Harry's Last Stand

Harry's Last Stand

How the World My Generation Built Is Falling Down, and What We Can Do to Save It

Book - 2014
Average Rating:
Rate this:
"In November 2013, 91-year-old Yorkshireman, RAF veteran and ex-carpet salesman Harry Leslie Smith s Guardian article--'This year, I will wear a poppy for the last time'--was shared over 80,000 times on Facebook and started a huge debate about the state of society. Now he brings his unique perspective to bear on NHS cutbacks, benefits policy, political corruption, food poverty, the cost of education--and much more. From the deprivation of 1930s Barnsley and the terror of war to the creation of our welfare state, Harry has experienced how a great civilisation can rise from the rubble. But at the end of his life, he fears how easily it is being eroded. Harry s Last Stand is a lyrical, searing modern invective that shows what the past can teach us, and how the future is ours for the taking."--From publisher.
Publisher: London : Icon, 2014.
Copyright Date: ©2014
ISBN: 9781848317369
Branch Call Number: 306.0941 SMITH
Characteristics: xix, 202 pages ; 21 cm


From the critics

Community Activity


Add a Comment
Oct 27, 2019

Harry’s Last Stand by Canadian author Harry Leslie Smith is a book every young reader under 30 should read. A quote from page 156: “It is terrifying that in a world of 8 billion souls, fewer than a hundred men and women control half its wealth, thereby having enormous influence on its politics.”
Harry describes the hardship he endured as a boy in England; the difficulty he had getting an education and often going to bed hungry. Harry belonged to a family poorer than almost any reader today can even imagine.
Harry’s warning to the youth and young adults of today is to be cautious and mindful of politicians who allow the hard earned benefits earned by his generation to erode with regards to the simple right to an affordable education and in particular, access to an affordable and universal National Health Service (NHS). In his youth, these and were only available to the rich and to corrupt politicians. Most workers in the coal minds and the work houses of that era, could not afford to get sick. Basic health care was beyond their reach or the depth of their pocket. You were fortunate if your children never went to bed hungry. Simple labourers and their families were there for the purpose of making money for the mine owners, business owners, and corrupt politicians; they were replaceable and were discarded when they were no longer useful to the ruling class.
This book is also a book that every politician today should read. Harry does indeed bring his unique perspective to readers on NHS cutbacks, benefits policy, political corruption, food poverty, the cost of education, and so much more. Highly recommended by Senior Doctor-at-Bass Fishing! D. A.

Jan 17, 2019

I wish our Governor and State legislators would read this book.

Oct 26, 2017

A must read to save democracy. Last 33 pages should be mandatory reading for everyone.

Oct 26, 2014

The one interesting aspect of this I found was not that it said anything new but that it comes from a 94 ( I think) year old englishman who experienced hardship, poverty and deprivation in the 30's and can see the same problems today with austerity measures, corporate greed and dominance and callous politicians. My point being he knows shat he is talking about and while one can see the connections I did feel that he laboured his points a little too much. There are many similarities with the social situation here in NZ as there is in many other countries following neo- liberal policies. In spite of those shortcomings it is an easy read with his style of writing being grounded in common language as opposed to many other tomes I have read on the same themes that are written by experts, policy analysts and corporate mouth pieces.

Age Suitability

Add Age Suitability

There are no age suitabilities for this title yet.


Add a Summary

There are no summaries for this title yet.


Add Notices

There are no notices for this title yet.


Add a Quote

There are no quotes for this title yet.

Explore Further


Subject Headings


Find it at JMS

To Top