What an absolute disgrace is the Universal Credit policy of this cruel, inept and downright callous Conservative – DUP Government.
But is it a policy that really surprises us?
The answer of course is no we’re not.
The Conservative – DUP policies have sentenced families and individuals to a state of indescribable poverty.
The reality for thousands of people in the United Kingdom is that the current Government under Theresa May have been sentenced to a life of destitution and desperation and what is even worse – they – the Government – don’t bloody well care.
Perhaps the saddest thing about this issue is that millions of people in the UK share the view of the Government and also – because it doesn’t directly affect them or their families – also don’t care.
What is incredible is how quickly people have forgotten the raft of austerity Welfare Cuts – as they were called – that were made by the Cameron Government and which accepted by millions of people because of course it wasn’t applicable to them.
Aimed as it was or so we were expected to believe at the shiftless and feckless skivers who were sponging off the state when in reality the impact, just as the Universal Credit policy does is on people who are working, either full time and increasingly part time for low wages.
Who an earth – or perhaps more importantly – how callous and uncaring do you have to be to even think of a policy that prevents people from putting food on the table to feed their children or to keep a roof over their heads.
The answer is of course that you need to be a Conservative or Democratic Unionist Party Member of Parliament
Which brings back to the Universal Credit Debate.
Anyone who watched and listened to the debate would not be blamed for wondering just what planet the Government were on but it did raise in my mind a number of questions.
The first is around the stories of difficulties people are facing as related by their Labour, Liberal Democrat, SNP and Green Party Members of Parliament.
They were powerful and distressing which as we have now come to expect – and sadly it seems accept – were met with cat calling, sniggering and derision from the Conservative Government.
Why do the opposition let them get away with it ?
Surely the policy is affecting Conservative MP constituents?
And yes I know there is a ‘protocol’ – a gentleman’s agreement – that MPs should not speak about or on behalf of other MPs constituents but for f*** sake we are talking here about a policy that is seeing children starving, people losing their homes and having to go into bed and breakfast, older people not being able to heat their homes and worse still people – OUR PEOPLE – committing suicide.
Bugger the protocol.
What should be happening is that the opposition should nominate and publish the names of a contact in every Conservative MPs constituency who will take up the fight on behalf of families who are suffering from the impact of Universal Credit.
That information should then be sent to their parties in Westminster and used in future debates.
Let’s see for example the Conservative Member for Newton Abbott or Northampton South – or the Prime Minister and her Cabinet – mock-scoff-and-throw-buns, snigger and jeer when an opposition MP starts to relate a story about one of their constituents.
As I have said – Bugger protocols – people are dying.
A second thought that listening to the Universal Credit debate brought to mind was that of the lameness and ridiculousness of the Conservative excuse that because they abstained and didn’t take part in the vote – which was won 299 – 0 – it wasn’t binding.
Apart from being ridiculous it wasn’t true because one Government MP, Dr Sarah Wollaston the Conservative MP for Totnes did have the courage to stand up for her constituents and voted.
She may have been in a minority of one but she is a member of the coalition Government and therefore the argument that the vote wasn’t binding because the whole Government – including the DUP – abstained is patently false.
Beside which of course ‘abstaining’ is a choice and in politics the options are simple, For, Against or Abstain.
Perhaps a future Government will ban the option to abstain?
Now wouldn’t that make it interesting – forcing politicians who would be on record for all time having voted for or against and no longer being able to be mealy mouthed about it when looking for votes by claiming – “I didn’t vote against”, or “I didn’t vote for” – neglecting to say because I abstained.
In May 1991 the then Conservative Chancellor of the Exchequer Norman Lamont said,
“Rising unemployment and the recession has been the price that we have had to pay to get inflation down,” and that it was a “price well worth paying.”
Substitute “deficit” for “inflation” and “poverty” for “recession” and we see that Theresa May and Conservatives and their DUP supporters in Westminster believe that,
“Increased poverty is the price that they are prepared to inflict on our people ,” and it is a “price well worth paying.”
The big question is “Do the British people believe it’s a price worth paying”?
I would hope that the majority of people are appalled at seeing families having to resort to begging or apply to ‘food banks’ to feed their children.
My regret and anger is that a vast majority of the British people either simply don’t think about it or just don’t care.
And that is the saddest thing of all.