Monday, 13 February 2012

First Meldrew Moment of 2012

We have hardly moved into the new year when
I have my First Meldrew Moment of 2012.

When security guard Charles Oloro spotted a shoplifter slipping out of the HMV shop with an armful of DVDs, he knew exactly what to do. He gave chase through the shopping centre and catching him.  Mr Oloro, who has worked for HMV for 14 years, caught the thief, on New Year's Eve. The security guard then frogmarched him back to the shop where he then called police. But instead of being congratulated by his bosses, the 42-year-old HMV worker was sacked for apprehending the thief outside the shop premises. Despite recovering the stolen goods, his actions saw him hauled in front of his bosses, and led to him losing his job.

For reasons of "Health and Safety" Mr Oloro gets the sack. So now all those shoplifters who were thinking of visiting other stores will be heading to HMV for a bit of low-risk shopping. I don't believe it!

Swansea University students are being given toilet training advice after complaints about the state of the loos on their campus. Now there is nothing new in offering advice to students. I can remember similar advice being given years ago about keeping a kitchen clean in the halls of residence.

Maybe its an indication of how piss poor the school examination results are if students go to University and need to be given life skills advice.

But it should come as no surprise. Rising numbers of children are starting school without being toilet trained, a survey of teachers suggests. Primary school staff say they have seen an increase in youngsters having accidents during the school day over the past five years.

Association of Teachers and Lecturers (ATL) which conducted a poll, said the increase in pupils without toilet training is putting extra pressure on school staff. ATL's survey of 848 primary school staff in the UK, carried out in partnership with the Education and Resources for Improving Childhood Continence (ERIC), found that 62 per cent say they have seen a rise in the numbers of youngsters wetting or soiling themselves during the school day.

Those questioned suggested that the main reason for the rise was parents failing to toilet train their children before they start school. A senior manager said: ''Parents do not spend the time training their children - they feel it is the school's job. Changes in legislation meant that we could no longer say to parents that their child could not start nursery if they were still in nappies.''

I'm glad that I have retired from a life in academia, I felt at times that I was already wiping their arses. It looks like I would have been in the future. The job was shi bad enough as it was.

Clerical Medical's Cash Pension fund investments are guaranteed to fall in value.

Savers often make use of cash funds within their pension plans to shelter from volatile markets or while they are deciding where to invest. But Clerical Medical's Cash Pension fund pays interest at 0.5pc while charging a 1pc annual management fee, resulting in a fall in value. Clerical Medical now under the umbrella of Scottish Widows, which is in turn owned by state-backed Lloyds Banking Group has admitted that the returns on such cash investments had not been enough to fully offset their 1% annual management fee. This has resulted in the unit price falling slightly. But Clerical Medical's Cash Pension fund investors are not being made aware of the poor return.

Now, call me old and cynical but how can a company like Clerical Medical have the brass neck to charge people to lose their investment principal. I don't believe it!

Ethical Bankers cut staff bonuses.

Barclays Bank has respond to public pressure over bankers bonuses by slashing payments to staff. The banking giant is under intense pressure to drastically cut the total staff bonus pot estimated at more than £1billion. It is also expected to axe hundreds of jobs from its 10,000-strong UK  workforce. However, Barclays boss Bob Diamond who was once described by former Cabinet minister Lord Mandelson as “the unacceptable face of banking” is still expected to scoop more than £3million in shares on top of his ­£1.35million-a-year salary.

I don't think the message has quite gotten through yet! Barclays will cut pay, jobs and rewards for the 10,000 UK staff. But the firm’s high-flying ­investment bankers will still get their huge bonuses. Banks didn't wreck the economy. Saving the bankers bonuses with our money has wrecked the economy. I don't believe it!


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