It’s austerity, stupid!

Earlier this week, Pascale Lamb, one of Labour’s MEP candidates tweeted, “It’s not immigration that causes pressure on services…..it’s austerity”, and in under 100 characters sums up what should be at the heart of Labour’s campaigns this spring and isn’t. The right wing led Commission of the European Union is the world’s ideological engine of austerity and in this country austerity economics has been adopted by the Tory led coalition as a macro-economic policy enabling the assault on standards of living and the welfare state. There are alternatives. Labour should be offering hope of a better (economic) life, not to mention a decent tolerant society. It should also be making something of the fact that it has a candidate for President of the Commission. It’s austerity which is killing jobs, and it’s the result of policy.

For those frightened that immigrants will steal jobs, we must point out that business can (and does) send the work abroad, people come here to work & learn and in so doing contribute to the wealth and prosperity of this country and pay taxes. In many cases they bring skills that we are short of,  allowing the country’s economy to grow. We need the skills, we need the people.

For those that are frightened that they have to compete for houses and education we must believeably offer to build houses, open good schools and make college and university education affordable again.

Only Labour is fighting with pan-european manifesto opposing austerity and looking to borrow a phrase, to put people before profit. The left and right nationalist autarky proposed by the left or right is no longer a sensible strategy; capitalism is too strong and on the right, we have to ask if they care. We all need to understand that, austerity is the problem, not immigration.

 

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