Waves of destruction

It was Schumpeter who said capitalism was characterised by waves of creative destruction. The constant search for improvement throws out the old and welcomes the new.

In the last century out went the businesses shoeing horses, and supplying coaches and carts for the horse drawn age. In came the petrol car and van, and the garages and filling stations they needed. The transition happened rapidly, as people found the new vehicles more convenient, easier to keep and faster.Farriers and carriage makers had to retrain and change jobs.Mews properties were adapted to new use.

Today we have a new phenomenon. We have governments launching a huge wave of capital and job destruction. The Green revolution aims to remove the entire oil and gas industry, transform the electricity generation industry, and force change in the way we travel and power our homes and workplaces.

The extent of the planned closures and write offs is large . The mighty oil and gas companies of the last century have to plan the demise of their own main assets. The car companies have to close down all their diesel and petrol making capacity and replace it with very different production lines making very different vehicles, centred around the entirely new technology for them of a large floorplate battery. The home heating industry has to completely change its product range, weaning people off oil and gas boilers.

Governments who favour these changes argue that there will be lots of new green jobs. It is true it will take people to make electric cars and environmentally friendly heating systems. It requires new jobs to build windfarms and put in hydro power. The worry is the pace of this, and meanwhile how difficult will be the transition with massive job losses in the products and services the state wishes to close down.

At the moment there are many more people put off buying a new diesel or petrol car than there are people wanting to buy new electric vehicles. There are more people pausing over replacing their domestic heating system than there are people ripping out the old and spending on the new. The anti Covid Policy inspired recession adds to the dislocation and slashes spending power just when governments want people to buy new heating and transport.

Governments did not need to offer subsidy and incentives to get people to buy the motor car or the smartphone. People wanted them. industry improved designs, generated economies of scale and cut prices until more or most could afford the products. This top down revolution is different. Government has demanded the electric car. It has to subsidise it and wait for industry to improve it so more people will willingly buy it. People want better performance on range, recharge times and battery life, and much lower prices.

People are happy with their gas boilers and will run them until they break down, unless the government forces them to change. One intervention in a market leads to another and another. The danger is this will all prove very expensive for the public purse and will entail substantial direction and intervention in people’s lives to get it done. Too much government intervention will mean lower incomes and living standards as well as less freedom.

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  1. Ian Wilson
    Posted August 3, 2020 at 4:45 am | Permalink

    “Government has demanded the electric car”. Precisely. It is doing so based on two fallacies.

    Firstly that CO2 supposedly drives climate change. Common sense says that it cannot make a significant effect when for much of Earth’s history CO2 levels were many times higher yet there was no runaway warming, indeed there were ice ages. Quite obviously most climate change is natural and indeed the modest rise in CO2 is helping feed the world.
    Secondly electric cars are anything but ‘green’. I, for one, won’t buy one until we can mine battery minerals without sending children as young as 7 down mines working in dreadful conditions. Why are ministers turning a blind eye to the reality behind electric cars?

    • oldtimer
      Posted August 3, 2020 at 6:41 am | Permalink

      Agreed. The UK was described by Quentin Hogg as “an elective dictatorship”. It should also be described as a “destructive dictatorship.” For that is what it is, driven by activists who have mastered propaganda arts and deceptions. Both the main parties and many national institutions have been captured by them. National decline is inescapable while they control the levers of power and compulsion.

    • Martin in Cardiff
      Posted August 3, 2020 at 7:07 am | Permalink

      “Government” is not some spontaneous natural phenomenon, with its own inexorable laws.

      It is a product of the thoughts of the people who comprise it.

      John’s party of government has a majority of eighty, it is near-indefeasible in the Commons.

      It is its job to balance the extent of necessary progress and its rate against any disruption and damage caused by this.

      John seem to me to be pretty certain that it is incapable of doing this.

      • NickC
        Posted August 3, 2020 at 6:30 pm | Permalink

        Martin, Whatever the voting system it is a fact that governments in a democracy are coalitions (by one party, or by multiple parties). That limits how single minded a government can be.

        So it is not a case of the Boris government being “incapable” – not having monolithic and unfettered power over everything in the country is perfectly normal in our rule of law democracy where MPs have differing views.

        • Martin in Cardiff
          Posted August 3, 2020 at 7:35 pm | Permalink

          But you demand that any MP – who has a differing view from your fanatical, puritanical one over brexit – be expelled from the party. In fact, from Parliament altogether if you could.

          Don’t you?

          Johnson/Cummings went a long way to accommodate you too.

          • Edward2
            Posted August 3, 2020 at 8:39 pm | Permalink

            As did the voters.

          • Mike Wilson
            Posted August 3, 2020 at 10:43 pm | Permalink

            A referendum is the closest thing to democracy we have. It is far more democratic than our truly useless first past the post democracy. An MP who seems to overturn the result of a referendum has no place in a democracy.

          • NickC
            Posted August 4, 2020 at 10:06 am | Permalink

            Martin, Leave is neither fanatical nor puritanical. It was what was offered as an alternative to Remain in the Referendum. We were promised by both campaigns that Leave meant fully leaving the EU, its laws, its policies and its courts. All I insist upon is honesty.

          • Martin in Cardiff
            Posted August 4, 2020 at 7:43 pm | Permalink

            No, many Leave voters were perfectly reasonable people.

            However, people such as you claim that they were all as fixated, and wanted exactly the same things as you do.

            They were sold Single Market membership by Hannan etc. Many voted for that, it is reasonable to assume.

          • Edward2
            Posted August 5, 2020 at 9:03 am | Permalink

            I bet only one in a few thousand had heard of Hannan.
            Whereas Cameron gave several speeches on prime time TV and radio heard by many millions telling us what Leaving meant.

          • Ed M
            Posted August 5, 2020 at 5:50 pm | Permalink


            Please move on.

            I support Brexit in theory because I believe in patriotism (as opposed to nationalism) and the Sovereignty of one’s country (which does NOT mean sticking your nose down at other countries).

            I didn’t support the way Brexit was conducted (and Remainers got many things wrong too). But Brexiters won.

            Let’s move on. It’s already taken a lot out of the country and we need to move on and tackle other big issues.

          • Ed M
            Posted August 5, 2020 at 5:53 pm | Permalink

            Also, whilst implementing Sovereignty, we still need to keep close relations with Europe in particular over the economy, culture and security but we don’t have to be wedded to them in a political or economic union to achieve that.

      • Lynn Atkinson
        Posted August 3, 2020 at 8:50 pm | Permalink

        The Government is constrained by the Constitution!

        • hefner
          Posted August 4, 2020 at 7:28 am | Permalink

          Please tell me, where can I read ‘the Constitution’ of the UK? I’d love to read for the UK the equivalent of the seven Articles and 27 Amendments of the US one available to anyone on multiple websites.

          If the English Parliament was in the past the ‘mother of democracy’, it has lost this title a long time ago, probably in the eighteen century.

          With FPTP, each of the main parties, Cons & Labs, usually includes a hotchpotch of MPs with various ideas on different topics with the result that some of the backbenchers with what one could qualify as ‘relatively clear ideas‘ are unlikely to be consulted by the Government of the day issued supposedly from the same party.
          Then the public has to witness the emergence of coteries like the ERG or that of the recently 100 OneNation MPs. Are they all pulling in the same direction? We recently learned that Ministers will not be able to choose their own SpAds (where is such a thing written in the ‘Constitution‘?) but will have to do with whoever will be chosen by the unelected PM’s advisor.

          The UK is not even a banana republic, certainly not a ‘res publica’ and without banana growing, at least for the next few years.

          And here for a laugh, we have the usual ‘ravis de la creche’ telling us ‘The Government is constrained by the Constitution’.

          Reply The Constitution is written in various Statutes and the Standing Orders of the Commons.

          • hefner
            Posted August 5, 2020 at 10:47 am | Permalink

            The best introduction to the UK Constitution is, for me at least, the long article in wikipedia

            From there, with a bit of patience, and looking at imbedded links, one can find most of the answers to questions, in particular something that was important when the red tops were shouting ‘Enemies of the people’, ‘Saboteurs’, … It was indeed the Supreme Court’s prerogative to look at and give its opinion on various questions put forward by members of the public, Gina Miller in particular.

            That Parliament, specially voted in via FPTP, can change articles of the Constitution following a simple vote is mind-boggling.

        • Martin in Cardiff
          Posted August 4, 2020 at 7:46 pm | Permalink

          Yes, “Parliament alone is the law”. So if it votes against the Government then it is defeated. However, with a majority of eighty, and with many eager-to-please new faces, that is highly unlikely.

          And referendums can only ever be advisory.

          But you have a de facto elected dictatorship.

    • Anonymous
      Posted August 3, 2020 at 7:41 am | Permalink

      One wouldn’t mind had the Tory “On yer bike” instruction not been heeded so well by the working population.

      We did better than that. We adapted to job opportunities and property ownership by buying our own houses and taking on the liabilities of owning cars in order to be independent and able to pay taxes.

      Now an 80 seat majority Tory party does this to us.

    • Lifelogic
      Posted August 3, 2020 at 8:34 am | Permalink

      +1 – the other total delusion they have is that you can predict the climate for 100 years if you have shiny expensive computers and a few deluded boffins. They do not even know the sunspot activity for 100 years or volcanic activity, or genetic evolutions, meteor impacts or the population levels or any technology advances for this period such as fusion energy or from genetic engineering advances.

      • NigelE
        Posted August 3, 2020 at 4:18 pm | Permalink


        An additional delusion is that the UK’s move to EVs and ‘green’ energy generation will have an effect on the world’s climate. If I were able to wave a magic wand and achieve zero CO2 emissions for the UK tomorrow, by about the end of the month, increased emisions from India & China (to name but two) will have offset the UK’s savings.

        And it infuriates me that Germany and Poland continue to burn (poor quality) coal for power generation while we leave considerable reservers of much better quality coal in the ground and have to pay for expensive green electricity.

      • Lifelogic
        Posted August 3, 2020 at 5:37 pm | Permalink

        Yes another error is the idea that renewables, electric cars, bikes and the likes even make any significant difference even to C02 – let alone the future weather.

      • NickC
        Posted August 3, 2020 at 6:40 pm | Permalink

        Lifelogic, Indeed it is most strange. The less the CAGW proponents know the more adamant are they that we’re all going to fry.

        We don’t believe the government policy of battery cars – because the government is not building the fuel stations (electricity generation plant) for them. Neither do we believe the climate catastrophists – because they’re not buying real estate in the Antarctic.

    • A.Sedgwick
      Posted August 3, 2020 at 9:33 am | Permalink

      Agreed, hypocrisy abounds and the Victorian practice of young children working in danger should be condemned strongly and widely but for some reason it is not. Current battery vehicles are a joke, not the planet’s saviour.

    • Fedupsoutherner
      Posted August 3, 2020 at 12:38 pm | Permalink

      +1. It’s disgusting that the plight of some children isn’t being recognised in what is supposed to be a forward thinking country who can’t stop bleating about human rights. I despair at this virtue signalling government which is ignoring the economic damage being inflicted on our country.

    • M Davis
      Posted August 3, 2020 at 5:31 pm | Permalink

      I agree with every one of these comments on this thread.

    • dixie
      Posted August 4, 2020 at 6:08 am | Permalink

      So have you stopped using your laptop and mobile phone, electric shaver, toothbrush or MP3 player and the rest which rely on NMC batteries?

      EVs do require larger Lithium batteries, are more exposed to the economics of constricted resources. Consequently they are driving the Cathode R&D to remove Cobalt from the process – so you will eventually be able to use your laptop, phone and the rest guilt-free.

  2. Mark B
    Posted August 3, 2020 at 5:11 am | Permalink

    Good morning

    You had me there for a moment, Sir John. I thought you’d gone over to the dark side.

    What we are witnessing is the West own Great Leap Forward. Only it isn’t so much forward, as back, into the dark and off the edge.

    For every winner there is one loser. Those who can see and make use of the opportunities ahead will be the former. But what of the latter ? Will government, as seems to be the case, be picking those winning pockets to keep the loser voting base ?

    The thing here with these so called green technologies is that they are mostly on the hands of large corporates with the market dictated by them. So it will be very hard, especially given this governments appalling attitude to SME’s, do a new company to grow and compete. And competition is vital ! Because it is that that creates growth, jobs and reduces poverty.

    Someone needs to remind those in government that the Berlin Wall fell decades ago and with it Communism.

    • Martin in Cardiff
      Posted August 3, 2020 at 7:12 am | Permalink

      A particular system of governance collapsed with the Berlin Wall, not any ideology, any more than imperialism collapsed with the fall of the British Empire.

      Would-be authoritarians are always around, trying to gain power.

      Those in the UK are helped enormously by its exit from the European Union, unfortunately.

      • Mike Wilson
        Posted August 3, 2020 at 10:01 am | Permalink

        And he is serious, folks. The EU is the biggest power grab in history, but it protects us from ourselves, apparently!

        • Martin in Cardiff
          Posted August 3, 2020 at 3:48 pm | Permalink

          It is anti-authoritarian.

          Hence Poland and Hungary are at risk of expulsion.

          The European Union could never have imposed lockdowns in any of its member countries. Only the nations can do that, and it shows where the real power is.

          The European Union’s institutions are dependent upon the sovereign nations for their existence, not vice-versa.

          • M Davis
            Posted August 3, 2020 at 5:34 pm | Permalink

            It is very authoritarian!

          • NickC
            Posted August 3, 2020 at 6:48 pm | Permalink

            Martin, Hahaha you’ve just confirmed what Mike W said.

      • Fred H
        Posted August 3, 2020 at 10:54 am | Permalink

        the British Empire didn’t fall – – we let countries take over government when they appeared to be able ! Few made a decent attempt to self-govern. Dictators had a field-day – remaining true today.

        • Martin in Cardiff
          Posted August 3, 2020 at 3:52 pm | Permalink

          “Let them” – by inflicting unspeakable torture and mutilation on their rebels, as in Kenya. Oh yes.

          Take off those silly rose-tinted spectacles Fred.

          • NickC
            Posted August 3, 2020 at 6:52 pm | Permalink

            Martin, The British army fought the terrorists in Kenya, just as it fought the terrorists in Malaysia. When the terrorists were defeated, the countries were handed back to the natives under the principle of self-determination. A principle which, by the way, must also apply to the UK and its constituent nations (otherwise it isn’t a principle).

          • Fred H
            Posted August 3, 2020 at 7:07 pm | Permalink

            Big Empire, big Commonwealth. So- Kenya. Any more revelations or is that it?

          • Lynn Atkinson
            Posted August 3, 2020 at 8:52 pm | Permalink

            Yes we stopped a Genocide in Kenya. You oppose that?

      • Narrow Shoulders
        Posted August 3, 2020 at 12:07 pm | Permalink

        The authoritarians are all on the left Martin. This government is not a right wing free market government and we are still in the left leaning EU.

        • Martin in Cardiff
          Posted August 3, 2020 at 3:54 pm | Permalink

          Spiders are mammals, Paris is the capital of Zimbabwe, a rake is used for smoothing cement…any other pearls of wisdom, NS?

          • Narrow Shoulders
            Posted August 4, 2020 at 2:32 pm | Permalink

            Tomatoes are fruit

      • Martin in Cardiff
        Posted August 3, 2020 at 3:57 pm | Permalink

        The people who have the most authority and influence over ordinary lives are employers, landlords, and lenders.

        Democratic Government has minor impact by comparison, whether national or internationally-shared.

        • NickC
          Posted August 3, 2020 at 7:07 pm | Permalink

          Martin, Since governments impose the laws that all of us (individuals, employers, landlords, and lenders) must obey, and the government is present in everyday life, and the government spends about 50% UK GDP, it is the government which has the most power and the most impact. Far more than any one landlord, employer, etc.

    • Everhopeful
      Posted August 3, 2020 at 9:21 am | Permalink

      Unfortunately I believe that the fall of the wall allowed communism to spread!

      • UKQanon
        Posted August 3, 2020 at 1:51 pm | Permalink

        Spot on

  3. DOM
    Posted August 3, 2020 at 5:29 am | Permalink

    Small State, market choice and freedom of the individual free from political State interference were the defining attributes of our last great PM, MT. Today, both parties and the political State they have built and now protect and expand reject MT’s vision and have embraced State control, State compulsion and social engineering using Marxism as its philosophical foundations

    Any issue irrespective of its importance is used to driven change through politics into our lives.

    The UK has become a vile, politicised, oppressive and neutered place driven by sinister politicians, extremist activists, a …….. State broadcaster and a State taken over in 1997 to dictate the lives from top to bottom of a % of the British population

    There are many backbench MPs on all sides who sit in silence and watch the economic, cultural and moral destruction of our nation. They are elected to do good. They are failing us.

    Some may overlook the fact that we’ve had a Tory govt since 2010 and the pace of top down compulsion has accelerated as your party bend over backwards to neuter the activist left, Labour and their client state.

    No doubt there’s capitulation to the Globalist forces such as the UN, UNESCO, Etc ed and many other sinister, unaccountable entities that are affecting our lives.

    The fall of Thatcher marked a terrible turning point for the UK. It has brought us to this point today and I predict things will become much more oppressive as we move forward unless people stop voting Tory, Labour, LD and SNP.

    • Lifelogic
      Posted August 3, 2020 at 5:48 am | Permalink

      We have esentially had socialist in charge for years certainly since the end of the war in 1945. Thatcher tried to row back a little but even she did little about the rather dire state monopolies in schools and healthcare or to roll back the state to a sensible size of the economy (under 20%). She even appointed the fool John Major as chancellor who idiotically took us into the ERM and would have taken us into the EURO (in yet another insance plan driven by state sector group think idiots).

      • Hope
        Posted August 3, 2020 at 8:33 am | Permalink

        I can’t think of a govt that has made such a mess of everything in such a short period of time. Wrong with every decision, from economy, EU, immigration education, health, local authorities, police, courts, prisons Chinese virus and other public services.

        What is disappointing JR and other colleagues allows it to happen. Ten years waiting for change or promises to be fulfilled. Nothing absolutely nothing.

        Those who failed the nation ie Hammond, Clarke and May get rewarded! Johnson is such a coward. What is he going to do when asked difficult questions run into another fridge or not turn up to be interviewed?

        The Govt. was warned that the ECB and Stability mechanism was contained in the WA, losing cash assets but remaining liable for loans and it still signed it. Shock and horrors the UK is on the hook for 12% the EU loans emanating from Chinese virus, about 180 billion Euros!

        • Fred H
          Posted August 3, 2020 at 2:38 pm | Permalink

          Hope — I think most people have lost it.

          Abandon all hope ye that enter here. (Dante).
          Using Martin’s favourite word – its indefeasible that Boris can be moved out of the seat, and have good sense return.

        • Lynn Atkinson
          Posted August 3, 2020 at 3:30 pm | Permalink

          JR and a few colleagues are powerless.

          • Hope
            Posted August 4, 2020 at 8:12 am | Permalink

            If they have been powerless for ten years, then perhaps they should not put themselves up for election or keep the govts propaganda going.

    • JoolsB
      Posted August 3, 2020 at 5:59 am | Permalink


    • Ian @Barkham
      Posted August 3, 2020 at 6:00 am | Permalink

      +1 So true in every sense

    • oldtimer
      Posted August 3, 2020 at 6:35 am | Permalink

      Well said.

    • Christine
      Posted August 3, 2020 at 7:45 am | Permalink

      Well said but how do we change things? The FPTP voting system only gives us the choice of the same dire parties who all have the same agenda. We need a new party to emerge like the Brexit Party which was so successful at the European elections. Unfortunately the fear of a Labour Government stopped them breaking through.

    • BOF
      Posted August 3, 2020 at 8:37 am | Permalink

      DOM, I agree. We now live in a virtual dictatorship where ministerial pronouncement becomes law, after being dictated by ‘the experts’. Democracy? I don’t think so.

    • Mike Wilson
      Posted August 3, 2020 at 10:10 am | Permalink

      I wonder how many people you think hold similar views to you. I would guess – less than 5%.

      I don’t vote for any of the parties you mention. I vote Green. I hope that absolves me.

      • UKQanon
        Posted August 3, 2020 at 1:58 pm | Permalink

        I used to live in Brighton in the area that total idiot Carolyn Lucas (Green party) represents???? There again, Brighton overall is a lost cause now.

      • Lynn Atkinson
        Posted August 3, 2020 at 3:32 pm | Permalink

        Certainly DOES NOT ABSOLVE YOU! You actually voted for the policies foisted on us by the eccentric Boris!

      • NickC
        Posted August 3, 2020 at 7:24 pm | Permalink

        Mike W, The Green candidate round here said that Green policy was no one need work unless we wanted “bright shiny things” because a Green government would provide all housing, food, and a dole, for each person. Crazy, or what?

        Then the Greens go in for each new “green technology” fad, including banning Nuclear, bio-fuels, and promoting diesel cars, all of which have failed; and Windmills, Solar, and battery cars, all of which are failing.

        You seem like a nice guy; and I even agree with you on some things. But frankly some of the people in your party are fascists without the trains running on time (or at all).

        • Mike Wilson
          Posted August 3, 2020 at 9:35 pm | Permalink

          It’s not my party. I vote Green to keep environmental matters on the agenda. I realise many of their policies are barking but there is no chance of them winning power. On the other hand you vote for a party that has us 2 trillion in debt and is spraying borrowed money around like a drunken sailor. Which is more nuts? Tories who borrow and spend and think 300,000 extra people a year is okay or the Green Party?

          • NickC
            Posted August 4, 2020 at 10:14 am | Permalink

            Mike W, Yes I have occasionally voted Tory, but not exclusively – I have also voted for four other parties. I agree that all the parties are nuts in one way or another.

    • Martin in Cardiff
      Posted August 3, 2020 at 1:05 pm | Permalink

      You write of “state interference” as if it were the most oppressive force acting against the ordinary man or woman.

      It most definitely is not in most democracies. The entities with grinding, day-to-day, oppressive power over them are the Unholy Trinity of Employer, Landlord, and Lender.

      Yet you choose to distract them if you can, with the midge-bites, inflicted by the democratically-elected Parliament, such as the smoking ban inside pubs, 20mph speed limits, and so on.

      What they really need are laws with real teeth, to protect them from unreasonable predations by the former.

      You’ll never get those with right-wing governance, however.

      • Edward2
        Posted August 3, 2020 at 5:45 pm | Permalink

        If you replace the landlords, the employers and the lenders with just the State, you end up with systems which enslave, impoverish, starve and in the end kill their own people.
        100 million dead caused by socialism in the 20th century.

        • Martin in Cardiff
          Posted August 3, 2020 at 7:38 pm | Permalink

          Who was proposing that, Ed?

          • Edward2
            Posted August 3, 2020 at 8:41 pm | Permalink

            You by implication of your post above.

            Either you want freedom of the individual under a democracy or you move down your path towards State control and socialism.
            I just explained where that path ends up.

          • Lynn Atkinson
            Posted August 3, 2020 at 8:58 pm | Permalink


          • Martin in Cardiff
            Posted August 4, 2020 at 7:49 pm | Permalink

            Quote me.

      • NickC
        Posted August 3, 2020 at 7:28 pm | Permalink

        Martin, Totally fatuous. None of your “Unholy Trinity” are monopolies. The government is. And the government is vastly bigger than any of them. And the government gets to write all the laws too.

  4. Mick
    Posted August 3, 2020 at 5:39 am | Permalink

    The only Waves of destruction is what is happening in our waters around the U.K.
    This needs sorting NOW , your party is in charge with a whopping borrowed majority, what are you waiting for you are very silent Mr Redwood this cannot continue you are as a mouth piece of the people to shout from the rafters about this silent invasion by these economic illegal migrants , what are you waiting for some sort of incident to happen by one of these illegals before you say something, you are being has silent as the MSM on this issue , get it sorted NOW

    Reply I have regularly called for a clamp down on people trafficking

    • matthu
      Posted August 3, 2020 at 6:07 am | Permalink

      How is this trafficking when people appear to arrive voluntarily and under government escort before housed in 4-star hotels? I see no sign of coercion here.

    • Fred H
      Posted August 3, 2020 at 7:27 am | Permalink

      reply to reply – But have you called loudly enough for your favoured government to urgently review the direction of travel, which is to lose the voters who were told it was the best option.?

    • Anonymous
      Posted August 3, 2020 at 7:34 am | Permalink

      Including borrowed Brexit Party votes from all over the nation.

      We did not give the Conservatives an 80 seat majority for them to behave as they are.

      • Martin in Cardiff
        Posted August 3, 2020 at 1:10 pm | Permalink

        Maybe the far bigger slice of the pie chart of Tory voters thinks that they did?

        Maybe the Tories would pick up some Labour votes, to replace yours and more, if they did the right things too?

        • Edward2
          Posted August 3, 2020 at 5:47 pm | Permalink

          Labour party supporters continue to say they hate Tories and Brexit party supporters.
          It is very unlikely they would vote for the party that hates them.

    • Alan Jutson
      Posted August 3, 2020 at 7:58 am | Permalink

      Reply – Reply

      Aware you have called for a clamp down John, but us plebs out here see absolutely no sign of any effort being made to stop it at all, other than perhaps paying the French to help, which does not seem to be working well does it !
      No news on what is happening to those who are intercepted, or of any people being returned, nothing, absolutely nothing, so is it any surprise that we draw the conclusion that absolutely nothing is being done, other than more and more hotels being rented to house these people, who can still roam the Country at will.

      For goodness sake, if the Government is doing something then produce the figures to back up that claim.

      From some (unconfirmed) reports, we now have something like 48,000 people waiting for any sort of decision, at a cost of £4 billion, this is complete and utter madness and incompetence.

      What are the real figures and cost ?

    • Iain Moore
      Posted August 3, 2020 at 8:18 am | Permalink

      People trafficking is a delusion politicians cling on to to avoid confronting the reality. ‘Oh if we can only get a handle on the traffickers everything would be sorted’ …No it won’t. Australia showed how it is done, but our politicians are too frit to do what is necessary. We are in this mess because of our virtue signaling political class . With 60 million people classed as refugees, 258 million classed as migrants, and 100’s of millions who can slip in under the claim of asylum makes the UN Convention of Refugees unworkable. Its mass migration we are not allowed to control. If that wasn’t bad enough and a warning to politicians to not give away more sovereignty on the issue Mrs May goes and signs the Global Compact for Migration which allows for safe, orderly and regular migration

    • bigneil(newercomp)
      Posted August 3, 2020 at 8:24 am | Permalink

      Winter is not far away – and it will be “heat or eat” time for many pensioners. But those now laughing their heads off in hotels at our expense won’t have that problem.

    • beresford
      Posted August 3, 2020 at 8:27 am | Permalink

      Criticising ‘people trafficking’ is a copout, nobody supports the traffickers. What takes courage is to stand up against ‘liberal’ opinion for zero tolerance of illegal immigration itself. You could start by triggering a debate on withdrawal from the UN Migration Compact, which Theresa May had no mandate from the British people to sign.

    • BOF
      Posted August 3, 2020 at 8:44 am | Permalink

      The people traffickers supply the boats and take the money. The French navy escorts them half way. The Border Force lands them safely before buses take them to their hotel accommodation where they are housed fed and given spending money.

      It must be Government policy!

    • Everhopeful
      Posted August 3, 2020 at 9:27 am | Permalink

      Sadly I think it is all part of the plan.
      As I keep saying ….look at the Global Compact for Migration signed up to by May!
      Also…take a deep breath….do the powers that be EVER, EVER tolerate that which they actually WISH to stop???
      They locked us in our houses and thousands have arrived.

    • Ian @Barkham
      Posted August 3, 2020 at 9:38 am | Permalink

      Trafficking will only stop when illegal’s (as that is what they are) are sent back to their original starting point. Only then will the message get out that these profiteers are not to be trusted.

      All the time the are able to deliver what they are paid for, people smuggling, it will continue

      • Lynn Atkinson
        Posted August 3, 2020 at 9:00 pm | Permalink

        We must make life difficult for people we don’t want here. For a start, don’t give them business. It’s in our hands. We are still the majority.

    • Mike Wilson
      Posted August 3, 2020 at 10:16 am | Permalink

      Reply I have regularly called for a clamp down on people trafficking

      Wow, that’s a mealy-mouthed, politician’s answer. Everyone is against people trafficking. The comment was about your silence on the the reverse of Dunkirk that is going on now. I’m surprised Boris and Priti haven’t asked for fishing and leisure boats to go over and help with the evacuation.

    • Otto
      Posted August 3, 2020 at 12:03 pm | Permalink

      Reply to Reply ‘I have regularly called for a clamp down on people trafficking’.

      You never say what responses you get on anything you call for – I guess nothing.

      • Otto
        Posted August 3, 2020 at 5:24 pm | Permalink

        JR – I have to admire you posting critical comment against yourself – not many would do that – shows good character.

        • Mike Wilson
          Posted August 3, 2020 at 9:38 pm | Permalink

          I’d second that.

  5. Lifelogic
    Posted August 3, 2020 at 5:41 am | Permalink

    Exactly and this top down Government picking winners and bribing people to buy them (using taxes often before they are even technically ready or practical) is hugely damaging.

    When cars arrived it was fairly clear that horse businesses were largely done for (go long on horses) but it was not at all clear which of thousands or car manufacturers with different technologies would be Ford or Benz. MPs and governement are almost exclusively scientifically illiterate, art graduates with little grasp of business, science, numbers, competitive markets, logic or economics. They are singularly unsuited to making these choices. They do not even care if the choices they make are idiotic (as they usually are) they get paid anyway. They also suffer from group think an agender emerges than everyone stick to it even when it is clearly idiotic. As we saw with the EURO and the ERM for example.

    I am currently reading the excellent book – False Alarm: How Climate Change Panic Costs Us Trillions, Hurts the Poor, and Fails to Fix the Planet by Bjorn Lomborg. This exposes the huge damage and endless waste being done by governments arround the world by the Climate Alarmist religion. Even green job destroys at least three real jobs through higher taxes and more expensive (and not on demand) energy.

    • Lifelogic
      Posted August 3, 2020 at 5:50 am | Permalink

      Sorry – Every green job destroy at least three real jobs ……..

      • John Hatfield
        Posted August 3, 2020 at 1:35 pm | Permalink


      • dixie
        Posted August 4, 2020 at 6:22 am | Permalink

        @LL Please provide evidence backing your assertion that every “green” job (whatever that is) destroys at least three “real” jobs (whatever those are).

        Also, what evidence have you that energy isn’t becoming more expensive anyway and that it will remain as economically accessible in the future as now.

    • Everhopeful
      Posted August 3, 2020 at 9:36 am | Permalink

      Does the political class feel safe from what it has unleashed?

      • Lynn Atkinson
        Posted August 3, 2020 at 9:01 pm | Permalink

        It shouldn’t. Everyone around my neck of the woods is losing their sense of humour!

    • Mike Wilson
      Posted August 3, 2020 at 10:19 am | Permalink

      Surely when it was clear that cars were here to stay, you’d go short on horses.

    • Otto
      Posted August 3, 2020 at 12:06 pm | Permalink

      LL – agree totally. Does all this make JR think he’s in the wrong/useless job?

    • dixie
      Posted August 3, 2020 at 3:20 pm | Permalink

      You do know that Bjorn Lomborg’s background is political science – MA and PhD and work profile. Check his website/About, there is no evidence of scientific, engineering or technical background.

      So with all your complaints about scientific illiteracy of UK politicians why do you think he has any more credibility over a UK equivalent?

      • Martin in Cardiff
        Posted August 3, 2020 at 5:00 pm | Permalink

        Because the author and poster agree, perhaps?

      • Lifelogic
        Posted August 3, 2020 at 5:49 pm | Permalink

        Some people like JR clearly survive an arts degree and still talk sense. Some even survive PPE or a law degree. It is not really the degree it is the sort of people who are attracted to such a degree. Usually less numerate and perhaps even aiming or desiring a career in law or politics.

        Bjorn Lomborg moved over lecture in statistics I understand. Though he does still believe in the climate change religion. He just thinks that there are far better ways to spend the money on real and more immediate problems and adaptation at needed is far preferable as anyone sensible and numerate would do.

  6. agricola
    Posted August 3, 2020 at 5:44 am | Permalink

    The horse to car was occasioned by the native wit of man. All government had to do was work out how to tax it. The change from the Internal Combustion Engine to an electric motor is entirely politician led. The people and industry are being dragooned into this change which is half baked. It is not led by technical innovation, in fact it is a step backwards. Politicians are demanding it be done while having no coherent plan as to how it might be done. As soon as you give politicians responsibility for such change you are off to hell in a handcart.

    The majority of politicians only echo pressure groups or seach for whatever is politically correct. All of which have given us Rotherham, Oxford, and today, spikes in Covid 19 in places wbere the more enlightened locals have gone on record with the reasons in the press this weekend. It is politicians who are unfit for purpose rather than the inventiveness of man. It is man in his factories and laboritories who will resolve Covid and the ICE, not a bunch of mouthy politicos sat in Westminster.

    • Lifelogic
      Posted August 3, 2020 at 6:38 am | Permalink

      It is not the electric motor that is the problem it is the battery and charging technology infrastrutures. Batteries need to be far cheaper, far lighter, store far more energy, charge more quickly, last far longer, leak less energy, waste less energy in charge and discharge and be far more environmental in their manufacture and mining for materials. Quite some way to go on all off these issues.

      Best keep your old jalopy until they sort these issues or come up with alternatives like fuel cells or other clean alternative fuels.

      • Nigl
        Posted August 3, 2020 at 7:23 am | Permalink

        Indeed. Governments seem incapable of changing course when what probably started out with good intentions doesn’t ‘work’ the billions wasted on smart meters springs to mind.

        Maybe something to do with virility?

        • Lifelogic
          Posted August 3, 2020 at 8:36 am | Permalink

          Or the ERM Euro projects!

        • Lifelogic
          Posted August 3, 2020 at 11:27 am | Permalink

          “the road to hell is paved with good intentions”

      • Arthur Wrightiss
        Posted August 3, 2020 at 12:31 pm | Permalink

        I have just sold my 4 year old electric hybrid car and bought a petrol one.
        Technology moves very quickly and my hybrid became old technology .The guarantee on the battery expires very soon and replacement if something goes wrong is extremely expensive.
        Pure electric has range problems, and if you buy one now it’ll be out of date technically in a few years. Depreciation is steep. Stick with your old banger.

    • Stred
      Posted August 3, 2020 at 6:43 am | Permalink

      The Green Party has never received more than 10% of the national vote and only has one MP who lives in the constituency where a majority of the voters are as daft as she is. The main political parties are pursuing green policies beyond authority, unless the United Nations and the EU are considered to be the masters by our carefully selected MPs and Lords.
      The current energy policy will cost far more than the public understands and lead to economic disaster, while doing nothing measurable to the mild increase in global temperature, exaggerated by the BBC in every news programme and every week in weather reports. The Greens have to be rooted out of the civil service and politics or many lives will be ruined.

    • Andy
      Posted August 3, 2020 at 7:52 am | Permalink

      Politicians here in this country have no idea how it will be done. This is because, as COVID has shown, you have elected a completely incompetent government.

      Plenty of other countries are managing to decarbonise their economies perfectly well. Norway is a world leader. Denmark too.

      • NickC
        Posted August 4, 2020 at 10:24 am | Permalink

        Andy, We are a carbon based lifeform. As is plantlife, upon which all other lifeforms depend. Which is why CO2 is essential, and not a problem. Unfortunately we are “decarbonising” our economy. So much so our economy is hollow. We should re-carbonise by onshoring manufacturing so that we have a strong resilient economy again.

    • cynic
      Posted August 3, 2020 at 8:19 am | Permalink

      Far from encouraging the change from the horse and cart age, the government of the day did its best to kill it off with a restrictive regulation. This required a person carrying a red flag to walk in front of the motor vehicle. Twas ever thus.

    • Everhopeful
      Posted August 3, 2020 at 9:46 am | Permalink

      An electric car was made in the early 1800s. By 1900 they were all the thing in the USA but Ford delivered a death blow to all that.
      I dare say that the oil lobby had a lot to do with the fact that electric cars have not been improved and developed over all the intervening years.
      And now I have no doubt they will tax our petrol cars away from us.

  7. Lifelogic
    Posted August 3, 2020 at 5:57 am | Permalink

    Looking at the elevations to the Lords in rather more detail I wonder what on earth made Boris think that what is desperately needed was more big state socialists, deluded climate alarmists, and pro EU people with little or no understanding of science, economics, logic or reason. It is surely stuffed to the roof with such people already.

    Plus a few people and deluded ex-chancellors – surely guilty of treachery against the nation over Brexit thrown in for good measure.

    • Andy
      Posted August 3, 2020 at 7:53 am | Permalink

      Kate Hoey too. Her biggest political achievement appears to have been duping everyone into thinking she was a Labour MP for 30 years when actually she was as Faragist.

      • Fred H
        Posted August 3, 2020 at 2:44 pm | Permalink

        worse than that – dozens of claimed Leave Tories turn out to be Quiet Remainer/Reds.

      • Lynn Atkinson
        Posted August 3, 2020 at 3:34 pm | Permalink

        Phew Peter Shore and Barbara Castle would have you on toast for that remark!

      • NickC
        Posted August 4, 2020 at 10:28 am | Permalink

        Andy, Labour since the early 1970s has been more eurosceptic than the Tories. Your understanding of even quite recent British history is abysmal. No wonder you voted Remain.

    • Ian @Barkham
      Posted August 3, 2020 at 9:45 am | Permalink

      To me it shows that Boris and his cronies have turned into Socialist Totalitarian regime that cannot be trusted. I am a Conservative voter that has lost a party.

      Sorry Sir John you may be my MP but even you must be embarrassed by all the idiotic virtual signaling and continuation of the fight against the people. The cancel culture has more effect on Boris & co than Conservative voters have.

      • M Davis
        Posted August 3, 2020 at 5:55 pm | Permalink

        And Sir John is silent!

    • Otto
      Posted August 3, 2020 at 1:54 pm | Permalink

      LL are you listening to the 1.45pm Radio 4 programme called ‘How They Made Us Doubt Everything’. The remaining progs Tues-FRi I don’t know the agenda.

      Past think tanks of Exxon Mobile 1972 (?) showing climate change due to CO2 is certain and how to cover it up. Getting white coat scientists to trash the research for them and target lower educated white males (for a start) to deny any climate change. Methods used were same as used by the tobacco industry – “and we all know what happened there”. The programme also used a stupid American voice (perhaps a genuine radio spot) to state how stupid the climate change message was to show how underhand the deniers are.

      Last week another R 4 BBC programme started with, ” All scientists know the CC is caused my human activity….”

      • Lifelogic
        Posted August 3, 2020 at 5:55 pm | Permalink

        Yes complete climate alarmist propaganda. The BBC line is always that anyone who doubts catastrophic woman/man made climate change is a flat earther (or climate change as they call it – no one surely does not thing the climate changes).

        In truth the BBC’s deluded art grads, lovies and climate alarmists are the flat earthers.

  8. Ian @Barkham
    Posted August 3, 2020 at 5:58 am | Permalink

    It is the manipulation of enterprise/capitalism by Governments that causes decline. The market never gets to decide as there is deliberate manipulation of a controlling class.

    We had it with the so-called Brexit debates in the HoC, Parliament just seems to get satisfaction from fighting the electorate, fighting the people. In the end it poses the question what are they there fore?

    The market works effectively when it is not manipulated for an individuals ego trip. That’s the point its a market, the market is capitalism. The our style of Political Class has the aim of a totalitarian rule. Hence the need to disenfranchise the People and Democracy – the Lords the ultimate demonstration of a corrupt political class.

  9. Nigl
    Posted August 3, 2020 at 6:00 am | Permalink

    You have missed a paragraph off at the end, namely what are you doing about it? Governments rely on the silent majority being just that, silent, a once every five year vote, ‘ignored’ the day after is hardly democracy.

    It seems you only listen when angry people take to the streets. Ongoing simmering resentment, most recently fostered by HMG making us suffer over Covid through lack of preparation and operational failures with people responsible still in post, is not a good recipe for the future.

    • Fred H
      Posted August 3, 2020 at 7:28 am | Permalink

      this will not end well for the Conservative Party, or the country!

      • Mike Wilson
        Posted August 3, 2020 at 10:23 am | Permalink

        Of course it will end well for the Tories. YOU WILL VOTE FOR THEM. You always do. Anything’s better than Labour eh? And you wouldn’t vote for PR because you don’t like democracy.

        • Fred H
          Posted August 3, 2020 at 2:46 pm | Permalink

          Mike – – ah but thats where you are wrong. I have not always voted for them. My normal protest votes have gone elsewhere, but last time it was Sir John or a *****/ ****** rejected Tory from next door. I couldn’t let that happen. But next time…

          • Lynn Atkinson
            Posted August 3, 2020 at 9:06 pm | Permalink

            You need Sir John whatever! Specially on the opposition benches. I will not be voting Tory because my Hexham MP is useless.

          • Mike Wilson
            Posted August 3, 2020 at 9:42 pm | Permalink

            I’m intrigued by your asterisks but I know who you mean. In fact he was my MP for a while and I used to have to turn the telly off when he was spouting his Remainer nonsense.

        • NickC
          Posted August 4, 2020 at 10:31 am | Permalink

          Mike W, That’s not what happened at the EU elections.

      • czerwonadupa
        Posted August 3, 2020 at 1:33 pm | Permalink

        Since 1945 this countries leaders have only thought of a managed decline. Joining the EU gave them an excuse for passing the problem onto foreigners rather than the more difficult problem of setting out on a path of renewal.
        Meanwhile MSM while ignoring the scandal of regular escorting of illegals by the French navy to Dover inform us Penny Lancaster 49 has started menopause during lockdown. This is the pap they’re feeding us to try & divert from their continued failure of the British people who desperately want leadership

    • Everhopeful
      Posted August 3, 2020 at 9:47 am | Permalink

      Not sure that globalists really want democracy to continue!

    • Nigl
      Posted August 3, 2020 at 11:53 am | Permalink

      How prescient? We see the government allowing a para military march in Brixton, Of course they did nothing either in Trafalgar Square or Bristol, oK because it’s BAME but looking to lock down Ordinary people for no reason.

      I wonder the ratio of fines between breaking lock down and rioting?

      • Everhopeful
        Posted August 3, 2020 at 3:15 pm | Permalink

        Divide and rule again.
        They want us to blame the paramilitary marches ( supposedly illegal anyway) for a rise in Covid cases that will be “reported”…like in Leicester ( blame large families) and Bournemouth ( crowds on beaches), mask wearers against non mask wearers etc etc
        Divide and rule…set us all against each other while the state, our real enemy thinks it will get off Scott free.

  10. Ian @Barkham
    Posted August 3, 2020 at 6:05 am | Permalink

    Reading the comment here so far this morning the conclusion is that our Government is not fit for purpose.

    It is certainly not Conservative/Tory or an advocate of trusting the People and Free Enterprise. Government is currently looking like the enemy of the People, the suppressor of the People that has a distaste of Free Will

    • Otto
      Posted August 3, 2020 at 12:13 pm | Permalink

      JR reading all these post for moderation must have been sweating profusely to realise what a total mess his party is in and he a part of it. As he seemingly has no influence at all with his party when will he resign I wonder?

      • Lynn Atkinson
        Posted August 3, 2020 at 9:07 pm | Permalink

        From what? Why should he resign? He’s sticking to the Manifesto – it’s the rest who should resign!

        • Otto
          Posted August 4, 2020 at 1:30 pm | Permalink

          Why should he resign? Perhaps he has better things to do.

  11. They went mad
    Posted August 3, 2020 at 6:12 am | Permalink

    by waves of creative destruction. The constant search for improvement throws out the old and welcomes the new

    Creative destruction? Is that how the history books will record this plandemic Great Reset and Fouth Industrial Revolution? Or rather proof globalist politicians went mad?

    • Fred H
      Posted August 3, 2020 at 7:29 am | Permalink

      the way people embrace that change has to be willing or revolt beckons!

      • Everhopeful
        Posted August 3, 2020 at 9:48 am | Permalink

        They locked us in…remember?

        • Fred H
          Posted August 3, 2020 at 2:47 pm | Permalink

          willingly so far!

  12. Lifelogic
    Posted August 3, 2020 at 6:31 am | Permalink

    The government’s misguided interventions in housing, transport, energy, healthcare employment laws, schools and universities have also cost the country billions (and thousands of lives too). It does huge damage by creating massive numbers of essentially parasitic jobs for lawers, paper/mouse pushers and the likes and inconveniencing the productive. Hugely damaging the UKs ability to compete in the process.

    I heard Boris’s (LibDim) sister Rachael on LBC defending the elevation of her brother Joe to the House of Lords on the grounds that he knows a great deal about university education.

    If he does actually know a bit about universities then perhaps he understands that we sent about 4 times as many people to them as we should do and that about 75% of UK degrees are hardly worth £1000 let alone the £70K plus loss of earning and loss of learning on the job that they cost. Half of the people going have 3 Ds of less at A level so really should be getting a job or resitting those. It is time to cull about 75% of this parasitic, state funded with soft loans industry. Soft loans that will in the main turn out to be mainly grants!

    It seems Joe is also still a close friend or the economic illiterate ex-chancellor George Osborne. The one who mugged pension pots, taxed landlords (and thus tenants) on non existent profits (very sustainable), gave us absurdly high CGT rates, failed to increase the £325K IHT threshold (despite promising to raise it to £1 million) and increase stamp duty to totally absurd levels and increase taxes and tax complexity hand over fist. So clearly another economically and numercially illiterate chancellor.

    • Sir Joe Soap
      Posted August 3, 2020 at 7:07 am | Permalink

      I can’t see what effect Bro Jo has had in changing anything at universities.

      • Timaction
        Posted August 3, 2020 at 9:54 am | Permalink

        Total cronyism and corruption!

    • a-tracy
      Posted August 3, 2020 at 11:23 am | Permalink

      Lifelogic, do you know how many students who lived in England when they applied and were on ‘income-contingent Plan 1’ loans – ie, started uni between 1998 and 2011 – and began repaying their loans between 2002 and 2006 are the ones affected by today’s announcement are due to start being written off by 2022 and how many (what %) have repaid in full? I’ve tried to google it but I couldn’t find the figures.

  13. George Brooks.
    Posted August 3, 2020 at 6:38 am | Permalink

    The whole green movement is being promoted by a bunch of impractical ”fruit cakes” egged on by equally impractical and scientifically ignorant MPs who are trying to drive us back a couple of hundred years. The country will go bust as will all the population and we will end up in a Marxist State.

    We will only have ourselves to blame if we let this madness develop. We need to look forward not backwards

    • Anonymous
      Posted August 3, 2020 at 7:30 am | Permalink

      We tried and tried via the ballot box. Please don’t blame us.

      Our only recourse now is disobedience and we are not that people. (To our great credit.)

      • Lynn Atkinson
        Posted August 3, 2020 at 3:37 pm | Permalink

        Oh yes we are! Going to be a huge shock for those who took us for suckers.

      • Fred H
        Posted August 3, 2020 at 5:48 pm | Permalink

        you might not be…

    • Lifelogic
      Posted August 3, 2020 at 8:19 am | Permalink


      Government seems to think they know best, For you, your family, your health, your education, your circumstances and how to run your business. This even though they have never even visited or met you. Plus they invariably have zero knowledge of compeititive business, economics, engineering or science). This months it seems you need insulation grants, half price restaurant dinners, a smart meter, a £40,000+, more employment and landlord red tape, electric cars than can only go 70 milies in and you need to lose a stone or two. What will be next month fashion I wonder?

  14. Javelin
    Posted August 3, 2020 at 6:45 am | Permalink

    The Government are being dishonest.

    The climate change lobby has been shown to be another front for those wanted to “smash capitalism“. Many scientists had predicted the ice would have melted in the Arctics and the North West passage would be open in the summer. It was “settled science”. Didn’t happen.

    So what are the Government’s real reasons. Given the science has proven wrong. Is it peak oil? Removing dependence on Russia and the ME? Preparing for nuclear fission? Chinese infiltration to destroy our economy? Group think? Marxist Professors ?

    There doesn’t seem to be a rational explanation of the policy. But there does seem to be a lack of candour. I am finding dishonesty, based on presenting only one side of the argument, strongly characterises the Government, MSM and PR.

    I hope this one sidedness is a strong sign preempting their collapse in the eyes of the public.

    • Lifelogic
      Posted August 3, 2020 at 8:28 am | Permalink

      Indeed. No only is CO2 not a remotely a serious or urgent problem but the “solutions” they force onto us (renewables, electric cars, public transport, bikes, smart meters and the likes) do not even really work. Not even in purely CO2 terms. The “solutions” are doing vast damage and costing us £billions.

      Plus Boris and Sunak have become (or always were perhaps) deluded tax borrow and waste interventionists it seems. There are far more serious and urgent problems in the world than CO2 many have cheap and easy solutions too. Investment that would be hugely more sensible than this misguided war on plant food.

    • Ian @Barkham
      Posted August 3, 2020 at 9:46 am | Permalink

      “The Government are being dishonest”. in so many ways

    • Everhopeful
      Posted August 3, 2020 at 10:00 am | Permalink

      I have thought about this a lot.
      Is it possible that the ruling classes have sucked dry the old money making scams?
      A HUGE recession was maybe coming…2008 was never resolved.
      So in order to remain wealthy and get even more so they have to find new ways to exploit us? Intimidate and tax us into buying more green stuff!
      And print the money for us to do so.
      And fling it from helicopters?
      I guess too…that there are too many people for their liking?…….

      • Everhopeful
        Posted August 3, 2020 at 10:26 am | Permalink

        Oh gosh!
        Of course.
        This is the deconstruction of capitalism.
        Communism has won and the liberal elite allowed them to win.

  15. Roger W Carradice
    Posted August 3, 2020 at 6:46 am | Permalink

    Sir John
    I am going to buy an older car from the pre-electronic age that can be kept running for a long time to avoid these unwanted electric toys.

    • Lifelogic
      Posted August 3, 2020 at 8:43 am | Permalink

      Unless they ban them! Also they are very cheap now, easy and cheapish to repair (unlike many newer cars which are often designed to be expensive or repair). Also they have better headroom and towing capacity I find with less stressed and simpler engines.

    • graham1946
      Posted August 3, 2020 at 9:56 am | Permalink

      I have one. I’m waiting for them to lower the emissions to impossible to achieve levels to get us off the road.

      • miami.mode
        Posted August 3, 2020 at 4:37 pm | Permalink

        Funny you should say that graham, as the new E10 petrol is harmful to some cars.

    • DaveK
      Posted August 3, 2020 at 10:29 am | Permalink

      They will just block your access to fuel.

      • Fred H
        Posted August 3, 2020 at 2:50 pm | Permalink

        and I would ask everybody to drive onto roundabouts on the A roads into London, get out with key and walk to a station home. That grid lock would be like no other.

  16. Nigl
    Posted August 3, 2020 at 6:46 am | Permalink

    I can’t escape the feeling that the effect on the ordinary voter is deliberately ignored or not thought through.

    Offering vast numbers of HK residents a home here when we cannot even provide one for our own citizens, MPs dont suffer from trying to get Doctors, dentist and hospital appointments, try the real world for a change. Let’s virtue signalling a rise in the minimum wage but ignore those people priced out of jobs. At a time of brutal economic downturn lets risk a trade war with China that we cannot win. Let’s force people to have pensions to plan for the future and then trash the companiesS and dividends That make up their value.

    And so it goes on.

    • bigneil(newercomp)
      Posted August 3, 2020 at 8:17 am | Permalink

      “Offering vast numbers of HK residents a home here when we cannot even provide one for our own citizens “. On BBC news I was saddened on reading of a 93 year old woman, despite having help from carers, was exhausted looking after her 66 year old disabled son. Presumably “budget cuts” didn’t allow her more help – Meanwhile boat after boat of unemployable, non English speaking, possibly dangerous, freeloaders are put in hotels at our expense, awaiting the rest of their families arrival to take up their new ( paid for by us ) housing, healthcare, benefits and schooling. Seemingly there is absolutely NO budget limit on providing totally free for doing nothing lives for new arrivals who don’t bother with visas or passport control. Their way of getting here is MUCH more profitable – -for them.

      I don’t think those in Wastemonster are in contact with what they create for the rest of us who they love taxing so much.

      Or is Agenda 21 in full flow?

    • Peter Parsons
      Posted August 3, 2020 at 10:41 am | Permalink

      Of course the ordinary voter is ignored. The UK is a country where politicians get their mandate under FPTP, a system designed to ignore most of the voters, and John Redwood and his party are staunch advocates of keeping it that way.

      • Edward2
        Posted August 3, 2020 at 5:49 pm | Permalink

        It took Ireland 5 months after the election result to cobble together a government and leader.
        Policies that people who voted for by voting for one one party or another now have a hybrid government with various new policies.

        Very democratic.

        • Peter Parsons
          Posted August 3, 2020 at 9:48 pm | Permalink

          I’m glad you agree that a voting system which delivers a parliament which actually represents how people voted is very democratic.

          It’s a shame for the UK that we don’t have the same.

          • Edward2
            Posted August 4, 2020 at 8:20 am | Permalink

            But it didn’t.
            The parties involved carved it up between themselves after people had voted behind closed doors.

          • Peter Parsons
            Posted August 4, 2020 at 10:49 am | Permalink

            It did. Three parties each secured less than a quarter of the vote, and their seats reflected that accurately.

            With no party securing a majority of the vote, they have to cooperate and come to common agreement, which is a mature way to do things. Far superior to having a minority being able to “have it all their own way” with out majority support.

            If you want to “have it all your own way” you should have to get the support of the majority. If you can’t do that, then you have to do better next time.

          • Edward2
            Posted August 4, 2020 at 8:10 pm | Permalink

            The seats might reflect the maths but the policies each voter voted for when they voted for three separate parties have now been changed and the hybrid government is not what those who voted for one of the three parties thought they were getting.

            In my opinion they should call it a draw and have another election and see if a party with a majority can be found.

          • Peter Parsons
            Posted August 5, 2020 at 10:02 am | Permalink

            We should do the same in the UK then. No party gets to govern alone unless they can secure the support of a majority of those who voted, and we keep re-running elections until one party secures a majority of the votes cast.

            Even single party governments don’t implement all the policies in their manifestos and sometimes implement policies differently to what was in their manifesto. I also doubt that the average voter has both read and is 100% in agreement with every single policy in the manifesto of the party or individual they voted for.

            If we were simply voting for policies rather than people, there would be no need for elected politicians at all. Actually, maybe that’s a good idea…

    • Fred H
      Posted August 3, 2020 at 10:51 am | Permalink

      We can and must deal with a possible trade war with China (and anyone else!). We must accelerate and re-start businesses that gave up in the face of ‘dumping price’ imports from them. Buy lowest price continuously and you destroy any ability to make inhouse.
      We have a whole host of lost industries due to being complacent and buying ‘dump’ priced goods.

    • Martin in Cardiff
      Posted August 3, 2020 at 2:11 pm | Permalink

      Yes, brexit is rather a silly idea.

      • NickC
        Posted August 4, 2020 at 10:38 am | Permalink

        But nothing like as silly as Remain.

  17. Jessica Hallom
    Posted August 3, 2020 at 6:50 am | Permalink

    Governments are always and everywhere the most destructive force causing inflation, recession, war and inequality. We do not have capitalism in the modern world. All governments are very socialist and constantly indulge in central planning which is always a disaster. The economic crash is entirely made by governments and banks and the virus is merely a fall guy for something that was baked in the cake anyway. Global warming is a complete hoax designed to kill off vast numbers of people and enabled by the gullible that do not realise what is going on – just like the virus hoax. Sadly billions of people still suffer from government and media indoctrination and we are heading for a Hunger Games type of society riven by conflict, starvation and repression.

    • Ian @Barkham
      Posted August 3, 2020 at 9:51 am | Permalink

      Some of us thought 1984 was meant as a warning. Our Political Ruling Class see it as their bible. The follow the scripture diligently.

      I wonder what it would be like to live in a Democracy that actually allowed freedom of thought, personal responsibility.

    • Sharon Jagger
      Posted August 3, 2020 at 12:03 pm | Permalink


      Eloquently put!

      Could do with an uptick system here. This deserves one.

  18. Stred
    Posted August 3, 2020 at 6:54 am | Permalink

    The younger Tories who push green agendas call themselves Bright Blue. One of them was calling for the public to inform on drivers who leave their engines running while waiting for the traffic to move on after a short stop. They understand very little about technology and come from metropolitan arts backgrounds. Unfortunately, our Prime Minister fits the description.

    • Lifelogic
      Posted August 3, 2020 at 8:54 am | Permalink

      Indeed not bright and certainly not true blue. More like watermelons – fake green on the thin outer veneer but all socialist/communist/big state red on the inside inside. The less science, engineering and maths they have the more convinced these fools are that they are right.

      Listen to the Moral Maze on the Moral Purpose of the BBC with Johnathon Freedland (PPE Oxon again). Who thinks the BBC should push one sided climate alarmism (as they endlessly do). This as it is as indisputable as saying it is raining when it is raining!

  19. Alan Jutson
    Posted August 3, 2020 at 6:55 am | Permalink

    Can anyone remember why the electrically powered trolly bus was scrapped 50 years ago ?

    It worked on planned fixed routes, with long pantograph arms, it was not restricted by battery life, rails or track, it could overcome obstructions on the road, it gave a very smooth ride, it had some limited battery power to self manoeuvre when not connected to the overhead power supply lines, it was quiet with little or no emission pollution from the actual vehicle.

    Other than the need for cables above, it seems like almost the perfect vehicle for todays public transport system if the roads were not constantly being dug up and closed which would necessitate a detour.

    • Adam
      Posted August 3, 2020 at 7:40 am | Permalink

      Trolley buses had exclusive lines of power for movement, but did they not have to queue behind traffic ahead, and conform to the same traffic lights?

      The operators had stout long hooked bamboo poles, which they needed to use to detach the connections of other trolley buses blocking their progress, merely to overtake.

    • John E
      Posted August 3, 2020 at 7:43 am | Permalink

      I can remember getting the No 17 trolley bus from Tilehurst into Reading. I must have been about ten when they were retired and I wondered why at the time.
      I do remember they had frequent issues turning right at the White Horse crossroads and the drivers often as not had to get out and reach up with a long wooden pole to connect to the right overhead cables before we could get on our way. I enjoyed watching all that but then as a child I wasn’t in a rush to get anywhere.
      There are still some slightly more modern single deck trolley buses operating in Budapest.

    • Caterpillar
      Posted August 3, 2020 at 9:32 am | Permalink

      From the elderly trolley buses running in Valparaiso, Chile to the modern network in Seattle, USA, I agree trolley buses perform well. Particularly around cities or more major city access routes (maybe less fitting to a suburban sprawl model of high popn and house ownership).

      They do require distributed maintenance of the network, whereas the diesel or battery bus is just taken to one place for maintenance. I think in the UK trolley buses originally lost out on cost compared with diesel, and with our sprawl model of living the car gave freedom.

    • Ian @Barkham
      Posted August 3, 2020 at 9:52 am | Permalink

      The had to make way for the cycle routes

    • Mark
      Posted August 3, 2020 at 1:06 pm | Permalink

      Overhead gantries are expensive to maintain, and back then (before heavy diesel duties and before OPEC quintupled oil prices in a year) diesel was cheaper and buses could easily divert or make their way around obstructions. If you have ever watched a trolley bus being reconnected to the overhead power supply you may have seen several failed attempts to get the spring loaded arms to engage with the overhead wires: it can take several minutes.

    • miami.mode
      Posted August 3, 2020 at 5:09 pm | Permalink

      AJ, San Francisco runs around 300 trolley buses in addition to their wonderful cable car system and their old trams (including 2 from Blackpool), which of course they call streetcars.

  20. Bryan Harris
    Posted August 3, 2020 at 6:58 am | Permalink

    There is nothing creative about the green movement – they simply want us to go back to the dark ages and remain in our villages without consuming energy…. Likewise the marxist movement is all about destruction — Neither have any intention of making life better for the average person.

    Workable technology is what drives our progress. The socialist dogma that is pushed down our throats is neither progress nor innovation.

    • Sharon Jagger
      Posted August 3, 2020 at 10:47 am | Permalink

      Bryan Harris

      Sadly, I agree!

      There is a fight back going on…Talk Radio are giving a voice to a large number of groups that hate what is going on in the world and here in Britain.

      This is a bigger battle than leaving the EU was – and even that isn’t properly ended yet. But we’ve got to try.

    • czerwonadupa
      Posted August 3, 2020 at 1:56 pm | Permalink

      The Green Movement brings to mind the Tulip Bubble of 1636/7 & the South Sea Bubble of 1720 were fraud & folly go hand in hand with hubris

  21. Sir Joe Soap
    Posted August 3, 2020 at 7:06 am | Permalink

    Well I don’t think it happened that rapidly.

    Even in developed economises the motor car too from 1900 to mid 1960s to peak, and in less developed countries, it only really started in the 1980s. Not everybody had a horse and cart.

    This government seems not to use any knowledge or experience in any decisions, because it doesn’t have any. It doesn’t use its voter base for feedback, but the MSM and whoever shouts loudest. It’s relying on D Davis, you etc to provide a mature feedback mechanism, then failing that, the population itself.

    Us 50-80 year olds will need to become far more vocal and reactive, because we will get trampled over otherwise. We might provide the bulk of this government’s voter base, but it has 4 years more not to listen.

    • Nigl
      Posted August 3, 2020 at 7:49 am | Permalink

      Good comment about feedback mechanisms. I guess they do have focus groups etc but there is a real feeling of disconnect and thus not being listened to.

      Doesn’t seem healthy to me but I wonder what HMGs view is. Every year for the past umpteen I have filled out a lifestyle, health, finance etc questionnaire, with the survey results fed into research/policy making. Lately monthly re Covid.

      Initially it was with a real person but laterly on line.

      It cannot be beyond HMG to introduce one to give it more info but also give us a sense, we have a voice.

    • Lynn Atkinson
      Posted August 3, 2020 at 9:13 pm | Permalink

      Read ‘Atlas Shrugged’ Ayn Rand.

      • hefner
        Posted August 4, 2020 at 10:30 am | Permalink

        A nice piece of fiction writing.

  22. Andy
    Posted August 3, 2020 at 7:06 am | Permalink

    What do we want?

    Inefficient and poisonous electricity production which is harmful to the planet.

    When do we want it?

    Now and for the rest of all eternity.

    It is, though, quite funny watching you all complain about a debate you lost 30 years ago.

    • Anonymous
      Posted August 3, 2020 at 7:25 am | Permalink

      Win or lose a vote it doesn’t matter to you, Andy.

      There’s nothing funny about your version of democracy. (I have much sympathy for your arguments but it’s precisely the way you put them that got you Brexit. Look in the mirror.)

    • Edward2
      Posted August 3, 2020 at 7:43 am | Permalink

      Electricity generation is only a small part of the energy needs of the planet.

    • Lifelogic
      Posted August 3, 2020 at 8:56 am | Permalink

      No we want sensible, cost effective and the best technology we have available at the time. When advances are sensible and cost effective we move on.

    • Mike Wilson
      Posted August 3, 2020 at 9:59 am | Permalink

      Of course electricity production does not have to be inefficient or poisonous. Enough solar power hits the earth every hour to power the world’s energy needs for a year. Cancel HS2 and spend the money on solar farms – for a start.

      How many asylum seekers should we allow to settle here?

      • Fred H
        Posted August 3, 2020 at 5:45 pm | Permalink

        if they cross numerous countries – none.

    • Mark
      Posted August 3, 2020 at 12:54 pm | Permalink

      Yes, windmills aren’t a good idea. Neither is burning woodchips.

  23. Nigl
    Posted August 3, 2020 at 7:07 am | Permalink

    Off topic but a potential bombshell. Namely our vast liabilities via the European Investment Bank allegedly agreed by our PM.

    Inconvenient truth anyone?

    • Lifelogic
      Posted August 3, 2020 at 8:57 am | Permalink

      More details please.

  24. Dave Andrews
    Posted August 3, 2020 at 7:08 am | Permalink

    Is the British Army getting ready with an electric tank, for when there are no refineries to supply diesel to current designs?

    • John E
      Posted August 3, 2020 at 7:34 am | Permalink

      Actually that might be neat. An electric fighting vehicle would be a bit more stealthy than the current noisy hot vehicles. But that is fighting the last war and not the next one I suspect.

      • Lifelogic
        Posted August 3, 2020 at 8:59 am | Permalink

        Sure we just need to make sure we get all the charging infrastructure in place in the next to be war zone! Plus agree to have recharging breaks in the fighting. Even more of an issue for ships and the Navy.

    • Iain Moore
      Posted August 3, 2020 at 9:08 am | Permalink

      James Blunt had a laugh at the MOD’s expense on Top Gear , how they were going green, shooting people in an environmentally friendly way with depleted uranium shells.

      • The Prangwizard
        Posted August 3, 2020 at 5:33 pm | Permalink

        About 20+ years ago I corresponded with the MOD about the armament to be carried by the Typhoon fighter – whether or not it would be fitted with cannon.

        They said they were concerned about the environmental impact. So it’s clear that type of thinking is well embedded.

    • Anonymous
      Posted August 3, 2020 at 9:27 am | Permalink

      It would need a gun battery too.

      • Stred
        Posted August 3, 2020 at 3:09 pm | Permalink

        The CCC, which has been accepted by Boris and the Brightblue loons plan to generate enough electricity and fuel using 15,000 500ft high windmills in the deep sea, which will last 20 years, giant solar farms like the one they’ve approved at Faversham, natural gas with carbon capture, which no-one has made to work yet with liquefied carbon dioxide shoved under the North Sea, most of the natural gas converted to hydrogen which will be three times as expensive as the methane and the CO2 will also be shoved under the sea, burning more American trees, only two or three nuclear stations and turning half of the agricultural land over to rapeseed and corn. It really is that mad.

    • Fedupsoutherner
      Posted August 3, 2020 at 12:28 pm | Permalink

      Dave I don’t envy them trying to charge up in the middle of nowhere

    • Sea Warrior
      Posted August 3, 2020 at 2:32 pm | Permalink

      I believe that CGS, a little while back, spouted some rubbish about modern recruits wanting Greener fighting vehicles. Personally, I think they’d rather go to war in vehicles that were designed to maximise firepower, mobility and protection. But hey, what do I know about land-warrioring?
      P.S. Drove a Warrior IFV a little while back. Such fun – and much easier than the average car. Diesel-powered.

  25. Narrow Shoulders
    Posted August 3, 2020 at 7:27 am | Permalink

    The most pertinent parts of your diary today Sir John are the parts that describe demand and how business reacts. Business reacts quickly to real demand not government mandated demand.

    Prices are higher when demand is real and not fabricated.

  26. John E
    Posted August 3, 2020 at 7:32 am | Permalink

    I don’t suppose that anyone in government is joining up these plans? Does anyone know where all the electricity to power the heat pumps and heat the electric-only apartments and drive the road vehicles is going to be generated?

    • Lifelogic
      Posted August 3, 2020 at 9:00 am | Permalink

      Joined up thinking unlikely we currently have subsidised dinners out and a lose a stone or two agenda!

    • Everhopeful
      Posted August 3, 2020 at 10:04 am | Permalink

      I don’t think that the plan is for ALL of us to be mobile or warm…or living.

  27. BeebTax
    Posted August 3, 2020 at 7:35 am | Permalink

    An interesting article. Many governing elites are naturally attracted to the idea that they, as superior beings, exclusively know what is best for everyone else and that it’s only under their control that the mass of humanity can be led or coerced into following the right path. These elites are wary or downright hostile to individual liberty, freedom of expression and freedom of thought. Our elite is rapidly moving towards the downright hostile position.

    We’re witnessing the emergence of new quasi-religious beliefs such as environmentalism and intersectionality. These ideas started in the universities, and have spilled out as successive cohorts of graduates have entered the workplace and climbed the greasy pole. Our politicians may be believers, or feel it’s in their narrow interest to pretend to be believers. We really need to hear some alternative voices but with the Cancel Culture very few have the courage or opportunity to speak out. I hope politicians with courage, energy and conviction emerge to lead us out of the hole we are sliding into.

    • Lifelogic
      Posted August 3, 2020 at 9:03 am | Permalink


      I often wonder which ones are so thick as to actually belief in it and which ones are just going along with it for political or personal advancement or economic reasons. The endless lunacy that the Committee on Climate Change come out with is amazing!

    • Longinus
      Posted August 3, 2020 at 9:53 am | Permalink

      We need to elect MPs with scientific backgrounds as it’s clear that our legal and arts graduates are not up to the task of leading us into the future.

      • Fred H
        Posted August 3, 2020 at 5:44 pm | Permalink

        or even common sense, people recognise a lemming and certainly don’t want to follow it!

    • Ian @Barkham
      Posted August 3, 2020 at 9:54 am | Permalink


    • Anonymous
      Posted August 3, 2020 at 11:44 am | Permalink

      It is interesting that a technological wave of destruction meets a cultural wave of destruction.

      Coincidence ?

      Protests and drunken disorder all over the place and they want to lock away over-50s… who happened to vote the wrong way.

    • Narrow Shoulders
      Posted August 3, 2020 at 12:41 pm | Permalink

      Quite – social media has given the loudest a repetitive, affirmed voice. They used to march or camp out and get ignored. Now the 24 news cycle is on the look out for content to fill numerous empty hours so these loud campaigners are given a platform. It would be interesting to see if the National Front would have been given a similar platform in the 70s in the same circumstances.

      The right has always been too busy doing to campaign, I suspect that is why the Conservatives have moved to the authoritarian left so significantly. Those who can do, those who can’t tell people how it should be done.

    • Martin in Cardiff
      Posted August 3, 2020 at 1:18 pm | Permalink

      What typifies a religious belief is, that if things don’t go your way, then it was the fault of those who did not believe fervently enough, who lacked your passion and conviction. As if believing itself can change the whole universe to suit.

      In other words, exactly as the brexit fanatics accuse those who try to tell them the simple truths and realities of the mess into which they have got the country.

      There is your prime example.

      They also denounce disbelievers as apostates, heretics etc., or in this case “traitors”, as an analogue.

      The pattern fits like a glove.

      • Edward2
        Posted August 3, 2020 at 5:51 pm | Permalink

        Remainers like you and Andy are even more fanatical in your own beliefs.

        • Martin in Cardiff
          Posted August 3, 2020 at 7:47 pm | Permalink

          I’m not a Remainer, Ed.

          Given that Parliament had decided that the UK would leave the European Union, it is only proper that it did, and given the lamentable state of this country on so many levels now, that is also to the benefit of the twenty-seven countries of the European Union and the of the whole project.

          And that is the main thing.

          • Edward2
            Posted August 4, 2020 at 8:25 am | Permalink

            You cannot be serious!
            You post non stop on here every day telling us how you love the EU and hate us leaving and dislike all who voted to leave the EU.
            If that doesn’t enable you to be described as a remainer I am baffled.

          • Martin in Cardiff
            Posted August 4, 2020 at 7:55 pm | Permalink

            That is not incompatible with accepting the sovereignty of the UK’s Parliament.

          • Edward2
            Posted August 5, 2020 at 9:08 am | Permalink

            That is a seperate argument.
            That you accept Parliament’s decision to accept the result of the referendum is fine.
            But you could hardly develop from that statement that you are a Leave supporter.

        • Lynn Atkinson
          Posted August 3, 2020 at 9:15 pm | Permalink

          Obdurate bigots springs to mind.

      • miami.mode
        Posted August 4, 2020 at 11:16 am | Permalink

        ………it was the fault of those who did not believe fervently enough……

        Surely this is the essence of the EU and the continual mantra of “more Europe”.

        • Martin in Cardiff
          Posted August 4, 2020 at 7:57 pm | Permalink

          Who was the last eminence to urge that?

  28. Tabulazero
    Posted August 3, 2020 at 7:53 am | Permalink

    Yet a few days ago, you were extoling the virtues of state-led intervention to re-industrialise the UK on the ground of national security.

    You sounded then eerily like Jeremy Corbyn. Today, you sound closer to traditional Conservatism.

    What is missing in your article is the degree of scrutiny you see fit for government intervention ?

    After a ferry-line without ferries, a cable car that serves no purpose, a bridge that did not even left the drawing board yet cost the taxpayer £50mm, a tracing app not fit for purpose which will have to be scrapped even before getting launched and the investment in a busted company with the wrong kind of satellites, are you sure a “light-touch approach” as extolled by Dominic Cummings when it comes to the public purse is wise and do you support it ?

  29. Bill B.
    Posted August 3, 2020 at 8:09 am | Permalink

    Completely agree with your post, JR. Trouble is, the electorate gave your government an 80-seat majority on a manifesto which included such promises as:

    ‘We will lead the global fight against climate change by delivering on our
    world-leading target of Net Zero greenhouse gas emissions by 2050, as advised by the independent Committee on Climate Change.’

    ‘It is precisely because we understand the concept of aspiration, and enterprise, that the UK is now leading a new green industrial revolution.’

    It’s going to be hard to row back from that, I should think.

    Your party allowed its manifesto to be steered by the CCC, chaired by a man so ‘independent’ that he’s part of a consultancy ‘working with blue-chip companies around the world to help them improve their environmental, social and ethical impact’ (https://www.theccc.org.uk/about/committee-on-climate-change/)

    Maybe you didn’t notice.

  30. Tim the Coder
    Posted August 3, 2020 at 8:33 am | Permalink

    Why is the Government getting involved in some people’s religious mania?
    Leave the Greens to their own fantasies, do not inflict it upon everyone else.

    • Martin in Cardiff
      Posted August 3, 2020 at 5:10 pm | Permalink

      Fair’s fair. It threw itself headlong, into your brexit religious mania after all.

      • Lynn Atkinson
        Posted August 3, 2020 at 9:18 pm | Permalink

        In a Democracy the Sovereigns are the Voters Martin. The Government were under direct orders. They tried to thwart us and May reduced Tory support to 9%. I reckon Boris is on the same level – we keep tolerating him because we want clean Brexit in the bag. He knows this so keeps extending the ‘talks’. He’s on very thin ice!

        • Martin in Cardiff
          Posted August 4, 2020 at 8:01 pm | Permalink

          In the UK Parliament is sovereign.

          It decided that the UK should leave, and I accept that.

          There’s no more such a thing as a “clean brexit” than there is a “pretty disembowelment” or “tidy plane crash” however, as you are learning.

  31. ChrisS
    Posted August 3, 2020 at 8:36 am | Permalink

    I cannot understand how other politicians cannot get to grips with the problems you outline and demand answers. It is civil servants that develop policy and propose what is necessary.

    How can these, supposedly intelligent people come up with a proposal to make us all green that is so disjointed and mixed up ?

    Assuming that the politicians agree with the need to go green, there needs to be a coordinated strategy that everyone can see, is subject to peer review and voters are prepared to buy into. Bad policy almost always emerges when Government and opposition parties all want to go in the same direction. The voter, who invariably has more commons sense and a firm grip on their wallet, then has no way to get their wishes across.

    I would make a substantial wager that the average voter sees the need to do something about climate change but correctly assesses that the vast changes and enormous expense being demanded of us will have almost no effect because far larger countries like China are still building and commissioning at least one coal-fired power stations every month completely counteracting anything we do.
    That is where we are now.

    Firstly, if we are to go down the all-electric route, the obvious first step has to be to decide how much power will be needed, how it is to be generated and by when.

    Secondly, with road vehicles, is the battery electric car anything other than a cul-de-sac ?
    The Hydrogen fuel cell would solve all range and recharging issues and the oil companies, threatened with the total loss of their business, will pay for the infrastructure and provide the Hydrogen.

    Thirdly, How practical is it to move as fast as the Climate extremists are demanding ?

    We don’t have answers to any of these questions which seems extraordinary.

    • ChrisS
      Posted August 3, 2020 at 8:13 pm | Permalink

      Further to my previous post :

      Production of Electricity

      It has been estimated that to run the entire fleet of cars in the UK will require FIVE additional Hinkley Point power stations over and above the current planned capacity from all sources. This does not include any provision for vans or trucks.

      I cannot find an estimate for the generating capacity necessary to replace every domestic gas boiler in the UK or for the entire needs of industry, if they are forced to switch away from gas. It must be much higher than the amount needed for cars.

      Furthermore, it is obvious that the additional capacity required cannot come from solar and wind because peak demand is in winter and, as I know from our own solar array, production between 1st November and 28th February is minimal. Carbon-free additional capacity can only come from Nuclear as nothing else is reliable.

      We must therefore be looking for at least an additional ten to twenty large nuclear stations and that does not include the replacement of several of our existing aging stations. This is a programme that will have to run over at least thirty years.
      We need to be asking all political parties now, is any government going to stump up the money and the political will to build them ? If not how else are they going to come up with the equivalent capacity ?

      If the answer is yes, the programme will be large enough to justify re-starting our own Nuclear industry to plan and build them. Alternatively, we could sensibly join forces with France, who are already planning to replace almost all of their existing 58 stations over a similar timescale. If they have been doing similar calculations to eliminate gas and coal, they will need to build between 75 and 80 new stations.

      The only good news is that the economies of scale will be enormous.

      • Stred
        Posted August 5, 2020 at 9:44 am | Permalink

        Prof MacKay in his book SEWTHA reckoned 34 HP sized nukes plus some biofuels and other renewables would be necessary to ditch fossil fuel.

    • Stred
      Posted August 5, 2020 at 9:49 am | Permalink

      German manufacturers have given up on hydrogen because the fuel cells are so much more expensive than batteries. Also, the total energy losses for hydrogen from generation, distribution to motor are twice that of battery. There is a clear article with details on The Conversation.

  32. Everhopeful
    Posted August 3, 2020 at 8:51 am | Permalink

    Did previous governments imprison their populations with threats and untruths in order to effect the changes?
    I don’t think so.
    The blacksmith continued to shoe a dwindling number of horses yet installed several petrol pumps for the increasing numbers of cars and gas mantles were left on the wall for years after electricity had become the main power source.
    We, on the other hand, are being bound, gagged and disoriented. Psychological manipulation. Mass hypnosis techniques.
    This treatment is a total disgrace. Inhuman, cruel, sadistic and unchristian..but then…
    Could we expect anything better of our politicians?
    There does appear to be one truthful one though. Hope there are more in the closet!

  33. JimS
    Posted August 3, 2020 at 8:54 am | Permalink

    Dear Africa and Asia,

    There will be no cars for you in future as you don’t have the necessary infrastructure for all the charging points needed for electric cars.

    Just get yourself a RIB and come to Europe!



  34. Iain Moore
    Posted August 3, 2020 at 8:59 am | Permalink

    I am deeply unhappy at the totalitarian agenda of the state which seeks to force us to become St Greta groupies. As we have seen heretics are not allowed, they are trying to make any questioning of their Global Warming religion a hate crime (the creation of hate crimes another part of the totalitarian agenda) , but they are even seeking to outlaw passive resistance , so even if we want to keep our 89 to 94% efficient gas boilers, or 75 mpg diesel cars they are going to make it impossible, and they are doing that because they know what they are trying to force us to accept is not as good, for if it was better people would do it without the need for incentives or laws.

    While they force us kowtow to St Greta they at the same time pursue the most environmentally destructive policy of all, massive population growth. The disconnect between the two shows the Marxist agenda behind it , for they want to accrue the power to tell us how to live our lives , but at the same time they want mass immigration to fracture the nation state, and the stupid Tories have bought it hook line and sinker.

    How do you square the zero carbon agenda with adding millions to our population?

  35. kenneth
    Posted August 3, 2020 at 9:06 am | Permalink

    It’s the age-old socialist disease where intervention brings into play the law of unknown consequences. Then more corrective laws are passed and so the disease spreads.

    Why, after electing a Conservative government, are we running socialist policies??

  36. Iain Gill
    Posted August 3, 2020 at 9:07 am | Permalink

    It will just allow other countries not adopting such measures to undercut this country, produce cheaper output, and destroy further our ability to earn our living in the world.

    It will not end with net reductions in world pollution it will just move it (together with jobs) to other countries.

    It is sheer madness.

    The political class really need to stop all its bias about how it thinks this country should earn its way in the world, and leave it to the businesses of the country without constant state manipulation and social engineering.

  37. Pat
    Posted August 3, 2020 at 9:33 am | Permalink

    It could be that the public has good reason to stick with what they’ve got.
    Because the replacements are worse, not better.
    What is proposed will make energy, and everything dependent on it, much more expensive and much less reliable.
    It will make everyone poorer.
    And unless we can persuade the poorer countries in the world to make themselves poorer still it will have no effect on CO² emmisions.

    • Lynn Atkinson
      Posted August 3, 2020 at 9:19 pm | Permalink

      Can’t get any worse! So we need to sack them. They hate being sacked!

  38. Ginty
    Posted August 3, 2020 at 9:39 am | Permalink

    45k out of 67 million means that 99.99933% of our people have not died of Covid-19.

    For this the Tory Party destroys our economy, petrifies our people and threatens house arrest.

    And while we’re in lockdown it makes many of our roads impassable by car and tells us we must get on our bikes – for our own good (whilst telling us to gorge ourselves silly in Pizza Hut.)

    • hefner
      Posted August 3, 2020 at 1:56 pm | Permalink

      Unfortunately you do not know how to compute a percentage correctly.

      • Fred H
        Posted August 3, 2020 at 5:42 pm | Permalink

        hefner ? 0.00067 x 67m = 45k.

      • Edward2
        Posted August 3, 2020 at 5:56 pm | Permalink

        Is the answer 0.671641791 ?

      • hefner
        Posted August 4, 2020 at 10:40 am | Permalink

        45,000 / 67,000,000 = 0.000672 , which is 0.0672 percent, therefore 99.9328 percent of people have not died.
        Gee, in my days, that was primary school maths.

        • Edward2
          Posted August 4, 2020 at 8:17 pm | Permalink

          Please sir, do I get half marks for getting it nearly right?

          • hefner
            Posted August 5, 2020 at 10:10 am | Permalink

            Yes, possibly, when you’ll know how to figure out changing the evolution of exchange rates properly, as your last attempt had been a disaster.

          • hefner
            Posted August 5, 2020 at 10:15 am | Permalink

            Yes, possibly, when you’ll know how to figure out changing exchange rates properly, as your last attempt had been a disaster.

    • Martin in Cardiff
      Posted August 3, 2020 at 5:19 pm | Permalink

      About one in six hundred have died either from it or because of it. That’s about 0.17%. So your figure is wrong – it would be 99.83%.

      Many times more would probably have joined them, if not for the lockdown and other measures too.

      Just tot up what a thousand a day plus would mean over a couple of years.

      • Anonymous
        Posted August 3, 2020 at 10:54 pm | Permalink

        Well. The rioting you liked didn’t seen to create a spike.

        Many have died (and will die) *because* of lockdown and not because of CV19.

      • NickC
        Posted August 4, 2020 at 10:54 am | Permalink

        Martin, The death toll rollover happened on 10 April, about 2.5 weeks after the official lockdown. Since infection to death is usually much longer than that, the lockdown did not reduce the death toll – because it was already reducing! And you’ve omitted the additional deaths caused by the lockdown.

    • miami.mode
      Posted August 3, 2020 at 8:45 pm | Permalink

      Wow, all these mathematicians!

      67m minus 45,000 = 66.955m
      66.955m x 100 divided by 67m

      What do they teach people nowadays?

      • Martin in Cardiff
        Posted August 4, 2020 at 8:03 pm | Permalink

        Use excess deaths.

  39. Mike Wilson
    Posted August 3, 2020 at 9:55 am | Permalink

    My combo boiler needs replacing. Should I:

    1) replace it and use gas which is about one sixth the price of electricity to provide hot water and heat the house

    2) rip out my radiators and pipe work and buy a load of convector or storage heaters and a hot water tank and a pump and heat my house and hot water using electricity which is:

    a) 6 times as expensive as gas
    b) likely to be in short supply if we all start using electricity for domestic heating and to power our cars

    The plumber is coming on the 15th.

    • ChrisS
      Posted August 3, 2020 at 3:08 pm | Permalink

      My neighbour was the MD of a well-know group that manufactures heat pumps.

      I asked him what price I could buy a suitable pump through him and he asked one of his technical specialists to contact me and work out what was required. After going over everything, the recommendation was to stick to gas because, even acquiring a heat pump at close to their cost price, we would never save enough money for the system to be economic against gas.

      We do have a 4kw solar array which was acquired just before Gordon Brown made the first cut to his ludicrously over-generous feed-in tariff. By then, and by shopping around, it was possible to buy the complete system for £11,000 whereas others had paid more than double that sum. Since installation, we have been getting back almost £2,000pa, which is indexed linked and guaranteed for 25 years!

      Obviously the only way a future government is going to make people switch away from gas is to spend billions subsidising the installation of heat pumps or increase the taxes on gas. Can there be any doubt as to which route they will choose ?

    • NickC
      Posted August 4, 2020 at 10:58 am | Permalink

      Mike W, You could try a ground source heat pump. Payback about 7 years. But yes at best it uses about 1kW of electricity for every 4kW of heat.

  40. Caterpillar
    Posted August 3, 2020 at 10:07 am | Permalink

    It is difficult to identify the correct narrative of what is going on –

    Mass irrationality – Many under 50 year olds having been educated in the decades of the culture of fear and are now in Govt and media.

    Green conspiracy – Stern Review based on a near zero social cost of capital, quickly followed by GFC to achieve ZIRP, that wasn’t enough so the opportunity has been taken to big up the virus and destroy freedom of movement.

    Marxist/leftist/anarchist conspiracy – grab any issue: green, ancestry, identity … and use these to pull down existing structures.

    Defenders of scarcity economics – supply can now outstrip demand therefore destroy swathes of the existing economy such that scarcity returns.

    Jealousy of playing strong man politics – Xi Jinping, Putin, maybe even Macron and Merkel.

    Homogenizing ways of knowing – state schools all delivering the national curriculum, the spread of professionalisation including the professionalisation of university research.

    The positive seeking of shared goals – how to bring a country’s inhabitants together once there is no common culture, once nationalism (unless Welsh or Scottish) is declared evil – how is a shared identity replaced?

    The cancel culture – rational argument based on empirical and quantitative measures (the positive, underpinned by STEM) and rational argument based on values (the normative, underpinned by the social sciences and arts) have both gone missing from U.K. political and media (so-called) debate. Contrarian or common-sense thinkers will get cancelled.

    • Martin in Cardiff
      Posted August 3, 2020 at 5:22 pm | Permalink


      Try to establish the facts, not some make-believe tale – “narrative” as people call them these days.

      • Caterpillar
        Posted August 3, 2020 at 8:23 pm | Permalink


        All of these these have differing amounts of supporting data. In some one can trace back causality to a certain degree, others can be measured as current status but cause is hard to find. The point is many theories can fit the data, but it is hard to distinguish which one(s) are correct (or can be rejected) and hence why ‘we’ are where ‘we’ are.

  41. Jack Falstaff
    Posted August 3, 2020 at 10:13 am | Permalink

    Quite frankly we should just cut to the chase and focus on finding a new habitable, sustainable and Covid-free planet.
    Electric rockets to get there anybody?
    Cancel-culture activists need not apply. They can just stay here, care of the ghost of Charles Darwin.

  42. Sakara Gold
    Posted August 3, 2020 at 10:57 am | Permalink

    In a year where the global average atmospheric carbon dioxide has reached 407.4 parts per million – higher than it has been for a million years and countries such as Iraq, Morroco, Libya and central India have experienced temperatures of 50degC (imagine that without air-con), my response to your diatribe is – too bad.

    If we don’t stop burning carbon as our primary energy source, clearly the planet will become uninhabitable. Especially when Brazil has finished burning their rain forest, I ask where is the oxygen that we all need to breathe going to come from?

    • Stred
      Posted August 3, 2020 at 2:47 pm | Permalink


    • Ian Wilson
      Posted August 3, 2020 at 3:30 pm | Permalink

      CO2 is not responsible for high temperatures near the tropics – that’s normal weather there. In the dinosaur era CO2 was between 5,000 & 7,000 ppm and they did very nicely thank you. There is very poor correlation between CO2 and global temperature.
      It is now well established the modern rise in CO2 has boosted food output – shouldn’t that be cause for rejoicing when there are 6 million more mouths to feed every month?

    • Iain Moore
      Posted August 3, 2020 at 3:37 pm | Permalink

      “Plankton that are plants, known as phytoplankton, grow and get their own energy through photosynthesis and are responsible for producing an estimated 80% of the world’s oxygen.”

      PS CO2 is plant food, NASA reports on a greening of the planet.

    • Fred H
      Posted August 3, 2020 at 7:12 pm | Permalink

      S.Gold – – Good job someone kept records a million years ago.

      • Martin in Cardiff
        Posted August 3, 2020 at 7:53 pm | Permalink

        The planet kept its own records, Fred.

        Bubbles of million-year-old air can be found trapped, accurately dated, and analysed, for instance, and there are other methods too.

  43. ian
    Posted August 3, 2020 at 11:09 am | Permalink

    The government is not the problem it’s is the people who are elected by the people who are the problem by way of voting for parties which in turn follow the doctrine of world institution. They are trying to bail out their experimental money system which started when they all went off the gold standard back in 1971 but as they are finding out, the hole just keeps getting bigger so they resort to ordering the people around to get people to spend money on thing they don’t want in a vain effort to bail themselves out of their experimental money system that is failing big time.

    • Ian @Barkham
      Posted August 3, 2020 at 3:22 pm | Permalink

      The way we have instituted the party system is just as culpable. Theoretically any one can stand to be an MP. Our systems however distorts that ideal by forcing the taxpayer to fund the Parties to fight at the expense of every other would be candidate. You are just not permitted to challenge the ‘establishment’. Just as we all got Boris’s brother and all the other cronies appointed to the revising chamber, government and its system excludes the people.

      As a result, for the most part you get MP’s that were selected by their Gang Leader and funded by coercion with taxpayer money.

      Logically our elections are not free and open, but distorted to keep a political class as your rulers.

  44. ChrisS
    Posted August 3, 2020 at 11:29 am | Permalink

    Those who started the row over the Chief Whip not suspending the MP arrested for alleged rape, seem to be ignoring the whole essence of natural justice.

    As the Member’s name has rightly not been revealed, and will remain under wraps unless or until he is charged, it is also correct for him not to have been officially suspended as that would almost certainly allow the newspapers to identify him. I am quite sure he will have been advised to keep a very low profile and in any event, we are now into the summer recess. The only possible reasons for the calls to suspend him can therefore be for opposition politicians to be able to reveal his name and attempt to score party political points.

    It seems that in case of alleged assaults on women, and only women, otherwise respectable democratic politicians are quite prepared to pillory the accused as long as they are male. This is not acceptable.

  45. Ian Heath
    Posted August 3, 2020 at 12:00 pm | Permalink

    Bang on. It’s good to hear the other side of the story – albeit blasphemy to the climate change lobby.

  46. Ignoramus
    Posted August 3, 2020 at 12:01 pm | Permalink

    Sadly, ignorance is bliss for millions.

  47. Freeborn John
    Posted August 3, 2020 at 12:16 pm | Permalink

    Why is the U.K. Covid vaccine being licensed through the European Medicines Agency? The pandemic and leading virus from Oxford offers the perfect opportunity to pressure the EU to accept the recognition of a UK medicines agency.

    • Martin in Cardiff
      Posted August 3, 2020 at 5:25 pm | Permalink

      Because not everyone is as cynical as you.

  48. Mark
    Posted August 3, 2020 at 12:52 pm | Permalink

    These matters proceed by edict and propaganda, not by democratic choice. Those who think that they have a democratic mandate to trash the economy and the livelihoods of so many are in for a rude awakening. Perhaps it is why they permit the agents of anarchy to roam the streets. The outlook is not good until we can restore some sanity to politics.

  49. John Hatfield
    Posted August 3, 2020 at 1:21 pm | Permalink

    All unnecessary, a waste of time and effort. And expense.

  50. forthurst
    Posted August 3, 2020 at 1:25 pm | Permalink

    ‘Creative destruction’ is an oxymoron: there is reverse Luddism. What actually happens is that demand for a product drives capital investment both positively and negatively. In the bad old days this demand was by free election of the people; nowadays in the brave new world of no-nothing Arts graduates knowing what is best for us, the people, some of whom who may be scientifically educated ie educated, cannot be trusted by the no-nothing Arts graduates to make the right elections and therefore need to be encouraged to the correct pattern of demand by having their choices artificially constrained.

    • forthurst
      Posted August 3, 2020 at 1:29 pm | Permalink

      Correction: there is no reverse Luddism.

  51. Jack Falstaff
    Posted August 3, 2020 at 2:32 pm | Permalink

    Now is not the time for investing in anything other than staying afloat.
    We don’t have business coming in or money to throw around and our understanding of “long-term” right now is getting through the pandemic in one piece.
    The government should prioritise along similar lines too, as tax revenue will also be low. Spending wisely means first things first at this sorry juncture and anything else just looks like other-worldly, irresponsible luxury.

    • Sea Warrior
      Posted August 3, 2020 at 4:40 pm | Permalink

      Seconded. The government needs to concentrate on saving the businesses that were in place at the beginning of the year. Longer-term aspirations will have to wait.

    • Anonymous
      Posted August 3, 2020 at 10:59 pm | Permalink


  52. Lynn Atkinson
    Posted August 3, 2020 at 3:28 pm | Permalink

    Quicker and cheaper to change the Government!

    • Fred H
      Posted August 3, 2020 at 7:09 pm | Permalink

      Change is not guaranteed. Name maybe.

      • Lynn Atkinson
        Posted August 3, 2020 at 9:25 pm | Permalink

        The 3 pillars have fallen, the Palace, the Pulpit and Parliament. Cromwell faced the same scenario. There was serious improvement from his great efforts. There will be again, we need this crisis to put right a huge number of running sores. We will do it.

  53. dixie
    Posted August 3, 2020 at 3:33 pm | Permalink

    What makes you think the existing sources and methods of energy and transportation will remain tenable, as easy to access and as cheaply?

    What are your proposals for dealing with existing fuels becoming scarcer and more expensive owing to reasons of geology or politics?

    • Mark B
      Posted August 4, 2020 at 5:04 am | Permalink

      Demand and supply.

      If you reduced the demand for more and more energy you will reduce the need. Currently our bunch of arts students that are running the country do not seem to have grasped that.

      • dixie
        Posted August 5, 2020 at 6:08 am | Permalink

        because the demand-supply arrangements worked so very well during the Covid-19 pandemic?

  54. David Brown
    Posted August 3, 2020 at 5:15 pm | Permalink

    I support the move away from carbon fuels, I’m happy with the top down approach.
    The problem with this debate is the same story of ageing people who are looking backwards with rose tinted glasses.
    Its exactly the same with leaving the EU.
    The same with ditching EU regulations.
    The same with wanting a no deal Brexit.
    All driven by ageing people.
    I’m optimistic that carbon fuels will be phased out.
    A future Government will have a Customs arrangement inc regulations with the EU driven by young voters who want to ditch the old regime. There are many signs of protest from Climate Change to Black Lives Matter next will be jobs marches blaming leaving the EU without a deal (rightly or wrongly) but not for right wing style of total unregulated free market.

    • Lynn Atkinson
      Posted August 3, 2020 at 9:27 pm | Permalink

      How thin are you David, because you will be a lot thinner if you get your way.so will Boris, imagine him at say, 6 stones? You see we old fools have seen that sort of transformation. You will do and deserve to.

  55. alastair harris
    Posted August 3, 2020 at 6:05 pm | Permalink

    If I am forced to stop heating my home with the new energy efficient gas boiler recently installed then to me it becomes a question of cost. The replacement gas boiler would be relatively cheap, but what would I buy instead and at what cost? And how will I pay for it. And if my gas boiler is functioning well when I am required to do it, do I just scrap the value lost? And how about the car. I run an efficient and relatively small engined petrol car. An upgrade to a newer model, perhaps 3 years old is something I can just about afford, but an electric car – even one of the inefficient models currently on sale – is well out of my price range.
    But this is just on a personal level. What about all that sunk cost in an infrastruture that works but will just be scrapped. Whether it be gas or car fuel. And this has to be replaced. For all the talk of 2renewables” the fact is that our electricity supply depends on a baseload delivered by traditional methods. All of the new methods are intermittent, or unreliable. The wind doesn’t always blow (sometimes it blows too hard) and the sun doesn’t always shine. And of course batteries – even lithium ion batteries – are not as efficient a means of storing energy as petrochemicals. Even assuming we are able to source enough of them. Perhaps nuclear generation is the answer, but where is that coming from in the required timescales.
    We hear of innovation regularly but who is to say innovation will deliver solutions using the technologies the government is investing in on our behalf? Perhaps graphene batteries. Perhaps hydrogen fuel cells. Neither of which seem to be on government radar.
    And more to the point – we have many decades of hydrocarbons we could exploit at low marginal cost, which would make use of the infrastructure we already have. The truth is the cost of delivering the zero carbon policies that will keep Mrs Boris happy are eye wateringly expensive, and there is a good chance the technologies the government is attemptint to exploit now will not survive even in the medium term.
    So the immediate answer. Let markets do their job. Trust to the ecomonics Stern suggested, and which we did actually enable. And stop trying to stem the tides!

  56. Will in Hampshire
    Posted August 3, 2020 at 10:11 pm | Permalink

    Off topic, but I thought John Keizer did a fantastic (if unintentional) job of making the case for Remain in the Spectator today. He’s finally figured it out. Shame it’s taken so long.

  • About John Redwood

    John Redwood won a free place at Kent College, Canterbury, and graduated from Magdalen College Oxford. He is a Distinguished fellow of All Souls, Oxford. A businessman by background, he has set up an investment management business, was both executive and non executive chairman of a quoted industrial PLC, and chaired a manufacturing company with factories in Birmingham, Chicago, India and China. He is the MP for Wokingham, first elected in 1987.

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