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?

FreyaSnow Thu 04-Apr-13 19:11:54

Most people on MN are parents. Most parents are in receipt of benefits.

Kiriwawa Thu 04-Apr-13 19:12:28

Both Lisa and Mairead were in employment

I thought Goadyfuckers threads were against the talk guidelines?

fuzzysnout Thu 04-Apr-13 19:13:34


You shouldn't 'bash' people who are in less than ideal circumstances.

Jesus. Christ.

Here we go again.

Bearbehind Thu 04-Apr-13 19:15:15

Freya But IMO that comes under 'not available for work' for a finite period, not spending your whole life on benefits.

Kiriwara I was referring to the principle rather than the specifics of the Philpotts's case.

So people too disabled to work shouldn't be allowed a mobile phone or a holiday? hmm

Pancakeflipper Thu 04-Apr-13 19:16:03

There's an idea which is widespread that getting benefits means you sit back on your sofa watching JKyle swigging champers.

The reality is families struggle on a day to days basis with little freedom as every penny is accounted for. And little thought is given to the reasons why people are entitled to the benefits.

Fairylea Thu 04-Apr-13 19:16:13

Isn't it something like the top 5% earn 40% of the income in this country? And gas companies and banks still give out millions in bonuses?? But that's ok, let's moan about Mrs so and so spending her small amount of benefits in relation on sky tv so she actually has some form of entertainment in her life instead of staring at the four walls until she dies.

PeneloPeePitstop Thu 04-Apr-13 19:16:23

My personal gripe is that I save my local authority £9000 a week. In order to do this I have to claim benefits.

I won't be treated as sub human because of that. I get enough of that in RL.

Fleecyslippers Thu 04-Apr-13 19:17:18

I'm working and yet I still claim 'benefits' I'm watching Sky on my wide screen TV and shopping online using my internet connection.

Do you 'KNOW' how many families in the UK are claiming benefits for 10+ children?

You don't receive child benefit then OP ?

Actually, don't bother answering cos it's fecking tedious.

Why SHOULD we 'benefit bash'?

What can it accomplish? What would be the reasons for doing it?

That's probably a better question to ask yourself.

ImTooHecsyForYourParty Thu 04-Apr-13 19:17:36

Because it's not 'benefit' bashing, is it?

It's people bashing.

I am sure nobody would have a problem at all with debating the issue of the welfare state and the best way forward for it.

But people don't do that.

It's all 'scrougers' this and 'shouldn't have had kids' that and sweeping generalisations spouted by the hard of thinking based on the Gospel According To The Daily Mail.

everyone on benefits has 20 kids and a 100" flat screen tv and leans out of their bedroom window, lambert & butler in mouth, yelling "Fuck The Workers!"

When people are described in horrible ways, no reasonable discussion can be had.

HoneyDragon Thu 04-Apr-13 19:17:54

Because being on benefits isn't fun and you don't kick people when they are already down.

WestieMamma Thu 04-Apr-13 19:18:09

A holiday isn't a luxury if you spend all the rest of the year single handedly caring for a sick/disabled loved one.

Sky isn't a luxury if you're disabled and housebound. My dad cannot even get out of bed anymore and has round the clock carers. His one pleasure is watching Sky Sports 24/7. But people like you want to take it away from him.

PeneloPeePitstop Thu 04-Apr-13 19:18:51

Sense of superiority, mrs c.
If they are vile enough about it, they won't be in that situation.

From a former home owning higher rate taxpayer who lost the lot.


Bearbehind Thu 04-Apr-13 19:19:06

OK - bashing is the wrong term and this isn't a goadyfucker thread- its a genuine question because it isn't what I think is the norm but I'm not so ignorant to assume what I think is always right so I'm trying to understand other's opinions.

A biscuit isn't helping me understand smile

Think the point you are missing OP is that the majority of the welfare budget goes on pensions and to people in work ie TAXPAYERS.

<knows that valid points will be ignored. Head. Wall.>

Miggsie Thu 04-Apr-13 19:19:39

"If he were wont to die he should do it and decrease the surplus population."
"Who are you to say who shall live and who shall die? It may be, in the sight of God, you are less worthy to live than this poor man's child"

A Christmas Carol
Charles Dickens

How we have not evolved and still despise the poor and blame them for their plight. How little charity we have. How sad.

FairyJen Thu 04-Apr-13 19:19:42

FYI I'm not on benefits but can't afford a lot of the luxuries you describe. There are some and everyone agrees who exploit the system but they are a minority.

People are anti bashing as anyone could end up reliant on welfare. If your issue is with those who do not try to get out of this then fair enough but otherwise biscuit

Fret to say - YABVU.
Your OP is quite vile. angry

MrsBW Thu 04-Apr-13 19:21:21

I think bashing people that are down - like people claiming DLA as one example - is hideous.

I think the Daily Mail hysteria that everyone on benefits is a scrounger is hideous.

What I can't understand is a flat out denial that there is a minority of people for whom a life on benefits is a lifestyle choice and the debate that should be ha around that.

MyDarlingClementine Thu 04-Apr-13 19:21:27

I have not read all the comments; but I would rather not bash benefits.

I would rather bash brash jumped up cock sucking immoral rich bankers.


YouTheCat Thu 04-Apr-13 19:22:25

True fact, Wannabe.

Bear, it is bad because it is bloody nasty, that is why. Does there need to be any other reason?

And of course it doesn't stop at those unfortunate enough to be unemployed, the bashing continues about carers, the disabled, pretty much anyone who receives some financial support.

Bearbehind Thu 04-Apr-13 19:22:41

sauvignon I explicitly stated that my views only applied to those capable of working.

I totally agree that I shouldn't have used the term 'bashing' as I meant why do so many tolerate their taxes being used to fund lifestyles that they themselves might not be able to afford.

BitBewildered Thu 04-Apr-13 19:23:27

I would rather things like MPs expenses were reduced. I think it's unfair to tar all benefit claimants with the Philpot brush.

Do you really begrudge people having a bit of autonomy over their household budget?

Lucyellensmum95 Thu 04-Apr-13 19:23:56

I think the reason why a good proportion of the poster on here disagree with benefit "bashing" or berating people on benefits, whatever you choose to call it are intelligent and compassionate enough to think "there but for the grace of god" They will know that there will be inscrupulous people in any walk of life who will play the system, be that by knocking out a few extra babies to get an extra bedroom or by finding the appropriate Tax avoidance scheme if they are a high earner. Thankfully, these people are in the minority.

Emilythornesbff Thu 04-Apr-13 19:24:25

Benefits vary a great deal.
Child benefit, income support, housing benefit, tax credits, state pension etc. .........- all different.
So, many people (almost all parents) are/ have been in receipt of some kind of benefit. so much criticism of peole's "subsidised" lifestyles is misinformed.

some ppl take the piss and cheat the system.
Some very hard working ppl might be better off financially if they weren't employed, and that really shouldn't be the case.

But"benefits bashing" seeks to demonise ppl who receive benefits as undeserving, lazy, scrounging, and costing the "brasher money.
It's the politics of envy.
And, IMO it is related to the mentality that saw the Nazis gain power in Germany.

YouTheCat Thu 04-Apr-13 19:24:37

So you mean those capable of working who through no fault of their own are unable to find work?

There are so few jobs out there, what would you suggest people do?

FreyaSnow Thu 04-Apr-13 19:25:03

'Freya But IMO that comes under 'not available for work' for a finite period, not spending your whole life on benefits.'

I don't know what that means. Most people who are of working age who claim benefits have a job. Most families have one or two people working and claim benefits. Some people who claim benefits and have a job get more money in benefits than people who claim benefits and don't have a job.

The vast majority of people who claim JSA do so for a finite period of time. They may, however, spend their whole working lives on benefits because they have an occupation that is poorly paid.

EllieArroway Thu 04-Apr-13 19:25:13

The problem is that, in spite of what certain newspapers would have us believe, the vast majority of people in receipt of benefits are in situations that the welfare state was founded to help with.

Very few indeed are claiming because they can't be arsed to get a job. And lots and lots (probably the majority) actually ARE working, they just can't earn enough.

I'm very proud of the welfare state & that we as a nation care for each other (or did until this fucking government showed up). Yes, we have to put up with the scroungers but I'd rather do that than dismantle the whole thing, or make the genuine claimants feel like scum.

Bear in mind, Phillpot only got the money he did because of the children and I don't begrudge them a penny.

poppypebble Thu 04-Apr-13 19:25:22

You know what it is fucking awful surviving on benefits and people who are in that position do not deserve to be treated like scum. Life is hard enough.

Stop believing everything this contemptible excuse for a government tell you. Anyone who can use the deaths of 6 children to score political points is the one you should be bashing.

HoneyDragon Thu 04-Apr-13 19:25:40

<<gently removes Wannabe's head from wall>>

Tell you what Wannabe. Do you want to help me load this trebuchet with goats and sling them where necessary?

You can should FIRE! if you like?

Emilythornesbff Thu 04-Apr-13 19:25:47

Sorry, brasher not "brasher.

Penelopee- sorry to hear that.
You are right though- it can only be to assert some sort of superiority over others which is a bit cheap and horrible.

I've been on both ends of the stick myself so would NEVER make ridiculous assumptions based on somebody's current income or lack thereof.

What I can't understand is a flat out denial that there is a minority of people for whom a life on benefits "is" a lifestyle choice and the debate that should be ha around that.

Personally I feel that a debate on the billions of pounds being tax evaded or leaving this country through loopholes would be more appropriate. As opposed to the minority of people who have been ground into thinking a life on benefits is any kind of desirable.

Also, the majority who are in need should not be punished for the actions of a few.

PeachActiviaMinge Thu 04-Apr-13 19:26:11

Educate yourself. I'm on benefits but we can't afford those luxuries ffs sometimes we can barely afford to eat. When a real disaster occurs we're screwed and now up to our eyeballs in debt to Brighthouse because we don't have the option of cheap credit.

You can look down your nose at me and others like me but one day it could be you in my position and I would hope that people wouldn't treat you like I am treated. Sometimes you need that little luxury to make life bearable if its cigarettes a can of larger or a bar of chocolate sometimes its the only thing that will keep you going.

You might not think me worthy of your respect because I fell on hard times well had the misfortune to suffer various mental illnesses but please don't make it so obvious at least allow us our ignorance.

FairyJen Thu 04-Apr-13 19:26:46

I think the op is actually referring to the minority that actually just don't want to work full stop and claim benefits

Greythorne Thu 04-Apr-13 19:26:52

OP - if you think being on benefits is so great, why not resign, get put on a waiting list for social housing, claim all these generous benefits and then sit on your bottom watching Sky on a plasma telly and going to Florida on holiday.

Or don't you think it works like that?

WestieMamma Thu 04-Apr-13 19:27:48

why do so many tolerate their taxes being used to fund lifestyles that they themselves might not be able to afford.

Because we understand that those for whom it is a lifestyle are a tiny, tiny minority. A minority who will find a way to exploit the system whatever the system is. And most importantly because we understand that attempting to stop that exploitation of the system will cost way more than it will ever save and will also penalise the majority who should be getting what they get and make their situations worse.

MaryPoppinsBag Thu 04-Apr-13 19:28:21

When my DH was made redundant in 2008, I was already pregnant with DS2. He was out if work for 16 months (I was on mat leave for 12 months of that and almost 2 months was spent waiting for his subsequent job to come off) we went on holiday it was essential for our mental health.

I'm not talking package holidays, I'm talking a long weekend sharing a static van with my parents or a static van for a week paid for by him DM for his birthday.

Long term unemployment is soul destroying.

hugoagogo Thu 04-Apr-13 19:28:31

First take disabled people and their carers out of the equation:

The idea that benefits should be at a basic level of food and heat would be fine if there was full employment and if wages were at a level that could support the average family.

As there is not full employment in this country and wages are not at a level that can support a family (as evidenced by the government subsidising wages in the form of tax credits and the like) then benefits cannot be viewed as short term emergency relief.

If the minimum wage was increased and measures were taken to produce full employment, then and only then could people look down on those not working and call them scroungers.

YouTheCat Thu 04-Apr-13 19:28:54

I think the OP is referring to the '10s of thousands' alluded to in the Fail.

Which is utter and actual bollocks.

Bearbehind Thu 04-Apr-13 19:29:14

I understand the 'there but the grace of God' theory'. I know I'm fortunate not to be in the position of having to survive on benefits.

Some of the replies are enlightening and are answering my questions.

I guess, like so many things, the minority adversely affect the perceptions of the majority.

I'm anti 'benefit bashing' because I know we are just one unlucky turn away from having to rely on them. Very few people choose it as a lifestyle, despite what the papers want us to think.

SirChenjin Thu 04-Apr-13 19:29:40

It is perfectly possible to bash both bankers and people who live off benefits with no intention of ever working when they are perfectly able to - they are not mutually exclusive.

poppypebble Thu 04-Apr-13 19:29:44

What about those people who are too disabled to work but are being forced onto JSA because of ATOS assessments?

Who decides who should be 'bashed' and not? Should we have a conference? Perhaps at Wannsee?

MrsBW Thu 04-Apr-13 19:30:08

wannabe totally agree there are more important debates to be had...

And agree with your example too.

MP expenses is another.

You did, OP, I stand corrected.
However, those 'capable of working' may find their circumstances suddenly through no fault of their own.
Do you suggest that benefits should only be paid in vouchers to be used in government sanctioned shops that do not provide any luxury goods?

GrowSomeCress Thu 04-Apr-13 19:31:16

OP, I think mumsnet is a particularly left-leaning site - and it doesn't always mirror the opinion of society as a whole.

Oh HoneyDragon, the poor goats, will noone think of the goats grin

YouTheCat Thu 04-Apr-13 19:33:52

You don't have to be left-leaning to have some bloody compassion and empathy.

PeneloPeePitstop Thu 04-Apr-13 19:34:06

Wannabe I barbecued my goat...

Bearbehind Thu 04-Apr-13 19:35:25

Thanks fairyjen, I am referring to the minority who chose to remain on benefits rather than looking for work

We had to rehome ours.

Thank god theres no Goathouse on MN. I would have been flamed badly for that!

PeachActiviaMinge Thu 04-Apr-13 19:38:58

If you earn £15k P.A then £812 of your taxes will go to welfare and pensions but if you have one child then you receive £1055.60 in child benefit p.a.

Also in 2010 just under 1/3 (28%) of all benefits paid out went to people on above average incomes.


The minority who choose to remain on benefjts is so small that honestly tbere are more important issues. Can you not see that?

Unemployment. Inflation. The crisis in Europe. The situation in N.Korea.

These are all this that will directly or indirectly affect us. They need discussed and this govt needs to do something.

Instead they are talking about scroungers and wide screen TVs while their mates are rolling in the bucks an sending them offshore.

Get it yet? Its a distraction.

So, bear behind, have you had children? Did you receive child benefit? Any maternity benefits like smp?

GrowSomeCress Thu 04-Apr-13 19:42:05

YouTheCat I didn't say you did. But it's fairly obvious that mumsnet is left leaning and that explains some of the general views on here, which are not always mirrored amongst the general public.

I didn't even express an opinion on benefits.

FanjoForTheMammaries Thu 04-Apr-13 19:42:40

OP..because they aren't heartless bastards who believe everything they read in the Mail perhaps?

CloudsAndTrees Thu 04-Apr-13 19:43:51

Many people on MN are so anti benefit bashing because they class anything that isn't a liberal left opinion on benefits as bashing. Discussing anything about the benefit system and disagreeing with any element of it is seen as bashing. Which would be fine if it were actually 'bashing'. Or if it was criticising individuals without any knowledge about them. I would be against offending people for no reason too, but most of the time, it isn't. It's just a discussion. A discussion that is nearly always labeled wrongly, as bashing.

It's very silly.

Bearbehind Thu 04-Apr-13 19:43:52

Freddie those aren't the benefits I'm talking about, those are for a finite period, they are not in lieu of working for the majority of your life.

SirChenjin Thu 04-Apr-13 19:44:17

Child benefit and SMP? Are you deliberately ignoring "the minority who chose to remain on benefits rather than looking for work" comment from the OP? If so, why?

Bearbehind - a number of reasons. Let me explain my perspective.
Firstly, the media seems to me to be (cynically and for the most vile of reasons) using the Philpott case to smear the reputation of people on benefits. This is, it seems to me, to be a highly immoral thing to do. Philpott is no more representative of people on benefits than (to quote Owen Jones I believe) Beverley Allitt is of nurses, Shipman was of GPs, or Hitler was of failed artists. I believe that the motivation for this kind of bracketing is to demonise people on benefits and justify treating them as criminal and subhuman.
In fact people on benefits have no more in common with each other than people in work - they are a class and within that class each individual circumstance is unique.
As for your personal opinion about what benefits 'should' be, well to turn your question on its head, why would you think that everyone should share what is - it seems to me - a very small minded, narrow and mean spirited, even inhumane, way of looking at your fellow human beings? All this talk of food stamps, the bare minimums, no alcohol?? It's nasty jealousy and envy and forgets that the people who will suffer most are th CHILDREN. Not to worry though, because they are only the children of welfare. Not actually PEOPLE or anything.
I am not interested in prescribing the 'luxuries' that other people on benefits should or should not use their money on. It is, bottom line, not my business. Benefits are set at a pretty minimal level and most people I know who claim benefits are - SURPRISE! - struggling to get by.
FWIW I have never claimed benefits ever, though I have been in receipt of child benefit and I also had a student grant a gazillion years ago.

MyDarlingClementine Thu 04-Apr-13 19:45:51

I dont know if mn is left leaning I just think they shout the loudest.

FarBetterNow Thu 04-Apr-13 19:45:54

There are many 'state benefits' paid to rich people too, ie Maternity Pay and Child Benefit.
Why bother giving money to people who really do not need it?

It isn't just the poor and jobless who receive benefits.

There are many tax avoidence schemes set up for people on 40% tax.
Oh and then we have the Philip Green's of the world.

DevonLodger Thu 04-Apr-13 19:45:57

Slightly OT but why are people on here (and Sky/BBC) referring to "Mick" and "Mairead" as if we know them and we can use their familiar nicknames or their Christian names. See post above "Mairead worked". Mairead Philppott is a child killer. Michael Philpott was a dangerous evil man. Benefits are irrelevant here. No one used the familiar "Maxine" or "Ian" (Huntley) or "Myra" and nor should they have in those cases or this.

GrowSomeCress Thu 04-Apr-13 19:46:17

SirChenjin because then they wouldn't be able to use their ad hominem and straw man arguments

So sorry. I read the op and took my time to post and x-posted with the clarification.

So, it's certain benefits you disapprove of, but not all.

What ones in particular are allowed and what ones are not allowed?

sandberry Thu 04-Apr-13 19:47:52

Because I don't judge other people out of envy and self righteousness and I don't think the only value in a person is what they earn
plus adults can make their own decisions on what to do with their money. If they choose to shop and eat cheaply in order to go on holiday, why is that my business?

Also because increasing poverty especially child poverty ultimately costs the country more money in health care and criminality this far outweighs the marginal amount spent on reasonable benefits. Keeping benefits deliberately low is political point scoring and appeasing jealous people for votes, it will not make even the tiniest dent in the deficit and ultimately is likely to lead to a slower recovery from recession.
Personally I would prefer the government to focus on something useful.

morethanpotatoprints Thu 04-Apr-13 19:48:49


Your last paragraph asks what you are missing. I don't believe you are missing anything, nor do I believe you are really asking a question.
I also believe you fully understand that many tax payers aren't happy to fund other peoples lives on benefit, because these boards are full of such comments.
It is my opinion that you are purposely trying to goad.

expatinscotland Thu 04-Apr-13 19:49:01

'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?'


We are working poor. We don't and cannot afford luxuries.

We live in a HA maisonette and so all our neighbours are working poor and/or on benefits.

The only ones who have Sky, fags, booze all the time, all that crap are on the fiddle, and, as pointed out, plenty of us are in work, albeit low-paid.

poppypebble Thu 04-Apr-13 19:49:20

Most spending actually goes on pensioners, JSA accounts for around 3 per cent of welfare spending.

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

Bearbehind - off you pop then and live on the benefits you think are going to,fund your extravagant lifestyle. Since you're so sure.

poppypebble Thu 04-Apr-13 20:11:49

Here the government's own figure for fraud is 0.7 per cent.

Bearbehind Thu 04-Apr-13 20:12:20

Yay bibs you have put it far better than I have! Thank you- my sentiments exactly

Sunnywithshowers Thu 04-Apr-13 20:12:31

Because I have seen what life on benefits is like, and it sucks rotting balls.

Because we shouldn't punish the majority of honest strivers for the actions of a few.

Because for every dingbat sitting on their arse living in 'luxury' on benefits, there are many thousands who are afraid of the next bill or selling their possessions to get by.

Because my DB lost 2 stone in 2 months because he had only £10 a week to feed and clothe himself after his bills were paid. [He is now working on a zero hours contract and doesn't know from week to week how much income he will have coming in.]

Because there are hardly any decent fucking jobs, and the price of everything is going up.

Because carers are paid piss all to save this government millions of pounds every year, but are still shit on by people who think that benefits claimants are all scroungers.

Because illness, disability and joblessness can happen to anyone.

<hides thread>

expatinscotland Thu 04-Apr-13 20:12:38

''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.'

Of course. 'I didn't mean you! I meant them!' Naturally.

williaminajetfighter Thu 04-Apr-13 20:14:06

Moomins. Examples like that are few and far between. What's sadder and much more prevalent are the households in places like Easterhouse with 4 generations of unemployment. That's just rotten.

JSA is not exactly easy to come by though. When my DH was made redundant a few years ago he was told he wasn't entitled to anything because we had capital - were half way through paying a mortgage on our flat. Was told we should sell flat and live on proceeds. Person at job centre even said 'you live on a nice street...' Nice. So JSA is not universally available.

poppypebble Thu 04-Apr-13 20:14:07

Who is joining me as we pour over lists of the deserving and undeserving poor to decide who we should bash and who we shouldn't?

FarBetterNow Thu 04-Apr-13 20:14:31

Pamelat: You are correct - NO ONE should be abusing the system.
Phillip Green, Jimmy Carr and the many other thousands of tax avoiders shouldn't be either.

PeachActiviaMinge Thu 04-Apr-13 20:14:35

'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.

So the 0.7% of claimants? I am so so sick of being classed as scum because of a tiny tiny handful of people. The only reason this makes the news is because so few people are doing it. I wish you could live a day in my shoes or PPP's and understand how hard it is to know so many people are looking down their nose at you when all you're doing is trying to survive, how it feels to have your childs teacher hand you a bag of school uniform because she's noticed your child's clothing is full of holes, how grateful and ashamed you feel, how much it hurts to not be better.

There is no safe place for people like us anymore, nowhere we can be and just forget all the crap in our lives for a little while, Somewhere to get some support and just feel human for a few minutes. We have basically nothing anyway now you're taking away the one place we could turn for a little support without being judged.

poppypebble Thu 04-Apr-13 20:16:29

Some Tudor poor laws here, select which ones you think we should have put back on the statute books:

1531: If any man or woman are vagrants, they shall be tied to the end of a cart, naked, and be beaten with whips until their body be bloody.
1547: Anyone unemployed for three days is a vagrant and could be branded with a ‘V’ and given as a slave to the person who reported them as a vagrant. If a slave ran away twice he could be executed.
1572: Vagrants should be whipped and bored through the ear for a first offence; executed for a third offence.
Everyone in a parish shall make compulsory weekly payments to help the poor and sick.
1576: Parishes should provide raw materials for the unemployed to work with.
1598: Vagrants should be whipped until they were bloody, and then sent to the Parish where they were born. There they should be given work if able bodied, or put in almshouses if not. Persistent vagrants should be put in a house of correction.
Each parish should appoint people to look after the deserving poor, and collect tax from people in the parish to look after the poor.

morethanpotatoprints Thu 04-Apr-13 20:16:48

OP, having come back to this thread and having read the post by Peachactivia I have reported your thread for its goadiness and the fact your wording is so offensive.

I'm not sure if you set out to do this but this thread is not good. I didn't want to leave without stating the bleeding obvious.

So sorry Peach

Bearbehind Thu 04-Apr-13 20:17:16

freddie Have I once said that is what I aspire to do- strange assumption to make? I don't need to live on benefits, for which I'm grateful, but I can't imagine choosing to do so if there was an alternative, which is my point. If there is absolutely no other option then that is what welfare is for, but not instead of working for a fucking living when you are perfectly able to and there are jobs in your area.

SirBoobAlot Thu 04-Apr-13 20:17:54

Less than one percent, you mean, then?

Go away and educate yourself with something other than a BNP leaflet.

SirBoobAlot Thu 04-Apr-13 20:19:21

Peach completely understand how you feel.

Un-MN hugs to you.x

Oh. Right. All these fucking jobs. Where? Or didn't you notice the economic climate out there?

FreyaSnow Thu 04-Apr-13 20:19:42

'What's sadder and much more prevalent are the households in places like Easterhouse with 4 generations of unemployment. That's just rotten.'

4 generations of unemployment (presumably not including school children). So that's families where nobody has worked since when? The twenties? The second world war?

Does such a family actually exist?

Bearbehind Thu 04-Apr-13 20:22:21

morethan this thread isn't goady, report away if you feel the need, I have yet to hear a justification to change my views that the benefit system allows the minority to chose to live off it rather than even attempting to work because they can fund a lifestyle in excess of that which they could fund by working.

Those who need benefits because they medically or geographically can't work are not who I was referring to and you haven't grasped that.

FarBetterNow Thu 04-Apr-13 20:22:56

Please do NOT feel ashamed because of your situation.

I hope life gets better for you.

Ignore the ignorant people on here.
There are many good, kind people here wishing you well.
Best wishes to you and your family.

Do you mean that to sound so patronising and rude?

FarBetterNow Thu 04-Apr-13 20:25:20

My ex MIL always whinged about people claiming benefits, but she also always paid tradesmen cash to avoid the VAT.

Double standards but she never, ever thought it was immoral.

Bearbehind Thu 04-Apr-13 20:27:33

Not at all freddie I actually really don't think what I said was patronising or rude. Maybe that's my problem and maybe I will never understand this but how can you justify some people choosing to live off benefits for an infinite period when there are alternatives

GrowSomeCress Thu 04-Apr-13 20:28:50

expatinscotland Of course. 'I didn't mean you! I meant them!' Naturally.

Do you not understand that it is possible for someone to criticise one sub-group of people within one group?

pamelat Thu 04-Apr-13 20:29:05


I'm sorry

I'm sorry that things are hard for you

Maybe it is too easy to be cushioned from it when it's not you, if that makes sense.

No one means to hurt, people, including me on here, just feel misplaced resentment.

On an individual level most people do still care about others

Go live off the benefits for a year.

Then you might get it.

Good luck all, I'm out before I burst a blood vessel banging my head off the wall.

usualsuspect Thu 04-Apr-13 20:31:19

Blah blah blah blah blah blah.

hugoagogo Thu 04-Apr-13 20:33:13

they can fund a lifestyle in excess of that which they could fund by working.

The problem here is that work does not pay enough, not that benefits pay too much.

step up for a living wage

over 90% of people who claim JSA are back in work within 12 months. these are sort of figures we should bear in mind. I am nearly 50. I have spent all my life working and paying into national insurance..I have also been receipt of benefits when working. and now I am not working (due to my business not making it, and sadly having to make my employees redundant). should I be bashed? why not allow that all those years of paying taxes and NI ensures I will not starve and my ds will not suffer during the the short period of time I need to get back on my feet? why demonise me for choosing to pay for internet access because my ds needs it for school work? why demonise me at all? It is an outrage. All those years of paying into an insurance scheme which apparently means I get things for free...hardly. I'd challenge most of the benefit bashers to have got to where I am in life without claiming benefits. shameful. shameful shameful.

sleepyhead Thu 04-Apr-13 20:34:39

Pamalat - I presume you reported the two people you "know" are working and claiming benefits.

What is the solution to this? Honestly, tell me what is the solution to the minority (and I know you think it's a majority but there are no figures that support you on this - it just feels like a majority because the news reports concentrate on the exceptional cases like the Iraqi woman subletting the £2mil mansion - allegedly) that doesn't end up affecting the innocent?

Because if you make the rules stricter, start handing out food vouchers, start banning people from buying certain goods with state support income then you make things harder for the majority who aren't "scroungers", who work hard, who are desperately trying to make ends meet - who could be you one day.

The government accept that accountants find loopholes for every single tax avoidance scheme in existence so that the rich can avoid paying their share by exploiting schemes in a way that wasn't intended. They accept that this is inevitable if they want to encourage certain behaviours (saving for example). They accept that exploitation of loopholes is what you pay to not have an insanely complicated tax system or to have to do away with tax breaks altogether. But heaven forfend a tiny proportion of benefit claimants gets away with the same thing, albeit on a miniscule scale...

CelticPixie Thu 04-Apr-13 20:36:00

I object to the lumping in together of all benefit claimants. I've had to claim JSA in the past and found it totally soul destroying, certainly not something I'd aspire to. It's a pittance and you get spoken to like dirt by some jobsworth with a superiority complex. A horrible experience and I feel for anyone who's unemployed at the moment.

Bearbehind Thu 04-Apr-13 20:36:10

freddie I'm banging my head against a brick wall too- you don't seem to understand that my point is I would never chose to live off benefits and if shit happened I would do all I could to support myself. I appreciate I may be unable to avoid it and I would be grateful for the benefits if I relied on them but I would never decide to live off the state if I had alternatives.

usualsuspect Thu 04-Apr-13 20:36:22

Is it your cousins best mates dad, that choses to live on benefits, OP?

hugoagogo Thu 04-Apr-13 20:36:26

It was interesting to see the expression 'the deserving poor' quoted earlier, how different to 'scroungers'. sad

usualsuspect Thu 04-Apr-13 20:36:53


usualsuspect Thu 04-Apr-13 20:37:39

Did you spot someone in Asda buying fags and vodka with their FREE money?

SanityClause Thu 04-Apr-13 20:39:36

Everyone, except for about the top 5%, are net takers from the system.

So, okay, you might not receive any benefits (not even child benefit, or a pension -yet!) But, you get policing, education, health, civic amenities etc, all subsidised by others who are putting more into the system than they take out.

Why are you not paying your way, you scrounger?

We live in quite a nice house, and have a nice lifestyle. But we rarely eat out or have a takeaway. These are things that people we know, who are on lower incomes than us, take for granted as beng a normal expense that they can afford. Why is it for me to say that they are wrong to spend their money on that, because to us it is a luxury?

Benefit bashing is easy to do. It's convenient for people in a society to find a hate figure to blame. I think you'll find historical evidence for this.

expatinscotland Thu 04-Apr-13 20:40:22

No, usual, they were in Oxfam buying goats.

montage Thu 04-Apr-13 20:40:32

"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."

Is that really how you see it? His comments "touched a nerve"?

I think many people saw it as morally reprehensible and quite unbelievable that he sought to use the deaths of 6 children to score a political point.

If you see his comments as acceptable but just "touching a nerve" then there isn't any point engaging with you really.

Footface Thu 04-Apr-13 20:41:55

There is also a massive jugdementak attitude that if you claim benefits and work, then you should bloody well work harder, longer it have a second job.

Just because you are paid a low salary doesn't mean you work less harder than someone on 40k.

usualsuspect Thu 04-Apr-13 20:42:51

Did you overhear 2 girls in costa saying they were going to have more babies to get a bigger council house?

Or was that someone else? <narrows eyes>

Pagwatch Thu 04-Apr-13 20:43:01

It's a funny old thread.
I can't quite get past the idea that people are supposed to be in favour of bashing.
What on earth is the positive outcome of bashing any group?
Why is it odd that people don't like a particular group getting a kicking?


RowanMumsnet (MNHQ) Thu 04-Apr-13 20:43:12

Hi there

We've moved this thread to In the News now as it's not really an AIBU

We know this is an emotive topic but please remember the Talk Guidelines


every society chooses to stamp on the feet of those further down the ladder than them in an economic crisis. all of those thirty odd years I worked and paid my taxes and employed people mean nothing, nothing to those who fear the feral feckless. Wait until their wtc is gone, their ctc is gone, their cb is gone. and see how they manage. wait until their position is made redundant. and for those of who who object to big tvs, when you have no hope ever of owning your own home, why should you not spend any spare cash on a good tv?

usualsuspect Thu 04-Apr-13 20:45:18

Can you move it to the Goading topic?

sleepyhead Thu 04-Apr-13 20:45:28

So how do you suggest that we target, with laser precision, those people who choose to live off benefits (which doesn't suggest to me that they've got a lot going for them since living off benefits doesn't exactly get you much of a life) without punishing those who didn't make that choice?

That's what you have to accept. Any changes that make things harder for those you label (correctly or no) scroungers will make things harder for everyone on benefits. The tighter you draw that net, the more you'll catch.

We can't even find a way to make Philip Green admit that it isn't his Monaco-based wife who's making all that lovely money, how do you think we'd be more successful in targeting some people who are content to live on fifty odd quid a week in a damp tenement in the East End of Glasgow? And even if we can, don't you think that PG would make a riper plum?

pamelat Thu 04-Apr-13 20:46:05

I didn't report them, I should have. In fact if it happens again I will do

I don't like being a "grass" but recognise that this is hypocritical!! It's difficult when the person is someone that you are related to and is in many ways less fortunate, at least financially, than you sad

Maybe the stand we need to take is a zero tolerance to the abuse of it, a wider knowledge of how to report and people doing it. A wider awareness of figures of abuse ofthe system. I'd like to know how they worked these out as it's not something you'd self report? Perhaps not even anonymously?

It may sound patronising but perhaps we need re-educating on welfare criteria and getting the non welfare supported people on side.

There's a lot of tension isn't there between different groups, mainly stemming from a lack of awareness?

I'm not sure what this awareness would bring, but it would alter opinions on both sides, it can only be a good thing

Maybe if the two "sides" joined up a little those abusing it would fltered out.

The abuse of the system is the thing to focus on, even if as minuscule as claimed, as it's the focus of popular opinion. I think.

GrowSomeCress Thu 04-Apr-13 20:47:00

Generalising and benefit bashing is bad... as is doing the equivalent of covering your ears and screaming 'lalalala' to any possible mention of any problem of the system ever, as some posters are doing

I was reported. When I was on benefits. For having a boyfriend living with me.

I didn't. It was a malicious report.

But the weeks it took to sort out were not fun I can assure you.

poppypebble Thu 04-Apr-13 20:48:59

MadameDefarge is quite right, people do fear those who have little. The fear is that they have little to lose. In 1596 Edward Hext claimed that the country was overrun by 'desperate and wicked persons' because some people were starving.

expatinscotland Thu 04-Apr-13 20:49:23

Every time I see Gidiot, he touches a nerve.

The MPs subsidised bar - a fucking bar - and canteen costs the taxpayer about £6m/annum. They have a £15/day meal allowance. On top of their £64K salary for a job with 12 weeks holiday, £400/month grocery allowance, live in a free home in London (a bought one, often enough) courtesy of the taxpayer and many claim over £100K/annum in expenses/annum.

Every time I see that man, I think about that and you'd better believe it touches a nerve because he is forever preaching to the rest of us about a life he knows sweet FA about.

Well &#375;ou know it is hard to afford food on 64k

ItsallisnowaFeegle Thu 04-Apr-13 20:52:09

Both myself and DP work. We earn too much to claim any tax credits etc. Have DD 15, DS 17 weeks. We're struggling on my Mat pay & will struggle just as much financially and much more so emotionally on my return to work.

We both pay a decent lump into Tax & Nat. Insurance but you know what? Who the fuck am I to police HOW people spend their benefits? I really don't give a shit. I have my own worries and my own life to navigate.

I use my vote wisely and all I can say is I hope to fuck those who whinge about 'benefits scroungers' do too.

We live in a democracy people!

SanityClause Thu 04-Apr-13 20:53:52

Shouldn't this have been moved to Shite Stuff?

expatinscotland Thu 04-Apr-13 20:55:51

Very hard, Stealth. They need not just a canteen but also a bar. A fucking bar. It's not enough for them to get £15/day for their subsidised food but also their BAR, after they wanted a min price for alcohol for everyone else. But they get a fucking state-subsidised bar.


And they're chosing this lifestyle! Scroungers!

usualsuspect Thu 04-Apr-13 20:55:57

I'm not bitter about people who have less than me, why the fuck would I be?

Living on benefits is not the life of fucking riley the DM would have you believe.

If you are eligible for benefits in our society then you should be able to claim those without reproach. If society deems the system to be too generous then vote for the people who would reduce them. what i object to is the demonisation of people who claim the benefits the law allows them.

sleepyhead Thu 04-Apr-13 20:57:12

Exactly expat, and the reason they have all these things (too much, waaay too much) was originally to make sure that MPs from other parts of the country weren't put off standing for Parliament because of the expense. So that ordinary people could become MPs and not just the independently wealthy. It wasn't meant to just be the preserve of the professional politician.

Again, an example of a fair enough concept that gets distorted and abused. But if we got rid of all the subsidies and expenses we'd be back to Lord Deep-Pockets and pals being the only people who became MPs - too risky for the ordinary to do something that involves packing in your job and your life to come back to potentially nothing in 4 years time.

Mind you, don't think I'm not saying that we could pare off a great big slice without too much hardship.

I admit I used to be as narrow minded as a some people on this thread. Moaned about single mums and scroungers living of tax payers money blush. Then I became a single mum. Twice. And ended up with a disabled child and on income support after having to give up my job.

Then I got it, and understood just how shitty life is on benefits.

scottishmummy Thu 04-Apr-13 21:03:43

Osbourne got it wrong.philpott is not representative of most people on benefits

KarlosKKrinkelbeim Thu 04-Apr-13 21:04:27

I think it is possible to hold the view that our current welfare arrangements occasionally play a role in facilitating some unpleasant lifestyles whie also recognising that the Philpotts of this world are very far indeed from being representative of most benefit claimants.
I used to do criminal defence work, and came into daily contact with a group of people who hoover up a great deal of public resource, in terms of direct payments, health care, paid-for legal representation etc - but they are not the norm, thankfully. Something like 47% of the welfare budget goes on pensioners, most of the rest to people in work.

stephrick Thu 04-Apr-13 21:04:30

I'm on some benefits though work, have 3 children, eldest is working in a rural area where we live when work is hard to find, he is moving out to flat share with a workmate, DD is moving for UNi in September, youngest is doing GCSE and want to go to uni too. My point is when we see the feckless that do not give aspirations to their children, and lets face it they are hardly going to bother to go on MN, Mumnetters care about thier children's futures, whether they are on benefits or not.

DP went to his second interview since august (from hundreds of CVs and applications sent) to be talked down to. He had his CV picked apart, like something out of the apprentice, for a fucking min wage factory job.

Then she asked "And how have you been supporting yourself since August?"

Really? You have to ask? You have to make him say it? This man who has worked since he was still in school, who is on his knees because he is out of work, who is over qualified for your fucking job but he really really bloody wants it!! But yes, you have to make him say hes been signing on, out loud.

Then tell him you cannot proceed with his application because his references are over 6 months old.

The worst part? I have to lie beside him at night while he tosses and turns, losing sleep because he didnt get the job. Lucky fucking escape if you ask me.

usualsuspect Thu 04-Apr-13 21:11:10

That's the reality, wannabe.

I know it, you know it. Try convincing the moaning bitter twats though.

stephrick Thu 04-Apr-13 21:17:38

I feel for you both, all companies want are arse kissers, yes sir no sir, they are not interested in whether they will work hard. I went to an Asda interview a few years ago and we had to do bloody role play, for F sake. I was in the Navy years ago and I didn't have to role play for an interview then.

PeneloPeePitstop Thu 04-Apr-13 21:26:38

Yunno my sibling who tells me to get a job?

He's got a job. And claims JSA.

The only shame is I don't know for sure he's doing it right this minute so can't report it.

Nice, eh? And I'm the Scrounger.

stephrick Thu 04-Apr-13 21:28:04

ohhh do you want to? I would

PeneloPeePitstop Thu 04-Apr-13 21:29:08

Yep and if I was sure I'd do it. He's been vile to me.

stephrick Thu 04-Apr-13 21:30:42

if they get a tip off they don't watch just for a day, they will keep an eye on it for a while.

MrsVamos Thu 04-Apr-13 21:37:53


My DH went to an interview recently where the bloke conducting it told him (after working out that DH was far more qualified than him for his job) than he was that it was "very nice to meet you but I didn't quite get the responses I wanted from the advert for the job, so I'm going to re-advertise and wait to hear from younger people".

Not that younger people shouldn't have jobs, but my DH is bloody terrified he may never work again. sad

ItsallisnowaFeegle Thu 04-Apr-13 21:40:05

Your OH has my utmost respect wannabe. As do you for sharing something that's so genuinely heartbreaking.

This, unfortunately, is indicative of how life is for far too many in the UK. It's only getting worse and those who moan about people claiming benefits need to be repeating there but for the grace, on a daily basis, because if this diabolical situation, that too many families in this country are finding themselves in, never has any kind of impact on you and yours, you will be lucky indeed.

Its a disgrace MrsVamos.

The young are discriminated against too. DP is only now able to get insurance for the job he is qualified to do, but employers want years of experience. Which he hasnt got due to the insurance.

Then you have my Dad who is keeping his job by the skin of his teeth with pay cuts and hours cuts and you wonder if he lost it would he get another due to his age.

Its scary and demoralising and horrible to live through. Thing is, its an employers market. They get to pick and choose. sad

Dawndonna Thu 04-Apr-13 21:50:39

The problem is Bear that the more you go on about those who 'choose a benefits lifestyle' the more those of us who haven't chosen it are affected. We are all tarred with the same brush, like it or not. I have stated on here more than once that we were hounded out of a village in which we used to live. At that point my dh could still walk, just, so apparently we were choosing to live on benefits and he was being a lazy arse. He was a lecturer, as was I. The notes posted through our door (at four and five in the morning) were horrific, along with bad spelling and grammar! Oh, and then along came the new government, took away my respite care and ensured that I could no longer work to support us. My dh needs dressing, turning at night, help to use the lavatory. He is 42. On top of this, I work an eighteen hour day looking after three children with disabilities. The government pays me £53 quid a week for that, and there are many on mumsnet as well as other places who call me scum for it. So please, everytime you say, 'Oh, I don't mean you', it's still me and others like me, that catch the flak. We don't look like we're doing enough because you're not awake at night watching us, or you see us wandering in the supermarket, or our children are having a good day. It's us that are tarred with that choosing a lifestyle brush too, not matter that you don't mean us.

MrsVamos Thu 04-Apr-13 21:52:08

It is, wanna. I feel for you and DH and family as I know exactly how shit it is. (((HUG)))

I feel sorry for the young. Can't get jobs, no jobs out there, no training, certainly not anything that would lead to a job. Almost all employers want experience, which no-one is prepared to give ! Crazy world we live in.

Totally agree about it being an employers market. And I hollow laugh every time I hear anyone talk about "making work pay"....where is this work, and where are the wages to enable work to pay ?

My DH is going for everything he is capable of doing. Yet for every let's say, 20 jobs he applies for, he might hear back from 2. Gets spoken to like crap, even though he worked for nearly 40 years before he had to claim. It was the last thing he ever wanted to do. Every day I see the light go out of his eyes a little bit more, and like you, every night I listen to him tossing and turning and sleeping a little bit less. My heart breaks.

GrowSomeCress Thu 04-Apr-13 21:54:21

MrsVamos That's really sad sad hope he keeps going

BenjaminButton172 Thu 04-Apr-13 21:57:13

So just because there is 0.fuckall % of people who choose not to work you think it is ok to start a goady thread.

I work and claim jsa. How do you like that?
Does that mean that i am a scrounger, a benefit cheat?

MrsVamos Thu 04-Apr-13 22:02:24

It's sad, yes, Grow but it's nowhere near as bad as some people have it.

I thank my lucky stars every day we all have our health, it could be a damn sight worse.

I have always thought that you should always think of the saying "walk a mile in someone else's shoes" before you judge.

You never truly know people's personal situations, and frankly I don't care who is and isn't claiming whatever benefits, if they need to, and they have been assessed as being 'entitled to' (because that's what it says on the letters that you get) then fair enough.

I am not in a position to judge anyone, and I don't.

I would also love to know how people 'generally' milk the system, from my experience it is very hard to get certain benefits, and for the life of me have no idea how you can 'fiddle'.

I think the saddest thing really is that there are twats who are involved in certain 'programmes' who told my DH that in order to get back into employment, because we lost our car, we should go to the bank and get a loan for a vehicle, or that he should go self employed and do it via public transport. Which would be brilliant, except that we have no income other than certain benefits, which would rule out the loan, and as for the public transport idea ? Great. Now tell me how a plumber does that ?

GrowSomeCress Thu 04-Apr-13 22:10:23

BenjaminButton172 it depends how much you work. If you work full time then yes indeed, you are a benefit cheat.

no grow some cress. do you actually know how much someone earns full time on the minimum wage?

BenjaminButton172 Thu 04-Apr-13 22:17:32

Grow no i dont work full time. I work under 16 and declare it like you are meant to. (cant seem to find any other job sad )

I just got a bit annoyed at the comments about people claiming jsa and working as some people dont know that you can. There is quite a few people at my work who do the same because our employer likes to employ four people on basically zero hour contracts to do one persons job.

Tasmania Thu 04-Apr-13 22:17:53

A bit off-topic. What is it with Sky TV? Is it really that great and exciting??? Nowadays that you have Freeview? Seriously?!?

Don't claim benefits, and don't have Sky TV. Hardly find time to watch TV because of work, family life and hobbies...

MrsVamos Thu 04-Apr-13 22:19:33

I don't get that about Sky either. DH would love it for the F1, but there's no way we could justify the money it costs.

I wouldn't put money into Murdoch's bank account either.

shufflehopstep Thu 04-Apr-13 22:21:05

wannabee - That is horrendous shock. You can report them for age discrimination if they said that. If someone was in an interview and they'd said, "very nice to meet you but I didn't quite get the responses I wanted from the advert for the job, so I'm going to re-advertise and wait to hear from a man / white person" there's no way they'd just sit and take it. It's against the law to discriminate because of age. Click here

That was MrsVamos' DH.

But I was thinking the exact same thing just now. It is definately age discrimination.

shufflehopstep Thu 04-Apr-13 22:24:52

Sorry. Just realised it was MrsVamos.

MrsVamos Thu 04-Apr-13 22:28:46


I know, DH knows, employer's know, you know, but what can you do ? When he next signed on the Advisor mentioned it and was shocked, but it's not even like they can ring the person and say "you must employ MrVamos, you cannot discriminate against age" is it ?

This is just another part of the problem. A lot of companies won't be honest and say they consider him too old, it's that he lives too far away, or lives in the 'wrong postcode' for the vacancy advertised.

Kind of kicks into touch the ideas of "get on your bike" or "get on the bus" to find work, doesn't it ?

I'll have a look at your link but it won't do any good. Thanks for the thought, though. smile

GrowSomeCress Thu 04-Apr-13 22:29:19

MadameDefarge if you work full time (which BenjaminButton doesn't, so irrelevant now) then you are not eligible for JSA. If you get it you are a benefit cheat.

MrsVamos Thu 04-Apr-13 22:29:49

And for the record, he's not old !

if I work full time dependent on my wage I am eligible for ctc, wtc, hb etc. which part of that legal entitlement makes me a benefit cheat?

when I had my business I paid myself minimum wage (actually I didnt even do that, I preffered to pay my staff) but I claimed as such. does that make me a benefit cheat? to have employed 12 people and have paid myself virtually nothing?

and i worked more hours out of the day than you could ever imagine. when we stopped service at 11 I would scrub the kitchen down which took two hours. I got to bed at 1 am. if i didnt cash up properly. you have no idea.

GrowSomeCress Thu 04-Apr-13 22:40:03

MadameDefarge er, I didn't say it did?

I have said specifically twice I AM TALKING ABOUT JSA which you cannot claim if you work full time.

shufflehopstep Thu 04-Apr-13 22:40:29

MrsV - They won't automatically employ him but you could take them to a tribunal and get some compensation. You have to pay court costs but a lot of companies will pay out outside of court to avoid the bad publicity. My DH works in HR (although at the moment he too is "between appointments" with no sign of anything on the horizon) and this is the sort of thing he deals with. Definitely have a look at the link.

BenjaminButton172 Thu 04-Apr-13 22:40:39

Madame I think u might have misunderstood.

I was talking about jsa and Grow responded to that. No where did it say anything about tax credits or other benefits.

Of course you can get other benefits if you work full time, you can not get jsa.

GrowSomeCress Thu 04-Apr-13 22:41:06

Honestly MadameDefarge I am confused. I was talking specifically about JOB SEEKER'S ALLOWANCE and saying if you work full time and claim it that makes you a benefit cheat.

I didn't even mention any other kind of benefit, or claim that you didn't work a lot of hours or didn't work hard or anything like that!

Well dont fucking restrict your condemnation to jsa... there are lots of other benefits people are entitle too by law like ISA or ESA. so what the fuck are you talking about? be clear. you just being pissy about people on jsa? do you even know what the stats are on that ? I hardly think so. as i stated earlier. over 90% of people on JSA get a job within 12 months.

sorry< I am bit confused, anyone of JSA is benefit cheat? what the hell are you saying? have you any idea of the hoops you have to jump through to keep jsa?

GrowSomeCress Thu 04-Apr-13 22:46:07

MadameDefarge I genuinely don't know what you're talking about. I never once "condemned" JSA.

I said that people who work FULL TIME and CLAIM JSA are benefit cheats. THAT IS TRUE. I said that in response to a comment by BenjaminButton.

Blathering on about condemnation and stats and stuff - I never said that people hang around not getting jobs on JSA. Wtf!!
Stop attacking stuff I haven't even said

MrsVamos Thu 04-Apr-13 22:46:34


You're a sweetheart, but there's no way we could risk having to pay court costs !

GrowSomeCress Thu 04-Apr-13 22:47:16

MadameDefarge I think you are a bit confused so I will say this once more as clearly as possible.

I never said "anyone on JSA is a benefit cheat".
I never "condemned JSA".
I never suggested that people don't work hard for little money.

All I said was that people who work full time and claim JSA at the same time are benefit cheats.
That is a fact.

KarlosKKrinkelbeim Thu 04-Apr-13 22:48:26

I am always bemused by the stories I hear about no jobs on offer. I am looking for soemone to come and work for me, as a classroom assistant for my DS who has ASD. I do not ask for prior experience, and I will arrange for full training. I am struggling to find anyone. people do not seem to want the work. I am offering well above min wage, btw.

GrowSomeCress Thu 04-Apr-13 22:48:43

And I was saying as a reply to BenjaminButton, not as a random attack claiming that all those on JSA are cheats. For god's sake.

IF people are cheating the system then they should be punished. They are benefit cheats and are committing fraud. what everyone else is objecting to is the notion that everyone on benefits are either happy to sit on their arses or have a cash in hand job.

BenjaminButton172 Thu 04-Apr-13 22:50:55

Madame i think you need to go back and read what i wrote and then read Grow's comment as it was in response to what i said.

Grow wasnt having a go at people on jsa, just stating a fact. You can not work full time and claim jsa. That is all that was said.

GrowSomeCress Thu 04-Apr-13 22:50:57

Yes. Exactly. I don't even know what you're talking about, and why you were attacking me for something I didn't say.

I will reread then.

and apologies in advance if I misread

Tortington Thu 04-Apr-13 23:06:14

the question you should ask is
why is it ok for millions of people to be affected like this - and the day after the queen gets more of our tax money and very soon millionnaires will get a tax break to the tune of £1000 per day.

why is the NHS being privatised

why are the government looking at scrapping minimum wage

why do the govt expect 21 people - to work for free on workfare in the SAME homebase store - yet wont give them a wage?

becuase its ok to fuck the poor up the arse - go on osborne stick it in there - then go french kiss your rich business friends whilst you make the unemployed work for free - whilst paying your good friends who find them jobs disporportionate amounts, whilst maximising your good business friend owners profit.

IshtarisntEaster Thu 04-Apr-13 23:07:13

To answer the OP, because they're decent people who find it completely disgusting that rich men would try to "other" people who are unemployed or disabled by focusing on the tiny minority of people who cheat?

Because they're not stupid?

Because they're not mean-minded?

That's the 3 reasons that spring instantly to mind, I'm sure there are loads of others.

Tortington Thu 04-Apr-13 23:08:17

oh but a poor person smoking is worthy of a daily fail headline.

i cannot for the life of me understand this obsession with the fuck all the poor are given - whilst no-one has even raised an eyebrow at tory party mobile phone emperor donators who don't pay their taxes in this country.

joiemecconue Thu 04-Apr-13 23:08:50

It's a necessary evil, the minority of claimants abusing a system mostly used by a genuine and deserving majority. What is the alternative? Cause a lot of people to suffer just in case a very few profit unfairly? I find it very difficult to care if some people cheat when there are so many more serious social injustices at stake.

shufflehopstep Thu 04-Apr-13 23:22:52

MrsV - last post I promise. You can make your own mind up but the court costs would come out of the money you would be awarded if you won. Obviously, speak to someone in more detail and get more advice but from that comment alone, I imagine you'd have a case. The burden of proof is on them, not you. As I said, if you had a decent case, the company might pay up rather than going to court. It's worth speaking to someone about it. Ring ACAS

Pan Thu 04-Apr-13 23:24:08

It's social engineering, by way of the Tories. I'm a bit surprised people didn't get that in 2010. We voted these fuckers in. We can also vote these fuckers out again.

MrsVamos Thu 04-Apr-13 23:26:40


Have sent you a pm. smile

Darkesteyes Thu 04-Apr-13 23:36:14

Because OP it causes attitudes like this....

DarkesteyesThu 04-Apr-13 22:44:19

I experienced first hand today the kind of attitudes that are being enforced.
A few years back we had a domestic abuse murder in the town where i live. A woman and her young child.
Today i overheard two people discussing the Philpot case and the conversation then focused on a local case.
the words were "they are just council house scum"
yes those were the words spoken about a dead woman and her dead child. Just because they were claiming benefits.
And these words were spoken by a woman who also has had problems with a controlling ex.
But the woman who spoke these words isnt a claimant so her logic is that she herself is an abuse victim but the woman who was murdered isnt. No she is just council scum just because she claimed benefits.
As i left the coffee shop i felt like screaming. its fucking despairing

10 lies were told about welfare says it better than me

"7. Claimants are pulling a fast one

No. Less than 1% of the welfare budget is lost to fraud. But tax avoidance and evasion is estimated to run to £120bn."

Sonnet Thu 04-Apr-13 23:45:10

deadwomanwalking whilst the thread has moved on I feel I have to comment on your post of approx page 4..
If the government had got it right years ago and helped you stay in work for the last 12 years then your families prospects would have been better when your Dh lost his job.
Not having a go at your circumstances you understand just a rant at the shortsightedness of the government

Sonnet Thu 04-Apr-13 23:47:04

Darkest eyes I could scream with you really I could

Flojobunny Thu 04-Apr-13 23:47:49

There is a huge difference between the amount of money a single person gets who is on JSA and a single parent with a couple of kids.
Something needs to be done, as the benefits system is all wrong and unfair.
But I have no idea what.
Sadly neither does the government.
But I am pro bedroom tax and glad that at least they are trying.

niceguy2 Thu 04-Apr-13 23:49:07

"Why is it ok for millions of people to be affected like this - and the day after the queen gets more of our tax money and very soon millionnaires will get a tax break to the tune of £1000 per day."

The queen has got extra because of a change in how the money is worked out. It's now based upon how much profit the Crown estate makes which is the money they give over to the treasury. Contrary to popular belief, the royal family give a lot more to the state than they receive back.

The 'millionaire tax break' I think you are referring to is utter spin from Miliband and co based on an increase in income tax that Labour said when introduced would be 'temporary'.

"why is the NHS being privatised"

It's not.

"why are the government looking at scrapping minimum wage"

It's not. The government has merely asked the low pay commission to consider the impact of any increase on the economy. A fact I'm surprised wasn't considered earlier.

"why do the govt expect 21 people - to work for free on workfare in the SAME homebase store - yet wont give them a wage?"

No idea about this one. Got a link?

Darkesteyes Thu 04-Apr-13 23:50:15

OP have you ever considered the fact that someone that you see "working and claiming JSA" might be on workfare.
Google it cos quite frankly......i cant be fucked.

Flojobunny Thu 04-Apr-13 23:55:16

They are not working for free are they? I thought they were working to keep their benefits.
And clearly you havent tried to get voluntary work recently. People are desperately trying to find that also, in the hope it will lead to a job.

expatinscotland Fri 05-Apr-13 00:12:59

'They are not working for free are they?'

They are costing the employer nothing, and in fact, the employer may even get a cherry for taking them on.

'The benefits system is wrong and unfair.'

You think it's fair that huge for-profit corporations get employees for free and possibly kick backs for doing so and cut real jobs because they get free labour? You think that's right that you the taxpayer should be subsidising them like that by paying out benefits whilst they pay nothing or even get more money from you for this practice?

You think it's right and fair that your money subsidises a canteen and a fucking bar for MPs to the tune of £6m/annum on top of their £15/day meal allowance, £400 for groceries, free home in London, and huge expenses on top of £64K salary and 12 weeks holiday?

You think that's fair and right?

Pan Fri 05-Apr-13 00:14:47

niceguy - the NHS IS being privatised, steadily and comprehensively. Very little of what we thought was public in the NHS isn't any more.
It's a big part of the Tory's agenda. Cut cost, cut services and so drive folk to private insurance, a la the USA.
If that has by-passed you I'm surprised.

Flojobunny Fri 05-Apr-13 00:18:51

No expat I don't. But like I said I don't have the answers. There are lots of changes I would like to make but like the government changes, there will always be knock on effects. They can't possibly please everyone.

I think we are on beenfits.... we get child benefit, about a fivder a week in tax credits. I got JSA and their excellent support for 6 months (love our local Job centre) DH is on a low wage in health and social sector. I am job hunting as I was made redundant, getting some supply teaching work but little jobs.

We feel the system was made to help us as we fully intend to be paying more back into when I am teaching again.

Woohooo for benefits, they are helping us. smile

Here's another good article dealing with FACTS about benefits and what a pilo'shite most of the welfare-state-leads-to-murder spouters should be sat in front of with their eyelids sewn to their foreheads.

Yes, THAT'S how frustrating it is to continually read opinions like those of the op. So read away!

Twentytotwo Fri 05-Apr-13 00:36:46

I think there is an important division here.

There are people whose attitude is 'well you shouldn't have had children if you can't afford them.' They see individual responsibility and self reliance as moral issues and believe that benefits 'subsidize' lazyness and poor lifestyle choices.

Then there are people who want to see those children fed regardless of the choices their parents have made, because children need food and self righteous indignation doesn't fill stomachs.

Darkesteyes Fri 05-Apr-13 00:54:51

Pan i really beilieve that something like a twenty pound fee for a GP appointment isnt too far away.

madamimadam Fri 05-Apr-13 01:01:58

What gets me is the language we use to describe state support given to certain groups. People are 'on benefits', as if they are being lavished with the largesse of the state. Have you read about Helen Goodman's attempt to live on £53pw btw? She said it left her with £18 for food:


Bankers get 'bailed out' (Have you seen the news about HBOS today?), MPs get expenses, a subsidised bar etc. The Queen has a 'pay rise'.

All paid for by the taxpayer - but only one group is continually demonised and dehumanised. Funny that.

But what really sickens me at present is coming on MN and seeing fellow MNers having to justify their very existence to some jumped-up fucker at the end of a keyboard who choses to tut tut about poor people watching Sky or drinking.

Fucking hell, if I had to look after my family on £53pw to cover pretty much everything, worrying myself sick about what I'd do if we had any emergencies, I think I'd bloody deserve a drink or a fag or something to give me a moment of respite from the worry, stress and sheer fucking misery of it all.

FFS. If we keep banging our heads against this wall any longer, we're going to break the Internet, aren't we?

Big unMN hugs to Darkest, Peachy, Dawn and everyone on this thread who has shared their experiences. You shouldn't bloody well have to, not in this way. xxxxx

ItsallisnowaFeegle Fri 05-Apr-13 01:17:04

Exactly what Pan said in her/ his first post.

Going back to what I said, I hope we are all using our votes and using them wisely.

Pan Fri 05-Apr-13 01:22:46

Its - his post fwiw. We live in a democracy. We don't have to put up with this stuff. My sister claims state benefits. And rightly. We need to vote wisely.

whethergirl Fri 05-Apr-13 01:23:02

Read 'Chavs - the demonization of the working class' by Owen Jones. It's a good read and throws up some good points re benefit bashing.

VestaCurry Fri 05-Apr-13 01:33:26

Osborne wanted 'a debate in this country'.

Really? This kind of debate? Maybe.

Or, did he seize the manslaughter of 6 children to serve his political agenda; to have the country focus in, like the sun through a looking glass onto people who claim benefits, so that the country forgets about the banking crisis, the tax avoidance scandals and the fact that real wealth is, as in years gone by, being concentrated into fewer and fewer hands etc etc.

He of course is doing the bidding of a man who once claimed DLA for his disabled son. Cameron showed his true colours when he announced he would protect pensioners (the grey vote) but didn't extend the same to the most vulnerable in our society, the disabled. I've come to the conclusion he learnt very little about the struggles of the disabled because he and his family had a substantial financial cushion when his son was alive. It's the only explanation I have for his lack of moral compass in this regard.

Darkesteyes Fri 05-Apr-13 01:33:28

whether Chavs is waiting for me in my reading pile (it just got mentally relegated to the top)

Darkesteyes Fri 05-Apr-13 01:36:25

Madam thanks

Twentytotwo Fri 05-Apr-13 01:38:31

It's not that surprising really. Historically, periods of serious economic troubles have always led to vulnerable groups being scapegoated. The discontent and anger of those feeling the pinch seeks a focus. Those who were already regarded with contempt are an easy target to unite the rest of the population in hatred. People seen as 'not like us.'

Political leaders target them, directing hostility away from themselves and their economic (mis)management. Newspapers stir up loathing, picking out extreme examples and presenting them as typical. Negative language used to describe the group becomes entrenched, which serves to further isolate them from the population as a whole. It's hard to hate a mother or want to take from children. Dehumanising them makes it a lot easier. Children are born, these ones are 'bred'. Parents and children are a family. These ones are a 'brood.'

Over time it has been skin colour, religion, nationality, ethnicity that determined those who are 'other.' This time, as well as 'immigrants', the target is the poor.

Twentytotwo Fri 05-Apr-13 01:47:48

I am shocked as to how many people seem so ready to buy in to the shit being peddled. I'm sorry for all the MNers who have to put up with crap from idiots as a result. It must be hard enough dealing with the consequences of the current 'reforms' hmm.

I don't do Facebook but it sounds like a general myth busting post doing the rounds might help. Or at least flaming educating anyone who is spreading them around.

VestaCurry Fri 05-Apr-13 01:50:18

Absolutely Twentytotwo.

It genuinely chills me to the bone, perhaps because my grandfather was executed by the Nazi's for opposing the regime. Seeds of hate are so easily sown.

No point in anyone trying to say "that won't happen again" or "that wouldn't happen here". Anything can happen again. Anywhere.

Twentytotwo Fri 05-Apr-13 01:58:39

Meanwhile, in some very naice bits of London, Cameron and his friends are laughing at the fact that they've managed to turn a financial crisis caused by the greed of the extremely wealthy into a situation where the low income are abusing the very low income, the welfare state is being dismantled and the super rich are free to carry on their merry way with industrial scale tax avoidance that makes benefit fraud look like a grain of sand in the Sahara.

CouthySaysEatChoccyEggs Fri 05-Apr-13 02:37:49

My Doctor has signed me off sick indefinitely. Yet ATOS has told me that they have reconsidered my award for DLA and stopped it. So apparently my disabilities aren't disabling despite the disabling effects they have on me.

confused Yet?

People in the same situation as this are going to make up a fair chunk of those 'long-term' JSA / other benefit claimants. Too disabled to work, yet not given disability benefits that would have them viewed as disabled...

SatsukiKusukabe Fri 05-Apr-13 04:13:04

if you really believe someone to be the sort of waste of space that would try and milk the benefits available to them... would you really expect that if you lessened their benefit that their children wouldn't be the one to suffer and tighten their belt?

Bearbehind Fri 05-Apr-13 07:31:15

OP have you ever considered the fact that someone that you see "working and claiming JSA" might be on workfare.
Google it cos quite frankly......i cant be fucked.

darkesteyes if you are going to use inverted commas to quote me as you have in the post above, can you at least quote something I have actually said!

I haven't mentioned any specific instances of benefit abuse, rather the principle of people who claim with no intention whatsoever of looking for work.

Perhaps OP, it would serve you better to discuss the points being raised, acknowlege what people are saying and have the debate you apparently want, instead of getting bogged down in semantics.

Or is that not goady enough?

Bearbehind Fri 05-Apr-13 08:04:38

wanna, I think darkesteyes post was far more goady than anything I have said because she quoted me on something i didn't say but I quite agree with your point about discussing what has been said and was just thinking about what to say.

What I really don't understand, and probably never will, is why so many people, many of whom are in desperate situations themselves, are so tolerant of the minority who get away with abusing the system.

Some of the posts on here are truly humbling yet there is a strange acceptance of those who have alternatives but chose not to take them as their lifestyle is funded without them having to work.

Because if you lived on the edges of these peoples lives, the alcoholics, the addicts, the downright lazy, you would see that there is absolutely nothing to envy about their lives.

The amount of money they live on is miniscule if they are single. If they have kids they get more but I would never begrudge a child money to survive no matter what their parent is like.

0.7% is so not worth bothering about. Taking £71 a week of these people will not fix the economy but it would have effects on them and their wider communities.

Its the big boys at the top we need to be scrutinizing. You know, the ones with the power.

Bearbehind Fri 05-Apr-13 08:23:33

I hear what you are saying wanna I think ultimately, as others have said, it is the benefits system which is wrong as there shouldn't be such a small difference, therefore such a small advantage in taking a job over remaining on benefits and people shouldn't be incentivised by larger council houses, more benefits etc to have more children. Whilst these are the facts I guess they'll always be some people who opt to milk the system.

I was recently talking to a Srilankan man who has 4 children and has to work abroad in order to fund his family as they have no benefit system and he can't find enough work at home. His perception of the UK benefit system was that it is very soft touch which got me thinking.

SprinkleLiberally Fri 05-Apr-13 08:24:18

I won't benefit bash because it is not very nice, or kind.
Berating the tiny number of people who "work" the system, if they exist, is too damaging to the majority of claimants who would love to be working and earning a good wage.
I also realise that my own pleasant lifestyle is very much down to luck. Luck that I was born relatively intelligent, to caring but not rich parents, able to go to a good school, parents who let me go to university, no limiting illness yet, no long term unemployment yet. None of this is
my doing, it's good luck. So why bash
those who have been less lucky?

But OP

Can you see that it is not benefits being too generous that is the problem? Benefits are set at minimum levels the government says you need to live on so they are already at the minimum. If work doesnt pay its an issue with wages and living costs.

The govt needs to do something about low wages instead of undermining the NMW. Do something about unemployment instead of massaging the figures. Do something about high housing costs instead of taking more money from people who have nothing already.

They are demonising claimants to distract from their lack of ability or desire to tackle any actual issues.

Bearbehind Fri 05-Apr-13 10:00:02

That's what I meant wanna, there's little incentive to take a badly paid job when it pays only marginally more than the benefits which would otherwise be received. The benefits some get are not the minimum needed to live as if this were the case they couldn't afford to drink and smoke etc as these aren't necessities but it is clear that for many the amounts they receive barely enables them to survive.

niceguy2 Fri 05-Apr-13 10:52:45

@Wanna. The million dollar question is what is this 'something' the govt needs to do to raise low wages? There is no magic wand solution.

Our economy is simply not competitive enough against our global competition to bring in the money we want to spend on our benefits. Govt's do not like to cut public expenditure because it loses votes.

But what can they do? Raise the MNW? We're already struggling to compete on price abroad. We're a western nation so raising our wages will affect exports.

And raising the NMW doesn't really help very much with our deficit. The low paid don't pay any or barely any tax at all anyway. Raising the NMW will either tip them over the tax threshold so they'd be no better off or we'd have to raise the tax threshold thereby negating any effect on our deficit. In short we'd still be spending billions more than we have each year.

What we need is a large scale investment in areas of industry we wish to develop. So leading edge technology seems a good idea to me. We're already great at microprocessors. How about investment in green technologies? High tech manufacturing?

In time those industries would bring much needed and well paid jobs. But all that takes time. Years if not decades to realise. And the electorate have short memories and just want a quick fix magic wand solution now. An answer where someone else pays and not them personally.

handcream Fri 05-Apr-13 11:00:23

I do agree Niceguy. Everyone seems to want to protect their own area (which of course is understandable!) Pensioners are being targetted now by some people as being able to pay for other people's benefits/lifestyle choices.

On a recent SAHM thread there were some saying that the pensioners should pay for their option to be at home.

The benefits some get are not the minimum needed to live as if this were the case they couldn't afford to drink and smoke etc as these aren't necessities but it is clear that for many the amounts they receive barely enables them to survive.

Someone who is spending their money on drink and drugs is doing without in another area. Its all down to priorities. I prioritise clothes for my kids and paying the bills, they put drink first. No one is living in a great house with brand new clothes and all the latest technology whilst still able to go out on the lash. Objecting to how they spend their money is fine aslong as you realise you cannot actually control it or lump everyone in together.


Ofcourse the answers arent easy, or quick, but I would welcome some kind of nod towards what they intend to do to help the economy instead of this constant narrative of how evil benefit claimants are.

What percentage of vote did the ConDems get? How many people voted them in and was it because they wanted the government to do this to our country? Do they have a mandate?

23 millionaires in cabinet - really? How can they fairly represent the average person?

I didn't vote for them, the majority of Scotland didn't vote for them, but we still have to suffer their policies and see their divide and rule tactics leave us squabbling amongst ourselves, whilst they continue to destroy the welfare state. What sacrifices are they making in the benefits they get?

I believe there are a tiny minority of benefit fraudsters, most people probably don't get what they are due because the system is so complicated.

To feel hatred towards people who have less than you, struggle to feed and clothe their families especially the low paid - who have to claim benefits in order to get by.

Who are the real scum in society? Not the poor!

WestieMamma Fri 05-Apr-13 11:33:19

What percentage of vote did the ConDems get? How many people voted them in and was it because they wanted the government to do this to our country? Do they have a mandate?

The tories got 36.1% of the vote. The libdems got 23%. So together 59.1% of the vote.

However voter turnout was only 65.1%, which means, if my poor maths skills are right, 38.5% of eligible voters voted for them. 61.5% of eligible voters did not vote for them (and that doesn't include all the libdem votes from people who wouldn't have done so if they'd thought for one second that they'd effectively be voting tory)

FasterStronger Fri 05-Apr-13 11:51:44

Tapsel Who are the real scum in society? Not the poor!

who do you think are the scum?

EldritchCleavage Fri 05-Apr-13 11:57:42

Why aren't we more annoyed that so many employers seem not to pay a living wage, knowing that depressed wages will be topped up by the taxpayer? Why aren't those employers derided for ripping off taxpayers, instead of only those who receive the benefits? And I would be more inclined to accept that wages cannot go up if executive salaries hadn't gone up massively over the last 20 years. Aren't we being required to subsidise the poor so their bosses can massively increase the money they take out of their companies?

MTSgroupie Fri 05-Apr-13 12:16:54

OP - It depends on how high up the economic food chain you are on. If you are on the lower rungs then chances are you yourself or relatives or friends are receiving benefits. So those people can identify with those being 'bashed'.

Bashing 'cock sucking bankers' on the other hand is fair game because, to many they are a breed apart that lives in leafy burbs and privately educate their children.

This class is busy working as opposed to spending time posting all day on MN so of course they will be in the posting minority. This gives the mistaken impression that the majority of the population are against the benefits bashers.

Most of the service/cleaning jobs in the City are done by students, immigrants from Africa and in more recent years from Eastern European. This is because the UK benefit system is such that, after travel costs and tax, its not worth coming off benefits to take up these near minimum wage jobs.

The reality is that for many people they will only be marginally better off if they had a job. Human nature being what it is, why spend 40 hours week cleaning an office building when you are only going to be about £30 better off?

Faster the scum are the people who attack the weak, the poor and the vulnerable in this society, as scapegoats. Who got us into this mess? The ones who have the power to use the media to divide and rule, then sit back and stuff their pockets when we scrabble and fight for what we _ are_ _ due_.

MP lives on 18 a week - says
"But the really disgusting thing is that on the same day that the bedroom tax is being introduced millionaires are being given a tax cut that will be worth £1,000—not over the year as a whole, but every single week."

JakeBullet Fri 05-Apr-13 13:28:25

OP....I am on benefits.

I have a mobile phone (needed so my son's school can contact me...he is autistic)
BT Vision...I never go out as childcare is not around for children like my son
I have internet access
I have a fancy laptop (thanks to Amazon who I review items for occasionally...they sent me this free in return for a review of it).
I worked previously for 30 years.
I even have....shock horror...a flat screen TV.

I anticipate I will need benefits for up to the next 4-5 years max and will then be back in work and contributing once more. By the time I retire I anticipate I will have put in 40 years of work and yet despite this I am made frequently to feel a second class citizen by some simply because I happen to need the welfare state at the moment.

I am VERY anti benefit bashing because any one of us could fall into a position where we have to rely upon benefits. We are not all wasteful, feckless and workshy, I would anticipate most are not and many want NOT to be on benefits, but given the comments I read both here and in the media you might think otherwise. So when I see benefit bashing going on I dive in and sometimes get very angry with people

niceguy2 Fri 05-Apr-13 13:42:53

Why aren't we more annoyed that so many employers seem not to pay a living wage, knowing that depressed wages will be topped up by the taxpayer?

Two reasons I can think of:

1) The vast majority of employers are not your Tesco's/Amazon's of the world. Most employer's are your small business entrepreneur's who are struggling themselves and certainly not earning millions. So it's not easy for them to up their salary costs. In fact most small employers shy away from hiring staff because of the high costs and bureaucracy involved already.

2) The last Labour govt made tax credits do this. Prior to tax credits there was a similar benefit only available to a small group. Labour changed this and with good intentions. But the law of unintended consequences meant that now millions of people could suddenly work part time knowing the govt would top their wage up. Then employers cottoned onto the fact they could just hire someone part time too!

So if you want to be annoyed, it's not the companies you should be annoyed at. Blame the idiots who created tax credits. What makes it even worse is that tax credits is/was all funded from money borrowed. The money wasn't found by cutting something else or an extra tax. Labour just borrowed it. Now it's so ingrained into our economy that noone can easily take it away.

FasterStronger Fri 05-Apr-13 14:01:08

Why aren't we more annoyed that so many employers seem not to pay a living wage, knowing that depressed wages will be topped up by the taxpayer?

it is a minority of employers who don't pay a living wage. the average salary is £26k so clearly most pay well above this.

Darkesteyes Fri 05-Apr-13 15:08:28

OP i mentioned workfare because you were talking about long term "lifestyle claimants"
a long term claimant WILL be on workfare at some point.

As for flat screen tvs.
You cant get any other kind. Please show me the website or high street stores where you can get the very old models to back up your argument
I will be very interested to see this nonexistent company.

And have you ever heard of Brighthouse.

Bearbehind Fri 05-Apr-13 15:19:39

darkesteyes yes I have heard of Brighthouse but have you ever heard of Specsavers as, once again you have mis-quoted me- I haven't once mentioned flat screen tvs either

Promotedbymailinglist Fri 05-Apr-13 16:04:59

When we were proud of our welfare state, seeing it as Utopian, sharing, increasing community values and helping a lot of people access healthcare, feel more equal to people with higher incomes and a feeling that we were a networked society dependent on itself moving forward to be successful - we had people who were respectful of benefits and help and used them fairly because there was little shame other than feeling obligated to contribute more should your income rise. There was pride in raising children properly and methods to get brighter children from any background into education, and into roles where there contribution to society was maximised. Our position in the world was stronger because we were working together.

I would guess MNers are anti benefit-bashing because they can see and feel the results - demonising people who claim benefits sets up immediate self-loathing, despair, depression and a feeling of being outside society. Instill that in any group and they cease functioning as part of the whole, feel marginalised. What's worse is more marginalisation, the more people feel as though it is a permanent badge.
IN an environment of demonsation there are two strategies flight/hiding or bitter acceptance. Bitter acceptance is of the 'they hate me so screw them' hence Philpott etc

Frankly we can't afford to have everyone on benefits feeling less human, depressed and demotivated...

However, those who are playing an individual game 'I don't care how the whole does, I care that I am doing better than others' don't care if the majority are disenfranchised- in fact in times of economic stress when growth can't be attained, the only way to increase the slightly psychotic margin that their self-esteem relies on, is to push the competition's performance downwards. You can see this in sales environments, the top sales person who can't keep increasing sales, moves to a strategy of demotivating colleagues in order to keep staying on top - crazy really because if Beckham had nobbled the defence to make him seem more valuable, he would have still been on a losing team.

MNers seem to be more collaborative, supportive and team orientated than the poppulation as a whole, that's why you will see support for members of society who are struggling financially but contributing equally.

Promotedbymailinglist Fri 05-Apr-13 16:15:18

Ooh Ooh Specsavers! A great example of 'privatising' healthcare - they get money from the government to supply glasses so... they advertise and prod and poke people to have 'free' eye tests (they claim from government for a lot of these) then whatever your result or need, if there is the slightest shade of a need for a prescription they will offer you one - if you are on benefits they emphaise how you will get a free pair of specs anyway so why not. Mystery shoppers and prescripted behaviours move people down the 'enquiry - glasses' pipeline. Why? because specsavers can treat glasses for people who don't really need them as a valid income stream because all their shareholders care about is the dollar result. You can see government ministers using the inflated costs as justification that specsavers are doing x millions of pounds of work in healthcare, but those costs didn't exist before the 'sales' culture of healthcare inflated them.

When tax payer's money is spent on costs, and on provision, any surplus is on reinvestment. When tax payer's money is paying costs, provision, and a profit margin for shareholders, tax payer's money gets funnelled back to those with spare money - who are already wealthier than the population at large, and to those managing the spare money (investment houses) who are many times more wealthy than the average.

This isn't 'achievement' or 'growth' this is fiddling the game to create unfair outcomes for those who already have wealth at the beginning of the game - sort of like only letting wealthy people win at Monopoly - it hides real growth behind a money conveyor belt.

MTSgroupie Fri 05-Apr-13 16:15:57

Bearbehind - The flat screen TV comment was directed at Jakebullet and not you smile

MTSgroupie Fri 05-Apr-13 16:32:26

grin at promote.

A customer has to be very feeble minded to walk into Specsavers with 20/20 vision and to get talked into buying a pair of glasses that they don't need

The staff are ordinary people. They are somebody's mum, wife, daughter so It's kind of stupid to suggest that once they clock in and put on their name badge they instantly morph into some hard sell salesmen, determined to sell you glasses that you don't need.

I''ve read a lot of rants about oil companies, utility companies and other Big Businesses. First time I read a rant about opticians grin

DadOnIce Fri 05-Apr-13 16:34:22

It's benefit fiddlers people really have an issue with, isn't it? Not genuine benefit claimants? And it is possible to criticise greedy bankers as well - it's not like it's some game where you have to choose between one or the other.

The fact that we have a welfare state at all is a good thing. I haven't ever met anybody who seriously argues the contrary. I'd be astonished if anyone could. It's very important to have a safety net for people who find themselves temporarily unable to find work. And it's one that we all pay into when we're working, so it's not as if we are spending "other people's" money.

The other important point always made about being a benefit claimant is that it can happen to anyone. It even happens to people with a lot of qualifications. Like a lot of people who graduated from university in the 1990s, before the economy picked up, I was on benefits for a short space of time in my 20s - largely because, while I had qualifications coming out of my ears, I just didn't have the experience for jobs I was going for. Even when I made it as far as the interview, the job would always go to someone with more experience.

I definitely saw it as a temporary thing, though, and while it's pretty demoralising having to go in every week and basically justify your existence by going through all the jobs you've applied for, I just kept telling myself it had to be over before long. (One thing I remember, though - and this may be a mark of how society has changed - it would never have occurred to me to buy a mobile phone, a computer, a TV, a car or a holiday during that time. It was quite firmly entrenched in my mind that these were the privilege of people who worked - and, moreover, had been working for a long time and had saved up for them. My Income Support, as it was called then, went on necessities - there wasn't enough for anything else.)

When I was on benefits, if I had gone out to work I would have been £10 a week better off.

Travelling to a job on public transport/parking the car would have cost more.

Therefore, I was better off at home.

I suppose that made a scrounger.

JakeBullet Fri 05-Apr-13 17:02:57

Sorry...yes I mentioned flat screen TVs as they so often get an outing on these threads grin.

Fact is though that most people want the "normal" things others have (I don't include Sky etc in this) but there are things that perhaps I need that others might not such as a mobile phone. This is why benefits are not given in vouchers etc as most people need to be able to fit benefits round their lives and we all have different needs.

I have a friend who is a smoker and on benefits...yes she wants to stop but at the moment she isn't able to (I am certain she will in the future). She had the most abusive childhood you can imagine and 25+ years on is still in therapy to help her cope. So she buys tobacco, rolls herself the thinnest cigarette going but says it helps keep her calm.
Who are we to say "actually you are on benefits so how dare you smoke"? It also prevents her (mostly) from cutting her arms when she is down...I'd rather she had a fag than sliced her arms up.sad

Have you tried buying a non-flat screen TV recently? Just by the by.

GrowSomeCress Fri 05-Apr-13 17:07:28

Freddiemisagreatshag did you stay on benefits instead of taking the job then?

Yes I did. NMW wage job 9 miles away. Public transport crap. Would have had to drive every day 18 miles round trip and pay to park the car. So I turned the job down.

You telling me you would have left yourself with LESS money in your pocket going out to work 37.5 hours a week? Bloody sure you wouldn't.

JakeBullet Fri 05-Apr-13 17:16:41

There's less money and less money though. If the "less money" is minimal when I go back to work then yes I would go back for less....there's more benefits in working than money. If the "less money" is significant though then why would anybody do it? How CAN anyone do it?

The jobcentreplus advisor I saw last (I am wanting to go back to work eventually) said that to break even financially I would need to do 30 hours at NMW (at the present time).

In the meantime I am doing voluntary work with an education charity which keeps me up to date with changes and means that I have something to put on a CV during this work break apart from "Carer".

£10 a week according to the advisor I checked it was right.

18 miles a day 5 days a week is 90 miles. My car at the time did 30 to the gallon. That's 3 gallons. At even a fiver a gallon that's £15 quid right there in fuel.

Plus car park at at least £3 a day, probably more. That's another £15 quid.

So my tenner better off costs me £30 so I would have been £20 worse off going out to work.

Damn fucking right well and surely I turned the job down.

GrowSomeCress Fri 05-Apr-13 17:22:17


No, I didn't actually say that I would have taken the job instead of staying on benefits. I didn't say at all what I would have done. You read that into my post somehow.

Was it not worth it for experience/having something on CV instead of CV out of interest?

Sorry. I misunderstood.

Benefits are minimal. I was already living hand to mouth. £80 less a month was a clean fortune. I could not have lived without that £80.

And no, it wasn't worth it for experience. I could have done it standing on my head with one hand tied behind my back.

But. In my position. Where going out to work was a tenner a week on paper but fuck all in RL and actually a negative, would you have taken the job?

MTSgroupie Fri 05-Apr-13 17:27:04

Freddie - If I was in your situation I too would have chosen to stay on benefits but sorry mate but you still are a scrounger.

To me a safety net is exactly that. It's for people who have no other options. It shouldn't be there so that people like you can decide that you are better off turning down a job. It is ridiculous that we have Africans and Eastern Europeans doing jobs that the indigenous population don't want to do because it makes more sense to stay on benefits.

BTW I am not on benefits anymore. Well, apart from child benefit.

I do have a decent, well paid job now and I don't for one second regret turning down that job.

And I defy anyone who had been in my position to not have done the same.

GrowSomeCress Fri 05-Apr-13 17:30:57

I don't know Freddie, as I've not been in that in position.
Obviously if I were living hand to mouth the loss of £20 would dent physical living significantly.
But at the same time working I feel would be psychologically a better option - feeling like I was doing something every day, getting up for a reason etc

JakeBullet Fri 05-Apr-13 17:31:19

MTS sorry mate but I think scrounger is an offensive term.

Freddie is NOT a "scrounger" but a HUMAN BEING (in case you missed it) who was at that point unable to find a job which would support her family.

MTS - I maybe WAS a scrounger. I am not now. And I don't think it's being a scrounger to put your family first. Because that's why I did it. For that extra £80 a month for my kids.

And I was spending every spare minute applying for jobs, loads of jobs that were shite and crap and well below my qualifications. Hundreds and hundreds and hundreds of jobs. Most of which I didn't even get a dear john for.

So I certainly wasn't sitting on my arse expecting a living handed to me, but no fucking way on the face of god's green earth was I going to go out to a job and knock my pan in and hand the government £20 a week for the fucking privilege.

Darkesteyes Fri 05-Apr-13 17:33:54

£80 pounds a month is a HELL of a lot to lose.
But i guess Freddie could have paid his/her council tax with pride.
Hey ive an idea. The Gov could issue pride vouchers and people in Freddies previous position could pay their council tax with those. hmm

And how very fucking DARE anyone on here call me a scrounger?

At one point I had 3 P/T NMW jobs to make ends meet. I worked every hour god sent doing a receptionist job, working in a chippy and working in a shop. Because it was all I could get.

I am anything but a fucking scrounger and I find the statement that I am offensive and disgusting.

Darkesteyes Fri 05-Apr-13 17:50:36

Freddie you wernt a scrounger. You didnt take that job because it wasnt economically viable for you to do so.

Want2bSupermum Fri 05-Apr-13 17:51:22

The reason the welfare bill in the UK is so high is because of the high cost of housing and council tax. I thought Osbornes comments were off base because social services should have been on top of that family. Society failed those children as that man should not have been allowed to manipulate those women. The home environment that was described is not a healthy environment for children to grow up in. Sod the cost of 'keeping' this family which IMO is minimal in the grand scheme of things. I want to know why taxpayer funded social services didn't step in to stop this man reproducing. Why did his girlfriends stick around? I find it hard to believe that a woman wants to bear that many children or share a man with someone else. The real crime is that these women were being abused by this man and given what has been reported in the press I am surprised the authorities were not all over this family regarding the well being of the children.

Exactly darkest eyes. And I went in and saw the benefits advisor and she said the same thing.

And anyone on here who would have taken that job and been eighty quid a month worse off needs to go and get a fucking grip because they really aren't quite wise.

MTSgroupie Fri 05-Apr-13 17:54:46

No. Freddie was unable to find a job that paid more than her/his benefits. Subtle difference.

During my working life I have had to go where the work was. I spent 2 years literally driving half way round the M25 every day at a cost of £150 pw in petrol, 5 hours round trip. For another job for a year I drove down to Dorset on a Monday morning and back on a Friday evening and stayed in a B&B at a cost £250 pw plus £60 in petrol.

My motivation? DP couldn't work. Benefits wouldn't be enough to pay for the mortgage. I had no choice, short of down sizing, but to spend 5 hours a day on the M25 or spend a sizeable chunk of income on a B&B far from home. During this period what was left was just about enough to pay the bills.

So no, I don't have much empathy/sympathy for people like Freddie who turned down a job because of the driving and parking costs.

MTS I would have traveled and stayed away all week. Who would you have suggested look after my children?

JakeBullet Fri 05-Apr-13 17:57:30

Want...firstly I think you have the wrog thread.

Secondly the children according to all who knew them were clean, appropriately dressed, well nourished and attended school regularly. Without covert surveillance which only a court can authorise what exactly do you think social services would have seen? Six apparently well cared for children.....even Ann Widdicombe acknowledged this when she did her programme. Socil services could have done precisely NOTHING without evidence and there wasn't any.
All the stuff at trial was as a result of covert surveillance and there are strict laws surrounding that. A social worker wouldn't have been given the right to do this based on what was known at the time.

MTSgroupie Fri 05-Apr-13 17:59:11

Why didn't social services step in and stop this man reproducing??? Seriously want2b?

Did you expect SS to castrate the man? Or did you expect SS to exercise some tough love ie if you can't afford to feed your many children then tough.

JakeBullet Fri 05-Apr-13 18:02:18

MTS, I will say again, the term "scroungers" is offensive and disgusting...and if I may say...used by arseholes.

What about me? I cant find a job that covers the cost of childcare because my child is autistic. Does that make me a scrounger too?

MTSgroupie Fri 05-Apr-13 18:03:41

Freddie - Errm... you turned down the 18 miles round trip job but you would've taken a long distance job if you had childcare sorted???

JakeBullet Fri 05-Apr-13 18:04:16

...and I think Freddie pointed out that there would not have been enough to pay the bills had he/she taken this job.

No mts. You misunderstood. What I am saying is that I could not travel because I had children. Who I couldn't leave alone in the evenings and overnight. No husband to take care of them for me.

JakeBullet Fri 05-Apr-13 18:06:49

MTS...you said that in the same situation you would have chosen to stay on benefits too. confused

Freddie is a human being with a life ....all our lives have their own costs and as such we make a decision if a job is offered about whether it will allow us to y the bills. If it doesn't then its a non starter and it doesn't make someone wrong to say that.

MTSgroupie Fri 05-Apr-13 18:07:29

Jake - why do some people insist on taking any.comments to an extreme? Saying that a person is a scrounger for turning down a job because the petrol and parking cost made it not worth while their whole is not saying that ALL benefit claimants are scroungers. Jeeze!

Darkesteyes Fri 05-Apr-13 18:12:03

NO MTS you called Freddie a scrounger which they arent.

Bearbehind Fri 05-Apr-13 18:12:41

The fact that freddie didn't take a job which would have made her worse off by working (i agree that there is not much incentive to do so other than for continuity on a cv) it does illustrate the problem that if benefits are the same or more than a NMW job with reasonable commuting costs, then something is very wrong.

So even though you would do the same, I'm a scrounger for making sure my kids have the most amount of income that was available to me and them at that particular point in time ?

How the fuck does that work?

Darkesteyes Fri 05-Apr-13 18:16:42

No bearbehind the problem is the national minimum wage. The problem is employers paying poverty wages.
In real terms the minimum wage is now worth what it was in 2004. But council tax petrol are not at 2004 levels <head desk>

The problem is that NMW is too low. Can't you see that?

Sorry x-post with darkest eyes. Slow. And eating.

yes because it would have meant she couldn't pay her fucking electric, feed her kids MTS not because she didn't want to drive 18 miles, just admit you're a bit of a twat for calling her a scrounger under those circumstances. <<<awaits deletion>>>

Bearbehind Fri 05-Apr-13 18:21:33

Yet again darkesteyes you are misquoting me as I didn't actually say which was wrong, NMW or benefits, just that it can't be right that there is little or no difference between the 2

And I'll tell you something else. And get flamed.

I would have taken a job if I had been £10 a week better off in my pocket. But other than that, nope.

I call that having a titter of wit. And putting my kids first. Not my "continuity on a cv"

GrowSomeCress Fri 05-Apr-13 18:25:27

Raising NMW would be horribly bad for business, and the economy by extension.

Fair enough. But the fault is NOT with the people, like me, who have done the sums and realised it would leave them worse off.

Sorry. Fat fingers. Posted too soon.

If that's your views on NMW, fair enough. But the fault is NOT with people like me who worked it out and would be worse off going out to work.

MTSgroupie Fri 05-Apr-13 18:28:08

Freddie - I made my comments based on what little i knew of your circumstances at the time. I apologize for any offense.

In my defense, I come from a WC town up north. When I travel back to visit relatives I see school 'friends' for whom benefits is a lifestyle choice. Some have never worked since leaving school years ago. The way they see it, why flip burgers for 40 hours a week when the state will give them money and a place to live for free. I'm living in a B&B far from home just so that I can pay the bills and the taxes that goes to supporting these baby machines.

This is obviously a hot button issue for me smile

FasterStronger Fri 05-Apr-13 18:28:19

The problem is employers paying poverty wages.

No The problem is some employers paying poverty wages.

on MN its like all employers pay NMW.....

Want2bSupermum Fri 05-Apr-13 18:28:26

MTS It isn't about castrating him it is about helping both women he was able to control leave. I would have thought that SS could have offered support to the women. This was a man who had been convicted of stabbing an exgf and was bearing children with two women at the same time. If that was part of his culture I could understand but it isn't and it wasn't.

Jake Thats my point. While getting kids dressed and attending school is relevant I am surprised no one was listening to the children. I am sure there would have been a few clues there.

Anyway, IMO the issue with benefits is that you shouldn't be worse off if you take a job. What a shame that Freddie turned down an opportunity because financially they were worse off. Also, there is no distinction made by the public regarding those that are supported due to disability or those that refuse to work. Everyone is on benefits.

I also think it is irresponsible to have more children when you are able bodied, in reciept of benefits and not working. So many taxpayers are not able to afford more than 1 or 2 children so limit the size of their family. However, you can't control this as limiting support for the parents only harms the child(ren).

Darkesteyes Fri 05-Apr-13 18:30:11

Sorry bearbehind but you did start this thread with a particularly goady OP so you cant be too surprised when people assume you think a certain way.

Thank you MTS. I think we misunderstood each other, and I'm sure it sucks never seeming your DP. my DP lives away from me, and I can't move because of kids and schools so I do understand.

Darkesteyes Fri 05-Apr-13 18:30:53

semantics Faster semantics.

thing is want" those women had to want to leave.

JakeBullet Fri 05-Apr-13 18:32:47

Thing is want that the children might have just accepted some stuff as normal. It doesn't sound as though they exhibited any signs of sexualised behaviour which you might expect if they were exposed to that stuff which means the likelihood is they didn't see it.

As it is the school describe them as normal and happy children which makes it all the sadder that they had Philpott for a Dad.

handcream Fri 05-Apr-13 18:38:55

I'm on another thread and having had a close relative have relationships time and time again with controlling men. They lie, they cover up for them, my relative is not a SAHM at the behest of a partner. She was a professional women who was attracted to these men.

We tried and tried as a family to get her to leave, she fibbed and fibbed and eventually as it was causing her M&D terrible worry and stress we decided to say 'we are here for you when you need us'.

Eventually the relationship ended (by him!) and she then went after a few months into the same sort of relationship with another man....

Bearbehind Fri 05-Apr-13 18:40:02

This wasn't supposed to be a goady thread (my choice of titles was not the wisest blush) but it has been enlightening for me. The crux of the issue for me is highlighted by freddies situation, I would have done the same as she did TBH but that doesn't make it right.

I also see that increasing NMW is not an option given the shitty state of the economy so I've no idea what the answer is.

handcream Fri 05-Apr-13 18:40:14

These children werent as far as I am aware abused. One apparently lived on chips and they went to bed in their school uniform (how sad is that!) but its not abuse is it...

DioneTheDiabolist Fri 05-Apr-13 18:41:23

to you Bear it may seem that some people choose to live on benefits. They do not. You can't see mental health problems but they are debilitating. I live in a deprived area. I work in a different deprived area and I am in shock that many of these people are functioning at all.

They are doing their best. You are buying into the demonization of the poorest and weakest members of our society. Shame on you.

It's easy to talk in generalisations, but make it specific and it's much more difficult.

I usually avoid these thread because I know how I will be perceived.

But I also don't think any decent parent who was putting their kids first would have done any different.

Want2bSupermum Fri 05-Apr-13 18:44:05

LLover and Jake Totally agree with you. I just find it surprising that the children were so normal and that both women didn't want to leave. How terribly sad that the children thought growing up like that is normal.

In anycase, I am conservative and was repulsed when Osborne made his comment. It was so inappropriate on so many levels. With regards to the list provided by the OP the only luxury is holidays. No one who is receiving benefits and unemployed should be allowed to go on holiday. You need to be available for work. I have no issues with someone who is working or disabled taking a holiday.

handcream Fri 05-Apr-13 18:47:32

I am also not sure about Mick Philpott's sister. She says he should rot in hell and she was jumping around on TV saying justice was done.

Surely she was closer than any social worker to this and knew what was going on. Did she do anything about this, make any reports to SS. I suspect not. I think she is trying to protect herself tbh. Completely disown him and you will be fine, if you make any attempt to cover up for him or excuse what he has done. Well her life wouldnt be worth living.

And could I ask - who are the people who run past the vans as prisoners are being transfered, kicking and shouting abuse? Is this a rent a crowd?

Bearbehind Fri 05-Apr-13 18:48:08

dione I made it very clear in my OP and subsequent posts that I was not referring to people who were medically unable to work, rather to people who chose not to work despite there being viable work opportunities for them.

I agree that it makes no sense to work for less than you would get in benefits though but that seems to be a whole other issue

twofingerstoGideon Fri 05-Apr-13 18:50:33

OP, having read the whole thread I'm not wholly convinced you really want to explore why '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!?' because I haven't really seen you engage with any of the points that people have made.

However, I'll give you the benefit doubt and give you my own take on things. I don't earn a huge amount and can't afford Sky, cigarettes or alcohol (neither do I want these things). I pay tax and don't begrudge whatever small proportion might go towards benefits for people who need them, regardless of what they spend them on, because (a) I have no interest in dictating how other people manage their finances and (b) depriving other people does not make my own financial situation any better.

Do you think making other people poorer will make lower paid people richer somehow? I don't think it works like that. HTH.

But surely, if you would get less working and stay on benefits then you're making what has been called "a lifestyle choice"?

Bearbehind Fri 05-Apr-13 19:01:24

twofingers I'm not sure how much more engaging I could have done, very few comments have been made saying people are happy to support the things I've listed. Comments have mainly said 'there but the grace of god go I' which I can appreciate or have i missed something?

DioneTheDiabolist Fri 05-Apr-13 19:05:38

Bear, I live this every day. I haven't met a single person who can work but actively chooses not to. I have met many people who are judged as such by people like you because their illness isn't visible.

Being on benefits sucks. No sane healthy person chooses them as a way of life.

K8Middleton Fri 05-Apr-13 19:09:49

3% of all benefits paid are Job Seekers Allowance ie paid to the unemployed.

Just so you know.

I'd rather we bashed employers who make large profits but don't pay their staff a living wage - they are subsidised indirectly by the state. Bashing the victims of the system rather than those who actually benefit from it seems pointless and horrible.

So I don't bash those in receipt of benefits because it would make me look like a thick twat who doesn't understand basic economics or where the money's actually going.

handcream Fri 05-Apr-13 19:14:49

Dione - but we do know one - Mick Philpott. I must admit I know a few who feel it isnt worth their while going to work on a NMW when the benefits will pay out slightly more due to their circumstances. Not huge amounts more but enough to say it isnt worth it for them

Frizzbonce Fri 05-Apr-13 20:02:04


"i cannot for the life of me understand this obsession with the fuck all the poor are given - whilst no-one has even raised an eyebrow at tory party mobile phone emperor donators who don't pay their taxes in this country."

Hear hear.

On the same day that the right wing press pick over the corpses of the Phillpott children to push their anti-benefit agenda, the three bosses of HBOS operating in a 'culture of delusion and selfishness' have been found guilty of ripping off the taxpayers to the tune of £20 billion and NONE of them have so far been held legally accountable. 'Pressure is growing . . . ' yadda yadda but are any of them going to jail? Are they fuck. Oh and SSE the Energy Giants have been fined £4.5 million for 'conning' the public and yet the CEO Ian Marchant walks away with a golden handshake of £15 million.

paintyourbox Fri 05-Apr-13 20:34:04

I'm going to put my arse on the line here and say that there are people out there who would rather have benefits than work.

How do I know? Well not so long ago my company recruited for a part time position. We appointed someone who said she actually wanted full time hours but would stick with the part time. When any overtime came up and a full time post was available she then turned round and told us that: She wouldn't work more than 16 hours a week as she'd lost her benefits."

So there you have it. She didn't want to do a full time job because she wouldn't receive benefits anymore.

50% of the welfare bill goes on pensions. just saying.

K8Middleton Fri 05-Apr-13 20:48:33

How much we're you paying per hour paintyourbox? Was it a living wage?

K8Middleton Fri 05-Apr-13 20:50:56

Tsk MadameDefage. You and your facts! Don't you know they just get ignored on this thread? wink

sleepyhead Fri 05-Apr-13 20:52:39

I'm going to put my arse on the line here and say that there are people out there who will go to a lot of trouble to avoid paying their taxes. Even as far as employing specialist accountants to find loopholes. These loopholes are so lucrative that the expense of an accountant is worthwhile.

Not illegal, but hardly in the spirit of all in this together. Makes working 16 hours a week so you can claim some benefits look like a drop in the ocean though. Shame we're not bothered about developing a culture of pride in contributing fully to our society in our wealthy as well as our poor.

paintyourbox Fri 05-Apr-13 20:54:40

Our basic starts at £7.50 per hour.

We did later find out the real reason she didn't want the extra hours was because of her other cash in hand part-time job.

K8Middleton Fri 05-Apr-13 20:54:42

Hear hear sleepyhead.

K8Middleton Fri 05-Apr-13 20:59:44

So not the benefits at all then. £7.50 an hour is less than £15k a year. Not enough to support and house a family in most places.

That said I do support SMEs who could be employing fewer or no people if they had to pay more. Big profits and low wages is shitty.

Are we talking tax avoidance now? What about HMRC signing off on a deal that saved Goldman Sachs £20m in tax payments and another which cut Vodafone's tax bill from £8bn to £1.25 one rule for the rich and another for the poor and vulnerable who cannot fight for themselves.

Darkesteyes Fri 05-Apr-13 21:50:35

paintyourboxFri 05-Apr-13 20:34:04

I'm going to put my arse on the line here and say that there are people out there who would rather have benefits than work.

How do I know? Well not so long ago my company recruited for a part time position. We appointed someone who said she actually wanted full time hours but would stick with the part time. When any overtime came up and a full time post was available she then turned round and told us that: She wouldn't work more than 16 hours a week as she'd lost her benefits."

So there you have it. She didn't want to do a full time job because she wouldn't receive benefits anymore.

IF the overtime that came up was intermittent and irregular it takes too long for the tax credits system to keep up with all the chopping and changing some employers do. And then claimants either get underpaid which causes hardship. Or overpaid which causes hardship when they have to pay it back later on.
Happened to my friend. She did a week of overtime and afterwards because of a tax credits backlog when she declared this overtime they stopped paying the tax credits for TWO MONTHS.
Things are not as black and white as low paying employers seem to think.

Darkesteyes Fri 05-Apr-13 21:52:33

Bearbehind if putting NMW up is not the answer then poorer people wont spend.
Then you will have places like Peacocks and The Works closing down due to lack of custom. More unemployment.

Bearbehind Fri 05-Apr-13 21:56:08

darkest Peacocks and The Works aren't going to keep the economy going- increasing NMW just isn't feasible when the economy is on its arse.

We'd all love to earn more but if companies can't afford it, that in itself will cause unemployment.

Darkesteyes Fri 05-Apr-13 21:57:49

paintyourbox if the overtime you were offering was intermittent and irregular but the hours in the cash in hand job were regular and guranteed.............well!

Darkesteyes Fri 05-Apr-13 22:05:10

See Bearbehind i was right you do think a certain way. The economy wont improve if people DONT have money to spend. And you have the nerve to start a goady OP spouting stereotypes.
And how do you expect people to apply for jobs without a mobile phone. Most employers expect you to have one so they can ger hold of you when theyve finally got some hours for you <head desk>

Bearbehind Fri 05-Apr-13 22:21:17

darkest I don't think in certain way but I am practical about the realities, where the fuck do you think companies can find the funds to pay a higher increased NMW from when they can barely survive as it is?

As I recall, you spouted 2 stereotypes at me, people on JSA who work more than the maximum allowed hours and flat screen tvs, neither of which I had ever even mentioned so don't accuse me of goading.

I am torn on this subject now, I think it's wrong there is minimal or even negative incentives to work in some instances but I agree the basic cost of living has increased so whatever your income, earned or benefits, doesn't go very far any more and I don't pretend to think I have the answers.

I'd love to hear your logic for how increasing NMR would improve the economy and increase spending. If companies can't afford to pay employees any more and our exports become so uncompetitive that they are priced out of the market- don't you think that will have a far more detrimental effect on people's spending power?

BoulevardOfBrokenSleep Fri 05-Apr-13 22:40:16

Textbook economics would say that £10 given to a poor person is more likely to be fed straight back into the economy than £10 given to a rich person.
I can't really be arsed to be googling it up right now as it's bedtime, but go ahead if you're interested. It is reasonably interesting. Honest.

Bearbehind Fri 05-Apr-13 22:43:09

I don't doubt the logic in that but the reality is the first tranche of job losses would be those who rely on the money the most so the money wouldn't feed into the economy.

expatinscotland Fri 05-Apr-13 22:44:02

Hahaha, HBOS, and do you hear in the press of the robbery of the people in Cyprus? Do you fuck!

And still, sheeple fall for this bullshit!

It's the poor on benefits who got us in this mess!

Are you really that fucking stupid and ignorant?

GrowSomeCress Fri 05-Apr-13 22:44:05

Boulevard it's called marginal propensity to consume I think. Poorer people spend a greater proportion than wealthier people.

Bearbehind Fri 05-Apr-13 22:51:11

expat I have no idea what the majority of your post meant but my sympathy for anyone who held more than 100,000 euros in one bank account in Cyprus is extremely limited.

DioneTheDiabolist Fri 05-Apr-13 22:57:56

Handcream, do you really consider Mick Philpott sane and healthy?shock

expatinscotland Fri 05-Apr-13 22:59:01

It is, Bear? You think it's okay that such people are made to pay for rich, greedy bankers who are off scot-free? You truly do? You think someone's life savings is okay to plunder to pay for their mistakes whilst those execs are gone with the wind without a second thought?

Bearbehind Fri 05-Apr-13 23:13:47

expatthe rules were pretty clear, anything over 100,000 euros wasn't protected so they should have put their eggs in more than one basket.

DioneTheDiabolist Fri 05-Apr-13 23:45:17

Bear, are you an I'm alright Jack kind of person?

Want2bSupermum Sat 06-Apr-13 02:27:04

Bear I think you should read some news reports on the people who have deposits taken away. My family is half Greek Cypriot and the older relatives have lost their pensions. My uncle owns a large hotel and he is now bankrupt. He borrowed Euro5 million for refurbishments and the money was deposited in his account three weeks before the crisis. He lost the Euro 5 million but still has to repay the money to the bank. He is determined to repay the money and is keeping the hotel open. My aunt is a nurse and is applying for jobs in the middle east so she can bring in some money to tide them over because they are too proud to declare themselves bankrupt.

Then there is my cousin and his wife who have spent the past 5 years saving for a home. They had more than Euro 100k in their account and pretty much all of it has all gone.

It isn't the bankers who we should be blaming. It is ourselves for electing the politicians who are clearly incompetent. The behaviour of bankers is a symptom of the problem which is lack of regulation. Politicans are responsbile for setting the boundaries and ensuring they are properly policed. This didn't happen which is why the economy is in such bad shape. With Cyprus it was the Greeks who shafted them by not repaying their loans. Again it was the government not bankers who were at fault. Why did the default on the loans happen? The Greek government has been overspending for the past decade. It hasn't been the bankers spending the money, nor was it them who defaulted.

The exact same thing has gone on in the UK in that politicans have elected to spend more than what is available. The NHS and education had billions spent on them without thought for how it would be paid for. I fail to see how that is the fault of the bankers. It just suits politicans to place the blame there.

Bearbehind Sat 06-Apr-13 05:23:30

I'm not an 'I'm alright Jack' kind of person. FWIW I thought it was outrageous when the EU was going to tax every bank account in Cyprus but in the end so did they. My understanding was that the maximum tax was 60% so I'm not sure how the person above has lost 5 million but what ever they have lost is shit and they don't deserve it but it was made clear the limits that were protected in a bank account and the Cypriot economy was on the brink of collapse so holding unprotected funds in bank accounts there wasn't a great idea.

Bearbehind Sat 06-Apr-13 05:36:03

I also think the principle of what has happened in Cyprus is wrong, the people who have had the foresight to save getting hit but the alternative was all EU tax payers bailing them out which isn't fair either.

MrsGrowbag Sat 06-Apr-13 07:32:25

Dione, do you really not know anyone who can work bit chooses not to? Because I know several of my friends who are very happy to not bother looking for work. However, they have husbands who earn a lot and can afford not to work. MKes my blood boil that they seem to think fact that their OH earns £100k gives them licence to not work themselves. And yet for some reason no-one has a go at them, no-one calls them lazy or scroungers, even though that is exactly what they are IMHO. Might not claim benefits as such now that child benefit taken away, but happy to use services funded by taxpayers whilst they have contributed NOTHING to the economy themselves. Ok, rant over.

bakingaddict Sat 06-Apr-13 07:48:43

Mrs Growbag I dont understand why it should make your blood boil that somebody chooses not to work and be supported by their husband instead. It wouldn't necessarily be my choice as I like some financial independence but you choose what is best for your family.

Did they work before children? Are they planning to go back to work once the children are older. We all need to use services provided by the taxpayer and different people provide different levels of contribution that's just life

MrsGrowbag Sat 06-Apr-13 08:21:01

Bakingaddict, I'm not talking about people with young children, I'm talking about people with children who are older teenagers (my kids age) who choose not to work. And it makes my blood boil becUse they use the same services as the rest of us (nhs, education etc) but don't pay any taxes or national insurance. I just don't understand why people have a go about people who are genuinely unemployed being "lazy" or "scroungers" but seem to have no problem with rich people not working or contributing in other ways. I think it's a class issue - it's ok for middle class people not to work but somehow not ok for working class people. I have a friend who hadn't worked since her children were born, 17 years ago, and who was moaning the other day about not being able to get an appointment at her GP when she wanted. I just thought it was really ironic that she hasn't paid a penny towards the nhs for 17 years but expects there to be an excellent service....

Bearbehind Sat 06-Apr-13 09:44:46

Re blaming the bankers for everything and condemning their salaries, I understand why it's tempting, but those fat cat bankers who command the highest salaries also make decisions on a daily basis that (when they get it right) make huge sums of money for the business ie they contribute to getting the economy back on track.

You never hear people moaning about fat cat footballers and they do nothing other than provide entertainment. They earn ridiculous salaries paid by clubs who, in some instances are on the verge of bankruptcy, and those salaries are funded by the general public paying extortionate ticket prices and tv subscription fees out of taxed income or benefits and many footballers partake in tax avoidance schemes. How is that acceptable when bankers salaries aren't?

sleepyhead Sat 06-Apr-13 12:19:01

Eh? I don't think I know anyone who thinks that footballer's salaries are ok. I know that dh and his mates are always talking about how it's killing football for a start.

Re: the financial industries though, I think most people's issue is that outrageous risk-taking, majorly incentivised by bonuses based on these actions, was a huge reason for the global financial collapse. Gambling with other people's money, huge personal gain if it paid off, maximum personal loss if it didn't was loss of job if you were particularly unlucky - the balance wasn't there, the checks weren't there, to discourage these huge risks taken with our money. We are paying and we just don't see the institutions and their leaders taking their share of the pain.

Want2bSupermum Sat 06-Apr-13 14:30:25

sleepy If most people have issue with the excessive risk taking then regulate the activities conducted by the banks.

The bonus culture has been lost a little. When I worked in banking 10 years ago a bonus was a bonus. In 2002 no one got a cash bonus and everyone thanked their boss for keeping their job. The top performers (around the top 2-3%) were given stock instead of cash. This kept the wage bill on the P&L low reducing the loss.

in 2007-2009 bonsues were still paid out. I also question how the government handled certain events both in the UK and the US. From what I saw a certain bank threw their losses at their clients and an investigation should have been launched into how they were able to turn a profit when every other bank had large losses. The SEC and FSA failed to regulate the banks. Had our politicians set legislation to enable regulation then I don't think the asset bubble would have been as bad in the first place.

The housing market is also a problem in the UK. With the expenses scandal I was surprised at how many MPs were flipping homes and not paying capital gains tax. I find it shocking that if you live in a home for a week you can get away with calling it your primary residence. The rule should be that you live in the home for at least a year. If you buy a place, renovate and sell within a year that is for profit in the vast majority of cases. Our politicians are hardly going to change things when they make so much money from the current rules though. Such a shame as housing is overpriced and taxpayers are screwed through having to pay more for housing themselves and more in taxes to cover the cost of housing benefit. I would also start taxing the foreigners moving to London to avoid paying taxes in their own country. From what I see the costs to the economy are far greater than the benefits.

growbag If we lived in the UK my DH would be paying around GBP250-300k a year in taxes. If I didn't work I think my DH would be more than covering the cost of our family and you could also argue that me not working would be a benefit as every extra GBP would be taxed at 50% for DH while it would be taxed at the lower rate for myself. With earning GBP100k/ yr significant taxes are paid from that and as long as these women are not requiring support from the government then I don't see what is wrong with them not working. Each family has to do what is best for their circumstances.

sleepyhead Sat 06-Apr-13 14:33:46

Oh absolutely. It's a scandal that regulation was actually relaxed in the years leading up to the crash. The finance industry was/is an enormously powerful lobby. It's dubious that any government can truly claim to be making independent decisions - especially the UK with our over-reliance on the industry in London.

The banks say "jump or we're leaving". The government (of whatever colour) says "how high Sir?"

Darkesteyes Sat 06-Apr-13 14:51:30

Want to be supermum i dont think Mrs Growbag was having a go at SAHMs with older children.
She was having a go at the hypocrisy when some of them have a go at benefit claimants.
I do realise that they dont all do that but a minority of them do.
Ive seen it on this site in the past.

FasterStronger Sat 06-Apr-13 17:57:58

the reason banks have power is that they pay about 10% of the total tax take.

it would be very bad for the UK if they left.

so before we put more pressure on banks, we need growth in other industries. we need an industrial strategy.

I have started a thread in AIBU about the welfare budget breakdown. It gives I hope a pretty good idea of where the money goes. there are in fact two pie charts, the second is a bit more detailed.

Cherriesarered Sat 06-Apr-13 21:32:37

I think Osbourne had a point. Phillpott was getting £56 000 in benefits per year for his "extended" family. All paid into his account. That's quite alot of money for not working.

That aside, the fact that he beat and stabbed his former girlfriend and seriously injured her mother shows that he had no regard for women.

The fact that he was let out of prison to go on and father several children then kill them shows how pathetic our legal system is in preventing domestic abuse and violence against women and children.

Why conflate the two issues though? A tiny percentage of people 'abuse' the system in that way. Whether he was a fabulous father to a lot of kids while being on benefits or a murderer is neither here nor there. Please don't mix the two up. That is exactly what I am objecting to. One rotten apple and the whole barrel is rotten? hardly.

well you know cherries until you are prepared to do a bit of research around the actual figures of how many families with eight or more kids are wholly supported by benefits its not really worth engaging, is it? You have a computer I am guessing (but assuming) why not go online and have a little peek at the multitude of information available?

Cherriesarered Sun 07-Apr-13 08:16:03

The point is that Phillpott was not necessarily abusing the system. The system was paying him based upon his and his families circumstances. The issue for many people is that is it right to keep giving people benefits based on how many children they have. If a couple earns £56k and has 4 children, they don't get an extra say £5k when they have another child. So it is not realistic for the state to do this, it doesn't foster responsibility!
I've worked in social services for many years and there are some people who I would not say are abusing the system but because they have never ever worked just expect the state to provide everything, even though they could contribute if the system expected them to.

Want2bSupermum Tue 09-Apr-13 10:41:00

darkesteyes Thats my point. The women/men who stay home to raise their family and enable their OH to earn GBP100k a year are contributing to the economy. If they went out to work would their OH be able to bring home GBP100k. This is what is wrong with the tax system in the UK. Income should be taxed on a household basis as it is here in the US. It is the only way to place a value on the work that a SAHP does.

Fargo86 Tue 09-Apr-13 11:15:04

Don't any single people earn 100k a year?

FasterStronger Tue 09-Apr-13 11:39:22

also many people are enabled to earn their salaries by people they employ - CM, nannies, cleaners, house keepers etc.

and they don't get a tax break because they need someone else's work to help them.

alemci Tue 09-Apr-13 11:50:39

Mrs Growbag if people are stay at home mums and their DH's earn loads then isn't it fair enough, they are not getting any subsidies such as CB and their DH are paying income tax and NI.

They may do voluntary work or stuff for the school that working parents cannot manage.

I have a friend like this who has a massive house with a cleaner and has never really worked but her DP's were wealthy and she married an older man who earned a good salary.

I suppose they should appreciate how fortunate they are to be able not to have to work.

boxershorts Mon 15-Apr-13 12:13:26

I think mumsnet has its share of benefit bashers and chinese mums

boxershorts Mon 15-Apr-13 12:15:19

Osbourne has an objectionable lifestyle Millionaire living off public money

boxershorts Mon 15-Apr-13 12:16:48

mrs G yes, up to a point. But many rich women work because they are bored

boxershorts Thu 18-Apr-13 14:40:11

you need to reword your headline ambiguos

ttosca Fri 19-Apr-13 00:06:11

Conservative claims about benefits are not just spin, they're making it up

Government ministers like Iain Duncan Smith and Grant Shapps are misrepresenting official statistics for political gain


In the past three weeks, readers of mainstream UK newspapers have learned a number of things about the UK social security system and those who rely on it. They have learned that 878,000 claimants have left employment and support allowance (ESA) to avoid a tough new medical assessment; that thousands have rushed to make claims for disability living allowance (DLA) before a new, more rigorous, assessment is put in place; and that one in four of those set to be affected by the government's benefit cap have moved into work in response to the policy. These stories have a number of things in common. Each is based on an official statistic. Each tells us about how claimants have responded to welfare policy changes. Each includes a statement from a member of the government. And each is demonstrably inaccurate.


AniMac Wed 08-May-13 18:35:23

It's a shocking state of affairs. My 15 year old son is autistic and dyspraxic, totally dependent on me, in a special school, under the care of speech and language therapists, an OT, a mental health unit and is in the process of having his dla reviewed because he is nearly 16.

At the moment, i'm in limbo. If his claim gets turned down, we'll lose the extra cash but more importantly, MOST importantly, I lose my position as his carer. That means he will have no supervision when outdoors (potentially life threatening), no help at home with cutting up his food, washing him, brushing his teeth, helping him get dressed, tying his laces, comforting him during the night when he has woken up in a wet bed.

I'm living and breathing this dla claim, with no idea what the future holds for my beautiful boy, no idea if the DWP will take any notice of the medical reports and do you know what he is worrying about? He is worried that people will hate him because he gets a benefit that "people with jobs are being made to pay me". I cried when I saw the worry etched onto his face and then vehemently told him he was never to worry about that, that he was 100% entitled to it and that I saved the government money by providing 24/7 care for £77 per week.

It makes me so angry that people can ask such an inflammatory question.

Oh God yes, I love this easy life on benefits.

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