Day of Rage? But Rage At What?

Head over parapet time.

There was a lot of comment after the appalling fire at Grenfell about not “politicising” the tragedy. It should not have been used as a vehicle to advance a political agenda – but of course it was, within hours – shamefully.

The media is very keen, especially the sections devoted to younger potential voters, to demonise the Conservatives. In the Huffington Post there is a piece by an angry young (I assume) journalist declaring that the fire was due to too few Black and Ethnic Minority (BME) Members of Parliament. He lists all those Tory MPs who were privately educated, and how many were university graduates. Thus, he claims, the fire was due to power and privilege: Tories had it all; the people living in that block of flats had neither.

Okay up to a point. There is little doubt that the Royal Borough of Kensington and Chelsea were not overly bothered by the poorer elements in their area. It is true that more BME MPs would help the country.

But as to the rest… What has education to do with anything? There are as many Labour Cabinet and senior MPs who went to exactly the same university courses as those on the Tory benches. Most MPs have had privileged lives. Most of those on the Government and Opposition benches went to good schools. A very high number went to Oxford and got degrees in PPE. Not only MPs, but their Special Advisers too. Is there privilege in Parliament? You betcher! Especially if your parents were MPs. That’s how youngsters Straw, Kinnock and others got their feet in the door, after all.

But facts don’t persuade the angry, and there is huge bitterness about the Tories and the present administration. Labour is happily fanning the flames since losing the last election.

The Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan, has written an open letter to the Prime Minister: http://www.independent.co.uk/news/uk/politics/sadiq-khan-theresa-may-grenfell-tower-fire-response-demand-action-residents-victims-deaths-safety-a7793846.html

On Monday I was listening to “The World At One” on Radio 4. Martha Kearney interviewed Nick Ross, the presenter of so many TV programmes, and a determined campaigner for safety in tower blocks. He was persuaded to get involved in the early 2000s and angrily spoke of the meetings he’s held with various ministers for housing, and how he always got the brush off. Since 2004 he has regularly tried to persuade ministers to install sprinkler systems without success.

One of those ministers was Sadiq Khan. There were many other Labour ministers with whom Nick Ross discussed the issue until 2010 when Labour was forced from office after the disaster of the banking collapse.

The fact is, successive governments and government ministers rejected retrospective installation of sprinkler systems. They allowed cladding to be installed that would increase fire risks. They reduced safety regulations (such as visits by inspectors).

And so, today, there is to be a “Day of Rage”. It has been eagerly promoted by those seeking to destabilise the state. Marxists and others will join forces, no doubt.

Who will suffer?

Most of all, the emergency services. The hard working people who have been rightly praised for their work over a series of terrorist attacks, who saved as many lives as they could in the Grenfell fire, and who have lost so many lives in recent years to bombs and fires.

I hope there is no violence today. I hope in particular that no police, fire and other emergency service staff get injured.

Sadly I think it’s a vain hope.

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Comments
4 Responses to “Day of Rage? But Rage At What?”
  1. These flames are being fanned by the very medium that you and I are using just now, buddy. The boy Zuckerberg envisioned Facebook as an engine that would create a global society, but he is only a naive native of a nation, most of whose citizens never leave its shores and who know eff all about the wider world. Therefore it will be a surprise only to him and his ilk that his globalisation machine has been taken over by the latter-day angry brigade, those who wish not to come together but to drive apart.

    I go back to the 70s which ended in chaos, with the TUC staging futile Days of Action aimed at the government it had sponsored, and the rise of Thatcher. Demos are nothing new, but now, thanks to the boy Zuckerberg and the like, they have acquired a language of hatred that should disturb us all. Today it’s the Left who are making most of the noise, but when the Right wakes up and joins the party, watch out.

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  2. Lindsey Russell says:

    A lot of things went wrong in the general election and I’m suffering too much from the heat to go into them all but one in particular is that people voted on what was in their own interests (regardless of whether it could be delivered) and didn’t vote putting what was best for the country first.

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  3. benchends says:

    I should think virtually everybody who votes does so in their own interest. We might dress it up as being ‘best for the country,’ but ultimately that means ‘best for my version of what I want the country to be.’

    Like

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