The ruling class In conference

by Daphne Liddle

IT IS HARDLY a coincidence that the Bilderberg group decided to have a conference just exactly a week before the G8 conference this weekend in Enniskillen, in the British-occupied north of Ireland.

The Bilderberg meeting was held last weekend in the Grove Hotel in Watford and attended by 138 people, selected by the group’s committee, on the basis of their extreme wealth, power and influence in the western world.

They include veterans like Dame Shirley Williams and war criminals like Henry Kissinger and claim to be just an informal gathering of leading elder statesmen with the best interests of the world at heart — the capitalist world that is.

On this occasion the meeting has been well publicised and has attracted hundreds of protesters. The presence of people like David Icke among the protesters allows the media to snigger at the lunatic conspiracy theorists and to dismiss the more rational protests of Michael Meacher MP, who points out that the discussions in the Grove Hotel will influence decisions taken in governments around the world and bodies like the IMF and G8 — but are totally secret and undemocratic.

Among the 12 “key topics” for this year’s conference were “developments in the Middle East” and “Africa’s challenges”.

The Bilderberg Group and the G8 delegates both seem worried about the growing power and influence of the BRICS group (Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa) growing economic power and cohesion. They are very worried about Chinese influence in Africa — freeing it from reliance on western imperialist economic strings.

Needless to say there is not a single African representative in the Bilderberg Group. It is reported to be 97 per cent white and male.

Dinosaurs

So the power of these imperialist dinosaurs is waning and, thanks to the BRICS group and rising working class mobilisation, the Third World is advancing and living standards can rise there.

The bad news for us is that these masters of the imperialist universe are succeeding in screwing the working classes in western Europe, the Unites States, Australia and Canada.

Figures released last Wednesday by the Institute of Fiscal Studies (IFS) show that wages in Britain have fallen since the economic crisis of 2008 faster and further than ever before in real terms.

The IFS claims this is due to workers being so afraid of unemployment that they will put up with effective wage cuts. In addition, the IFS pointed out that fewer workers are unionised or covered by collective wage agreements and they tended to see smaller wage increases.

Earlier this week, the TUC launched its Britain Needs A Pay Rise campaign, with new research showing that Britain’s total annual pay packet had shrunk by £52 billion last year, compared to before the recession, as a result of reduced hours, real wage cuts and changes in the type of jobs people are doing.

Added to that has been the butchering of the social wage — public sector spending on health, education, welfare and so on.

Our living standards are falling but we are not, yet, fighting back as we should. Figures from the Organisation of National Statistics (ONS) show a substantial fall in the number of working days lost because of strikes.

In April 2013 there were 30,000 working days lost from 15 stoppages. Over the previous year, 314,000 working days were lost from 135 stoppages. This is down by more than 75 per cent from a spike in industrial action which centred on the November 2011 public sector pensions strike.

Workers in the major capitalist countries face a stark choice: suffer ever falling living standards and put up with it, or organise to overthrow the ruling powers, represented by the Bilderberg Group.

And all respect to our brothers and sisters in Africa, Asia and Latin America who are currently leading the international workers’ fight and showing us how it is done.