Carillion is no one-off scandal. Neoliberalism will bring many more | Owen Jones
‘Recklessness, hubris and greed’ describes the entire system of delivering public services through profit-driven companies
Carillion is no isolated failure, no fluke, no aberration. It is another symptom of a decaying social order that is anti-democratic, inefficient and places profit ahead of people’s needs, aspirations and even lives. That social order is neoliberalism, a term which I accept is probably not bandied around your local pub, and is invariably met with “hur hur” sniggers of performative ignorance among the commentariat. Being deprived of a term to describe how our society is structured and run is convenient for our masters. It stops us joining the dots, of understanding that Carillion is just one manifestation of a failing system: one which rolls back the public sphere everywhere in favour of the private sector, which slashes taxes on big corporations and wealthy people, and one which obsessively deregulates.
Transport secretary Chris Grayling’s decision was surprising given his vehement opposition to public control of rail. But he said the move was partly to expedite the planned east coast partnership, which would see a contract re-let to a private firm in 2020. However, several train companies face similar struggles to Stagecoach and Virgin after overbidding for franchises and events may yet force his hand again.
Source: Guardian Transport