Photo: Bank of England/CC
Photo: Bank of England/CC

John Merrell, Leicester Socialist Party

Capitalist commentators, having seemingly convinced themselves that inflation had peaked, were shocked when it rose again in February to 10.4%.

During the months leading up to the start of the strike wave, Andrew Bailey, the Bank of England governor, recommended ‘moderation’ in workers’ pay claims to prevent “inflation becoming embedded”. Given Bailey’s £500,000+ in salary and perks, his warning was readily and rightly disregarded by workers seeking to maintain their living standards.

Now Bailey has made a different plea, this time to bosses: ‘Please don’t keep rising prices, it will keep fuelling inflation’. A year into the strike wave, he dares not provoke workers this time round.

Needless to say his ‘plea’ was roundly dismissed by capitalist companies, which are driven solely by profit. Consequently, ‘business as usual’ will mean BT increasing its broadband and mobile prices by 14.4%, Royal Mail increasing its first-class stamp by 16%, and supermarkets having raised food prices by 15% in the year to March.

A struggle to help fight the ravages of inflation, through the establishment of a living wage, adjusted to match inflation and price increases, is essential. So socialist policies – including the nationalisation, under democratic workers’ control and management – are necessary as the only way out of the impasse capitalism has become.