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Saturday 30 November 2013

Eternal Austerity and the Thinking Behind it

Yet another reminder of the sheer scale of cuts to local government here.  I think that there are a number of points about this that are still not fully understood.

The cuts and virtual dismantling of large parts of local government are not a consequence of government policy.  They are government policy.  David Cameron's eternal austerity programme is designed to roll back the state more dramatically than Thatcher did, and that means cutting back local government to such an extent it will not be able to recover.

The annihilation of universal services is designed to persuade a greater and greater proportion of the population that they do not benefit from state spending, and therefore why should they pay for it?  Strictly speaking of course, everyone benefits from public spending to some extent, but it is a key axiom of certain right wing ideologues that this is not so.

A key tactic in this onslaught is to attack the public sector as greedy and wasteful.  This is partly to distract from the waste and greed of the bankers who pay for the Conservative Party, but also helps people to attack public sector organisations as a means of divide and rule.

What remains of the functions of the state will increasingly be run by quangos and shadowy private contractors.  The secrecy of such operations may well lead to increasing corruption which discredits public spending still further.

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