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So called Student Riots

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Friday 10 December 2010 8.01am
Watching the scenes on television I had an awful feeling of deja vu when I saw the Police officer on the ground surrounded by protesters...Broadwater farm came to mind and P.C. Blakelock, I know it was irrational but I feel so uneasy seeing such anarchy on our streets. I think a few water cannons should have been used on the plonkers trying to gain access to the Treasury.
Had to laugh when spotting the Father christmas showing a 'V' sign in the doorway..Winston Churchill would have been so very proud!
Friday 10 December 2010 8.15am
These protests, for that it what they were (not riots), concerned the destruction of UK Higher Education and a return to privilege and elitism. Whilst I would rather see no one injured the anger was justifiable and the police tactics once again overly aggressive (in their defence of our 'democracy'). The reporting of this is breathtaking in how one-sided it is and the language being used to frame what was happening. Following the earlier student protests which led to violence against property it was clear how the news media would react (clearly forgetting their own free higher education and/or smug and comfortable in the knowledge that their wealth will mean that their children can still carry on as normal). When I see the BBC headline concerns a broken window to the car carrying Prince Charles and not the fact that this vote will destroy UK higher education as we know it (and in the long term reinforce the class based elitism across society - and now so clearly present in government - that so many of us hoped we were seeing disappear) I despair. I know who I would like to turn the water cannons on and it is not the student protesters!
Friday 10 December 2010 9.36am
'I saw the Police officer on the ground surrounded by protesters'
The police are just as violent, if not more so. But the TV doesn't show the police punching people in face.

Considering the lie Lib Dems have just ruined students futures maybe you should be more sympathetic.
Friday 10 December 2010 10.32am
I am sympathetic to the genuine students Eloise, that was why my heading was so called student riots. Trouble is the whole event seems to have been hi-jacked by people with their own agendas.

Just out of curiosity does any one know the ratio of police to people there?

And do they really have to pay only when starting work?
Friday 10 December 2010 12.55pm
Agree with Jan.

Also -

Student fees will be cheaper for the poorest 25%. For the remainder it will be more expensive. They will pay it back through loans.

I had student debts of £22k a few years back, and have to repay this at about 9% of my salary above £15k. The average under the new scheme will be £30k and has to be paid off only out of your salary over about £22k.

I've no time for the protesters, university IS a privilege and not a right, we are not a big rich country just a fairly small part of a global society where other countries (China anyone?) are making rapid gains in their economies and skills. I have worked out there and the skills of people in their early 20s are amazing. Some of my colleagues had PhDs and people in their late 30s gaining Professorships.

Our taxpayers cannot subsidise tens of thousands of students to go on degrees that they are not going to learn much on or use to get a job. A lot of people doing 3-year BAs end up having to retrain or go into semi skilled jobs that didn't need a degree in the first place. At least if they did something like English Literature they have got some learning out of it but if not, they've not used £30,000 of taxpayers money wisely.

A market based system of tuition is fair on everyone and it is just a shame that it has to be introduced so rapidly whereby the 2012/13 intake hasn't had much time to save up for it. But that is a legacy of the previous government not facing facts.
Friday 10 December 2010 4.13pm
Er, we are a big rich country (6th largest GDP in the world) and surely it befits such a country to recognise the value (not only economically but also socially) of education. A more highly educated populace benefits all of society (in myriad ways) and increases social mobility (the empirical evidence is out there should you wish to look). Whilst certain concessions have been made wrt the increase in fees for students from poorer backgrounds there is no fairness here. History has demonstrated that young people from families with no tradition of higher education (most often working class families) are seriously underrepresented in HE, notably in the 'elite' universities. The increase in tuition fees will reinforce this division yet further and the legislation around access is notably toothless. A return to higher education for the financially elite will inevitably return. The motivation for this move is simple. The economy was hit as a result of the banking crisis (where once again a small section of society was benefiting disproportionally) and the government decided to cut university teaching budgets by 40% (and in real terms much more than this), a cut proportionally higher than in any other sector. The result is an increase in tuition fees to fund the financial shortfalls that universities now face. The comparison with China is a useful one as they are increasingly up-skilling their workforce and investing much more in Higher Education at the same time that we are doing the opposite.
Friday 10 December 2010 10.48pm
I find it incredible that anyone could still think Tory equals bad labour equals good ,unless they were in coma for the past 10 yearss of new labour government, the Liberal democrats are in a coalition govonment,
If the coalition government fails to deliver on civil liberty’s that will be the time to storm parliament,
Not now,

these so called demonstrations have a hallow feel , just anti conservative rent a mob, no real agenda,and im some one who spent most of my life hating the Tories.
Friday 10 December 2010 11.17pm
love the suggestion that making middle class kids pay back some of the cost of their education rather than being subsidised by the rest of us is some kind of attack on the about deluded...mind you its the same logic that calls the riots "police violence". maybe the students should try working for a living and then they might have a better appreciation of the real world
Friday 10 December 2010 11.44pm
I couldn't go to uni unless it was subsidised, we have free school meals and were a single parent fmaily on benefits. Having a degree gave me a way in to emplyment and I now earn a good wage. If we make universtiy just for rich people our economy will suffer and there will be even less social mobility than there is now.

The people who will suffer the most from this are people from working class families who can't subsidise their kids thru university and who will end up with a lot more than 30K debt.
Saturday 11 December 2010 8.13am
and there is nothing to stop poorer youngsters going to uni in the new arrangements. but the subsidy paid by those in work to those studying will be reduced. i for one am happy to see the concept of "free" university education challenged. the labour government bloated higher education through a combination of ridiculous expectations and mickey mouse courses. the cost has spiralled out of control. on the other hand the riots and protests are simply hooliganism and i applaud the police for their efforts to keep the streets clear and safe for the vast majority who just want to go about their lawful going to work, a concept alien to many of the yobs we saw on tv in the week gone by
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