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From The Socialist newspaper, 11 July 2012

Readers' comment

As useless as a hole in the ground

Europe's tallest building, the Shard, next to London Bridge station, opened on 5 July at a cost of nearly 1 billion.

The hyperbole surrounding it is in full flow. Its owners, the middle eastern state of Qatar, claim it will enhance London's reputation as a place for future developments like it.

They should know, they have $100 billion in spare cash from Qatar's oil and gas wells to splash about.

It is another indication that the super rich have no idea what to do with all the profits that have been robbed from the labour power of the world's working class.

The Shard stands at over 1,000 feet in height, with 87 floors, the top floors being left deliberately uninhabitable and open to the elements. 72 floors are to be rented out to the obscenely super-rich in 50 million pound apartments and an 18 floor luxury hotel.

Its original owners had rented out part to Transport for London, but the new owners withdrew that contract as it was not what they envisaged for the "right" sort of tenants.

The utter blindness of the bourgeoisie of the Bob Diamond variety is their inability to see how their plans are seen by the rest of society.

The Shard is based in Southwark, where I live, which had the reputation of one of the most impoverished parts of Britain.

Southwark's Labour council leader said that the Shard will bring thousands of jobs to the borough. As if that could justify the obscenity of the whole project.

You might as well advocate that the unemployed should dig holes in the ground to give them something to do, the end product (the Shard) is about as useful to society as a hole in the ground.

The Shard shows the utter irrationality of a society where the rich have so much money that they can build playthings like the Shard, instead of things that meet the needs of the vast majority, like homes, hospitals and schools.

Bill Mullins

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In The Socialist 11 July 2012:


Socialist Party NHS campaign

LOOTED! PFI empties NHS coffers

Fight Profit From Illness

Save Worcestershire A&E services


Socialist Party editorial

Libor scandal exposes rotten racketeering system

Lords reform - Abolish the House of privilege!

Save our server!


Youth Fight for Jobs and Education feature

Fight for a future for the 99%

The politics of fighting the racist EDL

Pride should be about protest, not profits!

Them&Us


Workplace news and analysis

London bus workers discuss new offer: "militant strike action pays"

Build the fightback against the Con-Dems: Join the lobby of the TUC on 9 September

Single status appeal: Victory for Vine workers

Sheffield recycling workers win victory against sackings

Vote no to the local government pension offer

Workplace news in brief


International socialist news and analysis

Egypt: Will Mursi's presidential election victory bring real change?


Socialist Party reviews and comments

TV Review: Britain on the brink - back to the '70s

The Shard: As useless as a hole in the ground

Ringing bells in the GMB

Minimum wage, minimum security


Socialist Party news and campaigns

TUSC continues to build support in Liverpool

Leeds protest at prison privatisation rally

Help boost sales of the Socialist

Socialist Party Summer Camp


 

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