The 80’s shaped today’s society. Some say the 80’s needed to happen after Labour Governments failings in the 1970’s Winter of Disconntent, IMF, 3 day weeks, people sick of seeing rubbish on the streets. Hence Thatcherism and all it’s social evils, Free Market capitalism benefited some and left millions on benefits.
The Trade Unions were beaten into submission during the Miners Strike, youth culture became business through the new enterprise capitalism. Credit turned Council houses into castles, left people as slaves to the wage, some lucky ones got their freedom when they sold their homes for huge profits, others ended up in the workhouse when theirs were re-possessed.
During the Thatcher regime Political activism grew e.g. Red Wedge, Stop The City, CND, Anti Poll Tax Demos. A reaction to the injustice of selfish monetary policy, but strong political force, prevented any protest damaging Thatcher’s New Right Government, any opposition was crushed by her claw.
The 90’s was about consolidating our new society and packaging it up in Celebrity, Complacency and Compliance, Citizens as consumers. A re-branded Great Britain where things could only get better. But that was then and this is now! So where do we go from here then, and how are we going to get there, if the 80’s had to happen because of the 70’s, what is going to be done about the state of the nation in the 00’s? What’s the plan? Another set of extreme measures me thinks, for a whole new set of problems that have grown out of the 80’s and 90's e.g. Climate change, pollution, all the waste of 80’s economic growth had to go somewhere, and that’s on top of the constant issues no matter what decade, with things such as low pay and high prices, crime, living standards, you know the usual things that ails a Capitalist state, the things that they’ve created or condoned. The Cold War has finished, now it’s the War on Terror. Our young people are killing each other with guns and knives and for some reason immigrants want to come and live in Britain. No doubt here in 2008 there will be people saying that we have returned to a time of Labour crisis; discontent in Public Sector over pay with first the Police and now the teachers going on strike. People unhappy with Wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, credit crunch, high interest rates, increased cost of living, issues around immigration. Something old, something new, something borrowed something blue. Where’s the alternative? the opposition! New Labour and Conservative are one and the same a one party policy state, where it’s about containment and how to control the masses in this brave new world of theirs, with its high tech computers, genetic modifications and surveillance . As I’m thinking and typing this I can see many parallels with times that have gone I keep wanting to expand on points, and highlight them, but I’m starting to feel like I’m going to go round in circles if I do that, so I’m going to stop, unlike the world, politics and economics, which does go round in cycles. We need to remember that, and we also need to remember…fuck, forgotten what we need to remember, but it was along the lines of we are the opposition….we are growing in numbers…and they shouldn’t forget that…..and I wonder what people looking back will remember about the 00’s.