Royal Mail, the Probation service, East Coast Mainline – Child care services, EuroStar – and now the Land Registry.
The LibDem/Tory Coalition’s rush to privatise everything that moves, and a lot that doesn’t, continues.
The Land Registry is a public monopoly. For 150 years it has registered the ownership of all land in Britain. It is self-financing – it receives no subsidy from government. Its fees support it and its work. It is, however, a monopoly – all those who buy and sell and must make use of it. The service is generally recognised as good value, and as efficient. It makes a profit.
You don’t need to be Einstein to see what the results of privatisation – in increased fees and costs – would be likely to be. But you might still be foxed to understand why it needs doing. Dogma and ideology seem to be the only answers – dogma and ideology apparently shared by Tories and LibDems.
The whole thing has been done openly – there was a consultation which ended in March.
But quietly – had you heard about it before??
The media, those watch-dogs of democracy, were, as usual, busy with other stories.
But there’s plenty of opposition.
A group of independent High Street Law Firms have set up a campaign – and there are lots more details on their website HERE.
The essence of their argument is that the Land Registry works really well as it is
– and that it’s ‘critical that the state guarantee title, [that] they ensure that the information is correct.’
Think about that last one. Would you really want companies with a potential interest to be involved in the question of title to land? Think of the potential for fraud.
38 Degrees have also launched a petition – we posted it yesterday on our Facebook page. You can sign it HERE.
Michael Fallon is the minister responsible for this proposal. And whatever his public protestations, it looks as if the options on the table are – privatisation or privatisation.
Vince Cable may be criticising one form of that privatisation. But the LibDem architect of the Royal Mail sell off looks as if he’s going along with another form – part privatisation. After all, his LibDem side-kick, Danny Alexander, has upped the Coalition’s target for privatisation to £20 billion over 6 years. That’s got to come from somewhere.
You’ll get the chance to stop all this next May – though apparently the Coalition is so afraid of a Labour victory then that it’s rushing head over heels to sell off public assets before that.
So in the meantime, please take action NOW – and sign both the lawyers’ epetition and the 38 Degrees petition today.
You Own It – But Not For Much Longer – thanks to Cameron, Cable and Clegg
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