Britain Burns: Riots Spread Through U.K. CitiesPlease note that the Tea Party has yet to burn down anything and have earned a reputation for leaving their rally sites cleaner than when they got there. And they aren't big fans of redistribution of wealth either, whether by some idiot rioting the streets or some politician in Washington DC. What this fellow, and the other rioters, is doing is not redistributing wealth. They are destroying it.
"This is the uprising of the working class. We're redistributing the wealth," said Bryn Phillips, a 28-year-old self-described anarchist, as young people emerged from the store with chocolate bars and ice cream cones.
Phillips claimed rioters were motivated by distrust of the police, and drew a link between the rage on London's street and insurgent right-wing politics in the United States. "In America you have the tea party, in England you've got this," he said.
Many Tottenham residents claimed that the looting was the work of greedy youths — rather than fueled by anti-police sentiments.
"It's nothing to do with the man who was shot, is it?" said 37-year-old Marcia Simmons, who has lived in the diverse and gritty north London neighborhood all her life. "A lot of youths ... heard there was a protest and joined in. Others used it as an opportunity to kit themselves out, didn't they, with shoes and T-shirts and everything."
The past year has seen mass protests against the tripling of student tuition fees and cuts to public sector pensions. In November, December and March, small groups broke away from large marches in London to loot. In the most notorious episode, rioters attacked a Rolls-Royce carrying Prince Charles and his wife Camilla to a charity concert.
However, the full impact of spending cuts has yet to be felt and the unemployment rate is stable although it remains highest among youth, especially in areas like Tottenham, Hackney and Croydon.
Some residents insisted that joblessness was not to blame. "It's just an excuse for the young ones to come and rob shops," said Brixton resident Marilyn Moseley, 49.
The following audio link contains a Tottenham resident claiming that the economy in the UK and changes to the welfare state there are a justification for the riots going on there.
London Faces 3 Straight Nights Of Arson, Looting
The Telegraph has live coverage of the riots at their website and Instapundit has a round up of links and comments.