Wednesday, November 24, 2010
This scene and dozens like it have been repeated across the country. I hear that Michael Gove, the Education Secretary, has been on television, putting the 'blame' for these protests on the SWP. The SWP doesn't have this much of a following, but it's nice of Gove to do our advertising for us. In truth, tens of thousands of people who have never been political before are suddenly getting an education in how the system works, and they're deeply angry about what they're learning. Many of the young people I can see here won't have been born the last time there was a Tory government, and most certainly won't remember much about it. It's an incredible shock to the system to see what a Tory government is like, how brazen these upper class spivs and criminals are.
I know the media will go on about petty vandalism - inevitably dubbed 'violence' - but the odd window broken or cone burned doesn't even come close to expressing the palpable fury and sense of injustice that people feel. The government is flushing millions of young lives down the toilet, and next to that some shattered glass is small beer. This is the beginning, an opening shot. The Tories had no idea what they were doing when they started this. They might have expected unpopularity and protests. But what they're doing is raising a whole generation of militants.