G7 – Dear U.K., About That Brexit Project Fear…

I was watching some of the G7 (Group Of Seven) meetings of heads of State in Europe. Christiane Amanpour on Sky UK was interviewing Boris Johnson about Brexit. Doing a reasonably OK job for a left leaning Journo… but did constantly try to interrupt him and push him back to her talking point quesitions. Boris had none of it, so there was a lot of talking over each other.

A couple of key takeaways, though.

1) Boris made it clear that he had made it clear to the EU that “no deal” BREXIT meant the £ 39 Billion “divorce bill” stayed in the pocket of the UK. Boris knows how to let someone know why they care…

2) Boris made it clear that he didn’t see any horrific issues in a No Deal Brexit (as there wouldn’t be any – freedom is not an horrific issue…) Despite Christiane constantly trying to maneuver him around to saying their would be.

3) Project Fear is still the Go-To FUD in play. (Fear Uncertainty & Doubt – the strategy used by IBM for decades to keep customers from buying Amdahl, Hitachi and other “clones” of their mainframe computers – “Nobody ever got fired for buying IBM”. A strategy widely used in many industries now by many major players). In particular “Will there be shortages of food and medicine?” asked several times of Boris.

Dear UK

Just a little note to let you know that the USA, one of THE biggest (if not THE biggest) exporters of food to the world is more than willing, ready and happy to ship to you more food than your entire country could possibly eat. I mean, look at us: We’re a fat rotund lot who eats sandwiches called “Whoppers” and thinks a quart sized milk-shake is a “medium”. We’re drowning in the stuff. Really.

Now, you may also have noticed we’re having this little argument with China at the moment over their tendency to steal anything they can, use merchantilist tactics and policies to raid our economy, and suck out a few hundred $Billion / year via unfair trade practices. Now all sorts of folks have their panties in a bunch because they think this will cause a USA recession. Um, no. When you KEEP a few hundred $Billion more each year and keep your competitive technologies at home, that’s called “winning”.

Who will suffer? Well, the guy NOT getting that few hundred $Billion. China.

Now, in a real “cut off nose to spite face” moment, China is having some big big problems in the farming operations this year. Between some droughts and an Army Worm destroying their corn (maize) crops, they are way short of stuff to harvest. So what did they just do? They decided to cut off all food imports from the USA. Now you might think it incredibly stupid to reduce food imports right when your crops are failing, but that’s the Central Committee for you. Oh and they are slaughtering and burning most of their hogs to try to stop a rampant disease outbreak, so really short of pork.

Why does this matter for the UK?

This is an older article, but it has some useful information in it. This is from the first round of tariffs. Just to give a little bit of the idea of the size of things. While this talks about applying tariffs, remember that they have now said “No imports”. So all that food is looking for a place to land in the global marketplace. Note, too, that the $3 Billion is the “selected products”, i.e. a smaller part of the total food available.

https://www.fooddive.com/news/china-puts-tariffs-on-3b-worth-of-selected-us-food-exports/520339/

China puts tariffs on $3B worth of selected US food exports

PUBLISHED
April 2, 2018

In retaliation for tariffs President Trump announced on Chinese steel and aluminum, some U.S. food products exported to China now face 25% or 15% tariffs, according to CBS News. On Monday, the Chinese started imposing the previously determined import taxes on 128 items, many of which are U.S. food and agriculture products.

Exported U.S. pork products will be hit with a 25% duty by China, while U.S. wine, fresh and dried fruit and nuts will be charged a 15% tariff. On China’s list of U.S. commodities to be taxed are apples, pears, oranges, cherries, strawberries, peaches, lemons, mandarins, plums, almonds, cashews, pistachios and walnuts, The Packer reported.

The targeted U.S. fruit and nut exports are worth $977 million, The Packer noted, while exports of U.S. pork and processed items have been valued at almost $2 billion.

So think a nice pork roast, all the vegetables, oranges, pears, cherries, strawberries, peaches nuts and what all you could possibly want would tide you over a ways? All washed down with some great (and low cost) California & Oregon wines…

The article is pushing the “both lose in a trade war” nonsense:

Both countries have plenty to lose in this ongoing dispute. According to an AP story in Time, China calculates that two-thirds, or about $275.8 billion, of its global trade surplus is with the U.S., while the U.S. trade deficit with China has hit a record $375.2 billion.

So let’s see, The USA is losing by $375 BILLION / year? So we GAIN by $375 BILLION / year if we just stop playing? OK…

See, that’s the lie hidden in the nonsense about trade wars and tariffs. It assumes you have equal and balanced free trade. When a Merchantilist and Currency Manipulator is predating on your industry and hollowing out your country and sucking dry your banks; well, it’s a big win to just say “No.” And Trump has. (You can get the same with the EU to about € 50 Billion if I recall your trade deficit with the rest of the EU (mostly Germany and mostly cars). That’s why the UK has all the cards in a “Brexit Deal”. You have an immediate £39 Billion kept in pocket and then another huge billions / year of money leaving the UK in abeyance while Germany decides how much it really wants to keep selling cars. All you need to do is buy some other cars while they decide to play ball.

According to Bloomberg, China is the No. 1 global pork consumer, one of the main buyers of U.S. agricultural products and the second-biggest market for pork by volume.

So think you can use some pork?
No worries, we have lots of it.
Talk about “bringing home the bacon”…

The article then goes on about dropping pork prices in China and all. That was before the hog disease outbreak there…

In the tree nut and fresh produce categories, China purchased $100 million in pistachios and $41 million in almonds last year, according to The Packer. while U.S. cherry exports were valued at more than $122 million, oranges at $48 million and apples at $18 million in 2017.

Like Pistachios? Almonds? Cherries? Oranges? Apples? We got ’em all. In abundance. Those numbers were just the exports to China. Total production is way way more than that.

Oh, and we also produce a lot of beef and lamb. Though honestly, I think you will find the Canadian grass fed beef is really good too. Oh, and remember back before you joined the EU? All that Australian Lamb and New Zealand lamb that came in at great prices? Guess what, they still grow it. It’s what I buy in our grocery store. They can grow better lamb, and ship it here, cheaper than our local folks. (California being crazy expensive and Australia / New Zealand being just one boat ride away).

So we’ll understand if you order up a few million New Zealand Leg-o-Lamb and Australian lamb chops.

It’s just sitting there. Waiting for you to get out from under the EU Thumb and place an order. Good tucker that.

“Food Shortages”? No way. Only if bureaucratically created from spite or stupidity.

About Those Medicines

So I know the NHS is not fond of the latest drugs and prefers generics. So lets look at those generic drug makers:

https://www.thebalance.com/top-generic-drug-companies-2663110

Based on financial numbers provided by Evaluate through 2016, these drug companies are leading the way in the generics marketplace.

Teva Pharmaceutical Industries
Reported revenues in 2016 were $9.8 billion. Teva regularly records more than $9 billion in sales and purchased the rights to Allergan’s generics division in 2015.

Where is Teva, you ask?

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Teva_Pharmaceutical_Industries

Teva Pharmaceutical Industries Ltd. (Hebrew: טבע תעשיות פרמצבטיות בע”מ) is an Israeli multinational pharmaceutical company headquartered in Petah Tikva, Israel.[1] It specializes primarily in generic drugs, but other business interests include active pharmaceutical ingredients and, to a lesser extent, proprietary pharmaceuticals. It is the largest generic drug manufacturer in the world and one of the 15 largest pharmaceutical companies worldwide

Teva’s facilities are located in Israel, North America, Europe, Australia, and South America.

Um, gee, THE largest by far is not in the EU… Maybe you ought to just call them up and ask that they send a sales guy over…

You are likely getting a lot of your stuff from #2, Mylan. They are in the Netherlands. But they are not ONLY in the Netherlandsl

Mylan Inc.
Reported $9.4 billion in revenue for 2016. In 2014, it took on a large part of Abbott Pharmaceutical’s business, purchasing the rights to more than 100 specialty and branded generic pharmaceuticals. Headquartered in the United States, it has more than 20,000 employees worldwide.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mylan

Mylan N.V. is a global generic and specialty pharmaceuticals company registered in the Netherlands, with principal executive offices in Hatfield, Hertfordshire, UK and a “Global Center” in Canonsburg, Pennsylvania, US. In 2007, Mylan acquired a controlling interest in India-based Matrix Laboratories Limited, a top producer of active pharmaceutical ingredients (APIs) for generic drugs, and the generics business of Germany-based Merck KGaA. Through these acquisitions, Mylan grew from the third-largest generic and pharmaceuticals company in the United States to the second-largest generic and specialty pharmaceuticals company in the world.

So maybe they will ship from the USA, or India, or maybe even in your own UK locations. Do you really care?

Sandoz, the generics division of Novartis
Reported $9 billion in revenue in 2016. Sandoz employs more than 25,000 employees worldwide and runs 30 manufacturing sites.
[…]
Before the 1996 merger with Ciba-Geigy to form Novartis, Sandoz Pharmaceuticals (Sandoz AG) was a pharmaceutical company headquartered in Basel, Switzerland (as was Ciba-Geigy),

Note that Sandoz is now merged into Novartis:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Novartis#Sandoz

Novartis International AG is a Swiss multinational pharmaceutical company based in Basel, Switzerland. It is one of the largest pharmaceutical companies by both market capitalization and sales.

Now I’m no expert on the EU, but last time I looked Switzerland was not a member of the EU. They are a member of the European trade association but not a Member State of the EU and do trade with lots of other countries.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Switzerland%E2%80%93European_Union_relations

The European Union is Switzerland’s largest trading partner, and Switzerland is the EU’s third largest trading partner, after the U.S. and China. Switzerland accounts for 5.2% of the EU’s imports; mainly chemicals, medicinal products, machinery, instruments and time pieces. In terms of services, the EU’s exports to Switzerland amounted to €67.0 billion in 2008 while imports from Switzerland stood at €47.2 billion.
[…]
Switzerland signed a free-trade agreement with the then European Economic Community in 1972, which entered into force in 1973.[2]

Switzerland is a member of the European Free Trade Association (EFTA), and took part in negotiating the European Economic Area (EEA) agreement with the European Union. It signed the agreement on 2 May 1992, and submitted an application for accession to the EU on 20 May 1992. However, after a Swiss referendum held on 6 December 1992 rejected EEA membership by 50.3% to 49.7%,[3] the Swiss government decided to suspend negotiations for EU membership until further notice. These did not resume and in 2016, Switzerland formally withdrew its application for EU membership.[4][5]

In 1994, Switzerland and the EU started negotiations about a special relationship outside the EEA. Switzerland wanted to safeguard the economic integration with the EU that the EEA treaty would have permitted, while purging the relationship of the points of contention that had led to the people rejecting the referendum. Swiss politicians stressed the bilateral nature of these negotiations, where negotiations were conducted between two equal partners and not between 16, 26, 28 or 29, as is the case for EU treaty negotiations.

So it looks to me like the Swiss are free to trade with a free and independent UK Just Fine. Not seeing any reason their drugs would be in short supply.

So who’s next on the list?

Pfizer
Reported $4.5 billion in revenue in 2016. Best known for developing Viagra, Pfizer even began selling its own generic version of the drug when its patent expired in 2017.

That would be “Us”, collectively. USA / UK. A US company that was bought by a UK company.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pfizer

Pfizer Inc. (/ˈfaɪzər/)[2] is an American multinational pharmaceutical corporation headquartered in New York City, with its research headquarters in Groton, Connecticut. It is one of the world’s largest pharmaceutical companies. It is listed on the New York Stock Exchange, and its shares have been a component of the Dow Jones Industrial Average since 2004. Pfizer ranked No. 57 on the 2018 Fortune 500 list of the largest United States corporations by total revenue.

On December 19, 2018, Pfizer announced a joint merger of their consumer healthcare division with UK pharma giant GlaxoSmithKline; the British company will maintain a controlling share (listed at 68%).

Somehow I can’t help but think that you will sell drugs to you…

But who knows. Maybe you want a lower cost supplier.

Sun Pharmaceutical Industries
Reported $3.6 billion in revenue in 2016 and saw a 68 percent increase in drug revenue, due in large part to its $4 billion buyout of rival Ranbaxy Laboratories. The purchase added $2 billion in revenue and solidified Sun as a leader in the generic marketplace. Sun has more than 30,000 employees.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sun_Pharmaceutical

Sun Pharmaceutical Industries Limited (NSE: SUNPHARMA, BSE: 524715) is an Indian multinational pharmaceutical company headquartered in Mumbai, Maharashtra that manufactures and sells pharmaceutical formulations and active pharmaceutical ingredients (APIs) primarily in India and the United States. The company offers formulations in various therapeutic areas, such as cardiology, psychiatry, neurology, gastroenterology and diabetology. It also provides APIs such as warfarin, carbamazepine, etodolac, and clorazepate, as well as anti-cancers, steroids, peptides, sex hormones, and controlled substances.

So, you do remember The Commonwealth, don’t you? Still here. Waiting. Patiently.

Fresenius Kabi
Reported $2.8 billion in revenue in 2016. The Canadian company focuses on technologies for infusions, transfusions, and parenteral (intravenous) nutrition.

Endo International
Reported $2.5 billion in revenue in 2016. Its generics division is Par Pharmaceuticals, with PAR standing for “People Achieving Results.” The company began in 1997 after acquiring rights and assets from the DuPont Merck Pharmaceutical Company.

Endo is an interesting one. Inside the EU but…

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Endo_International_plc

Endo International plc is an Irish–tax registered generics and specialty branded pharmaceutical company that generated over 93% of 2017 sales from the U.S. healthcare system. While Endo’s management, operations, and customers are almost exclusively U.S.–based, in 2013 Endo executed a corporate tax inversion to Ireland to avoid U.S. corporate taxes on their U.S. drug sales, and to avail of Ireland’s corporate tax system.

I know, you don’t likely get anything from them at present. But if needed, they seem quite happy to sell to the USA outside of the EU umbrella…

I’m not going through all the rest. Just bolding a few bits. You can look them up if needed. Just realize the rest of the world makes, and buys, and sells drugs, too. It isn’t all just EU sourced. In fact, so far, the EU has been remarkably scarce on this list. The next one, Lupin, is in Mumbai, India while Dr. Reddy’s is in Hyderabad. Sanofi is French, but where are we on the list? Less than Lupin?

Lupin
Reported $2.5 billion in revenue in 2016. Lupin entered the generics market in 2003 with the antibacterial drug Cefuroxime Axetil. As of 2018, Lupin produces more than 75 generic drugs.

Sanofi
Reported $2 billion in revenue in 2016. Operates worldwide generic brands Zentiva, Medley, Genfar, Winthrop, and Globalpharma.

Aspen Pharmacare
Reported $2 billion in revenue in 2016. As one of the few pharmaceutical companies based in South Africa, it has seen growth by focusing on emerging markets in Asia. It continues to look for companies to acquire to add to its portfolio of medications.

Aurobindo Pharma
Reported $1.8 billion in revenue in 2016. Aurobindo has seen considerable growth in recent years and opened a 565,000-square-foot, fully automated state-of-the-art distribution center in East Windsor, New Jersey, in 2017.

Dr. Reddy’s Laboratories
Reported $1.8 billion in revenue in 2016. Dr. Reddy’s was founded by Dr. Anji Reddy in 1984 when he acquired Cheminor Drugs.

Cipla
Reported $1.6 billion in revenue in 2016. Based in India, Cipla also has a strong presence in the U.S. and South Africa.

Apotex
Reported $1.6 billion in revenue in 2016. Apotex is the single largest investor in research and development of any pharmaceutical company in Canada—brand or generic, according to its website. It has more than 1,100 active research and development projects in 50 countries. Since 2008, Apotex has invested $1 billion in research and development, with an additional $2 billion planned through 2028. It exports to more than 115 countries and territories and operates in more than 45 countries, primarily in the U.S., Mexico, and India.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Apotex

Apotex Inc. is a Canadian pharmaceutical corporation. Founded in 1974 by Barry Sherman, the company is the largest producer of generic drugs in Canada, with sales exceeding CAD$1 billion per year.

How many on that list are English Speaking Countries with a long history of doing business with the UK? How many are just waiting for you to be free to place orders? How many are in Commonwealth Countries?

Drug shortages? No way. Only if the NHS is too slow and stupid to ring up the sales staff from the above suppliers and ask for a quote…

“Food & Medicine Shortages” is just FUD, all the way down.

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About E.M.Smith

A technical managerial sort interested in things from Stonehenge to computer science. My present "hot buttons' are the mythology of Climate Change and ancient metrology; but things change...
This entry was posted in Political Current Events and tagged , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

20 Responses to G7 – Dear U.K., About That Brexit Project Fear…

  1. Bill in Oz says:

    The British Brainwashing Corporation ( BBC ) and other MSM are as always, full of utter scary bull on the horrors that await the UK if there is a No Deal Brexit.

    Why ? Because they are scared that a ‘No Deal Brexit’ might actually happen. In fact it looks very likely. EU policy on Brexit is being determined by a small minor member of the EU with a population of three million named Ireland .

    Meanwhile the interests of almost all the EU population, (circa 480 million) are being sacrificed to ensure that Ireland stays in the EU tent. Curious thing is that about 50% of Irish exports go to the UK – especially their agricultural exports of meat, dairy etc..

    Meanwhile there’s been a drought in key sheep & lamb producing areas of Australia. So prices for lamb & hogget ( 2 year old lamb )n have gone up again. There is a bit of a shortage Though probably there is a backlog in the coolrooms and freezers of the production chain to the USA.

    You mention that Boris & that journo kept talking over each other. Yes, that’s what happens when journo’s get to think that they are the story.. Not the elected government ministers & prime minister. There is a solution. It’s called : “Exit Journo”. If they are rude and interrupting throw them out. This could in the interests of being short & snappy be abbreviated to “Exijourn”. As in “I got exijouned for being an ignorant rude idiot”

    Finally re ” panties in a bunch”. I prefer ” Nickers in a twist” just that bit more interesting linguistically with the same meaning I think.

  2. Bill in Oz says:

    There’s been no mention of Argentina here. I think it’s worth keeping a eye out on events there. Recently the Argentine peso has lost about 20% of it’s value against the US Dollar. And folks are talking about a sovereign debt default.
    Prior to 2014 Argentina had a moderately left wing government that restricted capital flows and managed the peso exchange rate. The Macri came to power & made it all ‘unrestricted’ in a matter of months – in the interests of far right wing ideology. One extreme to another !..And so inflation took off and employment fell. macri forgot that major changes in national policy have to be managed slowly & carefully over time, not in a matter of months. So now it looks like he is going to be kicked in the arse in November and replaced by another from he further left… Again one extreme to another….

    This is I think worth knowing & staying informed about..

  3. E.M.Smith says:

    Trump & Abe have announced that Japan will be buying the corn that China has refused!
    https://www.agriculture.com/markets/newswire/trump-abe-say-us-and-japan-have-agreed-in-principle-on-trade-deal

    Man what a slap in the face to China! Japan gets to eat while China is hungry…

    @Bill in Oz:

    Yes, same meaning…

    The Lamb here has been contracted some long time ago, so we’ll see any “issue” a few months / 1/2 a year late…

    We do have local lamb, so it’s mostly the Big Box Stores like COSTCO where the Leg-o-lamb modulates with Australian weather…

    Yeah, Argentina is on the Yo-Yo Express. So much potential, wasted on ideological thrashing… At one time on a par with Europe in terms of wealth and culture, now heading into decay and squalor.
    It is what happens to every place that embraces Socialism, be it long term or as an oscillator.

    Oh Well.

    But yes, there’s oodles of food produced in Argentina, Chile, Brazil, Mexico, etc. etc. all available with a ship ride…

  4. Graeme No.3 says:

    Merkel has just announced that Germany will be carbon free by 2035 or 2050. It would only cost the average citizen 320-620 euros EXTRA per MONTH.
    I think her coalition will split, and she will have retired by the end of this year. If this lunatic policy is implemented then there will be lots of consumers in the EU looking for cheaper food. Already Macron is very unpopular in his own country, Italy, Poland and Hungary are openly against current EU policy, the Greeks are fuming about their continued deep depression (which they blame on the EU) so getting out of the EU before it collapses would be a winning strategy.
    If Boris starts dumping lots of the stupid EU diktats and frees up the UK economy, then the UK will be laughing (except there will be a rush of european tourists ‘souvenir’ hunting in British supermarkets). Cutting the weekly shopping bills and the electricity ones would result in an electoral landslide.

  5. Bill in Oz says:

    “It is what happens to every place that embraces Socialism, be it long term or as an oscillator.”.. I diasagree in this instance.. There was a deeply socialist government. I November 2014 Macri replaced it. He had an opportunity to gradually changes for the better. He went for major quick changes by regulation not legislation.. And brought on increasing inflation & increasing unemployment.

    That’s the dopey double in my book..Not matter who does it stupid. In this instance it was a free enterprise ideologue.

    Now the polls are saying “Get rid of the bastard” and so further chaos ensues.

  6. andysaurus says:

    E.M. When you say “Good Tucker” is that a natural idiom or are you consciously using the Australian argot? It’s good to see some words flowing the other way.

    Now all you have to do is instil in the media that the correct phrase, which I believe originated in the U.K. is “I could NOT care less”, which actually makes sense, whereas the phrase used by Americans omits the word I have capitalised and is nonsense.

    I don’t know about you @Bill in Oz, but lamb is a luxury for me.

  7. H.R. says:

    @Andy re the phrase “I could not care less.”

    That’s how I grew up hearing and using the phrase. I have noticed that in recent years, the ‘not’ is often missing. I think it’s just the lack of intellectual rigor in our schools that is showing up. Apparently, you’re just supposed to know what the speaker means instead of listening to what was actually said.

    As for E.M.’s and other’s usage of idioms and expressions that are not strictly American English, we discussed that here a year or so ago, probably while you were taking a break, and it was decided that this blog was to be bi-lingual in English ;o)

    I’ll throw in the occasional ‘rumour’ or ‘humour’ or ‘cheque’ here and there myself, as do some of the others. I actually just got zapped by American spellcheck on another blog about 1/2 hour ago for typing rumour (and zapped again just now). I wasn’t even thinking about the spelling. It just pops up randomly with me now.

  8. Gary says:

    About “I could care less.” I think what happened is the “could not” got contracted to “couldn’t” and then sloppy speakers dropped the “n’t” I’ve heard it spoken incorrectly all my 60+ years. Another hypothesis is that the “not” and “less” so close together in the sentence feel like a double negative grammatical error so the “not” gets lost because the “less” has to stay.

  9. Bill in Oz says:

    andy, I’m been enjoying lamb steaks from Aldi in recent months..Not that expensive.. But a leg of lamb ? Ummmm ! Yes a bit on the dear side.. Currenly $16-17.00 a kg (= 2.2 lb. )

    Here in Oz. I couldn’t care les is still how we say it. If the not or n’t is gone, we know the speaker is from a foreign land. :-)

  10. H.R. says:

    @Bill in Oz – We have Aldi stores here in the States. I didn’t realize they were international.

    Hmmmm… I’ll have to go look them up.

  11. H.R. says:

    Well sunnuva gun!

    I think this is from Wiki

    Aldi is the common brand of two German family-owned discount supermarket chains with over 10,000 stores in 20 countries, and an estimated combined turnover of more than €50 billion. Based in Germany, the chain was founded by brothers Karl and Theo Albrecht in 1946 when they took over their mother’s store in Essen, which had been in operation since 1913.

  12. p.g.sharrow says:

    “I could not care less.” would indicate I might care more in the future. “I could care less”. would indicate I might care even less in the future. Ether one could indicate I really don’t care in the present !~ LOl As an Old western American, I have listen to this phrase evolve over the last 70 years. Just one of many words and phrases that have evolved to confound me…pg

  13. E.M.Smith says:

    @Bill In Oz:

    My saying socialism leads to downfall and collapse does NOT imply other-than-socialism can not also make stupid decisions and lead to downfall and collapse…

    I’m saying socialism always gets there, eventually, you “counter” by saying something else ALSO got there, but I’m not disputing that. There’s plenty of Stupid Options for all sides…

    @AndySaurus:

    Spent a few weeks in Australia and New Zealand. Have relatives there. Soaked up some of it. It tends to come out when I’m thinking about Australia (“Situational Awareness” ;-) but I also just like the phrase… In early grammar school we learned “Waltzing Matilda” and how to translate things like “JumBuck In My Tucker Bag” so it’s been part of my life since at least about age 6?

    Down came a jumbuck to drink at the billabong, Up got the swagman and grabbed him with glee, And he sang as he stowed that jumbuck in his tucker bag, “You’ll come a-Waltzing Matilda, with me”. Waltzing Matilda, Waltzing Matilda “You’ll come a-Waltzing Matilda, with me” And he sang as he stowed that jumbuck in his tucker bag,

    No idea if they still do it, but in the 1950s we sang that in school… so it stuck with me.

    Per other British English: Mum was British. I use both languages. We had a Moggie when I was a child and the car had both a bonnet and a hood… a windscreen and a windshield, etc.

    I speak all the Englishes… ‘Merican, British, Aussie, even Texan ;-)

    FWIW, most of the time I avoid the phrase “I could (not) care less” simply because it is so mangled. Generally, IF I do use it, I use the “not” form; to indicate that I’m at my lowest possible level of caring. You hear it both ways in the States. I use the presence of “not” to indicate to me that the speaker is a careful person aware of words… I can’t guarantee I’m 100% successful at keeping the NOT in, just because I’m a style sponge…

  14. cdquarles says:

    About Waltzing Matilda, that song lasted, here, well into the 60s. NB that Texan isn’t the same as Southern ;p. Mutable things mutate; so I am not surprised at seeing idioms mutate, too.

  15. Larry Ledwick says:

    No one I know every fully articulated the “not” as I was growing up (western US mountain states) it was always “I couldn’t care less”, then sometime in the 1970’s or ’80s I started to hear people clip the ending and it transformed to “I couldn care less” then the current version of “I could (not implied by context) care less”.

    I still say “I couldn’t care less” or occasionally “I couldn care less” The transition in usage happened about the time other irregular translations of common statements started to creep into the language due to sloppy diction and lack of awareness of what the phrase was really saying..

    irregardliss vs regardless
    butt naked vs buck naked
    he was avid about it vs he was livid about it
    barrow pit vs borrow pit
    for all intensive purposes vs for all intents and purposes
    you have another thing coming vs you have another think coming
    tough road to hoe vs tough row to hoe
    Hone in vs. Home in
    Jerry rig vs jury rig

  16. Bill in Oz says:

    Back to UK Brexit. Corbie, the dopey leader of the UK Labor party, says a UK “No Deal’ is a ‘Trump deal’. It must be true is on the British Brainwashing Corporation ‘s web site
    https://www.bbc.com/news/uk-politics-49476705.

    EM I think some Corbyn adviser has been reading your musings.

  17. Another Ian says:

    On the other hand

    “The British Are Sooooo Much Better Off Leaving the EU!”

    http://www.smalldeadanimals.com/index.php/2019/08/28/the-british-are-sooooo-much-better-off-leaving-the-eu/#comments

    And sounds like a good G7

    “G7 Success — leaders issue statement 54 times shorter — and climate sidelined”

    http://joannenova.com.au/2019/08/g7-success-one-page-and-no-new-climate-declaration/

  18. beththeserf says:

    EU,
    your contradictions
    damn you.

  19. Another Ian says:

    “I speak all the Englishes… ‘Merican, British, Aussie, even Texan ;-) ”

    How about “Rhyming Slang English” and “Profane English”?

    And a good time to mention those English language books “Let’s Talk Strine” and “Canajan Eh?”

  20. E.M.Smith says:

    I can follow a small part or rhyming slang, but that is really more a code than English. Can’t talk it though. I don’t know what “Profane English” is as a proper noun (as an adjective I sure can do!)

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