Archives for posts with tag: social security

George Orwell War is Peace

This election is going to be one of, if not the hardest elections the left has ever fought. The ruling elites don’t like Corbyn, the monied elites don’t like Corbyn, the main stream media almost all don’t like Corbyn, the BBC, meant to be the nations impartial broadcaster, doesn’t like Corbyn, the Tories, moving ever further to the right, don’t like Corbyn, Daniel Finkelstein, a Jewish Tory Lord, speaking to British Jews via the Jewish Chronicle, writes, “If Jeremy Corbyn and his followers do not suffer a gigantic defeat in this election, it will be an utter, complete, ghastly disaster for Jews.”  The Labour Party Blairites don’t like Corbyn. Much of the nation, responding to the relentless negative press and propaganda, doesn’t like Corbyn. Even educated fleas don’t like Corbyn (sorry about that). And, of course, none of them like Corbyn supporters, against whom the kindest of the many names used, ‘Corbynistas’, is spoken with disdain and contempt.

This was a recent Tweet to me about socialism, “It’s a failed experiment that some insist on endlessly repeating. Thankfully the majority understand this.”

Given all that, and that’s a lot of ‘that’, it’s surprising that the local elections returned a single Labour win, if all we had to go on was all or any of the above.

Unsurprisingly the Tories are still ahead in the polls and given that all the vast majority of people have to go on is the main stream media it would be wholly surprising if they were not and the uncomfortable truth is that the Tories could win in June and with a clear majority.

As a simple test to find out what people know about Tory policies, may I suggest asking around a bit, friends, supermarket check out people, people in your church, neighbours you might chat to, I don’t think you’ll have to try too hard, ask them if they know the NHS is being taken apart and privatised. No more than that, although they may ask what you mean and you might tell them it is being broken up and given to private companies like Virgin. From their answers and even their questions you’ll get a clear idea of how much or little they know.

If they know nothing, they aren’t sheeple, stupid or ignorant, but the sources of news they rely on in their busy lives have simply failed to inform them what is going on, wilfully, deliberately and with malicious intent.

People aren’t generally stupid, but they are creatures of society and habit and most people simply don’t question that, or the media, and why should they? Activists are always a social minority, most people want to get on with their lives and most people lead busy lives (yes, including activists) and is it so great a crime to want to get by and not have to deal with the complexities of politics? And, godammit, they are complicated and they are complicated by slick talking, money grubbing, snake oil salesmen out for power and money.

The problem with Jeremy Corbyn, and don’t they just have a problem with him, is that he talks plain speak, plain English, and the career politicians have no answer other than to mock, denigrate and slag him off and those who support him.

Socialism hasn’t failed. Our NHS and our system of social security, those bastions and triumphs of socialism, aren’t failing, they are being dismantled by a right that is cunning, deceitful and brutal, full of its own grandiosity and greed.

How many times have you heard, “Why should I pay for them (poor, unemployed, disabled, old people, you name it)?”

When have you ever heard socialists screaming over the years, “Why should we pay for you?” Health, education, university, fire services, ambulance service, police, GPs, our vast national infrastructure, libraries, legal aid, etc.

And then there are all the benefits that organised labour and the unions have fought for – weekends, paid holidays, maternity leave, 40 hour working weeks, retirement ages, occupational health and safety, workplace pensions, the right not to be sacked for getting married, having a baby or being ill, the list goes on.

But do let’s hear it for the bankers, “Why should we pay for you!?!” And all the corporate scroungers, “Why should we pay for you?”

Never have I heard it said, “let’s have a cut off point, a level of income at which you can sort all your own shit out, every last whining, whinging, ungrateful bit of it.” It would be impossible to make it work.

Yet now, out of spite and media hate fuelled prejudice, people want to cut off their own noses to spite everyone including themselves, they want to sacrifice the benefits of socialism they’ve enjoyed all their lives because they hate the idea that other people are getting something out of it as well, and perhaps a bit more than them at this moment in time.

If there was any truth in advertising and without relentless propaganda, it is the Tories who would be unelectable and who would be vilified the length and breath of Britain.

The fact that the ruling elites, the media barons and the exceedingly wealthy, who do everything in their power to avoid contributing to the tax pot, detest Corbyn should really speak for itself, but the efforts and money they expend to trash him works.

Jeremy Corbyn is one of the most, if not the most, electable Labour leader and future Prime Minister the party has has ever had. The battle we have is not to prove he is electable, it is to battle the power of the wealthy propagandists and the ruthless Tory campaign war room backed by enormous wealth and employing unscrupulous masters of the dark arts of perception management.

Social, citizen and independent media has never been more important that in this general election and for the able bodied to hit the streets to get the honest message across that Britain needs and deserves to hear. Labour does not need to deceive, the Tories do. Labour wants to rebuild the nation after the Tories have spent seven years dismantling it and they’ll finish the job if they get back in.

KOG. 07 May 2017

https://www.thejc.com/comment/columnists/corbyn-must-lose-for-our-sake-1.437827

http://www.fleetstreetfox.com/2011/11/what-have-unions-ever-done-for-us.html

http://www.politico.eu/article/theresa-may-campaign-war-room-conservative-stephen-gilbert-lynton-crosby/

Image1

Readers might be somewhat put off by a silly, perhaps frivolous, attempt to portray the Labour and Tory leaders as characters from a movie, but the truth is that we’ve gone a very long way beyond that, so please bear with me.

For over a week now I have had a growing ache in my body, a wrenching ache that has steadily increased. I have felt the need to rest more, to sleep it off, but it is relentless and the very simple fact is that I am living on the edge of tears that will, at some point, release, but the problem remains.

I am outraged at the farce this election has already become, the power games Theresa May is playing, the lies and deceit and the vile twisted spectacle of it all.

My response has been mixed, from sharing some of the stories going the rounds which I felt needed sharing, to mocking and satirising the whole damned ludicrous ‘thing’, to sharing the policies that should be the real story but which are being smothered to the point of banality by ‘spectacle’.

The facts are that we’ve lived through seven years of Tory hell and thousands of people have died. They are stealing our NHS right from under our noses and if they get in again it’ll be all over for our most treasured institution and our greatest national achievement. They have turned the national safety net, our system of social security, into a secret penal system driving people into despair and death and attacking the weakest and most vulnerable people in the UK. Since 2010 food banks and food bank usage have gone through the roof as has poverty. And those are but a very few issues that we face which will, of a certainty, get very much worse if the Tories get back in.

I am getting on in years, I live on ‘my’ state pension, I have terminal cancer and I struggle with mental ill health and the brutal callousness of the Tories has had a dramatic affect on my life. I have little hope that my remaining years under a Tory government will be in any way peaceable and the reality is I do not expect to survive another five years of Tory misrule and their callous brutality. I do not require anyone’s pity, but I do require of myself that I face reality. I will fight these bastards to the bitter end but I have no plans to lose my sense of humour, my love of life and nor do I have any intention of giving up fighting for justice, but it hurts and it hurts badly.

I’ll find the release in need in tears, I’ll take their healing balm and I’ll go on, I will not fall into despair, endless depression and futility.

This is no film, some romantic dreamscape in which good triumphs over evil in a pre-scripted plot, but nor can I ignore these times in which the plots of a million films are being lived out. because this is fundamentally a war of good against evil, although I never thought I’d live to see such a thing.

Since coming to power in 2010 the Tories have been conducting a war on the poor with brutal contempt for our lives. Theresa May can hide in her exclusive gatherings of the Tory faithful, to the exclusion of all others, including the press, and pretend she’s the ruling matriarch of Britain. She may even believe she has some divine right to rule and she may be planning a coup if she does not, who knows? We’ll certainly never know from her or her sick party of the privileged.

Jeremy Corbyn won’t play their games, he won’t join their macabre pantomime, nor indulge in the name calling, dirt scraping, tactics so beloved of the right. And yes he does rather resemble Obi-Wan Kenobi, played so well by Alec Guinness and Theresa May does resemble the evil Emperor Palpatine played by Ian McDiarmid. And there is steel in Corbyn that May can neither emulate nor overcome. The force is as strong in Corbyn as the farce is in May. Overcome we shall, overcome we must, because our lives really do depend on it. This is the fight of and for our lives.

KOG. 03 May 2017

http://www.mirror.co.uk/news/politics/social-care-scandal-tory-cuts-9836261

https://www.theguardian.com/society/2015/aug/27/thousands-died-after-fit-for-work-assessment-dwp-figures

http://voxpoliticalonline.com/2017/02/18/tory-cuts-have-caused-thousands-of-deaths-again-they-are-denying-it-with-nonsense-claims/

http://www.independent.co.uk/life-style/health-and-families/health-news/nhs-health-service-healthcare-privatisation-a7160771.html

http://bellacaledonia.org.uk/2016/05/05/benefit-sanctions-are-britains-secret-penal-system/

https://www.crimeandjustice.org.uk/resources/benefit-sanctions-britains-secret-penal-system

http://www.independent.co.uk/news/uk/home-news/disability-benefits-motabililty-rule-change-disabled-people-vehicles-dwp-a7191636.html

http://www.independent.co.uk/news/uk/home-news/food-bank-usage-at-record-high-reveals-trussell-trust-a6984921.html

https://www.theguardian.com/society/2017/mar/16/child-poverty-in-uk-at-highest-level-since-2010-official-figures-show

27_august_2016

A letter a day to number 10. No 1,535

Saturday 27 August 2016.

Dear Mrs May,

Since 2010 we have seen the rise and rise of state cruelty. This isn’t about injustice, that’s normal, built into the system and has been from time immemorial.

In days of yore, brutal men would just grab any land they fancied, whether it was occupied or not, declare ownership of everything they’d possessed by force or were granted by yet other brutes, call themselves lords and barons, charge the people on the land for the privilege of being owned and expect their fealty and deferential servitude. Chivalry did not extend to ordinary people. So much, so history.

This modern cruelty started with Thatcher, she was bold, brutally breaking the miners and industry and setting the stage for neoliberalism and the cult of competitive individualism. She broke the workers but she dared not touch our NHS and the welfare state remained a safety net for those in need of a helping hand, although she presided over the end of the post war consensus of the universal provision of care.

The coalition under Cameron with the imposition of austerity saw the beginning of the end of the state as any sort of benign force for the good of the people and the speed of the implementation of the wanton destruction of the state spoke of plans long in the making and now the gloves were off.

The re-writing of social security as ‘benefits’ and the escalation of punitive policies and benefits denial against the most vulnerable, the development of Universal Credit as a system of scarcity and punishment, the rebranding of sickness and disability as ‘malingering’ and wholesale attacks on disabled people and the introduction of forced labour were driven by vindictive cruelty and contempt for the lives of ordinary people.

This is where we stand today and stand we must. There is no possible excuse for this cruelty in one of the worlds richest nations. The Telegraph reports that in 2014 ‘Blue chip bosses in the UK earnt an average of £4.96m’: obscene inequality is no accident of nature it is callously wilful. In your ‘coronation’ speech you said, “The government I lead will be driven not by the interests of the privileged few, but by yours.” The time to prove that is passing swiftly and there is no evidence that any such change is likely or ever will be as Liz Truss announces that she will be scrapping the Human Rights Act.

http://www.bbc.co.uk/history/british/modern/thatcherism_01.shtml

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/business/2016/04/12/who-are-the-highest-paid-chief-executives-in-the-ftse-100/

https://www.gov.uk/government/speeches/statement-from-the-new-prime-minister-theresa-may

We’re still scrapping the Human Rights Act, says Liz Truss

https://books.google.co.uk/books?id=8a2yDAAAQBAJ&pg=PA195&lpg=PA195&dq=chivalry+did+not+belong+to+ordinary+people&source=bl&ots=neBcKi1abY&sig=sCYaI6TlrluoyG6-B5zSI3884V0&hl=en&sa=X&ved=0ahUKEwis9IGEy9_OAhXiBcAKHTVpCo4Q6AEIKDAD#v=onepage&q=chivalry%20did%20not%20belong%20to%20ordinary%20people&f=false

24_august_2016

A letter a day to number 10. No 1,532

Wednesday 24 August 2016.

Dear Mrs May,

Paul Marlow is a man who reports he worked for 31 years taking only 2 days off for sickness in all that time, until he developed cancer in 2002. Since then he has had 42 operations and is suffering from hepatitis B, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, a medical drug addiction and other health problems and yet the DWP found him fit for work. Five weeks after the DWP stopped his support payments he has now won his fight for the reinstatement of his social security payments.

The Oxford Times reports, ‘The Department for Work and Pensions originally said they found Mr Marlow fit for work and added decisions were not based on the condition of claimants, but on what they can do’.

This is an explicit admission, as many have experienced, that the DWP routinely ignores medical evidence even to rebranding ‘Sick Notes’, with the Orwellian ‘Fit Notes’. If someone can nod their head they are capable of hitting a machine button with it and turn out egg cups, or whatever. The fact they might be dying in the process is neither here nor there.

Of course this is all part of a set piece gouged out by ‘Lord’ David Freud and the outlaw USA based Unum Provident insurance company to rebrand sickness and disability as ‘malingering’ and the ‘motivation for claimants of disability benefits’.

Whilst this whole filthy business began under ‘New Labour’, in the unlovely hands of Iain Duncan Smith it rapidly expanded into Britain’s secret penal system imposing heavier fines than the entire UK legal system and depriving people of the means of survival, something no court in the land would do.

Dr David Webster of the University of Glasgow had the following to say, “The British political class has come to believe that benefit claimants must be punished to make them look for work in ways the state thinks are a good idea.”

This arrogant authoritarian paternalism is an affront to humanity. It is little more than a psychotic perversion from over privileged and over bearing elitists who are too big for their own britches. Life is not a sweat shop for profit.

As I’ve pointed out on numerous occasions, the philanthropy of the poor to the rich far surpasses anything we might claim in feeble benefits, yet for which we are despised.

http://www.oxfordtimes.co.uk/news/14699246.Cancer_sufferer___39_put_through_hell__39__after_told_he_was_fit_for_work_by_government_assessors/?ref=fbshr

Mo Stewart: ‘The influence of the private insurance industry on the UK welfare reforms.’

#DWP ‘Benefit sanctions: Britain’s secret penal system’ by Dr David Webster University of Glasgow

http://www.independent.co.uk/news/uk/politics/the-graph-that-shows-how-the-poor-are-paying-more-than-the-rich-in-tax-10353982.html

http://www.desmog.uk/2015/07/27/landed-gentry-jackals-claiming-billions-farm-subsidies

http://www.theguardian.com/politics/2015/jul/07/corporate-welfare-a-93bn-handshake

19_august_2016

A letter a day to number 10. No 1,527

Friday 19 August 2016.

Dear Mrs May,

The annual report (2015-16) from the Social Security Advisory Committee chaired by Paul Gray reveals that the welfare reforms were driven by pressure from the treasury and that assessments of the likely impacts were non-existent, ignored/rejected or, through the use of secondary legislation, deliberately bypassed altogether.

What is also clear is that recommendations presented to government were rejected, an example being that the reduction of the maximum period for backdating ‘a claim for HB from six months to one month was too severe’. The government response was, “We remain of the view that the arguments are not compelling for retaining an additional two, or five month period during which entitlement to support for housing costs can be backdated for an increasing minority of new claims to benefit.”

With the imposition of Mandatory Reconsideration’s, benefit delays increased enormously, or ground to a halt, and any reduction in the period of backdating would, and has, led to hardship, hunger, homelessness, increasing numbers of suicides and death.

I put it to you that cuts to social security were always ideologically driven, that is, George Osborne had simply decided that the poor were ones who were going to be penalised to supposedly pay down the debt created by the banks. I also put it to you that this was an orchestrated war on the poor, in which sanctions and imposed hardship were weapons used against the poorest and most vulnerable people in Britain. Whilst George Osborne was cutting inheritance tax and corporation tax, rewarding the wealthy, the poor were, and are, being driven into the ground.

I also wonder where this war on the poor got us given that George Osborne created more debt than every Labour government in history and doubled the national debt. Poor, sick and disabled people have suffered, and continue to suffer, for no better reason than vindictive spite and even the stated intention behind such appalling treatment was entirely false.

Lastly, after the imposition of permanent austerity, the countless billions in cuts across the board, including our NHS, the fire sale of national assets and the increase of over £500 billion in the national debt, where the hell has all our money gone? As you are currently enjoying a walking holiday in the Swiss Alps, perhaps you could give a few banks a call and find out if George hasn’t opened a secret Swiss bank account and squirrelled all our money away there, because I am damned if I can figure it out.

https://www.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/545870/ssac-annual-report-2015-2016.pdf

The Tories aren’t persecuting the poor out of spite, it’s even worse than that

Tories pushed through welfare changes ‘without meaningful analysis of impact’

http://www.publicfinance.co.uk/news/2015/12/benefit-delays-%E2%80%9Cplunging-families-hunger%E2%80%9D-say-mps

https://www.theguardian.com/society/2014/jun/18/thousands-limbo-disability-benefit-appeals-grind-to-halt

DWP admits responsibility for benefit-related deaths with a single, small word

http://anotherangryvoice.blogspot.co.uk/2015/02/george-osborne-debt-monger.html

http://www.independent.co.uk/news/uk/politics/the-uk-national-debt-has-risen-by-555-billion-since-2010-under-george-osborne-a6947661.html

http://blogs.spectator.co.uk/2013/11/the-tories-have-piled-on-more-debt-than-labour/

http://www.independent.co.uk/news/uk/politics/george-osborne-on-course-to-sell-off-more-public-assets-than-any-chancellor-for-more-than-30-years-a6786926.html

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/2016/08/12/theresa-may-pictured-on-walking-holiday-in-the-swiss-alps/

26_july_2016

A letter a day to number 10. No 1,503

Tuesday 26 July 2016.

Dear Mrs May,

The people of Britain have been forced against our will to bail out the banks, we have had austerity forced upon us as a result, we have seen a catastrophic rise in opportunistic insecure employment, we have been victimised and demonised and accused of being ‘among the worst idlers in the world’.

George Osborne incited hatred against people on social security in his conference speech in 2012, “Where is the fairness, we ask, for the shift-worker, leaving home in the dark hours of the early morning, who looks up at the closed blinds of their next door neighbour sleeping off a life on benefits?”

Iain Duncan Smith justified his war of attrition against disabled people, saying, “We won’t lift you out of poverty by simply transferring taxpayers’ money to you. With our help, you’ll work your way out of poverty.” Disabled people have borne the greatest burden of cuts, leading to isolation, loss of jobs, hopelessness, despair and death.

It comes as no surprise that you have appointed George Freeman as the head of your policy board, a man who wrote in 2013 that he would like to suspend employment rights for new firms for three years and cut wages for workers in poorer areas and that he would also like to cut corporation tax to 10% for Britain’s biggest firms. Who would pay for that tax hole I wonder? It is hardly likely that this leopard has changed his spots or that he or your government will encourage worker participation and inclusion in the wealth that they create. Such ideas are alien and indeed anathema to right wing policy makers and board room profit racketeers.

We are not vassals of the state and nor are we corporate slaves. It is unacceptable that we are exploited for war and profit and yet are denied equitable reward for our efforts and patronised and even despised for our modest lives and status.

One of the reasons Jeremy Corbyn has attracted such overwhelming support is his call for a more equal and just society and it is an object lesson in how far to the right Britain has lurched that he is universally despised by all right leaning politicians, including those in his own party. The transfer of wealth from the poor to the rich is an obscenity and a travesty of social justice. That the mere suggestion of a fairer distribution of wealth sends the stealers and hoarders of wealth, the right wing media and politicians into apoplectic fits of rage and hate speaks very eloquently for itself.

Ordinary people getting above themselves is regarded as offensive and an affront by those in power and that is precisely why we should and why I write these letters.

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-politics-19300051

http://www.newstatesman.com/blogs/politics/2012/10/george-osbornes-speech-conservative-conference-full-text

http://www.huffingtonpost.co.uk/dr-simon-duffy/austerity-cuts-disabled-people_b_3248615.html

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-35476904

https://www.theguardian.com/society/2015/aug/27/thousands-died-after-fit-for-work-assessment-dwp-figures

http://www.mirror.co.uk/news/uk-news/theresa-mays-plan-slash-employment-8486233

10_july_2016

A letter a day to number 10. No 1,489

Sunday 10 July 2016.

Dear Mr Cameron,

I am mindful today of the last chapter of the book of proverbs in the bible. ‘The words of Lemuel, King of Massa, which his mother taught him’. Here are verses 4 – 7 of what your mum clearly left out of your instruction. “It is not for kings, O Lemuel, it is not for kings to drink wine, or for rulers to desire strong drink, lest they drink and forget the law and what it decrees, and pervert the justice due any of the afflicted. Give strong drink [as medicine] to him who is ready to pass away, and wine to him in bitter distress of heart. Let him drink and forget his poverty and [seriously] remember his want and misery no more.”

I wonder what Lemuel’s mum would have thought of the bars and restaurants which we so generously subsidise for you?

Now that he’s taken over the Department for the War on the Poor (DWP), devout Christian Stephen Crabb might like to have a word with David Freud in his latest scheme to micro manage the lives of the poor.

Details are scant but it seems the DWP are trialling a mobile app for managing social security payments. According to Freud, “Claimants are using an app on their phones through which they are receiving and spending their benefit payments. With their consent, their transactions are being recorded on a distributed ledger to support their financial management.” One of the missing details is just what ‘consent’ means, previous form would suggest that it is likely to be consent under threat of sanctions.

There are some big players involved not least Barclays and RWE npower, plus GovCoin Systems, and I wonder how many millions this is costing us? According to Business Wire, “GovCoin Systems is developing a platform to reduce the $1 trillion lost annually due to friction and fraud costs in the distribution of social welfare and aid.” Of the UK’s £164 billion social security budget, approximately £1.2 billion is down to deliberate fraud, so Britain’s part of that magic trillion is 0.12%, plus whatever crazy sums are being dished out in contracts.

Micro managing the lives of the poor is something dear to Freud’s heart because, as everyone knows, the poor can’t handle money, preferring to spend all their income on drink, drugs, cigarettes, tattoos and Olympic sized plasma TV’s, not to mention the Pit Bull Terriers and probably ferrets. Freud, who I doubt has ever actually met a poor person, is clearly of the view that Big Brother state is the answer to all our needs. Personally, I think he’d be enough to drive Jesus to drink. Just reading Freud’s name is enough to set of off my gag reflex and reach for a large one. Here’s mud in your eye!

http://www.businesswire.com/news/home/20160707005803/en/GovCoin-Systems-Implements-Social-Welfare-Payments-Distribution

http://www.fstech.co.uk/fst/GovCoin_Welfare_Payments_Trial.php

http://www.theweek.co.uk/62461/benefit-fraud-v-tax-evasion-which-costs-more

14_may_2016

A letter a day to number 10. No 1,433

Saturday 14 May 2016.

Dear Mr Cameron,

Every time I hear something like, ‘Labour’s great recession after 2008’ my head does a little blurred jump, like a glitch in the matrix whilst someone is trying to rewrite the code live.

It makes me want to do a slow motion sideways leap to avoid the bullet that’s been fired at my poor labouring, ageing, grey matter whilst simultaneously jabbing my walking stick into the crutch of the pea brained shooter, hoping for irrecoverable testicular damage.

Patrick McLoughlin, the transport secretary, is, naturally, deeply concerned that we do not grasp the ‘potential economic impact of Brexit’. You can almost see his lips trembling as he warns, “Farming and the car industry could disappear from Britain like coal mining in the 1980s because of the financial shock of leaving the EU.” I have yet to recover from the tragedy of the EU closing down our mining industry, it still gives me nightmares.

And, oh, the fallow fields of England that those Brexit bastards would inflict upon us! Crops rotting in the fields with no market, 64.1 million Britons will weep into their thin gruel of boiled shoe and mildew, scraped from the walls of their cardboard hovels.

I was in my local supermarket last week and the guy on the till said to me, ‘You’re a political bloke, aren’t you?’ ‘Yes, I dabble a bit,’ I responded. ‘What’s your view on Europe and the referendum?’ he asked. ‘Well,’ said I, ‘The first thing to understand is that whichever way it goes, we will survive.’ He gave me a long look. Was I being funny or was I making a hard political statement? The next customer was waiting so I didn’t get the chance to enlarge on that.

The big question isn’t in or out of Europe, it is whether we can survive a Tory government? The miners know the answer to that one. What is happening to our NHS, our schools, our social security system, our tanking economy, our front line services, our care services, our housing, our liberty and freedom, our human rights, our way of life, isn’t about our membership of the European Union, it is about whether we can survive the enemy within. Thatcher said ‘there is no such thing as society’ and you are doing your best to finish the job. But whatever happens, as with McLoughlin and his Labour comment, it’ll all be Corbyn’s fault as the BBC will reliably report it, in it’s modern newspeak unbiased way, independent of all political interference, naturally.

http://www.theguardian.com/politics/2016/may/13/brexit-eu-referendum-farming-car-industry?CMP=twt_a-politics_b-gdnukpolitics

05_may_2016

A letter a day to number 10. No 1,423

Thursday 05 May 2016.

Dear Mr Cameron,

Since 2010 your government has successfully branded every recipient of social security as a benefits scrounger. Iain Duncan Smith seemed to applaud the Sun in 2015 for inspiring blood boiling fury. Endorsing the promotion of hate, the Sun quotes Smith as saying, “What infuriates your readers – including me – is when somebody isn’t trying and living off the rest of us who are trying.” Feel the hate!

I don’t suppose that Smith would accept any causal link between the vilification of those in receipt of social security payments and the 41% increase in disability hate crime any more than he accepts any causal link between stopping benefits and claimant deaths.

Yet whilst disabled people are being hounded on the streets as frauds and shysters, those who promote such crimes, like Iain Duncan Smith and the Sun, are neither challenged nor prosecuted.

Frank Herbert observed in ‘God Emperor of Dune’ that, ‘the position of authority is the most prosperous criminal position available’.

The allegations of electoral fraud which have emerged over some of your party’s election expenses are astonishing if for no other reason than for something so serious, for which any ordinary person would have the police crawling all over them, the degree of inaction is incredible.

What we get are public denials whilst those accused are allowed to go about their business, including standing for elections, as usual. Such privilege does not exist for ordinary people. If nothing else, what channel 4 has revealed is that those accused have engaged in some very creative accounting practices which entirely throws into doubt whether they have obeyed either or both the ‘letter and the spirit of the law’.

I cannot recall a period in my lifetime when the problem of holding power to account has been such a public issue or accountability so flagrantly abused as it is now. Even the Telegraph has reported that wealth inequality is ruining Britain and wonders why we’re not talking about it, but inequality in power is of equal importance and what is astonishing about power is that so few can hold power over so many and don’t give a damn for the consequences. Holding power to account is like trying to wrestle with a greased pig and it is long overdue that pig was stuck and stopped.

http://www.thesun.co.uk/sol/homepage/news/politics/6333434/iain-duncan-smith-anger-at-benefit-cheat-stories-in-sun.html

http://www.independent.co.uk/news/uk/hate-crime-against-disabled-people-rises-41-per-cent-in-one-year-a6713546.html

http://www.mirror.co.uk/news/uk-news/iain-duncan-smith-benefits-deaths-6108493

http://voxpoliticalonline.com/tag/iain-duncan-smith/

http://www.channel4.com/news/election-expenses-tory-pcc-candidate-under-scrutiny

http://www.channel4.com/news/questions-over-zac-goldsmiths-election-expenses

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/men/thinking-man/11578214/Inequality-is-ruining-Britain-so-why-arent-we-talking-about-it-more.html

11_april_2016A letter a day to number 10. No 1,399

Monday 11 April 2016.

Dear Mr Cameron,

No word of your resignation yet, I notice. But then it is Sunday as I write, the day when ordinary people work, like junior doctors, nurses and all those who make our 24 hour NHS possible, supermarket staff and carers, to name but a few. There is a vast army of ordinary people working this minute and every minute keeping our infrastructure going, unseen and unsung, yet without whom the country would grind to a halt. It is 2:13pm as I type and I’ve just had a look online, if I wanted to get to London to protest today the next train is at 3:17pm and on my arrival at Paddington, the choice would be mine whether to take a taxi or the underground to Westminster or enjoy a leisurely 2.8 mile stroll fortified with a bottle of water and perhaps a sandwich purchased at a vendor somewhere along the way.

The hurly-burly bustle of life continues seven days a week, Britain’s gigantic infrastructure seamlessly (with the occasional, soon dealt with, hiccup) rolls on, a giant interconnected beast.

I tried to discover how much it costs to run Britain’s infrastructure for a day. Perhaps it is a measure of how much it is taken for granted that I could not find any figures, although I did discover that London gets 24 times more spent on infrastructure per resident than the entire north-east of England. Here’s a thought, I reckon it’s a safe bet that London also has many times more wealthy freeloading tax dodgers than the north-east of England and quite likely in just the City of London.

Understandably tax avoidance and evasion is on my mind, but more than that is living in a country which is, by and large, run by the wealthy for the wealthy. It’s a rigged game and during your time as prime minister you have gone to extraordinary lengths to rig it further, from cutting legal aid and workers rights, to privatising our NHS and stripping our system of social security. It was ever thus.

The abolition of slavery is considered a milestone in British history, a triumph for humanity. Less well documented is the compensation given to slave owners, 40% of total government expenditure for 1834,  between £16 billion and £17 billion in today’s money, the largest tax heist in British history until the recent bank bailout. For the slaves, those whose lives had been torn apart and, for vast numbers, brutally destroyed, not a brass farthing was forthcoming. Even after their supposed liberation, ex-slaves were still treated as subhuman and of no regard.

Called on to apologise for Britain’s role in slavery you fatuously said to Jamaica’s parliament, “I do hope that, as friends who have gone through so much together since those darkest of times, we can move on from this painful legacy and continue to build for the future”, apparently to head shakes from the audience. Those are the same kind of weasel words as you and Osborne saying, ‘We’re all in this together’. No, we are not, we never were and it’s unlikely we ever will be. You are responsible for an unforgivable war on the poor and your departure from office, at the very least, is long overdue.

http://www.theguardian.com/news/datablog/2014/aug/07/london-gets-24-times-as-much-infrastructure-north-east-england

http://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2016/apr/10/britains-struggle-free-world-morality-tax-avoidance

http://www.theguardian.com/world/2015/jul/12/british-history-slavery-buried-scale-revealed

U.K. Prime Minister David Cameron Dismisses Jamaican Demands for Slavery Reparations

http://www.theguardian.com/politics/video/2012/oct/08/george-osborne-tory-conference-video

http://news.sky.com/story/811331/cameron-speech-were-all-in-this-together