One of the numerous QUANGOs to be abolished by the Con-Dem government as part of its programme to cut government spending to the levels of around 4 years ago is "Cycling England". This entity had a budget of £5 million in 2005 which has now ballooned elephant like to £60 million this year ("oh but the deficit is due to bankers" cry the wilfully blind on the left). Quite why it needed a 1200% budget increase at a time of deficits is astonishing, and even with its abolition this funding wont disappear.
What is the response of the Green Party of England and Wales? Hysteria
"A big question mark now hangs over the future of cycling" says Green Party representative Ian Davey (a city councillor in Brighton, not an MP).
Really Ian? Does cycling need a government agency spending vast amounts of other people's money? Do people not buy bicycles unless bureaucrats are paid to promote it? Will people stop biking because Cycling England no longer exists?
What sort of hysterical hyperbole is this? The type that states that if anything good exists, it can't survive without the government spending other people's money on it.
Now I am not saying that cycling isn't good, in fact the measure about whether it is good is up to the individual. Some find it a lot of fun, it keeps them fit etc. Others are uninterested. That's ok.
However there IS a solution for those who promote cycling. They can keep Cycling England or reconstitute it through (take a deep breath, the concept I am about to describe bamboozles statists) their own efforts and their own money.
Yes, remarkable though it may be to those on the left, but you don't need the government to make things happen in your community.
I'll try it another way - "take the energy you put into placards, marching and generally being a nuisance to peaceful citizens going about their business, and use it to help do what you like Cycling England doing".
You see the government doesn't get enough money, from already high taxes, to pay for everything you want. Which means you're going to have to pay for some things you like yourself.
Oh and if you don't, cycling isn't going to end. For the same reason that there isn't an organisation called Blogging England to help fund this activity.