A headline item on The Today Programme was the hike in rates for 25% of businesses, which means many will go to the wall. Apparently business rates guarantee tax income of £24bn a year. The underfunding of social care also featured. Another big story this week was the air pollution plaguing our cities and contributing to 40,000 premature deaths a year in the UK alone. Of course no mention was made of the role of traffic control in poisoning road-user relationships, blocking flow, and mulitplying emissions by a factor of up to 29. No mention was made of the flaw at the heart of the system, which gives rise to the vexatious regulation that costs lives and costs the earth. As it hoovers up tens of billions in public money every year, the self-serving traffic control industry continues to escape scrutiny, and to preside over an annual peacetime casualty toll in the tens of thousands. The field is crying out for reform, and represents a goldmine for a fairer redistribution of public money.