Wednesday, 14 April 2010
Inequality and New Labour
The Governments own National Equity Panel produced a report called Anatomy of Economic Inequality in the UK
The households in the top tenth the UK wealth distribution have total wealth 100 times those in the bottom tenth.
The share of wealth of the top 0.05% of the population declined from 1937 until the 1070’s – but by 2000 this was higher than it had been in 1937.
In the 1990’s the top tenth increased its share of national wealth – but all of this was due to the increased wealth of the top 0.1%.
This is not an inevitable consequence of globalisation or the market economy, or any other such bullshit. In other European countries the share of the top 1% did not increase, as it did in the UK (it declined from 1937 to the 1970’s there just the same).
Britain is a more unequal society than our European counterparts. It has become more so during the thirteen years of ‘New Labour’ government. All the drivel about ‘fairness’ or ‘an aspirational society’ cannot hide this. If I needed reminding why I wasn’t going to vote Labour, now I don’t.
Peter Mandelson’s famous dictum that New Labour was ‘intensively relaxed about people getting filthy rich’ is the real face of New Labour; what we are seeing at the moment is the one that they dust off every few years for elections.
Green Party Candidate
Muswell Hill Ward