In another typical case of government destroying productivity and trampling on property rights, farmer Robert Fidler of Surrey has lost a high court bid to save his home from being demolished.

After being denied “planning permission” Fidler went ahead and built his home (a beautiful construction, complete with castle turrets and a grand central hallway) anyway. He hid the construction from the bureaucrats by piling straw bales around the property, he then lived in the property for 4 years before removing the bales. The plan was to use a loophole in the law that says if you have lived in your property for 4 years without anyone objecting, it is no longer subject to planning enforcement.

But the trouble with fighting the government with sneaky legal loopholes is that they are always going to be better at that game than you are. Why? Because they make up the rules!

But in March 2007 the borough council issued an enforcement notice, which was upheld by a Government planning inspector in May 2008.

The inspector ruled that the removal of the straw bales constituted part of the building works and the four-year immunity rule would not apply.


And does anybody believe the judges in this country rule impartially and in the benefit of the public? In fact the judges will almost always side with their employer: the state. Lest anyone get any ideas that it might be a good idea to work around laws that punish construction and productivity. Deputy High Court judge Sir Thayne Forbes:

In my view, the inspector’s findings of fact make it abundantly clear that the erection/removal of the straw bales was an integral – indeed an essential – fundamentally related part of the building operations that were intended to deceive the local planning authority and to achieve by deception lawful status for a dwelling built in breach of planning control.

Just for once it would be amazing if a judge took a 2 second glance at photographs of the property and instantly ruled “What a lovely home. Did you build it on your property? Oh you did? Then case dismissed.”

I can dream right?

In this country nobody actually owns their property, just like nobody actually owns their body. In a moral sense, we should, but for practical purposes, we don’t.

For the same reasons that if we really owned our own bodies we’d be allowed to choose what substances we put into it, so long as we didn’t harm anybody else, if we really owned our own land then we’d be allowed to choose what we built on that land, so long as we didn’t infringe on anybody else’s property rights. But instead we must fear imprisonment, harassment, and the destruction of our own homes if we don’t first get permission from the parasitical, power-hungry, runt politicians:

Judge Thayne Forbes