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Re: Trains...why?

Posted: 27 Apr 2019, 9:01am
by Cugel
Vorpal wrote:And by contrast, NSB, the national rail system in Norway is government managed (through a government owned company), efficient and easy to use. It's quite clear which trains take bikes by reservation only, and which ones are first-come-first-served. The same company serves the entire country, and it is reasonably well-coordinated with services from neiboring countries, and other modes of transport.

Oldjohnw has the right of it. There is a clear strategy in some places to apply increasingly stringent budgets on public sector services, including public transport. Then, the people clamour for reform in the face of the resultant degradation. IMO, the same thing has been happening to the NHS.

The reform thus far has mainly been privitisation and consolidation, neither of which have helped much because the investment has continued to decline.

I somewhat prefer state run enterprise to privitisation, but either way, significant improvements require significant investment. And no, you can't wave HS2 in my face because that sort of thing has limited impact on the rest of the system. New rolling stock, cross rail; these things will help, but not enough to make up for 30 years or more of increasingly stringent budgets.


The starve-the-public-service trick is a mild version of the Shock & Awe tactic devised and recommended by the Chicago School of Economics and it's Chief Moneygrabber Milton Friedman. The full-on version is the sort of Yank antic seen in bringing about regime changes such as those promoting Pinochet in Chile or the more recent Iraq debacle. Bomb them to bits then offer to rebuild the country with Yank Big Business stuff.

Our neolib Tory (and Toryesque New Labour) governmenst starve public utilities and services 'til they become inefficient or moribund. They then employ the private sector PR via the oligarch-owned&run newspap to go on about how the private sector is "customer first" or some other euphemism for "well-able to construct gullible consumer fools".

Bits of the public service are privatised, with regular wholesale privatisation of whole areas of public service, generally with the cry "more efficient". They neglect to mention that this means "more efficient at making profit for fat cats and shareholders but pretty bad at providing services or saving tax income".

Consumer dopes fall for the PR, particularly the lovely decor of the front-of-house and the white-toothed grins of smart-looking receptionsists. Behind the facade, things are black-toothed - full of slavering fang, biting at the consumer wallets in exchange for not-a-lot.

It amazes me that government is still doing this and the public don't seem to have cottoned-on in large numbers.

Cugel

Re: Trains...why?

Posted: 27 Apr 2019, 9:06am
by Cunobelin
pete75 wrote:
irc wrote:
PH wrote:First we’d need to decide if public transport was a service or a business, all decisions would follow from that one. If we treated the road network as a business motorists would soon be crying in their petrol.


Why is that. Road expenditure is far less than motoring taxes/

https://www.racfoundation.org/data/road ... data-chart


As is often mentioned here roads are for everyone not just drivers.


.. and ironically the reason why a hypothecated "Road Tax" was abolished so many years ago

Entertainments may be taxed; public houses may be taxed; racehorses may be taxed and the yield devoted to the general revenue. But motorists are to be privileged for all time to have the whole yield of the tax on motors devoted to roads. Obviously, this is all nonsense Such contentions are absurd, and constitute an outrage upon the sovereignty of Parliament and upon common sense.


Churchill then went on further to point out that there were drivers wh
"Claimed ownership of the roads that they paid for"

Re: Trains...why?

Posted: 27 Apr 2019, 9:23am
by RubaDub
Why?

Because I don't like driving and living in Ireland they are free for people of my age. I've brought my bike on a train many times and met interesting people. I also live close to a station and can avoid peak times.

Re: Trains...why?

Posted: 27 Apr 2019, 12:24pm
by horizon
PH wrote:
Lance Dopestrong wrote:
Could well be, could well be. But where would we get the funds from to subsidise it today?

First we’d need to decide if public transport was a service or a business, all decisions would follow from that one. If we treated the road network as a business motorists would soon be crying in their petrol.


Why as a business? We could treat roads like English Heritage: set up a trust and finance it by selling tea towels, calendars and memberships. :lol: :lol:

Actually the best might be a TOC set up as a trust like a big housing association. Would have to be quite a tough organisation but ATEOTD would serve its customers not its shareholders while avoiding the downsides of the old British Rail.

Re: Trains...why?

Posted: 27 Apr 2019, 6:15pm
by brynpoeth
Kim jong-un likes train travel too, he took one from Pyongyang to Valdivostok

Re: Trains...why?

Posted: 28 Apr 2019, 11:33am
by Oldjohnw
horizon wrote:
PH wrote:
Lance Dopestrong wrote:
Could well be, could well be. But where would we get the funds from to subsidise it today?

First we’d need to decide if public transport was a service or a business, all decisions would follow from that one. If we treated the road network as a business motorists would soon be crying in their petrol.


Why as a business? We could treat roads like English Heritage: set up a trust and finance it by selling tea towels, calendars and memberships. :lol: :lol:

Actually the best might be a TOC set up as a trust like a big housing association. Would have to be quite a tough organisation but ATEOTD would serve its customers not its shareholders while avoiding the downsides of the old British Rail.


We should do that for weaponry. People should stand on the street corner with collecting tins for tanks and pay for soldiers injured in warfare fully from the exchequer rather than the other way round, as it now is. And why should we need charity collections for school books?

Re: Trains...why?

Posted: 28 Apr 2019, 11:43am
by reohn2
Oldjohnw wrote:...... And why should we need charity collections for school books?

Or cancer research and treatment,or for emergency service helicopters,or for the homeless,etc.

Because we'd rather have a low tax economy so the necessities for a caring society are ar at the whim of people dropping their loose change in a tin.......

Re: Trains...why?

Posted: 28 Apr 2019, 1:00pm
by PH
irc wrote:
PH wrote:First we’d need to decide if public transport was a service or a business, all decisions would follow from that one. If we treated the road network as a business motorists would soon be crying in their petrol.

Why is that. Road expenditure is far less than motoring taxes/


Cunobelin made the case for the unreliability of the figures based on what you do or don't include, I thought it was generally accepted that motorists don't pay the full cost of the services they use, but I'm not going to argue it.
I was only partly thinking in those terms when I wrote that roads were not treated as a business, certainly not in the same way as the railways. All rail investment considers how it will increase revenue, use is charged on a supply and demand basis - just compare peak and off peak fares - can you imagine this happening for road transport? Maybe if you want to drive up the M1 you should book two weeks in advance or pay a premium, then when there's enough space sold for it to be free flowing you stop selling tickets. The list goes on... roads are considered an essential part of society and we seem to forgive just about everything on that basis, OTOH railways have been seen as an inconvenience by successive governments and planners.

Re: Trains...why?

Posted: 1 May 2019, 9:33am
by brynpoeth
I do like to visit the train station even when I am not travelling, I enjoy the smell of the electric and diesel, I read the timetables, it is fun to see people meeting on the platform, kiddies run to meet the grandparents
People saying 'how do you do?', they are really saying 'I love you' :wink:
..
Buses..why? :?

Re: Trains...why?

Posted: 1 May 2019, 12:23pm
by Cugel
brynpoeth wrote:..
Buses..why? :?


The best comedy shows I ever attended were on the top deck of the Number 86 bus returning from a neet oot in Newcastle to South Shields, when Ah wos an older teenager. Everyone was a bit drunk and always there were one or three wags taking the micvkkey oot of themselves and everyone else. The bus would be a-roar with helpless laughter all the way back.

Of course, if some lout said summick wrong. then the mood would turn and another form of entertainment would ensue.

I often recall bus journeys of my yoof. I enjoyed many kinds, especially those where the bus was crammed and there was a sort of race between how long the bus took to get to your stop and how long the conductor was going to take to push his way down the heaving crowd to get your fare.

Cugel

Re: Trains...why?

Posted: 2 May 2019, 12:06pm
by Vorpal
irc wrote:
Why is that. Road expenditure is far less than motoring taxes/

https://www.racfoundation.org/data/road ... data-chart

It depends on what is included.

Here are a couple of previous threads about how motoring is subsidised...

viewtopic.php?f=6&t=120805
viewtopic.php?f=6&t=115700
viewtopic.php?f=1&t=89938

Re: Trains...why?

Posted: 15 May 2019, 1:47pm
by 100%JR
I saw earlier in the week that "Train Spotters" were "dangerously close to the tracks" to get photos of the Flying Scotsman :roll:
According to the report this caused over 1000hrs of knock on effect delays :?: :?: A THOUSAND HOURS?????Surely a mistake?

I don't like trains.I don't get "Train spotters"...especially turning up to see a relic :|

Can I change the title to Train spotters...why?

I saw the Flying Scotsman.....or parts of it when it was being rebuilt at the National Railway Museum in York(sons school trip) a few years ago.It's just an old train!

Re: Trains...why?

Posted: 15 May 2019, 2:01pm
by Mike Sales
100%JR wrote:I saw earlier in the week that "Train Spotters" were "dangerously close to the tracks" to get photos of the Flying Scotsman :roll:
According to the report this caused over 1000hrs of knock on effect delays :?: :?: A THOUSAND HOURS?????Surely a mistake?

I don't like trains.I don't get "Train spotters"...especially turning up to see a relic :|

Can I change the title to Train spotters...why?

I saw the Flying Scotsman.....or parts of it when it was being rebuilt at the National Railway Museum in York(sons school trip) a few years ago.It's just an old train!


Do you understand old car enthusiasts? Or those men who coo over flashy modern ones?

Re: Trains...why?

Posted: 15 May 2019, 4:03pm
by horizon
100%JR wrote:I can assume this is not going to be a popular post here but Trains.Why?



Yesterday I used trains to do a journey of about 50 miles each way. That's about 1.5 hours each way by car in narrow lanes and a couple of busy town centres. It actually took me about 2.5 hours each way by train due to the fact that it's an awkward journey involving 2 - 3 changes on each leg. So that's a loss of 2 hours. Or is it?

Going by car might well involve the odd stop (getting petrol, going to the loo, having a tea break, dealing with extra traffic and then parking). All that eats into the time advantage. But worse still for the driver, the time on the train isn't wasted - you can read, nap, look at your emails etc.

And then there is the real cost: £45 (45 ppm according to HMRC) compared to £9.00 off-peak with rail card. That's two hours' working time for an average person to make up plus the cost of parking. And the breaks between trains were used for sitting in the sunshine.

There's simply no comparison: travelling by car as the driver is hugely inefficient and time wasting, even when the train is a bit slow, noisy, crowded and dirty (none of which my trains were). Going by car is initially inviting but by the end of the day you have a tired driver and a refreshed rail passenger (at least in my case).

Some people love driving and enjoy the personal space of their clean, smart car, listening to music as they drive. And yet they spend their leisure time complaining to newspaper comment columns about the behaviour of cyclists. Can't be all that wonderful then.

Re: Trains...why?

Posted: 15 May 2019, 4:23pm
by irc
Vorpal wrote:
irc wrote:
Why is that. Road expenditure is far less than motoring taxes/

https://www.racfoundation.org/data/road ... data-chart

It depends on what is included.

Here are a couple of previous threads about how motoring is subsidised...

viewtopic.php?f=6&t=120805
viewtopic.php?f=6&t=115700
viewtopic.php?f=1&t=89938


Not that old chestnut. Counting things like reduce d physical activity as a subsidy for cars while not doing so for public transport. By that logic cycling is subsidised because someone doing a 5 mile commute by bike expends less effort than a pedestrian.
Likewise noise pollution counted as car subsidy but not bus or train subsidy.