20 March 2012
A fair budget for all?
It is unlikely that tomorrow's 2012 budget will contain any big surprises or u-turns. Despite George Osborne's assurances that the rich will be taxed, this looks to be a budget set by the rich for the rich.
With 2.7 million people unemployed and stagnant economic growth it is likely this budget will continue down the same path as previous Tory budgets under Margaret Thatcher. With the abolition of the 50p tax rate almost certain, privatisation of roads being proposed, and anti-renewable energy rhetoric gathering pace little seems to have changed.
Lack of jobs is the most pressing problem currently facing the UK, with only 1.8 vacancies currently available for every 100 employee jobs and down 22,000 from the third quarter of 2010 to 2011, the government's current attempts to kick-start the job market have dramatically failed. In fact they have slashed jobs in the most successful job arena; the solar energy industry, thanks to the savage cuts to the feed in tariff.
George Osborne is using deficit reduction and the Eurozone crisis as an excuse to prioritise his corporate chums at the cost of UK workers who are finding it harder to find a job whilst facing unjustifiable cuts to job seekers allowance, child benefits, and disability allowance.
'Now is the time for George Osborne to prove the truth of his mantra that we are all in this together. So far, the poor and vulnerable have been the ones to bear the brunt of the banking crisis and its aftermath. Cutting either corporate or high-earner tax rates will be a clear indication that this government is determined to further the interest of the 1% while ignoring the increasingly desperate situation of the hard-working majority.'
Professor Molly Scott Cato, Green Economist
The Green Party call on the government to create a fair budget for 2012 that doesn't widen and strengthen the gap between the rich and the poor. We need a fair budget that concentrates on taxing the wealthy as well as those facing job peril, and financial insecurity.