Posts Tagged ‘Roy Hattersley’

A Few Sharp Quotes about Thatcher and the Tories

October 21, 2018

I also found a couple of sharp quotations about the Margaret Thatcher and Ronald Reagan in the same issue of Focus, which had a comment from Martial. Martial said that man loved malice, but only against the fortunate and proud, not the unfortunate. It’s completely the opposite case with the Tories, who are only too full of malice towards the unfortunate. Here are the quotes printed in the magazines against Maggie.

She sounded like the Book of Revelations read out over a railway public address system by a headmistress of a certain age wearing calico knickers.

Clive James.

She only went to Venice because someone told her she could walk down the middle of the street.

Neil Kinnock.

A semi-house trained polecat

Michael Foot on Norman Tebbit.

And on Ronald Reagan:

A masterpiece of the embalmer’s art.

Gore Vidal.

And there are many others about the Tories. I think it might have been Roy Hattersley, who said that there wasn’t a British tradition Thatcher hadn’t struck with her handbag, and described her as a ‘bargain-basement Boadicea. And it was also him, or someone else from the Labour party who described being attacked in parliament by Douglas Hurd as like being savaged by a dead sheep.

And a friend of mine, who used to be a member of the Tory party, was fond of the quote, ‘The Tory party is an organized hypocrisy’.

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Jeremy Hunt’s Smirk, the Junior Doctors’ Strike and the Privatisation of the NHS

April 28, 2016

A few days ago Mike over at Vox Political put up a piece about how the veteran Labour MP, Dennis Skinner, had told Jeremy Hunt to take the smirk off his face in parliament. I am not surprised Hunt is smirking, as I think he and his masters – David Cameron and George Osborne, really want the junior doctors to go on strike, no matter what they say to the contrary. And it’s disgusting that they should.

It’s all about appearing strong and combative, you see. Maggie gained much of her support by being combative and showing she was ruthlessly ready to crush all opposition. During one industrial dispute – I think it may well have been with the teachers – she privately remarked that there was some leeway to reach an agreement with the teachers. But she didn’t want to take that route, because it would make her look weak and conciliatory. And so she went about, as Roy Hattersley so memorably remarked, ‘like a bargain-basement Boadicea’. It was important for her image, and those of her followers like Norman Tebbitt, to be seen as towering political colossi standing up to the bloated power of the union bully-boys. That’s how they presented themselves during the Winter of Discontent, the Miners’ Strike, and all the other trade disputes, regardless of whether they were right or wrong.

And my guess is that’s what Hunt, Cameron and Osbo hope they can do now. Provoke an industrial dispute, and then pretend that they’re protecting the ordinary, suffering people of Britain from stroppy, overpaid and lazy workers. That’s they way they’ll present it. You only have to look at every report of every strike in the pages of the Scum, the Express, the Torygraph, and the Heil.

And you can see how the Tories hope to sell their privatisation of the NHS. They’ll start with articles in the Scum and the other parts of the Tory press, telling everyone that they’re bring the discipline of private investment, and its greater resources, to the ‘strike-hit’, financially struggling Health Service. Private investment, they will tell us, will mean greater investment and help ease the tax-burden on poor, hard-working people. Which as we’ve seen, really means all the rich multi-millionaire fat cats bankrolling the Tory party, who are currently soiling themselves at the prospect of getting their mitts round the NHS.

And they there’ll be all the advertising by the NHS’ new, private masters. They’ll put adverts on ITV, Channel 4, 5 and the satellite and cable channels, telling everyone how they’ve been providing healthcare for ‘x’ number of years, their hospitals are really wonderful, how you can be seen on the same day. They’ll also, no doubt, start selling discount deals for those ready to pay that little bit more on their private health insurance policy. They might even try to go the populist route by trying to tell the public that they can now have their own little piece of this British institution, if they get their shares in now. Though as they’re doing it by the back door, because of how unpopular it’s going to be, I actually doubt they’ll pursue this approach.

This is how they want to do it, and it’s sickening.

As we’ve seen from all the other privatisations, the results are going to be worse service, longer waiting times, closures, plus a massive increase in disparity in health across the UK. It’s already the case that you can live years longer if you’re a middle class person living in a middle class area. Well, if you’re poor after the privatisation of the health service, and live in a poor area, your healthcare will be correspondingly poor.

Just like it was before the foundation of the NHS.

But Jeremy Hunt can smirk. He and many of the other Tories have investments and connections in private healthcare companies. He’ll make a tidy pack out of the fees they’ll charge for our healthcare.

Boot out Hunt, Cameron and Osborne, and support the junior doctors. Before Hunt kills us. He’s doing his best to make us all heartily sick already.

Vox Political on Tory Proposal to Cut Number of MPs to Give Them Greater Number

February 13, 2016

Mike over at Vox Political put up this report from the Guardian about the Tories wishing to go ahead with their plan to cut the number of MPs down from 650 to 600. The Commons Political and Constitutional Committee, however, has rejected the proposals as unjustified. The real reason the Tories are going ahead with it is because they hope that by adjusting the boundaries they’ll get 20 more Tory MPs.

Mike has called this what it is: gerrymandering. He states it’s part of the same tactics, which has caused the Tories to cut Short money, the parliamentary funding of opposition MPs. His recommendation is that Labour should make good on their threat and stop all co-operation with the Tories.

Conservatives will go ahead with ‘unjustified’ cut in number of MPs – for their own benefit?

This isn’t the first time the Tories have tried something like this. I remember that back in the 1980s, under Thatcher, they carried out a similar piece of gerrymandering. They altered constituency boundaries in order to give them an electoral advantage. The result was that Tony Benn, the highly respected Labour MP for part of Bristol, was kicked out and we were given Jonathan Saeed instead. Not that Mr Saeed’s career in anyway blossomed under Maggie. Bristol was one of the areas where Thatcher decided she was going to cut funding. Saeed stood up to her, and so suffered the fate of all Tories when they make the mistake of confront the Generalissimo.

And, of course, there’s a fine piece of Tory hypocrisy about this. Remember the howls of rage when Tony Blair packed the House of Lords with ‘people’s peers’. Not democratic! they thundered. They compared him to Cromwell’s attack on parliament and his abolition of the House of Lords. One volume, written by an outraged High Tory, had a caricature of Blair on the cover as a punk, dressed in black leather and combats, for his assault on traditional British institutions.

Well, as Roy Hattersley I think once said, there wasn’t a British institution that Maggie didn’t handbag. To them, it’s only an affront to democracy and tradition when Labour do it. The Tories’ machinations are another step towards setting up the oligarchical state they so desperately desire. A state run by the privileged rich, for the privileged rich, and with the proles firmly kept in their place, excluded from power by any means possible. And they’ve had good practice at it. They’ve been doing it for over thirty years. The time’s well overdue this was stopped, before it leads the whole parliamentary system into disrepute.