Monday, May 15, 2006

More Public Transport Chaos

Why do we have a public transport service? Is it to help the public? To transport them to their destination in a timely and efficient manner? To serve the taxpayer that foots the bill and pays over the odds in fares? Nope. In Ireland public transport exists only to provide employment and a pay packet to a bunch of people who don't know the meaning of the word service.

After years of running their existing fleet of trains into the ground and working day and night to bring our rail network right up to 1940s standard (1944 to be exact, in Germany, after a bombing run by the US Air Force) CIE finally introduced some trains suitable for transporting people instead of freight and on the first day the bloody train drivers take advantage and go on strike.

Officially this evening they claim the strike is because of inadequate training but this morning it was supposed to be about money. They know they can cause chaos and they will take maximum advantage of their monopoly.

"Inadequate training". Pah, they aren't driving steam locomotives anymore. A modern train is pretty much Push button to go, Push button to stop. In between keep an eye out for cows and leaves on the track. If I had my way they would all be fired and a new crew trained up, perhaps we could get some helper monkeys to press the buttons and a seeing-eye dog to watch the line ahead. Though then the taxpayer would have to pay for their dole, but somehow that seems more palatable to me. Hell, maybe we could adapt those electronic voting machines to start and stop trains and the could solve two problems at the same time.

Update 18 May: The dispute was resolved after 7 hours of talks. The problem is whats not being said
Neither side is saying what, if anything, has been agreed in relation to pay or working conditions.
My guess is someone is singing "Money, Money, Money, It's a Train Man's World."

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