Thursday, 31 March 2016

The pathetic Tory response to the steel industry crisis

The UK steel industry is being ruined by a tidal wave of artificially cheap Chinese steel. Now that Tata have decided to abandon their UK steel operations tens of thousands of jobs are on the line. 

The response from the Tories is absolutely pathetic. The business secretary Sajid Javid knew this announcement for Tata was coming but he decided to lord it up at a black tie dinner in Australia instead of do anything useful to help the UK steel industry. David Cameron also knew it was coming, but he decided to continue enjoying his relaxing 17 day holiday in Lanzarote until he was shamed into returning to the UK. He obviously didn't return because he wanted to, or because he thought it would be the right thing to do. He came back because he knew it would be a PR disaster if he didn't.

The Labour opposition have worked hard to pressurise the Tories into doing something to support the British steel industry. Jeremy Corbyn's petition for David Cameron to recall parliament so that the government can be held to account for their inaction rocketed past 100,000 signatures within a day of its launch.

The Tories are determined to stick to their crackpot Laissez-faire ideology that "state intervention in the steel market is wrong". They're flat out refusing to consider renationalisation of the steel industry and they even voted against an EU move to allow increased import tariffs on artificially cheap Chinese steel in February 2016.

Even when the UK steel market is facing an existential threat from the state controlled Chinese steel market, the Tories are still absolutely determined to stick to their ridiculous "state intervention is wrong" Laissez-faire ideology. 

It's now completely obvious that the privatised UK steel industry can't compete with the vast state controlled behemoth of China which produced more steel between 2013 and 2014 than the entire output of the UK steel industry since 1870!

The choice for the UK is simple. The state has to intervene in order to save one of our core strategic industries from complete annihilation, or the Tory government deliberately sacrifice it on their altar of 
Laissez-faire fundamentalism, which would make the UK entirely dependent on imported steel, no matter what the future price, putting our entire economy in a dangerous position of weakness.

It's absolutely clear that as far as the Tories are concerned, the tens of thousands of people who work in the UK steel industry and related trades are virtually worthless sacrificial pawns. Why would they give a damn about industrial workers? After all, most of them don't vote Tory do they?

A much bigger objective for the Tories than protecting a vital UK strategic industry, and the tens of thousands of jobs that go with it, is their policy of pathetically sucking up to the Chinese. Why else would they have voted down the EU measure to allow states to increase import tariffs on artificially cheap Chinese steel?

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David Cameron's surrender to the Chinese
The Tory nuclear price-fixing deal
The Tory "economic recovery" mantra is a lie
George Osborne has created more debt than every Labour government in history combined
Austerity is a con
The Tory ideological mission
Asset stripping "bankrupt Britain"
Margaret Thatcher's toxic neoliberal legacies


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