Charles Orton-Jones's comments

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  • 7 most annoying Thatcher myths

    Charles Orton-Jones's comment | Wed, 10 Apr 2013 1:26 pm

    Alan: The sand sculpture was made at Golden Sea beach in Puri, India.

    We agree - it's a gorgeous image.

  • James Max: Too many U-turns have left the UK spiralling downwards

    Charles Orton-Jones's comment | Mon, 9 Jul 2012 4:18 pm

    "The economy isn't crashing beause of U-turns; it's in deepening recession because the government is crushing the life out of it because of an ideologically driven desire to reduce state spending at the least appropriate time in our history."

    You might be interested in this article. It shows that spending is not being reduced because of "ideology". In cash terms it is going up and and up and up.

    In fact in real terms the cuts are only 3 per cent of spending over the couse of the parliament. Not enough to trigger a double dip - especially since 2010 overall spending has barely been reduced at all.

  • If state spending is rising, how can there be "cuts"?

    Charles Orton-Jones's comment | Wed, 27 Jun 2012 1:10 pm

    Rob: The decline in capital spending has had a significant impact on economic growth. The services sector has been doing Okay since 2010, but the construction industry is suffering as public money is re-routed from capital spending (such as the school building programme) to paying the interest on the national debt.

  • Brown's beer: Step aside craft beer, it's time for our "session beers" to shine

    Charles Orton-Jones's comment | Mon, 26 Mar 2012 11:14 pm

    Superb article! Session bitters are disappearing, leaving only 4% plus ales. After a game of football I want something refreshing...and 3%.

    Great breweries like St Austell are now entirely 4%+, with Smugglers and Cornish Bock at 6%+.

    And what happened to Dark Mild?!

  • This woman sold her last firm for 200m euros. Now she's taking on Facebook

    Charles Orton-Jones's comment | Wed, 22 Feb 2012 3:53 pm

    Joanna: Thanks! Facebook is a serious business tool - although many (older!) business people find it hard to believe.

    Your training is precisely the sort of thing which professionals ought to find time for.

  • Nigel Farage: As Athens burns, Brussels is lost in a world of utter fantasy

    Charles Orton-Jones's comment | Tue, 21 Feb 2012 10:53 am

    "The fact that youth unemployment is 50 per cent in parts of southern Europe is quickly brushed aside"

    A superb point. In the UK unemployment amongst 16 to 24 year olds is 22 per cent. To reach 50 per cent, as Spain and Greece have, is simply unimaginable.

  • Square-Mile-ophile: Five oldest pubs in the Square Mile

    Charles Orton-Jones's comment | Mon, 13 Feb 2012 10:00 pm

    Was going to suggest Ye Olde Mitre. But Time Out tells me: "The date on the sign says 1547, but this version of the Mitre was actually built around 1772"

    Wonderful place for a pint if you're ever out near Hatton Garden.

  • Charles Orton-Jones: Why Hester deserves every penny of his bonus

    Charles Orton-Jones's comment | Tue, 31 Jan 2012 2:32 pm

    @EdmundSwain - I gather the bonus is calculated on quite a wide range of metrics, not just share price.

    Plus, the idea of tieing bonuses to corporate performance is pretty controversial. I had a Twitter-spat with Stefan Stern (FT columnist) who insisted that CEOs have very little control over performance, and flat salaries are more "responsible".

    Chuka Umunna said he believed this too. He was asking why anyone should get a bonus - it's a u-turn on the 2008 thinking that corporate pay should be increasingly tied to performance.

  • Charles Orton-Jones: Why Hester deserves every penny of his bonus

    Charles Orton-Jones's comment | Sun, 29 Jan 2012 5:56 pm

    One more point Ken:

    It is UKFI, not the government, which represents the taxpayer at RBS.

    Politicians can't be trusted with companies. They meddle. They follow the will of the mob. So UKFI was created to act as a barrier between the taxpayer's sharedholdings in the banks and the politicians.

    It is UKFI which approves bonuses. It has a mandate to get maximum value for the taxpayer.

    Asking politicians to violate this is asking for trouble. We'd could lose billions if the RBS board quit in protest at interference, or if politicians demanded the right to approve loans to struggling firms. And if RBS faltered again I am sure can imagine the consequences.

    ps: I appreciate your fury - my own blood boils when I think of Fred Goodwin and his pension settlement. Why Lord Myners agreed to pay that I have no idea. Panicked, by all accounts.

  • Charles Orton-Jones: Why Hester deserves every penny of his bonus

    Charles Orton-Jones's comment | Sun, 29 Jan 2012 4:08 pm

    Simple logic for you: if you don't want to pay millions to an employ don't sign a contract which requires you to pay millions.

    You are arguing after the fact.

    Hester signed a contract in 2008 which was freely and willingly offered by RBS and the Labour government, via UKFI, on behalf of the taxapayer.

    It offered him a bonus to be calculated by an agreed formula.

    Hester may be magnanimous and choose not to accept the bonus (essentially donating £1m to the goverrnment). He would be wise and virtuous to do so.

    But the iron fact is that we, as counterparties to the contract, must recognise our obligations. We signed a contract and must abide by it.

    Perhaps you know the phrase caveat emptor, buyer beware. If you buy something you cannot later, having enjoyed the fruits of it, dispute the price, nor complain that the seller is insisting you pay what is owed.

    My point is not that Hester could not have been lured for less (it is possible he might, and that RBS negotiated poorly); nor that bonuses are effective (interesting debate); nor that bankers are paid appropriately (they have been able to escape the negative externalities of their collective failings).

    Merely that we must pay what we agreed to pay.

    Ps: Your definition of "illegal" is "stuff I don't like".
    I prefer to use contract law.

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