Contents predators possessing the speed & power of a Bengal Tiger. In fact, large numbers of Bengal

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  • Contents:

    1: Introduction............................................ 2: Overview................................................ 3: Basic Policy Proposal............................ 4: Costings & Feasibility........................... 5: Legacy Costs/Benefits........................... 6: Pro Rail Addenda................................... 7: Impact Concerns.................................... 8: Conclusions & Further Analysis............

    Appendix 1: The Tinfoil Hat Thinktank

    Appendix 2: Casting & Direction of Section 5

    Appendix 3: Why it is suggested to be named the Barbara Castle Memorial Waterway

    The Footnotes

  • 1: Introduction*

    This document is a preliminary sketch (1:1) of the LS1 idea which is to be offered to the OMRLP conference for consideration of being a Loony Policy worthy of adoption in the next manifesto(1:2). This initial incarnation is written in the hope of encouraging the participation & ideas of:

    Official Monster Raving Loony Party Members(1:3) Rebelling Members of Parliament(1:4) & Political Luminaries(1:4a) Concerned Individuals(1:5) Unconcerned Multividuals(1:6) Any right or wrong thinking citizen of earth(1:7)

    Any reader of this document who would wish their opinion to be included in the final draft has only to submit it to ( to have inclusion & accreditation(1:8).

    Readers should also note this first rendering of the proposal is almost exclusively Horatian Satire (ie. Silly), the question whose answers will make the second version far more Juvenalian Satire (ie. contemptuous) is : CUI BONO? For whose benefit? Who are the rats & fat cats that will gain by the nations loss? If you know, please help.

    *Each section's footnotes indexed (section:note) ie (1:1) is the first entry on the Introduction section.

  • 2: Overview

    The HS2 proposal, as it stands(2:1), is nothing short of a direct challenge by the major political parties to make a massive land grab on firmly held Loony party political territory. The inherent lunacy of the present HS2 proposal should strike fear into the heart of every Loony in the UK. If ostensibly rational mainstream politicians are making the Loony Party look like the sensible option, it would appear that the Loonies will have to up their game.

    As bleak as this turn of events undoubtedly is(2:2), lessons can be learned from groups who have resoundingly confounded the schemes of the government in the last 12

  • months. Amongst the most successful of these has been good old Brock the Badger & his ursine associates. Few of us possess their upper body strength(2:3) & mining tenacity but the moving of goalposts may not still elude us. We have but to articulate their cunning by devising a policy which to the untrained eye may appear much sillier on first reading but which slow burns like a subterranean fire in a coal mine.

    We could shift the goal posts by simply envisaging the opposite of the High Speed 2(2:4). The Low Speed 1 is almost too easy. Instead of providing a scarce few points of egress, providing innumerable stopping points. Replacing a terrible eyesore(2:4) with a beauty spot the length of the realm. Choosing not to destroy our environment but to allow its development.

  • 3: Basic Policy Proposal

    The Low Speed 1 is a proposed alternative to the High Speed 2. It is to be a network of wide-beam canals threading together the major rivers, cities & sites of national pride (as geography allows), connecting & reaffirming the cultural bonds & shared heritage of England, Wales & Scotland(3:1).

    The LS1 is envisaged as a 2 metre deep trough(3:2) of 30 metres width with 5 metres as lock restriction. This has a 'back of the fag packet' costing of £42,000 per 100 metres(3:3). The lining of this artery will be constructed of material beneficial to the propagation of wildlife(3:4).

    The final proposed route will be determined by popular demand. Rather than NIMBYs shunning unpopular concepts such as HS2, the LS1's route will be drawn to (Would Love It At The Foot OF My Patch) WLIATFOMPs(3:5).

    The spoil from the LS1 would be used for the construction of a series of grass banked amphitheatres. These would be evenly spaced throughout the nation to provide a social space for public celebration in the years which the Glastonbury Festival is not held(3:6).

    But mainly, who among us does not hold the ember of a coal of burning pride which is set to flare at the thought of belonging to a nation so bold as to propose the 'Inland Sea'. Not only propose it, but brave enough to dig it(3:7)

  • 4: Costings & Feasibility

    Let us start with feasibility(4:1). If we were to ask bookmakers(4:2) what odds are there for either of two projects to fail. One which utilises two hundred year old technology which has already been used in the British Isles. Or a second project using high technology which is in the development stage. And then ask the bookmakers what are the odds of each project coming in on the original costing target.

    The Lord Mayor of London, the inestimable Boris Johnson has suggested (& I paraphrase here) that 'the current HS2 costing is the very fabric of the quintessence of fluffy fanciful thought'(4:3).

    If the costing of the HS2 is fanciful in the extreme, it begs that the costing of the LS1 should take that sush as we have had a duellist’s gloved struck across our open cheek. I think we could MAKE money digging it(4:4).

    We should do all the digging by hand. Shovels, spades, picks, mattocks & barrows. The extra spice is we charge people to dig at our municipal outdoor gymnasium. Theme a series of Victorian gym gear & instead of all that grunt & sweat going to waste(4:5), it can be building one of the new wonders of the modern age.

    The LS1 will make the nation fit, the HS2 will make the solicitors fat(4:6).

  • 5: Legacy Costs/Benefits

    It can be but one question(5:1).

    In a hundred years, what have we bequeathed to those who follow us?

    LS1 – a fabulous white elephant which meanders through the canvas of this sceptred isle, a benefit to each and every man & beast, a shield & spear to combat floods & an aspirational world tourist destination.


    HS2 – a bleak scar, nature's enemy, with a rapacious greed, intermittently screaming through the countryside tearing communities apart as their ears ring to a legion of avoidable poor decisions.

  • 6: Pro Rail Addenda

    If we're throwing money around for rail infrastructure & not upgrading existing badly underfunded rolling stock(6:1),then lets think back to when this island ruled the rails. Each existing train to have Thomas the Tank Engine style faces moulded onto the front of them. Amongst the Rev Awdry's delightful characters there would be a range of faces of unpopular politicians(6:1a). There would be notification of the arrival of these trains so the local populations can throw faeces(6:2) at the faces as they go by. Or, eggs maybe(6:3).

    We could possibly clear some space on the roads by building rail yards for moving non-perishable goods more than 75 miles. This is undoubtedly a brilliant idea as it propounds the paradigm proposed by Kevin Costner in his seminal work 'Field of Dreams'(6:4). Ie 'Build it and they will come'.

    We could also lower our collective aspirations (6:5)& look to successful low speed, underfunded networks. How much more business does the Indian rail network do than ours? And if made up facts turn out to be miraculously true, I'm pretty sure much of the track was laid before Mohandas Ghandi swapped his british army boots for flipflops(6:6). Now I'm not suggesting we ape our previous age of systematic military exploitation of foreign nations but rather to look to the railway networks we left amongst the wreckage once we had we stripped them of their wealth & heritage.

  • 7: Impact Concerns

    To try and conceive the impact concerns of the HS2 would be as pointless as to try & count tears in rain, when a lot of very sensitive people are watching something very sad in very rainy conditions(7:1).

    The impact concerns of the LS1 are a very different kettle of fish. In fact they would be more like a kindle of kittens(7:2) in a cosy cot, nothing fishy nor relating to the confinement thereof. The concerns regard success rather failure.

    The first positive concern of the LS1 revolves around the explosion in the native flora & fauna in the immediate locales through which it passes. The delightful hedgehogs, water voles & otters may well be but the fore guard to an army of elk, aurocks & mammoth. These super herbivores are likely to play havoc with the Gardener's Question Time devotees(7:3) who are our present protectors of threatened native species.

  • The solution would be to introduce a community of predators possessing the speed & power of a Bengal Tiger. In fact, large numbers of Bengal Tigers(7:4). This would have the added advantage of being able to write 'Here be Tygers'(7:5) on maps.

    The other problem would be the wealth generated by the LS1 would attract development & new buildings which are often not very nice to look at(7:6). 8: Conclusions & Further Analysis

    Basic conclusion : The HS2 is so