Anything is better than YTS. I was placed in an ironmongers and immediately found myself in the middle of a storeroom move. One highlight, I remember, was clearing-up a shattered window without gloves.
At about the same time, a trainee somewhere in England was burned to death when when was sent into the middle of a solvent puddle with only a mop and bucket.
After a month of maybe not 100% effort (I was 18 and receiving 25% of pay of employees), I was let-go: I later found out the employer did this again. Out of all the positions the local YTS provider had, none were thought suitable for me and I was moved to their administrative office where, baring a few crib sheets, I gained no further experience as other registrants passed in and out.
After 18 months of typing out Terry Pratchett novels on the word-processing software, it was realized that I still was there beyond the maximum length of time; so I was jettisoned with two days notice, and had to wait almost a month before my unemployment benefit was approved.
I cannot find any details on whether the LibDem’s previous manifesto pledge of raising the minimum wages for 16/7 and 18/21 year olds to that for 21s and over has been pragmatized out of existence, but pledges by the Business Department for £250 millions in funding by 2015 for apprenticeships can be only good news; even allowing for an axing of the Future Jobs Fund.
In the Calvinist Republic of Scotland, the governing SNP bases its plans on the future on comparing Scotland to other small countries or autonomous regions, such as Basqueland which is a surer bet than Ireland and Iceland.
Scottish Labour has framed its plans in terms of what is available. At the Party Conference in Oban, Andy Kerr, the finance spokesman has vowed to reintroduce a regional Future Jobs Fund with £40 millions. The Party leader, Iain Grey made a decent speech which he argued both for apprenticeships and a pruning of bureaucracies which would, as it happens, not necessarily enamor him to many of the bien pensants who consider themselves the guardians of Scottish Labour or the public sector.
And then he was upstaged by a keratinophobic quip from Harriet Harman which was ever bit as ill-judged as the Tory candidate for Na h-Eileanan an Iar (aka the Western Isles) in 1992 who vowed the fight to protect Scotland from the “Papist intrigues of Europe”, and alienated the southern Roman Catholic half of the constituency.
The great panjandrum himself, Alex Salmond has a dim view of Grey, whom he has called “the Invisible Man” of Scottish politics. Even allowing for the fact that Griffin was perfectly visible (at least in his long coat, waddling and goggles), his invisibility came as a result of trying to create a breakthrough elixir and his own hubris.
Surely that would be more like Nick Clegg?