BBC2 debate on road pricing

Discussion in 'Current Affairs, News and Analysis' started by Litotes, Feb 19, 2007.

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  1. There is an interesting battle on road pricing on Newsnight at the moment (as a result of the e-petition which reportedly has hit 1,500,000!) which leaves me with a dichotomy. Do I agree with:

    The Minister - Mr Ladyman?
    The Sun Columnist - Mr John someone or other?

    I cannot believe I am writing this but the Sun columnist was way ahead on points. The Minister was, frankly, unbelievable.

    Did anyone else see it?

  2. Yes I watched it.

    It wasn't just the road pricing scheme, there was some bint complaining about the extension to Londons congestion zone and both of them whinging about speeding fines.

    Interesting that the Minister was backed up by the Lib Dem spokesman and the environental spokesman in stating that costs to motorists had gone down.

    Also interesting that the businesswoman didn't know that vans with LPG not only paid less in fuel but didn't pay the congestion charge
  3. Ladyman was simply full of spin! I have no confidence in anything that comes from this current government. I noted that he tried to refute that the government would not spy on where you are at any given time say that there were options that would not show this information. Hmmm, whats the bet that these options soon go by the wayside....
  4. British Government voices have no idea.

    SatNav is wholly in the jurisdiction of the American military/civ conglomerates who placed the satellites. Ergo any civilian costing system has to take into account the discrepencies inherent in such a system. For one: The signals from such a system are so weak that they can easily be disrupted by cloud, mist, sunspots, etc. - you name it. Take as an example Sky TV. Anybody got it? I haven't but I've seen the "No Signal" on other's TV - right in the middle of an exclusive paid for boxing match.

    Secondly they are not accurate - argue that in court. "Sorry M'Lud, not guilty I wasn't there, prove otherwise."

    Lastly they can be blocked. Wait until this system - if it ever arrives - then the techno warriors will hit pay dirt.

    The whole thing is a bag of nails based on dodgy USA technology. Don't be phased by this - it will simply be another scam perpertrated by a government in decline sucking air from the taxpayer.

    Incidentally. As there are several million untaxed,uninsured motors out there surely a switch of number plates as you barrel down the motorway wouldn't come amiss? Heaven forfend!!!
  5. I fear that this idea, from the government who gave you 'education, education, education', 'tough on crime, tough on the causes of crime', 'we will be whiter than white', the Millenium Dome and, most recently, the £20billion (yes, that is right!) white elephant that is the NHS central computer prescription system (which even the designers of admitted was dog toffee last week!), this is yet another grand idea that is great on paper, but pants in reality.

    Never mind the techno warrior thing mentioned in a previous post, can you imagine anyone voting for a government about to charge them £600 for equipment and then up to £1.50 a mile for the privilege of utilising the car they use for going to work etc?

    This idea makes the Poll Tax look positively inviting! You should all be encouraging (very quietly!) the government to pursue this idea. If the electorate vote in a government pushing this, then you get all you deserve.

    What you really need to watch is what the opposition parties say against the idea and what proposals they have for reducing traffic congestion and controlling vehicle emissions. (I am guessing not a great deal!)

    On a more positive note, it will never happen where I live!
  6. Does it really matter what they say?
    They may even 'say' they will not use it but if they get voted in they will then 'commision' a report that says they were wrong and we DO now need it.....


    Think I may have to add FFS to my sig...
  7. Ord_Sgt

    Ord_Sgt RIP

    It'll never happen and even if it does how will you police it. simply put a tin foil hat on the antenne - no GPS fix - system fcuked - game over.
  8. With regard to your comment (my bold); this is the background to the EU's Galileo system which they are building now. Once the EU has its own GPS system in space, the EU will insist on road-pricing across the State. And surveillance will follow. Except for the bad guys, of course!

  9. What debate. Liarbour have made up their minds already and the Libel Democrats are backing them to the hilt...
  10. E-petition: Response from the Prime Minister
    The e-petition asking the Prime Minister to "Scrap the planned vehicle tracking and road pricing policy" has now closed. This is a response from the Prime Minister, Tony Blair.

    Thank you for taking the time to register your views about road pricing on the Downing Street website.

    This petition was posted shortly before we published the Eddington Study, an independent review of Britain's transport network. This study set out long-term challenges and options for our transport network.

    It made clear that congestion is a major problem to which there is no easy answer. One aspect of the study was highlighting how road pricing could provide a solution to these problems and that advances in technology put these plans within our reach. Of course it would be ten years or more before any national scheme was technologically, never mind politically, feasible.

    That is the backdrop to this issue. As my response makes clear, this is not about imposing "stealth taxes" or introducing "Big Brother" surveillance. This is a complex subject, which cannot be resolved without a thorough investigation of all the options, combined with a full and frank debate about the choices we face at a local and national level. That's why I hope this detailed response will address your concerns and set out how we intend to take this issue forward. I see this email as the beginning, not the end of the debate, and the links below provide an opportunity for you to take it further.

    But let me be clear straight away: we have not made any decision about national road pricing. Indeed we are simply not yet in a position to do so. We are, for now, working with some local authorities that are interested in establishing local schemes to help address local congestion problems. Pricing is not being forced on any area, but any schemes would teach us more about how road pricing would work and inform decisions on a national scheme. And funds raised from these local schemes will be used to improve transport in those areas.

    One thing I suspect we can all agree is that congestion is bad. It's bad for business because it disrupts the delivery of goods and services. It affects people's quality of life. And it is bad for the environment. That is why tackling congestion is a key priority for any Government.

    Congestion is predicted to increase by 25% by 2015. This is being driven by economic prosperity. There are 6 million more vehicles on the road now than in 1997, and predictions are that this trend will continue.

    Part of the solution is to improve public transport, and to make the most of the existing road network. We have more than doubled investment since 1997, spending £2.5 billion this year on buses and over £4 billion on trains - helping to explain why more people are using them than for decades. And we're committed to sustaining this investment, with over £140 billion of investment planned between now and 2015. We're also putting a great deal of effort into improving traffic flows - for example, over 1000 Highways Agency Traffic Officers now help to keep motorway traffic moving.

    But all the evidence shows that improving public transport and tackling traffic bottlenecks will not by themselves prevent congestion getting worse. So we have a difficult choice to make about how we tackle the expected increase in congestion. This is a challenge that all political leaders have to face up to, and not just in the UK. For example, road pricing schemes are already in operation in Italy, Norway and Singapore, and others, such as the Netherlands, are developing schemes. Towns and cities across the world are looking at road pricing as a means of addressing congestion.

    One option would be to allow congestion to grow unchecked. Given the forecast growth in traffic, doing nothing would mean that journeys within and between cities would take longer, and be less reliable. I think that would be bad for businesses, individuals and the environment. And the costs on us all will be real - congestion could cost an extra £22 billion in wasted time in England by 2025, of which £10-12 billion would be the direct cost on businesses.

    A second option would be to try to build our way out of congestion. We could, of course, add new lanes to our motorways, widen roads in our congested city centres, and build new routes across the countryside. Certainly in some places new capacity will be part of the story. That is why we are widening the M25, M1 and M62. But I think people agree that we cannot simply build more and more roads, particularly when the evidence suggests that traffic quickly grows to fill any new capacity.

    Tackling congestion in this way would also be extremely costly, requiring substantial sums to be diverted from other services such as education and health, or increases in taxes. If I tell you that one mile of new motorway costs as much as £30m, you'll have an idea of the sums this approach would entail.

    That is why I believe that at least we need to explore the contribution road pricing can make to tackling congestion. It would not be in anyone's interests, especially those of motorists, to slam the door shut on road pricing without exploring it further.

    It has been calculated that a national scheme - as part of a wider package of measures - could cut congestion significantly through small changes in our overall travel patterns. But any technology used would have to give definite guarantees about privacy being protected - as it should be. Existing technologies, such as mobile phones and pay-as-you-drive insurance schemes, may well be able to play a role here, by ensuring that the Government doesn't hold information about where vehicles have been. But there may also be opportunities presented by developments in new technology. Just as new medical technology is changing the NHS, so there will be changes in the transport sector. Our aim is to relieve traffic jams, not create a "Big Brother" society.

    I know many people's biggest worry about road pricing is that it will be a "stealth tax" on motorists. It won't. Road pricing is about tackling congestion.

    Clearly if we decided to move towards a system of national road pricing, there could be a case for moving away from the current system of motoring taxation. This could mean that those who use their car less, or can travel at less congested times, in less congested areas, for example in rural areas, would benefit from lower motoring costs overall. Those who travel longer distances at peak times and in more congested areas would pay more. But those are decisions for the future. At this stage, when no firm decision has been taken as to whether we will move towards a national scheme, stories about possible costs are simply not credible, since they depend on so many variables yet to be investigated, never mind decided.

    Before we take any decisions about a national pricing scheme, we know that we have to have a system that works. A system that respects our privacy as individuals. A system that is fair. I fully accept that we don't have all the answers yet. That is why we are not rushing headlong into a national road pricing scheme. Before we take any decisions there would be further consultations. The public will, of course, have their say, as will Parliament.

    We want to continue this debate, so that we can build a consensus around the best way to reduce congestion, protect the environment and support our businesses. If you want to find out more, please visit the attached links to more detailed information, and which also give opportunities to engage in further debate.

    Yours sincerely,

    Tony Blair
  11. Blinkin poppy cock.......Bliar does my head in...
  12. Typical of the lies and threats coming out of Bliar , any money spent on more roads will have to come out of health , education or higher taxes. What about cutting the waste of overseas aid, travel expenses for MP's , the drain of the EU , cutting back the money spent on keeping prisoners in comfort, all the money given out to foreigners who have had their human rights abused.
    There are plenty of areas that money could be cut back, not least the Bliar travel costs.
  13. In that case, why don't we just stick a tax on time wasting? Or better still, make it illegal and pin an "on the spot fine" to it.

    But seriously, the only thing which should be made illegal is that prick being able to sign anything "yours sincerely".
  14. My webmail would not 'light up' this morning, I bet it was the Bliargram b*ggering it up. Having read the thing thanks to a poster on here, I think it was composed by the 'Welsh Wind-bag' himself Kinnock, it is so long. What a load of Orwellian b*llocks and the dreadful little man had the gall to sign himself SINCERELY !!!
  15. Got my copy of the emperor's E Mail this morning and have put a question onto the webchat line for 1600 Thursday as invited. Interesting to see what response I get.

    I also note that he states ...'nothing will happen for at least 10 years'... long after he's gone and someone else has to deal with the c##p.

    Nothing new there then.