07/06/2022

Rishi Sunak’s measures are a one-time payment, and the £400 covers just half of an expected average rise in energy bills of £800 (Sunak reflects ‘energy profit tax’ in £15 billion cost-of-living package, May 26) . Even those with the biggest payments only get it once. This little faux pas to disguise this government’s sordid behavior and corruption does little to alleviate the UK’s growing poverty. People need a much better level of guaranteed income, more work rights and security.

But we also need a radical tax shift from income tax to property tax, property tax and wealth tax. All tax evasion allowances must be closed. Utilities must be returned to public ownership or much greater public control, and management must include workers and consumers.

There are many things that can be done to restore greater justice to the population. The dominant economic model of government is not natural law, as the chancellor and other ministers claim. It is a human construct and can be modified by human action in such a way that its benefits are distributed equitably.
Alasdair MacDonald
Glasgow

The government took a great idea and implemented it poorly. The oil and gas industry gets away with the vast majority of its excess profits from rising energy prices, while taxpayers cover two-thirds of Rishi Sunak’s energy subsidies to pay the bills.

Instead of lowering the cost of future bills by expanding cheap renewable energy faster and insulating homes, the government is giving oil and gas producers huge tax breaks for fossil fuel investments. In what world does it make sense to expand the production of expensive, life-threatening fuels on our planet while doing nothing to get more cheap green stuff?
Jenny Jones
Greens, House of Lords

Many homeowners will claim £400 for the main and second homes. With around 500,000 second homes in the UK, this means around £200m more that could be used more equitably. Once again we are told that it is very difficult to locate any second homes. As with the massive fraud that occurred during the pandemic due to the inability of governments to regulate the creation of new businesses, funds are misappropriated for those who do not need it. Whoever has more, gets more. Only the meek among us can look to inherit the earth.
Barbara Holroyd
Arpingham, Norfolk

It is not entirely true that ‘every family’ gets £400 from the government. There are households (including mine – one of over 350 in Northumberland alone) that do not have electricity from the grid and therefore do not receive this assistance. This is despite relying on diesel for electricity (unless you’re lucky enough to have wind and solar, which is out of reach for most people), whose cost nearly doubled in one year, and on oil or wood for heating, for which money has no upper price limit. And where the cost increases are obvious.

We face the same cost of living challenges as everyone else. These families were ignored. We are weak in everything.
su fink
Elsdon, Northumberland

The government is planning to give me £400 to cover my energy bills. Looks like I can get an extra £150 because I’m retired. I don’t need the payments so I will donate them to a charity that supports those who are really struggling because of this government.
Peter Jones
Berkhamsted, Herefordshire

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