On 13th December I reported that Spain's bad-bank was set to launch to market some 89,000 homes and 13m square meters of building land, but that this represented just those holdings worth more than €250,000 that had been transferred from the good-but-bankrupt banks. Ambrose writes today of efforts by the bust banks to offload their residual property holdings before the bad-bank's portfolio hits the market; with a fall in value of 75% from 2008 levels expected, and a potential free-fall that could see some developments worth just 5% of their peak value, offering an attractive investment opportunity for any Germans brave enough to acquire holiday homes at the bottom of the market and proving that everything will sell if the price is low enough.
Meanwhile nearer home Bruce Anderson confirms what we all know already, thereby upholding the great tradition of hindsight exhibited by the MSM;
A generation ago, the populists warned that the abolition of the death penalty would lead to a sharp increase in the murder rate plus the proliferation of gun crime. They feared that if schools abandoned traditional disciplinary methods, many classrooms would become ungovernable. They were also afraid that in practice, comprehensive schools for everyone would mean secondary moderns all round. They were convinced that uncontrolled immigration would undermine the quality of life in our inner cities. They were equally certain that welfare payments which merely subsidised idleness would turn the welfare state into an ill-fare state and condemn its clients to demoralisation. They were perennially suspicious of the EU. To put it mildly, there seems no reason for those who held such views to prostrate themselves in repentance. Not that they are inclined to do so, which helps to explain the Tory party’s poor performance in recent elections: its failure to achieve its demographic potential in an increasingly middle-class society. A lot of potential Tory voters see little point in turning out for a party that persistently ignores their opinions, especially when they believe that they have been proved right.In the days when the Tory Party formulated policy on the basis of a bottom-up information flow from hundreds upon hundreds of local Conservative Associations to Central Office they wouldn't have missed this. Now there's a new name for this old process - 'crowdsourcing' - which will no doubt be miraculously discovered by the party as a hip, modern replacement to policy wonk tanks and metropolitan gurus - but perhaps discovered too late to do the party any good.
And so as we drift towards a 2013 that few are anticipating with much pleasure we must ask again where are the politicians who will do justice to the wisdom of the people?