Why Rishi Sunak is not your friend – Economist Michael Burke for The People’s Assembly

This is the third article in the cost of living series by Economist Michael Burke for The People’s Assembly

Rishi Sunak is billed as the ‘safe pair of hands’ in the oligarch media that operates in this country. In reality, he is only safe because he will take account of the current resistance to further attacks on workers and the poor.

But this does not mean he is giving up on the aim of a low-tax, low-spending like the US, with few trade union union rights and almost no environmental protections. That remains the aim, but taking account of the real world he is forced to go a bit more cautiously.

What this means is, unlike Truss, he won’t borrow to give tax breaks to big business and the rich for now. He will limit himself to hammering workers and the poor with cuts to public spending, PS wages and benefit cuts.

But he has no problem with giveaways to the rich – that’s what he did in his March Budget earlier this year. As Diane Abbott tweeted after he was elected – he will go down in history as the only person ever to deliver two austerity Budgets in the same year.  He will come forward with another austerity Budget on November 17.

He already has a track record of supporting big business at the expense of ordinary people. He was responsible for the disastrous ‘eat out to help out’ policy which did not save places to eat. But did help restart the spread of the virus.

He also introduced 80% wages, that is a 20% pay cut in furlough.  He wanted to go further, down to 75% but that was too far even for Boris Johnson.  His hope at the time was to cut wages and keep them there. That didn’t work out because so many people have quit working as they can’t make work pay. Instead, they are now using inflation to cut real wages.

He probably couldn’t get past the Tory members because of the colour of his skin, so we got Truss instead. Of course, anti-austerity campaigners and others despise the racism of the Tory party.

We also despise his austeriry policies which literally kill people.  Defending workers and the poor means opposing him and his party’s policies all down the line.

When the further cuts and/or tax increases it will be under the PM who is the richest PM in the Commons, and possibly the richest PM ever. He would like to super-charge those policies that made mega-riches possible.

He is also Britain’s first ever Goldman Sachs banker to become PM.  Goldman has spawned literally dozens of central bankers, finance ministers and PMs around the world. They are, without exception right-wing ideologues who pursue neoliberal economics.

There are reports that Sunak split the ERG and got some support from them by offering to press ahead with ripping up the NIreland Protocol, to cut immigration and to offer them jobs.

His pledge to the Tory party and its backers is that he will make workers and the poor pay for their crisis. Our task is to broaden and deepen the movement opposing him.

Remember remember the 5th of November – National demonstration – Britain is broken