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Blame neo-liberalism for Trump's victory

Published 16/11/2016

From Thatcher and Reagan to Brexit and Trump, are we seeing the death of neo-liberalism and austerity?

We've gone from the trickle-down theory to the trickle-up reality of the politics of dispossession, where 30-year-olds pay more on a mortgage or rent and have less of a disposable income than their contemporaries of 30 years ago.

The established elite, through neo-liberalism, has crushed the middle ground and the middle-classes. Zero-hour contracts and the minimum, unlivable wage have become the norm.

The people we elect cut school, health and welfare budgets, while telling us we've never had it so good. Working-class families need two incomes to survive and grandparents are unpaid carers for a new generation of latch-key children.

As people look for an alternative to austerity cuts, job losses and tax-evasion, the rich get richer at the expense of wider society. The danger is that society will move further to the Right.

Brexit and Trump have proved that people have been forgotten and marginalised. These people insist on being heard. It's not just a protest vote, people are demanding equality and a financially inclusive society.

The far-Right and sections of the media blame immigration for a shortage of adequate jobs, housing and hospital beds. In reality, it's neo-liberal privatisation and cuts that are at fault.

The Left must offer a viable alternative to neo-liberalism, as I believe we do, and stop the move of society to the Right, as we are seeing in Europe and further afield.

FRA HUGHES

Belfast

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