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When Theresa May was gifted the role of Prime Minister from a disgraced and departing David Cameron, she stood outside Downing Street and delivered the following message:
“I would like to pay tribute to David Cameron for the leadership he has shown our part and our country…
We need to unite our country and we need a strong new positive vision for the future of our country. A vision of a country that works not for the privileged few but that works for every one of us. And that’s how together we will build a better Britain.”
What we’ve seen, however, is quite the opposite. Rising rents and prices. Falling wages in real terms. Unprecedented levels of homelessness and child poverty. The return of Victorian illnesses caused by malnutrition. Crippling household and personal debt directly attributable to austerity policies.
Up to 8.3 million people in the UK are unable to pay off debts or household bills, according to a report from the National Audit Office (NAO). The value of spending on cards issued by UK high street banks was £11.1bn in July 2018 – up more than 8% on the previous year.
At the same time it was revealed that transnational mega corporation Amazon will pay nothing in tax on profits of $11,200,000,000. In the UK HMRC reckon the amount avoided by corporations in 2018 alone totalled almost £6 billion. That year only 2 arrests and six “interviews” took place.
Meet the new bosses, the same as the old bosses.
Tory austerity has always meant one thing: Bailouts and tax breaks for big business paid for by the blood, sweat and tears of working people.
And now a new political formation – the so-called”Independent Group” – has seen pro austerity MPs (all voted for the Tory Welfare Bill in 2015) band together. With no agreed policies the public can only hazard a guess, based on their voting records, as to what “shared values” they hold dear. But if their press conference and subsequent interviews are anything to go by there’s little hope for anti austerity activists there.
It’s clear the Conservative Party couldn’t run a bath – let alone coordinate a challenge to tax avoiding corporations and the big issues the country faces. But, quite aside from having the moral and political integrity to build a country that “works for every one of us”, it’s clear the political will to do so simply doesn’t exist. The idea that any Tory government can ever be a “success” for working people is a dangerous fantasy.
And as for the leading Tories who might step in to save us from the crippling Conservatism of the past decade and “build a better Britain”?
One of the protestors on the recent Youth Climate march said it best “I’ve seen better cabinets in Ikea.”
The People’s Assembly Against Austerity
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