Yesterday, the government announced its plan for local government. Underneath the bullshit claims of empowerment was an ideologically-driven attack on the notion of government of any sort.
Paul likes some of it, but he thinks it doesn't go far enough. He thinks that the only people who should make decisions about our communities are… (drum roll): property developers.
While I welcome today's statement, particularly the measures that go towards tax incremental finance, will my right hon. Friend consider making them developer led, rather than local authority led? When the measures were trailblazed in the United States a couple of decades ago, most American cities and states found that regeneration was much more effective when they were developer rather than local authority led.
(As you might know, Mr Uppal is a property developer).
Being serious for a second, I'll point out what's wrong with this idea. Simple. Democratically-elected bodies exist solely to serve their community. They can get things wrong, and they can be sacked by the community. Developers work solely for private profit. They've got no interest in the public good. A developer's idea of a successful community might be Broad Street in the Dark Place: a dystopian hell of sex shops, fast food and drug dealing. A developer would see this as great: profitable. A decent council would see this as damaging to public health and safety. Giving control to developers logically leads to the abolition of elected bodies entirely, and I don't think he's averse to the idea.
What a massive twat Mr. Uppal is. It's come to this: polite and reasoned argument just fails in the face of such determined refusal to address anything wider than his own greed and selfishness. I'm genuinely ashamed that this benighted community is supposedly represented by such a small-minded individual.