Ashes to Ashes

September 14, 2010 at 6:09 am 1 comment

Former British Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher

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What on Earth has happened to this country? I returned from a business trip to South Africa on Friday and, on Monday, I seem to have awoken in 1982. Please tell me it is jet lag. Or am I dreaming? Or have I fallen into an episode of Ashes to Ashes?

We are still fighting a foreign war in Afghanistan – albeit less popular than the Falklands Conflict, but I guess we were winning that one.

A Papal visit is imminent – albeit less popular than the last one. While Pope John Paul II was a reforming leader, Pope Benedict seems divisive and fit for a different century – maybe around the time of the Spanish Inquisition.

The Tories are back in power – albeit in a coalition with the LibDems and less popular than Mrs T’s (Thatcher) Conservative Party.

And, the militant loony left of the Trades Union Congress seem intent to wreak havoc and disruption upon our streets.

When will the militant left wing realise that strike action in support of political end is unjustified and doomed to failure. When will the public sector realise they are not a special case? The Government does not owe them a job for life. They will have to share the pain that those of us in the private sector are feeling.

2010 v 1982 – let’s hope that we can avoid the riots on our streets. What a damning indictment of the New Labour experiment. Wheras they would have wished us to believe that this is all about the ConDem coalition, I can’t help but feel it is the result of the government of Gordon.

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Business Travel I Survived!

1 Comment Add your own

  • 1. Middle Man  |  October 1, 2010 at 6:04 am

    To be fair, I was given an insight into a different perspective on this from one of my best friends, who is a public servant. I obviously touched a raw nerve – my comments were aimed mainly at the unions. Many in the private sector (including yours truly) have had three or more years of salary freezes or cuts, reduced working weeks and the like, and, no union has come out on strike to help me. And nor would I want them too – that would just lead to more pain, redundances, job losses, cuts, shorter hours, etc. etc. That is the reality in the private sector.

    But I still think his view is worth sharing:

    “Sitting where I sit – people don’t think they are owed a job for life (the TUs do but they are idiots, that bit you’re right on) and most accept that cuts need to be made (we’ve had hardly a whimper about pay freezes etc).

    Frankly some of us get a little fed up of being pilloried for the hard work we do.

    To me it feels a little strange that a crisis that started in the banking sector (one that Governments of all colours conpsired to create with their hands off approach to regulation – stretching back to the “big bang”) should be neatly being turned in to a propoganda war against the public sector by our own version of the NeoCons to fit their view of society (are we back there being no such thing as society? We might be heading there without an honest debate about what kind society we want and expect especially when we need help). The main impact of the extent of the cuts that we should worry about is not the jobs (although contrary to popular opinion most people in local gov’t are not highly paid: George O’s budget announcd a pay freeze for all apart from the “low paid” – when we looked at his definition of that it covered 70% of our staff…….) what should concern people – if they look beyond their own self interest – is the services that often vulnerable people receive – kids in care, crime prevention, old people, people with learning disabilities and mental health issues, special educational needs (I could go on!) etc etc. That kind of stuff never makes the Tory media though.

    Sharing pain is fine. A necessary rebalancing of the economy is fine and the last Government had gone silly in a number of areas with cash but that’s not really this Government’s agenda. I’m not convinced that the cuts will impact where the daft stuff was. And meanwhile the (now state owned) banks carry on much as before and still pay their bonuses. Will they be feeling any of this pain….I think it unlikely? What contribution are they making to restoring public finacnes, which are mainly knackered because of bailing them out (has their been some collective amnesia on this point?! Did the Tories have a credible alternative plan at the time?)”

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