Grenfell Tower – Britain still a country that murders its poor

March 2024 Forums General discussion Grenfell Tower – Britain still a country that murders its poor

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  • #85552
    Anonymous
    Inactive

    Not a lot of discussion on this forum of “hot” topics in the news where workers have been treated like dirt under the shoes of their masters yet again – I’m talking about Grenfell Tower.

    I can understand it in a way – so what, capitalism craps on workers yet again, so what’s new.  I do think that possibly more topical items of discussion might engage people straying onto this forum, though.

    Aditya Chakrabortty has written as follows in the Guardian:

     “While in Victorian Manchester, Friedrich Engels struggled to name the crime visited on children whose limbs were mangled by factory machines, or whose parents were killed in unsafe homes. Murder and manslaughter were committed by individuals, but these atrocities were something else: what he called social murder. “When society places hundreds of proletarians in such a position that they inevitably meet a too early and an unnatural death, one which is quite as much a death by violence as that by the sword or bullet; its deed is murder just as surely as the deed of the single individual,” he wrote in 1845, in The Condition of the Working Class in England.

    Over 170 years later, Britain remains a country that murders its poor. When four separate government ministers are warned that Grenfell and other high rises are a serious fire risk, then an inferno isn’t unfortunate. It is inevitable. Those dozens of Grenfell residents didn’t die: they were killed. What happened last week wasn’t a “terrible tragedy” or some other studio-sofa platitude: it was social murder.”

    https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2017/jun/20/engels-britain-murders-poor-grenfell-tower

    He also mentions the fact that many disabled people have killed themselves rather than go through more indignities trying to get hold of their benefits.

    This happened under a PM who saw fit to introduce a manifesto pledge to give MPs a free vote on repealing the fox hunting ban – so that a few toffs can dress up in silly clothing, blow a bugle and let hounds rip some small furry creature to bits.

    #127741
    HollyHead
    Participant

    Some discussion of this terrible tradgedy has taken place on the SPGB Facebook pages.And yes it is yet another example of outcomes originating in capitalisms economic imperatives — the need to make profit comes before the safety needs of people.

    #127742
    Anonymous
    Inactive

    Good to know this has been discussed on your Facebook page.  I steer clear of Facebook myself.I hear on the news this morning that the Grenfell Tower residents had chosen a fire resistant material for the cladding themselves.  Their choice was ignored.Just a horrendous thing to happen, no wonder many of the members of the emergency services were traumatised.  Perhaps lawyers can bring a case of corporate manslaughter to court.  Not that it will bring anyone back.

    #127743
    rodmanlewis
    Participant
    meel2 wrote:
    Not a lot of discussion on this forum of “hot” topics in the news where workers have been treated like dirt under the shoes of their masters yet again – I’m talking about Grenfell Tower.I can understand it in a way – so what, capitalism craps on workers yet again, so what’s new.  I do think that possibly more topical items of discussion might engage people straying onto this forum, though.Aditya Chakrabortty has written as follows in the Guardian: “While in Victorian Manchester, Friedrich Engels struggled to name the crime visited on children whose limbs were mangled by factory machines, or whose parents were killed in unsafe homes. Murder and manslaughter were committed by individuals, but these atrocities were something else: what he called social murder. “When society places hundreds of proletarians in such a position that they inevitably meet a too early and an unnatural death, one which is quite as much a death by violence as that by the sword or bullet; its deed is murder just as surely as the deed of the single individual,” he wrote in 1845, in The Condition of the Working Class in England.Over 170 years later, Britain remains a country that murders its poor. When four separate government ministers are warned that Grenfell and other high rises are a serious fire risk, then an inferno isn’t unfortunate. It is inevitable. Those dozens of Grenfell residents didn’t die: they were killed. What happened last week wasn’t a “terrible tragedy” or some other studio-sofa platitude: it was social murder.”https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2017/jun/20/engels-britain-murders-poor-grenfell-towerHe also mentions the fact that many disabled people have killed themselves rather than go through more indignities trying to get hold of their benefits.This happened under a PM who saw fit to introduce a manifesto pledge to give MPs a free vote on repealing the fox hunting ban – so that a few toffs can dress up in silly clothing, blow a bugle and let hounds rip some small furry creature to bits.

    …and yet the crapped-on workers still vote for it…

    #127744
    james19
    Participant
    #127745
    Anonymous
    Inactive

    Good one, James.This man has been having a bit of a rant:https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qRNXff_HHuU

    #127746
    Anonymous
    Inactive

    Good one, James.This man has been having a bit of a rant:https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qRNXff_HHuU

    #127747
    rodmanlewis
    Participant
    meel2 wrote:
    Good one, James.This man has been having a bit of a rant:https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qRNXff_HHuU

    When I first heard the news and that it was in North Kensington, that told me everything I needed to know.

    #127748
    Dave T
    Participant

    106 years after the Triangle Shirtwaist Factory Fire in New York where 146 workers were killed and here we are again. Capitalists will always cut costs and they never care about the loss of human life as the Grenfell Tower tragedy testifies to. These terrible events are part and parcel of an exploitative society and will continue until workers get rid of it.

    #127749
    Anonymous
    Inactive

    I shared this on our Facebook. He makes some good pointshttps://www.facebook.com/UnityMarchUK/videos/1395631037185088/Some of the workers have been told that they are not entitled to be rehoused as they made themselves homeless by refusing to take accommodation in Northumberland. Some are sleeping rough.  Nothing new about this, I have witnessed this myself 

    #127740
    Anonymous
    Inactive

    Hi VinYes, I like James O'Brian and I often listen to his phone-ins.  He is very keen to get people to substantiate their comments with facts – and there is no doubt that he has a heart as well as an enquiring mind.I think he regards himself as some kind of “liberal” but he gets accused by right wingers of being a “leftie”.Meel

    #127750
    alanjjohnstone
    Keymaster

    While the fire was still smoldering and smoking our blog commented on the fire.http://socialismoryourmoneyback.blogspot.co.uk/2017/06/disaster-capitalism.htmlAnd a follow-up brief observation herehttp://socialismoryourmoneyback.blogspot.co.uk/search?updated-max=2017-06-16T08:01:00ZNo need to return to the Triangle Fire because the blog has regularly discussed the more recent factory fires and building collapses in sweat-shop Asia and the industrial "accidents" in America.I think we were right not to jump on the band-wagon of the legitimate outrage of the Grenfell and other high-rise tenants which those on the Left did. But i think the blog could have done a bit more to commend and congratulate the protestors who have indeed partially recognised the source of atrocity, cost-cutting, but who are still not directing their anger at the system which permits it. But instead, urged on by the Left, they are blaming the Tory council and the Tory government, giving past Labour governments and Labour controlled councils a free pass on their budget-focussed building procedures. I can't express my own indignation when on news reports and press photographs i saw the iniquitous Socialist Worker placards. People have not fully joined up the dots for a more accurate picture. When the pain and suffering has eased, we need to criticise those who are being seen as the "friends" and "sympathisers" of Grenfell and highlight some home-truths and point our fingers at all parties Doing so now, i feel would not be receptively welcomed. 

    #127751
    alanjjohnstone
    Keymaster

    As expected, many other high-rises have been found to have similar fire-risks to Grenfell and hundreds of people are being evacuated and temporarily re-housed.Sad to say that, "kith and kin" once more are being given priority over "strangers". The case against offering increased admittance to refugees was based upon lack of housing yet now those homes are being found and made available. It shows what can be done when there is a political will. 

    #127752
    Anonymous
    Inactive

    Owen Jones supports the Labour Party – I don’t know if Frankie Boyle does.In the video below, Boyle does seem to understand that he has a deeper understanding of what’s wrong with our society; he speaks about “structural changes” being necessary (rather than just a change of politicians).It’s quite chilling the way he describes the function of politicians, Tory politicians in this case.  He says they are well trained in handling disasters, that they are “disaster capitalists” and that, currently, they have Theresa May strapped to the front of their war machine (the implication being, they could strap somebody else up there, the function of the machine would be the same).He speaks of actuaries making cold, calculating risk assessments, so that it was an “acceptable risk” for them to let Grenfell (and other buildings) be clad in something that constituted a fire risk – all in the name of profit.With regard to London, he says they are planning to make London like Paris; a gleaming centre full of top rate hotels, gleaming banks and shiny office blocks; the poor will be sent to the outskirts, the “banlieues” of Paris – all the better to manage any riots, they can be easily shut out from the protected centre.All of this is coolly planned, he says.I don’t know about you, but I find some of this difficult to get my head around.  There’s Boyle, by all accounts a person able to empathise, to see the injustices visited on people, to get angry on their behalf – on our behalf – to understand why it is happening.  There are other people like Boyle, hopefully most of the people on this list.Then there are the lizard people (you get the feeling that at any moment, the skin’s going to peel back and who know what’ s going to appear), like Theresa May, like the accountants and actuaries coldly calculating that people dying is an “acceptable risk”.How can there be such a wide disparity of empathy and understanding between people – are all our “overlords” psychopaths?Theresa May, like many in her party, spend an inordinate amount of time on looking “smartly turned out” – you just notice her carefully matched necklaces and earrings, the new, neat hairdo, and the  expensive looking suits.  David Cameron chided Corbyn on his scruffy appearance in the House of Commons.A scruffy appearance is worth a mention in the highest centre of power in the land and is not acceptable– letting people fry to death in high is buildings is.https://www.theguardian.com/global/video/2017/jun/23/frankie-boyle-grenfell-tower-residents-were-treated-as-less-than-human

    #127753
    Anonymous
    Inactive
    Quote:
    Owen Jones supports the Labour Party – I don’t know if Frankie Boyle does.

    He doesn't support them as they came to be, ruling careerists, in Scotland. He has a thing for Sottish independance, from a Leftie perspective, but is more a 'workerist' versus 'upperosity' type.I thnk he is sufficiently iconoclastic so I don't think he will be comfortable in any camp.That is the first interview I've seen, where he didn't resort to comedy.

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