This is why I drink…

Yesterday was the 25th anniversary of the miner’s strike starting. One of my pet hates is the re-writing of history, which is why the BBC page dedicated to it is of interest and incredulity.

I remember watching the footage and, even as a seven year old, finding it fishy that a bunch of blokes in trainers would charge at riot police, complete with the whole stormtooper gear. Of course, we now know that the footage was doctored to suppress the fact that the police charged the unarmed strikers. Of course, when confronted with the evidence, the BBC (a publicly funded, supposedly neutral broadcaster who receive the same funding from a coal miner’s household in Yorkshire as they do from, say… a chief of police in London) assured us it was “an honest mistake“.

Hmm…

Sadly, the general public seem more concerned that the Beeb would misrepresent the Queen having an alleged tantrum over a photo shoot than the fact that the police in this country had been used to kick the fuck out of law-abiding citizens at the behest of the government. So, we have police brutality, government trampling on the civil liberties of members of the electorate and a cover-up by a public broadcaster. It’s a shame that we only mined coal, if there had been oil, perhaps the Yanks would’ve come in to “liberate” us.

I remember at the time our primary school had a “hero and villain of the week” thing; kids would draw some approximation of whichever footballer or pop star was to be recognised. A certain teacher I had went out of her way to encourage somebody to draw a picture of Arthur Scargill each week. I got in trouble for refusing. The next time somebody tells you there’s a leftist agenda in our schools or the media, make sure to point and laugh at them.

Hero of the week – Steve Nicol, villain – Scargill. I’m not sure which was more libellous. Steve Nicol, for fucksake…

Mick Hume (admittedly, a man in the media with a leftist agenda) wrote an excellent piece in yesterday’s Times. Apparently, Norman Tebbit deeply regrets” how things turned out, particularly the abandonment of the jobless miners. So that’s all right, then. Turns out they couldn’t afford a bike between them, let alone get on it.

So, for those of you keeping score during this rant, the seven year old me learned the following;

The government didn’t care about the consequences of their policies to the people they shafted.

In fact, M*rg*r*t Th*tch*r actively pursued policies to destroy the people who would not vote for her (see – Ravenscraig, the Poll Tax etc).

The Metropolitan Police and Army were given carte blance to attack (and in some cases, kill) British citizens with impunity.

The public service broadcaster was willing to be a part of a conspiracy to cover up what was going on.

Somewhere, a South American dictator is thinking; “Jesus, what balls…

Whatever you think of trade unionism, since the strike, there has been a shift away from skilled work and manufacture in this country to the point that our finance and service-dependent economy is humped as soon as a recession hits (like now). The political climate ever since (under the Tories and New Labour) has been one of increasing greed, fear and social injustice. We are all, unfortunately, now children of Th*tch*r.

But hey, I can always work in a call centre, for the time being…

Ironically, we’ve been importing coal ever since, despite a local source of better quality coal in the UK that could be used to control emissions to a greater extent. So much for making the country’s fossil fuel policy “more efficient” – how much was it costing to prop up this terrible, pinko commie industry, anyway? Compared to, say… the bail out of the banks, or the Iraq / Afghanistan debacle (another government / media whitewash)?

Or the Falklands conflict? That was fucking her, as well. Thanks for listening.

Mick Hume’s column archive is here.

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