The Budget and subsequent measures are intended to be transformational; a major step on the road to thoroughly ‘Americanising’ the British economy with low taxes, low wages, privatisation, deregulation and union-busting that are already designed to boost the profit rate.
The economic project of the Truss government overall has no prospects at all of meeting its stated aim of increasing the trend rate of growth in the economy.
The sole important obstacle to severe further damage to living standards, public services and wider society that are central to the project is the resistance being mounted by many trade unions and their members.
Socialists support the striking rail workers and any others who enter the fray.
At the same, the Business Investment strike must be broken for any realistic possibility of a sustained rise in living standards.
The current crisis of the British economy is exceptional in historical terms and even relative to the generally stagnant state of the major capitalist economies. As a result, the ruling class offensive against workers and the poor is also an exceptional one.
To assist an increase in the rate of exploitation, Johnson’s government has prioritised boosting profits at every turn. Freezing public sector wages, cutting benefits, ‘fire and rehire’ and the outrageous attack at P&O are all part of the drive to anchor wages lower.
NEF analysis shows a fall in living standards for the lowest paid half of the population, and a big increase in incomes for the top 5% of earners. On this evidence, the point that austerity has never gone away is irrefutable. The government clearly has an interest in misleading the population on this point.