Monday, October 28, 2013

Welcome To Conservative 'Sweatshop' Britain!

George Osborne and Boris Johnson
Communist China

Welcome to Conservative Britain in 2013 where the rich are getting richer and the "plodders, the poor and vulnerable" are getting screwed daily. The true saviours of this country, those who work in the public and private sectors alike and who toil in the offices, the factories, the hospitals, the schools and the shops doing a myriad of different jobs all interdependent and equally as important as the next, are being treated no better than rat droppings on steps of 10 Downing Street. These people are being used by the Coalition government to divide our country in order to allow the introduction of right wing dogma from a particularly nasty extreme right wing Tory controlled government.

The writing is there and is clearly written on the wall and it's now time to look closely at the evidence!

David Cameron, George Osborne and their banker and corporate buddy mates are laughing assassins who smile while they stab "hardworking people" in the back. Look past the Tory bluff and bluster and you will see how they are insidiously removing workers rights and driving down pay and conditions. They are also being helped by right wing fanatical press tycoons who have vested interests in retaining Conservatives in Downing Street.

The Tories (enabled by their poodle lap dogs the Liberal Democrats) are busy passing laws and changing the rules to enable them and the bosses of industry to control workforces across the country by using intimidation and fear of job losses. Slowly but surely they are rendering the workers of this country impotent. This country is not progressing, it's regressing and slipping back in terms of education, healthcare and working rights. Bosses and business leaders have gained carte blanche from this government to use the fear of job losses as some kind of metaphorical cattle prod to force change of contracts and loss of pay and conditions while keeping the workforce in their 'rightful place. Some may think this is happening to other people (not them) so they don't worry too much and then suddenly out of the blue it's their turn to be treated like dirt and pushed around. The way things are going soon people will not be able to call on any union for help and all workers rights will have been previously stripped and they will have been left impotent and utterly powerless! Those that knock unions need to think very carefully about this.

Divide and rule is all part of the Conservative plan of course and has been from the start. Right from the start it has been the Tories agenda, to weaken people then set worker against worker, the private sector against public sector; turn workers against the unemployed, able bodied against disabled people, young against the old. Those on benefits were held up to be ridiculed and the public invited to abuse them with insults and to spit venom at them, like some kind of virtual modern day equivalent of olden day stocks where people were once pelted with rotten fruit. Today those stocks often take the form of the extreme right wing newspapers like the Sun, Sunday Times, Daily Mail and the Express, where gullible and vulnerable people have been fooled into inviting reporters into their homes to have their stories taken they have been led to say things and then their words have been twisted and spun out of all recognition. These people are then plastered all over the newspapers and then pilloried by inviting 'rotten fruit throwing' in the shape of comments from the nasty "hang 'em and flog 'em brigade", who really do live under the misinterpretation that this government 'doesn't' mean them. Well one day they too will be in for a very nasty shock.

Once divide and rule was established it was followed by the gradual removal of workers rights. Employment law reforms have been announced by Liberal Democrat Vince Cable (no less) which will allow company bosses to exploit and bully workers. Companies now have stronger legal protections to pay off who they accuse of being  under-performing staff, or simply invent stories to get rid of staff they don't require any longer and employees rights have been eroded and now any employee is open to this kind of abuse. Workers face a drastic cut in how much compensation ordinary working people can claim if they win a case for unfair dismissal and that is only if they can afford to bring the case in the first place! Bosses have literally been given a license to discriminate against their workforce by this Conservative controlled Coalition government.

Ordinary workers are being blamed and treated as if the global recession and international banking collapse is their fault, they didn't cause it, but they are being made to pay for it while those that did cause it are allowed to get away with their crimes. Not one single banker in this country has been prosecuted for their part in the demise of the global economy and the Tories have allowed them to get away with it. In fact just a couple of weeks back, while the leader of the opposition Ed Miliband was sticking his head above the parapet getting a kicking from the energy companies, the banks, and the Tories for trying to get a fairer energy deal for the consumer (us), George Osborne was busy defending bankers bonuses and arranging to take the EU to court on behalf of the bankers and forcing us the taxpayers to pay the millions in legal charges. On the same day that Osborne announced he would be defending bankers bonuses at the European Union, Michael Spencer a former Conservative Treasurer who has donated at least £5 million to the Tories was named as being in the middle of a political and financial storm after his firm was named by City watchdogs for its role in the Libor interest-rate fixing scandal. Yet where on the BBC, ITV or Sky News was this reported? You can't really make this up! Meanwhile the workforce who actually keep this country running are being kicked, right left and centre!

There is a clear erosion of trust and hard fought for rights in the workplace and the Government are allowing bosses to get away with this  in clear cut cases of abuses of power, and it will not create one proper job with one proper wage/salary, all that is being created is low paid and more often part-time work, or worse still zero hour contract positions but the government know this of course. They are giving the green light to company bosses to change your working contracts, cut your hours, cut your pay and cut your pensions and if you think this is an overreaction then you only have to look to Grangemouth for confirmation. Grangemouth is not a one off, this kind of practice is now sweeping right across this country and mark my words it is coming to a private company, a public service, a hospital, a school, a factory, or a shop near you! The odds are being deliberately and heavily stacked against the workforce and in favour of the companies. Many of these companies are also being allowed to get away with paying little or no tax to the Treasury and to make matters worse, George Osborne has pledged to lower corporation tax, which means they'll be paying even less to exploit their workers!

Take Grangemouth and Ineos for example: Ineos has been allowed to avoid paying UK tax for years and its finances are a complete mystery yet this has been ignored. How many workers and small businesses would be allowed to get away without paying their tax? What about Vodafone they owe the British Treasury at least £6 billion and still more in interest, yet Osborne instructed their tax to be written off. Top Tory donor Sir Christopher Gent and personal friend of George Osborne and David Cameron was the former CEO of Vodafone!

Ineos and Jim Ratcliffe are out of control and they are holding Scotland to ransome. They've created a climate of fear and have forced decent working men and women into signing away their rights and pensions for which they have saved all their working lives - is this right? Think it cannot happen to you?

Last July the Government brought in rules that will now cost you between £160 and £250 to lodge a claim for unfair dismissal, with a further charge of between £230 and £950 if the case goes ahead and if you are forced to take your employer to tribunal for discrimination, detriment and dismissal, these claims attract even higher fees. The Ministry of Justice also charges fees of £400 to lodge an appeal and £1200 for a full hearing. Question: "How many people who have been unfairly dismissed will have the money to challenge for unfair dismissal at a tribunal?" The Government and Liberal Democrat Business Secretary, Vince Cable have in effect stymied those affected and removed any chance of challenging corrupt practices and they have got away with it, mainly because this Tory controlled government have managed to divide and rule the public and the workforce we are nothing but lowly pawns in their power games!

The scales are being loaded in favour of the banks, the bosses, the conglomerates, the corporations and the multi-nationals. What happened to the workers of Grangemouth could now happen to any worker anywhere in this country, workers are left bare and and badly exposed and defenceless and open to abuse. All those ordinary people call yourself workers, or middle class or whatever you want who are cheerleading for this Tory led government need to realise it could be their turn next and probably will be! Not too many companies are going to carry on paying their workers properly and provide proper pay and conditions when they can get away with paying nothing on zero hour contracts or are being sent a regular supply of full-time labour from Jobcentres under the guise of a government workfare scheme!

Health and safety in the workplace, workers rights, pay and conditions are all up for change.

It appears that business leaders of big companies want all the gain of trading within the EU but do want to accept any responsibility for the health, safety and welfare of their workers in the workplace and we have a prime minister in the shape of David Cameron and a government hell bent on seeing that these unscrupulous companies get what they want. Once again we see the PM on the side of big business at the expense of the workers and people of this country.

Recently a taskforce of six business leaders delivered its report to David Cameron with 30 recommendations for cutting health and safety regulations to make it easier for their businesses.

Among those recommendations was:
  • Acquired rights directive changed so that companies being taken over can change employees can have their contracts changed more easily by their new employers.
  • New rules on workers rights and pregnant worker proposals should be axed.
  • Removing the right of the company to have written health and safety records
  • No right to sick leave
  • More rights to hire people on zero hour contracts
  • Drop plans for strict rules on food labelling
  • Remove unnecessary proposals on shale gas
Can you see a picture emerging here?
  1. Divide and Rule
  2. Drive down pay and conditions
  3. Remove Workers rights
  4. Stack the odds in favour of the companies and their bosses
  5. Make it difficult for workers to claim unfair dismissal
  6. Relax Health and Safety Laws
  7. Reformed disabled peoples rights in the workplace as well as stripping them of every benefit they can possibly be stripped of.
  8. Drive the workforce who the Tories laughingly refer to as "hard working people" by fear and intimidation eg: work for peanuts or pick litter up in the streets, or work on a government workfare scheme full-time just for your JSA - your choice!
So what is it all about?

Recently the chancellor came back from communist China telling us we British are "second rate" people and Britain is a second rate country and we should all be more like China. Strange because just a week previously he was accusing Ed Miliband of "getting all his policies from Das Kapital"! But then George Osborne is nothing if he is not inconsistent! 

What we are witnessing is an unspoken Conservative ideological agenda in action. Having successfully and deliberately divided public opinion, setting one half of the country against the other, private sector vs public sector, employed against the unemployed, and encouraged a hate campaign against those on benefits using the specific Tory hate campaign rhetoric; "shirkers, idlers; wasters, skivers; scroungers" etc the government have successfully split public opinion and divided us and are now in the process of imposing their draconian austerity and their agenda in devaluing much of the British workforce. Cameron, Osborne, Clegg, Cable and Alexander have moved to deliberately drive down the wages and salaries and terms and conditions of working people both in the public sector and the private sector, in order that they can now encourage investors from countries like China where the workforce is treated as expendable commodities and to ensure that the companies already here and British companies etc can compete with the Chinese companies in terms of low wages and virtually non existent fair working conditions.

Get ready for sweatshop Tory Britain 2013, it's here and if we allow it, it will be here to stay.

We are at a crossroads as a country, do we carry on blindly accepting the false Tory narrative that Britain is broke? That the worst global recession for 80 years and the international banking collapse was somehow all the previous Labour government's fault and if we don't 'do something' then we will end up like "basket case Greece"? (We could never have ended up like Greece because we are a Sovereign country with our own currency and were kept out of the Eurozone by Gordon Brown who tried to warn other countries against joining it). Or do we say "enough is enough" and stop allowing this unscrupulous dishonest incompetent Conservative government to walk all over us and keep feeding us their lies? If we carry on as we are in around five years time few will have job security (except those at the top), the NHS will have been lost to Tory privatisation, as will state education and the police, fire and paramedic services as much of the prison service and the probation service have already been privatised. If we do nothing in a few years time our entire country will be being run by companies like G4S, Serco and Capita and we will have become a low paid demoralised sweatshop economy.

Why else do you think that the Tories are hell bent on privatising everything? The Tories "small government" means selling off all the county's assets to foreign investors (electric, gas, water, BT, the Railways, now the NHS, education, Royal Mail and partly state owned bailed out banks), so they can devalue the workforce, rule by intimidation and fear of losing our jobs and or homes and thus creating a two tier economy in a two tier society. remember the next job could be yours and you have no protection anymore and few rights you are now free to be abused by your boss and this applies to public and private sector alike. Pensions, sick pay, holiday pay either gone or under review - 'Conservative sweatshop Britain'

Living in an unequal society is bad for us, bad for our children's futures and ultimately will be so bad for society that it will push people over the edge, look forward to civil unrest, lawlessness, looting and rioting on our streets as hungry people try to feed their families, think I am wrong? Think back to the summer riots of 2011, not quite the same, but see how easy it is to ignite when people feel they have finally had enough? Think back to the Conservative party's and Margaret Thatcher's poll tax riots of 1990, the lessons of history are staring at us in the face.

How much do people want their children to grow up in a grossly unequal society where they feel grossly undervalued and have little or no prospect of getting a proper job with proper pay and proper conditions?

People must force themselves to think about the legacy they are handing their children if we allow this Conservative government to proceed unchallenged. It is not the legacy of the great 2008 global crash we should be worried about, it is the legacy that is now being mapped out in Downing street by a former PR con man in Cameron and an ex towel folder in Osborne aided and abetted by corrupt lobbyists and government advisers from banks, hedge funds, private equity companies, private health companies, energy conglomerates and corporations and a party called the Liberal Democrats who no longer knows it's arses from its collective elbows. We are being overrun by people from Eton who haven't a clue what it is like to live on the breadline or in fear of the postman and the next big energy bill falling on the mat, or finding the money to feed the family. Look at the sudden rise in the number of foodbanks and thousands queuing up to get long life food to feed their families on, this is all down to this government and their dogmatic agenda.

People must ask themselves if they really want their children to live in a country with little or no proper healthcare/NHS or adequate state education? Because this is what is happening, right here and right now and if we do nothing to stop it, so it will be and so it will be because we allowed it to be so!

This government are mapping your child's future out now, think about that and ask yourself do you really like the kind of selfish, harsh nasty society they are making? Sweatshops, part-time work, low paid work, zero hour contracts? Government workfare litter picking schemes? Being forced to work full-time for companies for under £80 per week JSA, the same companies who make hefty donations to the Conservative party coffers.  A country with little or no social  housing and virtually no chance of buying a place to live? What will be next, estates filled with boxes like in shanty towns where people are forced to live because they can no longer afford to live anywhere else?

Where is panicking George Osborne's 'Help to buy'  'Funding for Lending' schemes leading us? Another crash timed for just after the next election when interest rates will suddenly be increased by Osborne's Patsy Bank of England Governor Mark Carney?

Yet more ready made excuses to impose more austerity measures on us? Reduce our working rights, pay and conditions still further? Allow more Chinese companies in to set up their own sweatshops to supply their own cheap shops which will start springing up on every single High Street in every single part of this country, while Osborne reduces their tax burden and increases ours?

Allow more foreign investors in to create a monopoly of our markets, and force us to pay even more for our gas, electricity and water? The Tories have *ALREADY* subcontracted part of the running of this country out to these energy conglomerates and now they are allowing in the Communist Chinese Government and the French Government to place a stranglehold on what price we will pay for our electricity for the next 35 years. While in their respective countries they enjoy cheap energy because we in Britain are being forced to pay for it.

Ask yourself how many bosses in the Conservative supporting CBI, the banks, multinationals, energy conglomerates, corporations, hedge funds and private equity funds do you see waiving their pension rights? Their multi million pound bonuses? Their multi million pound pay packets? How much bedroom tax are these people forced to pay for their mansions?

Ask Sammy Laidlaw the boss of British Gas conglomerate Centrica who just hiked the price of our gas and
electricity  by 10% by pleading poverty for his energy company while forgetting to mention his company is both the producer and buyer of energy, so they set the price and buy off of themselves and refuse to tell us for how much. Mr Laidlaw has just applied for permission to build a second huge heated swimming pool in the grounds of his sprawling Cotswolds mansion. Don't be too hard on him though, after all he must try and spend some of the £5 million he earns each year (at our expense).

Eton educated as our prime minister and chancellor Sam Laidlaw has the PM covering his back and sticking up for him and his swimming pools and his millionaire lifestyle. The irony of him heating two huge swimming pools while David Cameron tells us to put on an extra jumper and stay in one room to keep warm rather than stand up to these energy bosses and force them to put their prices down. While this government deliberately drive down our standards of living and allow the cost of living to get completely out of control because the PM is in cahoots with all the bosses and the bankers. Until last December, Centrica boss Sam Laidlaw whose father was Chairman of BP Oil, was a close adviser of David Cameron in Downing Street.

Sam Laidlaw once had  words of praise for David Cameron, when he sat on the PM's business advisory council.
“The Budget we’ve just had was very supportive of business, and I think people need to judge by the track record rather than by some of the rhetoric. Business needs to be behind the Government as well.”

We are being governed by "predators" who have rigged the system and who are being aided to rig the system by the Conservative prime minister.

We are in effect gradually slipping back to the Victorian sweatshop age, no wonder George Osborne looks up to that age with such affection, it looks like he Cameron and Clegg have modelled their entire Tory controlled government ethos on it.

So if you want to work long hours in unacceptable conditions for low pay and you don't mind that this is all your children will have to look forward to, then vote Conservative at the next general election and give them permission to carry on devaluing our country and devaluing our workers and citizens, while standing up for the energy conglomerates, corporations and big business. Meanwhile I leave you to the words:
It is a national evil that any class of Her Majesty’s subjects should receive less than a living wage in return for their utmost exertions… where you have what we call sweated trades, you have no organisation, no parity of bargaining, the good employer is undercut by the bad and the bad by the worst; the worker, whose whole livelihood depends upon the industry, is undersold by the worker who only takes up the trade as a second string… where these conditions prevail you have not a condition of progress, but a condition of progressive degeneration.
Winston Churchill.
At least one Tory knew the value of our people.


Pam said...

Excellent blog, but I cannot agree with your comment about Winston Chruchill! who wanted to turn the troops on miners? He described them as animal and suggest they "eat grass". Not therefore worthy of admiration, in my opinion and many socialists.

Gracie Samuels said...

Point take Pam and you are correct.