The original shareholders in its manufacture must have presumed that it was a commercial plane built for commercial profit. But rather like our canals, which never returned a dividend, or our railways, which likewise sapped the right-hand side of their profit-and- loss accounts for most of their 'privatised' lives, it has simply drained money away on a whim.
So will the Channel tunnel and the Birmingham toll road. We have to decide on a subject of international importance - to what extent should world resources be devoted to transport and what environmental impact should we allow? I remember the optimistic view that Saudi Arabia would put up with sonic booms so that Concorde flights to Australia might be possible; what came of that?
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