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Thatcher’s slow-motion housing timebomb

Posted on January 5th, 2014 at 9:04 by John Sinteur in category: News -- Write a comment


Housing in the UK is a microcosm for everything wrong with neoliberalism: corruption, cronyism, grinding human misery, and funny accounting to prove that it’s all working, honestly

  1. The UK must be one of the few developed countries where anyone can set up an estate agency with no qualifications whatsoever, I am not even sure you even need to be literate.

    I personally found it rather satisfying that one of the first estate agents I had to deal with was later prosecuted and eventually incarcerated for criminal financial irregularities.

    The selling off of social housing at cut price rates has created an enormous housing shortage for poorer families, putting them at risk from unscrupulous landlords and crowding them into virtual ghettos with poor access to transport and other social services.

    The shining star of the selling off movement was Dame Shirley Porter who managed to oversee the sale of millions of pounds worth of social housing in the desirable Westminster Borough where she was council leader. The action was viewed as gerrymandering and judged to be illegal by the district auditor and she was asked to pay back 27 million pounds, later raised to 42 million: “Writing in The Spectator in 2006, author and journalist Leo McKinstry described her as “the high priestess of Tory sleaze.” (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Shirley_Porter) She managed to scrape together 12.3 million pounds which the council accepted. This sort of sleaze led to the ousting of the conservatives, the triumphal appearance of Tony Blair and things carried on much as before.

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