This is a guest blog kindly provided by Rev Paul Nicolson, the founder of Taxpayers Against Poverty, which campaigns for an affordable home and an adequate income in work or unemployment for all citizens.
One of the major difficulties in tackling inequality is the way it coerces many people into accepting and even promoting it. In a steep social hierarchy people will often choose to shore up their own precarious social position by kicking down on poorer, weaker folk rather than challenging the richer more powerful folk above them.
This Thursday Iain Duncan Smith will announce an update to the Government’s child poverty strategy. It’s been billed as a radical approach, but that’s rather like saying ordering a diet coke with your supersized McDonalds is a radical way to lose weight.
The measures rumoured to be included are the recycled announcement of more children getting school dinners, more food stamps and measures that will help slightly reduce poorer families’ utility bills. Not exactly ground-breaking.
Discussions of the “Squeezed Middle” have brought out all sorts of people claiming that they too feel the squeeze. A recent article in the Daily Telegraph sparked derision on social media when someone on £120,000 a year (in the top 5%, if not higher) complained about their declining living standards.