Viewing 40 posts - 15,561 through 15,600 (of 15,926 total)
  • Sir! Keir! Starmer!
  • ctk
    Full Member

    Yes and he spouts the bollocks about “every penny going to reduce bills rather than compensating the shareholders”

    It’s dishonest.

    timba
    Free Member

    did listen to Brown talking and although his sentiment was there he barely scratched the surface of what to do

    He has history…
    1997-Abolished ACT and took another chunk out of the UK pensions system (TBF Lamont took a chunk in 1993)
    2001-Changed vehicle taxation to promote diesel/diesel cars to protect the environment by lowering CO2 emissions, but harmed humans by increasing NO2, N2O and plain NO as well as particulates
    “Light-touch” banking regulation in the run up to the 2008 crisis
    Failure of his Chancellorship and later PM-ship to push to renew nuclear energy

    But the sentiment was there…

    kerley
    Free Member

    Efficiency differences are nonsense as the same set of people are doing the same jobs (i.e. a finite group of people at all levels within org with the skills/knowledge/training)
    It is all about the money and who gets it and how much is spent with profit as the main objective when privatised and direct cost to the consumer as the main objective when nationalised.

    nickc
    Full Member

    Starmer wants to spend more on propping them up in the short-term than nationalisation would cost.

    Yeah, and he’s also had the energy shadow say that they’ve pretty much ruled out privatization as too expensive* I can see the political problem he faces. If Labour Privatize: Spend the public’s money, and U-turn on previous statements. He’s stuck

    *I know it’s popular as a policy, but the cost is largely undiscussed in those sorts of polls, and I think will be the thing that will sway the public either way, especially in the current climate.

    kelvin
    Full Member

    Starmer wants to spend more on propping them up in the short-term than nationalisation would cost.

    And? The cost of keeping bills down is still there if you nationalise. Nationalisation would be an additional cost, not instead of the cost of fixing prices for this winter.

    That in itself is grossly inefficient.

    The comparison is a dud. I’m all for full nationalisation of energy supply, distribution and generation, but claiming you can buy just the energy retailers on the cheap now, and that would in itself solve this winter’s energy crisis, is a false hope. There are just the shop front, not the means of production.

    rone
    Full Member

    And? The cost of keeping bills down is still there if you nationalise. Nationalisation would be an additional cost, not instead of the cost of fixing prices for this winter

    You’re simply not thinking long term then.

    1) One monopoly purchaser could secure a better price from the wholesaler.

    2) You can subsidise bills more effectively without the issues associated with privatisation when in state hands.

    3) state gains an asset with nationalisation so real cost is nominal.

    4) efficiency gains by having one supplier has got to be better than several that can’t stay solvent. There’s nothing efficient about using government money keeping a private organisation afloat because it’s got a profit demand on it.

    The propping up method is a dud but just about better than nothing.

    rone
    Full Member

    The comparison is a dud. I’m all for full nationalisation of energy supply, distribution and generation, but claiming you can buy just the energy retailers on the cheap now, and that would in itself solve this winter’s energy crisis, is a false hope. There are just the shop front, not the means of production.

    You can do both – subsidise bills and demand a better rate with one state supplier

    The short term approach offers no answer beyond this winter.

    The scope of Starmer’s plan is too small and *expensive* relative to a long term solution.

    rone
    Full Member

    If Labour Privatize: Spend the public’s money, and U-turn on previous statements. He’s stuck

    Take the U-turn.

    There are good ones and bad ones.

    This is a good one.

    nickc
    Full Member

    You can subsidise bills more effectively without the issues associated with privatisation when in state hands.

    Isn’t EDF – more or less wholly owned by the French Govt, currently suing the French govt for E8.9B?

    rone
    Full Member

    Isn’t EDF – more or less wholly owned by the French Govt, currently suing the French govt for E8.9B?

    Yes, though good luck with that I guess – in the meantime the public enjoy reasonable bills, and a state asset.

    ernielynch
    Free Member

    Price rises (certainly the ones we’re seeing now) are largely effected by events without our borders and have less to do with whether they’re efficient or inefficient, private or nationalised.

    I was specifically referring to the last 35 years before the current crises:

    “35 years on electricity prices have increased by a third in real terms and gas by half (pre-present crises)”

    Have we had 35 years of unfortunate events? To be fair there was a slight drop in electricity and gas prices in the first 5 years after privatisation.

    Although I wouldn’t be surprised if that was connected to massive pre-privatisation government investment which the Tories like to oversee – it is unlikely to be because privatisation is so efficient that within months prices fell.

    Or the even more likely the government deliberately put up prices prior to privatisation to make the whole package more juicy and attractive.

    I agree that the virtues of being a “shareholding nation” were sold at the time by the Tories**, but I still maintain the principal benefit of privatisation was claimed to be that it would lead to greater efficiency and therefore lower prices for consumers.

    What has actually happened is the reverse. Unsurprisingly.

    ** And they certainly didn’t tout the virtues of millions of consumers paying their electricity bills to a state-owned foreign company. Unsurprisingly.

    rone
    Full Member

    Also the government are paying 2 billion to bulb currently for what exactly?

    I don’t see the gain here.

    thestabiliser
    Free Member

    No, electricity produced by burning coal 35 years ago was cheaper than production methods now but unacceptably polluting

    nickc
    Full Member

    There was an article a couple of days ago in the Guardian about the Water privatization by Jonathan Portes 

    In it he argues that: We knew what was going on, because water privatisation was never really about efficiency. In the short term, the overriding political priority was a “successful” sale – one where demand for shares was high – and where those who applied and who had, from previous privatisations, already come to expect a large premium. 

    He even says that while it was overwhelmingly unpopular at the time, it was also oversubscribed by 6 times.

    kelvin
    Full Member

    You’re simply not thinking long term then.

    I’m all for long term fixes. We need a Labour government to get on with them. A 2019 win would have started us down the right path sooner, but hey. But the energy cap fix is just a short term measure to deal with the here and now. We need that short term stopgap as well, and it needs to happen while the Tories are in government. It can’t wait.

    The short term approach offers no answer beyond this winter.

    Correct. That is what it is for. No more than that. It is not all that Labour are saying on energy though, just the current focus, because people are worried about heating their homes this winter and the government need bouncing into doing something fast.

    ernielynch
    Free Member

    No, electricity produced by burning coal 35 years ago was cheaper than production methods now but unacceptably polluting

    I’m not sure that is entirely true.

    “Renewables are by far the cheapest form of power today.”

    Two-thirds of new renewables were cheaper than coal in 2021 – IRENA

    “Renewables are cheaper than ever – so why are household energy bills only going up?”

    https://www.ucl.ac.uk/news/2022/jan/opinion-renewables-are-cheaper-ever-so-why-are-household-energy-bills-only-going

    thestabiliser
    Free Member

    Coal was cheaper then than gas is now (pre-crisis).

    kelvin
    Full Member

    Gas was cheaper then than gas is now (pre-crisis).

    Comparing old coal prices to new gas prices doesn’t tell us anything.

    We need to be going all in on renewables, storage and reducing energy use.

    Ramping up on-land renewables is the big thing missing right now.

    ernielynch
    Free Member

    Coal was cheaper then than gas is now (pre-crisis).

    So are renewables according to those two links. And yet despite ever increasing amount of energy from renewables prices are still going up in real terms. Privatisation has not resulted in cheaper prices for consumers.

    “Competition” in former state-owned monopolies has resulted in the most expensive source of energy, in this case gas, setting the price for all the others.

    People were sold a lie, and voters, including Tory voters, now recognise this. So why does Starmer persist in supporting the lie?

    ernielynch
    Free Member

    The Guardian this morning:

    https://www.theguardian.com/environment/2022/aug/18/i-wont-vote-tory-again-water-crisis-in-blue-wall-surrey-could-tip-balance-at-election

    Barnby was an enthusiast for water privatisation in 1980s. “I thought yippee, we’ll have some efficiency now. But the efficiency has changed to pure greed.”

    She added: “I have mostly voted Conservative, but I won’t do it again.” Asked whether the water crisis had changed her vote, she said: “Water and the energy companies – the profits they make are a joke.”

    Labour shadow chancellor less than 4 weeks ago:

    “Labour will not nationalise rail, water or energy, Rachel Reeves says”

    https://www.independent.co.uk/independentpremium/uk-news/labour-public-ownership-nationalise-reeves-starmer-b2131610.html

    What a great time for Starmer to abandon his pledge of two years ago to nationalise energy and water.

    Perfect timing in front of a captive audience to miss a huge open goal. From the man who has touted his alleged “forensic skills”.

    Poor Mary Barnby might as well carry on voting Tory as both Labour and the LibDems are now committed, despite public opinion and staggering failures, to persist with the failed Thatcherite legacy.

    Starmer’s excuse is that, according to him, “the pandemic has changed everything”. Although the casual observer might be forgiven for thinking that the present energy/water crisis has changed things even more.

    kelvin
    Full Member

    “Water and the energy companies – the profits they make are a joke.”

    That could be justification for clawing back those profits via a backdated windfall tax, as well as for removing the possibility for removing profits in future in some way (nationalisation or arms length not for profit, etc). It supports both policies.

    thestabiliser
    Free Member

    Renewables are cheaper NOW

    5 charts show the rapid fall in costs of renewable energy

    Anyway **** it. Kier Starmer privatised everything and lied to us while he did it, that OK?

    ernielynch
    Free Member

    Anyway **** it. Kier Starmer privatised everything and lied to us while he did it, that OK?

    I’m sorry is this what this is all about……you don’t like criticism of Starmer for not supporting a policy which he himself made as one of his “pledges” in his bid to become Labour Leader, and which voters, including Tory voters, support?

    Why? Do you think it really is too much to ask of Starmer?

    Edit: Btw my emphasis has been to ask why Starmer has totally reversed his position on nationalisation of rail, energy, and water, rather than criticise him for it.

    I am genuinely puzzled as it appears to make no sense at all, especially under the present conditions. And I can’t see how it will help him get into Number 10 – his stated aim.

    thestabiliser
    Free Member

    No, just that you were wrong about energy costs.

    ernielynch
    Free Member

    If your only point was that I am wrong about energy costs, which was based on the couple of articles which I linked rather than my personal view, then this makes even less sense as it has nothing to do with energy costs:

    Anyway **** it. Kier Starmer privatised everything and lied to us while he did it, that OK?

    thestabiliser
    Free Member

    Cos you were using that false assertion to attack Starmer. There’s plenty to go at without making shit up.

    ernielynch
    Free Member

    Saying that in the last 35 years since privatisation electricity has gone up a third in real terms and gas by a half isn’t “making shit up”. It isn’t even an attack on Starmer.

    thestabiliser
    Free Member

    Yeah but one of the main drivers for that has been a policy decision to shift from coal to gas and renewable sources. Not just that the energy co’s are trousering the difference and that Starmers fine with that. Which was your point.

    ernielynch
    Free Member

    No my point is that Starmer appears to be supporting a failed strategy which does not have widespread public support. And that I can understand that from the Tories for various reasons but I can’t understand it from the leader of the Labour Party.

    the main drivers for that has been a policy decision to shift from coal to gas and renewable sources.

    Yeah I can understand that but you haven’t provided any evidence that it has had such a significant effect on the cost of electricity and gas.

    Has gas really gone up by more than half in real term because we use less coal?

    There was a very significant drop in the dependency on coal in the first 5 years or so after privatisation, however this coincides with the only period in the last 35 years when energy costs actually fell in real terms.

    The next approximately 20 years UK coal dependency remained more or less fairly stable, during this period energy costs increased significantly in real terms.

    In the last 10 years or so coal dependency has completed collapsed and has been replaced by renewables to the point that they are now the dominant source. Despite renewables being considerably cheaper than either coal or gas energy prices have still continued to significantly increase in real terms – even before the current crises.

    I am happy to accept that moving away from coal has had an effect on energy costs but I am sceptical that it has been so significant as to explain the third increase in real terms in electricity prices and the even higher increases in gas prices.

    squirrelking
    Free Member

    Gas prices have increased since privatisation for several reasons:

    1) We weren’t allowed to use gas for power generation under an EC directive that was only repealed around 1992, once that was repealed we had the so-called ‘dash for gas’.

    2) Initial fuel stock was taken from the North Sea, as I understand it those reserves are seriously depleted and must be supplemented with imports.

    3) Storage capacity has dropped over the years going from 14 days worth in 2013 to 4 days worth last year. When was the last time you saw a gasometer? There used to be one in every town, now they’re all but extinct, I don’t think there’s any left at Provan in Glasgow, they were the last ones I saw. This means we need to buy it as we go rather than building up reserves when it’s cheap.

    thestabiliser
    Free Member

    **** hell, repeating myself. Renewables are cheaper NOW. They were very expensive early doors and we’re still paying for a lot of the high tariffs on earlier sources

    There was a very significant drop in the dependency on coal in the first 5 years or so after privatisation, however this coincides with the only period in the last 35 years when energy costs actually fell in real terms.

    Dash for gas. Then gas went up steadily until the banking crash.

    In the last 10 years or so coal dependency has completed collapsed and has been replaced by renewables to the point that they are now the dominant source

    Gas is still ~50%, so even including nuclear – which the grid dont; no

    Plus other stuff in bills, mostly network costs, CCL, and yes profit

    ernielynch
    Free Member

    I thought gasometers had become a thing of the past because natural gas is piped at much lower pressure than coal gas and also because coal gas can’t be produced on demand?

    It does still appear that the real term increase in gas prices is linked to cost cutting and “efficiency” in the privatised industry according to the linked article:

    The Rough storage facility, owned by Centrica, the parent company of British Gas, provided 70% of the UK gas storage capacity for more than 30 years before it shut in 2017 following a government decision not to subsidise the costly maintenance and upgrades needed to keep the site going.

    The government claimed that it would save £750 million over 10 years, which presumably wasn’t a cost that Centrica was prepared to pay.

    And according to the FT:

    https://www.ft.com/content/c88039ce-96e5-4eed-b6e8-58a01623987e

    Investment in the North Sea by energy companies has fallen 90 per cent since 2014, according to OEUK, the trade body for Britain’s offshore oil and gas industry, and capital spending is expected to at most plateau in the coming years.

    I consider that to be a failure of the privately owned industry. Although I do understand that less investment might well be needed with considerably cheaper renewables now being the dominant source.

    But all this lack of investment whilst explaining the possible reasons for high energy prices it doesn’t justify it, nor does it make the case for privatisation, quite the contrary.

    thestabiliser
    Free Member

    So the answer to over reliance on catastrophically expensive gas is to go and look for it in hard to exploit unproven reserves? OK.

    Also it’s one thing to nationalise generation and transmission/distribution but exploration too?

    ernielynch
    Free Member

    **** hell, repeating myself

    You are not really, you are saying different things to justify how much energy prices have increased since privatisation 35 years ago.

    Initially it was because the UK moved away from cheap coal, although that started well before the privatisation of gas and electricity so it should have been predictable before privatisation. Voters were told that privatisation would result in cheaper consumer prices.

    thestabiliser
    Free Member

    No, I just pointed out that you were wrong to attribute 100% of that increase on privatisation/profiteering. All the subsequent thrashing about youve been doing has been you trying to deflect from that.

    ernielynch
    Free Member

    you were wrong to attribute 100% of that increase on privatisation/profiteering.

    No, you have completely made that up. I have not made any claim concerning what is 100% responsible for the real term increases in electricity and gas prices.

    I said that privatisation has not resulted in lower prices for consumers as it was claimed it would. For reasons which I can only assume are idealogical you have decided to have an argument over that undeniable fact.

    I am perfectly prepared to accept that multiple factors are responsible for the failure of privatisation to lower electricity and gas prices.

    Including that the whole premise of lower consumer prices was based on the lie that privatisation would result in greater efficiency which would be passed on to customers.

    thestabiliser
    Free Member

    Oh. I see. Because you can’t be wrong I must be ideologically impure. All makes sense now.

    ctk
    Full Member

    He’s crap but he’s going to win the next election.

    ernielynch
    Free Member

    Oh. I see. Because you can’t be wrong I must be ideologically impure. All makes sense now.

    Yeah that’s what I said. ffs

    thestabiliser
    Free Member

    Yeah that’s what I said. ffs

    Yes, it is.

    For reasons which I can only assume are idealogical

Viewing 40 posts - 15,561 through 15,600 (of 15,926 total)

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