Friday, 11 January 2013
Smashing the myth of strivers and skivers
Divide and rule is an age old tactic of the ruling class has been used for decades if not centuries it’s simple yet effective. Well recently or longer depending on your point of view the British government has been embarking on the demonising of the poor in a attempt to force through benefit cuts, pay freezes job cuts and so on. Their latest divide and rule tactic has to pit so called strivers and skivers the deserving poor against the undeserving poor, the unemployed against the employed, public sector vs. private sector the disabled against the non disabled. I could go on and on all ways of dividing the working class. Lets be clear society as it stands consists of two great social class’s directly opposed to each other the bourgeois i.e. the so called 1% at the top the ruling class who use their state the police and the army a body of armed people as Engel’s once described it and the working and middle class below these called99%. New Labour and the Tories have been great at muddying the lines of class phrases like we’re all middle class now and if you work hard you can get on and throwing money at the poor and the use of the credit system to inflate a boom period all served to drag everyone up. This was not sustainable of course under capitalism and we are now seeing the results of this. Since the financial crash of 2008 all governments around the world Bara few have embarked on a austerity drive in their words to cut the deficit never mind most deficits have continued to rise ever since. In the UK the con-dem government who came to power in 2010 have set about making some huge huge cuts which will change the face of the country for good. We have coined the phrase a scorched earth policy as I think personally the tories do not think they will get back in in 2015 and as so are going for broke in order to turn as much of the public sector over to the private profiteers. Also their main drive in cutting the deficit has been to cut welfare and the idea that you should not earn more on benefits than you can in work. Which is a complete lie have any of these Tory rich boys ever been on benefits or out of work? Currently JSA is at a pitiful rate of 75 quid a week roughly and even less if your younger with other cuts to housing benefits to the under 25’s cuts elsewhere and the rising living costs this is not the life of luxury the government and previous governments have made out. On 8 January Parliament voted to limit increases in benefits to 1% rather than by the rate of inflation as they had previously been. Cutting the link between prices and benefit rises is effectively a huge cut to future benefits because people will be able to afford less with the money. Iain Duncan Smith, minister for work and pensions who is driving the attacks, said it would be 'absurd' to raise benefits by inflation (currently officially 2.2%). He said it was unfair because benefits are paid by the taxes of those who are working who are not seeing their wages increase by inflation. But contrary to the government's talk of 'shirkers' the Institute for Fiscal Studies (IFS) has shown that this change will affect the benefits of far more working people than unemployed (7 million compared to 2.5 million). This was just a day after the changes to child benefits came into force. Households where one person earns over £50,000 will see their benefit cut and over £60,000 will see it stopped altogether. The IFS has worked out that these families will lose an average of £1,300 a year. The Trade Union Congress (TUC) has published research which shows government and media attacks on 'scroungers' are based on lies. On average members of the public think 41% of the welfare budget goes to the unemployed. This 'fact' is used to justify attacking the unemployed as scroungers. In fact the figure is 3%. And, with huge job cuts, any of the "hard-working taxpayers" of today could be denounced as the "work-shy scroungers" of tomorrow. Alongside the massive tax dodging of firms like Vodafone and Starbucks, the amount of benefit fraud is even more miniscule. The public has been led to believe it is 27% of the welfare budget. The figure is actually less than 1%. Compared to the legal and illegal expenses claims of MPs most benefit fraud is tiny. All this has not stopped the Tories of Westminster City Council from floating the idea of cutting benefit for people they deem too fat. And next week people they deem too thin or too tall no doubt. People in work are being asked to approve attacks on the unemployed because they 'get too much money'. However, one of the questions in the TUC survey was about the benefits entitlement of an unemployed couple with two children aged six and ten. The imagined figure was £147 a week, when £111 is the real figure they would be entitled to. But the amount that those surveyed thought the couple would actually need to live on be £202 a week (excluding housing costs). The old adage would seem to be true. Figures can't lie but liars can figure. The Daily Express contained headlines "a new ice age", "a cure for cancer" and "the economy is booming" in the same month. Why on earth believe it when they tell you 80% of benefit claimants are frauds? To give a example of real laziness Youth Fight For Jobs a organisation set up in 2009 to fight their system a system which was not providing young people with enough jobs and opportunities were set to debate with Tory minister Matthew Hancock on Thursday morning on the ITV breakfast programme Daybreak about the governments new traineeship programme. Guess what Matthew could not even get himself out of his bed to defend his own flawed policy. What a shirker you may think. Youth Fight for Jobs supporter, Ian Pattison, said, “Can you imagine my surprise when I discovered a minister whose government berates so-called ‘shirkers’, couldn’t be bothered to get out of bed to defend his own policy. Unfortunately, the Tory Business Minister, Matthew Hancock, overslept and missed our debate. If the Minister was a jobseeker, he could lose his benefits for up to 3 months for such an offence. Luckily, the Tory MP doesn’t have to worry about things like that, as I’m sure he’s more than happy with his meagre £97,000 salary, on top the £43,230 he claimed last year in expenses – a new personal record.” “Hancock’s Traineeship scheme is the latest gimmick coming out of the Tories’ to disguise the fact they have failed to tackle the staggering problems of unemployment effecting young people. Hancock and his government are trying to shift the blame for youth unemployment away from them and their failed system and onto the unemployed.” “Young people are not lazy. In fact, it is the Tories’ cuts agenda that is worsening the economic crisis, slashing jobs in the public and private sector. Jessops is the latest high-street chain to go bust; 2000 workers could lose their jobs. Research has revealed that it is harder to get an apprenticeship than get into Oxbridge. Hancock claims his Traineeships are a stepping stone to apprenticeships, but the whole point of an apprenticeship is secure people with the training they need for a job. Hancock’s scheme doesn’t create any new jobs, or even promise any apprenticeships. Hancock isn’t genuine about developing young people’s skills, he voted to increase university tuition fees to £9,000 a year, which alongside the scrapping of EMA, has priced a huge number of young people out gaining the skills they could use to secure a job.” So lets smash this myth of striversand shirkers, we are the working class the 99% and we are all under attack from this system of capitalism . Its time we threw off our chains and united. Lets not fall for anymore divide and rule lets united and bring down this system of the rich once and for all.