Do you recall the anguish and hand-wringing of politicians after the 2011 riots? They had no idea why the unrest started, blaming the opportunism of ‘mindless vandals’ intent on acquiring the latest trainers and flat-screen TVs.
So, I’m going to do Mr Cameron a favour. I’m going to save him all that heart-rending, gut-churning, debate about the causes of the NEXT riots. I’m giving him advance warning of what is to come and save us the expense of endless inquiries.
The Great British Public understands inequality. They know some (like Richard Branson) make billions while others earn barely enough to live. They understand wealthy families live in mansions while the homeless sleep in shelters. They know not all people are created equal and live with the discrepancies every day.
What they cannot tolerate is unfairness. They know some companies thrive while others perish. They accept jobs depend on the success of the organisation. What they will not accept is multi-million pound pay offs and bonuses to directors who lead their companies to failure.
When the British Prime Minister says ‘we are all in this together’ they expect to see the evidence. They will not accept falling living standards and job insecurity while directors’ pay rises inexorably.
The British public resent financing failing banks that pay bonuses for mediocrity. They don’t accept energy companies making record profits while hypothermia deaths triple as families find themselves unable to pay rocketing bills.
They’re angry that deals are done wiping out huge tax debts for large corporations while the Inland Revenue persecute small traders and the self-employed.
They’re incensed that bankers manipulated interest rates on a massive scale with impunity while petty crooks go to jail.
Taxpayers want to see the watchdogs they fund earn their keep. They do not expect High Street banks to get involved in high-risk casino gambling with their money.
Neither do they expect oil companies to raise the price of petrol and diesel while market prices fall. (Track the world price of oil on the Internet – you’ll be amazed to find oil prices are 10 per cent lower today than they were 18 months ago).
Trade unions of all persuasions are considering industrial action and it isn’t financial constraint that’s enraging their members… it’s the iniquitous way the burden of recession is distributed.
It’s squeezing those at the bottom while making a special case for those at the top that ignites the blue touch paper.
The next civil disturbances will not be the result of economic deprivation but an expression of public rage at the elitist policies of arrogant politicians and the affirmed belief that no change of government will make any difference.