Saturday, 29 May 2010

Who should travel First Class?

With MPs still simmering about losing their First Class travel perks, the question as to who should travel First Class crops up, to which the popular answer seems to be anyone who pays for it themselves.

This is a blow to the Managerialists who have so screwed our national stratification in their grubby climb to the peak, displacing traditional professionals as they go. Their triumph is the new official government Socio-Economic Classification table; it used to be that doctors, lawyers, clergy and officers occupied the top slot. No longer. The new managerial regime places senior civil servants and MPs right at top of the tree;
Job holders in this unit group formulate and ratify legislation and government policy, act as elected representatives of either Parliament, European Parliament, Regional Parliaments or Assemblies, act as representatives of the government and direct the diplomatic operations of government departments
Assistant secretary/Grade 5 (government)
Member of European Parliament
Member of Parliament
Permanent secretary (government)
But these are exactly the sort of people that the British public don't reckon are worth First Class fares; indeed, a sizeable chunk of the electorate wouldn't even give them a bicycle.

But then it's clear that after eight years of work in compiling the new classification, those clever statisticians still don't understand the most basic distinction between Parliament and Government. An MP isn't a 'Senior official in National Government'. In fact, the whole new SEC is an enormous pile of Managerial crap, and wholly ignored by the real statistical industry which continues to use the old ABC1C2DE classification.

So who should travel First Class, given that we won't pay for those above to do so? Well, from my observation, the following;

- Senior sales reps on expenses
- Wives of successful Estate Agents
- Elderly couples on rail company promotions
- High scale prostitutes
- City figures who've never accepted the Big Bang that let chaps with white socks into the place
- Theatre, film and TV agents, hairdressers and costume supervisors
- Wives of successful charlatans and frauds

In fact, politicians and their dags fitted in pretty well in First Class. Their removal to Second Class (sorry, 'Standard' or 'Silver' or whatever) can only lower the standard of travel that the rest of us enjoy.


Anonymous said...

Personally speaking, the reason that stopped me travelling 1st class (on the railways) was the poor standard of conversation and 3rd class 'standing' of my fellow travellers.

I have now switched to second class; where the people are kinder, friendlier and better conversationalists and am much happier.

English Pensioner said...

When I was working, I was entitled to claim for first class travel if the journey was going to take more than a certain number of hours. I seem to remember getting it when I went to Scotland and also when I went to Plymouth (from London). Business class flights were allowed if you had to start work immediately on arrival (such as attending a meeting), but not if you were able to have a reasonable rest before starting work.
This seemed quite logical.

Anonymous said...

- High scale prostitutes

But you just said that politicians shouldn't travel first class and now you're including them on a list of people who should travel first class!

You must try to be more consistent, R.

Spent Copper said...

Who should travel first class? If my taxes are paying for it, anyone prepared to pay the difference in the the standard class fare to which they are entitled and the first class fare.

Demetrius said...

The late great Bill Deedes used to travel Second routinely, we often were in the same carriage. Alas, Ian Hislop who so enjoyed satirising him I have seen in the First Class.