THINK TANK - The Ideas Zone....!!!, Welfare to Work

– The poor must accept benefit cuts

“The state-must not compensate the poor for their predicament ……..”

This is the bold and controversial statement from Nick Clegg as he signals his support for benefit cuts.

In this mornings Times newspaper he argues that the ballooning benefits bill under Labour from £63bn in 1997 to £87bn was nothing more than a giant cheque written by the state. (Agreed)

Rather than it being an engine of mobility and change it was a safety net rather than a trampoline.

On the day that JSA figures increased: this will send a sobering signal to millions of Britain’s who now find themselves jobless, – some- hopeless and overs staring redundancy in the face.


As you know, I’m not one for making comments, espousing value judgements or indeed suggesting that one or other view is flawed, baseless, insensitive and/or misinformed.
(… I see your smile…)

But on this occasion I will break with that tradition!!!

Firstly, many of us are indeed disgruntled at the inbuilt unfairness in our benefits system that:

  • you can pay into it for years but when you need to draw on it it is like extracting teeth, not only do you need to prove that you exist, but the process is often soul destroying and demoralising.(I hear)
  • on the other hand we see people willy nilly living on and drawing on the system that we have so diligently paid into. Many recipients are in no hurry and have no sense of their duty to contribute to society. (allegedly)

There are however those on the other hand for who finding work and reducing their dependency on state would cause more problems due to health, familial, caring and other reasons.

This is the group that Nick needs to be mindful of and careful not to badge as benefit scroungers and the undeserving; because some of these people are

• People like me
• People like you

Etcetera… Etcetera….. Etcetera…. Etcetera….

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