AS THE GENERAL election campaigning enters its final week the reasons for keeping the Tories out at all costs become ever more obvious.
Tory ideas for changing society will all seriously deepen class inequality and lead to serious hardship for the working class.
They want to allow parents to get together and open their own schools if they are not satisfied with local provision — supported with taxpayers’ money.
We all know that the only parents likely to take up this offer will be those on higher incomes who have been through higher education. Working class parents do not have the time to runs schools.
Running schools is a full-time professional job and the prospects for pupils at schools run by amateurs are not good. But the money to support them would come from cuts to the budgets of local state schools.
Cameron has many other ideas for getting the general public to run their own public services — it is a way of cutting thousands of jobs currently done by qualified and competent professionals and putting them in the hands of misguided amateurs, where they will deteriorate, collapse and be replaced by private services only for those who can afford them.
Cameron also wants to set up a citizen service for 16-year-olds where they can be imbued with capitalist values — a Tory version of the boy scouts that is most unlikely to appeal to working class youth and would end up as the Young Conservatives on camping holidays subsidised by taxpayers.
The Tories are considering an idea for withdrawing housing benefit from young unemployed people who turn down three jobs and offering them accommodation in special hostels. The idea is insulting to the young and oppressive. But it is unlikely to happen — the hostels would cost taxpayers a lot more money than housing benefit.
In education Labour has made half-hearted attempts to get more working class students into the best universities but the inequalities are rooted in early-years education. Good quality nursery and primary education is the gateway to university entrance.
But the Tories have hinted they will destroy the current system of 15 hours-a-week free nursery education by allowing nurseries to charge top-up fees — thus immediately excluding the children who need it most.
And they will reduce the sure-start scheme being rolled out for all pre-school children to a targeted, means-tested service that will carry a stigma for all families deemed poor and ignorant enough to need it.
The policy ideas more and more mirror the ideas of the right-wing of the American Republican Party where tax cuts are predominant and public services are regarded as a burden on taxpayers that should be delivered only by condescending charities.
Cameron is promising big tax cuts for the very wealthy — but by cutting the civil service at the same time and reducing the number of revenue officers he will render it very unlikely that those who dodge paying any taxes at all will ever be caught.
Only those on PAYE, whose tax is deducted before they get their wages, will pay income tax at all. But we will all have to pay more VAT on the things we buy to make up for it.
We are very likely to get a hung parliament and a Tory-Liberal Democrat coalition is a real possibility. Clegg has said he feels closer politically to the Tories; he is on the right wing of his party.
He has also said he could work with Labour but not with Brown. The part of Labour he feels closest to are the failed ultra New Labourites like Blair, Hoon, Jowell and Charles Clarke.
hint of socialism
The ones he cannot stand are those still with a hint of socialism about them — and since last September’s Labour conference and the split with Rupert Murdoch, this is where Brown is gravitating to.
So any coalition with the Lib-Dems would leave the working class a lot worse off than it is now.
This is why we must support Brown, with all his faults.
But at the same time we must continue to work to educate, agitate and organise to raise working class political consciousness and rid the country of this dictatorship of the bourgeoisie that kicks the workers in the teeth, whoever is sitting on the front benches in Westminster.