The Housing Crisis, who benefits?

The following article is reproduced with the kind permission of our comrades at Rebel Cork’s Fighting Story

Original article – http://rebelcorksfightingstory.wordpress.com/2013/09/25/the-housing-crisis-who-benefits/

We all have a right to our own home, or so we’re told. A ‘Fundamental Right’. So why is the entire system rigged so that we are in the hands of the Landlords? The vast majority of Irish people throughout our history have never been masters of their own destinies, held down, kept back by the Empire, and now today, by the Gombeen Classes.

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Landlordism in Ireland, is the Legacy of British Rule.

Far from ‘cherishing all the children of the nation equally‘ the gap between the rich and poor in Ireland now widens by the day. People lie on trolleys in Hospital Corridors, many children and parents are forced to go without, due to cutbacks to our Health, Education and welfare, all so we can repay some debt that we don’t actually owe. This is but a continuation of the mentality that has long existed in Ireland in the minds of the Wealthy Elite. Make the poor pay for the mistakes of the rich. As the 1798 man Jemmy Hope once said “the rich always betray the poor”

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Today, tens of thousands are on Social Housing Lists in the 26- county state. Meanwhile Hundreds of Thousands empty Houses dot the landscape. From Ghost estates to empty City and County Council properties, the country is awash with Housing, so why are they empty, and more importantly, why are people made wait for years on end on manipulated Housing lists?

In Cork over 7000 are on the Social Housing waiting list, of the City and County Council. The Councils have a disastrous history in Dealing with the Housing issue. At present in the City Council area, there are up to 500 empty properties and many more in the county. Nothing is being done to fill these vacant houses and give people a better chance in life, when you inquire about your right to access this empty housing, you are met with a stone wall, and are either lied to, or fed a load of excuses regarding the cost of repairing properties, properties that were left fall into disrepair by the Councils in the first place, ‘we have no money’ is what we’re told, no shortage of money though when it comes to the blanket of apolitical ‘art’ that now covers various hoardings around the city. Plenty of cash for the marble floors in the City Council at Angelsea St! People’s needs and rights are far down the list of priorities for the Councils.

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Private Property Interests?

Many on the Housing list are forced on to the list in order to be eligible to get Rent allowance i.e The Landlords Dole. This deliberate inflation of the list helps the City and County Councils keep people forever in Limbo and with many landlords now making a very large amount of money because of Rent allowance , the system seems set in their favour, and the question needs to be asked, do people with the power in the various Councils have private property interests themselves? Why for example is the state spending €500,000,000 a year in rent allowance to Landlords? Imagine the quality of housing and the quality of life people would have if that money was spent properly, €500,000,000 on new housing projects and repairs! Its obvious the only people benefiting out of the Housing Crisis in Ireland are the Landlords and the people who preside over this corrupt system.

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James Connolly was right when he said ;

“If you remove the English army to-morrow and hoist the green flag over Dublin Castle, unless you set about the organisation of the Socialist Republic your efforts would be in vain.

England would still rule you. She would rule you through her capitalists, through her landlords, through her financiers, through the whole array of commercial and individualist institutions she has planted in this country and watered with the tears of our mothers and the blood of our martyrs.”

If people had unfettered access to decent housing and a place they could call their own, we would be a lot closer to realising the objectives aspired to in the proclamation of 1916, as the old saying goes, Níl aon tinteán mar do thinteán féin.

An Lámh Dubh

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