The Benefits of the Union 15

Following today’s completion, for a mere £14.8 billion, you will now be able to get on a train in Reading and get off it in Southend, something I thank God I am unlikely to do, in either direction. According to Transport Secretary Chris Grayling this is going to be “a massive driver of economic wealth across the whole of the UK”. The citizens of Scotland, who have stumped up £1.5 billion of the cost of this project, I fear would have a very long wait before they saw their money back in extra economic growth. Meanwhile Scotland’s railways are mostly not even electrified yet, and the A1 not even dualled for long stretches, both South of Edinburgh and North of Newcastle. Ho hum.

Mind you, Crossrail was a snip at about 5.5% of the cost of Trident renewal. Crossrail was described as “Europe’s biggest construction project.” It does rather put things into perspective, that Trident costs almost twenty times Europe’s biggest construction project.


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15 thoughts on “The Benefits of the Union

  • Sharp Ears

    Better value than the two a/c carriers, HMS QE and HMS P Charles, combined.

    Wasn’t signing off the Crossrail project a Gordon Broon initiative?

    Remembering the man who was killed and the two men seriousy injured.
    ‘Two charges relate to the death of 44 year old Tkacik on 7 March 2014, who was crushed while working in the 24m deep Fisher Street crossover tunnel below Red Lion Square in Holborn.

    One charge relates to the severe leg injuries sustained by Terrance “Ian” Hughes when he was crushed by a tipper truck. He was working in the section of tunnel between Bond Street and Paddington on 16 January 2015.

    “We have today informed the three contractors that they will each be prosecuted for the death of a worker and injuries sustained by two others, in three separate incidents on the construction project.”

    The final charge comes after Alex Vizitiu, who was working in the same stretch of the tunnel, was struck by a high pressure mixture of water and concrete during a routine operation to clean concrete lines on 22 January 2015. He sustained head and hip injuries.’

    They paid a terrible price.

  • Peter Brown

    Of course, new Queensferry Crossing is not “UK National Infrastructure” so 100% funded by Scottish Governement.
    Same for Borders railway.

  • Trowbridge H. Ford

    When is the UK going to stop helping the real loser Donald Trump with its Tridents, aircraft carriers, and nuclear bans? just proving that the UK is capable to doing what North Korea can’t is not enough.

  • Shatnersrug

    As a half Scot Londoner that was born in Southend I can assure you this line is for people to get the FUCK out of Southend, not the other way around.

    Cross rail is nothing no more than a new tube line. No one is paying for it from their taxes, when you pay taxes it cancels out there is technically no such thing as Tax Payers Money because tax is a method of removing excess money from the economy thereby reducing inflation. I wish people would try to understand that, and understand that this is why government debt means nothing – all money is government debt and British currency never leaves the British economy.

    Cross rail was built with freshly minted money. Anyhow – my opposition to it is on a much more cultural basis. Due to cross rail we have lost The Astoria theatre which was part of the ornate original Cross and Blackwell Branston Pickle factory. We have lost most of the buildings on Denmark street(though retaining the frontage) including the complete destruction of Denmark place.

    You can read more here

    Now I discover that the old and venerable Foyles book shop building was CPO’d and has now been demolished. Foyles was a world cultural site for 100 years, the destruction of Soho and St Giles has been painful to watch over the last 10 years. There are many other sites that have been destroyed to build what now has been admitted to being just another Tube line that – the Bastards are even going to call it the Queen Elizabeth Line. I supported Ken Livingston many times but it was his insistence on building this pointless line.

    Btw if we’re talking about wasting public money what about that daft Tram system in Edinburgh

    • Stu

      “all money is government debt and British currency never leaves the British economy.”

      Surely offshore tax havens are full of money created by national governments which then leaves those countries?

      • Shatnersrug

        If it stays in pounds than technically it’s still in the economy although resting and if it’s converted to dollars then the pounds are returned to the uk. Unlike the dollar the pound can really only be spent in the uk.

        Off sure accounts is how Osbourne “prevented” inflation – increasing the money supply and allowing be stored – of course the excess should have been collected in revenue and spent on public investment, by doing what he did Osbourne fuelled inequality in Britain.

        The fact is that the NHS for example needn’t cost the British people a penny, it could easily be funded solely with new money, even with a degree of contractors working within the NHS the money would find its way into the real economy and create an up cycle. Osbourne’s reaction to the banking crisis has deliberately caused 19th century hardship. Now I don’t know if that was intended originally but from the moment it was clear what was happening he made the decision to continue.

  • Jacomo

    Crossrail is necessary. Crossrail 2 probably, although if London’s population growth is reversed because of Brexit then maybe not.

    HS2, on the other hand, is a bad joke and should be canned.

    Unfortunately, London is played off against other parts of the country for these infrastructure upgrades, and the rest of the UK is feeding off crumbs.

    The new Forth bridge and the cancellation of the idiotic Garden Bridge in London show that it’s not all about the capital. Not quite, anyhow.

    • Shatnersrug

      The increase in london population was a deliberate myth sold to Gordon Brown by properly developer lobbyists, the real reason was to make it appear necessary to rip up previous building code and housing legislation in order to redevelop land in central London as land banking – hence the empty property crisis in central London. There was absolutely no evidence that the London population was to increase significantly in the way it was sold in 2005, by which time both Blair and brown had started accumulating london property and so were already financially dependent on it.

      In reality London was at its most populated in the 1930s when most houses were single family (although large family) occupancy. London has never exceeded that and is set to decline. The government are now injecting new money into the london property racket to prevent it collapsing. Buy to let was sold as an investment opportunity to the middle class but it’s entire business model was based on the idea that there would always been an influx of young Europeans and students to pay top dollar for substandard rooms with 5 or more to a property. But in usual Tory stupidity Osbourne cut the number of students by introducing ridiculous student fees(again to be sold as derivatives on the financial markets, again created by lobbyists and sold to useless politicians as a necessity) and Cameron forced a referendum which, despite his plans, went Brexit and scared off most young Europeans. Now the housing Market is being propped up by poorly implemented Keynesianism.

      Which are now in such a bad situation that a fresh Labour Government will have to reimplement its entire postwar 1945 manifesto just to get us back to normality.

  • Sharp Ears

    ‘Mind you, Crossrail was a snip at about 5.5% of the cost of Trident renewal. Crossrail was described as “Europe’s biggest construction project.” It does rather put things into perspective, that Trident costs almost twenty times Europe’s biggest construction project.’

    And not even fully operational. See P Eye Issue 1450 on page 38 In the Back

    ‘Defences Down
    Trident Nuclear Subs

    PWR leak at the Vulcan Naval Reactor test Establishment @ Dounreay. Vulcan is operated by Rolls Royce with a small naval team.

    The leak of radioactive gases gradually came to the attention of the Scottish Environment Protection Agency.

    HMS Vanguard’s Reactor was the first to be hauled out. A £270m operation!! Still out of commission and MoD told to wait until 2019.

    The RN will be short of one of its CASD boats until 2030. The Vulcan site was supposed to have decommissioned before then at an (estimated 2005) cost of £2.1bn

    A scandal and a danger to the health of the people.

    CASD = Continuous at sea deterrence. LOL.

  • giyane

    I was born on the A1. Well the house I was born in is now next to a widened Ai in Hertfordshire. The Northern end could be mistaken for a Roman road, neglected for 2000 years. Improvements to colonial exfrastructure rarely happen soon.

  • Pete

    If you think Scotland’s railways are bad, try living down here in Cornwall. London to Exeter (through Greater London, Berkshire, Wiltshire, Somerset and Devon) as little as 2 1/4 hours. Exeter to Plymouth (less than the width of one county) takes about an hour. Plymouth to Penzance (not even the full length of Cornwall) two hours!

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