Join the Socialist Party Join us today!

Printable version Printable version

Facebook   Twitter

Link to this page:

From The Socialist newspaper, 16 October 2013

Tories' rags and riches Britain; Join the socialist fightback!

James Ivens
Tale of Two Cities - Youth Fight for Jobs protest against Workfare in Stratford's Westfield shopping centre in London 25 February 2012 , photo by senan

Tale of Two Cities - Youth Fight for Jobs protest against Workfare in Stratford's Westfield shopping centre in London 25 February 2012 , photo by senan   (Click to enlarge)

It is the best of times, it is the worst of times.

When Charles Dickens wrote his Tale of Two Cities, he saw a world divided by poverty and excess. But even his alcoholic anti-hero Sydney Carton isn't a scratch on today's super-rich soaks.

Last week in Mayfair, two oil magnates fought a "full-on Champagne war". Stunned witnesses described the competing capitalists ordering "more and more" bubbly. Their contest for biggest bill totalled 131,000, or a decade on the minimum wage, in just one night.

For many minimum-wage workers, the "war" seems permanent - and the enemy is want. At the same time last week, the Red Cross announced plans for emergency hunger relief in Britain. Better known for work in the war-torn third world, the charity has not distributed food here since World War Two. More than half a million rely on food banks for meals, many in 'gainful' employ.

According to the Mirror, the "Bollygarchs" bought so much booze that a third went untouched - only to be poured away at the end of the night.

The Guardian recently reported on working class Liverpudlians faced by the "heat or eat" dilemma. Unemployed chef Peter Browne detailed his 2-a-week food budget, subsisting on noodles, spaghetti and short-dated bread. He, like many of us, has been forced into fuel poverty by rising prices, job destruction and welfare cuts.

Striking teacher holding a Socialism2013 leaflet; London, 17.10.13 , photo by A. Hill

Striking teacher holding a Socialism2013 leaflet; London, 17.10.13 , photo by A. Hill   (Click to enlarge)

While the Peter Brownes of this world scrimp and struggle, the elite parasites down Dom Perignon in exclusive hideaways. Under capitalism, based on exploitation and inequality, they have plenty to celebrate.

Private firms are siphoning off tens of billions from an NHS shackled to crippling, decades-long PFI contracts.

Since 2009, wholesale energy prices have increased by around the same measly amount as net household income. Yet dual fuel charges have exploded by eight times as much!

And last week's deeply unpopular sell-off of Royal Mail could pay for more than one new helipad. Day one saw traders make an instant 38% profit. Meanwhile posties face ongoing attacks on pay, pensions and conditions.

Dickens' masterpiece conclud-ed with the French Revolution. That event showed how the poor masses booted out their oppressors.

Today we again need to build a mass movement, this time based on the potential power of the organised working class, to end this 'them and us' society.

The Socialist Party fights for socialism - a democratic society run for the needs of all and not the profits of a few.

If you agree - join us!

Socialism 2013

Socialism 2013   (Click to enlarge)

Socialism 2013

Fight against cuts, crisis and capitalism!

A weekend of discussion & debate hosted by the Socialist Party - London 2-3 November

For more information go to

Why not click here to join the Socialist Party, or click here to donate to the Socialist Party.

In The Socialist 16 October 2013:

Socialist Party news and analysis

Tories' rags and riches Britain; Join the socialist fightback!

Teachers, firefighters, workers fighting back: Unite the strikes!

TUSC: 2014 local elections campaign launched

Immigration Bill: Whipping up racism to cut our services

Council tax benefit cuts hit hard

SSE: So Sodding Expensive!

Fight Tory plans to scrap lifeline for young

Jobcentre staff struggling to cope

'Help to Buy' no solution to housing crisis

Them & Us


Robinson drops EDL but not his bigotry

Trade union-led anti-racist demo in Liverpool

Bradford anti-EDL protest

Education feature

Why are our schools in crisis?

International socialist news and analysis

Workers and youth re-assert their political voice in South Africa

Sri Lanka - 'No to Chogm' campaign

Refugees perish in Mediterranean "cemetery"

Socialist Party reports and campaigns

Join the party for the millions - not the millionaires

Socialism 2013 appeal

Save Kent's children's centres

Socialist Party workplace news

Probation officers to take on 'failing Grayling'

Time for national action on education

Fight the Royal Mail sell-off

Blacklisting victory - now build union strength

Workplace news In Brief


Home   |   The Socialist 16 October 2013   |   Join the Socialist Party

Subscribe   |   Donate   |   PDF  |   ebook

Related links:


triangleLiverpool Socialist Party: Political perspectives for Britain

triangleA socialist approach to Corbyn and a customs union

triangleWaltham Forest Socialist Party: Young people and the fight for a future in austerity Britain

triangleNorth West Socialist Party conference

triangleRussia, spies and nerve agents


triangleGrimsby TUSC: Tories out, Corbyn in, Elect real socialists in NE Lincs

triangleLocal paper reveals Labour candidate 'tried to defect to the Tories'

triangleBirmingham Socialist Party: Council cuts - How can we fight back?

The Socialist:

triangleThe Socialist - a fighting, campaigning, workers' paper

triangleVictorious Fearnville Fields campaigners thank the Socialist

triangleThe Socialist inbox


triangleSchool strike forces head to say privatisation will stop

triangleSheffield Socialist Party May Day meeting


triangleHull says no to war, no to austerity


triangleSave Free School Meals!


triangleLewisham & Southwark Socialist Party: Reform or Revolution?


triangleCoventry TUSC: Council cuts - how can we fight back?

News and socialist analysis

News and socialist analysis



Enoch Powell's racist 'Rivers of Blood' rant 50 years on


Them & Us

Them & Us



Billions for the bosses, benefit cuts for us



1,400 beds empty as patients lay in corridors: health unions must act now



Young people need homes



For a fighting, democratic Labour Party



A socialist approach to Corbyn and a customs union


Child poverty

Child poverty to hit 5m by 2021 - strikes can stop the cuts


Equal pay

Gender pay gap figures show need for trade union action


Young people

Alienation and austerity behind London deaths - fight for socialism



Fight the Tory enemy


Northern Ireland

Northern Ireland: peace process on the brink



Right-wing Vote Leave campaign may have broken spending laws



Retail crunch: even giants not immune as 21,000 jobs disappear



End the housing crisis! We can't wait till 2022!

triangleMore News and socialist analysis articles...

Join the Socialist Party
Subscribe to Socialist Party publications
Donate to the Socialist Party
Socialist Party Facebook page
Socialist Party on Twitter
Visit us on Youtube



Phone our national office on 020 8988 8777


Locate your nearest Socialist Party branch Text your name and postcode to 07761 818 206

Regional Socialist Party organisers:

Eastern: 0798 202 1969

East Mids: 0773 797 8057

London: 020 8988 8786

North East: 0784 114 4890

North West 07769 611 320

South East: 020 8988 8777

South West: 07759 796 478

Southern: 07833 681910

Wales: 07935 391 947

West Mids: 02476 555 620

Yorkshire: 0114 264 6551



Alphabetical listing

April 2018

March 2018

February 2018

January 2018