While idly scanning the DT in Tesco today I saw this.
The really really offensive, totally Stalinist words which he actually, even as an artificial-human-being, uttered, are these:-
Local Government minister John Healey said that local councils should charge more for basic services such as off-street parking, despite people in many parts of the country experiencing inflation-busting council tax rises.
In a speech to the Local Government Association, he said: “Only one in five councils are using charging to the full potential. Not just to cover costs but to shape their area.”
In a clear sign that he believes motorists should be targeted, Mr Healey said that charging more would result in “reducing congestion, improving levels of health and exercise, encouraging the use of local shops“.
It is quite unclear to me what a “minister for local government” does, or ought to do. Unless it was something to do with “bringing government close to the people” – a notion which I should have thought everybody would recoil from in stunned horror – then he has no function.
“Shaping of one’s area” is the job, as seen by libertarians, of individuals who own it (that is to say, the area.) Or at a push, it is the responsibility of voluntary private institutions freely entered into by the said individuals, so that together they can agree to deploy more (of their own) resources towards an agreed plan.
The language used by this John Healey person is unforgiveably disgusting and wicked, in its impicit reduction of the lives, bodies and needs of real people to statistics in a Utopian planning resource. Yezhov comes to mind. Healey (not Yezhov) can however be forgiven, possibly, for he appears never to have had a real job. About the only thing going for him is that he “campaigns for medals to be awarded to Suez Canal Zone veterans”.