It is traditional for the chancellor to have a whisky as he delivers his budget. A stiff drink for someone bearing glad tidings. I hope it was water and not vodka Osbourne was knocking back though perhaps it was a gift for a non dom russian. It is rarely the masks come off politicians but today I noted the delight in Osbourne’s face as he delivered news and announcements that will impact on so many peoples lives.
He made no apologies for targetting some of the most vulnerable. Those new claimants in the employment support allowance placed in the work related activity group will see their payments slashed to be the same as those on job seekers allowance. I predict that there will be turbulant times ahead for those in the support group as they are placed in the work relared group. Tax credits will be confinedto the first two children in a family. Talk abouteugenics in action. There will be freechildcarefor 30 hours a week but in return parents of 3 year olds will be expected to look for work.
Young people especially have been targetted with an end to housing benefit and benefit. An end to grants will see less young poorer people able to afford further education and university. Meanwhile for the middle classes there will be no inheritance tax on estates up to a million pounds. Osbourne sneered as he said the left didnt understand that parents wish to pass on their wealth to their children. The difference is we believe in other peoples children too that is why we are socialists.
This was the ultimate divide and conquer budget where the poor once again have born the brunt simply for the crime of being poor.Those not in work or in part time work were reminded over and over againthat our one nation Britain had no place for those subsidised by the taxpayer. Osbournecontinued to cause conflictby announcing those on £40,000 in London, A£30,000 for the rest of us will pay the market ratefor rent. Social housing was designed as a land ” fit for heros” and was available to all. It is good we have a mix of folk with different backgrounds. The rights to a council house should belong to all of us. However, Thatcher’s children are just continuing the social engineering project started by their mater when shebrought in the right to buy your council house and began the dismantling of all we hold dear.
Finally , like all good magicians pulling thewhite rabbit out of the hat, the prestige.The announcement of a nine pounds an hour minimum wage but only for the over 25s. I predict ahuge increase in youthemployment. My concerns are how thiswill be paid for employers will no longer have to pay national insurance contributions. These payments are crucial for things we holddear like our NHS and sickness benefits. When you live in a country where being ill is seen as a crime though does it matter of course it does.
There is another way. I looked today at the faces of Cameron, Duncan-Smith and other tories celebrating the opportunity to dismantle further the welfare state, to further demonise the poor. We are here to challenge their rhetoric of hate and spread the message of hope and solidarity. The tories may attempt to rewrite history. They improved conditions in the mills but it was us struggling for a better way who made it so. Now more than ever I want to continue this for not only my bairns but for all our bairns. We can make a better world together.