WITH house prices increased by 10.2% (19% in London) in the last 12 months, and with rents at astronomic heights, plus rail fares about to increase by up to 4.5% next year, all talk of an inflation rate in further decline is obviously of a very dubious bourgeois black propaganda character.
Even using the bourgeois propaganda figures – that is a CPI inflation rate of 1.6% – a fall of 0.3% – and an RPI rate (that includes some housing costs) of 2.5% – a fall of 0.1%, inflation is racing ahead of wages.
The ONS calculates wages to have grown by 0.6% in the three months to June. In other words, workers’ wages are continuing to be slashed, with even employed workers using food banks.
The only beneficiary of this situation, where the pay of the FTSE 100 bosses is calculated to be 145 times that of one of their workers, and where the bankers are drowning in multi-million pound bonuses, is the ruling class as a whole.
The fact is that this situation is the result of deliberate government policy to smash wages and push through a zero-hours working regime to enable the UK to rival India and China in terms of wage rates and productivity.
Yesterday, the bosses were patting themselves on the back, celebrating that Britain is now the ‘lowest-cost manufacturing economy of Western Europe’.
Amongst those celebrating was the Daily Telegraph with its line that ‘Stable wages and improved productivity over the past decade made the UK increasingly competitive even compared to many Eastern European countries.’
It added that ‘UK competitiveness has been helped by its flexible labour laws’ which has made the UK ‘one of the cheapest locations to produce goods in Western Europe’.
It continued that ‘Direct manufacturing costs in the UK have improved by up to 10 percentage points compared to other Western European countries thanks to stable wages and improved productivity over the past decade.
‘The trend is so pronounced that the UK is even becoming increasingly competitive compared to many Eastern European countries like Poland and the Czech Republic, according to a new study by the Boston Consulting Group.’
It cites that ‘The BCG classes the UK along with the Netherlands, Indonesia and India as “regional rising stars” and says that it has emerged as “the lowest-cost manufacturing economy of Western Europe”.’
The ruling class are spelling it out that British capitalism can only survive by returning the UK working class to the conditions of the 19th century.
They are now planning to privatise entire sections of the NHS, and to bring in new anti-union laws to make all strikes illegal, so that they can slash wages to the bone and put an end to the great gains that the working class made in the period after 1945.
They are organising a real counter-revolution to bring back the dark ages! They must be met by a real revolution that brings in socialism! The truth of the matter is that the ruling classes have been able to get this far because they have been allowed to do so by the Labour and trade union leaders, who have refused to use the power of the working class to stop them in their tracks and defeat them.
For the last two years, the cowardly leaders of the TUC have been discussing the practicalities of calling a general strike, and just looking on while public sector wages have been slashed, while A&Es and entire hospitals have been closed and hundreds of thousands of unemployed have been ‘sanctioned’ and had their JobSeeker’s Allowance cut or removed altogether.
This is why the Young Socialists are marching from London to the TUC Congress in Liverpool to call the cowardly TUC leadership to account and to insist that it calls an indefinite general strike to bring down the Tory-led coalition and bring in a workers government and socialism.
Workers and youth must support the YS march and join it as it goes through the major cities and towns between London and Liverpool.
There must be a massive demonstration outside the TUC Congress in Liverpool on Sunday September 7.
It must be made crystal clear to the TUC Congress that it has no alternative but to call an indefinite general strike to bring down the coalition and bring in a workers government and socialism.