UP to 100,000 students marched through London yesterday to protest against £9,000-a-year tuition fees, and the way that the Tory-LibDem coalition is turning back the clock to make higher education the preserve of the sons and daughters of the rich, quite beyond the reach of the mass of the working class and middle class.
Education is being privatised for the benefit of the rich and big business, while the new universities like London Metropolitan University are being cut to pieces, witchhunted, bankrupted and then shut down.
There are already almost one million 16-24 year olds out of work, with many thousands of students who have graduated unable to get even the most menial job.
Instead, they are forced to lower their ambitions and to try and become Interns. These are young people who do a full day’s work, and don’t get any pay.
While they are creating super-profits for the bosses, they are told that they should be grateful for being allowed to acquire some work experience, and that if they are really good, in the future some employer may deign to employ them for money.
Meanwhile, tens of thousands of student graduates are forced onto the JobSeekers Allowance, and the regime of proving that you are desperately seeking work, or being forced to work for your allowance, or see it completely removed, and being forced to become part of the growing number of young people who are living on the streets, the modern equivalent of George Orwell’s ‘Down and Out in London and Paris’.
As well, the changes that are being made to housing benefit mean that for the under 35s there won’t be any.
So independent young people who want to make their own lives and futures are being forced back to live with their parents, into their 20s and 30s and even 40s, seeing that that they will have a lot of tuition fee money and loan money to pay back, over very many years, to the bankers.
Their parents who waved goodbye to them are also being targeted, to bring them back home.
They are to have their housing benefit slashed for every empty bedroom that they have in their house!
Youth who want to go to university but cannot afford the fees, and the amount of debt that will have to be shouldered, have already been dealt a severe blow with the abolition of their Education Maintenance Allowance (EMA) of some £30 a week. This was brought in to assist them as they prepared for their examinations in order to go to university.
Now it has been scrapped and the youth have been scrapped with it, despite the fact that they are the most important part of the productive forces.
All of these youth, and they number millions, have had their futures destroyed by the Tory-LibDem coalition and the Labour government before it, that brought back tuition fees and ended free state education!
The National Union of Students leadership says tuition fees will still be an issue in the next election – and it has published a YouGov survey indicating it will influence the voting of parents with children affected by higher fees.
Its position is electoral only. It seeks to try and replace the present coalition with Miliband who is pledged to continue with tuition fees and to do everything that is necessary to try and save the bankrupt capitalist system of the bosses and bankers.
This is no solution. Labour cannot resolve the crisis of capitalism. it can only carry on with making the workers and youth pay for it.
Meanwhile, the bosses are planning class war at home to abolish the Welfare State and regime changes abroad to rob countries of their resources.
Youth will fight for their future. They will build up the revolutionary party to smash capitalism at home and bring in socialism that is production to satisfy people’s needs. They will not just do this in Britain but all over the world. This is the future!