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From The Socialist newspaper, 30 January 2013

Austerity's utter failure

Dave Griffiths, West Midlands Socialist Party

Tory Chancellor Gideon Osborne still tells us austerity is working, but the government managed to take economic growth below 0% not once, not twice but now into a 'triple dip'.

The Con-Dems claim more are working than ever. This hides the brutal reality of low-paid, precarious and insufficient work.

But if - as the latest figures say - the economy shrank by 0.3%, then more people must be making less.

The productivity fall that this indicates reflects the parlous state of British capitalism.

'Oops' said Deputy Prime Minister Nick Clegg, 'perhaps we should have invested earlier.' But instead the Con-Dems launched an orgy of attacks on wages, jobs and working people's benefits - but not benefits for banks.

Even their International Monetary Fund mates tell them it isn't working and other pals in the markets threaten their 'Triple A' rating.

While misery is piled on to the vast majority of people, in 2012 the world's richest 100 people 'earned' $240 billion. Oxfam says this is enough to end extreme poverty four times over.

In 30 years, the top 1% saw their share of wealth triple from 5.7% to 15.4% while the obscene wealth of the top 0.1% - 60,000 people - rose five times to 6.1%.

The big divide in the UK is between a small group of the super-rich and nearly everyone else.

This new 'corporate feudalism', brought to us by the free market Tory, Liberal and Labour parties alike, is strangling the economy.

Stuart Lansley of Bristol University says: "Britain has been building a new form of inequality, close to the searing gap of the Victorian era...

"Most of the rich's income surge has come not from... building a more robust economy triggered by an entrepreneurial leap forward but the very opposite - a clever process of wealth and income transfer from the bulk of the working population.

"Until this gap begins to close... the economy is likely to remain locked in crisis."

In other words, the free market has contributed to a structural economic crisis, not a temporary one. The 'new normal' offers frightening prospects for most of us.

Punishing the poor for the actions of the richest isn't working. We must fight attacks on our living standards and services and fight for a change to a democratically planned socialist system.

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In The Socialist 30 January 2013:


Socialist Party NHS news & campaigning

NHS workers resist cuts

Privatisation: Bleeding the NHS dry

Heatherwood hospital campaign shows determination

East Midlands: Campaign forces retreat on ambulance station closure

Life as an NHS worker: bullying and stress


Socialist Party news and analysis

Cameron takes a gamble by threatening EU referendum

Austerity's utter failure

Taxing words from Cameron?

Aaron Swartz: a fight to free information

Them & Us


Fighting the cuts

Southampton councillors have a choice ... Don't vote for cuts!

Hull councillors ready to vote No

Brighton's Greens vote for cuts in workers' allowances

Labour meltdown in Stoke-on-Trent continues; and Unison withholds funding

Stop Sheffield children's centre closures


Workplace news and events

Twelfth day of strike action by Tyne and Wear metro cleaners

DfE strike ballot

London teachers call for strike action against Performance Related Pay

Workplace news in brief


Socialist Party review

Fired up by Fire in the Blood - a story of big business cruelty and neglect


Socialist Party reports and campaigns

Jumping through hoops for a job

Shrewsbury 24: What is the government hiding?

Wales conference - confidence in socialist ideas

Server appeal: Members provide a huge boost to our resources

Socialist Party National Congress 2013


 

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