A bird's eye view of the vineyard
?US/Israel seek Lebanese civil war to derail a Hezbollah in its prime?: Qandil Mon Oct 18, 2021 14:16 | amarynth
Original link: http://middleeastobse... Description: In light of the recent massacre of seven protesters and the wounding of dozens of others in a highly sensitive district of Beirut, senior political analyst Nasser
Moveable Feast Cafe 2021/10/18 ? Open Thread Mon Oct 18, 2021 07:30 | herb
2021/10/18 06:30:01Welcome to the ‘Moveable Feast Cafe’. The ‘Moveable Feast’ is an open thread where readers can post wide ranging observations, articles, rants, off topic and have animate discussions of
Assessing the Russian counter propaganda efforts (Saker rant) Sun Oct 17, 2021 19:20 | The Saker
In 2016 I wrote an analysis I called “Counter-propaganda, Russian style” and, about a year later, another one I called “Re-Visiting Russian Counter-Propaganda Methods“. I ask you to please read
The Grayzone ? Super Imperialism: The Economic Strategy of American Empire with Michael Hudson Sun Oct 17, 2021 14:29 | amarynth
Max Blumenthal and Ben Norton speak with economist Michael Hudson about his book “Super Imperialism: The Economic Strategy of American Empire.” Professor Hudson just published a 3rd edition that updates
When the West was itchin? to go to China Sun Oct 17, 2021 14:17 | amarynth
The old Silk Roads played a major role in connecting the world through trade, and the new version can too by Pepe Escobar, posted with permission and first posted at
The Saker >>
Interested in maladministration. Estd. 2005
Are the wheels of justice creaking into action?
Middle class revolution Anthony
Allegations of political criminality reported to An Garda Siochana Anthony
Minister Catherine Martin: Not fit to serve Anthony
Establishment media and delusional analysis Anthony
Public Inquiry >>
A Blog About Human Rights
5 Year Anniversary Of Kem Ley?s Death Sun Jul 11, 2021 12:34 | Human Rights
Poor Living Conditions for Migrants in Southern Italy Mon Jan 18, 2021 10:14 | Human Rights
Right to Water Mon Aug 03, 2020 19:13 | Human Rights
Human Rights Fri Mar 20, 2020 16:33 | Human Rights
Turkish President Calls On Greece To Comply With Human Rights on Syrian Refugee Issues Wed Mar 04, 2020 17:58 | Human Rights
Human Rights in Ireland >>
?Notable, Significant and Abnormal? Purchases of PCR Lab Equipment in Wuhan, Summer 2019 Tue Oct 05, 2021 13:44 | Michael Curzon
Researchers believe that "abnormal" purchases of PCR lab equipment in Wuhan in the summer of 2019 suggest Covid was spreading "virulently" in the city far earlier than was previously thought.
The post ?Notable, Significant and Abnormal? Purchases of PCR Lab Equipment in Wuhan, Summer 2019 appeared first on The Daily Sceptic.
12,000 Women Living with Undiagnosed Breast Cancer after a Year of Lockdowns Tue Oct 05, 2021 12:07 | Michael Curzon
Almost 12,000 women in the U.K. were living with undiagnosed breast cancer in May this year, according to new analysis ? and screening for the disease is still below pre-lockdown levels.
The post 12,000 Women Living with Undiagnosed Breast Cancer after a Year of Lockdowns appeared first on The Daily Sceptic.
No Good Reason to Introduce Vaccine Passports Right Now, Says Sajid Javid Tue Oct 05, 2021 10:52 | Michael Curzon
Sajid Javid says there are currently no good reasons to introduce vaccine passports, but concedes that his comments do not mean "there can?t ever be a role for such an intervention".
The post No Good Reason to Introduce Vaccine Passports Right Now, Says Sajid Javid appeared first on The Daily Sceptic.
Why Are People?s Risk Perceptions So Skewed? Tue Oct 05, 2021 08:08 | Noah Carl
For months, we?ve been treated to morbid ?daily death numbers? ? but for only one cause of death. Perhaps if these figures had been reported for all causes of death, people?s risk perceptions would be less skewed.
The post Why Are People?s Risk Perceptions So Skewed? appeared first on The Daily Sceptic.
And Finally? Tue Oct 05, 2021 00:10 | Toby Young
In this week?s London Calling, the talking points are the recent easing of travel restrictions (unless you?re unvaccinated), unsuccessful stalking adventures, the new Sharpe novel and Irwin Shaw?s Young Lions.
The post And Finally… appeared first on The Daily Sceptic.
Lockdown Skeptics >>
Bus Connects Transport Plan Promises Much But Won’t Deliver
public consultation / irish social forum |
Saturday August 11, 2018 23:39 by pbp - People Before Profit
The National Transport Agency (NTA) wants to redesign all Dublin Bus routes. They promise a faster, more efficient bus service with more buses and better frequency for Dubliners. They also promise a more environmentally friendly transport system for the capital. If this was delivered it would mark a major step forward for life in the city. But the reality is not that simple. The plan hinges on 16 new radial bus corridors on the busiest routes – primarily linking outer suburbs with the city centre. At a future (non-defined) date, they also promise orbital routes to link the outer parts of the city together.
Government campaign to sabotage Dublin Bus and Bus Eireann bus services through privatisation has begun | The Privatisation Agenda of Bus Connects Will Lead To Bus Disconnects>/a> | Dublin Bus Area Network Redesign
Submission details to NTA to object to Bus Connects do not rely on the online survey. It will be ignored. Make a postal submission
There are positive aspects to the plan. Three stand out in particular.
The plan envisages 230 kilometres of continuous bus priority. This would make it easier to get into the city on public transport reducing congestion, travel times and the carbon footprint.
The plan promises 200 kilometres of cycle lanes to make it easier and safer to move by bicycle. Again this is a welcome development in a city that currently lacks proper cycle infrastructure.
The plan envisages a new low emissions fleet of buses to further reduce the environmental impact of travelling around the city.
Public Investment not Privatisation
All of this sounds extremely positive, but to implement it properly, there will need to be significant investment. Unfortunately the National Transport Authority and successive governments have severely reduced the funding that has gone to Dublin Bus. Here are some important facts.
Public investment is falling. In 2008, Dublin Bus got €85 million to operate its services – a figure which represented one of the lowest subsidies in Europe at the time. This was then cut every year until 2015, when €57.7 million was invested. Last year, even as the traffic chaos increased and more people travelled by bus, the subsidy was reduced again to just €47 million.
The number of buses has been reduced. In 2009, there were almost 1,200 buses in the Dublin Bus fleet. This fell to 914 in 2013, and has only recovered to 1,016 this year –despite the fact that there are more people travelling on the system than ever before. Even if the promised increases in buses materialise under the Bus Connects plan, Dublin Bus will still have less buses than it had in 2009.
The NTA are privatising routes. This year over 10% of Dublin Bus routes have been given to a private company from England (Go Ahead) with an appalling record in providing train and bus services. More shocking still, is the fact that Dublin Bus made a cheaper offer to provide these service but the NTA took the more expensive option to increase competition, and, in the long run, reduce terms and conditions in the public service.
The NTA have increased traffic congestion. The NTA have increased traffic chaos with the Luas cross city. Figures released by Bus Connect confirm that Dublin Bus carries 67% of all Dublin passengers with only 18% taking the Luas. Despite this, some bus services have been diverted away from College Green to facilitate the Luas. The NTA knew the Luas line would have a dramatic effect on bus users but went ahead with the project anyway.
The Current Plan
There are also problems with the plan as it is envisaged. Below we outline some of the most important ones.
The plan will not benefit all passengers as is claimed. The new plan promises to replace infrequent bus services with local services which bring people to high frequency services into the city centre. But this is only partially true. In many cases an infrequent service to the city centre is simply replaced with an equally infrequent service that links to a route that continues onto the city centre. For example – The plan replaces the 27a that travels into the city from Dublin’s Northside every 30 minutes with a new route, 279, that operates every 30 minutes. However, this will just link the area to the Malahide road where people will have to transfer to another bus to get into the city.
The plan will create hardship for vulnerable service users. Bus Connect promise a more efficient system, but in many cases the new plan will mean great hardship for people with mobility problems. Jarrett Walker, the consultant who devised this plan, admitted that many people, including older passengers might lose out.
[Box] He previously stated – How will this affect older people and people with disabilities? There is an unavoidable tension between senior and disabled needs – which are much more inconvenienced by interchange – and everyone else, and a network designed solely around senior/disabled preferences for minimum walk and interchange is simply too slow to be useful for the rest of the population. Again, attention is being given to making interchanges as convenient as possible, including for people with limited mobility, but a balance must be struck.
The plan may not reduce journey times. Bus Connect claim that, overall, people will get to their destination quicker as they transfer to higher frequency routes. But again this is only true in some cases. In many others, the transfers may be to less frequent routes or to routes that don’t go the way the old network did. This means passengers will need to transfer to two or more routes to get to where they want, disadvantaging less mobile users. For example the current route 122 service from Drimnagh via the South Circular Road is scrapped completely. A lot of elderly people currently rely on this route. To access a bus service under the new plan, passengers will need to walk to the Crumlin Road and take a service to Dolphins Barn where they will need to transfer to another service to access the South Circular Road. If they wish to travel to Wexford St like the current route, they will need to transfer again.
The plan often just renames existing routes. Bus Connect have hyped seven new “Spines” routes on which they claim buses will arrive every 5 minutes. But in most cases these “Spines” are simply a renaming of existing high frequency bus corridors. So, for example, the new “D” route simple renames the existing service that sees a number of high frequency routes such as the 27, 15, and other services using the Malahide road. Similarly the new “A” route already has high frequency services on it like the 41, 16, and 13. In other cases the plan merely diverts existing services out of estates and keeps them on main roads. For example, the 79 route is renamed the “G” route and is taken out of the lower end of Ballyfermot. People here will have to walk for 10/15 minutes to access the bus service that use to take them to the city centre.
Major working class areas will not have direct access to the city centre. Mass population areas like Tallaght and Clondalkin will not be included in the 16 radical routes meaning that the people who live there will not get the priority bus corridors or cycle lanes.
There is no planned reduction in fares. In order to make public transport attractive the new plan should cut fares dramatically. In our last pre-budget submission, People Before Profit advocated cutting fares by 50% in a bid to reduce the dependency on cars and the amount of traffic congestion. This is an important step, but one that will not be taken by the current plan.
The government backed plan promises some important benefits, but insists that older people, people with disabilities and some communities may have to lose out for the city to get a modern, efficient bus service. This is nonsense. A clever redesign of the bus network is not going to solve problems caused by years of underinvestment and past cuts in services. Forcing old people to make multiple transfers will not mean a better service for others. The cause of existing delays and traffic chaos is too few buses on congested roads and fares that are too expensive. Much of this has been the result of the actions and inactions of the NTA and the Government.
We need and should campaign for;
The new orbital routes planned for in Bus Connects.
The new bus lanes and new bus priority measures planned for in Bus Connects
A massive increase in the Dublin Bus fleet to at least 1500 buses; this is well beyond any number planned for in Bus Connects , which only plans for a 10% increase in the existing bus numbers.
Reduced fares by 50% to encourage people to use buses.
The retention of all existing bus routes and services; No community should lose an existing service.
An end to the policy of privatising bus routes and competitive tendering. This only lowers wages and conditions of workers and does nothing to improve services.