Monthly Archives: July 2014

Bankers who torpedoed the economy are set to get away with it after all

No, we should not and must not. There’s an election coming so this is another of the things we need to keep bringing up and not let drop after the election.
We need that money back to restore our public services and pay less taxes as well as a decent income for all!
Yes, we can change the world – we are!
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Mike Sivier's blog

Not even this many: This Economist cartoon paints a false picture of the situation. The magazine has stated: "In Britain, which had to bail out three of its biggest banks, not one senior banker has gone on trial over the failure of a bank." Not even this many: This Economist cartoon paints a false picture of the situation. The magazine has stated: “In Britain, which had to bail out three of its biggest banks, not one senior banker has gone on trial over the failure of a bank.”

Here’s a word that should be in all our dictionaries but probably isn’t: ‘MAXWELLISATION’.

It refers to a procedure in British governance where individuals who are due to be criticised in an official report are sent details in advance and permitted to respond before publication. The process takes its name from the late newspaper owner Robert Maxwell, who fell off a yacht after stealing the Mirror Group’s pension fund.

Maxwellisation is how the irresponsible bankers who caused the economic recession, out of which some of us have just climbed according to the latest figures, are likely to get away Scot (and the word is used most…

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As war rages in Gaza and Pakistan, drone companies gather at Farnborough to market their wares

well, we have to start getting this appalling slaughter business off the menu.
How about changing the paradigm and investing in life and construction instead of killing and destruction.
We can make a difference.
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Drone Wars UK

Palestinians gather around a taxi in which four members of the Abu Daqqa family were killed in a reported Israeli drone strike on Khan Younis, southern Gaza Strip, on 16 July.  (Ramadan El-Agha / APA images)
Palestinians gather around a taxi in which four members of the Abu Daqqa family were killed in a reported Israeli drone strike on Khan Younis, southern Gaza Strip, on 16 July.
(Ramadan El-Agha / APA images)

Against a backdrop of horrific Israeli air strikes in Gaza as well as a US drone strike in Pakistan, the Farnborough International Air show took place this week in the UK. Although billed as an air show, the event is in reality a week-long marketing event for the world’s military (and some civil) aviation companies to show off their wares with an open-to-the-public air show tacked on at the end.

Drones are increasingly important at Farnborough with a reported 78 companies displaying unmanned drones this year. In terms of British drones the key event was the signing of a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) between the UK and France on the £120m ($205m) agreement to study…

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Shameless – Workfare Exploiting Charities Slam The Benefit Sanctions They Are Responsible For

A little truth about the YMCA and The Sally Ann. Please read the comments as well. Grim…
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the void

times-letter-sanctionsIn an act of breath-taking hypocrisy, the Salvation Army, along with the YMCA, have both signed a letter to The Times calling the current benefit sanctioning regime unfair and counter-productive.

This comes despite both organisations being involved in ‘Mandatory Work Activity’ and therefore responsible for reporting unemployed people to the Jobcentre to face sanctions if they don’t turn up for unpaid work placements.

The Salvation Army has even been praised by the DWP for ‘holding the line’ on workfare after scores of charities distanced themselves from the scheme. When peaceful anti-workfare campaigners visited the Salvation Army in protest at their use of workfare, the charity locked them inside and attempted to have them arrested with fabricated stories of staff being man-handled.

The Salvation Army have repeatedly defended their involvement in mandatory welfare-to-work provision and also their operation of a Work Programme sub-contract. Claimants on this scheme, including those on out…

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Council boss gets £25,000 pay rise while lowest paid offered two per cent

Wrong! Solution – get down to the council chamber and sort it! If enough people pay attention and go to the meetings we can stop this sort of unfairness.
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UNEMPLOYED IN TYNE & WEAR

A council chief executive’s pay has rocketed 25 per cent in two years whilst its lowest paid workers have been offered two per cent, prompting calls for more scrutiny on top public sector pay.

The head of Hambleton District Council, Phillip Morton, was taken on in 2012 at £100,000 and is now earning £125,000 after management restructuring.

Previously the North Yorkshire authority had shared the chief executive role and senior management team with neighbouring Richmondshire District Council under its money-saving, shared services agreement.

But when the shared chief executive left, the two councils re-established their own management teams.

Although Mr Morton’s salary is amongst the lowest for chief executives in the North-East and North Yorkshire, the timing of the rise has been criticised, with many tax payers struggle to afford essentials with the cost of living crisis.

A Hambleton District Councillor, who this week tried to raise the…

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No, Mr Osborne, it’s not party time yet

Agree with both Frances and Kitty. Nothing yet to crow about but they will however the long-term damage done in closure of public services and the long-term effects of poverty especially on children and the disabled is very grim.
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Politics and Insights

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Whilst official figures show that the economic depression has ended, we need to be mindful of what the headlines have not mentioned – much damage has been done by the government’s austerity measures, such as the cuts and closures to our public services, and the wasteful and costly privatisations. The economic downturn may be temporary but it seems that the cuts and the consequences are permanent.
Growing poverty reflects a large-scale economic failure, regardless of the pitifully thin distillation of Tory evidence of “recovery” and “growth” which is mostly localised to a handful of millionaires. Poverty is about the loss of much more than money. Poverty entails indignity and humiliation and exclusion. For a so-called first world democracy to treat its most vulnerable citizens so callously ought to be a source of utter shame. Austerity is an attempt to disguise the fact that the Tories are not “paying down the debt” as claimed:…

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Criticising Government Policy Online Is “Unacceptable Intimidation” According To Treasury

Well done! Things really are changing and fast.
Is it really so hard for the government to provide real jobs for real pay????
Come on – this needs sorting!
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the void

byteback-fb1As pointed out by @refuted, the Treasury’s claim that a recent anti-workfare social media storm was “unacceptable intimidation” comes just days after an Upper Tribunal judge endorsed this kind of criticism as “legitimate political expression”.

The comments came after news broke that Bristol IT company Byteback had pulled out of workfare a week after being visited by George Osborne to sing the praises of the scheme.  Hundreds of people had contacted Byteback on social media expressing dismay at their involvement in forced work after some fierce questioning from @andygale on twitter caused them to refer to their unpaid workers as ’employees of the state’.

Shortly after this bombardment, and in a huge embarrassment for Osborne, Byteback apologised for their involvement in his grubby scheme and promised “no more involvement ever with workfare”.

This prompted a tantrum from the Treasury who took to the national press to complain of…

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Spike in demand for foodbanks

Appalling third world conditions especially for those with children.
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UNEMPLOYED IN TYNE & WEAR

Darlington community workers are urging people to increase food bank donations, as the summer holiday sparks a surge in demand.

The Salvation Army provides free food parcels every Friday evening and the King’s Church has operated the Food Store and three other distribution centres in the town since February 2012.

Both look to provide emergency food resources for those unable to feed themselves or their families with all work carried out by hard working volunteers.

> Hope they are all volunteers – Salvation Army has a poor record regarding Workfare.

Summer is a crucial time for the projects, as the beginning of six weeks of school holidays leaves many families unable to cope.

King’s Church network manager Lisa Marsh said: “It is important that people can put food on the table.

“The last two summers has seen an increase in the demand for more food donations, often from families…

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DWP Limbo: “Sometimes I Think I Would Be Better Off Dead”

A fundamental redesign of the ESA end-to-end process is required.
I couldn’t agree more. Just read and ponder these appalling stories of suffering and then wonder why any social security system would put its citizens through these horrors.
End this now!
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Same Difference

From yesterday’s Guardian:

Tucked away in this week’s work and pensions select committee report on employment-related disabilitybenefits is a section on an innocuous-sounding policy called Mandatory Reconsideration (MR).

Its blandness hides a host of Kafka-esque sins, however; this is truly a monstrously perverse and bureaucratic generator of poverty and stress.

Here’s an example of one claimant’s experience of being caught up in the strange limbo-land of MR, taken from research by Citizens Advice Bureau:

It has affected me badly. Financially I am struggling – when I pay gas, electricity and bedroom tax I have nothing left. I sometimes don’t have enough money to buy food. Sometimes I go hungry. Sometimes I just have toast as it’s cheaper

So what is MR and how do you get caught up in it? MR kicks in when claimants of ESA or Employment and Support Allowance (unemployment benefit for people who cannot…

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Whither the UKIP vote? The 2014 local elections and implications for 2015

Very interesting stats – look at the Fryerns, Bradford results for 2010 and then 2014! A lot is changing all the time.

Second reading

Eight weeks on from the 2014 European and local elections, the election results may be out of the headlines but parties are left with much to ponder as to what it means for their chances at the general election next May. UKIP’s extraordinary performance saw them secure 24 of the 73 European Parliament seats (up from 13 in 2009), gain an additional 1.85 million European votes relative to 2009, and win a record number of seats on local councils. We consider what UKIP’s success might mean for the general election.

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A Mother’s Appeal For Help- Disability Hate Crime

Appalling. I am very, very sorry for this attack and the effect it’s having on you both. I do hope the perpetrators are found and that they are heavily punished.
Much love and support to you both.
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Same Difference

This mother is desperately trying to find the people who did this to her son- to give him his confidence back.

The mainstream media haven’t picked it up yet- can we get them to? Kindly reblog retweet share everywhere possible.

Didn’t want to post this, but I’m really beginning to think that the boys who tried to kill my son are going to get away with it.
I can’t help but feel that if I’d illegally parked I’d soon be found.
They did far more than stab him, they’ve also taken away the only bit of independence he had, which took us almost two years to prepare him for. I’m now too frightened to let him back out, and I‘m getting the fallout from that too.
The media are totally uninterested in the attempted murder of an Autistic boy, not so much as a reply to my emails to…

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