Seen as it’s all over Twitter: How should SDLP/Labour/the Left respond to Corona

1. The Left needs to decide who will pay for the crisis. It shouldn’t be on the backs of workers or ordinary people but based on taxing those who’ve done well fro, COVID-19 and before it. (1/4)
2. Bailing out employment-heavy businesses (who have been reliant on the state subsidy scheme) from the profits of the more profitable non-emp. heavy sectors is a must. This shift of cash from profitable to temporarily unprofitable mustn’t be an excuse for demand suppression.
Conservatives and neoliberals will want to utilise this covid recesssion to show the ‘creative destruction of the market’. Saving jobs is good economics when firms are profitable in normal times.
3. A stimulus budget, paid for by a mix of so-called “People’s QE” and borrowing for capital projects to lend to strategically beneficial, ecologically sound & innovative business that is worker-owned and for productivity-enhancing infrastructure projects such as ntl broadband.
Cuts in VAT (and reduced or zero-rating for goods and services mainly produced in this country), increases in benefits and other spending or tax-cutting efforts must be focused on being socially just and economically efficient (more money for those most likely to spend it).
4. Any fiscal retrenchment should be in the medium term (but begin early to cool market forces acting against the €/£ or government). Taxing the $945Bn cash-pile sat on by the top 1% of global corporations is the only sane way to cut deficits without killing demand.
The employment subsidy scheme is costly, but a multinationally agreed clamp down on MNC tax avoidance, paired with a FTT; wealth tax and tech monopoly tax can pay for both it and higher discretionary spending on the social and economically-enhancing programs outlined by Labour.
A windfall tax on these cash piles and other monopoly utilities could well be a good idea. Sufficient planning would be needed to avoid cash piles being dumped abroad, but this is perfectly doable.

In summary:

The 2010s can never, ever happen again.
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