By Gina Ravens
So David Cameron says we are in an economic war.
I am 58 years old – too young to have been alive during WW2, and Cameron younger than I. Even so, I understand that he is trying to evoke a blitz spirit of us all working together and suffering every hardship, enduring all until the enemy has been beaten. It is a riff on his “all in it together” theme, something that really doesn’t work when you look at the expenses he and other MPs claim, and the amount of booze he manages to imbibe while he plays fruit ninja and leaves his children to fend for themselves in pubs.
So who is the enemy?
Who has he declared war on?
By his actions, it is you and I, and he will do his best to demoralise and destroy the economic enemy.
So many policies regarding austerity aimed at the poor, sick, unemployed, student and elderly, it is hard to see where his support lies, while the wealthy get their tax cuts and cry into their crystal at how much more they are suffering than those in the poverty traps he is creating.
It is obvious to those who are not millionaires and billionaires that he does not love us, does not care to see us safe, solvent or healthy.
His blinkered Government talk about recovery, but plunge us deeper into debt, this last month another £13 billion in debt while they pursue policies that drive us further to the brink of destruction. There are, through these policies, less jobs, but we are punished if we are unemployed.
They pursue an ideology of giving disabled folk more full and meaningful lives (their rhetoric), by means of taking unemployable disabled people off of disability benefits and into a job market which has no vacancies for them and see them as a liability and, all the while, real jobs are lost because employers take advantage of workfare to fill what would otherwise be vacancies, with free labour. Effectively, enforcing poor conditions on those who have no choice. All during a time when other policies remove worker’s rights in the workplace and legal aid.
Not to forget, that these policies are wizard wheezes thought up by Lord Snooty and his Eton pals without consultation and throwing away equality impact assessments – a supremely arrogant position to take when you consider the numerous blunders this Government has made during their time in office.
If our Government has declared war on it’s own people, should it not expect us to war back with them?
An enemy does not roll over and wait for the worst, not when surrender means complete ruin.
Cameron’s declaration of war is an invitation to fight back, to use what resources we have to depose them – they are little by little removing any other means to remove them and have choices in Government.
Lord Freud is quite right when he says we have little left to lose, but removing this ultra right-wing government gives us so much to gain.
Cameron fired the first shot in this war and, so far, every shot since.
We have held our protests and marches, but the media is in the Tories’ pockets and very little of the Government’s atrocities or our actions have been adequately reported. As such, our actions have done little to change things.
The Department of Work and Pensions (DWP), by means of ATOS assessments are taking people off disability benefits that they depend upon, an action that either through inappropriateness of decision, or causing major stress has seen a death rate of an average of 73 people every week, either as a direct or indirect consequence of work capability assessments.
Thousands are already dead, more will die as this continues.
When presented with any detail of this, the government response is to declare their pride in getting people off benefits.
Workfare is a system supported by far too many big companies. This is a Government scheme whereby the unemployed are forced to work for their meagre benefits, resulting in the equivalent number of jobs which would otherwise be employing people being lost. This is a Government that destroys jobs, makes virtual slaves of the unemployed, and enriches the already wealthy owners and directors of the businesses that participate in workfare.
Every measure the Government has taken in the name of Austerity has reduced benefits resulting in a fall in income for the unemployed, the sick, the disabled, the elderly and destroying jobs for the young. Meantime, part-time workers also suffer from the measures along with low paid workers. The destruction of jobs through Government policy assures that few part-time workers will achieve full-time status, low paid workers have their income and rights removed, and the threat of redundancy or other means of loss of their jobs increases.
The Government declare that we are all in it together, but while we have our incomes eroded and costs increase, the wealthy get substantial tax rebates.
The Government takes no measures to recover the billions that wealthy individuals and big companies evade in taxation, despite making huge profits here, whilst coming down hard on the tax of hard workers and punishing the poor with economic measures designed to punish us for the behaviour of bankers.
In the meantime, the bankers escape scot-free, the wealthy get richer on our backs, child poverty escalates to horrific proportions, homelessness increases, and the Government laughs up its sleeve at the destitution, starvation and misery they have caused.
Housing benefit is eroded, the poll tax is being reintroduced as the Government council tax proportion that they expect us to find from our own pockets.
Unemployment benefits, at a time of high unemployment is full of sanctions positioned as booby traps to remove benefits from the unaware and sick. the Universal Benefit system being introduced is capped, removing even more chances of evading starvation and homelessness, and housing benefit has a two-year limit before it is removed, as if the Government expects jobs to materialise from thin air at that time.
In real terms they are pushing us over a financial precipice into complete ruin and are completely unconcerned by that consequence.
The NHS is being sold off, eroding health provision for those not wealthy enough to afford it,
Education is being similarly eroded.
Nursing jobs are lost and customer satisfaction plummets while companies such as Virgin cream off profits for themselves.
Folks, I could go on all day listing the many many ways we are being squeezed, but to tell you the truth, I am sick at all of this, and can only see more death and destitution coming while the Tories squeeze us for all we are worth, and the LibDems seems do little to stop their worst excesses.
This Government will say time and time again that we are suffering because of the previous Government, but take it from me, it just is not true.
These measures do not justify the measures taken, the tax breaks for the wealthy, the attempts to remove human rights and qualities from us, or refuse us legal aid and a means to raise our hands and object. This essentially Tory Government have created a far worse economy than when they came to power, they destroy the economy, growth, jobs, and the very people they are supposed to represent and protect, and they do this to pursue right-wing policies, establishing their real agenda of creating serfs and slaves of us.
The proof that this Government, and most Governments, are taking the wrong path for their people is in Iceland, but you are not supposed to know about it. A few years ago the media were reporting that the country was virtually bankrupt, then we heard no more, and for this reason: the people of Iceland rose up against their Government and deposed them. They jailed the bankers, forgave the debts of the common people and started running the country for the people. Today they repaid almost an entire £47 million debt to Scotland.
They are solvent and thriving, and only the fat cats are paying for their crimes.
We will not be able to do the same unless we put away our ‘kumbayas’ and ‘we shall overcome’ and become organised and take our country back.
I can envision so many more deaths going unreported and unnoticed if we do not take action to stop this Government, stop the deaths, stop the ruination of this country.
The Government are making things worse, how long before we take action to make things better?