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As usual, Ekklesia will offer running budget comment, analysis and response (http://www.ekklesia.co.uk/budget2014) today and tomorrow (19-20 March 2014) - highlighting especially the moral and social issues, alternative economic perspectives, the response of charities, NGOs and faith groups, and emerging policy questions.
As ever, our concerns will be: (1) how do specific proposals impact on the most poorest and most vulnerable in society? (2) how is wealth being shared or accumulated, by whom and to what ends? (3) how is sustainability and environment factored economically? (4) what is being done about tax evasion and avoidance? (5) what is being done to stimulate positive, green growth, jobs and pro-social enterprise? (6) how are fiscal, monetary and other levers being used and to what ends?
Budgets, Ekklesia believes, are moral documents. They are not just about abstract figures. They indicate the priorities and vision (or lack of it) of a society and the choices it - and especially its elected leaders - wishes to make.
The larger issues about how we understand money, its nature, creation and use are raised well in political economist Ann Pettifor's digital book, Just Money: How society can break the despotic power of finance, which is introduced here: http://www.ekklesia.co.uk/node/19919
In related work, Ekklesia is continuing to look at church investments / financial policies and has co-published the churches' São Paulo Statement: International Financial Transformation for the Economy of Life.
You can follow developments today on our website, and at the 2014 Budget aggregator: http://www.ekklesia.co.uk/budget2014
On Twitter, follow the hashtag: #Budget2014
Resources we recommend for following the debate:
* Treasury feeds on the budget: https://www.gov.uk/government/topical-events/budget-2014
* Official Budget 2013 documents on the Treasury website: http://bit.ly/YWd3hx (2014 will follow)
* To compare a range of past budgets and statements, look back on: http://www.ekklesia.co.uk/budget
* Guardian budget live blog and calculator: http://www.theguardian.com/politics/economics-blog/2014/mar/19/budget-20...
* New Economics Foundation: http://www.neweconomics.org/
* ToUChstone blog detailed analysis: http://touchstoneblog.org.uk/
* Resolution Foundation budget analysis and response: http://www.resolutionfoundation.org/press/
* Jonathan Portes (NIESR): http://niesr.ac.uk/blog
* Tax Research UK: http://www.taxresearch.org.uk/Blog/
* Prime Economics: http://www.primeeconomics.org/
* False Economy: http://falseeconomy.org.uk/
* Frances Coppola: http://coppolacomment.blogspot.co.uk
* Past budget year analysis aggregated individually on Ekklesia: http://www.ekklesia.co.uk/budget2013 http://www.ekklesia.co.uk/budget2012, http://www.ekklesia.co.uk/budget2011, and http://www.ekklesia.co.uk/budget2010.
If you have comment to offer, please email simon.barrow AT ekklesia.co.uk, heading your contribution BUDGET and giving your contact and brief biog details.Tweet