Saturday, August 25, 2007

So much for the right to protest

Today's Independent - see here - highlights another case where this impotent government not only allows a large multi-national corporation (nPower) to commit what should - in any sane society - be an illegal act, but then use the law to bully anyone who tries to protest about the gross act of negligence that they're about to commit.

Here's how it works: nPower is going to fill a number of lakes in Oxfordshire with 600,000 tonnes of waste material - apparently legally. Anyone attempting to protest against this is being bullied by threats of legal action (which will succeed thanks to this country's poorly drafted laws). Now, if you or I attempted to dump waste material into a lake without attempting to hide the fact, we'd surely be prosecuted, wouldn't we? And rightly so. Yet, if a large corporation does it, we're supposed to just sit there and let them?

I would very much like Gordon Brown to respond to this whole sorry episode publicly. But I doubt we'll ever hear anything from him on the subject - it seems it's not just the politicians who are in the pockets of big business. Apologists for Thatcher in the 80s tells us that the unions needed breaking, but why isn't there a groundswell supporting the reining in of big business? Clearly the pendulum has swung far too far in the other direction, but it seems that governments are far better at cracking down on the people they're supposed to serve than the businesses who seem intent on exploiting anyone and everyone for as much as they can make.

Once again I'm left to muse on whether or not Karl Marx had his description of capitalism spot on, even if his solution is unworkable with a species so taken with greed and selfish behaviour.

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