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Who Benefits From Austerity? Mechanics Institute Limerick, May 2013
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Who Benefits From Austerity? Mechanics Institute Limerick, May 2013

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Presentation on who benefits from austerity, Mechanics Institute Limerick Summer School, 4 May 2013

Presentation on who benefits from austerity, Mechanics Institute Limerick Summer School, 4 May 2013

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  • * Yet 6 out of 10 Traveller children live in a family where their mothers have no formal education or some primary education only.
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    • 1. Who Benefits from Austerity?Mechanics Institute Limerick, Summer School, 4 May 2013Dr. Conor McCabe, Equality Studies Centre,UCD School of Social Justice
    • 2. 11 May 2010Dear Chief Secretary,Im afraid to tell you theres no money left.Sincerely,Liam Byrne.chief secretary to the Treasury.
    • 3. “The British Government hasrun out ofmoney because all the moneywas spent inthe good years.”George Osborne, 25 February2012
    • 4. “So we cannot just carry on as we are. Unless we reform oureconomy - rebalance demand, restructure banking, and restore thesustainability of our public finances - we shall not only jeopardiserecovery, but also fail the next generation.”Mervyn King,TUC Conference, 15 September 2010.
    • 5. 5 March 2009. QE : £75billion10 October 2011. QE : £75billion2009 – 2011. corporate bondpurchase via asset purchasefacility : £375 billion2012: Monetary PolicyCommittee approve a further£50 billion.“So we cannot just carry on as we are. Unless we reform oureconomy - rebalance demand, restructure banking, and restore thesustainability of our public finances - we shall not only jeopardiserecovery, but also fail the next generation.”Mervyn King,TUC Conference, 15 September 2010.
    • 6. Long Term Refinancing Operations(LTRO)21 December 2011: €489.2 billion to523 banks – 3yrs @ 1 per cent29 February 2012: €529.5 billion to800 banks – 3yrs @ 1 per cent
    • 7. Long Term Refinancing Operations(LTRO)21 December 2011: €489.2 billion to523 banks – 3yrs @ 1 per cent29 February 2012: €529.5 billion to800 banks – 3yrs @ 1 per cent“Some banks, particularly in Spain and Italy, usedportions of those funds to buy higher-yieldingbonds issued by their governments at a time whenmost investors remained skittish, and it helpedreduce government borrowing costs.But many banks primarily used the funds to paydown maturing debts or simply deposited themoney at other banks or with the ECB itself, eventhough they yield less. The infusion fell short ofsome politicians hope that it would stimulate banklending to customers in struggling European
    • 8. Financialization refers to the increasing importanceof financial markets, financial motives, financialinstitutions and financial elites in the operation ofthe economy and its governing institutions, both atthe national and international levels.Gerald Epstein, „Financialization, Rentier Interests, and Central Bank Policy‟,20021970s – The Monetarist revolution1980s – war on labour1990s – Credit as a substitute for wage increases2000s – Credit solution for wage stagnation failsPresent day – open conflict over monetary policy once again
    • 9. Some characteristics of Neo-liberalism - Attacks the post-war compromise between producer capitaland labour – compromise that put severe checks on freemovement of capital- Great Britain and Northern Ireland = Social DemocraticWelfare State- Irish Republic = Corporatist State / Rerum Novarum(Vocationalism)• Pushes a monetary policy designed to benefit financialrentiers• Privileges asset-price speculation over producer-ledemployment• Needs to kill inflation in order for asset price profit-seeking towork
    • 10. “In the case of the United States, financialization duringthe 1990s led to a closer alignment of large industrialand financial firms in the U.S., leading to a greateremphasis by Alan Greenspan and the U.S. FederalReserve in financial asset appreciation as a goal ofmonetary policy.”Gerald Epstein (2001)
    • 11. “In the case of the United States, financialization duringthe 1990s led to a closer alignment of large industrialand financial firms in the U.S., leading to a greateremphasis by Alan Greenspan and the U.S. FederalReserve in financial asset appreciation as a goal ofmonetary policy.”Gerald Epstein (2001)“The goal of monetary expansion has been to do justenough to stabilize financial asset prices without goingfar enough to produce catch-up growth in the labormarket”Matthew Yglesias, Rentiers and Financialization (2011)
    • 12. “What [the wealthy], businesses andbanks share is a common interest insupporting asset prices, a lack ofinterest in seeking full employmentunless it is a prerequisite forsupporting asset prices, and anaversion to any policies that cantrigger wage inflation.”Ashwin Parameswares (2011)
    • 13. Closing down of Dissent - Attacks on Equality in IrelandEquality Bodies – closed down or with reduced Budgets Combat Poverty Agency –closed 2008 incorporated into the Department of Social Protection Equality Authority – 2009 43% cut and now being merged with the Human Rights Commission Women’s Health Council – closed 2009 Crisis Pregnancy Agency – closed and merged with the Health Service Executive Irish Human Rights Commission -Budget cuts since 2009 and merged with Equality Authority Equality for Women Measure - co-funded by EU Operational Programme ---budget partly transferred out ofthis area and now under Dept. For Enterprise, Trade and Employment National Consultative Committee on Racism and Interculturalism (NCCRI) _Closed 2009 Gender Equality desk at the Department (Ministry) of Justice, Equality and Law Reform – Desk Closed 2009 Gender Equality Unit – Department of Education – Closed early 2000s Higher Education Equality Unit – UCC -Closed and merged into Higher Education Authority (early 2000s) National Women’s Council of Ireland -158 member organisations- budget cuts of 15% in 2008-11 and 38% in2012 Traveller Education cutbacks 2011 and 2012 – all 42 Visiting teaches for Travellers removed* Rape Crisis Network Ireland – core Health Authority Funding removed 2011 SAFE Ireland network of Women’s’ Refuges - core Health Authority Funding removed 2011 People With Disabilities in Irelands (PWDI) - funding removed 2012 National Carers’ Strategy – abandoned 2009Kathleen Lynch, Equality Studies UCDSchool of Social Justice 44

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