/ Should people be forced to work?

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Blizzard - on 12 Feb 2013
In light of the recent poundstretcher legal case. Should the long term unemployed, disabled in deed everyone be forced off benefits and into low paid jobs( lets face it they are the only available jobs out there, unless you are a cardinal seeking popeship.lol)
TheDrunkenBakers - on 12 Feb 2013
In reply to Blizzard: In a word, yes.

If people are able to work whether their ability is to stack shelves or if disabled, work in an office.

I am firmly of the opinion that if people whom are physically and mentally able to work, and decide to opt out, that they should get beggar all from the state.

Blizzard - on 12 Feb 2013
In reply to TheDrunkenBakers:
What if you are unemployable? ( I have no doubt that a lot of people are of this ilk)
Chateauneuf du Boeuf - on 12 Feb 2013
In reply to TheDrunkenBakers: There are barely any people unwilling to work, and a civilised society still owes them enough to get by. The OP makes a good point though, there are no where near enough jobs to go round even in the 'good times'. This isn't the fault of those without work.
Only a hill - on 12 Feb 2013
In reply to TheDrunkenBakers:
> (In reply to Blizzard) In a word, yes.
>
> If people are able to work whether their ability is to stack shelves or if disabled, work in an office.
>
> I am firmly of the opinion that if people whom are physically and mentally able to work, and decide to opt out, that they should get beggar all from the state.

The government is in a perilous situation, far more perilous than many people realise, I think. They know that if they dismantle the benefits system they face revolution. Only another industrial revolution--and radical cultural shifts--would provide enough labour to employ all the presently unemployed.

With their benefits suddenly taken away, genuine poverty would return--the sort we have not seen in this country for many decades. Political extremism and violent uprising will follow.
EeeByGum - on 12 Feb 2013
In reply to TheDrunkenBakers:

> I am firmly of the opinion that if people whom are physically and mentally able to work, and decide to opt out, that they should get beggar all from the state.

I am completely with you.... until you start thinking about this in a little more detail. The problem, is that there are only so much shelf stacking jobs out there. Working in a shop requires interpersonal skills, initiative, the ability to be outgoing, confidence and other skills not readily available in the long term unemployed. Office work requires skills above and beyond that. Data entry may sound easy and dull to us, but try explaining Excel to someone who has never used a computer before!

It is easy to say that if you don't work you won't get a penny from the state, but then you only need to go to places like India to see that this is not something I would like to see in my country.

I have no idea what the solution is, but the status quo is pretty favourable to all when you start to dissect the issues.
Only a hill - on 12 Feb 2013
In reply to Chateauneuf du Boeuf:
> there are no where near enough jobs to go round even in the 'good times'. This isn't the fault of those without work.

This is simply a function of a post-industrial society and always has been.

At least we are not back in the dark years of the mid 1800s when hundreds of thousands of families starved in wretched cellars and died from cholera and lack of drinking water. Do we really want to go back to that kind of world?

The benefits system is a force for good in the UK, but it isn't perfect.
Blizzard - on 12 Feb 2013
In reply to Only a hill:

What about those trapped in it? eg a friend who has children, gets house and benefits, can live comfortably off it. Also the real lack of incentive that benefits offer. I remember posting previously to get off the dole you would need to be offered £16K upwards to make it worth your while. There simply are not that many £16K a year jobs knocking around these days. ( not that i know of anyway)
Chateauneuf du Boeuf - on 12 Feb 2013
In reply to Only a hill: This is a weird analysis. Yes there are only so many jobs and yes if you withdrew all benefits then the government would effectively be sentencing many to death.

Genuine poverty? There are already loads of people struggling to heat their homes and put food on the table, the crippling immobility and pain this forces on people amounts to poverty in my eyes. You don't need to have flys crawling around your eyes and a bloated stomach before your genuinely poor.

As to your ideas about what must change they seem nonsense too, a cultural shift or a another industrial revolution? what to you mean by this? A much better distribution of wealth would easily free up enough money to employ millions more people, this economic shift is whats needed. Jobs need to be there for people to get on their bike to, I assume your cultural shift thing was some form of victim blaming.
Only a hill - on 12 Feb 2013
In reply to Blizzard:
> (In reply to Only a hill)
>
> What about those trapped in it? eg a friend who has children, gets house and benefits, can live comfortably off it. Also the real lack of incentive that benefits offer. I remember posting previously to get off the dole you would need to be offered £16K upwards to make it worth your while. There simply are not that many £16K a year jobs knocking around these days. ( not that i know of anyway)

Is that not better than your entire family being trapped in a life of miserable poverty, starvation, malnutrition, and death at a young age? I know which I'd choose.

In the 19th century the ruling classes simply ignored the 'problem of the poor.' They walked through cities blind to the ocean of suffering around them. And the result of this indifference? Political extremism and revolutions.
Blizzard - on 12 Feb 2013
In reply to Only a hill:

I am not defending it, what I am doing is putting myself in the position of someone who may never work in a their lifetime. That is situation that cannot be easy, meaningful or desireable. Yet some of the media have us believe everyone on benefits is creaming it in.

Just to detract from the point

What I was thinking off today is what is the point in working for a living, even longer, now that pension age has increased. Only to get to old age and have your house taken off to pay for it you as you are shipped into a care home. Working for a living seems pointless to me in one respect. Warped logic I know.
Chateauneuf du Boeuf - on 12 Feb 2013
In reply to Only a hill: No its a function of a neoliberal society,, more equitable societies have much lower rates of long term unemployment.

Your second point is a rather ludicrous false dichotomy, one can view structural unemployment as a bad thing without wishing to go back to a Disraelian Britain.
Only a hill - on 12 Feb 2013
In reply to Chateauneuf du Boeuf:
Then how do you propose to implement full employment? It's impossible in our society the way it currently exists.
Chateauneuf du Boeuf - on 12 Feb 2013
In reply to Blizzard:
> (In reply to Only a hill)
>
> What about those trapped in it? eg a friend who has children, gets house and benefits, can live comfortably off it. Also the real lack of incentive that benefits offer. I remember posting previously to get off the dole you would need to be offered £16K upwards to make it worth your while. There simply are not that many £16K a year jobs knocking around these days. ( not that i know of anyway)

That's nonsense. Unemployment benefit is 3500 (800 less if your under 25) quid a year and HB can be claimed in work. My mate was on the dole and gladly quit it for a job paying 60 quid a week (even though as it was less than 15hrs p/w he was still entitled to claim some money), dole is such a hassle to apply for and the rate is shit. Anyone unless they had children would give it up for any old job.
Nutkey on 12 Feb 2013
In reply to Blizzard:
> In light of the recent poundstretcher legal case. Should the long term unemployed, disabled in deed everyone be forced off benefits and into low paid jobs( lets face it they are the only available jobs out there, unless you are a cardinal seeking popeship.lol)


It means the public sector is effectively subsidising a private company at the expense of other private companies in competition with the first. This is silly - other companies will follow suit, and eventually there will be no paid shelf-stacking jobs, and all shelf-stackers will be on the dole doing unpaid work experience.
Bjartur i Sumarhus on 12 Feb 2013
In reply to EeeByGum: " Working in a shop requires interpersonal skills, initiative, the ability to be outgoing, confidence and other skills not readily available in the long term unemployed"

I agree with this, you only have to go to B&Q to see what it's like when these rules are broken.

(I am tarring a lot of good people with a broad brush there, but boy...there are some shockers in the stores near me)
Nutkey on 12 Feb 2013
In reply to Only a hill:
> (In reply to Chateauneuf du Boeuf)
> Then how do you propose to implement full employment? It's impossible in our society the way it currently exists.

My dad,, who has spent considerably more time in the lower strata of society than I have, is firmly of the opinion that some people should be paid to do nothing, and this is more economic than giving them a job which they don't want and where they will be negatively productive.
TheDrunkenBakers - on 12 Feb 2013
In reply to TheDrunkenBakers: There are very few people who are genuinely unemployable but you raise an interesting point.

Those I am referring to are the ones whom are not career criminals for example which most employers are rightly nervous about. Even then picking fruit/vegetables, where no petty cash can be stolen, is surely something which an able bodied criminal could do without too much fear of the photocopier going missing once the back is turned.

The one's Im talking about are the typical Jeremy Kyle, sit at home all day on the PS3, never done a day's work in your life types. It cannot be allowed to continue.



cuppatea on 12 Feb 2013
In reply to Nutkey:
> (In reply to Only a hill)
> [...]
>
> My dad,, who has spent considerably more time in the lower strata of society than I have, is firmly of the opinion that some people should be paid to do nothing, and this is more economic than giving them a job which they don't want and where they will be negatively productive.


Isn't that what Thatcher had in mind with the miners?

I'll be off now..

TAXI!!
Chateauneuf du Boeuf - on 12 Feb 2013
In reply to Only a hill: There are a hell of a lot of jobs to do which are not being done. For instance we have a housing shortage of around 130 000 p/a . We could start by building more housing and better roads/railways. This could be paid for by introducing extra council tax bands, increasing inheritance tax, clamping down on tax evasion and avoidance. It would stimulate business and reduce the cost of housing benefit. In short I'd redistribute wealth away from large useless accumulations (property etc) and get it active employing people whether privately or publicly.
Blizzard - on 12 Feb 2013
In reply to TheDrunkenBakers:
>
>
> The one's Im talking about are the typical Jeremy Kyle, sit at home all day on the PS3, never done a day's work in your life types. It cannot be allowed to continue.


Do those people really exist? I dont actually know any of them. The last one I did hear about died of a brain hemorrhage for playing the game for 14 hours without a break. LOL. He did kind of deserve it tho.
TheDrunkenBakers - on 12 Feb 2013
In reply to Blizzard:
> (In reply to TheDrunkenBakers)
> [...]
>
>
> Do those people really exist? I dont actually know any of them. The last one I did hear about died of a brain hemorrhage for playing the game for 14 hours without a break. LOL. He did kind of deserve it tho.

I'm stereotyping a little but you get the drift. Our crippled and dilapidated town centres are full of these. Just take a look every day.

Ramblin dave - on 12 Feb 2013
In reply to TheDrunkenBakers:
> (In reply to Blizzard)
> [...]
>
> I'm stereotyping a little but you get the drift. Our crippled and dilapidated town centres are full of these. Just take a look every day.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Truthiness
Jim C - on 12 Feb 2013
In reply to Chateauneuf du Boeuf:
> (In reply to TheDrunkenBakers) There are barely any people unwilling to work, and a civilised society still owes them enough to get by. The OP makes a good point though, there are no where near enough jobs to go round even in the 'good times'. This isn't the fault of those without work.

Well said. My daughter(no2) has two jobs cannot get contracted hours, and can turn up for work ,having used petrol to get there, to be told she is not required, or is only needed for a few hours, which may o may not even cover her petrol.
She saved up, started her own small business which she is trying to grow, puts in huge amount of effort and hours as well as applying for loads of other jobs with contracted hours , but rarely even gets an acknowledgement. She is well educated, self motivated, gets up early for a run , to keep herself fit and healthy, but still cannot get enough decent paid work to get herself somewhere better to live.

How are others that are NOT like her ever going to get a decent job, is she can't when she really wants to. Even if you get a reply to an application there often hundreds of others chasing that same job, so on that basis perhaps not everyone who is unemployed is a shirker.

What about the Ryder cup, is the guy who is looking for people to volunteer to work for nothing, working for nothing him/herself? I doubt it.
What a chance missed to give some youngsters a chance to show they are willing to work, and earn a few pounds, it would have lifted their moral. Instead I know people who have put their name down, and are already working, who are well off and can afford to PAY to work.

Working and earning a living is just not as not as easy as some people like to make out. I have been lucky to never have been out of a job in my life, and I have passed the work ethic on to my kids. But what is there out there for daughter no 3 when she graduates in June? She can perhaps apply with all the Spanish graduates that are going around the world looking for work, any work.

Be careful folks not to tar everyone with the same brush, it is all too easy to put the blame on someone who is not in a job, there will always be people who work the system, who dodge and dive and think the taxpayer should look after them.
(They are called MP's)
Rob Exile Ward on 12 Feb 2013
In reply to Chateauneuf du Boeuf: How can we create more jobs? Have more part timne working, especially among the better off, accepting this will mean a 'lower' standard of living, as in buying less Chinese cr*p and less devastation of the planet by going on fewer long haul holidays; stop encouraging people to work longer, really when most people are 65 they are due for a break or at least a significant reduction in working hours; fund social care properly so jobs that aren't currently being done - looking after the elderly etc - start getting done.
Jim C - on 12 Feb 2013
In reply to Game of Conkers:
> (In reply to EeeByGum) " Working in a shop requires interpersonal skills, initiative, the ability to be outgoing, confidence and other skills not readily available in the long term unemployed"
>
> I agree with this, you only have to go to B&Q to see what it's like when these rules are broken.
>
> (I am tarring a lot of good people with a broad brush there, but boy...there are some shockers in the stores near me)

Some of these people in Home base, B&Q Asda are graduates, who can't get anything better. ( As I found out when I went shopping with my daughters, who pointed them out to me)
jonfun21 on 12 Feb 2013
In reply to Blizzard:

Slightly off subject but your comment "working for a living seems pointless to me" chimes with my view that for a lot of younger people working in the UK is rapidly becoming pointless in terms of the input (tax paid)vs. output (benefit recieved) equation.

This is driven largely by politicians pandering to the older generation (nothing means tested, expansion of care provisions etc). Which is entirely rational as they are now the largest constituent group (due to inverted population pyramid) and ultimately the people who will re-elect them.

Whereas if your young and you work you are seeing lots of stuff withdrawn, a retirement age which continues to go up, no guarantee of a pension etc.

Therefore why stay in the UK and pay lots of tax and get nothing back, when you could move abroad (e.g. developing country) and still get nothing back but pay a lot less tax = increase standard of living.
Enty - on 12 Feb 2013
In reply to Jim C:
> (In reply to Game of Conkers)
> [...]
>
> Some of these people in Home base, B&Q Asda are graduates, who can't get anything better. ( As I found out when I went shopping with my daughters, who pointed them out to me)

I'm amazed by that (not the fact that the graduates are useless) but by the fact that they have taken a job in the first place.

When I graduated, the ones who didn't go into teacher training, sat around moaning that their degree in French was useless or there were no jobs around requiring a geography or media studies degree
Meanwhile I was carrying bricks up a ladder on a building site for 450 quid a week laughing at them.

E
Blizzard - on 12 Feb 2013
In reply to jonfun21:

Nice idea but there are a few problems associated with this.

1) Linguistic skills are needed
2) Everyone needs a support system (friends) of some sort
3) Developing nations have their own teething problems
4) You are not guaranteed a higher standard of living abroad
5) What if it goes tits up abroad? You are likely to return to the UK homeless and benefitless.

The sad fact is the gap of haves and have nots is widening and nothing is being done to level the playing field.
Wiley Coyote - on 12 Feb 2013
In reply to jonfun21:
> (In reply to Blizzard)
>

> Whereas if your young and you work you are seeing lots of stuff withdrawn, a retirement age which continues to go up, no guarantee of a pension etc.
>
> Therefore why stay in the UK and pay lots of tax and get nothing back,

Just a couple of minor points.

1 The retirement age is going up because people are living longer. Someone who is 20 now will, statistically at least, live something like 20 years longer than I can expect to. Personally I'd swap a few extra year in work for 20 more years of life.

2 Get nothing back? You forget that those graduating now have already had 20 odd years of 'getting something back'in all the services they have consumed while contributing precisely nothing. Even their tuition fees that they complain so much about are well below the actual cost as you'll see if you compare them with what overseas students have to pay. Of course the pragmatic answer may be to accept the 20 years of bucksee living and then welch on the debt by going abroad as you suggest but it's not really helpng to stake out the moral high ground, is it?
ads.ukclimbing.com
Father Noel Furlong on 12 Feb 2013
In reply to TheDrunkenBakers:
> (In reply to TheDrunkenBakers)

> It cannot be allowed to continue.

You should write letters into the Daily Record which are full of tosh saying similar. My personal favourite is "something needs to be done about this".
jonfun21 on 12 Feb 2013
In reply to Wiley Coyote:

Appreciate my analysis is extreme, but the balance has shifted a lot recently.

Most government announcements about protected services and benefits focus on older generations (NHS, Paying for Care, Non Means testing of benefits)

The axe is falling on serives and benefits that mainly focus on the younger generation (tuition fees, unemployment benefit, increases to the retirement age and benefit etc).

I understand why they are doing this, you want to please the majority to get re-elected, its logical.

The issue is I (and my generation) can vote for people who might seek to re-balance this, but they will never get in to power due to the smaller number of votes we constitute.

Eventually the younger generation is going to be crippled, then people will either move (though taking points above onboard maybe not many) or just not bother to work as it really isn't worth it in terms of what you get back.


Couple of other points:

- The retirement age for my generation (I am 30) will be at least 75 if not higher by the time we get there at the current rate of progress

- I am not suggesting you don't pay back the debt, even if you go abroad you have to pay it back; which you don't if you never earn enough whilst in the UK

- "Even their tuition fees that they complain so much about are well below the actual cost as you'll see if you compare them with what overseas students have to pay".

Question did you pay for your university tuition....or did you get a grant and leave with no debt? I have worked my nuts off for 8 years to clear my student loan...its usually the baby boomers who paid nothing who can't understand what people are complaining about :-)

TheDrunkenBakers - on 12 Feb 2013
In reply to Father Noel Furlong:
> (In reply to TheDrunkenBakers)
> [...]
>
> [...]
>
> You should write letters into the Daily Record which are full of tosh saying similar. My personal favourite is "something needs to be done about this".

Nicely done, sir. I'm no expert on these matters and alas, there are far brighter people whom have not yet found a solution to one of societies biggest challenges.

But I have an opinion, and that opinion is that the mess has to be sorted. You seem to suggest that the status quo is fine? Is this correct?



Neil Williams - on 12 Feb 2013
In reply to Blizzard:

"Should the long term unemployed, disabled in deed everyone be forced off benefits and into low paid jobs"

No-one capable of work for whom a suitable job (i.e. one they can do) exists should be paid full benefits, IMO. Benefits of that kind exist for those who absolutely cannot work through e.g. health, and for those seeking work but unable to find anything at all.

Arguably, we are better off subsidising people to work and contribute to society than we are just to pay out benefits.

Neil
Neil Williams - on 12 Feb 2013
In reply to Blizzard:

"What if you are unemployable?"

Then you need to buck your ideas up and not be unemployable, assuming you mean by that unemployable due to attitude rather than because a suitable job doesn't exist. It would also be a good idea to offer training to help people where a suitable job doesn't exist but training might help.

If, having been offered a job you can't hold it down due to laziness, attitude problem etc, you lose. Any benefits in that case should be absolute bare-minimum to exist, nothing more.

If you mean for health reasons, that's different. Such people do deserve support.

Neil
Neil Williams - on 12 Feb 2013
In reply to EeeByGum:

"It is easy to say that if you don't work you won't get a penny from the state, but then you only need to go to places like India to see that this is not something I would like to see in my country."

Agree. But equally, assuming we are talking about an adult with no dependents, benefits to those who can't hold down a job through their own fault should be low. They should get free healthcare via the NHS (the lack of which is the big problem in India). They should get basic, healthy, vegetarian (it's cheaper than meat) food and basic needs e.g. soap and toothpaste. They should get a room to live in. That's the lot.

They should also get training and encouragement into a job to better their situation. If they choose to ignore that, their loss.

Where kids are involved it's a rather harder question, as it's hard to ensure the (blameless) kid is looked after while doing the above. I can't answer that.

Neil
Neil Williams - on 12 Feb 2013
In reply to jonfun21:

"- The retirement age for my generation (I am 30) will be at least 75 if not higher by the time we get there at the current rate of progress"

I don't see why people have such a problem with this. Unless you save a very large proportion of your income (or pay it in tax) - say half of it - you're not going to be able to be non-productive for half your life. When the retirement age was set at 65, most people didn't live beyond 75. By the time you or I (I'm 33) get to that age, I'd bet living to 100 will be the norm, and at 90 we'll be as healthy as 75 year olds are now. So why's it unreasonable? We benefit both ways.

"- I am not suggesting you don't pay back the debt, even if you go abroad you have to pay it back; which you don't if you never earn enough whilst in the UK"

I guess with you being 30 you've hit the worst of both worlds - you were presumably on the "mortgage style" student loan system. The new system is more of a graduate tax in its implementation, and it isn't assumed it will necessarily be paid off in full. In a way, it's means-tested on how much you earn when you enter productive work, which is far fairer than means-testing it on your parents' income.

The only way to go back to no fees/grants is to reduce the number of people going to University back to what it was when it was free, so it's affordable to fund that. Maybe 10%, not the 50% target that tends to be mooted?

Neil
Dax H - on 12 Feb 2013
In reply to Chateauneuf du Boeuf:
> (In reply to Blizzard)
> [...]
>
> That's nonsense. Unemployment benefit is 3500 (800 less if your under 25) quid a year and HB can be claimed in work. My mate was on the dole and gladly quit it for a job paying 60 quid a week (even though as it was less than 15hrs p/w he was still entitled to claim some money), dole is such a hassle to apply for and the rate is shit. Anyone unless they had children would give it up for any old job.

18 years ago my best mate was widowed and left with a 6 month old son. After a few years totally going to pot he got his life back together, got custody of his son back and did the single parent thing.
When said son turned 10 he decided to go back to work (this was 8 years ago) but just to break even with the benefits he was on needed a job paying £200 a week. (free rent, free prescriptions, no council tax ect).
He was unable to find work paying that much but he wanted the self respect of working so eventually he took a cash job on the side and over a couple of years he proved an asset to his boss and moved up the ladder to the point of earning enough to go legit.
At this point he was working a 40 hour week for £5 more than he was being given in benefits.
It all worked out for him though, when I saw how much of an asset he was to his employer I made him an offer he could not refuse and gave him 25% of my company to come and run my office.

My point to this is that though you see benefits as being a very low amount of money the cash side is quite a small part and a lot of people are trapped in the system with little or no hope of getting out.

ice.solo - on 12 Feb 2013
In reply to Blizzard:

not forced to work per se, but engaged to contribute.

if you just want to smoke bongs, play video games and eat fried food at least let government scientists experiment on you.

seriously.

theres a large resource of ill-placed people and a large demand for answers to questions about humanity - put them together. pay minimum to be part of sociological experiments. if you dont like it, get a job.
im sure versions of this already exist under other names (sickness benefits...?).

societys to blame for seeing those who dont work as a problem.
stroppygob - on 12 Feb 2013
In reply to Blizzard: I'd be more happy that my taxes were being used to support people in getting into, and staying in work, than going out for them to sit at home doing nothing.
benallan on 12 Feb 2013
In reply to Blizzard:

In reply to the question - yes.

A bit of a generalisation, but - in reality workers are forced to pay ever increasing taxes to pay for scroungers to sit on their arse smoking weed all day then go out stabbing and shagging of an evening. Then when they are asked to go out and get a bit of work experience, and actually do something in return for their dole money, it all kicks off!

thin bob on 12 Feb 2013
In reply to Neil Williams:
> (In reply to EeeByGum)
>
Agree. But equally, assuming we are talking about an adult with no dependents, benefits to those who can't hold down a job through their own fault should be low. They should get free healthcare via the NHS (the lack of which is the big problem in India). They should get basic, healthy, vegetarian (it's cheaper than meat) food and basic needs e.g. soap and toothpaste. They should get a room to live in. That's the lot.
>

perhaps you've heard of workhouses?
or the (much quoted) statistic that there are between 8 and 20 people unemployed for each job available?

yes, maybe i am slightly bitter, with my 32 years-worth of taxes paid, 2 degrees and 15 years charity work. Bitter with the system that doesn't help people up, but allows MP's free houses. And allows tax evasion & benefit fraud. Just don't use the broad brush on all of us.
stroppygob - on 13 Feb 2013
In reply to Blizzard:The problem is, whenever this question arises, we get the usual people trying to find reasons why A person may not be able to work rather than be on the dole, and extrapolating this to ALL who are on the dole.

”But what about a blind, one legged, lesbian, Albanian refugee who doesn’t speak any English, with 17 kids by 18 fathers, all under 5 yrs old, living in a cardboard box by the side of a motorway? You cannot expect her to get a job, so we’d better not think of trying to change the system so as to make people work.”
Neil Williams - on 13 Feb 2013
In reply to thin bob:

"or the (much quoted) statistic that there are between 8 and 20 people unemployed for each job available?"

That can't possibly be true, as the unemployment rate is not somewhere between 89% and 95% by any stretch of the imagination.

What might be true is that there are that many people on average applying for each job, which is not entirely improbable because when seeking employment it is usual to apply for a larger number of jobs than just one, and it's also usual for people who don't like their job to try to apply for another one (or more) while still doing their old one. It doesn't stop people using stats to their benefit, though.

"yes, maybe i am slightly bitter, with my 32 years-worth of taxes paid, 2 degrees and 15 years charity work. Bitter with the system that doesn't help people up, but allows MP's free houses."

I will admit I was annoyed at claims for mortgages. But if they have to travel, and providing a rented apartment is cheaper than a hotel, that's just business expenses. My contention on that matter was that they should be treated the same way as someone in industry doing the same journey.

"And allows tax evasion & benefit fraud."

Not really completely avoidable, sadly. I wish it was!

"Just don't use the broad brush on all of us."

I don't recall where I said I knew your case nor applied anything to it personally. That doesn't mean we should not criticise those who are sponging (of which it would appear from the limited amount of available information you are not one).

Neil
Father Noel Furlong on 13 Feb 2013
In reply to benallan:
> (In reply to Blizzard)
>
> A bit of a generalisation, but - in reality workers are forced to pay ever increasing taxes to pay for scroungers to sit on their arse smoking weed all day then go out stabbing and shagging of an evening.

Have you ever smoked weed? If so you would know that if you smoked it all day you wouldn't be able to get off the couch let alone have the energy to stab someone!
GrahamD - on 13 Feb 2013
In reply to Only a hill:

> The government is in a perilous situation, far more perilous than many people realise, I think.

All governments are in a perilous posiion because they can be voted in or out. We get the government that we choose.

> Political extremism and violent uprising will follow.

How depressing. A new generation of blackberry touting teenagers breaking into a few shops and stealing telivisions. A few more hard working families put out of business. The country a slightly poorer place.

Timmd on 13 Feb 2013
In reply to Father Noel Furlong:
> (In reply to benallan)
> [...]
>
> Have you ever smoked weed? If so you would know that if you smoked it all day you wouldn't be able to get off the couch let alone have the energy to stab someone!

lol
elsewhere on 13 Feb 2013
In reply to Neil Williams:
> "or the (much quoted) statistic that there are between 8 and 20 people unemployed for each job available?"
>
> That can't possibly be true, as the unemployment rate is not somewhere between 89% and 95% by any stretch of the imagination.

It's simple maths that if you have a few million unemployed and a few hundred thousand vacancies then you get that sort of ratio. No need for the almost total unemployment you calculate.
Neil Williams - on 13 Feb 2013
In reply to elsewhere:

So what you mean is that there are only jobs that could be filled by 10% of the current unemployed. That is a rather different situation to what your text implies.

Let's get them filled, then!

Neil
thin bob on 13 Feb 2013
In reply to Neil Williams:
I apologise for making it feel personal, Neil! and thank you for the compliment.
I (in)tend to write replies as general comments, rather than personal :-)
SI - profile removed on 13 Feb 2013
In reply to Father Noel Furlong: That ain't true! I'm smoking weed and plastering a wall as I type...

Haven't stabbed anyone today though.
Neil Williams - on 13 Feb 2013
In reply to thin bob:

No problem, nothing wrong with a good bit of robust political debate ;)

Neil
elsewhere on 13 Feb 2013
In reply to Neil Williams:
I'd limit my meaning to the mathematical simplicity that a few million unemployed to a few hundred thousand vacancies plausibly gives a ratio within the range 8 to 1 or 20 to 1 quoted by somebody earlier without requiring unemployment at the approximately 90% level that you calculated.

What other meaning do you think my text implies?
Neil Williams - on 13 Feb 2013
In reply to elsewhere:

To me this:-

"or the (much quoted) statistic that there are between 8 and 20 people unemployed for each job available?"

implies that a job "available" means one that is offered, not just those which are untaken, IYSWIM.

Neil
Chateauneuf du Boeuf - on 13 Feb 2013
In reply to Dax H: Interesting post. In my experience a spell of unemployment makes you a lot keener and hardworking once you do get the chance to work again, though i don't view this an argument in favour of unemployment. I think I did qualify my post by saying the situation would be different with children as childcare is so expensive.

However, while the situation you describe is of course far from ideal it is better to be on benefits than have no money coming in at all. I'd much rather someone was able to get by without work and only re-enter the job market once they could gain a decent wage rather than be forced to desperately scrabble around for anything going.

As for my point I was talking about a single persons benefit, young people seem to come in for a large amount of nonsensical bile on this front, but quite simply they're desperate to work as the alternative is shit.
PeterM - on 13 Feb 2013
In reply to Blizzard:
> - Should people be forced to work?

No. And I'm perfectly happy that my tax pounds go to help out those in need, even if a few abuse the system. This is the governemnts job to police it better (which they're too incompetent to do) rather than penalise those in need by withdrawing benefits altogether.
Sarah G on 13 Feb 2013
In reply to the OP.


Yes.


Next.


Sx
elsewhere on 13 Feb 2013
In reply to Neil Williams:
"or the (much quoted) statistic that there are between 8 and 20 people unemployed for each job available?" - not my words and not in the text of my comment on your maths.



PeterM - on 13 Feb 2013
In reply to thin bob:
> (In reply to Neil Williams)
> [...]

> or the (much quoted) statistic that there are between 8 and 20 people unemployed for each job available?

Where/by whom is this quoted? Is it in any way meaningful, e.g. is that 8 - 20 suitably qualified people for each position, or is it some pointless, meaninless bit of arithmetic?

Chateauneuf du Boeuf - on 13 Feb 2013
In reply to PeterM: I read somewhere that benefit fraud costs around £17m while £16bn of benefits go unclaimed, can't imagine big businesses willingly paying more tax.
PeterM - on 13 Feb 2013
In reply to Chateauneuf du Boeuf:

£16bn unclaimed? Are you sure about that...?
elsewhere on 13 Feb 2013
In reply to PeterM:
I expect it's a useful indicator if unemployment numbers and vacancy figures are counted consistently.
PeterM - on 13 Feb 2013
In reply to elsewhere:

Indicator of what exactly?
Chateauneuf du Boeuf - on 13 Feb 2013
In reply to PeterM: The figure varies a bit depending on how you work it out. 16 bn is in the ballpark though, for instance: http://bam.turn2us.org.uk/research/ http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/business-17139088
elsewhere on 13 Feb 2013
In reply to PeterM:
Of nothing "exactly".

However if the ratio of unemployment to vacancies is particularly high or low it would indicate that the economy is doing particularly badly or well respectively.
Fraser on 13 Feb 2013
In reply to Jim C:

> Some of these people in Home base, B&Q Asda are graduates, who can't get anything better.

In many parts of the US, it's rapidly becoming the old and 'over-qualified' who are getting jobs in relatively menial positions (DIY chains and shelf-stacking / packers in supermarkets etc), mostly because they are more articulate, turn up on time and have better inter-personal skills than the hard-of-thinking staff than they used to have. Employers love the fact they can now get decent employees instead of lazy numbskulls.

Opportunistic perhaps, but it shows you what employers really want from their staff.
PeterM - on 13 Feb 2013
In reply to elsewhere:

I still maintain it is quite meaningless. What about high employment and a high number of vacancies?
gd303uk - on 13 Feb 2013
In reply to Chateauneuf du Boeuf: this article confirms tax avoidance is a much bigger issue than "welfare cheats"

In reply to the op,
No you shouldn't be forced to work if there is a job pay somebody to do it, could people be loosing jobs as a result of free labour, Why pay somebody to work if you can get work for free? The girl in the news recently would have earned 400 plus , for her work at poundland , denying a wage and work to somebody who would want to work there.
PeterM - on 13 Feb 2013
In reply to Chateauneuf du Boeuf:

Pretty shocking figures. However the govt (DWP) do make it almost impossible for some - the elderly, disabled, e.t.c - to claim. I know some elderly relatives if left on their own and not helped by family would recieve nothing of what they are entitled to. And as for the number of people that are just advised incorrectly... and don't know they can appeal.
elsewhere on 13 Feb 2013
In reply to PeterM:
> I still maintain it is quite meaningless. What about high employment and a high number of vacancies?

Low unemployment and lots of vacancies sounds like a buoyant economy to me.
Chateauneuf du Boeuf - on 13 Feb 2013
In reply to PeterM: Yeah they are shocking, but go some way to dispelling the idol waster theory. I though the woman's case in the news shed a light on a lot the behind the scenes coercion which goes on. She was fantastically articulate too and given a good spell on PM which hopefully will influence some of the waverers. I fear those who have completely committed themselves to the ludicrous rhetoric will actually have to experience hardship themselves before they're turned.
benallan on 13 Feb 2013
In reply to Father Noel Furlong:

I've seen many a edgy chav hit the bong all day and still go out fighting
Father Noel Furlong on 13 Feb 2013
In reply to benallan:
> (In reply to Father Noel Furlong)
>
> I've seen many a edgy chav hit the bong all day and still go out fighting

That statement can be read in soooooo many ways. thanks.:-)

PeterM - on 15 Feb 2013


..and to make a bad situation worse we now have this:

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-scotland-21467830

obviously when you have no permanent address and/or money, broadband is one of those things that is a necessity. Something that everyone can just use and understand...
ClimberEd - on 15 Feb 2013
In reply to Rob Exile Ward:
> (In reply to Chateauneuf du Boeuf) How can we create more jobs? Have more part timne working, especially among the better off, accepting this will mean a 'lower' standard of living, as in buying less Chinese cr*p and less devastation of the planet by going on fewer long haul holidays; stop encouraging people to work longer, really when most people are 65 they are due for a break or at least a significant reduction in working hours; fund social care properly so jobs that aren't currently being done - looking after the elderly etc - start getting done.

Now now, you've been reading New Economics' papers haven't you ;-)

http://www.neweconomics.org/publications/21-hours

Neil Williams - on 15 Feb 2013
In reply to PeterM:

Public libraries offer Internet access. Training is available on it (one would hope free to the unemployed).

If people feel shut out of that they need encouragement. If they can't be bothered, tough.

Neil
PeterM - on 15 Feb 2013
In reply to Neil Williams:

You've never been to the back-end of the Isle of Harris, have you? There are massive areas of rural Scotland where this is going to be a guge issue. Not everyone on benefits is a single able-bodied twenty-something living in a city. Some are relatively poor folk in their 50's and 60's who may be carers for elderly parents relative..or are you saying that the CAB are just full-of-shite panic merchants?
Chateauneuf du Boeuf - on 15 Feb 2013
In reply to ClimberEd: I don't think NEF have got a monopoly on this. I'm all for a nice dream to be aspired to but I don't know about all of NEFs lets all grow our own vegetables stuff which seems rather like some of the crazy back to the land turn of the century shite.

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