Masters Of War

Come you masters of war You that build all the guns You that build the death planes You that build all the bombs You that hide behind walls You that hide behind desks I just want you to know I can see through your masks. You that never done nothin' But build to destroy You play with my world Like it's your little toy You put a gun in my hand And you hide from my eyes And you turn and run farther When the fast bullets fly. Like Judas of old You lie and deceive A world war can be won You want me to believe But I see through your eyes And I see through your brain Like I see through the water That runs down my drain. You fasten all the triggers For the others to fire Then you set back and watch When the death count gets higher You hide in your mansion' As young people's blood Flows out of their bodies And is buried in the mud. You've thrown the worst fear That can ever be hurled Fear to bring children Into the world For threatening my baby Unborn and unnamed You ain't worth the blood That runs in your veins. How much do I know To talk out of turn You might say that I'm young You might say I'm unlearned But there's one thing I know Though I'm younger than you That even Jesus would never Forgive what you do. Let me ask you one question Is your money that good Will it buy you forgiveness Do you think that it could I think you will find When your death takes its toll All the money you made Will never buy back your soul. And I hope that you die And your death'll come soon I will follow your casket In the pale afternoon And I'll watch while you're lowered Down to your deathbed And I'll stand over your grave 'Til I'm sure that you're dead.------- Bob Dylan 1963

Saturday, March 9, 2013

Mary Barbour and the Glasgow Rent Strike | Counterfire

Mary Barbour and the Glasgow Rent Strike | Counterfire


Mary BarbourFrom April this year, one hundred thousand Scottish people living in social housing will be affected by what Nicola Sturgeon describes as ‘one of the most pernicious pieces of legislation introduced in Scotland since the poll tax’. This legislation – the bedroom tax as it is becoming known – means that from the first of that month, people on Housing Benefit who live in a property with more bedrooms than they need for their household will have their benefit cut by 14 percent for one spare bedroom and 25 per cent for two. Throughout Scotland there is a groundswell of protest rising against this latest in a long line of iniquitous assaults to what most people regard as a social right and entitlement: the right to adequate housing. For the poorest and most vulnerable people in our society this basic human right is provided by low rent municipal housing.
Such rights have not always been codified in legislation. Before the First World War housing conditions for people were seen as a commodity rather than a necessary right and members of the working-class lived in overcrowded, dilapidated, damp and squalid conditions. As early as 1885 Glasgow militants were campaigning for decent municipal housing in the city and by 1914 the Glasgow Women’s Housing Association – whose aims were the improvement of tenement homes – was formed. But it took the anvil and hammer of the onset of war and its consequence of the need for more workers into the munitions industry, the loss of workers who joined the army and the influx of thousands of immigrants into already overpopulated, crumbling areas to foment social tensions among the working class to breaking point. Additionally, financial stresses of increased costs of living were felt by working class families but it was the actions of rapacious landlords, who saw an opportunity to increase their rents more often, that caused latent indignation to rise. Evictions for arrears of rents – especially for the families of men who ‘took the King’s shilling’ – provided additional sources of moral outrage, especially when the rhetoric from the Conservative/Liberal coalition Government of the day was that everyone had to make sacrifices.  READ MORE

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