Wrong to Buy

Peter Wilby – First Thoughts – New Statesman – 17-23 April 2015

The Right to Buy – allowing tenants to purchase at a discount council houses and now, under Cameron’s proposals, housing association properties – is another terrible Tory policy. For many years, almost everyone applauded Margaret Thatcher’s original scheme. Only three decades later can we see the full consequences. More than a third of ex-council homes in London are in the hands of private landlords who are, in effect, subsidised by the state through housing credits that help tenants pay the inflated rents – a supreme example of privatisation that leaves both consumers and taxpayers worse off. Private tenants have no rights even to carry on renting beyond a few months, let alone a right to buy. When you hear Tories praising the policy, agree and say you like right-to-buy so much you think it should be extended to the private sector. Then sit back while they try to explain why that wouldn’t be a good idea.

http://www.newstatesman.com/politics/2015/04/tories-nutty-tax-promises-how-fallon-weaponised-trident-and-minor-cricketing-drama

Animals and Autism

I have just listened to this fascinating item on today’s Woman’s Hour:

When Fraser met Billy the Cat

We talk to the mother whose autistic child found happiness and calm through his relationship with a rescue cat called Billy. Fraser’s tantrums and anxieties were overwhelming. His daily life was chaotic and normal daily events like mealtimes or bedtimes could trigger a meltdown. But with the cat by his side her son would immediately calm down. His mum Louise Booth tells Jenni how the presence of the cat has transformed all their lives.

___

If you are interested and have the opportunity, you can find this on BBC Radio i-player.

___

One of the many benefits of working at Boz’s Gaff is that I get the opportunity to listen to Woman’s Hour.

___