Originally published on South Heath Against HS2.
Powerhouse – a drink made of 1/4 orange juice, 1/4 vodka, 1/4 anabolic steroids, and 1/4 Viagra
Last week’s announcement that George Osborne intends to invest 15 billion pounds in ensuring that The North will be transformed into something a bit more Southern, has raised a few eyebrows.
“Today I’m setting out the northern powerhouse, so we can deliver a real improvement in the long term economic performance of the north of England”, he declared. Adding, “This will be the centrepiece of my Autumn Statement – and part of our long-term economic plan for the country.”
Anyone would think it was his money, or money we had ‘just lying around’. At least though it might do something to improve Northern infrastructure, something everyone agrees is long overdue. It all seems so easy that it rather begs the question, “why did nobody think of it before?”
The fact is that throwing large amounts of wonga about rarely does much more than make a small number of wealthy people even more wealthy. High Speed Two has done little to reassure the public that politicians know how to spend money wisely. Ludicrously, HS2 seems to be, ‘an idea looking for a reason to build it’, with many false starts over journey time savings and wildly varying cost projections and no doubt many more to come.
Only last month The Treasury was trumpeting about its infrastructure cost savings, road users up and down the country will not have failed to notice just how bad roads have become in recent years. Rail showed one of the biggest savings, no doubt a great many rail users will have much to say about that too.
The bottom line George, is that if you are going to give that much money away, please consider the greater good and get value for money, if that’s not too much to ask!
Telegraph Article: Northern Powerhouse