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G20 is austerity summit

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“G20 is austerity summit” claims protest organiser

BrisCAN spokesperson, Adrian Skerritt said: “The G20 meeting will disrupt the lives of Brisbane residents from November 8 to November 16. But it won’t end there. G20 policies will continue to disrupt our lives long after the meeting is over.”

The G20 forum is committed to shifting wealth from the majority of citizens to the incredibly rich. They will do globally what Newman and Abbott are doing locally – sell public assets, outsource and cuts to social services.”

“The G20 is the Austerity Summit” claimed Mr Skerritt.

“What they can’t achieve through their budgets and trade deals they will attempt to resolve through war. Look at Obama and Abbott’s new war in Iraq and Putin’s use of military force in the Ukraine.”

The rally and march on November 15 will condemn G20 policies that create poverty and inequality. The march will also champion the values that should drive economic and political decisions – justice, sustainability, indigenous sovereignty and democracy.

“BrisCAN is demanding a world with an economy that works for people and the planet, a world safe from the ravages of climate change and war, a world with good jobs, clean air and water and healthy communities” said Mr Skerritt.

The rally will assemble at 11am November 15 2014 at Emma Miller Place (Roma St) and subsequently march past the G20 summit to Musgrave Park.

People and Planet before Profit
Brisbane Community Action Network – G20 (BrisCAN – G20)
PO Box 5829, West End Qld 4101
http://www.briscan.net.au

For detail about BrisCAN-G20 visit briscan.net.au or http://www.facebook.com/briscan.g20.

For further comment contact media spokesperson Adrian Skerritt on 0400307892.

Reference
bp-working-for-few-political-capture-economic-inequality-200114-embargo-en

10 responses to “G20 is austerity summit

  1. Oxfam report: Working for the few

    In November 2013, the World Economic Forum released its ‘Outlook on the Global Agenda 2014’, in which it ranked widening income disparities as the second greatest worldwide risk in the coming 12 to 18 months. Based on those surveyed, inequality is ‘impacting social stability within countries and threatening security on a global scale.’ Oxfam shares its analysis, and wants to see the 2014World Economic Forum make the commitments needed to counter the growing tide of inequality.
    Some economic inequality is essential to drive growth and progress, rewarding those with talent, hard earned skills, and the ambition to innovate and take entrepreneurial risks. However, the extreme levels of wealth concentration occurring today threaten to exclude hundreds of millions of people from realizing the benefits of their talents and hard work.
    Extreme economic inequality is damaging and worrying for many reasons: it is morally questionable; it can have negative impacts on economic growth and poverty reduction; it can multiply social problems. It compounds other inequalities, such as those between women and men. In many countries, extreme economic inequality is worrying because of the pernicious impact that wealth concentrations can have on equal political representation. When wealth captures government policymaking, the rules bend to favor the rich, often to the detriment of everyone else. The consequences include the erosion of democratic governance, the pulling apart of social cohesion, and the vanishing of equal opportunities for all. Unless bold political solutions are instituted to curb the influence of wealth on politics, governments will work for the interests of the rich, while economic and political inequalities continue to rise. As US Supreme Court Justice Louis Brandeis famously said, ‘We may have democracy, or we may have wealth concentrated in the hands of the few, but we cannot have both.
    ’Oxfam is concerned that, left unchecked, the effects are potentially immutable, and will lead to ‘opportunity capture’ –in which the lowest tax rates, the best education, and the best healthcare are claimed by the children of the rich. This creates dynamic and mutually reinforcing cycles of advantage that are transmitted across generations.
    Given the scale of rising wealth concentrations, opportunity capture and unequal political representation are a serious and worrying trend. For instance:•Almost half of the world’s wealth is now owned by just one percent of the population.
    •The wealth of the one percent richest people in the world amounts to $110 trillion. That’s 65 times the total wealth of the bottom half of the world’s population.
    •The bottom half of the world’s population owns the same as the richest 85 people in the world. 3
    •Seven out of ten people live in countries where economic inequality has increased in the last 30 years.
    •The richest one percent increased their share of income in 24 out of 26 countries for which we have data between 1980 and 2012.
    •In the US, the wealthiest one percent captured 95 percent of post-financial crisis growth since 2009, while the bottom 90 percent became poorer.
    This massive concentration of economic resources in the hands of fewer people presents a significant threat to inclusive political and economic systems. Instead of moving forward together, people are increasingly separated by economic and political power, inevitably heightening social tensions and increasing the risk of societal breakdown.
    Oxfam’s polling from across the world captures the belief of many that laws and regulations are now designed to benefit the rich. A survey in six countries (Spain, Brazil, India, South Africa, the UK and the US) showed that a majority of people believe that laws are skewed in favor of the rich –in Spain eight out of 10 people agreed with this statement.
    Another recent Oxfam poll of low-wage earners in the US reveals that 65 percent believe that Congress passes laws that predominantly benefit the wealthy. The impact of political capture is striking. Rich and poor countries alike are affected.
    Financial deregulation, skewed tax systems and rules facilitating evasion, austerity economics, policies that disproportionately harm women, and captured oil and mineral revenues are all examples given in this paper. The short cases included are each intended to offer a sense of how political capture produces ill-gotten wealth, which perpetuates economic inequality. This dangerous trend can be reversed. The good news is that there are clear examples of success, both historical and current.
    The US and Europe in the three decades after World War II reduced inequality while growing prosperous. Latin America has significantly reduced inequality in the last decade –through more progressive taxation, public services, social protection and decent work. Central to this progress has been popular politics that represent the majority, instead of being captured by a tiny minority.
    This has benefited all, both rich and poor.

    Like

    • ...coordinated unorthodox monetary policy?

      I think we can expect: coordinated unorthodox monetary policy, careful fiscal consolidation, various ‘structural reforms’ and infrastructure expenditure.

      What do you mean by coordinated unorthodox monetary policy?

      Do you mean (for example) that the US federal reserve will continue to print money to stimulate growth (quantitative easing)? If so, is there any evidence that this is working even in capitalist terms i.e. put crudely has Obama or any of the G20 leaders have solutions to the current global economic crisis?

      The BrisCAN press release about the G20 being the Austerity Summit press release says that ‘They will do globally what Newman and Abbott are doing locally – sell public assets, outsource and cuts to social services.’
      However at a local level, aren’t regional centres (country towns) dying because of lack of capital? For example, instead of two supermarkets in town there is only one. Retail businesses are closing, buildings are empty or being rented to second-hand businesses, unemployment is rising, local government amalgamations have taken important wages from previously thriving towns. Where is the objective evidence that what Newman and Abbott are doing is providing solutions in their own heartland?
      Aren’t they likely to be gone sooner than later?
      Why look at the economic crisis from a top-down perspective at all?
      Ian
      October 2014

      Like

      • Ian. You are misreading what I am saying here. I don’t think their strategy will work. I do think though it is important for anticapitalists to actually try to be accurate and tell the truth.
        It’s important to try to understand capital’s strategy wouldn’t you agree?

        Like

        • Failure in the market?

          Dave,

          I have refined my questions:

          1) What do you mean by ‘coordinated unorthodox monetary policy‘?

          2) At the global level are you saying that public spending (on infrastructure) is propping up failure in the market?

          3) At a local level, aren’t regional centres (country towns) dying because of lack of capital?

          Ian

          PS You still haven’t produced an explanation of the GFC in less than 3 minutes (length of a rock song), as promised but pls don’t let my questions distract you from looking after bub 😉

          Like

          • Hi Ian
            1) In practice it means that the ECB, the US Fed and the Bank of Japan are working to make interest rates functionally zero. Its clear to all that this can’t go on forever so as the US winds back Quantitative Easing the others will take up the slack. Also they are engaging in forward guidance which means they are announcing planned interest rates months in advance.
            2) Not, but its planned to. I’ll be writing about this more in weeks to come. You should look at chapter 3 of the latest IMF WEO. Also I deal with this question in detail in relation to Australia here: http://withsobersenses.wordpress.com/2014/09/20/building-the-infrastructure-state-plans-anti-politics-and-sullen-refusal/
            and here: http://withsobersenses.wordpress.com/2014/03/04/roads-to-nowhere-capitals-plan-a/
            3) I have no idea. I have done no research on this question. No investigation, no right to speak after all. But I’m unsure why you think this is related to the G20.

            I wouldn’t use the language of ‘failure in the market’ as I think the term ‘market’ is a fundamentally neoclassical term which comes with a host of assumption ( including the idea that its opposite is the ‘state’.) I prefer the Marxian notion of capital accumulation.

            I’m pretty confident I could do that 3 minute summary now. Maybe bring your stop watch next time we meet?
            cheers
            Dave

            Like

    • Response from BrisCAN’s Adrian Skerritt

      Please let me know if anyone would like hand out leaflets this Saturday.

      This report is a strong rebuttal I believe –> https://www.oxfam.org.au/wp-content/uploads/2014/01/bp-working-for-few-political-capture-economic-inequality-200114-embargo-en.pdf

      Like

  2. Pingback: Is the G20 the Austerity Summit? No actually….. | The Word From Struggle Street

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