Link to this page: https://www.socialistparty.org.uk/issue/697/13297
From The Socialist newspaper, 7 December 2011
Ireland: Resist latest austerity attacks
The Fine Gael/Labour coalition government in the Irish republic announced yet another austerity package on 4 December, amounting to a €3.8 billion (£3.27 billion) cut, to deal with its financial deficit caused by the banking failure and the capitalist recession. This attack on living standards is part of a €12.4 billion package of austerity measures planned over the next four years.
Taoiseach (prime minister) Enda Kenny while being "painfully aware" of the country's high unemployment rate (14.5%) claimed that there was no alternative but to cut more public spending and increase taxes in order to plug the £16 billion budget deficit.
This latest tranche of austerity measures is on top of the previous savage cuts imposed on the working and middle classes by the previous Fianna Fáil/Green Party government dancing to the tune of the European Union (EU) and the International Monetary Fund (IMF) - part of a €24 billion banking bailout last March. In this budget €1.4 billion will be slashed from education, health and welfare spending, including a reduction in child benefit, disability benefit and fuel allowance. Some families will be €1,000 a year worse off as a result. University student charges will also be increased as will VAT.
Last month in the Dáil (parliament) Socialist Party TD (MP) Joe Higgins attacked the government's "savage austerity cuts on ordinary people's living standards" which will "plunge society deeper into economic crisis".
Joe went on to describe the catastrophe imposed on the Greek people by austerity measures three years ago. Then it was falsely argued by capitalist politicians and bankers that if the Greek people accepted these cuts, recovery would be on the way. Joe further rounded on the Labour Party which, while claiming to represent ordinary people, "slavishly submits to the diktat" of the capitalists.
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The coronavirus crisis has laid bare the class character of society in numerous ways. It is making clear to many that it is the working class that keeps society running, not the CEOs of major corporations.
The results of austerity have been graphically demonstrated as public services strain to cope with the crisis.
The government has now ripped up its 'austerity' mantra and turned to policies that not long ago were denounced as socialist. But after the corona crisis, it will try to make the working class pay for it, by trying to claw back what has been given.
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In The Socialist 7 December 2011:
Socialist Party feature
Con-Dems pile on the misery - 'Enough is enough'
Socialist Party editorial
Eurozone crisis - capitalists have no solution
Workplace news and analysis
Cuts and misery - it doesn't have to be like this
Socialist MEP supports public sector strike
"The genie is out of the bottle"
30 November strike: a historic day!
Building a fighting union - interview with Steve Hedley
Defend the JIB, victory to the sparks!
Reinstate Paul Kelly: Solidarity with Portsmouth RMT
Workplace news in brief
Socialist Party news and analysis
Tory sleaze is back!
Reading the riots
All in it together
Them & Us
Climate change and extreme weather
Homes Crisis: Fund housing need - not fat cat greed!
International socialist news and analysis
Portugal: Build on the general strike action
Ireland: Resist latest austerity attacks
Tamil Solidarity: Gearing up for 2012
Brazilian socialists remember Socrates
Socialist Party reviews
When workers planned production: the Lucas Aerospace plan
The Socialist 7 December 2011 |
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