Tag Archives: welfare reform bill

See No Evil, Hear No Evil – Talk Bollocks


I’ve noticed a couple of times on Twitter someone claiming that the mere act of reporting that people are committing suicide after losing some or all of their benefits is irresponsible, and that suicides will increase as a result. Now, in the Telegraph, Brendan O’Neill adds the slur that those of us who care enough to even notice are exploiting “such psychologically disturbed behaviour for political ends“.

His “reasoning” seems to be that suicide “ is not a rational response to having your benefits cut” and we therefore can’t link the deaths to the cuts.

Of COURSE suicide isn’t rational, that’s the point we’re all making! Vulnerable people are losing money that they can ill afford, are often in danger of losing the very roof over their heads, don’t know where their next meal is coming from, and are increasingly desperate about their future, until it all becomes too much for them.

Keeping quiet about suicides doesn’t slow down the rate, however. It just keeps them hidden, and better off people, who don’t rely on benefits, can smugly pretend there isn’t a problem.

O’Neill ends:

” These campaigners approach working-class and less well-off communities through the politics of pity rather than the politics of solidarity, and consequently have a tendency to view “the poor” as vulnerable, at risk, irrational, on the cusp of suicide, and in constant need of care and largesse from the do-gooding state. Poorer communities would be far better off fighting against such Victorian-style pity-politics than against Cameron’s welfare reforms.”

Not everybody is vulnerable in terms of mental health. On the other hand, poverty is a vulnerability in itself, since one increasingly needs money these days to obtain any kind of justice. Even a small reduction in benefits can be devastating.

Something that  Brendan O’Neill probably cannot, or will not, see, ensconced as he is in his ivory tower.

Hatebook – The War Against the Vulnerable


It has been quite obvious for a while now that the government, with the help of some of the more right-wing press, have been running a smear campaign against disabled people, to make it easier to pass their Welfare Reform Bill with a minimum of protest.

An example of how well they are succeeding can, if it hasn’t been removed by the time you read this, be found on a Facebook page that seeks to have “Blue Badge” parking permits taken from disabled people.

The page seems to be American in origin, but there have been quite a few comments from Brits keen to show their disdain for the disabled.

Here’s their mission statement:

Notice at the end the call to break the law, yet Facebook, at the time of writing, have ignored the many reports that I know they have received.

The most recent post, and the reply, demonstrate the stupidity of this group.

Stacey makes a fatuous leap from a few cases seen in a television show, to widespread abuse of the system, and Amelia agrees, and makes a further leap, that disabled people are liars because some people are pretending to be disabled.

With witless people like this around, is it any wonder that disabled people are increasingly being bullied and attacked?

EDIT: 11th April, the page has disappeared!