Posts tagged ‘politics’

Will UBI Be The Right Solution?


 

 

 

 

 

 

This Week Labour has been talking about the prospect of UBI if a Labour Government came to power.

A report by Guy Standing for the Progressive Economy Forum UBI Pilots who is deemed the expert in this field published his ideas on how the UK could make this work.  This blog will about that discuss this and the flaws in his argument.

Firstly his claims that other pilots have been successful is a matter of opinion, I cant see how this claim can be made,  given each of the pilots mentioned operated very differently so therefore are not comparable as they would need to be identical in operational terms. Many have been scrapped and reported as failures.This idea has been around since C 1200 yet none of the previous UK governments have implemented it , even though it has been discussed many times. Why because it was deemed it wouldn’t work.  Are Labour digging up a corpse?

The Pilots suggested by Guy Standing are as following:

Five types of basic income pilot that are
recommended:
• Model A. Under this variant, a sample of people – a whole community defined
as a locality – would be provided with basic incomes, with additional separate
benefits for those with special needs. The basic income would be provided
instead of existing means-tested benefits, with the exception of housing
benefit, which should be retained (or be replaced by an equivalent to
compensate for any loss of the housing element of Universal Credit).
Provisionally, it is proposed that every adult in a selected community would be
provided with £100, with £50 for each child, and with additional separate
benefits for those with disabilities. As indicated later, the selection of the
community should be random and be drawn from a group of low-income
communities.
Bearing in mind that existing benefit levels have been allowed to fall in real
terms and that there is nothing optimal about existing tax rates, this model
should be regarded as realistically aspirational, in that it the test would be to
see the impact on the population, recognising that funding such a scheme
nationally would involve a significant cost that would have to be met by tax
increases, diversion of public spending from other uses (such as subsidies and
tax reliefs) or the establishment of a national commons fund as described
earlier. A primary purpose of this Model would be to determine whether the
benefits of such a scheme – such as improved health, reduced stress, more
work and less crime, as found in pilots elsewhere – would merit consideration
of this option in the future.

• Model B. Under this variant, a sample of people – again, preferably all members
of an identifiable locality – would be provided with basic incomes of £70 per
week for working-age adults, and £20 per week for children on top of Child
Benefit. Tax codes for every recipient would become BR, thus imposing the
basic rate of income tax on all earned income below the higher rate tax
threshold. Means-tested benefits would be left in place, and basic incomes
would be added to the means taken into account in their calculation, so each
recipient household’s means-tested benefits would be automatically adjusted
downwards, and their means-tested benefits would also be automatically
adjusted upwards by the changes in net earnings brought about by the tax
code change. Administration of the scheme would be possible if the recipient
community were to be defined by postcode boundaries and the government
was able to instruct HMRC and DWP to make the necessary changes within
the recipient community.

• Model C. Under this variant, a sample of people – again, preferably everybody
in a local community – would be provided with basic income as a supplement
to their existing state benefits. This would be firmly in the spirit of common
dividends, and the per capita amount could be less than in the first case. One
option might be to provide every adult in a community with a tax-free £50 per
week for one year that was not taken into account in determining access to
means-tested benefits. This would strengthen income security and be
progressive, since the amount would represent a larger proportion of the
income of a low-income person than for others.

• Model D. Under this variant, a sample of welfare recipient adults would just
have existing conditions for entitlement to existing means-tested benefits
removed, so as to make the benefits closer to a basic income, notably by
removing forms of behavioural conditionality that permeate Universal Credit
and other benefits at the moment. This type of experiment is close to what is
currently being tested in The Netherlands and Finland, as described in
Appendix A. It would have minimal net cost, and might even save public money.

• Model E. A fifth type of experiment is very different from all the others. This is
sadly relevant to the austerity era, and would be a refinement of an approach
taken in the City of London some years ago. As described in Appendix A, the
gist of the policy was that a group of homeless were given a cash grant instead
of the various measures made available, and it led to most of them obtaining
places to stay, and thus actually saved the council considerable money over
the longer term. Given the horrifying growth of homelessness across the
country, this experiment should be repeated in a few other, randomly chosen
places. It should not be made a national policy, but the results could be taken
into account in formulating and implementing a national basic income system.

To make UBI work in the UK it would take some radical changes not just in thinking ,but with certain groups in society who cannot work such as Disabled People,Carers ,Elderly for a variety of reasons. One annoying trait with all governments is the focus on getting people into jobs, which isn’t a bad idea in itself if they can , but with total disregard to those who cannot, as if it is like some sort of Utopian world view where work is the be all and end all of life. With many on low wage zero hr contracts and not enough FT jobs or skilled workforce to fill current vacancies. Many people are working less than 3 hrs a week but classed as employed by government ,yet complaining about the welfare cost rising and counted as claimants too . Many are grandparents/ parents who are picking up childcare for example or carers which actually saves Governments an absolute fortune in service provision.

For any UBI scheme to work in the UK  these marginalized and demonized groups need to be included and additional bolt ons, like disability premiums,PIP, AA,Carers Premiums,Child Elements,Housing Benefit must be retained and set at a realistic level  and to cope with modern society after Brexit,  if that happens, with rising costs and inflation etc. The figures quoted by Standing are unrealistic in the modern world with AI creeping into the workplace and less than current payments on Universal Credit for some and in Scotland even less money.

A flat rate fits all approach will fail without doubt and plunge many into a worse situation than they are currently facing under Universal Credit. we shouldn’t throw the idea out altogether but if Labour wants this to work, it first needs to Listen to those on the receiving end of the policies put forward not just so called experts. Sanctions and Behavioral Conditionality,  the awful WCA/PIP assessment processes  that currently are costing a fortune both monetarily and with reported deaths of claimants should be abolished as promised and the rapid rise of homelessness. There should be a claw back process for those who gain employment set at a certain threshold ie: 50k.

Disabled people in particular have higher costs (500mth) because of disability and social care needs, we need to make it possible for those who can work to get jobs, keep mobility vehicles to enable them to get to work , eat healthy food, put clothes on their backs and pay their bills  and even a holiday which will all benefit long term costs in other areas as well as make them healthier both mentally and emotionally and  initial costings will in the  long term cut costs in other areas.

Critics on all sides make wild claims for and against this idea but if well thought out , it might just work! Piloting different approaches are not helpful in some ways as they are costly on both sides of the argument, but a well thought out UBI might work for the many and not the few .

I’m still wary of ‘False Prophetic’ claims of a brave new world of welfare state, in fact I may not live to tell the tale, but this has to be done properly for the generations to come who need support of a safety net just because they Can’t!

 

For those wishing to read Standings report: https://www.progressiveeconomyforum.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/05/PEF_Piloting_Basic_Income_Guy_Standing.pdf

 

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When a Rebellion is Controlled by the State-Updated


Image Courtesy of XR

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I’m most likely going to upset many people who have a genuine concern over climate change, it’s not like that we don’t know it happening, we can see that daily with extremes of weather and animals being endangered among many other things. But is it really a new phenomena given our planet has undergone changes for billions of years, or is it just another cycle of our planet Earth?  A complete smoke and mirrors job.

 

However that doesn’t mean we should not challenge the status quo and ideology behind the latest headlines that has thrust one particular phenomena  that came out of nowhere to hit front pages around the globe. When the anarchist federation speaks out against it warning people to be wary, as have many others, I thought it was at least worth a dig around.

Well what a surprise I got . “The new group, Extinction Rebellion, is another incarnation of Climate Camp and Reclaim the Power. They make money by selling “activist courses” to innocent people. They are astroturfers – fake grass roots and their style comes from the Tavistock Institute or Common Purpose leadership training. These are the controllers who steer real activists into illegal activities so that they get arrested, a police record and never get a decent job again.” says one blogger. Well Green Party activists are also behind this movement and many of them genuinely believe in the cause while others have called them the New Occupy which no doubt has attracted many activists  from wider circles  and groups. but it is a middle class  movement which drags others along in the back-draft.  Joining in some fake rebellion controlled by state henchmen whose objective is to clamp down on citizens rights and control any dissent and gather data on the activist movement just for starters.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Well what I found was a movement inspired  that a 16yr old child state patsy, encouraging kids and workers alike to take days off school/work to join in the huge protests happening in London and many other places around the UK and Internationally which has attracted many big names such as David Attenborough, Chris Packham, Emma Thompson ( who got trolled for flying) and many other big celeb supporters , yet when asked who is funding them we get told activist donations and a few small donations from persons unknown. Their Fundraiser currently stands at 82k. Calls for this child to be nominated for a Nobel prize no less , echo amongst the supporters of Greta Thunberg who apparently has Aspergers.

Make no mistake what they have achieved in shutting down London is no mean feat, but it begs to question where were these people when the UK has suffered nine years austerity? People are homeless, thousands have died under welfare reforms and a Government that is in meltdown over a political mistake called Brexit which has divided the nation. Austerity and capitalism go hand in hand and maybe they will expand their remit but it is unlikely. Is it more sinister about controlling resources like food, water etc?

The Main four people claiming to be behind it from Rising Up have some interesting links  yet say Greenpeace have not pushed hard enough. Call outs for people to come down to be arrested and then the Police move in when they arrive is somewhat of a PR stunt while the Mayor of London is left to foot the rising bill  and the Tory ministers go full attack mode saying round them up and a army on standby to quell any uprising. One thing for sure is the working classes of the UK will get the blame for a clampdown just in time for the announcement of a new bill of rights and a activist hit list is complete as the intel will have been garnered. Many good campaigners and activists will be sucked into this data black hole who are frustrated that the UK has a Dictatorship in control of the country, it is all part of the plan, but not like the agenda 21 type that’s banded about idly by conspiracy theorists.

I and others I speak to find it astonishing that many cant see they are being hoodwinked by the state to enable them to  oppress UK citizens even more than they already do so.

 

Below you will find links to the company details of the main 4 people of Rising Up  it makes interesting reading as does a few other of their cohorts and a couple of  bloggers who calls them out. Make your own mind up don’t be taken in!

 

https://lisamckenzie1968.wixsite.com/website/blog/it-s-capitalism-stupid-extinction-rebellion-can-t-do-it-with-flowers

https://steemit.com/news/@francesleader/from-occupy-to-extinction-rebellion-exposing-the-common-purpose?fbclid=iwar0ilgp0-nqrsjp0xiwans_m9itz8otk4zyfhrdkywvciu7ttgj0s7g5yai

http://www.commonwealnonviolence.org/blog/hope-dies-action-begins-an-interview-with-risingups-gail-bradbrook#more-853

http://www.theartofannihilation.com/the-manufacturing-of-greta-thunberg-a-decade-of-social-manipulation-for-the-corporate-capture-of-nature-crescendo/

https://radicalthinktank.files.wordpress.com/2015/12/how-to-win-10-15.pdf

https://drillordrop.com/2018/07/11/breaking-judge-grants-cuadrilla-injunction-over-lancs-fracking-site-to-2020/

https://radicalthinktank.files.wordpress.com/2015/12/how-to-win-10-15.pdf

http://www.weatheraction.com/resource/data/wact1/docs/ScientistsAgainstExtinctionFAKErebellion1.pdf

https://kclpure.kcl.ac.uk/portal/en/publications/how-the-internet-can-overcome-the-collective-action-problem(7043d36c-a77f-4304-85ce-8987b4ba2903).html?fbclid=IwAR0XzZUjfKZ8j64AnEgYfsxUo8AAPF82Uvn5MJ9LtfxSHaCFDFh2OHAGjM4

https://kclpure.kcl.ac.uk/portal/en/persons/roger-hallam(a8c519a2-c149-4ada-9deb-0bf09f0fad02).html?fbclid=IwAR3UGuOAH8qeChE978Kk9xuTO17hQVYABCdN7LQpUeXcSJCNh3WkG2vOQtg

https://www.theelders.org/news/elders-stand-solidarity-students-striking-climate-action

https://barbaramckenzie.wordpress.com/2018/12/15/more-child-exploitation-as-the-globalist-climate-project-creates-its-very-own-bana-persona/

https://beta.companieshouse.gov.uk/company/09622618/officers?fbclid=IwAR2o2Iuhg6WPaiWisYSxzpmW6L69NQ7LM2sQVDcGT4AR9RyjuO9P9HYBi-k

https://beta.companieshouse.gov.uk/company/03963007/officers?fbclid=IwAR3bCr4wp5uuG7ygOSriL4jeY4IHSCdb1FTxGRTvxE8ktVJLXEGaY7f2Sag

https://beta.companieshouse.gov.uk/officers/nVSRl-xqh_Xca07MV5JOv4SvCJg/appointments?fbclid=IwAR3mq91TWn41a6bXR94JVQmBX-lOB7IGkNSVl9X7hlcU64GY8Pdhvsxj7_Q

https://youtu.be/-f34TZ-k9AU

https://www.businessgreen.com/bg/news-analysis/3074451/xr-business-green-business-leaders-rally-in-support-of-extinction-rebellion?fbclid=

https://www.forbes.com/sites/erikkobayashisolomon/2019/01/04/climate-change-investing-the-greatest-opportunity-in-history/?fbclid=IwAR3LUOoy9VeF17l0jEmcQwnBrwuBLd5f0RjghNkulrOD8Zc4aOuD_AJcfCU#12ecd4c83e34

https://youtu.be/m6pFDu7lLV4

Class War On The Poor


 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

For 9 long years campaigning against Austerity has opened my eyes beyond measure, to the corrupt nature of the ruling class. The serious nature of crushing the poorest in society from dissent by control is no joke especially if you are working class whose lack of opportunity is stifled by lack of resources available to them, this is not because they don’t want to rise up the ladder of life, it because of the person holding the ladder preventing them from access and climbing it.

It started with social control via religion and landowners making sure those at the bottom were prevented from rising up and knew their place. It has divided communities across the land and across the globe.

However progression from Victorian England and workhouses because the elite feared disease from black death, cholera, smallpox ,Tuberculosis etc ,society progressed slowly towards better equality with the industrial revolution and workers rights being forced by withdrawal of labour that led to the formation of what we now call the labour party to oppose conservatism and the ruling elite.

But what has really changed? The class system still impacts on citizens today it depends which class system you are born into as to where you can go, even with best will in the world with a few exceptions along the way of those who are catapulted into prominent positions because they understand what class does to society and how it is used as a tool of oppression.

 

From  Peterloo ,Suffragettes , the Tolpuddle Martyrs, and the  Jarrow Marches,  Miner Strikes in 70’s , and the Poll Tax Riots the working class has stood up to be counted and achieved a lot at the time,  to make working class lives better for a while. It wasn’t without cost of life or oppression and blacklisting of individuals seen by the state as troublemakers.

In 2019 things are at crisis point after 9 years of Austerity in which a Conservative government has incited crushing oppression and hatred on the working class through various austerity measures, divided our communities into groups that hate each other because while everyone is fighting for the crumbs off the table via various pecking orders of worth and Brexit made it worse and opened the door to the rise of the far right who want their country back. Absolving the state from its own responsibility to act in the best interests of all it citizens rather than the few who run the country with impunity with mates rates for those who could afford to contribute more, instead of taking what little the poorest have leaving some of  them without means of survival. After all positive and behavioral change is at the heart of welfare reforms and austerity.

 

 

 

The rise of the middle class protests funded by those with vested interests to contain rebellion from   the working classes while dragging some of them along for the ride  to seem as if they truly care , is nothing more than a establishment smokescreen, which is why the media are reporting on it , and advocating clamping down on such dissent.

I’m not saying these issues don’t matter to working class people too, they most definitely do, disabled people have tried in vain to raise the systemic violations they are currently suffering with welfare reform to no avail and those who do know about it turn a blind eye as it doesn’t affect them, the NHS is being cash starved to privatise it to the American Insurance system which I may add is also being dismantled both here and there so only the rich will have access to medical care. Climate change is a big one we should all care about after all our very existence depends on it, is the latest  protest with arrests now being carried out, whether they will face same sentences before the beak is another matter, as often the working class are made examples of to put you in your place.

 

So what am I getting at…. It’s the class system we need to get rid of along with this government who will only use these protests to control and oppress the working classes further  because they dared to ask for more, while the middle classes will disappear down the proverbial black hole after gaining some concessions and helping the establishment achieve their goals.

Austerity and climate change are interlinked, but Capitalism is your master right now and has been for some considerable time and that will need crushing to get the changes needed for a fairer and equal society for all citizens and the redistribution of wealth that is needed to radically change the infrastructure of the country.

If you understand what you’re fighting against and what you are fighting for you have a greater chance of success of stopping your oppression.

The Death of the Welfare State-Joining the Dots Series -Part 2


 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

By Blueannoyed  and Paula Peters

So lets look at the next stage of where it all went badly wrong and joining up a few more dots.

Private Finance Initiative (PFI) schemes were introduced to the UK under the John Major Government in the 1990s, with the first project Skye Bridge https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rDDTu7kZUjA .Tony Blair’s New Labour Government significantly expanded PFI as a convenient way of funding public infrastructure “off balance sheet.” Despite frequently calling for an end to “Labours flawed PFI program” whilst in opposition, in 2011 Chancellor George Osborne re-branded and continued the PFI gravy train under the “PFI 2” banner. NHS Trusts owe £80bn in PFI loan repayments and “unitary charges,” the technical term describing the extortionate ongoing running costs of maintaining PFI hospitals via PFI – where private contractors are granted 30-year monopoly rights to deliver maintenance and services.

https://www.opendemocracy.net/ournhs/joel-benjamin/seven-things-everyone-should-know-about-private-finance-initiative

In recent years reform of the welfare system in Britain began with the introduction of the New Deal programme  introduced by the Labour government in 1997. The aim of this programme was to increase employment through requiring that recipients make serious efforts to seek employment. The Labour Party also introduced a system of tax credits for low-income workers. The Welfare Reform Act 2007 provides for “an employment and support allowance, a contributory allowance, [and] an income-based allowance.”. The objectives of the Welfare Reform Act of 2007 were to increase the employment rate to 80% from 75%, to assist 300,000 single parents find employment, to increase the number of workers over 50 by 1 million, and to reduce the number of people claiming incapacity benefits by 1 million.

In the 2009 Welfare Reform Bill This welfare reform proposed an increase of personal responsibility within the welfare system. The reform eliminated Income support, and allocated funds over to the Jobseeker’s allowance, to encourage employment. It also encouraged increased parental responsibility by amending child support laws, and requiring births be registered jointly by both parents. This is basically how we got to David Cameron In power with the help of the Lib Dems. Building on Thatchers Legacy they all equally promoted on the capitalist world stage.

Disability campaigners saw this coming this is how the main groups in 2010 like DPAC (Disabled People Against Cuts) Black Triangle Campaign in Scotland and Spartacus Campaign,Pats Petition,WOW Debate MHRN (Mental Health Resistance Network)and many others were created to fight against the forthcoming erosion of the welfare state and austerity measures in the pipeline that was to be foisted onto the most vulnerable in society in the hope there would be little opposition, well they got that wrong! Disabled people started to take to the streets warning of what the end game was yet they were often dismissed as scaremongering by the general public but that did not deter them. When people start to die you just cannot sit and do nothing and boy did they take to social media too,  all working together behind the scenes collectively to raise awareness of what was happening to people under these new reforms .  The campaigns that hit headlines were Spartacus twitter  campaign ‘I Am Spartacus’, DPAC ‘s  Independant Living Campaign (ILF) 2010  one thing for sure disabled people were not going to suffer in silence they were going to take this fight to the government and still are! DPAC disruptive direct actions are notorious and they took their concerns to the UN over deaths that were occurring as people slipped through the cracks, while others produced hard evidence of what was going wrong and how to fix it by lobbying ministers to their plight.

ATOS  was the main contracted  outsourced provider of new Biopsychosocial model assessment regime designed by the likes of Mansell Aylward , Gordon Wadell,  (The biopsychosocial approach systematically considers biological, psychological, and social factors and their complex interactions in understanding health, illness, and health care delivery.)  Iain Duncan Smith and Lord Freud,Frank Field et al  grabbed this flawed research with gusto and turned it into something brutal and unrecognizable removing the safety net of the welfare state for those who need it. This government have created a hostile environment for anyone who needs state support with lies about claimants taking taxpayers money while they are working hard to pay taxes. The demonisation started by IDS et al all feeds through to the general public  via the media that those needing support via his scrounger rhetoric, lazy ,feckless , money for nothing,hard working people are just a few of the soundbites used harking back the the victorian days of blaming the person rather than state failures to provide jobs in a failing economy since the 2008 global crash.

 

Iain Duncan Smith (Center for Social Justice)  -Between 1997 and 2001, he was Shadow Secretary of State for Social Security and then Secretary of State for Defence. From 2001 to 2003, he was leader of the Conservative Party and then from 2003, having stepped down as leader of the Conservative Party, he set up the Centre for Social Justice (CSJ). The CSJ was an organisation dedicated to focussing on the problems facing those in the lowest income groups in society. It published a series of reports, perhaps the most significantly, “Breakthrough Britain: Ending the Costs of Social Breakdown”, focusing on the five pathways to poverty and a Conservative way to implement social justice and improve the quality of the poorest in society. It is also worth noting that in 2013, the CSJ published the paper on modern day slavery, “It Happens Here: Equipping the United Kingdom to Fight Modern Slavery”, which subsequently led to Theresa May enacting legislation on this matter. In 2010, Iain Duncan Smith became Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, a position he held until he resigned in a dispute with the Chancellor over his determination to reduce his expenditure on disability benefits by over £1 billion. During his time as Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, he undertook the most significant programme of welfare reform in modern times, transforming the benefit and pension systems, as well as employment services and support. Perhaps the most significant reforms were the introduction of Universal Credit, (bringing together the six unemployment and sickness benefits), the Work Programme, for the first time bringing together private and voluntary sectors to get unemployed people back into work, and the introduction of the Single Tier Pension simplifying the State Pension.

https://www.centreforsocialjustice.org.uk/

 

Many battles have been fought since then and the Labour Government started to listen and ministers started to support disabled people in their fight and Ministers from all parties started to have their surgerys full of cases where this regime change was causing preventable harm. Meanwhile the Tories continue to ignore it and dismiss it as ‘work as a health outcome’ and disabled people as scaremongering despite extensive evidence to the contrary.

Further reading:

https://dpac.uk.net/research/

http://www.welfareconditionality.ac.uk/2017/07/demonising-disabled-people-public-behaviour-and-attitudes-during-welfare-reforms/

https://truepublica.org.uk/united-kingdom/killed-by-the-state/

https://www.inclusionlondon.org.uk/campaigns-and-policy/facts-and-information/independent-living-social-care-and-health/ilf-one-year-on/

https://kittysjones.wordpress.com/2016/11/29/rogue-company-unum-had-a-profiteering-hand-in-the-governments-work-health-and-disability-green-paper/

https://kittysjones.wordpress.com/2015/07/18/a-brief-history-of-social-security-and-the-reintroduction-of-eugenics-by-stealth/

Spartacus Reports:

http://www.ekklesia.co.uk/search/node/spartacus?fbclid=IwAR0oZ4h1GCEG62yOm4M1V8ir_UnEPN-Oq0jJuhlXBpzLHIPgxko3Luy4H6U

https://spartacusnetwork.wordpress.com/?fbclid=IwAR1uGHwGNaggW9dMo7cbdG1WCT33SJK979fd99uQ4lENhKvi1v5bW-KLA3E

 

Universal Credit and Mixed Age Couples-Updated


 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The Government has now turned it’s attention to the poorest pensioners. With the introduction of Universal Credit people in this group could face losses of £140 per week and over.

Please click the link below, then click send an email to your MP and post onto pensioner sites so that they know what is going to happen after May15th this year 2019.

This is a must read!

 

Panorama -Universal Car Crash


 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

BBC  Panorama Highlighted some of the issues with Universal Credit  with the focus on Housing Benefit Direct Payment process. While this may have been a overall a shock for those who watched the programme who may have never even heard of it, It wasn’t a shock to Disability Campaigners and those who need to make a claim!  The Media has been in full swing recently highlighting the many issues this controversial benefit failings, forcing the Government to make significant changes to the managed migration process as MP’s,charities,many DPO’s including CPAG (Child Poverty Action Group) and SSAC (Social Security Advisory Committee) all advising the Government that changes must be made before the next cohort is transferred Secretary of State Ester McVey made considerable concessions to appease the outrage,which combined with fact the UN Rapporteur Philip Alston was visiting the UK looking at Welfare Reform and Poverty felt like a PR stunt to fend off recent criticism.

They focused on 3 Groups of the many that will be affected Unemployed,those who are Sick, and Low Income families. Using Government rhetoric of ‘making work pay’ more than benefits which the government has successfully ingrained into the mindset of many in society through the scrounger rhetoric since 2010.

Anthony the first  man lost his job is 63 so found that while he thought work was out there couldn’t secure employment and had 4K of rent arrears and had had been sanctioned losing 200mth just because for whatever reason  he had failed to comply because no phone or computer skills to manage his claim, and facing eviction, and even when he did make contact was sanctioned again as the advisor was not in the Jobcentre. One can only assume while he was doing everything required to look for work this was due to failed appointments which are generally online or via text notifications. Many in society will most likely exclaim well he was smoking roll ups and not attract much sympathy such a sly move by BBC to present him in this manner, saying well he can afford fags although I’m certainly they will defend this as usual.

Second Guy James Dade was single dad reliant on the food bank for survival but very little was said about his circumstances.

We then saw a Councillor state when people have limited choices they will choose to feed their kids and stay warm than pay their rent  nugget dropped into the programme implying reckless budgeting decisions. even though across the UK the average rent arrears is £663 compared to £263 on legacy benefits which on average is 2 and half times higher and recently over 1/2 claimants found online process difficult hinting yet again that its the claimants fault rather than a design fault.

The next couple Richard and Rita  claimed the benefit as Richard had a car accident  and consequently lost his job telling the public they were forced to sell things in the home to manage due to the fact the design features within the system were paying them less than they should have got, and being taken to court for council tax arrears while they tried desperately to sort their claim out leaving them in debt. they both eventually found Jobs.

Keith  the next claimant was a fellow suffering depression who admitted he was hopeless budgeting relying on the local food bank had lost his job, and faced eviction in November,due to rent arrears and without support unable to cope with system.

Professor Paul Hickman was interviewed  saying that direct payments to claimants rather than landlords as the previous system did was ignored by the DWP. Alok Sharma from the DWP was then interviewed spouting the same Tory script they must have learnt verbatim just like the actors they are, and displayed typical indifference to the plight of those on the receiving end of this vile policy claiming 90% of social sector will soon be signed up to the Landlord Portal which is being rolled out.

With 5821 evictions in the UK and many already homeless on the streets struggling we then had the council highlighting cuts from central government have left councils UK wide unable to pick up the slack and find homes due to lack of Social Housing properties that the country so desperately needs. Councils have seen their landlord lists plummet as many private landlords  refuse to let to those on social security and those needing Alternative Payment Arrangements such as Domestic Violence  victims  unable to get this arrangement and councils unable to help as the agreement has to be done via the landlord not a third party.

 

This programme really barely scraped the surface of the design faults within this policy, many things are changed as an after thought because the policy wasn’t properly thought through and administration is so bad and training is so bad that even those who should be helping haven’t a clue about the constant changes and are mis -informing claimants causing further chaos with long waits on the phone which campaigners call the ‘Vivaldi Line’.

In July 2019  as the Government rolls out a pilot sample of approx 10,000 claimants with many transferring in November 2019 in tranches this chaotic policy is only going to cause considerable harm to many families across the UK. The government knows fine well many of these  families will face hardship and tells them to stand on the beach looking at the wave that is a reality a tsunami waiting to hit them and their children. Yes done properly with support people could transition more easily hence the CAB contract of Universal Support recently announced will help many navigate the complex process of doing so, but support is soon going to be difficult to get appointments due to the volumes involved.

The most severely disabled will if they don’t have change of circumstances will start this process in 2020.

One thing is for certain is the noise about Universal Credit will get worse and louder as this government tries its best to hang on bloody mindlessly instead of scrapping it and admitting this policy should never have been introduced without making sure it was robust,practical to implement and the structure was sound. Now it is only fit for the waste basket of many government projects which has wasted Billions of Taxpayers money while UK citizens find themselves back in Victorian times and seen by the elite as undeserving and feckless poor who situation is their fault, absolving themselves of any responsibility for this total failure ,while the architects have long since retired with a golden peerage  and a hefty financial handshake.

If you missed it here it is;

 

Transgender Wars- Silencing the Debate-Updated


 

I have watched with dismay the fight for Gender Recognition and the proposed GRA, which has been very divisive and nothing short of vicious by some on both sides of the debate. Unscrupulous press articles which lack content by some are scandalous and harmful to both sides . It seems common sense has left the building altogether. I am not going into too much depth in this blog or it would resemble something fitting a masters degree thesis but I will be  attempting to engage in rational debate and provide a balanced argument for both sides , but if you want drama look no further than social media. It has also split the communities affected, the Unions and Political Parties

One thing this debate is about is ‘Human Rights’ to live in peace and have respect for each others differences. Secondly this debate is deeply entrenched with patriarchy as well as misogyny and religious fervour governing  the  social control of the masses to conformity of ideology,and plenty of hormones.

The GRA as it is Since the passing of the Gender Recognition Act (GRA) in 2004, the UK has had a mechanism by which a person can acquire a legally recognized gender different from their sex. Under that law, a person with a gender recognition certificate (GRC) becomes legally the other sex for most purposes, though there are exemptions set out within the GRA itself. For example, the inheritance of aristocratic titles is exempt, as are what are termed “gender-affected” sports. This was passed under Blair’s Labour government after a decade long campaign by Press for Change, and a number of important legal cases about privacy and the right to family life going to the European Court of Human Rights.

To be able to get a Gender Recognition Certificate currently, one has to be over 18, diagnosed with gender dysphoria, have lived in one’s acquired gender for at least two years, and intend to do so permanently.

In 2010, the UK’s legislation on sex, race, and disability discrimination was brought together under the Equality Act, together with six other protected characteristics, one of which is “gender reassignment.” This is a broader category than people with GRCs, and protects from discrimination anyone proposing to undergo gender reassignment, as well as those in the process of doing so and who have done so.  At the same time, the Equality Act has exemptions that permit single-sex services, occupations, communal accommodation, and sporting activities where these are a proportionate means of achieving a legitimate aim.

 

The Change The proposals put forward by Justine Greening MP who was, until recently, the Minister for Women and Equalities, would allow applicants who wished to achieve legal recognition of a gender status on their birth-certificate that accorded with their gender identity, to do so by a simple process. They would be able to self-declare without the need for a ‘diagnosis’ of gender dysphoria. The Exceptions above in the Equality Act 2010 would also be removed to allow those who transition into spaces that they identify with.One way to simplify things for trans men and women would be to allow individuals to self-declare the gender in which they choose to live, without the need for medical evidence or proof.

 

 

Over the decades the rights of women have been in the spotlight, highlighting the positive rights that have been hard fought and won by many who suffered greatly to ensure they had a voice, from the right to vote to equality in many areas of life which is still ongoing, equally that also included gay women who fought for the right to be accepted into the women’s movement  because they are biologically females. Society has moved on to a more liberal footing encouraging acceptance & tolerance in many areas of life, then along comes other differences over the decades including transgender,non binary,and self ID etc. This should be a watershed moment but instead it has turned into a campaign of hate and oppression and neither side is blameless. For decades the warring factions have just got on with it and been accepting and supportive of transgender rights until now, where the threat to women’s rights was met with some anger by the feminist movement and seen as a perceived threat to their hard fought protections, who rightly or wrongly, fear a watering down of  those protections.

 

So how can this be resolved to the satisfaction of both sides? Certainly not the way the debate is being framed.

Many feminists see this as mansplaining steeped in patriarchy and misogyny & sexism to invade women only spaces and to eradicate the rights of women per se as they claim that if GRA goes through in its present format it means anyone can call themselves a woman,so therefore their bio-sexual orientation is erased and to a degree I can see that argument particularly for women and children who have suffered domestic violence situations this is only space they feel safe in.  Growing up under male oppression in a society where men had privilege over women  is what some call a ‘lived experience’ from menstruation to childbirth and violence towards them by male counterparts always seen by society as weaker sex to submit to their male counterparts wishes,or the portrayed temptress leading men astray because they are too weak to control their desires. This is one thing that trans women cannot  say is their  lived experience when a considerable part of their lives they grew up with male privilege,however they can identify with the  ‘violence’ they suffer generally by males who feel their masculinity is threatened, the same applies with gay women, as often but not exclusively  the aggressor is male. Women and children are often victims of government policy to keep them in their place, like the hideous rape clause recently introduced.

Violence is ‘violence and abuse of power’ by another, this goes on in relationships regardless of gender and in same sex relationships too, and no one should be subjected to this kind of aggression and those who commit such acts should be called out and prosecuted accordingly.

 

The trans women feel that this harms them considerably and imagine feeling trapped in the wrong body and unable to express their natural feelings it most certainly is going to damage you mentally and emotionally in the same way an abused child is affected for life by their experiences and no human being should suffer ,because it is seen by society as outside the majority lived experiences. According to the recent ITV programme Transformation Street which was portrayed positively, As of April last year, there were 280 patients in the UK on the list for gender reassignment surgery and another 169 consulting on the process, according to the Imperial College Health Care Trust. Figures published in July showed that the number of children being referred to gender identity clinics has quadrupled in the past five years.  Since 2010  650,000 people have come forward to ID as Transgender with 86% not having fully transitioned.Prices at this clinic start at £5,000 for procedures such as Adam’s Apple reduction, chin shaping, brow contouring or a nose job, rising to £35,000 for full gender confirmation surgery, which is a four- to five-hour operation and only lower surgery is on NHS.Historically, female to male transitions have been less common but now they are on the rise — and patients are getting younger. The minimum legal age for gender reassignment surgery is 18 so many young people that have attempted suicide, or have been estranged from their family because of gender identity .

Guardian Update:

Schools are supporting increasing numbers of transgender students, using a variety of guidance from the teaching unions and charities such as Mermaids (which has a grant of £35,000 from the Department for Education to deliver training to 35 schools).

This rise is reflected in referrals to the children’s Gender Identity Development Service (Gids), run by the Tavistock and Portman NHS trust, which increased by 1,978% – from 97 in 2009 to 2,016 in 2016-17. Of those children, 70% are biologically female.

Bernadette Wren, a clinical psychologist at Gids, says many young people seen by the service have been bullied or self-harm, and a number are on the autistic spectrum.

They feel they have a right to be included in society and treated like any other person and live the life they chose in the gender they feel comfortable.

The World Professional Association for Transgender Health (WPATH) asserts that medical evidence should not be necessary for trans people to gain legal gender recognition. WPATH says “no particular medical, surgical, or mental health treatment or diagnosis is an adequate marker for anyone’s gender identity, so these should not be requirements for legal gender change.”Indeed, 17 countries, including the UK, have already adopted the approach that medical treatment is not a prerequisite.

 

The amount of reading I have done to understand the issues from both sides has been phenomenal and lengthy. There is an awful amount of misinformation in both camps about the real issues and heavily influenced by the USA and the intersectionality argument which originated  regarding a court case about women of colour ,facing racism and sexism being used by some as the way forward,which to my mind only clouds the issue further.I get the argument for it but the origin has seemingly been hijacked to justify a course of action.

Intersectionality is a term that was coined by American professor Kimberlé Crenshaw in 1989. The concept already existed but she put a name to it. The textbook definition states: The view that women experience oppression in varying configurations and in varying degrees of intensity.15 Jan 2014

1.Political intersectionality is a form of structural intersectionality that addresses sexism, racism, class exploitation or homophobia in policy-making processes and policies. It indicates how inequalities and their intersections are relevant to political strategies.

2.Structural intersectionality refers to how a person’s legal status or social needs are marginalized (Shields, 2008). Representational intersectionality refers to the cultural construction of the identity, including the production and the contemporary critiques of the identity (Crenshaw, 1991).4 Feb 2016

 

Journalist Eleanor Robertson wrote in the Guardian 2017

Intersectionality is the buzzword to end all buzzwords, the term that launched a thousand hot-takes, a discursive sinkhole where political disputes go to die. Depending on who you ask, it’s the most important theoretical innovation in feminist history; the cancer that’s killing the left; a critical tool in on-the-ground organising; or a totally meaningless liberal shibboleth. I am not overly invested in trying to claw back some kind of clarity on what intersectionality “means”. Like much of the work done by feminists and queer theorists around the same time, there is a certain ambiguity to intersectionality, if only because many of the people interpreting it come from this poststructuralist milieu.

The abuse some face, is both verbal,and physical threats of violence and name calling seems to be most prominent which I will not be repeating or including in this blog because as a decent human being I find them all equally offensive . I have seen some extremely aggressive behaviour by some which I have found unacceptably distasteful and bigoted.  The statistics are flimsy and poorly researched material and quoted regularly. It would do everyone a favour if there was independently fully funded long term study with a long term view of providing accurate research/stats for both sides . According to the Trans Murder Monitoring Project  8 people have been murdered between 2008-2014 in the UK, Home Office Hate Crime figures of transgender   have steadily risen to the current figure of 1,248 between 2011/2012-2016/2017.

The barrage of articles recently from both camps from various journalists and academics leave many affected by the debate more confused than when they started out, as rational debate is silenced and those who shout the loudest seem to get the most coverage. If we are to change with the times then it is a debate that is needed and both sides should be invited  to put their arguments in report form on the table so that they can be independently scrutinised by those tasked to make a decision. Its is reported that the Tory government put this on the agenda when the opposition stated if they didn’t, they would, when in power. A consultation is due to be announced in the Autumn but many have concerns that like many consultations the decision is merely a formality as the decisions have already been made.

I have linked many articles and orgs from both sides below……………You Decide but lets have a real discussion without the abuse

 

https://www.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/535764/Government_Response_to_the_Women_and_Equalities_Committee_Report_on_Transgender_Equality.pdf

 

https://sexandgenderintro.com/

https://www.theguardian.com/world/2017/sep/30/intersectional-feminism-jargon

https://www.standard.co.uk/lifestyle/london-life/transformation-street-itv-transgender-documentary-a3737876.html

https://womansplaceuk.org/

https://www.mumsnet.com/Talk

https://morningstaronline.co.uk/article/why-do-we-need-new-women%E2%80%99s-movement#.WqQC7UubaG8.facebook

https://medium.com/@julian.vigo/the-invisible-woman-gender-identity-in-the-age-of-neoliberalism-33f9e1203b0a

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/magazine-32979297

https://www.theguardian.com/lifeandstyle/2018/mar/31/man-explains-what-means-be-woman

https://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/2017/11/04/private-gentlemans-club-allows-first-woman-member-150-year-history/

http://averypublicsociologist.blogspot.co.uk/2017/11/theorising-feminist-transphobia.html

https://medium.com/@GappyTales/a-crisis-of-misogny-a-plea-to-the-labour-party-4ce9d39e11c4

https://www.spectator.co.uk/2018/03/transgender-activists-and-the-real-war-on-women/

https://www.huffingtonpost.co.uk/entry/gender-recognition-act_uk_5a9417f5e4b0ee6416a5400f

https://thedebrief.co.uk/news/politics/gender-recognition-act-law-change-sex-trans-transexual/

https://www.transgendertrend.com/professor-robert-winston-joins-transgender-debate-share-concerns-young-children/

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-5041267/Backlash-Lord-Winston-gender-operations-warning.html

https://www.thetimes.co.uk/article/lord-winston-warning-on-sex-change-surgery-sparks-abuse-v0c6q95pb

https://www.bmj.com/content/360/bmj.k1312

http://rosieswayne.blogspot.co.uk/2018/03/unqualified-lesbian-swerves-abruptly_23.html

https://www.stonewall.org.uk/lgbt-britain-trans-report

https://www.equality-network.org/your-rights/gender-recognition/

https://www.gires.org.uk/

http://www.petertatchellfoundation.org/gender-recognition-act-time-for-reform/

http://www.mermaidsuk.org.uk/

http://uktrans.info/

http://www.edf.org.uk/government-equalities-office-announcement-gender-recognition-act-consultation/

https://www.socfem.net/faq#q1

http://www.counterfire.org/articles/opinion/19538-as-a-trans-woman-this-is-the-unity-i-want-to-see

https://www.huffingtonpost.co.uk/entry/the-current-debate-about-whether-trans-women-are-women_uk_5a71b6a9e4b00248476f1506?utm_content=buffera7be3&utm_medium=social&utm_source=facebook.com&utm_campaign=buffer

https://www.sparkle.org.uk/single-post/2016/11/25/Parliament-Debates-Transgender-Equality

https://medium.com/@tom_farr/the-left-are-abandoning-women-and-in-doing-so-abandoning-everything-they-stand-for-51fd63457d8c

https://blogs.spectator.co.uk/2018/02/the-violent-misogyny-of-the-gender-debate/

http://www.feministcurrent.com/2018/01/04/thanks-trans-activism-2017-saw-return-old-school-sexist-dismissals-women-womens-rights/

https://blogs.spectator.co.uk/2018/03/fear-and-loathing-grips-the-gender-debate/

https://www.theguardian.com/lifeandstyle/2018/mar/17/elena-ferrante-even-after-century-of-feminism-cant-be-ourselves?CMP=share_btn_fb

https://morningstaronline.co.uk/article/women-have-every-right-discuss-changes-law-could-affect-them

https://gendercriticalgreens.wordpress.com/2016/08/15/a-feminist-view-of-gender-identity-politics/

https://www.theguardian.com/education/2018/may/15/transgender-row-teachers-afraid-challenge-breast-binding#comments

https://notthenewsinbriefs.wordpress.com/2018/07/17/turning-the-tide/amp/?__twitter_impression=true

 

 

Letter to David Gawke……. further correspondence ,further excuses


 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

We published the letter  from Independant Researcher Mo Stewart to the then SOS David Gawke on our blog ,  who highlights the excuses the DWP come up with to excuse the ideological bullshit of welfare reform even though many other academic researchers in the UK have torn it to shreds time and again and the harm they are causing to those who have the misfortune of being disabled or chronically ill. Since then this independant researcher has continued to point out their shortcomings and exposed the UK Government repeatedly while they deny rightful entitlement to those who need state support and deny that their policies are causing harm to UK citizens with sometimes fatal consequences. This is the latest series of correspondence published for all to see.

 


 

 

The Letter David Gauke will not be expecting and won’t want to receive


Related image

Image Courtesy of the The Telegraph

 

Mo Stewart – Independant Researcher WCA……..After her letter to Mansel Alyward one of the architects of the WCA and  her extensive research and publication of her book Cash Not Care , Mo Stewart has sent a explosive letter to the current Secretary Of State David Gauke. I have been granted permission to use it for my blog. One thing that springs to my mind is I would love to be a fly on the wall when he reads this to see his face. For too long now this government as blagged it way to convince the public it is justified to cut benefits to disabled people. This researcher keeps holding them to account.

Redacted Letter to SoS David Gauke by Gail Ward on Scribd

https://www.scribd.com/embeds/368603275/content?start_page=1&view_mode=scroll&access_key=key-OfbQJpuEQVhzoVpl48LA&show_recommendations=true

 

What Will It Take ……….


 

 

What will it take for the people of the UK to wake the hell up? There is hell of a difference in a british stiff upper lip to standing idly by, and getting shafted right up the rear end. The Government openly shows it contempt for the people time and time again and all you do is shrug your shoulders and walk on by those less fortunate, and blame them for the countries ills. Today Budget is for the wealthy yet again while most of the population is crawling on its knees to survive. Angry doesn’t come close and you should be angry too.

Without workers ,nurses and doctors,teachers,emergency services and many other professions this country would not be able to operate, the machinery would stop, yet you all seem content with having your faces rubbed into the mud, or your palms crossed with silver  while the wealthy fleece you and take the clothes off your back and food out your child’s mouth or for some bizarre reason think you are part of a class you are not. You work, your Working Class! 

Globally we are a laughing stock  and productivity is low while this shower of traitorous fools laugh in your faces while asset stripping our country. You want to take your country back well get off your high horses and do something about it, stop ignoring the reality. We are not a poor country and these ideological policies are designed to make the poorest pay for a crisis they created by their constant mismanagement  for decades and the constant crises would have removed any other Government from power forthwith, so who is pulling the strings besides the obvious global barons and media corps?

Now they want to invest in technologies that make you redundant and driverless cars, while not investing in solar power  and address the climate changes that are killing us all, including the animals we share it with.

We have families surviving on food banks , diseases long gone returning,malnutrition a potential public health timebomb building,rising numbers of homeless people on our streets , disabled people denied their rights and a basic income, our elderly freezing to death or being cruelly beaten in care homes  and suicide rates escalating around the globe and worst of all a total disregard for human life unless you are productive  and this is progress .What fucking planet are you on?

 

This social engineering project needs to stop!  It is time to remove this Government from power before it is too late for the many,not the few.

 

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