Thursday, August 30, 2007

Gordon Brown has told the prison officers that staggering their pay deal (see here) - thereby ensuring their wages don't even rise in line with the cost of living - is "essential" in tackling inflation. I'm sure armed with this knowledge they'll drop their threat of industrial action immediately.

Sometimes I feel like I'm waking from a bad dream, only to find myself in some kind of nightmare: we live in a world where money means everything to everyone. George Monbiot claims this modern-day neo-liberal world we live in was shaped by events following the Second World War (click here). If I'm honest, I don't want to agree with him, even though deep down inside I know the facts speak for themselves. Wealth is being concentrated in ever-fewer hands to the point where these people wouldn't know how to spend a fraction of the money they've hoarded if they were suddenly charged with doing so. At the other end of the scale, we have people in supposedly developed countries living below the breadline - never mind those areas of the world where survival is little more than ekeing an existence in the dirt. And yet we all turn a blind eye, however much it pricks our conscience. Of course, the fact we live in a system that preaches unsustainable economic and population growth doesn't help - it would be easier to tackle the problem of poverty if we didn't all know deep down that if every single individual on this over-populated planet was to live the lifestyle we do then the planet would buckle within months, never mind years.

But this is the world we live in, where Gordon Brown can pretend that squeezing public sector workers while turning a blind eye to the hypocritical and irresponsible behaviour of big business will somehow make all the difference. Sometimes I feel like the end of this madcap capitalist system can't come quick enough.

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