Yesterday, All My Troubles Seemed So Close…

So what happened yesterday?  Well, after an uneventful morning, Mark and I headed to the Clock Tower for what turned out to be a rather muted protest at the effect of budget cuts on the disabled.  According to a recent Freedom of Information request, there have been thousands of deaths following claimants failing the incapacity benefit test; this sticks in the craw particularly since today’s announcement of an 11% pay rise for MPs.  Now, I note that the three party leaders have opposed this, but who the hell thought it was a good idea?  MPs already get a basic salary of 66,000 (that’s about six times our household income), not to mention expenses and allowances and the highly controversial second home scheme.  The whole thing stinks, and there to point this out was a gathering of disabled people, Left Unity people, other socialists and priests including the soon-to-be-licensed Poineer Priest amongst the homeless, Rev. Helen Hayes.  Oo!  Apparently she’s going to be licensed at the Martyrs!

The protest got off to a slow start as the PA took a while to arrive; however it featured a good balance of speeches, singing and poetry (from me, doing the poem I did at the LU conference, see Monday’s post)

And so to Peter’s, where we began the afternoon by toasting Nelson Mandela with a glass of South African shiraz, then descended into the rough with the Sicilian red which I brought and which Peter so much enjoys, and after that we broke out the other Merlot and then the South American bhajis descended into the rough with the cheese scones and Chris Conway came over with his three-headed girl and…

You get the picture.

Kirk out

Politics Schmolitics

People don’t seem to be liking these political posts on a Wednesday; I’m not getting many views, so I’m wondering whether to stick with them or change them.  And what would I replace them with?  I would ask for suggestions, but previous experience suggests that a deafening silence would result from that; so I’m going to have to come up with something myself.  And I’m thinking that, since we have a meeting on Sunday at the Phoenix cafe (3 – 5 pm)

to discuss how the arts and politics should interact; I should do something about the arts in these posts instead of just politics.  I mean the other arts; painting, sculpture, music, pottery etc.

The meeting on Sunday arose out of a desire to express politics in a different way.  political meetings are often dull or combative; they are generally business meetings where policy and pragmatism are yoked uneasily together while the group tries to steer a course through to where it wants to be.  Always assuming it has decided where it wants to be, that is.  There is usually some dull but necessary stuff; there may be some opinionated ranting; and there is often jargon which can put outsiders off.  So this is a new way of engaging with politics; to bring the heart and soul – and art and soul – into it.

So come along!

Kirk out