ISF Logo   IS Forum
Forum Index Register Members List Events Mark Forums Read Help

Go Back   International Skeptics Forum » General Topics » Social Issues & Current Events
 


Welcome to the International Skeptics Forum, where we discuss skepticism, critical thinking, the paranormal and science in a friendly but lively way. You are currently viewing the forum as a guest, which means you are missing out on discussing matters that are of interest to you. Please consider registering so you can gain full use of the forum features and interact with other Members. Registration is simple, fast and free! Click here to register today.
Reply
Old 2nd January 2018, 04:02 AM   #1
Captain_Swoop
Penultimate Amazing
 
Captain_Swoop's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2010
Posts: 15,402
Cost of rail travel in the UK.

Rail fares to increase by 3.4% on January 2nd.
We are paying 50% more than rail users in Europe.

It is cheaper to fly from Newcastle to London via SPAIN than it is to get the train there.
Captain_Swoop is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 2nd January 2018, 04:16 AM   #2
Darat
Lackey
Administrator
 
Darat's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2001
Location: South East, UK
Posts: 80,922
And we pay more in subsidies then we did when it was British Rail!
__________________
I wish I knew how to quit you
Darat is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 2nd January 2018, 04:40 AM   #3
Captain_Swoop
Penultimate Amazing
 
Captain_Swoop's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2010
Posts: 15,402
The Tories don't mind state ownership of the railways as long as it's the French or German state.
Captain_Swoop is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 2nd January 2018, 04:47 AM   #4
Hubert Cumberdale
Graduate Poster
 
Join Date: Sep 2008
Posts: 1,044
And there's another £100bn in public debt
Hubert Cumberdale is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 2nd January 2018, 04:50 AM   #5
Hubert Cumberdale
Graduate Poster
 
Join Date: Sep 2008
Posts: 1,044
And our rail manufacturing industry has been destroyed
Hubert Cumberdale is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 2nd January 2018, 04:52 AM   #6
Hubert Cumberdale
Graduate Poster
 
Join Date: Sep 2008
Posts: 1,044
There is literally no downside to the wonders of privatising profits and nationalising losses
Hubert Cumberdale is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 2nd January 2018, 05:02 AM   #7
Captain_Swoop
Penultimate Amazing
 
Captain_Swoop's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2010
Posts: 15,402
An annual London-Peterborough season ticket now costs £7,864. In Germany you can buy an annual BahnCard 100, providing travel on every train in the country, for less than half that (€4,270, or £3,797).

DB runs UK several franchises and the biggest rail freight operator in this country. I.e. we are subsidising their network.

Last year virgin train made £3.5bn profit.

The govt trumpets HS2. It will save a few minutes for businessmen going from London to Birmingham.

It takes longer to get from Leeds to Manchester than it does from London to Birmingham. The money for HS2 should be put in to regional railways, they are dead on their feet.

Last edited by Captain_Swoop; 2nd January 2018 at 05:05 AM.
Captain_Swoop is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 2nd January 2018, 05:06 AM   #8
PhantomWolf
Penultimate Amazing
 
PhantomWolf's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2007
Posts: 16,886
At least you still have national passenger trains.....
__________________

It must be fun to lead a life completely unburdened by reality. -- JayUtah
I am not able to rightly apprehend the kind of confusion of ideas that could provoke such a question. -- Charles Babbage (1791-1871)
My Apollo Page.
PhantomWolf is online now   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 2nd January 2018, 05:29 AM   #9
lionking
In the Peanut Gallery
 
lionking's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2007
Location: Melbourne
Posts: 41,541
3.4% isn't much (yes I know inflation is low). You have a huge railway infrastructure,which costs a fortune to maintain, let alone expand. If you think the public sector can more efficiently manage transport systems than private enterprises, you are living in fantasyland.
__________________
A fanatic is one who can't change his mind and won't change the subject.

Sir Winston Churchill
lionking is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 2nd January 2018, 05:35 AM   #10
PhantomWolf
Penultimate Amazing
 
PhantomWolf's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2007
Posts: 16,886
Originally Posted by lionking View Post
3.4% isn't much (yes I know inflation is low). You have a huge railway infrastructure,which costs a fortune to maintain, let alone expand. If you think the public sector can more efficiently manage transport systems than private enterprises, you are living in fantasyland.
From our experience of private sector management of the railways, all they are interested in is stripping as much profit from the network as they can before it falls apart from a lack of, or poor, maintenance, and then they simply leave it for the public sector to try and rebuild it again, all while walking off with a huge wad of cash.
__________________

It must be fun to lead a life completely unburdened by reality. -- JayUtah
I am not able to rightly apprehend the kind of confusion of ideas that could provoke such a question. -- Charles Babbage (1791-1871)
My Apollo Page.

Last edited by PhantomWolf; 2nd January 2018 at 05:36 AM.
PhantomWolf is online now   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 2nd January 2018, 05:42 AM   #11
P.J. Denyer
Illuminator
 
Join Date: Aug 2008
Posts: 3,546
Originally Posted by lionking View Post
3.4% isn't much (yes I know inflation is low). You have a huge railway infrastructure,which costs a fortune to maintain, let alone expand. If you think the public sector can more efficiently manage transport systems than private enterprises, you are living in fantasyland.
I'll bet 3.4% is more than a lot of the people paying it have got as pay rises, this year or recent years when the prices have also gone up. It's also a small percentage rise on already large figures, it would be almost £270 extra on Captain_Swoop's example season ticket.
__________________
"I know my brain cannot tell me what to think." - Scorpion
P.J. Denyer is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 2nd January 2018, 05:45 AM   #12
Hubert Cumberdale
Graduate Poster
 
Join Date: Sep 2008
Posts: 1,044
Originally Posted by lionking View Post
3.4% isn't much (yes I know inflation is low). You have a huge railway infrastructure,which costs a fortune to maintain, let alone expand. If you think the public sector can more efficiently manage transport systems than private enterprises, you are living in fantasyland.
Must be why French and German railways are so much worse than ours.
Hubert Cumberdale is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 2nd January 2018, 05:57 AM   #13
3point14
Pi
 
3point14's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2005
Posts: 14,488
Originally Posted by lionking View Post
3.4% isn't much (yes I know inflation is low). You have a huge railway infrastructure,which costs a fortune to maintain, let alone expand. If you think the public sector can more efficiently manage transport systems than private enterprises, you are living in fantasyland.

Can I see your evidence that points to the private sector being more efficient than the public?

I've never seen it.
__________________
Up the River!
3point14 is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 2nd January 2018, 05:59 AM   #14
P.J. Denyer
Illuminator
 
Join Date: Aug 2008
Posts: 3,546
Originally Posted by Hubert Cumberdale View Post
Must be why French and German railways are so much worse than ours.
And why we'd never let them near our power networks..
__________________
"I know my brain cannot tell me what to think." - Scorpion
P.J. Denyer is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 2nd January 2018, 06:24 AM   #15
Information Analyst
Philosopher
 
Information Analyst's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2009
Location: London, UK.
Posts: 7,241
Originally Posted by lionking View Post
3.4% isn't much (yes I know inflation is low). You have a huge railway infrastructure,which costs a fortune to maintain, let alone expand. If you think the public sector can more efficiently manage transport systems than private enterprises, you are living in fantasyland.
You think? In the case of main franchise on England's East Coast Main Line, two successive franchise-holders following privatisation were allowed to bail out before the full term of the franchise due to poor performance. In 2009 it was re-nationalised, with the government-owned operating company that took over managing to not only run it efficiently, but also do so on a lower subsidy than all the private franchise-holders across the rest of the company. Despite that obvious success, the government allowed a private franchise-holder to take over again in 2015. In November 2017 it was announced that the franchise will be terminated in 2020, three years early, because again the private sector is again struggling to operate the service.

Go figure.

Last edited by Information Analyst; 2nd January 2018 at 06:26 AM.
Information Analyst is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 2nd January 2018, 06:46 AM   #16
The Don
Penultimate Amazing
 
The Don's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2002
Location: Cymru
Posts: 24,150
Originally Posted by lionking View Post
3.4% isn't much (yes I know inflation is low). You have a huge railway infrastructure,which costs a fortune to maintain, let alone expand. If you think the public sector can more efficiently manage transport systems than private enterprises, you are living in fantasyland.
As has already been pointed out, France and Germany seem to manage just fine.

Depending on how you measure efficiency, British Rail was more efficient than the current privatised mess. It received lower subsidies, charged significantly lower fares and ran a quicker and more punctual service. It also managed to maintain a national asset BREL, which was responsible for all kinds of innovation. These days everything is bought in and the UK lacks any kind of rail innovation capability .
The Don is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 2nd January 2018, 06:54 AM   #17
PhantomWolf
Penultimate Amazing
 
PhantomWolf's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2007
Posts: 16,886
Originally Posted by Information Analyst View Post
You think? In the case of main franchise on England's East Coast Main Line, two successive franchise-holders following privatisation were allowed to bail out before the full term of the franchise due to poor performance. In 2009 it was re-nationalised, with the government-owned operating company that took over managing to not only run it efficiently, but also do so on a lower subsidy than all the private franchise-holders across the rest of the company. Despite that obvious success, the government allowed a private franchise-holder to take over again in 2015. In November 2017 it was announced that the franchise will be terminated in 2020, three years early, because again the private sector is again struggling to operate the service.

Go figure.
That story sounds rather familiar.....
__________________

It must be fun to lead a life completely unburdened by reality. -- JayUtah
I am not able to rightly apprehend the kind of confusion of ideas that could provoke such a question. -- Charles Babbage (1791-1871)
My Apollo Page.
PhantomWolf is online now   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 2nd January 2018, 07:19 AM   #18
ddt
Mafia Penguin
 
ddt's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2007
Location: Netherlands
Posts: 18,560
Originally Posted by Captain_Swoop View Post
The Tories don't mind state ownership of the railways as long as it's the French or German state.
You forgot the Netherlands. BTW, thank you for indirectly subsidizing my rail tickets that way.
__________________
Founder of the group "The Truth about Anjezë Gonxhe Bojaxhiu aka Mother Teresa"

"I think it is very beautiful for the poor to accept their lot, to share it with the passion of Christ. I think the world is being much helped by the suffering of the poor people." - "Saint" Teresa, the lying thieving Albanian dwarf
ddt is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 2nd January 2018, 07:39 AM   #19
ddt
Mafia Penguin
 
ddt's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2007
Location: Netherlands
Posts: 18,560
Originally Posted by Captain_Swoop View Post
An annual London-Peterborough season ticket now costs £7,864. In Germany you can buy an annual BahnCard 100, providing travel on every train in the country, for less than half that (€4,270, or £3,797).
There's no allround railpass like the BahnCard 100 in the UK?

For fun and giggles, I looked up the prices of the NS, the Dutch railways. An allround railpass costs €333/month - so slightly costlier than the German one - and gives also access to other rail carriers (a few peripheral lines have been franchised out). However, a season ticket Nijmegen-Amsterdam (roughly the same distance as yours) costs €410/month
__________________
Founder of the group "The Truth about Anjezë Gonxhe Bojaxhiu aka Mother Teresa"

"I think it is very beautiful for the poor to accept their lot, to share it with the passion of Christ. I think the world is being much helped by the suffering of the poor people." - "Saint" Teresa, the lying thieving Albanian dwarf
ddt is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 2nd January 2018, 08:15 AM   #20
The Don
Penultimate Amazing
 
The Don's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2002
Location: Cymru
Posts: 24,150
If I still had to work in London, my annual season ticket would now be £12,392

That said, I'd imagine that the alternative, living in London in an equivalent property, would be significantly more expensive.
The Don is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 2nd January 2018, 08:15 AM   #21
Information Analyst
Philosopher
 
Information Analyst's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2009
Location: London, UK.
Posts: 7,241
Originally Posted by The Don View Post
As has already been pointed out, France and Germany seem to manage just fine.

Depending on how you measure efficiency, British Rail was more efficient than the current privatised mess. It received lower subsidies, charged significantly lower fares and ran a quicker and more punctual service. It also managed to maintain a national asset BREL, which was responsible for all kinds of innovation. These days everything is bought in and the UK lacks any kind of rail innovation capability .
When someone tries to assure me that the railways are better these days, I explain how in 1984 I was able to go from Hull to Bedford via Leeds, staying one night in the latter each way, on an ordinary open return. Try doing that today.
Information Analyst is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 2nd January 2018, 08:27 AM   #22
3point14
Pi
 
3point14's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2005
Posts: 14,488
Originally Posted by Information Analyst View Post
When someone tries to assure me that the railways are better these days, I explain how in 1984 I was able to go from Hull to Bedford via Leeds, staying one night in the latter each way, on an ordinary open return. Try doing that today.

Privatisation seems to always bring with it terribly complicated pricing structures. It seems trivially obvious to me that this is to obfuscate the actual costs but I could be wrong.

Why it would be necessary to obfuscate costs in the bright now, ultra efficient, cheaper post-privatised market, I do not know.
__________________
Up the River!
3point14 is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 2nd January 2018, 08:27 AM   #23
Information Analyst
Philosopher
 
Information Analyst's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2009
Location: London, UK.
Posts: 7,241
Originally Posted by ddt View Post
There's no allround railpass like the BahnCard 100 in the UK?
Nope. There's something like one for tourists, but not the locals. Considering how much point-to-point fares can be on the day, if they offered one, it would be simply unaffordable.

Quote:
For fun and giggles, I looked up the prices of the NS, the Dutch railways. An allround railpass costs €333/month - so slightly costlier than the German one - and gives also access to other rail carriers (a few peripheral lines have been franchised out). However, a season ticket Nijmegen-Amsterdam (roughly the same distance as yours) costs €410/month
When I worked full-time, I was paying £180 a month for a London Zones 1-4 Travelcard, which covered me for all Underground, Overground, National Rail travel within the Zones (outside meant a zone extension taken from pre-pay balance on the card), as well as all of the Croydon Tramlink, and buses throughout the capital. I think if I had a season ticket just for the National Rail element into Charing Cross from where we live, it would cost almost as much.
Information Analyst is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 2nd January 2018, 08:50 AM   #24
Trebuchet
Penultimate Amazing
 
Trebuchet's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2003
Location: The Great Northwet
Posts: 16,217
In the United States, rail travel can cost you your life....
__________________
Cum catapultae proscribeantur tum soli proscripti catapultas habeant.
Trebuchet is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 2nd January 2018, 09:35 AM   #25
Captain_Swoop
Penultimate Amazing
 
Captain_Swoop's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2010
Posts: 15,402
British Railways were nationalised after the war because they were worn out by both enemy action and the demands put on them by the wartime economy. They were almost bankrupt.
Before the war the four big operating companies were in competition but cooperated over ticketing and connecting services. You could buy a ticket at any station for any other station in the UK.

When it was all re-privatised the system devised was intended to make it difficult to re-nationalise and to maximise profit for shareholders.
Track and infrastructure was given to one company that doesn't run trains. Actual services were leased to franchise holders on a bidding basis. These franchisees had to bid and pay for access to track and stations.
Because the franchises were of such short duration (only 5 years) they operating companies didn't own the rolling stock. It was all sold to leasing companies that just owned the stock, they didn't run trains.

So, the franchise holders have to pay for access to track and stations and pay to lease rolling stock.

Under the old private companies and British Rail the whole system was owned. If a loco failed a spare would turn out from a local depot. If points failed or there was a breakdown trains could be re-routed and the local depot would turn up to repair the problem.

Now if a loco fails the operating companies don't have spares so they just cancel services. If there is a points failure or blockage everything is held up until the sub contracted engineers turn up to fix it.
Breakdown trains were held in most depots, they had a crane and other lifting gear and track repair tools and materials.
There are no longer any breakdown trains, everything is sub contracted. If anything is derailed the third party contractor hire a crane that turns up by road.

A couple of years a go a derailed loco in the throat of Norwich Station took 3 days to get back on the track, only one platform was available until it was done.
Under British Rail the local breakdown train at Norwich Shed would have the loco re-railed in a couple of hours and repairs done or a spare loco put on.
Now it takes a day for the various 'stakeholders' to argue about who should pay before they even think of going to a sub contractors to come and look at it, then there will be arguing about who is responsible for what part of the job.

Last edited by Captain_Swoop; 2nd January 2018 at 09:44 AM.
Captain_Swoop is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 2nd January 2018, 09:38 AM   #26
3point14
Pi
 
3point14's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2005
Posts: 14,488
Originally Posted by Captain_Swoop View Post
British Railways were nationalised after the war because they were worn out by both enemy action and the demands put on them by the wartime economy. They were almost bankrupt.
Before the war the four big operating companies were in competition but cooperated over ticketing and connecting services. You could buy a ticket at any station for any other station in the UK.

When it was all re-privatised the system devised was intended to make it difficult to re-nationalise and to maximise profit for shareholders.
Track and infrastructure was given to one company that doesn't run trains. Actual services were leased to franchise holders on a bidding basis. These franchisees had to bid and pay for access to track and stations.
Because the franchises were of such short duration (only 5 years) they operating companies didn't own the rolling stock. It was all sold to leasing companies that just owned the stock, they didn't run trains.

So, the franchise holders have to pay for access to track and stations and pay to lease rolling stock.

Under the old private companies and British Rail the whole system was owned. If a loco failed a spare would turn out from a local depot. If points failed or there was a breakdown trains could be re-routed and the local depot would turn up to repair the problem.

Now if a loco fails the operating companies don't have spares so they just cancel services. If there is a points failure or blockage everything is held up until the sub contracted engineers turn up to fix it.
Breakdown trains were held in most depots, they had a crane and other lifting gear and track repair tools and materials.
There are no breakdown trains. If anything is derailed the third party contractor hire a crane that turns up by road.

A couple of years a go a derailed loco in the throat of Norwich Station took 3 days to get back on the track, only one platform was available until it was done.
Under British Rail the local breakdown train at Norwich Shed would have the loco re-railed in a couple of hours and repairs done or a spare loco put on.
Now it takes a day for the various 'stakeholders' to argue about who should pay.


sounds waaaay more efficient...
__________________
Up the River!
3point14 is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 2nd January 2018, 09:53 AM   #27
Trebuchet
Penultimate Amazing
 
Trebuchet's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2003
Location: The Great Northwet
Posts: 16,217
Ironically, all or nearly all railway passenger service in the USA is government owned. That's because private companies, starting in the 1960's, want nothing to do with it.
__________________
Cum catapultae proscribeantur tum soli proscripti catapultas habeant.
Trebuchet is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 2nd January 2018, 10:21 AM   #28
commandlinegamer
Philosopher
 
commandlinegamer's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2009
Location: Mazes of Menace
Posts: 8,658
If I understand correctly the most recent thinking is that instead of having one company managing infrastructure (Network Rail) and others running trains, in future each franchise area will be handed to one company which will have control over rolling stock and the track.

British Rail when publicly owned was criticized for being out-of-date and poorly managed. Others argue the biggest problem was underfunding.
__________________
He bade me take any rug in the house.
commandlinegamer is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 2nd January 2018, 10:25 AM   #29
3point14
Pi
 
3point14's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2005
Posts: 14,488
Originally Posted by commandlinegamer View Post
British Rail when publicly owned was criticized for being out-of-date and poorly managed. Others argue the biggest problem was underfunding.

Step 1 - under fund
Step 2 - Publicise poor performance - fail to mention under funding
Step 3 - Privatise
Step 4 - PROFIT - for shareholders - by far the vast majority of which are major financial institutions.
__________________
Up the River!
3point14 is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 2nd January 2018, 10:31 AM   #30
Beerina
Sarcastic Conqueror of Notions
 
Beerina's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2004
Posts: 29,166
Just admit these are boondoggles whose heartbeats are kept alive by government for nostalgic reasons and no politician wants to be the one in office when it fails.

Tell the truth: Not enough people want this going to keep it self-supporting. You, The People, want it for whatever reason is in your little hearts. So you will have to pay for it with extra taxes.

I have another story about taking a flight between European cities being significantly cheaper than a train ride -- my own experience.

When it's cheaper to fly than take the rail on long journeys, something is wrong. Or something is right, and old nostalgia dies hard.
__________________
"Great innovations should not be forced [by way of] slender majorities." - Thomas Jefferson

The government should nationalize it! Socialized, single-payer video game development and sales now! More, cheaper, better games, right? Right?

Last edited by Beerina; 2nd January 2018 at 10:32 AM.
Beerina is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 2nd January 2018, 10:36 AM   #31
3point14
Pi
 
3point14's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2005
Posts: 14,488
Originally Posted by Beerina View Post
So you will have to pay for it with extra taxes.
Seems reasonable.

Oh, sorry, was I meant to go all waily-waily at the thought of my taxes increasing to fund essential public services? Sorry to disappoint.
__________________
Up the River!
3point14 is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 2nd January 2018, 10:37 AM   #32
Captain_Swoop
Penultimate Amazing
 
Captain_Swoop's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2010
Posts: 15,402
Air and Road get big hidden subsidies from government while the railways are openly responsible for paying and maintaining their infrastructure (In the UK the railway is responsible for the cost of building and maintaining bridges carrying roads over the railway for example) Subsidy given to rail is obvious but the subsidy given to road transport in the form of government road building and maintenance isn't ever taken in to consideration.
Captain_Swoop is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 2nd January 2018, 11:08 AM   #33
ohms
Muse
 
ohms's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2005
Posts: 993
If you look at the level of subsidies compared to number of passengers then the UK is one of the lowest to subsidise their rail travel:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rail_subsidies#Europe

With wages rising lower than inflation there could be an argument for increasing the subsidies from central government. Won't happen under the Tories though.
__________________
Long time lurker
ohms is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 2nd January 2018, 11:48 AM   #34
Hubert Cumberdale
Graduate Poster
 
Join Date: Sep 2008
Posts: 1,044
Originally Posted by 3point14 View Post
Step 1 - under fund
Step 2 - Publicise poor performance - fail to mention under funding
Step 3 - Privatise
Step 4 - PROFIT - for shareholders - by far the vast majority of which are major financial institutions.
That's enough about the NHS, what about trains?
Hubert Cumberdale is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 2nd January 2018, 11:56 AM   #35
lobosrul5
Muse
 
lobosrul5's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2017
Posts: 579
Originally Posted by Trebuchet View Post
Ironically, all or nearly all railway passenger service in the USA is government owned. That's because private companies, starting in the 1960's, want nothing to do with it.
Probably because its nearly impossible to compete with roads (which are enormously subsidized) without your own huge subsidies (which are terrible examples of socialism). The only exceptions I know of are heritage type scenic view railways. For example: http://www.durangotrain.com/
lobosrul5 is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 2nd January 2018, 12:18 PM   #36
ddt
Mafia Penguin
 
ddt's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2007
Location: Netherlands
Posts: 18,560
Originally Posted by Beerina View Post
Tell the truth: Not enough people want this going to keep it self-supporting. You, The People, want it for whatever reason is in your little hearts. So you will have to pay for it with extra taxes.

I have another story about taking a flight between European cities being significantly cheaper than a train ride -- my own experience.
I can one-up that. When I flew to London Stansted a few years ago with Ryanair, the train ticket for Abellio's "Stansted Expresss" going into Central London was more expensive than the plane ticket.

Originally Posted by Beerina View Post
When it's cheaper to fly than take the rail on long journeys, something is wrong. Or something is right, and old nostalgia dies hard.
You're really comparing apples and oranges.

The main function of the rail network is not for very-long-distances like you sketch, but for commuters who travel up to 100 miles single way for their work. Those trains are chock full, at least over here, and air is simply no alternative as the nearest airport for both your departure and arrival cities is likely to even be the same. The main competitor for the rail network is the car, not the plane.

And in addition to what Captain_Swoop says about costs, there's an additional problem in the financial structure in the comparison between car and train. You already have a car, and already paid for the write-off and maintenance, insurance and vehicle tax; are you now going to spend the differential costs of extra car miles or the costs for a train ticket in which all railway costs are accounted?
__________________
Founder of the group "The Truth about Anjezë Gonxhe Bojaxhiu aka Mother Teresa"

"I think it is very beautiful for the poor to accept their lot, to share it with the passion of Christ. I think the world is being much helped by the suffering of the poor people." - "Saint" Teresa, the lying thieving Albanian dwarf
ddt is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 2nd January 2018, 12:22 PM   #37
Hubert Cumberdale
Graduate Poster
 
Join Date: Sep 2008
Posts: 1,044
Originally Posted by ohms View Post
If you look at the level of subsidies compared to number of passengers then the UK is one of the lowest to subsidise their rail travel:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rail_subsidies#Europe

With wages rising lower than inflation there could be an argument for increasing the subsidies from central government. Won't happen under the Tories though.
Thing is, Network Rail's debt is rising by around £5billion a year. That puts total public subsidies far closer to that of France than the politicians want it to appear.
Hubert Cumberdale is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 2nd January 2018, 12:22 PM   #38
ddt
Mafia Penguin
 
ddt's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2007
Location: Netherlands
Posts: 18,560
Originally Posted by 3point14 View Post
Seems reasonable.

Oh, sorry, was I meant to go all waily-waily at the thought of my taxes increasing to fund essential public services? Sorry to disappoint.


And yes, in addition to serving commuters, train (and bus and tram) have the essential function of providing everyone mobility.

I'm just waiting for Beerina to trot out another misguided comparison with video games.
__________________
Founder of the group "The Truth about Anjezë Gonxhe Bojaxhiu aka Mother Teresa"

"I think it is very beautiful for the poor to accept their lot, to share it with the passion of Christ. I think the world is being much helped by the suffering of the poor people." - "Saint" Teresa, the lying thieving Albanian dwarf
ddt is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 2nd January 2018, 12:32 PM   #39
ddt
Mafia Penguin
 
ddt's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2007
Location: Netherlands
Posts: 18,560
Originally Posted by Information Analyst View Post
Nope. There's something like one for tourists, but not the locals. Considering how much point-to-point fares can be on the day, if they offered one, it would be simply unaffordable.
It was a bit of a rhetorical question, I fully expected not, what with the fragmentation of the British rail network. And yes, to the last, see my example of how in the Netherlands you'd pay more for a season ticket for a specific route of 120 km than for an allround rail pass (or even for an allround public transport pass).

Originally Posted by Information Analyst View Post
When I worked full-time, I was paying £180 a month for a London Zones 1-4 Travelcard, which covered me for all Underground, Overground, National Rail travel within the Zones (outside meant a zone extension taken from pre-pay balance on the card), as well as all of the Croydon Tramlink, and buses throughout the capital. I think if I had a season ticket just for the National Rail element into Charing Cross from where we live, it would cost almost as much.
Ooph. Those are hefty prices. You really gotta wonder why British public transport prices are so much higher than, e.g., Dutch ones.
__________________
Founder of the group "The Truth about Anjezë Gonxhe Bojaxhiu aka Mother Teresa"

"I think it is very beautiful for the poor to accept their lot, to share it with the passion of Christ. I think the world is being much helped by the suffering of the poor people." - "Saint" Teresa, the lying thieving Albanian dwarf
ddt is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 2nd January 2018, 01:10 PM   #40
Information Analyst
Philosopher
 
Information Analyst's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2009
Location: London, UK.
Posts: 7,241
Originally Posted by ddt View Post
I can one-up that. When I flew to London Stansted a few years ago with Ryanair, the train ticket for Abellio's "Stansted Expresss" going into Central London was more expensive than the plane ticket.
All the [Airport] Express services are massively over-priced compared to regular rail/Underground services, some of which use the same track route.
Information Analyst is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Reply

International Skeptics Forum » General Topics » Social Issues & Current Events

Bookmarks

Thread Tools

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Forum Jump


All times are GMT -7. The time now is 05:56 PM.
Powered by vBulletin. Copyright ©2000 - 2018, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.
© 2014, TribeTech AB. All Rights Reserved.
This forum began as part of the James Randi Education Foundation (JREF). However, the forum now exists as
an independent entity with no affiliation with or endorsement by the JREF, including the section in reference to "JREF" topics.

Disclaimer: Messages posted in the Forum are solely the opinion of their authors.