Carol Hunt: A growing wealth gap puts burden on the poor
The wealthy bore the brunt of the financial meltdown, but were largely able to take the hit, says Carol Hunt
DID you feel like throwing your slippers at the telly? I know I did, sitting there, watching that man from the European Commission with the unpronounceable name (Istvan Szekely) telling us that the wealthy had borne the brunt of the Troika-imposed austerity measures.
I wasn't feeling particularly wealthy I can tell you, watching the evening news with my son's woolly hat on my head and a thick blanket wrapped around me because we'd run out of coal and I was damned if I was turning the heat on yet.
Like most working families in similar situations, I felt as if we had borne the brunt of the financial meltdown of the last few years: a huge drop in income, increased taxes and charges, little or no discretionary spending and palpitations at the thought of upcoming Christmas expenses. And I know people – developers, builders, investors, those involved in construction – who have lost the shirts off their backs, some of whom are now solely dependent on charities like St Vincent de Paul for food and basics.