In something entirely unrelated to Worcester Park as I perused yesterday's letters my attention was caught by the one from British Gas saying "sorry you're leaving us for another provider" and I suddenly realised that the companies I've developed the strongest dislikes for seem to have the word "British" in them. Let's take my recent gripes about BA (British Airways) and BAA (British Airport Authority), cast into the limelight by yesterday's Terminal 5 fiasco, and then add the aforementioned British Gas and append the truly awful BT (British Telecom) and you've pretty much covered my list of thoroughly dislikeable companies.
Although most of these companies now prefer to hide behind their acronyms they do still seem to have this unspoken belief that "Yes, we're big, give rubbish service and fleece you rotten, but what are you going to do about it... because we're British". I haven't had the displeasure of dealing with BT for my home phone for nearly 15 years but as someone who deals with them as a business customer quite regularly they're outstandingly shocking (To be fair most telcos aren't great but BT are in another league entirely).
Anyway to depress you further there's an article here about the most useless drone aircraft, why the British Army have to use it and why we have to pay for it:
"The resulting Watchkeeper aircraft will be a bit better than the current Hermes 450s - but they will cost much the same as much bigger, hugely more capable Reapers. And they won't arrive until at least 2010. And they will be dependent on parts and support from both Israel and France, so they don't offer Blighty an independent capability."
"Sure, deals of this type generate jobs in the UK. But it almost always turns out that each job costs the taxpayer (at least) a million pounds over and above the cost of buying existing gear - and then, in ten years' time or less, a similar demand is made in order to preserve the said job. The jobs actually turn out to be, in effect, a tremendously expensive dole scheme."
"And meanwhile, British troops - so badly paid that they are often not from Blighty at all nowadays - wait years for their gear until it can be made in the UK, paying hugely inflated prices for the privilege. And then, often enough - considering the good old British made Phoenix - it isn't worth either the wait or the price"