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Is Labour's railway plan an election winner? Watch

  • View Poll Results: Is Labour's railway plan an election winner?
    Yes
    13
    40.63%
    No
    19
    59.38%

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    Labour have called for renationalisation light on the railways and Ed Miliband seems to have agreed to a policy which has managed to resonate with rail unions and the vast majority of passengers, without annoying the rail companies too much.

    Labour will allow the creation of a state-owned rail company which'll bid for existing lines, following the success of the East Coast franchise which is run by the Department of Transport and has been delivering consistent profits back into the Treasury, with no shareholders pocketing the cash.

    With an overwhelming majority of the public in favour of full renationalisation when voting in polls on apolitical websites, this looks like a surefire momentum-kicker as the 2015 election draws closer.

    But is it an election winner?
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    (Original post by Numberwang)
    Labour have called for renationalisation light on the railways and Ed Miliband seems to have agreed to a policy which has managed to resonate with rail unions and the vast majority of passengers, without annoying the rail companies too much.

    Labour will allow the creation of a state-owned rail company which'll bid for existing lines, following the success of the East Coast franchise which is run by the Department of Transport and has been delivering consistent profits back into the Treasury, with no shareholders pocketing the cash.

    With an overwhelming majority of the public in favour of full renationalisation when voting in polls on apolitical websites, this looks like a surefire momentum-kicker as the 2015 election draws closer.

    But is it an election winner?
    It is quite popular - even fairly right-wing people like Peter Hitchens believe in re-nationalisation of the railways - so it may well be an election winner. I'd personally prefer worker-ownership to state-ownership.
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    A likable policy, perhaps. An election winner, not really.

    This is the sort of policy that will motivate some of the core-support and will likely pull some people in the undecided middle to him, which may be what the election comes down to.

    However, polling doesn't show Labour curb-stomping the polls (getting 40 points + support), and that will likely not change on the back of this.

    I'm personally waiting, as I'm sure many others are, to see how the wider economic battle wages before the election.
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    (Original post by SocialistIC)
    It is quite popular - even fairly right-wing people like Peter Hitchens believe in re-nationalisation of the railways - so it may well be an election winner. I'd personally prefer worker-ownership to state-ownership.
    Yeah, me too - the non-profit route is an attractive one.

    I'd like to see some kind of worker-ownership insofar as there are different providers with groups of workers across the system trying to deliver innovation in the customer service that - in Nick Robinson's report - the head of Chiltern Railway Rob Brighhouse (who has British Rail on his CV as a reference point) points as a successful element of privatisation.

    ^ In my view, improvement in the treatment and comfort of the passenger is the only thing that I think have improved.

    I would merge ticketing with the nationalised rail network company which could become a subsidiary of government and replace not-for-profit operators if they're not up to scratch.
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    YES!!!!!!!!!!!!!
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    It will be good step, but it won't be a major step, things really won't be that much different under public ownership. I think things will get a little bit better, but they won't be drastically better, plus you have to wait until the contracts for the companies run out, so it will take a few years to implement anyways - east coast is just being signed now.

    All in all I think its a nice policy but far from an election winner.
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    (Original post by Pedd)
    A likable policy, perhaps. An election winner, not really.

    This is the sort of policy that will motivate some of the core-support and will likely pull some people in the undecided middle to him, which may be what the election comes down to.

    However, polling doesn't show Labour curb-stomping the polls (getting 40 points + support), and that will likely not change on the back of this.

    I'm personally waiting, as I'm sure many others are, to see how the wider economic battle wages before the election.
    Over policies such as?
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    (Original post by Pussy Galore)
    Over policies such as?
    So, the main consideration for me will be how the economy is before the election, in terms of extent of recovery.

    The general populace will likely be doing the same, in terms of how much money is in their pockets compared to the last couple of years prior. Labour knows this, which is why they their main economic campaign seems to be orbiting the 'cost of living crisis' slogan.

    Specific policies: the main battle-areas will probably be:

    - levels of taxation
    - deficit reduction approaches
    - investment aims (most notably, housing)

    We'll see in their manifesto!
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    Allowing a state run company to bid for franchise does not mean a state run company will though. And even if one does, that does not mean they will win the franchise. Personally I think the whole Train Operating Company franchise system needs to be looked at anyway because it is a massive mess. We get the worst of a private system and the worst of a public system, and the benefits of neither.
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    I thought I'd never vote labour, but tbh I usually vote green and they're unlikely to win but if lab win their proposal for national rail really appeals to me so would it be worth it.

    Suppose I've got a year to think about it.
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    I strongly agree with this proposal.

    Unfortunately, the Labour party is now rife with commies and feminists and thus I will not vote for them despite my support of this policy.
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    (Original post by #Ridwan)
    I strongly agree with this proposal.

    Unfortunately, the Labour party is now rife with commies and feminists and thus I will not vote for them despite my support of this policy.
    You mean, the grassroots, right?
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    (Original post by Numberwang)
    You mean, the grassroots, right?
    Not solely. There are radical feminists at the very top of the Labour party: Harriet Harman, Gloria de Piero etc.
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    not for me it isn't; why should I have to pay more in taxes towards a national railway company when I'm not a person that uses them? charge people who use the railways, not me, goddamn it
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    (Original post by zippity.doodah)
    not for me it isn't; why should I have to pay more in taxes towards a national railway company when I'm not a person that uses them? charge people who use the railways, not me, goddamn it
    You're already subsidising the railways as the state keeps stepping in to fund maintenance and upgrades due to the failure of the private franchises to fund these necessities themselves.
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    (Original post by #Ridwan)
    You're already subsidising the railways as the state keeps stepping in to fund maintenance and upgrades due to the failure of the private franchises to fund these necessities themselves.
    that's so bull****, obviously; why would I need to supply railways that I have nothing to do with?
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    (Original post by Numberwang)
    Labour have called for renationalisation light on the railways and Ed Miliband seems to have agreed to a policy which has managed to resonate with rail unions and the vast majority of passengers, without annoying the rail companies too much.

    Labour will allow the creation of a state-owned rail company which'll bid for existing lines, following the success of the East Coast franchise which is run by the Department of Transport and has been delivering consistent profits back into the Treasury, with no shareholders pocketing the cash.

    With an overwhelming majority of the public in favour of full renationalisation when voting in polls on apolitical websites, this looks like a surefire momentum-kicker as the 2015 election draws closer.

    But is it an election winner?
    I had to think about the poll for some time since I think rail is one of the few things he can get away with nationalizing (call for BT or car companies ect.. And he'd be regarded as the loony left). I did vote no but I still think it wins a percent or two in a way that I don't think the discredited energy freeze will.

    Like many I'm also looking forward to the manifestos and general message. The cost of living has strong appeal to the C voters who went with Cameron in 2010 however I think Miliband will flop with the squeezed middle (they are squeezed but not on the bread line).

    Regarding Labours actual plan I think its worth remembering that the ECML was the most profitable line pre-recession so its not like state ownership has done anything magical. Its also worth noting that the railways as a whole are actually loss making so I'd like to know where Labour will cut spending to pay for that unless they plan to cull rural lines.

    With the above being said however, I don't like the current system because the idiots have put private ownership above competition. Ideally I'd have companies register as open access operators and then have the state run the services they don't want to. Limiting them to 1 service per hour each ensures competition.
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    (Original post by #Ridwan)
    You're already subsidising the railways as the state keeps stepping in to fund maintenance and upgrades due to the failure of the private franchises to fund these necessities themselves.
    Since privatization infrastructure and operation has been separate so they've never been asked to. Network Rail is essentially publicly owned and funded yes by taxation, but also by ticket sales.

    Indeed the same is true of the trains and carriages which the state buys. FTP actually wanted to buy new trains to increase services under the last government but was prohibited because they'd own the trains and if they lost the franchise, it would mean reduced quality and frequency of service.
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    (Original post by zippity.doodah)
    that's so bull****, obviously; why would I need to supply railways that I have nothing to do with?
    Everyone subsidies things they don't use to some extent.

    I'm by no means a statist, some of the rubbish the state spends money on horrifies me. Railways are, however, an essential public service. You may not use them but our economy is dependent on having an efficient and reliable rail network.
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    (Original post by #Ridwan)
    Everyone subsidies things they don't use to some extent.

    I'm by no means a statist, some of the rubbish the state spends money on horrifies me. Railways are, however, an essential public service. You may not use them but our economy is dependent on having an efficient and reliable rail network.
    I still don't quite understand why that means I have to pay for them? private businesses are essential for our economy, sure, but that wouldn't justify a public bailout if they fail, and it's the same sentiment here
 
 
 
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