Jeremy Corbyn: positive proposals and a denunciation
Nigel Morris (Independent) observes that many think Jeremy Corbyn’s commitment to tackling inequality will strike a chord with the public who are dismayed by the excesses of the corporate/banking sector.
As Mr Corbyn told a Fabian conference in London: “Too much of the proceeds of growth have accumulated to those at the top . . . Of the G7 nations, only the US has greater income inequality than the UK. Pay inequality on this scale is neither necessary nor inevitable.”
Some of his proposals are highlighted below, drawing on the text of the speech:
- to close the gap between top earners and low-paid staff and “institutionalise fairness”: research by the OECD concluded that failure to distribute wealth more evenly hinders economic growth. “A more equal society is not only fairer, it does better in terms of economic stability and wealth creation”.
- to support for bringing the railways back into public ownership: train fares would fall and investment increase if the railways were returned to public ownership. “It would be governed not remotely from Whitehall, but by passengers, rail workers and politicians, local and national”.
- to embark on a large-scale house-building programme: recognising that we need homes for families not for investment portfolios.
- to achieve “democratic control” of the energy giants: this would help to reduce costs and ease the transition to carbon-free energy supplies. Half of German energy suppliers are owned by local authorities, communities and small businesses selling themselves cleaner and cheaper electricity they increasingly produce for themselves and the most innovative Labour councils here are starting to do this.
- to ban or restrict firms from distributing dividends to shareholders if they are not paying the Living Wage to all staff.
Having narrowly won the general election, he believes that the Conservatives are progressively gerrymandering the electoral system to rig it and keep themselves in power by weakening opposition both inside and outside parliament.
Jeremy Corbyn concludes that though the party in power is funded by hedge funds, and backed by a press owned by multi-millionaire or even billionaire tax avoiders, there is everything to work for:
“Our membership has doubled since that defeat in May and our party is in a process of regenerating – a difficult process of adjustment for us all at times – but a huge opportunity to breathe life into all sections of the party and draw on the collective wisdom of all. Only Labour can offer a vision of a fairer Britain. Let’s work together to create and deliver that fairer Britain”.
Readers may well also value Andrew Marr’s interview with Jeremy Corbyn on Sunday.
Posted on January 17, 2016, in Democracy, Economy, Inequality, Jeremy Corbyn, Labour Party, Politics, Watershed and tagged Andrew Marr, banking sector, billionaire tax avoiders, energy suppliers, Fabian conference, gerrymandering, hedge funds, housebuilding, Living Wage, railways. Bookmark the permalink. 2 Comments.