Living standards dropping as greedy few get richer

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Like many others, my answer to George Hetherington’s question (Letters last week) is that I am sick of the greed and lies.

Key to us escaping their grip is political leadership focused above all on putting the interests of ordinary people above the interests of the financial markets.

The failures of our weak and split Government show that it is not providing that leadership. The facts deny its attempts to blame it all on the Euro crisis.

Our economy has weakened over the last year, since well before the effects of the eurozone problems kicked in. Because the Government’s primary concern is to appease the markets.

We have record unemployment, with young people and women disproportionately affected.

For most of us living standards are dropping because prices are rising more quickly than earnings, while the greedy few fill their pockets without regard to the rest of us.

Britain is down at the bottom of the EU economic growth table, with only Portugal and Greece having worse growth over the last year.

The Government’s ideologically driven attacks on public servants and services have led to record support for strike action, including by people who have never done so before.

The latest YouGov surveys show only 27 per cent support for the Government’s record, 71 per cent of respondents worried that they will not have enough money to live comfortably in the next few years, 64 per cent worried about losing or finding work and 70 per cent fearing that they will suffer directly from cuts to public services.

Growing groups like the Occupy movement and UK Uncut are giving voice to these concerns.

Yet the Government ploughs on regardless, even though David Cameron and George Osborne have no electoral mandate, seeking above all to impose austerity rather than promote growth, so as to appease the financial markets – despite the obvious lessons of 2008 when the markets brought us to the brink of disaster and even though austerity is failing in its own terms, with the prospect of the Government’s deficit reduction target being missed.

All this, despite the fact that in Italy and Greece appeasing the markets has taken precedence over democracy.

Indeed, the time has come for us to build a fair and democratic society.

Steve Preston

Cold Overton Road, Oakham