October 22, 2017

The Tory Record – Introduction

The Tory Record - an Assessment (front cover)This is the introduction to The Tory Record – an assessment (published by Jon Carpenter Publishing in 1997 on behalf of The Commission for Assessing the Conservative Record).

The booklet was inspired by Teddy Goldsmith, who also wrote the introduction, while cartoons were by the incomparable Richard Willson. Other chapters were:

  1. Food quality – Tim Lang
  2. BSE (mad cow disease) – James Erlichman
  3. Organophosphate poisoning – Elizabeth Sigmund
  4. Agriculture – Vicki Hurd
  5. Malnutrition – Suzi Leather
  6. Water privatisation – Fred Pearce
  7. Nuclear privatisation – Paul Brown
  8. The treatment of nuclear waste at Sellafield – Crispin Aubrey
  9. Chemical waste – Ralph Ryder
  10. Contaminated land – Alan Watson
  11. Jobs – Colin Hines
  12. Child poverty and prostitution – Nick Davies
  13. Caring the mentally ill – Richard Thompson
  14. Crime – Stephen Shaw
  15. Education – Ted Wragg
  16. Transport – Stephen Joseph
  17. Aid to the third world – Nicholas Hildyard
  18. Democratic government – Andrew Puddephat

The Tory Record - an Assessment (back cover)We are told that the economy has never been healthier. The economic indicators are positive, GNP is growing, the pound is strong, exports are booming, house prices are rising and the stock exchange is hitting new highs (10 January 1997).

But the economic indicators do not tell the whole story. The responsibility of government is to create the conditions that allow for social stability, general prosperity and a healthy and content population. This is what the real economy is for – the economy that really serves the need of the nation as a whole. But nobody talks about that one.

This small book attempts to look at this real economy.

Its various chapters assess the Conservative record on such fundamentally important issues as: the quality of our food; problems caused by industrial agriculture (such as mad cow disease, organophosphate poisoning, and the plight of the small family farm); the growing poverty in this country, especially among our children, and the consequent malnutrition among those who can no longer afford to feed their families properly; unemployment and underemployment (growing problems despite misleading government figures); the rising crime rate; our increasing exposure to chemical and radioactive pollution; our distintegrating educational system; and perhaps even more fundamental, the systematic erosion of British democracy.

The conclusion is that the Tory record has been almost universally appalling. It has failed to care about the true needs of the nation, and it has been willing to sacrifice the long-term wellbeing of the British people for the benefit of the special interests of big business – special interests with which it has become ever more closely associated.

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