Greed. Profit. Selfishness. These are the values Boris Johnson has just declared himself committed to in his recent inequality is good speech. A sad manifestation of Conservative ideology, the London Mayor has announced his support for inequality – claiming it to be a necessity as some people just have lower IQs. In perhaps one of the most damning speeches of this coalition, Boris Johnson has presented us a case for a rougher, market-driven Britain. Boris says he would like to see more power and respect given to the richest, who in his mind contribute far more to the country than the average Britain. Despite John Majors warnings about social mobility and inequality, it is very clear that it is the ruthless neoliberals that have taken the helm of the Tory Party. Markets and businesses are sadly the driving forces of British society – whether we like it or not.
People like Boris Johnson, David Cameron and George Osborne aren’t like you or me – or perhaps even any politician we’ve ever had in the past. They worship money and the devices of its accumulation. They worship free markets and corporate dominance. These are people who have grown up around the rich, schooled in Eton and educated in Oxford. They have no doubt spent their whole lives around ideas of wealth and extravagance, and because of this have little concern for the mothers struggling to feed their children in abandoned northern council estates. Our government isn’t just ignoring the problems of ordinary people, they’re intensifying them. Welfare and compassion aren’t ideals shared in Westminster. Because why spend money on helping the less fortunate?
What Boris fails to recognize is that it is the big businesses who are in fact the biggest drains on British society.They profit from tax avoidance, zero-hour contracts and the stress of their squeezed employees. The majority of companies in the FTSE100 could very likely afford to double the wages of every single one of their employees and still turn obscene profits – it’s their greed which stops them from doing so. However it won’t be the Tories who decide to clamp down on these untamed corporate monsters. Tories are the parliamentary representatives the upper classes; founded on ideals of markets, wealth and affluence. The party wages their war on budgets, welfare and the public sector while people suffer needlessly in the face of profitable corporations. An ethical society would not let this happen.
Scotland looks it’ll be able to escape the business-driven oligopoly of power and politics, turning towards a model similar to those of the humane social-democracies in Scandinavia. But for most Britons a Tory country looks very grim indeed with people like Boris Johnson on the party leader shortlist. The Conservatives will no doubt continue to commercialise the very social fabrics of British society, however in response we need a movement that will stand up to market evils. A movement for sensible, social-democracy – a Britain based on community, compassion and human ethics.