Turning off traffic lights at night. D’Oh!

Some idiot is – seriously – proposing that Central London traffic lights be turned off at night to save energy and improve traffic flow. If that doesn’t deserve a rant at the Evening Standard, nothing does:


Of all the lame-brained ideas I have heard lately, turning off traffic lights at night is by far the stupidest. Though I suppose it will give our A&E departments something to do when it would otherwise be quiet.

If they want traffic to be self-regulating, traffic lights should be set to flashing yellow like Zurich does. At least that way drivers know they are approaching a junction and should take care.

Turning them off is a recipe for disaster.

Which got printed as:


New “Occupy” organisation pointlessness

At the request of the Standard’s letter editor, today’s rant. On past performance, they probably shan’t use it, though, not least because I complained about the editing last time:

I see that caring face of middle class youth, the Occupy movement, is at it again, populating our Parliament Square and behaving as though they own it. “This is our space” they complained: No it isn’t, it belongs to us Londoners, and I for one resent your presumption in polluting it and making it unusable by us.

Like most previous efforts by these people, it is utterly pointless because nobody, least of all them, knows what they are protesting against. Everyone has a different banner, a different whine and a different shade of face paint. They seem to fit in their protests during half term from their social studies courses at their Berkshire polytechnic.

Firmly cementing this impression of being headless chickens, the Emperor of the Clueless and professional mangler of the English language, Russell Brand turned up and gave a speech yesterday. That must have been nice for them, if a little confusing.

This hopeless bunch of unfocussed noisemakers are utterly cringeworthy.

They have no detectable message, no direction and are behaving as arrogantly as those they object to.

The Jarrow Marchers must be spinning in their graves with embarrassment.

This is what they edited it down to: