Written by Richard Leonard
There really are no bounds to the brazenness of Cameron and Osborne. Fresh off the back of trumpeting as a success the derisory and shameful tax settlement with Google, the posh Tory duo are banging on about how they are saving the UK economy by selling off its assets. It’s a bit like Barcelona saying they will strengthen their team by selling Messi and Neymar, with Suarez’s disposal just round the corner.
Back in the eighties another ex-Eton Tory Prime Minister, Harold MacMillan, roundly criticised one of his successors, a certain Margaret Thatcher, for ‘selling the family silver’. (Whatever happened to one-nation Conservatism?). But here is Osborne, surely the creepiest Chancellor we have had since Norman Lamont, boasting about selling off the Government’s Eurostar stake, just when the company is on the threshold of pouring the best part of a billion pounds into the exchequer over the next decade (International Business Times 6th November 2015); at the same time as ditching another tranche of the public’s stake in Lloyds Bank; all at a considerable discount to their Tory supporting friends in the City. At least he has been forced to backtrack on selling Lloyds for the time being.
So desperate to impose her ideological policies in the eighties Thatcher destroyed shipbuilding, steel and the mining industry and most of the rest of manufacturing with no regard to the social implications for the hard working people of these islands. The current heartless Tories have adopted Thatcherism with an enthusiasm which would have made even the wicked woman blush. Most, if not all, of our crucial industries were sold to anyone who would buy them, mostly speculators from abroad. We now have the scandalous situation where our airports, steel, car manufacturing (sic), utilities and vital infrastructure are no longer in British control. Even three quarters of our railways are owned by foreign companies. (The Independent 2014).
Recently we had the embarrassing and humiliating sight of a British Chancellor of the Exchequer scuttling around China trying to sell off as much of Britain as he could. The fiasco of the privatisation of the railways and buses has not deterred our heartless duo from continuing the brutal Tory practice of putting cash before community. They gave Royal Mail away to their city paymasters who made a fortune from the so called sale. We have already lost British Airways, Rolls Royce, the main UK Airports, Seaports… I could go on but I’m getting tired.
Already the NHS and Education service are being steadily privatised so that we will be forced to pay the Tory’s friends for what the Labour Government of Clement Attlee gave to the nation. If ever we needed a warning that our heritage was in danger under the Tories this is it. Next to go, amongst others will be Channel 4, the Royal Mint, the Met Office and, if they can get away with it their hated BBC. Even Vince Cable, a Cabinet Minister in the previous discredited coalition government, has said ‘selling off channel 4 would be cultural vandalism’ (Guardian 11th January 2016). Indeed, selling off the country’s crucial assets at Aldi prices is social and moral vandalism.
This from the shameless Tories who claim to be the party protecting British interests. ‘A land fit for heroes’ the Labour Government of the late forties promised – they hadn’t counted on the callous ideological practices of Cameron and Osborne.