Unplugging London’s Tubes

What sits at the choke point of almost every major metropolitan area of over one million residents?  What is able to lay waste the daily orderly functions of business and everyday life in these densely populated urban areas?

Unfortunately, it is usually a very, very small group of people.  And in the instance of the current question, the ratio of the chokers to the chokees is:  1 to 37,500.  This is real power.

On Sunday night, 200 maintenance staff on two major underground lines – the Jubilee and Northern – walked out over a dispute over raises. (sic)

Separately, about 10,000 staff of the Rail Maritime and Transport union, or RMT, and the Transport Salaried Staffs Association, or TSSA, were set to walk out for 24 hours starting Monday afternoon to protest the termination of 800 jobs.  Drivers, signalers and station staff joined them Monday night.[i]

With unemployment being such a problem both here and in Europe, it seems like tons of people would love to get a job working for London’s transport systems.

This strike is the fourth expected to shut down large parts of the Tube network since 2002.

The most recent action, in June of last year, lasted two days and resulted in significant disruptions on 10 of the 11 Tube lines.[ii]

Maybe a lot of new employees are the only thing that could prevent the frequent chokings of city with a population of over 7 million people.

With over 3.5 million commuters using the tube network each day, the strike is expected to cost London an estimated £48 million ($62 million) in lost productivity each day, according to Colin Stanbridge of the London Chamber of Commerce and Industry.[iii]

Why do they put up with this?  There should be more competition for these jobs and then there would be happier workers who were much more appreciative of having a good place to work.  And a more content workforce would lead to more productivity.  And, thereafter, no expensive disruptions of daily life would occur in London.

How is it that such a small group of people can plug the tubes of London, create general chaos and still get away with it again and again?  Why are its citizens subject to periodic sieges?

For a most incisive answer to this questions, please see Chapter 13 (“The Only Place that Democrats want to Drill for Oil”) of The Simple Guide:  How Liberalism, A Euphemism for Socialism, Destroys Peoples and Nations.  Yes it will answer the questions.

[i] Espinoza, Javier.  “Londoners Cope with Transport Disruptions.”  The Wall Street Journal.  7 September 2010.  Web.  8 September 2010.  <http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424052748703713504575475514033471540.html>.

[ii] Id.

[iii] Id.

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