Socialist Worker

Maggie Thatcher would be proud of him

Issue No. 1829

Blair's POLITICAL attack on all of us

THE government's assault on the firefighters has shown just how vicious New Labour is. Tony Blair, Gordon Brown and John Prescott have been trying to smash a group of workers and their union, just like Maggie Thatcher did to the miners.

The Tory press was crowing on Monday that the firefighters had been humbled. But there is still resistance from the firefighters and their supporters.

That is why this Saturday's demonstration with the firefighters is so important. The strike has seen a Labour government, funded largely by the unions, lining up with the establishment. Just look at who Blair has sided with:

  • Rupert Murdoch, billionaire owner of the Sun, whose fat cat editors smear any group of workers who stand up against low pay and privatisation.
  • The Rothermere clan, owners of the Daily Mail, who employ editors like Paul Dacre on £650,000 to spew out every right wing argument to bring back the Tories.

 

The government accused leaders of the Fire Brigades Union of 'politicising' the dispute. But the government has acted in the most political way possible. It intervened three times to force the firefighters to go on strike, in the hope of facing them down and spreading fear through every workplace. It tried to use low pay in the NHS as a justification for low pay in the fire service.

And Gordon Brown last week announced another £1 billion for war on Iraq, on top of an extra £1 billion already allocated. These are all POLITICAL decisions.

So is refusing to tax the rich while telling workers that any pay rise must be paid for by longer hours and job cuts. This is the politics of big business and of craven support for George Bush's war for US power. It's right to fight back on each front - against union bashing and war.


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News
Sat 7 Dec 2002, 00:00 GMT
Issue No. 1829
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