Tory ‘welfare’ policy is let’s fly a Doobie Brothers kite as in What a fool believes … and at huge cost to the taxpayer.
In January 2015 the Institute of Fiscal Studies said the Housing Benefit bill was over £1 billion a year MORE and in real terms despite the HB cuts from bedroom tax, benefit cap, LHA cap and SAR cap.
In January 2016 the Independent reported (which many seem to have missed!) that DWP fit-to-work assessments cost more money than they save.
The Indepedent cited a report from the National Audit Office:
The study by the National Audit Office (NAO) found that the Department for Work and Pensions is handing over £1.6bn over the next three years to private contractors who carry out the controversial health and disability assessments.
But at the same time, the Government’s own financial watchdog has warned that savings in benefits payments are likely to be less than a billion pounds by 2020 as a result of the new tests.
The Tories are spending £2.4 billion over four years (£597 million per year) to find a £1 billion saving!
What is worse is that the £1 billion saving that costs £2.4 billion to find is (a) not a saving at all obviously; and (b) is dependent upon everyone being assessed when only 65% of that number are actually being assessed. So now it is costing £2.4 billion to achieve a £650 million ‘saving!’
Spend £4 to save £1 is the Tories work capability assessment policy!
But we all know someone who gets disability and is taking the piss out of the taxpayer right? And who can argue against the simple way the policy is sold in we are focusing on what work disabled people CAN do and not what they can’t! Such a noble sentiment from the caring Conservatives eh?!
What a fool believes …
Yet there is no saving only a huge increase in taxpayer cost and the same NAO report said the cost of each assessment has also increased by 65% from £115 to £190 per case and yet we still find that 60% of decisions made by the assessors are overturned on appeal!
(And there is additional taxpayer cost of that too and I know one organisation that has a 98% success rate in overturning ESA decisions!)
But hey as long as the public believes this disabled people are taking the piss political strategy then that’s ok is the way the Tories decide policy over ‘welfare!’
What a fool believes … is common right across politics unfortunately …
When every political party’s favourite think thank in the IFS and when the government’s own financial watchdog in the NAO say that the impact of these welfare policies is the direct opposite of their claimed intentions and end up costing every single UK taxpayer more and the taxpayer doesn’t give a shit about it then we have a problem, a huge problem.
11 million of the electorate were duped with the Brexit vote into believing a NO vote would lead to Britain becoming ‘Great’ again and a truly sovereign nation who can control its own borders an its own destiny … and all the other bullshit claims that were promised including £350 million per week more spent on the NHS – very much a case of What a fool believes …
Just as Brexit means Brexit means nothing, we also find that bullshit means bullshit when it comes to Tory ‘welfare’ policy which subsequent to this NAO report now finds a £1500 per year cut to those on ESA who are in the work related activity group as a direct consequence of the Tory balancing the books after the ideological and superficial assessment system they said would save money actually costs so much more.
In short the £1500 per year ESA cut was a direct consequence of the WCA policy costing four times what it could ever hope to save
This lack of scrutiny of the assessment programme and the political intransigence not to change it despite its huge taxpayer cost now sees all those on ESA (wrag) which was previously called Incapacity Benefit to reflect what it is now have a £1500 per year cut AND still have to face the ignominy and stress of the work capability assessment charade.
The reason the government get away with this is because the general public don’t give a shit and they believe the foolish myths upon which such policies are based – and even when those myths emerge with the huge increased taxpayer cost the public still don’t give a shit as they still foolishly believe the myths.
It is on that basis that this government peddles all its welfare policies.
Yesterday we saw a tiny modicum of the Tories being found out and start to run a bit scared – the kite flying aspect of their welfare policies. Upon Theresa May being told that the LHA Maxima Cap policy will close DV refuges we saw May say she is looking to exempt them from the policy and note those words well.
The Tories have known since they got responses to their July 2011 consultation paper on this exact same issue that this policy would close DV refuges yet in 5 years they still haven’t come up with a (politically acceptable) solution.
The political difficulty is how do they exempt refuges (and probably sheltered housing too for cuddly and ‘deserving’ older persons) yet keep the policy for all the NIMBY supported housing groups such as single homeless, ex and sex offenders and those with substance misuse whether drug or alcohol?
Tory welfare policy is a case of he who shouts loudest and gets public opinion on their side … or in this case she who shouts loudest – and how dare the Archers run a DV story line!!!
At a different level and a significant one go back to the decision to cut the £1500 per year from those on ESA. The powerful disability lobbies launched a very powerful campaign over why disabled persons should keep this £29.05 per week YET not one argument was that the real reason the Tories did this was to balance the overall welfare books because their farcical and ideological work capability assessment policy was costing the taxpayer hundreds of millions per year over and above what it could possibly ever save.
The work capability assessment was a Blair policy and thus exposing how complicit the Labour Party were in this ideological farce and thus left the Labour Party of January 2016 no political wriggle room in attacking the Tories much more enhanced and invasive and costly version of the WCA. The right wing agenda Blair started of blaming those on welfare was coming back to bite the Labour Party on its own arse and placed it in a political cul-de-sac.
But hey that’s fine say the Labour Party we can blame that on Corbyn … which merely reveals that the PLP like the Doobie Brothers too!
Many many political fools love the Doobie Brothers in the new political framework that even surpasses Gove’s dismissal of experts when the electorate, the general public and Her Majesty’s Opposition even dismiss irrefutable fact!
Were the Doobie Brothers singing about democratic accountability when they said I believe she’s never coming back?