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Provost Harrison
17-02-2005, 15:54:30
Every now and again I feel an urge to check a news website just on the offchance that Margaret Thatcher has recently died and I didn't hear it/hasn't yet been announced?

Funkodrom
17-02-2005, 15:57:39
:lol:

Gary
17-02-2005, 16:24:20
Doesn't everyone ?

I read they've fixed her statue :hmm:

sleeping_satsuma
17-02-2005, 16:26:39
she wasn't all bad

The Bursar
17-02-2005, 16:26:59
until she hit puberty

Dyl Ulenspiegel
17-02-2005, 16:28:06
I think that's prefectly normal. There's a bunch of domestic politicians whose departure in whatever form I would celebrate.

Funkodrom
17-02-2005, 16:28:13
Thinking about it...

Actually... yes, she was all bad.

Provost Harrison
17-02-2005, 16:28:18
Originally posted by Gary
Doesn't everyone ?

I read they've fixed her statue :hmm:

Time to go back with a chainsaw methinks :D

Funkodrom
17-02-2005, 16:30:51
I don't wish she was dead. I don't wish anyone was dead. But in her case whilst she's still alive there's always the chance she'll pop out in public and either support or criticize the current Tory leader, thus ensuring they won't win.

Funkodrom
17-02-2005, 16:31:37
Sorry, clarification to that last post.

I wish the guy who wrote "Who let the dogs out" was brutally tortured to death.

sleeping_satsuma
17-02-2005, 16:37:49
Originally posted by Funkodrom
Thinking about it...

Actually... yes, she was all bad.

no she wasnt, she was just hard as nails.

She actually, ironically, helped the working class by giving them the right to own their council houses, and freeing up credit regulations so that things like loans and mortgages were within grasp of blue collar workers. The more I leran about her the more I like her, and I'm developing a theory that all governments eventually achieve the aims of their opposition, although I havent developed the fine detail yet.

Obviously crushing Wales and Scotland wasnt a good thing.

Provost Harrison
17-02-2005, 16:45:28
Originally posted by sleeping_satsuma
no she wasnt, she was just hard as nails.

She actually, ironically, helped the working class by giving them the right to own their council houses, and freeing up credit regulations so that things like loans and mortgages were within grasp of blue collar workers. The more I leran about her the more I like her, and I'm developing a theory that all governments eventually achieve the aims of their opposition, although I havent developed the fine detail yet.

Oh great, putting the working class at the mercy of the boom-and-bust property market and making her friends in the city fat stacks of cash in rewards for the huge amounts of money loaned out. Yeah, Thatcher was thinking of herself and her allies there...

sleeping_satsuma
17-02-2005, 16:48:13
so we should instead have kept the Workng class enslaved to council rent schemes with no hope of ever owning a property? Of course it had benefits for others but it democratised house owning.

Provost Harrison
17-02-2005, 16:50:52
Benefits of owning property? It's an artifact of the working of society that we need to 'own' property...materially it's just a pile of base materials after all.

Gary
17-02-2005, 16:51:27
She actually, ironically, helped the working class by giving them the right to own their council houses,

She bribed the poor with cut price houses paid for by the rate-payers, and then prevented the councils from buying replacement stock, so that the present day poor are well and truly buggered.

All I can recall she was good for was criticising BA tail fins, and telling the EU where to get off.

Gary
17-02-2005, 16:53:40
The ability (or otherwise) to afford property is a function of paying a worker the right rate i.e. minimum wage, not giving away gifts paid for by those overpaying local taxes.

sleeping_satsuma
17-02-2005, 16:57:22
Bribed them my arse. At least they can now own something ie invest their money in something.

I would like to see anyone on minimum wage afford a house in this country.

Gary
17-02-2005, 17:00:21
Did anyone accept that as a bribe then ? Methinks someone is in denial.

Don't know how you can say what someone can or can not afford on mnimum wage since you're not defined a rate you're willing to set it at.

Besides if folk can not afford something, then they can not afford it. That's why society should provide a safety net.

Funkodrom
17-02-2005, 17:02:19
Of course the other effect was to stop anyone ever leaving council accommodation when their circumstances improved and so removed the total amount of council housing there was. Whcih created shortages of space in council accommodation so it also forced families who got into financial trouble and who'd normally have benefitted to live long term in bed and breakfasts.

Provost Harrison
17-02-2005, 17:06:04
Thankyou Gary, I think you've summed it up quite well. Social housing construction has well and truly slumped since Thatcher's years and now it is very hard to get hold of any.

Originally posted by sleeping_satsuma
Bribed them my arse. At least they can now own something ie invest their money in something.

I would like to see anyone on minimum wage afford a house in this country.

Why do people insist on having the notion that property should be some sort of investment. It's a roof over the head, not some luxury to fluctuate up and down with the market and people to be rendered homeless because of it. Thatcherite thinking.

sleeping_satsuma
17-02-2005, 17:09:03
minimum wage will always be substantially less than you need to buy a house since its the rate they pay to shelf stackers and cleaners etc. Other wages will rise in response, as will property prices etc.

why should society provide a safety net if it can instead provide a method for people to help themselves?

Besides we do have safey nets- there are tons of people living on benefits right now. We're soft as hit in this country. There is very little real poverty left in Britain. Thatch managed to bridge the money divide between working and middle class- you rarely see council houses now without two cars on the drive and a satellite dish because there is almost no material separation between the working and middle class now. We have all the same goods and we all go on holiday and we can all own a house.

Funkodrom
17-02-2005, 17:13:38
satsuma - if you sell council houses to the people who are living in them, and don't build any more, where are new people who would previously have qualified for council housing going to live?

You can't buy a house if it doesn't exist. So you end up with people permenantly in scummy B&Bs.

It was the fundamental problem with Thatcher's plan.

Some people (typically low income normally labour voters) got to buy a house very cheaply, the treasury got a quick injection of cash but it left a big social housing problem behind.

A potentially good idea - I agree - but totally flawed in it's application.

Labour is now proposing to build new housing that's cheap for new buyers and 'key workers' like nurses, firemen who can't afford to buy at the moment but it's new housing. Much better solution.

sleeping_satsuma
17-02-2005, 17:14:03
Originally posted by Provost Harrison
Thankyou Gary, I think you've summed it up quite well. Social housing construction has well and truly slumped since Thatcher's years and now it is very hard to get hold of any.



Why do people insist on having the notion that property should be some sort of investment. It's a roof over the head, not some luxury to fluctuate up and down with the market and people to be rendered homeless because of it. Thatcherite thinking.

Housing in general is in crisis in this country.

You might be independently wealthy PH but for me, my house will be the biggest and most serious purchase I ever make, and thats true for most people. Investing in property provides us with security against bust pension schemes & dodgy landlords, and it provides independence

Beta1
17-02-2005, 17:14:45
PH - do you actually own a house/flat?

I quite like owning my own flat, which incidently is an ex council build flat that was bought by a previous tenant under right to buy.

If that hadn't happened there is no way in hell I could afford to have bought. I may not be the poorest person in town but it took the combined salaries of myself and my girlfriend + a lot of parental assistance with the deposit.

If these properties were not available theres no way either of us could have afforded to buy. And because we could we now have a home, not just a roof over our head. The money we pay on the mortgage doesnt go into the pocket of a landlord who couldnt care less about us and while the building society does alright out of us it all goes back to the saving accounts they hold (mutual societies are great).

Funkodrom
17-02-2005, 17:16:59
I'd love to be able to afford a house and agree with the investment stuff satsuma's mentioning. Just don't agree that the council sell off was all good. It had some benefits for some people and big drawbacks for others.

sleeping_satsuma
17-02-2005, 17:17:26
Originally posted by Funkodrom
satsuma - if you sell council houses to the people who are living in them, and don't build any more, where are new people who would previously have qualified for council housing going to live?

You can't buy a house if it doesn't exist. So you end up with people permenantly in scummy B&Bs.

It was the fundamental problem with Thatcher's plan.

Some people (typically low income normally labour voters) got to buy a house very cheaply, the treasury got a quick injection of cash but it left a big social housing problem behind.

A potentially good idea - I agree - but totally flawed in it's application.

Labour is now proposing to build new housing that's cheap for new buyers and 'key workers' like nurses, firemen who can't afford to buy at the moment but it's new housing. Much better solution.

yes that is the big flaw. But I and others like me wouldnt have been able to buy a house if it were not for Thatch. We would be a generation of renters, which is fine when you're young, but not as you get older.

the new scheme is bugger all use to anyone who isnt a key worker tho.

sleeping_satsuma
17-02-2005, 17:19:07
Originally posted by Funkodrom
I'd love to be able to afford a house and agree with the investment stuff satsuma's mentioning. Just don't agree that the council sell off was all good. It had some benefits for some people and big drawbacks for others.

anyway, my point was that overall, house buying was democratised and class lines have become less defined. If Labour had acted more quickly we wouldnt now be sitting in a country where housing costs 5 times the average wage.

Dyl Ulenspiegel
17-02-2005, 17:21:14
Originally posted by Funkodrom
if you sell council houses to the people who are living in them, and don't build any more, where are new people who would previously have qualified for council housing going to live?




It makes a lot more sense to solve that by extra benefits for housing needs. If the public sector provides housing in natura, it will usually be less efficient, and it is difficult to adjust to an improvement in people's financial situation once they are set in public housing.

Beta1
17-02-2005, 17:21:15
following on from funko - the keyworkers thing is just a sham. yes its great for the nurses, teachers and firemen but its doesnt help the other people who are just as "key" but not election poster worthy.

My other half is a hospital immunologist - She doesnt qualify for it and is on equivalent to nurse's salaries, but if she's not there and you end up in hospital with some sort of chronic reaction your in trouble. The lecturers at uni are on less than many secondary school teachers, they are not key either. Giving certain professions cheap flats as a way of getting out of not paying them properly is no better than the right to buy scheme.

One thing that might help is bringing back mortgage tax relief on the first 150K of the value of the property (would just about cover a small flat) and raising the stamp duty threshold a bit. That way the cost of buying would be lower. Mind you it would probably just encourage more buy to let - which is one of the real reasons property in london is so expensive.

Funkodrom
17-02-2005, 17:23:28
We are a generation of renters. Being able to buy a house isn't a right - if you can afford somewhere to live there's no problem. If you can't, there is.

The housing problem is a big one. There's no easy solution and it's been becoming a problem for years. Labour could have done more but I have no confidence any other government would have done more.

I don't think that policy on it's own had any effect on class lines, we'll have to agree to disagree on that.

sleeping_satsuma
17-02-2005, 17:25:10
one of my mum's colleagues is a key worker and she still cant afford a house even with the assistance because the market has gone so crazy

Funkodrom
17-02-2005, 17:26:12
I can't afford one. Why should I be able to?

Funkodrom
17-02-2005, 17:26:56
I could move north or east or west and get a slightly less well paid job in an area with much lower housing costs and afford one. But I don't want to.

That's a free market for you.

sleeping_satsuma
17-02-2005, 17:27:10
Originally posted by Funkodrom
We are a generation of renters. Being able to buy a house isn't a right - if you can afford somewhere to live there's no problem. If you can't, there is.

The housing problem is a big one. There's no easy solution and it's been becoming a problem for years. Labour could have done more but I have no confidence any other government would have done more.

I don't think that policy on it's own had any effect on class lines, we'll have to agree to disagree on that.

I dont think that policy was the single thing that did it, but it was a big part of it.

Being able to buy a house should be a right- its the only security worth having

Lazarus and the Gimp
17-02-2005, 17:28:53
Originally posted by sleeping_satsuma
There is very little real poverty left in Britain. Thatch managed to bridge the money divide between working and middle class- you rarely see council houses now without two cars on the drive and a satellite dish because there is almost no material separation between the working and middle class now. We have all the same goods and we all go on holiday and we can all own a house.

Sorry- you're flat out wrong there. While certain goods are more widely accessible than they were 30 years ago, poverty is actually increasing. Particularly among the fastest-growing sector of the community- the elderly.

sleeping_satsuma
17-02-2005, 17:29:13
Originally posted by Funkodrom
I can't afford one. Why should I be able to?

I think access to housing and food are basic expectations. You can control the housing market to make it easier to buy. The economy here is not set up for renters and what will happen when they all reach pensinable age? It has consequences.

Funkodrom
17-02-2005, 17:30:05
People do have the right to buy a house, wherever they can afford it.

sleeping_satsuma
17-02-2005, 17:30:17
Originally posted by Lazarus and the Gimp
Sorry- you're flat out wrong there. While certain goods are more widely accessible than they were 30 years ago, poverty is actually increasing. Particularly among the fastest-growing sector of the community- the elderly.

there is still very little poverty, and I mean people living below the breadline

Lazarus and the Gimp
17-02-2005, 17:30:51
Originally posted by Funkodrom

The housing problem is a big one. There's no easy solution and it's been becoming a problem for years.

Actually there is, but it terrifies the political parties. There are about a million vacant or abandoned houses in Britain. Give local authorities the power of compulsory tenancy, and suddenly things start looking a lot healthier.

Funkodrom
17-02-2005, 17:30:59
To be fair, I could afford to buy a shitty bedsit in a horrible area of town. It's my choice not to.

Lazarus and the Gimp
17-02-2005, 17:31:21
Originally posted by sleeping_satsuma
there is still very little poverty, and I mean people living below the breadline

So do I.

Funkodrom
17-02-2005, 17:31:59
Originally posted by Lazarus and the Gimp
Actually there is, but it terrifies the political parties. There are about a million vacant or abandoned houses in Britain. Give local authorities the power of compulsory tenancy, and suddenly things start looking a lot healthier.

Awesome. :beer:

I love that.

sleeping_satsuma
17-02-2005, 17:32:11
Originally posted by Funkodrom
People do have the right to buy a house, wherever they can afford it.

you're deliberately missing the point

people shouldnt have to rely on landlords or move to the other end of the country to find a house they can afford. the government should have tackled this situation ages ago

sleeping_satsuma
17-02-2005, 17:34:23
Originally posted by Lazarus and the Gimp
Actually there is, but it terrifies the political parties. There are about a million vacant or abandoned houses in Britain. Give local authorities the power of compulsory tenancy, and suddenly things start looking a lot healthier.

can you imagine the cost of renovation???

similar things have been suggested for the homeless but there are lots of drawbacks

Provost Harrison
17-02-2005, 17:37:08
Originally posted by Beta1
PH - do you actually own a house/flat?

No I don't, but don't magically think that just because you 'own' your flat you actually own it. What if interest goes up like it has in the past? Could you afford to pay out twice what you are paying now? Most would be repossessed due to the amount I have loaned. And there is a significant housing problem. They just aren't building them. They need to build taller in inner city areas too, especially London, and there are plenty of brownfield sites around still available to be built on. It almost seems like an artificial problem sometimes to keep property markets where they are...deliberate restriction of the supply of property.

Dyl Ulenspiegel
17-02-2005, 17:37:15
Originally posted by Lazarus and the Gimp
Actually there is, but it terrifies the political parties. There are about a million vacant or abandoned houses in Britain. Give local authorities the power of compulsory tenancy, and suddenly things start looking a lot healthier.

Well, why are they vacant?

Lazarus and the Gimp
17-02-2005, 17:37:17
Originally posted by sleeping_satsuma
can you imagine the cost of renovation???

similar things have been suggested for the homeless but there are lots of drawbacks

There certainly are a lot of drawbacks, but it's a lot more cost-effective than building new developments. If I was in power, it would be on the statute books on my first day in office.

Lazarus and the Gimp
17-02-2005, 17:39:34
Originally posted by Dyl Ulenspiegel
Well, why are they vacant?

Any number of reasons, but mainly due to inner-city urban decay. When there's one empty property on a street, if it's not filled again then the others will almost certainly follow. Take a drive through areas of Liverpool and you can drive a solid mile along streets where over three-quarters of the properties are derelict.

Dyl Ulenspiegel
17-02-2005, 17:46:09
Is there strong housing demand in Liverpool, then? I don't quite understand how forced tenancy in some areas will solve supply contraints in other areas.

Provost Harrison
17-02-2005, 17:51:25
Originally posted by Dyl Ulenspiegel
Is there strong housing demand in Liverpool, then? I don't quite understand how forced tenancy in some areas will solve supply contraints in other areas.

Parts are relatively pricey, others are absolute dives...

Beta1
17-02-2005, 17:55:03
Originally posted by Provost Harrison
No I don't, but don't magically think that just because you 'own' your flat you actually own it. What if interest goes up like it has in the past? Could you afford to pay out twice what you are paying now?

Yes I could, I'm not stupid enough to take on a debt I couldn't maintain.

The point I was trying to make is that the flat we own together is far more our home than the ones we rented together.