Tuesday, April 01, 2008

Great Scapegoats of Yesteryear #48 – The British Shop Steward

Once upon a time, whenever things went a little wobbly with the economy, the British public were reminded that the Number Once cause for all their economic ills was arsey unionists demanding too much money for too little work from nice employers like the guy in the far left of this picture…

The interesting thing now is that there’s no way anyone can honestly pretend that the (entirely unforeseeable) economic meltdown we’re about to witness is anything to do with organised labour or socialist policies; though if you flip through the comments in conservative blogs like Guido Fawkes' there’s no shortage of people, desperately trapped in an outdated paradigm, who are still trying.

(Many of Guido’s commentators seem to think that all that money the government is hoovering up is being used to support a bloated public sector when all they have to do is scratch away a little bit to discover that large swathes of that bloated public sector are actually operated by large, faceless, lucrative private monopolies, this bunch for example, which in turn are controlled by large, faceless and lucrative banks)

The problem with doing away with organised labour, offshoring skilled manufacturing jobs to the developing world and generally cheating your populace of income is that sooner or later that populace won’t be able to afford any of the goods and services you are trying to sell them. You can start lending them hods of paper money to buy those goods and services but sooner or later they won’t even be able to service the interest on those loans, let alone ever be able to pay the loans off.

And then what?

Whatever is to come you can be pretty sure that forcing people into even more debt by raising the cost of essential commodities, capping wage rises, lowering borrowing rates and creating mounds of worthless money is not a recipe for future happiness

And there won't be a union official in sight



paul said...

I remember the days when you had labour correspondents in newspapers,world in action exposing the economic league, trade unionists on tv and dire warnings about (the govt) 'printing money'.
To younger readers, the seventies wasn't all blackouts and bodies piled in the streets (as you would surmise from the one piece of stock footage that seems to have survived since then).
If fact it was quite nice.

Stef said...

some shocking colour scheme decisions though

ziz said...

"The Marina has been described as one of the worst cars of all time"

Dreadful slur, one great feature (so far as I know, undocumented" was the acrid burnt oil smell that trailed behind elderly versions for many miles on the motorway which gave you ample time to be ready for the uncertain driving of a man who was wearing hat inside his car.

My first computer was an LSI CP/M with IBM 8" disk drives (120K per drive) 64 K RAM Z80 which required 2 people to carry and cost more than a Morris Marina... which I still have ...in non working mode.

The Ital was a fantastic car, the only (?) one that enabled you to skin the knuckles on your right hand when the front quarter light was left in the open position.

Thegreat feature of course of Marinas was that they were all built on Friday afternoons.

Stef said...

"A survey conducted by Auto Express magazine in August 2006 revealed that just 745 of the 807,000 Marinas sold in Britain are still on the road - fewer than one in a thousand. This made it officially the most-scrapped car to have been sold in Britain over the previous 30 years"

ziz said...

" 745 of the 807,000 Marinas sold in Britain are still on the road "

Not too difficult to win the Concours at the Marina Owner Dribblers Club events then ?

Stef said...

aside from the small obstacle of having to drive to them in the first place

33_hertz said...

If I recall correctly, that hue was commonly called "babyshit" brown.

Stef said...

your memory serves you correctly

puppies sometimes got a mention too

classic scrapper said...


all original faults

Stef said...