Today and Ed – joint shame?

The Today Programme’s big interview this morning was Ed Miliband. So now we know what Labour would do about the deficit. Or do we? All I gleaned was that Ed would spread cuts over four years, “and go out and ask the people what they think”. Brilliant! Evan Davis hopped about like a goblin (do Today presenters get bonuses for interruptions?), accusing Ed of a willingness to fall behind on deficit targets by £40bn a year, and claiming that therefore there is no alternative to painful spending cuts. A dozen times over the last two years, I have emailed Today editors telling them that in traffic system reform there is scope for beneficial cuts of tens of billions a year. I’ve written about it in Economic Affairs, and here (politically I’m unaffiliated by the way). In researching an updated piece for a Sunday paper, I’ve had annual savings of £40bn certified by an accountant as a realistic figure for kind cuts from traffic system reform, assuming you agree that equality is a better basis for road-user interaction than priority (with its expensive network of defensive-aggressive and ultimately futile controls). The figures are broad brush, because the cost of traffic management and control, as a DfT spokesman told me, “is as long as a piece of string”, and, as a senior traffic economist and engineer warned, the field is virtually impossible to unravel. But the point is that the mainstay of independent, investigative journalism, the BBC, is swallowing ill-informed government PR and neglecting outside voices bringing insights of major import.

About Martin Cassini

Campaign founder and video producer, pursuing traffic system reform to make roads safe, civilised and efficient
This entry was posted in Uncategorized and tagged , , , . Bookmark the permalink.