Yesterday I joined with over 1,000 others in Birmingham to protest against massive cuts to services and jobs which will affect the most vulnerable of our citizens. Simultaneously action was taken in other cities in the region.
I have made the point before, but I think the term “cuts” is euphemism for an attack on people. The ConDem are engaging in a class war with those who have grabbed the wealth from us having cut and run with our money. Those in the financial services used the funds we entrusted to them to speculate wildly. When the dodgy deals crashed those who could waltzed off with the takings. The culture of wealth means that like the Artful Dodger (the Chancellor of the Exchequer) taxes are evaded and money laundered in tax havens. They owe billions. So where is the need to indulge in “cuts?” The game, as Cameron himself explained in the Telegraph. is to shut down the public sector and feed more of what is our wealth to greedy individuals to maximise profit. The expense is incalculable when you see what is being lost in health, in education, in jobs and so on.
The measures are extreme by Tory standards – Thatcher could only contemplate the destruction of the state. How the Liberal-Democrats can be party to this is another matter, and if they are totally eclipsed at the next opportunity for voting it will be a just return. However this wholesale slaughter was not part of the Tory manifesto either. Regrettable Labour too believe in cuts, as they believe in Capitalism. Their current leadership embrace it and will take opportunities, like Blair, to enrich themselves personally. Socialism is off the agenda. It needs to return quickly as the only viable alternative to Capitalism and the destruction of our environment and society.
Western leaders bleat on about democracy, or lack of it around the world, while right under their noses the state clamps down on demonstrations even when they are peaceful. An ex CIA agent, now fed up with US foreign policy stood up while Hillary Clinton intoned about how protesters elsewhere were treated with brutality. He turned his back in silent protest and was immediately pounced on by heavyweight thugs, supposedly security officers. He was subsequently interviewed as you can see here.
David Cameron too was intentionally or unintentionally ironic as he went on a visit to Cairo among a number of Middle Eastern countries. The sub-text was trade, but most evident in his entourage were representatives of the arms industry. What fantastic timing as the Middle East rises up how could such an opportunity to sell to opposing sides and ensure that blood baths are well and truly sustained. Did he know that the crowds that had returned to Tahrir Square were chanting about marching on Jerusalem in support of the beleaguered Gazans? Was he with them with the wish to stop the bombing of Gaza which is continuing as we speak?
When Margaret Thatcher pronounced that “there is no such thing as society” perhaps this was a wish rather than a statement of fact. People profoundly disagreed. Cameron and the Tories are about to make it a reality. After the demolition of the NHS everything else provided by the state will be offered on a plate to the private sector. It is an entrepreneur’s dream. A Peoples’ Nightmare. Polly Toynbee has read David Cameron’s article in the Daily Telegraph and puts her dreadful conclusions in the Guardian.
As Toynbee points out there will be no going back since the whole edifice will be broken up. Nothing will be left. There was no mention of this prior to the election. Presumably the Liberal Democrats are happy with this, but so far their support for the unsupportable has shown a craven wish to do just anything to hang on into power. This is power. Well not theirs or most certainly the majority of Lib Dem voters. Time for Nick Clegg to pull the plug. If not him, then others have to break rank.
Worth sharing! The main opposition aren’t saying “NO CUTS”, including the Labour Party and Trades Unions. they are objecting to the size and speed while maintaining that cuts are necessary. We don’t agree! as this brief film makes clear wealth there in aplenty in UK PLC, Problem is it is being syphoned into private hands and the proposals for cuts in jobs and services in the public sector are supposedly to be taken up by private concerns. These typically pay poor wages and conditions while profits soar. We’ve been conned and all Labour can do is go along with it opposing at the margins. None of this tackles the problem of Capitalism which inherently fails to deliver except for the few who managed the system in the first place. The bankers have been bailed out by Labour as well as the ConDems. They set the scene for them to go further and faster. At the same time tax avoidance is rife, both individually and corporately. Some are already on their case! Well done!
In short we need to retake control of the economy and all the other commodities and services on which we depend. The dependency has been artificially created to give no choice, so we pay more and more for food, for energy, for a home. Services previously labelled “essential disappear and at the same time wages and pensions fall dramatically of they don’t completely disappear. Cuts isn’t the word. It is a war on the people by those who have seized control. The limit of democracy is the ballot box, which we know is not representative of peoples wishes. In May we get to vote for a system which should be marginally fairer but falls well short of what the treacherous Liberal Democrats promised us they would fight for before we gave them sufficient votes to get a sniff of real power.
The Independent reports the wisdom of an elder who has seen everything that has been going on for years and is able to sum up in a few words. “The young are wiser than us” he says.
How the attitudes of outsiders changed is discussed in an article in the Morning Star.
Mubarak may still waltz off with billions unless quick and decisive action is taken internationally. It belongs to the Eqyptian people, not him personally, but as we have seen with the bankers getting your hands on money, whoever it legitimately belongs to, can make, or break you, personally. These are the arbitrary rules of Capitalism which explains how it will repeatedly reach crisis point.
As an uprising for freedom in one country inspires others, even the seemingly impregnable fortress of Capitalism, the USA is not immune as Noam Chomsky reveals.
Al Jazeera comment.
Fidel Castro in Granma 14/02/2011
Tarik Ali in the Guardian.
David Cameron says that the “Big Society” idea gives “power to the people” just as wealth is being hived off. Financiers and their services continue to mint it while the people lose their jobs and services while being told that Thatcher’s TINA has made a come back.
The realisation that dictatorial government doesn’t work is only slowly dawning, although not in Britain. Students took he lead in resisting the pernicious hike in tuition fees. Th Toies don’t seem to wonder how their LibDem partners can hold down opposition from the party that pledged to protect education. As local councils are flailing around trying to do the unthinkable there have been stirrings among the yellow bird throng. Maybe the parrot is not yet so dead.
(In Birmingham the LibDems are more Tory than the Tories, willingly cutting jobs and services as if there’s no tomorrow. In fact they are making bloody sure there isn’t!)
What has been happening around the world, in Greece a few months back, in Tunisia. but above all in Egypt, is seen as inspirational by many. March 26th in London will note the calls for democracy which the so-called “cuts” so blatantly deny.
Did anyone spot David Cameron in Luton as the fascist English Defence League fielded 3000 thugs to intimidate Muslim Britain? Sorry David, “multiculturalism: is a long and well established fact, not an argument, but if you’re intent on creating division then you’re doing an even better job than the EDL. Who needs them with you leading the country?
Cameron not only follows on from the Thatcher “swamping” rhetoric, the late New Labour rabble made their own contribution with the opinionated Jack Straw first attacking women for not conforming to his preferred dress code. More recently he has had a go a Muslim men for harassing white girls who were not so demurely clad. Seems to me a bit of irony here. Muslim friends of mine used to think of themselves unquestioningly as “British”. The likes of Straw, Cameron and the EDL have pushed them away, in some cases fodder for the “extremism” that they say the fear most. Worse still they put their lackey, Trevor Phillips, in charge of the Equalities Commission declaring war on multiculturalism.