The austerity delusion and its targeted victims

17_may_2015A letter a day to number 10. No 1,088

Sunday 17 May 2015.

Dear Mr Cameron,

I wonder if you or George have heard of Paul Krugman? He is an economist, but not just any old economist, he’s a Nobel prize winning economist, which means he knows a thing or two about economics. In fact he is a Professor of Economics and International Affairs.

The difference between you, George and me and Paul Krugman is that we are not economists and have no training in economics. It’s tempting to say, given that you and George are in the government and responsible for such things as the economy, that out of the four of us I am the most clueless, but that would be somewhat disingenuous. Of the three of us in the economic numpty class I have the distinct advantage of being willing and able to learn and the desire and motivation to do so, whereas you and George seem to be utterly impervious to learning anything and are seemingly only interested in pursuing a self serving agenda to the detriment of the vast majority of ordinary people.

Krugman is far from alone in debunking the austerity ‘delusion’, as he calls it and quotes John Maynard Keynes, the world renowned British economist, who wrote in 1937: “The boom, not the slump, is the right time for austerity at the Treasury.”

Keynes was a man after my own heart in that he believed that the proper aim of work is to provide leisure. Work for work sake is a soul destroying notion unless, as Keynes was, it is driven by an internal fire which has nothing to do with mere money making and everything to do with passion and engagement in something which one finds captivating and worthy of investing time and money in its pursuit.

The fundamental needs of life are common to all creatures, food, shelter, and so on, with a bunch of biological imperatives thrown in for good measure. There is nothing innovative about such common needs and drives, and yet it is precisely the common needs that you and your government are engaged in attacking under the guise of the false necessity of austerity.

If we really were all in this together there might be some room to accommodate or tolerate your discredited policies, but given that your austerity pogrom is specifically aimed at the poor whilst the rich are enjoying an economic bonanza, your austerity measures are doubly damning for being patently false and for destroying the lives of those they are very specifically, punitively and unforgivably aimed at.

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