Tuesday 29 June 2010


The new Tory government in London are really clamping down on Benefits, doubtless as their way of reassuring their core vote that they haven’t gone soft just because they have a few daft Liberals about the place to make up the numbers.

Labour and SNP politicians have criticised plans to relocate people in a sort of Stalinist way, from areas of high unemployment to places where there are jobs. (Erm, where? London I suppose?)

The plans have been described by both parties put forward by Iain Duncan Smith as a return to 1980s’ “on your bike” policies of old Norman Tebbit whose constituency IDS now represents.

IDS said millions of people were trapped in places where there was no work and were unwilling to move for fear of losing their homes. He talked about “ghettos of poverty” where people were unable to find work but lacked the ability to leave. The scheme would allow people to go to the top of the housing list in another area, even it if was hundreds of miles away, rather than giving up their right to a home. Doubtless this will knock people already living in the area, down the list.

And for what...? In so many cases the jobs on offer will be at or just above minimum wage. The cost of moving is thousands... well above what poor people could ever hope to afford. And what about when the job comes to an end? After 3 months as the firm folds or the work dries up? Will they go to the top of the list to move back again, with no job to come to, but desperately wanting home to their family and friends?

Mr Duncan Smith needs to realise that mobility is a privi
lege of the rich. Moving house for them is almost always a matter of making a profit. Moving for working class people is an expense they can rarely afford. Given the state of the jobs market and the rapidity with which companies go under and jobs disappear, it’s a big risk. Mobility is much more difficult, like most other things, when you are poor.

Duncan Smith said Britain had one of the most static workforces in the western world, with people locked to areas and the result that there were more than 5,500,000 people who “simply don’t do a job”. Ah, that’s the reason they don’t do a job is it Mr Duncan Smith. I always wondered about that. So if they all just get off their fat, lazy backsides there will be jobs for them all ....right? What nonsense.

It’s not often I agree with Iain Gray but I’m right behind him when he said that the latest plans showed how little the Tories understood the reality of life for those seeking work or living on low incomes.

Grey pointed out: “Families cannot move around the country every time a parent is out of work. Politicians should be creating jobs in local communities, not trying to move unemployed people around like pieces on a board.”

Eilidh Whiteford for the SNP said: “Instead of endangering economic recovery with short-sighted cuts and reverting to policies which proved disastrous in the 1980s, the new coalition Government should be investing in growth and job creation across the UK.”

There was also criticism from Ed Balls and Ed Miliband.

We are all in this together, so we’re going to really hammer the poor and we can discuss it all at the next garden party, or perhaps at the Henley regatta. I’m sorry; I thought IDS had more about him than this nonsense.

Norman Tebbit and his beloved leader Margaret Hilda, and IDS, apparently having learned little about working class life.


  1. Sorry Tris,

    I completely disagree with all of that.

    Even the opener is rubbish, "The new Tory government in London are really clamping down on Benefits, doubtless as their way of reassuring their core vote that they haven’t gone soft just because they have a few daft Liberals about the place to make up the numbers"

    Erm, no. It is targeted for cutbacks because 32.4% of all 2010-11 state spending is to be on 'social security and welfare'. That is by far the most we are spending on domestic sides, god the NHS empire only costs a projected 17.5% [and that is ringfenced to increase above inflation].

    So why target benefits and services? Because it is costing us more than we can afford with a structural deficit odf £606bn.

    If we really want to reduce the idle list, they need to find work; move to areas with new opportunities.

  2. Tris, do you want the state to simply create jobs in geographically unsustainabel areas, just so the idle don't have to move?

    We tried that, it was called linwood car factory. It all ended in tears because it wasn't a going concern as a result.

    People need to move till they find work, not just sit on their lawrels and expect hard working [and not too rich] average wage earners to foot their bill of idleness and wastefullness.

    IDS is dead on here.

  3. Dean: that is such a disappointing attitude to take. And one that does not augur well for you party’s brave new dawn in Scotland. You will have to realise that to be a success in Scotland the new Tories (whatever they are called) will have to adopt a more social democratic approach to suit Scotland’s more social democratic political climate. Simply swallowing, hook line and sinker, Englo-centric policies in this way is what got you party into the mess it is in north of the border. There is no point in hiving off a Scottish Tory party if you continue to adopt policy suited to England without apparently thinking. My concerns of yesterday it seems were fully justified. I latterly wondered how a new Scottish Tory party would work with the Westminster elections and how any Scottish Tory MPs might vote in Westminster, where they would sit, if they would be part of a Tory government, and most of all if they would fight for Scotland and not roll over when English interests were paramount. Thank you for answering that here. I can now make it plain where I would stand with any possible link up between the new Scottish Tories and the SNP in order to keep Labour out. I am against it tooth and claw and would rather have Iain Gray as First Minister.

  4. Dean:

    Like Munguin I’m amazed at that.

    Low income people can rarely move unless they have homes to go back to. Yes, of course you will get Labourers and tradesmen going to work on big projects... and they do that already. I got lads set up with work on Heathrow Airport a few years ago and there is work on the Olympics work now. Soon there will be work on Cross Rail and the Glasgow Commonwealth games.

    But you only ever get single lads going, because the work is temporary. Lads are put up in hostels. It’s not nice and it’s not comfortable, but for a short time, earning good money, it’s worthwhile.

    But let’s be honest it’s unlikely that someone is going to take his wife and 3 kids to work on a project that may only be for 6 months or a year.... maybe two years, go to the top of the housing list in another part of the country (which incidentally in Dundee would mean being allocated a house that a rat would turn its nose up at) and then, after 2 years trying to get back home, without the privilege of going to the top of the housing list.

    Rich people can do that. Of course the university educated used to expect to move around taking their kids with them, within and out with the UK, in the days when a degree was something only a small percentage to the population achieved, and necessarily ended up with a well paid professional job. Today many of my degree educated mates are working in Tesco, or a filling station, or in a call centre, on minimum + wage.

    And if we are talking about migrating to where the work is, it is often in England, has been in the past and will be in the future. They have a different education system from us; kids go to school at different ages, and a move, especially at a certain age, is really hard on them. Moving backwards and forwards, changing schools is bad for kids. They don’t make friends; they are at different stages in their education. It happened to me, and it was hard....

    Have you any idea how much it costs to move? Carpets, curtains, furniture which no longer fits.... Do you know how much it would cost to move all your goods from one town to another, maybe 500 miles away?

    When people in Barking thought that Eastern Europeans were going to the top of the housing list there was a near riot.... and that was only a myth put about by BNP supporters for political advantage. Don’t think that just because people came from another part of the UK it would make any difference. Bloody jocks!

    IDS is living in a middle class world, where jobs are advertised in the nationals... and include relocation expenses. No-one is going to pay relocation expenses for a tyre fitter.

  5. If you ever want any evidence that torys will always follow the Thatcher dogma look no further.

    The Eton boys said after the election that "we are all in this together" what they meant was everybody else pays and the tory supporters reap the benefit.

    This is typical grab a headline today with something that has not been thought through but will generate a quick headline in the Daily Wail. Who would move 100s of miles to a house no one else will live in to take a job that no one else will do, at the lowest wages possible. No one, but we can get back to the eighty's when miners steelworkers etc who had never missed a shift in their lives were suddenly work shy if they did not take a part time job miles away at minimum money.

    The Times had some crap at the weekend about the SNP and the torys forming an alliance at Holyrood after the 2011 election. The SNP would be mad to even consider joining with them. The Lib Dums are going to pay a high enough price for Clegg wanting a ministerial mondeo.

    The cause of independence would be set back years by such an alliance. Better four years of Gray, as bad as that will be, but it will remind people how bad they are (Baillie for health minister anyone) than propping up a dying tory party.

    Remember the old joke. How can you tell a tory has a glass eye? it shows more kindness and compassion than the real one. 1980s torys or 2010 torys same old same old as our American friends would say.

  6. Dear! Dear! IDS and anyone else who thinks that they are going to make a difference with unemployment is living in cloud cockoo land.

    The UK (and the others) economy was based on debt, getting people to keep on buying houses and other tat, while trying to grow the economy to stay ahead of the debt. Bang! Afraid the pyramid is now collapsing and there is no way back. Banks are making "profits" and giving out bonuses whilst their debts are being ignored - of course they are being guaranteed by the tax-payers. Millions more are going to be unemployed because of the cutbacks which is going to snowball into even more unemployed.

    Yes the country is bankrupt and cannot afford to keep people in jobs in the public sector - so where do the dreamers think the jobs are going to come from in the private sector when what little manufacturing jobs keep going abroad and places like B & Q replace their workers with machines.

    There will be no need to move unemployed people around as there will be plenty of local unemployed all over the country to take up any local jobs.

    Time to get a new system in place to get rid of this dying Capitalist system. See the Zeitgeist Movement dvd at www.zeitgeistmovie.com a lot of that seems a sensible way forward for people and the planet.

  7. Yes guys... Sad to say, the honeymoon period for those of US not on £150,000 a year soon ended.

    I think you summed it up brilliantly Dubbieside, so I'll not try to add to it.

    Billy: You're right there will be more and more unemployed. One of the questions I guess this guy needs asking is...

    Where are the jobs? Does he want the people in Lewis to go to London? Would they fit in? Could they live there? Do they have the skills for that kind of life?

    He, it seems, like so many others of them, live in a world quite separate from anything we have ever known.

    Dean: You must understand that the bulk of the people on benefits are not idle, or spongers. Don’t let the MPs tell you that. It is to distract doubtless from the fact their lordships have announced for themselves, revised charter to steal today.

  8. Honeymoon? What honeymoon? Nothing like the SNPs which lasted for 2 and a half years: better even than President obama.

    The SNP has shown it is not a load of basket cases, it can run a devolved administration with a fair degree of success, considering it was a minority administration. Now it is time to get back to campaigning to get our country back and that can best be done in opposition. So let Iain Gray be FM I say and "no deal" to the Tories. I for one am not going to campaign for an SNP that is in cahoots with Dean's Tories! Can you imagine knocking on folks doors and asking them to vote for that?

  9. Munguin,

    You astound me!

    "adopt a more social democratic approach to suit Scotland’s more social democratic political climate"

    That social democratic consensus is what is crippling our once fine nation. It is right that some of us want to challenge the notion of statist socialism, a very dangerous political reality for Scots.

  10. What is better to help the poor? High taxes, and means tested benefits, or good, honest to God tax cuts for the lowest paid?

    I know what I want, less tax, less government.

    "Don’t let the MPs tell you that."

    Less aid to spongers. Lord Tebbit in a recent article in the Telegraph blog explained that most of those on incapacity are not actually ill or too weak to work. I rather doubt Lord Tebbit would be deliberately malicious or nasty.

  11. Tris,

    "When people in Barking thought that Eastern Europeans were going to the top of the housing list there was a near riot.... and that was only a myth put about by BNP supporters for political advantage. Don’t think that just because people came from another part of the UK it would make any difference."

    So encouraging better working mobility would increase racism and fascist Party support?

    Utter tripe. I am offended by that rubbish, I would not advocate a policy that would aid the BNP.

  12. Statist socialism? what book did you get that crap from Dean?

    What the vast majority of people want in Scotland is a fair and equal society. Not some far right wing ideology where the poor, the sick and the elderly get trampled on by Eton boys who are disciples of Thatcher. That is why torys are irrelevant to Scotland and always will be, we are at heart decent compassionate people, something that the majority of torys I have met never will be.

    Scotland can and should be a far better country than it is at present. A country with resourceful people and vast natural wealth. If we stopped giving our national resources away to get a pittance back from Westminster, we could build that better country, and treat the poor, the sick and the elderly Scots with dignity that they should receive.

    I do not like paying tax any more than the next man, but I do not want people to live in cardboard boxes under motorways to fund my tax cuts.

    Torys have no mandate in Scotland and never will have. The Lib Dums have sold their mandate in Scotland for a Mondeo, and they will get their answer about what the Scottish people think of that come 2011.

    Alliance with tory or Libs, never ever, they are not on the Scottish wavelength, they are not on the same planet.

  13. Dean:

    I rather doubt Lord Tebbit would be deliberately malicious or nasty.

    That says it all. I've worked with them as you know. Mr Tebbit has not.

    Some are fiddling. Most are not.

  14. Dean:

    So encouraging better working mobility would increase racism and fascist Party support?

    Utter tripe. I am offended by that rubbish, I would not advocate a policy that would aid the BNP.

    There's no insult in that. It's simple fact. People don't like their housing queues being jumped or their jobs going to others

    Brits don't like it with foreigners; English don;t like it with Scots or Irish (remember the signs they used to have on guest houses)

    If you were insulted by it I'm sorry, but it's a fact.

  15. Once again Dubbieside, you've said what I should have said, much more eloquently than I would have said it.

    What you paint......That's what I want.


  16. Dean

    How does Tebbit know that most of those on incapacity benefit are not actually ill or to weak to work?

    As far as I am aware every single person on invalidity benefit has to be assessed by a doctor. When did Tebbit gain medical qualifications? or is being a third rate politician qualification enough in your book to over rule a GP?

    Welcome to Thatcherism mark2 Eton version. Doctors to be over ruled by penpushers and politicians.

    About the only sensible thing Kinnock ever said was, "I warn you not to be poor, to be sick or to be old, as the torys will make you suffer.

  17. The Tory's always blame the unemployed, single mothers etc but are always silent when it comes to the biggest fiddlers in the country - the tax fiddlers.

    Last time I saw anything about this they reckoned it was £28 billion per year and probably double that.

    My there would be no trouble paying off the national debt if they made an effort to reign this in - then again most of this will be their pals so they continue to take the attention from this by hitting out at the poor.

  18. Tris it is not a fact that encouraging labour force geographical mobility would encourage racism and fascism. That is such rubbish, you cannot be serious.

    If it where then the USA would be under the rule of a national socialist dicator long ago!

  19. Munguin,

    "Scotland and always will be, we are at heart decent compassionate people"

    Ah, so English people for voting tory aren't capable of being compassionate then? Compassion is now a monopoly of social democratic Scots?

    Rubbish, unspeakable tripe. I am not continuing with this conversation if this is the level of debate.

  20. Billy,

    "The Tory's always blame the unemployed, single mothers"

    Good bye...

  21. Oh dear! See what I mean.

    When the Tories were in power before all the ills of the country were down to single mothers.

    Now all the ills of the country are down to the unemployed and ill nothing to do with the bankers and politicians.

    Two facts but all a Tory like Dean can do is go off in a huff about these facts but like his party ignores the massive tax fiddling mentioned in my comment that is going on in this country.

    Like I said above time for a new system that puts people and the planet first.

  22. Well Dean,

    That's up to you. If you chose to read things into what has been written that are not there, then I can't help that but I will try to explain.

    If you are standing at the top of a queue for chips and three people go in front of you are you not a tad cross? I know I am.

    And if you are on a housing list in Brighton, for example, and you are just about to get a house. And suddenly you find you are number 23 on the housing list, because a whole pile of people from Bolton, Manchester, Wolverhampton, Much Binding on the Marsh and Halifax have taken your place, then would you get a little cross.

    It's nothing to do with racism; it's to do with being bumped in a queue. The BNP reference was to illustrate how a political party can use it. In this case it was racist because the BNP hate foreigners; other people could use people from other parts of England. It would be worse if they were of another race within the UK, because that gives the thick even more to fight with.

    As for your second point, the Tories appear to be as hard as nails, and they always hit the poor. Billy is (maybe) old enough to remember the twat of a Tory Peter Lily, who amused all his fellow Tories with his own version of the Lord High Executioner’s piece from “The Mikado”, "I've got a little list"... You can see what he had on his list..... He didn't, however, have one fat cat executive that fiddles his tax, nor one thieving Lord, nor a fiddling MP... nor a prince that uses precious military equipment to ferry his family to a stag night...No... none of them was on his list. Only the working classes.

    "I've got a little list / Of benefit offenders who I'll soon be rooting out / And who never would be missed / They never would be missed. / There's those who make up bogus claims / In half a dozen names / And councillors who draw the dole / To run left-wing campaigns / They never would be missed / They never would be missed. / Young ladies who get pregnant just to jump the housing list / And dads who won't support the kids / of ladies they have ... kissed / And I haven't even mentioned all those sponging socialists / I've got them on my list / And there's none of them be missed / There's none of them be missed.

    Talking of fiddling MPs...interestingly Mr Lilly was himself told by Thomas Legg to repay £41,057 because it represented interest on a mortgage taken out to repay a loan to the MP's wife, whose money was originally used to buy the central London flat. His wife lent him money to buy a house that we paid the interest on.... neat one Pete. However he got away with it on appeal. I guess he has friends in high places.

    Ahhhh.... how there is one rule for the rich and one for the poor.

  23. Come on Dean, answer the question. How does Tebbit know most people on invalidity benefit are not ill?

    Usual tory rubbish, someone makes some ridicules statement, someone repeats it as fact, then when asked to verify the so called fact they run away.

  24. Yes, thats true Dubbieside.

    Mr Tebbit has no idea about that in fact.

    What research has he done to produce that figure? Who has he interviewed? What kind of qualitfications has he got to make these pronouncements? I understand he was a pilot by profession, before he gave up work to become an MP.

    In what way did he manage to explain it?

  25. Billy:

    We are all in this together.

    The mess was created by incompetent management of the financial apparatus of the country.

    The banks were allowed to run betting shops with ordinary banking money: The government, the Bank of England and the FSA are to blame. The only Tory who said a word about any of this was Vince Cable, late of the Liberals. The rest said nothing as their mates got richer and richer.

    The average working person contributed by maxing out as many credit cards as they could.

    The old and the ill and the unemployed had the least input to the gigantic cock up that was made of the country.

    Proportionately of course they are paying most.

    The garden parties, I note, will continue; the state opening of parliament was as grand an affair as ever, the Lords' expenses are much as they were before with no checks on them, the cabinet went to Yorkshire at an estimated cost of between £100,000 and £200,000... No expense spared.

  26. Dean: adopt that attitude if you want, but like it or not Scotland is a more socially democratic country than England (call it what you will: statist socialism, liberalism, communism, whatever) you need to take that on board. Do you want electoral success for your new Scottish Tory party? Do you want it to be fit to enter a Scottish coalition and be in government here? If so you better ditch all that Englo-centric, Lord Tebbit makes sense crap.

    Sometime I wonder Dean what sort of Tory you are. Small government yes, but EU also yes, the latter is hardly small government, Ted Heath, Harold MacMillan and paternalistic Toryism yes and then Margaret Thatcher, Lord Tebbit and there is no such thing as society yes.