By Juan Torres López
They are still applying cuts in Portugal (and Spain) although they do not work and produce (as critical economists have warned) the opposite effect to that predicted by the neoliberal authorities. They have imposed brutal increases in VAT, affirming that this rise will boost government revenue in 2012 by 12%. Critics warn (as we have warned in Spain) that this would not work well and the fact is that at the end of July revenues were down 1.1%.
Now in our neighbouring country they are applying new wage cuts, saying that they are essential to bring economic recovery (as they will very soon do here). But be assured that its effect will be the opposite: more productive activity and jobs will be destroyed and the economy will deteriorate further.
The reason why they insist on measures that everyone can see do not work is clear: they are not trying to solve the economic problems and make the economy and society work better. If it were so, they would not continue to apply policies that increase business failures, unemployment, poverty and mortality (it has risen 20% in Portugal above all because there are many older people who no longer get access to the more expensive medical and transport services).
They are seeking something else: simply that the rich and powerful social groups further increase their wealth and power, and take all. Some call it theft. I see it as the old class struggle that some say is an invention, that no longer exists.
Juan Torres López, ATTAC Spain, September 15, 2012
Translation by Revolting Europe