UK poverty is rising we're told: they're wrong


We're told today that poverty is rising in the UK. Apparently the baby eaters have decided to push into destitution yet ever more of the inhabitants of this sceptered isle. On the grounds, presumably, that they just hate poor people. This is not in fact true and this report doesn't show anything like that happening either:

Poverty in the UK is increasing after two years of heavy welfare cuts have helped to push hundreds of thousands of people below the breadline, according to an independent study of the coalition government’s record.

Although middle-earners saw incomes rise marginally after 2013, policies including the bedroom tax and below-inflation benefits rises have reduced incomes for the poorest, pitching an estimated 760,000 into poverty since the last official figures were produced, according to the New Policy Institute (NPI) thinktank.

The report itself can be found here. The reason the statement is incorrect is because they haven't looked at poverty at all. There is, by any historical or global standard of measurement, no poverty in the UK today. There is, of course, inequality, and this is what they are measuring. That number of people are, by their calculations, now getting under 60% of median income. That is, they are looking at relative poverty, not poverty.

Which is, of course, why inequality was renamed relative poverty (and the relative almost always immediately dropped) so that the terminally aggrieved would have something to complain about still. After all, how can you go on shouting about the horrors that capitalism afflicts on the poor when capitalism has abolished poverty?

Change the definition and carry on shouting, obviously.