Friday, March 11, 2005

Tory Motorvation

Greg Knight, the Tory transport spokesman, seems to be rather ill-informed. Not that I'm surprised about that, obviously.

In questions to the Secretary of State, Alistair Darling, he claimed that using environmentally friendly fuels would have little effect unless the government was more pro-car.

Surely, if we can reduce overall car use and encourage the use of fuels that damage the environment less, that's a double whammy of green goodness? But you forget - this is just part of the Tory plot to lure the voters of middle England with well-designed policies at the expense of everybody else. This is about saving the poor, hard done-by motorist.

We've already had the Tory review of speed cameras. Whenever a Tory speaks of a review, you know that cuts are around the corner. The use of the word bureaucracy just hammers in the final few nails. That policy launch also saw a proposal to raise the motorway speed limit to 80mph.

This week saw an attack on traffic-calming, with Tim Yeo, shadow transport minister, drafting an amendment to stop any more being constructed. He cited a statement last year by the London Ambulance Service, which claimed that 800 lives a year are lost because of delays in responding to incidents caused by traffic calming. Never mind that research cast severe doubt on this claim or that removing speed bumps would lead to more deaths on the roads. Yeo quickly changed his mind, claiming that it was merely a talking point. Yeah.

But why should we in Birmingham be surprised by this? We've already got a council that is shamelessly pro-car. They've already suspended bus lanes, which will make their journeys into Birmingham from the Tory redoubt of Sutton Coldfield so much faster. Greg Knight went on to describe the transport policies of the Tory council in Birmingham as 'successful.' Such a resounding success that they have been criticised for backing 'dud projects', being 'anti-bus' and returning to the 1960s.

Think of what's happening to Birmingham as a warning to the rest of the country.


john said...

One bus lane (in two directions) and not for the whole of the route has been suspended.

Bob Piper said...

You can't criticise the Tories without John loyally coming to the aid of his Leader, you should know that by now. He's praying silently every night for a Howard victory and a win for Hemming in Yardley and you won't be able to stop him trying to get his feet under the table. It makes you feel uncomfortable to see such naked political ambition.

PoliticalHack said...

Well, there is a photo on John's blog which shows the future for education under the Tories.

I am joking.


john said...

Actually I respond to criticisms of the City Council Administration.

I have to accept that whether or not the Cabinet Member implementing a policy is Lib Dem or Tory is not the key issue. What is key is what the council does.