Book Reviews

BOOK REVIEW : Bash the Rich by Ian Bone

This book is the autobiography written by Ian Bone, who the Sunday People branded the “most dangerous man in Britain”. Bone has been involved with the anarchist and class war movement in various forms for several decades, with this book being a well-written look at his role. The author doesn’t pretend that the movements were always well run and there’s no shortage of humour running through the title, but it is a reminder of how strong the feeling was against the move towards Thatcherism.

There are elements of vandalism and damage being caused which do give more of an impression of the Bullingdon Club, but there is a different dynamic about wanting to change society for the better. Bone refers to the corruption within Swansea council from the elected Labour councillors, testament to his concern that this wasn’t just a movement against the Conservatives, it was against those who wanted to make the working class worse off. When recounting the story of a bomb attack the author notes that he felt “bombings were a sign of failure” and there was a purpose to what Bone wanted to achieve. Although the book doesn’t cover this period of Bone’s life, he was involved in the respected Bristolian newspaper which he edited for a time during the early 2000s.

It’s undeniable that some will find it challenging to read about the dancing on the grave of Michael Roberts, a Conservative MP who died at the despatch box, but the book is likely one of the better accounts of the radical groups that were at the fringes of politics. And if the Sunday People thought that Bone might be disheartened or disappointed by their defining him as dangerous, they were seemingly very wrong. As to whether individuals love, hate or are indifferent to Bone, they’ll likely find this book authentic and genuine.

For those who want to see Bone in action, here’s his appearance on television being interviewed by Jonathan Ross.