29 JANUARY 1960, Page 11

Public Ownership Cheap Literature LCC 'Oligarchy' The British Students' Orchestra

Round Robin Critical Quarterly Scottish Poetry Robin AlarriA. • Ronald S. Mallone J. M. Feehan Hugh Jenkins A Student Phyllis Bottome A. E. Dyson Tom Scott Sydney Goodsir Smith PUBLIC OWNERSHIP

you know, I do not exactly belong to the school of radical thought represented by Mr. Michael Foot, but surely the position at the end of your exchange with him last week is that you are lying on the floor, the referee is counting, and Mr. Foot is

standing in his corner waiting to sec if you can get

uP I would like to ask you to have another try, if °IllY in the hope of discovering, for the first time, your real Political philosophy. Mr. Foot, characteristically, Hung some wild punches, but in intellectual debate ven more than in boxing, countering your opponent's bad blows is no answer to his good ones. The con- f usion of your last paragraph (in 'What's Left?') Particularly filled me with despair: 'Crichel Down' is rut as relevant to the question of land nationalisa- tion as telephone tapping. If You say that 'ownership' is irrelevant because th concept of 'public' ownership is meaningless, I 41.1 With you, but if by ownership you mean econo- inr lc control, and you believe that is irrelevant, Mr. 4:3;ot is quite justified in calling you naive. The point e' Issue is whether land nationalisation is a necessary 411dition of effective town and country planning, not Whether it is a sufficient one; and the experience of last ten years suggests it may well indeed be a necessary ecessary condition. aril is not a coincidence that socialist views, overt a are much mores prevalent among leading ,irenitects and town planners than among the profes- twenal middle classes generally : the comparison be- seneen the works of private developers, as may be 41;111, for example in the City, and the works of public To,uori ti", as may be seen in schools and in the New f4Il hfully, speaks for itself. What say you?—Yours gill



Rhls letter is referred to in a leading article on

—ge I2R Editor, Spectator.]