As you may have heard, SouthEastern and the Department for Transport are considering innovative approaches to radically enhance your interchange opportunities.
I thought it might be worth going through their consultation document in a little more detail.
If you suspect SouthEastern trains and the DfT are off their collective rockers, there are three things you can do about it. Let’s have a look through that lovely PDF
Oh yes Chris, I couldn’t agree more. I’m all ears, even though you thought it was ok for gay people to be turned away from hotels, and you blocked Sadiq Khan’s attempts to take our trains away from disastrous SouthEastern and give them to TfL.
Yes. Trains are not new technology. Elon Musk can land a reusable rocket on a drone ship from space. Trains are Victorian. The reason they don’t work is idealogical. They work in Europe. They’re cheap in Europe. They’re (mostly) nationalised in Europe. Do you get me Chris?
In fact, SouthEastern is part of a massive transport company called Keolis part-owned by the French Government. Just let that sink in. Our leaders believe in market forces so strongly, that they think the best solution to out transport problems is to let a nationalised French railway company run them. In 2015, Keolis made 33 million Euros in profit, which they gave to their shareholders (70% of whom are the French government). Not reinvested into our infrastructure, or some such bollocks. Go-Ahead Group is the other part owner, and they made £157m in profit, up 16%. So the French can run a profitable nationalised railway company, but we can’t, because Chris Grayling says so, and my ticket costs £1548 a year.
This is a great idea. Thanks to Oyster, SouthEastern and DfT know precisely where and when we get in and out of the transport network. And do they use this data to automatically reimburse us when they’re outside their terms of service? Not on your nelly. But, have no fear, Chris is to the rescue! He has an innovative plan!
Instead of being allowed to fill out a form when your train is 30 minutes late and pop it in a post box, he has a truly 21st century solution! He’s going to let you fill out a form when your train is 15 minutes late… Maybe…
Oh, thank God – that’s what we’ve all been crying out for! We don’t need cheaper tickets, no no, we want Wi-Fi! You see, commuters don’t have mobile phones with data plans… What we really want is to give the train companies another excuse to “reinvest our money” into another pointless scheme. Crappy non-working wifi for everyone! And stop calling it a fleet. Fleets are elegant, and move in formation. Your trains don’t.
Oh Chris… Is it complex to run your little trains? Do you want to give us simpler opportunities? My work is tricky too. Maybe I’ll make it simpler and still get paid the same… That sounds lovely. Or maybe, you know, just figure out how to get your shit together… You’ve had since the 19th century to figure it out.
Hang on, haven’t you been messing with our journeys into London Bridge for the last TWO YEARS to solve precisely this problem?
Please make sure you go and have your say on his proposals.