Wednesday, February 5, 2014

London Transport Strike - What it says about Socialism

London's main transport union is presently on strike.


Because the union doesn't believe in modernity. Because they would rather have low-middle income Londoners subsidize their staffing levels and inefficiency than reform. Because, to be succinct, their boss is a thug who knows how to play the system.

This really isn't complex. Recognizing that widespread staffing of ticket offices is an anachronism in the 21st century, London's Mayor knows he has to change the system. After all, the consequence of not evolving will be a transport network that is starved of efficient resource allocation and technological advancement. 

Even then, while I lived in London (for 26 years), each ticket office seemed to have at least two staff members on a break at any particular time (sometimes 2/2). The ticket offices have always been a big joke. Just like the RMT (the union on strike). The simple truth is that London Underground is overstaffed and overpaid. It just is. And, incredibly, the network still closes at 12.30 each night. And because Londoners believe in keeping their mouths shut - and don't like to be seen as anti-union (a fact the unions well know) - it's been near impossible to enact necessary reforms.

Nevertheless, as I noted in regards to France, the shutdown of London's transport network might finally begin to move people away from socialist sympathy. This situation is absurd. While I'm happy that I no longer have to deal with the BS, I feel bad for my friends.

1 comment:

  1. This is really simplistic and completely ignores the fact that Londoners - yes, those people who actually use the Tube - are genuinely concerned about staffing levels, especially at outlying stations.

    Who wants to arrive at a deserted station at midnight which is open to any local gang who fancies causing trouble?

    Who wants to be a lone member of staff at that station, out on the platform, when that gang turn up?

    So I, generally a non-supporter of the RMT, actually think they have a point here. Articles like this really don't help the situation.