Tuesday, April 18, 2006

London Underground: useless, lazy, fucking cunts. Again.

Via Snafu, it seems that Tube workers fancy a few more days off. Apparently, their human rights are being breached, and this is indeed a heinous crime. But how? What evil has the PPP consortium come up with this time? Can it be that engineers are being forced to work on live tracks, or that signallers are having to manually change the lights with a wee flick-switch? Or maybe that Tube drivers are being forced to work 48 hours at a stretch?
The Rail Maritime and Transport (RMT) union said the new system could be used to check hours worked by staff.

Fucking hell! Truly this is a breach of their rights! A company actually checking that their workers are working the hours that they are paid for? This is ridiculous!

Two pertinent questions spring to mind:
  • Would the company go to the expense of introducing clocking-on cards if they thought that the workers were actually working the hours that they are supposed to?

  • Would the unions be making such a fuss if they didn't know that their workers weren't working the hours that they are paid (a substantial amount of money) for?


Once more, I fear that these lyrics must be posted again...
Some people might like to get a train to work
Or drive in in a Beamer or a merc,
Some guys like to travel in by bus,
But I can't be bothered with the fuss today
I'm going to take my bike,
Coz once again the Tube's on strike.
The greedy bastards want extra pay
for sitting on their arse all day
even though they earn 30K .
So I'm standing here in the pouring rain,
Where the fuck's my fucking train?

London Underground
London Underground
They're all lazy fucking useless cunts
London Underground
London Underground
They're all greedy cunts I want to shoot them all with a rifle.

All they say is "Please mind the doors",
and they learned that on the two day course,
This job could be done by a four year old.
They just leave us freezing in the cold.
What you smell is what you get
Burger King and piss and sweat
You roast to death in the boiling heat,
With tourists treading on your feet
and chewing gum on every seat,
so don't tell me to "Mind the gap"
I want my fucking money back.

London Underground
London Underground
They're all lazy fucking useless cunts
London Underground
London Underground
They're all greedy cunts I want to shoot them all with a rifle
LaLaLaLa
LaLaLaLa

The floors are sticky and the seats are damp,
Every platform has a fucking tramp,
But the drivers get the day off when we're all late for work again,

London Underground
London Underground
WaWa Wankers , They're all Wankers ,
London Underground
London Underground

Take your Oystercard, and shove it up your arsehole.

(C) Adam Kay and Suman Biswas

It's funny because it's true...

Why not amuse yourself by listening to the MP3, watching Manic's Flash video, or even buying the CD? It's for charidee, mate...

UPDATE: Thanks to The Stationmaster, who helpfully pointed out my typo; I have corrected the spelling in the title of this post.

19 comments:

Anonymous said...

You've made another friend, I see.

Hmmm, do you think urging people to "comment spam the fuck out of this blog post right now" might constitute a breach of the poster's ToS?

Raw Carrot said...

I really cannot possibly imagine how trying to solve the eternal principal-agent problem could possibly come close to infringing human rights... Mind you, even if it did, human rights are often just a lot of bollocks.

Anonymous said...

So...."government ID cards bad - employee ID cards good"? Have I got it right?

Anonymous said...

Employee ID cards have been around on our rail system for a long while now. The Sentinel system introduced by Railtrack and operated by Capita has gained widespread acceptance in the industry (including that of the RMT). There is, however, a clear distinction between a discreet industry/employer system that simply records work related information and a national system that is accessible by third parties and has limitless uses. The RMT complaint here seems to be RFID for track workers in the tunnels. I have some sympathy with this, but would balance it against the risks of working in a hostile environment. In this instance, knowing exactly where people are makes sense.

Despite your attempts to portray one, anonymous, there is no paradox here.

Devil's Kitchen said...

Quite, Longrider. There speaks a man who knows.

Besides, there are many companies in which one has to clock on and clock off (even for a cigarette break): Scottish Widows is an example that springs to mind.

As has been pointed out many times in the ID Card debate, one can always find another job...

DK

Anonymous said...

I agree with some of that - I clock on and off, have to complete leave and sick records for monitoring etc and don't have a problem with that being done in a more technologically efficient way. But the link you posted is to another of these "maybe/if" stories that don't add up to much. The union 'may" ballot on strike action and the company "may" include biometric data and fingerprints "may" be used etc etc. And the argument around ID cards has similarly been filled with what might or might not happen and how they might or might not be misused. I don't think the point about leaving the comapny if you're not happy is any more valid then suggesting you emigrate if you don't like what the country does. Campaign against the government if you don't like national ID cards - and get your union to fight if your employer proposes something that may (or may not!) be unacceptable.

Anonymous said...

Just a minute, why is it when you hear the term “Tube Workers” you and the rest of London attack myself and my colleagues who work the stations or trains to keep the service going as best we can?

Indeed I haven’t voted in favour of a strike. I have, like the rest of my colleagues carried staff ID cards for years.

The people who are getting upset about this are the army of contractors who work to maintain the system that you and hundreds of other Londoners use everyday. I agree with the idea of these workers clocking in and out – that way maybe then we (LUL) will get value for money from our maintainers – at present they are paid for 8 hours, arrive on site at about midnight and have booked of again at 030 or 0330 while claiming to be on site until 0430.

Bet your firm won’t like that either. Any maybe you would l9ike the idea of practices or conditions being changed and you being forced to work longer hours – AT NIGHT, 6 nights a week either?

As for the Tube Staff, have you ever tried to work with the travelling public – maybe you should try it, ‘cos I’m prepared to bet afterwards you wont be so ungrateful.

And as for that song – maybe that’s why the NHS is in such a state, I’m surprised that the Doctors – on £90000 a year or more had time to write such a load of crap, being as they are always complaining of being overworked, maybe they should have spent their time healing people after all that’s what they’re paid for.

NO we the blue uniformed staff of LU are not wanting more time off, or are my colleagues who work the signal complaining at having to flick a wee small switch, or are the train operators having to work 48 hours in a stretch.

But maybe, just maybe you’ve got the wrong end of the stick AGAIN

Anonymous said...

Get a life, or fuck out the city and go hug a tree

Anonymous said...

Too many anonymouses are confusing me - as anon 1 on this thread can I rename myself....I dunno...what about "Fair play", no too namby pamby. Erm well as I seem to take it upon myself to temper DKs wildest flights of bile and rhetoric, "Angel by your side"?

Devil's Kitchen said...

Just a minute, why is it when you hear the term “Tube Workers” you and the rest of London attack myself and my colleagues who work the stations or trains to keep the service going as best we can?

You make it sound as if you are on the verge of collapse: is keeping the Tube running really so difficult? (I'm genuinely asking, by the way, not being sarky.)

Oh, and I live in Edinburgh, so I am not subject to the depredations of Tube workers anyway.

The people who are getting upset about this are the army of contractors who work to maintain the system that you and hundreds of other Londoners use everyday. I agree with the idea of these workers clocking in and out – that way maybe then we (LUL) will get value for money from our maintainers – at present they are paid for 8 hours, arrive on site at about midnight and have booked of again at 030 or 0330 while claiming to be on site until 0430.

These are private contractors? Interesting: but this point...
Would the unions be making such a fuss if they didn't know that their workers weren't working the hours that they are paid (a substantial amount of money) for?
... obviously still stands. And as far as I am concerned, you are all "Tube workers" because you are all employed by London Underground (or whatever the bloddy PPP thing is called these days), whether permanently or as outside contractors. Obviously London Underground feels that some workers, whether permanent or contractual, are defrauding the company and that the best way to stop this is to introduce clocking on and off for everybody.

I don't see what the issue is here, or why anyone would even consider striking over this. Still, we do seem to have stirred up a wee hornet's nest though...

DK

Anonymous said...

Except that it comes back to the point that something introduced for one purpose - health and safety? - shouldn't be used for something entirely different without open debate. So if it's about clocking on and off then let the RMT and Metrothing (can't be bothered checking the company name) debate that. And there are issues other than fraud - i know nothing about the underground but I do know that it's beyond the wit of my employer to allow us to key in at one building and out at another. So if you travel between buildings for work you come off the system and have to do manual updates. Where does the poor plod in the tunnel key in and out?

And while I'm used to, though bemused by, some of your little ways - you can't blame people for taking the hump with you when your opening position is that they're all cunts.

Devil's Kitchen said...

Get a life, or fuck out the city and go hug a tree

I'm sorry, are you implying that I'm some kind of tree-hugging hippie? How entertaining!

Look, boy-who-hasn't-the-courage-to-even-post-his-name, either make a constructive point as others have done, or bugger off and rape a squirrel, 'kay? 'Kay? Okay.

Besides, I live in Edinburgh, a city so superior to London in just about every way that I don't need to leave it to hug a tree: I just walk downstairs, cross the road and right there in front of me is one of the biggest green spaces in the city (complete with very huggable trees).

But the main advantage of Edinburgh is that it's very small and one can walk everywhere (it's why no one really cares when Lothian Buses go on strike (and First Bus make a killing)) and I don't have to submit myself to the tender mercies of the London Underground.

DK

Devil's Kitchen said...

You know me, angel etc.: I just love a lively debate!

How the technology is implemented is beside the point at the moment, I think. Let's start from the position of assuming that they know what they are doing and are going to put in a system that works (a pretty big assumption, I know, but let's just make it anyway).

I don't think that safety is the primary motivation for introducing the cards: I think that Metro-whatever are simply trying to sell 'em. The primary motivation, as far as I read it, is to ensure that people are working the hours that they say they are.

Union officials said introduction of the new card was being linked to a new pay deal.

Yeah, the deal is that you only get paid for the hours that you actually work rather than being able happily to knock off early, lie about the hours that you have worked and steal money from the company that employs you.

Having said that evil capitalist thing, I now off to hug a tree. I'll be back in two minutes...

DK

Devil's Kitchen said...

Still, whilst we are vitriol mode. let's have a look at Anon 2's comments.

Any [sic] maybe you would like the idea of practices or conditions being changed and you being forced to work longer hours – AT NIGHT, 6 nights a week either?

They aren't being asked to work longer hours, just the hours that they are bloody well paid for. As you pointed out, presently they do not. They steal money from their employer.

And as for that song – maybe that’s why the NHS is in such a state, I’m surprised that the Doctors – on £90000 a year or more had time to write such a load of crap, being as they are always complaining of being overworked, maybe they should have spent their time healing people after all that’s what they’re paid for.

The song was on a CD collection of songs that were written when they were still students, and it was to raise money for a cancer charity. I think that covers healing people. It also makes people laugh like a drain and -- hey! -- laughter is good for you!

And if you think that all doctors are on £90k a year, you really does need to do some research. A junior doctor's basic salary is considerably less than, say, a Tube driver's: by about £10k...

NO we the blue uniformed staff of LU are not wanting more time off, or are my colleagues who work the signal complaining at having to flick a wee small switch...

I was being facetious; go down to Poundstretcher and buy yourself a sense of humour.

... or are the train operators having to work 48 hours in a stretch.

Well, they shouldn't be. That patently puts lives at risk and is, furthermore, illegal. What the fucking shit is the point of having employment legislation if the damn workers are going to ignore it?

DK

Anonymous said...

Interestingly, the Sentinel scheme was ostensibly introduced for "safety" reasons. It was a means authorising track access to those people qualified (as opposed to those who bought their track safety permits down the pub - yes, it did happen). The scheme, despite early difficulties, has matured and works reasonably well as it enables Network Rail through its audit contracts to ensure that only authorised people provide training, assessment and ultimately go and work on the infrastructure with the relevant qualifications. It provides a robust audit trail and, frankly, it's a good scheme for what it claims to do. As a side benefit, people book in with their sentinel cards on and off site - this means that their hours can be monitored using the same tool - even though this was not the primary purpose. No one seems to have a problem with this as it ensures that people do not work excessive hours.

It is logical, therefore for LUL to adopt a similar scheme. I read elsewhere that they want to use RFID tracking so that they may locate individuals at any given time. I suspect that they are overestimating the capabilities of RFID. The RMT's objection contradicts their acceptance of Sentinel. Having said that, I would object to my employer demanding more information than is necessary. They really don't need biometrics for this scheme; that is way over the top.

The sensible thing to do would be to buy into Sentinel as it is a ready made, mature scheme, but I suspect politics is at play here - LUL probably don't want to be seen to be buying into a Network Rail system. Ah, well...

Angel, I've worked with the general public and they can be obnoxious and ungrateful bastards, so I sympathise.

Anonymous said...

I see another full broadside volley from LUL Staff, and the LU bloggers.

schopenhauer said...

The transport cost issue is realitvely simple: It is all a matter of competition: if the transport worker who wrote above is correct, then the fuss is about private contractors working 30 minutes, when they're supposed to be working 4 and a half, in order to be paid for 8 (yip: that's the crazy deal).

Just offer the contract on an open market: someone will glady do it for around 20% of the current price, as it seems to involve about 20% of the work being paid for. Or perhaps it is 50 or 80. It doesn't matter: just contract the work out. Of course that is illegal (illegal to pay people for shorter than a day of work, illegal to run a service with less than absurdly high levels of safety in a world of people who don't believe in accidents...)

As for train station employees being worth £30,000. It is clear that the way to be well paid in the UK is to work in a job where the government wants to hear no public complaints: Otherwise why are doctors in the stupid NHS all of a sudden worth twice what they were 4 years ago? It's a joke, unfortunately one played out on us.

Brian Dunbar said...

And as for that song – maybe that’s why the NHS is in such a state, I’m surprised that the Doctors – on £90000 a year or more had time to write such a load of crap, being as they are always complaining of being overworked, maybe they should have spent their time healing people after all that’s what they’re paid for.

Now, I'm an American. More, I was raised in Oklahoma, lived in Texas for a few years, so I'm not nearly as sophisticated as y'all are.

So my first thought was not to apologize by saying "well these guys were in school when they recorded this etc etc so it's not like they were slacking off" it's to say...

It's none of your g-d damned business what a fellow does in his off time.

Jesus, the things y'all put up with. Nosy Parkerism and class envy aren't sins but they are by G-d damned dumb things to go on about.

Anonymous said...

Hello, I am the director of a company that employs people for one of the PPP's. Although my business enjoys the fruits of the PPP and we do a good job, as a citizen and taxpayer I can safely say that the only way to rein in fraud of working time on the system is to introduce logged working hours. There are even ghost workers who get paid 8 hours and the entire amount goes straight to the offending company without having to pay antbody. Pretty good markup wouldnt you say?

Our company tries it best to work to ensure employees stick to the rules, but seeing some of the other companies working on the system, my god if you only could see it on the ground, then you would understand the objections of the unions to the proposals are simply the response of a spoilt child who has had it too good for too long.

And those who talk about an open market for the labour, dont be ridiculous, the child will cry.

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