gallery, cafe & apartment


I have almost got another blog post ready, but I felt like a quick eve-of-poll rant.  We haven’t got any local elections around here, only the European elections, but there’s plenty in politics to rant about even without elections.  I could rant about Nigel ‘Phony’ Farage, the privileged, privately educated, stockbroking, pinstriped, self-styled man-of-the people, Toad of Toad Hall, but it’s too easy.

No, my current bête noire is that current favorite insult of the neo-liberal – ‘anti-business’.  George Osbourne used it as his ‘killer’ argument against UKIP and Labour in a speech to the CBI today.  Almost every time a government minister is up on their hind legs they are calling anyone who disagrees with them ‘anti-business’, a level of name-calling debate that they should have got over in the playground.

Of course, calling people ‘anti’ something is a very old trick – it’s a negative so it is supposed to put you on the back foot. You are supposed to say ‘oh no, we’re pro-business, of course we are’, as the rights of  “hard-working people” are brushed under the carpet of zero-hours contracts, enforced ‘self-employment’ (so the real employer is spared the hardship of national insurance payments), tax breaks and child protection services sold off to the sort of companies that bill us for looking after non-existent prisoners, assuming they haven’t lost them in the first place.

OldByreSkye – apparently we may harbour "anti-business" sentiments...

OldByreSkye – apparently we may harbour “anti-business” sentiments, despite being a business…

So here’s a thought.  If someone says you’re anti-business, don’t say ‘we’re pro-business’, say ‘We’re actually pro-people’, because people are what makes business work: ALL the people from the bottom up.  Remind them that it’s normal for there to be risk if you make an investment and you can’t expect the public purse to make it better if you lose out.  That drug companies were founded to make drugs, not fortunes for city financiers and hedge funds.  That if you need paying more than a million pounds a year to make you feel secure and valued then you might not need more money, you might just need counselling [and you can afford to pay your taxes].  That it’s rational to expect a safe working environment.  And if being pro-business means that you are anti-people, anti “normal hard-working people” [to quote just about every government speech since they hit on that particular divisive wheeze] then maybe, just maybe, you’ve got the model wrong…

Currently listening to: Ziggurat – Steve Tilston.  A Pretty Penny should be played as background music every time a banker is interviewed on television.  And Nigel Phony should be made to listen to Speaking in Tongues until his ears bleed…

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