Published: 3 August, 2012
• WHEN trying to assess the latest reason for Islington Council’s current excursions into the realm of what it euphemistically entitles “tenant empowerment”, we would be well advised to take heed of the words of Titus Petronius Niger, of Rome, in 210BC. On encountering a similar problem, he stated: “We trained hard… but every time we formed up teams we would be reorganised. I was to learn that we met any new situation by reorganising… And a wonderful method it can be for creating the illusion of progress, while producing confusion, inefficiency and demoralisation…”
Spot the similarity? First there was the Federation of Islington Tenants’ Associations, the borough’s only truly independent tenants’ organisation, which worked so well that they shut it down by withdrawing its funding.
This was superseded by the dreadful Homes for Islington, which performed so atrociously the council was compelled to shut it down (after allowing it to underperform for seven years).
Now we are to be treated to the latest attempt to control us, by consensual subterfuge. “The tenants’ champion”, complete with an executive housing committee, is totally unrepresentative of the housing needs of the borough. And they are without the power to execute their opinions should they indeed have the knowledge to identify problems to start with.
So, just what has 2,200 years of accrued knowledge taught us?
Someone, somewhere should have been paying more attention to what was actually being proposed, instead of simply relying on the illusions presented.
DR BRIAN POTTER
Federation of Islington
Islington Leaseholders’ Association