Springingtiger's Blog


Food Banks and Second Day Bread Shops

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This morning we were shopping in Tesco because of a special offer. To any food purchased for the food trust food bank, Tesco would add another thirty percent. Yes, it’s good PR for Tesco and I don’t suppose they will be out of pocket, but for people wanting to contribute it is a worthwhile offer. They say doing good should give one a warm glow, however I am upset and angry that in Glasgow we need food banks, I get no satisfaction from what we did today, only sorrow that it’s necessary. Actually it’s not necessary, it’s a result of the financial mismanagement of our colonial masters in London.

In Maryhill we used to have a “second day” shop that sold day old bread to families who couldn’t afford to buy it fresh, now the bread shop is gone, but we have food parcels for the poor. The government and media are portraying our poor as scroungers and cutting their benefits, now many are depending on charity to survive, these are no scroungers they are victims, victims of a callous English Conservative government. David Cameron may claim we are in this together, however that people are depending on food parcels while millionaires get tax cuts, shows how false that assertion is.

It is not only the unemployed who suffer benefit cuts, the London Tory government is attacking the disabled also. As well as cutting benefits and paying private companies millions to exclude disabled people from benefits, by forcing the closure of Remploy they are actually throwing disabled people out of work. Sometimes it feels as if David Cameron is punishing the disabled for living when his own son died. I can see no logic in the Conservatives’ treatment of the disabled, only spite and contempt.

This week, in a display of appalling double standards, we have been seeing the far right politicians and media, largely Tories and Daily Mail, attacking the Trades Unions funding of the Labour party. What is worse is the Labour leadership’s scramble to distance themselves from the Unions. The Conservative Party shamelessly accepts donations from businessmen and in return gives them tax cuts and law changes, yet complains when workers want representation in parliament. The behaviour of the Labour Party in the stooshie over Falkirk has been pitiful, and demonstrates how far they have moved from being a party for ordinary people. In their desperation to regain power, and its perks, they try to coorie up to big business and to the Middle classes while attacking the Unions they were set up to defend. The only reason the Labour party opposes Scottish independence is because they fear that without Scottish votes they won’t get elected to Westminster, even if they manage to prevent a yes vote they may discover they can no longer rely on a people they have betrayed.

It is time the Trades Union Congress recognised that the Labour Party is no longer either their friend or ally. It is time the unions turned their back on Labour and called on the TUC to establish a new political party to represent workers. As for the Westminster Parliament, it is time that Scotland realised, that as long as the union with England is maintained we will get Conservative governments, and as long as we get Conservative governments we will have to suffer the indignity of depending on food banks and Second day bread shops.

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