Friday, 11 March 2011

Slings, Arrows and Outrageous Fortunes


Hullo ma wee blog,

Is it just me or do things just stop making sense when you get older? I've never felt this so often before, never felt so aggravated every single time I pick up a newspaper or hear a headline on some news programme.. Every time there's a current affairs programme on the radio there's going to some bloody politician spouting the line, doling out tales of woe about how bad the current economic climate is, how dire the country's finances are, how cuts being implemented are being targeted to make them as fair as possible, how carefully thought through they all are, consideration given to every aspect of our modern life blah blah blah.

Through all this we are also told that this is the best way to deal with things. We can't go on spending and borrowing more than we earn.

On the face of it I have to agree. We ARE in the middle of a global recession. We do need to make changes. But I can't stop being skeptical about this coalition government and particularly about the Lib-Dem ability to reign in the excesses of Tory ideology. Both the Tories and Lib-Dems made numerous pledges to us pre-election about what they would and wouldn't do and of course if you believed all of it then you need your head examined, but -  I've never known so many pledges to be ditched so quickly and openly. This really worries me. The Government are prepared to to treat us like we are somewhere between idiotic children and simple cash cows. I AM ABSOLUTELY SICK TO THE BACK TEETH OF IT ALL.

When politicians start dripping words like 'fair', 'justified' 'equality' and 'common good' it doesn't bode well for the future. If you have any sense you know you're in trouble.  And don't believe for a second that it includes them or their vested interests whatever they say regardless of political party or ideology.  I also have heard lots of Government MP's lately  bleating about  "the scale of the problem was much worse than we were told by the Labour government". Well I'm sorry but that's absolute crap. The financial situation was fully known about before you toe-rags were elected and in the weeks before you actually created this abomination of a coalition government it was DOWNGRADED by £5 billion - so the situation you inherited was even BETTER than you should have ALREADY KNOWN  it was.

 Or maybe you were asleep and missed that. { maybe you were doing your expenses!}  As for some of the 'crazy' previous decisions you have had to mop up after - many of these - such as spending on nimrod and aircraft carriers involved cross party consultation and decisions.

Not once when the bale out of the banks and banking system was being discussed did you - any of you then in opposition - say it was the wrong thing to do. Never once did you say we couldn't afford this without massive and agonising impact, paying off hundreds of thousands of people and cutting services for the most vulnerable and needy in our society, yet now it's oh so obvious that this policy was just building up problems for the future. Who the hell do you think you are kidding here? Shame on you. SHAME ON YOU ALL! You say you have the skills in the coalition to sort this. You have the perspective. Yet many of you are millionaires in your own right and fifteen of the front bench government ministers went - not just through a private education - but 15 of you went to THE SAME SCHOOL! How will that bring  a breadth of perspective? You have no idea what people are going through cosseted as you are by salaries expenses and great big party blinkers.

Of course it does bring perspective,all that expertise, that world experience, but perspective of a very different kind to what's needed. None of you millionaire old school tie brigade will make a decision to make those who really can pay their way do so, no matter how justified it would be. No, no, no. You would work doubly hard to create a justification for the opposite. These people are 'wealth creators'. Well sorry - but they're not. They're wealth takers, nothing more. They pay their workers salaries and benefits as low as they can push them, nothing more and squeal at any hint of added cost no matter how justified, no matter how paltry.  That's where your perpsective falls short. None of these super rich top tenpercentile earners in the UK will ever feel anything like the same kind of pain as the lowest paid workers and families who depend on some of those very benefits removed for creating a basic decent standard of living. Benefits that the poor are paying for through taxes at a higher rate than the top earners regularly pay anyway thanks to your inaction on the tax system. Those highest earners wouldn't vote to keep you in power if you did or give you jobs when you 'retire'.

None of them will feel any pain at all. None of their children will be denied access to education because their parents can't afford it. They'll be sent like their fathers to Eton and Cambridge where annual fees are higher than the average national wage and then be given access to jobs based on pedigree, on connections and by right of the old school tie and spend the rest of their life increasing the inherited wealth because of that protection rather than have to dig it up from scratch.

So let me just remind myself of some of the crap you promised in the election campaign and whats happened since!


No frontline cuts in public services - DECIMATED
Protecting the NHS budget - MASSIVELY CUT AND FRONTLINE NURSES BEING PAID OFF
3,000 more police officers - POLICE OFFICER NUMBERS IN ENGLAND AND WALES BEING CUT. NUMBERS IN SCOTLAND UNDER THREAT.
Keeping VAT at 17.5% - RAISED TO 20%
Keeping the Future Jobs Fund - SCRAPPED
Preserving tax credits for middle earners - REDUCED
Scrapping tuition fees - TUITION FEES RAISED TO UPPER LIMIT OF £9,000 pa. FUNDING FOR EDUCATION DECIMATED - yes education costs - but ignorance will cost more.
No bonuses for bank directors - HUGE BONUSES FOR BANKERS REMAIN. NO EFFECTIVE STEPS TAKEN TO REGULATE THE EXCESSES OF THE BANKING SYSTEM WHICH CAUSED MUCH OF THIS PROBLEM IN THE FIRST PLACE. TAX ON TRANSACTIONS SET AT LOWEST ESTIMATED LEVEL. BANKS ALREADY PLAN PASSING THESE CHARGES DIRECTLY ON TO CUSTOMERS
Three more army battalions - SCRAPPED.
Pupil Premium additional to the schools budget - SCRAPPED
Keeping Child Benefit universal - SCRAPPED
A Post Office Bank - NOT HAPPENING
No cuts to the Royal Navy - HUGE CUTS TO NAVY AND AIR FORCE
Automatic prison sentence for carrying a knife - NOT IMPLEMENTED FOR ENGLAND AND WALES
Cutting rail fares each year - 10% INCREASES IN FARES
No more top down NHS reorganisations - THE BIGGEST EVER REORGANISATION OF NHS ANNOUNCED TO TAKE PLACE AT THE SAME TIME AS IMPLEMENTATION OF HUGE CUTS
No cuts to public spending this year - MASSIVE CUTS TO SPENDING AND A HUNDRED THOUSAND PLUS TO BE MADE REDUNDANT.

Military chiefs have written a joint letter saying we are leaving ourselves unprotected and that these cuts make no defensive sense and serve only fiscal policy. We were told that getting rid of quango's would simplify procedure and save almost £100 million annually. Since then the Institute for Fiscal Studies - who are normally the experts the govt use for these things - say that there will be no significant savings as a result of changes made. Unsurprisingly the govt say the IFS have got it wrong.

On top of all this fuel prices are through the roof - our  home domestic gas cost has gone up 55% this year. You can add another 10% on that for last year too. God knows what the % increase is for transport fuel - yet you sods continue to add to the misery by increasing the tax take on every single litre sold. - How can you possibly justify that?  Mervyn King, head of your own Bank Of England is saying that banks are showing no change in operation and no real restraint in managing bonuses. And you lot - YOU LOT - have rolled over on forcing reforms and charging a meaningful transaction tax and instead have given them £19 billion worth of tax reductions by allowing them to offset previous losses against future tax. EFFECTIVELY YOU'VE GIVEN THEM ANOTHER 19 BILLION POUNDS OF OUR MONEY. ??????  WHERE DID YOU GET THE MANDATE FOR THAT BIT OF PERSPECTIVE? That should pay for a few Tory voting chief exec bonus'  no doubt. That should earn some of you a nice little earner in drectorships when you give up this political malarky to go and top up your pension schemes.

You absolute gits.

Today I hear that the number of billionaires in the country has increased at a higher rate than previously yet we have taken no steps to ensure that our tax system is properly reformed. It's reckoned that billions annually in tax are not paid through deliberate tax avoidance by UK companies yet this is not illegal - only 'tax evasion' is. If we only stopped companies sending profits into tax havens and made them pay the tax THEY ALREADY SHOULD BE PAYING - we would wipe out the entire national debt in one bloody year!!! - without making one single person redundant. Never mind stopping up the loopholes for tax deductions so often used by the super rich. They should be following the spirit of the law- not trying to avoid the letter of the law.Frankly, the law should leave them no option, yet you hesitate to make any meaningful change. And you reward these same people with peerages and consultant positions. You self seeking cretins.

 We're as bad because we put up with it too. Will we never learn.

In the meantime you're not tackling these issues because you are too busy cutting jobs, freezing wages and raping peoples pensions. I bet every bloody one of you has a final salary pension but heaven forbid we should give one to a fireman, policeman, a nurse or a teacher and many who have often worked hard for years at lower salaries than they could have got because they have the sense of social responsibility you so clearly lack,  because they want to make life better for people.

It's time somebody - any bloody politician at all - grew some balls and some integrity and made some changes that are actually going to be genuinely for the benefit of this country and not just the self serving, crass and damaging same old same old over and over again.

WILL YOU PLEASE - PLEASE - GET A GRIP.

I've never been ashamed to be British -  BUT I AM NOW!

Rant over.

Phew.....I feel better for that.

8 comments:

The Scudder said...

Al .. I love you !!
I threaten to post exactly this blog every night at about 6-30pm ,, following another round of news nonsense ,,
However you've missed one of my favourite rants ,, that of no matter how poor we appear to be ,, how bad the nasty recession is hitting us ,, we can ALWAYS find money ,, ( & generally £ BILLIONS ) to send off to any old 3rd. world cause ,, these 3rd. world countries are now mostly RICHER THAN US ,,
Africa takes the biscuit for me ,, all these poor folks with 8 & 9 dying we'ans ,, all suffering from AIDS or some such ,,, but never do we see any bugger actually WORKING ,, If the buggers did a wee bit for themselves and stop SHAGGING all day long then I might sympathise ,, and then of course there's the real Catastrophes ,, Tsunamis, earthquakes etc ,, again we can ALWAYS find £BILLIONS to send as aid .,., As far as I'm concerned WE'RE A BLOODY CATASTROPHE and in great NEED ,, so why is MY MONEY being sent abroad ?
Great to see you almost as angry as me !!

karensomethingorother said...

er..not that this has anything to do with your post, but I tried, on a whim, to add my picture to that little thingy showing who's visiting from around the world, but then I got stuck when it asked if my blog was "family friendly." I'm still wondering...

While I can't necessarily comment with any authority on what's happening in Scotland, there is that great commonality around the world of promises made vs promises kept and the great divide therein.

Jane said...

Big Massive HEAR HEAR!! Brilliant post - totally sums up how I feel about this bloody bunch of liars that are now ruining, I mean running, our country.

Rebecca S. said...

Wow. Quite the rant, and I'm sure entirely justified. I can't comment too much as I'm not directly a Brit, but what seems to be happening in many of our democratic governments (including Canada's) is a lack of effective opposition to hold these people accountable. I do hope things improve!

Ignorance costs more....too true!

Alistair said...

Thanks guys. Needed to vent my spleen a bit.

Karen - it worked as you can see......

thanks for dropping in and leaving a footprint. Nice to meetcha.

Big Swifty said...

I loved reading that Al. And what I would have liked even more would be for you to stand on a soapbox and deliver that to the "top" politicians, and them be forced to listen, as they are clueless of what life is really like for people outside their social circle.

Alistair said...

Cheers Swifty. You guys obviously feel much the same. Looks like lots do.

Antares Cryptos said...

Whether publicly or privately...The same is happening globally. Countries struggling in the EU and North America, and the cuts are happening in the wrong places, while the people responsible will never see justice.

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