Austerity Budgets are Just Another Name for Plutocracy in Action

While corporations, the wealthy and especially the banks wallow in excess governments everywhere are enacting 'austerity budgets' that cut spending on services essential to economic growth, that freeze or shrink public sector wages and sell off commonly held public assets like parks and resources. All of these false austerity measures depress economic growth, which causes governments to lose more money in tax revenues causing a downward spiral like that being seen in the EU.

Austerity programs that cut spending without raising taxes on the banks, the wealthy and the corporations always hit the poorest segments of the population the hardest. Economists who oppose the plutocratic model of austerity budgets agree that Instead of cutting government programs austerity should be attained by collecting taxes from multinational corporations and the wealthy. And agree that austerity measures tend to depress economic growth, which ultimately causes governments to lose more money in tax revenues. In countries with already anemic economic growth, austerity can engender deflation which inflates existing debt.

The Financial Times of London defines 'austerity budget' as, "A national budget which aims to reduce the amount of money that people spend, for example by increasing taxes, or to reduce the amount that the government spends." Greece has become the poster child for the perils of one sided austerity, rocked as it is by social unrest and dashed hopes for the future. And, with ongoing economic uncertainty, even fiscally conservative institutions such as the IMF are now expressing concern about over-aggressive deficit programmes.

Nonetheless yesterday the provincial governments of Ontario and New Brunswick here in Canada toed the plutocratic line by introducing one-sided 'austerity' budgets. Tomorrow the federal government of Canada will introduce the same short sighted type budget. Why, when the budgetary benefits of raising taxes on the banks, the corporations and the wealthy are so obvious, does the neo-con's disastrous economic agenda continue to hold sway? Money honey. The rich can buy the influence they need. The rich, through endless propaganda, have convinced enough middle class voters that their self-interest lies in going along with charade of no tax increases on the wealthy when in fact that is the only solution that will work. Austerity for the poor and excess for the rich is a recipe for depression both economic and emotional for the 99%.