THE ages old reformist illusion that the worst excesses of capitalism can be curbed through a mixture of indignation and moral outrage received yet another body blow with the revelation that the pay for top executives is continuing to reach the stratosphere, paid for through the poverty of workers and their families.
Last year there was a huge outpouring of anger and hatred when the extent of the bosses bonuses hit the headlines
Executives at bankrupt banks were pilloried for awarding themselves multi-million pound bonuses, on top of their million pound plus salaries, for presiding over the banking collapse that drove forward the vicious austerity cuts imposed by this Tory-led coalition government.
The LibDem business minister, Vince Cable, vowed to end the bonus culture that ‘rewarded failure’ and curb these huge pay packages.
Now it appears that far from curbing these amounts chief executives are still raking it in while the working class suffer.
Annual research from Income Data Services (IDS), shows that Executive pay increased by 14% last year to £2.1m.
Basic salaries for these executives went up by 4.1% and although annual bonuses did indeed fall by 8.8% this was more than compensated by them cashing in shares awarded to them instead of a cash bonus.
Because of a surge in share values on the stock exchange of 58% this scheme has resulted in the average total earnings of one of these executives going up by 40% to approximately £3.32 million a year.
At the same time that these representatives of the capitalist class were wallowing in vast pay increases, the working class and their families were paying the price through wage cuts.
The majority of workers have faced pay freezes and pay cuts for the past five years resulting in a 5.5% cut in real wages since 2010.
Over the five years of this coalition government the average family will have lost £6,660, this equates to families being nearly £30 a week worse off through all the cuts.
While the working class and increasingly sections of the middle class face real poverty, when millions of families are forced to rely on food banks just to survive. and pensioners face the choice between heating their homes or starving, the capitalist class are living high on the hog.
But the real culprits in this are not the capitalist class, who are merely acting as capitalists always have, that is exploiting the working class in order to ensure their profits keep rolling in, the real criminals are to be found amongst the leadership of the trade unions.
While condemning the super-rich executives and the poverty level of wages, they have gone along with every pay cut and wage freeze.
At the Grangemouth refinery dispute the leader of Unite, Len McClusky, agreed to a three-year pay freeze and a no-strike deal and boasted that this treachery was no different from all the others similar betrayals the Unite leadership have agreed up and down the country in order to keep bankrupt capitalist companies going.
The trade unions were built at the turn of the 19th century to fight for wages and conditions, McClusky and the rest of the TUC leadership have completely abandoned even the pretence of fighting today.
Instead they are only concerned with the survival of a bankrupt and historically outmoded capitalist system at the expense of the working class.
Now is the time to give these reformist traitors the boot and replace them with a new revolutionary leadership determined to fight for the only way to end the obscenity of the working class paying for the ruling class to live in luxury.
That is for the trade unions to call a general strike to kick out the government and replace it with a workers government that will advance to a socialist society where production is for the need of all and not for the profit of the tiny number of bloated capitalists.