Socialist Worker

Sunday Times Rich List shows the money’s there for jobs and services

by Charlie Kimber
Issue No. 2553

Weve got to get rid of the rich

We've got to get rid of the rich (Pic: Tim Sanders)


The Sunday Times Rich List, published yesterday, shows the immense wealth that could be used for public services and workers’ wages in a decent society. It also shows how capitalism sucks wealth to a tiny elite.

John McDonnell, the shadow chancellor, is right to call for higher taxation on anyone with an income of over £80,000. But he was also right to say it was a “modest increase”.

We need to go further and have a fundamental shift in wealth and income.

Don’t believe the Tories’ predictable squeals about the disaster that would come from taxing the rich.

  • The wealthiest 1,000 people and their families have a total wealth of £658 billion, which is up 14 percent on last year's £575 billion. Brexit, cuts, ups and downs of the economy—none of this touches the super-rich while the rest of us are told to accept less pay, lower benefits, and cuts in services.
  • In 2009 the richest 1,000 were worth £258 billion. Their wealth has more than doubled between then and now.
  • There are now more UK-based billionaires—134—than at any time in history.

Dominic Lawson, the son of former Tory chancellor Nigel Lawson wrote in 2009, “If there is a bloody Bolshevik revolution in this country, I think I can guess the inflammatory pamphlet which will be waved by the people putting the wealthy up against the walls and shooting them.

“It will not be the Communist Manifesto. It will be the Sunday Times Rich List.”

Let’s hope it will be both!

 


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