No return to class war

I WAS on holiday while the TUC conference was happening, so never got the chance to comment on the silly reaction to Harriet Harman’s speech.

All she said was that the she wanted everyone to “get a fair crack of the whip” whatever their “socio-economic class”; “Equality matters more than ever” and “is necessary for individuals, a peaceful society and a strong economy”.

Pretty much like saying you’re in favour of motherhood and apple pie. But how do the Tories react?

Trying to focus on issues of class and background is “outdated and distracts from the real issues”, according to Theresa May, who seems to think HH has single-handedly restarted the class war.

Why are the Tories so dismissive of helping people, regardless of “socio-economic class”? Maybe they haven’t changed as much as ‘Dave’ likes to claim.

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15 Comments

Filed under Conservative Party, David Cameron, Labour, Politics

15 responses to “No return to class war

  1. Perhaps because they want to pretend class no longer exists?

  2. The tories are fighting a class war of their own, while the rest of us go to work.

  3. Johnny Norfolk

    How you can defend that woman I just do not know. She represents all that is wrong with Britain. She is from a posh background and has never done a real days work in her life and she is full of a guilt for her background.

  4. Madasafish

    Tom
    Spherical objects and you know it:-)

    That well known Conservative papaer the Guardian reported:

    http://www.guardian.co.uk/politics/2008/sep/10/tradeunions.labour

    Harriet Harman, Labour’s deputy leader, today appeared to soften an attack on the entrenched class system by removing a swath of quotes from her speech to the TUC on the government’s new plans to tackle inequality.

    The equalities minister was expected to say that social class – more than gender, race, sexual orientation or disability – was the main reason why people failed to reach their full potential.

    “What overarches all of these is where you live, your family background, your wealth and social class.”

    The quotes, briefed in advance, made the lead story in the Daily Telegraph under the headline “Class war is back as Labour bows to unions”.

    But today Harman confined herself to two examples – showing how less able six-year-olds from the middle class were already ahead of better able six-year-olds from working-class backgrounds – and showing how very rich men now lived longer than poor women.

    A Labour spokeswoman said that the main reason for the change was that the minister was speaking from notes and would not necessarily follow the text put out. The spokeswoman insisted that she had not intended to tone down her views.

    SO there CLASS does matter

  5. Zorro

    Probably because Labour subscribes to the Polly Toynbee camel train analogy…

    The only possible way the “gap in opportunities between rich and poor” can be tackled from your point of view is to work out the difference in cash between a rich person and a poor person, divide that by 2. Take that away from the rich person and give it to the poor person. (I realise it’s a bit more complex than this as there are a lot more poor people than rich people but that’s the gist of it and I didn’t want to confuse your Labour supporting readership).

    Stuff inequality. Inequality matter not one iota. Make the rich richer, this DOES trickle down. Everyone gets richer. As long as the poor are actually made richer then they are better off. The alternative with the economy the way it is will lead to almost every one of “the rich” leaving the country. This will not make one poor person better off.

    Or do you really believe the poor would be better off if they’re actually /poorer/ but more equal?

    When I say almost every one of the rich, this obviously excludes MPs for whom the state of the economy is not personally relevant, as you cheeky sods live outside of the real economy.

    I’m not poor (though Gordon is doing his damnedest to change that). I am certainly not rich. From my point of view, and that of every rational person I know, it doesn’t matter to me that there are people earning 20 million pounds a year running a bank. I expect someone running a bank to earn more than me. Economically all I care about is the amount of money in MY pocket and what it can buy me. Not in relation to what ANYONE else earns. Get it?

  6. Zorro – Forgive me if I take you up on a couple of points: “this obviously excludes MPs for whom the state of the economy is not personally relevant, as you cheeky sods live outside of the real economy.”

    Yeah, right. Unlike most workers, MPs have to reapply for their jobs every four years of their working lives, and when you’re a member of the governing party and the economy’s going through a bad period, that tends to concentrate the mind.

    Second: “I didn’t want to confuse your Labour supporting readership.” You mean Labour supporters read this blog?! Because they hardly ever leave a comment if they do…

  7. Madasafish

    Tom
    You don’t get enough Labour readers?

    Is this due to the failures in the modern education system or have they more sense than us non Labour supporters?

    I think we should be told… 🙂

  8. Quentinthecrisp

    Perhaps the Labour supporters are disguising themselves as conservative supporters as they are ashamed to admit their weakness.

  9. Zorro

    Tom,

    Unlike most MPs, normal people can be fired at any point, for you it’s only every 4-5 years. We plebs also have to pay for our own groceries, transport, accommodation, sky subscriptions etc, out of our wages, which are generally lower than yours.

    You lot seem to just put anything you don’t fancy paying on expenses. At OUR expense. (Note I’m not specifying this at Labour MPs, I think all MPs are pretty much on a par on this).

    I assumed you would have some Labour supporting readers, I admit I don’t see many. I guess that’s maybe something to do with the polls?!

    Getting back to my main point, which you didn’t address (probably a good part my fault, I do tend to go on a bit!) – Do you think the poor would be better off if;

    (a) if they are made richer, but the rich get /even/ richer, meaning they are richer but less equal

    or

    (b) made poorer but the rich made even poorer, meaning they end up poorer but more equal.

    ?

  10. richard

    I’m all ready to trot out some metaphors about bigger slices of pie and small boats rising on the tide but I don’t honestly think anyone’s listening.

    Good comment on Coffee House yesterday though. Something along the lines of “Gordon knows plenty about taxing and spending but sod all about not taxing and not spending”

  11. Patchouli

    The Equal Pay Act was introduced in 1970 – how’s that working out? The first Race Relations Act was five years earlier – major cases still hitting the headlines today.

    Why do you continue to believe that a law a day will be any more effective? How many more employment tribunals are there today compared with, say, 1997? Do tell and, while you’re at it, explain how an RAF typist can win over £700K due to a weak wrist but a gvt doesn’t want to pay pensions to the Gurkhas who have put their lives for the UK on the line.

    Yes, let’s have a discussion on equality. I can’t help being more gorgeous, more naturally gifted than the person down the road. I was born that way, along with my humbleness. I’ll not labour the point any further.

    Equality of opportunities through legal means has not worked. Equality through birth will never work unless you admire Hitler. If you don’t admit to the facts you’ve no chance in addressing them.

    Equality will not make for a strong economy, communism was quietly euthanised a while ago.

    Have to make dinner for my current husband now.

  12. Martin Cullip

    “Trying to focus on issues of class and background is “outdated and distracts from the real issues”, according to Theresa May, who seems to think HH has single-handedly restarted the class war.”

    No, I think Labour restarted the class war in the run-up to the Crewe & Nantwich by-election.

    Come on Tom, you MUST have been very embarrassed by that if the tone of this post is to be truly believed.

  13. Jerem

    Hi Tom – it’s me again. Can you advise. The PM is aghast that some businesses have off balance sheet accounting. He says this is bad. Why then is PFI ok?

  14. Madasafish

    Jerem

    Some businesses have off balance sheet accounting becuase the FSA lets them.

    The FSA is accountable to – the Chancellor.

    So Gordon is aghast that Darling is incompetent?

    Easy solution …

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