A look at the effects on people of one measure introduced in last week's Budget 2021, the hike in petrol duty rates, illustrates class-based divisions that have implications for social cohesion. If left unchecked, these divisions may result in a rise of populism.
While class divisions normally pertain to property ownership, income and education, they are also associated with one's profession or mode of commute. For more affluent car owners, the fuel hike will cause concern due to its direct, immediate impact on costs of living. On the other hand, it has little effect on public transport commuters, and so their response is muted or indifferent.