You Say Private, @JeremyCorbyn Says Public, I Say, Public or Private Our Railways Poorly Managed & Run

Standard

As we near the date of the (2015) General Election we once more hear the bellows of private is good and public is bad from the extreme Right and vice versa from the extreme Left. In particular, in a ‘brave’ attempt to win the votes of those on the Left, the Green Party proposes to nationalise the national rail network so that it may be run in the interest of passengers and staff and not for a profit or even to break even, but with a permanent taxpayer funded subsidy.

I say brave in inverted commas, because if you are courting the votes of the sort of person on the left who thinks the original version of Clause IV explicitly called for nationalisation of the private sector then proposing to re-nationalise the country’s (loss making) rail network is a no brainer. Added to which, if you are pitching for the votes of electors in commuter land then proposing to spend more taxpayer’s money on reducing the cost of their daily commute is a logical, if rather unprincipled, policy to adopt.  Such a policy combining as it does an appeal to a principled, but other worldly ideology and blatant self interest certainly shows that the Green Party are taking getting elected seriously these days.

For the uninitiated on both sides of the debate, the extreme Right for whom profit is king and the extreme Left, for whom profit is a dirty word, the primary purpose of any organisation or company is to remain in existence. Anyone may turn a profit, particularly in an established business. I could tomorrow. I could wander into Marks and Spencer, still a profitable company despite what some assert, and liquidate its assets. I would make, therefore, a profit next week, but after that, there would be no more profits. On the other hand, I could go into the same company, switch its product lines over to items more likely to be found in Aldi, sell them at the same price and watch the company founder into administration. M&S needs to sell products its customers want to buy, at prices they are willing to pay and that the revenue from which at least cover its costs. It has to exist to do all of these things and only then can it make a profit.

We are so pickled in this country in the teachings of the Anglo-Saxon Business School that many of us believe City types when they say M&S is one step away from terminal decline. Why? Well, its declared profits do not always meet the predictions of some callow retail analyst or (as Nigel Lawson once remarked) teenage scribbler in the City thereby raising questions about its future profitability. I recall reading some years ago that M&S made four times as much profit per square foot of retail space than Tesco. In other words, if M&S made £4 profit per square foot then Tesco only made £1, but, even then, there was a lot of tut tutting about M&S whereas Tesco was a shining example of how to run and grow a retail business. Well at least it was back then, according to people who were considered to be experts in retail management.

On the extreme Left, the answer seems to be to nationalise (loss-making) businesses so they do not need to make a profit or surplus thereby seemingly avoiding matters like trying to break even at least and/or meeting the needs of the customer, patient or passenger. If a business or organisation is within the public sector then the taxpayer will cover any loss. Moreover, if it is not meeting customer needs then, according to the writer of this article, formerly a management consultant, the following applies:

“Public services are democratic. If a service fails to deliver our needs, we can hold those responsible to account at the ballot box. Important matters such as wages, pensions and working conditions are the result of negotiation, and subject to internal and popular support.

Public services are funded by public money, paid to public workers, managed by public representatives, all co-operating to deliver social utility – every penny put in is recycled within the public economy.

By contrast, the primary responsibility of a business is to create a profit for its shareholders. It may well have other aims, but all must be subservient to this primary aim or the corporation will cease to exist, or be taken over.”

Apart from the fact that one may make profits quickly and relatively easily through fire sales, most companies are not corporations quoted on the Stock Market and the bulk of them employ fewer than 250 people. Tesco, which employs 300,000, is very much the exception and not the rule when it comes to both the size of its workforce and market share. In addition, I worked in the public sector for over 27 years and I do not recognise the idealistic, if not naive description of it contained in the first two paragraphs.  And where is the taxpayer, who is quite often also the service user within those two paragraphs?  Waiting for the next General Election to make a plea for better Value For Money?

We have a mixed economy in this country not two separate ones, a public and a private, and the twain do meet and they do inter-act. For example, the National Health Service does not own a building company and so has to contract with the private sector to build a new hospital thus the NHS pays public money to the private sector to meet the needs of the public. The public and private sector have an obligate symbiotic relationship.

Britain’s rail network is very much representative of our mixed economy as it has not been wholly privatised because, if it had then the size of the network would have shrunk, lines would have been closed, stations shut and services reduced or ended. How do I know this? The fact that before its semi privatisation it was receiving a subsidy from the taxpayer and that today it receives a subsidy too.

The writer whose paragraphs I quote above also said in her article that: “When Dr Beeching dismantled the railways in 1963, the narrative then, and now, was that the rail network was losing £140m a year. This is business-speak. It means the gap between ticket revenue and costs of running the service was £140m. If the railway had been a business, this would have been a loss. But the railway was a public service. A well funded, serviceable, cheap at the point of use railway service was, and is, an important social utility. The gap between ticket revenues and running costs could in this case have been entirely expected, since the priority was the accessibility and maximum utility of the service – not profit. This idea is anathema to business.”

Of course, if Beeching had dismantled the railways in 1963 then who owns and runs the network today would not be the major topic that it has again become. Any way, it may be business-speak to say that Britain’s railways were running at a loss, but let me put it another way that the network in 1963 was costing the taxpayer £140 million per year at 1963 prices. In 2013 that £140 million, inflation adjusted, would have equated to £6.25 billion per year. The United Kingdom Government’s total spend in 1963 was £12 billion. You may respond by saying that £140 million back then was just over 1% of the total budget, but that deficit (see what I did there?) was before any thought was given to new investment in the network. For example, investment such as the £1 billion Modernisation Plan that was authorised by a Conservative Government in 1955. A sizeable proportion of that serious sum of money (by 1955 standards) still keeps many a youngster, aged between 5 and 95, myself included, entertained on our preserved railways, partly because too much of it was a complete waste of the taxpayer’s money.

Unfortunately, that cobbled together modernisation ‘plan’ not only wasted public money, but made Treasury officials deeply suspicious about any future requests for money from the Department for Transport. Unsurprisingly, they wanted to know that any further investment would result in some improvement in the rail network’s finances.

What we have today is a hybrid in which the Government, standing in for the taxpayer (and passenger), has leased out rail services to the private sector for delivery. The private sector rail companies deliver services within franchises laid down by the Department for Transport. The DfT interferes significantly behind the scenes, for example, through the three rolling stock leasing companies from whom the rail companies lease their trains and from whom they commission new ones. In addition, since its inception Network Rail has been within the public sector. Effectively, the taxpayer already owns the rail network. The delivery of rail services is what are in private hands and we can change those hands, but we will not be able to do so if the network is both publicly owned and run. There will be no hiding place for those who say public good, private bad if nothing much changes post full re-nationalisation.

DfT’s interference is behind why a diesel unit leaves Euston for Holyhead and travels all the way there, even under overhead electrical wires, by diesel power. Elsewhere in Europe, trains switch from diesel to electric generation or vice versa as circumstances permit or the train is hauled by an electric locomotive and switches to diesel haulage when required. Trains able to switch between diesel and electric generation are frowned upon, as are locomotive hauled trains. To contend, therefore, that our national rail network would be better run than now, if completely run from the desk of the Secretary of State for Transport flies in the face of the evidence. Incidentally, DfT is responsible in part for why a lot of seats do not line up with carriage windows and why booking a window seat on a Virgin train actually means you have bought a seat other than on the aisle and not necessarily one with a glazed view. Moreover, if you are either an advocate of complete privatisation or nationalisation and the foregoing baffles you, then may I ask why you are confident that your remedy would improve the state of our rail network, improve the service for the passenger and, if rail remains in part or wholly within the public sector deliver Value For Money for the taxpayer?

The fact is that squabbling over who owns or runs important parts of our economy ignores the reality that whether in or out of the public sector too many organisations and businesses are poorly run and managed. Quite often, the root cause of customer dissatisfaction is the quality of the product or service being provided. For example, is anyone seriously suggesting that bringing the rail companies (with their existing business practices and management) wholly back into the public sector will make any significant difference to rail users? And, if you are then why do you think that they will see an improvement?

Will commuters be cock a hoop to know that, although their train is still routinely running behind time (or even cancelled) at least it is in public hands? I am sure that the taxpayer funded 10% off their season ticket, promised by the Green Party, might go some way to appeasing their chagrin at realising they had been duped into thinking public was better than private when it came to running trains on time or at all. Of course, 20 years before they had allowed themselves to be conned into thinking that the private sector could run trains better than the public and another 45 years before that Nan and Grandad had been told that a publicly owned and run (loss making since 1914) national rail network was in their best interests. Although the fact that each time rail was nationalised previously, 1914 to 1918 and 1939 to 1945, it was in a worse state at the end of those periods than at the beginning might have given them pause for thought.

I mentioned Beeching above in using a quote from this Guardian article. The argument that his review of the rail network and his subsequent recommendations were based on a lack of accurate information was right and he knew it too. He had wanted more time to gather information about the viability of a network. Up until then, no one had seriously asked the network to provide such data. Most organisations these days are data rich and information poor, but back in the early 1960s Britain’s railways were just data poor.

The people in charge of our rail network knew in 1963 that they had a bucket that was leaking money, but not where the leaks were. Beeching knew there were leaks and made an educated guess as to where they might be plugged and the bucket reduced in size. Those opposing Beeching’s recommendations mostly accepted there were leaks, but not from their bit of the bucket; that any reductions in the bucket’s size were unacceptable and that any patches should be temporary, requiring continuous maintenance. Eventually, when someone examined the bucket carefully some years later it was discovered that whatever its size it was always going to leak and the patches were never going to be permanent. Consequently, if rail had been fully privatised it would not now exist, but then it could not be privatised fully, because only the public sector would have been willing to run it at a loss, sorry, incur a deficit.

In or out of the public sector our rail network will cost us money and, if we must have one then the taxpayer will have to pay for it. And, if the taxpayer has to pay for it then most of the people who manage it today need to manage it a lot better in the future and politicians, elected and unelected, need to give them the space in which to manage. And, if the politicians do give them that space then the passenger and the taxpayer will have to curb their desire to blame Ministers for the shortcomings of the network.

If you want a case study about how our national rail network might be better run then I refer you to the history of Chiltern Railways, a company that lives and dies by its service to its passengers, its emphasis on good quality management, based on continuous service improvement and its empowered work force. The circle can be squared, a public service can be run in a businesslike way and even sometimes make a surplus.

Of course, Chiltern is a nationalised railway company. It is owned by Deutsche Bahn AG and is part of Arriva, which is responsible for Deutsche Bahn’s local and regional service outside of Germany. Finally, Chiltern Railway’s Mission Statement (its Clause IV) says:

To be the best Passenger Railway in the UK.

All day, every day, we aim to offer a safe, reliable, welcoming and value for money service.

Our business will prosper because customers use us repeatedly and recommend the service to others.

Well, I use their services regularly because I find their service to be safe, reliable, welcoming and valuable for money.  And that is why I am recommending it to you. Is it the best? I do not know, but it is proof of what a company founded by managers who used to work for British Rail could have done (and could do) in the public sector.

Nationalisation: “a dead-end argument”

Advertisements

#BREXIT O’Rourke performed live at #TWT2017 & #Lab17 with @UKLabour’s @jeremycorbyn!

Standard

Corbyn blamed immigration for harming the lives of British workers

Laying out the case for leaving the single market, Corbyn used language we have rarely heard from him, blaming immigration for harming the lives of British workers.

The Labour leader said that after leaving the EU, there would still be European workers in Britain and vice versa. He added, “What there wouldn’t be is the wholesale importation of underpaid workers from central Europe in order to destroy conditions, particularly in the construction industry.”

“wholesale” EU immigration has destroyed conditions for British workers

ukip couldn’t find a British bricklayer to to appear in its poster campaign

“ukip at the weekend announced details of a £1.5 million poster campaign to be rolled out across the country. One shows a “builder” with the headline “EU Policy At Work”, followed by the caption: “British workers are hit hard by unlimited cheap labour.” ”

The ‘British builder’ portrayed in the ukip poster, begging on the street and accusing EU workers of taking UK jobs, was actually an Irish actor, called Dave O’Rourke from Dublin.  O’Rourke had been resident in the UK for at least ten years before posing for the poster in 2014.

The gaffe emerged just hours after ukip suspended a real builder who appeared in an election broadcast video wearing a hard hat for a series of tweets which condemned Islam as “evil “and branded the Prophet Mohammed a paedophile.

Face of ukip poster is Irish migrant actor

 

Kezia Dugdale gives #Cameron & #Corbyn the old one, two over #BREXIT

Standard

Kezia Dugdale gives David Cameron and Jeremy Corbyn the old one, two over BREXIT

The Prime Minister took the Pisa this week, carting herself, dozens of advisers, cabinet colleagues and the world’s media to Tuscany to give a speech on the continued shambles that is Brexit.

You can’t walk two feet in Florence without tripping over a priceless piece of Renaissance art, so it was so typically Theresa May that she should stand before a white, bland and utterly soulless backdrop with the phrase “shared history, shared challenges, shared future” embossed on it. If only.

Michelangelo’s artwork that adorns so many churches and cathedrals across this beautiful city is admired for its depth and intricate detail.

The same could not be said of the Tories’ Brexit plan.

And what did her speech tell us? That it’s going to take a little longer to leave the European Union than we’d first been told and we’ll need to pay our bill on the way out.

Well, that’s just common sense – the only people in denial about that are Boris Johnson and his free market bandwagon.

People so rich they can play fast and loose with the country’s economic future.

People so free of a moral compass they are itching to do a deal with Donald Trump’s US government and barter away hard-fought employment rights.

I’m fraught with anger and frustration about Brexit.

I blame David Cameron for calling a referendum no one wanted in the first place but I also blame my party, the Labour Party, for a totally lazy and lacklustre Remain campaign that got us here.

And yes, I blame Jeremy Corbyn too for failing to use the power of his popular appeal to convince traditional Labour voters to see that Europe creates more good than harm.

Not only that, now the country has spoken, I’m embarrassed by the complete paucity of my party to say and do the right thing no matter how hard or unpopular that might be at first.

Seriously, Labour have just denied their own members a meaningful vote on the issue of Brexit at party conference – whatever happened to straight-talking, honest politics?

Make no mistake, Britain will be economically weaker and more isolated post-Brexit and the price of that will be felt by the working people of this country.

They’ll feel it as the dole queue gets bigger, as their employment rights disappear and as the price of food, fuel and services rise.

It might be fun and games to watch the Tories rip each other apart over Europe but Labour are equally culpable if we fail to fill the leadership vacuum.

I have long believed that Labour should be making a full-hearted, passionate case to retain full tariff-free access to the single market – the equivalent of membership. And we should accept all the conditions that come with that, including the free movement of labour.

The likelihood of that happening is disappearing by the day – but we should still try. It’s better to try and fail, than to fail to try.

And should we fail, the biggest test for Labour has yet to come because leaving the EU without access to the single market is not what I believe the country voted for.

If that happens then Labour must insist that the final Brexit deal goes to another public vote to be ratified or rejected. Ireland wouldn’t think twice about doing this.

If the UK Parliament and the other 27 nations of Europe get a final say on the deal, why shouldn’t we?

No one voted to be poorer but that’s what we’re all going to be.

Brexit is spiralling out of control and out of the interests of working people. That’s why we the people should take back control with a final vote on the deal.

From Corbyn to Cameron, we all share blame for Brexit shambles – but no single market access would mean we MUST vote again

.@EmilyThornberry said #Labour under #Corbyn wouldn’t be able to afford to end benefits freeze & cap

Standard

Ken Loach’s fictional Daniel Blake was claiming Jobseeker’s Allowance.  In the real world, JSA has been frozen since April 2015.  On Planet Corbyn, Daniel no longer exists.

On the Friday before the August Bank Holiday 2017, Labour sneaked out a press release in the name of Jeremy Corbyn, stating that Labour would not end the benefits freeze on taking up office.

JSA for a Daniel Blake has been frozen at £73.10 per week since April 2015

Income Support for lone parent Daniella Blake has been frozen at £73.10 per week since April 2015

Employment and Support Allowance for a Daniel Blake has been frozen at £73.10 per week since April 2015.

Labour will, however, enact free university tuition for mostly white, mostly middle and upper class youth on its first day in office.

Labour will make Daniel Blake, a real victim of austerity, foot the bill for free university tuition.

People on JSA, IS and ESA all have children as dependants.

Child poverty has been rising under the Tories and it would continue to rise under a Corbyn led Labour Government, not incidentally or accidentally, but as a deliberate policy choice.

Labour, under Blair and Brown, pledged to eradicate child poverty by 2020.

Labour, under Corbyn, in 2017 pledges to enact free university tuition and let child poverty rise during his premiership.

The Tories were nasty, vile people for making those without a voice suffer through having their benefits frozen.

What then is Corbyn, who made so much out of the plight of Daniel Blake at PMQs, but who has now said, in an under hand, cowardly way that he would not end the benefits freeze on his first day as Prime Minister?

Does his decision make Corbyn a sanctimonious onanist?

What does it say about Ken Loach that he has not spoken truth unto Corbyn over his plan to extend the freeze of Daniel Blake’s JSA?

A purveyor of poverty porn to Islington Socialists?

Whilst not committing Labour to end the benefits freeze, Corbyn has pledged Labour, without caveat, to maintain the (State) Pension Triple Lock.

Whilst the JSA of Daniel Blake, jobseeker, has not increased by a penny since April 2015, the State Pension of Charlie Blake, pensioner, has increased by 2.5% each year in the same period.

Daniel Blake’s JSA has not risen, even in line within inflation, since April 2015.  His JSA would remain frozen indefinitely under a Corbyn led Labour Government.

Charlie’s State Pension has risen by 2.5% per year and if inflation increases by more than 2.5% then Charlie’s pension goes up by more than 2.5% per year.

Inflation has been rising for over 18 months now:

Inflation measured using the Consumer Prices Index reached 2.7% in August 2017.

Were benefits rising in line with inflation then they would be increasing each year in April, using the previous September’s CPI figure.

Daniel Blake cannot wait to claim his State Pension, because the real value of his weekly JSA payment is falling with every passing day.

No one has yet said at what date Corbyn expects sufficient savings to have been made to end the freeze.

No one has yet said what Labour lifting the freeze would actually mean for a Daniel Blake.

Would Blake’s JSA begin to rise in line with inflation from the lifting of the freeze?

Or would he, instead, receive a backdated increase, taking into effect inflation since April 2015?

Does Corbyn hope to find the savings to end the benefits freeze before April 2019?

April 2019 is the date when the Tories currently plan to end their benefits freeze.

I know there are Corbyn supporters out there who think we should focus on helping people off welfare into work, but we, Labour under Blair and Brown, managed that between 1997 and 2010 without freezing people’s benefits.

I know there are Corbyn supporters out there who think the benefits freeze is disagreeable, that we cannot help everyone and that free university tuition is a priority.

I know there are Corbyn supporters out there who think that benefits are not earned in the first place by recipients and are the state’s generosity.

In all my Civil Service career and in my over thirty year membership of the Labour Party, I have never heard anyone, even people not sharing my politics, call JSA, IS or ESA generous, unless they were a dyed in the blue wool Tory.

There are a lot of Tories or neo-Tories or people who think selfishness is socialism numbered amongst Corbyn’s supporters.

Their common link?

Free university tuition for them and theirs.

In the 1980s, under Thatcher, Greed was Good.

In the 2010s, under Corbyn, Selfishness is Socialism.

Most of Corbyn’s fans have never claimed benefit, expect to claim benefit, know anyone who has claimed benefit, know anyone who is claiming benefit and/or worked with people in receipt of benefit.

Does this explain their callousness, their lack of empathy?

It certainly suggests that saying they had seen I, Daniel Blake was more of a chance to virtue signal than it was anything else.

And have those ardent Corbyn fans forgotten, if they ever knew that Iain Duncan Smith, yes, Iain Duncan Smith resigned over the benefits freeze?

If Corbyn’s youthful supporters were truly selfless idealists then surely they would be campaigning against the benefits freeze and not for free university tuition?

Surely Corbyn’s youthful, and not so youthful, acolytes, should be saying they do not want free university tuition at the expense of the working age poor?

Surely Corbyn’s progressive fans should be demanding that their idol find another way to fund free university tuition?

Surely Corbyn’s fans should be saying, to prove their ideological purity, that they would rather do without free university tuition, if it may only be funded through the increasing suffering of children living into poverty?

Surely Corbyn’s followers should be asking themselves, as much as Corbyn, if there is much to connect maintaining the benefits freeze to fund free university tuition with, well, Socialism?

Corbyn will maintain the benefits freeze, for which Jacob Rees-Mogg voted and over which IDS resigned, in order to find the money to fund free university tuition.

Corbyn will maintain the benefits freeze in order to find the money to fund free university tuition so as to honour a pledge, yes, another Corbyn pledge, not to raise Income Tax and National Insurance on the income of anyone whose earnings are less than £80,000 per annum.

Corbyn has pledged that his Income Tax and National Insurance freeze, for the 95% whose incomes are less than £80,000 per annum, will last at least five years.

I leave the last word to Benjamin Disraeli.

Labour is definitely not the PARTY OF THE POOR any more.

#Corbyn tell #GrenfellTower guy he hugged #Labour in Government to keep benefits freeze & cap? #Grenfell

Standard

Ken Loach’s fictional Daniel Blake was claiming Jobseeker’s Allowance.  In the real world, JSA has been frozen since April 2015.  On Planet Corbyn, Daniel no longer exists.

On the Friday before the August Bank Holiday 2017, Labour sneaked out a press release in the name of Jeremy Corbyn, stating that Labour would not end the benefits freeze on taking up office.

JSA for a Daniel Blake has been frozen at £73.10 per week since April 2015

Income Support for lone parent Daniella Blake has been frozen at £73.10 per week since April 2015

Employment and Support Allowance for a Daniel Blake has been frozen at £73.10 per week since April 2015.

Labour will, however, enact free university tuition for mostly white, mostly middle and upper class youth on its first day in office.

Labour will make Daniel Blake, a real victim of austerity, foot the bill for free university tuition.

People on JSA, IS and ESA all have children as dependants.

Child poverty has been rising under the Tories and it would continue to rise under a Corbyn led Labour Government, not incidentally or accidentally, but as a deliberate policy choice.

Labour, under Blair and Brown, pledged to eradicate child poverty by 2020.

Labour, under Corbyn, in 2017 pledges to enact free university tuition and let child poverty rise during his premiership.

The Tories were nasty, vile people for making those without a voice suffer through having their benefits frozen.

What then is Corbyn, who made so much out of the plight of Daniel Blake at PMQs, but who has now said, in an under hand, cowardly way that he would not end the benefits freeze on his first day as Prime Minister?

Does his decision make Corbyn a sanctimonious onanist?

What does it say about Ken Loach that he has not spoken truth unto Corbyn over his plan to extend the freeze of Daniel Blake’s JSA?

A purveyor of poverty porn to Islington Socialists?

Whilst not committing Labour to end the benefits freeze, Corbyn has pledged Labour, without caveat, to maintain the (State) Pension Triple Lock.

Whilst the JSA of Daniel Blake, jobseeker, has not increased by a penny since April 2015, the State Pension of Charlie Blake, pensioner, has increased by 2.5% each year in the same period.

Daniel Blake’s JSA has not risen, even in line within inflation, since April 2015.  His JSA would remain frozen indefinitely under a Corbyn led Labour Government.

Charlie’s State Pension has risen by 2.5% per year and if inflation increases by more than 2.5% then Charlie’s pension goes up by more than 2.5% per year.

Inflation has been rising for over 18 months now:

Inflation measured using the Consumer Prices Index reached 2.7% in August 2017.

Were benefits rising in line with inflation then they would be increasing each year in April, using the previous September’s CPI figure.

Daniel Blake cannot wait to claim his State Pension, because the real value of his weekly JSA payment is falling with every passing day.

No one has yet said at what date Corbyn expects sufficient savings to have been made to end the freeze.

No one has yet said what Labour lifting the freeze would actually mean for a Daniel Blake.

Would Blake’s JSA begin to rise in line with inflation from the lifting of the freeze?

Or would he, instead, receive a backdated increase, taking into effect inflation since April 2015?

Does Corbyn hope to find the savings to end the benefits freeze before April 2019?

April 2019 is the date when the Tories currently plan to end their benefits freeze.

I know there are Corbyn supporters out there who think we should focus on helping people off welfare into work, but we, Labour under Blair and Brown, managed that between 1997 and 2010 without freezing people’s benefits.

I know there are Corbyn supporters out there who think the benefits freeze is disagreeable, that we cannot help everyone and that free university tuition is a priority.

I know there are Corbyn supporters out there who think that benefits are not earned in the first place by recipients and are the state’s generosity.

In all my Civil Service career and in my over thirty year membership of the Labour Party, I have never heard anyone, even people not sharing my politics, call JSA, IS or ESA generous, unless they were a dyed in the blue wool Tory.

There are a lot of Tories or neo-Tories or people who think selfishness is socialism numbered amongst Corbyn’s supporters.

Their common link?

Free university tuition for them and theirs.

In the 1980s, under Thatcher, Greed was Good.

In the 2010s, under Corbyn, Selfishness is Socialism.

Most of Corbyn’s fans have never claimed benefit, expect to claim benefit, know anyone who has claimed benefit, know anyone who is claiming benefit and/or worked with people in receipt of benefit.

Does this explain their callousness, their lack of empathy?

It certainly suggests that saying they had seen I, Daniel Blake was more of a chance to virtue signal than it was anything else.

And have those ardent Corbyn fans forgotten, if they ever knew that Iain Duncan Smith, yes, Iain Duncan Smith resigned over the benefits freeze?

If Corbyn’s youthful supporters were truly selfless idealists then surely they would be campaigning against the benefits freeze and not for free university tuition?

Surely Corbyn’s youthful, and not so youthful, acolytes, should be saying they do not want free university tuition at the expense of the working age poor?

Surely Corbyn’s progressive fans should be demanding that their idol find another way to fund free university tuition?

Surely Corbyn’s fans should be saying, to prove their ideological purity, that they would rather do without free university tuition, if it may only be funded through the increasing suffering of children living into poverty?

Surely Corbyn’s followers should be asking themselves, as much as Corbyn, if there is much to connect maintaining the benefits freeze to fund free university tuition with, well, Socialism?

Corbyn will maintain the benefits freeze, for which Jacob Rees-Mogg voted and over which IDS resigned, in order to find the money to fund free university tuition.

Corbyn will maintain the benefits freeze in order to find the money to fund free university tuition so as to honour a pledge, yes, another Corbyn pledge, not to raise Income Tax and National Insurance on the income of anyone whose earnings are less than £80,000 per annum.

Corbyn has pledged that his Income Tax and National Insurance freeze, for the 95% whose incomes are less than £80,000 per annum, will last at least five years.

I leave the last word to Benjamin Disraeli.

Labour is definitely not the PARTY OF THE POOR any more.

“The commitment I make is that I do understand the perverse effects of the (benefits) cap.” #Corbyn 2017

Standard

Ken Loach’s fictional Daniel Blake was claiming Jobseeker’s Allowance.  In the real world, JSA has been frozen since April 2015.  On Planet Corbyn, Daniel no longer exists.

On the Friday before the August Bank Holiday 2017, Labour sneaked out a press release in the name of Jeremy Corbyn, stating that Labour would not end the benefits freeze on taking up office.

JSA for a Daniel Blake has been frozen at £73.10 per week since April 2015

Income Support for lone parent Daniella Blake has been frozen at £73.10 per week since April 2015

Employment and Support Allowance for a Daniel Blake has been frozen at £73.10 per week since April 2015.

Labour will, however, enact free university tuition for mostly white, mostly middle and upper class youth on its first day in office.

Labour will make Daniel Blake, a real victim of austerity, foot the bill for free university tuition.

People on JSA, IS and ESA all have children as dependants.

Child poverty has been rising under the Tories and it would continue to rise under a Corbyn led Labour Government, not incidentally or accidentally, but as a deliberate policy choice.

Labour, under Blair and Brown, pledged to eradicate child poverty by 2020.

Labour, under Corbyn, in 2017 pledges to enact free university tuition and let child poverty rise during his premiership.

The Tories were nasty, vile people for making those without a voice suffer through having their benefits frozen.

What then is Corbyn, who made so much out of the plight of Daniel Blake at PMQs, but who has now said, in an under hand, cowardly way that he would not end the benefits freeze on his first day as Prime Minister?

Does his decision make Corbyn a sanctimonious onanist?

What does it say about Ken Loach that he has not spoken truth unto Corbyn over his plan to extend the freeze of Daniel Blake’s JSA?

A purveyor of poverty porn to Islington Socialists?

Whilst not committing Labour to end the benefits freeze, Corbyn has pledged Labour, without caveat, to maintain the (State) Pension Triple Lock.

Whilst the JSA of Daniel Blake, jobseeker, has not increased by a penny since April 2015, the State Pension of Charlie Blake, pensioner, has increased by 2.5% each year in the same period.

Daniel Blake’s JSA has not risen, even in line within inflation, since April 2015.  His JSA would remain frozen indefinitely under a Corbyn led Labour Government.

Charlie’s State Pension has risen by 2.5% per year and if inflation increases by more than 2.5% then Charlie’s pension goes up by more than 2.5% per year.

Inflation has been rising for over 18 months now:

Inflation measured using the Consumer Prices Index reached 2.7% in August 2017.

Were benefits rising in line with inflation then they would be increasing each year in April, using the previous September’s CPI figure.

Daniel Blake cannot wait to claim his State Pension, because the real value of his weekly JSA payment is falling with every passing day.

No one has yet said at what date Corbyn expects sufficient savings to have been made to end the freeze.

No one has yet said what Labour lifting the freeze would actually mean for a Daniel Blake.

Would Blake’s JSA begin to rise in line with inflation from the lifting of the freeze?

Or would he, instead, receive a backdated increase, taking into effect inflation since April 2015?

Does Corbyn hope to find the savings to end the benefits freeze before April 2019?

April 2019 is the date when the Tories currently plan to end their benefits freeze.

I know there are Corbyn supporters out there who think we should focus on helping people off welfare into work, but we, Labour under Blair and Brown, managed that between 1997 and 2010 without freezing people’s benefits.

I know there are Corbyn supporters out there who think the benefits freeze is disagreeable, that we cannot help everyone and that free university tuition is a priority.

I know there are Corbyn supporters out there who think that benefits are not earned in the first place by recipients and are the state’s generosity.

In all my Civil Service career and in my over thirty year membership of the Labour Party, I have never heard anyone, even people not sharing my politics, call JSA, IS or ESA generous, unless they were a dyed in the blue wool Tory.

There are a lot of Tories or neo-Tories or people who think selfishness is socialism numbered amongst Corbyn’s supporters.

Their common link?

Free university tuition for them and theirs.

In the 1980s, under Thatcher, Greed was Good.

In the 2010s, under Corbyn, Selfishness is Socialism.

Most of Corbyn’s fans have never claimed benefit, expect to claim benefit, know anyone who has claimed benefit, know anyone who is claiming benefit and/or worked with people in receipt of benefit.

Does this explain their callousness, their lack of empathy?

It certainly suggests that saying they had seen I, Daniel Blake was more of a chance to virtue signal than it was anything else.

And have those ardent Corbyn fans forgotten, if they ever knew that Iain Duncan Smith, yes, Iain Duncan Smith resigned over the benefits freeze?

If Corbyn’s youthful supporters were truly selfless idealists then surely they would be campaigning against the benefits freeze and not for free university tuition?

Surely Corbyn’s youthful, and not so youthful, acolytes, should be saying they do not want free university tuition at the expense of the working age poor?

Surely Corbyn’s progressive fans should be demanding that their idol find another way to fund free university tuition?

Surely Corbyn’s fans should be saying, to prove their ideological purity, that they would rather do without free university tuition, if it may only be funded through the increasing suffering of children living into poverty?

Surely Corbyn’s followers should be asking themselves, as much as Corbyn, if there is much to connect maintaining the benefits freeze to fund free university tuition with, well, Socialism?

Corbyn will maintain the benefits freeze, for which Jacob Rees-Mogg voted and over which IDS resigned, in order to find the money to fund free university tuition.

Corbyn will maintain the benefits freeze in order to find the money to fund free university tuition so as to honour a pledge, yes, another Corbyn pledge, not to raise Income Tax and National Insurance on the income of anyone whose earnings are less than £80,000 per annum.

Corbyn has pledged that his Income Tax and National Insurance freeze, for the 95% whose incomes are less than £80,000 per annum, will last at least five years.

I leave the last word to Benjamin Disraeli.

Labour is definitely not the PARTY OF THE POOR any more.

Vote #Labour! Vote #Corbyn! Give the offspring of a #ReesMogg free university tuition, tax free!

Standard

Ken Loach’s fictional Daniel Blake was claiming Jobseeker’s Allowance.  In the real world, JSA has been frozen since April 2015.  On Planet Corbyn, Daniel no longer exists.

On the Friday before the August Bank Holiday 2017, Labour sneaked out a press release in the name of Jeremy Corbyn, stating that Labour would not end the benefits freeze on taking up office.

JSA for a Daniel Blake has been frozen at £73.10 per week since April 2015

Income Support for lone parent Daniella Blake has been frozen at £73.10 per week since April 2015

Employment and Support Allowance for a Daniel Blake has been frozen at £73.10 per week since April 2015.

Labour will, however, enact free university tuition for mostly white, mostly middle and upper class youth on its first day in office.

Labour will make Daniel Blake, a real victim of austerity, foot the bill for free university tuition.

People on JSA, IS and ESA all have children as dependants.

Child poverty has been rising under the Tories and it would continue to rise under a Corbyn led Labour Government, not incidentally or accidentally, but as a deliberate policy choice.

Labour, under Blair and Brown, pledged to eradicate child poverty by 2020.

Labour, under Corbyn, in 2017 pledges to enact free university tuition and let child poverty rise during his premiership.

The Tories were nasty, vile people for making those without a voice suffer through having their benefits frozen.

What then is Corbyn, who made so much out of the plight of Daniel Blake at PMQs, but who has now said, in an under hand, cowardly way that he would not end the benefits freeze on his first day as Prime Minister?

Does his decision make Corbyn a sanctimonious onanist?

What does it say about Ken Loach that he has not spoken truth unto Corbyn over his plan to extend the freeze of Daniel Blake’s JSA?

A purveyor of poverty porn to Islington Socialists?

Whilst not committing Labour to end the benefits freeze, Corbyn has pledged Labour, without caveat, to maintain the (State) Pension Triple Lock.

Whilst the JSA of Daniel Blake, jobseeker, has not increased by a penny since April 2015, the State Pension of Charlie Blake, pensioner, has increased by 2.5% each year in the same period.

Daniel Blake’s JSA has not risen, even in line within inflation, since April 2015.  His JSA would remain frozen indefinitely under a Corbyn led Labour Government.

Charlie’s State Pension has risen by 2.5% per year and if inflation increases by more than 2.5% then Charlie’s pension goes up by more than 2.5% per year.

Inflation has been rising for over 18 months now:

Inflation measured using the Consumer Prices Index reached 2.7% in August 2017.

Were benefits rising in line with inflation then they would be increasing each year in April, using the previous September’s CPI figure.

Daniel Blake cannot wait to claim his State Pension, because the real value of his weekly JSA payment is falling with every passing day.

No one has yet said at what date Corbyn expects sufficient savings to have been made to end the freeze.

No one has yet said what Labour lifting the freeze would actually mean for a Daniel Blake.

Would Blake’s JSA begin to rise in line with inflation from the lifting of the freeze?

Or would he, instead, receive a backdated increase, taking into effect inflation since April 2015?

Does Corbyn hope to find the savings to end the benefits freeze before April 2019?

April 2019 is the date when the Tories currently plan to end their benefits freeze.

I know there are Corbyn supporters out there who think we should focus on helping people off welfare into work, but we, Labour under Blair and Brown, managed that between 1997 and 2010 without freezing people’s benefits.

I know there are Corbyn supporters out there who think the benefits freeze is disagreeable, that we cannot help everyone and that free university tuition is a priority.

I know there are Corbyn supporters out there who think that benefits are not earned in the first place by recipients and are the state’s generosity.

In all my Civil Service career and in my over thirty year membership of the Labour Party, I have never heard anyone, even people not sharing my politics, call JSA, IS or ESA generous, unless they were a dyed in the blue wool Tory.

There are a lot of Tories or neo-Tories or people who think selfishness is socialism numbered amongst Corbyn’s supporters.

Their common link?

Free university tuition for them and theirs.

In the 1980s, under Thatcher, Greed was Good.

In the 2010s, under Corbyn, Selfishness is Socialism.

Most of Corbyn’s fans have never claimed benefit, expect to claim benefit, know anyone who has claimed benefit, know anyone who is claiming benefit and/or worked with people in receipt of benefit.

Does this explain their callousness, their lack of empathy?

It certainly suggests that saying they had seen I, Daniel Blake was more of a chance to virtue signal than it was anything else.

And have those ardent Corbyn fans forgotten, if they ever knew that Iain Duncan Smith, yes, Iain Duncan Smith resigned over the benefits freeze?

If Corbyn’s youthful supporters were truly selfless idealists then surely they would be campaigning against the benefits freeze and not for free university tuition?

Surely Corbyn’s youthful, and not so youthful, acolytes, should be saying they do not want free university tuition at the expense of the working age poor?

Surely Corbyn’s progressive fans should be demanding that their idol find another way to fund free university tuition?

Surely Corbyn’s fans should be saying, to prove their ideological purity, that they would rather do without free university tuition, if it may only be funded through the increasing suffering of children living into poverty?

Surely Corbyn’s followers should be asking themselves, as much as Corbyn, if there is much to connect maintaining the benefits freeze to fund free university tuition with, well, Socialism?

Corbyn will maintain the benefits freeze, for which Jacob Rees-Mogg voted and over which IDS resigned, in order to find the money to fund free university tuition.

Corbyn will maintain the benefits freeze in order to find the money to fund free university tuition so as to honour a pledge, yes, another Corbyn pledge, not to raise Income Tax and National Insurance on the income of anyone whose earnings are less than £80,000 per annum.

Corbyn has pledged that his Income Tax and National Insurance freeze, for the 95% whose incomes are less than £80,000 per annum, will last at least five years.

I leave the last word to Benjamin Disraeli.

Labour is definitely not the PARTY OF THE POOR any more.