Labour Call Unemployed “The Work-Shy” 98

I just read the Guardian’s account of today’s Labour leadership hustings, and they are not Tory Lite, they are Tory High Octane. Supporting Tory benefit cuts, calling the unemployed “the work-shy”, defending £9,000 a year tuition fees, supporting Trident and falling over themselves to reject autonomy for the Scottish accounting unit. But what I find even more astonishing is that the Fabian Society audience were lining up afterwards for selfies with Liz Kendall, Yvette Cooper and Andy Burnham, and according to the Guardian nobody wanted a photo with Jeremy Corbyn, the one decent human being there.

The quite astonishing thing is that Andy Burnham, the man who privatised much more of the English NHS than anyone else including the Tories, is (Jeremy aside) touted as the left wing option. There is a very interesting diversionary tactic in play, all over the media. A meme is being promoted – by Burnham’s corporate media supporters – that “Andy Burnham fears he will be attacked over Mid Staffs hospital”. The events at Mid Staffs hospital, though awful, were clearly not Burnham’s personal fault. This is a fascinating PR play and example of media management, an attempt to divert the focus on Burnham’s NHS record on to Mid Staffs which has widespread public name recognition, and away from privatisation where he is much more vulnerable.

98 thoughts on “Labour Call Unemployed “The Work-Shy”

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  • John Goss

    “Excellent stuff from Mr Tressell – did I tell you many of my direct Yorkshire ancestors were house painters as well.”

    Then you should read the chapter called “The Great Money Trick”. The liquidity ratio has been too high for too long. I don’t believe that banks should be allowed to lend out gross amounts of money they don’t have and cannot call back. In a depression poor savers and investors are the ones to suffer and it is only preferential shareholders that have a chance of getting their money back from the usurious bankers.

  • RobG

    Resident Dissident
    6 Jun, 2015 – 11:37 pm

    “but as I said most sensible Keynesians believe in the use of both monetary and fiscal policies to deal with depressions and economic downturns.”

    The economy has been completely trashed and robbed, yet again, by a bunch of greedy and stupid feckers (this has particular impact in the developing world; which once again never gets mentioned in the western media); and you still put this forward as ‘sound economic policy’?!

    The likes of you are going to have a firework put up your arse sometime soon; not least by people in the West who are now so strapped that they will no longer put up with all the BS that Oxbridge economists spout.

  • Mary

    The photo accompanying the Guardian article to which Craig referred shows a fivesome including Tristram Hunt who is not standing but excludes Jeremy Corbyn who is standing. Says it all. The Liebour party has had it. The toxicity of Blair hangs around in the air.

  • Habbabkuk (la vita e' bella)


    Resident Dissident made the following point:

    “but as I said most sensible Keynesians believe in the use of both monetary and fiscal policies to deal with depressions and economic downturns.”.

    If you disagreed, you could have advanced several arguments based on known facts.

    But instead, you fired off a stream of non-specific, crude,irrelevant ad hminem garbage, as follows:

    “The economy has been completely trashed and robbed, yet again, by a bunch of greedy and stupid feckers (this has particular impact in the developing world; which once again never gets mentioned in the western media); and you still put this forward as ‘sound economic policy’?!

    The likes of you are going to have a firework put up your arse sometime soon; not least by people in the West who are now so strapped that they will no longer put up with all the BS that Oxbridge economists spout.”

    You are not arguing, just shouting and showing off.

    This again confirms my opinion that you are just on this blog for laughs.

    To use your own expressions, you are a fecker and if you return to the UK you wil be set up against a wall and shot! 🙂

  • Hieroglyph

    I love the idea that Corbyn is simply being cut out from photo’s; stand over there old chap, got to take a picture of the real candidates. Our MSM truly is a wonderous propaganda matrix, which puts Pravda to shame. At least everyone knew Pravda was party-bullshit. The MSM has a patina of respectability, and sometimes genuinely do good work, but their bullshit can be just as shameless.

    As it happens, I think Corbyn is chasing a lost cause. There is no reforming the Labour Party, it’s too late. He should lead his splinter group, and leave. That would be fabulously entertaining as well, watching the red, mottled faces of the Blair-ites as they realise the game is up. Not going to happen though. My guess is certain coercive techniques make it impossible.

  • Tony_0pmoc

    Good to see Craig Murray..Really Getting into Gear..and Laying it Down..Just as it is.

    I have never claimed anything in this life…except my education and my health..when I was a kid,,I had all The Childhood Diseases…and some of them were Really serious…I had the lot + more you have probably never heard of…and was in hospital twice before the age of 8..My Mum nursed me back to health..and The NHS..was completely wonderful…in The 1950’s

    But since then I haven’t claimed a Penny..except during two periods of unemployment which lasted for less than a year..but sure it was hard…when that happens…

    And I haven’t checked the Records..but I have always honestly paid my Tax as accurately as I possibly could…because it was only fair that I should do..and I respected my hour/days/weeks of need I was supported by The State…

    I am almost certain that I have paid considerably more than 10x in tax, than I got back in benefits..but most of this was later in life..when I had survived the crises that nearly killed me……

    And Now Look at These Fcking Cnts..Just Stripping Our Children Bare..No Education..No Future..No Health Service..Just Fck Off and Die..

    That is What The State is Doing To Our Kids..whilst The MP’s vote themselves a 10%+ Increase…

    What a Bunch of Horrible Selfish People.

    Did You Vote For Any of Them?

    I didn’t..both My Children Told Me Not To..

    They Have Got You Cnts Sussed.


  • CanSpeccy

    At least they`re not calling for the extermination or sterilization of idle plebs, as did the pre-war Fabians e.g., George Bernard Shaw (Please justify your existence: and H.G. Wells.

    But they`re idiots if they think cutting welfare is the solution. The solution is to make welfare dependent on work, which in turn means repealing minimum wage laws, and introducing a reverse income tax that insures every working person has a living wage. The benefits of such reform would include fewer drug dealers and users and less crime generally, and some expansion of the economy as entrepreneurs take advantage of the new supply of cheap labor to bring back some of the jobs outsourced to Asia, Africa and the ME.

    But the Labor party will never undertake such reforms because a large part of their membership are welfare bureaucrats who need a mass of welfare cases to justify their jobs. Without a welfare class, the welfare bureaucrats would have to work in the productive economy, which might be more demanding than handing out taxpayers cash.

  • Elaine S

    Trouble with my ex party was they had years to sort out the Welfare in a fairer way where it wasn’t easy for cheats but the genuine folk weren’t penalised like sanctions. When Labour got in with Blair they promised everything, they through all the money and a system too easy to cheat yet its all the genuine folk who are struggling who ARE looking for work who can’t get a job because Tories haven’t put in place the kind of opportunities other than slave Labour. I am 60, suffer chronic pain and osteo arthritis of the neck, all my experience is in retail so I have the skills of a teen in office/admin which is only place I can work. I have worked all my life with a few bouts of unemployment,back in the 70s you could leave one job and get another in same day….no application forms, no mass experience/qualifications as long as you looked a hard worker. This time it drains me emotionally,it makes me feel worthless and chances of me getting a mundane job with light tasks is about zero. The Gov hasn’t put in place any help for those of us of a certain age or disability. Cooper needs to stand up and admit it was Labour that has pretty much got the Tories jumping for joy at being able to inflict so much suffering because Labour never sorted the abuse that punished the cheats but helped more folk into work. I can catagorically tell you its brutal on JSA, you are scared witless you get sanctioned because you are unfortunate to have a bad un dealing with your case. I’ve seen people sanctioned wrongly, they suffer for around 4 weeks no money then get told it was a mistake……the hell they go through begging at foodbanks when they had done nothing wrong! I left Labour for a reason, because they aren’t Labour…..its a London run tory lite party, aiming at retaining their middle class voters knowing for many of those working class in England,they have to like it or lump it because for them its the only big party that can do something, if they can be bothered doing any good for working class leftwing voters. I’ll never return to Labour, I grew up under real Labour…those folk in the south are shams! Scottish Labour is dead, we need a leftwing Labour back to reclaim their voice and Cooper is saying no…….ex Labour have left and will NOT return as long as part of Labour is rightwing. A small group of Leftwing Labour MPs will never be heard and that is the fact of life! I wish they’d re-name their party because they have no right using it. Hardie built that party with blood,sweat and tears for us, the socialist working class of UK…its doesn’t exist other than the name

  • 1,827,837

    Once again pompous mediocrity Habbakuk is talking out his ass in a poignant attempt to gain status in his tiny disembodied corner of the internet. His particular brand of outdated pedantry makes him fixate on geezer economics from the old days. He’s too past it to brush up rigorously, so here’s some remedial tutelage, 2012/ 12/ stephanie-kelton-explains-modern-monetary-theory-to-you.html

    It’s one thing to ignore his contentless formulaic niggling, but we can’t let it go when he’s engaging in the intellectual equivalent of blowing his nose with his thumb. Poor sod has to be acculturated to the standards of educated discourse.

  • CanSpeccy

    @ Elaine S: I left Labour for a reason, because they aren’t Labour…

    Dead right, Elaine, Labour ain’t labour anymore. And the reason is the death of the labour movement. Labour represented working people when the party was underwritten by the financial resources of powerful unions that could shut down the whole country in a general strike, and when many Labour MP’s came up through the unions. But the 1994 GATT agreement, Margaret Thatcher, offshoring of jobs, and mass immigration together destroyed the power of the unions and hence their ability to sustain a real workers’ party.

    In reality, Britain’s two-party system was an anomaly. Throughout virtually all history in all places, workers have worked and the ruling class has ruled. That was the case in Britain, where, prior to the rise of the Labour Party, there were two aristocratic parties, Liberal and Conservative, that traded places from time to time, but which both served the interests of same the landed aristocracy and the commercial interests.

    But the industrial revolution resulted in large concentrations of oppressed workers in the industrial cities, which created a fear of rebellion. In response, and only after many struggles with workers efforts to extract more favorable conditions of life from the oppressing classes, the ruling class granted workers the right to organize (1871 Trades Union Act), which in turn led to the rise of the Labour Party and the need, then, for all parties to compete with Labour in offering benefits to working people, e.g., pensions and minimum wage laws, both introduced by Winston Churchill, President of the Board of Trade in Asquith’s pre-WW1 Liberal government.

    But globalization, of with which our esteemed blog host is fully on board, has ended the anomalous era of working class power, and it is impossible imagine what could possibly restore it. In the meantime, better to vote for the party of the upper class than a phony labor party. At least if the money power are openly in power, they are under some pressure to justify their actions in the name of the people as a whole, whereas a fake labour party is merely a bunch of chancers and sons of bitches like Phony Blair, only too anxious to sell out to the Money Power whatever the cost to ordinary folk.

  • craig Post author

    Elaine S

    Thanks for sharing your experience. It is appalling that the system has become so heartless.

  • Enoch

    9,000 pounds is pretty good value for tuition. Why should the workers have to pay for these dorks to study crap and ponce around in their gowns? We’d rather spend our money as we see fit, not be compelled by fascists like you to fund some wanker who wants to be a journalist/accountant/politician/whatever.

  • craig Post author


    You plainly haven’t understood progressive taxation, whereby the wealthy pay a great deal more tax. They therefore subsidise the education of the children of “the workers”. Worked very well when I was a student. I am fairly confident you are not really a “worker” incidentally.

  • technicolour

    Dear Elaine: Yes, a heartrending state of affairs; my sympathy too.

    Just one thing; you say that Labour had the opportunity to improve the system

    “in a fairer way where it wasn’t easy for cheats but the genuine folk weren’t penalised like sanctions. When Labour got in with Blair they promised everything, they through all the money and a system too easy to cheat”

    The government’s own, most recent figures show that they estimate that fraud is responsible for 1.85 percent of any overpayment of benefits.

    “Labour never sorted the abuse that punished the cheats”

    It’s a common misconception that the system is packed with people playing it for a sucker.

    “Benefit fraud: people estimate that 34 times more benefit money is claimed fraudulently than official estimates: the public think that £24 out of every £100 spent on benefits is claimed fraudulently, compared with official estimates of £0.70 per £100”

    These perceptions, while wildly skewed, contribute to the process of demonisation which allows this rotten state of affairs to continue, and worsen.

    All best wishes


  • YouKnowMyName

    I’m sure that I saw ‘socialist’ Yvette taking her young children to nursery in a ministerial limo’

    obviously was some time ago, and I may have been mistaken?

    At least we will get a reasoned analysis in the news today about the concerns of the leading Group of Seven economies, and timely solutions to the problems of the world…ttip,putin,isis,and other trillion-dollar fairytale inventions or might I be mistaken?

  • Resident Dissident

    “Then you should read the chapter called “The Great Money Trick”. The liquidity ratio has been too high for too long.”

    I think you mean that the liquidity ratio has been “too low” – perhaps you should also note that your friend Friedman was also an opponent of fractional reserve banking and even today such a position is supported by the more fruitcake monetarists.

    But anyway I asked for your Keynesian analysis of the impact of removing reserve banking – and I’m still waiting.

    “In a depression poor savers and investors are the ones to suffer and it is only preferential shareholders that have a chance of getting their money back from the usurious bankers.”

    Well if you bother to look what happened following 2007 and 2008 when the banks collapsed – you will find that the savers and investors lost nothing (due to the action of our Govt and it was their preferential shareholders who lost out. But then ignoring reality was always one of your strong points.

  • Mark Golding

    O/T Reply to Mike
    6 Jun, 2015 – 10:05 pm

    Regime Change Proxies Inc…UKRAINE

    The Ludicrous ‘Map’ presented by Marie Harf at the Washington Daily Press Briefing June 4, 2015:

    I offer the briefing dialogue which is an interesting interplay through the window of US public relations:

    QUESTION: So you still think – it is still the U.S. Government’s assessment that the vast or overwhelming majority of violations are coming from the separatist side?

    MS HARF: That’s certainly my understanding, and I would also point out —

    QUESTION: But that’s not what you – but that’s not what you said.

    MS HARF: Okay.

    QUESTION: I mean, I just want to make sure that —

    MS HARF: Thank you for being – no, I appreciate that. But I also think, Matt, it’s important to remember the big picture here and the context of what is happening. Between the September Minsk agreement and the February implementation plan, combined Russian-separatist forces seized hundreds of square kilometers of Ukrainian territory in direct contravention to the agreement they had just signed. The OSCE cannot get access to separatist-controlled areas to verify the ceasefire, and I have this map up here; I’m happy to give anyone afterwards that shows the area the Russian-separatist combined forces are preventing the OSCE from even getting to. So I think it’s important, again, to step back and take a look at the bigger context here…

    MS HARF: But wait, let me finish. To be clear, that’s your analysis of what the OSCE is reporting. The OSCE does not say X number of violations by either side. The OSCE does not say those in those reports. And if you want to see this map, this red part —

    QUESTION: But when you’re saying the overwhelming number —

    MS HARF: Wait, no, let me finish. This red part right here is the area that the Russian-separatist forces won’t let OSCE monitors in. How —

    QUESTION: Do you have the area where the Ukrainian forces do not let them in?

    MS HARF: Yes. It’s this very tiny yellow tip right there. And I’m happy to give this to you after the briefing, if you’d like.

    QUESTION: Where is that? Where does it come from?

    MS HARF: It comes from the British Government. I’m happy to give it to you after the briefing.

    QUESTION: But not from the OSCE, right?

    MS HARF: Go ahead.

    QUESTION: It doesn’t come from the OSCE, does it? — subject changed.

    Maps are of course interesting. We remember this statement from Felicity Arbuthnot in an open letter to Gordon Brown:

    Lastly, it is worth looking at the website of your former Ambassador to Uzbekistan, Craig Murray also former Maritime Head of the Foreign and Commonwealth Office. ‘The Iran-Iraq maritime boundary shown on the British government map does not exist. It has been drawn up by the British government…. (it is) a fake map.’ Good Lord, surely not another ‘dodgy dossier’?

    The ‘British government’s Ukrainian ‘map’ appears to originate from a young army lieutenant stationed in southern city of Mykolaiv as part of the British contingency to train members of the Ukrainian army in a deal arranged with Arseniy Yatsenyu by Con-servative PM agent David Cameron.

    ..nuff said.

  • Briar

    So – mission accomplished, in the UK as in the US. In my opinion, the whole 2015 election (they had plenty of time to prepare for it) was about replacing the Labour party with a subservient English version of the US Democrat party. Everything, from the misleading poll results, to the vicious attacks on Miliband, caricatured (unconvincingly) as Red Ed, to the attacks on the Unions, to the instant promoting of Labour “reform” triggered by the exit poll and more, had just one objective: removing labour from Labour and replacing it with business. And, hey presto, now you see it, now you don’t. The possibility the interests of employees and not employers has disappeared as if it never existed. The corporate oligarchy has established total electoral dominance.

  • mike

    Mark G, Thanks for that enlightening exchange. The lies melt away when you shine a light on them.

  • Resident Dissident


    Don’t they just – I hope you heard the OSCE spokesman on the BBC Radio news last week (Thursday after 10pm) informing us how they observed with a drone that the assault with heavy weapons started from the rebel side and how the Ukrainians were now bringing back previously withdrawn heavy weapons in order to defend themselves.

  • Mark Golding

    ResDiss – Occam’s Razor ol’ boy – why would the pro-Russian rebel side break the Minsk Agreement when it serves them well and resists/repels the $5 billion central role of the Nuland/McCain/CIA.

    That really does take the Geoffrey Pyatt ‘biscuit’ and we note ‘breaking the biscuit’ -so to speak- really does the business for VP Biden where the future of Ukraine’s economy is very important, not only of its own motion, but also because of Biden’s family ties in the Ukrainian energy sector.

    In May, 2014 the largest Ukrainian gas company, Burisma Holdings, appointed Senator Biden’s son Hunter Biden to the Board.

    Nuff said…

  • Macky

    “ResDiss – Occam’s Razor ol’ boy”

    Our Resident Dissident doesn’t do the obvious or rational reasoning, he’s a sucker for conspiracy theories; like the one that Assad would launch a chemical attack upon the arrival on UN Inspectors, or that NATO had to attack & massacre untold Libyans to avert a potential & mythical massacre.

    So he’s still falling for one of the oldest trick in the imperial handbook, being that attack is so much easier to sell, if it’s packaged as pre-emptive or retaliatory defence, and RD is always an eager Buyer for the fake moral highground.

  • john young

    Ask all of those MPs that batter the unemployed to post up their CVs for all to see,it might then give us a grasp of how they “worked their asses off> to get where they are to-day.Were they born into families where poverty of the soul/body/mind prevailed,I very much doubt it,we have to re-invigorate all 3 because they are intrinsic in making the person “whole”,you cannot have a 1/2 sided triangle and we in the west have all but lost our soul/spirit and people wonder why we are “going to hell in a handcart”.

  • Villager

    I declare my ignorance to all matters Ukrainian. But a Ukrainian acquaintance mentioned to me that Russia’s intention is to obtain access to a land route to Crimea through Eastern Ukraine. Any truth in that?

  • Mark Golding

    O/T SORRY – very important:

    Neutron bomb explosion in Yemen- Analysis:

    Its not a conventional 2000lb bomb. It’s much bigger. (My father was a government explosives expert working in Gibraltar as a quality control armament specialist).

    It is possible the blast is from a very large MOAB bigger than 4,000 lbs. The bomb we know from photographic evidence was dropped by an F-15/16( with a Saudi paint job) which has a 2,000 lb payload per bomb rack making the deployment of a heavy MOAB impossible.

    The lightning effect and duration of the fire ball being suspended in mid air and the very large mushroom cloud is the main give away while the video camera’s ccd electronic circuit is hit by fast neutrons producing white flashes.

  • John Goss

    Thanks Mark Golding. Resident Dissident talks so much shit. He claims to have a degree in economics. I think he must have bought it. He claims to be anti-austerity but supports Milton Friedman’s monetarist economics at the same time claiming we have had Keynesian economics. He claims not to be a Fascist, at the same time supporting the Fascists. He gives me so much entertainment. 🙂

    But hey, there are serious issues and we should not get distracted by those ‘trolling’ the blog.

  • Resident Dissident

    “He claims to be anti-austerity but supports Milton Friedman’s monetarist economics at the same time”

    Which is of course another of Mr Goss’s lies – to say nothing of the recent demonstration of his economic illiteracy. Given the intention of QE is to increase the money supply and is opposed by most monetarists could Mr Goss explain why it is a monetarist policy as he previously claimed. Mr Goss opposes QE and opposes/wants to reduce fractional reserve banking, both of which are policies he shares with most monetarists – but then he accuses me of being a monetarists and having bought my economics degree and other various insults just to try and cover up his ignorance.

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