Yesterday, I heard from the BBC not balanced reporting, as their charter requires, but histrionics. The end of the world is nigh, the country is about to be hit by an all out nuclear attack or a gigantic tsunami or a hurricane of unknown magnitude, or at least that was the impression given, not that public servants, most who will not be noticed one way or another, are to take the day off work in a national strike.
I did not notice this histrionics when the country shut down for the day during the summer for the Royal Wedding, though I did notice a completely over-the-top reaction to a handful of protests.
I did not notice this hysteria when Heathrow was closed for several days last winter due to snow or last spring when volcanic ash closed down flights.
It is the norm in Europe for airports and ports to be closed during strikes, and yet the countries manage to cope.
We are told foreigners will not wish to come here, that inward investment will dry up.
All total tosh!
What’s up then?
What has got the hated ConDem governement worried is the numbers who are going to take to the streets.
The despised ConDem govermenment has been using a hyped budget deficit to justify slash and burn of public services. Shock doctrine. Class warfare is being waged against the poor, the disadvantaged and the elderly
Not a day seems to go by without some statement or other being issued by the obscene ConDem government which will hit one or more of these groups.
The rise in fuel duty on petrol and diesel to be offset by not paying in full the increase in benefits in line with inflation. The poorest to pay for the rich to drive their gas guzzling cars. We all pay through climate chaos and deaths and ill-health due to air pollution.
Petrol and diesel are actually lower in real terms.
Even if the poor were compensated in full for the increase in inflation, they would still be out of pocket. Most of their income goes on fuel and food, both of which have risen much faster than inflation. In the case of fuel, 20% increase over the last year. More and more poor households are sinking into fuel poverty, faced with a stark choice between heating and eating.
Unemployment pay from when it was introduced retained its value as half the average wage, even under Margaret Thatcher. It halved under neoLabour.
Train fares are due to rise in January by far more than inflation. In October the ConDem government removed the scheme that gave elderly and disabled half price coach travel.
The ConDem government is wishing to lower the minimum wage, remove employment protection from at least a million workers.
The latest wheeze to hit the poor is to remove tax credits from the working poor to introduce an employment scheme for the young. Remember YTS, Youth Training Scheme of the 1980s? It was a total failure, it was hated by the young, its only purpose to provide cheap labour. Well it is about to be dusted down, reintroduced under another name.
Last year we saw brutal crackdown on student protests when they tried to march on Parliament. Student fees tripled, EMA abolished (a lifeline for students from poor households).
We do not have democracy, at least not in the neo-Gothic Palace of Westminster where we have childish public schoolboy slanging matches.
Well actually we do have democracy, it is taking place every day at St Paul’s in-the-Camp, the Bank of Ideas and at least two dozen occupy sites across the country. That is why the ConDem government and Mayor Boris the bankers friend have done everything possible to smear the camps, but their smears have spectacularly backfired, the public has seen through their lies.
And when the smears do not work send in the paramilitary thugs as we have seen in the US and Tahrir Square.
When the banks were bailed out, which we all paid for both directly through our taxes and indirectly through the impact on the economy, no strings were attached.
The ConDem government say they have levied a bank levy. The amount raised will be dwarfed by this autumn’s obscene round of bank bonuses. How about a 50% tax on bank bonuses?
Dave Hartnett head of HMRC the most wined and dined public servant. Vodafone, Goldman Sachs and other tax dodgers are delighted. How about going after the taxes Vodafone and others owe?
Occupy London Shut Down the city is what scares the ConDem government witless, that we are going to see the greatest street protests yet against this obscene government, the 99% versus the 1%!