NUS Organise A Demonstration of Passivity in the Pouring Rain

Two years after students were abandoned by their union at the height of the struggle against tuition fees, the NUS finally held a Central London protest today.  Sadly offering too little much too late, the student union agreed to police demands to march the demonstration away from Parliament and out of Central London.

A demonstration is exactly what it says.  At best this means a demonstration of power as people organise together to take direct action, strike, riot or generally fuck shit up.  At worst it can be a demonstration of passivity – a signal to the state that should they continue along the same path then actually no-one will bother to do much about it.

When 2 million people marched placidly against the Iraq war it sent a clear message to Blair and his war mongering Government.  That whilst lots of people disagreed with the war on Iraq, not enough people disagreed enough to make the planned invasion unworkable.  Government’s need to be forced to make concessions, not asked nicely.  Only the threat of an ungovernable country would have stopped Blair in his tracks.  Instead the Stop the War Coalition called little more than a mass picnic in Hyde Park.   Tens of thousands of people died as a result of this inaction.

Today around 10,000 students and supporters joined the march against  education cuts where they were led away from Parliament by the NUS to listen to the wannabe MPs of tomorrow make speeches in a South London park.  A  lively feeder march called by the bolder National Coalition Against Fees and Cuts (NCAFC) also took place marching from the University of London Union.

NCAFC had hoped to march to Parliament Square but were thwarted by a heavy police presence and their unpaid helpers in the form of NUS stewards.  A stand off at the edge of Parliament Square turned into more of a stand around.  Eventually the large section of the march which opposed the NUS’  concessions to police diktats reluctantly headed south over the River Thames where a rally was being held in the remote Kennington Park.

According to reports on twitter the rally was closed with a stage invasion by rightly furious students who had been marched into the middle of nowhere to listen to a self-congratulatory love in from NUS stooges.  The latest news is that current NUS president, Liam Burns, was egged by protesters who stormed the stage and brought the dismal affair to a close.

Students have every right to be angry and every reason to keep fighting.  With the welfare state, the NHS and other social protections being swept away it is their futures that are being dismantled.  Anger at the shabby response of the NUS to this onslaught is also well deserved.  Not for the first time, a Union, which exists to demonstrate collective power, has instead buckled under cowardly leadership.

The student protests which took place shortly after this Government weren’t elected demonstrated exactly what can happen when these self-serving leaders are ignored.  Whilst the storming of the Tory Party Headquarters was an inspiration to people across Europe fighting banker imposed austerity, the NUS condemned the action and refused to support further protests against tuition fees.

This caused the student movement to develop a life of its own, far stronger, tactically sharper and just fucking hipper than anything the NUS geeks could have dreamed of.  The rage from many students at the spinelessness of the NUS today demonstrates what could still be possible.  But it won’t happen if left to the likes of Liam Burns and other feeble careerists at the NUS.

NCAFC have already issued a call out for the 5th December.  More info at:

23 responses to “NUS Organise A Demonstration of Passivity in the Pouring Rain


    Class war in any guise. The working classes pose a threat to.opportunities of the owners of production. Saddled with mortgage sized debt just to achieve a paper of dubious use alone needing postgraduate study and more debt. The rich always were immune from it all, the favours called in, cheating at university, its expected of them. Meantime genuine talent shovel chips at fast food outlets just to keep a roof, student debt growing daily. How long before that young talent revolts? How long before politically motivated organisations recruit the frustrated youth?. Saw it all as mature student running 6 jobs for the priviledge.

    Sent from my HTC

    • The middle-class can afford to pay their way through uni, before loans and Jim Murphy we had grants and if your parents could afford it a “parental contribution” which if your parents earned enough reduced the grant to zero. There was no such thing as loans: you parents were expected to support you. Why should the poor working classes subsidise the middle-classes and the rich toffs education. And don’t give us that bullshit that we all benefit from doctors, poor kids don’t get don’t get the opportunity to be doctors and lawyers. Incidentally doctors are the second most stupidest students at university, the dumbest are doctors; both cushy well-paid middle-class professions. Why don’t you join that middle-class “Occupy”: they might even pay off your mortgage, then you can expand your fucking buy-to-let “portfolio” and rip off the poor, the only loans the poor get access to are fucking Wonga loans.

  2. jamiles369

    Your lecturers have been salaried by debt collectors, what does that tell you about them?

  3. Careerists all right, like that cunt and (allegedly, just in case the cunt read this blog 🙂 ) MI5 man Jim “Loans Not Grant” who Murphy who left the students a merry dance. And turncoat Lorna Fitzsimmons. The NUS is a crock of shit.

  4. My daughter started university last month. She was saying that a couple of students on her course have already dropped out because of money worries, and a few of her friends were having to take on more debt (overdrafts and credit cards) just to pay for essentials like rent, food and bus fares – ffs.

    Funny though, these laws on self sufficiency for students were proposed by and enacted by people who paid no tuition fees, got a full maintenance grant three times a year and could even sign-on the dole when the university year had finished.

    • Back in the day students could sign-on at Christmas, Easter and over the Summer break (if they weren’t working), they also received some Housing Benefit. Students of today don’t know how good they have got it 🙂

    • And no tuition fees either 🙂

    • And back in the day there was no such thing as a credit card (maybe the toffs had them, who knows), the only “loan” a student would have had was a couple of hundred pound bank “overdraft” to tide them over until their “maintenance grant” was paid in. How times have changed – and you have the likes of Jim Murphy to thank 🙂

  5. I don’t know, all these cuts and where is it getting us?
    Deeper in the shit by the looks of things.

    He couldn’t run a piss up in a fucking brewery.

  6. “A few powerful men have hijacked our economic, financial and political structure. They aren’t socialists or capitalists. They’re criminals.”

    • I’ll take a look at that later.

      • frank_begbie,

        My own thoughts on it are that there is a lot more to the article then what it say’s, all that is happening is not happening by accident, it can’t be, the writing was on the wall many, many years ago, nothing was done to stop it, why!. There is something else going on, we didn’t get where we are by what the article say’s, the article just talks in the main about the effects. I think we are only just entering into the nightmare of what is to come. Whatever happens, I think it was all VERY well planned out to happen along time ago, still, we will have to wait and see if I am right or wrong, one way or another we won’t have long to wait.

        • Politicians like to give the impression that they are running around like headless chickens reacting to events as they are happening, but that is just bullshit. It is all planned down to the finest detail, nothing happens by chance although Joe & Josephine Public are led to believe so. All the the players and actors, either wittingly or unwittingly play their part as if on a stage. It is like a puppet show, and you can’t see who is behind the curtain pulling the strings.

          • Sooty,

            You are so right, that is how it works, always has done, but now something has changed and for the worse by a long, long way, I have never been as frighting as I am at this moment in time and I am old!!!.

    • They are capitalists thought – this is what capitalism is. all that’s taking place now is that a lot of the shit that was exported to what were called third world countries is now being imported here. it seems to be a shock to some americans (and liberals in the UK) that capitalism isn’t very nice.

  7. why the fuck can’t I make a comment or reply?

  8. Very good article just finished it.

    Since we left the Gold Standard we’ve been living in a bubble of debt created wealth.
    Now its got so big its about to burst, and the people in charge are milking it for all their worth before it crashes and burns.

    And the media which they control, are spreading the lies that get most of the population hating the poor because they alone are responsible for this economic downturn.
    They’ve created a scapegoat to take the blame, but the truth will come out when capitalism finally crashes the economy.

  9. Annos

    Loved your link to http://www.zerhedge.if thats the correct adjective for such a despondent article. There was one I down loaded some time ago entitled
    ‘The collapsing us economy and’ the end of the world’ in our new times. I’m not sure if it is a pdf file or not.

  10. Just like the labour unions and New Labour they sold their souls for a slice of the pie we’re denied at every turn.

  11. Pingback: The Future is Unwritten. « Velvet Coalmine

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