Free market case

Certainly the business model favoured by Stagecoach, if there were a Yes vote, isn’t “free market fundamentalism” (your report and Business, 26 June).

One risk perceived to the group’s prospects would be changes in the “availability of public funding”.

This shows the accepted business model is that bus and rail transport are a “public good”.

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Taxpayers are expected to subsidise buses and trains 
because it benefits the community as a whole.

Isn’t it incumbent upon free market economists as part of 
the independence debate to challenge this?

Say, for example, subsidies for luxury coach intercity services were to be withdrawn by the government.

What is the benefit to the whole community (all tax-
payers) of government subsidies for these services?

Can this kind of “public transport” service be justified as a “public good” and therefore 

Arguably it isn’t because of “market failure” public transport is subsidised as free market fundamentalism hasn’t been tried.

Ellis Thorpe

Old Chapel Walk


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