Tuesday, June 19, 2007

David Miliband: thieving bastard

I see that David "irritating, speccy twat" Miliband is pushing ahead with his plans undermine property rights.
Plans to give open access to the entire English coastline have been unveiled.

Everyone will have the right to walk a new 2,500-mile pathway round the coast under the proposed scheme.

Gosh, how fluffy and wonderful! But how is it going to happen?
It will create the first ever 'right to roam' at the edge of thousands of privately-owned beaches, golf courses and farms.

But the plan has run into fierce opposition from landowners and farmers whose properties border the sea.

Ah. So, the government are going to force landowners to allows walkers on there, are they? As usual, young Master Timmy makes the point.
Mmmhm Hmm. So, currently private property, land that the owner may, if he so wishes, exclude people from, is to have that right of exclusion lifted from it. That is, make it not private property.
Landowners and farmers whose land will be affected are angry because they will not receive compensation and they are concerned that the value of their land will drop.

This is what is known as a "taking". Compensation should indeed be paid for this. If it isn't, it's theft. No, it doesn't make any difference that it's the government doing the stealing, it's still theft.

And who is the architect of this wonderful plan? Yes, it's our old friend Batshit, the man possessed of "an eminently punchable face; the sort of face you want to grab and hold down in the toilet for flush after gleeful flush, roaring with joy that there are such geeks in the world for you to torment." And so what has Batshit got to say for himself?
The Environment Secretary, David Miliband, who will open up the scheme for consultation, said:

"We are an island nation. The coast is our birthright and everyone should be able to enjoy it.

"I want families to have safe and secure access to walk, climb, rock scramble, paddle and play all along our coastline."

The coast is our birthright? What absolute fucking twaddle.

Look, Batshit, whichever way you cut it, this is theft and no amount of touchy-feeling, huggy-buggy, fucky-sucky rhetoric is going to change that, you thieving fucking bastard.

Miliband apparently got a First in Politics, Philosophy and Economics so he should fucking well know that property rights are the absolute fundamental of any civilised society. He has absolutely no excuse for not understanding the implications of this.

One can only conclude that he is a fucking lying shit, fully supporting a totalitarian government whose power is not loaned from the people but is derived from a moral rectitude that over-rides any petty concerns about liberty and justice.

Oh—wait—of course he does: he's a bloody little NuLabour socialist.

23 comments:

Roland Deschain said...

"I want families to have safe and secure access to walk, climb, rock scramble, paddle and play all along our coastline."

And who's going to pay to make every mile safe and secure?

Pascal said...

oh come on kitchen, it was just the same bullshit when it was introduced in France all those years ago (notice that compensation would be enough for your end of the world scenario).

Funny that the world has not come to an end there, nor even the end of civilisation.

At least you cannot blame the EU for once !

Little Black Sambo said...

"We are an island nation. The coast is our birthright and everyone should be able to enjoy it."
Not being ruled by continentals is also our birthright, so what is he going to do about that?

woman on a raft said...

He obviously hasn't walked over any golf courses recently, or perhaps he has. A blow to the head would account for some of the peculiar oratory; he's barely an inch away from spinsters cycling to early morning mass through the rock pools. Does your tyres in, that does.

Has he asked the RSPB? They have quite a few frilly bits and although they tolerate their paying members twitchering about with binoculars they would not welcome the scrambling and paddling brigade, much less the ones who turn up with jet skis on trailers.

As for safety; funnily enough I was near an edge a few weeks ago and suddenly realized that it wasn't only 100 foot up above jagged rocks, but it was at a distinct incline and covered in smooth damp grass. If I lost my footing there was no stopping and no surviving, despite the fact that superficially it looked no more dangerous than the average corporation bowling green.

There must be thousands of miles like this, everywhere there is an edge which is significantly above sea level.

My advice if you have a family is to go to a nice corporation beach with toilets, a car park, a ramp for granny and baby buggies, a first-aid post, a place to get ice cream, some beach security and a coast guard.

Remember to take a packet of painkillers, factor 50 suncream, insect repellent, a thing for getting insect stings out when the repellent doesn't, an emergency tooth repair kit, a beach mat and possibly a tent, inflatable boat, emergency flares, fog horn, map, camping food, camping stove, survival bag, watershoes, emergency bandage, pillow, spare everything, kendal mint cake, water, water purifying tablets, antiseptic wipes, sealed kit for taking out your own appendix, and a magazine to read. A Sherpa comes in handy, but failing that, put everything in the pram and make someone carry the baby.

The average family on the beach looks like a Fiddler On The Roof Summer Touring Party.

Milliband doesn't know this, does he?

Charles Pooter said...

Nah, you're wrong on this one Devil. There is nothing inate or sacred about the system of land titles used in this country. I'm not saying there is anything particularly libertarian about this proposal but:

1. Anyone who owns more land or property than a single owner-occupied house is dependent upon the state to enforce their title. In an anarchy, squatters would move in. If the community in a free society did allow absentee landlordism it wouldn't be for half of fucking Yorkshire (ala Michael Hesseltine). To my mind if someone uses land for golf they should have a pretty good reason to be against a few ramblers walking around the boundary.

2. Heard the one about the "enclosure of the commons"? Most of the land in this country was nicked from common community use in the first place, so I'm not going to weep if the Millibot lets us peasants tramp across golf courses that we used to tend our sheep on in the first place.

Roger Thornhill said...

WoaR:If I lost my footing there was no stopping and no surviving

Don't worry, Chairman Miliband will send his Green Guards there to put up some ghastly barriers, a concrete pathway, signs, bins, signs for the bins, more signs telling you where it is supposed to be pretty and in what direction to look, another with a phone number of "CoastalAccidentLawyers4u" (motto: Our Coast, their cost") in case you are careless, and piped music and advertising hoardings which were insisted upon by the sponsor who won the monopoly contract to "maintain the nation's coastline" for the next 40 years.

xoggoth said...

Bad enough but are they supposed to pick up the tab for legal liability as well? Idiotic.

Dr Ray said...

Charles Pooter is describing the "Property is theft" school of anarchy. Come the revolution we shall all drive Rolls-Royces-just like the peasants do in Russia

Pogo said...

And... As some 10% of the coastline falls under the "stewardship" of the M.O.D., who's going to pick up the bill for compensation after the ghastly sprogs of "Mr & Mrs Chav" have played, very briefly, with the unexploded ordnance that tends to litter these chunks of land?

flashgordonnz said...

My first thought when I first read this was "compensation for the ramblers"! If I am considered a felon when a burglar loses his footing and falls down my stairs in the dark, imagine my level of responsibility to ordinary folk wandering across my (imaginary) land. Esp when I let the bull out to service the cows.

The Remittance Man said...

For reasons we shall not go into now (except to say that I was with drink taken), I was once informed by a member of the Metropolitan Police that taking without consent is theft. At the very least this could earn one a night in the cells and a rather stiff interview with a magistrate in the morning.

So when does Millipede appear before the beak?

Charles Pooter said...
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Charles Pooter said...
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Charles Pooter said...

dr ray:

Who mentioned revolutions? And we all remember the anarchist paradise of Soviet Russia (what are you on?). We must build the new society (peacefully) within the shell of the old.

Property is theft *and* property is freedom. A free society requires the right to justly acquired private property. How do you justly acquire land? In my opinion, you "homestead" it: that is, you mix your labour with the land. Not only that, but you must continue to exploit some aspect of that land to retain a right to that land. Not only that, but exploting one aspect of land does not prevent someone else from exploiting another (for example someone who hunts on a bit of land should not automatically be able to exclude someone from mining below it).

I can see that if you grow some apples, you should own those apples. I can see that if you earn cash and buy a computer you should own that computer. I don't see, morally or economically, why putting a fence around a field entitles you to exclusive ownership in perpetuity backed up by the force of the state. Why should it allow you to exclude anyone else from that field, pass it on to your decendents and charge money to anyone who wants to, for example, build a house in that field?

It's worse than that though, because in Britain titles were granted on land that was *already in use*. Most of it was stolen from common community use in a process known as enclosure.

Also, economically, it is completely unjust that, whilst land is concentrated in the hands of the few, we all pay through taxes on our income the cost of enforcing these totally unjust exclusive land titles.

We all want a home to call our own and many may want a few acres to cultivate or space for running industrial enterprises. In a capitalist liberal society with a state: squatting, trespass and forceful invasion are prevented by the police, courts and prisons. If I own a one bedroom flat in Clapham and Alan Sugar owns half of North London, are we getting the same value from the state? Is it not true that I am paying for the police to protect Alan's "investments"? Isn't this a massive subsidy to large land owners? Isn't the cost of protection a cost that the landlord has externalised (to use economic jargon)?

Land is not like other property: it is finite and it requires no labour to take "ownership" of it. Therefore it is governed by different moral and economic rules.

The Remittance Man said...

So according to Charlie I must apply labour and "exploit" land to call it my own.

Okay, then I shall mow the lawn, prune the shrubs and dead head the roses. That should meet the definition of applying labour.

And as for "exploitation" I take this to mean deriving some benefit. Well my benefit is the enjoyment I get by sitting undisturbed upon my freshly mowed lawn beneath a newly pruned tree while supping a long glass of Pimms. A benefit that would be ruined by hordes of unsightly, dayglo-clad "ramblers" wandering past or even setting up camp to brew tea.

So who is now in the wrong, Charlie?

Charles Pooter said...

remittance man:

You don't get it. No one is suggesting your garden should be a free-for-all. You're making use of of it and I certainly would not want to be part of a community that didn't recognise the right of an individual or family to be secure in the freehold that they occupy. Even without a state, I would hope that the community would help enforce your claim against any agressor. The common security of their own freeholds depends on such enforcement being fair and consistent.

But the moral claim of the Duke of Devonshire and his descendents (to take an example at random) to have exlusive right of access and enjoyment to half of Derbyshire just because one of his ancestors killed a Frenchman or bribed the King is very suspect. The granting of the original title was invalid because the land was probably enclosed commons land already in use and (even if we forgive historic injustice) the continued existence of the title is invalid becuase one individual (or family) cannot possibly exploit all aspects of such a large area of land.

Can you not see that there is a qualitative and well as quantative difference between the moral and economic claim of an owner-occupier of a small freedhold and the claim of an absentee landlord who has state-granted title to vast swathes of land?

The Remittance Man said...

Can you not see that there is a qualitative and well as quantative difference between the moral and economic claim of an owner-occupier of a small freedhold and the claim of an absentee landlord who has state-granted title to vast swathes of land?

To put it simply: No, I can't. Because in law one cannot make the distinction. Why? Because no one will ever be able to agree where the line gets drawn. Who decides what holding is legitimate and what isn't? Some apparatchik? You? Me? The Duke of Devonshire or Scruffy the Tramp?

I think you'll find that we all possess different ideas of what might be equitable. Though I suspect His Grace and I have broadly similar views.

Xoggoth also makes a very interesting point - who bares legal liability? In my own garden if I trip and stub my toe I have only myself to blame. If I invite someone else then the liability is probably shared. But who takes the blame when I am forced to let people wander all over my property? Me? The injured party? Or the government that forced me to let the buggers in in the first place?

I know who the wankers in Whitehall would want to carry the can, but I'll be buggered if I spend a mountain of cash making my garden sufficiently idiot proof to satisfy the Safety Nazis. Especially when they are the ones pointing a gun at my head and forcing me to comply with this "access to our birthright" bollocks.

Charles Pooter said...

Yes, you can make the distinction. You are just wedded to the idea of exclusive title. The assumption would be that someone can start using a piece of land for any purpose. It would be up to the another party to show that this infringes on their prior usage. You, no doubt, would claim that this would be a litigious nightmare, but I will disagree in advance. Common case law would make most examples pretty clear-cut. For example, nobody would bother to try to claim it was OK to burrow under you garden, which, by the way, CAN happen now with compulsary purchase/emminent domain.

As for legal liability, I assume you are making these points generally about the regime's proposals, rather than addressing the questions to me? For the record, I think no legal liability should rest with someone who has a prior claim on a plot of land, for accidents suffered by a subsequent user if there was no intent to harm. Intent would have to proved (anti-rambler landmines, that kind of thing).

Charles Pooter said...

Oh and by the way, in case any one is wondering: I am not and never have been a member of the ramblers association.

The Remittance Man said...

Charlie,

Well, I was directing the point about liability at you and thanks for your answer.

Thanks also for the anti-rambler-mine idea - I spot a niche in the market. If anybody wants me I'll be in the magazine at work tinkering.

The Remittance Man said...

"It would be up to the another party to show that this infringes on their prior usage."

And if my prior usage is simply sitting an enjoying the view this means it's okay for some bugger to come along and build a factory there? Or "social housing" or whatever the latest fad in Whitehall might be?

Nope, I still think you are the one wedded to a false premise.

Property rights and the security thereof are the bedrock of all civilised societies. Start tinkering with that, even for supposedly good reasons, and you are opening a very large can of worms.

Charles Pooter said...

And if my prior usage is simply sitting an enjoying the view this means it's okay for some bugger to come along and build a factory there? Or "social housing" or whatever the latest fad in Whitehall might be?

Nope it may not be OK if you can show that you use that land for that purpose on a regular basis, but obviously I'm not going to attempt to second-guess the legal decisions of the institutions of a hypothetical free society. As for state-erected housing, I am agin it. As for Whitehall, it seems like it will be prime land for homesteading once the current occupants are put out of work!

The Remittance Man said...

As for Whitehall, it seems like it will be prime land for homesteading once the current occupants are put out of work!

Now there's something I think we can both agree upon.