By Rab Bruce’s Spider

Twitter: @RabBrucesSpider

Mastodon: @RabBrucesSpider1@Mastodon. Scot

Nobody needs telling that the UK is in turmoil. It seems, though, that some people still don’t get who is to blame for this mess. I was appalled to see a Tweet by Kelvin MacKenzie, former editor of The Sun, in which he referred to ambulance drivers as "Creeps" for announcing that they intend to take strike action. Not only is it almost laughable that a person like Kelvin MacKenzie can refer to anyone as a creep with no apparent trace of irony, he seems oblivious to why the men and women in this difficult occupation have taken the desperate decision to withhold their labour. The Tory government has sent the UK into a spiral of poverty and hardship for so many of its citizens that workers in far too many occupations are really struggling. It is not just ambulance drivers, but pretty much anyone who is paid by the UK state who is feeling the pinch, which is why we see nurses, teachers and others taking strike action. Yet the response of those on the extreme right is to blame the workers.

Similar things are happening in other occupations. The ongoing rail and postal strikes are taking place in privatised businesses where the management has adopted Tory philosophy by enriching themselves and their shareholders at the expense of their workers.

I am old enough to remember the many strikes of the 1970s and 1980s. But I sense a real difference between the current industrial disputes and those which helped give the UK the reputation of being the Sick Man of Europe. You see, back then, strikers were vilified by the media, and public opinion was at best ambivalent, and often hostile, towards the strikers. But people are no longer so reliant on the mainstream media for their news, and this time around I sense a very different attitude. Far more people realise that it is Government decisions which have created this utter shambles, and I detect a lot more sympathy for the workers than for the bosses or the UK Government. The premiership of Boris Johnson has shone a light on the greed and corruption at the heart of the Tory Party, and Brexit is so obviously the root of many social as well as economic problems that even the best efforts of the television and newspaper media cannot fool people into blaming the workers.

We have seen with recent announcements of thousands of job losses in the major tech companies that billionaire owners treat their employees as disposable items. On top of that, the huge inequalities in society both in the UK and USA are now so apparent that it is not jealousy which is driving protests, it is a deep sense of injustice.

Where will this end? I don’t think many people would venture to offer a prediction on that, but the way things are going, it’s not going to be a happy ending for many people at all.