If there is one thing I have learnt over a long lifetime it is that ordinary people are the donkey engine, the powerhouse, that drives the nation in war and peace and that for those in power, our lives are entirely expendable. In war it is we who are sacrificed and in peace we are (or were) the industrial heart of the nation, and in both war and peace, we pay.
It was ever thus, but we are now in the era of neoliberalism, capitalism with the gloves off, and they are wringing us dry for ever greater profits that they neither need nor care about the harm they cause.
Ordinary people are both the sacrificial lambs for rampant greed and also the cash cow that feeds their greed.
Inequality is raging across the world, last year it was reported that just 62 people had more wealth than half the rest of the world and the top 1% had more wealth than the all rest of the world put together.
In her 2016 Christmas speech the Queen said, “My ministers will continue to bring the public finances under control so that Britain lives within its means.” To which I can only say, ‘Then fix your own house love,’ as the government prepares to give her £369 million of public money to fix up Buck House, not to mention doing up Houses of Parliament at a cost to us of up to £5.7 billion.
Britain is not broke, there is enough money to do everything that is required for stable and prosperous public services, including the social safety nets and our NHS.
Only the other day someone asked me what we are supposed to do if we don’t privatise the NHS because we cannot afford it?
The problem is one of perspective and most people simply have no idea how much wealth there is, which very much includes me. I measure money in terms of tens and hundreds of pounds, I simply have no real perspective beyond that and think of a thousand pounds as a lot of money, even whilst knowing that several grand over a year goes nowhere.
Start talking about millions, billions and trillions and I am basically ga ga because these are meaningless numbers to me.
According to an Oxfam study, $7.6 trillion is sitting in offshore accounts and that is just 8% of individual financial wealth, which puts the total amount of global individual wealth at $95 trillion. That’s $12,838 for everyone on Earth. That may not sound like a lot in a first world nation like Britain, but of the 7.4 billion people on Earth, 2.7 billion people live on less than $2 a day or less than $730 a year.
What does all that mean? I don’t know in terms of social justice and inequality except to say this, clearly a very small percentage of people are not only living within their means they are so far within their means that the mere concept is meaningless to them. I can only suggest that it’s like an elephant walking up to an ant and saying, ‘I’m bigger than you,’ and the ant wondering, ‘Did that mountain just speak to me?’ How can an ant make sense of an elephant? I know the feeling.
According to Noam Chomsky it used to be that some 90% of wealth was created by producers, traders and investors in the real economy, that is ordinary working people, today that is reversed with 95% of wealth being in financial markets and financial speculation and just 5% in the real world economy.
That being the case it is not hard to see why the powerful elites might think that ordinary people are now superfluous to requirements. Production is no longer labour intensive and most of the stuff we need is turned out by machines.
Our labour is no longer a necessity, but instead of everyone sharing in the abundance of wealth in the world with more spare time and fewer working hours, and for many, if not most, maybe none, wealth has polarised and ordinary people are not just abandoned, we are being robbed at every turn and hounded to death.
The world is at permanent war, and war has always been an excellent way to keep the population down and, of course, grab even more resources for the few at the expense of the many. But it seems even that is now no longer enough. In the search for endless profits, they have turned on the national pots of public taxation and public services, built and paid for by the people, and people are literally being sanctioned and financially penalised through poverty pay and shutting down the social safety nets (the same as turning off life support).
I hear a lot about Agenda 21 and population reduction, whatever your take on that, the fact is that we are being exterminated. In my first letter to Number 10 I wrote, “Clearly your contempt for the people of Britain can have only one logical end, so why not begin the cull now?”
I was, of course, being tongue in cheek because they had already started. Can anyone seriously deny it now?
Ordinary, decent, human beings have trouble with words like exterminate at any time, and quite rightly so. Words like extermination and genocide are horrific in their meaning, taking life knowingly and wilfully, which no decent person would ever consider even for a moment. But these things go on in the real world and it is always ordinary people who are the victims of such inhuman barbarity.
As recently as last November the government was slammed by the UN for abusing the human rights of disabled people, the government response? It strongly disagreed with the UN findings and Work and Pensions Secretary Damian Green said the findings demonstrated ‘an outdated view of disability which is patronising and offensive’. He went on, ‘The UN measures success as the amount of money poured into the system, rather than the work and health outcomes for disabled people’. So there we have it, if you can’t work in some bullshit job scrabbling for pennies, you might as well fuck off and die.
KOG 02 January 2017