Why are so many people on MN so anti benefit bashing?

(383 Posts)
Bearbehind Thu 04-Apr-13 19:09:19

Genuine question- although I am well aware I will probably get flamed for this.

Osbourne's comments in the wake of the Philpotts's about benefits supporting lifestyles which are disagreeable to most tax payers today has touched a nerve with many for varying reasons.

I've always been of the opinion that benefits should be sufficient for the basic necessities but shouldn't cover luxuries like cigarettes, alcohol, Sky, mobile phones or holidays, as they shouldn't be an alternative to working (obviously only for those people capable of working) yet so many threads on here say its none of our business to question what benefits are spent on?

Why is it so many people are happy for their taxes to fund the luxuries listed above for others when they can't afford some of them for themselves after paying tax!? Am I missing something?

SirChenjin Thu 04-Apr-13 19:50:12

Agree Grow.

The corporations who don't pay tax and the people who chose a lifetime of benefits over work are as bad as each other in my book - I won't jump to the defence of either group.

expatinscotland Thu 04-Apr-13 19:50:53

Exactly, popple! But we can't mention that. Oh, no.

PeachActiviaMinge Thu 04-Apr-13 19:51:08

I have been turned down for DLA apparently my mental health issues aren't bad enough so I have to claim JSA instead I suppose this makes me scum? Was it really my fault that my childhood has left me so fucked up? My DH wants to work but where are the jobs for him? I live in the city that saw over 1000 applicants for 1 job.

Get off your high horse if you can and just think how hurtful your comments are, how much they take out of someones confidence and self respect. I have nothing left and then I log in here to have that nothing rubbed in my face and basically told that I don't deserve the little bit of money I use to support my family.

I feel so guilty for what we take anyway I'd give anything for it to be different but people like you will never understand that because we're all just the same and the 0.7% of claimants who are playing the system make the rest of us scum.

Also, Bearbehind, there are large areas of the country which have suffered from industrial decline and the massive social problems that follow from this.
I hate to oversimplify for the sake of brevity but - if you come from a highly deprived area, you are more likely to have been brought up in difficult and trying circumstances, in poverty, surrounded by mental health and addiction issues. You are more likely to have not received the kind of education that makes it a straightforward matter to get employment that supports you. You are more likely to have left school without qualifications, to have a criminal record, to have been put into care, to have have suffered with addictions and mental and/or physical health problems.
Being unable to work or having difficulty in maintaining an employment record is not a simple matter of a life style 'choice'. Not everyone is born or brought up with equal chances in the world.
Some of the issues we are reaping in terms of long term decline in many areas of the country were sown in the 1980s.

FreyaSnow Thu 04-Apr-13 19:51:58

All benefits are for a finite period.

Can you clarify which group of benefits claimants you want to bash?

1. Disabled people
2. Pensioners
3. Part time workers with no children
4. Part time workers with children
5. Full time workers with no children
6. Full time workers with children
7. Any worker who has more than two children
8. Full or part time workers who have a partner who does not work (including people on maternity leave)
9. People who have been unemployed for one year who have no partner in employment.
10. People who have been unemployed for more than one year who have no partner in employment.
11. Mature students.

GrowSomeCress Thu 04-Apr-13 19:53:37

SirChenjin I am politically very moderate and atm wouldn't vote Labour or Conservative and can't bear people dismissing arguments for no good reason on the basis that there are bigger problems.

pamelat Thu 04-Apr-13 19:53:51

I haven't read the responses, but know that I will be in the minority.

We don't claim any benefits, child benefit has gone/going, that's been the only thing we've ever had

DH works full time, long stressful hours

I work part time, logistically difficult around two children and for a year my childcare bill equalled my income.

I do resent the idea of people being "given" more than I earn, I believe this is possible if I deduct my childcare, to be off all day, leading a fairly stress life.

I accept that there are genuine cases of need but am not confident that the majority meet this.

My uncle is on benefits and he and many of his friends seem to spend a lot of time in the pub, sleep in, and generally "doss about"

I guess in just jealous ;) but accept that I chose to work, as hard and not very profitable, as it is, and am currently lucky to have a job.

Ivdont read the DM!!

Oh FFS! Most people on benefits are only on them through circumstance, disability, low income, unemployed. My DH has worked for the past 23 years, I've been a SAHM for 12 years, before that I worked from the minute I left school. We have almost always had to claim benefits of some kind, housing and council tax benefit because we had a low income, and then tax credits when we had kids. It was cheaper for me to stay at home than pay thousands in childcare.

We are now completely on benefit because DH was made redundant last year. All of a sudden we've gone from respectable taxpayers to shitty benefit scum, how did that happen over night? confused I suppose technically the tax DH has paid for the past 23 years would more than cover the benefits we're claiming atm, but that isn't good enough for the benefit bashers! hmm

And FWIW I don't have Sky, had to get rid of that as soon as his job went, we don't smoke, haven't been on holiday for 5 years (and even that was a weekend in Wales, my kids have never been abroad), I do have we do have mobile phones because we have to be instantly contactable according to the jobcentre, we also have the internet because how else can you apply for jobs? Oh I'll tell you what luxury we do have, and it's a big one - we have a 13 year old car so we can get the kids to school. We should be shot by firing squad really shouldn't we! hmm

expatinscotland Thu 04-Apr-13 19:55:24

'My DH wants to work but where are the jobs for him? I live in the city that saw over 1000 applicants for 1 job.'

Waits for the 'Just move'/on yer bike people to show up, with tails of how they've moved multiple times. But it's never for min wage jobs where you have to claim DSS/HB/LHA for part of your rent. Or the 'just couch surf' people who think the solution is for one person to go forth to a big city, couch surf, because we all know people in these places willing to let you live there until you find a job, or urban camp (illegal) (squatting is now, too).

FarBetterNow Thu 04-Apr-13 19:56:40

If there is not enough money in the coffers to pay all the Welfare & Benefits bill, surely it makes sense to stop all payments to the wealthy, before decreasing payments to the poor.

Oh and my dd gets DLA so there's another thing you can hate me for.

expatinscotland Thu 04-Apr-13 19:58:42

'I guess in just jealous ;)'

You're jealous of sad addicts who waste their lives away pissed? Really?

Seriously, you people are envious of someone living in a dire council estate most of us wouldn't set foot in in some damp, minging council flat with no car and a KwikSave for shopping?

williaminajetfighter Thu 04-Apr-13 19:59:33

Penelopee, why are you actively on these 'benefit-bashing?' threads when in the last one you got properly upset and said the comments were making you suicidal?

For your own sanity wouldn't it be better to avoid these threads - which might cause upset - and hang out somewhere a little less turbulent??!

PeneloPeePitstop Thu 04-Apr-13 20:00:50

Ohhhhh what a lovely stress free life I do lead!

Three children with permanent, incurable disabilities (not the kind that the fragrant Ms McVey reckons will heal). The local authority doesn't want to give them a decent education, the DWP doesn't want to pay to meet their needs...

And I laugh like a tinkling bell when I get spat at...

Oh and the 26 days' holiday, clocking off time and lunch breaks you get caring are a real boon (!)

It makes you full of the joys too when your child hits/kicks/scratches you for the umpteenth time that day.

Ahh yes, so stress free... Those poooooor workers who have it worse...

Messandmayhem Thu 04-Apr-13 20:00:58

I'm a SAHM, my hubby worked a bare minimum wage job, we were entitled only to tax credits, so we paid all our rent, council tax, and we had a phone line and broadband put in, and got iPhones on contracts. We could afford this as we don't smoke or drink or go out to eat or to the pictures. We sold some old stuff and bought a smart tv and blu ray player.

My hubby lost his job. His JSA has to cover our food, electricity, telephone/broadband, phone contracts and credit cards. These aren't luxuries. These are contracts which we are tied into. We aren't profiteering off the tax payer. It is almost impossible to profiteer on benefits if you are only claiming your fair share. The Daily Hate Mail has brainwashed a lot of people in this country and it is deeply unsettling.

SirBoobAlot Thu 04-Apr-13 20:01:20

Because 99.9% of people on benefits is on them so they can live. Despite what the Daily Fail would like everyone to believe, it's not a lifestyle choice.

I met up with a group of people suffering from one of the same illnesses as I do the other night. We had a lovely time. Until we started discussing how long we had all been suffering for. At which point we all started sobbing quietly, knowing that there is no cure, and that we are damned to existing rather than living our lives. Each of us would do anything to be well enough to work. Fucking hell, I'd love to be well enough to work in a call center, be a cleaner, work in McDonalds...

So why shouldn't we benefit bash? Because there are people receiving them. Not names on a screen. And because each person has their story. which you will never know.

MyDarlingClementine Thu 04-Apr-13 20:01:22

There is a bloody credit crisis on!
At a time when lots of people need help even more, more people competing for jobs from here and over seas, reduced wages, redundancies, inflation, food prices, heating bills all rising to "luxury levels"
Why benefit bash!

Its the same to me though as saying the English don't like to work.

PeneloPeePitstop Thu 04-Apr-13 20:03:02

Why do bugs fly to insectocutors?
I still live in hope that the bots will listen...

EllieArroway Thu 04-Apr-13 20:06:36

Also, with regard to the "luxuries" issue - imagine if we said, "Right. We'll pay your rent, give you vouchers for food and only food and another voucher to buy clothes in Oxfam. And that's it".

What we'd be doing, by just covering the bare basics in that way, is to force a group of people to have no standard of living at all. No TV (Sky or otherwise), birthday or Christmas gifts for the kids, no internet, no days out of any kind. How crap would that be? You eat, sleep and that's all.

Prisoners are treated better than that. So people who are in receipt of benefits should not just be given enough to feed themselves, they should in theory be able to have a standard of living that isn't fucking Victorian.

* I don't think any of the above are "luxuries", by the way, and in any event most people are struggling to cover the basics at present, so my point is pretty moot.

I'm just trying to explain why I think the idea of "only covering the basics - why should we pay for them to go down the pub?" is as morally suspect as writing everybody off as "scroungers".

stella1w Thu 04-Apr-13 20:06:57

I wouldn't be on benefits if i wasn't being taxed to death and paid a low wage and paying over the odds for energy, public transport etc.

Moominsarehippos Thu 04-Apr-13 20:07:04

It's abuse of the system that hacks people off, not genuine claimants. The economy is in such a mess, its hardly surprising. The system seems to let through some mad abuses yet we all know people who are really on their uppers but are entitled to nothing.

I walk past a block of flats daily. It was in the sunday times last week. One flat is worth £2m and rented out to people on benefits (Iraqi woman with 4 kids). She is supposedly sub-letting it at a profit of £1200-£2700 a week. Yes, a week (wouildn't you?!). The council think it is appropriate to house a family just off Oxford Street at a cost of £1300 a week (rent). It fairly boggles the mind when people are scrimping to make ends meet when one weeks rent is the same as a month (or two) in other parts of London/the country.

The system sucks, yet people take advantage (albeit within the letter of the law, just like bankers bonuses, tax avoidance and offshore squirrel accounts).

FarBetterNow Thu 04-Apr-13 20:07:33

The Housing Benefit system has only served to allow the price of houses to increase.

House prices go up with demand.
Wages do not go up at the same rate, so HB covers the difference.

It is the money lenders benefit from high house prices.

Bearbehind Thu 04-Apr-13 20:08:07

'sirboobalot' I have clarified that I'm not talking about people who are medically unable to work, I am referring to people who manipulate the system in order to avoid working in favour of a life on benefits which fund a lifestyle more extravagant than most of us who work for a living can comfortably afford.

Bibs123 Thu 04-Apr-13 20:08:39

OH come on ... there is a culture of entitlement in this country. Nobody is bashing hard working people who claim benefits to get by or indeed people who have NO OTHER CHOICE but there are plenty of people who could go and get a f@cking job but choose to sponge off the state instead.

pamelat Thu 04-Apr-13 20:08:48

You all describe the genuine need that I refer to

However there are people, and I'd thought the majority, but I'm happy to be wrong, who have simply decided to not work
Would everyone agree that some are abusing the system? The very system that we have universally contributed to.

I think that more of these benefit cheats people, those claiming JSA but working on the side (I know 2) should be ashamed of themselves, ESPECIALLY (sorry felt the need for caps as emphasis) because of the needs of genuine claimants?

My DH's job is hugely unstable, lots of redundancies etc and now he pays £140 a month as redundancy insurance sad it would pay his wage for avyear as and when it next happens.

It's a difficult time for everyone and no one should be abusing it

Join the discussion

Join the discussion

Registering is free, easy, and means you can join in the discussion, get discounts, win prizes and lots more.

Register now