Osborne to “Dismantle Welfare State Brick by Brick”.
George Osborne Sneering at the Less Well Off.
This confirms what a lot of us have thought for some time: the Tories want to take away the social rights of millions, make poverty the spur to accepting low pay and poor conditions, and let their chancer friends make as much money as possible out of the corpse of the Welfare State.
Background in the Telegraph.
The state will be radically different by the time George Osborne has finished cutting public spending, Institute for Fiscal Studies says, ahead of the Spending Review and Autumn Statement on November 25.
In the article we see this,
Mr Osborne is now legally required to cap welfare spending each year, meaning he has little room for manoeuvre in easing the cuts.
George Osborne is seeking nothing less than the complete dismantling of the welfare state, says John McDonnell.
Britain’s poorest households are bracing themselves for some of deepest cuts we have ever seen, with Labour warning that George Osborne is seeking nothing less than the complete dismantling of the welfare state.
The Chancellor is said to be preparing a devastating myriad of cuts to benefits and vital services for some of the poorest and most vulnerable people in society, which he will unveil in the Autumn Spending Review later this week.
Osborne is reported to have reached a deal with the Work and Pensions Secretary, Iain Duncan Smith, to safeguard the Universal Credit budget in return for cuts in other areas of welfare spending.
Iain Duncan Smith reportedly threatened to resign if Osborne raided Universal Credit to soften the blow of tax credits cuts.
The move would have meant that the taper rate for Universal Credit would rise from 65p to 75p, meaning that working people would lose 75 pence for every pound earned over the earnings threshold – removing “work incentives”, say opponents.
It is believed that cuts to tax credits will continue to go ahead, be it in a slightly diluted form, despite opposition from a growing number of Tory MPs and recent defeats in the House of Lords.
The exact scale of those changes is as yet unknown, but it is believed that Osborne is seeking reductions in housing benefit to “mitigate”, or slow down, the pace of cuts to tax credits.
It has also been reported that Osborne will push for far-reaching cuts to council services, including reductions in social care spending for the elderly.
Sickness and disability benefits may also be targeted for further cuts.
Shadow Chancellor John McDonnell says Tory austerity cuts are ideologically driven, and more about shrinking the state than tackling the nation’s deficit.
George Osborne will use “smoke and mirrors” to cut spending on social security, he said.
Figures published by the Office for National Statistics (ONS) show that the deficit – the gap between what the government spends and takes in – grew by 16% in the year from October 2014 to £8.2bn, significantly higher than the £6bn forecast by economists.
The Office for Budget Responsibility (OBR) has forecast that this could reach a staggering £69.5bn in the fiscal year to April 2016.
The damning figures have exposed Osborne to claims that his austerity agenda simply isn’t working, and also that the government is failing to balance the books.
However, John McDonnell says George Osborne’s cuts aren’t about tackling the deficit.
“If he really wanted to do that, he wouldn’t have cut inheritance tax, or corporation tax or sold off some of the things that were making profits.
“That’s why I think it’s about more than that. It’s ideological. He wants to dismantle the welfare state brick by brick.”
It is worth reading this in full: Welfare Weekly.
So Iain Duncan Smith has saved something of his pet project, at the expense of other people on benefits.
What a surprise…
The BBC reports,
George Osborne’s plan to raise more money than he needs to spend is “unacceptable” when he is cutting benefits, according to John Swinney.
Scotland’s deputy first minister has written to the chancellor ahead of his Autumn Statement.
Mr Osborne has argued a surplus is needed while the economy is growing.
Scottish Labour leader Kezia Dugdale has also sent a letter to him warning of the “devastating consequences” of his cuts to tax credits.
In his letter, Mr Swinney said the tax credit cuts would deprive a quarter of a million households, many living on low pay and raising children, of an average £1,500.