Vous êtes sur la page 1sur 3

1

Schools and hospitals are out-


Wednesday February 22rd 2011 of-bounds, the Tories have reassured
us, but pretty much everything else
is fair game. Nonetheless, the
PUBLIC Chancellor of the Exchequer, George
Osborne has indicated he wants to

SECTOR reduce the national deficit by £86


billion. Although this seems
reasonable, he plans for some £66
CUTS: billion (a remarkable 76.7% of the
target!) to be achieved by cutting
public expenditure over the next six

TEODROS years.

GEBREKAL Realistic Options


It has often been argued
On How the Cuts Are A Not (coincidently, usually by the Tories!)
Panacea to the Deficit But that the public sector is a waste on
national budget. Certainly, the public
an Crude Oxymoron sector enjoys better pay, bigger
pensions, more sick leave and
greater job security than the private
sector. Taking this into account it
would seem plausible that certain
sacrifices are made in public sector
expenditure, just those as sacrifices
are being made in the private sector.
Posted by
One of the reforms is the
Teodros Gebrekal reassessments of public sector
14:45 GMT worker pensions. There is to be the
introduction of a 'pension’s levy',
which would require public servants
to contribute far more if they want to
continue to enjoy the benefits of
their pension schemes. Essentially,
the government will charge an extra
2.5 per cent of salaries in pension
contributions to raise approximately
Understanding the Cuts: £3 billion a year. Such a move would
What’s going on? effectively be a pay cut, a
phenomenon which has been
Without doubt the worldwide prevalent in the private sector. While
global economies are awash with this particular line of action is not
debt and even more worryingly, void of challenges, it would seem
uncertainty. There has to be a review both a logical and plausible move to
on public service expenditure. help tackle the deficit.
Clearly, all three major political
parties are in agreement that cuts
are needed in public sector Unnecessary Attack
expenditure.
However, it is the government’s
But how deep should the public determination to cut thousands upon
sector cut knife penetrate? thousands of public sector jobs which
2

has been met with stern opposition. employment and stimulus in the UK
The level of cuts that are planned is job market reduces the chances of
dangerous and naive. victims of the cut’s finding work.
Putting people out of work with such
By making enormous cuts in high unemployment in general,
such a unique sector, the Tories have results in a loss of tax revenue and in
overlooked that public sector workers turn an increase spending on
(especially those who have been long benefits. Thanks to the recession,
standing servants) may become demand for both permanent and
disenchanted and feel almost like temporary staff has decreased
scapegoats. The public sector is truly drastically, which really
unique and it retains an ethos that’s does threaten the recovery of the UK
just not present in other sectors. job market.
Resultantly, many workers may
choose not to explore the possibility This is a vicious cycle that would
of working outside the public sector provide to be a major problem to the
should they be made redundant. Tories’ reforms. Ironically, tackling
the deficit through excessive cuts
Generally, public organisation could actually only serve to increase
employees are usually associated it. Bewilderingly, according to
with safeguarding the interests of research carried out by the trade
the general public. There is a self- union UNISON, the government’s
worth and personal satisfaction that plans
“£6.6to cut 725,000
billion public
in lost taxsector
comes with serving the public. Such jobs could cost
revenue andtheanUK economy:
extra £8.8
empowerment really does intensely
motivate public sector employees, billion to the nations
who may feel that this incentive can’t benefit funding.
be replicated in other lines of work. Additionally, Small
Having undertaken a public sector businesses dependent on
specialist subject and experienced public sector contracts will
working in the public services, take a hit. Unison estimates
personally I can relate to this
sensation. This also ties in with the
that economic output will
stereotype that the private sector, is fallThere
by £46 billion
seems to beas
a political
“a cut-throat and self-serving zone” a result.that
consensus ” massive cuts are
in comparison to the public sector. obligatory for a country to manage
The end product being many public its national debt. More useful,
workers simply claiming benefits, maybe, is to case study the fiscal
unless other similar employment is situation across the shore in Ireland.
available to them. Although, this Having taken a hard and fast
seems a trivial rationale at first approach in carrying out cuts, Ireland
glance, with greater inspection such now has an economy that has become
entrenched feelings by workers who too weak to sustain recovery and is
will be made redundant could prove facing yet another economic crash.
to be a major problem for the Like their ancestors, many Irish
government. workers, especially graduates, are
migrating for employment and
There is more than an emotive greener pastures. Interestingly, in
argument comparison Spain has been cutting at
against the a significantly gradual pace and
Tories’ coincidently, is much more equipped
cuts. The for recovery after a disastrous
general collapse to its economy.
lack of

Public sector job cuts hit employment


outlook Photo: Sky News
3

Without labouring the point, Traditionally, the Conservatives


more cuts could lead to fewer jobs as have always desired to significantly
aforementioned, which all in all reduce the size of the state. Many
results in will claim that the Tories sole
no motivation in driving through such
economic extensive public sector cuts is an
growth. actualisation of their neo-liberal
The cuts ideology, instead of seeing the cuts
will hit poor as measures that could address the
people, deficit. Even though such an
slow down argument goes beyond the scope of
economic this blog, it is interesting to note that
recovery many see these reforms as being
and increase unemployment. underpinned by sinister political
That is hardly a panacea for the interest.
deficit, is it? Therefore, in retrospect,
it may have been wiser for David What’s the alternative? There
Cameron to wait until there is clear are better, simpler and more
evidence of sustained growth in the equalitarian methods of reducing this
private Food for thought for the nation’s deficit. One of those
sector, Prime Minster Photo: Getty Images methods already exists precisely for
providing that function: Taxation. Yes, tax
jobs and support until introducing increases are being introduced by the
such sweeping cuts. Tories, but they are deceptive,
considering they balance for less
As well the actually loss of than 25% of the Chancellor’s £86
employment, the public sector cuts billion target mentioned earlier.
directly impact on the British public. Moreover, it would be advantageous
Those at the lower end of the income if the Tories could raise plentiful
scale now face crippling crushes. capital should they choose to
Many welfare programmes cuts are seriously confronting tax evasion and
planned. Certainly, the Tories are avoidance. In actually fact, white
right to tackle the culture of comfort collar crimes strip billions from the
and the perverse incentives in certain national economy each year. Again, a
welfare schemes. discussion of the viable alternatives
to the cuts are beyond the scope of
However, disappointingly, some this blog, but forcing the public
of the reforms are borderline sector to be held responsible for
bullying. The chancellor recently 76.7% of the overall deficit reduction
announced that mobility component target, is a clear show of
of the disability living allowance foolhardiness by the Tories.
would be removed from people living
in residential care. This is a
The one certainty is that this is
devastating notion considering it
one of the most important periods in
helps to meet some of the extra costs
British fiscal politics. The Tories
disabled people face when they
simply have to hope they got it right,
travel. This would affect the
and unfortunately we must pray it all
independence of thousands of people
works out.
living with a disability. Arguably, this
move can be seen as Tories targeting
a section of society who are unable to
defend themselves, contradicting the
government’s claim before the
general election that vulnerable
people in society would not be
affected by their welfare reforms.