Thursday, January 12, 2012

The Mayor - Still Idling

Boris has been moaning about idling again. Unfortunately, his commitment to reducing engine idling stops short of actually enforcing the law. He's now launching a publicity campaign. Remember, this is the same Boris Johnson that criticized the previous Mayor for spending too much on publicity. And Johnson's campaign is as likely to work as it was last time he mentioned it about a year ago, since when I've noticed no discernable change in driver behaviour, and I've seen no sign of the promised taxi rank marshals. It's taken decades to get cigarette smoking rates down, and it's taxing and banning smoking has had a lot more effect than simply talking about it. But with smokers, it's only their own health they're affecting. Should we stand idly by (geddit?) and allow lazy motorists to put other people's health at risk, while spending scarce public money on advertising? It might be fair enough if Boris's publicity was warning drivers that they'll get fined - and actually recouping some of the advertising spend by fining the polluters. Instead, it's the rest of us Londoners picking up the tab both for the publicity campaign and for the health service bill resulting from air pollution.

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