I'm delighted to be performing poetry for a great cause tonight: the Save Friern Barnet Library cabaret. Charles Shaar Murray is accompanying me on guitar, and there's a long line-up of talent from 7.30pm.
Since the Tory coalition government (which few voted for) grabbed power with the help of their Lib Dem human shields, the social carnage in the UK has been devastating.
In the area of our national culture alone, the arts have been dropped from the proposed EBacc(teria) exam created by Michael Gove in order to completely turn education into a sausage machine for the surviving capitalists.
Arts funding has been slashed, and in some cases destroyed. Curiously, Maria Miller, the minister for Culture, Media, Sport and Women, threatened the Telegraph newspaper with Leveson press laws when they dared investigate her claim for £90,000 from the public purse for a house occupied by her parents.
And libraries, those great Victorian philanthropic centres of study, educating and enlightening the masses, are being closed down against the wishes of the communities they serve.
The scapegoating is pitiful and transparent. No immigrant ever took an axe to our way of life the way the Tories have with the connivance of the Lib Dems and the timidity of the Labour Party. No "benefit cheat" ever did the damage the bankers and tax avoiders have wrought over the years.
All along the Tories have droned the same mantra: that we have to clear the deficit. And yet the profits from the top 1,000 richest is enough to clear it. I blogged this in 2010:
HOW TO SOLVE THE CRISIS IN ONE EASY MOVEThe occupation of Friern Barnet Library by local volunteers has become, in the words of the Greens, "a symbol of resistance". That is why it is so important that we all get behind the wheel on this one and ensure the Friern Barnet Library campaing wins because this fight is for all of us.
A report in the Independent shows that the richest 1,000 people in the UK could pay off the whole of the £159 billion public deficit tomorrow, just from the profits they have made last year out of the economic crisis.
The collective wealth of the country's 1,000 richest people rose 30% last year in the wake of the economic crisis.
Their combined wealth rose by more than £77bn to £333.5bn, the biggest annual increase in the 22-year history of the Sunday Times rich list.
Please come to the gig tonight and support these brilliant people. And see some great entertainment.
Friern Barnet Library,
Friern Barnet Road, N11 3DS
Twitter: Occupied Library; Save Friern Barnet Library
Indymedia report here