It’s all too easy to focus on either the micro or the macro, and forget the other one exists.
Lately I’ve been talking a lot about the macro stuff, trumponomics, what’s happening with the deep state and so on, but that doesn’t mean that life doesn’t go on at the local micro level either.
Local life and macro life co-exist and feed into each other, and while you have to be careful that correlation != causation, it’s wrong to ignore the micro, there are always tell tales.
So, on to the micro.
The dating / swinging scene has evolved, there is a lot less of the strong independent wimminz, hear me roar, and a lot more of the wanting some sort of relationshit, as in, forget my history, the future is less sheer numbers of sexual partners as a goal, not more, per week / month / year.
Formal divorce rates are still trending down slowly, but you have to remember that the proportion of people who are married is also a lot lower, co-habitees don’t get divorced, they still split and invoke the secret family courts and child custody battles and alimony etc, but it doesn’t get included in the divorce numbers, these numbers are still very very high, as are the allegations of violence and / or sexual abuse, but it is almost absent from mainstream reporting or public consciousness, it’s all back on the back burner with cancer, eg if it happens to you it’s real and personal, if it happens to someone else it’s just background noise.
An interesting metric locally is rental house prices, they are stagnant or dropping, for the last few years where I have been is an absolute bargain, relatively speaking, and the jump to 2 and 3 bedroom properties you were looking at the thick end of a thousand a month, that has now come down, sure, there are still places going for that and more, but there are also places going for 750 or so, bear in mind 8 years ago I was paying 625 for a 3 bed place.
So it’s still very very high in terms of absolute cost, but the wheels have definitely come off from the old days of get a liar loan interest only mortgage and rent it out and make money, property isn’t such a hot thing to be in, and you can see this when you go to the local DIY stores the footfall just isn’t there, and a lot of the local retailers who supply to independents like electricians are consolidating and closing some outlets.
The vibe on the high street in town is similarly split, there is the world of the property developer who owns whole blocks of shops, and the world of the property developer knocking shit down and building whole blocks of student flats that hold 300 students at a time, and there is everything else, and everything else is hurting.
BHS closed it’s doors months ago now and the site is still vacant and nobody knows what’s happening to it, and being a BHS you know this was a prime city centre location, there are some homeless guys who have set up tents in the doorway…
Lots of the other shops, well lets say I have walked into two of the local independents recently looking to buy something, only to be told that those whole lines of goods are no longer being done by them, again not a good sign.
On the roads driving standards and road courtesy have taken another sharp dip downwards towards the road rage end of the scale, sure it’s anecdotal and personal observations but it is quite real and quite noticeable to me.
On the business front for me things aren’t looking too bad, starting the year with three different local businesses that previously went nationally to get shit done because it was cheaper, and now they are going locally with me simply because the cheaper national ones are not delivering on promises like they used to, and it’s a lot easier to deal with someone ten miles down the road.
Globalism / Brexit / whatever but local businesses in the manufacturing sector are seeing green shoots of growth, it’s not a lot but it is there, which makes it stand out from all the service stuff…
Basically there are small businesses working at making a living and making a profit and trying real hard to do so, and in shades of what’s wrong with the world there are large national businesses that don’t have a fucking clue… for example I have not had a gas or electric bill sent through the post for over a year, and this is after arguing with them for a year over “miscalculated” bills (I have the proof in the utility’s own actual printed bills with records of payments made by me, payments which were ignored when it came to the claimed balance owing, and since disputing this non existent “debt” the utility company has simply ignored me, and not responded to attempts to communicate) which is really very symptomatic of all big business and big government in this country.
The incompetence and levels of disconnect from reality is fucking mind blowing.
Globalism / Brexit / trumpton / fracturing of the EU etc seems as real and relevant to all of these big global level players are this blog post, eg they don’t even have a suitable radar for it to fly under, it literally doesn’t exist in their world.
I’m also seeing a surprising grassroots rise in activism and “lack of complacency” for want of a better way of putting it, increasing numbers of ordinary citizens who are saying things like “Am I being detained officer?” instead of just co-operating as they used to.
And it is not going un-noticed when there are headlines like “Three men in St Austell (a small ex kaolin/tin mining town in Cornwall) arrested for murder” and then it comes out that all three and their victim were ork rapefugees… the spin is to downplay and obfuscate this fact as much as possible, yet it is the fact that most people are talking about on the street.
The whole attitude towards the homeless in general and refugees is shifting towards automatic condemnation just on status alone, and I’m not saying this is right or wrong, it’s just an observation.
It’s also just an observation that the chuggers (charity muggers with collection boxes) have pretty much disappeared from the streets, and there is little goodwill on the ground for Big Issue sellers either.
Times are hard and people are struggling and hurting trying to pay their own way, and if you aren’t struggling and hurting and paying your own way too then you ain’t one of them.
On the micro level it’s not just the people making the noise you need to pay attention to, it’s the people who you just do not hear or see any more, and you used to.
Look at the local jobs listings above, half of these are shit and don’t exist or never did, just recruiters cv stuffing, and half of what’s left aren’t local at all, they are recruiting for 100 miles away.
but what’s left for a regional capital city of 118,000 pop and 664 registered unemployed, lets take a look at the 7 automotive jobs.
Mechanic in Tamworth which is 2 hours drive away
Parts sales in Stoke which is 3 hours drive away
Mechanic in Brentwood which is 4 hours drive away
Driver in Harlow which is 4 hours away
Mechanic in Lincoln which is 4 hours away
2 x good vehicle drivers which are local, 1 is an agency stuffing their books
I’m not saying you *can’t* get a job locally, if you work at it long and hard enough sooner or later you find something like a zero hours shelf stacker in Tesco on minimum wage, but the traditional mantra of you need a job to get a better job so you can springboard from that shelf stacking job at £7 per hour to a driving job at £8 per hour and so on up, meh, it doesn’t fucking exist.
Employers know it, which is why they all act like they are doing you a favour to give you a job, and you better not ever ask for a pay rise or balk at being asked to do something illegal or dangerous.
This is a set of 3 and 4 storey modern offices, I worked there for a while a few years ago for IBM who were subcontracted to a very large national insurance company, even then the site was two thirds empty, it’s been completely vacant (apart from security staff) for the past couple of years, as you can see from the car parks, and this is literally 400 yards off the M5 motorways main J30 Exeter junction.
570 people used to work there.
It’s not even being offered for rent, if you look at the local commercial property rental / lease sites, it just doesn’t exist.
It’s micro level stuff but you really need to be aware of it, the roads around where my mum lives used to be owned by people that worked at that facility… one of them now has his DPD (parcel delivery) van parked outside, one works away all week in London, one does Kleeneze, one does photography on the quiet.
The road itself is potholed to fuck and has been getting steadily worse for ten years, they used to repair them properly, now some guys come by with a van with some tar and grit and tamp some tar in the hole and pound it for a couple of minutes and move on.
2 out of every 3 streetlights are now turned off at 8 pm.
Every day I get enquiries from people who either want something done but don’t want to pay the going rate, because that way they can’t make a profit, or they want to pay at the end of the month or whenever because they don’t have the cash flow to do the production themselves… or both.
Every couple / few weeks I get some guy sending me his CV and asking for a job, has to be said, even if I was looking for a full time employee none of them would even remotely qualify, so no, no props for going out looking for work actively seeking and all that, when your CV is all about what responsibilities you’ve had and what roles you fulfilled, and sweet fuck all about actual hand on experience and work ethic.
Day comes for me to hire it’s going to be young, pretty, with big tits and plenty of “O” vertime from the boss… .;*)
Just answer the phone and make the coffee and sweep the floor bitch.
Being brutally realistic I don’t see a way for naturally growing this business to the point where there are a dozen employees and I’m making enough profit to buy a new merc and a big house or whatever it is you are in to, maybe 20 years out, yes there is growth but it is organic, and meantime rust never sleeps and bills have to be paid and so on.
And this position makes me *fortunate* compared to many out there at the micro scale, very fucking fortunate, so trust me, I’m not knocking it or complaining, but down here at the micro scale talk of “growth” and “business” and “economy” is mainly bollocks, sure I’m positioned to help other small businesses who need our services to grow, and grow myself, and so on, but it’s more like farming, no matter what you have to put *all* the work in or you’ll get *no* crops some months down the line, and when it comes to harvest time, you still have to sell that shit at a profit…
None of this magic nigger shit about telling some lies to a computer to get a virtual money loan that you give to someone else and they give you a virtual document to a property that you let to someone else for more than your repayments on the virtual money loan and then you go round telling everyone what a fucking financial genius you are.
Mostly it’s keeping the wolf from the door and not doing anything stupid that costs you money you can’t afford to lose.
At the micro scale there is no glamour or glitz, you go out and do what you can and earn what you can and cut your suit according to your cloth.
The exact opposite of everything at the macro scale, and the disconnect between the two is starting to wear real thin nowadays.