Paul Robinson Poetry

Smash the Council, Blockade the Town Hall!

Last night Merseyside Police barrelled into a peaceful anti-cuts protest outside Liverpool Town Hall, arbitrarily arresting two protestors; another protestor was injured by mounted police. Although, this time round (see Truth, Reason & Liberty Blog: Merseyside Police Attack Demonstration at Town Hall), there was a greater awareness of police tactics, built up from experience on recent demos, this did not stop the cadre of council-protectors from diminishing and silencing what should be everyone’s freedom to carry out and participate in protests against behind-closed-doors decisions that are being made on behalf of the citizenry of Liverpool.

Thing is, though, words such as ‘freedom’, ‘protest’ & ‘citizenry’ lose all meaning when protestors find themselves in the vicinity of the State and its apparatus. Time and again, as numbers have dwindled at anti-cuts demos, the police have took the numerical advantage and arrested individuals on piss-poor charges of public disorder —this, in my view, is allowing the police to ‘process’ the most vociferous of protestors: allowing the accumulation of personal details; allowing the break up of any remaining contingent of dissent, with the intention of dissuading people from attending future actions and carrying out direct action and, ultimately, disallowing Our voices.

This must not be allowed to happen.

The police must not be allowed to dictate the terms of our protest; the council must not be allowed to make budgetary decisions, on behalf of Liverpool people, within the exclusive walls of the Town Hall.

Town Halls across the UK are now —where they ever anything else?— fronts for the implementation of control, subservience, atomisation, under the guise of austerity —a watch-tower over the “Proles”; Town Halls are a breeding ground for the machinations of the power-hungry and a classroom for the debilitation of those who thought ‘change’ could be made in accordance with the rules.

What say do we have in the cuts being made? We have none! What channels allow us to lobby these privileged individuals reaping the rewards & benefits of local government? The channels are mere smoke and mirrors! We need (must) wrest control away from the cadre of councillors who continually eschew the working class of Liverpool. We are nothing to them, despite their well-honed bedside manners, despite their statements and claims of ‘working within communities’. Our response, our actions towards those in ‘power’, those wielding ‘authority’ must be, “you are nothing to us!”

If we do not begin to organise effectively, if we do not rise-up above our ‘set places’, there will be no dissent remaining to object & obstruct the decision-making process nestled within the pockets of ‘councillors’ and their ilk in Whitehall. This, in no uncertain terms, is a war, a struggle, and we must treat it as such.

It’s still only March and there have already been a slew of arrests: authority is taking bites out of us, starving us of our resistance. We must be ready —as activists, as demonstrators, as protestors— for a spring/summer offensive.

Smash the Council, Blockade the Town Hall!