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Pay rises ARE NOT a lasting solution for Key Workers and the low-paid who ALL deserve more

img_5939One of the few positives of Coronavirus has been widespread recognition that many of the workers who make much of life as simple as having to pay a bill don’t get nearly enough income so that they can live the lives they have outside of work in the same way as most would choose.

The emphasis has been on Key Workers and specifically the nurses, healthcare workers and medical support staff who work for the NHS. But refuse handlers, van and lorry drivers, shop assistants, shelf stackers, gig economy workers, takeaway staff and many more besides all do jobs that streamline and bring significant value to our lives.

Because we have been conditioned to believe that money is the only thing that really adds value to anything, there is a clear link between public acknowledgement of what these workers do and the growing clamour to provide a financial reward.

Yet the problem that is difficult for many to see is that by raising the salaries and hourly rates of the lowest paid or those we accept are not paid enough, we simply set off a chain reaction of price rises and financial benefits that stretches right back up to the top. It makes the money we have worth less and quickly takes the real-world value of the new higher wage back to where it was before.

The supply of money isn’t the best way to reward the people that we need to value more.

It is the money system itself that is the problem. The way that it is managed by Government that is broke.

As long as this continues, life will always be something that the low paid simply cannot afford.

Free markets and liberalisation of finance, big business and the banking system are a great idea if everyone working within them operates compassionately and considerately with the emphasis fully on service with profits playing only a happy and coincidental part.

That’s not the way that it works.

With Banks printing money at will, agents buying, selling and transferring goods before they reach us without adding value to the process many times, and a city that speculates on company and asset prices like the impact on users doesn’t matter, the real people who just want to earn enough to provide for themselves and have a life observe the rich who play with money getting so rich they cannot spend all they have, whilst the basics in life are all the low paid can hope for and little more.

The looming financial crisis created by the Lockdown will provide us with the opportunity to put all of this right. That’s as long as we have the right people with the right vision and the motivation to do whats right and see it through in charge.

The basic prices of goods, services and accommodation that are essential for the lowest paid worker to support themselves without help and live a life that is worth living now have to be controlled.

Only Government should have the power to adjust prices, print money or have the ability to manipulate markets.

The management of money and how it can be used against us should no longer be left unhindered in private, profit-hungry hands.

This is the way that every worker no matter what they do and where they do it can do their job and feel that they go home with adequate reward.

Let’s end the idea that more money can solve any problem and just change the way that life works so that it is something that everyone can afford.

COVID-19 has exposed just how sick the NHS and ALL public services were BEFORE this emergency began. Their future is YOURS to decide

April 28, 2020 Leave a comment

The flipside of so much focus on support for the NHS and frontline staff is the spotlight that has been shone on its supply chain, lack of resources and specifically the serious lack of PPE being stockpiled for a medical crisis before the COVID-19 Pandemic began.

Today, in the middle of the Coronavirus emergency, it would be hard to find anyone who wouldn’t agree that this really is not how things should be within our Health Service. Yet at any other time, the same people are more likely to nod politely and walk away thinking little more about it than that you were just having a whinge.

You won’t feel the blast from a bomb until the bomb has gone off and the NHS has suffered from a serious lack of urgency and attention because things like PPE have simply been one of those things that it seemed easy to put off until another day.

The lack of planning and consideration within the NHS for the ‘what ifs’, along with the serious staffing shortage that has now been highlighted too are pretty much the tip of the iceberg of the problems and difficulties that affect just about everything else within it too.

But it doesn’t stop there.

In fact, as perhaps the most recognisable face of public service provision in the UK, the real problems that the NHS is facing and the reasons that it is facing them are also being faced and experienced just the same across all parts of Government and the whole of the Public Sector too.

No. I’m not referring to a shortage of PPE across bodies like the Environment Agency, Highways England and local councils too – even though it could very well be the case. I am referring to the cultural rot that exists within all of these public-serving organisations that causes all of the problems that we only experience when they deliver their effects.

This isn’t a new problem and it has been building for a long time. Whilst they appear to be very different outcomes, the Rotherham scandal and the mechanics of the Grenfell disaster are sadly the outcome and effect of all the very same causes that have set the NHS up to struggle at the very time and in the very places that everything should feel like it has come together seamlessly as one.

Political correctness, the push for diversity, EU-derived employment legislation, protectionist culture where the buck gets endlessly passed to none of the above, political interference with ridiculous schemes like PFI, the creation of a massive backroom structure of managers with titles that were never needed before and a complete lack of understanding of how money being thrown at problems at the very top of Government only make the problem worse and push the problem into the lap of the next government or generation of politicians to skirt around another day.

These and others are all contributory factors to a public-sector-wide malaise where managers and those with responsibility have been conditioned to avoid doing anything that reaches beyond the confines of their own contract and job.

Some would call it a failure to use common sense. Others, that it is basic lack of appreciation of what public services are actually there for. But in many cases the whole lack of interest in really serving the public and tax payers that all of these jobs were created to help is made distinctly worse by the reality that the wages of those in these jobs will alwaysget paid.

The problems that the NHS has will not be solved by simply upping the budgets for any of the parts of it. The money will get spent, but it will never reach the parts that it really should do whilst the culture remains the same. Ultimately without top to bottom and above all cultural reform, the Key Workers and Frontline Clinical Staff throughout the NHS will not ever be valued and given the opportunities that they should have and we would all want them to.

Beyond the effort to ‘protect the NHS’, the Lockdown has began to cause massive problems that are set to reverberate throughout our society in the coming weeks, months and years. The impact of what this Government has done will cause harm to people and the country in many different ways that could have been avoided if we had different politicians in charge.

These are not the people who will put everything that is wrong in the NHS and the Public Sector right. Not now, not after the COVID-19 Pandemic is over, not at anytime thereafter.

The politicians we have today simply don’t and will not try to understand what is actually going on.

So if you love the NHS, the nurses, the doctors, the surgeons, the therapists, the healthcare workers and all of the key staff in our hospitals that make the real part of the NHS work, remember them at the next General Election or when this Government collapses – whichever happens first,  and bear in mind that is the point when you can help to make things different for all of them by making a different choice to the one you normally would, and choose an option that will not be available from any of the existing political parties that we know.

 

 

 

 

We ALL need bills & interest put on hold and enough money to eat and be clean. Government bullshit about Subsidies, Loans and Grants helping us now or in the long term is simply f**ktarded

March 20, 2020 7 comments

img_5347It doesn’t matter if it’s electricity, gas, water, credit card, a loan, a lease, rent, a mortgage, phone, broadband, TV streaming, contract subscriptions of any other kind, or anything else. It is the ceaseless demands of the private, profit-making interests in this Country being allowed to continue sucking money from our pockets that is the real problem that people are facing now and will then continue to do so long after Coronavirus has been put in its place.

Subsidies, Loans and Grants from the Government make great headlines when politicians are obsessed with how things look. But these hollow actions are giving legitimacy to the continuance of profiteering and endless money making on the part of commercial interests and what we have come to know as ‘the few’. All at a time when there is no longer any excuse for the people we elected to provide opportunity for the usual suspects to carry on making money at our expense, at a time when we cannot earn, and as if they are entitled to act, behave and continue doing so like gods.

By allowing the economy to unravel, pretending it can be propped up by giving people the means to pay bills that could be put on hold so that everyone is in the same position and pushing many people and businesses into what will quickly become unserviceable debt, the Government is initiating a downward spiral for this Country and what should be a robust economy.

The outcomes of their ineptitude will be far worse for real people and businesses over the long term than the outcome from the temporary hit that the Government should be taking on our behalf right now.

The pathway that the Chancellor has taken so far indicates that the Johnson Government is either incompetent and doesn’t understand the reality that people like small business owners, deliveroo riders, people on zero hours contracts and those simply laid off from jobs in cafes and bars face, or they are intentionally using a crisis to assist in shackling all of these people and many more into forms of debt and the emotional bondage that accompanies it, simply so the friends and supporters of the Government can look at the piles of cash that they already have smile as they start taking even more.

Whether deliberate or created by stupidity and ignorance on the part of politicians who should always know better, the situation that this Government is now facilitating will quickly become little more than profiteering from the misery of the many, simply to line the pockets of the few.

No matter what anyone says – whether they are an MP, so-called ‘expert’ or specialist, journalist or anyone else who has fashioned themselves as part of the ‘celebrity cause’, the solutions that the Government are now offering up do not go far enough in just about every way.

The PM, the Chancellor he appointed and the Government and Politicians around him have the power and therefore the means to do whatever is necessary to help all of us and keep the Country in the best position going forward as it is possible to do so. But that is not going to happen if they are misguided by the self-interests and biases of the people and influences around them, rather than the Public at large – which should always be their one and only cause.

Extraordinary times require extraordinary measures on the part of the people that we have elected to lead us.

That means they must step up, read the situation for what it is in reality for everyone – rather than what they think it might be or what their advisers are telling them – and adopt a much bigger, realistic and worldly view.

Economic thinking is just another set of ideas that become real simply because it is the line that people choose to believe.

Economic theory is one that is founded on the idea that money must be kept flowing at all times as if it is a blood supply that cannot ever be stopped. It works and operates on the basis that money and the systems that support its generation are the only important thing.

It isn’t.

img_5348What economists and the people who have been influenced into thinking this way are failing to consider however, is there is something far more important than money – which is the people and the communities that we live in. And beyond their thinking and the ideas that they choose to accept, there is most definitely another and very clear way to approach this crisis which is an option.

As such they are currently making a choice. One that is all about profit or all about them.

It should be people first. Money when its sensible to return to it thereafter.

To deal effectively with the Coronavirus Crisis and without long term fallout for the many, the economy as it stands can be and should be shut down and stopped from operating in its current form.

Interest accumulation should be halted and a payment or repayment holiday imposed on everything – whether it is for domestic use or for business – so that EVERYONE is being treated fairly and just the same.

The Government should temporarily renationalise all essential utilities and services – that’s the ones that were sold off and should be in the hands of non-profit making management and ownership anyway – and simply take the steps and underwrite the supply to ensure that the essential services the public need are simply provided for the duration of the Crisis without the need for anyone to worry about how they continue to pay.

For the people who have been laid off, have had to stop trading, have had their hours zeroed out or have had their incomes stopped by the Coronavirus Crisis in any way, there  should be a basic income provided to cover the costs of food and essential items so that everyone is able to function in their homes and remain clean and healthy in every other way.

To do so would ensure that the people who have been left completely vulnerable and at the mercy of circumstances that they had no part in creating, are able to standstill and most importantly survive at the very least, without anything changing. They will therefore placed in the best situation possible to pick up and return their own lives to normality alongside those of everyone when the Coronavirus Crisis is accepted as being over and what will then become life as usual is once again ready to begin.

For the businesses and the workers who are able to continue working throughout the Crisis, the payment holiday that they will then all inadvertently receive will itself be a bonus and for many of them thanks enough.

Yes, the Government could and should now be doing this.

MPs, Politicians, Government Officers and Advisors must start thinking outside of their very tunnelled and out-of-tune Westminster box.

Just to begin with, these are preventative steps the Government should now take:

  • Ditch the £Multi-Billion plan for Grants, Subsidies and underwriting Loans
  • Stop Interest payments and accumulation of any kind
  • Stop Loan Repayments 
  • Stop Mortgage Repayments
  • Stop Rent Payments
  • Stop Leasing Payments
  • Stop Utility Bill Payments
  • Stop Phone Payments
  • Stop Broadband Payments
  • Stop TV Streaming Payments
  • Stop Insurance Payments without penalty for any function not in use whilst maintaining ongoing cover for capital value without charge
  • Stop any other form of contract subscription which is non essential in any form

And a here are some proactive steps that the Government should also begin by taking:

  • Provide a Basic Income to cover the cost of food and essential items for everyone, their dependents and the people they care for, who has lost their income as a result of the Crisis 
  • Provide a top-up for anyone, their dependents and the people they care for who’s income has been reduced to a level below that which matches that above
  • Take all former public services that were privatised back into temporary Government control
  • Provide gas, electricity and water to every household for the duration of the crisis without charge
  • Create legislation that outlaws profiteering or price gauging of any kind, with companies, their directors or the individuals fined heavily or jailed when charged
  • Create legislation that prevents any commercial or private interest seeking compensation or interest of any kind from anyone or any business who has not paid them for the duration of the crisis, in the future at any time.

Setting any of us up to fail in the long term as a result of implementing policies during a time of crisis that have not been through through will not be in the best interests of anyone. Least of all the Politicians who are failing us by coming up with such stupidity or  lack of foresight in the first place.

Fundamentally, the approach currently being taken is morally as well as practically wrong.

This National Crisis and the future of this Country of ours simply demands thinking from them that is new.

 

images thanks to unknown

 

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