The petrol crisis that wasn’t is reaching ridiculous proportions. Today the Telegraph tells us that
Ministers [are] under pressure to bring in emergency rationing as 999 crews struggle to get hold of fuel.
The tanker drivers are not on strike. Fuel supplies are normal. The “crisis” has been 100% caused by the Government panicking.
Yes, they are telling us not to panic. But we should all fill up our cars just in case.
Eric Pickles even claimed today that the country was in a “stronger position” as a result of ministerial advice on fuel, which had “worked reasonably well”.
They are pretending that their aim all along has been to encourage people to stockpile, to make the system more “resilient”. That is utter nonsense. In no way does transferring fuel from petrol forecourt tanks to drivers’ tanks increase by even a single hour the length of time the country could withstand a tanker drivers’ strike.
It is the Government themselves who are panicking. What a sorry shower they are. They would do well to ask themselves how it is that the tanker drivers, who after all work for a number of different companies, could be all threatening a strike at the same time and for the same grievances. Do their employers pay them all the same amount, and provide them all with exactly the same conditions of employment? Are the union and the employers possibly operating an old-fashioned cartel?
The Government should be asking those questions, not creating an entirely artificial panic over a non-existent crisis.