Labour MPs shout down Harman’s proposed support for child tax credit cut

Embattled: Harriet Harman.
Embattled: Harriet Harman.

The Parliamentary Labour Party turned against interim leader Harriet Harman when she called on members to support her claim that they should not oppose the Conservative Government’s plan to cut tax credits, thereby increasing poverty – including child poverty.

At a PLP meeting yesterday, 20 members spoke against her call for the party to abstain on the government’s Welfare Reform and Work Bill next week. Only five supported her refusal to table reasoned amendments.

And it seems likely that she was set to face more anger at a Shadow Cabinet meeting this morning.

According to George Eaton in The New Statesman:

  • Labour whips expect 60-80 MPs to vote against the welfare bill in defiance of Harman’s stance.
  • There was “no consensus on the child tax credit changes”.
  • Harman’s critics will be looking to her replacements for a clear commitment to pursue a different course.

The article states that rebel Andy MacDonald said the Tories’ proposed two-child limit on tax credits was a regression to the days of “Mao Tse-Tung and King Herod”.

And Frank Field, former welfare reform minister and current work and pensions select committee chair, shouted at Harman that Labour had to defend the “three million strivers” who faced losing £1,000 from tax credit cuts.

Harman is said to have warned the meeting that “If we oppose everything, people will not hear those things we are opposing and why”. Clearly, then, she is in favour of the kind of “triangulation” this blog was discussing yesterday. It represents an abandonment of principles – don’t forget that Labour introduced tax credits – that This Blog cannot support.

Harman is also said to have pointed out that Labour voted against 13 social security bills in the last Parliament but that only its rejection of the bedroom tax was noticed. In fact, this is probably over-optimistic. How many times have commenters to this blog and others claimed that Labour MPs sat on their thumbs throughout the whole of the Coalition Parliament and failed to oppose any of the changes? Those people were, of course, absolutely wrongVox Political has chronicled Labour’s opposition to the Tories’ dismantling of social security in considerable detail, but it seems the public prefer a juicy lie to the hard facts.

In fact, this demonstrates very clearly that Labour should oppose more Tory policies. Yes, campaign against the lowering of Employment and Support Allowance, the scrapping of maintenance grants for poor students, the abolition of child poverty targets and tax credit cuts such as the reduction in the income threshold – but don’t abandon children to poverty and destitution; that is not the Labour way.

One thought that is of particular concern to This Writer concerns what will happen to young people who become impoverished as a result of the Tory plan. What will they have to do in order to survive? At a time when child abuse is high on the polical agenda – the inquiry into historical child sex crimes has only just opened – it seems this Conservative Government is opening the door for further such incidents – aided by an interim Labour leader who has faced accusations of her own in regard to such matters.

Doesn’t it?

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22 Thoughts to “Labour MPs shout down Harman’s proposed support for child tax credit cut”

  1. Gary Aronsson

    Anyone who SERIOUSLY wishes to see the British Poor made better off would grasp that the quickest way to reduce their poverty is by placing an IMMEDIATE halt to mass immigration.
    The Working Class have only the scarcity value of their labour to trade in exchange for a wage.By allowing several hundred thousand more people to come into Britain each year we see wages plummet and the price of accommodation skyrocket.
    I am sick and tired of opposition to this being called RACIST,it is simple common sense!
    Had immigration not increased by 1000% a year,and yes that is the figure compared to that from the 1980’s,our present population would be several million less than it is at present.
    We would now have over full employment,wages would be much higher,property prices and rents lower and the Working Class would be a scarce and valuable resource that industry and commerce pursued with rising wages and conditions of employment.
    People should stop pretending that mass immigration serves the British people,it doesn’t,it serves the British Ruling Class!
    And if being opposed to importing ever more cheap scab labour is racist then lets have some racism rather than ever more poverty!
    It is interesting to note that the period in English history which witnessed the greatest decrease in Working Class poverty,the swiftest narrowing in the gap between the Rich and the Poor and the largest amount of social mobility was in the period after the Black Death in the 1350’s.The Working Class had suffered anything between 60 and 80% mortality around Britain and labour became incredibly scarce.Wages skyrocketed despite it being ILLEGAL to offer them,the landowners desperately needed workers to work the land upon which most of the nations wealth was built.The surviving members of the Working Class didn’t need charity from anyone,they saw their wages rise and rents fall!Ask yourself why this scenario would be so awful today!

    1. Mike Sivier

      Fascinating that you have decided to use concern about a cut in child tax credits to attack immigration.

    2. So logically, the poor were better off in the 1930’s, when the population of the country was around 45 million.

      Oh. They weren’t.

      Sorry, try again.

      1. Gary Aronsson

        The price of EVERYTHING is determined by Supply and Demand.I am sorry if this basic economic fact is not to your liking but that does not change it.It follows that if we ALLOW mass immigration then this increases the SUPPLY of labour and results in a fall in its price.A fall in wages inevitably means that those people getting them have less money,they are POORER!
        If you SERIOUSLY wish to see poverty in Britain reduced then you must support the ending of unrestricted mass immigration.Mass immigration also causes a rise in Demand for housing,this results in a rise in its price while wages are at best STATIC,if not actually falling.
        The demand for unrestricted mass immigration is lead by the Ruling Elites dream of having a docile,submissive Working Class which will produce wealth without actually expecting to share it.
        What I find truly amazing is the number of people who expect to see prices fall in the New Year Sales when shops are forced to drop prices because of their having an over SUPPLY yet they can’t grasp that mass immigration has the same effect upon wages in Britain,a drop in the price of labour.
        Why is this very simple and entirely predictable fact constantly refuted by people who like to think of themselves as intelligent? I am not talking about the size of the population but the relative size of the working population and the FACT that we have an ever increasing SUPPLY.How can wages ever increase if the SUPPLY is always rising?
        We would not be talking about poverty in Britain,Benefits levels, housing shortages and high rents IF mass immigration was not a constant factor in our lives.Wealthy people do not get or need BENEFITS,end the cause of this poverty and you remove the need for Working Tax Credits!

    3. Mel Roberts

      Interesting , especially when it can actually be likened to the time before & after The Plague, population wise and the downtroddden way serfs were treated before the population was halved. Less labour about? Payment increases and people have a worth in their own right. Also, the , `Ruling Class` are the only ones who benefit as they buy the houses that they then rent out as the housing crisis bites etc etc. Food for thought.

    4. “The price of EVERYTHING is determined by Supply and Demand”
      Not quite. It is *influenced* by it, but there are various factors involved in causing prices to go up and down, supply and demand is only one dimension of it.

      “I am sorry if this basic economic fact is not to your liking but that does not change it.”
      I have expressed no preference one way or the other. I was merely pointing out the historical evidence that disproves your implied assertion that population size alone will govern the well-being of the poor.

      “It follows that if we ALLOW mass immigration then this increases the SUPPLY of labour and results in a fall in its price.”
      Yes, I am aware that that can happen. But I am also aware that the majority of immigrants are a mixture of people who do necessary work that the native population is not willing to do anyway, and qualified people with skills that the native populace have a shortage of. If these people weren’t covering a lot of necessary work, the economy would contract so dramatically that there would be a massive GDP wind-down and unemployment would surge.

      “A fall in wages inevitably means that those people getting them have less money,they are POORER!”
      Are you another of those Internet foam-at-the-mouths who are under the delusion that littering their sentences with capital letters and exclamation marks will somehow make your comments more definitive? Because I promise you, it doesn’t work. It makes you look like your having a hissy-fit.

      “If you SERIOUSLY wish to see poverty in Britain reduced then you must support the ending of unrestricted mass immigration.”
      Depends on whether immigration is really what’s causing the problem. Current evidence suggests that immigration is actually what kept the economy from lapsing into a full depression in the early years of the last Parliament; because extra people coming in meant more basic sales activity for the service sector. Had there been the kind of collapse that George Osborne almost created with his mindless Austerity, unemployment could have surged past 5 million.

      “Mass immigration also causes a rise in Demand for housing,this results in a rise in its price while wages are at best STATIC,if not actually falling.”
      Yes, but so does mass-ownership of housing by property-hawks.

      “The demand for unrestricted mass immigration is lead by the Ruling Elites dream of having a docile,submissive Working Class which will produce wealth without actually expecting to share it.”
      Possibly.

      Maybe you should be going after the elites and simply demanding they share the wealth out a bit more reasonably. You know, treat the root causes rather than the symptoms?

      “What I find truly amazing is the number of people who expect to see prices fall in the New Year Sales”
      Oh good grief, now he’s banging on about higher-than-expected prices in the January Sales?

      What has any of this got to do… sorry sorry, let me type it in a way that you seem to think is easier to read; –

      WHAT has ANY of THIS got TO do WITH child TAX credit CUTS?!?!?!? (Extra exclamation marks AND question marks included at no extra cost.)

      “Why is this very simple and entirely predictable fact constantly refuted by people who like to think of themselves as intelligent?”
      It isn’t. It’s just that it’s only one of a number of factors, and frequently it plays a far smaller role than anti-immigration obsessives imagine, while also having a positive counter-effect that the anti-immigration obsessives refuse to notice.

      “I am not talking about the size of the population but the relative size of the working population and the FACT that we have an ever increasing SUPPLY. How can wages ever increase if the SUPPLY is always rising?”
      Because all sorts of other factors are brought into play, including state intervention, e.g. the Minimum Wage, and technological advancement. Historically, wages have often gone up alongside population rises. (Given how hopelessly poor most people were in the era of the Black Death, as you cite, and how much better-paid people are today, your argument would suggest that the workforce of Britain must now be tiny compared to then. In fact, it is completely the other way around. Our workforce today numbers something like 50 million, compared with less than 1 million back then.)

      Even allowing for inflation, the average working wage in, say, the late-1970’s was far higher than at the start of the 20th Century, even though the working population by the 70’s was about five million higher. There are loads of factors involved in this, but you are so fixated on one dimension that it blinds you to the vast historical evidence that contradicts you.

      “We would not be talking about poverty in Britain,Benefits levels, housing shortages and high rents IF mass immigration was not a constant factor in our lives.”
      Yes we would.

      “Wealthy people do not get or need BENEFITS,end the cause of this poverty and you remove the need for Working Tax Credits!”
      You don’t think, just for instance, the greed of the rich would be the real cause of this poverty?

      I’m sorry, but while some points you raise are legitimate in isolation, you are making the mistake of *only* looking at them in isolation. There are so many other issues involved in this that immigration only brushes the surface.

      1. Gary Aronsson

        Yet another economically illiterate defence of mass immigration being necessary for THE economy.Well the economy it is necessary for is that of the RICH,each sector of society has a different basic economy and the one that benefits from unrestricted mass immigration is that of the very rich.They employ people,they own property and land and it is they who benefit from rising productivity and static or falling real wages,it is they who benefit from ever rising demand for property and land.And it is useful idiots like you that fall for the crap about British people lacking skills or a work ethic and thus needing several hundred thousand people a year to be admitted to Britain to sustain our “ailing economy”! If Britain was so backwards and decrepit then why was its economy the 5th or 6th largest in the world prior to mass immigration exploding under Blair? As the majority of this immigrant labour comes from such economic basket cases as Eastern Europe,Africa and Pakistan then why should we suppose that they have anything to offer our economy that its critics say it needs?
        You are desperate to defend mass immigration,why? Why do the laws of Supply and Demand cease to operate when it comes to the price of labour?
        The news today that the Government wants to further restrict the freedom to strike is yet another part of its war against the Working Class,when this is allied with endless increases in the supply of labour the scene is set for the final victory of the Ruling Elite and useful idiots like you who pump out their argument that increasing supply doesn’t lower prices will have done your bit.Well done ,hope you spend your 30 Pieces of Silver wisely as once we have been properly stuffed they won’t need you anymore!
        Now make silly comments about using CAPITAL letters for added emphasis and pretend that the price of labour is complex and not controlled by market forces,I can do with a laugh!

      2. Mike Sivier

        Can we keep this discussion civil, please? I’m enjoying it but there’s no need to descend into personal abuse.
        People come here because the discussion is civilised. The only person around here who has to put up with any personal attacks at all is me.

    5. Crikey O’Reilly, what a silly rant. Someone is clearly very easily upset when they are argued against.

      “Yet another economically illiterate defence of mass immigration being necessary for THE economy.”
      I dunno about economically illiterate, but there sure seems to a commenter on here who is illiterate in a more conventional sense. Your entire rant is based on false premises, the first of which is that I think mass immigration is ‘necessary’ for the economy. I never said it was, nor did I ever imply it. I simply pointed out that it can have positive effects, and that it did during the early years of the last Parliament.

      “Well the economy it is necessary for is that of the RICH,each sector of society has a different basic economy and the one that benefits from unrestricted mass immigration is that of the very rich.”
      Or it can just benefit people in general. For example, when there’s an area of the country where there aren’t enough qualified doctors, hiring foreign doctors to cover the shortfall can benefit people in that area, regardless of their wealth.

      It depends on the circumstances, you see. Your interpretation is a one-size-fits-all generalisation, without any flesh on the bones.

      “And it is useful idiots like you that fall for the crap about British people lacking skills or a work ethic and thus needing several hundred thousand people a year to be admitted to Britain to sustain our “ailing economy”!”
      Again, I never said that. I said there are certain jobs that British people are unwilling to do, not that they are unwilling to work at all. And there *is* a skills gap in this country, but that doesn’t mean that no one here has those skills. It means *not enough* people here have those skills.

      If you want to get abusive, ask yourself this: Who’s the real idiot? Someone who points out a flaw in someone else’s argument, or someone who points out a flaw in a strawman argument? I mean, what a silly waste of time, arguing with things that haven’t even been said. Who’d do that, except an idiot?

      “If Britain was so backwards and decrepit then why was its economy the 5th or 6th largest in the world prior to mass immigration exploding under Blair?”

      Well again, I didn’t say Britain is backwards and decrepit, and I haven’t a clue where you got the idea from that I did. I pointed out that George Osborne is a dire Chancellor who nearly took us into a full-on Depression, but that’s the nearest I can recall.

      But also, Britain’s economy remains one of the largest in the world today, after ‘Blair’s mass immigration’. Mass immigration, in a sense, makes that all the likelier, as the more people there are, the more economic activity there is likely to be. That is not an endorsement of it, by the way, just a feature of it that ears mentioning.

      “As the majority of this immigrant labour comes from such economic basket cases as Eastern Europe,Africa and Pakistan then why should we suppose that they have anything to offer our economy that its critics say it needs?”
      Ah, now you have given away what your real agenda is; let’s turn the question around. Why should we suppose that, being from these countries, they *won’t* have anything to offer our economy? The only answer to that is lazy prejudice.

      A person’s ability is not governed solely by where they come from, even though it can affect how well their skills are developed. An individual who comes from a poor country can hardly be the reason that country is poor. Indeed, the reasons why a country is poor will vary from place-to-place, so the only way to make a reasoned judgement is by taking each candidate on his or her particular merits i.e. you shouldn’t make snap-judgements about people just because of where they come from. But that is what you are hinting at.

      Employment has selection processes, and if these people aren’t qualified for the job they apply for, they are unlikely to get it. The inherent nonsense in your argument is quite obvious, as they wouldn’t even have arrived here under such circumstances. A poor, unskilled worker is unlikely to travel to another country without the certainty of a job waiting for them there, as they could not afford the effort and expense of making such a journey.

      “You are desperate to defend mass immigration,why?”
      I’m not ‘desperate to defend’ anything, I’m just pointing out that the picture isn’t nearly so black-and-white as you paint it.

      “Why do the laws of Supply and Demand cease to operate when it comes to the price of labour?”
      They don’t, and yet again, I never said they did. I said that there are many other factors that play a role as well, and you seem to have ignored them because they doesn’t fit well with your argument.

      “The news today that the Government wants to further restrict the freedom to strike is yet another part of its war against the Working Class”
      Yes, I agree with you on that.

      “when this is allied with endless increases in the supply of labour the scene is set for the final victory of the Ruling Elite”
      Um, you do realise that most of the Conservative Party is actually quite *anti-immigration* in its outlook, don’t you?

      “and useful idiots like you who pump out their argument that increasing supply doesn’t lower prices will have done your bit.”
      Strawman again. I never said that, and I think you know that I never said that.

      Let’s go through it again, shall we? I said, many other factors play a role, and that increased supply doesn’t determine these things on its own.

      If you’re so sure you’re right and I’m wrong, why do you have to keep changing the meaning of everything I say before you can argue with it?

      “Well done ,hope you spend your 30 Pieces of Silver wisely as once we have been properly stuffed they won’t need you anymore!”
      Oh, so firstly I’m an idiot who doesn’t realise he’s fighting for the wrong side, then I’m a traitor who does know and is doing it for money?

      Kindly make up what passes for your mind.

      “Now make silly comments about using CAPITAL letters for added emphasis and pretend that the price of labour is complex and not controlled by market forces,I can do with a laugh!”
      My point about your childish use of capitals and tidal-wave exclamation marks stands. They makes you look like you’re either having a teenage strop, or that you think it will intimidate people into not arguing with you.

      As you can see, it hasn’t worked.

      Oh, and I am actually the one who *is* arguing that the price of labour is controlled by market forces (plural). You are the one who is saying it is controlled by working-population-size alone, which is only one single market force among dozens of others.

      1. Mike Sivier

        As I indicated to Gary, let’s please keep this civil and not trade insults!

      2. Gary Aronsson

        Regarding your comment about British people lacking certain skills have you ever asked yourself why this arose? Back in the 1980’s the Construction Industry Training Board,the CITB,was abolished by the Conservative Government.This organisation had kept the building industry supplied with trained and certified people.Once it was abolished no individual company would bother training its own people as they could never prevent them from leaving in the future.This created a future skill shortage time bomb that would to “justify” mass immigration.
        The training of Nurses was turned over to Project 2000,in about 1980,in which instead of training being almost totally on the job AND being divided into two grades,the lower being the more basic but equally vital provision of basic comfort and food,we have essays and exams with limited exposure to the wards.This leads to elderly patients actually dying from hunger and thirst because nobody could be bothered to get the basics right.It is no coincidence that many foreign nurses,trained under the old system that British colonial governments helped to set up,are often thought to be better at patient care than recently British trained ones.
        These are but two examples of how an artificial demand for foreign labour was engineered.Mass immigration is being used to hammer the British Working Class into the ground like a bloody tent peg.It is very interesting to note that even so called Socialists never use the term Cheap Scab Labour anymore.It is also curious that while no government has thought it worthwhile to reverse these cretinous schemes they have handed out 20000 work visas a year for people to come to Britain to pick fruit!
        Supply and Demand is ALL that matters in the determination of wages,it is not a complex issue,it is really very simple.We now have more people in work in Britain than at any other time in history.Despite having created well over 1 million new jobs in the last 4 years unemployment is still almost 1.5 million and wages have hardly changed.This is entirely due to mass immigration providing an endless supply of labour so that while the number in employment has risen the number out of work has hardly changed,and thus no pressure to increase wages has been felt by industry.Even the Government admitted that most of the new jobs had gone to immigrants,well over 80%.
        The refusal of people to admit that unrestricted mass immigration is crucifying the British Working Class can stem from only two motives,either they are unbelievably stupid or they support it because they benefit from it.

      3. Mike Sivier

        I don’t agree that supply and demand are all that matters in the determination of wages. It seems to me that wages are determined according to how much an employer feels like paying. They don’t make calculations regarding the cost of living or the value of the work provided, and they certainly don’t consider the availability (or lack of the same) of qualified candidates.

    6. Oh and incidentally, we’re still waiting for you to explain what *any* of this rationalised xenophobia has to do with the actual topic i.e. child tax credits.

      1. Gary Aronsson

        Child Tax Credit is nothing but a Band Aid for the ever increasing poverty of the British Working Class.Without unrestricted mass immigration we would have rising wages and ever improving conditions of employment.Employers would be setting up their own Nurseries and offering ever more flexible working hours to woo people into working for them.That is what happens when finding staff becomes a problem,equally when bosses have a huge glut of people from whom to choose they demand ever higher qualifications and experience and they treat their staff with contempt.
        By being sidelined by symptoms of poverty rather than the cause,unrestricted mass immigration,we are never going to see conditions improve.Ask yourself how many people on £15 per hour or more claim Child Tax Credit.Higher wages are what we need not benefit schemes,and we will only ever get them when we put a halt to unrestricted mass immigration.

      2. Mike Sivier

        I don’t think we’d have rising wages without the Freedom of Movement that is allowed within the EU.
        Wage depression is a Conservative Party project, and will continue to be so, whether we are in the EU or not.

    7. Aha. Compare this; –

      “And it is useful idiots like you that fall for the crap about British people lacking skills or a work ethic”

      With this; –

      “Regarding your comment about British people lacking certain skills have you ever asked yourself why this arose?”

      So it was ‘crap’ when I first raised the issue, but now you admit that the situation *did* arise. You have contradicted yourself again. I am well aware of the reason why it has happened, thank you anyway, but the precise reason why it happened does not make it any less true that it did.

      “The training of Nurses was turned over to Project 2000,in about 1980,in which instead of training being almost totally on the job AND being divided into two grades,the lower being the more basic but equally vital provision of basic comfort and food,we have essays and exams with limited exposure to the wards.This leads to elderly patients actually dying from hunger and thirst because nobody could be bothered to get the basics right.It is no coincidence that many foreign nurses,trained under the old system that British colonial governments helped to set up,are often thought to be better at patient care than recently British trained ones.”

      Again, you are underlining my point rather than arguing with it. There *is* a skills gap, and you have just confirmed it by explaining how it got there. The reason it is there is indeed unforgivable, and Margaret Thatcher’s fanatical penny-pinching is to blame for many more issues beyond this. But once again, that reason the skills gap is there does not make it any less real, or make it ‘count’ less, nor will training up a new generation of medical experts be sufficient to cover the gap in the shorter term; medical education simply takes too long, and people will continue to get ill all the time during the six years or so it will take to get the next generation trained up. While we wait for this next fully-trained generation to arrive, we have to get the doctors from somewhere else.

      That last sentence of yours also acknowledges that people from what you call ‘basket-case’ countries can indeed be effective workers when they come here. Which means you have contradicted yourself once again.

      “Supply and Demand is ALL that matters in the determination of wages,it is not a complex issue,it is really very simple.”
      No, there are loads of other factors. For instance, the amount of work that actually needs doing. The amount of demand for goods there is in markets. The skills levels within a workforce. Inflation levels. The national economic outlook. The international economic climate. Actual productivity. Minimum wage laws. Excess corporate power. The health of the dominant industry of the country. Sheer ignorance of employers even.

      The list is very long.

      As I have already pointed out, there are examples historically of wages being higher with a larger workforce. A larger pool of the unemployed strengthens the hand of the elite, it’s perfectly true, but to assert that it’s the only factor is just wilful blindness.

      “We now have more people in work in Britain than at any other time in history.Despite having created well over 1 million new jobs in the last 4 years unemployment is still almost 1.5 million and wages have hardly changed.”
      Except, a lot of those jobs aren’t even real – tens of thousands are jobless people who have been pressurised off Jobseekers Allowance and to claim self-employment grants, as that gets them off the unemployment figures, Workfare candidates being counted as employed when they’re not etc. Many of the new jobs are also part-time or temporary.

      “This is entirely due to mass immigration providing an endless supply of labour so that while the number in employment has risen the number out of work has hardly changed,and thus no pressure to increase wages has been felt by industry”
      And it is entirely due to that, why? On what information do you base that, apart from your own say-so?

      Do you not imagine, for instance, the huge, prolonged recession following the Credit Crunch might have had something to do with it? Or are you going to blame the Credit Crunch on mass-immigration too, even though it was a global crash?

      “Even the Government admitted that most of the new jobs had gone to immigrants,well over 80%.”

      You might want to read this. http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-politics-26447244

      And this. http://www.independent.co.uk/news/uk/politics/immigration-to-britain-has-not-increased-unemployment-or-reduced-wages-study-finds-10075047.html

      You might respond that the studies are flawed in some way, and that might even be true, but at least they are based on a genuine investigation of the facts. But what investigations are you basing your assertions on? So far, all I’m seeing from you is cherry-picked comparisons that suit your confirmation bias.

      “The refusal of people to admit that unrestricted mass immigration is crucifying the British Working Class can stem from only two motives,either they are unbelievably stupid or they support it because they benefit from it.”
      Again, you’re being too simplistic there. There might be other reasons why they dispute it, for instance, it might just be that they know more about this than you do. You are certainly deluding yourself if you imagine that I haven’t heard your arguments before.

      On a plausibility level, I for one find it very hard to believe that an attempt to crush the working class would be made by *increasing* their numbers. All that can lead to is far, far bigger opposition. Of course, one way of reducing the effectiveness of that opposition would be to divide-and-conquer. For instance, to encourage it to fight among its own numbers. An unprincipled elite could use the media to increase xenophobic rhetoric, convincing the native working class to oppose the immigrant working class. Draw attention away from the rich by stoking up resentment of the ‘undesirable foreigner’. Get them to blame these ‘outsiders’ for all their problems.

      This is what you are doing. You wouldn’t be that easily manipulated, would you?

      Further, given the Government’s draconian cruelty on welfare issues which is literally killing the poor in their tens of thousands, thus *reducing* the competition for work, this masterplan you are picturing appears to be in conflict with itself.

      It is further a little odd that you think the rich big business elite are pro-mass-immigration, when the parties of the rich big business elite, the Tories and UKIP, are both opposed to it. The Lib-Dems are very much in favour of free immigration, and the rich big business elite, who you say also favour free immigration, find the Lib-Dems intolerable and never support them. You blame Labour for mass immigration, which means you think that Labour is the big business party (admittedly not far from the truth these days, alas), and that the Tories are the party for the man-in-the-street, while they are cutting in-work benefits for the low-paid.

      You do see how bizarre all this sounds, don’t you?

      You need to stop fixating on immigration. When you look at the subject as narrowly as this and miss everything else that is going on, it can lead you to believe things that are completely at odds with the plain facts that you’ve ignored.

      1. “Child Tax Credit is nothing but a Band Aid for the ever increasing poverty of the British Working Class.”
        Agreed, but it’s better than nothing.

        “Without unrestricted mass immigration we would have rising wages and ever improving conditions of employment.”
        No we wouldn’t.

        “Employers would be setting up their own Nurseries and offering ever more flexible working hours to woo people into working for them.”
        No they wouldn’t.

        “That is what happens when finding staff becomes a problem,”
        It still happens anyway. Not nearly as much as it should, but when they need really skilled staff, employers do it anyway.

        “equally when bosses have a huge glut of people from whom to choose they demand ever higher qualifications and experience and they treat their staff with contempt.”
        I know that. But as I keep pointing out, a glut of available workers can be caused by any number of other factors, including an economic recession. Those factors will not cease to be real just by you repeating that mass immigration is the only thing that does it.

        “By being sidelined by symptoms of poverty rather than the cause,unrestricted mass immigration,we are never going to see conditions improve.Ask yourself how many people on £15 per hour or more claim Child Tax Credit.Higher wages are what we need not benefit schemes,and we will only ever get them when we put a halt to unrestricted mass immigration.”
        Or if we put up the Minimum Wage to above the Living Wage. (Which is also a hell of a lot simpler to enforce.)

        I have to say, the link between the actual topic and your ‘points’ is still tenuous at best. It reads like, “I want to talk about immigration, but this is about Labour copping out on child tax credits. So I’ll mention credits twice in about fifteen lines of text, and continue complaining about immigration the rest of the time.”

        This is not an immigration issue.

        Please also note that the Child Tax Credit was introduced as part of the Working Tax Credits in 2003, which pre-dates the Tony Blair’s ‘mass immigration’ period by about a year. Therefore, with your ‘mass-immigration-caused-it’ logic, you are arguing that it is a Band Aid for an injury that couldn’t have been inflicted yet.

  2. So they should. *All* Tories should be shouted down at a Labour Party meeting.

  3. bookmanwales

    I too, as a parent of a 17 yr old worry about the future of under 25’s. As a single parent what would happen to him if anything happened to me ? Of course he could go and stay with relatives but they live quite a distance away from where he is settled, has friends and has grown up. And, more to the point how long would they be willing to support him with no income or a measly £70 week on some crap apprentice scheme ?

    However, on a more sinister note the plans for a compulsory “National Service” for all under 25’s now fall into place. 1 year as a paid slave of the state accommodated in dormitories in ” education camps” would suddenly become much more appealing to those homeless and penniless, especially during the winter.

    Then of course after the 1 year compulsory term there will be an offer of a “voluntary placement” well that or life back on the streets cold and hungry.

    The fact that several hundred thousands of these feral, lazy youths disappeared ( predominantly the ill and disabled) would be largely unnoticed by the public at large.

    Did I hear somewhere that this had been done before ???????????

  4. The main aim of the conservative party is to shrink the state to get it into line with the likes of Saudi Arabia where you sink or swim which depend on your resources
    All of the main conservative policies are very much modelled on the Saudi system and as time has gone by this country has moved at a faster pace in the Saudi direction

    As we all know it is a very dangerous system to many types of people but is a god send to those with the land and the contacts along with the wealthy both at home and overseas

    Labour need to take a good hard look at the Saudi system at this point in time (my wife has many contacts throughout the middle east and was born in Eritrea) so is very well placed to know how the countries are closing together which is subtle to the untrained but very striking when you’re in the know

    Labour needs to highlight those that are and have been disadvantaged in a much greater detail when speaking publically on social issues so to ram home the message of the ultimate damage that is being done to certain groups of people

    It is not only the sick and disabled that have a hard time and in many cases leading to their death but also the young that grow up with a set of values and beliefs which are not ideal and in turn they turn out as outcasts in many ways that lead to family breakdown/ divorce/drink/drugs/violence /etc.

    All of which in many cases could have been prevented by having a strong socially inclined prime minister with his mind set on building a country that has social values at its core

    I could go on by am sure most here on this blog get my drift

  5. sally

    As an aside: Personally, I don’t appreciate Frank Field, squawking the divisive term “three million strivers” as if there is some magical, invisible divide between *these* poor and *those* poor. That’s part of the bigger problem -a neoliberal agenda that rewards the rich and applauds their fetishisation of early retirement and pursuit of ever-after leisure versus a stick of varying lengths and thicknesses for the remaining population.

    There is no excuse for any child to grow up in poverty or hunger in the UK of today. Billions are wasted on vanity projects, failed schemes and corporate give-aways to the already obscenely wealthy business community. There is a failure of priority and a disconnect between those who are elected to serve and the consequences of policy on those whom they are meant to serve.

    That young people can enlist in the military, fight in foreign wars, yet do not also deserve the same social security net as all others, or are expected to work along side other adults for less or no pay is frankly a very dysfunctional system. A society that does not nurture its offspring is a society doomed.

    Youth camps, national service and reprogramming will replace a future that should be determined by those who live it. More than a whiff of social engineering.

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