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Dec
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Vandalism: investment in our collective future

The upsurge of resistance on the 9th of December has caused another predictably stupid and stuffy response from those who believe that all these damned young people should go home and think about what they’ve done to the taxpayer (as well as the poor police). Student protesters won’t be donning the dunce hat any time soon, however, because that is precisely what we’re already doing.

Most of us aren’t privileged enough to be able to afford to buy the Tories champagne, caviar and nationwide billboards at general elections. We fall into the category of those who will pay through the nose for things which  probably won’t exist in a few years, and a whole lot of other things which we probably don’t like, such as royal weddings, a war on the poor Afghanis and nuclear weapons systems designed to destroy Moscow. We’re called everyone-but-the-ruling-class and not only is our education in peril, but so is our healthcare, our welfare state and our employment. We’re paying more for less, too, one example being the 2.5% increase in VAT scheduled for next January.

It is important to note that a great deal of those protesting won’t actually be affected by the increase in tuition fees. The cap increases in 2012, meaning that anyone who is in the lower sixth form and below will definitely be affected if they choose to run the gauntlet of student debt to start their careers in the red by over £40,000. Many of those risking their health (and even their lives, as recent police brutality against students has shown) and their criminal records are doing so for the sake of others.

Student protests aren’t just about students, either. Whenever our crowd on Thursday passed a group of workers the chant, “students and workers, unite and fight!” went up, putting smiles on the faces of construction workers labouring into the night. “No ifs, no buts, no public sector cuts!” is another common one. Nick Clegg thinks that we don’t understand the fairness of his proposals and that if only we read them thoroughly, we’d think differently. Not only do we understand that Clegg is thoroughly taking the piss, but we also understand that what the government are doing to the country as a whole is despicable and immoral.

Churchill_415

That is why we must fight. By any means necessary. It’s not petty wage increases and perks that we’re fighting for, as the press often portrays strike action to be about, but people’s lives. Consider the disparity in life expectancy between the rich and the poor. This is only going to increase with massive cuts to healthcare, welfare and jobs. It will expand along with the wealth gap, which is becoming more of a wealth Grand Canyon, as rich donors of the Tory party are given cool sums like £6 billion and private investors loom over our public services like vultures.

Also, something important to realise is that a vast amount of taxpayers money spent on the 9th of December was probably spent on the overtime of all the coppers used to kettle thousands of protesters in Parliament Square and on Westminster Bridge for hours upon hours as a punishment for exercising our democratic right in a sham of a free country.

priceless

The vandalism in London is a pertinent symbol of the righteous rage of the youth. Millbank is a landmark of resistance in the UK, it has encouraged the public to stand up once more and fight for what is right. On the 11th of November, the country woke up the image of smashed windows at the Tory Party HQ. The targets of vandalism are largely valid – the shops of tax avoiders and  statues of right-wing racist imperialists. The situation has only escalated since the 10th of November. The police are the ones to ignite violence at protests with their wanton barbarity and complete disregard for human life: Every action has an equal and opposite reaction, they say. I am both terrified to think of the shape of the country in a few years time and excited when I consider the level of resistance we could see here. This is a class war, and the cost of a few windows, walls and police vans is a drop in the bucket compared to what is at stake.


4 Responses to “Vandalism: investment in our collective future”


    • December 12, 2010 at 4:26 am

      That is an interesting reactionary piece. I’d be utterly shocked if our government funded windmills in Africa or did anything rational in the face of environmental crises. What the article overlooks is if cuts are even necessary in the first place – national debt was around 250% of GDP after WWII, but we managed to set up the welfare state. Education does our country and our economy a great deal of good, and is quite the industry considering the number of internationals who come here. It’ll also cost more in real terms if it’s marketised.

  1. 3 twl
    December 12, 2010 at 10:55 am

    I’m against tuition fees. I think it should be free because the degree has become worthless. My Masters degree in International Politics didn’t help me. If you want to work for an MP on defence policy apparently the best credential you can have is to be Russian, female and blonde :). I am neither.

    Although I had to pay something, at least I didn’t have to pay £18-27k for my degree.

    Over time, because the degree has become so devalued, I think we need to change the system. Fewer people should do degrees. But now is not the time to throw students onto the job market or shackle them with a debt millstone which will prevent them having a life, even when they get a good job.

    BTW, what do you mean by “environmental crises”? The idea of dangerous global warming is a multi-billion taxpayer scam which is impoverishing students, taking their funds and giving them away in green aid, and killing pensioners through high energy bills. Windfarms don’t work, the subsidies that make them profitable is a form of government patronage to large landowners like the Crown Estate and (foreign) industrialists who make the steel parts for the machines.

    The climate system is driven by multi-decadal oceanic cycles (PDO, AMO), the sun, yearly oceanic cycles (ENSO) and volcanic activity. The affect of CO2 has warmed the planet by 0.72C but because the affect on warming of additional CO2 is logarithmic.

  2. December 12, 2010 at 6:32 pm

    I don’t think fewer people should do degrees to prevent them from being devalued… I think that would normalise the attitude towards education that it is only for preparing people for the job market. I think the real benefits of education are ones that do not fluctuate with markets but are real and tangible. Personal and social benefits.

    By environmental crises I mean the degradation of soil fertility, anthropogenic global warming and peak oil. Yeah, new green energy isn’t all that profitable, but as the EROEI ratio of conventional oil continues to drop I think we’ll be forced into other avenues.

    Those are all some really interesting points about AGW, but I promised myself I wouldn’t get into climate change in this blog… I do too much of that in my degree and it’s such a damn contentious issue. I would ask you if you’ve read ‘The Deniers’, however. I’m gonna get a copy soon.


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