Wednesday 08 April 2015.
Dear Mr Cameron,
Betrayal is a terrible thing. The central issue of all these letters has been the betrayal of a nation for an ideology that rewards the rich whilst punishing and penalising the poor. Britain is reported to be the only country in the G7 group of leading economies where inequality has increased this century.
“The Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development estimates that rising inequality between 1990 and 2010 cost the UK nine percentage points of economic growth. Across OECD members the richest 10% earn 9.5 times more than the poorest, up from seven times in the 1980s. Top UK directors now earn 120 times the average wage, up from 45 times in 1998. Britain’s highest-paid director earned a year’s worth of the living wage in less than an hour.”
But as we know it is far more than inequality that is dogging any form of recovery for the poorest and most vulnerable people in Britain, at its heart are the multi-pronged attacks on poor and vulnerable people by George Osborne and Iain Duncan Smith. Disabled people are suffering the brunt of these attacks and, of course, the jewel in the crown of perfidy and betrayal is the removal of the means of survival through Smiths vicious sanctions regime. Smith claims that sanctions are only imposed as a “last resort” and yet in 2013 alone more sanctions (1,122,526) were imposed than fines by the entire judicial system (849,000) and no court fine ever involves the entire removal of all someone’s income. As Dr David Webster put it, “Benefit sanctions are Britain’s secret penal system”.
The front-line troops of these all out attacks on the poor are the DWP staff who bear the burden (those with a conscience) of carrying out the instructions of the DWP.
And how are they to be rewarded? The Financial Times reports that 30,000 DWP staff are to be shown the door over the next five years if a Conservative government is elected in May, a cull of over a third of the workforce of 83,000. I am afraid that I struggle to feel any sympathy for them compared to the suffering they have imposed and yet your government really knows how the stick the knife in the back of those who have served you well. That really is the height of betrayal! I wonder how many of them will end up on the receiving end of a sanction?
How anyone but the blindly self obsessed can vote Tory I will never know.