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Rover’s Crisis

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Warning: This post was published more than 11 years ago.

I keep old posts on the site because sometimes it's interesting to read old content. Not everything that is old is bad. Also, I think people might be interested to track how my views have changed over time: for example, how my strident teenage views have mellowed and matured!

But given the age of this post, please bear in mind:

  • My views might have changed in the 11 years since I wrote this post.
  • This post might use language in ways which I would now consider inappropriate or offensive.
  • Factual information might be outdated.
  • Links might be broken; embedded material might not appear properly.

Many thanks for your understanding.

The whole Rover crisis (latest here) will doubtless play a major role in the upcoming election for the marginal seats surrounding Longbridge, and so the ‘B’ team (Brown and Blair) will doubtless be doing their best to help people to keep their jobs.

From what I’ve seen thus far of their handling of this crisis, though, they’ve bungled it. Badly. From the moment Patricia Hewitt announced that the company had called in the administrators when, in fact, they hadn’t, it was obvious that the government wouldn’t handle this whole crisis well. As far as I can see, this government has never been terribly good in a crisis – it’s suffered a battering through fuel protests, handled foot-and-mouth frankly terribly, invaded countries under false pretences, and the PM has stayed on his hols whilst tens of thousands are dying in the biggest tsunami in living history. And yet people still rate him as good in a tough spot. I would suggest that this is more because he is in power than because of anything he’s actually done.

Anyway, back to matters at hand. I’m not entirely sure on what I see as the ‘right’ course of action in this situation: Should Rover be supported with tax-payers money? Probably not. But should thousands be left jobless because of a government’s wish not to get involved? Probably not. And would Tony and Co. suffer from not being seen to be helping? You bet. So what’s the right course of action? Beats me.

I’d like to think I’d stick to my principles, and let the people be made jobless, rather than electioneering. That might seem a little under-compassionate for the families who would suffer, but governments can’t be bowing to companies to avoid job losses, or we’re no longer living in a democracy. Why should Rover get handouts just because the company is threatened with closure? Would other companies then get handouts if they announce they’re to up and leave to China? It’s a bad precedent to set.

That’s the position I’d like to take, but I think it would be very difficult. The government will be criticised for whatever it does in this situation, so I think it’s probably best to just leave them to find a way through this, and live with the outcome. I’ve said what I felt needed to be said, and unless they do something spectacularly stupid, I won’t be posting any criticism of their actions on this in future.

Well, actually, knowing me, I almost certainly will, but hey-ho, I can do that, because I’m not in government… and therefore I’m in a much easier position than them!

This 488th post was filed under: Election 2005, News and Comment.






More posts worth reading

What I’ve been reading this month (published 4th March 2017)

What I’ve been reading this month (published 6th February 2017)

What I’ve been reading this month (published 31st December 2016)

Appearing on Newsnight (published 25th January 2005)

Jack Bauer syndrome (published 30th August 2005)

London’s Olympic dream in tatters (published 30th January 2005)

Review: Cheats, Choices and Dumbing Down by Jerry Jarvis (published 22nd August 2012)


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