It was George Orwell who said: “In a time of deceit telling the truth is a revolutionary act.”
And, as I write this letter, I am also talking to a young man, a boy really, sitting beside his sleeping bag on Westminster Bridge.
He is homeless, destitute.
I will take the memory of that encounter to my grave.
It epitomised the Thatcher years along with cardboard cities, mass unemployment and riots.
The deindustrialisation of Britain, reducing vast swathes of country to a wasteland, was hailed as progress.
Truly a time of deceit.
I had seen real poverty in South America but had never dreamt it could happen here.
It is from that time my deep and abiding loathing of the Tories comes.
If that makes me a ‘red-flag waver’ or a ‘resident Marxist’ then so be it.
The fact is, whenever the Tories are in power people get hurt.
The last five-and-a-half years have eclipsed even that brutal time as Thatcher’s children have systematically dismantled the bedrock of our society.
At least under Thatcher and Major there was a kind of twisted logic but with these Bullingdon boys it is pure venom and a ruthless indifference towards the people.
We are told that the ‘long-term economic plan’ is working and that ‘Britain’s got its mojo back’ as the infrastructure of the country crumbles and mass unemployment and poverty become institutionalised – part of the furniture.
We even have a chancellor, who has failed to deliver on every promise, giving us now excuses for his future failings – the Chinese slowdown, oil prices, Islamic State, Uncle Tom Cobley and all.
Indeed, anything and anybody but himself while FTSE100 chief executives rack up in four days what the average worker will earn in a year.
The art of deceit and the corruption of language have risen to heights never seen before.
And while it hoodwinked enough voters the first time it is losing its power now that we have an opposition worthy of the name, holding the Tories to account, exposing their deceits and formulating alternatives.
If the boy on the bridge defined the Thatcher years then the case of Dawn Amos, whose life support was turned off the day the DWP wrote to stop her benefits, tells us everything about the Cameron years.
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