Friday 9 December 2016

New Labour's toxic legacy is now on view in London rioting

Tony Blair's lust for power created a generation without hope or aspiration, says Peter Oborne

Published 13/08/2011 | 05:00

The rioters who have rampaged through the streets of Britain over the past seven days were the children of Tony Blair. Many of them were born under Blair. They went to school under Blair. They learnt their system of savage values and greed under Blair. They are the product of the policies of Blair.

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So what happened? What explains the savage irony that New Labour, a movement that was supposed to do so much good, created instead so much evil and despair? This is the urgent question that David Cameron, Nick Clegg and Ed Miliband must each try to answer as they get to grips with the horror of last week.

At the heart of this problem lies New Labour's approach to the welfare state. Gordon Brown developed a social security system that entrenched dependency and trapped the unemployed in poverty. Certainly he gave them more money -- the benefits to which a single mother is entitled rose by 85pc under New Labour.

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