Friday, November 27, 2015

No end to austerity until we're bled dry

Just in case you were foolish enough to believe the Tory press when they declared that George Osborne's decision to axe plans to cut tax credits signalled "the end of austerity", here's John Harris to explain why that's complete bullshit. The simple truth is that local councils - some already stretched beyond capacity - are having to face up to cuts in central government funding of more than 50 per cent by 2020.

Meanwhile, one of the most incredible aspects of Osborne's Spending Review was his attempt to mitigate the continuing classification of sanitary products as "luxury items" and thus subject to tax by explaining that the money raised will be used to support women's charities. As has been widely pointed out on social media, this effectively makes women responsible for funding organisations that care for female victims of domestic abuse, which is almost always perpetrated by men. Not only that, but it begs the question of what happens if the ludicrous tampon tax is ever removed - starved of their source of funding, will these vital support services simply atrophy?

If Osborne had genuinely recommended that disgruntled women use Jaffa Cakes in place of tampons, as the Daily Mash has suggested, it wouldn't have been much more absurd.

(Thanks to Terry for the first link.)

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