Would you re-nationalise the energy companies?' poll discussion

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  • dell12
    dell12 Posts: 148
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    Interestingly we now pay more in subsidy to train operators to run the railways than we did to run British Rail in real terms.

    For me a nationalised energy company would provide not only lower prices (just look at the difference between wholesale and consumer prices) but also energy security and some proper investment in the infrastructure of the country.
  • National Grid spent £1 billion in the last year on capital expenditure.

    Just what criteria would a nationalised energy company use to decide what 'proper infrastructure' should be constructed? And who would decide - politicians, civil servants?

    Energy security? Don't make me laugh. Remember those CEGB (RIP) workers on strike, miners on strike, gas workers on strike. Doesn't sound like security to me, but making yourself a hostage.
  • mjh421
    mjh421 Posts: 28 Forumite
    Just think what the government could do with the profits these companies extort from an artificial market. I am personally sick of conmen and women calling on my phone or knocking on my door to sell me so called cheap gas and electricity, these people should find a real job and save us money to boot. Margret Thatcher promised these companies would provide better service and cheaper in both cases it has been a disaster. That goes for all her privatisations, Just look at the lottery you have to go through buying a rail ticket let alone getting a seat.
  • WhiteHorse
    WhiteHorse Posts: 2,492 Forumite
    Utilities like power, water and railways are vital national interests. They are far too important to be allowed to fall under foreign control or into the hands of greedy domestic speculators.

    All should be renationalised. Nationalisation doesn't have to mean (as it did for so long), massive waste and incompetence.
    "Never underestimate the mindless force of a government bureaucracy
    seeking to expand its power, dominion and budget"
    Jay Stanley, American Civil Liberties Union.
  • WhiteHorse
    WhiteHorse Posts: 2,492 Forumite
    mjh421 wrote: »
    Margret Thatcher promised these companies would provide better service and cheaper in both cases it has been a disaster.
    A disaster for the nation, certainly. Not a disaster for the vested interests behind it. Thatcher knew what she was doing, and was doing what she was told.
    "Never underestimate the mindless force of a government bureaucracy
    seeking to expand its power, dominion and budget"
    Jay Stanley, American Civil Liberties Union.
  • elbeie
    elbeie Posts: 3 Newbie
    edited 7 December 2010 at 2:41PM
    Rather like the debate about Cadbury's being taken over last year, this is a silly point to make. It matters not one jot whether these companies are UK owned. What matters is whether the money received from the foreign purchasers is employed to better purpose than previously. For example, take a company making £100m pa profit that is sold for £1,000m to a foreign buyer and that £1,000m is invested to make a return of £150m pa then the UK is better off by £50m pa.

    I know some posters will reply to the effect 'what about all the lost jobs?' but that too is to be sought after (with the caveat that it is government's responsibility to create an economy that creates new jobs). Ditching defunct jobs (coalmining, steelmaking, shipbuilding) and replacing them with higher value added jobs helps to fund a better NHS etc.

    Try telling that to the many skilled and experienced and workers who are now forced to work in supermarkets and call centres rather than use their skills and experience to benefit the UK economy. Are these the higher value added jobs referred to? 'Defunct jobs' is a smokescreen used by those who refuse to defend British industry and manufacturing whilst other countries steal an edge off us.

    Government needs to be about serving the people of this country. Representing and enacting the electorate's will rather than using smokescreens and illusions to act to the contrary. What a shame it's not, because judging by the poll so far, nationalisation is what people want despite many years of being offered idealogical smokescreens.
  • plumber2009
    plumber2009 Posts: 304 Forumite
    edited 7 December 2010 at 3:37AM
    Renationalise and use the profits to reduce defecit and fund the public purse.
    Renationalise Energy/Rail and BT.

    All profits would help fund public services in the longer term and create jobs rather than shareholders screwing british citizens in order to line their own pockets while the poor and eldery suffer.

    This country needs to stop selling its assets for a short gains. Buy it all back now as it will pay for itself in no time.
  • Eco_Miser
    Eco_Miser Posts: 4,707
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    My point is that the running costs of a government backed company are greater than the running costs and profit of a private enterprise.
    Why? What intrinsic mechanism automatically makes a government organisation more expensive than a private enterprise, such as a bank?
    Eco Miser
    Saving money for well over half a century
  • Eco_Miser
    Eco_Miser Posts: 4,707
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    Rather like the debate about Cadbury's being taken over last year, this is a silly point to make. It matters not one jot whether these companies are UK owned.
    Yes it does, not directly, but because the dividends go out the country. This is the mechanism by which in the 19th century Britain became rich, while India and Africa, despite having the raw materials which drove he industrial Revolution, remained poor. Now it's happening the other way.
    Eco Miser
    Saving money for well over half a century
  • Eco_Miser
    Eco_Miser Posts: 4,707
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    May I assume you are too young to remember the vastly higher tax rates of the 1960s and 1970s that were set in order to fund the atrociously inefficient state-run basket cases like steel, rail, coal and, yes, electricity?
    Back in the late 70s, British Steel was losing £1m a day; they also produced the cheapest steel. The losses came not from the production, but from servicing the debts, the money the government had lent them.
    Eco Miser
    Saving money for well over half a century
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