Readers' letters: Interest rate rises won’t cure inflation

The Bank of England is increasing interest rates to quash inflation. It won’t work.

By The Newsroom
Thursday, 19th May 2022, 7:00 am

Inflation isn’t caused by excess consumer demand, but by the UK’s mismanagement of Covid and a self-inflicted Brexit, exacerbated by war and global warming.

ONS data shows that real wages have fallen while food and energy prices have risen, making people poorer.

The costs of producing food and energy haven’t risen, so price rises are being driven by speculative profit-taking in the face of the external shocks of Brexit, Covid and war.

Sign up to our daily newsletter

The wealthy will survive these shocks and also benefit from higher interest rates while the majority will suffer. Raising interest rates won’t cure the inflation disease and risks killing the patient.

Instead, the UK Government should act. It should restore benefit cuts, cancel the national insurance increase, tax the energy companies and banks who are profiteering, cut VAT on fuel, increase wealth taxes and realign trade rules with the EU to cut the huge costs of Brexit.

In addition, it should protect the vulnerable from Covid by ensuring workplace safety and pay for tests to relieve labour shortages.

If the government fails to act, which is likely, poverty and inequality will soar, public services will suffer through another round of austerity, people will die and the likelihood of recession and civil unrest will increase.

Leah Gunn Barrett, Edinburgh.

City needs more than change of manager

I see Ian Swanson confirming that the council, like any football team, is organised, led and motivated by party political policies (News, May 17).

To the residents of Edinburgh with local issues in mind who elected these officials (apart from the anti-Tories who seem to believe Westminster is to blame for Edinburgh’s problems), we seem to have been ignored again.

What happened to improvements to our roads, removal of impediments to business, such as the many Spaces for People and the issues they were elected upon?

We need more than a change in manager, unless readers believe that Adam McVey has done a good job during his term.

Neil Macpherson, Edinburgh

Sharma’s wake-up call on climate

COP26 president Alok Sharma’s words in Glasgow should be a wake-up call to all nations when he said failure to take strong and swift action to counter climate change would be a "monstrous act of self-harm."

Unfortunately our First Minister, who was in the USA speaking to the Climate Solutions Foundationthis week, will fail to provide any solutions to climate problems because of her objection to nuclear power

I image this will be a missed opportunity for Nicola Sturgeon to put Scotland at the forefront of climate action by pointing out that it is impossible to envisage a future where we can decarbonise electricity power grids of major industrial countries, without increasing their nuclear capacity by a significant amount.

Without nuclear power providing energy in Scotland I believe we shall be entering a "dark age" in more ways than one.

C Scott, Edinburgh.

BP pension rise

BP has given some of its profits to the pension fund so pensions paid to retired staff have been increased by five per cent. Very unlike the UK government.

BP pensioner, Edinburgh.

Write to the Edinburgh Evening News

We welcome your thoughts. Write to [email protected] including name, address and phone number – we won't print full details. Keep letters under 300 words, with no attachments. If referring to an article, include date, page number and heading.

A message from the Editor

Thank you for reading this article. We're more reliant on your support than ever as the shift in consumer habits brought about by coronavirus impacts our advertisers. If you haven't already, please consider supporting our trusted, fact-checked journalism by taking out a digital subscription. Click on this link for more information.