The Lie In The UN Rapporteur’s UK Poverty Report


Philip Alston is the UN Special Rapporteur on poverty. He’s been around the UK telling all how terrible poverty is here.

It’s not, obviously, as we don’t have any poverty. We do have inequality, that’s true, but not poverty. Still. In the report we get this:

“The United Kingdom’s impending exit from the European Union poses particular risks for people in poverty, but the Government appears to be treating this as an afterthought,” the UN Special Rapporteur on extreme poverty and human rights, Philip Alston, said at the end of a 12-day visit to the country.

Almost all studies have shown that the UK economy will be worse off after Brexit. Consequences for inflation, real wages, and consumer prices will drive more people into poverty unless the Government takes action to shield those most vulnerable and replaces current EU funding for combatting poverty, he said.

In the United Kingdom, 14 million people, a fifth of the population, live in poverty. Four million of these are more than 50 percent below the poverty line, and 1.5 million are destitute, unable to afford basic essentials.

All of those measures of poverty are of inequality, less than 60% of median household income, less than 50% and so on. This sort of poverty decreases in recessions. As it just did in the last one. Because top end wages are more geared to profits and the economy. So, they collapse more in a recession.

So, he’s claiming Brexit will cause a recession? But that means inequality, this sort of poverty, will reduce. That’s thus a lie, isn’t it? Or, alternatively, he’s not got the first clue about the subject at hand. And having corresponded with him I don’t believe that second, he knows very well.