I was dismayed by the council’s decision to capitulate so tamely, without any sign of a fight, on the Barrow homes decision.
Taking notice of a barrister rather than the clear views and wishes of local people seems hard to accept.
A barrister may be able to quote and clarify the existing law exactly as it has been written by Parliament. Presumably, in this case the relevant law says the Communities Minister can make whatever decision he likes on a whim without any consideration of the facts.
A barrister will probably not be willing, or able, to say whether the law is fair, sensible, reasonable or in line with common sense – he will just tell you what the law states today.
In cases where evidence and reasoning suggests strongly an existing law is flawed (as, I believe, is clearly the case here), surely the required action is to challenge and change the law, rather than merely clarifying it and reinforcing the current unsatisfactory position.
In this country, laws are made and can be changed, if necessary, by Members of Parliament.
Of course, MPs don’t like to do this as it can be seen as an admission they got things wrong the first time round and they might then come across as being less all-knowing and God-like than they like to think they are. So this explains how Barrow (and other Lancashire towns and villages) can be destroyed just so some Government Minister doesn’t “lose face”.
However, very rarely, it can sometimes occur to them that admitting getting it wrong is preferable to political annihilation if they perceive their policies and actions are deeply unpopular enough. This of course, is just self-preservation on their part, rather than any conversion to common sense, but it is surely worth a go.
Throwing the towel in before the bell for the next round has even been rung in this way is sending the wrong message to Westminster entirely and will result in more of the same thing here in the future.
The laws allowing this state sponsored vandalism to proceed unchecked need to be challenged robustly and changed if at all possible, not just clarified and meekly accepted (even if it’s with regret) by the council.
Pendle St East, Sabden