“If you want a picture of the future, imagine a boot stamping on a human face – for ever.”
George Orwell, 1984
Well, the Eton mafia will take the election result as permission (if they ever thought they needed permission) to keep on stamping.
Scotland and the North East, almost entirely non-Tory, can expect to be in for an extra-special kicking.
And if you’re one of those toasting the prospect of 5 more years of austerity, just bear in mind that 30+ years of neo-liberal politics means that the family silver is well and truely depleted. Sooner or later, once they’ve sold everything they possibly can, the Tories will come looking for their pound of flesh.
Pensioners should be particularly worried – £12 bn of welfare cuts are proposed. Pensions make around 50% of the welfare bill.
Yes, I know that nice Mr Cameron promised not to touch your pension if you voted for him… but that was before the election.
Sooner or later, they’ll come looking for you.
In the meantime, we start all over again – but not from scratch, because we’ve been slowly building foundations over the last five years. Somehow or other we now have to take things to the next level.
I’m not quite sure exactly how at the moment, or even what the next level is, but if we keep moving onwards and upwards, adapting to situations as they arise and, most importantly, continue to make sure that news of what’s really going on is available around the internet.
Sooner or later, someone is going to grab hold of one of those stamping boots, pull the stamper to the ground and give them a taste of their own medicine…
Scenes from the strikes have been compiled by historians as they take a look back at communities as they took to picket lines.
A DVD, titled The Greatest Struggle, centres on when colliery workers took industrial action between 1984 and the following year in a fight for jobs it says was “one of the most bitter industrial disputes Britain has ever seen”.
Striking miners and families from Easington, Eppleton, Wearmouth, Dawdon and Murton among others feature in the film, with scenes outside the pits, streets of their villages and clashes with police included in the footage.
John Dawson, who is among the team to have put together the DVD, said:
“The year-long strike involved hardship and violence as pit communities from around the UK fought to retain their local collieries – for many the only source of employment.
“With scenes from the North East of England, we witness events with miners and their families from Ellington, Bates, Whittle, Ashington, Dawdon, Wearmouth and Easington Collieries and include many more to see how it was in that year- long strike.
“You never know who you may see in this film. It could be yourself, a family member, friend or a work colleague. As Arthur Scargill said to everyone at a huge rally, ‘When you look back, you’ll look back with pride, and you’ll say to your son or your daughter, in 1984 I took part in the greatest struggle in trade union history.’
“I fought to save your pit, I fought to save the job, I fought to save this community, but in doing so, I preserved my dignity as a human being and as a member of the finest trade union in the world.
“I was part of the strike myself so I know what it was like and it was very hard.”
The film includes footage shot by amateurs and has been put together by the Six Townships history group.
Others it has put together include Easington A Journey Through Time, Colliery Villages of Durham, Durham Miners’ Gala, Sunderland A Sentimental Journey and South Hetton Demolished.
The latest addition to the archive is £4.99 and available to all schools free.
It can be bought via http://www.sixtownships.org.uk
Source – Sunderland Echo, 20 June 2014
(not satire – it’s the Tories!)
Here’s an extract from George Orwell’s novel, Nineteen Eighty-Four (my highlights):
“Heavy physical work, the care of home and children, petty quarrels with neighbours, films, football, beer, and above all, gambling filled up the horizon of their minds. To keep them in control was not difficult. All that was required of them was a primitive patriotism which could be appealed to whenever it was necessary to make them accept longer working hours or shorter rations. And when they become discontented, as they sometimes did, their discontentment led nowhere, because being without general ideas, they could only focus it on petty specific grievances.”
Remind you of anything?
Don’t say we weren’t warned!
Related articles by Tom Pride:
Please feel free to comment.
MP Sharon Hodgson has called on Ministers to apologise for the Government’s treatment of striking miners during 1984/5 dispute.
The Washington & Sunderland West MP has joined a new campaign to seek an apology from senior politicians.
The ‘Justice for the Coalfields’ campaign has been launched after the release of previously-confidential cabinet papers revealing that the Thatcher Government had a secret plan to close 75 pits at the cost of some 65,000 jobs, sought to influence police tactics to escalate the dispute, and actively considered deploying the Army to defeat the miners and unions.
Mrs Hodgson has joined colleagues in writing to Cabinet Secretary Francis Maude demanding a formal apology from Ministers for the actions of the Government during the time of the strike, and for the release of all information on collusion between the Government and the police at the time, particularly around the Battle of Orgreave, the pitched battle between miners and police in South Yorkshire in 1984.
Mrs Hodgson said: “The Miners’ Strikes may be a distant memory for some, but the wounds are still raw for many people around here, with communities and families torn apart.
“It was no surprise when these Cabinet papers showed that the Government had been lying about its plans for widespread closure and the use of force against striking miners, but that doesn’t let them off the hook. The very least that coalfield communities deserve is an official apology and complete transparency from the Government about the secret plans being made at the time. Any less would just be one more insult.”
> All very nice, although I cant help feeling they’ve been all respectful and waited until Thatcher died before raising the point.
But what I’d really like to see is a few Labour MPs – especially North East ones – getting equally worked up about what is happening right now. Or do we have to wait another 30 years until they get around to that ?
Source – Sunderland Echo 29 Jan 2014