We are almost at the final post with the fire consultation in London (final day for submissions is 17 June) with cuts proposed to 12 fire stations, 18 engines and 520 firefighters.
Average incomes have fallen for the second successive year, leaving median and mean incomes six per cent and seven per cent below their 2009 and 2010 peaks, according to government figures released today.
In the latest instalment of Labour’s on-going expectation’s management effort to level with the public about what it can and can’t achieve in such a difficult financial environment, Carwyn Jones who, as first minister of Wales remains the leader of the only Labour government in the country, has warned of further cuts to come to unprotected budgets.
Older people should of course expect a decent standard of living in retirement. But should they really expect a standard of living which outpaces that of the average worker, especially when the cost of proving it is likely to mean further cuts elsewhere in the welfare budget down the line?
I am used to David Cameron shooting from the hip with knee jerk, ill thought out policies to respond to public opinion but I thought that Ed Balls would be cleverer than that.
Ahead of this week’s European TUC mid-term conference in Dublin, European Union leaders have called for a new European Recovery Plan to kick-start economic growth.
Welsh first minister Carwyn Jones has told AMs that Wales is making progress in “the most difficult economic circumstances” and that the Welsh government is “standing up” to UK government austerity and welfare policies.
Rather than making society’s most vulnerable members carry the can, true ‘austerity’ would require those at the top to bear the much greater burden, in order to bring down increasingly obscene levels of unequal wealth.
Something strange has been happening in stock markets since 2008: they have been going up. Not just up, but absolutely flying. Through the prolonged failed recovery, unemployment, an investment crisis, the Fukushima crisis and the EU debacle, Wall street, still the market all else look to, has doubled in value.
Ed Balls is currently making a speech in which he will effectively renege on previous Labour Party statements that universality remained a “part of the bedrock” of the welfare state.