The death toll after the Israeli assault on the Gaz aid flotilla is now
reported to be over 20. The attack took place in international waters, making it a major violation of international law. Imagine the response if such an attack had been carried out by Iran. We would now be at war.
Below is athe press release issued by Stop the War earlier, calling for the
British government to condemn the attack and to break links with Israel.
ISRAELIS KILL TEN STORMING GAZA FLOTILLA
EMERGENCY DEMONSTRATION TODAY
MONDAY 31 MAY 2.00PM DOWNING STREET LONDON
SPREAD THE WORD
Yet another act of Israeli barbarism as its forces storm one of the seven ships on the international flotilla taking aid to Gaza, where Israel’s illegal siege is starving Palestinians of essential resources. At least ten activists on board have been killed by Israeli forces.
Please join the emergency demonstration today if you can. Publicise it as widely as possible.
Ah, those glorious eighties!! A period between 1979 and 1994, when it was claimed that average earnings rose by 40%, of course this gives a very distorted figure. If we look at the richest 10% of the population the growth in income was approximately 68%. On the other hand if we look at the poorest 10% their incomes grow by a mere 10% before housing costs and actually fell by 8% after housing costs. What a wonderful time to be among the richest 10%.
Under capitalist labour/conservative governments this country has always had more than its fair share of poverty. The last thirty years the poverty has been considerable and what this means to the lives of all those affected by this poverty is immeasurable. It leads of course to poor maternal nutrition, risking unhealthy babies, we have the young unable to afford a healthy diet, with housing and jobs out of their reach, pensioners dying of hypothermia. Then there is the poverty related ill health pushing the national health service to breaking point. Let’s not forget poverty related crime and the effects it has on peoples’ lives.
All this adds up to billions more than it would cost to implement a decent living wage for all, but this is capitalism and it is not the welfare of the people that matters, it’s profit. So wages must be kept to a minimum to keep the shareholders happy. Tinkering with minimum wages and such will not get rid of the deprivation, it is the system that is rotten and doesn’t work for the benefit of all our people. It is a winner take all and to hell with the hindmost system that benefits the small band of parasites at the top. Keep the system, keep the poverty.
Recently in a TV interview Ian Duncan Smith made a statement that perhaps displays the way his class actually think of ordinary people. He was referring to people on incapacity benefit and he said that many on incapacity benefit, “could be worked.” It is much the same way that farmer would refer to his horse or his sheep dog, a possession to be worked, not a person with equal rights. Was it a slip of the tongue, where is that Freud book??
You have to hand it to them for arrogance. Our nice new shiny young millionaire Chancellor of the Exchequer made a statement recently in which he said, “—the age of plenty is over–”. Of course he wasn’t talking about his friends in his millionaire/billionaire club. No, you see their plenty will still go on and on at our expense, and as for us, who never had the plenty in the first place, well our imaginary plenty is all over, again. The stench of hypocrisy coming from the Westminster House of Corruption is overpowering. When that place is in session you probably have the largest collection of millionaires sitting in one room than anywhere else in the country. They will sit and in all seriousness discuss the need to tighten belts and get used to the age of plenty being over. They will point out how wages will have to be frozen or cut, how services will have to be decimated, while they resent having somebody looking over their extortionate expenses claims. They will continue their champagne dinners and retreat to their summer residence in some leafy idyllic spot, leaving us to get on with the poverty and deprivation.
The decisions of this millionaires’ club will heap untold misery on thousands, while they will be rewarded by their friends in the corporate world for their part in depressing the wages in this country. How much unemployment? Well the Fraser of Allander Institute at Strathclyde University has come up with a figure of 60,000 job losses in the Scottish public sector alone. Professor Brian Ashcroft, policy director of that institute stated, “The public probably don’t realise what we we’re facing. We are set to see a cut in spending unprecedented in recent history.” Though I can accept the learned Professor’s figures, I’m inclined to think that it is an underestimate. It is the “WE” part that I take offence with. All the top paid academics and the millionaires’ club at Westminster keep uttering the word “WE” when there is no real connection between their lifestyle and that of the ordinary people. This is to create the impression that there is some relationship between the lifestyles of the two classes, that we have something in common. “WE” have nothing in common with “THEM”, their decisions will hurt us, it will in no way hurt them. Do they have the right to inflict a such pain and deprivation on others while they themselves lap up the luxuries of a parasitical lifestyle? Does anybody? If, as they keep saying, “we’re all in this together,” well let’s start sharing all the wealth of the nation to see to the needs of all the people, as well as all sharing the burden. As a democracy perhaps they will let us, the people, vote on that suggestion. However, I’m not holding my breath on that one.
It is obvious that when historians come to write about the capitalist era it will be written up as a dreadful failure for humanity. They will be able to write about the fact that at its period of highest development, approximately one third of the world’s population were well fed, one third were hungry and one third were starving. They will be able to detail the misery of those fifteen million children who died of hunger every year. In their learned papers they will catalogue the enormous wealth poured into unbelievable destructive weaponry and they will calculate that in the midst of all that hunger and starvation, the price of one missile could have supplied 100 nutritional meals every day for five years. No doubt their findings will also include that to feed this grotesque beast of privilege and greed it was necessary to pollute and plunder the earth’s resources to the extent of destroying the planet’s ecosystem. Their conclusions will obviously be that it was a cruel, vicious, unjust, hypocritical and unnecessary system inflicted on the population of the planet by a small band of greedy, power hungry, over privileged parasites.
Why do we have to wait for the historians verdict? We are now aware of the type of system that has been created and the misery that it inflicts on vast swaths of the world’s population. We know that the greatest benefits go to the smallest group, a useless, pampered bunch of parasites. We also know that it is a man made system, not something written in tablets of stone. It is well within our power and our imagination to dismantle this abomination of greed and hypocrisy, and replace it with a system of mutual aid. A system based on free association, voluntary co-operation and sustainability that sees to the needs of all our people, a system freed from the greed driven motif of profit.
We have the imagination, the ability, and the resources, all we lack is the will.
It appears that General David Petraeus, Commander of US Central Command issued secret orders last September, allowing the Pentagon to engage in espionage and reconnaissance throughout the Middle East and the Horn of Africa without regular congressional oversight or prior approval from the White House. This encompasses friend and foe lumped into the one package. So, can America claim to be a democracy now that its Generals can conduct their own form of foreign policy. A policy that interferes in the internal affairs of its sovereign allies?
Of course those who are in anyway informed will be well aware that America has been for some considerable time, governed by a military/corporate plutocracy. It is an imperialist power that rides roughshod over friends and foe alike in its quest for control over the planets resources.
Every four years the American public are granted the privilege of voting to see which bunch of millionaires/billionaires and their cabal of Generals/oil barons will have the privileged seat of power. This will decide which of the corporate moguls will get the cream and which will have to play second fiddle. However, the American people, like those in the other developed capitalist countries, will always remain at the bottom of the heap and for some strange reason they will continue to applaud their parasitical masters.