Tuesday, 9 August 2011

Stay Home Tonight

One motive for the riots is 'See what you get when you take away a kids future'. Indeed cuts have ensured that opportunities for access to higher education are nil, job opportunities, possibility of affording a decent place to live, negligible. Even after a patch up job, where community figure heads might try to take some of the blame here and ensure the provision of more youth services, improve police dialogue etc UK society will never provide financial equality for all if neoliberalism remains central. I think an important question we actually need to ask 'what kind of future?' ... a great future as a wage-slave, working all the hours in the week to pay the mortgage and buy 'stuff', or work in goal/corporate orientated academia, or a social sector driven by key performance indicators etc? - in the neoliberal emerald city, the streets aren't paved with gold for most. I think the kids have seen through this and nihilism has set in.

What these looting kids are doing in a 419 culture, cut out the middleman, style is cutting to the chase. They got the trainers, the gold, the track suit, and did they have to work for months or nurture soul scalding credit? ... they did not. The way these objects of desire are produced and distributed is the problem, not the objects themselves or the desire. Look to Adam Curtis' All Watched Over By Machines of Loving Grace for a history on the oil crisis in Nigeria for insight into the actual costs of primary source theft, i.e. oil to make our Play Stations etc. Surely this is the individualistic entrepreneurship neoliberalism advocates, talk about instant profit. Fast wealth looks bad and unfair, but at least these kids have the guts to do it out in the open, not behind false shrouds of dignity like the political elite and the mega-rich.

The gangs already have their organised unions, I think it shines a light on the lack of other Londoners to come together and take to the streets to protest. I resent Teresa May et als exclusion of these kids as 'thugs' that 'Londoners' should unite against. These kids are Londoners. At this time any demonisation should be abhorred. Denying responsibility for social malaise is a tabloid tactic. However, I think the governmental stance will play on the idea that at this time of great austerity, everyone should be making do and mend, altruism is key. These kids are not playing fair, not showing allegiance to the Big Society and not showing the negative solidarity that is needed. Their criminality will be seen as a great burden, they will be outlawed. I think everyone is looking for significance here, political intent, or a logical motive. Of course the rioters' motives will be mixed. But on the whole I think the motive is angry revenge, revenge for taking out one of their own (Mark Duggan) revenge for being poor and for being bored.

As I write short term solutions are being proposed - further denial of civil liberties, legal police brutality in the form of surveillance of phone calls, use of water canons and plastic bullets.

No comments:

Post a Comment