Articles tagged: privatisation

How the Tories wordgrabbed Progressive and sent Mandy Mental

August 12, 2009

Yesterday, unlike ‘Lord’ Mandelson, I saw George Osborne deliver his case for the Tories as the party of ‘Progressive Politics” at centre-left Demos think tank HQ. The hounhymns were confounded. Phil Collins – no, not the former drummer of progressive rock group Genesis but the former speechwriter for failed prog rock singer, Tony (Ugly Rumours) Blair – introduced Osborne’s speech as the latest attempt at Tory ‘wordgrab.’ He concluded by thanking Boy George and telling him that he’d be pleased to relay his advice on policy to the Labour war... More

Pay attention, class. This is an important revision course on UK student tuition fees

July 26, 2009

Both Labour and Tories are backing plans to more than double student tuition fees to £7000 within four years. Labour shamelessly abandoned its 2001 election manifesto promise that ‘it will not introduce top-up fees and has legislated against them’ – then introduced them in 2004. The Dearing Report, commissioned in 1996 under Tory PM ‘Sir’ John Major (who achieved only 3 O levels, didn’t go to university but won an election with the greatest margin in electoral history, published in 1997, recommended charging students 25% of their tuition costs. Newly-elected... More

Kicking National Express was a good call from Labour

July 5, 2009

First, let me apologise for foolishly assuming that National Express, the (privatised) UK bus company, chaired until last week by well-connected Richard Bowker, was clever enough to engineer a de facto merger with Virgin Trains/Stagecoach (Thus passim) and thus recreate a large part of the old subsidised British Rail monopoly under the guise of privatisation. I also apologise for stating the National Express was profitable: it was, until it grossly overbid for the UK’s East Coast Railway franchise. With decent rolling stock a clear run from London to Edinburgh and... More