Poll: Majority of Brits Want Rail, Energy Companies Nationalized

Credit: Er0229/wikimediaCredit: Er0229/wikimediaHere is part of a write-up on the latest terrifying poll from the other side of the Atlantic (from YouGov):

The majority of the British public – including the majority of Conservative voters – support nationalising the energy and rail companies

Labour’s plan to freeze energy prices for 20 months has re-ignited the debate over the role of the government in markets, with Conservatives arguing intervention is a ‘con’ while Labour claim the state should ‘reset’ the market. Shadow transport secretary Mary Creagh has even suggested Labour are open to re-nationalising train services.

However, YouGov research for the Centre for Labour and Social Studies finds voters of all politics united in their support for nationalisation of energy and rail.

It shouldn’t come as a surprise that most Labour Party supporters, who are unashamedly socialist, want rail and energy companies to be nationalized. However, it is frightening that more than half of Conservatives polled agree with Labour supporters on the issue:

Credit: YouGovCredit: YouGov

The graph above not only shows that the nationalization of rail and energy companies has majority support across the British political spectrum, it also highlights that UKIP members are hardly the supporters of limited government and free markets some seem to think they are. In fact, UKIP members support the nationalization of rail and energy companies more than Liberal Democrats, who are oftentimes described as center-left.

Below is another terrifying graph from the same poll. It turns out that over a third of the British public believe that the government should have the power to control the price of food:

Credit: YouGovCredit: YouGov

Read the full results of the poll here

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  • ||

    Let 'em have at it. Stupid Limeys. I foresee a day when we will be sending food aid to England the way Carter did to the Soviets.

    OT; Bob Beckel just now - "Sure you can keep your doctor, but your doctor doesnt have to keep you."

    They are trying to get out in front of the outrage that is coming over people losing their doctors. Blame the doctors. What a bunch of mendacious fucks.

  • John||

    They have just forgotten. Let them do it. And when the lights go off, they will figure it out. Some people are so stupid only things going dark can educate them.

  • PapayaSF||

    Are you sure? Has everyone in Cuba, Venezuela, and North Korea figured it out? They certainly haven't figured it out in the average American university faculty lounge.

  • John||

    For sure they have. It is just in those countries the power of the gun prevents them from doing anything about it.

    The people in Eastern Europe figured it out didn't they? The UK figured it out in the 70s didn't they?

    Society does self correct, it just takes a while. If it didn't, we would not be where we are.

  • ||

    You are drifting back to optimism John. You are kinda right, people do figure it out, sorta. It takes a new generation coming along and rebelling to do it though. Individuals on the other hand....

    Watch out, that optimism can be dangerous to your mental well being.

  • Sudden||

    Hope is a dangerous thing.

  • Almanian!||

    Therefore, we must have the atate crush it. Excellent idea, Sudden.

  • BigT||

    Hope is a dangerous thing.

    Coupled with change it is downright toxic.

  • The Immaculate Trouser||

    Russia hasn't figured it out, despite participating in (and being victimized by) one of the most oppressively evil regimes ever created by humans. Africa, near as I can tell, never figured it out and isn't about to do so anytime soon. Argentina (one of the wealthiest countries in the world at the turn of the 20th century) hasn't figured it out.

    Maybe they will self-correct, but I suspect that societies naturally twirling, twirling towards freedom is a just-so story seeking to explain a consequence of US' dominance in world affairs, rather than an accurate depiction of the world.

  • John||

    The problem Trouser is that thanks to technology unfree societies can't compete with free ones. Back when everyone fought wars with simpler technology, central planning and oppression created really good war machines. But now, the failures of central planning goes beyond poverty to your ability to make war and defend yourself. Thus, central planning and oppression is doomed. There will always be someone who is free and has the will to survive and they will always win. But you are right, it doesn't have to be us. We can always kill ourselves out of guilt and self loathing and racism and stuff.

  • Austrian Anarchy||

    There are something like 60,000 escaped North Koreans living in South Korea right now.

  • Sudden||

    See, the majority stayed to enjoy the worker's paradise. It's only those greedy teathulgican ratfuckersbourgouise that left.

  • JW||

    They have just forgotten. Let them do it.

    Bring back British Leyland! There hasn't been a good months-long strike in the UK in decades.

  • The Immaculate Trouser||

    Uh, WTF does this have to do with UKIP? UKIP's party platform states disagreement with nationalization of private industry and support for Thatcher's privatizations -- all of which has been articulated by many, many party leaders.

    So what if their voters are impure (something not shown by this article, but which I will take as a given)?

  • SIV||

    It has something to do with UK cocktail party culture.

  • Generic Stranger||

    The Brits have gone full retard. Never go full retard.

  • Paul.||

    Gone?

  • Medical Physics Guy||

    Ugh. There was a lot of anger expressed by pols here recently about energy companies charging "the highest prices they can get away with."

    Markets, how do they work?

    And no, the nationalist parties are far and away the worst. I arrived here and perceived that the two main factions are Scottish Labour and Scottish Nationalist parties. I figured these were left and right. I was correct - but Labour is to the right. SNP is even worse. They really do think if they could just keep all the oil money, Norway-style shangri-la would be just around the corner.

  • John||

    I wish people in the US would understand that "Right" in European politics means a particular breed of socialist who embraces nationalism and racism and has nothing in common with what we call the "right" in the United States.

  • Winston||

    "Right" traditionally referred to defenders of feudalism and absolutism.

    In the US right "has" traditionally meant...opponents of the New Deal.

  • The Immaculate Trouser||

    In truth, the US doesn't have a strong tradition of conservatism in the first place. It was dominated by classical liberal parties (with a small injection of progressive politics from 1890-1920), until after the New Deal -- which transformed the US to the point that any manifestation of classical liberalism was categorized as conservative.

  • Winston||

    The US was much more classically liberal than Europe in 1776. Left/right and conservative/liberal didn't come into US political parlance much later with the "reactionaries" being opponents of increasing government power.

  • Sudden||

    Well, other than the RACISM!!!1!! right?

    /progtard

  • ||

    In other words, Nazis.

  • Sudden||

    Not Nazis, Donnie. These men are nihilists. You have nothing to be concerned about.

  • Libertarius||

    I'm skeptical of this notion of injecting racism into the political spectrum, it's arbitrary and crudely simplistic.

    See those guys on the right? That's where the racists be--the political spectrum said so!

    But it is maddening to hear of these "right wing" governments in Europe which have messed things up. The European political spectrum is a fixed coin; it's like that line from The Fountainhead: "Heads, collectivism; tails, collectivism."

  • Redmanfms||

    I'm skeptical of this notion of injecting racism into the political spectrum, it's arbitrary and crudely simplistic.

    True, though in the case of European politics, it really isn't far from the truth. Both sides are collectivist/socialist, but one is weird kind of multicultural "open society" and the other thinks it's those dirty foreigners that keep fucking up the planners' visions.

    Europeans are the most virulently, unabashedly racist people I've ever met. Kluckers would blush and say, "That's too far man" at some of the things I've heard in polite conversation when I've worked in Europe. The racism doesn't really obey any kind of political spectrum though, leftists there are much like the leftists here (though they aren't really as paternalistic). They seem to view other ethnicities as some kind of entertaining menagerie. They want them around, but they don't want them really blending in.

    The "righties" just don't want them around at all, because they simultaneously take all the jobs and suck up the "benefits" that decent upstanding (insert whatever European shithole they're from) should be getting as a birthright.

    I honestly believe that if we weren't over there babysitting them they'd be in another wild, genocidal, vicious conflagration within 20 years, 30 tops. All of the same prejudices that lead to the World Wars and the Holocaust still exist and they are every bit as virulent.

  • jester||

    Very well stated. I quite agree. I would add that much of the 'blame-the-immigrant' atttitude over in Europe is caused by the central planners creation of high unemployment that particularly affects the immigrant groups. When I think of Europe, I think of immigrants running down streets with their blanketful of goods for sale chased by policemen.

  • Austrian Anarchy||

    Wait, that is "Conservative" in British. Translates to "Democrat" in American. Labor translates to "CPUSA," but I repeat myself.

  • Hugh Akston||

    Someone ought to stockpile a warehouse full of toilet paper in Britain. Once the grocery queues start to wind around the block, you'll be able to make enough to retire somewhere nice.

  • Aresen||

    Hugh, remember that what the Brits do to 'traitors'.

    Do you have a brave heart?

  • Hugh Akston||

    Aresen, if we don't hang together, we shall surely have those little dingleberries hanging off of our parts.

  • Austrian Anarchy||

    Toilet paper might be a better choice than toothpaste.

  • Death Rock and Skull||

    I have no reason to believe that one who does not brush his teeth has any use for toilet paper, either.

  • Aresen||

    Not terribly surprising really, it is just typical "gimme" politics where people think they are entitled to what they want at the price they wish to pay.

    If any UK government should ever actually be so foolish as to implement these preferences, the Brits would be freezing and starving in the dark faster than you can say "Venezuela".

  • Winston||

    However, it is frightening that more than half of Conservatives polled agree

    Wasn't it Harold MacMillan who compared Thatcher's privatizations to selling off the family silver?

  • BardMetal||

    You ever wonder if Winston Churchill looks down on Great Britain, shakes his head, and wonders why he ever bothered?

  • BardMetal||

    I guess the same could be said about Washington or Jefferson looking at our country.

  • Rob||

    I don't think Churchill, Washington, Jefferson, or any other champion of liberty would ever look back with regret. They would be saddened with what people have done with their liberty, but they would never regret fighting to have those freedoms.

  • Winston||

    Churchill is responsible for a lot of the horrors the UK is going through. He was a part of the Liberal governments that helped create the welfare state and got the UK in WWI. Not to mention his actions as PM.

  • Aresen||

    This. Churchill was a protectionist, nationalist "Red" tory.

    The American right fell in love with him for his anti-Communism; they failed to note his other baggage.

  • Winston||

    He was also a Social Liberal who wanted to get rid of that anti-government classical liberalism.

  • Raven Nation||

    Churchill's enduring reputation was made by his opposition to Hitler. For that he deserves everyone's admiration and thanks for generations.

    BUT, apart from that he was a statist elitist. He would have spent millions of pounds trying to retain the empire after the war if he hadn't lost the '45 election.

  • Doktor Kapitalism||

    Gladstone, more likely.

  • Boisfeuras||

    GladstoneSalisbury, more likely.

  • Loki||

    The REALLY terrifying thought is that in 20-30 years (maybe less) you'l be able to see identical polling of American voters. They're just a few years ahead of us on the path full retard, but we'll get there too eventually.

  • Aresen||

    I suspect, if you phrased the question as "take control of" instead of using the bogeyword "nationalize", the numbers in the USA would not be too different today.

  • Paul.||

    We're firmly entrenched in the politics of free stuff. I don't see it getting better before it gets worse.

  • Raven Nation||

    And, it will be framed like the healthcare debate: "We are the only industrialized country where the government doesn't control X."

  • Jordan||

    Labour’s plan to freeze energy prices for 20 months

    Holy shit. So their solution to the brownouts and rate jumps caused by their green energy policies is price controls? What a shitty little island.

  • Austrian Anarchy||

    It is becoming Cuba, without the nice weather.

  • John||

    Such a shame. I love England and am a complete Anglophile. But the country seems to be gone.

  • Paul.||

    As someone who's an Anglophile by birth, not so much by choice, I am less disappoint, and more... "Saw this coming from a mile away".

  • John||

    I saw it coming too. But it doesn't make it any less sad.

  • The Immaculate Trouser||

    The real question is what happens when they go after the city of London and the bankers there? Thatcher pretty much revitalized the country by liberalizing banking laws; if they go after that sector of the economy the going will be very rough indeed.

  • Austrian Anarchy||

    Sealand!

  • angus||

    Define rough.

    The UK has spent the past 5 years socialising massive losses incurred by the City of London. The BoE were running QE at higher cost per taxpayer, than the Fed for a while. And the City of London is still holding a lot of Greek, Italian, French, Spanish bonds.

  • califernian||

    Sounds like America at this point.

  • John||

    Of course, Labor let in huge numbers of immigrants from Pakistan as a way to get voters. And unsurprisingly, the place now looks a lot like Pakistan.

  • Sudden||

    Yes, but the UKIP being the one party of consequence (not counting the BNP for obvious reasons) that would actually like to restrain that number still shows a remarkably high percentage of its voters as having gone full retard on economic issues.

  • Medical Physics Guy||

    Nah, the UK is pretty damn lily white. Parts of London, Birmingham, maybe Glasgow excepted. Scotland is like 96% white?

    Every European country did this. Sweden let in what, 500,000 Somalis? Expecting them to become model Swedes in a generation? And now Europe has a problem.

  • Kill all the economists||

    Indeed.

    Article not by Nick Gillespie, btw.

  • Calidissident||

    Yeah, John, Pakistanis, who make up less than 2% of the population, are the reason why the UK is a socialist basket case. That's one step above "JOOOOOOOOOS!"

  • Sudden||

    OR smoking hot latin broads.

  • Austrian Anarchy||

    Cubans probably have better teeth too.

  • John||

    That is a funny myth, but the truth behind it is worse. The Brits of the post war generation had bad teeth because the National Health Service strictly rationed Novocaine and NOx. So every British child who grew up in the 50s under the wonderful NHS unsurprisingly developed a terrifying fear of the dentist and thus ended up with bad teeth.

    It is a shame the Brits got the rep for having bad teeth rather than the truth that socialized medical care is cruel and inhuman being told.

  • Sudden||

    Fascinating. I intend to drop that one in conversation soon. You have a link source I can cite?

  • John||

    I read it in the Kieth Richards biography. He mentions it talking about his childhood. He remembers going to the dentist as a kid and getting literally two or three breaths of NOx. He said he was in his 40s before he would willingly see a dentist again and every kid who grew up in the era is the same.

  • ||

    But dentists don't give you nice, even teeth, orthodontists do. Without any drilling or pain, just with dorky braces.

  • John||

    If you never get your teeth cleaned, they are going to look nasty even if they are straight.

  • Redmanfms||

    If you never get your teeth cleaned, they are going to look nasty even if they are straight.

    Which is why, though it seems plausible, that I don't believe the "it was the NHS post-WWII." How many people actually need NOX or a numbing drug to have their teeth cleaned. I seriously doubt it's very many.

    They have bad teeth because culturally, going way back, having bad teeth wasn't a big deal. I still meet Brits my age (early 30s) who think Americans are "too fixated" on straight, clean teeth.

  • Austrian Anarchy||

    How many people actually need NOX or a numbing drug to have their teeth cleaned. I seriously doubt it's very many.

    I never have. Never had NOX for anything else either.

  • John||

    If you are terrified of the dentist you are not going for a cleaning eve it is painless.

  • Austrian Anarchy||

    I thought it was because Cuban Nationalist Healthcare included dental.

  • The Late P Brooks||

    The majority of the British public – including the majority of Conservative voters – support nationalising the energy and rail companies

    It worked so well, last time, until that evil sorceress hag Thatcher ruined everything; why the hell not?

  • Medical Physics Guy||

    You have just summarised the viewpoint of at least 3/4 of Scots

  • Paul.||

    Poll: Majority of Brits Want Rail, Energy Companies Nationalized

    And this is news why? this is England we're talking about. England. The country that yearns for the halcyon days of dreary block houses and pissed off factory workers who can't pay their rent.

  • The Rt. Hon. Serious Man, Visc||

    Do they not remember the 1970s?

  • Winston||

    If it wasn't for those Tory Wreckers Heath and Thatcher then Tony Benn, Michael Foot and Neil Kinnock would have turned the UK into a Worker's Paradise!

  • ||

    Does anyone remember the 70s? I know I don't. Oh wait, I was just a little kid. Maybe that's why.

  • Sudden||

    And if you were any older there would've been a severe drug problem that would've wiped out your memory as well.

  • ||

    That's why I don't remember the 90s.

  • John||

    That was probably a wise choice. You didn't miss anything worth remembering and you saved yourself a lot of hassles by being too stoned to notice or care what was happening.

    If we ended the drug war, I think I might follow that approach to pretty much every decade.

  • ||

    If only I couldn't remember anything about Friends. I guess I just wasn't stoned enough.

  • John||

    At least you blocked out Will and Grace.

  • ||

    WELL NOT ANY MORE JOHN.

    Deborah Messing was so cute before that show when she was on Ned and Stacey. Then she went Skelator.

  • The Rt. Hon. Serious Man, Visc||

    It's to be expected that people my age--born in the late 80s/early 90s and, in the UK, told that Thatcher was Satan incarnate by academics and teachers--would buy into this horseshit.

    But you'd think there'd still be plenty of people 45 or older that could tell them about how insane Labour and the unions were in the 60s and 70s. They were practically Leninist.

  • ||

    Remember, this is a poll. Polls are retarded bullshit that are affected dramatically by how questions are worded, who gets called to be asked the questions, and many other factors.

    It might be amusing to talk about it, but it doesn't mean shit.

  • The Immaculate Trouser||

  • Gran||

    It's to be expected that people my age--born in the late 80s/early 90s and, in the UK, told that Thatcher was Satan incarnate by academics and teachers--would buy into this horseshit.

    As far as "the people" I don't think so. The people have been told for the past five decades that they were evil for being White ans should support immigration. They don't support immigration.

  • Winston||

    So can we blame this on Campbell-Bannerman, Asquith and Lloyd-George? They helped create the welfare state, kowtowed to labour unions and got the UK into WWI. The latter two also helped put Labour into power in 1924. Churchill by the way served under those guys.

  • Rrabbit||

    The 1994 privatization of the UK railway network was carried out poorly.

    Railtrack got a monopoly on the tracks and the infrastructure, and then maximized short term profits by not maintaining the rails as needed. This led to poorly safety records and to massive delays when trains could not travel normal speed due to poor condition of rails.

    Passenger operations were franchised to individual private sector monopolies, again not much competition.

    Thus, this poll is not a surprise - British voters are simply not aware that a nationalized rail would be even worse.
    Meanwhile, the British taxpayer still massively subsidizes the railroad.

  • OldMexican||

    Re: Rrabbit,

    Meanwhile, the British taxpayer still massively subsidizes the railroad.


    That's because it wasn't really privatized, more like crony-sized.

  • Death Rock and Skull||

    They should have privatized it as in, new owner receives full title and gets to do as they fucking wish. Scrap it and sell the land, if that is the most profitable decision.

  • Libertarius||

    Seriously. I work on the railroad, and I can tell you there is no money in passenger rail (hence cronyfied Amtrak, which is run by the mob for all I know).

    The money in RRs is in freight--big, beautiful freight trains hauling oil, grain, cars, lumber, steel, intermodal, etc. And I don't see a whole lot of need for a huge Class 1 RR on the British Isles. Maybe one sleepy eastern US-style local could get it done for them, or I just don't know what the hell they actually produce over there.

  • OldMexican||

    However, it is frightening that more than half of Conservatives polled agree with Labour supporters on the issue


    Who told you that conservatives cannot be socialist?

    What neither of those two groups is, is libertarian.

    It turns out that over a third of the British public believe that the government should have the power to control the price of food


    And why not? The bloody buggers are ready for a good famine. There is nothing like experience to (re)learn a good lesson.

  • ||

    Yep. That bit about price controls is just stunning. Nuclear grade ignorance.

    Let them try it. Every time I have someone complain to me about how a teenager is giving them grief I tell them "Stop making it easy for them. They will only quit when they feel pain.". By pain I mean suffering the consequences of their own stupidity.

  • Rrabbit||

    Have they already sent some representatives to Venezuela to convince themselves how well price controls are working?

  • Sevo||

    It's a shame Castro's a walking corpse; the Cubans could ship him off to England.

  • AlmightyJB||

    How can I best profit from this information?

  • Almanian!||

    Avoid England?

  • AlmightyJB||

    Always

  • vivo||

    I would be tempted to trade future options on the LME or such, but then they might get pissed about trading when this goes south, and then nationalize or something. Shorting the LSE may be good long term, but you might sustain losses in the mean time. Perhaps you could buy options on futures on Brent Crude when this start to come down. I am not expert on futures, but the options on futures has gotten my attention as of late, and seems like a good way to play this. Perhaps consider land on the Channel Islands or Spain, as people try to get out of the UK. Other than that, I don't think the UK would put much of a hamper on the world price of any commodities. perhaps if you can find public transport co.s, you could short them.

  • Almanian!||

    Here's how...American....I am. I thought they already WERE nationalized.

    "What - behind the rabbit?"

    "It IZZZZZZ the rabbit!"

  • Gran||

    Wow. Reason actually admits it's ideas aren't that popular....in Britain. A good start at least.

    Libertarians proclaim themselves to be culturally liberal and fiscally conservative. The American people are fiscally left, they want to raise taxes on the rich and want higher tariffs, and socially conservative, they want less immigration and no affirmative action.

  • Andrew S.||

    Is this a new troll or sarcasm? I can't tell any longer.

  • ||

    It's probably 'Merkun. Ignore it.

  • MJGreen||

    I smell American.

  • Redmanfms||

    Muriken.

  • OldMexican||

    Re: Gran,

    Reason actually admits it's [SIC] ideas aren't that popular


    Well, the most immediate thing one can conclude is that the proper way to write the possessive form in the 3rd person singular when referring to a thing is NOT popular with YOU.

  • Habeas Dorkus||

    "Its" vs. "It's" ... I just don't even fucking care anymore.
    You win, retard. You win.

  • Gran||

    Do you think the government should have the power to control....public transportation fees?

    WTF?

  • AlmightyJB||

    Vapors

  • Habeas Dorkus||

    "And we shall never, never surrendah ..."

    Well, not right AWAY, Churchill.

  • angus||

    Depends on the state of the rail and energy sectors.

    When a state compliant regulatory license provides for certain profit, companies grow by milking subsidy after subsidy from the taxpayer. A culture of crony capitalism has evolved.

    Nationalisation is preferable, deregulation is preferable. Continuity is far and away the worst possible choice.

  • Libertarius||

    Nationalization is *far* and away the worst choice. Nationalize a railroad and there will be no trains, but the government will spend mountains of money not running them.

    Don't Europeans ever learn?

  • GroundTruth||

    I work with a number of Brits; nice people individually but all completely fracked up in the head about freedom in any form - economic or social. Having listened to their prattling ad nauseum, it sounds like it's mostly the result of indoctrination that American teachers' unions can only dream of. The quote that comes to mind is "well, most people that have been through education know that..." They makes it sound like a damn EST seminar or something.

  • Death Rock and Skull||

    Let's nationalize the private freight railroads in America, too. One less obstacle for Obamatrak!

  • Death Rock and Skull||

    "Labour claim the state should ‘reset’ the market"

    Does 'Labour' even understand what an actual reset of the market would look like?

  • JidaKida||

    There is a dude that seems to knwo whats going on.

    www.PrivacyRoad.tk

  • Pinky||

    "The government should have the power to control prices"

    "Prices should be left to those selling the goods or service to decide"

    The question fails; it erroneously presumes that the alternative to government control is that those who sell goods and services determine price.

  • Lyle||

    They celebrated the NHS at the Opening Ceremonies of the Olympics for Christ's sake.

    Fuck the lobsterbacks. Let'm rot!

  • Libertarius||

    That was *really* bad. Hospital beds on ice? Turn your country into a giant government hospital where everyone just sits around dying, sounds grrrreeaaat.

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