Poor Poor Britain

Following on from my article yesterday which covered the Money Weeks report “The Death of Britain” that set out the argument that Britain is a basket case economy which is about to come crashing down round about everybody’s ears in the worst financial collapse in world history. Stating that Economic Armageddon cannot be avoided. I am sure that not everyone will agree with their assessment, which would be expected.

If it were only the financial magazine Money Week that was saying this, it would be much easier to disprove. Unfortunately, as I showed in links to my article, they are nowhere near alone in their assessment,with Max Keiser’s Keiser Report, and other financial publications and economists joining in.
Even the Bank of Englands new boss is on record as saying that the Uk is facing the Financial equivalent of a World War,and that generations to come will still be trying to pick up the pieces.
Whichever way you look at this, the UK is about to be FUKed.

The monetary facts are there for all to see, and they make horrendous reading. It is like watching a Financial Hiroshima about to go off.

Delving into the world and thoughts of the Financial Sector is a murky business though, you end up feeling as if you have been in contact with something psychotic and unclean. These people, have little or no understanding of basic human social norms or concerns,and they couldn’t care less, their goal and God is making money, lots of it! To hell with the consequences of their behaviour on anybody else.
The British Government of whatever party are up to their ears with these people, as their personal investments and government investments are controlled by them. No matter which party is in government the result will always be the same, just some slight tinkerings of difference around the edges.

So when the Likes of the Financiers blame the state of the economy and Britains sky high rocketing debts, on the creation of the welfare state back in the 1900’s, their reason is obvious, from their point of view the only way to make more money, is to cut out that which does not produce a monetary return.
Their goal has been to have the Welfare state decapitated, The NHS destroyed, To end State Pensions, and to privatise everything putting an end to all public ownership.

Since the Thatcher/Reagan era, every single successive British government has followed their mantra.
The wholesale sell offs of Utility and State owned Industries, the raiding of public state pensions, with another raid recently by the Tory Coalition with 35 Scottish Labour Mps absent from the vote.
Gordon Browns sell out of Gold, His raid on Public pensions, his ending of the 10% Tax rate for the poorest workers. The massive attacks of this Government on State Benefits, working tax benefits, disability benefits, the gradual privatisation of England and Wales NHS. The route and method is obvious for those with eyes to see what is going on!

Scots have a clear and unique choice in 2014, on whether or not we want to go along with all this.
The YES campaign is focussing exclusively on getting a positive message across to Scots, while the Better Together mob are scaremongering with their media pals at a grand rate of knots, with some truly ridiculous spoof horror scary stories.

While I agree that Scots and Scotland have much to be positive about, I don’t agree with being exclusively positive. Namely if we do go our own way, it will not all be a bed of roses, nothing ever is,and I don’t expect there not to be challenges and difficulties ahead. We live in a potentially wealthy Independent country with fantastic resources others would love to have, But we are not Brigadoon!
Nor do I agree with the YES campaign and the Scottish government simply sitting back and reactively responding on the back foot to whatever scare story the Better Together Bunch are cooking up today.
It simply paints them as being on the defensive and possibly having something to answer and account for, when they do not!

In my opinion, they must take the fight back to Better Together and Westminster and the House of Fuds.
and start proactively engaging, and taking the fight back to them, by pointing out the very clear state of Britain, and by telling our populace just what they can expect if we continue to be taken in by the nonsense of the British State.
In effect, engage in proper debate!

While Westminster and Better Together stick their fingers in their ears and make lalala noises at the mention of Independence, and say that they are not actively considering the possibility of it happening, that the polls do not support it (who pays for the polls?) believe you me, they sure as hell are considering it, and it scares the pants off them!

We must take the debate to them! Force them onto the back foot, let the Scottish public see what is really going on in Britain today, and what they can expect if they decide to stick with it! What sort of lives they will have, what will happen to their society and their children.

So I would ask YES to stop being so nicey nice…It’s nice…but nice doesn’t always win! There has to be a bit of good Scottish grit and determination and drive in there too! Let the facts speak for themselves.

While I spoke yesterday about the state of Britains Finances and Economy, lets see now what successive Labour and Tory governments in Britain have been doing for the poor.
I cite the lastest report by the Joseph Rowntree Foundation as evidence.

The report shows just how far reaching poverty is in the UK,and getting much worse, as its statistics for the report only come as far as 2010 and doesn’t cover the austerity measures since put in place by this government…so lets say that there is unlikely to be any fewer on the poorest of Society.

In 2009/2010 22% of the population was officially in poverty…that is startling Isn’t it? almost a Quarter of our population!

“Poverty is measured in this report by household income and is sometimes simply referred to as “low income”. A household is in poverty if its income after tax is below 60% of the national median. In the figures below, we also deduct housing costs and housing benefits from household income. Income is adjusted for household size and composition, recognising that, for example, two people need a larger income than one person to enjoy the same standard of living, they do not need twice as much.

The poverty statistics used in the report are from the Department for Work and Pensions. The most recent year for which they are available is 2009/10. In that year, 60% of median income measured after taxes and housing costs had been deducted was £124 per week for a single adult, £214 for a couple with no children, £210 for a lone parent with two young children and £300 for a couple with two young children. ”

“In 2009/10, 22% of the population were in poverty, little changed from the previous year. Just under half of these (10% of the population) were in deep poverty, with household incomes less than 40% of the median”

Broken down by age, 29% of children and 16% of pensioners were in poverty.
Among working age adults, 25% of those with dependent children are in poverty, as are 20% of those without. But whereas for the former group this represents little change over the years, the poverty rate for the latter has risen quite consistently over the last decade.

Over half of children in poverty live with at least one working parent. In 2009/10, around 2.1m children lived in low income, working households,this is historically still very high. Around 1.6m lived in low income, workless households.

The report looks at other measures of exclusion which are more common among people on lower incomes. For instance, we look at educational attainment among 11 year olds. Year on year, the proportion of 11 year olds not reaching expected standards in maths and English has fallen

But there is a huge gap in attainment between children who receive free school meals (because their parents claim out of work benefits) and those who do not. For instance, 41% of boys on free school meals did not meet the expected standard in English, compared to 20% of other boys. For girls the figures are 29% and 12% respectively.

Another example is fuel poverty – households who cannot afford to heat their homes properly. As fuel prices have risen in recent years, so has fuel poverty. In 2003, around 10% of households in private rented accommodation were fuel poor, as were around 5% of social renters and owner occupiers. By 2009, 20% of all renters were fuel poor, as were over 15% of owner occupiers.

Breaking this down by income, we see that 85% of households in the bottom tenth of the income distribution were fuel poor in 2009, as were 50% in the second bottom tenth. This compares to 3% of households in the fourth and higher deciles.

The foundation argues that the coalition’s anti-poverty plan is repeating the same mistakes as Labour on poverty reduction.
The coalition is ignoring the high level of poverty among young adults, almost a third of whom are in poverty, the foundation says. Ministers have also not focused on working-age adults without dependent children; the number in poverty has risen by 1 million in the last decade, it says. During the same period.”

Year on year, since 1980 and Thatcher, poverty has risen in the UK, through successive Tory and Labour Governments, Thatcher, Major, Blair,Brown, Coalition. Even through the Boom Years, it has still risen, and the gap between Rich and Poor has continued to extend under Labour as it has done under the Tory Governments. So irrespective who was in Government the results were the same,and they have all followed the same basic agenda of the London City Financial establishment.

In 1980 those living at under 40% of the breadline was 2.9% of the population, by the end of Browns Labour government in 2010, that figure had risen to 9.7% of the population,with over three times as many people now living at under 40% of the poverty line

In 1980 those living officially in poverty accounted for 15.5% of the population.By 2010 this figure had risen to 22.3% of the population. An increase of almost 10%,and again risen year on year through the Boom years.

As those who are poor, have seen a threefold rise into those who are the poorest of the poor, we see another story developing alongside it.

From a different report we hear this:
“The bottom tenth of earners saw their pay creep up just 0.1% between 2010 and 2011 while the top tenth saw their pay grow 18 times faster”

“John Philpott, chief economic adviser to the Chartered Institute of Professional Development, warned that the figures showed the UK could be heading towards US-style wage inequality.

“Unskilled workers are facing a choice between no pay and very low pay. One feature of the previous Labour administration was widening inequality, but real wages increased across every income group. This year’s earnings figures, with wages stagnant in even nominal terms, look more like those from the US than the UK,” he said”

“Wednesday’s official data followed a report from the High Pay Commission in the UK this week showing that executive pay has risen sharply.

The pay of the head of Barclays bank has increased nearly 5,000% in 30 years, while average wages have increased just threefold.”

“The earnings of chief executives and directors of “leading organisations” rose 15% to an average of £112,157, in part a result of trends shifting earnings to basic pay and away from bonuses.

Salaries of senior corporate managers also increased substantially – up 7.1% year-on-year to £77,679.

By contrast, the annual pay of waiters and waitresses – who are mostly part-time workers – fell 11.2% year-on-year to £5,660, among the most substantial drop for any group of workers. Hairdressers’ salaries fell 4.5% to £9,599, while cleaners’ remuneration fell 3.4%.”

“Regional differences in salaries were also sustained year-on-year. England’s highest earning constituency, Westminster North, had a small 0.5% drop in pay in 2011, but its average earnings of £39,745 were still more than twice those of the country’s poorest”

“The median salary in London of £27,560 was almost 50% higher than Northern Ireland’s £18,494, the lowest-earning region of the UK. Average earnings in Scotland were £20,862, and Wales £19,472.”

The OECD Report tells us that Britain is the 4th most unequal society in the developed world,and rising fast into 3rd place!
“The main driver behind rising income gaps has been greater inequality in wages and salaries, as the high-skilled have befitted more from technological progress than the low-skilled. Reforms to boost competition and to make labour markets more adaptable, for example by promoting part-time work or more flexible hours, have promoted productivity and brought more people into work, especially women and low-paid workers. But the rise in part-time and low-paid work also extended the wage gap.

Tax and benefit systems play a major role in reducing market-driven inequality, but have become less effective at redistributing income since the mid-1990s. The main reason lies on the benefits side: benefits levels fell in nearly all OECD countries, eligibility rules were tightened to contain spending on social protection, and transfers to the poorest failed to keep pace with earnings growth.

As a result, the benefit system in most countries has become less effective in reducing inequalities over the past 15 years.
Another factor has been a cut in top tax rates for high-earners.
“There is nothing inevitable about high and growing inequalities,” said Mr Gurría. “Our report clearly indicates that upskilling of the workforce is by far the most powerful instrument to counter rising income inequality. The investment in people must begin in early childhood and be followed through into formal education and work.”

The OECD underlines the need for governments to review their tax systems to ensure that wealthier individuals contribute their fair share of the tax burden. This can be achieved by raising marginal tax rates on the rich but also improving tax compliance, eliminating tax deductions, and reassessing the role of taxes in all forms of property and wealth, the report says”

So for those who were complaining that my usage of the Financial Reports were alarmist, and Scare stories, and these people were teapots or whatever with extreme right wing agendas..

I am not disputing for one moment that they have their agenda, but the financial data they use speak for themselves. They don’t attempt to disguise what their motives are, or that they want to get rid of the welfare state! There is one very good reason why Britain is an Economic and Financial Basket Case, and that is because successive British Governments have been following these exact same policies for generations! And it is all coming home to roost very shortly!

Today I have highlighted from the more Socialist side of the coin, how these Financial and Economic policies have been pursued, and what the stark effects of them are!
And as the UK goes into financial melt down, who exactly do you see being the ones who will be sucked dry first? Before they move onto the next group up the ladder? Which Countries and regions of the UK will they decimate first?

As for the Rabid Brit Nat supporters? Enjoy eating that flag you have been waving about, because very soon that will be all you have left to eat! I have my doubts that it would feed you any better than it would adequately clothe you too.

As for Scotland….The choice is very simple and stark… Either choose to go along with these policies and what they will ultimately do to us, post 2014 If we remain. Don’t count on there being Jam though!

Or we strive to make the most use of our undoubted resources, and put an end to the dreadful inequalities of a British Class based system of government, and endeavour to improve not just our lot, but the lot of our children and and grand children. Do we really want to see them facing paying off the mistakes of British governments or indeed our mistake in allowing this completely dysfunctional union to continue?

Rowantree Foundation: Poverty Report

Guardian: RIch and Poor Gap

Channel 4: Gap between Rich and Poor

OECD Report

About auldacquaintance

I am not a member of any political party. I am however a strong supporter of Scots Independence. Any views which I express in this Blog are purely my own. This Blog intends to be a place where I will be putting my views on Scots Independence. It will primarily concern itself with the upcoming Referendum In Scotland. However It will also be somewhat diverse in the range of day to day issues which are evident to me in modern day Scotland. Not all of it will be political, and indeed may take me off into avenues I am not even aware of yet. Please come and join in on this journey, and any comments are welcome provided they are not abusive! All the best from a new acquaintance! Rod
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6 Responses to Poor Poor Britain

  1. Wish I’d read this before commenting on your previous article!

    I stand by my comment on said article, though – which we seem to agree about on the issues at play, namely the agenda, to deconstruct the State itself, which is in plain view for all to see. Folk are voting against their own interests, especially in the U.S.A. – the Tea Party folk who rely on state benefits demanding the end of said benefits, etc. I refer to a shocking poll during the Presidential campaign in said country, where more than half of grass-roots Tea Party supporters didn’t realise that medicare/medicaid are Federal programs which they, their families and friends relied on, for example. And voted to have them abolished.

    About debt, there’s a brilliant film available on Youtube done with great style which I recommend everyone to watch if they have a spare 45 minutes or so.


  2. Arbroath1320 says:

    What is realy worrying in my view is the effect of the ConDems idea they had of introducing REGIONAL pay scales for workers so that two people do the exactly same job would end up with totally different earnings.

    One person in the North of England would get “X” amount as a salary while worker TWO working in London/S.E. would get “Y” salary. The main point being that salary “Y” was a great deal HIGHER than salary “X”. In my view this is discrimination almost in the extreme. A defintie case of “we’re better than you” philosophy.

    We regularly hear calls for the Westminster government, Labour Tory Coalition, to CLOSE the pay scale gap. Needless to say the OPPOSITE is the reality, it continues to WIDEN. In my blinkered outlook on life this is outrageous. WHY do the men/women at the top need big percentage pay rises? We keep getting told that the UK is a FAIR society. With HUGE pay rises for top management and MINISCULE, if any, pay rises for the bottom tier of workers. I do NOT find this a FAIR way to operate in a so called fair society. 😦

    Cut say 1% off their pay rises and the people at the bottom, the WORKERS, would get a wee bit MORE in their pay packet. Over time these sort of pay increases would I’m sure REDUCE the pay scale differential that we currently see in the UK. I’m sure others will ridiclue this idea and come up with better solutions but as I’m not an economist I tend to go for the most logicl if not necessarily the most eassily workable solution. 😀

  3. Arbroath1320 says:

    WOW! I’m an economics expert who’d have thunk it. 😀

    Maybe I should get my application form into the Treasury to be the next Chancellor of the Exchequer. Ah hell forget that idea I’ll just let Osborne carry on he’s doing a grand job. I’m sure his expertise will deliver Independencer before my application gets past stage 1. 😀

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