The early 20th century was a time when those born working class were pigeon holed at birth, condemning them to a life of struggle and subservience.
Aware of what working-class life was like in the 1930s, and having witnessed how society has developed, post WW2, I see little real change in substance in todays’ world. The rich and powerful few still holding sway over the life of the many.
And the sad fact is, society allowed it to happen under its very nose.
That said, there were mitigating circumstances, post WW2. In that, fearful of the uncertainty of what lie ahead in those turbulent post-war years, and subject to the lies, deceit and manipulative guile spewed out on a daily basis by the calculating, near monopoly power of the Right-wing press, the few were able to misrepresent Labour’s aims and values as being akin to that of Stalin’s totalitarian Russia – something not too difficult given the post-war shifting political sands and political naivety of the time.
Indeed, it wasn’t until social media exploded on the scene, giving society the tools to effectively expose the self-serving, self-seeking duplicity of those seeking to impose Right-wing ideology on a society – at best unwitting, at worst indifferent – to the destructive nature of Right-wing ideology and the terrible harm it is inflicting on the essential fabric of decent society.
A society let down, driven to despair and apathy by the inability/unwillingness of political leaders to deliver unequivocal fairness and equal opportunity to all willing and able to positively engage with society, in whatever capacity.
Conservatism – a lesson from history:
Post WW2 brought a surge of people power, threatening the status quo. That is, until the might of the state was brought to bear. Effectively crushing it.
To understand the mood of those times requires an understanding of the *appalling poverty, deprivation and utter helplessness felt and suffered by pre-ww2 working class, and their determination not to see its return.
* You can Google 1930s working class life in england for an absorbing, eye-opening account. (For the record, I am not associated with the author in any way whatsoever.)
Helped by the formation of trade unions and their new found power in post war Britain, working class life improved immeasurably.
Buoyed by their success and driven by bitter memories, trade union leaders and activists forged full steam ahead with their dream of a fair society. In their haste and naivety, forgetting to take into account the guile of the forces they were up against. A fatal mistake. Allowing the few to play their ‘divide and conquer’ card. Branding trade unions ‘the enemy within’ and ushering in 30 years of unfettered Capitalism, which led to the near collapse of global banking and, ironically, the return of Tory government. Their austerity measures seeing the rich get richer, the rest of society get poorer, and the return of poverty and deprivation.
Hardly a day goes by without the rottenness at the heart of big business being exposed. Not least HSBC’s involvement in tax evasion by rich clients. Government reluctance to effectively stamp it out and a ministerial post and peerage for the man in charge at the time.
And it has to be asked. Why is it only one of a thousand exposed tax evaders has ever had to face justice?
Could it be to avoid the risk of opening up a can of worms, exposing the endemic collusion and rottenness at the top of society?
There is obscenity in a bunch of over privileged millionaires riding roughshod over the lives, wellbeing and aspirations of millions of ordinary people.
Masters of portraying victims of Tory administrations as architects of their own circumstances, the lies and misinformation pumped out by their propaganda machine will come as no surprise to those familiar with Tory tactics.
Pre May 2015 election they tried to make us believe things would be different if re-elected. My experience and that of history, says not.
What it does say is Right-wing ideology is anathema to fair society. The lives of millions all the better off when the blight of living under its shadow is brought to an end once and for all.
The OLD GUARD – aka the few – the real enemy within.
Demolishing the fabric of decent a decent society:
My dad grew up in a world of grinding poverty and profound social inequality, becoming a committed socialist and active trade unionist.
When I entered this world little had changed and I grew up with the words ‘never trust the Tories’ ringing in my ears.
Looking back over the years, how true this has proved to be the case.
Governments have come and gone and yes, the lot of ordinary people has improved immeasurably since those dark days, but this, not because of, but in spite of Tory ruling years, with much of what were achieved under Labour being clawed back and reversed under Tory rule.
Don’t be fooled by their rhetoric. Equality and social justice never was nor ever will be part of Tory mind-set. As ever, ‘self’ is its centre plank. Beneath its surface, the ‘me ethos’ running through its core like a stick of rock.
The last Tory administration handed over control of the nation’s gas, electricity, water, railways and public transport to the boardroom mentality of big business, leaving ordinary people to pay the price ever since. Now, this one is hell bent on repeating the process with what is left of the fabric of a decent society.
Using the ‘mess’ created by greedy banks as a smokescreen, what they have in mind is less about the ‘mess’ and more about imposing Right wing ideology. Demolishing all that remains of the essential fabric of a decent society and inflicting unnecessary misery and hardship on millions of ordinary people.
Time is for Joe Public to stand shoulder to shoulder in defence of what is left of the fabric of decent society before it is lost to the Rabid Right’s political agenda. Plundered and exploited by the destructive nature of free market forces and their insatiable appetite for yet more and more profit.
Clipart used with permission from Microsoft