Wednesday, 10 April 2013


Never in the field of .... oh sorry wrong Tory :)

There has been a hell of a lot of shite posted on the webs since the news that Maggie had died, as usual the Tory led press lapdogs are busy rewriting history to make her the reincarnation of Churchill and the Labour press are burning her in effigy and publicising the spontaneous street parties that sprung up on the news breaking.

As usual in these cases, the truth falls somewhere in between, as someone who lived through the Thatcher years and was one of "Maggies Millions" for 5 of them I had an understandable hatred of the woman, but as a fair minded individual (yes I am - so shut up, its just that the current set of Nazis get me annoyed) I reassessed my opinion and did my research....

So lets take a look at some of the myths, untruths and facts shall we ?
My comments as always in Yellow

1. She supported the retention of capital punishment - I dont have a problem with this one, in fact bring it back ....please

2. She destroyed the country's manufacturing industry - mmm as someone who worked in manufacturing before a factory closure, I remember the "Closed Shop", "Restrictive Practices" and petty abuse of power by the unions, I dont think the blame can be laid ENTIRELY at Maggies feet here ...

3. She voted against the relaxation of divorce laws - OK thats a bad one but then again on reflection, since then, how many men have been bankrupted and prevented from seeing their kids under the new laws, Legislation is a 2 edged sword - it cuts both ways

4. She abolished free milk for schoolchildren - this was an anachronism left over from the second world war when milk was not freely available, at the time of abolition you could walk into any corner shop and buy fresher milk than was served in my school, so on reflection this was a good call.

5. She supported more freedom for business (and look how that turned out) - I refer you to my answer to point 2, this point is just the flipside of that one.

6. She gained support from the National Front in the 1979 election by pandering to the fears of immigration - OMG so she was a politician then?  Do I need to list the people that followed her into office who did exactly the same thing and continue to do it to this day ? (both in and out of power) ... a silly point  methinks

7. She gerrymandered local authorities by forcing through council house sales, at the same time preventing councils from spending the money they got for selling houses on building new houses (spending on social housing dropped by 67% in her premiership) - a 50/50 one this, she gave people the right to buy their homes from the council - thats a good thing, but the money raised was not used to build more houses - thats a bad thing and led to the present situation... but again lets be fair, at the time it was a massive recession caused by multiple factors so where did this money go ? I would suggest it propped up various initiatives in leiu of the missing taxes (see point 8) .. this point needs more investigation and deserves a blog post on its own but lets put this down as a black mark, thats 1 out of 7 so far for those keeping count.

8. She was responsible for 3.6 million unemployed - the highest figure and the highest proportion of the workforce in history and three times the previous government. Massaging of the figures means that the figure was closer to 5 million - slippery slope here, cant argue with figures can we ?  well yes we can and again this one deserves its own post, but lets rewrite the rewrite shall we first, massaging of figures only started towards the end of her last term and was one of the reasons she was ousted. and as for directly responsible, there was a long recession (ironically NOT caused by the government) which can be partially blamed for this as well, but in the interests of balance lets give her a black mark for this as well thats 2 out of 8

9. She ignored intelligence about Argentinian preparations for the invasion of the Falkland Islands and scrapped the only Royal Navy presence in the islands - a blatant untruth this time, HMS Endeavour, I believe the ship was called was the only Royal Navy presence in the area and she was a research ship with NO OFFENSIVE ARMAMENT !! - so why not save the lives of its crew by pulling them out of the line of fire once it became apparent it was all going down the shitter?  and baring in mind that one set of FACTS this point is disproved, because if she was ignoring intelligence about the build up then why recall the ship ? - you cant have it both ways

10. The poll tax - YEP definate black mark thats 3

11. She presided over the closure of 150 coal mines; we are now crippled by the cost of energy, having to import expensive coal from abroad - for part 1 of this point, I think a certain Mr Scargill must share equal blame in this one or has the compiler of this list forgotten "Flying Pickets" of miners being sent to other industries to blockade them? and as for part 2 that is just a consequence of part 1, the real tragedy of this is the poor miners and their families caught in the middle, they were the only losers in the end, because I never saw a Union leader going hungry or signing on.

12. She compared her "fight" against the miners to the Falklands War - did she ? I dont remember this but I'm prepared to concede she said it, but why list this, its not a criticism ?

13. She privatised state monopolies and created the corporate greed culture that we've been railing against for the last 5 years - just like any Tory does, then old labour would come along and nationalise it

14. She introduced the gradual privatisation of the NHS - NO this one is a BLATANT untruth I should subtract a point here for such an obvious lie - lets not rewrite history OK ?

15. She introduced financial deregulation in a way that turned city institutions into avaricious money pits - she introduced financial deregulation, human greed did the rest, cant lay blame here

16. She pioneered the unfailing adoration and unquestioning support of the USA - NO NO and again NO, the person writing the initial list obviously has a problem with America, but forgets the "Cold War" the west was in at the time. and in fact there are documented cases where Maggie stood up to Reagan and forced him to change his policy, just as allies do then present a united front.

17. She allowed the US to place nuclear missiles on UK soil, under US control - Yes she did as part of the strategic defence of Europe

18. Section 28 - wow your really digging deep here, this was a bad piece of legislation granted. that makes it  4 out of 18

19. She opposed anti-apartheid sanctions against South Africa and described Nelson Mandela as "that grubby little terrorist" - another 50/50 one here, yes I believe sanctions imposed on South Africa caused the positive change we see today, but I also believe that Mandela WAS a terrorist he and his followers used the same playbook as the IRA and expanded upon it, however no side in that mess had clean hands.

20. She support the Khmer Rouge in Cambodia and sent the SAS to train their soldiers - at the time EVERYBODY supported them and their fight against a communist government, the truth only percolated out later.

21. She allowed the US to bomb Libya in 1986, against the wishes of more than 2/3 of the population - and when TB and his cronies decided to invade Iraq against the same odds and Parliaments wishes ?  how is that different ? ...this is what governments with a large majority do. as for the bombings they were retaliation for Lockerbie ... and as history proved,  for once the US hit the correct target.

22. She opposed the reunification of Germany - an opinion, nothing more from someone who lived through one world war (WW2) and studied history,EVERYBODY was nervous about German reunification, this was a country remember that had plunged the entire world into war twice in less than 30 years

23. She invented Quangos - Jobs for the boys every political party does it and some quangos did good work, some bad just like any branch of the civil service.... I dont see the implied criticism in this point.

24. She increased VAT from 8% to 17.5% - Nope an untruth again heres the figures to prove it

Standard UK VAT Rate from 1979 to 1991
  • 18/06/1979 to 18/03/1991 – 15 %
Standard UK VAT Rate from 1991 to 2008
  • 19/03/1991 to 30/11/2008 – 17.5 %
Standard UK VAT Rate from 2008 to 2009
  • 01/12/2008 to 31/12/2009 – 15 %

25. She had the lowest approval rating of any post-war Prime Minister - what lower than Gordon Brown ? - I find that one hard to believe as well, but again its not a valid criticism so lets disregard this one as well

26. Her post-PM job? Consultant to Philip Morris tobacco at $250,000 a year, plus $50,000 per speech - Yep this ones true, but so what, why is it a criticism to bring up her job AFTER her political career ended ?

27. The Al Yamamah contract - The government offered "sweeteners" to a foreign country to order British aircraft rather than US ones and safeguard the future of British Aerospace  now come on you cant have it both ways, you cant blame Maggie for the loss of industry on one hand and then criticise her for safeguarding one part of it on the other ...Pick ONE.

28. She opposed the indictment of Chile's General Pinochet - NO again a bending of the truth, she opposed the extraditon of Pinochet to Spain to face trial (as did old George W.) preferring that he face trial in his own country.

29. Social unrest under her leadership was higher than at any time since the General Strike - mm a massive recession, unions stirring the pot, 3 million + people with nothing to do and a reasonably free press to spread the word ... however a fair point I suppose ..that makes it  5 out of 29

30. She presided over interest rates increasing to 15% - actually they went up to 17% at one pont - go on I'll allow this one as well 6 out of 30

31. BSE - The first confirmed animal to fall ill with the disease occurred in 1986 in the United Kingdom, so you can have a point for that as well 8/31

32. She presided over 2 million manufacturing job losses in the 79-81 recession - it was a recession, places close but OK lets allow this one as well 9/32

33. She opposed the inclusion of Eire in the Northern Ireland peace process - a mistake to be sure 10/33

34. She supported sanctions-busting arms deals with South Africa - I refer you to my replies to points 19 and 27 as this point is just a rehash of them....

35. Cecil Parkinson, Alan Clark, David Mellor, Jeffrey Archer, Jonathan Aitkin - they are all lying scumbags, your point being ?

36. Crime rates doubled under Thatcher - gee 3 million unemployed and a recession wonder why this happened ... but OK lets allow it  11/36

37. Black Wednesday – Britain withdraws from the ERM and the pound is devalued. Cost to Britain - £3.5 billion; profit for George Soros - £1 billion - yep but history shows that withdrawing was the correct decision  despite the short term pain it caused.

38. Poverty doubled while she opposed a minimum wage - it was a recession for christs sake I cant keep giving points for the same thing stated over and over again.

39. She privatised public services, claiming at the time it would increase public ownership. Most are now owned either by foreign governments (EDF) or major investment houses. The profits don’t now accrue to the taxpayer, but to foreign or institutional shareholders. - Another one that needs it own post, but lets be accurate she presided over the privatisation of Gas, Electricity and Water, but was opposed to Railway privatisation (that was John Majors doing)  but you can have a point for the whole misguided policy 12/39

40. She cut 75% of funding to museums, galleries and other sources of education - better this than what the currect bunch of Nazis are doing .. but have a point for this one as well 13/40

41. In the Thatcher years the top 10% of earners received almost 50% of the tax remissions - and were taxed at 90% so fairs fair, no point here

42. 21.9% inflation - at the time nobody could control this ... but have a point 14/42

So out of 42 criticisms raised on this list only 14 are valid really, not a bad result for the Iron Lady

I still hate what she did to me and many others during those years, but I'd take her premiership over the current bunch of Nazis any day of the week and twice on Sundays, so comparing like with like I'm prepared to say rest in peace Maggie, you weren't all bad domestically, and you were the last of our great International leaders, we shall never see your like again.


Saturday, 23 February 2013

FUCKWITS ARE US ..or how Osborne cocked up the economy

Congratulations are due to the fuckwit pictured here ...

He has taken a minor recession (and it was a minor one - see earlier post on how it was blown out of all proportion for propaganda purposes) and turned it into a disaster.

here's the article with as usual my comments in Yellow.

UK's credit rating downgraded from AAA to AA1 by Moody's

George Osborne says decision is 'stark reminder of the debt problems facing our country' well if we have a "debt problem" you caused it dickhead...

George Osborne has insisted Britain will not "run away" from its problems after Moody's downgraded the country's AAA credit rating.
The chancellor said the coalition was determined to stick by its plan for economic recovery after the rating was lowered by a notch to AA1. OMG the mans an idiot !
The agency warned that "subdued" growth prospects and a "high and rising debt burden" were weighing on the economy. But Osborne said the loss of the gold-plated status did not mean the government should change course. Despite the keeping of the AAA rating being the stated purpose of these austerity measures when they were introduced ..I have a long memory Georgy boy
"Tonight we have a stark reminder of the debt problems facing our country – and the clearest possible warning to anyone who thinks we can run away from dealing with those problems," he said. The debt problems YOU created you twit.
"Far from weakening our resolve to deliver our economic recovery plan, this decision redoubles it. Will someone in the Nazi Tory party with a grain of sense please sack this moron
"We will go on delivering the plan that has cut the deficit by a quarter, and given us record low interest rates and record numbers of jobs." Which country is this guy living in because its sure isn't Britain .. or put another way thats 3 lies inaccurate statements in one line a new Nazi Tory record :)
The statement from Moody's highlights the problems the weak medium-term economic outlook poses for deficit reduction plans.
It now expects the "period of sluggish growth" to "extend into the second half of the decade". mm I wonder why THAT is ... I'll tell you what lets take a little lesson in common sense here ...
If one millionaire is given £1000 or 10 Poor families are given £100 each, who is more likely to spend that money immediately ? ... in that one question can be seen what is wrong with the current poilcy.
"The main driver underpinning Moody's decision to downgrade the UK's government bond rating to AA1 is the increasing clarity that, despite considerable structural economic strengths, the UK's economic growth will remain sluggish over the next few years due to the anticipated slow growth of the global economy and the drag on the UK economy from the ongoing domestic public and private sector deleveraging process," the agency said.  Huh ? say what now.. see Iceland for how it can be fixed in less than 2 years
"Moody's says that the country's current economic recovery has already proven to be significantly slower – and believes that it will likely remain so – compared with the recovery observed after previous recessions, such as those of the 1970s, early 1980s and early 1990s." .. could that be that in those recessions we had a chancellor who knew his arse from his elbow ?
Osborne said: "As the rating agency says, Britain faces huge challenges at home from the debts built up over many, many years, and it is made no easier by the very weak economic situation in Europe. Debts built up by the very people whose profits you are protecting George
"Crucially for families and businesses, they say that 'the UK's creditworthiness remains extremely high' thanks in part to a 'strong track record of fiscal consolidation' and our 'political will'. Read as we are living on a reputation built up by people who knew how an economy works
"They also make it absolutely clear that they could downgrade the UK's credit rating further in the event of 'reduced political commitment to fiscal consolidation'.
"We are not going to run away from our problems, we are going to overcome them."
The downgrade is a major blow for Osborne, who has been coming under increasing pressure to take action to stimulate the economy.
The chancellor has used maintaining the top credit rating for governmentbonds as one of the key arguments for the austerity programme.
However, Labour has insisted that withdrawing demand from the economy has put it more at risk by stunting growth.

Now is this guy the bloody idiot he appears to be, or is there some deeper hidden agenda here ?

Something to ponder methinks


Thursday, 21 February 2013

Tory Genocide 2.0 ..we've worked the kinks out now

Tory Genocide 2.0 ..we've worked the kinks out now .. or put another way, they have taken all your appeal rights away, cut funding to the only people that could help you and passed the buck down to an already overstretched department ... don't believe me ? on

Thanks to the Ilegal site for this one at the bottom of page

The DWP has already worked out how to 
say 'NO' to 
your PIP claim!.....

Can you believe this?...

An eagle eyed ilegal member has obtained a leaked letter sourced from the DWP which shows how eager they appear to be in breaking the bad news to thousands of vulnerable and disabled potential Personal Independence Payment claimants that they won't be getting a single penny....

On the side of caution we've pipped them to the post by safely downloading the letter before it disappears from where it currently appears on the DWP's internet at this address .  We've replicated the opening paragraph of the callous 5 page letter which the DWP is plotting to sending out to what will be many bitterly disappointed claimants....

Here it is: 

Mr David Smith 
18 Blackpool Road 

Warbreck House 
Warbreck Hill Road 
FY2 0YJ 
Telephone: 0845 0850 3322 
Textphone: 0845 601 6677 

07 January 2013 

Personal Independence Payment 
Your Personal Independence Payment Decision

Dear Mr Jones 

Thank you for your claim for Personal Independence Payment. 
I’ve considered all the information about your conditions and how they affect you as identified in: 

• the "How your disability affects you" form 
• the information provided by the health professional consultation report 
• the information provided by Jobcentre Plus

I’ve decided you’re not entitled to Personal Independence Payment from XX Month YYYY I realise you have a disability or health condition and receiving this decision isn’t the news you were hoping for. 

letter continues here -

The DWP gears up to the next generation of 'computer says no' letters....

The letter sent out to a mythical & unlucky 'Mr David Smith' from a heartless DWP decision - maker who proudly puts the name 'Mrs Sarah Smith' to the 'bad news' letter was apparently drafted on the 7th January 2013; well before the new Personal Independence Regulations come in to effect on the 8th April 2013.

It is notable that the letter only makes mention of information coming from a 'healthcare professional consultation report'; a strong indicator that the DWP will ONLY be considering more of the same highly controversial computer based evidence reports from the DWP's contracted healthcare assessors, principally Atos healthcare who have won a £400 million pound contract (alongside Capita) to assess claimants for the new payment.  

The DWP notifications also informs the claimant that they will no longer be able to go straight to an independent tribunal to have the decision overturned; instead they will have to wait for the DWP to consider the claim again - a process which could take many months as no statutory time limit is applied to the hard pushed department who are already struggling to cope with thousands of Employment & Support Allowance claims as part of the government's mass reassessment of over 2.6 million incapacity claims.  the new legislation is introduced to coincide with serious cut backs in funding to advice agencies who previously assisted benefit claimants with soon to be abolished state funded help in dealing with what are often highly complex disability claims.

Is it really any wonder that the disabled live in absolute fear when the DWP's mindset is so obviously focussed on refusing them their benefits before anyone has so much has even made a single claim? 

Read more:

I did warn you this was coming, keep sleeping oh you happy sheep because they are coming for you and yours once they've solved the "disabled problem" with their new updated for the new millenium "Final Solution" , the Nazis march on


Wednesday, 13 February 2013


This is one of Ian Duncan Smiths despicable henchman

his name is Mark Hoban

This is the full text of his response to yesterdays court ruling

as ever my comments in yellow

The Minister for Employment (Mark Hoban MP): The Court of Appeal has today ruled that the Government’s back-to-work schemes do not breach Article 4 of the European Convention on Human Rights.
Whilst the judgment supports the principle and policy of our employment schemes, and acknowledges the care and resources we have dedicated to implementing them, the Court of Appeal has ruled that the Jobseeker’s Allowance (Employment, Skills and Enterprise) Regulations 2011 (“the ESE Regulations”) do not describe the employment schemes to which they apply, as is required by the primary legislation.
The Court of Appeal has therefore held the ESE Regulations to be ultra vires and quashed them.
Well at least he acknowledges the courts authority
We are seeking permission to appeal against the Court of Appeal’s judgment and, if permission is granted, we will take our case to the Supreme Court. As we are currently seeking permission to appeal, claimants who have already served a sanction will not be able to appeal on the basis of the Court’s decision until our appeal is heard.
But he doesn't agree with it and is stamping his tiny feet that he cant have it all his own way and is now trying to be appealing (I know awful joke - but I'm allowed one) - and then we get to the important part .. as the government is seeking to appeal (only seeking, the appeal is not actually lodged) the poor sanctioned people can not get their rightfull money back, 
mm sounds like more Tory dodging to me 
We are considering a range of options to ensure we do not have to repay these sanctions.
And if we dont win the appeal or are refused the right to appeal, then we are going to change the law so we dont have to give this stolen money back
Today we intend to lay new regulations which will come into force immediately and enable us to continue to refer Jobseekers Allowance claimants to our employment schemes and to provide the best chance for people to find employment.
and we are going to enact new rules immediately so we can go on stealing from you

Its amazing how fast legislation and rule changes can be passed when something goes against these bastards aint it ?
Yet the DWP/Atos scandal continues to kill 26 people per week at the last count and it still gets endlessly debated and reported on and nothing gets done...
I would say double standards if I thought the condems had any standards
Instead I'll just say bastards and leave it at that


Tuesday, 12 February 2013

THE LAW SAYS WE'RE WRONG ..thats OK we'll just change the law

This young lady's name is Cait Reilly ttoday the high court ruled on appeal in her favour ...

A Judgment that has profound consequences for anybody collecting unemployment or sickness benefits ..

The Story of the ruling is set below ...

From that champion of free speech with no political bias whatsoever ..The Daily Fail

Taxpayers 'facing multi-million pound compensation bill' as judges rule back-to-work schemes are unlawful in Poundland test case

  • Cait Reilly has won her Court of Appeal claim that requiring her to work for free at a Poundland discount store was unlawful

  • She and unemployed HGV driver Jamieson Wilson, from Nottingham, both succeeded in their claims

  • The ruling will not affect the schemes’ existence but will mean the way in which they are written and enforced will need to change

  • Lawyers say today's ruling could mean those whose benefits were stripped for refusing part in back-to-work schemes could now reclaim them

  • But DWP say it is 'adamant there are no grounds for repayment'

A university graduate has today won her Court of Appeal claim that requiring her to work for free at a Poundland discount store was unlawful.
Cait Reilly was backed by three judges in London who ruled that the regulations under which most of the Government’s back-to-work schemes were created are unlawful and quashed them. 
But they disagreed with a comparison to the programmes as 'slave labour', and found that participation in the schemes does not breach human rights. 
However, lawyers say today's ruling could mean thousands who had their benefits stripped for refusing to take part in the programme - designed to help the unemployed gain skills through training and unpaid work - could now reclaim them at a multi-million pound cost to the taxpayer.

Today Miss Reilly, 24, from Birmingham, and 40-year-old unemployed HGV driver Jamieson Wilson, from Nottingham, both succeeded in their claims that the unpaid schemes were legally flawed.
Their solicitors said later the ruling means 'all those people who have been sanctioned by having their jobseekers’ allowance withdrawn for non-compliance with the back-to-work schemes affected will be entitled to reclaim their benefits.'
Today’s ruling was made by Lord Justice Pill, Lady Justice Black and Sir Stanley Burnton.
In November 2011, Miss Reilly had to leave her voluntary work at a local museum and work unpaid at the Poundland store in Kings Heath, Birmingham, under a scheme known as the 'sector-based work academy.'
She was told that if she did not carry out the work placement she would lose her jobseeker’s allowance.
For two weeks she stacked shelves and cleaned floors.

Mr Wilson, a qualified mechanic, was told that he had to work unpaid, cleaning furniture for 30 hours a week for six months, under a scheme known as the Community Action Programme.
He objected to doing unpaid work that was unrelated to his qualifications and would not help him re-enter the jobs market.
He refused to participate and as a result was stripped of his jobseeker’s allowance for six months. 
After the ruling Public Interest Lawyers, who represent Ms Reilly and Mr Wilson, said the Court of Appeal’s unanimous decision was a 'huge setback for the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP), whose flagship reforms have been beset with problems since their inception'.
They said that 'until new regulations are enacted with proper parliamentary approval, nobody can be compelled to participate on the schemes.'
Solicitor Tessa Gregory, said: 'Today’s judgment sends Iain Duncan Smith back to the drawing board to make fresh regulations which are fair and comply with the court’s ruling.
'Until that time nobody can be lawfully forced to participate in schemes affected such as the Work Programme and the Community Action Programme.
'All of those who have been stripped of their benefits have a right to claim the money back that has been unlawfully taken away from them.'
Ms Gregory said: 'The case has revealed that the Department for Work and Pensions was going behind Parliament's back and failing to obtain Parliamentary approval for the various mandatory work schemes that it was introducing.

'It also reveals a lack of transparency and fairness in the implementation of these schemes.
'The claimants had no information about what could be required of them under the back-to-work schemes.
'The Court of Appeal has affirmed the basic constitutional principle that everyone has a right to know and understand why sanctions are being threatened and imposed against them.'
But a DWP spokesperson said it was adamant that there would not be any repayment. 
She added: 'We have no intention of giving back money to anyone who has had their benefits removed because they refused to take getting into work seriously. 
'We are currently considering a range of options to ensure this does not happen.'
Ms Reilly said she was delighted with today's judgment.
'I brought this case because I knew it was wrong when I was prevented from doing my voluntary work in a museum and forced to work in Poundland for free for two weeks as part of a scheme known as the sector based work academy, ' she said.
'Those two weeks were a complete waste of my time as the experience did not help me get a job.
'I wasn't given any training and I was left with no time to do my voluntary work or search for other jobs.
'The only beneficiary was Poundland, a multimillion-pound company. Later I found out that I should never have been told the placement was compulsory.
'I don't think I am above working in shops like Poundland. I now work part time in a supermarket. It is just that I expect to get paid for working.

Read more:
Follow us: @MailOnline on Twitter | DailyMail on Facebook

However it did not take the Government long to respond ....

From the ever despicable Hoban ......

"The court has backed our right to require people to take part in programmes which will help get them into work. It’s ridiculous to say this is forced labour. This ruling ensures we can continue with these important schemes.
"We are however disappointed and surprised at the court's decision on our regulations. There needed to be flexibility so we could give people the right support to meet their needs and get them into a job. We do not agree with the court's judgment and are seeking permission to appeal, but new regulations will be tabled to avoid any uncertainty.
"Ultimately the judgment confirms that it is right that we expect people to take getting into work seriously if they want to claim benefits."

So if they cannot appeal ... they are just going to change the rules to suit themselves then ?

why does this NOT surprise me


Friday, 1 February 2013

I suspected this was coming..

Well I tried to lighten the tone of the blog for a bit, but they wont let me ... this next article has been reblogged from someone far more articulate than me (I just get angry when I find out things like this) so should be easier reading for people of a sensitive disposition.

It does however demonstrate just how low the Nazis in government will sink in denying the disabled and sick their basic rights in this country ... as always my comments in Yellow

My thanks to Kitty S Jones for the writing and Robert Livingstone for the Memes...

shall we begin ?

Section 102 and Schedule 11 of the Welfare Reform Act, (Clause 99) – Power to require revision before appeal. 
If there is anyone left in doubt that this Government’s policies are grossly unfair, and are punishing the most vulnerable of our citizens, whilst the Tories are claiming that they are benevolent and paternalistic, by utilising Orwellian Newspeak/Doublespeak methodology, you need look no further than Clause 99 for evidence to verify my conjecture. Currently, claimants who are found fit for work can continue to receive Employment Support Allowance (ESA) at the basic rate by immediately lodging an appeal if they think the decision is wrong. ESA will then remain in payment until the appeal is decided.

That is all set to change, however, under Clause 99 of the Welfare Reform Bill, intended to be effective  from April 2013. Under the new rules, claimants who wish to challenge a benefits decision – including ESA and DLA decisions – will no longer be allowed to lodge an appeal immediately. Instead, there will be a mandatory revision or review stage, during which a different Department of Work and Pensions (DWP) decision maker will reconsider the evidence and, if necessary, send for more information, before deciding whether to change the original decision. There will be no time limit on how long this process can take. The requirement for a mandatory review/revision before proceeding with appeal applies to all DWP linked benefits. The ludicrous claim from Government is that this “simplifies” the appeal process, and  ”the changes will improve customer service by encouraging people to submit additional evidence earlier in the process to help improve decision making. Resolving any disputes without the need for an appeal will also help ensure that people receive the right decision earlier in the process.” Call me a cynic, but I don’t believe this is the genuine reasoning behind clause 99 at all.
In other words .. They can park you at the "Mandatory revision" phase for as long as it takes the DWP to review your case with their timescales anybody want to bet with their track record that will be 2-3 MONTHS minimum ?
You will also have to appeal directly to HM Courts and Tribunal Services, this is known as “direct lodgement,” as DWP will no longer lodge the appeal on your behalf. DWP has agreed with the Tribunal Procedure Committee to introduce time limits to stipulate how long DWP has to respond to an individual appeal.  DWP is currently discussing what these time limits might be with the Tribunal Procedure Committee. That is assuming, of course, that  people manage to circumnavigate the other  consequences of this legislation.
Well that should drastically cut the number of appeals then as most people will not know how to directly lodge an appeal with the courts (I know I wouldn't) and of course the only avenue to get advice on how to do it (Citizens Advice) has just had its funding cut again and is already overstretched dealing with ESA/DLA 
From 1 April 2013 you will not be able to get legal aid for First-tier Tribunal hearings. Legal aid will still be available for appeals to the Upper Tribunal and higher courts. See  appealing to the upper tribunal against a first tier tribunal decision here: for more information.
And they have withdrawn the right to legal aid as well ... but theres more ...
There are some serious implications and concerns about these changes. Firstly, there is no set time limit for DWP to  undertake and complete the second revision. Secondly, claimants are left with no income at all whilst they await the review, and until appeal. The only choice available seems to be an application for Job Seekers Allowance. (JSA). However, we know that people in situations  where they have been refused ESA have also been refused JSA, incredibly, on the grounds that they are unavailable for work, (and so do not meet the conditions that signing on entails) or they are unfit for work, because they are simply too ill to meet the conditions. We know of people who have had their application for JSA refused because they attend hospital for treatment once a week and so they are “not available for work” at this time.
Furthermore, there is some anecdotal evidence of people being told by DWP that in order to claim JSA, they must first close their original claim for ESA, since it isn’t possible to have two claims for two benefits open at the same time. DWP are also telling people that this means withdrawing their ESA appeal.
I can confirm that there was no risk analysis or risk register in respect of clause 99 of the Welfare Reform Bill. I sent an FOI to DWP that asked about these issues, together with questioning that Clause 99 contains no reference to a time limit on ESA reconsiderations, although it makes them mandatory. I asked :-
1) When is the intended implementation date?
2) As yet no decisions have been made regarding ESA payment levels
during the reconsideration period which could be indefinite. Can
give an assurance that this will be announced BEFORE
3) What data will you collect so that the effects of this
legislation can be accurately analysed subsequently?
4) Where are the risk assessment, impact analysis and risk register
that show the effect this will have on claimants whose benefit
payments could be affected indefinitely?
The response informed that the planned implementation date is April 2013, and “the DWP will conduct a  formal public consultation in line with the Government’s code of practice on consultation. This does not include publishing a risk register or conducting a risk analysis. This is because all aspects of the proposed changes are considered during the consultation process and in the impact assessment and equality impact assessments related to the changes”. There are no plans to introduce a time limit, or to retain payments of basic rate ESA throughout the second revision and leading up to appeal.
Straight from the Horses mouth as you may say .. you "plebs can sit there on hold with no money for as long as we want to keep you there ...
The DWP published consultation document “Mandatory consideration of revision before appeal” that could be accessed via the DWP web site under the heading “Consultations”. The consultation concerned issues relevant to the implementation and operation of the appeals reform provisions in the Welfare Reform Bill and invited comments on the draft regulations. I worked on raising awareness regarding the issues that the Government’s draft raised, as well as prompting and garnering responses to the consultation. I can also confirm that the Government response to the consultation did NOT take into account any of the concerns we raised collectively, in particular, regarding the lack of a time limit on the DWP to produce the mandatory review, and the withdrawal of basic rate ESA to those awaiting the review outcome .
So, the consultation was evidently a sham, nothing more than paying lip service to an increasingly perfunctory democratic process. Given that basic rate ESA is exactly the same amount per week as JSA, we need to ask ourselves why the  Government have withdrawn the ESA safety net for those wanting to appeal DWP decisions that they are fit to work. Why introduce another layer of DWP bureaucracy to the appeal process, and why is it the case that there is need for a second revision, if the first response is based on robust procedure and decision making, and yields accurate and fair outcomes?
Of course we know that the outcomes are neither fair, accurate, or based on robust decision making. We know that some 40% of appeals for ESA were successful in 2011 and that this percentage rose to around 80% when claimants had representation at appeal. That is pretty damning evidence against this Governments’ claims that the system is working, and that many disabled people “can work”.
It’s horrific and true that Clause 99 has been introduced to make appealing wrongful decisions that we are fit for work almost impossible. Sick and disabled people are effectively being silenced by this Government, and the evidence of a brutal, de-humanising, undignified and grossly unfair system of “assessment” is being hidden. More than 10,600 people have died because of the current system, and it is terrifying that our Government have failed to address this. Instead, they have made the system even more brutal, de-humanising and unfair. Clause 99 is simply an introduction of obstructive andKafkaesque bureaucracy to obscure the evidence of this. This Government is oppressive, repressive and certainly bears all of the hallmark characteristics of authoritarianism.
We need to be pressuring for the introduction of a  time limit (on both legal and humanitarian grounds) as currently there is none. I did enquire to see if DWP had any internal rules or guidelines yet regarding a time limit but so far they have not. We also need to be pressuring for basic rate ESA to continue. That was a major part of the consultation response, too.  Meanwhile, legal challenges to this unfair and totally unacceptable addition to the Welfare Reform Bill will be going ahead.

Government’s response to the public consultation

The DWP published a short Mandatory consideration of revision before appeal – Government interim response to public consultation which stated that the Department did not propose to make any significant changes to the draft regulations included in the consultation document as a result of the comments received.
The Government’s final response to the consultation included the following:
  • There is to be no time limit for the completion of mandatory reconsideration of decisions.
  • No decision has yet been made with regard to paying ESA pending reconsideration but other benefits may be available to claimants where ESA has been disallowed.
  • It was confirmed that housing benefit and council tax benefit will not be included in the mandatory reconsideration process.
  • Where a person makes a late application for revision, the Department will be removing the requirement that an application for revision cannot be granted unless it has merit, and removing the regulation which requires that, in deciding whether an extension of time is reasonable, the decision maker cannot take into account the fact that the individual misunderstood the law or was ignorant that they could request reconsideration.
In considering a late application for revision, the decision maker will look at whether it is reasonable to grant the application for an extension of time, and what the circumstances were that meant that the application could not be made within the one month time limit.
The decision maker will still consider whether an any time revision can be made, or whether the decision should be superseded when considering a late application for revision as they do now.
Where a request for reconsideration is made out of time, and the decision maker refuses the application to revise the original decision, the effect of the draft regulations is that there can be no appeal as the Secretary of State must consider whether to revise the decision before an appeal can be made.

You really couldn't make this up .. I have gone past amazement, into incredulity then past that into anger about this Governments policies and yet the General Public remains blissfully asleep while these Nazi Bastards practise GENOCIDE on our disabled population...

I despair ..I really do

JD :(