Brits Winning the War Against the Car

Robert Farago
by Robert Farago
brits winning the war against the car

Of course, that's not the way the left-leaning Guardian newspaper's spinning news that their country's populace relies on cars for 80 percent of their journeys. (That's four fifths of all movements hither and yon.) As far as the papers' editors are concerned (and rest assured they are), the UK Department for Transport's annual national travel survey is bad news. Hence the second paragraphs' statement that a quarter of all UK car trips were less than two miles. And this back asswards analysis: "The proportion of households in Britain without access to a motor vehicle fell to 25% last year, from 30% 10 years previously – the lowest figure ever." Consumer affairs correspondent Rebecca Smithers trots-out the Paul Watters of the AA (Automobile Association) to finish her report with the appropriate chastisement: "UK citizens know the transport system lags behind those in Europe. The UK's congested network would do better with a dose of European medicine, showing how to run a truly joined-up transport system."

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  • Slow_Joe_Crow Slow_Joe_Crow on Aug 31, 2007

    TaxedAndConfused: It's actually worse, transport policy is made by people who get driven in limos, often with police escorts, so they are totally insulated from transport policy failures. As far as I know the only major politician in London who uses public transportation for anything other than photo ops is Ken Livingstone. Of course the pols in the US are no better, NY mayor Bloomberg's famous subway journeys begin and end with a convoy of armored Chevy Suburban SUVs.

  • TaxedAndConfused TaxedAndConfused on Aug 31, 2007

    bfg9k: I think its gone downhill since it was originally nationalised in the 50s. Slow_Joe_Crow: Funny you mention this, I was reminded earlier of my fave Margaret Thatcher story. Basically all the time she was "supreme being" she used to be whisked from place to place in a Jag XJ12. When she was removed/ deposed/ sacked and ended up being whisked without a police escort she was apparently shocked to realise just how bad traffic really was. And of course lets not forget current Conservative “cycling” leader (Call me) "Dave" Cameron who is follwed by a Jaguar when he cycles to Parliament. Blair's position on Global Warming ? "The debate is over, we have to act...". Er, no. I would like to have more of that debate please.

  • Hank Hank on Aug 31, 2007

    And yet coming from a US point of view, we could only hope for as good a public transportation/rail service as the UK.

  • Morbo Morbo on Aug 31, 2007

    Don't worry Hank, from what I've read the Brits are also waiting for a good public transportation/rail service in the UK.