Universal Credit was always based on a false premise that somehow hardened benefit recipients could be made to behave and budget like careful middle class people.
The concept of reducing 29 separate benefits and transmuting it into one is alluring but the civil servants in the DWP, Lord Freud and Ian Duncan Smith are too far removed from the lives of benefit recipients to understand how these people actually think and live.
Thus welfare policies have always missed the mark. irrespective of whether a strategy was in place or not.
Dr Alf worries about lack of strategy and is right to do so but I think a strategy is there but not for welfare.
The strategy is to encourage mass immigration from poor countries to undertake the jobs that Britons from socio-economic groups C1, C2, D and E refuse to do and to warehouse.
The unemployment figures, which are deliberately massaged, indicate that things are getting better when tax receipts and NI contributions give weight to the lie.
Not enough jobs are being created by the economy and this has been true for the entire period since 1946 as evidenced by our average 1.4% growth rate.
New job creation is overseas in the BRIC and MINT countries.
The rest will be subsumed by robots, automation, expert systems, 3D printing, cybernetics and self replicating machines.
Plutocrats in the UK will and are investing in these developments but not to any great extent in the UK workforce which has effectively been written off although no-one dare say so.