Blog fuel protests failure

Whatever happened to the fuel protests? Or rather didn’t. What a wonderful damp squib they were, attracting fewer people than the average village Women’s Institute annual general meeting. What a contrast with 2000.
Was it the juxtaposition of the protests with the climate change talks in Bali, which made people too embarrassed to come out to support them. I doubt it. It was probably a combination of cold weather, Christmas and general apathy, but nevertheless the failure should be celebrated. Certainly it made for some seasonal cheer.
It would be comforting to think that this will embolden politicians and that ministers will realise that it is now possible to implement policies that may not be opposed by the AA and the RAC, let alone Captain Gatso. There would be a neat symmetry if, just as the fuel protests of 2000 led to the scrapping of any policies that even begun to limit the environmental damage caused by transport, then the failure of the 2007 protests would have the opposite effect.
Fat chance. There is, so far, no sign that ministers are considering reimposing the fuel tax escalator, and national road charging seems to have slipped off the agenda faster than cars have gone off the road in the recent icy conditions. If one had to score the present government’s policy on climate change out of a hundred, it would be difficult to mark them into double figures.

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