Rail Fares Freeze – whose promise?
When Labour promised an energy price freeze they were condemned for
- interfering in the market
- having a freezing effect on necessary investment
- effectively preventing price drops
And who was condemning them?
Now we have an election promise to freeze rail fares? Whose promise?
The Conservatives are promising a real-term freeze …
BBC News Website 10 April 2015 : Election 2015: Tories pledge rail fare freeze
But this is not any Labour Promise it is a Conservative and Unionist Promise. But unlike M&S it is full of holes.
- “Real-term” – i.e. they will continue to raise prices according to their measurement of inflation (RPI). It may be low at the moment but it won’t stay low.
- “affecting about half of all rail fares if they win the election.” (ibid)
- So it’s only “regulated fares”, so won’t affect fares I pay, but will affect fares paid by London commuters (who live in Outer Suburban constituencies which are overwhelmingly already Tory (and unlikely to change whatever is promised!)
- “If they win the election” – which presumably means if they win an outright majority of seats (on the usual minority of votes). They been studying the FibDems!
- Unregulated fares will rise (above inflation) to keep the franchisees in sufficient lolly.
- “Labour called the pledge “unfunded, uncosted and… totally unbelievable.” (ibid) Wide up, it’s an election pledge – you expect costings?! It’s another dog whistle.
I think that Labour’s “freezes” are more genuine than Tory “freezes”. And this one does not even have the benefit of being a temporary mechanism whilst the market is sorted out. The Tories seem quite happy with the current way the railways are run.