Tory cuts for the rich, more pain for rest
The Conservative Government, supported by the Ulster Unionists before, during and after the last Westminster election, continues to show its contempt for the ordinary people of the United Kingdom.
Not satisfied with its slash and burn policies that have deeply affected our public services, they are now eager to begin a new round of cuts. To add insult to injury the cuts they now want to implement are tax cuts for the rich.
The Tories are doing what they do best and are looking at ways to reward the wealthy by cutting the 50p tax rate.
What is staggering is that the Government's own figures show that over the next five years this tax will bring in almost £13bn.
This is a fantastic amount of money yet the Tories, endorsed by the UUP in 2010, want to put it back into the bank accounts of the super-rich.
Every part of the UK has seen its budget slashed and services curtailed because of the Tories savage cutbacks. These are cuts that have hit schools and hospitals, they have affected public transport and our roads, and have reduced vital benefits that people depend on.
The £13bn the Tories want to put into the pockets of the super- rich could be used to reverse some of these cuts. It could restore EMA for schoolchildren right throughout the UK, it could reverse the cuts in Winter Fuel Payments that pensioners will have to endure, or it could reduce the cuts to child benefit and tax credits, helping many struggling families.
The Tories and Ulster Unionists have told us time and time again that, "We're all in this together". You know what, they're lying. The super-rich, who the Tories now want to make even richer, can afford private schools and private healthcare, they aren't affected by cuts to buses and trains and they aren't counting pennies deciding what will be more important this winter - heating or eating.
When we warned of Tory cuts at the last election there were those in the likes of the Ulster Unionist Party who said we were scaremongering. If only we were. Sadly, the Tories are ready and willing to make their cuts even more perverse: tax cuts for the rich, real cuts for the rest of us.
Cllr Tom Smith