AFTER losing its majority, its housing minister and a clutch of seats in the suburban south-east, the Conservative Party seems at last to have reached the limit of its NIMBYism. “The penny didn’t drop until now,” says Rob Wilson, a Tory MP who lost his seat in Reading, a commuter town 40 miles west of London. But the view that the Conservatives should urge the building of more houses is at last filtering throughout the party. The alternative, according to the Daily Telegraph, the unofficial journal of NIMBYism, is “Marxist social engineering”.
A shift is long overdue. A much-trailed white paper on housing in February—when the party was riding high in the polls—was gutted of any radical proposals. Still, cannier parts of the party have long argued for more housing. And from a political perspective, the Tories’ unwillingness to boost the supply of homes for people to buy seems increasingly imprudent. Building such houses may breed Tories:…Continue reading