DRMacIver's Notebook

Big Capital: Who is London for? by Anna Minton

Big Capital: Who is London for? by Anna Minton

This was a good book that I don’t think I can really recommend.

It’s a compassionate, well-written, account of the extent of the problems with treating London property as an investment vehicle, the extent of the personal cost to people, and the degree of culpability of the councils in this problem. I knew much of this, but it filled in a lot of details for me.

I was very impressed with how level a tone the author managed to keep throughout the book. The style would have been almost painfully dry, except that the material has such a high emotional impact and the writing is sufficiently concise and to the point as to offset the worst of the dryness. Instead it is a very effective accounting of the situation we find ourselves in. I don’t think I could have written anything like it without calling for open revolution.

Unfortunately, I don’t know what to do with that information, so the book just made me angry and sad, and I was already angry and sad about this. Some concrete proposals were made in the last chapter, and they seem like good ones, but they’re not ones where I feel like I have much agency, and to the degree that I have agency I would probably spend it on other things.