Balls attacks Universal Benefits 73


New Labour’s “Big idea” is to cut winter fuel allowance for wealthy pensioners, thus saving £100 million a year, or 0.08% of the annual deficit. This is plainly irrelevant, but is given such prominence because the media have to maintain the fiction of significant policy differences between the three neo-con parties, and because at the same time we are supposed to get used to, in the words of Johann Lamont, New Labour’s opposition to the “Something for nothing society”, otherwise known as benefits for the needy.

In my own family, pensioners who would already be entitled to pension credit do not get it because they will not apply; they see the basic state pension as an entitlement to which they paid in their working lives, but anything means tested as charity to relieve poverty, the idea of which they find demeaning after a lifetime of work. I understand their attitude and find it, at root, noble.

I cannot understand why this country is unable to produce a single unified tax system, under which those with far too much money are relieved of a significant portion of it, ordinary folk pay reasonable taxes and those without enough money, including the unemployed, underemployed and pensioners, receive enough money for their needs, including looking after their children or personal care. A single, unified form every resident fills that removes stigma and removes overpayment, underpayment and the obscenity of the super-rich tax dodgers.

Meanwhile the odious Balls plans to find £100 million from pensioners while planning to blow that 1,000 times over and blow $100 Billion on the entirely worthless Trident missile system. Anybody who believes New Labour is the answer to any of our problems is certifiable.


73 thoughts on “Balls attacks Universal Benefits

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  • woodsy

    Well said sir.

    What Balls has done is attacked the idea of universality that was ushered in by the postwar Atlee government.

    What’s next? Rich ill people being banned from using the NHS.

    Today’s Labour hierarchy has well and truly waved goodbye to the principles on which it was founded.

  • Komodo

    I cannot understand why this country is unable to produce a single unified tax system, under which those with far too much money are relieved of a significant portion of it, ordinary folk pay reasonable taxes and those without enough money, including the unemployed, underemployed and pensioners, receive enough money for their needs, including looking after their children or personal care. A single, unified form every resident fills that removes stigma and removes overpayment, underpayment and the obscenity of the super-rich tax dodgers.

    Institutional corruption and public apathy.

    Ne mutlu Türküm diyene….

    http://www.policymic.com/articles/45849/taksim-square-protests-13-photos-showing-severity-of-the-protests

  • Wilkowski

    Agenda21 & Common Purpose are at work. Draining citizens. Making believe that closing everything down is the answer when it obviously is not. Balls will b attending the Bildeberg meeting at Grove Hotel Watford. If u want info/updates on this no longer secret meeting of the powerful (bankers/media/politicians/royals) who sit & callously decide OUR fate then check out infowars/B.

  • fedup

    why this country is unable to produce a single unified tax system, under which those with far too much money are relieved of a significant portion of it, ordinary folk pay reasonable taxes and those without enough money, including the unemployed, underemployed and pensioners, receive enough money for their needs, including looking after their children or personal care. A single, unified form every resident fills that removes stigma and removes overpayment, underpayment and the obscenity of the super-rich tax dodgers.

    Clearly I need to start with the birds and the bees story; once upon a time ……

    The rich who sponsor the political lickspittles, are only concerned about themselves and their wealth. Further these rich whom do not use the civic amenities; buses, social services, benefits, etc. do not see any reason that compels them to be contributing towards these social services. So far as the rich can see, anyone with a bit of a get up and go, can make it, and become rich too. Thus we the people who are not rich, is our fault, because we are all lazy wankers sitting on our butts and expecting to take their money away from them (not the fact that they have nicked all the money and there is none/sweet fuck all left for anyone of us to get at).

    Hence the current mess, and fiasco of taxation, whereupon 75 percent of the taxes are met by the 99 percent of the people, and twenty five percent by the 1 percent remaining (the rich), this iniquitous taxation burden on the rich really annoys them and they want to ensure that they pay only their one percent and get twenty four more percent out of the ordinary people.

    The only trouble with the above model is; short of reintroduction of the slavery* this model is unworkable, however, Balls and the rest of wankers will be pontificating change in the long tradition of shifting the taxation from the rich onto the poor. This trend has been under-way since 1930s. Then the taxation was 75 percent from rich (corporates and the stinking rich) and twenty five percent from the people, now it is upside down and still not enough so far as the rich are concerned. Further if they are taxed too much they will all leave (I wish the fuckers would sling their hooks already) has been the fear of the politicians. This they fear will end their (politicians) sponsorship and thus their tickets for the free ride is vanished.

    Anybody who believes New Labour is the answer to any of our problems is certifiable.

    This statement is not entirely correct, because it does not reflect the reality. It ought to read:

    Anybody who believes New Labour any of the current shower/fuckers/our dear leaders/ politicos is the answer to any of our problems is certifiable.

    * as it stands 75 pence of every pound that we spend is paid as interest (the rich didn’t get where they are here today without sinning their way through usury). Then there are the taxes to be deducted, leaving a few pence out of every pound to be spent by we the lazy fucking poor.

  • Komodo

    Balls might more usefully look at non-pensioners – over-60’s who are still working. Universality ensured that WFP was made to all over-60’s, not just pensioners. Though it’s surely helpful, many don’t need it. Legislation on the obscene profits made by energy companies operating in the UK (and owned elsewhere) would achieve the desired result for everyone,/i>, in any case.

  • fedup

    Institutional corruption and public apathy.

    You must be fucking Kidding, oh your lizardship. Apathy?

    Mr Cameron pledged to dismantle the “conveyor belt to radicalisation” in Britain with Coalition plans to target schools, universities, prisons and the internet.

    the Prime Minister suggested it was necessary to understand the root causes of extremism and that more needed to be done to tackle them.

    “We need to dismantle this process at every stage – in schools, colleges, universities, on the internet, in our prisons, wherever it is taking place.”

    This how they get away with it

  • Brendan

    Policies for which Balls recieved praise from no less a disparate pairing as … Tonybee and Guido.

    I just laugh at Nu Lab. Assange maintains that the Australian Labour Party has been infiltrated since the 70’s, and one can only presume it’s the same with the UK version. I quite honestly pay very little attention to anything emanating from the front ranks of the Labour Party, and haven’t done in about a decade, if not more. It’s obvious what they are, and I wish more people realised it: they are, like the US Democrats, the other Business Party, if perhaps the slightly more liberal version (though, perhaps not even more liberal).

    It’s a racket, simples. And yet another Nu Lab heavy positioning himself for either leadership (I remain of the view that Ed Millipede will never be PM), or Chancellor duties, and doing so by means of an audition aimed at the real powers in the UK (hint: it’s not the electorate) – well that’s just depressing. And of course we’ve been here before …

  • craig Post author

    Fedup

    Actually that statement was entirely correct, and your amendment shows you believe that. What you actually meant was “This statement is entirely correct, but insufficient”.
    I knew some good would come of those logic lessons in my Philosophy classes!

  • Villager

    Is it apathy, or is it deliberately kept complicated so that your brain remains in a confused maze, while they run little circles, or big circles even (with ever increasing zero’s at the end of their net worth) from outside the maze. In other words, keep you googled.

  • Arbed

    O/T (but as the last comment mentioned Assange I’m taking the liberty)

    Assange Statement on the First Day of Manning Trial
    http://wikileaks.org/Assange-Statement-on-the-First-Day.html

    That man can write! Did anyone else read his review of Google honchos Eric Schmidt and Jared Cohen’s book The New Digital Age? A treat for all who are aghast at the very idea of the surveillance abuses made possible by Google Glass:

    The Banality of ‘Don’t Be Evil’
    http://www.nytimes.com/2013/06/02/opinion/sunday/the-banality-of-googles-dont-be-evil.html?pagewanted=all&_r=0

  • fedup

    “This statement is entirely correct, but insufficient”.

    I stand corrected.

    I knew some good would come of those logic lessons in my Philosophy classes!

    Indeed (thanks for the smile Craig).

    =======

    Meanwhile back at the ranch and pursuant to; This how they get away with it.

    The following says it all.

    Could you feed your family for a tenner a week?

    As reports show that half a million Britons are relying on food banks to eat, we take a look at one radical plan to keep fed for an awful lot less.

    More than half a million people in Britain are relying on food banks to ……..

    But how low can you realistically cut your food bill without compromising your health? I decided to find out by following the example of Jack Monroe.

    .. Jack launched a blog – A Girl Called Jack – where she chronicled her efforts to cook good wholesome food for herself and her child, despite her small budget.

    This is off the charts, a single mum (supposedly, the target demographic) sets up a domain through Domains by proxy (remains anonymous on the internet to you and I) and then proceeds to use the photocopier salesman techniques, or the inverse of the energy suppliers “Savings” in the off fuckwits website who are too busy telling us all to change suppliers so that our energy bills can go lower.

    In photocopier salesman technique the huge amounts of lease is divided into the second and minutes and the client is told; “this machine will cost you only pennies per five minutes”. As Jack does:

    When Jack prices up her dishes, she only factors in the cost of the specific amount she used. So if a 750ml bottle of economy red wine cost £3.48 but she only uses 30mls, she’ll price that up at 14p.

    The erroneous and utter bollocks of buying 30 mls of wine from the supermarket, and not paying the £3.48 pence aside, on goes the charade: “She paid 5p for one carrot”.

    Needless to point out the single mum through her “frugal” and “imaginative” recipes has managed to land a £25000 book deal, and win the adoration of every fascist tosspot for proving that everyone is a winner in the current austere UK, and no need for any of the namby-pamby food bank clients (more than 500,000) who have never had it so good.

    PS. note the authors shopping bill coming to £7.29 which leaves a whole lot of £ 2.71 for the rest of the week’s shopping. Just dunchyou love the smell of bullshit in the morning?

  • Flaming June

    Any Bilderbergers involved here?

    Charity Commission may not be ‘fit for purpose’, MPs say
    Public Accounts Committee chairwoman Margaret Hodge: “We are extremely concerned”

    MPs have questioned whether the UK’s charity regulator is fit for purpose, after it failed to spot a charity apparently set up for tax avoidance.

    A report by the Public Accounts Committee (PAC) said the Charity Commission did not carry out sufficient checks on the Cup Trust charity.

    [..]

    ‘The Cup Trust was given charitable status by the commission in 2009.

    The PAC said it then received £176m in income, but gave away just £55,000 to charitable causes.

    The trust’s sole trustee was a company called Mountstar – based in the British Virgin Islands and whose directors were already known to UK authorities as being involved in tax avoidance.

    In the meantime, The Cup Trust tried to claim gift aid of £46m, money that otherwise should have been paid to the government in tax.

    And although the Charity Commission began to investigate the Trust in March 2010, it has still not published a report.

    But the Commission explained that it had been unable to de-register the trust, because it was legally structured as a charity.

    Ms Hodge said the trust’s purpose “was to avoid tax”.’

    [..]

    No names revealed. The BBC are being coy.

    http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/business-22758191

  • Keith Crosby

    Who needs the EDF and BNP with fascist filth like Balls strutting about like a decent person?

  • Arbed

    Villager, 12.16pm

    Thanks, Villager. O/T again (sorry, but this is so important for anyone and everyone who cares about press freedom and the public’s right to know, so Craig’s blog is a good place to try to get this information the attention it deserves).

    Techdirt 31/5/13: Bradley Manning Accused Of Aiding [Classified Enemy]:
    http://www.techdirt.com/articles/20130531/02593523270/bradley-manning-accused-aiding-classified-enemy.shtml#comments:

    We know whose name goes in those square brackets, don’t we?

  • Jay

    If the wealth of currency came back from the Fiat side – {mega global wealth funds) is tje possible outcome inflation?

    I see there is a slight movement into domestic markets fo asset buying and ,materialism.

    As you say all wealth movement is restricted to materialism and asset buying, heating fuel is an asset.

    What we want is money coming down here to be made to work for the people.

    Improved health care and solid investment.

    Shit it is only paper!

  • BrianFujisan

    Well Said indeed Craig… Heart breaking the way the richest treat the rest of us.

    Fedup, Thanks For That ( Feed your family for a tenner ) Post. And there was me thinking you couldn’t make that shit up

    One can pick up a tidy wee washing machine for say £250, But if a family is really pushed to make ends meet, they will have to pay £520 – at £10 per week – over 52 weeks.
    My daughter was telling me this story, of a company called UK homemaker, going from door to door in the poorest parts of Inverclyde, offering family’s items from a catalogue, which they then pay up…
    Souless preying on the poor

  • guano

    A squid can change colours to match its surroundings. Maybe we will see a coalition of flavour-less Quavers consisting of foaming Tories, fickle LibDevils and Nu-Labour colour-squids standing against pork-scratching BNP/UKIP?EDL. At least you will know what you’re eating with the latter by the hairs.

  • Abe Rene

    “I cannot understand why this country is unable to produce a single unified tax system..” We already have such a system. Income tax plus social security, and a largely free NHS. We just need to get it to work better. But threatening to take £100 million from fat cats is foolish, IMO. Adding 1p to higher rate tax or scrapping nuclear weapons to improve infrastructure, or scrapping bureaucrats from the NHS to the same end, might be a better idea.

  • Habbabkuk (La vita è bella!)

    I remember suggesting a thread along these lines some while back and I’m glad it’s arrived; there will, I hope, be some good arguments and points coming in.

    Some random thoughts from me, but can we first put the Bilderbergers to bed, please (Wilkowski above, and John Goss God knows how often, elsewhere.. so far). The rationale of the Bilderberg meetings was persuasive in the context of the time when these meetings were initiated and they have just carried on although overtaken by a multitude of other fora…..with as little (or as much, if you like) effective outcome. They are not a conspiracy but merely an example of meeting-itis and of important people meeting with other important people across a variety of fields of action, thereby reasserting their sense of (self-)importance. At bottom, it is the same phenomenon as the (automatic)knighting of ambassadors in certain important postings (except that this is a privately organised iniative rather than state-inspired.

    Enough of that.

    1/. Fedup’s point about the weight of taxation in the 1930s is basically correct (although I’m not certain if the %ages are). In the 193Os, personal income tax apparently kicked in at above the national average wage; this was, however in the days of a much smaller state. WW2, ‘great power’ illusions and the postwar welfare state changed that for good.

    2/. Fedup is surely also correct when he says that wealthier people who do not call on public services and amenities probably resent contributing toward same. This is why, I think, the postwar state provided for the universality of certain benefits; the idea was to give everyone the feeling that they had a ‘stake’ in the arrangements – arrangements which were only sustainable financially through a system of graduated and therefore redistributive direct taxation. Perhaps such an approach was only capable of general acceptance in the aftermath of something like WW2, where an existential danger succeeded in overcoming – temporarily – man’s natural selfishness?

    3/. Having said that, I think there is little case for maintaining the universality of the WFP (or for that matter, free bus passes); £1OO million saved is not to be sneezed at and the argument (correct) that the govt wastes billions in other ways is not really relevant.

    ‘Nuff said for now.

  • Komodo

    Arbed – In a sane world this would be easy to sort out:
    Ultimately, though it remains to be proved that this was his intention, Manning handed the information to the world at large.
    This means the world at large is considered to be the enemy of the US.

    I’ve suspected this to be the case for some time….

  • nevermind

    This race to look tougher than tough, for a media blip in time and history, to join in the blue agenda, battle it out on the fields of benefit cuts, until it sounds utterly second rate and tedious, well said Craig,

    No balls Balls jumped on the bandwagon, he has nothing to offer and must keep in with business if he wants to have a chance, and the banks, so nothing too Tobin tax or Offshore action is going to emerge from him his fellow lobby fodder.

    Just been to a great scrutiny meeting at Norfolk County Hall. Senior officers are beginning to realise that a new agenda is dawning with regards to our new future resource economy, sounds so much better than incineration.

  • Flaming June

    The Torygraph are kidding us that the wealthy have taken the hardest hit. If you read on you see it’s the lowest paid who will suffer the most.

    Wealthy hardest hit by recession, says Institute of Fiscal Studies
    Wealthier Britons have been identified as the biggest victims of the recession, with the wages of those earning more than £50,000 rising by eight per cent less than inflation.

    The top 10 per cent of earners – those earning more than about £50,000 annually – saw their salaries rise at eight percent less than inflation between 2009 and 2012.
    04 Jun 2013

    The Institute of Fiscal Studies (IFS), the economic forecaster, says that the top 10 per cent of earners will be almost £3,000 a year worse off by 2015 in real terms, as a result of the economic turmoil which began in 2008.

    However, the experts believe that the “falls in real incomes” for middle and higher earners have now ended.

    In contrast, poorer Britons who rely on state support will continue to see their incomes squeezed for several years.

    The analysis is based on official economic projections from the Government’s Office of Budget Responsibility (OBR) which is now predicting a modest recovery in the British economy. Robert Joyce, a senior research economist at the IFS said: “If the OBR’s macroeconomic forecasts are correct, then most of the falls in real incomes associated with the recession have now happened for middle and higher income groups.

    “But much of the pain for lower income groups is occurring now or is still to come, because these groups are the most affected by the ongoing cuts to benefits and tax credits.”

    /..

    http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/politics/10096964/Wealthy-hardest-hit-by-recession-says-Institute-of-Fiscal-Studies.html

    At least the BBC have a different take on the report.

    Families to be £1,800 a year worse off by 2015, IFS says
    Middle-income families will see their spending power cut by £34 a week

    The average middle-income family in Britain is likely to be nearly £1,800 a year worse-off by 2015, according to the Institute of Fiscal Studies (IFS).

    Families with two children will see a fall of £34 in their weekly incomes, after adjusting for inflation.

    A childless couple is likely to lose £1,248 a year, or £24 a week.

    The IFS also said that over the next three years, less well-off families will be hit harder than those with higher incomes.

    /..
    http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/business-22765940

  • guano

    Hybridcar

    So you think the idea of a welfare state arose out of a particular external threat, rather than out of a millenium of feudal and industrial oppression. Oh well.
    => external threats – good
    => war on terror – good
    => we live in the best of possible countries which with just a little careful pruning to wasteful expenditure will produce lovely flowers next year
    => sigh

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