CONDEMS: Renewing Their Vows (to destroy us)

January 11, 2013 2:47 pm

Some wise man once said that politics is ‘showbusiness for ugly people’. Never a truer word was spoken, especially if you apply it to ‘inner ugliness’.

Granted, on a purely superficial level, neither Cameron OR Clegg (PM and Deputy PM respectively) are particularly physically repulsive, unless they have portaits of their ugly selves tucked away in some attic somewhere. However, most of their policies certainly are ugly. Ugly in the sense that they impoverish many millions of people’s lives in this country, compounding the disgraceful deeds of the banks and the shysters in the financial corridors of the City.

Fat Bankers

In 2010, the global economy found itself in a hole due to the irresponsibility of banks and financial houses both here and abroad. They were linked by a thousand threads in an international network of grasping greed that sought out the biggest profits for the smallest outlay.

Our politicians, from Thatcher onwards, must bear some responsibility for this having given the green light of  ‘de-regulation’ in the 1980s and maintained that free for all ever since.

When it all came tumbling down like a house of cards from 2007, the ordinary working person was told that we would have to pick up the tab. Some tab. We pumped around £300bn of tax payers’ money in this country to ‘save’ our banks. To pay for this ‘we’ would have to, yet again, ‘ tighten those belts’.

This devastating course

We were told that ‘we were all in this together’ yet the proportion of cuts and austerity policies that hit the ordinary worker, the working poor and the unemployed and those others on benefits, has been considerably higher than those at the top of the socio-economic pile. In fact, the wealthy ‘1%’ have had a tax cut while millions of others have either lost their jobs, had pay freezes or cuts, their benefits reduced.

And now the CONDEMs pledge to continue on this devastating course as more cuts rain down on us. Indeed, Cameron himself has high hopes of continuing on to be prime minister for a further seven years until 2020.

It really doesn’t bear thinking about. It reminds one of the speech that political failure Neil Kinnock made the morning after his second dismal defeat at the hands of the Tories in 1992.

I paraphrase: ‘Don’t grow old under the Tories, don’t get ill, don’t wish to be educated or to be gainfully employed under the Tories.’  Words that later rang hollow as (now Lord) Kinnock himself, and his wife Glenys, both went on to make their own personal fortunes working in the lucrative bureaucracy that is the EU.

Divide and rule

Nurses

All the CONDEM coalition can offer is more of the same. Already, they are working all out to use shameful divide and rule tactics to get their policies through. First they try to turn private sector workers against those in the public sector. They claim every public sector worker has a ‘gold-plated pension’. They say that the public sector is overstaffed. Yet since the CONDEMs took power, 6,000 nurses in our NHS have lost their jobs.  We hear regularly how more hospitals are in dire financial trouble as patients are left on trolleys in corridors while wards AND hospitals themselves are closed down.

Schools are being privatised at an alarming rate, forced into becoming ‘academies’ or ‘free schools’ while those that remain in the public sector are left to wither on the vine.

Then the spotlight turned on the ‘shirkers and workers’ divide and rule ploy. The notion that a worker going out in the early morning and seeing their neighbours’ curtains drawn is one that ‘everyone’ experiences is used to justify cuts to benefits. They imply that everyone on benefits is a ‘workshy fraudster’.

Millionaire George Osbourne, the Chancellor, and his lickspittle Works and Pensions Minister, Ian Duncan Smith, declaim that it’s not right that workers who have lived with pay freezes all these years should see those on benefits receive 20% increases. That was one of  the biggest fabrications.

The recent JSA rise, in concrete terms, meant a jobseeker had a weekly rise from £64 to £71! If they were genuinely concerned about workers low pay then why don’t they legislate to sharply increase the paltry minimum wage? Why don’t they force bosses to provide meaningful pay rises instead of the many working poor having to have their pay topped up by benefits? Or why not legislate to limit the rate landlords can charge for rent?

A Barrage of Heartless Cuts

The univerity sector sees a falling away of applications to the tune of around 50,000 while the drop out rate increases. All mainly due to the scandalous tripling of tuition fees – a betrayal the LibDems will live to rue the day they went back on their promise to oppose such rises.

Local councils continue to receive a barrage of heartless cuts in social services, child care, care for the disabled and the elderly, already very much the ‘Cinderella’ services. The Local government minister, the repulsive Eric Pickles, expressed his ‘delight’ recently when he heard Birmingham City Council announce the many far-reaching cuts they had to make which meant the end or curtailing of many of their vital services, including child support services.

Homeless man in London

Meanwhile, five million people flounder either living on the streets; in homeless hostels; in extortionate privately rented homes, many of them substandard; or are forced to share crowded homes with their elderly parents. All this while tens of thousands of building workers are on the dole, struggling to find the few jobs available.

The CONDEMs sincerely believe they are right to serve up this ‘medicine’, that ‘there really is no alternative’. They actually believe their own weasel words. On the sudden proliferation of food banks, Cameron told one interviewer recently that the increase of the use of food banks was due to them ‘advertising themselves far better.’

It would be hard to find a more complacent view of the state of our society today than in that one statement.

So, who is going to come to our rescue? Who are those who will rid us of this turbulent crew?

If people are putting their faith in a resurgent Labour Party, it’s my belief they will be bitterly disappointed. They offer nothing but more cuts and will be sticking closely to CONDEM policies, possibly with the proviso they will only slow down the pace a little.

Labour are faced with one of the weakest, unstable governments whose members are, beneath the surface, tearing at each other. Yet Labour politicians refuse to take any advantage of this for fear of seeming too ‘radical’, too ‘old Labour’. It’s a tag they are petrified to be labelled with by their enemies. Therefore, they offer no real alternative to cuts.

UKIP are little more than ex-Tory voters who found the Tory Party not nasty enough for them, and demand deeper cuts. Their leader, Nigel Farage, actually questioned Osbourne’s ‘Autumn Statement’ with ‘where are the cuts?’

We need to look to ourselves

Mirror Stage

No,  ordinary working class people, and the increasingly impoverished middle class, need to look beyond Labour. We need to look to ourselves. We need to build our own forces of opposition through a combination of the many ‘anti-cuts campaigns’ and the 7 million strong trade union movement.

Through these two different strands lies the real possibility of building a political vehicle for those whose needs the mainstream parties are no longer capable of meeting .

The time is long overdue. We need democratic representatives who will implement policies that will benefit the millions, not the millionaires.

We need a political party of our own.

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  • Lance Eames

    Where do I sign up!?

  • “They offer nothing but more cuts and will be sticking closely to CONDEM
    policies, possibly with the proviso they will only slow down the pace a
    little.”

    Labour offered a fundamentally different strategy at the election, and Ed Balls continues to trumpet Neo Keynsianism. I have no idea if that would have worked, or would land us in a Hellenic situation. Point is – we didn’t vote labour.

    I completely agree that politics is largely stale and ineffective, but I don’t see much suggestion behind your criticisms. The government does not have any money. If you want to reverse the cuts and keep the jobs, how will we pay?

  • ChrisRobinson

    Jonathan, stay tuned…
    Lance, google the Socialist Party or the National Shop Stewards Network (NSSN) or ‘Campaign for a New Workers Party’ or Trade Union and Socialist Coalition if you want to ‘sign up’ – unless, of course, you’re just being cynical.

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