The Conservatives need to realise that their figures don’t add up: the Liberal Democrats need to be reminded that the deficit is not the economy: and Ed Balls needs to remember that he once knew some economics. The tax and spending proposals of all three parties demonstrate either total ignorance of the reasons why the UK’s fiscal deficit is not reducing as planned, or – more likely – wilful ignoring of the truth for political reasons.
Michael Gove has written: “For some of us Victorian costume dramas are not merely agreeable ways to while away Sunday evening but enactments of our inner fantasies … I don’t think there has been a better time in our history” in “Alas, I was born far too late for my inner era”.
A better time for what, precisely? Child labour, desperation? Prostitution? Low life expectancy, disease, illiteracy, workhouses? Or was it the deferential protestant work ethic reserved only for the poor, the pre-destiny of the aristocracy, and “the rich man in his castle, the poor man at his gate”?
A clue is in the name: The word “Tory” derives from the Middle Irish word tóraidhe, which means outlaw, robber or brigand, from the Irish word tóir, meaning “pursuit”, since outlaws were “pursued men”. It was originally used to refer to an Irish outlaw and later applied to Confederates or Royalists in arms. The term was thus originally a term of abuse. The Tories live by plunder. They steal your taxes, your public services, your state provision and your labour, in order to raise more money for the rich.
Every woman should take the attacks on other women personally. Because the attacks are not aimed at the particular person, they are aimed at women. Women who “don’t know their place!”
Watson is not the only one being told to “get back” by misogynists who wield sexual terror as a weapon. She is in the company of many other women, all over the world, who have made the decision to participate in public life and suffered the consequences. Writers on feminist issues, deluged with rape threats: get back. Activists from Syria, to Sudan, to the Congo, raped in prison: get back. South African lesbians, raped to “correct” their sexuality: get back.
You see, I thought, for reasons that are unclear to me right now, that the main issue with agents like triclosan was their use in kitchen counters and clothing and building materials. Well, it never even occurred to me that it would be in oral care products and thus purposefully introduced into the human body.
So I decided to check to see if my toothpaste had any in it. And, well, $*##. It did.
The No result should be a trigger for a better country for all of us. Though I won’t hold my breath 🙁
The Yes camp have managed to make it seem like criticism of their politics is an attack on the individual’s right to imagine a better self. To do this, the Yes campaign has had to be emptied of almost all actual political content. It has had to become a form of faith.
And it’s not surprising – there is no way that the groups under the banner of Yes could actually work together; they’re all fighting for fundamentally different things. How can the Greens reconcile themselves with the ‘let’s make Scotland a new Saudi Arabia’ oil barons? How can the radical left reconcile themselves with the pro-capitalist Business for Scotland group? Or the L.G.B.T Yes Youth community find common cause with elderly Calvinist nationalists or with the millionaire SNP donor who backed Clause 28. Instead converts chant the same mantra – YES – to cover all the cracks between their mutual hatred. Debate becomes reduced down to one word and the positivity of that one word erases all conflicts and questions beneath a fantasized unity. YES. Yes also erases history, politics and reality. Yes means too many things and ends up meaning nothing. It’s silenced the conflicting politics within it to the point that it means little more than the euphoric American self-help phrase “be all you can be.”
Having lived for more than a third of my life outside the UK (and the EU for that matter) and always knowing that I am British, a citizen of the United Kingdom & a subject of HM QEII no matter where I live or what other nationality I may gain by “naturalisation”, this whole situation seems like a complete farce. Mind you, I returned to the UK after the weirdness of devolution* & I’m still wondering where the adults were when that was being thought out. We’re either ONE country with ONE government, or we’re not. And if we’re not, then half-hearted measures do nothing but piss everyone off and lead to, as we have seen, internal racism… Racism! Against fellow Britons? Really? This is who we are in the 21st century?
Anyway, that’s nothing to do, really, with the post I am linking to – apart from having the Scottish Independence Referendum in common.
“Would an independent Scotland remain in the EU? The SNP have a terrible record of making-it-up-as-they-go-along on this question. Even now they are still at it.”
*It’s like letting your 18 year old set up their own little apartment/annex in the garage/basement so they can have their independence but still have Mum & Dad around to deal with the really important stuff (and the cooking & cleaning, of course). Now they want to put a new door in or change the locks. Oh, and claim the equity in the property as an asset 😉
“Taxpayers will face a £300m-£400m penalty if controversial probation privatisation contracts are cancelled after next May’s general election under an “unprecedented” clause that guarantees bidders their expected profits over the 10-year life of the contract,” according to The Guardian.
I should probably stop “reading the comments” (those under certain online newspaper articles and blog posts). My BP goes up and the acid rises into my throat.
Regarding the Philpott case and the Chancellor’s comments I’ll just say that Osborne is a creep of the first order. There’s no natural justice in the world or he, IDS, Cameron and the rest of the bastards would soon experience the pain and stress that too many of us have to deal with every day – and without the cushion of insane wealth or “friends” to ease it for them. It won’t happen, but I can dream sometimes. Hey, I never, ever said I was a nice person. I can be kind, helpful, caring etc – also judgemental, bad-tempered, angry, grudging and vindictive. But not nice – ask my husband, he’s the nice one.
So, the Philpotts received Child Benefit for 11 children (two mothers, 5 and 6 children each)? And, apparently that’s a horrible horrible thing. To some people the idea of having that many children is so alien that it can only be explained by “They did it for the money!” I’ve heard this said about families with 5 or 6 kids where both parents are working and claiming no other benefits than Child Benenfit (until recently payable to, usually, the mother of every child in the UK).
So let’s examine the amazing financial benefit of “squeezing out another brat” as I have heard it termed (I have heard other terms used, some by people I still consider friends despite their seeming hatred for children – that’s another rant for another post). One thing every single person forgets when they cry “OMG! They were getting £8K* a year in Child Benefit!” is that each one of those kids has to be fed, housed and clothed. Each one has to:
– have a bath or shower regularly (utilities bill);
– be clothed adequately, now hand-me-downs used to be the way with large families but nowadys cheap clothes barely last through one child, so clothes & school uniforms for constantly growing kids, shoes and coats being the most expensive items – oh, laundry, more on the utilities bill;
– they have to be fed regularly, preferably with healthy food;
– have somewhere to live, so rent & rates on a large enough house to accomodate all of you (note: both women worked, so may have had to pay rates & at least part of rent depending on income);
– to be kept warm in winter – unless you want to force them all into the box room to keep warm by body heat a la the middle ages.
There is a lot more, but you get my drift.
Once you’ve paid all that…. you know what? Child Benefit per child doesn’t come anywhere close to covering what it costs to raise a child. So there’s no “extra” left to fund any kind of “lifestyle”. I don’t know what sort of “lifestyle” the Tories and their sycophants think someone who has to rely on a high level of benefits has – perhaps they should each swap homes and incomes with some of those that they are trying to dehumanise and turn into hate figures for people who are scared that they might be next.
£20.30 /week for first child
£13.40 for each subsequent child
Now, most calculations I have seen assume only one at eldest child rate, but I suspect each mother received her own Child Benenfit.
So, per week:
2 @ £20.30 = £40.60
9 @ £13.40 =£120.60
Weekly total = £161.20
x 52 = £8382.40