Tough for some
Life is tough for everybody. The government cut in Universal Credit is forcing tens of thousands into poverty at a time when prices are set to rise. People will have to choose between heating the house and eating; but pity the poor MPs.
MPs have to live on £82,000 in salary, though many double that amount by claiming expenses.
Nevertheless, Sir Peter Bottomley claimed it was "desperately difficult" for many of his colleagues. He compares his job with the critical life-saving work of doctors. I think we all know who we would rather trust with our lives.
Socialist Party member Dave Nellist was a workers' MP on a workers' wage from 1983 to 1992. Sir Peter would like to be a toffs' MP with toffs' emoluments.
Derek McMillan, Brighton Socialist Party
Unplanned capitalist chaos
Bristol's bus service has never been great, but it's getting worse. I spoke to a bus driver who explained one of the reasons. First Bus has lost 47 drivers from just one depot in the last month alone. They've left to become HGV drivers, lured away by the rising pay and sign-on bonuses offered as hauliers try to plug the skills gap.
Who can blame them? Hopefully this will lead to rising pay for bus drivers too. But in the meantime life is made harder for passengers and the remaining staff.
This is yet another example of the madness of the unplanned capitalist market. Crises compounding one another. A democratic, socialist economic plan would direct people's efforts and energies far more effectively, ensuring that workers are employed where they're able to meet people's needs and wants - and everyone gets paid well in the process.
The problem with school
I'm a Year 11 secondary school student. A big issue I have is how it's privatised. Uniforms can be marked up. You can only buy uniforms in specific places, it's really expensive.
It costs loads of money.
They put a lot of anxiety on you to get things done. You've got to make sure you have everything, otherwise you get detention. They put you in isolation for stupid things. If you don't have the right socks, you go into isolation.
The buildings are designed really cheaply. Nobody can fit through the corridors. It's not safe at all. There are barely any proper Covid guidelines.
The school canteen is expensive, even though I get it for free, and it's also disgusting. It's the worst food I've ever had. It's not healthy at all.
We need more funding in schools. We need democratic control of the schools by students, teachers, parents and the community as a whole.
Adam Gillman, Reading Socialist Party
In The Socialist 13 October 2021:
We need a pay rise!
What we think
Youth Fight for Jobs
Winter of Discontent