Over the last few weeks we have witnessed the Tories in crisis. Some of it self-inflicted, well all of it really….
Not only are people beginning to realise the Tories are a bust flush with their cuts agenda that is making our economy worse, but that the party of old that lost a succession of elections based on barmy policy agendas, right wing dogma, internal division and Europe is well and truly back despite all of Cameron’s dodgy dealings to convince us otherwise.
THE ECONOMY – What’s happening with the economy will do for them in the main. They claim the deficit is down but conveniently forget debt is up. That’s what happens when you cut cut cut. Confidence is lost, workers lose jobs, people don’t spend, business hoards cash, banks don’t lend, tax receipts go down, economy tumbles. This all ensures the rich get richer, the poor get poorer, and ordinary people get duped into thinking there is no alternative.
The simple message is that the cuts are not working. We need a change of direction based on fairness, green investment, and sustainable infrastructure investment that puts local communities first. The problems won’t be solved by using the same methods that got us into trouble in the first place, despite grand airport or HS2 schemes kissing goodbye to money that would be better spent on more localised projects. While the same underlying problems exist with global capital, the banks, multinationals working for themselves instead of us, and wealth control remaining in the hands of the few, it will always be 2 steps forward, 3 steps back.
THE EU – It seems the Tories are also feeling squeezed by UKIP. Cameron has attempted to steal UKIP’s new emperor clothes by promising an undeliverable EU referendum, on changes that are never going to happen. It backfired on them and exposed once again their divisions and little Englander mentality. Our own MP has even joined a ‘special’ gang of Tory MP’s looking to redefine our relationship with Europe. Now he’s shacked up with a bunch of no hopers, true blues and UKIP rejects determined to slash the social chapter, cut workers rights and put us in the ‘pay for europe but get no say’ cheap seats. Playing to the blue gallery and gambling with our future as Hedge-Fund bankers do, and not having learned the lessons of 2008. Europe needs change to make it more accountable to us but this is not the way to do it. Ask a baby if it can get its own rattle back once it’s thrown it out of the pram…it can’t …..it will have to grow up first. A subtle message in that.
EQUALITY – Then there is the question of gay marriage raised by Cameron, which over half of his own MP’s failed to support and showing why they are an anachronism in the 21st century despite the PR spin. Closer to home, our own MP Mark Garnier had spent months saying he was relaxed about gay marriage only to come out (no pun intended) at the eleventh hour declaring that because he got some letters from angry people, he is voting against the Bill. If only getting Mark to change his mind on a whole host of other issues was so simple.
Yes, the Tories are back bless them.
Kidderminster Gallery – There has been much dismay about the county council’s intended destruction of the much loved Gallery, on the top floor of Kidderminster Library. A feat accomplished by the county council with a catalogue of fibs about its special nature, and with a total lack of meaningful engagement with the local community and artists who use it. The Friends have fought valiantly to defend it but been undone by council tactics, a council cover up, and the one man who could have helped save it, and despite his promise to the contrary, the local architect David Millis, losing his bottle and going to ground and so helping to save the council’s bacon.
Hartlebury Incinerator – More unbelievable county council decisions are afoot with their proposed Hartlebury Incinerator. They plan to spend nearly £1billion of our money burning rubbish in a PFI facility that is not needed and which is too expensive. Alongside the complete abdication of fiscal responsibility here, there is a total ignorance of the reality of the reductions in waste, the benefits of recycling and value of recyclates, upcoming EU legislation on incineration, or the fact there is over-capacity in incineration already. This, in a time of the most severe cuts in county council budgets in history. But it’s ok because a multi-national company based in Spain will make a mint.
Highways – The county cabinet today voted to increase spending on roads by £2.5million because that’s what the public want. Elsewhere, services are being slashed and burned, staff are losing their jobs, vulnerable people’s frontline services are going. People place roads second behind social care according to the Tories in their ‘constructed’ consultation. On that basis, why hasn’t there been an increase in the social care budget too? People see roads every day but not the impact of cuts in social care, until they might need them that is. The Tories know a vote winner when they see one. That’s politics at its cynical best.
Elections – We have the county council elections this year and the Green party will be announcing its Wyre Forest candidates very shortly. Let’s hope people are ready for a change and will vote Green to start putting an end to some of this nonsense coming out from County Hall Tories.