But this time, Lazy Paul has met his nemesis, in the shape of another Tory MP! Having made some pointless intervention, Uppal's comment was followed by one Richard Harrington, MP for Watford. In the course of his speech, we got this:
My second suggestion will probably make me extremely unpopular, in particular with my hon. Friend Paul Uppal. Although the Government cannot do much about the role of small commercial landlords, those landlords are absolutely deluded about their ability to get the rents they ask. Their mentality is to ask for yesterday’s rent; because a shop was rented out 10 years ago at £40,000, they will keep it empty for three, four or five years under the delusion that they will get the same rent, and notwithstanding the fact that they are paying empty property rates, which I point out to the Minister it is right for them to be doing. If the vast array of small commercial landlords are listening to the debate or reading Hansard tomorrow, which I accept is completely unlikely, I have a suggestion that might help, although it is not the panacea for everything. As MPs, local councillors and people involved in the community, we could persuade small operators to come into some of those empty shops, but landlords asking for a rent that they once got 10 years ago makes it almost impossible.Now as a Tory, Mr Harrington is a moral, political and economic vacuum, just like Mr Uppal. But in this case, he's an honest one. He's openly capitalist, in that he clearly believes that those who live by the market should die by the market, rather than demanding state aid. Mr Uppal, on the other hand, is a dishonest capitalist (the most common sort): he thinks that capitalists deserve bail-outs whereas ordinary citizens don't. Which is why we have welfare cuts for disabled children and multibillion £ subsidies for banks and speculators.
I know which kind of Tory I prefer. It ain't Uppal.