The Tory Government are once again on the war path, seems that once they have the bit in-between their teeth they are unable to let it go!
Unemployment benefits and the unemployed; these are the Tories NEW official target now. These are the new scourge of UK society.
At last the Tories have stumbled upon a policy they obviously believe will bring the UK people firmly back on their side, and now they won’t stop the cull. Any policy that outlines how to cut these benefits, how to reduce them, minimise them, and how to rid the country of the unemployed is fair game to them.
Are these policies a good idea???
I have mentioned in many other posts that there has been a need to reform the benefit system in the UK for LONG while. Plenty of taxpayers money has been going into the hands of recipients who don’t deserve it; I have direct experience with this type of work, so I was used to witnessing this inequity everyday. I was always infuriated by how genuinely in need people lost out under the system’s rules! However, the new Tory Manifesto regarding the latest proposed measures is a step too far, or maybe a step backwards.
The Tories not only want to cut benefits for people living North of London, but also want to target claimants who are classed as overweight too.
The reasons behind this new proposal??
People living North of London have a lower cost of living; which is the worst excuse for cutting a benefit I have ever heard. Poverty is still a factor whether you live in London or not! Also, those who are overweight will have to abide by their Doctors rule and loose weight to be able to continue claiming a benefit. The overweight claimants have to comply with what is deemed healthy, so not to drain the NHS or other UK support systems of precious resources; but what about the bureaucracy that currently drains the NHS of resources? Will that be dealt with too, as that squanders the money before any patients are even seen!
This Tory manifesto has other proposals too; axing the retirement age and lengthening the school day by up to three hours. Great, so when can a hard working person claim their much deserved pension? Also, they struggle to keep kids in school now, so good luck with applying those extra hours to the day!
This whole ‘Manifesto’ screams that the Tories are not willing enough to deal with the whole rotten picture, and the core of the problems. It seems the Tories have become lazy, and are now opting to target pockets of people to vent their wrath upon (the scapegoats of UK society); in a hope this will save them money! How wrong could they be?!
How about actually adopting a comprehensive package to solve unemployment in the UK, rather than one based on prejudices and nonsense?
One where; businesses are encouraged and job opportunities are actually produced. Where the actual advertising of jobs is given back to the Job Centres, and taken away from the grasping and ‘closed shop’ employment agencies that hold on to them all now. Where retraining is available to all ages, and not just for the over 50’s and under 24’s. Where education is advocated too, and not just in the form of Vocational training. Where Maths and English skills are valued and encouraged; I have seen countless of people who are illiterate being told it doesn’t matter by the Job Centre, when clearly it does! Where regional development policies are advocated; local councils and agencies work together to seek a tailored solution to the myriad of problems which afflict areas suffering from the worst and persistent unemployment! Where help is agreed which is actually required and needed; instead of cutting funds, invest into communities. How about also thinking about how to help other regions other than merely London!
As far as cutting benefits for the overweight go, well, I have never heard anything so ridiculous! This one factor alone is far from a cut and dry issue. Who is classed as overweight? Anyone without a perfect BMI and that is over 60% of the UK population, if not more. Who classes you as overweight? Your Doctor, therefore people will immediately boycott going to their GP. This will stack up serious health issues over a fear that anyone overweight, and claiming a benefit, will now be a GP’s target. If they don’t dance to their GP’s tune they won’t be eligible to claim a benefit they require to survive upon! Also, NOT every person who is overweight is on a benefit, nor is every person who is overweight work shy!
Is this judgemental nonsense what the Tories want to include in a serious political policy? What is the next step here?? I didn’t realise the UK would be so happy to live in a ‘police’ state! One final thing to consider is that there are plenty of people working, and also in Government jobs who are overweight too; so what is the proposal for them??
I know benefits and unemployment are difficult situations to remedy, and the solutions are not easy. Yet, nothing will be easy when those issues have been left to languish so long without attention. If the Government are going to tackle the issues and problems, then, do it right or don’t bother! Otherwise, the UK will be left with more follies hampering it’s progress, and more problems to rectify in the future.
Some of the proposals you’ve mentioned don’t actually surprise me.. But, I can’t imagine what life would be like for a parent (even both) to finish work for the day and return home while their child or children is or are still studying!
Kids rely on their sleep. If they’re asked to stay in school for an extra three hours a day then, it could virtually be bed time (for the youngest) by the time they finish – all school and no play!!
That’s as absurd as cutting the financial support from those who need it most!
While parents are having to run around at extra hours, what about the teachers having to work what might’ve been considered overtime before? I could understand a little extension to the school day to compensate for average adult working hours, if that’s something kids could mentally cope with.
Thanks for your comment!!!!
Yeah, extending the school day to me seems like a bad move. They could organise more ‘before’ and ‘after’ school clubs or activities though. This would help the parents who work to reduce on childcare fees, and maybe give the kids a chance to play properly (other than on a Xbox)!
Kids need time to rest, and away from stresses and strains of school work, and school bullies (teachers included). School can be a hostile environment, so no doubt kids will be outraged at that extended idea! I feel most sorriest for the tiniest kids as you mentioned already.
Teachers too, their pay would have to be extended and no doubt their holidays too!
Congratulations on raising the issue of benefit fraud which is certainly taboo over here. I also want to point out that it is a timeless classical liberal insight that once government takes over a function that was previously in the hands of individuals there is a certain inexorable logic that leads to even further state intrusions. For example, although you may disagree with the policy, there is a certain twisted logic to requiring that anyone receiving benefits tailor their lifestyle to what the government thinks is the healthy regime de jour. After all, with the National Health Service an unhealthy lifestyle does impose additional costs on everyone. The next step is probably mandating that everyone excercise a certain number of hours a day, and so on, and so on, until every facet of our life is dictated by legislation.
Thanks for that Malcolm, I know in the UK people are beginning to wake up to reality of benefit fraud. Though it is still not a popular topic with everyone; as poverty and benefits are inextricably linked, but not everyone claiming is necessarily ‘hard done by’ in society. The only issue with this newly founded outrage on fraud is that every benefit claimant is becoming subjected to a witch hunt. There are those who are genuine and in need, and benefits are their life lines. I feel the Government are taking advantage of this new wave of outrage to intrude further. They seem to be picking on random groups to avoid actually dealing with the real issues that are causing failure in their welfare, and health systems. It is true unhealthy lifestyles impact on everyone (NHS included), and yes there is a logic to their desired policy, but then who are any of us to say we are without fault. I just wonder what other targets they will choose, and what else these ‘outlawed’ people will be banned from. It is scare mongering, and people look for others to blame, rather than the Government itself. The NHS is under stress, but over weight patients aren’t the root of the problem. Exactly, legislation or dictatorship will soon remove any freedom of choice, and that bothers me.