Archive for the Published Category

Taxing Issue

Posted in Accrington Observer, Letters to Newspapers, Policies, Politics, Published with tags , , , , , , , , , , , on February 7, 2010 by wagstaffe

Greg Pope, like most other politicians have lost the plot, they just don’t get it do they?  The whole point of a tax system is to collect a fair contribution from those of us who can afford, to pay for the services that everyone benefits from, a communal pot. So when those who have the task of allocating said pot, the politicians, are all helping themselves to it, the expenses debacle, you can understand why no one wants  to contribute any more than they have to. If we had people at the helm whom we had confidence in to do the right thing then I wouldn’t mind contributing more. I’d imagine that your average worker would be happy to be earning the kind of money the higher band fall into.

The MP’s expenses and the Iraq enquiry have been a convenient smokescreen hiding the fact that a lot of us have just worked the month of January, and will continue to do so, for the next ten years for nothing. That is if anyone has managed to grapple with the figures for the Bank bailouts.

I have a couple of predictions for the future myself. More pensioners will fall into fuel poverty as a result of the energy companies holding us to ransom. More cost cutting at Hospitals to pay for the leases (PFI’s). More school playing fields lost to developments (BSF’s). More Ministers walking into Boards or paid consultancies as a result of favourable decision making whilst in Parliament. More toothless nodding ned, sycophantic cronies making up Cabinets.

Parking Tickets, It’s a Tax in all but name

Posted in Lancashire Evening Telegraph, Letters to Newspapers, Published on January 13, 2010 by wagstaffe

The parking tickets (“Where were we meant to park ?”; LT, Jan 6) are part and parcel of the regressive tax system  we have in this country. It’s a welcome cash cow as far as the Council are concerned. Unfortunately those victims will witness at first hand the perverse relationship between the effort of issuing a PCN to that of winning an appeal. Some folk will give up on the process. It’s a pity the Council’s don’t factor well being into their policies. Happy days.


Posted in Letters to Newspapers, Published on September 21, 2009 by wagstaffe
Adding to the comments made by Billy the Bus, the Tories made the point about “why should people who don’t use the bus service subsidise those that do”. I would prefer to go the extra mile and provide free public transport for everyone, after all we provide a lot of subsidiesw anyway. It would reduce the carbon footprint, take more traffic off the roads, less accidents leading to a cleaner safer environment. The reason none of the main parties have this idea on their agenda right now, despite the inevitable gridlock, are the interested parties who make money out of the current situation. Government makes billions in fuel tax. Councils make millions in parking charges and fines. Oil companies and car manufacturers prefer a car dependent economy. Supermarkets want you to travel out of town and bus and train operators make their money out of the inefficiency of our transport agenda.

Bus Lane

Posted in Letters to Newspapers, Published with tags on June 5, 2009 by wagstaffe

I wasn’t aware that the County Council employed someone to look at the future of Public Transport. I can tell them, for nothing, that in a few years time there will be total gridlock. Bus lanes and congestion charges are just futile ideas to put off the inevitable gridlock.

Depending on whose figures you look at, every adult in the country will owe £32,000 each in bailing out the banks in the next couple of years, more money than any previous Governments put together, get the picture, a lot of money. Oh, I forgot to mention, there will be nothing, absolutely nothing to show for all the money we are borrowing. So, I propose that we borrow a little bit more and provide a world class transport system free to everyone, after all we’re not to a few more billion. Hard economics will get people out of 2nd cars, reduce congestion and, more importantly, our carbon footprints. You only need to go on some of the private bus company websites to see them spouting about the effect of using buses to reduce our carbon footprints. At least we could show something for our money.

You can understand why “free public transport” isn’t on any of the major political parties agendas when you think of who does benefit from this poorly planned transport system of ours.

The Government take billions in fuel tax, local councils charge for parking and make additional money from parking enforcements. Police make money from speed cameras, car manufacturers want to sell more cars and the Supermarkets want you to drive out of town to shop. So sod the planet and the people, there’s money to be made from a poorly planned infrastructure.

Buses & Banks have same values

Posted in Letters to Newspapers, Published with tags on June 5, 2009 by wagstaffe

The Bus Companies and the Bankers have got the same values as the rest of us, the only difference is they don’t need to do the lottery.

The buses run as a business for profit. Bankers run banks for profit. They are both run successfully, for themselves, and has very little to do with it working well for the rest of us. Its called Capitalism.

There are three types of bus route, profitable, break even and subsidized. They all fall over themselves for the profitable ones, they get paid by the taxpayers for the subsidized ones and who wants to run a route for nothing (break even routes).

It would make better sense to provide free public transport but oil, car and bus companies would have a lot to say about that.  Stagecoach owner Brian Souter made a £500,000 donation to the SDP two years ago and yes you guessed it, they dropped a manifesto pledge to reform the transport network.

Our Transport system in this country is fragmented and piecemeal not what you would expect in the 21st Century more 19th Century.

As for the bankers, well if you were offered a job that ensured you won the lottery several times a year, would you turn it down ?

Gt. Harwood Town Council

Posted in Letters to Newspapers, Published with tags on June 5, 2009 by wagstaffe

Voter apathy does not equate to “people seem very happy with services provided” ( Leaders Viewpoint, 30/1/09), regarding the low turnout for the Gt. Harwood Town Council idea. You’ll never get 100% participation, so you have to go off the number of people who were interested for or against the idea. Although it was a narrow margin, according to the figures, the majority voted for a Town Council.   The idea of getting people who win a popularity contest in a ward to run things sounds ridiculous, but its true. We’d be better off with a raffle

Blackburn Royal Infirmary

Posted in Letters to Newspapers, Published with tags on June 4, 2009 by wagstaffe

Having admitted that our new Super Hospital is “stuffed to the gills” one can only hope that their predicted drop in local population during the lifetime of the hospital is correct. Personally, of the two options on the table, I’d have gone for the super-duper one.

published in LET nov 08