The Thatcher Vision comes to fruition Log Out | Topics | Search
Moderators | Edit Profile

RAMSEY CAMPBELL » Discussion » The Thatcher Vision comes to fruition « Previous Next »

Author Message
Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message

Frank (Frank)
Username: Frank

Registered: 09-2008
Posted From: 85.222.86.21
Posted on Sunday, November 07, 2010 - 05:56 pm:   

http://uk.news.yahoo.com/4/20101107/tuk-long-term-unemployed-made-to-work-dba161 8.html
Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message

Gary Fry (Gary_fry)
Username: Gary_fry

Registered: 03-2008
Posted From: 86.29.126.12
Posted on Sunday, November 07, 2010 - 06:03 pm:   

I'd love to see her in her present state swiping leafs from the gutter. Love it.
Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message

Barbara Roden (Nebuly)
Username: Nebuly

Registered: 03-2008
Posted From: 216.232.180.184
Posted on Sunday, November 07, 2010 - 08:07 pm:   

"The Work Activity scheme is designed to flush out claimants who have opted for a life on benefits or are doing undeclared jobs on the side, as well as restoring the work ethic in people who have not been employed for years. . . . The UK has five million people on out-of-work benefits and one of the highest rates of workless households in Europe, with 1.9 million children living in homes where no-one has a job."

Just to play devil's advocate here, before all the "F***ing Con-Dems/F***ing Thatcher" posts start to fly:

As long as the scheme doesn't target people who LEGITIMATELY can't work, and goes after people who've been claiming benefits for years while making little or no effort to find paid employment (some of whom have doubtless been doing unreported paid work on the side), then I really can't see the problem. They get a lesson in work ethics (turning up on time, putting in the hours, doing the job; you know, the basic stuff that's expected of people in paid employment, but that long-term dole recipients have probably gotten out of the habit of), and everyone else gets clean streets and an all-round nicer environment in which to live. Five million people on out-of-work benefits? That's a helluva lot of people unable to find any kind of paid work at all; I know the employment situation in Britain isn't brilliant, but I can't believe that NONE of those five million can find work. Cripes, I worked as a full-time waitress for the last year-and-a-half; not the most glamorous job in the world, but it was a job (and even at minimum wage I ended up bringing home more than I did in my previous $20.00+/hour union job; if you're a good waitress you can do pretty damn well in tips, let me tell you).
Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message

Gary Fry (Gary_fry)
Username: Gary_fry

Registered: 03-2008
Posted From: 86.29.126.12
Posted on Sunday, November 07, 2010 - 08:19 pm:   

That's not the point. The point is that benefit fraud constitutes about about one quarter of other forms of fraud, such as tax evasion. I worked out recently that benefit fraud costs each UK tax payer about 130 a year, whereas tax evasion costs them about 500. The spending review did pledge about 900,000 to look into curbing tax evasion, but that is of nothing compared to this attempt to gain back a few quid (and relatively speaking, that's what this is) from targeting benefit cheats.
Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message

Des (Des)
Username: Des

Registered: 09-2010
Posted From: 86.158.237.247
Posted on Sunday, November 07, 2010 - 08:23 pm:   

Most of the wasteage, I'm told, is 'office error', not fraud or laziness. By a long long way.
Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message

Gary Fry (Gary_fry)
Username: Gary_fry

Registered: 03-2008
Posted From: 86.29.126.12
Posted on Sunday, November 07, 2010 - 08:27 pm:   

>>>As long as the scheme doesn't target people who LEGITIMATELY can't work

And herein lies at least one difficulty. One of the things I come across commonly in my work with benefit recipients the issue of 'invisible' conditions, such as, for instance, certain mental illnesses. How can these be demonstrated during home assessments? Claimants frequently complain that it's next to impossible conveying to Local Authorities the variable difficulties they face. It's not like, say, an absence of physical mobility, which is visibly apparent. In other words, a huge grey area.
Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message

Gary Fry (Gary_fry)
Username: Gary_fry

Registered: 03-2008
Posted From: 86.29.126.12
Posted on Sunday, November 07, 2010 - 08:30 pm:   

>>>They get a lesson in work ethics (turning up on time, putting in the hours, doing the job; you know, the basic stuff that's expected of people in paid employment, but that long-term dole recipients have probably gotten out of the habit of), and everyone else gets clean streets and an all-round nicer environment in which to live.

That simply isn't going to happen. How the hell they hope to enforce this beggars belief. Ever tried to get a 'chav' out of bed? I have. Sometimes violence is necessarily involved.
Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message

Barbara Roden (Nebuly)
Username: Nebuly

Registered: 03-2008
Posted From: 216.232.180.184
Posted on Sunday, November 07, 2010 - 08:38 pm:   

>>>They get a lesson in work ethics (turning up on time, putting in the hours, doing the job; you know, the basic stuff that's expected of people in paid employment, but that long-term dole recipients have probably gotten out of the habit of), and everyone else gets clean streets and an all-round nicer environment in which to live.

---That simply isn't going to happen. How the hell they hope to enforce this beggars belief. Ever tried to get a 'chav' out of bed? I have. Sometimes violence is necessarily involved.---

So what's the answer, then? Throw up one's hands and say hey, can't force him out of bed and into some kind of work without using physical force, so we'll just keep paying him benefits until he dies?
Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message

Gary Fry (Gary_fry)
Username: Gary_fry

Registered: 03-2008
Posted From: 86.29.126.12
Posted on Sunday, November 07, 2010 - 08:41 pm:   

A fair and thriving jobs market with good posts which pay well and offer folk a real chance at a worthwhile life. Yeah, a fairy story. But no more unrealistic in practice than this bollox.
Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message

Barbara Roden (Nebuly)
Username: Nebuly

Registered: 03-2008
Posted From: 216.232.180.184
Posted on Sunday, November 07, 2010 - 08:45 pm:   

"That's not the point. The point is that benefit fraud constitutes about about one quarter of other forms of fraud, such as tax evasion. I worked out recently that benefit fraud costs each UK tax payer about 130 a year, whereas tax evasion costs them about 500. The spending review did pledge about 900,000 to look into curbing tax evasion, but that is of nothing compared to this attempt to gain back a few quid (and relatively speaking, that's what this is) from targeting benefit cheats."

As far as I can see, it's not an either/or thing, cracking down on either benefit fraud or tax evasion. Even if tax evasion costs the UK taxpayer more than does benefit fraud, surely it's worth taking steps to curb the latter as well (and the two often go together, as in people claiming benefits and then doing undeclared work on the side, for which they receive money they don't pay any tax on). Every little bit helps, and from what I read in the papers the British economy needs all the help it can get.
Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message

Gary Fry (Gary_fry)
Username: Gary_fry

Registered: 03-2008
Posted From: 86.29.126.12
Posted on Sunday, November 07, 2010 - 08:46 pm:   

The really disturbing aspect of all this is that by targeting cheats (and yes, I do agree that a lot of them need a good kick up the arse) is that we're going to hurt a lot of other, needy people, too.

Any welfare system will always be exploited. It's inevitable. But who would honestly rather live without one, whther they're in paid work or not?
Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message

Gary Fry (Gary_fry)
Username: Gary_fry

Registered: 03-2008
Posted From: 86.29.126.12
Posted on Sunday, November 07, 2010 - 08:49 pm:   

>>>As far as I can see, it's not an either/or thing

It is for the Tories.
Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message

Barbara Roden (Nebuly)
Username: Nebuly

Registered: 03-2008
Posted From: 216.232.180.184
Posted on Sunday, November 07, 2010 - 08:50 pm:   

>>>As long as the scheme doesn't target people who LEGITIMATELY can't work

---And herein lies at least one difficulty. One of the things I come across commonly in my work with benefit recipients the issue of 'invisible' conditions, such as, for instance, certain mental illnesses. How can these be demonstrated during home assessments? Claimants frequently complain that it's next to impossible conveying to Local Authorities the variable difficulties they face. It's not like, say, an absence of physical mobility, which is visibly apparent. In other words, a huge grey area.---

This is, unfortunately, a huge grey area, as you point out. I don't know what it's like in Britain, but here in Canada the government closure of many hospitals and institutions which formerly dealt with the mentally ill has led to a huge influx of these people into 'everyday' life, often without any means of coping adequately or being assessed professionally. I don't know what the answer is when it comes to assessing such people as to their readiness, or not, for work; it's no comfort to me that people far more qualified to look at the situation don't seem to know the answer either.
Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message

Gary Fry (Gary_fry)
Username: Gary_fry

Registered: 03-2008
Posted From: 86.29.126.12
Posted on Sunday, November 07, 2010 - 08:57 pm:   

Exactly. The logistics involved are staggering.
Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message

Barbara Roden (Nebuly)
Username: Nebuly

Registered: 03-2008
Posted From: 216.232.180.184
Posted on Sunday, November 07, 2010 - 09:09 pm:   

Something I can't quite get my head round - even after five years of living in Britain back in the 1990s - is the extent to which the British government funds people for things which, in Canada, people are expected to pay for themselves. Do you still get tax relief on mortgage interest there? That's never been on the cards here (or if it ever was, it's long before my or my parents' time); if you buy a place to live you don't expect relief from the government. Same for social housing; there is some here, in larger cities, for the homeless or the very poor, but council housing on the scale it's found in Britain is unknown, as is the idea of being paid a weekly or monthly sum in order to afford to live somewhere. Single mums get no queue-jumping privileges when it comes to housing, simply because there is no queue to jump, and long-term unemployment benefits - unless there's a good reason why you can't work - are likewise unknown. I don't know the reason for this, unless it's to do with the fact that most Canadians are only a few generations removed from a time when there was little government, or anything else, here to speak of, and if you wanted/needed something - whether it be a job or a place to live - your only option was to make or build or pay for it yourself.
Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message

Gary Fry (Gary_fry)
Username: Gary_fry

Registered: 03-2008
Posted From: 86.29.126.12
Posted on Sunday, November 07, 2010 - 09:27 pm:   

I don't know what the differences between the two countries are, but I'd speculate that the fact that the UK has 61m people crammed into a set of small islands, whereas Canada, in all its expansiveness, has only 31m might have something to do with differences in social welfare strategies. There's obviously more to do with it than this - such as the UK's complex post-war development, including Beveridge's welfare state and subsequent transformations thereof - but at root, this must be a factor. Competition over resources, winners and losers, etc.
Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message

Gary Fry (Gary_fry)
Username: Gary_fry

Registered: 03-2008
Posted From: 86.29.126.12
Posted on Sunday, November 07, 2010 - 09:34 pm:   

Barbara, this kind of grounds the very deeply rooted issues in UK society: http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/business/4696391.stm
Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message

Barbara Roden (Nebuly)
Username: Nebuly

Registered: 03-2008
Posted From: 216.232.180.184
Posted on Monday, November 08, 2010 - 07:39 am:   

>>>Barbara, this kind of grounds the very deeply rooted issues in UK society: http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/business/4696391.stm<<<

Thanks, Gary; very informative article.
Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message

Frank (Frank)
Username: Frank

Registered: 09-2008
Posted From: 85.222.86.21
Posted on Monday, November 08, 2010 - 10:31 am:   

People who work on the 'side' and claim benefits do so (most of them) out of desperation, not because they wish to defraud the government or anybody else for that matter.

For example, I've known plenty of people who 'work the fields' in the north west simply because benefits aren't enough. Working the fields is backbreaking, dirty, underpaid (legal or not) work. I hardly imagine this, and any other kind of work constitutes a successful approach to a lifestyle Ronnie Briggs would have been proud of.

But any work done on the side is usually done by people who are trying to maintain a household where one partner is out of work, and there are children to feed. Benefits is simply not enough.

And I find it difficult to believe that the paltry amount of money paid to people who don't work can be seen as some sort of luxury conferred on an idle segment of society. The two week payment of Job Seekers Allowance is NOT a blank cheque.
Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message

Rhysaurus (Rhysaurus)
Username: Rhysaurus

Registered: 01-2010
Posted From: 80.4.12.3
Posted on Monday, November 08, 2010 - 10:45 am:   

I have no problem with long-term unemployed people being made to work for a month -- provided they get paid for that work -- properly paid. If they are expected to do it for nothing... why, that's slavery, isn't it? And if it's argued that they already get paid (i.e. the dole) then I'm afraid that the hourly rate comes to below minimum wage, which is illegal.

So yes, send them to work for 4 weeks, on a proper wage. The temporary increase in income will be a far stronger motivator for them to look for work when the work period is over.

But no return to slavery, thanks!

I've just read Orwell's The Road to Wigan Pier which is about poverty and unemployment in the north of England in the 1930s. Very, very sad. And we are currently on a fast track back to that age...
Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message

Gary Fry (Gary_fry)
Username: Gary_fry

Registered: 03-2008
Posted From: 129.11.76.230
Posted on Monday, November 08, 2010 - 11:04 am:   

Yes, JSA works out at about 1.38 an hour.
Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message

Gary Fry (Gary_fry)
Username: Gary_fry

Registered: 03-2008
Posted From: 129.11.76.230
Posted on Monday, November 08, 2010 - 11:14 am:   

In fairness, Frank, everyone knows that most poeple from the north are lazy. I mean, let's consider some 'lived world' evidence: http://www.mirror.co.uk/celebs/news/2010/11/07/x-factor-simon-cowell-brands-cher yl-cole-lazy-in-vicious-swipe-115875-22698630/
Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message

Rhysaurus (Rhysaurus)
Username: Rhysaurus

Registered: 01-2010
Posted From: 80.4.12.3
Posted on Monday, November 08, 2010 - 11:17 am:   

I've always believed that a carrot is better than a stick. True, sometimes the carrot can be used as a stick -- but it's always better to be whacked on the arse with a vegetable than with a tree's arm.

There's nothing stopping the government saying to long term unemployed people: "Now you're going to work for a month, at a real wage, and learn what real earning power is like. After you've tasted that, you won't be satisfied with dole payments, and will probably make more of an effort in future..."

Maybe I'm naive. Maybe I'm not right wing enough. Maybe I'm not eaten up with resentment to a sufficient degree (even though I've worked on farms, cleaning the hulls of ships and even teaching creative writing to prisoners) but that seems like a good idea to me.
Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message

Gary Fry (Gary_fry)
Username: Gary_fry

Registered: 03-2008
Posted From: 129.11.76.230
Posted on Monday, November 08, 2010 - 11:25 am:   

Sure, let's do things like this. But let's also, for instance, make the likes of Vodafone pay their tax bills.

http://www.thisismoney.co.uk/news/article.html?in_article_id=514832&in_page_id=2

Or let's at least talk about this as much as we all talk about benefit cheats, even though it doesn't give us the same glow of self-righteousness.
Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message

Frank (Frank)
Username: Frank

Registered: 09-2008
Posted From: 85.222.86.21
Posted on Monday, November 08, 2010 - 11:37 am:   

Rhys - exactly, mate, people who are paid a proper wage. I know a lot of people like this who'd jump at the opportunity.

Gary - Mate, I'm just glad I don't have satellite TV...Cheryl Cole, Big Brother, etc....in fact, I'm glad I don't have the TV connected. If it weren't for my love of movies, I might have 'done a Rhys', and never had one in the first place.
Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message

Rhysaurus (Rhysaurus)
Username: Rhysaurus

Registered: 01-2010
Posted From: 80.4.12.3
Posted on Monday, November 08, 2010 - 11:40 am:   

Absolutely, Gary! Self righteousness is a substitute for a real log fire for some people...

Resentment is the other soul-eroder. As Nietzsche kept pointing out, most of the trouble in the world is caused by people who, because they feel they have missed out or been put out in some way, are desperate to make sure other people don't get "one over" on them. And in this regard it's always easier to pick on the weak and vulnerable than the rich and powerful.

Here's an idea: could we not give the long term unemployed properly paid temporary work investigating and busting larger scale fraud? After appropriate training, of course...
Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message

Gary Fry (Gary_fry)
Username: Gary_fry

Registered: 03-2008
Posted From: 129.11.76.230
Posted on Monday, November 08, 2010 - 11:57 am:   

The need to feel worthy overrules almost all others. How can you feel worthy comparing yourself to the successful? Quite the opposite occurs, in fact.

No, to feel worthy, we need (perceived) lesser beings than ourselves. So we focus on losers.

It's basic playground psychology.
Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message

Des (Des)
Username: Des

Registered: 09-2010
Posted From: 86.158.237.247
Posted on Monday, November 08, 2010 - 12:04 pm:   

Here's an idea: could we not give the long term unemployed properly paid temporary work investigating and busting larger scale fraud?
===============

They'd be better used as extra staff coping with the benefit system's 'office error' wasteage that dwarfs by far any loss from fraud, I believe.
Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message

Frank (Frank)
Username: Frank

Registered: 09-2008
Posted From: 85.222.86.21
Posted on Monday, November 08, 2010 - 12:11 pm:   

Yes, but where does that leave those who come from particularly tough backgrounds? They can sometimes be some of the worst judges with regards to the 'enigma' and 'mystery' of work/employment. The reasoning there is that, there's no reason for others to be claiming dole, and 'stiffing the system', because they themselves are examples of what can be done if people simple 'put their back into it.'

It's dismaying how people come from my social background, and who judge only too easily others on account of their own work ethic and success. I admire them at the same time as despising their spurious arguments.
Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message

Gary Fry (Gary_fry)
Username: Gary_fry

Registered: 03-2008
Posted From: 129.11.76.230
Posted on Monday, November 08, 2010 - 12:13 pm:   

You need to give us a source, Des.

As to the other stuff, John Pilger put it into some perspective last week:

"The theft of 83bn in jobs and services matches almost exactly the amount of tax legally avoided by piratical corporations. Without fanfare, the super-rich have been assured they can dodge up to 40bn in tax payments in the secrecy of Swiss banks. The day this was sewn up, Osborne attacked those who "cheat" the welfare system. He omitted the real amount lost, a minuscule 0.5bn, and that 10.5bn in benefit payments was not claimed at all. Labour is his silent partner."

http://www.newstatesman.com/uk-politics/2010/11/pilger-britain-british
Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message

Des (Des)
Username: Des

Registered: 09-2010
Posted From: 86.158.237.247
Posted on Monday, November 08, 2010 - 12:17 pm:   

You need to give us a source, Des.
=======================
http://blogs.lse.ac.uk/politicsandpolicy/?p=3674
Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message

Gary Fry (Gary_fry)
Username: Gary_fry

Registered: 03-2008
Posted From: 129.11.76.230
Posted on Monday, November 08, 2010 - 04:08 pm:   

An anecdote

When I first went to upper school I was approached by a kid who'd nicked a computer game from a local shop and he basically forced me to buy it off him. He threatened to chuck me in the nearby beck if I didn't bring 2 into school by the end of the week. So I did. And you know, I never really disliked this kid. He was big and popular, and I'd sooner have his good favour than his enmity. And strangely, via some mysterious psychological process, his popularity kind of eliminated any resentment I might have felt towards him, despite the fact that he'd made me buy something off him I didn't really need. There was no use protesting, however - this was the 'unofficial' school system. And in any case, I was soon able to fit in by positioning myself somewhere between these big boys and the squirming little worms with the uncontrollable mucus and inability to kick a ball straight during games lessons. Maybe I even resented the latter's free school dinners. I certainly scoffed at their clothing and their quite revolting personal habits. But in my defence I'll say I knew no better: I was a child.
Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message

Joel (Joel)
Username: Joel

Registered: 03-2008
Posted From: 91.110.154.150
Posted on Tuesday, November 09, 2010 - 12:28 am:   

Let's put a few current facts together and see what they suggest in combination.

1. The Government has announced that a million public sector jobs are to be axed.
2. The Government has also announced that a high proportion of people on disability benefit will be reclassified as unemployed, quite regardless of their chances of finding work.
3. Now the Government has announced that people who have been unemployed for a long time will be... not trained, not helped to find work, not given even temporary jobs, but rather forced to do unpaid work that corresponds to the most basic of public sector manual jobs.
4. The DSS estimates the annual cost of benefit fraud to be 1.1 billion. The Inland Revenue estimates the annual cost of tax evasion to be 40 billion.
5. The Government is cutting back staffing levels heavily in the DSS and the Inland Revenue, showing that neither helping people find work nor catching tax evaders is a priority. Catching benefit fraudsters is, however, such a priority that David Cameron has announced that private sector bounty hunters will be hired to track them down.
6. The Chief Executive of the Tory-controlled Birmingham City Council has notified 26,000 employees that they may or may not be made redundant but their current contracts are null and void, and they will not even be considered for re-engagement unless they sign new contracts that radically diminish their terms and conditions effectively casualising the Council workforce.
7. Kenneth Clarke, current Justice Secretary and onetime Home Secretary, famously commented that a very high level of unemployment was "a price worth paying" to break the trade unions.

What these facts show in combination is a minority Conservative Government, propped up by LibDem quislings, trying to do as much damage to our public services, the people who provide them and the people who receive them as possible. This is open war on the rights and living standards of the non-rich. It will greatly increase the crime rate, the suicide rate and the mortality rate among the non-rich. It will create a gangster economy of vicious profiteering, with every area of the public sector most especially healthcare being carved up into franchises.

The Government has said that the NHS budget is "ring-fenced". However, it will have to be spread much thinner to cover the community healthcare being cut out of the social services budget. Over the next few years there will be a wholesale shift from the NHS budget being used mostly to train and pay NHS staff to the same budget being used mostly to pay private sector health providers... who, as New Labour's Independent Sector Treatment Programme proved, are a lot more expensive than their NHS counterparts. They are also a lot less accountable, because they refuse to disclose their clinical and financial performance data on the grounds that it is "commercially sensitive".

The question is not when the ConDem Government will stop destroying everything that is decent about our society. The question is whether anyone will stop them. It has to happen soon. By the time of the next general election, the damage done to our social fabric and to millions of lives will be irreversible.

This is war.
Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message

Gary Fry (Gary_fry)
Username: Gary_fry

Registered: 03-2008
Posted From: 86.177.65.178
Posted on Tuesday, November 09, 2010 - 08:49 am:   

Facts like these obviously make no difference to how folk feel. And the simple fact is that it feels better to believe that benefit cheats and sponging immigrant are at the root of all our social ills. Such people have hedenic relevance to us; we see them daily. We have to change that before anyone will listen to common sense.

As I keep saying here, tell people and they forget; show people and they may remember; involve them and they'll never forget.

Just how much financial injury do we have to sustain before we feel involved?

While we're queuing up at our hopelessly overstretched public service venues - hospitals, the police station, the fucking Post Office - will we really still be focusing on the chav in front of us in the tracksuit bottoms, who's here to collect his/her dole? Or maybe the immigrant who has a "poorly arm" while we've got some serious ailment?

I'd say yeah, we probably will. Cos it feels good. And by then, it'll feel better and better, cos we'll feel a whole lot worse . . . possibly the worst ever.
Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message

Des (Des)
Username: Des

Registered: 09-2010
Posted From: 86.158.237.247
Posted on Tuesday, November 09, 2010 - 09:10 am:   

There is a lot of truth in comments above by Joel and Gary. And I have great sympathy and the desire to act...

In the scheme of things though...
http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/science-environment-11715120
Hadron Collider provides mini-big bang =
Slightly facetious of me, but the universe is a big big place.
Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message

Zed (Gary_mc)
Username: Gary_mc

Registered: 03-2008
Posted From: 195.166.117.210
Posted on Tuesday, November 09, 2010 - 09:48 am:   

Gary's nailed it - nobody can be bothered to act; they'd all rather bitch about some chav in the Post Office queue in front of them and then rant about it on Facebook.

What's worse than us being fucked is that nobody can be arsed to do anything about it. Except rant on messageboards (what was it John Lennon said about starting a revolution from your bed?)
Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message

Zed (Gary_mc)
Username: Gary_mc

Registered: 03-2008
Posted From: 195.166.117.210
Posted on Tuesday, November 09, 2010 - 09:50 am:   

nobody can be bothered to act

I also condemn myself with that statement, btw. I'm too busy trying to raise a family, keep a roof over our heads, and write novels (to earn a bit on the side to help keep a roof over our heads) to get involved.
Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message

Gary Fry (Gary_fry)
Username: Gary_fry

Registered: 03-2008
Posted From: 129.11.76.230
Posted on Tuesday, November 09, 2010 - 10:54 am:   

I do think - perhaps speculatively, but I offer it up for discussiion - that having to work for a living is a crucial factor here: that is, even though the economic elite who are ripping us off (yes, that's right, Albie: the economic elite, paranoid, paranoid, wibble, wibble, boy how I love Ickey), they at least have jobs. We kind of respect that. All the rest - the complications with tax, etc - are just inconsequential scribbles around the edges of this fundamental fact.

It's the "work-shy spongers" who really infuriate us, because they (allegedly) have something we desire: daily freedom (big joke, natch). We're jealous.

Hedonic relevance.
Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message

Rhysaurus (Rhysaurus)
Username: Rhysaurus

Registered: 01-2010
Posted From: 212.219.233.223
Posted on Tuesday, November 09, 2010 - 10:54 am:   

> I also condemn myself with that statement, btw. I'm too busy trying to raise a family, keep a roof over our heads, and write novels (to earn a bit on the side to help keep a roof over our heads) to get involved.

I understand that attitude exactly, Gary. I've taken the opposite approach. I don't own a house or car, have no wife or children to keep, no possessions, nothing to tie me down. I suspect I have chosen this lifestyle as a way of making myself portable if things in Britain get too bad. I can skip more easily than most. If you don't have anything, you can't lose anything...

So I also have less incentive to act, but from a different end of the spectrum to you...

Gary (Fry)'s anecdote about the school system reminded me of the gulag tales of Varlam Shalamov and Gustav Herling (on a much smaller scale, of course) where the networks of power are utterly exposed, shorn of all the adornments of 'civilisation', where the popular bullies aren't resented by their victims because they are 'keys' to survival and advancement.
Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message

Gary Fry (Gary_fry)
Username: Gary_fry

Registered: 03-2008
Posted From: 129.11.76.230
Posted on Tuesday, November 09, 2010 - 11:00 am:   

Thornton Upper School was a Gulag. :-)
Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message

Zed (Gary_mc)
Username: Gary_mc

Registered: 03-2008
Posted From: 195.166.117.210
Posted on Tuesday, November 09, 2010 - 11:01 am:   

Yep, I hear what you're saying, Rhys.

The only thing that suprises me about this current state of affairs is that anyone is suprised by it.

I mean, I'm not a political animal in the least and I saw this fucking shit coming...the only people more stupid than those who voted Tory are those who voted Lib-Dem in some kind of misguided "protest vote", IMHO.
Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message

Gary Fry (Gary_fry)
Username: Gary_fry

Registered: 03-2008
Posted From: 129.11.76.230
Posted on Tuesday, November 09, 2010 - 11:05 am:   

That's interesting, Rhys, that a lack of investment in the social system can lead to a similar reluctance to get involved in its ongoing developmental.

So what we're saying is that the only people who are in a position to act are those who are involved in this system, but who don't have to worry about losing everything by protesting. In other words, the very economically powerful people who are causing all the problems!
Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message

Gary Fry (Gary_fry)
Username: Gary_fry

Registered: 03-2008
Posted From: 129.11.76.230
Posted on Tuesday, November 09, 2010 - 11:06 am:   

>>>I mean, I'm not a political animal in the least and I saw this fucking shit coming...the only people more stupid than those who voted Tory are those who voted Lib-Dem in some kind of misguided "protest vote", IMHO.

Is that why you've spent the last eight years going on about chavs?! :-)
Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message

Rhysaurus (Rhysaurus)
Username: Rhysaurus

Registered: 01-2010
Posted From: 212.219.233.223
Posted on Tuesday, November 09, 2010 - 11:07 am:   

> ...the only people more stupid than those who voted Tory are those who voted Lib-Dem in some kind of misguided "protest vote".

Yes, when amateurs play at tactics, the result tends to be a backfire. It's not sufficient to read the first chapter of Sun Tzu or know how to play a fair game of chess to earn the epithet of 'tactical master'.

Confession: I voted Lib-Dem. I did wrong.

My penance is forthcoming. Unlike my penis: and that's my penance...

See what I did there? Wordplay! My real penance is to refrain from wordplay for an entire month, starting from now. Am I ready? Begin!
Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message

Zed (Gary_mc)
Username: Gary_mc

Registered: 03-2008
Posted From: 195.166.117.210
Posted on Tuesday, November 09, 2010 - 11:11 am:   

GF: eh? What's my hatred of chavs got to do with the way the current government is dismantling the fabric of our society? And FYI, I've spent the last 25 years hating chavs (we used to call them charvers in the northeast, long before the media coined the term chav). So there.

Rhys:
Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message

Weber (Weber_gregston)
Username: Weber_gregston

Registered: 03-2008
Posted From: 212.121.214.10
Posted on Tuesday, November 09, 2010 - 01:17 pm:   

Confession - I also voted Lib dem - however, living in Salford, hazel Blears got in anyway.
Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message

Tony (Tony)
Username: Tony

Registered: 03-2008
Posted From: 86.140.190.208
Posted on Tuesday, November 09, 2010 - 01:30 pm:   

Gary - to go back to your earlier posts - there's nothing 'wrong' with me technically but i don't feel suitable for any job at the moment. I seem normal on the surface but just can't keep anything in my mind, and don't hold back when it comes to my temper. I recently cut my hours down to ONE DAY after an incident in which I shouted at a bloke I support (snapped for first time since starting ten years ago), so my future looks decidedly wobbly. :-(
Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message

Hubert (Hubert)
Username: Hubert

Registered: 03-2008
Posted From: 78.22.237.21
Posted on Tuesday, November 09, 2010 - 01:36 pm:   

I don't own a house or car, have no wife or children to keep, no possessions, nothing to tie me down. I suspect I have chosen this lifestyle as a way of making myself portable if things in Britain get too bad. I can skip more easily than most. If you don't have anything, you can't lose anything...

My thoughts exactly. I've experimented with all sorts of lifestyles except marriage and all that comes with it. Only thing that ties me down is this terrific amount of books . . .
Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message

Carolinec (Carolinec)
Username: Carolinec

Registered: 06-2009
Posted From: 92.232.199.129
Posted on Tuesday, November 09, 2010 - 01:41 pm:   

Confession: I've been voting LibDem since I started voting - not sure I will do next time though.

I think the points Joel put forward above (along with Des' point about the government ignoring - and to a certain extent creating - waste) hit the nail right on the head. I had a rant about this elsewhere on this board a little while ago, so I won't go into it again (I've probably been conspicuous by my absence here recently - a bit tied up with other things so can't post at length). But I must say I'm starting to feel quite militant myself now - the first time I've felt that way since the Poll Tax issue. I think I'll have to find a disabled rights group to get involved with ...
Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message

Alexicon (Alexicon)
Username: Alexicon

Registered: 10-2009
Posted From: 88.106.30.97
Posted on Tuesday, November 09, 2010 - 01:46 pm:   

As the archetypal chav,I must be the most reviled person on this board (sorry Zed).

Anyway,I was sick and tired of lying around all day and realised that things had to change. So I voted Conservative because I felt I deserved a good kicking while I was down.

/
Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message

Gary Fry (Gary_fry)
Username: Gary_fry

Registered: 03-2008
Posted From: 129.11.76.230
Posted on Tuesday, November 09, 2010 - 02:04 pm:   

Much more important than any issue on this thread, Alex, is this: why don't you hit space after a comma? Is it a social experiment to see which of us will ask first? Well, I've blown it - I'm asking. Why? Why, why, why? Tell us now!
Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message

Tony (Tony)
Username: Tony

Registered: 03-2008
Posted From: 81.156.233.19
Posted on Tuesday, November 09, 2010 - 02:07 pm:   

People often do things that they know will be bad for them because they want shaking up, don't like the ennui. Anyone hear about the experiment with the pigeons recently? Been found out they prefer to get food from a machine that only gives out biggish lumps occasionally as opposed to food every time, even thought in the end they ended up with less.
Top of pagePrevious messageNext messageBottom of page Link to this message

Alexicon (Alexicon)
Username: Alexicon

Registered: 10-2009
Posted From: 88.106.18.69
Posted on Tuesday, November 09, 2010 - 03:03 pm:   

Gar,mate,,,wot's a commer? Never had none of that poncey crap at school..And wot you on about 'hit space.'? You think I'm an astranort,or what? You some sort of tory toff then?

Add Your Message Here
Post:
Bold text Italics Underline Create a hyperlink Insert a clipart image

Username: Posting Information:
This is a private posting area. Only registered users and moderators may post messages here.
Password:
Options: Enable HTML code in message
Automatically activate URLs in message
Action:

Topics | Last Day | Last Week | Tree View | Search | Help/Instructions | Program Credits Administration