I have discovered a site which bills itself as "News for the British public sector and beyond." It's a little like falling through the looking glass. Consider this story. Tesco "kindly" allow an elderly couple to use a vacant piece of land for an animal sanctuary while they try to get planning permission for a superstore. They fail, and - as the land is no use to them - decide to sell it.
The animal lovers, who seem not to understand the notion of gratitude, protest at the withdrawal of the free use of the land, even though Tesco have promised to keep it available for a further five years to allow them to find new benefactors. 24dash.com, using every piece of loaded language known to media man, reports that a "Conservative" councillor is lobbying Tesco to "do the right thing" by giving them some of the land. Consider the degenerate thinking behind the councillor's reported remarks:
"Tesco could achieve their aim of satisfying their shareholders and at the same time, do the right thing morally by compromising as I have proposed, thus giving Hopefield a permanent, albeit smaller, area to care for their animals in. There is hardly a huge difference in value to Mr Leahy, their Chief Executive, whether 35 or the full 56 acres are sold off."
It's not Mr Leahy's land, you idiot, it belongs to the company. The company belongs to the shareholders who probably include both your and the aged sentimentalists' pension funds and life assurance companies. Mr Leahy has no moral right to expropriate his shareholders' in order to support this couple's venture. Frankly, I think Tesco has gone way too far in foregoing a market rent until now and for the next five years. It would be ridiculous for them to forego 11 acres of valuable land (probably more once separate accesses were worked out). Having a ramshackle 11-acre animal sanctuary next door would undoubtedly reduce the value of the remaining land.
It is time for British shareholders to get aggressive on the American model and bring class actions against boards who are "generous" with other peoples' money.
Where do these people think wealth comes from? What do they think the effect of their campaign will be on companies thinking of making such gestures in future? What on earth is a Conservative councillor doing getting involved in such a mad campaign? Do such people think at all?