Viewing 40 posts - 21,721 through 21,760 (of 21,879 total)
  • Sir! Keir! Starmer!
  • 2
    stumpyjon
    Full Member

    Once I’m in London, (outskirts) the car won’t move, I love the underground, it’s excellent, so easy to use.

    Up here we have Trans Pennine, a donkey is faster and more reliable. We used to go to Leeds or York from Tod on the train, it was nice not to drive, made it a proper day out. Its now faster to drive across the M62 with all the delays that entails.

    My daughter has recently started using the coach, journey times are longer than the train (at least on paper), costs way less, guaranteed a seat and somewhere to safely put luggage. Plus it stops every couple of hours at the services for a break.

    For the train to be a contender the railworkers, government and train operators all need to have a good word with themselves, they are all equally culpable for the delays, cancellations and terrible service.

    alanl
    Free Member

    “Anyway… nationalising the operators one by one seems a good path to public ownership to me “

    Despite what the papers and Labour say, the Train Operators are effectively Nationalised already. The DfT controls them. The names are different due to the Management team who run the line. The Management teams (Avanti, MML, GWR etc) have no input on which trains to run, how much to charge, how many services a day etc, they are there to implement what the Government want, via the DfT. They do not set fares, and do not get any fare revenue, even if they double passenger numbers, they do not get a % fee (there may be some bonuses available, but they arent published). they are on a set fee, which was rumoured to be 1.5% of income when the Contract came in.
    That is why there are still strikes by Drivers. The true ‘privately ran’ Companies (Open Access Operators Lumo, Grand Central, Hull Trains etc, freight Companies, and the Unitary Authorities) settled months ago, so dont have any strike days. It is only the ones run by the Government that are continuing to have strikes, as the Government wont allow any negotitions to settle the matter. Avanti takes the flak when no trains run from Euston, but it is the DfTs fault for not allowing any pay rises to placate the Drivers. All that Labour are doing is taking away one level of Management, and replacing it with a Government body.

    alanl
    Free Member

    “For the train to be a contender the railworkers, government and train operators all need to have a good word with themselves, they are all equally culpable for the delays, cancellations and terrible service.”

    It is the Government.The Workers and Staff cannot be blamed. The DfT wont employ more Staff, they wont allow more trains to run (in fact TPX is the worst hit in that the DfT have taken away a number of their trains last December). TPX cannot do anything about the overcrowding, they only manage what they are told to do. The DfT tell them what to do.
    The Government has done a great job in keeping these facts from people who dont follow the Railway workings. they wont allow Driver recruitment as it costs too much, so less trains run, trains are packed, but the people using them blame TPX, when TPX can do nothing about it. Its a big con trick which seems to be overlooked even by Labour, though, TBH, no Party is truly interested in getting a well run transport system, just look at how many Transport Secretaries there have been over the last 30 years, both Labour and Tories neglect the role, and the Railways have been reduced even further by being an off-shoot of the DfT, who are useless at running them, and only really interested in cutting costs. Cutting costs is a good thing, but their ideas just do not work, hence the railways need to be ran by Railway Staff, who actually know how things work.

    2
    finephilly
    Free Member

    Comparisons to France, Germany etc are not useful. Our network is more similar to Eastern Europe. A lot of investment is needed before we start improving reliability and punctuality.

    The Labour plan should allow more centralisation, so good for public sector investment. The Tory plan could have lead to serious fragmentation – e.g. SouthEast doing really well then Wales & the North maybe not so.

    Priorities for me are:

    Finish HS2. Life WILL be better when this is done (for everyone). Make it functional, rather than fanciful.

    Electrification between all major cities

    Automatic signalling across the whole network

    Continuous welded rail everywhere except Highlands

    rone
    Full Member

    Mr Brown’s successor Rachel Reeves prefers a deadening consensus, sacrificing policies to placate business while committing to Tory spending now that is “paid for” by austerity later.

    (Kelton) Her current argument that rising US interest rates might be inflationary finds her agreeing with her sharpest critic, Larry Summers. Such challenges should be welcome in Britain. The US debates have produced an industrial policy powered by government deficits – and the world’s fastest growing advanced economy.

    feature doc out on may3rd about MMT.

    Good to see the Guardian Ed doing a half decent job.

    kelvin
    Full Member

    I’ll watch that. How about posting this in your MMT thread for us to discuss it there once it’s released?

    MMT

    1
    Flaperon
    Full Member

    Is the problem with transport in the UK that rail fares are artificially high, or that petrol/diesel prices are kept artificially low in comparison?

    Not convinced at all that nationalising the rail operators will make any difference. It won’t fix the problems with industrial action and there’s clear evidence from companies like Grand Central and Lumo that services can run offering cheaper tickets. Being government-operated, LNER has no incentive to compete on prices.

    ernielynch
    Free Member

    The Guardian view on rethinking economics: a discipline in disarray holds too much sway in the UK

    Editorial

    I am frankly stunned. It hits all the nails squarely on the head, in fact too many to pick out – and its a Guardian editorial!!

    Although it paints a depressing picture I think the belief that the growth strategy (whether for Tory tax cuts or Labour spending) will fail should be a reason for optimism.

    As the editorial states “This strategy has failed since 2010. Why would it work now?” The Labour Party under Keir Starmer is ideologically rudderless, imo it is more likely to abandon failed economic policies than the Tories, who although are experiencing ideological turmoil (see mini budget) are nevertheless more committed to failed neoliberal policies.

    rone
    Full Member

    I’ll watch that. How about posting this in your MMT thread for us to discuss it there once it’s released?

    Good idea – but frankly i enjoy the more rounded view here – and Labour centric discussion, of this thread.

    That thread just turned into lots of people annoyed at me/MMT – I haven’t got time for that.

    There is a Reeves element to this post of course.

    1
    rone
    Full Member

    I am frankly stunned. It hits all the nails squarely on the head, in fact too many to pick out – and its a Guardian editorial!!

    Well we can make sure you are not too stunned Ernie because in the same digital guardian edition was this absolutely awful piece.

    https://www.theguardian.com/business/2024/apr/28/thames-water-collapse-borrowing-whitehall-uk-finances-bonds-liz-truss?CMP=Share_AndroidApp_Other

    https://x.com/MTBrone/status/1784662336973783515

    1
    kimbers
    Full Member

    Hes at my work today, but Im wfh, anyone have any questions they want passing on, he’s been chatting with everyone apparently- one of the lab assistants has a selfie with him (also him & defectee Dan Poulter), to go with her Sadiq Kahn one from a few weeks ago & the Theresa May one she got a few years ago!

    https://www.gettyimages.co.uk/detail/news-photo/london-mayor-sadiq-khan-takes-a-selfie-with-an-employee-news-photo/2135155752

    ernielynch
    Free Member

    Well we can make sure you are not too stunned Ernie because in the same digital guardian edition was this absolutely awful piece.

    Nah, that’s just a report suggesting that current policy makers are sticking to current dogma The Guardian editorial points out that the economic orthodoxy doesn’t work and isn’t the way forward.

    rone
    Full Member

    The Labour Party under Keir Starmer is ideologically rudderless, imo it is more likely to abandon failed economic policies than the Tories,

    Not sure either party understands or wants to understand there is another way    I’d need to see a bit more evidence of that.

    The whole thing is so less than scientific too – sticking to frameworks that simply don’t work by any sort of useful metric. Conned into believing from the ground up the wealthy fund the state when it is the complete opposite.

    They literally have everything back to front and no politician seems to want to stick their head up and point it out.

    I always thought Covid would be thing to align our values back to what’s important and here we are with worse than ever from both sides.

    ernielynch
    Free Member

    Not sure either party understands or wants to understand there is another way.

    Yeah of course they do, why do always to dismiss them as completely clueless?

    When Thatcher repeated endlessly her TINA mantra until eventually even the Labour Party embraced it she knew damn well there were plenty of another alternatives.

    Don’t confuse creating very useful economic myths with a lack of understanding.

    You might believe that the economic policies of the last 45 years have failed but they certainly have not from a Tory perspective.

    1
    rone
    Full Member

    You might believe that the economic policies of the last 45 years have failed but they certainly have not from a Tory perspectiv

    Because by their own measure of Tory success such as growth they’ve flatlined for years.

    I know what you’re saying but they’re not even ‘good” at what they’re supposed to be good at.

    Yeah of course they do, why do always to dismiss them as completely clueless?

    Can’t remember always saying they’re clueless. But you would think if they want growth a la the USA they might consider some policies that would encourage it.

    Reality is the Tories have done very little other than destroy what has been put place.

    I genuinely think both parties have run aground because Neolibralism has not delivered the things that they thought it would and thus are out of new ideas to fix it.

    I’m calling that clueless.

    If it also has effect of making a few people very wealthy yes of course but I suspect most politicians thought trickle-down was actually good for us all.

    And it has failed, clearly.

    1
    ernielynch
    Free Member

    I suspect most politicians thought trickle-down was actually good for us all.

    You genuinely believe that?

    And unless the wealthiest 1% have become poorer in the last 45 years the Tories have not “failed” at all.

    rone
    Full Member

    I’m not talking about the 1 percent.

    I’m saying this particular model was sold as good for us all and yes of course lots of politicians did believe trickle-down was a thing.

    You remember ‘free enterprise works’ stickers?

    You talk of ‘us’ and the 1 percent they are different benefactors.

    kerley
    Free Member

    I would think it is still fairly common to think trickle down works.  What amount trickles down and whether anyone would notice is the measure that none of them take because they wouldn’t want to know.

    I also think the tories were for more than the 1%.  They were for the 10-20% who were privileged/entitled and didn’t want the money they have taken from the country to be used for everyone in the country.

    Changing this should be an easy sell as it is in theory 80+% of the electorate but we know how that has gone.

    None of this is going to change under Starmer though so are we now just waiting for whoever replaces him and hoping they won’t be just the same?

    timba
    Free Member

    I would think it is still fairly common to think trickle down works.

    Liz Truss believed in it. It doesn’t work; rich people invest riches in making themselves richer rather than employing more serfs

    ernielynch
    Free Member

    Of course they know it doesn’t “work”. Trickle-down/reaganomics relies on making very wealthy people even wealthier through tax cuts – it’s the only direct way that the state can make wealthy people even wealthier.

    The claim that this will benefit ordinary people is contradicted by the fact that the three times post WW2 that this was tried it resulted in serious economic crisis – Maudling’s dash for growth, the Barber boom, and the Lawson boom all ultimately failed.

    They know damn well that if you give a dollar to a poor person it will stimulate more economic activity than if you give it to a very wealthy person. But why would they give a dollar to a poor person?

    There lies the great contradiction of capitalism – accumulation of wealth leaves skint consumers, and skint consumers are no good to anyone.

    But neoliberal policies have not failed the people they were designed to help. For example despite the the very serious economic crisis of the early 80s and again a decade later the very wealthy became even wealthier in that period.

    And giving the middle-classes some crumbs from the top table does not represent serving their needs. The ruling elite need to win elections, they do this through a combination of providing crumbs and creating myths.

    politecameraaction
    Free Member

    Hold onto your tits, everyone, you’re not gonna believe this – Aaron Bastani has just realised that maybe George Galloway isn’t the right guy for those alienated from the Labour Party by Starmer! Who could have ever predicted this? So weird that a man who worked for Putin’s TV channel and is a practising Roman Catholic turned out to be homophobic! 😮

    I Would Have Voted for George Galloway, but Then He Said Gay People Aren’t ‘Normal’

    ernielynch
    Free Member

    and is a practising Roman Catholic

    Ah, that will explain why George Galloway has been divorced 3 times.

    Btw Aaron Bastani claims that his Catholic upbringing influenced his politics.

    1
    BillMC
    Full Member

    I’d still vote for Gorgeous George over genocidal apartheid however.

    ernielynch
    Free Member

    Luckily there are plenty of non-genocidal politicians so nothing quite that desperate is necessary.

    rone
    Full Member

    Well the main Labour leader is a ferocious liar, and god knows what he actually believes but you never see such screaming outrage about his flip floppery from the  ‘sensible’ middle ground of war endorsing commentators.

    I mean Paul Mason has lot interest in hospital beds and mostly talks about the military now £££.

    3
    politecameraaction
    Free Member

    I’d still vote for Gorgeous George over genocidal apartheid however.

    You’re gonna shit when you find out what his old paymaster Putin is up to!

    ernielynch
    Free Member

    what his old paymaster Putin is up to!

    I guess that repeating well-rehearsed myths might not be honest but it is known to be highly effective.

    The actual reality however is surprisingly different. Just like Corbyn was warning the threat that Putin posed during the time that the Russian oligarchs were bankrolling the Tory Party, and was completely ignored, Galloway was condemning the Russians long before their special military operations in Ukraine.

    When the truth can be manipulated so successfully is it surprising that the Tories win so many general elections?

    2.30 minutes in.

    3
    faustus
    Full Member

    Does George still think the recent Moscow terror attack was orchestrated/had involvement from the West/Ukraine though?

    I think one example of George seemingly having a moment of sanity, doesn’t deflect from his long history of supporting Putin’s regime and false narrative. That isn’t a myth, and calling it out as such is wilfully ignoring the weight of evidence backing it up. Sure. he’s not paid or directed by Putin, but he doesn’t need to be, just that his version of the world suits those regimes enough to have given him a platform.

    Does that mean that the few things that he says might make sense in complete isolation, are enough to support the rest of his abhorrent views? That’s a question for those choosing to defend him to answer…

    ernielynch
    Free Member

    Well if Galloway has plenty of abhorrent views there is no need to claim that he is paid or directed by Putin. A tactic much used by right-wingers despite Putin regime’s close connections with right-wingers across the world – from the UK Tories to Donald Trump.

    2
    faustus
    Full Member

    It’s an exaggeration to suggest he’s paid/directed by Putin for sure. But that’s almost a technicality when compared with the substance of his views and actions in support of Putin’s Russia. Whether he is actually paid/directed is somewhat besides the point; what he says and does in relation to Russia, makes him a de facto stooge in any case. Coming to his defence on a technicality, comes across as inferring (deliberately or otherwise) that his views on Russia have merit and have been misunderstood.  Fair enough if that wasn’t your intention.

    I still think the weight of evidence/his actions refute that quite clearly, and the example above doesn’t really cut through the sheer weight of everything else. Particularly as Putin’s relationship with oligarchs is somewhat mixed to say the least, so that subject area isn’t much in the way of defying Putin’s outlook.

    dazh
    Full Member

    I mean Paul Mason has lot interest in hospital beds and mostly talks about the military now £££.

    Mason has been on an interesting journey. From lefty economist and neo-Marxist to full on military-industrial-complex apologist. Won’t be long before he’s banging the Zionist drum and/or proposing a nuclear first strike. 🙄

    1
    politecameraaction
    Free Member

    It’s an exaggeration to suggest he’s paid/directed by Putin for sure.

    Well, not now, obviously. But for the time Galloway presented his show on Russia Today (founded and funded by Presidential Decree of VV Putin). Clearly Putin wasn’t putting anything on Galloway’s autocue, but Galloway knew where the money was coming from. It should be no surprise to Bastani that a sympathetiser with a wildly homophobic regime like Putin’s (let alone his other former employer at Press TV, the Islamic Republic of Iran) is himself a homophobe.

    ernielynch
    Free Member

    Personally I would have thought that George Galloway rubbing shoulders with a racist and bigot like Nigel Farage, or his public accusations that the current Tory government is not protecting our borders from “illegal immigrants”, was more worrying than the much repeated right-wing Tory press claims that he is Putin’s/the ayatollahs henchman.

    Although I can see the obvious reason why the right-wing want to push that line.

    ernielynch
    Free Member

    2
    faustus
    Full Member

    His views on Russia don’t just have to just be a Tory right wing attack line, as explained above, they can also simply just stand as another horrible truth about the man. Not sure any of it needs to be ranked, it all rests on a plane of his true awfulness….

    1
    kelvin
    Full Member

    Blimey… if the money he got from RT News wasn’t in return for him doing Putin’s work for him in the Western media… he’s clearly doing it anyway. What a piece of shit.

    1
    kimbers
    Full Member

    I know this is silly but this is clever

    theyve got a pi$$take vid for every PM, so far theyve done Cameron & May

    https://conflix.uk/

    the thumbnails for the shows are great

    Screenshot 2024-05-07 14.34.46

    Now it is a bit sad that Labour arent showing what theyll do better and running a negative campaign is self-defeating (see Susan Hall) but systematically turning each Tory PM into a figure of ridicule is a pretty good tactic

    MSP
    Full Member

    24 hour lockdown party people :D :D

    Not realy funny though that number 10 were at the booze, pills and nose candy while people were dying in their thousands.

    1
    wheelsonfire1
    Full Member

    I know the Labour Party are desperate to get elected, but Natilie Elphick!!! I’ve just done a sweary dance around the kitchen. I despair.

    1
    kelvin
    Full Member

    She’s not standing at the next election though… this is just her exiting in a way that delivers a knifing to her party for its grandstanding and failure for her constituency (they deserve it). It’ll still be Mike Tapp campaigning and standing for Labour in her seat. Hopefully as soon as possible.

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