A politician inspects "the Peoples Train" yesterday
Once upon a time, some entrepreneurs spotted that there might just be a market for transporting goods up and down the country and producers would pay them to carry their goods to new markets. Low and behold, the industrial revolution began. Gangs of imported Irish labour toiled relentlessly to build the canal system in the UK and suddenly, Britain became a powerhouse of engineering and commerce. Cost to the taxpayer? ZERO
Next, some entrepreneurs decided that there might also be a market for transporting people around the country. Once again, the Irish navvies were sought to lay thousands of miles of tracks across the nation, the postal system was revolutionised, fresh produce could be transported the length and breadth of the country and people could actually choose to live away from their place of work. The age of the commuter was born, giving rise to the middle classes and massive wealth redistribution across the entire social sphere. Cost to the taxpayer? ZERO
So why is the taxpayer being asked to fund a high speed rail network to Birmingham? I have no problem with high speed rail, indeed, I find it infinitely preferable to being stuck behind some old biddy in her Nissan Micra on the M6 and am happy to pay for that service, but I will not be forced, through taxation, to subsidise the building of a network that I will then be charged to use. As if we don't have any experience of letting private finance raise the capital, our Government is keen to plunder the earnings of people who will never use a high speed railway network to the Midlands so that the history books will gleefully show the Transport Minister cutting the ribbon on yet another vanity project designed to show us, the people paying for it all, how benevolent our Politicians are for "facilitating" a new era of transport.
If business wants a high speed rail network, business knows what it has to do. Raise the capital and build one - build it and they will come. But no, our glorious politicians are FAR too interested in the glory of the State for national infrastructure to be left to people who actually have money to risk, so once again, a shelf stacker from Truro will be forced to cough up for a political project that will add no value to his existence and our glorious leaders can pretend they are doing something for the "nation", using money we don't have to spend if only we would allow the market to decide.
Dig deep folks, there's plenty more "national infrastructure" projects to come as Government tries to spend money we don't have on projects we don't want and can't afford. All in the name of State "progress"