Posts under ‘Infrastructure’

Tory privatisation economics: try the London sewer, the mother of all scandals

by Michael Meacher.

As an illustration of what the Thatcherite privatisations of the 1980s now mean, you could not have a better example than the London super sewer. It costs £4.2bn, and you might expect that Thames Water, the privatised company that controls the whole of its length, should obviously be expected to pay for it. Not a […]

The politics of Tory pledge-breaking

by Phil Burton-Cartledge.

Political gravity is starting to assert itself on the Tories’ ridiculous manifesto. You will recall that this gang of scaremongerers, who spent the entire election trading on economic competence, getting the deficit and public sector debt down, and “strong leadership” promised £28bn in unfunded spending commitments – presumably with the view that they’d never get chance […]

Scandal of 100,000k properties covering 1/2m acres owned in tax havens

by Michael Meacher.

The Eye has done a remarkable service in exposing the magnitude of offshore ownership of the UK’s historic country houses and of the huge swathes of the British countryside that they control. Using FOI applications and extensive analysis of other data, it has found that since 1999 titles to no less than 97,500 properties covering […]

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 […]

Putting people first : Venezuela builds 700,000 new homes

by Matt Willgress.

Despite facing many difficulties, Venezuela’s latest achievements in housing are a timely reminder of why our solidarity with Venezuela remains so important, writes Matt Willgress Venezuela’s President Nicolas Maduro recently inaugurated the 700,000th house built under a state-led initiative called the Great Housing Mission to provide housing to all Venezuelans, continuing the impressive results of a […]

Even the Tories’ naked bribery has now gone pear-shaped

by Michael Meacher.

There is a very noticeable difference between the way that the Tories and Labour have conducted this election. The Tories have used the twin-prong approach: personal vilification which has proved counter-productive and now blatant giveaways (of other people’s money) to try to produce a false feel-good factor. However, no serious policy proposals for the country’s increasingly […]

How the austerity con works

by Michael Burke.

‘The Austerity Con’ is the title of a recent article in the London Review of Books. It is written by a leading Keynesian economist Professor Simon-Wren Lewis, who is also a fellow of Merton College, Oxford. It deserves to be widely read because it contains two important arguments against austerity. The first argument nails the […]

Even by Osborne’s standards this is the most dishonest budget since the war

by Michael Meacher.

This was the thinnest Autumn Statement (mini-budget) in living memory. There was nothing new in it of any significance except the change from the slab system to the stepped system for stamp duty. But on the key issue which underpinned the whole statement, namely that this year the deficit is rising, not falling, there was […]

What do Britain’s private sector firms contribute?

by Michael Burke.

The main factors that account for economic growth are increases in the workforce or in the amount of productive capital in the economy. A far smaller contribution is made by improvement in productivity as a result of innovation. Since mid-2009 the British economy has grown. But this is wholly accounted for by growth in the […]

Privatisation of energy risks lights going out this winter

by Michael Meacher.

The effects of the UK privatised energy system are now becoming clear, not only in cartel pricing and poor service , but also, critically, in loss of energy security. As a result of the latter there are real risks of blackouts this winter. The Big Six privatised companies’ failed to invest on a scale that […]

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