Archive for June 2013
Some time ago, I asked readers to write to their MPs about the blatant lies told by the government, and in particular the DWP, about disabled benefit claimants. The responses of Tory MPs have been remarkable for the pure nonsense they contain – and many were almost identical.I posted last night a guest article detailing a remarkable series of emails between John LeBrocq and his MP Andrew Murrell, but my thanks go to everyone who took the time and trouble to write to their MP about the disgraceful behaviour of Work and Pensions Secretary Iain (Duncan) Smith and his colleagues. If I used every single response, this article would become very unwieldy, but the selection shown is very representative.
Re-blogged from The SKWAWKBOX Blog; Tory MPs respond to their constituents on DWP lies for the full story.
This won’t be an easy post to write, but recent events have persuaded me that it can’t be avoided. Some nasty stuff has been going on, and the only right response to bullies is to stand up to them.
Julie Bailey, the founder of ‘Cure the NHS’ (Cure), is treated as almost a saint by most of the media, who are currently portraying her as a poor, ‘hounded’ heroine who is being so viciously victimised by the people of Stafford who are outraged by her righteous campaign that she is being driven out of town, forced to leave in order to avoid supposed ‘threats’.
But the reality is somewhat different from its portrayal.
Re-blogged from The SKWAWKBOX Blog; ‘Hounded heroine’? The Cure the NHS myth for the full story
This is my story, posted here http://austerityuncovered.org/whats-your-story/; the 1,000 character limit meant most of it wasn’t sent- so here it is.
Journalists and politicians are asking for stories about how the cuts are affecting us. Yet nobody seems to be interested in the stories of those not affected or minimally affected that are against these measures. To gather a portfolio of such stories would, in my view be a great coup; a show of strength so powerful from people not affected who KNOW it’s wrong!
I’m working, a very low paid job and apart from the continuously rising cost of living, the only other relevant factor is the weekly housing benefit I receive of around £6. Come October, when Universal Credit is introduced I imagine I will be expected to attend work-focused interviews and seek better paid work for 35 hours a week, they will be told in no uncertain terms what they can do with their £6.
I am a life-long socialist, who incidentally believes that Labour is no longer the party of the people, and came to this fight using my strengths to disseminate information and support those who were hit hardest because it is the right thing to do; because austerity is wrong; because there is ample money in this country to solve all the economic problems we are experiencing, but we have a middle-to-upper university educated political class who, despite their rhetoric to the contrary, know little of the realities of being unemployed, low paid or even well paid in a job that leaves you too tired to enjoy what little leisure time you have!
Austerity isn’t just about pay and benefits; it is about profits, tax evasion, tax avoidance and the simple things in life- like days out with your family rather than days in, too tired to enjoy.
One thing the nouveau political class doesn’t seem to grasp is that the working class do not care about your wages, your expenses, profits or bonuses IF we were allowed to work; IF we were allowed to earn enough to live a decent lifestyle; IF our work didn’t leave us too tired to enjoy our leisure time and IF that leisure time were longer. It is when, as Michael Foot put it, we see “…a few fat men exhorting all the thin ones to tighten their belts” that we feel exploited, marginalised and abused and it is those feelings that cause dissent and, in extreme circumstances revolution.
This is my story- one of working to approach retirement with massive debt and a dwindling income; with the prospect of leaving nothing but debt; of fearing, as I never have before, that my retirement will be a cold, hungry one despite the aspirations of the socialist movement I once knew. Never have I feared for my future and that of my children as I fear today because we have no opposition, we have no party to fight our corner and we have no hope- the one forlorn hope, of a future Labour government reversing the trend to depositing our wealth in a few greedy hands and instead redistributing it equitably among those that created said wealth- the working class through their labour is gone.
And yet, my fears are for the future; how much more terrible is the plight of the hundreds of thousand’s already experiencing my future fears of being cold and hungry. How much more reprehensible are the politicians who allow this and will, despite their clever oratory do nothing to reverse this trend.
I’m not going to comment. I don’t think I need to, just post some of the pics of protests around the country- because they will, in all likelihood be all but ignored by the mainstream media.
Over a thousand gather in George Square against the bedroom tax
More from George Square against the bedroom tax