After being unable to get an answer out of the Prime Minister yesterday, people are still worried about whether they will still be worse off next year due to their tax credits being cut. It seems that today, the Conservative backbenchers have come to Mr Cameron’s rescue by going against the bill, showing that it will still make these people worse off.
It is strange that i find myself in agreement with a Tory on this matter, but i do agree. The conservative party has ‘lost its way’ on this, and i believe that Cameron and Osborne know this too. They have a big dilemma. They either go ahead with their ‘reforms’ to tax credits, and face the wrath of the public. Or they do a U-turn and don’t institute these cuts, and face the wrath of the media. Osborne says that he is in listening mode, but it does not seem so. Listening to who, to the public? Obviously not, he still wants to go through with these cuts but wants to spread it out over a longer period. This will still mean that people will be less off, it will still take away much-needed tax credits from the most vulnerable in our society. Introducing it over a longer time will only make it less visible. But it will still be horrific.
The Conservatives have now adopted the strategy of saying that they ‘need’ to find 4.4bn pounds from somewhere in the welfare bill. But they don’t. Why does it have to be from the welfare bill? why can’t they stop giving handouts to the richest in our society, and start providing for the poorest? We have a system that punishes the poor for being poor, and awards the rich for being rich. These awards come through letting companies get away with not paying tax. Money that our people deserve, money that we need. over 30 bn pounds could be raised if we just made companies pay their tax. If we really needed money, as Osborne says, then why is he not making these companies pay their fair share. Instead he is decreasing corporation tax by enough to fund everyone’s university fees four times. It is a betrayal to those people who need help most, that we allow our government to punish them for being poor. Poverty is not a lifestyle choice, it is not a decision. And the reason for the high welfare bill is because of the lack of government intervention to help these people.
John McDonnell was right when he explained that housing benefit is so high because we fail to build enough council houses. Not only that but we fail to crack down on exorbitant rents and the fact that there are 300,000 properties uninhabited throughout our country. Tax credits are so high because pay is so low. Pay is so low because the government allows employers to exploit their workers. Zero-hours contracts and unstable jobs means that people are unable to ask for a higher wage in fear they may lose their jobs. And the government’s implementation of the trade union bill is weakening any chance of better pay and in work rights for workers. The government does have the ability to stop this, but chooses not to. They are choosing to take 4.4bn out of the economy. The reason that unemployment bills are so high is because our government has chosen not to invest properly in our economy. The choice to allow the de-industrialisation in the north and elsewhere. These are why we have a bloated welfare bill. And just as the Tories always do, they blame the poor for being poor and not the system that they preside over. A system that funds the richest on the backs of the poorest. That disregards the most vulnerable in our society in order to ‘balance the books’ (something Osborne has absolutely failed at with the doubling of the deficit since 2010). I say that we should run a country for people before profit. Where caring for individuals comes before propping up exploitation. Where we don’t let people rely on food banks to get by. Where the people at the top pay their fair share and stop blaming the poor for their woes.
The conservatives are going to go through with this tax credit cut, whatever we say. They will make sure that the people at the bottom of our society will carry on propping up the people at the top. We should be saluting these people who do all that we as of them, not destroying them. The Conservatives are a threat to our national security, they will continue to be until they realise that a government that makes workers pay, can never claim to make work pay. David Cameron’s assault on poverty has become a crusade on the poor. We need to oppose the whole idea of these cuts. We don’t just need them to be spread over a longer timeframe, we want them to go. However long it takes the government to institute them, they will still punish the poor. Let’s stop the government’s ideologically driven cuts, and let’s oppose their upward distribution of wealth.