Thursday, 11 November 2010

It's That Picture Again

Some pictures seem eternally topical. Forgive me for showing it again.

That's (part of) me, top left. That's the Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change with the battering ram (apparently "the tenth most powerful minister in the new government", no less).

I took the day off yesterday, half -intending to go up to London to add my voice to the crowd opposing the Coalition's policies for higher education, half-intending to redecorate the mouldy bathroom ceiling. The ceiling won, I'm afraid.

The Prof was there, however, and reports that the best chant was "Nick Clegg, shame on you, shame on you for turning blue!". Apparently the route chosen was a little odd, and created long periods of crown immobility, which may have contributed to the eventual outcome.

Does the Coalition start to crumble now, imploding under the stress of Lib Dem hypocrisy and Tory condescension? We'll see.

Your blogger assembling a union banner in ancient times


Martin H. said...

Unsurprisingly, the term anarchists has been widely used in the press. I wonder what percentage of the population will stop protesting, for fear of being branded in such a way?

Sad to see that the skill of banner-making has declined so much, since ancient times. But then, students today, don't get nearly enough practice.

Mike C. said...

To me, "anarchist" is the description of a certain range of political positions, not a term of abuse, or a synonym for "cynical troublemaker". I have known a fair few people who travelled under that flag, and most of them were among the most decent, peaceful, intelligent people you could hope to meet. Ditto "Trotskyist".

In that top picture, we are forcing entrance to an administrative building which we then occupied overnight, only to be brutally ejected and then run the gauntlet of police lines outside.

I imagine, if I was 20 again, I might well have found myself invading Millbank Tower, not out of any great political conviction but because, as a young man, I had a certain mad attraction to that kind of dangerous fun -- what gentler anarchists would condemn as "adventurism".


Martin H. said...

I wholeheartedly agree with you about the term. But there is a misconception that the press, and the government, find it all too convenient to cash in on.

During my three years of unemployment, in the 80s, I was quite vocal and, as a result, encountered some pretty scary people. If you ever watched Alan Bleasdale's GBH, you'll know what I mean (Toxteth and all that). It may have been my letter to number 10 that prompted the 'special file' treatment, I subsequently received.

Anonymous said...

Now I can be revealed. it is I in the extreme top left corner, suffering lens distortion and reconciling myself to the presence of so many future pillars of society, including one of the leaders in the field of Operational Research in health care, a now early-retired chair of one of UK TV's most successful documentary productions companies, a distinguished QC, and said cabinet minister. Outside the frame, who knows what other Olympians?
Monsters of Millbank -- this is your future!

Mike C. said...

Hey, anonymous old friend, I can still feel your elbow in my ear as if it were yesterday -- it doesn't do to be a short man at a riot.

You're right, you definitely get a better class of hooligan at political protests (especially in Broad Street). The motivation (and chutzpah) to shove policemen in a good cause can take a person a long way...