There's no doubt that the middle-classes are mostly behind the junior doctors, and one reason is that we recognise the work-politics.
Clearly the doctors have an idiot, bulls***ing boss trying to “restructure” in ways that won't work, but will make everyone worse off. Who hasn't been there? It's a defining aspect of working life, so the idea of someone taking a stand is immensely appealing.
Increasingly it feels like a symbolic stand against injustice we can all rally round; it has all the hallmarks of the 1984-5 miners strike, with fewer tricky arguments about economics.
However, compared with the 80s miners, the middle classes are still getting the hang of this militancy business, and so in a very supportive way, we'd like like to make the following suggestions.
- Shrink the badges
Call us superficial, but MCs like their badges small and tasteful, not saucer-size. Make them too big and they'll be put somewhere discreet, not on the chest where they need to be
- Get a slogan
Remember Coal Not Dole? That was a memorable, assertive rallying cry. “I support the Junior Doctors” is very clear, of course, but not really something to bring folk to the barricades
- Be horrible about Jeremy Hunt more often
It helps to have an enemy, and we all hate him because he reminds us of the worst boss we ever had. Sod not wanting to get into personalities, and get cracking on the effigies
- Be more concise
The JDs are so good at explaining patiently and reasonably that their message can get lost. Be angry! We won't mind! In fact we'll really like it! Especially if there's also a good badge.