The nasty party is back with a vengeance

by Gavin Hayes

Last week a new survey discovered that Britain’s favourite decade is allegedly the 1980s. In the spirit of that decade in the last few weeks something else has become as glaringly obvious and vulgar as the luminous socks – the nasty party is back with a vengeance, coupled with a full range of toxic policies that again threaten to rip the very fabric of society.

David Cameron had of course promised us something very different indeed than the medicine he is now gleefully prescribing and throwing down our throats. We were promised his so-called new cuddly Conservative party would be compassionate and then once thrown into bed with the Liberal Democrat leadership we were even promised they would be ‘progressive’.

Yet we now know that sadly the progressive and liberal conservatism he once spoke of has completely rung hollow. Announcement after nasty announcement has confirmed this Government’s true colours. It would seem for them the 1980s really is their favourite decade.
The nasty party first reared its ugly head with the cuts. Despite well respected economists warning that the Government did not need to cut as hard or as fast, they have still been hell bent on forcing through over £81BN in public spending cuts. Nearly half a million public sector workers will lose their jobs so that we can then pay them to sit at home and do nothing, not paying their taxes while we then pay them unemployment benefit. Even City accountants Price Water House Coopers has warned that the cuts could result in one million unemployed. Unemployment is yet again a price worth paying. Whilst these cuts could yet again lead to 1980s style waiting lists as long as a piece of string.

Then last week we witnessed over 50,000 students, lecturers and their supporters demonstrating in their masses against the worst cuts to Higher Education in living memory, coupled with the prospect of £9000 fees and crippling mortgage style debt to go with them. Whilst Cameron and his Bullingdon buddies may well be used to paying such a premium for a good education, what they don’t seem to realise is that the vast majority simply cannot afford it, or indeed have rich mummies and daddies who can. Whatever your background education should be a right not a privilege. He may well have declared ‘no turning back’ on his fees policy – but that is exactly what this government is doing, they are turning back and repeating the worst mistakes of the past, returning to the worst hallmarks of the Thatcherite 1980s.

In reaction to this probably most worrying of all we’ve watched on our television screens (and for some of us from our office windows) the haunting and disturbing spectre, yet again under a Conservative Government, of civil unrest and riots on the streets of our capital city, bricks thrown through windows, the police set against the very people they are meant to protect – just like the poll tax before it. These scenes will surely not be the last round of violence we will witness in the long months and years ahead as the nasty party’s stranglehold takes hold.

Now we’ve heard of the draconian reforms to welfare – a direct attack on the very foundations and principles of the welfare state. People will now face £50 fines for incorrectly filling in forms – have they even thought properly of the dire consequences of that measure on claimants, their families and most important their children? This is tantamount to taking food off the table, or turning off the heating. And on this so-called welfare clamp down, we should always remember, whilst the TUC estimate that £800M is lost through benefit fraud at the bottom, over £13BN is lost in personal tax avoidance alone by some of the richest in society. The Lord Ashcrofts of this world, and according to a recent Channel 4 documentary, members of this government, who employ clever accountants to avoid paying their fair dues to society. The nasty party has yet again got their priorities wrong – instead of tackling excess at the top they opt to bully and vilify those at the bottom.

Meanwhile the nasty party seems minded to yet again repeat the same mistakes as the disgraced Dame Shirley Porter on housing policy. The caps on housing benefit are tantamount to social cleansing and will drive some of the poorest out of London.

Then we heard of Conservative Councillor Gareth Compton call for Independent columnist Yasmin Alibhai-Brown to be stoned. Where will it all end?

Be in no doubt about it Cameron may talk of a Big Society, but these policies and the agenda championed by his government will do nothing other than shred the very fabric of society. We now know for sure the nasty party is back, if ever it really went away and Labour must shout this from the roof tops from now until the next election.

Gavin Hayes in general secretary of Compass

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7 Responses to “The nasty party is back with a vengeance”

  1. Betapolitics says:

    Blimey, I think Gavin needs to go and have a lie down in a dark room. This post is equivalent to the Tories in the late 90s squealing that Tony Blair was a unreconstructed socialist. I.e over-the-top nonsense. Whether the economic crises was caused by US banks or Labour economic mismanagement we have an enormous debt that needs dealing with. Labour won’t be taken seriously until they stop spewing hate at other parties and start offering relevant solutions.

  2. Skiamakhos says:

    I hated the 80s at the time. Mainstream fashion was ugly, mainstream music boring – it seemed like a warmed over rehash of the 50s. Best part of the ’80s was getting out of the decade at the end. I look back on it with a sort of dreadful nostalgia the way a soldier re-lives battle with the guys from his unit. I wouldn’t want to go back there again, and I have an awful feeling of foreboding about this next decade, starting as we are with the Tories in power, a royal wedding & riots. Will we be at war with Argentina next year, with a rag-tag task-force of merchant ships, cruise liners & tinder-box aluminium Type 42 destroyers?

    The 90’s were so much better. We had raves, had fun, & eventually divested ourselves of the Tories. Much better.

  3. Alex Ross says:

    Over the top stuff like this isn’t going to get us anywhere. Trying to pretend a Tory councillor actually called for the literal stoning of someone makes us look hysterical and pathetic. It was obviously a joke – people would respect us more if we came out and acknowledged that instead of trying to fan some rather tedious flames.

  4. Chris says:

    Riots on the streets, that just shows that labour aren’t in power and their followers have decided to make a noise.

    Which party introduced tuition fees?
    Who commissioned the Browne report that, if implemented as labour promised to do, would have hit poor students more than the wealthy?

    Which party, in ignorance or with malice, did it’s best to destroy small businesses and presided over the larger fall in manufacturing ever? (just to help the socialists, it wasn’t Maggie or Major’s governments)

    Which party set out to tag every subject in the UK whilst refusing to deport convict criminals who are illegal immigrants and/or failed asylum seekers?

    Which party deliberately attacked any sign of christianity whilst subsidising other religious festivals?

    Labour out of government just means they aren’t restraining their doltish attack dogs. What they can’t corrupt they’ll try and destroy.

  5. Alex says:

    The nasty party is back? You’re kidding surely. Labour is dead and buried and won’t be back for years.

    the party that lied about Iraqi WMD and ended up killing hundreds of thousands of civilians. Gone, mate, long gone.

  6. Chris, “Which party deliberately attacked any sign of christianity whilst subsidising other religious festivals?” – are you accusing the world’s most famous convert to Catholicism and the son of a minister of anti-Christian animus? If so, can I have some of what you’re smoking?

  7. Chris says:

    @Edward Carlsson Browne,

    By their deeds shall you know them.

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