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Give it a rest

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Why is the Office of Fair Trading (OFT) so antiarchitect? Its investigation into anti-competitive behaviour among professions has identified architects (again) as potential villains whose rules and regulations must be changed.

Lumping architects in with accountants and solicitors, as the OFT has done, is a sick joke. The latter are serious professional monopolies; anyone can design a building, submit a planning application, supervise construction. There is no meaningful fee scale which applies across the profession, yet the OFT (a monopolistic body which acts as judge and jury) pretends there is.

Lacking any sense of irony or selfawareness, the OFT never examines whether its verdicts and instructions subsequently result in improvements to public life. It is just another bogus 'health and safety' bureaucracy with time on its hands.

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