The alternative to austerity
With all three main parties agreeing that cuts are necessary only disagreeing about the speed and amount, it is good to see a simple alternative. George Galloway has an idea:
"We would bring all our soldiers home from foreign wars – thus saving billions of pounds. We would scrap the renewal of Trident submarines. And we would pursue what Vince Cable said was the £100bn-a-year-plus tax avoidance and tax evasion industry. Thus, we'd have no deficit. If you do the maths, if we did those three things we not only would have no deficit, we'd be quids in. We'd be £80bn up." Guardian 30/4/12
Sounds straightforward until all the vested interests come into play. The arms/industrial complex, so astutely warned against by Eisenhower in the dying days of his presidency, are a baleful and malign presence throughout our upper echelons. The revolving door between the arms companies, the MOD and the Services ensures systematic corruption flourishes. These boys play dirty. Remember when the Reverend Blair scuppered a huge fraud inquiry involving the Saudi’s and BAE at the behest of a Saudi prince?
The tax avoiders too are a mucky bunch who live life on the hog at the expense of the poor and disempowered. They too will fight to retain their access to masses of cash.
And then we come to the armed forces, used as pawns for the petro-chemical giants. Their presence in various theatres has not increased our security. Look at the measures being taken to ensure people can hop, skip and jump at th’Olympics. We have given, and continue to give, a great many people many reasons to hate us. Hearing our rotten politicians crowing about us ‘punching above our weight’ is nauseating. Untold thousands have died so we can ‘punch above our weight.’
The Swiss model of aggressive defence with most adults undergoing some form of basic training with arms caches hidden around the country and the message to potential enemies that ‘you may invade us - but it is going to cost you dearly,’ is an alternative. It also helps that they can remind aggressive despots that they have their money.
So George, good ideas but a hard row to hoe. Particularly as 90% of the mainstream media fall into the tax avoiding category.