Conference and Universal Credit

By: A.C

I try to be apolitical and have never joined a political party. However, I can spot when politicians engage in contradictory lies and hypocrisy, and that is not a hard task, because as the old joke says “you know when a Politician is lying – because their lips are moving”.

Take for instance the statement by Ian Duncan Smith (IDS) reported on our Facebook Page and at the Independent “it was not the role of government to pay the disabled enough to stop them being poor and that the correct way to escape poverty was by working”.

IDS has always nourished and cherished his ideas of Universal Credit, and his latest speech missed out two words which are contained in the official DWP speech. At this website his speech is taken apart:

”He told conference that: “Universal Credit has now rolled out in the North West of England – to couples, shortly to families, to more than 1 in 8 jobcentres by Christmas – safely and securely as we always said. “But, Conference, today I can announce more.

I can announce that we are going to accelerate the delivery of Universal Credit… from the New Year, bringing forward the national roll-out through 2015/16 to every community across Great Britain.”

The only problem with this was the two vital words missing from IDS’ speech, but present in the DWP press release – the roll out will only be for ‘single jobseekers’.

In other words:
• not for couples;
• not for families;
• not for people in work;
• not for people too sick and disabled to work.”

IDS often quotes his visit to Easterhouse, Glasgow as his alleged ‘epiphany’ in realising how to develop his present Welfare Reform and Universal Credit policy.

This Christian site that comments on social justice has a lot to say about that alleged event, and one has to decide the significance as to who the co–founders of the Centre for Social Justice (CSJ) are. All are Professionals in banking, securities, investments and law though there are a wide range of “advisors”.

The Centre for Social Justice (CSJ ), founded by IDS, has a very Evangelical Christian ethos similar to the Hard–Right Republican Movement in the USA and their ideas of small government , low taxes and stopping immigration are all very similar.

Unless this alleged Epiphany also came with a Divinely Awarded Degree in Law, Public Governance, Finance, Economics, or Social Sciences , the CSJ seem to supply all the necessary professional “advice” that he needs or wants to hear. Does IDS have the competence or ability to run such a complex department like the DWP? Some would say not and have openly said so in the past. Alex Andreou at The Guardian says:

“Because, while I could put forward a decent argument on why Duncan Smith is not a great conceiver, I can put forward an irrefutable one that he is a hopeless implementer.”

It would appear then, that IDS has confidence in the CSJ to help make Government Policy for him.

This means an unelected group of people with Americanised Evangelical style Christian viewpoints have untrammelled access to a Government Minister, and are suggesting Policies which are being enacted by Government.

It would seem that the CSJ provides other government departments with ‘advice’ in keeping with the government direction of their policy and thoughts on migration and modern slavery for example.

As regards the alleged origins of IDS’ Universal Credit ideas, and whether he was inspired by what he saw in Easterhouse, The New Statesman has an article, which reveals that the alleged “Epiphany at Easterhouse” is probably just a nice story designed to keep the religious on board his pioneer wagon.

“In 1994, Duncan Smith (then working in the Department of Social Security, predecessor to the Department of Work and Pensions) wrote an editorial for the Mail (the text of which is copied here). In it, he decried the growth of spending on welfare since the foundation of the welfare state; he claimed that the benefits system had betrayed the intentions of the Beveridge Report, and was being defrauded and abused on a vast scale. Worst of all, he alleged, the welfare state had created a class incapable of self-help: “[T]he system discourages people from getting a job […] people become trapped, remaining dependent on the State rather than on their working abilities.” His answer? “There should be just one, income-assessed benefit.”

In his speech at the 2015 Conference he poured out the usual rhetoric against the disabled but the Mirror challenges his view.

However, we all know that the computer software has cost the DWP millions is being scrapped because it is useless.

This IT website report from 10 December 2013 reports:

“Work and Pensions Secretary Iain Duncan Smith MP confirmed to Parliament’s Work and Pensions select committee late on Monday that £40.1m in IT assets had so far been written off, following a series of embarrassing failings with the deployment of the technology underpinning Universal Credit.

Meanwhile, a further £91m in IT assets will be worthless five years from now.

The system was originally set to be fully operational for any British citizens claiming benefit on six different schemes by 2017.

However, IDS confessed last week that the target could no longer be reached as at least 700,000 people seeking Employment Support Allowance will still be absent from the new system a little over three years from now.”

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One Response to Conference and Universal Credit

  1. AC says:

    Quite apart from IDS’ inbuilt viewpoint that the vast majority of all the disabled claiming benefits are fraudsters, charlatans and thieves, his seemingly Messianic fervour to break apart the Welfare System for ideological purposes similar to that of America is clearly evident. As regards his qualifications and reliance on his pet project the CJS, this is a man who is not truthful about himself or his background. He has in the past been accused of telling fibs about his career and education, the details of which were investigated in 2002 by the BBC’s Newsnight team.

    That investigation proved beyond doubt that IDS never got any educational qualifications as he claimed, or indeed never attended a prestigious Italian University .In a complicated property ownership deal reported 5 years ago . he and his wife took up residence at the aristocratic mansion – house of his father –in –law .where he lives rent free Seems typical of the red -faced fist –pumping Secretary for Work and Pensions, to enact laws in order to harry and pursue the disable.

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