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What did the cuts march achieve?

19:07 UK time, Saturday, 26 March 2011

The government says it's "listening" but won't change its policy on spending cuts following Saturday's demonstration in central London.

More than 250,000 people took part in the anti-cuts protest and rally, which was mainly peaceful.

A few hundred demonstrators did turn to violence, with more than 200 arrests after clashes between police and activists.

Did you take part in the demonstration? What cause were you marching for? Were you caught up in the protest while out in central London? Do you agree with the protests?

Thank you for your comments. This debate is now closed.

Comments

Page 1 of 22

  • Comment number 1.

    nothing - all the valid protests are wiped out by the idiots - those trashing things and those making it a "Get out of Libya" march - incredibly ironic given that those protesting in Libya against government are being murdered, "disapeared", shot at by snipers and being beaten, raped and tortured.

    Untilthose making valid protests assist the police with identifying troublemakers - hey how about making a citizens arrest?? The protests will continue to be a joke.

  • Comment number 2.

    What did the cuts march achieve?

    Just how much did it cost to police this event ? Whatever it was, it's money that now can't be spent on more important things. I wonder if the marchers get the irony ?

  • Comment number 3.

    well. In all fairness, my milk isnt sour but hey WHO's IS?! The participants of the march have got to be joking! HOW ON EARTH are these idiots meant to change the ways of the cuts???? THINK THIS IS A TOTAL OUTRAGE MYSELF. WHO's WITH ME? C'MON PEOPLE OF THE NATION, WERE ALL IN THIS TOGETHER RIGHT?!

  • Comment number 4.

    What did the cuts march achieve?

    NOTHING! Some funny placards though.

  • Comment number 5.

    Ignoring the rent-a-mob thugs who seem to gravitate towards all marches and protests today, the 'cuts march' simply served to underline how selfish, ignorant, and out-of-touch, public sector unions and their members are. We in private sector employment cannot continue to fund the gravy-train public services any longer. It doesn't matter whether the public sector is overpaid or underpaid, it is a monkey on the back of productive workers that can no longer be carried. The bottom line of the bill for the public sector is simply far to high.

  • Comment number 6.

    As a retired Met Police officer I marched with my wife a nurse and member of the Royal College of Nursing a non affiliated trade union we were joined by Prison Officers,off duty police officers, fire fighters, paramedics and around 400,000 other public sector workers and their families the entire TUC organised march passed 100% peacefully amicably .
    It displayed the overwhelming opposition of the public sector to the cuts as being too fast and too deep.

    The vast majority of the public sector Unions accept that some cuts are regrettably needed owing to the banker generated credit crisis , public sector workers have accepted a pay freeze for 2 years which amounts to a 12% pay cut in real terms ,which has not been required of other employees or the captains of industry and city bookies who have granted themselves mega pay deals and bonuses. The unions believe these cuts are best done over an extended period as this will avoid damage to the economy and allow some possibility of employment for young people who will otherwise find themselves a lost generation.

    Why then has the Media portrayed the separate disorder by a few Anarchist nutters as part of the march. It manifestly wasn't anything to do with it a fact freely acknowledged by the Metropolitan police who after all are in a better position to know than pontificating journalists or Tory central office staff.

  • Comment number 7.

    We all don’t like spending cuts but we know it has to happen, to carry on the way we had under the last government would have been total madness. Cuts are and have to happen we don’t have to like it but we do have to accept them. And for the opposition leader to get behind the protesters I think is shameful, it was his government that got us into this mess and now he is backing the demonstrators, it’s shameful, he has the right to criticize government but not to back demonstrators.

  • Comment number 8.

    The people causing the trouble are mainly Anarchists. They are a small group who do not represent our opinions and had NOTHING to do with the March. Why are you reporting the two together? If the media only focusses on the violence of a tiny minority it is ignoring the views of more than half a million people peacefully demonstrating, and many many more who couldn't be there but supported it. I was on the March, I resent being told I have to pay for the mess that greedy bankers, spivs and speculators have caused. I marched for the public services that are so essential to our people, I marched for the NHS and I marched for the young to have a future. I also marched to express my disgust at the attacks on my hard earned pension and pay.
    This Government does NOT have a mandate to carry out what they are now doing and it is clear that the majority supported the reasons why were were marching - there are polls which demonstrate this.

    Finally, I just wish the BBC would stop using the Taxpayers Alliance for quotes. They are not a democratic organisation and they represent the Conservatives and their allies, they are hardly unbiased and research based!

  • Comment number 9.

    The marchers would have had my full support until I saw yobs amongst them pelting the police. Don't these idiots appreciate police officers are in exactly the same position; the government (to their disgrace) have not ring fenced the police service as they have education and health. As far as I am concerned a minority of cretins has totally wiped out any good this protest might have achieved.

  • Comment number 10.

    Just seen a snippet of Ed Miliband addressing potesters in Hyde Park - one of the most ridiculous and hollow speeches I've ever heard. To draw parallels with the Civil Rights movement, Apartheid and the Suffragettes was absurd - each of those were profound causes addressing fundamental human rights. Does he not realise that the assembled masses were there largely because of the mismanagement of the economy by the previous government. The muted reception he received suggests many of them realised that the cause of the problem was unlikely to be the source of any workable solution!

  • Comment number 11.

    What is wrong with the Police?
    Get a grip - surely?
    How can the police allow these people to get into places like Fortnum and Mason? They knew the route so why didn't they get it sorted?
    Obviously NOTHING was learned from the last debacle and the police look incompetant yet again!

  • Comment number 12.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 13.

    Achieved? Absolutely nothing. Other than prove that the TUC and Labour are back in bed together. 250k people impresses loonie lefties and the BBC. Unfortunately, the vast majority of this country are only too aware that these cuts (actually, a mere 3%) are necessary. They are necessary because the previous government made such a dreadful job of our countrys finances. A financial mess unparallelled in our history. No, I am not a daily mail reader, I am a calm collected citizen. it was obvious to me from about 2000 onwards that Labour, or New Labour, call it what you will were getting it horrendously wrong..Rather than admit it and put the country back on the rails (Which as we can see, could be unpopular) they took us further and further down into the mire. A lot of those protesting today are those who occupy the "Non Jobs" that Labour created in the public sector. Ed the red has shown his true colours, he wants Unions, strife, and ultimately, the destruction of our way of life. He has resurrected the old labour dream that all of us are equla and that all can survive on state handouts. Most of us can see that doesn't work. Mobster such as todays protesters won't change the opinion of the majority - even with the enormosu help they are getting from the BBC.

    Auntie, when, oh when are you going to give us a BALANCED view???

  • Comment number 14.

    Here is an interesting conundrum

    Our government is backing the rebels in Libya, Tunisia, Egypt etc. Will they back the rebels in this country?

    this one hurts my head trying to work out what the goernment should do.

    I mean should it send in fighter plans to bomb itself? what to do, what to do?

  • Comment number 15.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 16.

    What did the cuts march achieve? It exposed how supine BBC News has become to the government. Are you lot afraid that if you disagree with the party line they'll take away more of your funding? God even Sky News were more balanced from what I saw.

  • Comment number 17.

    "What did the cuts march achieve?"

    Well. Appart from some useful overtime for the street cleaners and the police, over the weekend, and Miliband jumping on the 'popularity' bandwagon? Not a lot I fear

    How much money (which could be spent on something useful) was wasted?

  • Comment number 18.

    250k - let's be generous 500k! That means for everyone on the march, 120-240 were not!

    The claim is that there is an alternative to the cuts - let the proponents of the alternatives put them forward - complete with their explanations of how they will avoid the 'brain drain'

  • Comment number 19.

    Once again the people who were in charge when the problems that caused the needs for the cuts have hijacked a march for their own ends.
    The yobs who end up overshadowing the peaceful protest won the day in terms of publicity lets here strong condemnation from labour and the unions towards the rentamob and their help in bringing the crminals to justice was this really about the cuts or just another political protest who ever came to power would haved to have done the same. If there is another way to turn the countiies fortunes around please let us all into the secret

  • Comment number 20.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 21.

    Its all going to come to nothing - and quite rightly too. If the Unions wish to blame somebody, blame the previous government who destroyed any financial cerdibility we have - as one ex Labour monister said "The money is all gone". Dont blame those who seek to sort this mess out, blame the people who caused it - and that rests at the foot of the Labour Party and every idiot that ever voted for them!


  • Comment number 22.

    The marchers had a walk in the sun and engaged in some physical exercise that was good for them. The self-interest groups, who believe that the rest of the population should support them financially, displayed their political and economic ignorance and naivety. The rioters demonstrated their usual childish and stupid behaviour that spoilt an afternoon out. Ed Milliband showed why he will never be Prime Minister. The only thing that was missing was the cabaret of Ed Balls and Yvette Cooper doing their usual non-stop nonsensical rant.

  • Comment number 23.

    As the march was organised by the TUC. The TUC should foot the bill for the cost of policing, cleanup and damage, that resulted from the lack of control over their own marchers.

  • Comment number 24.

    At 19:59pm on 26th Mar 2011, batrachian wrote:
    It showed the rest of us also suffering the cuts just how out of touch with reality are the champagne marxists of the unions and the cushi public sector brigade. 250,000 parasites who don't care whether the host dies or not.

    The above comment:

    Absolutely, completely, one hundred percent, SPOT ON THE MONEY. Couldn't have put it better myself.

    and just think, Batrachian got this superbly accurate comment in well before this forum degenerates into the usual off message leftie rantings that take over all measured comment.

    Batrachian for PM!!!

  • Comment number 25.

    The last administration created around 700,000 public sector jobs for an economy that couldn't afford to pay their salaries. Is the private sector supposed to keep supporting this system? We could lose 400,000 jobs and still be employing 300,00 more people than were able to provide essential services before Labour started buying votes by creating jobs paid for with public debt.

  • Comment number 26.

    Labour has a cheek to complain, given that all our current pain is a result of incompetence on their watch, from changing the rules to tax pension funds to allowing the banks to get away with it to creating unsustainable overpaid non-jobs to the cost of their wars. They don't deserve a platform. As for the marchers, why do they have to clog up our streets so that the rest of us have difficulty in going about our business? I couldn't get into central London and I know others had their plan wrecked with their activities. They can express their views in other ways, although we all know what they are anyway. Taking over the streets is so territorial. And of course they give cover to the nasties.

  • Comment number 27.

    OOOOOh, terrible, innit, shouldn't be allowed! I mean, all them people revolting in whatsit - Tunisia, Egypt, Libya, Yemen, Bahrain, Syria and whatever - I mean, what you want's a peaceful march, innit? a march wot causes no trouble, eh? I mean, you can't 'ave people rioting and shootin' at the Army, now, can you? How much did it cost poor old Mubarak to call them sojers out, that's what I'd like to know. Bloody wasters - don't they know the gov's just doing it's best, trying to clear up the mess Nasser n' Sadat and all that lot made, living like there was no tomorrow, I asks you. And now them Libyans - 'aving to be rescued by that there coalition - count their blessings, that's wot they want to do. We can't afford them no more, no we can't. Shouldn't be allowed.

  • Comment number 28.

    Not a good day for Miliband & Balls I suspect. To be seen addressing a demo which then elsewhere degenerates into the usual anarcho-fascist hard-Left mob violence. I expect the Tory spin doctors will be rubbing their hands in glee.

  • Comment number 29.

    What a joke NuLabour, the Unions, the marchers and trouble makers are! If this was supposed to be the "Alternative" demonstration, I am still waiting to hear what the alternatives are.

    Ed Miliband, Ed Balls and the rest of the useless NuLabour opposition have no alternative answers. They are just anti any proposals put forward by the Coalition, whilst having no answers themselves. Not surprising, it was them that got us into this mess in the first place.

    Gordon "McCavity" Brown has all but vanished off the political scene. I hope it is his concience that is making him keep his head down. He was the worst Prime Minister ever, closely followed by Tony Blair.

  • Comment number 30.

    It has achieved nothing apart from showing the Government what it already knows, People are angry at the cuts, both the scale and speed they are being implemented at.
    The idiots that hijacked the protest (anarchist groups, and thugs/criminals) have devalued the legitimate protest of the main body of people attending.
    This plays into the Daily Mail mindset that all protesters are criminals.
    The government as I said are aware, but do not care, it's early enough into their term to ignore the wants of the people.

  • Comment number 31.

    250,000 + marchers protesting peacefully and the government say they will not change course. It would be funny if it weren't so hypocritical. Apparently Libyan protesters are more important than UK protesters. £milllions spent on aircraft and bombs to support those protesters but those who protest here are unimportant.
    The common sense answer is to make cuts slowly, keep as many in work as possible as the lower paid spend money quickly and less is spent on benefits. Rapid cuts are not the answer but the wealthy don't care because they will not notice. We have a serious problem with the widening wealth gap. Not only is it not fair but it leads to social unrest and crime. I am sick of hearing we need rich entrepreneurs as if they were more important than any one else. We do need people with ideas but no more than those who produce the goods and do the work of getting the ideas onto the market, both are equally important. I am glad at last the public are beginning to wake up to the massive amount of tax evasion. Front bench members of the government are amongst the worst. George Osborne avoided paying £1.6 m last year. How can he do it without feeling guilty, it is breathtaking in it's audacity.

  • Comment number 32.

    15. At 19:59pm on 26th Mar 2011, batrachian wrote:
    It showed the rest of us also suffering the cuts just how out of touch with reality are the champagne marxists of the unions and the cushi public sector brigade. 250,000 parasites who don't care whether the host dies or not.

    -

    A vote of thanks from the thousands of nurses , paramedics, firefighters prison officers and yes off duty and retired police officers (myself included) who marched and who regularly undertake life saving activities for small reward. Nice to know we are champagne Marxists in cushi jobs makes you have a warm feeling that you've done a job worth doing..

    Just when was the last time you were shot at at work, or saw one of your close friends and colleagues murdered or saved a life?

    I like many other public service workers have experienced all three.

    If as I expect is the case the answer is never perhaps you would like to comment on a subject where you actually have some relevant knowledge!

  • Comment number 33.

    I am absolutely amazed that the BBC has started another thread on Have Your Say !

    Gordon Bennett, this proves that anything is possible !

    I'd guess that not many of the 30 Million+ people working in the private sector who have to pay for the public sector DIDN'T turn out for the protest in London today.

  • Comment number 34.

    I wonder what Nelson Mandela and President Obama thinks about Ed Miliband comparing his fight against cuts as similar to the fight against apartheid in South Africa and the fight for civil rights in America. Maybe the gormless inappropriate opportunism of Ed Miliband would be better served in a job with the Coronal Gaddafi’s propaganda bureau.

  • Comment number 35.

    I think we need to understand why the UK is overdrawn. Most of the blame lies with the last Labour Government, which borrowed billions of pounds and wasted it on unfair practices.

    1. The assumption that everyone had a right to expect whatever health care they wanted on the NHS, regardless of whether they contributed anything to the NHS.
    2. The assumption that not wanting to work was the same as being unable to work.
    3. The assumption that any people who didn't want to work had the right to as many children as possible, with a room for each child, whereas working people were limited by how much they could afford to pay for rent or mortgage.
    4. The assumption that property prices rising above the rate of inflation was a good thing, even though it meant that most working people couldn't affortd to live near where they worked.
    5. While many working people had to live far from where they worked, non-working people had the right to live where they wanted, regardless of the cost of the rent to local working people.
    6. Billions of pounds were paid out to prop up various banks. Despite this, the bankers did not become public sector workers and were not subject to pay restraint.
    7. Labour allowed drug addicts, obese people, alcoholics and other people who didn't want to work to stay on incapacity indefintiely, rather than being obliged to seek treatment and get a job.
    8. The compensation culture got worse, so that people who contribute nothing to society could gain access to no win, no fee solicitors.
    9. Labour assumed that anybody had a right to have children, regardless of how they treated their older children and had a right to free lunches and other meals at school.
    10. The gap between rich and poor got worse under Labour in 1974-1979 and in 1997-2000. Margaret Thatcher was in power for 11.5 years from 1979 to 1990. Labour had 13 years in power from 1997 to 2010 and had enough time to right any wrongs that Thatcher did. The fact that they failed says a lot about Labour. Why didn't Labour block all the tax loopholes and make sure that the rich paid their fair share?

    Ed Milliband expects the government to listen to today's demonstrators. I suppose this comes from the same people who listened to demonstrators before the illegal invasion of Iraq. I feel that people who have no intention of working, even though they are capable of contributing to society, have no right to complain about council cutbacks. If they paid council tax, there would be no need for cutbacks.

    I agree with many of the ideas about alternatives to cuts, but the main problem is that there are too many people taking as much money as possible out of the UK's finances and not enough people putting into it. All those people who expect to get through life without doing any work at all should expect to be poor.

  • Comment number 36.

    snarlygronkit wrote:
    At 19:59pm on 26th Mar 2011, batrachian wrote:
    It showed the rest of us also suffering the cuts just how out of touch with reality are the champagne marxists of the unions and the cushi public sector brigade. 250,000 parasites who don't care whether the host dies or not.

    The above comment:

    Absolutely, completely, one hundred percent, SPOT ON THE MONEY. Couldn't have put it better myself.

    and just think, Batrachian got this superbly accurate comment in well before this forum degenerates into the usual off message leftie rantings that take over all measured comment.

    Batrachian for PM!!!

    -
    As He probably works at Tory central dream factory already I suppose this is a remote but appalling possibility

  • Comment number 37.

    It shows we're tired of this right wing government.

    Cuts, cuts, cuts. Cameron wants to destroy our NHS and make millions more unemployed, thinking this is a solution to the economic problem. Its not. He's as brainwashed as the idiotic Americans are thinking that socialism is evil.

    We're heading back to the 1980's I tell you. Back to Thatcherism.

  • Comment number 38.

    The march provided a visible weight to the ordinary people of this country that politicians otherwise treat with indifference. The Tory plan of cuts goes against what every humble gardener knows: prune a rose bush sparingly and with care and it will grow back stronger and bloom; continue to cut indiscriminately, and it will simply die.

  • Comment number 39.

    What did the protest achieve?
    A lot more than the sheltered souls who spend their self-important time constantly giving their fictional view on things like this, from the safety of their homes of course. If you have a real opinion show it. Get out there, meet real people and you'll see that the cuts are ideologically and economically wrong. Wrong.

  • Comment number 40.

    I must have missed all the marches against profligate and stupid government spending a few years ago...

  • Comment number 41.

    Anyone who spoke to the demonstrators would have learnt that there is widespread belief that the cuts are not necessary. This is contrary to the rubbish from the BBC where it is argued that whilst the cuts are necessary there can be a difference of opinion with regard to how fast they should be implemented. Well, almost half a million people, and many more back home, are not listening to the state run media and are questioning the need for cuts.

    There are alternatives.

    So what did the demonstration achieve? Well, no change in government policy was expected. But it did ram home the fallacy of insisting on austerity as the key to our future well being. So come on BBC, just for once listen to the people, and question the policies you are churning out.

    I look forward to the hundreds of clones who will fill this blog up with their repetition of the mantra that tough decisions have to be taken to deal with Labour's bad management. Well, they did manage badly, but we don't accept the Government and its tame BBC's solution. Not when there is bags of money in the kitty for military adventures.

  • Comment number 42.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 43.

    What the march means is a lot of voting people of the U.K. dont swallow the B/S that the Con/fibdems government want you to , Because they is allways plenty of money for the greedy bankers, big business, and War in other countries!!! but not for old people, The sick or unemployed or any vital services for any people, who need them { Well done to all who took part}

  • Comment number 44.

    Hey Unions! Yes - you, you self serving freeloaders. Why don't you get your members to actually do something about the situation? How about supporting the local economy. I bet most of your members have booked their holidays abroad, using imported electronic equipment, having got home in their imported cars whilst wearing imported clothes.
    What has happened to our manufacturing industries? Clothing, cars, white goods, and lots of other consumer products. Oh yes, that's it! Gone abroad because union members just want to grab as much stuff as they want (not need, you understand), yet get paid high wages for their jobs, but blame everyone else when things go wrong - except themselves of course.
    Yes, you are going to lose your jobs - because there is no money in the system, you've spent it abroad. So why complain?

  • Comment number 45.

    I am absolutely amazed that the BBC has started another thread on Have Your Say !

    Gordon Bennett, this proves that anything is possible !

    I'd guess that not many of the 30 Million+ people working in the private sector who have to pay for the public sector DIDN'T turn out for the protest in London today.

    ------------

    80% Of Them didn't vote for this government either so precisely what is you point?

    Nearly 1 in 12 public sector workers took the time and effort on a day off to protest rather than sitting on their backsides or doing the shopping.This is by any standards a tremendous turnout and any amount of Millbank Tower spin will not undermine this obvious fact.

  • Comment number 46.

    It achieved nothing.

    Ed Milliband stood there and told the crowd that they represented the ordinary people.

    Well, I am an ordinary person, with a very ordinary wage. I did not vote Tory - but in no way does Milliband and his Union paymasters represent me.

    If Labour had won, they would have cut just as hard. They would have put VAT up to 20% (Darling has admitted that) AND they would have increased National Insurance.

    The people on the march may want to reflect on that. Yep, The Eds are lying to you. Again.

  • Comment number 47.

    Oh how terrible was the mindless violence. Never achieve anything that way. Now the Libyan rebels, one of whose leaders has supported Al Quaeda and fought against the UK in Afghanstan, have the right approach and are having millions of our taxes spent on them. Come on TUC, start demanding shariah law, hint of foreign oil fields, and let loose the dogs of war.

    Well, not really, sorry moderator. What they can do is tell all their supporters to kick out the Lib Dems in the May elections. Not long now.

  • Comment number 48.

    31. At 20:15pm on 26th Mar 2011, Lucy Clake wrote:
    "..250,000 + marchers protesting peacefully and the government say they will not change course. It would be funny if it weren't so hypocritical. Apparently Libyan protesters are more important than UK protesters. £milllions spent on aircraft and bombs to support those protesters but those who protest here are unimportant..."

    The government would probably say why should they change course, when 60,750,000 (give or take) chose NOT to march. Plus unlike Libya, there was no risk of them being shot, even when some decided to attack police & destroy private property.

  • Comment number 49.

    I could not join the demo in Hyde Park this afternoon because my Civil Service pension is so low that I do not have the money to get there from Mid Wales. From the vast crowds seen on TV I was not surprised to learn that over a quarter of a million people were there. On the other hand I was not expecting to see that almost all those present were white, hardly an ethnic face to be seen. This surely exposes the myth of multi-culturalism propounded by the politicians. A totally unexpected by-product of a very peacful and successful demonstration.

  • Comment number 50.

    sledger10 wrote:

    What is wrong with the Police?
    Get a grip - surely?
    How can the police allow these people to get into places like Fortnum and Mason? They knew the route so why didn't they get it sorted?

    ####

    If you actually listened to the news you would know that this was separate from the main demonstration which went a DIFFERENT route and was peaceful.

    This was the usual crowd of thick thugs with their own agenda who went off in a completely different direction.

  • Comment number 51.

    I'll be surprised if this post gets past the Biased Broadcasting Corps Thought Police....

    Lets see how out of touch with reality most of you are. It costs £500,000 to purchase a Tomahawk Cruise Missile but the country is broke. There are two Trafalgar class submarines on station off Libya lobbing these things at Libyan Air Defence installations, but the country is broke. Meanwhile the governments in Syria and Bahrain shoot protesters dead but, we're not bombing them - perhaps we can't afford it because the country is broke.

    Meanwhile, in a county not a million miles away school cleaners are about to lose 15-20 minutes off their working day in order to save approx £150,000 - £180,000. These people don't get paid a large amount - work it out for yourself, they get about 2 hours per day to clean their areas so will lose about £30-40 per month.

    No cuts to frontline services - don't make me laugh. I'd rather school cleaners keep their 15-20 minutes per day and we stop wasting money on insane foreign adventures we cannot afford.

    But, of course, none of this matters because theres no OIL in Local Government or the NHS. Only hard working low paid people trying to provide a service for which, their dedication will be rewarded by having their pensions cut and being made to work longer.

    So yes, I support the anti-cuts campaign and hope that this march is the first steps in a campaign that will result in this government being deposed, rejected and an end bought to their campaign of total and utter idiocy.

  • Comment number 52.

    Why so many people are so stupid? If the country spends more then it can afford, it can't indefinitely put it on it's credit card. On has to cut at some point. And this point is now - if we don't cut now the next loan will cost us more and we will be even deeper into debt.

  • Comment number 53.

    steve wrote:

    The vast majority of the public sector Unions accept that some cuts are regrettably needed owing to the banker generated credit crisis

    ####

    It is a pity they wont admit the reality of the HUGE debt their precious Labour party have dumped us in.

    The huge debt was there LONG before the credit crisis.

  • Comment number 54.

    The march achieved a lot, the riots invalidated all the hard work...

    I was there - I work nearby - and about 85% of it was peaceful and civilised, shame about the other 15%...

  • Comment number 55.

    My husband and I along with 6 friends were on the March together. It was a peaceful march and we marched peacefully through Trafalgar Square and down Picadilly at about 5pm. We saw no violence then although we could see paint had been thrown at banks and some windows smashed and Fortnum and Masons was occupied. We walked near to Picadilly at about 5.30 and again saw no violence/fires etc. We were somewhat surprised to hear on BBC news at 8pm that there had been violence during the last 3 hours in this area.We would say there was none at 5pm.
    Also during the interview with the gentleman who was supporting the march the BBC showed the violent splinter groups which had nothinbg to do with the organised march itself. In fact more attention has been given to the splinter factions than to the peaceful protest by over 280000 people. This does not show a balanced or accurate view as seen by people who were present. The BBC has let itself down in order to create a sensational news item.

  • Comment number 56.

    "We're heading back to the 1980's I tell you. Back to Thatcherism."

    Well said, and I agree.

    And that's not a bad thing. Thatcher's Government was the best thing to happen to this country. Successive Governments have been poor in comparison.

  • Comment number 57.

    56. At 20:40pm on 26th Mar 2011, Dave Hamilton wrote:

    "We're heading back to the 1980's I tell you. Back to Thatcherism."

    Well said, and I agree.

    And that's not a bad thing. Thatcher's Government was the best thing to happen to this country. Successive Governments have been poor in comparison.

    ____________________________

    Tell that to the thousands of public servants currently being given their p45's...

  • Comment number 58.

    Re Number 6 - I'm sorry? - banker-generated crisis? and this from someone from an industry where you can't get made redundant yet can prosecute an old lady doing 32mph who got overtaken by someone doing 60 only to be stopped by a cop who said' well, i've stopped you haven't I and you were speeding weren't you?', who will threaten to arrest a law-abiding football fan for asking 'where the heck were you? after getting punched in an unprovoked attack by a rival fan, and who will do nothing to stop the noise coming from a noisy neighbour at 2am yet will stop someone from hammering on their door to ask them to turn it off. Bankers played their part but so did governments and greedy consumers. Pot - kettle? Don't pick up a rock when you're standing in your greenhouse!!!

  • Comment number 59.

    5. At 19:47pm on 26th Mar 2011, The Rockabilly Red wrote:

    Ignoring the rent-a-mob thugs who seem to gravitate towards all marches and protests today, the 'cuts march' simply served to underline how selfish, ignorant, and out-of-touch, public sector unions and their members are. We in private sector employment cannot continue to fund the gravy-train public services any longer. It doesn't matter whether the public sector is overpaid or underpaid, it is a monkey on the back of productive workers that can no longer be carried. The bottom line of the bill for the public sector is simply far to high.
    --------------------------------
    You've been listening to too much right wing proaganda, The meme that the private sector is "productive" and the public sector is not "productive" has no basis in fact. The truth is only a tiny proportion of the the workforce are "productive", the job of all the rest, regardless of which sector they're in, is to circulate the new wealth generated by the few, who in modern times are mainly bankers, on the other hand the few who are truly productive couldn't survive without the money circulators behind them. They'd be very rich on paper but have nothing to spend it on and nothing to eat. That's how capitalism works.
    The particular issue at the moment is that with the wealth generated by the banking sector dramatically reduced and government income reduced as a consequence plus very low growth, we have a public deficit which we need to fix by cuts or alternatively massive public investment in the hope of stimulating massive growth. The markets and Conservative ideology say we must take the first choice so cuts are inevitable and marching will not stop them. They might, however, make the government less blase about making cuts and enourage them to, at least, give the appearance of concearn as to the consequences.

  • Comment number 60.

    The TUC's quarter million march achieved ... chaos.

    How many were Labour voters I wonder, crawling out of the woodwork when today's Chancellor makes an effort to fix years of Labour destruction? My only concession is £1m+ bonus bankers would be a better starting point in redeeming the country's finances to a workable level.

    Aside from that, TUC and miles of protestors - hang your heads in shame for trying to dissociate yourselves from what must surely have been considered as a possibility - anarchist attachments amidst the march.

    Watching policemen stand back while that rabble taunted, vandalised and terrorised them was a shameful sight - perhaps a direct result of last year's whinging protesters - at how badly they were treated by law enforcement. Pah! I'd have used water-canon, tear gas and a good few baton whacks round the legs of these trouble-makers.

    To my delight, the mute button works on Milliband's verbal tripe.

    Hope all attendees are proud of their blistering participation and those arrested have a thoroughly miserable time in the cells.

    Get well soon to the injured policemen. While the country can survive safely without libraries, it cannot without substantial police forces (devoid of Legal Observers - what the heck are they - lawyers on the hoof?) - take note Mr Cameron. Those particular cuts were vividly demonstrated today in what police reductions will give law abiding people to look forward to. Namely, no help whatsoever, so perhaps a rethink is essential on "cardboard cut-out law enforcers".

  • Comment number 61.

    32. At 20:16pm on 26th Mar 2011, steve wrote:
    15. At 19:59pm on 26th Mar 2011, batrachian wrote:
    It showed the rest of us also suffering the cuts just how out of touch with reality are the champagne marxists of the unions and the cushi public sector brigade. 250,000 parasites who don't care whether the host dies or not.

    -

    A vote of thanks from the thousands of nurses , paramedics, firefighters prison officers and yes off duty and retired police officers (myself included) who marched and who regularly undertake life saving activities for small reward. Nice to know we are champagne Marxists in cushi jobs makes you have a warm feeling that you've done a job worth doing..

    Just when was the last time you were shot at at work, or saw one of your close friends and colleagues murdered or saved a life?

    I like many other public service workers have experienced all three.

    If as I expect is the case the answer is never perhaps you would like to comment on a subject where you actually have some relevant knowledge!

    +++++++++++++++++++
    So Steve if I understand you if we haven't been shot at at work, or seen one of our close friends and colleagues murdered or saved a life, we can't comment.

    Okay I leave you to it. Most officers I know are not narrow minded, still enjoy your evening and retirement.

  • Comment number 62.

    I hope all of you, and all of the marches realise that until we actually get some real growth in the economy the government can cut what it likes, and all the anti union people can winge all they like. Next year they will have to cut more, and so on until nothing is left.

    What exactly are the Government doing about falling growth that they are in charge of? Nothing, it would seem. Ranting againt people protesting is not going to stop the wreck of a once great country by the rich boys.

  • Comment number 63.

    Achieves nothing what so ever. As for the boy Ed Milliband (cannot lift his head and speak for more than two remembered words from a pre-prepared speech), well he would appear wouldn't he, after all he defeated his brother by the Union vote. Are people so narrow minded that they cannot see the necessity for cuts, are they and Labour honestly saying that they have a credible alternative that does not involve cuts? The only criticism I would have toward this Government, in fact all MPs is that raising their expenses in this climate is not a good move. People need to get over it, it was not just the Banks but de-regularisation, hopeless management of the financial crisis by the Brown Government and obstinacy that got us into this mess.

  • Comment number 64.

    Main news item in Libyan & Syrian TV I expect.

  • Comment number 65.

    It did not really achieve anything. Even if 1 million protesters had turned out this would not have changed. The reality is that the UK economy and finances are severely stressed and there is not enough money in the treasury to avoid public sector spending cuts.

    A lot of errors were made (the financial/banking crises of 2008/2009, the housing market bubble, irresponsible lending of credit/resulting debt) and no matter how much one can regret these, you can't go back in time and get a second chance. You can only (painfully) deal with the errors, learn from them and move forward.

  • Comment number 66.

    Well i guess we now know how 'RED' Ed really is now, it could have been Arthur Scargill up there! I am someone who runs there own business and respects what people who work in the public sector do, but when are they and Labour going to
    step into the real world and accept they are going to have to go through what everyone else who works in the private sector has already been through in 2008/9.
    The march was good showing that some people are not happy but the sooner we get through this difficult period the sooner we can get things back to how they should be, where’s the 1940 sprit of grinning and bearing something for the good of the country!? Difficult times call for difficult decisions.

  • Comment number 67.

    Nothing as per usual. If protesters really want to achieve something, try blocking the M25!

  • Comment number 68.

    A fair sprinkling of the royal we in some of these comments. When people say ‘to carry on the way we had’ etc, I assume there talking about the banking sector and such?

    Predictably the march was hijacked by a few idiotic groups, but on the whole the marchers represented lower and middle class people, all of whom are paying the price of a banking failure largely caused by very well paid bankers and financial speculators. And for people to the come out and attack trade unions, who have helped improve the life of many lower and middle class workers in this country for hundreds of years is, to me, astonishing. Bob Diamond received a bonus equating to £6.5 million for 2010. The average UK yearly wage is £23,000. No surprise we didn't see him marching today.

  • Comment number 69.

    32. At 20:16pm on 26th Mar 2011, steve wrote:
    ==========================================
    About 20 years ago actually Steve also had my wife and children shot at and blown up (thankfully they survived), what is your point? The demonstration was a non event, I am now retired but agree wholeheartedly with cuts now to safeguard my grand childrens future. What does that Fool and Balls think they are doing, they do not have the answer and indeed I heard one of their Union masters saying he even disagreed with their alternative of halving cuts in 4 years.

  • Comment number 70.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 71.

    Ironic, is it not, that is 250,000 were to march in Libya the UK government would say "look at them marching for democracy, we must stage a military campaign to support them", but if 250,000 march in the UK then it doesn't matter at all and this government carries on with the cuts regardless.

  • Comment number 72.

    Protest marches by their size draw attention to grievances and politicians ignore them at their peril. The marches seldom achieve instant changes but they do put down a marker which most people remember at the time of general elections. There will surely be other protests against the government's cuts later in the year when the real effects of cuts start to bite. I still think that we could have a general election this year.

  • Comment number 73.

    #44 - I hope that you are being ironic - as it isn't the unions that shifted manufacturing abroad - that would be a decision made by company directors, and supported by their shareholders who are looking for maximum profits now, and don't give a damn if people lose their jobs in the UK.

  • Comment number 74.

    Tonight, on the 8.PM version of BBC TV News 24, there was an 8 minute interview with a rep. from the Liberal Conspiracy blog who should be asked to apologize for his gross misunderstanding of the economic figures he quoted, and your news dept. should know better than to let someone prattle on about a subject he (or she) obviously knows nothing about!
    'Public sector pensions are not expensive because they are only about £20,000'; 'the march today had 400,000 - 500,000 people'.
    Do we really pay licence fees for this drivel when reporting on a serious news topic?

  • Comment number 75.

    there will probablly a lot more when the cuts take effect .before next general election ,so back baenchers be ware your jobs could be at risk

  • Comment number 76.

    All this user's posts have been removed.Why?

  • Comment number 77.

    Not much - but please, fellow taxpayers:-
    1. Don't confuse the main marchers and the rioters - they were obviously not connected.
    2. Don't pretend the enormous cost of policing this was money well spent - in this day and age we don't need these events to prove what people feel.
    3. Get off the passive/"liberal" fence and support our police, condemn the rabble that caused the violence and, for God's sake this time, support harsher methods of containment plus harsher penalties for mindless destruction of property.

  • Comment number 78.

    2. At 19:37pm on 26th Mar 2011, HaveIGotThatWrong wrote:
    What did the cuts march achieve?

    Just how much did it cost to police this event ? Whatever it was, it's money that now can't be spent on more important things. I wonder if the marchers get the irony ?


    ////

    Yes, you have got that wrong.

  • Comment number 79.

    6. At 19:47pm on 26th Mar 2011, steve wrote:
    ... The vast majority of the public sector Unions accept that some cuts are regrettably needed owing to the banker generated credit crisis , public sector workers have accepted a pay freeze for 2 years which amounts to a 12% pay cut in real terms ...
    -----------
    The main cause of the crash was millions of unproductive public sector ( not a few thousand bankers) whose efficiency has fallen over the past decade, while wages have raced ahead of the private sector. How about a real cut in real money which I have suffered to keep my job plus followed by many years (so far 5) of below inflations rises while achieving productively growth.

  • Comment number 80.

    No wonder the Country was in such a mess from the borrow now let someone else deal with it later Labour Party if Ed Milliband can't do even the simplest of sums.

    I heard him say the march proves labour represents the Country, God I hope not!
    With a population of around 7 million in London & 61 million in Britain and only 250

  • Comment number 81.

    73. At 21:17pm on 26th Mar 2011, Jonn wrote:
    #44 - I hope that you are being ironic - as it isn't the unions that shifted manufacturing abroad - that would be a decision made by company directors, and supported by their shareholders who are looking for maximum profits now, and don't give a damn if people lose their jobs in the UK.

    --------------------------------------------

    I'm guessing that one of the prime motivators for moving their industry was the availability of cheap(er) labour. Not to mention the bureaucracy of running a company. The shareholders are probably the financial institutions many of whose customers will be this lot who complain bitterly if their returns are low. Economics, like charity, begins at home.

  • Comment number 82.

    All this user's posts have been removed.Why?

  • Comment number 83.

    Nothing, null, absolutely zero. This was just a waste of public money which otherwise could be spent elsewhere.

  • Comment number 84.

    Well at least, Ed Miliband's gone back to Old Labore.

  • Comment number 85.

    The protesters have been far too polite. I was hoping we'd learned something from the middle east in the last few weeks, but it looks like we still can't make a fist. How much longer?

  • Comment number 86.

    So - when is the PRO cuts march? I want to go on that one.

  • Comment number 87.

    The demonstrators are misguided perhaps. Many will lose their jobs, welfare reduced and will lose out on their pensions. But don't they realise that these sacrifices are for the benefit of this country? Mind you, we must somehow distinguish between the well being of the country and the well being of the people who live in it. Not the same you know.

    I see the defenders of the cuts are out again. Sometime after the election a thought was planted in their brains and they express it whenever they see a keyboard: 'we need the austerity measures to combat the mess that the previous Labour government left us in'.

    OK. a prize for the first blogger to count 500 such identical posts.

  • Comment number 88.

    If there is to be a protest against jobs going abroad, then stop buying imported goods.

    If it says "made in China" on the box, leave it there and use the cash to pay off your student loan instead.

  • Comment number 89.

    25 years in one discipline followed by 20 years in the Civil Service and believe me it was the cushiest job out of the two. 20 years of doing absolutely nothing productive for a good pension to add to my other one. Thanks very much. Of course cuts have to hurt and I fundamentally disagree with the lady who said on camera today she was demonstrating to safeguard her grand childrens future! What planet is she on? If the deficit is not cut and cut quickly, her grand children, my grand children and even perhaps their grand children will be paying for the last Governments incompetence (yes I know the Banks fault) for years to come. I loved Benn but his son has lost the plot (as an addendum).

  • Comment number 90.

    I am amazed these people could actually find the money to pay for the transport to London from various corners of the uk. I don't have any problem with protests although I do object to our taxes having to pay the police to keep the peace although it seems the demonstrators were peaceful and just splinter groups being violent. Ironic that they are protesting about cuts but the police cost for this day of protest would probably have kept a library or two open for a year. I work for the public sector and have taken a pay freeze and will have to put up with an increase in pension contributions probably but will not protest as I can see the reason why the coalition is having to make these tough decisions. In 2008 the private sector had to go through a difficult time and the public sector to a large extent was insulated from this. We have overspent thanks to the last labour government and not all the money was spent wisely. We have an unbalanced economy and an unbalanced society with the gap between rich and poor never wider in spite of a so called socialist government for the last 13 years. Those of us in the middle have been squeezed left right and centre and there is nothing left. I am fed up to the back teeth with being ever more highly taxed while the vast public sector grows ever more bloated not with doctors, teachers, firefighters and such but overpaid managers, numerous beaurocrats and council fat cats who are taking home high salaries and gold plated pensions. I am sick of government wasting our money on wars and the welfare culture and stupid schemes that are not thought through. I am angry but not with the current government, the people I blame are the previous bunch of liars and hypocrites that brought us to where we are today and now have the audacity to claim they speak for mainstream Britain. NEVER WILL ED MILLIBAND SPEAK FOR ME.

  • Comment number 91.

    Seeing all of these massed police opposing the will of citizens and dragging individuals away to the cells will provide a legitmate excuse for another country to support the rebels and attack the official ruling party of the UK. If it is ok for the middle east then why not here or did I just forget to mention oil reserves?

  • Comment number 92.

    All this user's posts have been removed.Why?

  • Comment number 93.

    No wonder the Country was in such a mess when the borrownow, lie about it and let someone else deal with it later Labour Pary were kicked out when Ed Milliband cannot do even the simplest of sums.

    I heard him say he represents the Country, funny how he didn't win the election then. in a town with a population of around 7 million in a country with a population of around 61 million can 250/300 thousand people be representative.

    Also if all those on the March think higher taxes and filling the tax avoidance loopholes would solve the problem, especially the unions why don't they ask Labour why they didn't do that when they had the chance instead of borrowing.

    If all these people really are for the true poor working class of this Country, which I am as a Public Sector worker earning less than 10,000 a year why have they never argued or introduced a fairer pay system instead of percent rises whereby the rich do get richer and the poor get poorer.

    As a white working class 53 year old who has lived in a Labour run council all her live with no hope of a change of power (Tottenham) Neither the Labour Party or a Labour Council have ever done anything for me.

  • Comment number 94.

    This march achieved nothing except a complete waste of money.

    Just goes to show how poor the British are at maths.

    The UK annual budget overspend (deficit), which dates back to 2005, was not thought a problem by New Labour who chose to ignore the growing deficit. HAD they any sense they could have done something about it, but no, quite the opposite, in the last 18 months of their hopeless administration they employed a further 250,000 civil servants.

    The only compliant I have with the coalition is that they should have simply taken cuts OFF ALL departments - then the savings could have be sprad further out.

    As for the job cuts, seemingly over 350,000 staff leave the public sector each year, so that should help!

  • Comment number 95.

    76. At 21:25pm on 26th Mar 2011, Igam Rehctat wrote:
    =============================================
    I agree with your generalisation except to say the protesters in this Country are not protesting against democracy but as a result of democracy that is their right!

  • Comment number 96.

    87. At 21:34pm on 26th Mar 2011, ProfPhoenix wrote:

    The demonstrators are misguided perhaps. Many will lose their jobs, welfare reduced and will lose out on their pensions. But don't they realise that these sacrifices are for the benefit of this country? Mind you, we must somehow distinguish between the well being of the country and the well being of the people who live in it. Not the same you know.

    _______________________________

    I don't think people would be protesting if the rich and privileged were suffering as much as us, especially since they are a large reason why we're in this mess now.

    To quote one of the placards I came across:

    "We're all equal... only some are more equal than others"

  • Comment number 97.

    "What did the cuts march achieve?"

    It showed us that there are at least 250,000 people who don't know who or what finances UK borrowing, what the bond market is, the concept of risk vs reward in relation to gilt yields, and the adverse impact on the economy if these yields shot higher. What's far more worrying is that Miliband & Balls don't seem to know either.

  • Comment number 98.

    Nothing.

    Also I find it absolutely criminal that any Labour party members could have the cheek to turn up at this rally after being 95% percent of the reason that the cuts had to be made in the first place. labour just spent and spent and spent and now somebody else is trying to sort out their mess . They should be totally ashamed.

    I think that Milliband should actually apologise for the part he played in the disgraceful waste of public money that took place today.

  • Comment number 99.

    Finally, Government will get what they want,but next time demonstration will not be the same,not so peaceful.

  • Comment number 100.

    I am trying to determine whether those people commenting and protesting about cuts are just totally clueless or totally selfish.
    What frustrates me about these whole anti cuts demonstrators is their absolute ignorance and total contempt for both the basics of economic principles and tax payers money.
    Most of them blame the bankers for the recession but don’t dare look at their own pensions which hold a trillion in future liabilities. That is a trillion pounds that our children and their childrens children have to pay for. Neither will they look at their own work ethic where performance monitoring means simply employing someone else when a member of their team is incompetent.
    There is a broken record that we hear from the public sector and unions time and time again, the same old rhetoric about the bankers caused the crisis etc when in fact it was a culmination of many economic factors and anyone with a modicum of knowledge knows this.
    The public sector need to learn about financial management, and not only that they need to realise that they do not add to the economy they simply take it from the private sector which makes them no better than those who spend years on benefits.

 

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