From the BBC: The UK "must do everything in its power" to stop the EU's Galileo sat-nav system going ahead until concerns over funding have been resolved, say MPs.
They say it isn't a good idea, because EU taxpayers would have to contribute towards filling any shortfalls towards the system.
I say the taxpayers should exclusively pay for it, and any private companies should be locked out of running it and its development. The system should remain in public hands and under public control.
The Transport Committee seem more interested in getting the project scrapped instead of actually determining if it is worth-while. There are two key reasons why it should go ahead.
1) Technically speaking it is superior to the US GPS system and as such is much higher resolution, providing much more accurate positioning, and not only for military uses, but for everybody.
2) Politically it gives us control over our own positioning system. GPS was developed for military purposes by the United States, and as such they can disable civilian use whenever they decide too. The construction and launching of the project provides not just jobs, but a boost to science and technology within the EU, areas where we will begin to fall behind in compared to India and China.
The costs involved, in the grand scheme of things are minor, in total about 10% of what the UK government wants to waste on a new batch of nuclear weapons. At the moment it is a joint development between the private and public sectors, this is European-wide project and so the costs are spread thinly between individual member states. Although as I said above, I believe it should be funded entirely from public money, after all positioning systems are becoming more popular, and the general public shouldn't have to wake up one and find their devices dead because the US decides to stop civilian use, or private companies have decided they want to charge people everytime they want to use one. We need our own system, under public control.
Gwyneth Dunwoody MP, chairwoman of the committee tries to make some opportunist non-sequitur about it.
What taxpayers in the United Kingdom and other European countries really need and want is better railways and roads, not giant signature projects in the sky.
I'd like to know why we can't have both though Gwyneth? There's no reason what-so-ever why we have to choose between one or the other. Your attempts at slipping arguments that don't follow past me won't work.
You are however dead right we do want better railways and roads. However, the railways for example are privatised, why should public money go into propping them up? If they're failing they should be nationalised, taxpayers should not be keeping private companies in business, they should be nationalising them.
The costs of Galileo are easily outweighed by the benefits, and the system should go ahead regardless of any potential budget shortfalls.
I'd also like to see the system brought entirely under public control and the private sector booted off the project. History has shown that joint private-public ventures are increasingly an unfair deal in favour of profit.