Sunday, November 14, 2010

BMW cavalcade to escort Tripodi from parliament

If like DH, you own a black BMW, join her in a cavalcade to escort ex-Housing Minister, Joe Tripodi, from Parliament and make sure he never returns. Please spread the word to all the other BMW owners on the estate.
In 2005, Tripodi presided over the disastrous "Reshaping Public Housing" policy, engineered by Ben Keneally, Kristina's husband, which increased the stigma and ghettoisation of public housing by further concentrating disadvantage, by dumping more mentally ill people in public housing, when the necessary supports were not, (and are still not*!)  in place. By way of amelioration, it was a response to John Howard's cutting a couple of $ billion from the then Commonwealth State Housing Agreement which funded public housing, and putting it into the pockets of private landlords via rental assistance, thus increasing inflation, and contributing to the current housing crisis.*

Whatever the exigencies were that created the policy, what was galling was the gutter tactics Tripodi resorted to in order to sell it to the NSW public. He chose to attack the public housing tenants who were under his protection, by the famous claim that the car parks of public housing estates were full of BMW's. This started a trend then trumpeted by every right-wing Housing Minister thereafter: his hapless proteges Cherie Burton and Matt Brown. See The BMW's that ate Public Housing in the SMH for more.

It fell to David Borger, who had a genuine vision for urban regeneration, to begin to undo the shoddy work and it was pleasing to note that the BMW claims have not resurfaced since.

* Worried am only the faceless man's nameless troll. Must get facts right! Rental assistance begun by Hawke govt. Labor used to claim that Howard ripped $3 billion out of CSHA over 10 years. Later the figure quoted became a mere $1 billion. Am settling for a fuzzy "couple" of billion. DH.

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