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The Case for Public Housing

Think Left

When did property ownership become such a major aim in the life of ordinary people? When did living in council owned housing become a stigma? When did mortgages did multi-generation mortgages come to be considered? Who has benefitted? In the light of current levels poverty and homelessness, why did we all go along with it all?

Sarah Glynn’s article looks back at the change in housing over the last hundred years or so.

The Case for Public Housing

By Sarah Glynn, Occupy Times

A home is such a basic need that the provision of adequate and decent housing should be a fundamental requirement of a fair society. But what do we require of a home beyond sound and safe shelter that can accommodate our household in a reasonably convenient location? Security of tenure is a vital basis for secure lives, and affordability is crucial. We may also need the…

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Imagine all the People – and an Alternative World

Think Left

How can we challenge the myths of Margaret Thatcher’s “There is No Alternative”? We need to awaken from an inhibiting stifling slumber, like a coma, when belief in a world of fairness in justice seems as unattainable as ascending Mount Everest on roller skates. We have become so entrenched in consumerism, so brainwashed by the media, that our imaginations need to be reclaimed. John Lennon’s “Imagine” asked us to:

“Imagine there’s no countries
It isn’t hard to do
Nothing to kill or die for
And no religion too
Imagine all the people
Living life in peace…”

“Imagine no possessions
I wonder if you can
No need for greed or hunger
A brotherhood of man
Imagine all the people
Sharing all the world..”  

See lyrics

If musicians can write songs we all believe in, I wonder – shouldn’t we hear this from our politicians? Andrea Brower appeals to our…

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DWP minister Hoban gets JSA amount WRONG – and jobseeking unaffordable


What I’m about to share with you demonstrates beyond reasonable doubt the reckless, couldn’t-give-a-**** attitude of the Department of Work and Pensions (DWP) toward the people it is supposed to be supporting.

It also demonstrates (yet again):

  • that the DWP’s concept of the the cost of living, the cost of jobseeking and the reality of life on benefits is utterly divorced from the daily experience of those for whom it is responsible (remember IDS’ ludicrous claim that he could live on £53 a week if he had to?);
  • the way in which the DWP, which has become thoroughly malignant under Secretary of State Iain (Duncan) Smith and other ministers, redefines benign words as their polar opposite in their attempt to disguise the attitudes and behaviours that are pushing millions into poverty, and making it harder for the unemployed to get work or even get by, as ‘help’ and ‘support’.

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One-legged man accused of benefit fraud after DWP examined wrong leg (not satire!)

Pride's Purge

(not satire – no really, it’s not!)

Here’s another one to file under “headlines which look like satire but aren’t

Officials from the Department of Work and Pensions have wasted huge amounts of taxpayers’ money and given a year of hell to a disabled man after they prosecuted him for benefits fraud when they examined the wrong leg he was having amputated.

Here’s the full story from local South Devon paper the Herald Express:

One-legged man falsely accused of benefit fiddle after officials examined the wrong leg

This is outrageous.

As a satirist I must object in the possible strongest terms to the DWP for managing to satirise themselves much better than I ever could.

It’s just a pity the DWP has to put so many disabled and sick people through so much suffering in the process.


Please feel free to comment – you don’t need…

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Benefit Cap Bullshit


Iain Duncan Smith got himself into bother a while back when he claimed DWP research showed that as a result of the benefit cap being announced, 8,000 people who would be affected by it have found work. The UK Statistics Authority disagreed however saying the claim “is unsupported by the official statistics…“. When finally challenged about this on the Today programme this morning, this exchange followed (JH is John Humphrys):

JH: “The problem is that you made claims about how things were changing on the basis of the trials that were being carried out and all the rest of it, and they turned out not to be well-founded. You said we’ve seen already, already you said, this is a statement you made in May, already we’ve seen 8,000 people who would have been affected by the cap move into jobs. But when the National Statistics Authority looked at that, they…

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They are corrupt to the Fracking Core – The Coalition Government

Think Left

 They are corrupt to the Fracking Core – The Coalition Government

The Coaltion Government is corrupt to the very core – the Earth’s core. The short termism of their policies is evident, plunging from disaster to disaster with no care for the damage inflicted to individual people’s lives as the welfare state, our NHS and public services are being demolished. They look no further than their own self interests.

The Independent reveals why, against all warnings, they choose to pursue a policy to release shale gas from fracking. The industry bosses have infiltrated our government ensuring the policies work to their own best interests.

Cuadrilla, which is chaired by Lord Browne, is searching for shale gas in Lancashire, but suspended operations there in 2011 after its drilling was found to be the likely cause of tremors in Blackpool.

The Government has signed up to the potential of shale gas after it…

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What now, Labour?

Law Geek's Blog

You can get some interesting results if you google “Labour effective opposition”. This is just a prologue to a longer post at some point (wouldn’t have googled it otherwise). I’m not happy with Labour’s performance in opposition, although I’d definitely rather have them in power than the Coalition. For now, I found one source that I couldn’t resist posting some quotes from now, in a pub quiz kind of way. Any ideas who said:

“Though observation of the enemy in full flight is extremely gratifying, there is a danger that Labour becomes mesmerised by Tory self-destruction”

“the search for the safe centre led to a passive, defensive posture that failed to articulate any coherent vision of the future or even sense of direction.”

“At times it seemed that all that Labour could demand from the less-than-dynamic duo was that they apologise for their mistakes”

“only by creating the basis for…

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