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From The Socialist newspaper, 21 March 2012

Them & Us


Super rich suffer cash piles

It seems that 'Broke Britain' ain't so broke. Cash holdings of big companies in Britain are standing at £731 billion. That's cash sitting in banks not being invested because of 'lack of confidence in the market'. The deficit for 2010/11 was £110 billion. So the cash lying idle could pay it off nearly six times over. In other words it could not only pay it off and end the cuts but also create millions of jobs by investing in infrastructure and public services, funding free education for all, etc, etc. But where's the point in that?


Happy birthday!

Topshop owner and tax dodger, Sir Philip Green, turned 60 recently. You're probably hoping he had a lovely day - chocolate cake, new aftershave and a nice meal with the family. No, no, no - that just won't do. Green held a joint party with his daughter, who turned 21, in the exclusive Rosewood Makayoba resort in Mexico. A DJ doesn't cut it for this birthday duo - they flew Stevie Wonder, Robbie Williams and Michael Bublé to perform at the event. Sausages on cocktail sticks wouldn't suit the crowd either - guests, including Simon Cowell and Gwyneth Paltrow, were treated to caviar and £225 a bottle champagne. Even the toilets couldn't be mundane and were glammed-up with mirrored walls and luxury black toilet paper. All a steal at a mere £6.5 million. You can see why the millionaire's government saw fit to make him their 'efficiency czar'.


PFI socialism

The Guardian recently quoted a risk and compliance officer at a major bank as saying: "I remember in my first few weeks I sat down with one of the structures products guys. He was selling so-called PFI deals, where local authorities buy a complicated financial instrument to pay for, say, a hospital. I asked him: where's the benefit for the local authorities in this? He was aghast. 'What are you, a socialist?'" Quite.


Greek tragedy

The austerity imposed on Greece by the Troika is having devastating consequences for working class and poor people in the country. 40% funding cuts to hospitals have led to a massive increase in infectious diseases including malaria and tuberculosis. An increase in prostitution and drug use as well as the closure of needle exchange services has meant a big increase in HIV/Aids too - in 2011 the number of sufferers increased by 1,250%. Families are struggling to buy food to the extent that teachers no longer expect children to do PE because many are too weak.


Muppets

Goldman Sachs - "a great vampire squid wrapped around the face of humanity" - typifies the dog eat dog nature of capitalism. Recent revelations by an ex-employee show that there is nothing 'moral' about Goldman Sachs and the other great firms that really rule the world, despite what David Cameron would have us believe. Goldman Sachs is "toxic", customers are "Muppets", etc. It helped to build the colossal debt mountain before 2007. It 'earned' revenues of $29 billion last year and distributed more than $12 billion to its staff in pay and bonuses, as much as the GDP of Albania!

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Coronavirus crisis - Finance appeal

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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  • When the health crisis subsides, we must be ready for the stormy events ahead and the need to arm workers' movements with a socialist programme - one which puts the health and needs of humanity before the profits of a few.
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In The Socialist 21 March 2012:


Fighting the cuts

Tell the Con-Dem government: NO CUTS!

Prepare for future struggle - build the trade union left

Build a strategy to win on pensions

Stop the NHS sell-off - National demo now!

Stroud: Labour lets NHS down again


Socialist Party features

Capitalism isn't working: Time to fight for socialist change

Fight or privatise: A tale of two councils


Socialist Party news and analysis

Budget: far from 'all in it together'

Student walkout: Socialist Students show what could have been

No to workfare - fight for a genuine alternative

Defend the right to protest!

Youth demand future at Dundee sham summit

Them & Us


Socialist Party workplace news

MMP packaging: workers still locked out

Swindon hospital workers fight bullying

Construction workers demand better pay and conditions

Workplace news in brief


International socialist news and analysis

The 'Kony 2012' phenomena

Sri Lanka's Killing Fields: War Crimes Unpunished


Reviews and readers' comments

Smear campaign on Hillsborough?

Single and video: ill Manors by Plan B


 

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