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Video: Labour rules out renationalising energy companies – because they’d rather give them more money

Utter nonsense that Labour is spouting is criminally dishonest

Keir Starmer: thumbs up for huge energy bills and corporate profits

Labour has dismissed the idea of renationalising energy companies to free millions of UK people from the terror of unaffordable energy bills – and misled on the feasibility of doing so.

In an interview on Sky News, Labour front bencher Steve Reed told viewers this morning that it would cost ‘an awful lot of money’ to renationalise the companies that are being allowed to gouge householders with eye-watering increases – increases that are not being mirrored in other countries.

And Reed said that instead Labour would want to put cash into paying energy bills – a move that would entrench and inflate obscene corporate profits even further:

But according to the TUC it would cost only some £2.5 billion to renationalise the UK’s energy supply – and even if it was twenty times that, it would be a drop in the bucket compared to the positive impact on life in this country that it would have.

And of course, it doesn’t have to cost anything. The government could simply legislate to take it all back – and tell companies that they had more than had their money back in profits in the more than three decades since the Tories flogged it all off. But there is clearly no interest among any of the main political parties in doing so, including – to its undying shame – the current Labour regime and its ‘leader’ who promised to do it in order to con Labour members into voting him into the position.

This is not a crisis. It’s a robbery – and Labour is holding the swag bag for the corporate barons no less than the Tories.

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  1. How will nationalising the energy retailers help consumers, they’re not the ones making the mega profits.

    1. It is very simple: energy supply becomes a monopoly. Only the state run grid is allowed tp produce or import energy, which it supplies to the population at prices fixed to suit them.
      The confiscation of the current oligopolies would also represent, in terms of capital, an immense addition to the social wealth, which would assist in raising any new capital, if needed, for expanding or modernising the system.
      This would also enormously improve society’s ability to enforce its demands- for example not using the waterways as open sewers, or cutting unnecessary emissions of pollutants- on the out of control, generally foreign owned corporations fattening themselves on the increasingly impoverished children of Thatcher and Blair.
      Finally by nationalising energy and all utilities (Adam Smith’s Natural Monopolies) the enormous power of these corporations over government would be ended. A government acting on behalf of society as a whole, rather than a handful of Hedge Funds and billionaires, would immediately end its suicidal relationship with NATO, put an end to its enormously expensive subsidy to Ukrainian fascism and import gas on advantageous terms from abroad. This would cut all heating bills for domestic consumers while giving industrial consumers a much needed advantage in the competitive international markets.

      1. bevin – I agree with much of what you say but how will nationalising the retail and distribution of power going to benefit consumers? The price of oil and gas are dictated by world markets.

      2. Well said Bevin. Pretty much agree with all you say. Labour will do nothing to help the public, but will adhere to their Trilateral Commission ideals.

      3. baz2001 – Can you explain how nationalising the energy retailers is going to reduce prices.

      4. “Can you explain how nationalising the energy retailers is going to reduce prices.”

        It would control price and rationalise (simplify) the supply chain. Surplus capital for the sole purpose of accumulation would no longer be the primary purpose for the supply of it.

      5. Two Cheeks
        Instead of £4000 bills they would be capped at £1200
        That would bankrupt suppliers, so it would cost nothing to nationalise them
        Money saved in conjunction with windfall taxes could reduce bills further
        Profits would be reinvested for the long term in renewable
        We as a country would become self sufficient
        The Question should have been ‘what do you do when markets FAIL’
        We know your a bit thick, so here’s an easy one for you
        How many fingers am I holding up

      6. Two Cheeks
        You cannot deal with climate catastrophe without nationalising carbon industries, there is no place for spivs and thieves in this emergency
        The only thing we dont know is what will trigger it

    2. Steve H. When it comes to business and the old monopoly game you are “pig ignorant” mr steve h.With the type of thinking you posses humans would have never got up on two feet and moved out of the caves.Cartels and stitch ups in Big oil like big pharma are notorious across the world and you clowns in the labour party are unfit to govern with your pygmy brains.and your complete ignorance of how control of markets and corporations function in this modern world.Go back to sleep stevie boy or start counting goats and sheep in your Caribbean bolt hole.

      1. Joseph – If we want to control world markets then I suppose we could go back to the tried and tested methods of the Empire and invade a few places to gain control of raw materials
        Is this what you are suggesting?
        If not, then what?
        How do you intend to control world commodity prices?

      2. So pygmy brains as spread in the labour party and how to run a modern economy isnt a natural progression for the labour party looking at the comments from Steve H mr 1979think tank from his Caribbean bolt hole.
        IT would seem that the independent editorial has now caught on to the labour leader and the partys disappearing act and had explained that the labour leader is actually back from his holidays today friday?and normal service will be resumed after the usual drying out session for our knight of the realm.Fortunately for the labour party only his friends in the media 2 noticed the leader had gone again as the dynamic supporting act for the conservative and unionist party.The country desperately needs a real Opposition party and clearly the labour party are not it and the sooner the members left realise it the better.I wonder who the smuck was that provided the starmer family with a free getaway whilst the country is burning.?

      3. Joseph – Oh dear 🥱…………………and your answers to my questions are?

      4. Macron seems able to do it, renationalised EDF and capped rise to 3.5% also paid the 3.5% to poorest.

      5. 1) Forget nationalisation. Let them go unfmder and acquire for pennies.

        2) Stop trading on energy in transit. Energy is bought and sold amny to es on it’s travels. This would stop much of the parasites behaviour.

        3) Progressive rate that charge more aren’t ideal unless measured by per person, not household. Other issues should be taken into account. The elderly or disabled for example should not be punished for needing heat.

        4) Dropping the green crap agenda and cost. Nothing wrong with green power, but it’s not going replace oil and gas any time soon. (Remember the coral bleaching end of the world about 20 years ago? Seems the great barrier reef was listening)

      6. Joseph, don’t piss onto the wind, squire.

        You’d be better off trying to teach a cat how to do Pinyin calligraphy.

    3. ONE “energy retailer” started out as a 22 year old boy. His business rapidly went belly up amid talk os massive loans to other family businesses, and consumers have been left with a 700,000,000 bill. Do you think that is helping “consumers?” An unnecessary bill of £14 for every man, woman, child and baby across the UK. If it had been nationalised that £700,000,000 would have been …. £0.00.

      1. That was in reply to the wee gobshite’s opening effort in the thread 🙄

  2. The Labour Party are not in tune with the population
    of the UK in this – it is surprising how many are in
    favour of it.

    Even Gordon Brown is coming round to it – saying they
    should be temporarily nationalised ..

    It is blooming Starmer – trotting along behind his Tory
    mentors like a little lad ..

    When was the last time he thought things out for himself
    I wonder?

    1. HFM – Gordon Brown’s solution makes next to no sense. what Brown is saying is that the state should absorb energy company losses, and then restore them to private control when profits return. That is madness

      1. Gas prices may be set steven but orofit isnt. The water is claiming debt yet giving billions to its share holders. And polluting our rivers. Its not hard steven.

      2. The ‘energy company’ would make no loss if it didn’t exist. The price, control, distribution and management of energy would be a very different market if the capital-accumulators were not controlling it.

      3. Two Cheeks
        Fuck me pink with one of Ken Dodds tickling sticks we will make a human bean out of you yet
        Whoed a thunk it
        Socialism for the 1% and Capatalism for the 99%

  3. The energy companies were stolen from the people.
    Likewise the railways, the water companies, Cable&Wireless, much of our telecoms infrastructure, etc
    The greatest robbery of the 20th century.
    It’s time for justice.
    Where is Noo Labour ?
    Not even on the field.
    No surprise there.
    The Trilateral Commission has spoken.
    Starm-Trooper must obey.
    The class war is alive and kicking.
    It’s the poor who are being kicked hardest.

    1. I am glad that someone has finally named – in this thread – the ideological basis for Starmer’s apparent “inaction”. The Trilateral Commission ought to be on the list of banned organisations as far as Labour membership is concerned.

  4. Macron is running into trouble with this as EDF seek to sue him. This is not to argue against nationalisation – there are some sectors where it will be less problematic than others – but some sense of the actual benefit to the end user (as opposed to identifying strategically critical sectors that have a profit cap imposed with no buyout cost to the taxpayer) should be undertaken. Energy doesn’t become cheaper because it’s nationalised, it still requires government subsidy to lower the end user cost. Energy however, is a prime candidate for disaggregating from the national grid and instead subsiding all households to become net producers rather than consumers of energy.

    1. Tim White
      Companies are expected to hedge against these unforeseen events
      Capatalism is built on creative destruction and moral hazard, they expect companies to collapse if they are to weak to withstand the storm
      Question is, why should we the consumer take any of the pain

      1. Doug, as I understand your point, business takes on risk and should have a contingency to cover that risk.
        Would the moral condemnation of such companies be less if the profits they made were retained as such a hedge, rather than being handed over to top wxecs and shareholders and, given that the question might equally be asked of something in public hands, what would constitute an acceptable level of contingency?

  5. Energy gouging and cartels have been recognised in the USA since the second world war.and are illegal under the law.Unfortunately the rise of unelected government across the western world as bypassed the working of government in the USA and its poodle the UK
    …Control of strategic Utilities as been identified for over half a century in the modern era and enforcement and nationalisation is one of the weapons against the unacceptable face of capatilism even used by the believers in so called “market forces” enterprise and robberry..Governments are elected to govern for the people and the labour party are obviously not even “in the running” to be capable of dealing with unchecked powerful corporations and never will be.under the knight of the realm.Looking at the motley crew in the shadowy cabinet its clearly impossible to form a opposition to the conservative and unionist party with this second rate tribute act.

    1. Joseph – Ignoring that there are worldwide commodities markets isn’t going to make them go away, For instance how do you propose to ‘nationalise’ Qatar’s gas production?

      1. Steve H you really don’t understand the concept of purchase power and influence government could and did use”once upon a time ” the once proud NHS could control the price and development of the drugs market and thats why it was destroyed by both the Tory party and the new labour tribute act..At the moment your policy of uncontrollable debt crisis and market forces rules the western world..but clearly its not working as unelected government decides that resouces belong to them and they will take them…re gulf wars and now Ukraine \Russia.and the burning of foods and force prices upwards and create massive shortages..We are entering a time of crisis especially were you are in the western world.
        Unless you get a grip of the shadowyunelected government you and the West will perish in a genocide of your own making.
        Life doesn’t carry on as normal and the world outside is changing rapidly…dont get left behind and aceppt that the days of western world control is finished…look eastwards for the development of the world as your time as gone and aceppt it as the nature of natural progression and evolution of humanity….go and play with the sheep and watch the sun 🌞go down on your Caribbean bolt hole.whilst you can….former comrade?

      2. SteveH, the UK government should give incentives to household to install solar panels and batteries to collect the energy for example.
        Pharma is part of the commodities market and China managed to reduce the bill by over 62%.
        France and Spain are managing to reduce energy prices too. Why the UK cannot do the same?
        Allow me to ask you an impertinent question: Are you a shareholder on a Rail company? Electricity, Gas, Water company supplier? It would explain a lot of things when it comes to you.

      3. Maria “Are you a shareholder on a Rail company? Electricity, Gas, Water company supplier?”


      4. Two Cheeks
        They are part of a Cartel
        Do you understand how they work
        What should happen now

  6. STeveH – well at least Brown is on the right lines –
    the beginning of a conversation if you like.

    Even that arch Tory Carol Malone is talking
    of the “obscene profits” of the water and
    energy Companies in contrast with the fear
    of the General Public.

      1. HFM – I would favour dumping the wholly regressive standing charge and making the tariffs progressive (ie:- the more you use the more expensive it is). This would achieve a number of objectives including allowing for the setting of ‘social tariffs’ and contributing towards our climate change objectives.

      2. Two labour loosers chatting…..whilst the leader and the commission laugh at your nievity and the leader of your labour party sobers up in the bunker.on full pay from his funders….pathetic old drivel from a party in terminal decline.You really don’t “get it do you” ….comrades do you…!

      3. Joseph – Oh for goodness sake give your Communist drivel a rest, very,very few people in the UK are interested in your very peculiar version of Animal Farm Utopia.

      4. very,very few people in the UK are interested in your very peculiar version of Animal Farm Utopia.

        Even fewer in your version. You abhorrent wrong un.

  7. Is the “Energy Cap” a Con?
    A millionaire with a 30 room mansion can use £20,000 worth of energy but only pays a few thousand pounds – his payments are CAPPED. The average family probably gets nowhere near the cap and never will.
    Is this robbing the poor to give to the rich?

    1. Andy Jenkinson, of course it is. Meanwhile this same millionaire is making millions out of his shares in the energy companies.

    2. Andy, I agree that the system is mad. Surely a commodity whose use is metered can be subjected to a model of payments akin to the tax system? There would be an amount that is provided entirely free that aligns with an estimation of how much is needed to provide heat for warmth and food (short term this could be scaled in line with council tax bands though I accept that this is an imprecise measure of the number of people living in a property) and then having increasingly expensive prices per kwH that make it known to the consumer that yes, you can leave all five computers in your house running all day but it is going to cost you a princely sum. The free allowance is a more targeted means of avoiding fuel poverty than lump sum handouts and the escalating bands would constrain usage – any green levy would be an increasing element as usage climbed through ever more punitive bands.

      1. Tim White
        Prepayment meters only work if users pay the same amount every weak, that way they build up credit in the summer
        Bills can vary from £10 week to £50 week, throughout the year
        The area to protect is in the enforcement procedure
        Here’s something that has changed the game, Smart meters can become prepayment meters and switched off when you run out of credit
        Now that is a Red Flag
        Hope I have read it wrong

        More and more this is looking like the Poll Tax on steroids

    3. Is the “Energy Cap” a Con?

      Rule-based systems never prescribe a rule unless it achieves or enables a ‘terminal objective’.

      I’d say that the quarterly-reviews (ofgem) Energy Cap is such a rule and it provides a diverse supply chain with cartel-like protection. End users? They don’t really feature in the model at all. The mickey-mouse politicians and BBC/MSM can talk about the Energy Cap as if it’s a consumer protection, but, essentially, it is not.

      Crony Capitalism and mickey mouse (FPTP) democracy They’re brother and sister. Socialism and true democracy, on the other hand, are indivisible.

  8. At least they’ve been honest. No one could possibly think Keef Stammer has the slightest intention of taking anything into public ownership, meet the new boss, same as the old boss.

      1. Trilateral Commission/World Economic Forum, we know what (capitalist ideologies) Sir third-way Starmer serves. His sponsors and their class interests are admitted and proudly proclaimed.

  9. So truss says the energy companies are not evil “..and I am sure that the labour party would agree with that and many of the members that voted for the despot piss pot leader.The carnage facing the working class across the western world should not be underestimated in the” Evil “that has been deliberately orchestrated by the unelected world order and carried out by your parliament…..I dread to think the misery and violence against my relatives and friends in Ireland and Britain if they are allowed to go through with this plan.

  10. Energy in France is nationalised and bills are going up there by 4% yet under private ownership in the UK they are going up 215%. (Ofgem, Politoco, EROSCOPE, Guardian).
    And oil refineries are doing particularly well (Sunday Times) so they and energy companies should be taken into democratic public ownership with staff & communities having a say – Energy Users Councils.
    With privatised energy WE GET WHAT WE ARE GIVEN a bit like the crumbs from Right Wing Top Down Labour!

  11. Extreme capitalism, the UK really is unique in Europe in its broken obsession with privatisation and profits over the people.

    It’s all Putin’s fault! is the line being peddled by politicians and pundits.

    But 50% of the UK gas supply comes from the North sea. Only 3% of the total is Russian. How can Russia be holding us to ransom when we only Russian gas only makes up 3% of our total? The fact we have no reserves and buy back our own gas from the European energy pool (where prices have risen) is the cause the problem. That and not investing in nuclear and renewables like tidal, solar, hydro, biomass and wind.

    1. Precisely Andy. If we only switched off our constantly on/ on-standby digital televisions and – just occasionally – our modems and routers, we’d probably reduce the energy demand by an amount equal or greater than the spend on Russian Gas.

      (If we stopped watching television and MSM entirely our mental health and awareness would increase significantly more than the reduced spend on Russian gas).

      1. I wonder where Starmer/Reeves are going to take Labour policy on hydraulic fracking? Guess it’ll depend on how much money is in it for them.

        Most Europeans hate fracking, and for good reason. Even relatively poor countries like Romania, poor village populations have rallied against it when the US giants arrived with their bribes.

        Fracking poisons the the drinking water aquifers – in the US it’s a huge problem up to a kilometer away from fracking sites. They pump in billions of litres of a toxic chemical mix to dissolve the rock and get at the shale gas. Sulfuric acid – corrosive to all body tissues, it’s also classified as a probable carcinogen, fuel oil, kerosene, hydrofluoric acid, and boric acid.

        The people in designated areas where the shale gas underlies aquifers(most in the UK) should absolutely reject it , lest face years of misery.

        We should concentrate on nuclear and renewables.

      2. Most modern device manufacturers have thankfully implemented ultra low standby power draw to meet eco targets – set by the EU.
        But yes , if we all switched to low power options and turned stuff off, it’d amount to quite an energy use reduction across the UK.

      3. Andy
        There’s a reason why Nuclear cannot be built without massive subsidies, its not a profitable business, the markets have spoken
        It also takes forever to build, so by the time it comes on line, the world will have moved on
        Just another transfer of public money to private interests, think Trident and HS2, they give white elephants a bad name
        Finally it is always impossible to quantify the clean up costs
        You may as well throw the money into an old coal fired station and burn it, would be more environmentally friendly

  12. Charging by usage seems like a really good idea, customers benefit from staying within a certain cap but pay more to use more. This would encourage people to invest in greener homes and adopt things like solar. Not sure how we would square EV charging with this.

    1. Terry, my understanding is that we start seeing EVs as a continuation of the age of ICE vehicles and more as power storage devices. Solar’s intermittent yield (especially in the UK) means that battery storage is an essential part of moving toward off-grid solutions (and surely no intervention is better than corporate or even state intervention) and once you have EVs that can store and dispense energy then it effectively becomes the battery. This is already being trialled on a Spanish island though the next phase in this is to have the car itself as an additional solar collector (see Sion,Lightyear and the otherworldly Aptera for existing products that, albeit with some hype, are promising unlimited range).

      More generally I would favour solutions that bypass both corporations and the state rather than see nationalisation as a universal panacea: energy can be done, mail runs up against the reluctance of atoms to zap from a to b the way bits do and water, though desalination and recycling tech gets some of the way, still leans on major infrastructure that necessitates the involvement of a larger entity. Rail does feel like a legacy of an earlier age and though in the short term nationalisation is a no-brainier, I think the future of transport lies elsewhere, be it other mass-transit solutions or mobility solutions on an individual basis.

  13. I think Starmer has made a massive mistake here that is unless ( which is far more likely) this announcement was made deliberately to ensure Labour is defeated at the next election. One of Jeremy Corbyn’s most popular policies right across the electorate was renationalisation of utility companies (along with transport , mail etc).
    Now we are facing a huge hike in energy prices which with associated rising food costs will cause real hardship for millions so Starmer thinks this is the right time to rule nationalisation of energy companies.
    Labour is facing electoral oblivion under this man. I truly believe that this is his motivation behind this and his other stupid statements and his malicious behaviour.

    1. Same thing occurred to me Smartboy. Thing is, even people who couldn’t notice a visual difference in Starmer and Corbyn (the inattentive) will notice this quickly.

      Starmer doesn’t realise it, but his ideological control-freakery-in-Labour is actually a g*d-send to the democratic left.

      A ‘new party’ will be eagerly insisted on (and better-supported?) by the electorate thanks to the bumblings of Sir Keir Rodney Starmer.

  14. Less than 2 years ago, Labour backed a big increase in the military budget.

    More recently, it attacked the government for allegedly not spending enough despite Britain already having one of the highest military budgets in the world.

    Labour is lying when it says there is not enough money to re-nationalise the energy companies.

  15. I don’t believe Macron did it from the goodness of his heart: he was forced.
    Macron witness the reaction of the Gillet Jaunes when he tried to raise the duty on petrol. He has also witness his vote collapse and he knows that the only reason he is France PM is because the left refused to back Marine Le Pen.
    He knows too, that in this area both Marine Le Pen and the left would unite against a rise in energy prices.
    Hence, it was a question or do I jump? Do I wait to be push? Wisely Macron decided to jump.

    1. Unlike the passive, apathetic British, French people actually show solidarity in protest, and tbf they usually win. They have better injustice instincts imho.

      When we(British) protest, we usually do it in a haphazard fashion and support isn’t universal it’s splintered. It’s how the establishment ‘divide and conquer’ and why we’ve still got a class system, aristocracy and people with fancy titles lording it over us. They’ve also got lots of folk willing to betray their own class.

      Look how the establishment have run rings around the left by hijacking Labour & imposing Starmer. If leading the Tories, similar leadership campaign lies would be being called out daily

  16. When you see the French protesting in an impressive and organised way – The MSM never translate or report much of what is being said:

  17. Energy Production & Distribution companies are often part of the same conglomerate e.g.BP a British Company who have made vast profits extracting energy from the North Sea & then selling it on the international spot market & not for the benefit of the British people. It was the Tories who agreed to allow them to do this & not create storage facilities nor create an emergency fund taken from excessive profits; Starmer is now in full agreement. Whose interests do these politicians serve?

  18. On the military budget, we have continued to honour our 2% GDP commitment (even as we have reneged on the 0.7% aid agreement, shamefully). To those who are using Ukraine as cover for bumping military spend to 3% and beyond I would say that you require your alliance partners to honour their commitment if any further spend is required – and to be clear I am doubtful that the existing 2% is justified but if we persist in putting people in harm’s way then they must be equipped to do so or not go at all. I am not justifying or excusing any military engagement rather saying that no soldier should be expected to go into combat inadequately protected because of funding issues.
    The % of GDP model does seem to me a suitable way of funding both health and education, setting the amount and then allowing the professionals to allocate resource: both areas have become the playthings of the right and left, neither of which strike me as suitable custodians of these essential services.

  19. Tony, re
    Labour is lying when it says there is not enough money to re-nationalise the energy companies.

    Yes, they are but there then does become less money to do othet things. Whether it’s prospective PMs trying to outdo each other over tax giveaways or policies to invest, buy up and subsidise from the left, one can argue over how much one can spend (always mindful that the further down this road you go, the more you tie the hands and the opportunities of those who follow after and inherit your debt) but it is does have a limit. If(and it’s a big if) Truss lasts till 2024 then an inviolate commitment (even from Starmer who doesn’t do commitment) to nationalising energy could look very much like a historical curio when more pressing concerns have emerged. It is a problem of the absolutist nature of FPTP – what is the point of setting out your stall when you can’t sell anything for five years – might as well sit on your hands and tailor your offerings to the customers of five years hence rather those of today.

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