Happy birthday, Tony!
A very happy birthday to Tony Delahoy, who celebrates his 95th birthday today.
Normandy veteran Tony, who received France’s top honour, l’ Ordre National de la Légion d’honneur, in 2015, has kept the NEN supplied with a regular stream of letters for as long as I can remember.
Londoner Tony’s passion for social justice burns as brightly as it ever has and there’s no sign of the Delahoy inkwell drying up just yet, as the following letters show. Keep up the good fight, Tony!
There are many people who have the skills and ability in finding solutions to problems that can and do occur everywhere: e.g. fire fighting, repairing and reconnecting electricity transmission cables, telephone cable maintenance, water supply pumping stations, sewerage and sanitation contro. The list of skills needed is indeed a very long one; these skills being supplied by ordinary working people, men and women, on a daily basis.
The whole working population also supply the knowledge and labour to produce what is needed for us to live or to exchange with goods produced by working people of other countries.
But there are times when this ability to pursue a stable life is halted by financial and individual investors deciding to close down industries that they consider not making enough profit, regardless of the devastating effect of unemployment. The knock-on effect of not having a wage can only lead to cutbacks in other industries as sales decline.
It cannot be right that such power over peoples’ lives should be in the control of investors who, in effect, are just gamblers.
Wool and Eyes
Today, the ‘in-word’ is productivity. It is said that if the volume of everything produced could be increased it would solve all our problems. But this raises the question: for whom?
Owners of industries would not doubt expect their employees to work harder or faster, with our without new technology, for the same wages. This raises the question: who would be able to buy all this extra productivity, bearing in mind that employers in other countries are doing the same thing?
So just to say that more productivity is the answer to our problems is misleading to say the least. Unless those who make the things have the ability to buy them, industries will start to decline, leading once again to an economic slump that will affect the whole population.
If this is the only plan – mainly for the benefit of the already very rich owners – then it is time this sytem of capitalism gave way … as did slavery, serfdom and feudalism throughout the long history of peoples’ struggle.