Party Blog

Labour and Greens both wrong on Rent

David Elston's picture

So we heard on the 1st that Labour's new shadow chancellor, Chris Leslie is against rent controls and he's a Landlord.

Mr Leslie said the party's policy of limiting the speed of rent increases for tenants had upset people seeking to profit from housing by implying that fast rises were exploitative.

Well isn't that exactly because they are generally exploitative? Too many tenants have been lured into a seemingly reasonable 6 month tenancy agreement only to have their rent increased substantially shortly after the 6 months or they face eviction. It's almost always the easier option for the tenant to simply agree to the rent increase. There are of course, the first-timer Landlords who will rent a property out for substantially lower than market value and who, given 6 months of research may wish to increase that rent to the “proper” level but this should still be done so gradually, through the regulation of rent controls.

Yet in the Pirate Party there is a very different tune. Deputy Leader, David Elston and the Spokesperson for Wales is a Landlord but is instead a strong advocate for rent controls.

Mainsplaining - Green Party's Gendered Insults

David Elston's picture

At a time of introspection, with new Leadership, Board and a whole variety of new faces mixing with the old, it's natural for a party to question if we are representing and speaking to all demographics.

When speaking to people, the Greens are usually thought of as the party for equality, especially around women's rights and social justice but it's not something I really ever agreed that they represented. In fact, I find them just as bad an extreme as UKIP when it comes to the equality balance, but in the other direction.

I have always found that the Greens are interested in focusing on specific groups as victims, rather than trying to achieve any real sense of equality and often veto justice or evidence and instead do what they morally feel is right.

A prime example; this image, which emerged after the Green Party Leader, Natalie Bennett attended the Glastonbury festival.

Opinion: Jeremy Corbyn is not the leader that the Opposition needs

George Walkden's picture

Not because of what he believes, but because of why he believes it.

For the past month-and-a-half, my Facebook and Twitter feeds have been abuzz with Corbyn-mania. It's impressive how a man who no one had ever heard of before June 2015 (despite being an MP for thirty years) has been able to generate so much buzz. Yet the reason people like Jeremy Corbyn is simple: he's left-wing. Really left-wing. At a time when the Labour Party is perceived as sliding ever further right, here's someone who promises to buck the trend.

A Pirate reads Piketty, part 1: Knowledge and Equality

George Walkden's picture

Back in 2014, Thomas Piketty's book Capital in the Twenty-First Century came as close to being a popular sensation as a 700-page economic tome can get, winning acclaim from a variety of sectors and propelling Piketty into the company of well-known "public economists" such as Joseph Stiglitz and Paul Krugman. A little late to the game, I decided to take a look for myself. I felt motivated to write this series of posts because it turns out that core Pirate principles and Piketty's main messages are more closely entwined than one might imagine.

The True Cost of the Budget

Cris Chesha's picture

"A National Living Wage, starting at £7.20 and rising to £9 an hour by 2020, replaces the £6.50 minimum wage." -- BBC News

Obviously, any increase in the minimum wage is somewhat welcome news, no matter how small.

But as manipulation goes, you've got to hand it to George: this is a 10/10. Appropriating a term & redefining it for your own purposes is standard; but to rebrand "minimum wage" into "living wage" (without actually meeting the evidentially calculated Living Wage, obviously) is a spectacular power-play in 2015. It's already everywhere: "Living Wage of £7.20". "Osborne introduces the National Living Wage".

Burying the old definition in search results, instantly. As utterly, almost hilariously clueless as the Tories are on some tech issues, they sure know their way around others.