Tue Jun 25, 2019 London

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The economy, politics and current affairsMoney, power and its guiding forces

Picture of the Week – A Coalition of Conspiracy

Boris Johnson pictured plotting with Sir Michael Fallon on a bench in Kent


When Theresa May recklessly called a General Election, nobody could have predicted what would have unfolded next. Aside from the impact on her premiership of her personally mishandling three tragedies in London and one in Manchester, ‘Weak and Wobbly’ Mrs May is now under fire from her very own party.


Yesterday, as the vultures rightly circle for the incompetent vicar’s daughter’s head, Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson was photographed perched on a bench with Defence Secretary Sir Michael Fallon by the River Darent in Chipstead, Kent.


Though a source for Sir Michael later dismissed talk of the pair meeting to conspire against Mrs May as “no great mystery, I think it’s called having a pint at their local”, an onlooker told the Daily Mail:


“It looked very deliberate, like they had planned to go out there on their own. They made a point to break away from the crowd and be on their own. Whatever they were talking about, they didn’t want anyone else to hear it… Boris then took Fallon by the shoulder inside looking at me shiftily”.


It’s plainly no longer a question of: “Will the ‘Worst Home Secretary’ in history turned ‘Worst Prime Minister in history’ go?” but one of “When and who’ll come next?” for the Conservatives. Plainly these devious conspirators have their own ideas but if their party has any sense, neither of them will be their chosen options.



4 comments on “Picture of the Week – A Coalition of Conspiracy”

  1. What is the alternative then? It looks appropriate that the lame ducks are sitting next to a fine stretch of water Plastic Duck can enjoy. At least we don’t have to put up with Corbyn who seems to think it is alright to steal your home. He likes the idea so much he repeated it yesterday.
    As Matthew has said we don’t need either (or any) of our current choices.

      1. “Jeremy Corbyn has reiterated his suggestion that people left homeless by the Grenfell Tower fire could be housed in empty flats, saying the government has the means to seize property.
        “Occupy it, compulsory purchase it, requisition it,” the Labour leader told ITV’s Peston on Sunday.”
        Occupying someones property is illegal and is squatting.
        ” The claim: Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn says the government should requisition housing if necessary for those made homeless by the Grenfell Tower fire.

        Reality Check verdict: Doing so would not be allowed under current rules, and legislation to allow property to be seized in peacetime would be controversial.”
        “”Any property requisitions may therefore require emergency legislation in Parliament to instigate and would probably prove controversial,” said Mark Woloshak, a lawyer from Slater and Gordon.
        Local authorities do have the power to force someone to sell their land, using something called a compulsory purchase order (CPO).
        These are used when there is a strong public interest justification, in order to “deliver social, environmental and economic change”, according to government guidance.
        For example, if land or buildings are empty, they might be compulsorily purchased in order to redevelop housing estates or to build a public road. The owner will be compensated.
        However, doing this with empty luxury flats would be extremely expensive. ”
        “And there are questions as to whether the exercise of this power in the context Mr Corbyn refers to would be lawful.

        “It wouldn’t stand in the courts… it would be a breach of the purpose that legislation is for,” said lawyer Chad Sutton from Planning Clarity Legal.

        Acquiring land through a compulsory purchase order is also not a quick process, often taking up to two years before public bodies can get access to the land, so this would not be a quick fix to rehouse displaced people in the short term.

        CPOs are intended as a last resort after the authorities have attempted to negotiate with the landowners.

        There are currently no powers available to force an owner to rent out their property if it is vacant.

        Local authorities have access to use Empty Dwelling Management Orders, but those are designed to allow local authorities to step in when empty properties have become targets for vandalism or a blight on the neighbourhood.

        There are restrictions on their use that would prevent them applying to luxury flats in good condition, even if they were empty.
        So, to provide emergency housing in the current circumstance, the government would need legislation either to allow requisitions or the use of CPOs. ”
        Seizing your home, even if empty, would be stealing it.

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