I don’t believe that the austerity policy is anything more than a convenient cloak for the real aims of reducing the role of the state to an absolute minimum to allow private profit to flourish and to turn the UK into a super tax haven. The ordinary Tory voter and Tory MP has been duped by the claims of balancing the books etc., into supporting this goal which only really benefits the uber rich and the power hungry such as Media barons like Murdoch.
The Poor Had No Lawyers by Andy Wightman and The Shock Doctrine by Naomi Klein catalogue the steady usurpation of power and wealth by the uber rich. I believe we are living through a particular explosion of that process. Klein highlights the method of taking advantage of crises by neo-liberals. The 2008 crisis gave a perfect opportunity to the Cameron-Osborne Tory government to do just that and to hasten the transference of power and state assets to the top 1%.
The continued existence of tax havens and the failure to catch tax dodging, the asset stripping and disruption of the NHS, TTIP, the privatising of the probation service and prisons are but a few examples of what is being done.
The Internet has facilitated a new culture which does not always place a monetary value on everything. It has spawned an attitude for many people of helping those less fortunate than themselves.
At the recent Commonwealth Games in Glasgow there were a million donations of £5 to UNICEF all done by text messaging. This is just one small instance.
On the other hand there are the uber-rich who are totally absorbed in making themselves ever richer to the detriment of the rest of world population and the planet itself. If a buck can be made nothing should stand in the way, rain forests, the climate, the Great Barrier Reef.
And I am very sorry but I think the Westminster Parliament is a major facilitator of this culture, selling the NHS, the Royal Mail to the benefit of their own kind.
Does Scotland want to be part of this huge wealth grab? It is not nationalistic but radical to want to go our own way to help make a better nation and so in the long run a better world.
The Panorama programme highlighting shocking staff behaviour in care homes is probably only demonstrating the tip of an iceberg.
Care home staff are generally on very poor wages with long hours. More reasonable hours and better wages would reduce the stress of the job and give staff a better standard of living which would address some of the problems. Good supervision by skilled managers throughout the day and night would reduce the chances of abuse. This costs money at a time when the fees charged by care homes are being squeezed.
As taxpayers we need to decide our priorities, dignity and a high standard of care for our elderly loved ones or allowing the uber-rich to pay minuscule rates of tax?