Richard Exell at the TUC has produced an elegant graphical analysis (1) of the way the UK tax and benefit system operates to redistributes wealth. His conclusion is that:
A strategy for reducing inequality and poverty that doesn’t raise taxes and increase benefits and services looks as if it is starting off with a massive disadvantage.
However, we know that the impact of Tory/LD ‘austerity’ measures are the complete reverse… with both massive cuts to benefits and higher rate tax.
After Austerity: the widening gap between rich and poor – video
The economist Dean Baker and the TUC’s Nicola Smith discuss why the economic gains of the past 30 years have gone disproportionately to the wealthiest section of society. Interviewed by Tom Clark at the TUC’s After Austerity conference, they weigh up the arguments for capping executive pay, the provision of government tax credits and an increase in the minimum wage