Britons in very large numbers reminiscent of the great trade union and peace marches of the early 1970s turned out for a march and demonstration in central London against the cuts now underway in essential social services and public spending. It was almost entirely peaceful, creative and solidarity building. A few 100 more extreme and violent actors ,possibly including some police undercover people, caused considerable destructive property damage at a number of fancy shops and hotels for which they will be prosecuted.
In no way should their extreme actions take away from the import of the vast number of peaceful protestors who represent the majority of the British population and their profound distrust of the Osborne foolhardy and divisive strategy of reactionary budget slashing before economic recovery has properly taken root in the British economy. Ed Miliband addressed the crowd, praising their solidarity and compared the march to the great movements for peace and progressive social change of previous decades. He also apparently and in my view, unwisely suggested that some cuts were necessary. He was booed by some for saying this. After suffering through the OsborneCameronClegg experience these Britons are in no mood to support budget chopping of any sort in the midst of an economic crisis. They are in economic policy terms correct. It is both needlessly cruel and foolishly counter-productive to impose austerity during an economic downturn and prematurely before full recovery has taken place.
Harold Macmillan, British Conservative Prime Minister (1957-1963) well understood this. Unfortunately most of this new generation of British Conservatives appear not to.