Monday, April 1, 2013

So Work Pays Does It Duncan-Smith?

The £2 million Buckinghamshire mansion where Work and Pensions Secretary Iain Duncan-Smith
rent free with wife Betsy

On Sky News this morning Iain Duncan-Smith the Work and pensions secretary parroted the government's favourite line of "making work pay", after cowardly ducking out of doing any live interviews where he may have to answer awkward questions from members of the public. During a pre recorded interview he conveniently stood in front of a ramshackle fence rather than in front of his Buckinghamshire mansion with spare rooms, a swimming pool and tennis courts. He lives rent free in the mansion with his wife Betsy who Duncan-Smith once paid a salary to out of taxpayer funded parliamentary expenses for doing absolutely no work in his constituency office. Mrs Duncan-Smith, despite being a multi millionairess was also once in receipt of Disability Living Allowance - the same DLA that Duncan-Smith is now taking away from other disabled people!

The Tories try to brush away criticisms about their attack on the poor, the disabled, the unemployed and low waged by pointing out that they are going to raise the tax threshold to £10,000. However;
  • This will not come into effect until next year, so people who are struggling now will get absolutely no help for another year and this is only if they are even entitled to it!
  • Claimants have to be earning enough money to pay tax to gain anything from this.
  • Most people are only working part-time because this is the only job they can get, so will not gain anything by this tax allowance.
  • By contrast this government of millionaires have given themselves and other top earners a tax cut and will receive a check for up to £110,000 - nice if you can get it!
Which brings me to another little known policy change that the Tories are inflicting upon the *working low waged*. 

It seems to have escaped the press's notice and more alarmingly, the notice of those very people this is going to affect, that from today the government will be cutting benefits from those already *in* work, and unless they can get extra work or persuade their employers to increase their hours, their *working* benefit will be cut. This policy change will affect over 1,500,000 people, who are currently working part-time simply because they cannot find full-time work. Increasing hours or finding more part-time work to fit in with existing part-time work and family commitments will be hard enough in the south, but almost impossible in the north of England where unemployment is at its highest and most stubborn, and just to further complicate things unemployment is again on the rise (if it ever really fell).

The people that David Cameron refers to as "strivers" are the very people this government is going to penalise for actually working and because of the gross incompetence of this government and their shocking inability to think things through to a logical end, the government have created a lose - lose situation.

If workers cannot persuade their employers to increase their hours, or they fail to find another job to supplement their current job then they will lose part of their working benefit, and if they do manage to find work to increase their hours then, this government will cut their benefits anyway. So it doesn't matter what they do they cannot meet the requirements being put  down by the government so they lose.

It comes at a time when families are struggling to make ends meet with the ever rising cost of fuel and food and gas, electricity and water.

How does Iain Duncan-Smith still maintain that work pays?


Nick said...

I'm in the process Gracie of transferring over from incapacity benefit to ESA and finding that tough even with my tory mp's help

It's a pity the bbc haven't been round to see me so they could see for themselves that despite me looking like a prisoner of war with a body shape to match they could see that all the hurdles i have to go through could kill me and no one apart from my family would be any the wiser

personally i think deep down that's the conservative plan and that's to kill off as many people as possible knowing full well that the press aren't that interested apart from the odd story that crops up now again and is quickly buried

Gracie Samuels said...

In addition to his £180,000 salary per year as a cabinet minister.

Living in a £2m RENT FREE mansion complete with swimming pool, tennis courts and extensive grounds and 5 spare bedrooms.

In addition to his wife being a millionairess.

Did you also know that Smith and his wife Betsey have anothe rincome from owning the Betsey-Wynne pub in Swanborn?

Betsey-Wynne Pub

Talk about rank hypocrisy!