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From The Socialist newspaper, 20 May 2015

Them & Us

100,000

The number of jobs the government intends to axe from its departments over the next five years, seriously damaging public service delivery. 90,000 jobs were scrapped by the previous coalition government.

Haves and have nots

Data crunching by Lloyds bank has revealed that the richest 20% of the UK population is 105 times wealthier than the poorest fifth. It underscored the fact that those with wealth are rapidly accumulating more, with their property, pension pots and other personal assets growing by a staggering 1.5 trillion last year.

Meanwhile, the Equality Trust reckons that 66% of the population have 'no positive financial assets at all'!

Toxic businessman

Putting Dracula in charge of a blood bank is not recommended. However, the government is happy to appoint Tory MP Sajid Javid as its business secretary, notwithstanding being embroiled in a tax dodging scheme.

Javid was a senior executive at Deutsche Bank in 2003 when it set up a complex offshore tax dodging arrangement to pay its top dogs lucrative bonuses.

This didn't prevent him from becoming a Treasury minister in 2010 despite the government repeatedly pledging to crackdown on tax avoidance.

The new business secretary in his previous employment had also staunchly defended the dodgy investments which Deutsche Bank and others peddled, and which led to the global financial crash of 2008.

Bribing drug dealers

A government-appointed economist, Jim O'Neill, has called for the establishment of a multibillion dollar research fund to produce a new generation of much needed antibiotics.

Not taking action will cost countries trillions of dollars he says.

O'Neill wants to 'incentivise' big pharma (the giant pharmaceutical companies) for each new breakthrough by paying them billions, providing these new antibiotics are marketed as generic, not-for-profit, drugs.

Wouldn't it make sense to simply nationalise big pharma?

The drugs do work

One way to ease financial pressures on the NHS is to cut its enormously expensive drugs bill. Researchers have recently pointed out that 85 million a year could be saved switching from anti-blindness drug, Lucentis, to a cheaper and equally effective (but unlicensed) alternative, Avastin.

However, the drug company Genentech, owned by Roche, that makes and markets Avastin (which is currently licensed only for bowel cancer treatment), declined to seek a licence to use it in blindness treatments. Surprise, surprise, Lucentis, which is licensed but costs over six times more than Avastin, is also made by Genentech!

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Coronavirus crisis - Finance appeal

The coronavirus crisis has laid bare the class character of society in numerous ways. It is making clear to many that it is the working class that keeps society running, not the CEOs of major corporations.

The results of austerity have been graphically demonstrated as public services strain to cope with the crisis.

The government has now ripped up its 'austerity' mantra and turned to policies that not long ago were denounced as socialist. But after the corona crisis, it will try to make the working class pay for it, by trying to claw back what has been given.

  • The Socialist Party's material is more vital than ever, so we can continue to report from workers who are fighting for better health and safety measures, against layoffs, for adequate staffing levels, etc.
  • Our 'fighting coronavirus workers' charter', outlines a programme to combat the virus and protect workers' living conditions.
  • When the health crisis subsides, we must be ready for the stormy events ahead and the need to arm workers' movements with a socialist programme - one which puts the health and needs of humanity before the profits of a few.
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In The Socialist 20 May 2015:


Socialist Party news and analysis

Cut rents not benefits

Fight back at the Tory war on youth

Stop the "elites fortifying their power"

Build a movement to defeat the government's savagery

Labour leadership contest - appealing to big business

Fight Tories' new 'anti-extremism' law

State and big business spied on activists

Ukip provocateur unmasked

Them & Us


Socialist Party workplace news

Support the National Rail walkout over pay and jobs

FBU debates how to combat Tory onslaught

All-out pay strike forces Labour council back to table

ITV production staff

Workplace news in brief


International socialist news and analysis

US: Bernie Sanders calls for 'political revolution'


Socialist Party reports and campaigns

Election aftermath: anti-Tory austerity protests

Cheapskate council screws up election ballot!

Build up resources to fight the Tories

Management thrashed in academies debate

Campaign news in brief


Socialist Party comments and reviews

Russell Brand's 'The Emperor's New Clothes'

Save our 'life saver' libraries!

Tories rig exams to favour rich students


 

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