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From The Socialist newspaper, 19 January 2010

LibDems show their true colours

As part of their 'progressive cuts' agenda, the Liberal Democrats have now backed down from their pledge of abolishing tuition fees. LibDem leader Nick Clegg now claims: "the world has changed" and that "money does not grow on trees".

But the Liberal Democrats have calculated that abolishing tuition fees would cost an 'unaffordable' 3.5 billion, and they backed the bailing out of the banks which cost over 800 billion, showing where their principles really lie.

The LibDems in the past have tried to win over the student vote by putting on a 'radical' front. Sadly this has caused some students to come to the false conclusion that the LibDems are an alternative to New Labour and the Tories. Even though they have never been elected to power, the LibDems have proved many times that they are in the same league as the rich and powerful.

Where they have been elected to council positions they have voted through cuts and privatisation of public services, such as the Tyne and Wear Metro system which is used by many students every day.

The LibDems are perhaps positioning themselves even further to the right in an attempt to show themselves as reliable coalition partners in a Tory-led government, which will inevitably cut our public services. However, no matter which combination of the main parties we get in government, it will only represent the bankers and the rich, making sure they don't suffer for the crisis they caused. Instead it will be ordinary workers and students who suffer.

The cuts, which all three main parties put forward, will put many more working class students off going to university. Unlike the LibDems, the Campaign to Defeat Fees and Youth Fight for Jobs fight for a free, publicly owned education system with living grants for all. The only way we will defeat tuition fees once and for all is by building a mass campaign involving students and linking up with workers in struggle and the trade union movement.

Paul Phillips Youth Fight for Jobs student organiser

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Related links:

Liberal Democrats:

triangleCorbyn's manifesto: An important step in the right direction

triangleTUSC: To stand or not to stand?

triangleLessons of the 'N30' 2011 pension strike

triangleLibrary cuts: working class kids suffer most

triangleLabour loses byelection but Corbyn isn't the problem

Students:

triangleBrighton victory

triangleUni market 'failure', two-year degrees - end cuts, scrap fees!

triangleLiverpool John Moores Uni landslide for Socialist Students

trianglePlans to launch no-cuts campaign at Kirklees College

Fees:

triangleMarch for free education! We demand a future!

triangleSocialist Students actions against uni fees on Budget Day

triangleWalk out against tuition fees on Budget Day!

Tuition Fees:

triangleSocialist Students day of action demands free education

triangleJoin the budget day protests!

Democrats:

triangleA world in crisis, ripe for revolution

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