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Industry Against An Evil Tax. BBC readers not sure…

I have mentioned the iniquity of APD (air passenger duty) before

This is excellent news and long overdue.

But the BBC comments are a cracker…

No one forces you to fly, so stop moaning and pay up, stay in the Uk or travel by road, rail or ferry.

I’ve choosen to stay in the UK for holidays for the last 2 years and forgo the ‘being treated like cattle’ on the plane or like a ‘terrorist’ at the airport and I’ve enjoyed every minute of every holiday, whether it be to Derbyshire, Manchester or Scotland.

- Anthony Rat

Sounds a barrel of laughs! Maybe it’s just me living in the vicinity of Manchester (and within very easy access of the Derbyshire peaks) but it doesn’t exactly seem a holiday as such. And quite frankly my last two foreign jaunts were to Turkey and Poland so please, please explain to me how they could have been easily accessible by road or rail (not to mention that Polish railways are dreadful and haunted by the spirit of Uncle Joe). I might be reading too much into that comment but it does seem to suggest that Mr Rat seems to think air travel is in principle worse in some sense than surface travel. Now far be it from me to point out the bleeding obvious but the airline game runs on very tight margins and every plane I’ve been on in recent years has been pretty (or entirely) full so in terms of the dreaded CO2 and all I very much doubt my wife and I could have driven (plus a ferry or the tunnel) to Istanbul more efficiently. Anyway seeing as I live in the North West of England where it rains all the time I can’t see a trip to Scotland being much of a morale boost!

keep the taxes! really cheap air fare is environmentally irresponsible anyway!

family of six? why not try a nice two week holiday to Orkney (i know a gorgeous self catered house up there which sleeps 9 for significantly less than £400 a week!)

or if the Scottish Isles don’t appeal there are always the classic options of Brighton, Blackpool and Wales. Plus, this way you support the UK economy!

- MayaGold

Two weeks in the Orkneys. There is the cube-root of bugger-all up there. My uncle once lived there in a futile attempt to evade justice. Oddly enough his nemesis in the shape of DS Donnelly of the Liverpool Serious Fraud Office arrived there by plane because surface is a pain. I mention this because APD is particularly severe for UK internal flights (essentially they tax you for each landing and take-off in the UK). So APD really doesn’t help the UK economy. Now you might be thinking internal flights in this country are silly and this is often the case apart from when they aren’t. If my co-conspirator RAB decided on “a nice two week holiday to Orkney” he’d undoubtedly fly because it’s a hell of a drive from Bristol where he lives. Or what about a Londoner who fancies a break in Belfast? But knowing RAB he’s much more likely to go to Sri Lanka or Cyprus because he’s a very bad man. As to the suggestion of Blackpool… Have you seen Blackpool recently? It’s like Dante’s Inferno. It is a dreadful place full of pissed Scousers having fights. Or you can see various variety acts at the end of the pier who you thought were dead. Like The Krankies.

So the airlines are against the tax – bearing in mind we do not levy VAT on air travel where should the government get their money out of this industry.

As ever the airlines think it is a god given right for people to fly no it is a luxury and as such we should remove APD and levy 20% VAT on the flights.

- quicksesh

That is a vile comment. It starts by assuming there is a God given right for government to get money out of flying. It goes on to suggest nearly 108 years after Kill Devil Hills that flying is a luxury! Not on WizzAir from Liverpool to Katowice it isn’t! If civilization has taught us anything (and quicksesh was clearly not at this lesson) it is that ordinary people can now live in ways that great sultans or emperors or generalized potentates of yore could not even dream of. That is the point. It’s a sort of diffuse version of the Nietzschean will to power. quicksesh’s vision (if I may call it so) is pathetic. Anyway of course the airlines are against this! They’d be failing their share-holders if they weren’t. I mean when was the last time you saw a turkey carrying home a Christmas tree?

It is fortunate that Orv and Will are dead because that comment would have killed them. They saw a brighter future as did so many others whose memory we betray by this new cult miserableness.

13 Comments

  1. Nen of yer pish noo says:

    Two weeks in the Orkneys. There is the cube-root of bugger-all up there.

    I like living here because lots of peeps elsewhere see it as so………. :-) . But it is difficult and time-consuming to get anywhere else, I admit. And APD is an absolute bastard.

  2. Lynne says:

    The comments are obviously written by nullthink numbskulls who breathe in deeply every time the Beeboid bumblefucks fart out their Bloody Stupid Johnson inspired take on AGW climate change climate disruption ishoos.

  3. John Galt says:

    For families looking to go long haul and living North of the Midlands, it can be cheaper to fly to Amsterdam on a EastJet or Ryanair and then get a connection from there to destinations in Far East or Caribean than trogging down to London and paying several hundred quid extra for the cube root of fuck all.

    The Netherlands used to have APD, but were smart enough to realise that the amount of money that they were making through the tax was less than the losses it forced upon their economy.

    If the politicians want to stop ‘the plebs’ from flying then APD is not going to hack it, it’s just going to screw up the economy. They would be better off growing a pair and introducing a personal carbon tax.

    Then at least I could use my Irish Passport and fucking avoid it rather than being rimmed by Gideon Osbourn every time I wish to leave the Septic Isle. It’s a good job I don’t live in the UK anymore.

    Politicians = Cunts!

  4. dfwmtx says:

    The more things change, the more they stay the same. There’s an aspect of this new enviromentalism which sends us back to the dark days in Christendom when sackcloth and ashes were popular fashion. “You there, prole, do without this vacation to foreign lands, for thy winged chariot spews too much carbon. For the planet, thou must stay close to home in a land familiar to thine own, and while thy are at it, make sure you don’t turn the heat up.” In the meantime, the high druidic priests of the enviromental movement each fly to paradise locations, each in their own personal jet, each riding around in their own personal SUV (because as we all know big black SUVs are needed to keep the pampered princeling protestors of petrochemicals safe from proles) all so they can complain that modern society is spewing too much carbon and we need to cut back on our emmissions and go back to the days of slave labor because it was a cheap and renewable source of green energy.

    I expect at some point some watermelon neo-Druid is going to call for a bonfire of the new vanities, and our big flatscreen TVs, SUVs, and aeroplanes will be pushed into the pyre. And those who protest will be pushed in next. For the great glory of Gaia.

  5. JimS says:

    This is rather like the comments to Radio 2′s Jeremy Vine Show re. smoking in cars that it should be made illegal BECAUSE it already was illegal to not wear a seat belt and illegal to use a mobile phone.

    And then there were the Welsh turkeys that voted to allow the Welsh Assembly to produce more legislation…

  6. Kevin B says:

    There’s also the fact that this cheap airline lark was once something we Brits were quite good at. You know, we used to bring in a bit of money doing it. Can’t have that.

    Next thing you know they’ll bring in some tax that will drive out all our financial business in case we make any money out of that.

    What? They’ve got one lined up all ready? The deuce you say.

  7. NickM says:

    John,
    Exactly. I’m from Gateshead originally and Schipol was my hub. Now living on the ‘skirts of Manc-land…

    dfwmtx,
    Shall I point out an inconvenient truth? My 32″ Samsung panel TV uses less juice than the (much smaller) CRT it replaced. Oh, and it uses an almost unmeasurably small amount when left on the great evil of stand-by.

  8. dfwmtx says:

    NickM, doesn’t matter if flatscreens use less juice than CRTs. Buying flatscreens, whether LCD or plasma, is one of the new 7 Deadly Sins. Specifically, Consumerism (a mix of the old outdated sins of Lust, Greed, and Gluttony), which threatens to steal all Mama Gaia’s precious Resources which She should keep to Herself and in pristine conditions. Your TV is also bad because you’re being brainwashed by anything you watch, and you’re a good little sheeple for watching any form of entertainment which is not politicized towards liberalism/progressivism/enviromentalism/ etc-ism.
    However, you may be able to absolve yourself of your sins by-
    A- pointing out it’s a modest 32″ version, not a big-screen.
    B- always keep your TV tuned to CurrentTV, or some documentry lamenting about climate change. Remember, do not watch TV to entertain yourself, otherwise it’s bad and brainwashing. Only watch TV which agrees with the sentiments of our watermelon overlords. Then your waste of Precious Natural Resources is ok, because you’re brainwashing….er, educating yourself regarding the issues.
    or C, which is what our celebs and politicians do, which is to donate lots of money to an org that proports to help the environment. Unfortunately, you’d not a celebrity, so you can’t do D, which is to speak out loudly and publically in favor of the new enviromentally-inspired asetisicsm then fly back to your large home and bask in how great you are (aka: the Algore option).

  9. NickM says:

    dfwmtx,

    ” Your TV is also bad because you’re being brainwashed by anything you watch, and you’re a good little sheeple for watching any form of entertainment which is not politicized towards liberalism/progressivism/enviromentalism/ etc-ism.”

    Er… But most of it is. I mean this article was cribbed from the BBC website!

    Anyway, I’m currently watching over the top of this laptop “Great Tank Battles” on Military History. Now those Panzer IVs don’t get good mileage do they.

    Anyway, I ought to be a celebrity.

  10. Talwin says:

    I wish I could think of something pithy or profound to say about Mr Rat but, honestly, I can’t get beyond ‘complete tosser’.

    Family of six holidaying in the Orkneys? I’ve been twice, by van (diving Scapa Flow, you see), and my recollection is that it took 9 hours to drive from Lancashire to Scrabster for the ferry. So let’s hope that this particular family of six doesn’t live much farther south than NW England because otherwise there’ll be an awful fucking lot of ‘are we there yet?’ Then there’s the joy of crossing the Pentland Firth, one of the roughest pieces of briney around the UK. On one of my trips, a guy who is a boat handler and RYA instructor was barfing for nearly two hours, I kid you not. That’d be fun for the kids: try and get them interested in looking at the Old Man of Hoy as you pass by with all that going on. At the Stromness pub I stayed in, I was told that the Orkney school kids had a song called ‘The Roly-Poly Ola’ (from the name of the then P&O ferry ‘St Ola’). ‘Nuff said.

    Blackpool?. Couldn’t agree more Nick. Being retired, Mrs Talwin & I often do lunch out. After several years away, we did the short drive (for us) to Blackpool, walked round trying to find somewhere looking even half-decent (nice snack, not Michelin starred), gave up and did one to Southport. I say this more in sorrow than anger: I was born in Blackpool and lived there for my first 25 years. It’s now an unmitigated dump (and gives a clue as to the expectations, horizons, and perhaps lifestyle) of ‘MayaGold’.

  11. Barman says:

    Or you can see various variety acts at the end of the pier who you thought were dead. Like The Krankies.

    I presume you meant hoped were dead?

  12. RAB says:

    Your evil co-conspiritor here…

    Funnily enough The wife and I and the bonkers dog did use road and ferry to get to our two holiday destinations this year.

    We spent a week in a cottage in Narberth in West Wales for a week, but that’s only two and a half hours drive away from Bristol, practically our backyard and had a brilliant time.

    Then in September we went to Brittany for a couple of weeks. The travelling time was about 14 hours all told with the overnight ferry, way more time than I’d wish to spend reaching my destination even if it was California or Sri Lanka, but a damn sight more comfortable than airplanes and airports. If we hadn’t had the bonkers dog with us, we would never have contemplated it, but ferries are a comfortable way to travel (unless the sea is rough, which it was on the way back). No hassle boarding apart from queuing up to get the car aboard, then you’re free to had a drink or three, pop out and have a fag and watch the ocean wooshing by. But if the idiot Anthony Rat thinks it’s cheap or saving the planet he’s completely barmy.

    The Ferry cost about £500, and the rented cottage near Carhaix another £500, what with all the petrol and the food and drink, well it was quite expensive for a fortnight, but bloody enjoyable, especially having the dog with us. She was the main reason we did this holiday in the first place.

    Now last year and the year before, we went to Crete and Turkey respectively. An all inclusive 2 weeks staying at top hotels. Cost about £1400, but the food and drink was superb and available at pretty much any hour of the day or night. Guaranteed sunshine etc. The paragliding and the car hire were extra of course, but wonderful! It just depends on the holiday you want isn’t it?

    Next year? Who knows, but if I fly I fly, and can afford, but resent, the tax that doesn’t solve any of our Nation’s fiscal problems and doesn’t save the Planet either. What pisses me off is that is seems to be a tax on the ordinary folk enjoying themselves and spending a bit of money in foreign climes that can well do with the money. Our Elite really don’t like us plebs getting about an mixing with the natives, we might start comparing notes ;-)

  13. NickM says:

    RAB,
    Your final paragraph says it all really.

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