Tory-LibDem Budget “Worst Single Attack on Workers Since Thatcher”

The British ruling ConDem coalition’s emergency Budget has been denounced as “the worst single attack on the working class since the days of Margaret Thatcher” by the Workers’ Party.

“Although the ConDems pretend it’s a ‘fair and balanced budget’, it is in fact a massive onslaught on the already poor and disadvantaged”, WP spokesman Paddy Lynn said.

According to the ConDem plans, outlined by multimillionaire Chancellor George Osborne, over the next four years public sector spending will fall by 25 per cent in real terms, with the exception of the NHS and the international aid budget. The budget has also added an extra £40bn of tax increases and spending cuts to £73bn put in place in the dying days of the Labour government

For the NHS the ConDems are planning £2.6bn in cuts during 2010-11. These cuts will pave the way for the privatisation of the NHS through outsourcing and the strengthening of bureaucratic internal market mechanisms.

The ConDem government plans to take £5.84bn a year by 2014-15 from people on benefits through lower annual rises. They will do this through the shift to the consumer prices index (CPI) from the retail price index (RPI) to decide how much benefits rise. Cuts to the housing allowance will force people to move into worse accommodation or private landlords to lower their rates.

Mr Lynn said; “While those on benefits get ready for worse to come, private landlords all over the country are preparing for the good times. On top of this, workers will bear the brunt of the proposed increase in the rate of the highly regressive Value Added Tax to 20%.”

The Workers’ Party warned that the budget’s attack on ordinary people will do nothing to improve the economic situation, with similar ‘austerity’ approaches being implemented by conservative governments in other EU countries set to ensure a worsening recession.

Mr Lynn said; “The UK economy is going to be depressed because working people will have less to spend. The rich and super-rich will have more to spend it all but they tend not to spend most of their colossal wealth in the real economy. In other words, taking money from the working class and giving it to the rich is in itself a deflationary move. On top of this all major export markets are introducing similar austerity measures. The UK economy cannot hope to substantially improve through exports when no-one is in a position to buy UK goods and services.

“The ConDem Budget is a recipe for economic depression and social disaster. There is no hope of a private sector led recovery in our economy. What is needed is a massive programme of public works which will expand jobs, expand the amount of money in workers’ pockets and so expand the economy”, the WP spokesman added.

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