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Thursday, 26 May 2016

Why levels of benefit claimants' spending on rent payments should be shouted from the roof tops

The blog administrator has received the comment below by email and considers it well worth a much wider audience. And the comment's sender agrees.

It pertains to a Taxpayers Against Poverty posting that can be found at

The comment about one-third of local average income being spent on rent is particularly germane to claimants. Prior to the benefits freeze and new allowances cap the local housing allowance, which determined housing benefit, was set at the 30th percentile of market rent. The suspension of these quantative outliers has created yet another arbitrary market. IIRC the dodgy old Austrian who first put it out there said: "Value is what you are prepared to pay". (Hayek).

Yet re the Hayek quotation Margaret Thatcher's favourite economist — while UK public land is sold to private global investers for a pittance, the question should be asked, do the landed sellers have the right to sell? Did the voters knowingly give those sellers the right to sell public land, land that should be held in public trust for people including those who have no voting power? And if 'the voters' did give away that right, which voters? Did all the voters consent to such a sale? See also http://www.taxpayersagainstpoverty.org.uk/house-builders-own-600000-plots-of-land-so-barnet-council-sells-them-some-more-for-3-see-bbc-documentary/

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