Coffee House

Ed warns energy firms: don’t reinforce perception you are the problem

25 September 2013

25 September 2013

Following the announcement of his plan to tackle rising energy prices — and the accompanying backlash — Ed Miliband has fired a warning shot at energy providers this morning, suggesting unless they get on board with his proposals, they will be seen as part of the problem, not the solution, by their customers.

Here is the full text of his letter:

‘In recent years we have discussed the need to rebuild public trust in the energy market many times. I think we all agree on the importance of that objective if we are to build a market that both delivers for consumers and underpins the investment in future clean energy capacity that we all want to see.

‘Our intention is to now reset the market that has consistently failed to secure the confidence of the public or the investment Britain needs. Doing that requires two steps. First, it means legislating to build competition and transparency into the market, with a trusted regulator standing behind the system. Second, it means ensuring that in the time it takes to put a new system in place, up to the start of 2017, we ensure the prices paid by consumers do not rise.

‘A fairer market for consumers must be matched by a better deal for investors. So we have also committed to set a 2030 power sector decarbonisation target; hold to the system of contract for difference in the Energy Bill; create an Energy Security Board with responsibility for identifying our energy needs and providing a clear framework to deliver this; and give the Green Investment Bank borrowing powers to support investment.

‘We believe that this framework will create certainty and attract the range of domestic and international investors we need in the years ahead.

‘I appreciate that you will not welcome all aspects of this package. But it is my firm view that without resetting the market we are not going to see the public consent that is required to underpin the scale of taxpayer backed guarantees for which you have argued.

‘I am prepared to make the case for sharing the risks of such investment, but that must be against the backdrop of a market that customers believe works for them.

‘You and I know that the public have lost faith in this market. There is a crisis of confidence. We face a stark choice. We can work together on the basis of this price freeze to make the market work in the future. Or you can reinforce in the public mind that you are part of the problem not the solution.

‘This is a genuine opportunity to reset the energy market in the interest of consumers and investors. Caroline Flint and I stand ready to work with you on these proposals in the months ahead. I look forward to continuing to discuss them with you.


More Spectator for less. Subscribe and receive 12 issues delivered for just £12, with full web and app access. Join us.

Show comments
  • Gary Wintle

    Steve Bell’s cartoon in the Guardian sums up the hypocrisy of the right beautifully:

    http://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/cartoon/2013/sep/25/steve-bell-fat-cats-firefighters

    Really, these energy companies are a cartel who are sucking money out of the economy and offering poor value for money. One of said energy companies is owned by the French government, and much like the German rail companies, is fleecing British people to fund foreign services, of no benefit to the public.

    The energy companies, like the incompetent bus and rail “providers”, are essentially corporate welfare prarasites; foreign entities sponging off the British people.

  • itdoesntaddup

    Ed is the problem

    Mandelson has spotted it, and said so.

    http://www.theguardian.com/politics/2013/sep/25/peter-mandelson-ed-miliband-energy-plan

    • Eddie

      Don’t forget that Mandy wanted David Millipede as leader – and even manoeuvred his god son (his former boyfriend’s son) into position (so to speak…) in camp David – he expected to have great influence at the highest levels. He hasn’t. No wonder he’s catty! Miaow!
      As for Wooden Ed’s free energy giveaway – well, it’s just a bribe to try and get votes, as is offering free childcare and granny leave to well-off parents who neither need nor deserve it.
      Observing the mass bribery that all parties engage in makes me wish we had a dictatorship – at least then the government could act for the long-term future of this country, and not short term vote-buying through daft and damaging policies like this, and especially the obsession all politicians have with making already inflated house prices rise even further to make the idiot British public feel happy and rich, and so vote for them. PAH!

  • Smithersjones2013

    Will the last one out blow out the candles coz Miliband is already taking care of the lights (and the cookers and central heating)….

  • Bluesman_1

    Three words:

    Climate. Change. Act.

  • rtj1211

    Tests for whether electricity companies are fleecing the customer:

    1. What is their return on capital employed? Is it less than 5%?? If so, they are not fleecing the customer.
    2. What is the ratio of capital investment to dividends paid?? IF it is less than 0.5, then profiteering is taking place. If it is > 2.0, then the companies are doing their duty.

    My experience of analysing ‘highly profitable’ industries is that banks are usually doing too well, oil companies only earn an average ROCE despite billions in profits. I’ve not analysed energy companies, but I read this morning that the ROCE for gas companies was less than that of Tescos.

    It’s not acceptable for government to play on emotions to take inappropriate financial decisions.

    • Tom Tom

      ROCE is total drivel if you do not have full transparency in the costs. You seem to have a facile grasp of Hollywood Accounting

    • Gary Wintle

      I hope you enjoy paying tax to foreign governments, because that is what you are doing when you pay your energy bills and rail fares.
      Most of the energy and transport companies are OWNED BY FOREIGN GOVERNMENTS. Let me emphasize this for the more slow-witted, FOREIGN GOVERNMENTS, STATE ENTITIES, they are NOT private companies, their fees are thus, in reality, TAXES.
      TAXES, imposed by FOREIGN GOVERNMENTS, upon the British people.

  • sarah_13

    …Caroline Flint, the woman who didn’t bother to read the Lisbon treaty…the shameless arrogance and opportunism of Miliband is a disgrace. I hope ukippers realise what we’re in for if they split the right vote. The last labour government will pale in comparison to the soviet style economic ineptitude we will see from this academic who loves the sound of his own voice, and writing theoretical papers and speeches till the cows come home. We can’t let Miliband and mcluskey finally destroy this country.

  • dalai guevara

    Who cares what Miliband thinks? He’s not in power now.
    Yet, Centrica confirm they will raise energy prices, as last year, and the
    year before, and the year before that, by quadruple inflation.

    Britain has an energy sector ownership problem.
    Our energy market is owned by the Germans, the French nation state, the Norwegian nation state, and the Russian nation state.

    These nations run a different model at home. They own their own
    markets. This is the bitter truth the British socialist haters need to
    face.
    The socialists own their AND our market.

  • Eddie

    I once spent 2 hellish months working for an electricity/gas company. It used to be British but was then bought by a US company that was bought by a French one – something they kept quiet, as do British Gas, also owned by foreigners.

    In fact, ALL energy companies are owned by non-British companies – so why on earth should they care if they overcharge us and treat us like dirt?

    It is absurd that the more power you use (however wastefully) the less you pay, for a start – that means the poorest pay more, esp with rip-off cards and keys (which charge many times the standard rates).

    We should have laws – like France and the USA – to stop foreigners taking over such important companies in the power sector. Ditto for other areas – transport perhaps, and companies of national cultural importance (Cadburys).

    The USA stopped Cadburys taking over Hersheys, and stopped Arabs owning their port authority companies, so it really is less free market than it claims. The French stopped Danone being taken over by foreigners – so these laws are legal in the EU. Why don’t we do the same?

    We Brits as always are left holding the fuzzy end of the lollipop – look at what a mess the Spanish have left at Cardiff airport (and the blackmail they then try on the government). Time for us to own our own companies again – force the foreign energy company owners to sell up to British buyers.

    • ButcombeMan

      “ALL energy companies are owned by non-British companies – so why on
      earth should they care if they overcharge us and treat us like dirt?”

      It is in my view a fiction to pretend that British Companies (whatever that means for large international players) always do care if they overcharge us.

      Tesco is or has been, “post code pricing” for fuel.

      British are they?

      ASDA are not. (British or Post Code pricing)

      • Eddie

        True – and we British are so unpatriotic, unlike the French, Italians etc. who happily pay more for their nation’s products (eg cars). They protect their own; we Brits do not – cf our habit of employing foreign nationals over Brits, and even giving the contracts for our trains and state-owned companies’ needs to foreign companies. That outsourcing to the cheapest foreign bidder does not take into account the huge longterm cost that has to be paid by the taxpayer for areas devastated because factories close. Of course British companies should supply trains to the UK network; of course our companies should supply the army, navy and air force!
        But really, a company being foreign owned DOES make a difference. Would the Spaniards have run Cardiff airport into the ground if it had been their local airport? They did that to blackmail the Welsh government to buy it back, giving them a nice profit – and it worked.
        By the way, I would never shop at ASDA – the way Wallmart exploits its staff is nothing less than fascistic.

  • Peter Stroud

    Written as if he is already Prime Minister: what a confounded cheek.

    • HookesLaw

      Its a cats cradle of socialist retoric.

    • realfish

      Evidence that Labour has yet another fantasist as its ‘leader’ (as he demands to be known).

      • HJ777

        We didn’t need more evidence.

        It had already been proven beyond reasonable doubt.

    • sarah_13

      He is a very dangerous, arrogance fool impervious to reality. I’m quite sick of the labour party’s entitled cheek. He is a nasty piece of work schooled in the Gordon brown tactics of government.

  • Swiss Bob

    Genius. Moron creates problem, moron comes up with moronic solution, morons cheer.

    • sarah_13

      You are absolutely right, that is labour. Devastate the ecconomy, create millions of entitled fools living off handouts and leave it to someone else to do the hard work of real resolution, when that takes a little time just give easy solutions to difficult problems and enforce the measure in a totalitarian manner. He is a dangerous disgrace, and should be ruthlessly countered by the conservatives.

      • Gary Wintle

        Except the Energy Cartel is parasitic and controlled by foreigners, such as the French and Dutch, for the benefit of foreigners. Why should British people fund French energy and German rail (their service is cheaper because Brits are paying for it), as we are currently being forced to do? As for handouts, well, that brings us neatly to the crappy rail and bus companies who provide a third world service while getting corporate welfare from the taxpayer AND charging obscene sums.

  • Hexhamgeezer

    Am I missing something? He’s offered a freeze of about 18 months which will, no doubt, be subject to a range of exemptions and caveats (but enough he hopes to get him elected). Is that it? The rest is bullshot and bluster.

    Free school meals for under 7s

    versus

    A ‘freeze’ on energy for a bit

    versus

    ?????????

    What giveaway goodies are coming next week.?

    And it doesn’t really amount to much does it? Lets have their 3 way coalition so we can vote all 3 of the tw@ts out next time.

    • HookesLaw

      he is not proposing to freeze business energy costs – so what will that do to our competitiveness? And he is proposing to effectively raise corporation tax.

  • Colonel Mustard

    “Re-setting the market” – that’s a good one. I wonder how many Labour wonks of less than thirty summers “blue-skyed” that one on their whiteboards?

    Perhaps Ed could “re-set the market” to wipe out government debt too?

    Politics as ad campaign. Marvellous.

    • dalai guevara

      A vision too many for those who believed Chavez was a revolutionary, and that France, Norway and Russia, who all sport state-owned energy markets, were socialists?

      • Colonel Mustard

        As is so often the case I have no idea what you are on about. You should try plain writing.

  • David Lindsay

    The same product, via the same wires or pipes: how can it possibly cost different amounts from different companies?

    It can’t. Of course it can’t.

    If people realised that, though, then they might ask why the utilities were delivered by cartels of pretend-competitors, instead of being where they belonged, in public ownership.

    And that would never do.

    Oh, no. That would never do at all.

    • Alex

      I don’t know what you are arguing. Are you saying prices are different or the same? If they are similar, that can be evidence of cartels or of competition.
      If they are different, how is that evidence of a cartel; it doesn’t make sense.

      • David Lindsay

        Precisely.

        Nothing about this does.

        • telemackus

          I agree. You do not make sense.

    • HookesLaw

      Miliband has blown his dog whistle and you have certainly pricked your ears up.

    • telemackus

      We national socialists wanted to stop all this but unfortunately we only had 13 years in power and were stopped by the extreme right wing liberals and the Green party so we never proposed anything at all.

    • HJ777

      So are you complaining that companies charge different amounts, or are you claiming that they don’t because they operate a cartel?

      Or are you just an expert at believing two contradictory things simultaneously?

    • Hexhamgeezer

      ‘The same product, via the same wires or pipes: how can it possibly cost different amounts from different companies?’

      For the same reason any product has different prices. Different people buying from different places at different times in different quantities.

      I was going to suggest you get out more but I’d hate to think of the annoyance you’d cause. Better you stick at your keyboard in a more controlled environment.

    • itdoesntaddup

      Yeah. A windmill in Orkney can deliver power to me at the same cost as a coal fired power station 10 miles away, reliably.

      As with any distribution problem, there is an optimal lowest cost supply pattern. It is quite unlikely in general that you will lie on the border between alternative optimal supply sources. However, the economics are not reflected in actual pricing, starting with the grid charges for distribution. Real competition comes from expanding the areas which a company can supply at cheaper cost than its alternative suppliers.

  • Bert

    Lets remind ourselves why prices are high:-
    1) Green energy feed in tarriffs funding the already wealthy.
    2) lack of forward planning for energy provision
    3) Lazy people not swapping providers.
    The first two are the fault of……..Wallace

    • HookesLaw

      Correct – labour deleayed and delayed on the provision of new nuclear stations.

    • Alex

      The last is also partly the fault of over-regulation. A lot of people used to change providers due to doorstep selling, but as a result of a tiny number of complaints the government effectively regulated it out of existence.

    • Alexsandr

      and VAT

    • greggf

      And 4) the fall in sterling against the USD putting up the wholesale cost of imported fuel.

  • David Lindsay

    He is now well on the way to creating the 70 per cent support for renationalisation that already exists for renationalising the railways (which could be done for free over the course of a Parliament), which already exists against privatising the Royal Mail, and which existed for his opposition to intervention in Syria, which he successfully prevented by Britain and, indirectly, by America.

    • AnotherDaveB

      “renationalising the railways … which could be done for free”

      Can you please explain how?

      • David Lindsay

        Just take back each franchise as it came up for renewal. Wouldn’t cost a penny.

        • HookesLaw

          Nationalsiation – is that what Labour believe in?
          Please do tell us.

          • Tom Tom

            The first modern act of nationalisation tookm place under Disraeli when he nationalised the Transatlantic telegraph cable owned by Globe Investment Trust

            • HookesLaw

              This is relevant?
              Henry VIII nationalsised the navy.

              Oliver Cromwell nationalsised the army

          • Alexsandr

            whats to nationalise? Network rail is some weird creation to take their borrowing off the governments balance sheet.
            The TOC’s have little. They are really management companies doing the governments bidding.
            The real money machines are the ROSCO’s who own the trains and lease em to the TOC’s. Their income is largely guaranteed by the government. But buying those out would cost a fortune, and that’s where a large part of railway money goes.
            Railways are really a complicated PFI scam.

        • AnotherDaveB

          Would buying trains, and hiring staff be free too?

          • HookesLaw

            Everything would be free (including the lunches), did you not see the milk and honey Miliband was handing out?

            • telemackus

              All will be free in our new national socialist paradise. Just like in that other paradise North Korea. I cannot wait.

          • Tom Tom

            At present these costs are borne by the taxpayer through subsidy to
            TOCs. The subsidies should be stopped immediately and let the Southern
            Region commuters pay the full economic cost of
            transport………….https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/rail-subsidy-per-passenger-mile

            • HookesLaw

              The subsidy has been coming down. Thats why rail fares have gone up. Thats why the companies have to be more efficient.
              nationalsiation would send things the other way.

            • HJ777

              Almost all the subsidy goes to the Labour government’s creation, Network Rail (which is public sector in all but name), not to Train Operating Companies.

              Why are you commenting on the railways without being aware of that basic fact?

            • itdoesntaddup

              It should be the employers who pay the costs of commuting (that is, the extra cost of providing peak capacity to meet rush hour demand).

              • Tom Tom

                I agree. Also Season Ticket Loans should not be taxable perks

        • telemackus

          Now why didn’t Gordon think of that?

        • itdoesntaddup

          Who do you think owns the trains at the end of a franchise? If the franchise goes to a new operator, do they get them for free?

      • Tom Tom

        Issue Fixed Interest Gilts

    • Alex

      I would love to see nationalisation of energy. Because thanks to successive government’s policies we are going to have massive price rises and power cuts, and it’ll make it very clear where the fault lies. Ed would be better off leaving the possibility of making the energy companies scapegoats for government’s incompetence, as the coalition is doing.

      • David Lindsay

        The Coalition is not doing that very successfully. The question is, “Why don’t you do anything about it?” And Ed has an answer, the price freeze.

        When they obstruct that, as they are already doing 18 months before he is officially in, then he can rally the huge bulk of the population behind public ownership.

        • Alex

          Oh, yes, it’s clever politics.
          It’s also a quite astonishingly bad policy for the economy, for the ability of business to function without the arbitrary exercise of political power, for energy investment and for the efficient working of the energy market. But then when did Labour care about any of those things?
          And who will he blame when the lights go out; the kulaks?

          • David Lindsay

            Plenty of people’s light are already going out, because they cannot afford to keep them on.

            Last winter two thirds of the population turned the heating down or off purely in order to save money. Two thirds. And people can die from that. Some people did.

            But, while retail prices have not risen, wholesale prices are still going up this winter by another 10 per cent. Ten per cent.

            It is the Coalition that blames the ungrateful LMCs for everything. And which punishes them accordingly. For example, like this.

            • Alex

              LMC’s?

              • David Lindsay

                Lower Middle Classes, daahhling. But Sam Cam’s husband could never bring himself to say the words. In fact, he must call them or us a great deal worse than LMCs.

                Mind you, Harriet Harman on last week’s Question Time said “to**et”. On the BBC, and in the presence of David Dimbleby and Shirley Williams. Standards are slipping.

                • HookesLaw

                  Class obsessed still.

                • telemackus

                  I am LMC (Last Male Communist) and proud of it comrade.

            • telemackus

              I agree, your lights are going out.

            • Fergus Pickering

              And under Labour we can have our lights on all day and sit about in our underpants.i

              • HookesLaw

                No thats just Mcbride and Campbell.

                • Russell

                  How could you forget the nasty Bryant in any underpants line?

              • HJ777

                David Lindsay already does sit around all day in his bedroom in his underpants with the lights on.

                Didn’t you know?

            • HJ777

              Tell me, why did Ed Miliband, when he was energy minister, put in place tariffs on energy bills which have forced up prices to consumers in order to subsidise unviable renewable energy providers?

              Was he deliberately trying to kill people?

              • Tom Tom

                Probably

            • itdoesntaddup

              That is due to Miliband’s policies, since pursued with excessive zeal by Huhne and Davey.

        • telemackus

          Controlling prices has worked very well in Russia, Cuba, Venezuela and North Korea and that is why we welcome it here in our new national socialist utopia.

          • Tom Tom

            Prices are controlled in most US states, Germany, France…..rents are controlled in Germany and in New York. Public Utility Commissions exist in the USA

            • Oedipus Rex

              Quite true – and it can’t be said enough.

        • itdoesntaddup

          Freezing prices at high levels – such a sensible policy! Just like keeping a house price bubble inflated.

          How about something madcap, like allowing REAL competition by offering no subsidies to renewables, and allowing as much coal and gas a nuclear as commercial businesses want to build?

          • Tom Tom

            NO private company wants to build a nuclear or coal-fired plant at £4 billion……it is simply not economic for a private company to build them when they can charge whatever they want for gas generation

    • Colonel Mustard

      Nationalisation is the real heart of this policy but as always with Labour what you see is not what you get. This is just one of the “sounds good” pawns moved out onto the board at the start of the game. The Coalition, dealing straight if stupid, will not be able to keep up or counter this without appearing anti-consumer and Cameron is only ever radical on issues that don’t really matter and speak narrowly to an identity focus group (like Mumsnet for Censorship).

      Ed has been able to do this because Cameron is so appallingly unable to tap into the concerns of ordinary people and do something about them, which the Coalition should have been doing from Day 1. Their focus on the economy presaged that everything else would come right. It hasn’t and Ed has been able to exploit the frustration and especially to deploy the classic left wing tactic of demonising scapegoats – bankers and energy companies – straight from the NSDAP policy book.

      But let’s not pretend this is anything other than soundbite propaganda which carries a hefty wallop of scare for the real market. If Red Ed can “fix” the energy market then no business will be safe from government intervention on pricing. The message is loud and clear.

      Mao tried something similar in the 1950s and the result was that “agriculture was stagnant, industrial production was low, and the people’s living standards had not increased in twenty years”. And that glosses over the endemic corruption and mass executions. Once government starts tinkering in the market there is no line to be drawn and the knock on effect/unintended consequences potential is enormous.

      • dalai guevara

        this is not a labour issue. this is a right wrong issue.
        look around you, no one of merit does not run state owned energy, one way or the other. oh look what it does to the current account balance:
        http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/e/e5/Cumulative_Current_Account_Balance_per_capita.png

        • Colonel Mustard

          Ed has made it a Labour issue. And stop stalking my comments with your arcana.

          • dalai guevara

            Have a bath Colonel, you are not stalked by anybody. If you want to leave comments without the option od a response, perhaps set up a website “comments are closed”?

            • Colonel Mustard

              I don’t mind responses – just yours. In the main because they are impenetrable and delivered in that faintly corrective style of an anorak wearing pedant. And the clue to my objection is in the subject of my sentence not the reference to your method of selecting those comments to comment on.

              To make it clear to you. It is the arcana rather than the stalking.

              • dalai guevara

                Sorry Colonel, you’ve lost me there. I am not into 1990s Swedish Rockpop.
                You’ve used the phrase NSDAP to outline your skewed and outlandish thought processes, whenever you do I will comment as much as I please, in some cases “off tangent”. Get over it.

      • itdoesntaddup

        Do you not remember the Price Commission?

      • Gary Wintle

        So you prefer railways be owned by foreign governments and that British people be forced to pay taxes to Germany, as is the current situation.
        Given the Germans use the high rail fares here to subsidize CHEAPER and BETTER services in Germany, rail fares are thus in effect taxes without representation, and you and I are effectively slaves of Ms Merkel. I hope you enjoy your servitude, after all, that’s better than having a UK state owned rail service actually run for the benefit of Brits instead of Germans.

    • telemackus

      Well said comrade. Let’s also nationalise all the sweet shops and distribute free sherbert lemons to the poor and disabled. That will solve all our problems and bring forth a new utopia…… coming nurse.

    • HJ777

      The railway network was renationalised years ago by Stephen Byers.

      Result: A huge increase in public subsidy, a big rise in charges to train operators, falling productivity, consistent missing of targets set by the regulator, and lots more and much better paid board members.

  • George_Arseborne

    This is Leadership. Ed a strong Leader standing up against the strong Energy cartel unlike a weak Cameron who will stand strong against the disable and the most vulnerable in the society and stand weak to the media and hedge funds gang.

    • Alex

      Does he stand up for bad English and lack of punctuation as well?

    • Russell

      The rantings of a schoolboy nerd who obviously doesn’t realise millions of people already have a freeze on their energy bills for longer than 20 months from available tariffs of the energy suppliers.

      • Tom Tom

        Crap. They have a cap and collar for which they pay in their tariffs. The real problem is that calorific value is given daily but “averaged” by the utilities to gas customers. Meters are refurbished meters up to 40 years old and the sole arbiter of whether they are accurate or in need of replacement is the utility. Gas costs are much higher than in regulated markets in Europe and electricity is driven up by using gas generation instead of coal and nuclear and the competition for French nuclear supplies now Germany and Italy look to French nuclear

        • Russell

          Utter Crap. I took out my frozen tariff months ago and it was the cheapest tariff available on the market, and is frozen till Feb. 2015 (with EDF, French!).

          • Tom Tom

            I know EdF and the deal you have. They have all been weighted with Standing Charges to guarantee them revenue irrespective of consumption. Your tariff might simply be the best in your postcode – the prices and tariffs are not uniform in this country

            • Russell

              As you acknowledge, I have the cheapest tariff in my area and guaranteed till Feb. 2015…….So why do I need a Socialist government to fix an energy tarfiff?…I don’t, and millions like me would actually put up with higher charges to keep out a Socialist government.

            • realfish

              The standing charge you talk about was imposed by the regulator (as a means of levelling the comparison playing field) NOT the energy companies.

              Another example of meddling by the state.

              • Tom Tom

                Agreed. I have to pay standing charge for a dead relative who is consuming no electricity and still has not sold her apartment….

              • Gary Wintle

                Which state, the British or French one?

                EDF is part of the French Government.

        • StateWeShouldBeIn

          Complete rubbish- have you looked at the data, or simply proclaimed what you*think* to be true? Fully taxed cost of domestic gas in the UK in 1H2013, in Euro cents/KWh was 0.0531. France 0.0678, Germany 0.0661, Spain 0.0769, Italy 0.0968 (2H2012, last period available). Source: EuroStat, http://bit.ly/15srkay.

          Plenty of things in the UK are expensive (often because they are taxed to oblivion, like beer), but energy is not one of them. Miliband has proposed a bonkers solution to a problem that does not exist. Even by his standards, that’s impressive…

    • realfish

      It’s not leadership at all, it’s visceral nasty politics, in which Miliband is picking a fight with the energy companies and the wealth creators to shore up his ego and his pretentions.

      Miliband is attempting to co-opt everyone, without yachts, into his army to fight his ugly class war.

      And of course the old adage: show me a socialist and I’ll show you a hypocrite, holds good. Why haven’t bills come down in line with wholesale prices (if that’s true)? Perhaps it has something to do with the £180 green taxes that Miliband himself imposed on us all…or to do with the devaluation of our currency (at one point by over 31% against the $) brought about the ruinous incompetence of Brown, Balls and Miliband.

      Miliband may have stood on a stage looking particularly smug and pleased with himself yesterday, but if anything his last period in government should have told him, it’s that responsible leadership is about more than ticking the focus groups boxes, populism or theoretical student politics.

      • Gary Wintle

        Most of these energy companies are not companies, though. EDF is not a company, its a proxy of the French government. De

        Why should British people pay taxes to the French, Dutch, German governments? This is what these charges effectively are, taxes, because the money goes abroad to those governments.

    • La Fold

      How old are you?

Close
Can't find your Web ID? Click here