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From The Socialist newspaper, 6 January 2021

UNICEF feeds children in the UK for the first time

Photo: UNICEF Ukraine

Photo: UNICEF Ukraine   (Click to enlarge)

Archie, Waltham Forest Socialist Party

"It is a real scandal that UNICEF should be playing politics this way" was the response of millionaire and Leader of the House of Commons Jacob Rees-Mogg to the announcement that UNICEF will be responsible for feeding children in the UK for the first time in its history.

This perfectly sums up the callous attitude the ruling classes have for working-class children. While Jacob Rees-Mogg can lavish his children with all the privileges that money and prestige can buy, 30% of children living in the UK are deemed to be living in poverty. Their health and living conditions are rapidly deteriorating following ten years of Tory austerity, and now exacerbated by the Covid-19 pandemic.

It is no surprise that Rees-Mogg spouts such bile. He and his Tory peers have always openly proclaimed their disdain for working-class children. Speaking in the Houses of Parliament earlier this year, in the debate over giving children free school meals throughout half term, Tory MP Ben Bradley claimed that this would result in the "nationalisation of children". This was before tweeting that free school meals vouchers would be directed to "crack dens and brothels" if issued.

The real scandal is that huge layers of the population have to rely on charity simply to survive. Charity can only offer small relief from the relentless drive for profit. Only a democratic socialist planned economy using the vast resources that exist in society can end poverty and provide everyone with a decent standard of living.

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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 6 January 2021:


Feature

2020 - a year which drove home the catastrophic failures of capitalism


Schools

Workers' action wins Tory U-turn on school safety


News

3 lockdowns, 20+ U-turns ... We can't trust the Tories

Nottingham City Council: Major battles against cuts ahead

UNICEF feeds children in the UK for the first time

News in brief

Hospital security staff on strike for 12 an hour

British Gas workers on strike against fire and re-hire pay cut


NHS

Protect the NHS - Funding, Pay, PPE, Public ownership

Protect lives and livelihoods, fight to defend the NHS


Engels

Engels on the origins of women's oppression


Universities

Universities: refund the rent, cancel the fees, for fully funded, publicly owned education

University teaching moves online in England


Reader's opinion

Books that inspired me: The Grapes of Wrath by John Steinbeck

Technology and AI response: Capitalists only invest for profit


 

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