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General Chat Thread, The Big Benefits Row in General; Originally Posted by tmcd35 Is that not a thin edge of a large wedge? If you let them get away ...
  1. #61

    Garacesh's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by tmcd35 View Post
    Is that not a thin edge of a large wedge? If you let them get away with that, what next?
    No. Because I don't have to take their money (literally speaking). But if I choose to take their money (even if it's because I feel I have no other option) then that's the agreement. The bank gives you money on the agreement you pay it back (with security measures in place just to be sure). The government gives you money on the agreement you'll spend it on what you say you'll spend it on (with security measures in place just to be sure).

    Quote Originally Posted by tmcd35 View Post
    Interesting example. I'm of the opinion that there should be one single means tested state welfare payment that applies to all. One single payment. It's upto you if you choose to spend a proportion of that income servicing your rent or your drug habit. Of course, if you choose not to pay your rent you'd end up homeless, but it's your choice.
    I'd completely agree - if kids and other dependants weren't a factor. The thing is, we're having children dressed in older clothes and eating inadequate meals as their parents buy the latest trainers and go and get their hair and nails done, or buy the latest phone, games console, TV, etc. Of course, this is a problem of bad parenting, but if we can place some restrictions on the money they're given we can use that to spot these problems much sooner. "We've allocated you $funds for children's clothing that you haven't spent for a month. How come?" (I know that sounds accusatory but there's no real way to phrase it, there would be perfectly valid answers)

    Quote Originally Posted by tmcd35 View Post
    But what if you can afford a new telly without the kids going hungry? And if the kids go hungry, again, is that not a social problem?
    Then you either don't need the JSA, or you saved up your 'unrestricted' portions for a few weeks to buy it. The scenario is vague, so I can't give a definitive answer.

  2. #62

    Edu-IT's Avatar
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    So suggest a better system.
    Well for starters those on job seekers allowance looking for jobs, couldn't they all give up a bit of time to do something for their local community and give something back in between looking for jobs?

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    Quote Originally Posted by Edu-IT View Post
    Well for starters those on job seekers allowance looking for jobs, couldn't they all give up a bit of time to do something for their local community and give something back in between looking for jobs?
    I worked in a charity shop 16 hours per week when I was on the dole. I would welcome this initiative. The counter-argument, however, is where do we put them? We can't put them with the people that alread get paid to do that (street sweepers, bin men, etc) because there's the worry they would reduce paid labour for 'dole labour'

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    Quote Originally Posted by Garacesh View Post
    From my own experience, and I fully announce this is all subjective, the jobcentre don't care. They just don't give a toss.
    Agreed, but they did more for you than they did for me. I'd sign on, get zero help* and get told my claim was "processing" for generally around 2 months. By the end of the 2 months I'd have found some temp work and have to sign off, never having received any money. Work would dry up after a couple of weeks and the circle started again.
    How can you possibly save enough money in 2 weeks to support yourself for 2 and a half months? Solution, once you are receiving money don't get a job or don't sign off...

    Also when I took a £25/week apprenticeship and went to sign off, again never having received any money, the job centre employee was extremely rude with me for "not getting a proper job", I was lazy, etc etc.



    * Once I was sent to a centre to "help" write my CV. The people in there had a very poor grasp of English (they were white British) and frankly did not know how to write CVs. To me it was just one of those non-jobs the government invents to tick a box, this one being "supplying help to the unemployed". TICK, yeah right.

  5. #65


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    Quote Originally Posted by Edu-IT View Post
    Well for starters those on job seekers allowance looking for jobs, couldn't they all give up a bit of time to do something for their local community and give something back in between looking for jobs?
    Quote Originally Posted by Garacesh View Post
    I worked in a charity shop 16 hours per week when I was on the dole. I would welcome this initiative. The counter-argument, however, is where do we put them? We can't put them with the people that alread get paid to do that (street sweepers, bin men, etc) because there's the worry they would reduce paid labour for 'dole labour'

    I was told you can't do this as if you are "working" in a charity shop/etc you are not seeking employment, and therefore not entitled to job seekers. But then, see above for how competent my job centre are.

    Job centre website seems to imply volunteer work must be through one of their schemes/systems and not something you can decide to do off your own bat.
    Last edited by j17sparky; 4th February 2014 at 02:23 PM.

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    Garacesh's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by j17sparky View Post
    I was told you can't do this as if you are "working" in a charity shop/etc you are not seeking employment, and therefore not entitled to job seekers. But then, see above for how competent my job centre are.

    Job centre website seems to imply volunteer work must be through one of their schemes/systems and not something you can decide to do off your own bat.
    They said the same to me, but I argued with them over the course of a few weeks, saying this was proving I was willing to work, I was only doing three (Two and a half) days a week and had plenty of time to look for jobs when I was not in 'work', or after work on the days I was in. Also, the owner had agreed that I would be able to take any time off I needed if I had an interview. They finally backed down.

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    Quote Originally Posted by tmcd35 View Post
    <SNIP>


    As someone who pationately believes in the values of the welfare state - you've just successfully described a society I would hate to live in. If ever I fall on hard times I'd like to believe there is a safety net there to keep me from the very worst.

    <SNIP>
    My thoughts exactly. I'm staying out of this one as much as possible. It's degraded again into petty jealousies, finger pointing and anecdotal evidence, into which this debate will always fall, until, we, as a society evolve a way of living in the Technological Age/Revolution/Era, call it what you will. A way of living and thinking that starts with understanding that never, ever again will there be enough work for everyone to have a full-time job, that some people will never, ever work in their whole lifetime and ends with dealing with the consequences of those simple, unavoidable facts.

    I don't care that so-and-so down the road hasn't worked a day in his life but has a bigger TV than me, faster broadband or more-Designer label shoes than I have, even though I've worked all my life. That is their choice, this is mine.

    I care more about the non-collection of tax from rich businessmen, multi-nationals and the tax loopholes and ridiculous Company Law system that allow these people and corporations to operate in this manner. Loopholes which the government we, as a society, elected but which they don't seem able or willing, to close.

    If my taxes weren't funding the welfare system, they'd be funding something else. Don't be fooled for one moment, any of you, that cutting the Benefit Bill, catching a few cheats, will reduce your taxes or lead to a better lifestyle for yourself and your loved ones......it won't.

    It's just an easy way to Divide and Rule. Which the majority of you have fallen for.

  8. 2 Thanks to Earthling:

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  9. #68

    Garacesh's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Earthling View Post
    My thoughts exactly. I'm staying out of this one as much as possible. It's degraded again into petty jealousies, finger pointing and anecdotal evidence, into which this debate will always fall, until, we, as a society evolve a way of living in the Technological Age/Revolution/Era, call it what you will. A way of living and thinking that starts with understanding that never, ever again will there be enough work for everyone to have a full-time job, that some people will never, ever work in their whole lifetime and ends with dealing with the consequences of those simple, unavoidable facts.

    I don't care that so-and-so down the road hasn't worked a day in his life but has a bigger TV than me, faster broadband or more-Designer label shoes than I have, even though I've worked all my life. That is their choice, this is mine.

    I care more about the non-collection of tax from rich businessmen, multi-nationals and the tax loopholes and ridiculous Company Law system that allow these people and corporations to operate in this manner. Loopholes which the government we, as a society, elected but which they don't seem able or willing, to close.

    If my taxes weren't funding the welfare system, they'd be funding something else. Don't be fooled for one moment, any of you, that cutting the Benefit Bill, catching a few cheats, will reduce your taxes or lead to a better lifestyle for yourself and your loved ones......it won't.

    It's just an easy way to Divide and Rule. Which the majority of you have fallen for.
    Your post is, I'll be honest, a little insulting.
    To me, it's certainly not about jealousy and certainly not about cutting taxes. I know for a fact that my taxes will go to something else if not benefits. To me, it's about funds being offered to those out of work being greedily mis-used on things they weren't intended for. Yes, I also hate multi-national tax evaders and corrupt MP's, but that's not for this thread. This thread is about benefit cheats.

    This is not 'divide and conquer'. I have nothing against those on benefits who are genuinely seeking employment, as I was, and I understand circumstances may make you unable to accept that employment (as I have personally been through them, as stated earlier). It's not about me being jealous that Mr. Cheat down the road has a huge TV and I don't - it's about Mr. Cheat being given that money when he doesn't need it. Benefits should not be used to purchase luxuries. Benefits should be there to keep you in a good standard of living until you find work, at which point, buy all the 65" TV's you like. Make a wall of 'em for all I care.

    Thing is, you do raise one valid point: There are too many people for jobs now. We've tried 'creating' jobs but that hasn't worked too well as money has to come out of somebodies pocket for that and people aren't too keen on giving. Question is, hypothetically we fill every available job ever. What do we do with the 'leftovers'? They certainly shouldn't get a free pass, that would just lead to those able to work not seeking it because it's okay not to work, you'll get money anyway. Having a job and earning a wage/salary is supposed to be a good thing. It's supposed to benefit you more than not having a job. So what do we do with those who don't if we fill every position available?

    I, for one, like the idea of communal work.

  10. #69

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    Ah well ok now that, that's cleared up and being on the doll all your life and letting the state provide for you while you sit on your big backside drinking booze and smoking fags and living a better lifestyle than those that do work with free healthcare, dental and all the rest of the package that comes with it and a free car what the hell am I doing working. Looks like I'm going to quit now and resort to this as Earthling thinks that it is acceptable, oh and if anyone asks I'm doing this because it's my choice of lifestyle and I'm better off than all of you because I don't do anything Cheers bye
    Quote Originally Posted by Earthling View Post
    I don't care that so-and-so down the road hasn't worked a day in his life but has a bigger TV than me, faster broadband or more-Designer label shoes than I have, even though I've worked all my life. That is their choice, this is mine.

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    Quote Originally Posted by alexbillbridgnorth View Post
    Ah well ok now that, that's cleared up and being on the doll all your life and letting the state provide for you while you sit on your big backside drinking booze and smoking fags and living a better lifestyle than those that do work with free healthcare, dental and all the rest of the package that comes with it and a free car what the hell am I doing working. Looks like I'm going to quit now and resort to this as Earthling thinks that it is acceptable, oh and if anyone asks I'm doing this because it's my choice of lifestyle and I'm better off than all of you because I don't do anything Cheers bye
    I didn't say it was acceptable, I said that which you quoted, 'I don't care etc'.

    Please, if you're going to enter into a debate, put words into anyone else's mouth, but not mine.

  12. #71

    tmcd35's Avatar
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    @AlexBillbridgenorth,

    It's not a case of acceptability, and with respect I've tried to suggest that maybe you've identified the right problem but are looking at the wrong solution. I firmly believe what you are describing is a social services and education issue rather than a benefits issue. Nobody can design a welfare system that can't be cheated in some way.

    Besides what @Earthling was saying mirrors my very first comment - we have 2.5 million unemployed. 900,000 of those are considered "long term" - they've been unemployed for more than 1 year.

    While the current benefits system isn't perfect, the problems you are describing are based elsewhere. Seriously the alternative to the Welfare State is Victorian England. A return to the slums.

    Yes it's wrong they are sitting on the back sides drinking booze all day - but there isn't the jobs for the 1.5 million who do want them, let alone the 900,000 who don't.

    I'm sure if we needed and could afford an extra 2.5million street cleaners then the jobs market would reflect that.

    And again, are we suggesting that all 900,000 long term unemployed are feckless? Just how big a problem do you think this is anyway?

  13. Thanks to tmcd35 from:

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  14. #72

    LosOjos's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by alexbillbridgnorth View Post
    Ah well ok now that, that's cleared up and being on the doll all your life and letting the state provide for you while you sit on your big backside drinking booze and smoking fags and living a better lifestyle than those that do work with free healthcare, dental and all the rest of the package that comes with it and a free car what the hell am I doing working. Looks like I'm going to quit now and resort to this as Earthling thinks that it is acceptable, oh and if anyone asks I'm doing this because it's my choice of lifestyle and I'm better off than all of you because I don't do anything Cheers bye
    Very mature response...

    If I wanted to, I could get signed off work with stress, then play on depression symptoms and get signed off for longer, hell I could probably find enough "unprovable" (or at least extremely difficult to prove) illnesses to make sure I never work again and live off the state. [EDIT: this is not meant to belittle those who suffer with depression (I have done myself) but to point out that I could do this]

    However, I won't do that because I believe that life is better this way. Yeah I moan about my job and daydream of that big lottery win, but I'd sooner do this until the day I drop than become a benefit thief; it was the way I was raised.

    The simple fact is, in any civilised society we have a duty to make sure those neediest within our society can live a decent life when circumstances mean they haven't found things as easy as some of us or simply can't do the things the rest of us can. Yes, some people take advantage of that system, there's no denying it, but you don't punish the majority to stop the minority. And it is a minority, despite what the tabloids would have you believe. It's also not as big a problem as they'd have you believe; approximately 1% of the £200bn total benefits bill is estimated to be lost to benefit cheats.

    I know people keep saying this isn't relevant in this thread but it really is; tax evasion costs this country approximately £32bn per year; or around 16 times more than benefit cheats. Why then do we constantly hear government banging on about benefit cheats when there are bigger problems that are easier to fix? You be the judge.

    TL;DR - don't believe everything you read.
    Last edited by LosOjos; 4th February 2014 at 03:23 PM.

  15. 2 Thanks to LosOjos:

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  16. #73


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    @Garacesh A lot of people are going to feel insulted by a lot of things, and not just on this Forum, before we grow into a society capable of living together in the 21st Century. Deal with it.

    None of us have seen anything yet, compared to the changes that will be upon us in the coming years.

  17. #74

    Garacesh's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Earthling View Post
    @Garacesh A lot of people are going to feel insulted by a lot of things, and not just on this Forum, before we grow into a society capable of living together in the 21st Century. Deal with it.

    None of us have seen anything yet, compared to the changes that will be upon us in the coming years.
    Oh, get out of it @Earthling. A 'deal with it' response would have been acceptable had I said 'That's insulting, that means you're not allowed to say it', but I didn't, did I? In fact, I even mentioned that you raised a valid point at one stage. What I did, was explain maturely why it was insulting, because you're making an assumption on my character that's entirely inaccurate (the character of the others, too, but I can't speak on their behalf).

    With a response like that, you're now just being petty and childish rather than adding to the discussion.

    You have the right to say something that's insulting. I have the right to respond to it. Neither one of our rights takes away the others'. "Deal with it" is selfish justification for self-centred behaviour.
    Last edited by Garacesh; 4th February 2014 at 03:41 PM.

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    Good point I suppose I read what I thought you where trying to get across but it does almost seem like you are sticking up for the people that cheat the system the problem is if you don't care and everyone had this attitude people will continue to cheat the system. The only way to get voices heard and act upon those that do this kind of thing is to speak loudly about what you believe in so people will hear. Anyway you have got a point I do think myself what's the point in caring about issues like this if nothing ever gets done to prevent these problems. It's a hard battle I am for and againsed it but I will just say one last thing that I said in a previous comment.
    Explain why Steven Hawking can go on and do great things and work all his life but these other people can't, even when your severely disabled if he can do it so can MOST people, it's whether or not you choose to!

    Quote Originally Posted by Earthling View Post
    I didn't say it was acceptable, I said that which you quoted, 'I don't care etc'.

    Please, if you're going to enter into a debate, put words into anyone else's mouth, but not mine.



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