Some of the effects of Tory party policys

(89 Posts)
ttosca Sat 06-Jul-13 15:39:55

The National Housing Federation has released a report highlighting the impact of 100 days of the bedroom tax in Merseyside:

• 26,500 households in Merseyside are affected by the bedroom tax, only 155 managed to downsize due to shortage of smaller homes.

• 19,055 disabled people in Merseyside are losing over £13m a year due to the bedroom tax. Some grants are available but for three months only.

• 14,000 Merseyside households fell into arrears with their rent in the first four weeks.

“The bedroom tax is hurting the most vulnerable people in Merseyside. It is time to face the facts and repeal this unfair policy now.” David Orr, Chief Executive of the National Housing Federation

Read the National Housing Federation's summary here

bit.ly/1beczNM (includes a link to the pdf report)

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More than half of benefit claimants ruled fit to work ended up destitute !

MORE than HALF of people stripped of disability benefits after being ruled “fit for work” by Atos Origin were left unemployed and without income, according to a Government study.

The Department for Work and Pensions - DWP, who hired the French IT firm to help them slash the benefits bill, have admitted finding out in a survey that 55 per cent of people who lost benefits in the crackdown had failed to find work.

Only 15 per cent were in jobs, with 30 per cent on other benefits.

The DWP claimed people left high and dry were given “tailored support” to find jobs.

But the extent of the hardship suffered by the Atos victims in the study will only add to the growing public fury about the firm and their methods.

Atos have assessed patients with terminal illnesses as “fit for work”. And thousands of victims of genuine, chronic conditions have complained of being humiliated by the company’s tests.

So far, Citizens Advice in Scotland have received a shocking 24,000 complaints about Atos, who rake in £110million a year from the taxpayer for their controversial work.

The extent of unemployment among people denied benefits after Atos assessments was revealed by the DWP after a Freedom of Information request.

www.dailyrecord.co.uk/news/scottish-news/atos-scandal-benefits-bosses-admit-1344278?utm_source=buffer&utm_campaign=Buffer&utm_content=buffer0762d&utm_medium=twitter

MiniTheMinx Wed 10-Jul-13 17:05:15

I don't know where to start with you two either !

Here's a link www.youtube.com/watch?v=xAAmtZSIX54

If you listen to Professor Mariana Mazzucato approximately half way through that lecture (58 mins) it will explain how the state underpins the free market through state investment into R&D, subsidies and beneficial tax regimes. She isn't on the left, just in case you think its biased. Her argument is that the value is created through investment but the extraction of value goes to the private sector.

speri.dept.shef.ac.uk/2013/01/15/myth-free-market-capitalism-rest/

You might also find this interesting, again not a left source.
www.forbes.com/sites/johntharvey/2011/04/29/why-the-private-sector-needs-the-government-to-spend-money/

Government spending after 1945 drove huge increases in GDP, drove down the debt to GDP because of how the money was invested (rather than just spent on war) & drove huge growth in the private sector despite progressive taxation.

niceguy2 Wed 10-Jul-13 21:45:38

OK, let's try to agree upon this. The state gets it's money from taxing the private sector. The private sector needs the state to spend money on various things like healthcare, police, defence, education, roads etc etc. Things which left to market forces alone wouldn't be a good idea.

The question is of balance. And there has to be a balance. The state cannot exist without the private sector and it would be pretty much anarchy without the state.

We'll probably disagree where the balancing point is but there has to be one correct?

What a Tory/Labour govt are in reality doing is moving the point a cm to the left or right depending on who is in power.

But my main point as I said before is that if the private sector does badly then it follows that the public sector also ends up suffering.

MiniTheMinx Wed 10-Jul-13 22:39:25

No incorrect.

We can have no state spending on welfare, health and education and a completely liberal economy, much as we did in the 18th and 19th century. We could then return to business as normal with people dying of preventable disease, children dying in childhood, a return of malnutrition and starvation. Scameron et al could all saunter out and wag their finger at the naughty immoral poor. oops, isn't that what they want.

Or we could have a complete command economy, as is the case in Korea.

There is no golden rule that says we must have state spending and a private sector.

Or we could just try something radically different. The struggle to control the state is historic with one class always having the odds stacked in their favour. In the interests of democracy I wouldn't ask them to get out their cheque book, I would request they pack their bags. smile

MrJudgeyPants Wed 10-Jul-13 23:48:01

In the interests of democracy I wouldn't ask them to get out their cheque book, I would request they pack their bags.

Are you suggesting that the wealthy should be chucked out of the country... in the name of democracy?

Wasn't that tried in Zimbabwe and Uganda? Remind me again how that turned out... Must have been the Bilderbergers, the Neo-Cons and probably even the Freemasons who deliberately trashed those countries economies pour encourager les autres.

niceguy2 Thu 11-Jul-13 00:37:28

Mini, i've no clue what you are arguing for anymore. Are you suggesting a command economy like Korea is a good thing? Because already I agree that a pure private economy is a bad thing.

The world is not black & white. That's why too much of any type of economy is bad. The 'best' is a mix of both.

As for the rich packing their bags and leaving, that's just foolishness. The rich tend to take their riches with them. Unless you are now going to promote state legalised theft?

ttosca Thu 11-Jul-13 01:16:16

Mini is quite correct.

Either extreme of liberal Capitalism or a centrally controlled command economy are anti-human and anti-freedom and are doomed to failure.

What he or she is calling for is something different, which presumably (I won't put words in to her mouth) is democratic socialism. That is, an economy where we produce goods to meet humans needs first, decided democratically.

Capitalism has historically been productive and has served its purpose. It has now reached its limit and is not sustainable if we want to have any semblance of democracy, nevermind neverending war, mass poverty, and environmental disaster.

flatpackhamster Thu 11-Jul-13 07:57:35

niceguy2
Mini, i've no clue what you are arguing for anymore. Are you suggesting a command economy like Korea is a good thing? Because already I agree that a pure private economy is a bad thing.

She is arguing for a communist command economy. As usual. Some people just won't learn.

MiniTheMinx Thu 11-Jul-13 09:50:16

I am not arguing for a command economy and a large state. The state itself is not democratic. Historically we have always struggled for control of the state. Under feudalism the state was not headed by an elected individual but by someone who claimed to have the divine right to rule.

Now we have governments made up of elected individuals that serve the class interests of those who pay the bills and those who pay the piper call the tune. And for those of you who think that is the tax payer, you are duped.

The state is corrupt, serving the interests of those with property, through laws and institutions that ensure that those without stay without.

I don't think we need a large state or even huge state welfare, what is needed are changes to property relations (I'm not suggesting you share your bathroom) we need changes to way in which businesses are owned and managed. Democracy needs to start from the ground up. We need to unpick the link between large finance capital and productive business, so that productive capital isn't subordinated to finance. Right now small businesses are still being denied investment or lending whilst the banks favour monopoly. That isn't a free market, that is a rigged market. And the capital flows in one direction, enclosing public and private life, inclusion into this necessitates the exclusion of others.

niceguy2 Thu 11-Jul-13 12:28:33

Ok, i'm genuinely interested in how you see this brave new world which Ttosca calls 'democratic socialism' would work.

So...correct me if I am wrong but you believe that the state is inherently corrupt. And that despite one person one vote that the resulting government only serves a narrow interest. Correct?

If so how would the new democratic socialism work? In other words, how would decisions be made? What changes are you suggesting need changing to business ownership? If I start off say a takeaway business and grow it into a big chain of takeaway businesses, who owns/manages it? Me or the state?

Picking up Ttosca's point on producing goods on the basis of meeting human need first. Who decides that and how? So for example if I don't like Brocolli, who decides that is more important than chocolate? And if I've worked and earned £x. And I just want to have a fun time and spend most of it on rubber dog shit, in a democratic society, who decides I cannot buy it because it fails the 'human need' test?

ttosca Thu 11-Jul-13 15:58:40

So how it is that this thread has again been diverted from discussing the harmful effects of the Tory's sociopathic policies?

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Food banks say use has doubled since benefit cuts

Thu, 11/07/2013 - 13:52 -- nick

Despite the government's insistence that benefit cuts have nothing to do with increased food bank need, the number using them has doubled since cuts came into force.

The Trussell Trust, the UK's biggest food bank provider, says it has seen a 200% increase in the number of referrals for help since the April changes, and that more than half of these were linked to benefits issues.

The major reasons for the rise were sanctions, benefit delays - which will be worsened by Chancellor George Osborne's recent announcement of longer waiting times for first claims - the bedroom tax, and cuts to council tax relief.

The Trussell Trust fed more than 150,000 people in the three months from April to June, and the numbers are increasing.

www.unemployednet.org/food-banks-say-use-has-doubled-benefit-cuts

flatpackhamster Thu 11-Jul-13 16:01:03

ttosca

So how it is that this thread has again been diverted from discussing the harmful effects of the Tory's sociopathic policies?

Why not just create another 15 threads, like normal?

I'm not sure the word 'discuss' covers what you do.

MiniTheMinx Thu 11-Jul-13 16:38:00

You don't have to respond Flatpack, no one forces you.

Lord Freud, "which came first, the supply or the demand … Food from a food bank – the supply – is a free good, and by definition there is an almost infinite demand for a free good." There, again, see these people make their judgements about others based on their belief that everyone is like them, avaricious. Except the poor are not just greedy, they are lazy.

An MP asked Freud if the Job centre was issuing vouchers, to which he said that the job centres were encouraged to make links with food banks. So it would seem that the delays, the sanctions and the mistakes are part of some well thought plan. Lets not use tax payers money to keep people when they find themselves down on their luck, lets make tax payers dig deeper and give their neighbours food, whilst we siphon off expenses, freebies, give welfare to corporations, wage wars and drink subsidised gin whilst we plan our £10,000 hike in salary.

And this is not a single party issue, Freud was hired by Blair to produce a white paper on welfare reform. So, what to do?

MrJudgeyPants Thu 11-Jul-13 22:27:59

Any democracy worth its salt has to acknowledge economic democracy - who can buy what and when is no business of the states. This extends to the wider issue of capitalism. If an individual or organisation can see a return on an investment it should be unimpeded in its pursuit of that return (provided there is a level playing field for all). The problem that the country faces is a dearth of investment opportunities which will deliver a suitable reward for the risk these banks are being asked to take.

For example, if HS2 was capable of providing a decent return on investment (as opposed to being a colossal white elephant waiting to happen) there would be banks and private investors queuing around the block for a piece of the action and the governments money wouldn't be necessary.

With government spending at around 47% of GDP, and taxation not being too far from that point, it isn't hard to find some way of boosting profits for companies leading, in turn, to more investment opportunities... leading, in turn, to more investment... leading, in turn, to more jobs...

I get fed up saying it but taxation (especially that on businesses and the poor) is unacceptably high.

MiniTheMinx Fri 12-Jul-13 22:19:46

We don't have a level playing field and capitalism isn't sustainable because of the capital absorption problem. The engine of capitalism is accumulation, what is accumulated grows bigger which means effectively larger and larger amounts of capital must find suitable investment opportunities. Do you want every surface of the globe concreted over, eventual under-consumption problems and every other social, bio and private sphere of life marketised only to find that it will still crash under the weight of its own contradictions.

Companies already have "boosted" profits, at the moment they are sitting on a $300 trillion surplus that they can't find investment for in productive areas of the economy.

Leithlurker Sat 13-Jul-13 11:07:55

www.independent.co.uk/news/uk/home-news/british-public-wrong-about-nearly-everything-survey-shows-8697821.html

So interestingly another way of looking at the OP is to say that the Tories have deliberately added to the problem by misleading and in a partisan way setting the context of benefits as one where lies and misunderstandings lead public opinion, not an honest and open debate about what the welfare state is for, nor what kind of society we want to live in. Easy to say that the public support getting tough on benefit scroungers which leads to the safety net of benefits being pulled out from under those most in need, if the public have no idea of the reality of the cost and where the money goes.

niceguy2 Sat 13-Jul-13 12:18:23

I do think there is a huge problem between perception and reality.

But I don't think there's a very easy solution to make papers like the DM right objectively without seriously encroaching on freedom of speech.

And naturally MP's will skew the figures to suit them just like night follows day.

What I would like to see though is these personal tax statements mentioned a while back.

Right now your average Joe Bloggs on the street hears of these billions of pounds spent every year on benefits whilst he's working his arse off and barely meeting the mortgage. Naturally he's not right happy and gets the impression he's being milked.

But if he got a statement each year which shows actually, out of the say £5000 tax he paid last year, £1k went on this, 2k went on that. Those are figures he can understand and relate to.

And when the DM or MP's are wittering on about cracking down on fraud, he can also see 'wait...only a tiny amount lost there. The elephant in the room is the £2k I'm paying towards xyz'.

MrJudgeyPants Sat 13-Jul-13 23:52:52

Mini, the first part of your argument doesn't stack up. The market is merely an efficient arbitrator of supply and demand. The trick is to maximise efficiency of a given resource (whether its land, oil or any other traded good) - this is the creative destruction of capitalism. Think about it like this, if the price of wheat spikes due to a bad harvest, there is a simple mechanism by which farmers can tweak the following years supply, similarly, the price acts as a disincentive to purchase (why buy wheat when rice is cheaper for example) - the nett effect is to smooth the price out over time. This just isn't possible in a planned economy.

Similarly, the 'contradictions' in capitalism, when compared to the alternatives, should be seen as features, not bugs. Even your point about concreting over the countryside is wrong as eventually farm land adjusts in price to balance supply and demands.

Your final point about companies sitting on cash reserves but not investing (whilst I question your figures) actually supports my point. More investment opportunities could be supported by a lower tax rate on companies.

Niceguy - I totally agree about the need for tax statements, particularly at a time when money is tight and spending budgets are being squeezed.

flatpackhamster Sun 14-Jul-13 09:25:32

Leithlurker

So interestingly another way of looking at the OP is to say that the Tories have deliberately added to the problem by misleading and in a partisan way setting the context of benefits as one where lies and misunderstandings lead public opinion, not an honest and open debate about what the welfare state is for, nor what kind of society we want to live in.

'Misleading' and 'Partisan' could be used to describe people using the term 'bedroom tax' or claiming the NHS is being privatised. In fact practically every chicken-little sky-is-falling story that has poured out of the left-wing press since 2010 fits the same description.

ISTM that your objection is not that there is misleading and partisan information, but that you are losing the propaganda war, despite the vast taxpayer resource (the BBC) which is fighting it on your behalf.

Easy to say that the public support getting tough on benefit scroungers which leads to the safety net of benefits being pulled out from under those most in need, if the public have no idea of the reality of the cost and where the money goes.

If they had any idea of the reality of the cost, I think they'd be even more appalled at the expenditure.

ttosca Sun 14-Jul-13 10:33:10

> Mini, the first part of your argument doesn't stack up. The market is merely an efficient arbitrator of supply and demand. The trick is to maximise efficiency of a given resource (whether its land, oil or any other traded good) - this is the creative destruction of capitalism. Think about it like this, if the price of wheat spikes due to a bad harvest, there is a simple mechanism by which farmers can tweak the following years supply, similarly, the price acts as a disincentive to purchase (why buy wheat when rice is cheaper for example) - the nett effect is to smooth the price out over time. This just isn't possible in a planned economy.

This is hilarious. It's like some guy time traveled forward from the 19th Century.

'The Market' is so efficient that 1% of the population own nearly 40% of the wealth. Thousands of pounds of food are thrown away by supermarkets every day whilst thousands of people go hungry. And whilst there are a large number of unoccupied homes in the UK, there is a huge shortage of homes, especially affordable homes, for ordinary people to live in.

It's such an efficient arbitrator of supply and demand that there is a chronic problem of unemployment and wages so low that the state has to intervene to subsides peoples wages so that they can afford to live.

Leithlurker Sun 14-Jul-13 10:38:46

You must really hate the idea that you were born 100 years to late FPH, you would have so loved to have been a victorian/Edwardien, except of course if you had have been born poor.

ttosca Sun 14-Jul-13 10:40:21

> Easy to say that the public support getting tough on benefit scroungers which leads to the safety net of benefits being pulled out from under those most in need, if the public have no idea of the reality of the cost and where the money goes.

> If they had any idea of the reality of the cost, I think they'd be even more appalled at the expenditure.

In fact, the more the public is informed about the cost of social security and the rate of fraud (which is tiny), the more likely they are to support it.

The problem is that politicians don't merely exploit ignorance, they actively promote it. Ian Duncan Smith, the serial liar and sociopath is a case in point. He has repeatedly bastardised statistics to push through his anti-social security agenda.

The Office of National Statistics has officially rebuked IDS for his lies and told the govt. they must stop abusing statistics in this way.

Meanwhile, you can sign this petition to get that vile shit, IDS, kicked out of Parliament for lying to Parliament:

https://www.change.org/en-GB/petitions/speaker-of-the-house-of-commons-expel-iain-duncan-smith-from-the-house-of-commons

MrJudgeyPants Sun 14-Jul-13 11:20:48

"It's like some guy time traveled forward from the 19th Century."

Oh the irony of a Marxist saying THAT!

"It's such an efficient arbitrator of supply and demand that there is a chronic problem of unemployment and wages so low that the state has to intervene to subsides peoples wages so that they can afford to live."

Ok then a) why the fuckity bumble does the state tax the lowest earners? and, b) the state sets a minimum wage AND we have high unemployment - wouldn't it be better to allow individuals to earn a 'clearing rate' and have more people in employment?

niceguy2 Sun 14-Jul-13 12:45:10

You are totally correct Ttosca that we throw away a lot of food and it's not a desirable thing given all the starving people in the world. If your definition of efficiency is for us not to be throwing away food then beware.

Look at the alternatives. When USSR was under communist rule following a planned economy...sure there was very little wastage. But then there was very little produced! In China before they adopted free market reforms people literally starved. To the point where to be called fat was actually a compliment since only the rich could afford to eat so much!

And look at the world today. One of the few remaining planned economies, North Korea. Many of it's citizen's only survive because of the generousity of the wicked capitalists giving food aid made from their evil free market economies.

So if you give me the choice of living in an 'inefficient' free market economy or the 'efficient' planned economy then I'd take the first everytime. Call me but I do like to eat.

flatpackhamster Sun 14-Jul-13 12:46:22

Leithlurker

You must really hate the idea that you were born 100 years to late FPH, you would have so loved to have been a victorian/Edwardien, except of course if you had have been born poor.

I assume that by choosing to attack me personally (with one of the laziest, most contrived and pig-ignorant smears I have seen in quite a while, so well done) rather than address the point I made, you are happily admitting that your lunatic socialists are quite happy to dissemble and smear your wicked propaganda?

Jolly good.

MiniTheMinx Sun 14-Jul-13 15:19:37

North Korea has suffered from typhoons and flooding and several other natural disasters. The USA sees itself as the guardian of capitalism, any help or relaxation of trade restrictions is subject to demands, all of which are in relation to opening up North Korea to capitalist expansion. Now North Korea is communist and quite understandably is trying to resist this imperialism. "We will continue to keep the pressure on them and they'll continue to isolate themselves until they take a different path," Obama said, so the plan is to starve them into submission.

Its all very well saying that Korea shouldn't be testing missiles but they are under threat, the threat may not be violence in the sense of all out war, but what is waged upon all socialist nations is a form of war, an economic war waged through sanctions, CIA coups, media. Did you know that the CIA owns media companies around the world? do you care? what is more the USA spends more on its military than almost all other nations combined.

"The countries directly battered by US military actions in recent decades (Grenada, Panama, Iraq, Libya, Somalia, Yugoslavia, Afghanistan, then again Iraq), along with numerous other states that have been threatened at one time or another for being “anti-American” or “anti-West” (Iran, Cuba, South Yemen, Venezuela, Syria, North Korea, and others) have one thing in common: not one of them has wielded a nuclear deterrence—until now......... “No single nation should pick and choose which nation holds nuclear weapons.” But that is exactly what the United States is trying to do in regard to a benighted North Korea--and Iran. Physicist and political writer Manuel Garcia, Jr., observes that Washington’s policy “is to encourage other nations to abide by the terms of the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty--and renounce nuclear weapons--while exempting itself. Michael Parenti. www.michaelparenti.org/NorthKorea.html

Look at all the money America stole and borrowed to fund its war against Russia. Regan tripped the american debt, not because he was protecting ordinary citizens but because he was acting in the interest of capitalism.

And the first part of my argument does stack up and here's why.

If I have two pairs of shoes, you have £20, you can buy one pr. If I have two prs of shoes and £20 and you have no money, I keep the shoes and the £20 and you have no shoes. I could invest my capital to make more shoes but because you have no money there is no effective demand for the shoes. Unmet human need sits beside capital surplus and in this instance commodities, I will not employ you because there is no demand and therefore I can not accumulate more money. Some Marxists have tried to say that under-consumption theory isn't correct by saying that capitalists themselves make up the difference in purchasing power. If this is so, why does the west indebt its governments to cleave open non capitalist countries to trade/investment and try to open up every area of human life to profiteering? The answer is because: wages are too low to create demand for service/commodities and also because the capitalist class themselves do not make up the short fall. There is after all only so much food anyone can eat, miles they can travel, clothes they can wear. Even for those who have vast wealth, there is a limit to how much they spend, the rest must find suitable investment opportunities. The only reason we do not have piles of waste is simply because capitalism regulates to some extent the excess by people withdrawing investment. But when this happens as has been the case over the last 20-30 years, we see financification where money is invested into markets and not into production for human need.

We need a larger percentage of the wealth created to be shared through wages, we need effective global tax rules and we need governments to continue to meet the welfare needs of people or we need a far more radical solution. Otherwise this system will fail sooner rather than later.

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