March 16, 2008

London Mayor Ken Livingstone is planning to raise the congestion charge from £8 to £25 for “gas guzzlers” (a fabulously evocative term if ever there was one). And the people at Porsche aren’t very happy about it. Not only are they launching legal action to try and stop it, they’ve put up a website to get the public on their side.

It’s liberally sprinkled with pictures of Porsches in London as if to persuade us how bereft London would be without them. In one photo, some banker appears to have parked outside the Lloyds building, which I suspect would set you back a lot more than the proposed charge.

And then there’s the words. “Porsche believes this will be bad for London.” “We believe it sends out the wrong message about London as a place to do business.” And my favourite: “This increase will hit a large proportion of families that drive people carriers – the sort of people who use one large car rather than a series of smaller ones.”

Now, there’s a germ of a point in there: it’s presumably worse for the environment to replace a large car with two smaller ones. On the other hand, as most gas guzzlers you see bombing past have at least half the seats empty, you’d only have to replace them with one.

But it’s the word “series” that really does it for me. On whatever planet these people are from, families don’t just have one or two cars, they have a whole bloomin’ collection, probably dotted around the grounds of their stately home. It’s just another tiny indicator that perhaps this website might be more about self-preservation than righteous indignation.

Then again, maybe I’m just jealous. I only get to ride through the streets of London in a series of buses.

3 Responses to “Series”

  1. Evol Kween Says:

    Porsches are loudly annoying and look like frogs anyway…..

  2. […] munter mit den von Heathrow aus startenden und landenden Flugzeugen verglichen, und ganz allgemein spricht die Wahl der Formulierungen Bände. Das kann man nun wahlweise als die Folge eines PR-Eilauftrags oder als das Vertreten eines nicht […]

  3. Monty Says:

    Yeah, get rid of all the Porsches! And everyone can then travel via a series of London buses. 🙂

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