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Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Are you psychic?

Courtesy of a tweet from Matt Raven, this is a fascinating employment opportunity being advertised on the Directgov Jobs and Skills search:

Psychic Readers

Do you want to earn money using your natural gift from the comfort of your own home? We require up to 20 psychics to take advantage of our home worker opportunity, you will work in a self employed basis via our payroll partners. All HMRC deductions and running costs will be taken care of by our back office. All we require is that you have a landline . telephone, broadband/internet connection, pc literacy and of course the most important part, natural psychic talent. The Company has given an assurance that this vacancy enables workers to achieve a wage equivalent to the National Minimum Wage rate. Self-employed people are responsible for paying their own National Insurance contributions and Tax. For information on how benefits are affected, and whether entitlement may be lost, speak to a Jobcentre Plus Adviser.

You wouldn't think that they needed to advertise really. Surely, potential applicants could sense the vacancy.
Government Ministers jobs eh
Well, I see that China has cut back on its 'rare' earth mineral exports. One 'could see that coming" from "a mile off".


... and where does this leave western hi-tech manufacturing ... oh, ship ahoy ... China

The USA is now working hard to reopen its 'rare' earth mineral mines. Every one was shut down because of regulations making it too expensive to mine. Now the Feds have signaled that the regs will not be applied harshly - it's that or the China highway.

Oh, the Fed regs are still oh-ah-coming - Obama is going to ban internships - the Feds signaled that this would happen In re private sector. Independent contractors (sometimes called micro-contractors) are basically being outlawed. Oh, did I mention that Obama wants gene patents banned. Oh well, that's another hit on jobs.

"Who’s looking at you" In re: 15% plus US unemployment ... if Obama gets re-elected expect unemployment to head upwards - between about 15 and 20%. And what will this mean? Oh, that part of the middle class not working for the government will be just about wiped out. The American Small Business sector will look like Cuba. Non-existent or so heavily regulated it will look like a wounded animal.

Oh, hang-on, that's what many of you Brits must have wanted ... well, right behind the USA, is the EU/UK/Wales.

Expect a series of living-standard downshifts in favour of SE Asia and India. Does anyone in Wales have a clue about the number graduating with PhDs in hard engineering/science? Oh, more than all of Europe.

So without "psychics" expect India and China to kick the EU/UK/Wales into touch. Yes, we will do business with them, but it will mostly be a one-way street. Just look at the current Chinese trade imbalance. We need to innovate - but the likes of Lesley Griffiths, IWJ and even the First Minister don't understand what the term means.

Absent a fundamental new Western business model and/or the re-election of President Obama - the 'great game' will be up. The western reliance on the housing market will mean squat if the West is not commercializing its innovation and a key part of that is patenting otherwise Chinese companies will copy our innovation without fear of infringement. Look at what happened In re MABs fiasco. The UK invented MABs, but didn't file a patent, the technology is now worth tens of billions - and oh, a British scientist with the old Empire mind-set invented hypertext, but didn't patent it - whereas foreign companies like Google patented applications of this technology - and Google is a multi-billion dollar company and pays no royalties for using web engines reliant on hypertext. Even in the home town of WAG - Cardiff - there's a Nobel Prize winner who didn't patent his HUGE inventions/applications of his discoveries. Great Empire mindset at work again - but Wales is CRYING OUT FOR JOBS. But hey, the old Empire mindset doesn't care about that - no siree.
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