That was, effectively, the catchcry of the 150,000-250,000 people who protested in London on Saturday. They all opposed government spending less of other people’s money, largely because most of them are beneficiaries of it. The Trade Union Congress initially said 250,000 turned up, more independent accounts indicated the figure was between 150,000-250,000 before the TUC started claiming 750,000.
Labour leader Ed Miliband liked to claim the people opposing cuts are in the majority, a claim that seems more credible than him comparing the protestors to those who opposed apartheid in South Africa or fought for civil rights in the US in the 1960s. Yes Ed Mandela, Ed Luther King. How pathetic and vile it is for this pitiful privileged Primrose Hill living Oxford graduate son of a communist to compare himself to two of the notable historic figures of the 20th century, when he will be but a footnote in comparison.
However absurd and disgraceful that comparison, his claim that the protestors are in a majority is almost as fallacious. The leading leftwing paper in the UK - the Guardian – has a poll showing quite the opposite view. A Guardian/ICM poll showed 35% think the spending cuts go too far, 28% think they are about right, but another 29% think they don’t go far enough. Yet if you read the details behind the poll there is an even more interesting story (PDF).
For feminists who think women are hard hit, well 32% of women think cuts don’t go far enough, 25% think they are about right – so women want MORE cuts compared to men.
How about young people? Don’t they feel betrayed about past generations living it up large and now they have to pay? No. A staggering 43% think cuts have not gone far enough, 36% think they have gone too far and 17% think they are about right.
So isn’t this just a mob of taxpayer funded (or rather future taxpayer funded) beneficiaries demanding that taxes go up and borrowing increase to sustain their dependence on the money of others? Well yes.
Bearing in mind that the cuts themselves are rather pitiful when you look at the big picture. Allister Heath at City AM today points out that the Conservative Chancellor George Osborne is only cutting spending by 0.6% in 2011/2012, and peaking in 2013/2014 with a 1.3% cut in spending. In other words, he is undertaking the minimum necessary to avoid a cut in Britain’s credit rating and to maintain confidence. Of course spending is being most dramatically cut in a number of areas, notably tertiary education, local government provided services and defence, but not health nor foreign aid.
So these aren’t “savage cuts”, the size of the UK state as a proportion of GDP within five years will have dropped, from around 50% to just over 41%, largely because the private sector will have grown.
In addition, the socialists and planners always demand to know where the new jobs are coming from, no free market advocate can tell because free market economies are far too complex for anyone to have a handle on new innovations or entrepreneurial opportunities. Compared to the final quarter of 2009, public sector employment is down 123,000, but private sector employment is up 428,000. You see you can’t predict where or how these jobs appear, but they do.
Those marching are mindless that the road they want is the one to lead to where Greece and Portugal have now head – where government can’t borrow money anymore because those with money see it as too risky, and demand ever higher interest rates. The government then engages in the barely disguised theft of the elderly and those on low to middle incomes, of inflation. Inflating the currency so that debts are devalued, along with the cash savings of those with too little knowledge and too little money to protect themselves from inflation. It hurts them more than anyone.
No doubt many marching don’t even understand what a deficit is ( it is spending over income, NOT debt) and somehow think that government can borrow ad infinitem, or pillage more money from taxpayers who will sit back and take it. The current government is being so meek it will only be breaking even by the next election, the massive public debt will have grown by then. However, the TUC sees the people receiving this money as children as seen by this video - adults should get pocket money. Given the TUC throughout much of its history has been more closely aligned to Moscow than anywhere else, it should be ignored as it has spent so long advocating an attitude of get paid more for doing less and hire more people doing less. It is a dinosaur that serves no purpose other than to be a rallying point for those too stupid to know better (you can't be too bright to have your interests represented by people who couldn't create a business if they tried).
Fortunately a majority disagree, and either think the spending cuts are right or not courageous enough. I’m strongly in the latter category, although when it comes to policing the other story in London on Saturday shows a different story. The more leftwing one gets the more violence is part of your bread and butter...