Tag Archives: privatisation

Daily Headline – 26/03/13

UK search & rescue privatised

Privatised helicopter rescueUK search and rescue (SAR) operations will be privatised after US company Bristow Group won the £1.6bn contract starting from 2016, lasting 11 years.

This will bring to an end 70 years of service by the Royal Air Force (RAF) and Royal Navy (RN).

Naturally this has caused much concern about the new ethics that will come into play when a for-profit business is involved in saving lives. As well as this there has also been strong concern about job losses and the RAF/RN losing a valuable training facility for their pilots.

No to the conservatives, no to privatisation!

Advertisements

Chavez on privatisation

Here is a quote from the late Hugo Chavez that is well worth thinking about:

“Privatisation is a neo-liberal and imperialist plan. Health can’t be privatised because it is a fundamental human right, nor can education, water, electricity and other public services. They can’t be surrendered to private capital that denies the people from their rights”

UK Greens call for rail renationalisation

From the Green Party of England & Wales:

Green Party of England and WalesGREEN Party leader Natalie Bennett has called for the renationalisation of the nation’s railways, as she backed a campaign to stop rocketing ticket prices forcing people to stay at home – or into cars.

Ms Bennett, who will be taking part in the national Love Trains – Hate High Fares demonstrations this Thursday (Feb 14), said that the Green Party was supporting the campaign to renationalise our railways.

She said: “Privatisation has been disastrous for the rail system. It has failed on every possible criteria.

“One of those is clearly high fares. I’m delighted to support this event, as the cost of tickets has increased shockingly. Prices have increased in many cases by more than three times the cost of living. It’s forcing travellers off the trains, and putting huge strain on household budgets also under pressure from rising food, energy and housing costs.”

Since our rail service was privatised in 1993, some rail journeys, including London to Manchester, the cost of which has risen by 208 per cent, London to Exeter (205 per cent) and London to Cardiff (196 per cent) have increased in price by a rate that dwarfs the increase in the overall cost of living, the Retail Price Index, which has gone up just 66 per cent over the same period.

Rail fares in England were famously the most expensive in Europe – in many cases ten times those elsewhere in the EU for journeys of the same distance – even before the Coalition allowed a further increase in January this year, and Ms Bennett called for an end to the failed privatisation experiment.

She said: “Renationalisation can help bring prices back down and help people get back on the trains. Private companies’ priority is profit, not services, and they are taking huge profits out of the rail system, at the expense of all of us who use them.

“Ticket prices are making it impossible for many to use the trains. It stops families and friends getting together and even stops people taking jobs because the cost of travel is so high.

“Environmentally, it’s vital, too. The Green Party wants to make in all areas of life the environmentally friendly choice the cheapest, simplest and most convenient option. We should work to ensure rail travel is always be cheaper than driving.”

Nationalisation

By Leon J Williams

The following is about the nationalised post service in the UK which is in the process of being privatised:

Workers who had not realised how this was done in the Post Office are now discovering with a shock that it is the basis on which coal, railways, electricity, etc. are going to be run. Annual Reports called “Post Office Commercial Accounts,” show how successful the Post Office has been as a profit maker. Except during one or two years after the last war when charges did not keep pace with rising costs, it always shows a surplus after interest has already been charged on the capital provided by the Government. In 1938-9, after charging £6,764,000 interest on capital, there was a net surplus of £10,255,000. During the war the surplus rose enormously. In a period of 35 years since 1912 the interest charges have totalled about £150 millions and the net surplus about £400 millions.

For full details click here.

The above example has been highlighted to put aside the issue of whether nationalisation does or can work.

Ultimately the choice of nationalisation or privatisation comes down to a more philosophical and ideological approach.

A) Do you want to encourage business and entrepreneurship through the incentive of getting rich for the owner(s).

or

B) Do you want to create profit for reallocation to other essential services (such as scientific research, transport, health & education).