I like to entertain the notion that I am not such a narrow-minded individual as to immediately lie down in the road and object to every last thing that comes of out of our coalition government’s mouth, but yet again my heart sinks as George Osborne has his moment of: Georgie Porgie’s not for turning on the television yesterday.
He has to stick to the plan of cuts, he said, because mind-changing would induce market panic. Maybe so. Then he was so dismissive of the unions that I would like to poke him with a sharp stick. Apparently, he hopes to sort out a possible wave of strikes by having a “mature” conversation. Of course the implication was that a union was not capable of such a thing. He also said he’d be willing to change the union laws to prevent striking if necessary and, if that were not outrageous enough, he proceeded to tell unions what was best for their members anyway i.e. what he proposes.
What rank arrogance. How long I will have to wait for that man to come a cropper, I do not know, but please let it be soon. Get after him Mr Balls, and get after him good.
Aside from the jaw-dropping conceit of the Chancellor, we are also witnessing the Tories scratching around like Old Mother Hubbard for the odd crumb on the floor to flog to private interests. Maggie only left them the Royal Mail and the Forestry Commission (the NHS they only dare to give to GPs to run). I can be reasoned with over the Royal Mail, but the idea of handing over forests and woodlands to charities or community groups, knowing full well private landowners are going to pick up the slack, is plain depressing.
Many communities can barely function as a community; thanks in part to this shower’s ideological inspiration. Remember there is no such thing as society…just individuals…and families. Those communities that remain, struggle to effectively run a community centre without support from the local council, so how the heck are they going to effectively manage a forest? It’s not just a case of listening out for falling trees and letting nature take care of the rest; it involves hard work, dedication, skilled management and conservation. In fact, all the things the Forestry Commission currently delivers. Please don’t be hoodwinked people. The Government say they want to hand us our own forests to share and enjoy together, but we haven’t got the time, the energy or the expertise to do it. This is nothing more than a money-making exercise that will leave much of our forests in the hands of private individuals. And don’t think they’ll want the likes of us tramping about on their land; not unless we are prepared to pay handsomely and join a pheasant shoot or summat.
Thankfully, and I never thought I would write this, Melvyn Bragg is on the case. Go Melvyn…
I was listening to Ed Milliband the other week on the radio, where as part of the gig to imprint himself on the public psyche he was actually having to speak to the selfsame public on a phone-in (not all at once).
And I thought he did quite well. One woman rang in, full of Tory bile about something or another which then segued into a rant about how her mother had died of MRSA in a hospital (sad) that was full of “foreign” employees on the weekend (two apparently), who could not speak English and were “taking hundreds of thousands of NHS jobs” from unemployed and fully-qualfied English nurses. Quite clearly ill-informed, deranged with grief and not a lover of immigrants she was every reason why I detest radio phone-ins. Ed, the son of immigrants, dealt with her in as reasonably sympathetic manner as you could hope for. Personally, I would have slammed the phone down.
And that’s the thing with Ed I think. He is an intelligent, thoughtful bloke. He’s my age and if I could lend him a bit more of the “slamming the phone down” contrariness we might be back in business. Equally well, the more of the public that actually die, not of MRSA, but of coalition cuts to every essential service we care to name, the quicker Ed’s Labour Party are to become rehabilitated in the public mind. That’s not really how it should be though.
The difference between Ed and Dave if you ask me (I don’t mention Nick anymore btw; he’s let himself be shafted to within in an inch of his manifesto and is washed up on some deserted beach somewhere): Ed has a set of values that include all of us, even the rancid and frankly racist old cow who’s mother tragically died of MRSA. Dave has a pasty sympathetic face that he pulls, that might make some gullibles think that cares, when he tells us for the billionth time that cuts are going to be hard. No Dave, be honest, if you’ve already got dough and vote Tory you’re going to be ok. If you are a family struggling to make ends meet with no work you are going to be worse off. A lot worse off and, if we don’t get rid of you and ghostly Nicky soon, the worse off for some is going to last a lot longer than you do.
What with his tough stance re British Petroleum and his healthcare reforms.
I know that kind of approach -it’s pretty tough and it doesn’t feel too much like love either, but it sure as hell gets things done.
Unlike little Nicky Legg who has been turned into a Rainbow Progressive Raggle Taggle Labour Alliance BitchHo by the media and its accomplices (Conservative voters).
The same Tory party, according to Lembit (source: Jeremy Vine Show which would happily devote a full 2 hours to these shenanigans), who won a third of the votes. The Lib Dem Hos won a quarter but only got a tenth of the parliamentary seats. So my maths tells me that a third plus one quarter makes 7 twelfths which mean that 5 twelfths of us wanted neither, or were Scottish. And that doesn’t include half (ish) of the country that stayed at home that day and watched Jeremy Kyle (Should I marry my violent fiance – hell no) instead.
It’s definitely broke.
Bang the set.