Wednesday, 28 November 2012

How To Get Back On Track

The tenth consecutive above inflation increase in rail fares.

In defiance of their own history until recent decades, the Conservatives cannot will the means. We need to renationalise the railways, uniquely without compensation in view of the manner of their privatisation, as the basis for a national network of public transport free at the point of use, including the reversal of bus route and rail line closures going back to the 1950s.

Those trains need to be run on electricity, produced domestically and not least from our vast reserves of coal, rather than on oil, which has to be imported, and that often from unsavoury and unstable petrostates in the Gulf and elsewhere.

And for all the good news for Newton Aycliffe in July, think how many more jobs could have been created if these trains were to have been built here, and not merely assembled here out of parts shipped in from abroad. 

Only public ownership can deliver these things. Public ownership is of course British ownership, and thus a safeguard of national sovereignty. It is also a safeguard of the Union in that it creates communities of interest across the several parts of the United Kingdom. Publicly owned concerns often even had, and could have again, the word "British" in their names.

Ed Miliband and Jon Cruddas, over to you.

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