Sunday, April 10, 2011

Back To the 30's - By Sue Marsh

By Sue Marsh


**Please substitute the word "sick" or "disabled" for the word poor throughout the 1930s quotes. Welcome to 2010 and the humiliating, degrading world of ATOS, ESA & Work Programmes. Do play the soundtrack above as you read :)

"Then in 1930 the Depression {2008 Credit crunch} threw government into a fiscal panic, and the poor {sick} got the sharp end with the {Work Capability Assessment} Family Means Test. You had to prove just how poor {sick} you were, in intimate domestic detail. It imposed form-filling, impertinent questions......"
"It broke families into homelessness : adult children lost all benefits if anybody in the house earned 31 shillings a week, so they had to move out....."{Anyone claiming ESA with a working partner who earns just over £5000 per year will lose all benefits}
"From 1934, 190,000 unemployed men were made to attend “training camps” simply because there were no Jobs." {New regulations for Mandatory Work Activity have been laid before parliament (March 14th). The government have announced new powers for Jobcentre Plus advisers, that will allow them in certain circumstances to refer Jobseeker claimants to mandatory work placements. The DWP said, “where advisers believe a jobseeker will benefit from experiencing the habits and routines of working life, they will have the power to refer them to a four week mandatory placement.}
"The depression {credit crunch} originated in the U.S., starting with the {sub-prime housing crisis} fall in stock prices that began around September 4, 1929 and became worldwide news with the {fall of Lehman's} stock market crash of October 29, 1929 (known as Black Tuesday). From there, it quickly spread to almost every country in the world."
"An even larger question is whether the {Credit Crunch} Great Depression was primarily a failure on the part of free markets or, alternately, a failure of government efforts to regulate interest rates, curtail widespread bank failures, and control the money supply. "
"In an effort to balance the budget and restore confidence in the pound, on the {22nd June 2010, George Osborne} 10 September 1931 with Phillip Snowden still as Chancellor, the new national government issued an emergency budget, which immediately instituted a round of draconian cuts in public spending and wages. Public sector wages and unemployment pay were cut by 10%, and income tax was raised from 4s 6d to 5s in the pound[6] (from 22.5% to 25%). The pay cuts did not go down well however and resulted in a Mutiny in the Royal Navy."
"Politically the decade {1930s} was dominated by a Conservative-led coalition while Labour tried but failed to be more than the party of the victims of the recession. The National Government blamed Labour for the mess in which the country had fallen - although the origins of the recession lay in Wall Street - while invoking a rhetoric which asked everybody to suffer some pain to see the country through."

1 comment:

e said...

A rather stunning and unfortunately apt assessment of the times then and now...

I've started the process of applying for Disability benefit here in the US where I'm told sixty percent are rejected...

I hope you and Sue are having a good day. Thanks for posting this.