The wonderfully knowledgeable Camilla Batmanhgelidjh, writing in the Inde:
Our leaders still speak about how protecting the community is vital. The trouble is, the deal has gone sour. The community has selected who is worthy of help and who is not. In this false moral economy where the poor are described as dysfunctional, the community fails. One dimension of this failure is being acted out in the riots; the lawlessness is, suddenly, there for all to see. Less visible is the perverse insidious violence delivered through legitimate societal structures. Check out the price of failing to care.
Mary Riddell in the Telegraph pretty much nails it:
The real causes are more insidious. It is no coincidence that the worst violence London has seen in many decades takes place against the backdrop of a global economy poised for freefall. The causes of recession set out by J K Galbraith in his book, The Great Crash 1929, were as follows: bad income distribution, a business sector engaged in “corporate larceny”, a weak banking structure and an import/export imbalance.
All those factors are again in play. In the bubble of the 1920s, the top 5 per cent of earners creamed off one-third of personal income. Today, Britain is less equal, in wages, wealth and life chances, than at any time since then. Last year alone, the combined fortunes of the 1,000 richest people in Britain rose by 30 per cent to £333.5 billion.
But what are we going to do? The PM’s statement, containing words like “consequences” and ended abruptly with the brisk “I have important work to do” (oh, thanks for noticing), was the predictable old-skool cant of a predictable old-skool cunt, his unquestionable priorities the protection of his wealthy cronies, the only thing that is open for question is how much punishment he will dole out to anyone who dares complain about the poorest bearing the brunt of the UK’s economic shortfall while the top five per cent literally roll about in their billions, giggling.
This isn’t a society I am proud to live in. But the parts of it I am most deeply ashamed of are not, perversely, the parts who rioted last night.