The government of Fine Gael and Labour in the South has introduced a draconian new household tax, another measure to make ordinary people pay to bail out bondholders and speculators. Out of the two million households in the country, only 41% had registered as the deadline for registration of 31 March passed and we go to print.
Analysis & News
Our local politicians have shown yet again that they care more about lining their own pockets than fighting for the working-class people they are meant to represent. They have just put through a package giving them an 11% pay rise – almost £5,000 a year ! – bringing their salary to £48,000. Chairs of committees will get £60,000, Ministers £86,000 and the First and Deputy First Ministers get £120,000!
By The latest budget announced by George Osborne consists of yet more public sector cuts, privatisation, and vicious attacks on the most vulnerable in society. It is another budget for the rich that will see the top rate of income tax cut from from 50p to 45p – a windfall to those on salaries above £150,000 – and a further cut in corporation tax on top of those previously announced. By 2015, it is estimated the planned reductions in corporation tax will see £5 billion per year lost to the public purse.
In the recent period, there has been an escalation in state repression in Northern Ireland. For example, the use of “supergrass” evidence in the trial of loyalists. A particularly worrying development is the return of internment.Republican Marian Price is being held in solitary confinement in Hydebank Prison in Northern Ireland. She was arrested after she held up a sheet of paper so that a masked member of the Real IRA could read a statement at an Easter Rising commemoration in Derry. As she was previously released “under license”, the state retains the right to return her to prison at any time.
Shows the potential for anti-cuts election challenges
It was a week when New Labour was passively benefitting from multiple crises of the Tory-Lib Dem coalition – in particular Osborne’s budget for the rich, the ‘cash for Cameron’ scandal, and the queues at petrol stations.