Government spending (Photo credit: 401(K) 2013)
I thank Dr Alf for reblogging the Guardian article entitled “Too much, too fast: the government’s ‘welfare revolution’ starts to unwind”. Personally, I feel that the Government has not fully grasped both the context and the reality of welfare in the UK. Let me try to clarify.
Welfare reform is not so much unravelling as being undertaken by people who have little grasp of basic economics and even less understanding of human nature and the mental processes of benefit recipients.
Since 1946, some 67 years ago, we have had 1.4% economic growth which is less than the 3% required for full employment.
Since 1982, under Margaret Thatcher, we have had a balance of trade deficit financed out of nothing more than smoke and mirrors which means we are not making enough or exporting enough of the things that people want to sell our way out of trouble and create jobs.
Our school system, at state level, is turning out people who in 1 case in 5 cannot read, cannot write and cannot communicate and the system is 44th in the world and falling further and further behind.
Employers, increasingly are hiring foreign workers because ours are not as well qualified, are unmotivated, lazy, afflicted with a desire to always be on holiday and are obese,unproductive and inefficient.
This applies to 85% of jobs and is not helped by the fact that UK worker productivity is 16% below the average for the G7 making British workers a bad choice for many employers. This is apart from automation, robotics, 3D printing, BPO, the rise of China, expert systems and AI all of which are developments which ensure that jobs, once gone, will never come back.
The welfare reforms are based on the idea that people can be forced back to work, when in reality there are 45 applicants for each job just based on the official unemployment figures, plus NEETS and the incapacitated which is a total of about 6 million people (2.5 million officially unemployed, 2.5 million incapacitated following ATOS ORIGIN work capability assessments and 1 million NEETS).
On top of these figures, there are a further 6 million economically inactive and economically discouraged,1 million more in training schemes, 1 million forced off the register for not actively seeking work and a further 2 million in other categories listed in the Benefits Computer which is the true repository of the real employment situation.
The Government has no strategy to :
–Control immigration and in fact wants more of it by getting Turkey and the Ukraine to join the EU,something which would take our population to 100 million and ensure that no ordinary UK citizen from the indigenous population,especially if they were unemployed,got a job
–Improve language training and employability via a trade for those who will never work whilst they remain in this country (applicable to at least 50% of school leavers and most of the unemployed and real/bogus incapacity benefit recipients)
–Increase inward investment
–Change the tax regime to bring money hidden offshore back to the UK where it can be invested to create employment and increase exporting
–Improve State Education to global best in breed levels so that our youngsters can compete in the global jobs market
The present welfare reforms are failing because these elements are not in place and Universal Credit will fail because benefit recipients do not know how to budget and will as all the Duncan -Smith pilots have shown, that rent arrears will ensue because all the Universal Credit will have been spent on drink, drugs,cigarettes, food and living expenses.
None of this will improve under a Miliband administration either or under a scheme run by Liam Byrne because no-one in the Westminster establishment is prepared to discuss the facts I have outlined, take on the teaching profession who are failing school leavers and the country and have the tough conversations needed with bosses, trades unionists, the public, the NHS and civil servants, local authorities, the banks and the COE about the measures required to fix the situation.
The Guardian is accurately reporting the Coalition’s failures but does not advance the necessary measures nor analysis.