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Cameron’s housing giveaway offers little to you and me

Well, here we go round the mulberry bush again. Right to Buy part two – who would have thought it?

But my view about Right to Buy has changed.

Back in the Thatcherite 1980s, in my patronising upper middle class way, I believed Right to Buy was a jolly good piece of legislation.

It never affected me of course. My dad was a posh estate agent and I never knew anyone from a council estate until I was 22.

It was then that I met a lovely girl called Shirley whose parents lived in a council house.

After a respectful and completely decent courtship I was invited to tea, an experience I have yet to recover from.

I had never realised electric ’pay as you go’ meters existedand everywhere there were bowls of cheap crisps and nuts, I assumed to impress me.

I view Prime Minister David Cameron’s offer of £75,000 discount to local authority tenants as nothing more than an electoral bribe.

Gone are my former egalitarian views on home ownership which could be loosely translated as – “It’s so nice that poor people can buy their own house, don’t you think?”.

“If I lived in a council flat with three Staffies and seven kids by three women I’d snap Cameron’s hand off”

These fine words have been replaced bythe undeniable truth that what Cameron and co are really saying is – “Here’s £75,000 and can I rely on your vote please?”.

And another thing that seriously irks me is what gives Cameron the right to do this.

Don’t council houses belong to you and me – i.e. the tax payer? So how come he can decide to sell them off without asking us?

OK, Thatcher did exactly the same, but that was 30 years ago and this is 2012 and times have changed.

The other aspect that concerns me is that all this will inevitably lead to yet more impoverished families having to rent in the ludicrously expensive private sector because every council house that’s bought reduces the social housing stock by one.

And in case you haven’t noticed they don’t build council housing anymore.

Don’t get me wrong, if I had a council flat at the top of a 16-storey tower block with three Staffordshire bull terriers and seven kids by three women, I too would snap Cameron’s hand off.

Who after all is going to look this gift horse in the mouth?

So in a nutshell unless you are a council tenant this idea of Cameron’s doesn’t benefit you or me one iota. It’s just cynical vote buying.

I am also undecided about the NewBuy Guarantee scheme to help first-time buyers purchase new-build homes.

Call me a sad old cynic but doesn’t this mean that the banks that have denied lending to us for years are now set to benefit massively? Something doesn’t sit right here.


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  • john smith 11th April 2012 at 1:12 pm

    please tell me this is some kind of april fool joke, is this guy for real? “I never knew anyone from a council estate until I was 22”.

  • Tom Cleary 10th April 2012 at 1:00 pm

    Possibly the most smugly conceited and condescending article I have ever read. Shirley had a lucky escape…

  • Harrry Houdini 10th April 2012 at 10:13 am

    Spot on!
    a deeply cynical exercise in selling other people’s property at a loss.
    The replacement property created will not be at social rents but at the new 80$ of market rent “Affordable rents” only affordable if someone has a job or Housing Benefit is taking the strain. “Save capex now , pay revenue Forever”

    economic Illiterates

  • Jenny Taylor 9th April 2012 at 2:28 pm


    Patronising (cheap crisps?)

    ‘You are a sad old cynic’.

  • Glen McKeown 7th April 2012 at 11:51 am

    Very well put. Unfortunately we are now blessed with a generation of full time politicians without any real connect with the outside world. The concepts coming through are sentimental idealism (the thrust will vary depending on one’s political inclinations) but their relationship with “real” life is highly tenuous. The “Rule of the Party” has always been important; now it is absolute.
    Our parliamentary system is under threat from the vast increase in communications options that provide everyone with access to information like never before (that does not mean people know how to interpret the information). Under this threat Parliamentarians are retreating into their own idealised world. The statement by Francis Maude on petrol is a prime example of being out of touch with reality.
    Property ownership has been deified in the UK. So we are now seeing distortions of social policy. If one is only earning £10,000 a year how is it possible to buy any property? So even a £75,000 handout is hardly likely to be practical. And having bought the property how does one deal with the upkeep?
    You are quite correct – something doesn’t sit right here.
    It strikes me that the thought falls into the category that stated “the biggest danger to the working class are middle class socialists” – all ideas and no reality.