What does 'austerity' mean, really?

It means savage cuts to our social-security safety-net – a net put in place to support us all when we need it.

It means savage cuts to local government, stripping vital local public services bare. Make no mistake: unless austerity is ended, then libraries etc. will start closing in Norfolk, within 18 months. There is nothing else left to cut.

It means piling pressure onto our beloved national public services – NHS, education.

This, sadly, is an agenda supported by both the old parties.

But thankfully, there is a real alternative. The Green Party would end austerity. Under the Greens there will be no cuts to social security. No cuts to local government, nor to public services.

On the contrary, we will create a political and economic system that puts the public first and has the capacity to support everybody's needs while treading more gently on the Earth.

How is this possible?

Because the Green Party, unlike the old Parties, is not afraid of making bold decisions.

We would create a fairer taxation system – introducing a Wealth Tax on the top 1%, which could raise up to £43 billion a year.

Putting our values first, there are also a whole range of cuts that the Green Party would make:

We would remove the tax breaks given to fracking companies that the Chancellor has introduced, and, furthermore, we would remove all the tax-breaks that fossil-fuel companies receive.

We would remove the subsidies paid to nuclear companies – currently given 50 times the investment directed to renewable energy.

We would scrap Trident, with its £90bn price-tag. That's money we think would be better spent on our social services, schools and hospitals.

We would rebalance government spending so that it prioritises public transport over unaffordable vanity road-building projects.

We would clamp-down hard on tax evasion and ensure that the vast sums sloshing around the City of London are made to work for the country, not just for bankers.

These items, which together add up to hundreds of billions of pounds, are taken for granted by the powers that be - these are NOT considered for 'austerity' by the two old parties.

The Greens would tackle the deficit by cutting bad things, and by making our society much less horrifically unequal than it currently is. What's not to like?