Monday, November 10, 2008

Unhappy Divergence From The Work Of Handel

See, there I was ready to break the habit of a lifetime and trumpet a party press release only to find that, in a moment of supreme irony, it failed to turn up on time...

Actually, that's a little unfair; recourse to Google finds the errant document on Cllr Steve Beasant's website and in the news section of the Institute of Transport Management. But this does not represent the sort of fanfare we need for a policy announcement we should be wrapping round a brick and hurling at Geoff Hoon's head.

Admittedly, I wish it was still Ruth Kelly's head we'd be hurling it at. I was always going to find her to be morally repugnant at the best of times, but remarkably I found her pronouncements on expansion of the rail network even more offensive than her moral CV. Question after question from local members desperate for new railway lines to relieve congestion and improve transport links in their area were batted away with, “we believe that lengthening trains and platforms is the best way to increase capacity on the network”, a statement so intensely moronic it isn't funny.

You'll imagine how much my heart was lifted to see us publishing a list of line and station reopenings, line redoublings and electrification projects . The list includes my old favourite the Varsity Line and is so comprehensive it includes schemes even I hadn't thought of. With a headline talking of rolling back Beeching, it's a fantastic announcement, a bold investment in infrastructure that the public want and the other parties are too stupid to propose.

And yet, upon the party website there's nary a mention and not even a story wedged down the back of BBC News Online. I don't for much, but when I get it, it'd be nice if we could make a song and dance about it.

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