LABOUR Industry Minister Margaret Hodge has won the support of Hazel Blears (Chairman of the Labour Party and a candidate for the deputy leadership of the party) and 10 Downing Street itself, ie the Prime Minister Tony Blair, for her call to put Britons first as far as access to housing is concerned and to put foreigners to the back of the queue.
Hodge, citing the need to make tough decisions, gave her celebrated example, one that all racists will admire.
This was that an overcrowded British family living in inadequate housing should be given priority over very badly housed migrants whose children were suffering from asthma and other conditions as a result of their appalling housing conditions.
Hodge and her supporters are seeking to appease and desperately convince the BNP and racist voters that there is no need to stand or vote against them at the next general election, when MPs like Hodge may well lose their seats because of the Blair-Brown government’s bloody war in Iraq and their other war at home, against council housing and the Welfare State.
The policies of the Blair governments have been drawn up for big business, and every one of them has hit the working class and Labour voters.
Blair and Brown have halted the building of council houses and fought to sell off every council estate to the private sector, creating a huge and growing housing crisis.
It has encouraged a massive migration from Eastern Europe, solely from the point of view that it is the best possible way to keep wages down in Britain, at a time when the cost of living is soaring.
Migrants have been seen only as cheap labour, as fodder for the gangmasters, and their housing and basic living needs have been completely ignored.
At the same time, Labour has been privatising the NHS and education, and introducing plans to close up to 100 District General Hospitals, putting the bosses in charge of hundreds of City Academies while allowing tuition fees for students to rise, with the next rise predicted to take them up to £10,000 a year.
All this has been accomplished at the same time as the taxation of the poor has been increased, and lightened for the rich.
The end result of this rampant Thatcherism is a Labour government that is hated by millions of workers
The response of Hodge, Blears and Blair to this crisis of their own making is to start playing the race card.
First of all, they are insulting the working class and its youth, who are not racists.
Secondly, once on that slippery slope of appeasing racism there is no telling where it will lead to and what movements will emerge out of it.
Having got to ‘A’ of the racist alphabet, ‘House Britons first’, the next letters beckon, from ‘Jobs for Britons first’ to ‘Repatriate foreigners who are a burden on the Welfare State’.
The working class and its trade unions must oppose racism and fight for the unity of the working class to solve the housing, jobs, NHS and low wages crisis.
To do this, the trade unions must advance and recruit millions of workers with a policy of boldly bringing down the Blair-Brown government that has already turned putrid under our noses, to go forward to a workers’ government.
This government will nationalise the banks, the drug companies and the building industry, under workers’ control, to build millions of council houses to solve the housing crisis and to defend and further develop the NHS.
Building millions of council homes will provide hundreds of thousands of new jobs at trade union rates of pay and create the need for hundreds of thousands of apprenticeships for youth to learn skilled trades, also at trade union rates of pay and conditions. The way out of the social crisis that Labour has created is not through appeasing racism but advancing to socialism.