I have recently received an energy bill, and on the side there is a note reminding me that I could get cheaper energy by switching supplier or tariff. I presume that this is a legal requirement, because I cannot see that the company are willing putting it there. I presume it comes from the findings that many suppliers and tariffs are complicated and customers might not be getting the best deal.
Of course, the core reason for this is that the energy companies are there to make money, and so are not going to encourage their customers to pay them less or move to another supplier.
So I have an idea: Nationalise the energy companies. Then those in charge can ensure that everyone gets the cheapest tariff available. There would be no need to encourage people to change companies, because there would only be one. There would be a possibility of tracking usage, and ensuring that all customers are automatically on the one that provides them with the best value for their usage.
Surely this is a much better option?
And we can go further. I am not going to discuss the re-nationalisation of the railways - that is discussed and debated elsewhere. However there is another business that I think should be considered.
Something that has become clear over the last few years, with the economic crisis, is that the financial sector is the most crucial to our economy, especially as we have destroyed our manufacturing sector. The financial sector is "too big to fail".
As this sector is so vital, it is clear that we should nationalise the banks. This would have a number of crucial impact. For a start, there would be no need to bail the banks out, as they would already be government owned. The massive profits that are currently earned by the banks, and handed out in bonuses, would then provide much needed income for the country.
Further to that, the bankers would become civic servants, and should then be paid as civic servants. Rather than millions going in bonuses, the bankers would be appropriately remunerated, and in receipt of appropriate honours for successes. We are given many assurances that the finance sector is important because of the money it brings into the country, these changes would, I am sure, be welcomed by all. They would result in far more money for the country, and enable us to manage and control this sector of the market, ensure that it stays safe and behaves, meaning that none of the risky investment strategies that plunged us into the financial crisis would reoccur.
Of course, the banks are not the only part of the financial sector, however, they are the most significant, and by nationalising these, it should exercise some control over other areas. I am, of course, talking about the merchant banks - the high street operations need to be separated from these, and more regulated, but they would seem to operate OK as competitive shops for our normal money.
Now who could really object to this? It provides significantly increased income for the government, the country. It brings the banking sector under control, and so the multitude of regulations and regulatory bodies could be reduced. The loathing that bankers currently face would be reduced, and it would send a strong message to the rest of the financial sector to ensure they do not take stupid risks.