Posts under ‘Social Affairs’

Tory Trade Union bill is an attack on a fundamental human right

by Michael Meacher.

Under the Tories’ proposed new law, strike ballots would need a 50% turnout for industrial action to be legal. But in the case of ‘essential’ public services – health, education, transport and fire services – 40% of those voting have to have voted in favour. In other words, 80% which is the combination of the […]

Immigration and benefits: the political economy of scapegoating

by Phil Burton-Cartledge.

Immigration and benefits. Immigration and benefits. Immigration and benefits. I can barely remember a time when these weren’t commanding headlines or the imaginations of politicians. One might say that this is no surprise, seeing as they are both hot button issues for the public – though it might be said these issues are fabricated and […]

What can we expect from renewed austerity?

by Michael Burke.

The new Tory government will renew its austerity offensive shortly with the publication of an ‘emergency Budget’ on July 8. It is simple to demonstrate that the previous austerity programme caused the economy to grind to a halt (and with it the improvement in government finances). Supporters of austerity like to claim that austerity led […]

Housing is now financialised, like the rest of market capitalism

by Michael Meacher.

The enforced sell-off of housing association homes, at the same enormous discounts as under Right to Buy (£70,000+ for a flat and up to £102,000 for a house) is driven by the two Tory goals, not only to act as bribes for voters at election time, but also to bring homes as an asset into […]

The coming tabloid assault on charities

by Phil Burton-Cartledge.

A couple of straws in the wind, perhaps, but I have a feeling something’s a-brewing. Exhibit one: Olive Cooke, a 92-year-old poppy seller and giver to charitable causes took her own life after, apparently, being repeatedly pestered by cold callers asking for more cash (she already gave to 27 charities every month) and receiving dozens […]

However silly no-tax-increases are, they should cut tax reliefs to pay off deficit

by Michael Meacher.

Enforcing £12bn welfare cuts (and a lot more beyond that if the deficit is really to be eliminated) is draconian and callous as a means of making the poor subsidise the rich so that the latter can walk away free of any liability, but no-tax-increases in this Parliament doesn’t end the matter. It doesn’t preclude […]

4000 UK Uncut members in mass civil disobedience tomorrow in central London

by Newsdesk.

UK Uncut is planning a spectacular act of mass disobedience opposing austerity in central London tomorrow, with over 4,000 people expected to attend. Precise details of the action are being kept under wraps, but the group has promised bold, exciting and creative direct action at a prominent location. Protests are also being held in a […]

Labour needs to confront not appease the UKIP agenda

by Barry Gray.

In the wake of UKIP’s electoral advance, both at this year’s General Election and last year’s European Parliament election, the Labour Party has come under growing pressure, from inside and outside its own ranks, to adapt to UKIP’s anti-immigrant and English nationalist agenda. Backed by the right-wing media, the Blue Labour current within the party in […]

Governance deficit – the burning issue entirely absent from the Queen’s Speech

by Michael Meacher.

Three related things became apparent on the day of the Queen’s Speech which show what is seriously wrong in the running of this country, but which got not a peep in the government’s legislative programme. They all relate to the key issue of governance in each area where the deficit of accountability is greatest – […]

Who will speak for those who lack any meaningful political voice?

by Michael Meacher.

One of the most disturbing aspects of the election a few weeks ago was the large and rising number of voters who felt disenfranchised and voiceless. Not only those who felt abandoned by Labour in Scotland, nor even the 9% who deserted the main parties to vote for UKIP, but the untold hundreds of thousands […]

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