Yesterday evening I went to our local garage to get some bread. I live in a village and we are lucky enough to have a garage and two good pubs. But, being a village, the main road is fairly narrow. I found I couldn't get near the garage for people queuing for petrol. Now I must admit that I'd taken my eye off the ball as far as the tanker driver's dispute is concerned but it was obvious what was happening - panic buying - when there is no reason to panic!
I now discover that the government has fueled this panic by telling people to stock up on petrol, and even store it at home - which is potentially a hazardous thing to do! I just can't believe the stupidity of this move. Obviously they are trying to undermine a strike which hasn't even been called yet, but causing panic buying is a wholly irresponsible thing to do, and may well backfire by annoying people and could even strengthen the position of the tanker drivers. Only idiots would provoke a panic and deliberately cause petrol shortages. This government has lost the plot - assuming it ever had it in the first place.
Unlike the government, the tanker drivers are involved in an industrial dispute with their employers for wholly responsible reasons. The big energy producers, Shell et al, used to employ tanker drivers but this work has now been outsourced and in the process pay and conditions are under attack, but so is safety. You get what you pay for, and if you try to do it on the cheap, corners get cut, and you end up with a worse service. This, of course, is all part of the race to the bottom globally in terms of pay and safety in order to increase profits for companies which already make billions, something this government heartily approves of. I wish the tanker drivers well and hope they win their dispute - for all our sakes. The tanker drivers can speak for themselves - watch this video and judge for yourself.