The Scottish Government’s decision not to allow the process of fracking that could establish if cheap gas can be produced domestically – at a time when we have some 940,000 souls enduring fuel poverty, of which for a quarter of a million it is extreme fuel poverty. Now our the SNP leader has compounded these errors by announcing to whoops of delight at her party conference that she will establish a state-owned not-for-profit energy company. Call something Scottish and it wins three, or maybe four out of five stars for PR value; call something Scottish that is state-owned and by implication belongs to all of us, and it wins five out of five stars. Unfortunately, as bitter experience has shown, state businesses end up being owned by none of us but are instead captured by those that work for them and the vested interests that manage them. We have been here before when everything in the Seventies that did not work tended to have the prefix “British” and was “owned” by the state but very much managed by the employees’ unions and the corporate bosses for their own benefit. Thankfully Britain has managed to leave behind that sorry period of never-ending strikes, rationing of supply (party telephone lines, anyone?) and build quality worse than a three-year-old’s Stickle Brick car – but the SNP wishes to revive it and paint it tartan.
Scotsman 16th Oct 2017 read more »