Debt.

    But the third rule helps a little. It says

    ” ? To keep interest repayments below 10% of tax revenue”

    So I did a little number crunching :-

    Base Line-from the last Budget Red Book:-
    2023/24:

    Tax Revenue £935 bn
    Debt Interest £47bn
    Government DEbt £1896bn-or 74% X GDP

    So-Labour adds £83 bn pa to tax revenue by 23/24 taking Tax Revenue to £ 1018bn

    Their Rule on interest payments allows £ 102 bn pa

    If £ 47bn is interest on £1896bn of Debt, then £102 bn is interest on £ £4114 bn of DEbt-or 160% X GDP

    The increase in Debt from Labour Policies could rise , under that rule, by £4114 bn -£1896 bn =£2.16trn.

    Of that we know that £400 bn is for the two Transformation funds-leaving £ £1.76 trn for all other borrowing increases -including nationalisations.

    An article in today’s Times lists the jobs Labour plan to create from their plans. Im “green” + 100k NHS +100k Social workers +150k early years teachers +37k Police, prison & fire. Thats 1.4 million jobs -dropping UK unemployment to 1.5%.

    ie There will be a massive skills gap. Together with a 15% Min. Wage increase & 5% Public sector pay rise , it will push up inflation.

    Labours tidal wave of Gilt issue will meet a demand for higher interest.

    With Debt at £4 trillion , every 1% rise in Gilt yields costs the Treasury £40bn.pa.

    A Fiscal Rule on State Borrowing that features no constraint on Debt, but only that Interest Rates cannot exceed a given % of Tax Revenue means that interest rate rises have to be funded by Tax rises or spending cuts.

  12. Re Corbyns neutral stance, to me there were three other options he could have gone for

    1. Continued to fail to answer the question on what he would support. Increasingly untenable and a big turn off for many voters

    2. Support leave – a disaster for Labour remain voters

    3. Support remain. It may have been the final nail in the coffin for the relatively few leave supporters Labour have. Yes it would make the remain supporters happy but I suspect committed remainers will be okay with a neutral position provided remain is in the ballot and in reality for most seats outside of Scotland there are no other realistic options but Labour.

    I think the neutral and honest broker approach was the best of the 4 options. Not only that a lot on the radio and tv news about it and how Corbyn wants to take an impartial approach

  13. Just another thought on how these mainstream TV debates and studio audience grillings may or may not be going down with the undecided voters engaging with this election for the first time via these sort of high profile events. We can all argue amongst ourselves, most of us with our own dogs in the fight, until the cows come home about who won and lost, but that doesn’t get us very far, I fear. Only voters who are genuinely unaligned and undecided will give the telling verdicts, and it won’t be purely on the basis of the debates anyway, influential though they can be.

    So, in strictly binary terms, there are no winners and losers that can be reliably measured and determined as such. Polls may move, but that could be for a multiplicity of reasons, but it’s also not true to say that the performances of the leaders in these widely watched spectacles are unimportant. Self evidently they are and there will be no other opportunities for as many people to see these senior politicians, largely unfiltered, as provided by last Tuesday, Friday and December 6th. Prime time TV slots watched by millions. They obviously matter hugely.

    In that context, who has most to gain from them? Probably Corbyn, I suspect, because of how far behind he is the others. In that sense,, the bar was low for him and the expectations similarly so. He didn’t really have much to lose bar some monumental gaffe or embarrassment. He’s a wily enough old campaigner and politician to avoid those. Did he soar? No, he didn’t do that either, but let’s get back to those expectations again. Many predicted that a “stellar” public performer like Johnson would wipe the floor with him and that Corbyn would compound the public’s low view of him rather than confound it. On any objective measure that didn’t happen and that must be a win of sorts for Corbyn in the context of this election. Johnson hasn’t bested him on either occasion so far when they’ve been pitched together. I think a reasonable consensus has formed on that beyond those who probably wrote their verdicts before a word was spoken in the debates and grillings.

    I think Corbyn has a Rubiks Cube path to Downing Street, with many sides of the cube still unformed in uniform colours. Will the Lib Dem drip towards to Labour start to trickle a little faster, will Tory Remainers still cling to Johnson, will young voters, slowly getting enthused again I detect, come out for Corbyn a la 2017? He has a desperately difficult, probably impossible task.

    But has the Labour mamifesto launch and his OK TV performances earned him a right to be heard and listened to again? I think they have and he’s sort of still in the game.

    That’s all both Labour and Corbyn could really ask in this historically difficult election for them both.

    Off to Matlock now to watch Redditch play in a qualifying round of the FA Trophy. I love my occasional little forays into non-league football. The Reds are doing OK in the Cup competitions but have lost 8 league games on the spin. Matlock are a decent side. Not expecting much result wise but looking forward very much to being amongst people, in a place and watching a game I love dearly.

    Have a good weekend everyone.

  14. @ Crossbat

    FINAL Qualifying round and then glory awaits in the First Round proper! Matlock Town is one of the prettiest grounds you could ever hope to visit, although I’ve forgotten what overlooks it- castle or church or something.

  15. I agree with you on the figures but this is probably a best case scenario. It is likely that bond sales would be affected from the outset which would make it very difficult to raise the sums envisaged. We could end up with the tax rises but only limited delivery of the programme because of resistance from the bond markets.
    There is a possible saviour on the horizon however. A rapid rise in inflation would reduce the debt in gdp terms and allow the government to meet its minimum wage pledges (although that minimum wage would buy less than it does now). Loads of cash for everyone.

  16. @CB11

    Be careful. Rentoul is viscerally anti-Corbyn and it would be very easy for any of us on UKPR to post a link to an article by, say Owen Jones, on how dreadful Johnson was last night.

    I just found it a highly amusing example of a blatant bias write up, – and very much doubt anyone on this site would be swayed/fooled to be convinced that black is white and white is black.

  17. That was to COLIN but my tablet deleted him.

  18. NEARLY FRENCH

    A rapid rise in inflation would not be a “possible saviour” for Labour.

    It -and the inevitable response on gilt yields-could wreak havoc on their Public Finances .

  19. I urge caution in respect of the New Registration data referred to earlier. The figures actually are ‘Applications to Register’ , and the experience of 2017 was that most of the Applications submitted came from people who – unknown to themselves – were actually already included in the Register. In reality, therefore, the number of genuine new voters is likely to be well under half the headline figures quoted.

  20. @COLIN
    Easily solved, just introduce New Pounds with a couple of noughts crossed off.
    I was being ironic.

  21. Colin,

    IR rises would only be on incremental debt and as long as total debt interest over time grows at or below GDP growth the payments are sustainable.

    I appreciate we will disagree just as we did over Coalition austerity and the 1981 Howe Budget but there is sound Economic theory behind Labours Keynesian approach.

    How it plays out Electorally with key groups is a different matter.

  22. NEARLY FRENCH

    Ah-yes-together with free government wheelbarrows to carry them in.

    Its the classic outcome of policies like that isn’t it?.

    Actually if they hadn’t made it so enormous; scaled back & listed priorities. Dump things like the 10% grab of larger companies equity, and some of the other Central Planning type stuff & dafter nationalisations-then I think it might have gained some credibility.

    It has a lot of stuff which BJ found out last evening, people are wanting after so many years of belt tightening & I think Cons would have had problems with a credible scale , scope & timetable.

    But I think its all gone to Corbyn & McDonnell’s heads a bit.

    Socialism in One Country-by Christmas !

    OTT is there problem I suspect.

  23. JIM JAM

    @”IR rises would only be on incremental debt ”

    No it wouldn’t.

    UK gilts have a range of maturity dates-constantly being repaid & replaced -at the current rate.

  24. Westminster Voting Intention:
    CON: 42% (=)
    LAB: 30% (=)
    LDM: 16% (+1)
    BXP: 3% (-1)
    GRN: 4% (=)
    Via @YouGov , 21-22 Nov. Changes w/ 18-19 Nov

  25. @ ONat 10.14pm

    Interesting that Willie Young (Labour) had such a proportion of his transferable vote going to the SNP in the Aberdeen TORRY by-election.

    Possibly it was a short-term feeling against Cons, with two of their Aberdeen candidates disgraced (sex; anti-Semitism).

    But more important is the general feeling that the SNP is well run by Sturgeon, and every SNP vote at whatever level should make her better-placed in UK politics.

    She ought to be involved in any negotiations with the EU come January.

  26. A new poll of North and Midlands of England is discussed here:

    https://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-7716641/Tories-win-30-seats-Labours-northern-heartland.html

    The poll indicates that labour still lag in terms of support behind their position in 2017 by up to 10% points.

    The poll was after the manifesto, but possibly not with time for people to consider it properly.

  27. CB11,

    The mighty Gladiators will be victorious!

    Shevii,

    Riber Castle. Its a Victorian folly that was used as a zoo for a long time and has been being converted into flats for about the last 20 years.

  28. “absolutely certain to vote”

    Labour 81%
    Lib Dem 77%
    Conservative 76%

    Remainers 73%
    Leavers 68%

    Middle class 69%
    Working class 55%

    18-24: 50%
    65+: 75%

    YouGov 18-19 Nov #GE2019

  29. How “Rebalancing the State” MIGHT work

    1/ You have to fix the current account (ideally the “good way” via making more stuff in UK and reducing imports whilst ideally increasing exports)

    2/ You can then gradually buy back the “family silver” (eg the original plan to return railways to state ownership as/when leases expired)

    3/ You possibly speed it up a bit if you could get folks to exchange “shares” for “Gilts” – see above on MMT – go easy!!!

    Now the next bit is how LoCs would see it and I’ll highlight where I’m prepared to be “Corbyn-lite”

    4/ The private sector have been “rent seekers” and due to the “natural monopoly” (or oligopoly) have been making “abnormal” profits – FAIR ENUF, agree with that.

    5/ Under State Control then by taking over the “abnormal” profit you could lower fares, improve service and still have enough “normal” profit to pay the interest on the new debt – IF YOU CAN SHOW ME TRADE UNIONS CAN BE TRUSTED THEN OK

    So I’d be prepared to run “pilot” schemes (eg rail, maybe one utility in each sector) to see if we can trust the trade unions. IMO unwinding 40+yrs of “ne0liberalism” can’t be rushed but I appreciate folks are impatient. Earn the trust, fix the current account and we can gradually take back more control of natural monopolies under state ownership.

    Now the RoC method is not that different but instead of “buying back” the family silver you force the “rent seekers” to only be able to make a “normal profit” and if they take the p!ss or can’t manage the natural monopoly then you step in (with intent to maybe step back out again later).

    I’m quite prepared to let the State run more than it does now, especially if the trade unions can show they can be trusted. The balance is out, the “market” has in some cases failed (or at least has been taking the p!ss for too long)

    What I fear (and most folks over about 42 given the age x-break divide) is secondary pickets etc and a return to the “old days” of the State being a very bad manager of natural monopolies.

    My rule of thumb is a 5% dividend (or risk premium) so if the State is 95% as “good” (or less bad) than the private sector then it makes sense for the State to manage the business on behalf of citizens, if it is below 95% as “good” (ie much worse via strikes, massive wage increases, etc) then NO – just start applying more “stick” to the private sector (eg force them to invest or hit them with “windfall taxes”)

    NB The above is not “picking winners” or crowding out. It extends only to “natural monopolies” such as rail, utilities and obviously the NHS, police, army, etc

  30. @Colin

    You point out that one of Labour’s rules allows a very considerable increase in public debt. The bulk of this probably has to do with nationalisations. The following are genuine questions.

    if the nationalisations are worth something, they must be making a profit for those who run them (correct?). This profit may indeed come from government subsidies but ‘buying back’ the family silver will presumably return this ‘profit’ to the government. (I guess this assumes that the government runs them as efficiently). In this way the transaction might be seen as a way of switching government costs from subsidies to interest repayment. How far is that a valid argument?

    A second rather abstract question compares what would happen if an ambitious businessman were to buy these companies using money borrowed from the banks. The banks would issue the money, basically creating it as i understand it, and then regard the assets as a debt so that it itself remains solvent. This seems to happen on a grand scale. Why can’t the government not simply issue this money, give it to some agency to run (say) the railways and then deny that it is in debt at all? I appreciate that the markets might see this as the height of irresponsibility and punish us accordingly, but I am still not sure why we can’t do it (it would, perhaps, be a version of quantitative easing)

    On your skills shortage and inflation points, I think that the term ‘social work’ is probably misused (presumably by the Times). Most social workers work in children’s services and there are under 30,000 of them there, so I find it hard to believe that even a Labour government plans to raise them by 100,000. Probably what is meant is something like ‘social care workforce’.

    I also assume that the 1.4 million extra jobs, assumes that these people do not switch jobs with their previous jobs being taken over by robots or lost to efficiency savings. (I think that it is a process we need to encourage as it would raise our productivity while switching jobs to things which cannot be done by robots or people outside the UK)

    That said, I think that you are right that this programme is almost certainly undeliverable at the speed and with the costings that are implied. My feeling is that Mrs T took her time to deliver the changes that underlie our current prosperity and current malaise. In the unlikely event that Labour are elected they will have to learn to do the same. They will also have to focus very hard on making sure that whatever they do they do well and efficiently.

    As you probably know, I support them because I think that they want to do the right things, not because i think they have an immediate prospect of achieving what they promise.

  31. NeiJ: Corbyn claiming he will be neutral on a second referendum is not a matter of election gaming. It is an abject failure of leadership from someone who aspires to be PM.

    How can the EU take seriously a negotiation with a PM who is not even prepared to defend the deal he negotiated in a hypothetical second referendum ? In fact, it is unbelievable that someone who is standing for the highest political office in the land can present himself to the public with such a stance on a major national issue.

  32. Post on Reclaiming the State must have had a naughty word. Shorter version below (read this before the “Rebalancing the state” post)

    @ COLIN – “Labours tidal wave of Gilt issue will meet a demand for higher interest”

    Thank you for crunching the numbers but we need to go to MMT and the simplistic view that a sovereign state can simply print it’s own money (ie you can’t owe yourself your own money)

    Modern Monetary Theory = Magic Money Trees

    The High Wizard is one Bill Mitchell and he has likes of McDonnell under his spell.

    I’d recommend reading his book as it is a glimpse into the darkness of an insane mind:

    “Reclaiming the State: A Progressive Vision of Sovereignty for a Post-Ne0liberal World”

    This is the legacy of using “conventional” QE to “fix” the banking crisis. That opened up Pandora’s Box

    At the bottom of Pandora’s Box you’ll find a copy of the

    Manifesto of Hope

    Anyone that knows Greek will know “Hope” can be translated differently…

  33. The Trevors,
    “Remain a member of the European Union [3] ( )
    Become a colony of the European Union [4] ”

    This has always been the choice. To withdraw from the management of the EU will guarantee their dominance over us, whatever we do. We joined because this was clear even then.

  34. Alex Cole-Hamilton MSP on Twitter confirms that the audience on BBC QT leadership debate was stacked against the Lib Dems:

    “BBC confirm that the #bbcqt #LeadershipDebate audience was stacked based on current party representation in the commons ie numbers of MPs. So there were effectively 2 Lib Dem’s in that room.”

    That confirms my impression at the time. So much for the unbiased BBC.

  35. part 2 of “Reclaiming the State” (from auto-mod)

    If you can use QE to save the banks (and by implication save the FEW ie “rich”) then why not use QE for the MANY (ie ‘Reclaim the state’)

    In the book they use 1930s Germany and Japan as examples of how successful MMT can be – seriously!! Read the book.

    More recently then Abe-onicms (Japan again) was the modern “poster child” of how MMT can fix all the problems (until that failed and Japan went back to conventional methods of failure)

    Anyway, back to UK and “democratising the UK” then, in MM Theory, you just print the money. More debt = print more money and buy back your own debt (you can’t owe money to yourself).

    So even if you accept QE can be used for “non-conventional” uses (which it can) then doing so in UK has some major complications

    1/ We have a massive current account deficit and to “pay” for that we have had to keep selling “the family silver” (rail, utilities, etc) – which in many cases is now own by foreign shareholders

    2/ If we want to buy back the “family silver” then they might not want McDonnell’s Gilts for their shares. Legal issues aside, if they are forced to exchange shares for debt they don’t want then they sell the debt and then sell £ to repatriate their money

    3/ You then have £ selling to fund both the current account deficit (already ‘woeful and widening” but spiralling out of control if you make UK less competitive) and the attempt to reverse the capital account.

    4/ As £ collapses you’d have to bring in capital controls and since nothing exceeds like excess then you ramp up the Keynesian policies and enter a vicious circle of widening deficit, £ collapse, lower competitiveness and back round the circle again.

    Note there is nothing “Modern” about that. Full boom-bust Keynes in UK 1960-70s was the same (but under the Gold Standard we went bankrupt before it got totally beyond rescue). Venezuela have/had oil exports so had a “head start” – we don’t even have that “head start” on the collapse. So Venezuela would be a picnic compared to the carnage of seeing if maybe MMT works in an open country like UK whose main competitive advantage is being the Global Financial Capital (for now)

    It’s like an alchemist that thinks, hhhmmm, “fiat money” I haven’t tried this before – maybe this time I’ll turn an inert metal into Gold. Maybe but 99.99999% sure McDonnell won’t coz it has failed the million other times someone somewhere at some point in history tried the same thing and failed.

  36. Leftie Liberal – to do it by #MPs seems clearly unfair on Lib Dems, compounding the unfair electoral system into the debates. Also explains why so many SNP supporters in the audience – the FPTP system is good for them.

  37. Isn’t the audience in US presidentual debates supposed to consist exclusively of self-declared “undecided” voters ?

  38. Still can’t believe that John Rentoul said that Boris Johnson “had the audience eating out of his hand” in his write up of yesterday’s debate. Those articulate people, all so critical of what he had done.

  39. I found the following tweet from Matt Singh;

    Since there’s been some debate about whether or not the #bbcqt audience was representative, here’s how a representative sample feels about the leaders:

    41% like Johnson
    23% like Corbyn
    34% like Swinson

    I was somewhat surprised at this

  40. The Trevors,
    “So, as I said several months ago this GE would not be so much WON by the best team but LOST by the team that failed to unite it’s side of the vote and divide the other ”

    Good to see you agreeing with me. However where we then depart is that you insist on continuously tallying possible scores for MPs, despite agreeing that polling right now is pretty meaningless. The final result will depend, as you say, on whether the sides get their supporters united.

    Lots of others still seem to be engaging in pointless guessing too. The interesting issue is how the process of unification is getting on, or not.

    So far, this election seems to be going much like the last one.

    Granted, I keep arguing that what the conservatives need to do is get out of office, and this is their second attempt to do so. But this relies on giving the appearance they expected to win, not allowing any suggestion they hoped to lose. So what conservative supporters need to be doing right now is pushing the idea there will be a big tory win. Before it becomes blindingly obvious to everyone that there will not. So one would expect that right now conservative hacks would be busy predicting a big win.

    Passtherockplease,

    You misrepresented the Danny view. Yes, I think conservatives want to lose and therefore not have to deliver Brexit. But the critical point is not to let anyone realise this is the case.

    I have always argued not that conservatives are stubbornly remain and thus motivated to stop it happening (though I think they are remain, and even after this election with a change of cast may still be), but that they see the consequences of delivery as ultimately worse than the consequences of not delivering. But a reasonable course forward is possible if they can steer between these two decisive options and pass power to anyone else fool enough to take it.

  41. @ CHARLES (1:35pm) – Folks tend to find my posts incomprehensible but in essence I agree with your 1:35pm other than the fact that I don’t (like 99.99999% certain) think it would work (at least not on the “new” timeline of two ageing white men seeking to find out if they can “rush it”)

    Auto-mod means my posts are out in time order but hopefully they explain why I’m prepared to give “Corbyn-lite” a go but i’m not signing up to see if Bill Mitchell’s disciples can make MMT work in UK

    NB the missing ingredient in my posts is the need for HMG to ensure the new BoE governor is Bill Mitchell (or one of his disciples).

  42. Mat Singh’s twitter has just posted the interesting result from a representative sample:

    49% of people like the Labour party
    42% of people like the Tory party.

  43. Matt Singh: “the latest YouGov poll suggests that the narrowing of a couple of points across the last few YouGov polls may be genuine”

  44. Somerjohn,
    PTRP was arguing that if the plane had the warning indicator to tell them the attitude sensors had failed (or a least were disagreeing with each other), then the pilots would have had earlier notice and could have taken over the plane safely.

    I am less clear whether this would ultimately have helped. Dont know if you have a view?

    It seems there have been quite a lot of faults with this system. What again isnt clear is whether these were different in nature to the ones which ended in crashes, or whether it was luck or maybe a pilot extra on the ball, or even just keen on bodybuilding, which made the difference.

  45. @Trevors

    I posted to Colin without having the benefit of your very interesting discussion of the pros and cons of nationalisation. (Are all of you Corbynlite?).

    An interesting illustration of some of this comes from the former telegrams service. Originally this was provided by different private companies which operated monopolies up and down different railway lines (e.g. London to Bristol or London to Newcastle). It was expensive and did not cover most of the country. The immediate consequence of its nationalisation was a massive increase in the number of telegrams sent, a very sharp drop in the cost (if I remember right, down from 15p to 5p) and a great increase in the productivity of managers who now managed a vastly increased area of operations for similar salaries to those applied before. A latent ‘problem’ was that the staff were put on decent conditions of service of which the primary component was that the longer you stayed the more you got paid. As a consequence the costs inexorably increased and by the later Victorian times the service which had originally run at a profit was making losses and regarded as a problem.

    And this is perhaps a major part of the issue. Nationalisation of some activities can be inherently more efficient, but it also tends to be good for the staff. Insofar as we don’t like paying people any more than we can get away with, we tend to regard this as a problem. In addition, we are reluctant to pay taxes for investment by the state and so the industries can lack the investment they need. The bad old days of British rail etc have, perhaps, more to do with these problems than with any ‘inherent inefficiency’ in state run enterprises (which is not to deny that they may have some).

  46. @Prof Howard

    “Still can’t believe that John Rentoul said that Boris Johnson “had the audience eating out of his hand” in his write up of yesterday’s debate. Those articulate people, all so critical of what he had done.”

    That obviously isn’t true. Anyone who saw the programme live (or like me, recorded) could see Johnson struggled. He always struggles when confronted by an audience and questions that are not pre arranged. Equally, Corbyn had a good night. Corbyn is good at this sort of thing anyway. He’s used to hostile questioning. He’s had to face it the whole of his political life. Boris’s problem is that he often has a free ride from a fairweather press. This does him no good a times like these when his charm and charisma are not enough. Still the numbers are on his side so it may not matter.

    Rentoul is Blair’s biographer and has written quite a lot on how aghast he is that Labour has abandoned Blairism. Like some on that wing of the Labour party, they appear to be more obsessed with their brand being successful than the party winning the election. Rentoul would probably prefer a Tory win to a Corbyn Labour one (even though he is against most Tory policies).

  47. @ CHARLES – I’ve always been “Corbyn-lite” the problem is that Corbynites and Corbynistas think anyone to the right of Karl Marx (eg Ian Austin) is a Tory.

    I’ll vote CON as I want to leave the EU but there was a LOT of stuff in Cameron-Clegg-Osborn and May-Hammond era that I didn’t like.

    TBC on the “new team” but Javid is much much much better than Hammond and no one could be worse than Mayb0t

    PS Did you find out which party has the “policy” to returning previously privatised bits of NHS (privatised by Blair) back to state control?

    I wonder if any LoC will find something they “like” in CON manifesto tommorow. I’ve posted the bits of Green and LAB manifesto that I like (nothing in LDEM’s manifesto as that is mix of “lite” versions of everyone else, only original bit is 1% on Income Tax but they had that last time and now is not the time for “sensible” policies that voters won’t like)

  48. YG’s write-up “youth vote”, if you open up the tabs then you can see a lot of DNV’17 lean LAB.

    So IF we do end up seeing a bigger sequel to Youthquake’17 then LAB will narrow the % gap a bit BUT since LAB have most of the “Youth” seats anyway then it won’t help them much in “old” LAB heartland seats.

    You win a FPTP GE in UK by winning 323+ seats not by “vote stacking” in seats you won[1] in the last GE

    https://yougov.co.uk/topics/politics/articles-reports/2019/11/22/general-election-who-will-win-youth-vote

    PS New poll isn’t up yet but we tend to start getting the Sunday press polls out today so a few more to come yet.

    [1] Obviously a few exceptions and certainly a chance IDS loses his seat of Chingford and Woodford Green if LAB can get an even larger GOTV than last time (and note no Green this time so a 1,000+ votes from there perhaps?). That seat was near 50/50 in EURef but as time goes by then it probably (demographically) “drifts” more Remain.

  49. Colin,

    Maturing debt needing replacing is incremental – perhaps I should have said on new debt as technically the old is being paid off with new taking its place.

    I think most UK Debt is very long term (Napolionic war debt only paid off a few years go I recall).

    In any event same principle applies but that the limit would be reached earlier if IRs are higher as a result of the total debt is mathematically irrefutable.

    I think we disagree on the principle of debt interest being key number rather than debt itself and are not going to agree.

  50. Serious question to our Scottish Posters.

    Imagine that I am a remain unionist in an SNP/Tory seat who wants to vote ABT but hear SNP politicians say this GE is about independence.

    In other words are some of the SNP leaderships utterances going to help the Tories hold more seats. Would not a more sophisticated suggestion that Brexit is more important at this GE than independence and that we will welcome remain unionist voting for us, and not misrepresent what that support means, be more sensible?

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