03.12.2010 - All over the UK, UK
"Swines". "Cavaliers". "Dictatorship". These were some of the words not commonly uttered by students demonstrating in these past few weeks. And for good reason. The first two words have generally fallen out of modern proverbial usage. And they would dare not utter the second, as it would be apocryphal to what the Stalinist reality of their anarcho-liberalist dreams would have eventually become.
These protests, dotted around the country have all excelled in the art of achieving, and that is the art of achieving one thing - absolutely nothing. They complained that the voices of the students had not been heard. They had been heard alright, as they are now, but of course they've also been promptly ignored, as the age-old tradition of society verses students persists.
In a sorry state of affairs, the highlights of these protests themselves weren't initiated or acted upon by the students, but those (probably falsely) claiming to be aligned to the students, breaking Conservative Party office windows, and other such vandalism. Even the police seemed more interesting, what with horses and tear gas and police officers armed with tear gas and mounted on horses. In all honesty, it's no wonder the student protests achieved nothing - indeed, the bigger question is, why did they even bother?
The protests were aimed against cuts and raises. Which seems a bit stupid, really; if something is to be raised, something else needs to be cut, and if something is to be cut, then something else needs to be raised. This is simple economics. Hell, this is simple anything.
One person who in particular should know is Maths student, Lionel Forton. I went undercover to a student protest in his university town of Sheffield, disguised as a disgruntled senior middle class journalist. I asked him the simple question, "Do you agree with the reasons for the protest?" He answered "Yes". This support for the government's policy shows just the naivety of the students - they just want to protest, no matter if they truly believe in it. This would be dangerous if they ever achieved anything, but life has dealt them a hash blow in that they won't. The ones among them who will are precisely the ones who didn't bother showing up to the protests; the ones willing to toe the party lines.
Furthermore, as this image shows, they were more interested in works of fiction than in the actual real life political affairs which they claimed to be protesting:
"We've been very busy these past few days. Things have been happening. In Koreas. In Afghanistan. In the world, really."Adding:
"There's no place for listening to students when we have the real world to deal with, the world of hard knocks and broken promises."Clearly, this world agrees.