Housing Regulation 408


There are two separate but linked questions arising from the terrible disaster at Ladbroke Grove. One is the efficacy of national building regulations on fire and safety. It is plainly true that, if Grenfell Tower met them, they are inadequate. The second is how Kensington and Chelsea Council in particular manage their housing.

To look at the second question, I do agree with David Lammy that there is potential criminal culpability here, but I am not quite sure that he is right to describe it as “corporate manslaughter”. It seems to me that responsibility rests more with government than with corporations (though I accept that the former is a tool of the latter).

One of the most retrograde developments of my lifetime has been the wholescale “outsourcing” of delivery of public services away from direct government provision. So rather than by council employees, your bins are probably emptied and your streets swept by a private company paid to do it. Just as your utilities are supplied, your trains run, civil servants get their stationery ordered, increasingly medical services are provided, international aid projects are administered, and literally thousands of other examples.

This development was driven by the ideological belief, often fanatically held, that people employed by government are less efficient than those employed by the private sector. That ideology also depended on a rejection of the very notion of altruism; which rejection of altruism was at the heart of Thatcherism. The idea that people are only motivated by personal gain is of course quite untrue. Firefighters, who are still employed by the public, have proved that just now, beyond anything I can say, by going well beyond their contractual duty to try to help. But even accepting for one moment, for the sake of argument, the doctrine that people are only motivated by money; it plainly does not follow that public services would be more efficiently delivered by the private sector. What does follow is that public services will suffer from profiteering if run by the private sector.

But this disastrous contracting out is not always to private for profit companies. It is sometimes to what Tories call the “third sector”, meaning charities and not for profit companies. Much of the aid budget is now spent this way. Not at all coincidental, the pumping of large amounts of public money into this sector has coincided with a quite incredible rise in the salaries and emoluments of senior charities staff.

We have ended up in the situation where executive staff of charities are on over £200,000 a year, where the chief executive of Save the Children gets twice the salary of the Head of DFID, and where people who occupy what were once public sector jobs in rail, water or housing can earn ten times what their public sector predecessors were getting. At the same time wages, employment protection, conditions and unionisation for the actual workers have all been cut.

This is important because the Kensington and Chelsea Tenants Management Organisation Ltd is a not for profit company. No shareholders get any profits from it, and it does not remunerate its directors. This is the body which manages Grenfell Towers and did the refurbishment. Some of the (rightly critical) comment has assumed that KCTMO Ltd is a profiteering private company and this is why it has skimped on possible safety features like sprinkler systems. But it is more complicated than that.

The majority of KCTMO directors, including the chairman, are themselves tenants of the council’s housing. Three more are council appointed. The philosophy behind KCTMO Ltd is on the face of it benign – the tenants are managing their own properties. Which leads to the question of why relationships had broken down so badly between KCTMO and those apparently speaking for the residents of Grenfell Tower, particularly over fire safety issues.

Some of the answer to that may relate to social hierarchy among different types of council tenant. I do not know if anyone on the KCTMO board lived in Grenfell Tower, but imagine we would have been told that if so.

My experience of other organisations would lead me to suspect that in practice KCTMO Ltd did not operate in the way that it does on paper, and that the Chief Executive and other officers had a disproportionate influence. I have seen enough decisions in enough public bodies with a supposedly democratic structure – including universities and councils – to know that the elected representatives often find it very difficult to challenge the “expertise” of the executive officers. This is particularly likely to be true in an area like housing, where there are architectural, construction and legal issues. You quickly end up in a situation where the elected representatives are not really making decisions but only rubber=stamping the decisions of the officers. I saw various tenants who had been involved in the complaints to KTCMO interviewed yesterday, and they all referenced the Chief Executive, Robert Black, and not the tenant representative Chairman.

KCTMO’s staff costs are just over £10 million per year. I can find nothing on wage structure and what the executive officers are paid. I hope that information will become available.

But I can see no reason to believe that Mr Black or anybody else could make any personal gain from not installing a sprinkler system, for example. It appears responsibility for providing funds for this kind of capital expenditure lies with Kensington and Chelsea Council and not with KCTMO. It happens I lived for three years in Shepherds Bush and know this area very well. Ladbroke Grove is 15 minutes walk from some of the most expensive houses in the world. The idea that people in social housing were not high on the priorities of the council rings to me entirely true. In fact there is plenty of evidence that councillors are in cahoots with developers looking to demolish the social housing and build yet more massive luxury developments primarily for sale to the global “elite” of the extremely wealthy.

So much for the local picture. Nationally, it appears beyond argument that the government has failed again and again to update regulations following similar fires both in the UK and elsewhere. Yet again this is ideologically driven. Deregulation is a key principle of neo-liberalism. The government has an intrinsic belief that anything that adds costs or restriction to corporate profit should be resisted, and the idea of adding new regulation is simply anathema to them. That background cannot be ignored. The more you dig into this terrible tragedy, the more lurid a light is thrown on Neo-Liberal Britain.


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408 thoughts on “Housing Regulation

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  • Sharp Ears

    Don’t know if Cameron still owns the house in Finstock Road where he lived before moving in to No 10 when he rented it out. It is half a mile away from Grenfell Tower.

    Similar houses are now valued at £3m.

  • labougie

    The fact that the ‘refurbishment’ was a solely a cosmetic exercise (to improve the local landscape for the benefit of its wealthier inhabitants/exploiters) is being lost in a welter of manufactured controversy about which cladding option would have been the best. The entire exercise was for show and quite obviously the cheapest option would have been selected.

    Surely the real problem here is the casual disregard for human safety inherent in this approach.

    • MJ

      “the ‘refurbishment’ was a solely a cosmetic exercise (to improve the local landscape for the benefit of its wealthier inhabitants/exploiters)”

      Not convinced by that. I think it was more likely done to increase the value of the building and improve the look of K&C’s accounts. This was social housing. Some of the flats were very spacious (4 bedrooms). Perhaps the long-term plan was to sell the building to developers to turn them into luxury flats.

      • labougie

        I don’t see that your comment rebuts mine. The ‘refurbishment’ was about external prettification. It undoubtedly increased the value of the building and improved Kensington and Chelsea’s and KCTMO’s accounts, but that was a lot of money to spend on a pretty but highly inflammable overcoat rather than sensible stuff like a proper sprinkler system. Are you seriously suggesting that Grenfell’s prettification was done (at public expense) for the benefit of the inhabitants?

        • Sharp Ears

          It was clad ostensibly to meet EU regulations on energy efficiency according to the Heil. Rot. It was to prettify the tower for the Hooray Henrys in near sight.

          • labougie

            The heart of the matter is:
            Whose decision was it to clad Grenfell and why was cladding necessary?

      • JBowers

        The common description is the flats were social housing. But I’ve seen flats from the tower listed for sale on estate agent websites (the Guardian linked to them the other day but I can’t find the piece or live feed item – RightMove was one site IIRC). How can they all be social housing if some have been up for sale for a quarter of a million quid or more?

  • Sharp Ears

    TOWER BLOCK FIRE
    +++US banned cladding that was used on Grenfell Tower
    • Material ruled unsafe for tall buildings • Disaster deaths expected to exceed 50 • Criminal inquiry launched amid anger
    June 16 2017
    Grenfell Tower was home to about 600 people. As firefighters shore up the building to allow them to make a detailed search for victims, the death toll is expected to pass 50.

    The death toll from the London tower inferno was last night expected to pass 50 as it emerged that the United States had banned the type of cladding that allegedly encased the 24-storey block.

    Scotland Yard said that it had begun a criminal inquiry amid calls from MPs for corporate manslaughter charges to be brought. Seventeen people were confirmed to have died in the blaze that swept through the building in the early hours of Wednesday.

    Senior sources voiced fears yesterday that up to 100 people could have died in the fire but later revised their estimates. Grenfell Tower, in west London, was home to about 600 residents.

    The difficulty of matching reports of those missing with the complex process of identifying the dead has…paywall
    https://www.thetimes.co.uk/edition/news/us-banned-cladding-that-was-used-on-grenfell-tower-kd02bwjlx

    • lysias

      “Cladding” is a word with which I was totally unfamiliar. I don’t think we have it in American English. They used a circunlocution for it on Democracy Now this morning. I wonder if the practice even exists here.

      • labougie

        Forsooth, thou jest! – ‘clad’ simply means ‘clothed’, as in:

        “Look, the morn, in russet mantle clad, Walks o’er the dew of yon high eastern hill.”

      • Tony_0pmoc

        lysias,

        Cladding normally means stuff you stick on the outside of a structure to make it look more aesthetically pleasing. For example, if I built a garden shed out of concrete blocks – it would look quite ugly/horrible – but it would last a long time. However, if I then covered the outside with some nice wooden cladding – it would look a lot more attractive,

        • German Girl

          Likely in this case the cladding had both an aesthetic as well as a functional use. Functionally many types of cladding improve the isolation of a building e.g. you need less energy to keep it warm.

          That type of cladding is used in Germany, too, and it is highly controversial because it is so highly inflammable. There were supervised inflammation tests with this material and they were conducted in a testing venue. During that inflammation test the fire got so intense that they had to evacuate the testing venue which was specifically constructed for inflammation tests. But because they couldn’t keep the fire under control not even in that testing venue they had to evacuate.
          No joke. Here is the german video:
          The test in the testing venue starts at 3:15

          https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1EL9-_27H04

          I wonder how many politicians got bribed to pass construction laws that allow such cladding.

          • German Girl

            Sorry, no evacuation. My mistake. That was probably another video.

            But you can see how quickly that stuff does burn. And worse: toxic fumes. And dripping fire. Because burning cladding material drops down the fire can spread both up and down the fassade of a building.

          • JBowers

            “That type of cladding is used in Germany, too”

            This particular cladding was banned in Germany in 2012. It’s also banned in the USA.

          • German Girl

            @ JBowers

            Styrofoam and polystyrene cladding is still legal and widely used in Germany for cladding. When recyled / put in the waste bin there are several obligations for correct disposal. But otherwise that stuff is very much legal. It is cheaper than mineral wool which starts burning at temperatures above 700° Celsius (glass wool) or 100° Celsius (stone wool). It is also slightly easier to use as cladding (just glued on) than mineral wool (has to be “screwed on” sorts of) which is why it is used.

            https://de.wikipedia.org/wiki/Polystyrol#Verwendungen

            “Polystyrol ist auch einer der Grundstoffe von Napalm-B, welches in Brandbomben Verwendung findet.”
            (from that wikipedia article above)

            Translation: “Polystyrol is one of the basic ingredients of napalm-b, which is used in incendiary weapons.”

          • JBowers

            @ German Girl

            It’s my understanding that this type of cladding is banned in Germany for use on tall buildings as it’s rated as flammable, and is in the same category as ‘unprotected wood with a thickness of no more than 12mm’. It’s also banned for buildings taller than 40 feet in the USA.

      • Laguerre

        Personally, I think they’re hiding what they know perfectly well about the number of dead, in order to avoid even more public unrest. Or rather to avoid Tory discomfort, particularly May’s.

        • Tony_0pmoc

          Laguerre, Whilst it will be an incredibly gruesome job, it must have largely cooled down by now, and there is a very slight chance that there may still be some survivors. The London Fire Brigade would do it. I have known some of them for years, and they have my complete respect.

          • Laguerre

            Oh, it’s not the fault of the firemen, for whom I have complete admiration. It’s May and her cabal who are protecting themselves.

  • Doug Scorgie

    Queen (teary eyed?) and Prince William meet Grenfell Tower residents. Mrs May nowhere to be seen………………………………

    “The Queen has met Grenfell Tower victims as rage continued to boil over Theresa May’s failure to personally meet them.”

    Huffington Post.

    • German Girl

      So the Queen functions like a fire extinguisher: she throttles the flames of fury.
      But does she hold anybody accountable? Does she demand inquiries?
      Oh no wait, the Queen is one of the biggest landlords in Britain. . . .

  • frankywiggles

    It’s being incessantly repeated that all regulations were complied with in Grenfell Tower. But in what sort of country can be legal for a block housing 600 people to have no serviceable fire alarms, no sprinklers and flammable cladding?

    • labougie

      The sort of country which claims to promote efficiency by “tearing up red tape” when the reality is a dilution of responsibility and a lowering of safety standards.

        • labougie

          The sucessful bidder for an NHS franchise immediately outsources to several other sub-franchisees, and the sub-franchisees outsource to several other sub-sub-franchisees in a fashion infinitely more apliccable to fast food than health care. If, at any point down the line, a patient is in danger, the contracts signed by A/ the sub-sub franchisees, B/ the sub-franchisees and C/ the original franchise holder are all of a sudden revealed as absolving A, B and C from any liability and the NHS picks up the botched result. There is a phrase which business uses to encapsulate this concept and we (the punters) would do well to understand it. It is, of course – (All Together Now):

          Privatise the Profits – Socialise the Losses.

          • frankywiggles

            Disgusting, mate, and all there in very plain sight, like the privatizing recommendations our govt-commissioned Naylor report.

  • Sharp Ears

    Large angry protest ongoing now outside Kensington Town Hall. They were demonstrating inside but were dispersed outside. Requests for councillors/officials were unmet. Instead they received a letter from the press officer. Very angry.

  • Beth

    Dan Brown on BBC asking a woman in the crowd why she is angry ! Why don’t you ask yourself Dan ? If this was happening in another country the BBC would have all the answers.
    How about we start looking after people in this country and stop bombing better and safer buildings in the Middle East. It’s time for a huge change in attitudes.

  • Tony_0pmoc

    When I had a small extension to our house built nearly 20 years ago, the builder did a brilliant job. I saw what he was doing next door – and I asked him for a quote. He was a real craftsman.

    From my point of view The Building Regulator from the council was just as impressive. I was at work, and the builder got the tiler to tile my roof with these tiles (that I had never seen). The Building Regulator turned up – whilst he was doing this -and said Stop – Take them all down (they did not match the original tiles on my 100 year old house).

    Now after 20 years – the extension looks like it was built at the same time as the rest of the house. It doesn’t look like an extension – it looks like it was always there.

    I don’t know if that would work now. The Building Regulator probably got fired.

    Tony

    • J

      Despite having no mandate for any of this, we need to realise this is is not going to stop until we get these fuckers out. By any means necessary.

      • Tony_0pmoc

        J, I would suggest that violence is not necessary. The evil is largely destroying itself, as more and more completely innocent people – not just here in The UK, but across much of the world become aware of it.

        This is a worldwide problem and Independence for Scotland is not going to fix it. Personally, I think the UK is much stronger together, and still very influential. I know we have had some evil people in power – but they are not all evil. I really like Jeremy Corbyn for example. You don’t want to give up hope on him. he has already made an enormous difference – and he is just one man.

        I have been out of internet contact for most of the last few days…so I would just like to take my hat off to Tom Feeley – a really courageous American one man band. I actually tried to send him $10. My payment was blocked by The US Banks. That is me in England trying to send $10 to an American in The USA. I phoned my UK Bank up..why has this payment been blocked?

        This is Tom Feeley’s website

        http://www.informationclearinghouse.info/

        Tony

  • Ishmael

    Very sad, and justified anger.

    It reminds me of the many fires in india, in factories etc.

    Chickens have been roosting at home. And there is no “home bias” and definitely an invisible hand.

    “Adam Smith actually did use the term, rarely, but take a look at how he used it. In Wealth of Nations, his major work, it’s used once, and if you look at the context, it’s an argument against what is now called neoliberal globalization, and what he argued is this, he was concerned with England, of course, he said suppose in England that the merchants and manufacturers invested abroad, and imported from abroad. He said, well, that would be profitable for them, but would be harmful to the people of England. However, they will have enough of a commitment to their own country, to England, what’s called a home bias in the literature, they’ll have enough of a home bias so that as if by an invisible hand, they’ll keep to the less profitable actions and then England will be saved from what we call the ravages of what we call neoliberal globalisation.”

    Noam Chomsky on ….Stuff.

    • Tony_0pmoc

      Noam Chomsky writes some good stuff, but he works for and is paid by The US Military Industrial Complex. He is Institute Professor Emeritus at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT). He will not write the Truth about 9/11, and I find it really hard to believe he is suffering from cognitive dissonance.

      Try This bloke instead…He’s a month younger and a lot brighter.

      http://www.peterdalescott.net/

      Tony

      • Ishmael

        Tony. He is a political scientist who discusses things based on known evidence.

        You must think I’m an idiot. And why waste my life away.

        I think there is a tread for this, Im sure you’ll find takers there.

          • Tony_0pmoc

            Ishmael,

            I love art, but am rubbish at it. I love music, but am rubbish at it. However, I am apparently going to a music and arts festival tomorrow on a London bus – so my wife tells me..and we’ve just got back from Norfolk and that was incredibly hard work with our Grandson (he is really little but he can just about say Grandad)…and then next week where we live all the local artists – are opening up their homes – their houses where they live – with the invitation – just come in…they will probably have a central venue too in our village.

            Its all free. You don’t have to buy anything.

            I never thought “You” an idiot.

            Tony

      • glenn_uk

        Tony, I’m afraid you are very wide of the mark in making claims like that about Chomsky. Clearly, anyone who doesn’t say exactly what you want to hear about “9/11” has to be a paid-up stooge working for the government.

        • Tony_0pmoc

          Glenn, now we’ve done Norfolk (yet again), we may well be travelling down your way (not on Motorbikes just yet). We really like Talybont-on-Usk and we also really like Hoarwithy. We actually thought Hoarwithy was in Wales (it is close to the border on The River Wye)..but it is actually in England. Its an amazing place…lots of people arrive by canoo – eg wife and kids – and they bring all their stuff in barrels on the canoo…set up camp – walk intto the local village and its all completely silent except for the choral singers in the temple/church – that looks even more Italian than you would find in North Wales(Portmeirion (The Prisoner- film) – or even Italy (Italy – real).

          Its a secret don’t tell anyone.

          We’ve no plans for Scotland yet, but my Son will very soon be in the Isle of Man.

          I don’t think he’s been before.

          We have.

          Tony

      • Laguerre

        “but he works for and is paid by The US Military Industrial Complex.”

        So, how is that supposed to work? Simply because he was professor at MIT? He’s far too independent to be employed on lucrative contracts by the MIC (nothing in the Wiki bio). You do understand that once you get tenure in an American university, don’t you?

        • Laguerre

          sorry that should be ” You do understand that once you get tenure in an American university you can’t be sacked”

          • Tony_0pmoc

            Laguerre,

            My niece wasn’t sacked. Both her and her husband (both Professors at an American University) voluntarily Resigned and came back home to England with their American born child.

            Now what exactly happenened to Professor Steven Jones – and I got it years before him.

            https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Steven_E._Jones

            If you tell the truth – you get fired.

            Tony

        • Ishmael

          Myself I think like anyone he’s bias, and it’s not like I agree with everything he says. The spine for instance, is an incredible bit of design.

          But sitting on it all day just messes it up over time. As many professors do. Also.

      • German Girl

        @ Tony_0pmoc

        Chomsky is originally a linguist. Science of language. His studies of language and linguistics led him to criticise media and society and politics and from that starting point on he criticises several developments of society.
        But 9/11 is a bit far off his field of expertise as the understanding of the collapse of the buildings would require extensive knowledge in physics and statics (architecture) and use of explosives.
        I think Chomsky not commenting on “The Truth” of 9/11 is a sign that he is a serious scientist. It doesn’t mean he got bribed nor does it mean he got gagged.
        Additionally a Prof. em. can usually speak much more freely about critical issues which might harm his university. So Chomsky is in a position where sharp criticism wouldn’t harm his career any more. So he could if he tought he should.
        Btw. Why don’t you write Chomsky an email and ask him?

        Scientists do generally never write “The Truth” because scientists do defend some hypothesis with evidence and they know that they can only get close to an objective and valid and reliable evaluation but they will never get to “The Truth”.
        Reliability, validity and objectiviy are some of the most important criteria for good scientific work.

        • John Spencer-Davis

          “His studies of language and linguistics led him to criticise media and society and politics”

          Not quite. Chomsky had an interest in politics from childhood. Both of his interests, politics and linguistics, arise from a common root – the study of free creativity within the limits and boundaries of what it is to be human. He frequently cites Wilhelm von Humboldt (1767-1835) as an intellectual predecessor, an Enlightenment linguist and political philosopher and a trenchant critic of state power and its effect on the liberty of the individual – a “philosopher of freedom”. Chomsky regards himself as having extended Humbolt’s thesis to the enormous escalation of private power under modern capitalism. J

  • N_

    Realise what could happen next Wednesday in the House of Commons: a motion of no confidence in the government and its dreadful anti-social housing policy that killed probably more than 100 people in Grenfell Tower.

    Bye-bye Tory government.

    • Ishmael

      So…….Is everything you post like, independence propaganda?

      Are you a person or an agency? Because you seem like an agency to me.

      • Republicofscotland

        The Brexit negotiations begin on Monday, and Theresa May and her Brexiteers are anything but prepared.

        Yet you post a comment regarding agencies and independence, which no one mentioned. Get a grip.

        • Ishmael

          …. Actually you kind of mention it every-time you post. Even if you don’t comment on something split in that partisan way (which is rare) it’s in your title.

    • Laguerre

      I rather enjoyed the “tonne of bricks”. A nasty EU metric ton, less than, and inferior to, the good old British Imperial ton. You will be detested by all decent Brexit-loving patriots for that.

      By the way, what sort of agency are you, as Ishmael suggests? Is it an agency of one?

      • Ishmael

        I worry about some on here, I really do.

        Ie, when does a job become you? I do work I don’t always like but to just pump out stuff on a blog? Is it paid or unhealthy (imo) amount of ideology for a single person to have all the time.

        ?

      • Republicofscotland

        Laguerre.

        Not you as well, Ishmael, I can understand his/her disjointed and wayward posts, but I thought you were more savvy over Brexit.

        Unless of course you actually believe Brexit will be good for Britain? I hope not.

    • German Girl

      Cameron being deceptive.

      Honestly you can’t always eliminate all risk. Cameron didn’t quite put it like that, did he. 😉

      But what you can do is that you can try to eliminate as much risk as you can and as is possible. With increasing technological progress one should expect that more and more risks will be eliminated. Though I am quite sure Cameron didn’t mean what I described in this paragraph.
      Cameron ment that it is fairness that the F**ck**g paupers die for the profits of the rich.” He just didn’t say that.
      If Cameron had said just once what he ment he wouldn’t have gotten elected ever.

  • Michael McNulty

    I’ve just heard an expert on Sky News say that what happened at Grenfell Tower was “fascia fire spread”. If they’ve got a name for it then the authorities knew all about it.

  • Tony_0pmoc

    I would like to see a debate – Preferably Live and Professionally Recorded and Transmitted Using High Quality Cameras and Microphones…

    Hosted by George Galloway

    Guest Speakers : Noam Chomsky, Peter Dale Scott, Gilad Atzmon

    George Galloway will get the Truth out of at least One of them. He may learn something.

    Tony

      • Tony_0pmoc

        Ishmael, so you are Ju1sh and you like Bob Marley? – nowt much wrong with that. I like Bob Marley too, and Gilad Atzmon is still in The Blockeads. ‘Open your eyes” is Snow Patrol. They come from Northern Ireland and Scotland.
        I come from Oldham.

        Where do you come from?

        Tony

      • Tony_0pmoc

        I would like George Galloway to invite Thierry Meyssan too. He is even Passionate here..He is French and lives in Damascus.

        http://www.voltairenet.org/article196804.html

        “….For 16 years, the Western powers have been rightfully accusing the Muslims of not cleaning up their own house, and of tolerating terrorists. However, it is clear today that these terrorists are supported by the same Western powers in order to enslave Muslims by means of « political Islam ». London, Washington and Paris have no problems with terrorism until it spills over from the « Greater Middle East », and they never criticise « political Islam », at least as far as the Sunnis are concerned. “

      • Tony_0pmoc

        Trowbridge, 2 days ago I found my laptop would not read a memory card through either of its card readers…and this really annoyed me…and then I remembered i had this mini/multi card reader thing that did USB ports and mobile phones too. It only cost me about £1.50 from China and it worked. Maybe you should move East.

        • Trowbridge H. Ford

          I wasn’t using any memory card. I was just expanding upon what Llily lAllen was claiming, and it all disappeared brhind a blue streak.

          Should have emigrated to China after I gave it insights into why its 2008 earthquake happened.

      • Republicofscotland

        Don’t worry Trowbridge, your in good company in here, some can’t type a sensible comment on a unaffected laptop.

    • Tony_0pmoc

      Ron, Itsy posted this above…I’ve only just read it. This bit shows it all really (and they don’t know)

      “As Leadsom was interviewed on Sky News, one man asked: “Sadiq Khan, Corbyn, have come down here, not with all these bodyguards and police, they’ve come down here and spoke to people, and actually, down to the level. Why is Theresa May coming down here, with a load of police, not meeting anyone?”

    • Tony_0pmoc

      How embarrassing…oh dear..just shows what one bloke in a bedroom can do…with a phone call. Issuing a D Notice – and then being told – No you can’t Do that (by the Home Office) – No it will just make you look very much worse. Withdraw it Now.

      and this is our government…oh dear

  • Dave

    Corbyn blamed government cuts to local government. This is nonsense when applied to inner-London which gets a very generous grant settlement and other match funding due to its official status as a deprived area. The cost of that one tower block refurbishment would pay to refurbish another borough’s entire housing stock. One reason to “pretty it up” is because they have the money to do so. It appears the cladding, with a design fault, was put on to meet climate change targets to save the world, a scam promoted by successive governments, but also by Corbyn, despite the wise words of his brother Pier’s.

  • Trowbridge H. Ford

    This whole thread is an illustration of what commenter claimed foolishly,: It was Theresa May’sHurricane Katrina moment when it was clearly her 9/11 one, though they both exposed capitalism exploitation, and the growing war on Islam coming home.

  • Tony_0pmoc

    If you didn’t already know how bad it is…OffGuardian publishes a completely brilliant article…

    “Two Years of “Wrong” Votes: The Media Take Aim at Democracy”

    https://off-guardian.org/2017/06/11/after-two-years-of-wrong-votes-the-media-take-aim-at-democracy/

    and in response Paypal pulls their account

    “OffG’s PayPal Account has been frozen – please cancel any recurring donations”

    https://off-guardian.org/2017/06/16/offgs-paypal-account-has-been-frozen-please-cancel-any-recurring-donations/

    That is not only Dictatorial from one of the World’s largest Bankers – but outright Fascist.

    Didn’t you notice?

    Tony

  • defo

    “Man jailed for posting pictures of victim online. ”
    http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/live/uk-england-london-40239008
    19:47
    16 Jun
    “A man has been given a three-month prison sentence after admitting posting images of one of the victims of the Grenfell Tower fire on social media.

    Omega Mwaikambo, 43, pleaded guilty at Westminster Magistrates’ Court to two offences contrary to section 127 of the Communications Act, Scotland Yard said.

    Mwaikambo, of Testerton Walk, west London, was arrested over images posted online which appeared to show a partially-covered body.”

    I’m sure those who are responsible for this foreseeable horror show will be dealt with as expediently.

    ‘D’ Notice !
    FFS. They are only trotted out when the establishment really feel under threat, like the 100 yr one on the Dunblane massacre. Hamilton had deep establishment links.

  • Tony T U

    Out of interest,

    1) were all floors of Grenfell Tower occupied by residents, including the topmost floor?

    2) What were the communications aerials on the top used for?

    Just asking. I am pulling on the idea that a DA Notice really has been issued. Why might it have been?

    • defo

      “Why might it have been?”
      Because Tony, this has the potential to be the spark that lights the bonfire under the establishments control of our legislature ?

      • Tony T U

        That’s too vague. What in particular wouldn’t they want reported? I’d go for

        1) communications equipment used by…ooh, say MI5 watchers, but there are many other possibilities, such as a security group protecting one or more of the buildings on Kensington Palace Gardens (which include a royal palace and several embassies) – I mean comms equipment that rarely gets visited

        2) a floor or a part of a floor actively used by an agency that they want kept out of this story for as long as possible. (Any rumours of a secret floor that’s always lit up at night? Probably not, because we’d have heard about it by now.)

        There are several other high-rise blocks in London that either 1) or 2) apply to.

        For the record, I am just considering the DA Notice hypothesis, that’s all.

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