Thursday, 8 November 2012

Channel 4 The Property Scandle George Clarke Could have done so much better

Last Night Channel 4 ran a further report on the UK housing crises, it was the worst sort of programme, as it was highlighting a very real issue, that most of us are aware of, but failed to address the economic argument of empty homes, such as the cost we all pay in tax towards housing benefit, much of which goes to the private sector, and the fact that more homes refurbished would generate real jobs and with increased supply, would lead to a fall in rents, or that building and refurbishing is cheaper short term as after 3 years you would have made the cost and would save money, by not needing to put tenants in the private sector, the rent produced could then be used to build more homes, or pay debt, or to pay for services.
How can you possibly produce a programme on housing, without these facts?
It also seemed odd that Lewisham People before Profit had not been featured, as we are one of the Only Direct action groups in the UK, which has been successful in winning our campaigns.
George said that he felt let down by the political system, and yet People before Profit does fight elections, another sound reason to feature us and our work.
Faced with the Labour Leader of Liverpool Council planning to give away perfectly sound Victorian houses over to a developer to build tower blocks, he again failed to challenge the Labour Leader at the most basic level, he was elected by local people not developers.
Up against Grant Shapps the former Conservative Housing Minister, he missed chance after chance, and yet the Minister view was that it was residents fault for voting Labour, as local Councillors they seek election every 4 years and as such, they can be voted out.
In Hammersmith and Fulham, the council is getting rid of an entire council estate to secure £100 million from private developers who wish to turn homes into tower  blocks for the rich, the Council had also resently stated that all future Council tenants would only be issued to certain types of residents, a system that would not allow most of the tenants facing eviction from securing a future housing offer, and yet this was totally ignored.
The Problem when you use pretty people to deal with real issues, they have no clear understanding or experience in what to say or do without a script, i was shocked and like most people let down by a very real issue, poorly produced and with a very saturday night style tv content, Our Housing deserves better.
Is it really so hard to produce a housing programme that features the issue, but also the solution, whilst putting forward a very clear economic argument to whu Housing matters to us all.
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