May 17, 2006

New Labour isn't working

The thing that New Labour always mentions when it harps on about is how good it is is how it has reduced relative poverty, however actually it hasn't. Relative poverty has risen under New Labour according to the Institute for Fiscal Studies.
the IFS says that if household spending is measured instead, then over the same period of time the poverty rate rose from 20% to 22%.

Using spending as a measure, the IFS also finds that the poverty rate among children increased by 11% during that time, compared to the government's assessment that child poverty, measured by income, fell by 15%.
They haven't done anything about that other Labour touchstone income equality either
Official figures (table 27 of this pdf) show that in 2004-05, the Gini coefficient for post-tax incomes was 36%, and the 90th percentile of people had disposable incomes 4.1 times those of the 10th percentile. Though both numbers are slightly lower than in 1996-97 (38% and 4.4), they are exactly the same as those in 1987.
Or how about the NHS, New Labour have blasted it with money and yet waiting times are still so long that people are willing to go to a different country to get treated (and now have the legal right to recoupe the money, which is good as they did pay for treatment from the NHS even if it was unable to deliver). Other countries being completely without waiting lists as they use a multi-payer multi-provider system and teh market to ration services rather than the centralised Socialist edifice that is the NHS. However throwing money at a bad system was never going to make it better, as is illustrated by Scotland. Scotland recieves far more from taxpayers than England and yet the outcomes are hardly different at all, because the systems are wrong.


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