Dear God No

This really isn’t sensible:

An influential conservative think tank has called for new housing secretary Michael Gove to support the construction of 250,000 homes for key workers to repay them for frontline work through the pandemic.

The Centre for Policy Studies has proposed the creation of “homes for heroes” as a new housing category, calling for land to be set aside to build 50,000 such properties annually over five years.

Having homes that a speshul for speshul workers reduces the mobility of the workforce. So, a fireman, or nurse, or more likely a politically connected bureaucrat, gets one of these speshul homes. Then a few years later decides to go try something else. Perhaps, say, become a productive member of society.

Do they have to move out of these speshul homes? Which is a drag on the mobility of labour, isn’t it? Or they don’t? Then it’s not homes for key workers, is it?

Yes, this is important. We know that “too high” a level of home ownership increases unemployment. Because there are costs associated with moving, therefore less labour moves to where the work it when there are few to no rentals to move into.

Ah, but these will be rentals you say? But social renting is based upon local authority areas. It’s near impossible to move from social in one area into social in another. That part of the system makes social housing even more of a drag upon employment than home owning.

This is all well known. So why in buggery is it being proposed?

Surely good Tories are over the idea that the peasantry just pick a job at 18 and stay in that little hole, cap doffing, forever?

22 thoughts on “Dear God No”

  1. ’ Surely good Tories are over the idea that the peasantry just pick a job at 18 and stay in that little hole, cap doffing, forever?’

    They would be, yes. If we had any…

  2. As an excuse to actually build houses its not a bad idea. Ownership can be transferred later.
    Better to simply abolish the planning laws, but maybe that’s politically impossible.

  3. I stayed in the same job for 49 years! I was an officer in the Merchant Navy so where on land I actually lived was rather irrelevant.

  4. Who are these heroic key workers got you through the pandemic, then? The shopworkers sold you your food? The truck drivers delivered it? The plumbers & electricians kept your water & electricity flowing? All the other people kept the vital infrastructure of a modern country going? Ot the NHS, most of which was sitting on its thumbs at home, hiding from the virus? The teachers who are still refusing to do their jobs? Employees of HM Treasury who look like they’re going to make working-from-home a permanent feature?

  5. Fuck “key workers”.

    I’m sick and tired of being told I’m a second-class person for doing the “wrong” work and have to subsidize the people doing the “right” work.

    And my job is situated in a mail room, so I went in to work every day during the pandemic.

  6. As a landlord I know that our tenants rent whilst they work their way round jobs as they progress through their careers. We regularly get young people who rent and then move on when they change jobs.

  7. As an excuse to free up some green belt for housing this might just be a good idea.
    But as BiS asks, who are these key workers? Not health visitors, not NHS admin, not civil servants, GPs or teachers. No public employees, in short.
    The “heroes” are mostly those on low wages or artisanal types. Not a key demographic for the mortgage brokers.
    Besides, no house builder would try to sell to sparks, plumbers etc. They might sus that the build quality was crap and half the sockets weren’t connected to the fuse box and the drains led uphill.

  8. What really isn’t sensible is the piecemeal destruction of beauty through building thousands of houses. Stop immigration instead. Conservatism isn’t about turning Southern England into Singapore with shanty-towns.

  9. Most people simply don’t know this stuff. If you’ve never lived in a council house, you might vaguely know that the rent is lower than in the private sector; but that’s the extent of most people’s knowledge. MPs and opinion writers are no different: unless they’ve made the effort to look into the minutiae, they have no idea how hard it is to move house within the social sector.

  10. What BiS and Ted S said.

    And Sam Vara too. I’m utterly sick of hearing people scream to take yet more green spaces away and ‘build homes’. Go into London via train and just count the number of bloody cranes!

  11. What BiS said.

    He missed the real key workers – people like me who keep the servers up and the networks running and the apps ticking along nicely, so that you plebs can get your Amazon deliveries and your Covid tests managed and returned quickly, and all the rest of it.


    But the point is made.

  12. Dennis, Not Being Sarcastic At All

    An influential conservative think tank…

    Can any sane person say that phrase without laughing?

  13. “to repay them for frontline work through the pandemic.”


    What kept most people going through the pandemic was volunteers. People who set up “help out” Facebook groups and got food to old people etc, stuff that was up and running within 72 hours while councils were farting around doing bureaucracy. The people I know that were getting old laptops recycled to kids while government was fannying around.

    The pandemic turned me full on libertarian. If the state can’t do the job well in an actual crisis, if it can’t cut the bullshit and deliver, it needs trimming to the bare minimum of defence and conflicting rights. Burn down the welfare state and let charities deliver.

    We should thank the supermarket staff, the bus drivers and food suppliers who adapted fast and kept things going. And the doctors and nurses in ICU who treated people. Fair’s fair. The NHS might be run by useless cunts, but those people stood and did their job.

    The Conservative Party is utterly dead to me with their worship of the state. I hope Farage comes back on the scene and leads a new right party that I can vote for.

  14. The key workers are farmers and agricultural labourers.
    Without them you starve.
    Is a single one of the proposed houses going to a farmer?
    I thought not.

    OTOH, if this is a fig-leaf to get councils to allow more Shared-ownership/rent-to-buy schemes, as a quick read suggests, then it has some merit.

  15. Interestingly here now that vaccines have been mandated for health care workers and there’s some pushback the mob have turned on the ‘hero’s’ and are howling for sackings.
    The Nurses union which won a human rights case a few years ago against mandatory flu shots has said it will support health care workers (law would appear to be on their side after all) who don’t want vaccination and has been turned on by the media.
    I’ve had people say Covid isn’t Flu but when I comment that’s a matter for the law to decide not them it usually results in silence or insults.
    The big issue is that nothing is being done to change the perception among people that Covid isn’t a death sentence so they are acting as if it has the fatality level of the Black Plague rather than the reality. Very reminiscent of the AIDS scares when there had to be a whole sustained campaign that ill people were not plague leper’s, recall they media spectacle over Diana shaking hands with someone with HIV

  16. There’s a key worker in my local high street who will also repair shoes when not cutting keys. He tells me that he will be writing to Michael Gove tomorrow to apply for a new home close by in Mr Gove’s Surrey Heath constituency.

    He has noted (© Potato Inc.) Mr Gove’s adulation of Greta Thunberg and expects his own solar panels, heat pump and anti-fracking and global alarm window decor to be fitted prior to moving in.

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