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Thread: Another Job well done by Labour

  1. #1
    For England and St.George Senior Member ShadesWolf's Avatar
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    Default Another Job well done by Labour

    Nearly £2bn tax credits overpaid

    Another classis 'Ex-social security minister Frank Field said it was hard to defend tax credits if £1 in £6 was "wrongly allocated". '

    article in full

    Nearly £2bn of taxpayers' money has been overpaid under Gordon Brown's child and working tax credit schemes, says HM Revenue and Customs.
    The official figures show that, of £13.5bn paid out last year, £1.9bn were overpayments benefiting 1.9m claimants.

    And 40,000 of those who were overpaid got £5,000 or more while 714,000 were underpaid a total of £464,000.

    Ex-social security minister Frank Field said it was hard to defend tax credits if £1 in £6 was "wrongly allocated".

    The Labour member added: "Every MP knows the horrors this chaotically-run benefit has brought to all too many families paid the wrong sum at the wrong time and sometimes in the wrong year."

    'Key challenge'

    Revenue and customs said the "vast majority" of overpayments occurred because of rising incomes as more people moved into work, the rest were due to computer problems when the system was brought in two years ago.

    "Clearly, a key challenge now is to encourage the reporting of such rises to the Revenue more quickly, in order to minimise people's overpayments in the future," the statement said.

    The One Parent Families charity said needy claimants were suffering as the department recovered monies that had been overpaid.

    Chief executive Nicola Simpson said: "Tax credits have huge potential to deliver real financial gains for families but at the moment the way the system operates is too often leaving lone parents in hardship.

    "We believe the system can be made to work for all families but reform is needed soon."
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  2. #2
    Things Change Member JAG's Avatar
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    Default Re: Another Job well done by Labour

    Tax credits work and get money to the most needed, where not only is it appreciated but vital. Tax credits have been a great success, you simply don't like it because it is one of those lefty measures which seeks to help the most vunerable in society.
    GARCIN: I "dreamt," you say. It was no dream. When I chose the hardest path, I made my choice deliberately. A man is what he wills himself to be.
    INEZ: Prove it. Prove it was no dream. It's what one does, and nothing else, that shows the stuff one's made of.
    GARCIN: I died too soon. I wasn't allowed time to - to do my deeds.
    INEZ: One always dies too soon - or too late. And yet one's whole life is complete at that moment, with a line drawn neatly under it, ready for the summing up. You are - your life, and nothing else.

    Jean Paul Sartre - No Exit 1944

  3. #3

    Default Re: Another Job well done by Labour

    Hows about this 1 then

    To reduce unemployment numbers labour has introduced new reforms,

    1 You must have proof of id to claim benefits,

    2 You must have a bank account to claim benefit

    3 without one of the above you may not caim benefit.

    So for the homless people who Have no home or id or a bank account they have a catch 22 situation,

    to get id they must have money,
    to have money theu must have proof of id,
    This can be anything from a passport to utility bills.
    Many homless people have neither.
    There for are uneligable for benafits,

    Now they could use there bank staements to prove they are who they say they are,
    However to create a bank account You must place money in the bank,
    But labour have introduced a scheem where you may open a bank account purley to pay your benafits in to,
    To do this you must send a letter to the bank from the Unemployment office stating you are eligabel for benafits,
    However again,
    You cannot get this letter without having a back account 1st.
    As you need a bank account for them to give you a letter saying you are eligable for benafit,

    This means labour have let in Thousands of imigrants.
    given them jobs,
    Whilst still leaving the unemployed unemployed,
    And managed to reduce unemployment numbers by increasing the population???
    How? simply by taking all the homless people off the unemployment list,

    Great moove,

    Now if/when the torys get back in pwoer they will fix this situation,
    And unemployment numbers will sky rocket,
    Leaving labour the abilaty to say

    Well look at the number of unemplyed now the torys are back,
    When the number of workers will still be the same,

    This is not helping the vulnerable

    Things like this and the war lead me to say.
    I hate tony blair.

    ShambleS
    Last edited by Shambles; 06-03-2005 at 12:29.

  4. #4

    Default Re: Another Job well done by Labour

    Quote Originally Posted by JAG
    Tax credits work and get money to the most needed, where not only is it appreciated but vital. Tax credits have been a great success, you simply don't like it because it is one of those lefty measures which seeks to help the most vunerable in society.
    Speaking as a tax advisor, I would have to say that they don't work very well. The aim may be good, but the implementation is awful. There are a host of simple things which could be done to make them work better - like allow retrospective claims, or base claims on the previous year's income rather than a necessarily vague estimate of what your future income is going to be.

    Pell.R.

  5. #5
    Things Change Member JAG's Avatar
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    Default Re: Another Job well done by Labour

    Dear dear, what tripe. I am sorry but that is complete rubbish.

    1 You must have proof of id to claim benefits,
    Well if you mean ID cards they have not even passed the commons vote on them which is by no means certain, and even if it was passed it is not being brought in until 2008 earliest.

    Now if you mean there are currently ID needed to get your benefits, well... Der? So you think no ID should be required? Meaning I could walk down to my local post office state I am my next door neighbor who happens to be on benefits and pick up his money? I have heard my criticisms on this Labour govt in my time but this takes the biscuit...

    2 You must have a bank account to claim benefit
    Now this is sensible because what Labour are trying to do is get people into the system by trying to get people to have bank accounts etc, having a bank account does have a lot of benefits. But you list it as if Labour simply go "You don't have a bank account [forget you]!" .. They do not. Labour actively try and help people get bank accounts, there has even been money put aside for advertising and public awareness, plus places like sure start centres which help people with concerns and questions.

    You then proceeded to go off on a rant about homeless people - do you know the figures of those homeless since Labour got into govt? It has DRASTICALLY gone down. Read this article for instance - http://www.johannhari.com/archive/article.php?id=439

    In case you do not read it I will highlight some points for you.

    In 1999 - the year Blair and Gordon Brown finally abandoned Tory spending plans - the Government began to plough £200m into lifting the poorest people in Britain off the streets. This whopping sum - more than some homeless charities were demanding - has made it possible to introduce a whole new approach to lifting people off the streets. The new Rough Sleepers Unit is in charge of Contact and Assessment Teams (CATs) for homeless people. It sounds jargon-heavy, but the reality is life-changing. Each individual is assigned a CATs worker who develops a detailed action plan for getting them into accommodation, dealing with their drug habit, and ultimately into work. They ring the hostels, they liaise with the GPs, they find them job training. Homeless people aren't on their own any more.

    For many people on the streets, it is the first time in their lives that anybody has lavished this amount of care and attention on them. You remember all those figures about the "extra bureaucrats" employed by New Labour? This is what they do. Workers in CATs count as "pen pushers". Some pen. Some pushers.

    nd the extra cash for the homeless (raised by, yes, increased taxation, particularly on the middle class) buys even more than this. Once they are housed, the ex-homeless are given a Tenancy Sustainment Officer who helps to make sure they don't lose their new home. These officers have been so successful that the rate of tenancy breakdowns has fallen to just 3 per cent. And there's more: spending on social housing stock has increased by 250 per cent under New Labour. But how many of us know about these successes? In some cities, such as Birmingham, the number of people on the streets has been cut by 96 per cent.
    Oh how they have abandoned the homeless eh? This govt has done more than any other for homeless people in this country.

    Then you go off on a bigoted rant about immigrants - oh how predictable the silent racism of so many in this country comes out.

    Immigrants - SHOCK HORROR!!! - have been coming to this country for a very, very, very long time. Under Thatcher we had immigrants, under Attlee we had immigrants, under every govt under the sun we have had immigrants coming to take up vital jobs in our country which we could not fill ourselves. Why then do you use it as an attack on Labour? In fact the MORE immigrants we take in the better, it not only shows that our economy is growing at a huge rate but also that we are creating so many jobs all the people in our own country cannot fill them.

    It seems like you are one of the impressionable minds the sun so loves, you read their crap and believe it, you don't know why you do you just believe it, after all they say immigrants = bad enough times! None of your reasoning shows any substance or reality it is all bollocks, but I guess that won't matter to you when you make your bigoted responses. Who knows if you start to understand the facts and the why's you might start to get better opinions - and better opinions of this govt and Blair as well.

    Anyway, where did Blair come into this? Brown is the one who looks over and is in direct responsibility for tax credits, it is one of the areas Blair really has no control.
    Last edited by KukriKhan; 06-06-2005 at 14:00.
    GARCIN: I "dreamt," you say. It was no dream. When I chose the hardest path, I made my choice deliberately. A man is what he wills himself to be.
    INEZ: Prove it. Prove it was no dream. It's what one does, and nothing else, that shows the stuff one's made of.
    GARCIN: I died too soon. I wasn't allowed time to - to do my deeds.
    INEZ: One always dies too soon - or too late. And yet one's whole life is complete at that moment, with a line drawn neatly under it, ready for the summing up. You are - your life, and nothing else.

    Jean Paul Sartre - No Exit 1944

  6. #6
    Things Change Member JAG's Avatar
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    Default Re: Another Job well done by Labour

    Quote Originally Posted by Pellinor
    Speaking as a tax advisor, I would have to say that they don't work very well. The aim may be good, but the implementation is awful. There are a host of simple things which could be done to make them work better - like allow retrospective claims, or base claims on the previous year's income rather than a necessarily vague estimate of what your future income is going to be.

    Pell.R.
    That is a very valid point of course, and I am not going to try and tell you that there isn't subtle but important tweaks which could make it run so much better, but the fact remains it is still a policy and system which works.
    GARCIN: I "dreamt," you say. It was no dream. When I chose the hardest path, I made my choice deliberately. A man is what he wills himself to be.
    INEZ: Prove it. Prove it was no dream. It's what one does, and nothing else, that shows the stuff one's made of.
    GARCIN: I died too soon. I wasn't allowed time to - to do my deeds.
    INEZ: One always dies too soon - or too late. And yet one's whole life is complete at that moment, with a line drawn neatly under it, ready for the summing up. You are - your life, and nothing else.

    Jean Paul Sartre - No Exit 1944

  7. #7
    Lord of the House Flies Member Al Khalifah's Avatar
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    Default Re: Another Job well done by Labour

    I was rocking my head like a nodding donkey on steroids to your response there JAG . I have little time for people who are always out seaking to kick those who are already down and am strongly in favour of labours social welfare policies. But then you made this comment.
    Quote Originally Posted by JAG
    Then you go off on a bigoted rant about immigrants - oh how predictable the silent racism of so many in this country comes out.
    Concern about immigrants does not equal racism. It is protectionism, isolationism or nationalism, but not racism.

    rac·ism (rszm)
    n.
    1. The belief that race accounts for differences in human character or ability and that a particular race is superior to others.
    2. Discrimination or prejudice based on race.

    I wish people would stop using the word racism on this issue, because it clouds peoples understanding of the true nature of the word. Its a fear tactic of character assassination by using a word that is far more dirty than necessary. Its an overused word like Nazi. I could be a racist, but totally unconcerned about the level of immigration to my country (as long as the immigrants were white perhaps). I could also despise all people regardless of their race if they weren't born in my country.

    Keep up the good work, just don't use that word where not necessary, because when your argument is sound, you shouldn't have to resort to hyperbolic vocabulary.
    Cowardice is to run from the fear;
    Bravery is not to never feel the fear.
    Bravery is to be terrified as hell;
    But to hold the line anyway.

  8. #8
    Senior Member Senior Member English assassin's Avatar
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    Default Re: Another Job well done by Labour

    No but, tax credits are FAR too complicated, and by having to claim them you get huge problems (eg a large proportion of pensioners do not claim what they are entitled to.) £1.9 billion is a lot of money that could have gone to help those who the rules say really need it, lefty people. And then there is the money spent on administration.

    Guaranteed minimum income is the way to go IMHO. Pay every adult in the country, say, £6 k a year. Pensioner, unemployed, disabled, chairman of barclays bank, all the same. No claim forms no nothing, bish bosh, if you're a citizen here's your £500 PCM straight in the bank, thank you very much.

    Then adjust income tax rates so that those who have an earned income of, say, 14K a year (ie total income of 20K) have paid the 6K back. Those between 0-14 K pay a bit back. Those above 14 K pay the 6 K back plus whatever they pay now. Otherwise leave the tax system as it is.

    Of course I don't insist on the exact numbers. The idea is to reproduce the broad effect of existing benefits with no administration.
    "The only thing I've gotten out of this thread is that Navaros is claiming that Satan gave Man meat. Awesome." Gorebag

  9. #9
    Things Change Member JAG's Avatar
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    Default Re: Another Job well done by Labour

    Yeh I apologise for my remarks in terms of the racism thing, you know sometimes you do get worked up over little things. For that Shambles you have my apology.

    EA - I am of the opinion that a blanket benefit system like you state, however fair in theory, it is not. We should have a welfare system which is disproportionately helpful to those at the very bottom not simply equal all round. This is in fact the biggest difference between the Lib Dems and Labour - still. The Lib Dems favour a middle class welfare state, with everyone given equal chances and everyone given the same, from the lowest working class to the highest payed middle class. Where as Labour are still about giving more to those at the very bottom before anyone else and if necessary without giving anything to anyone but those in the worst off positions, it is why they are still to the left of the Lib Dems and why they are still a lefty party.

    It should be disproportionately better for those further down because it is those people who struggle most and so need more. The forms are a neccesary evil, even if it can seem the opposite.
    GARCIN: I "dreamt," you say. It was no dream. When I chose the hardest path, I made my choice deliberately. A man is what he wills himself to be.
    INEZ: Prove it. Prove it was no dream. It's what one does, and nothing else, that shows the stuff one's made of.
    GARCIN: I died too soon. I wasn't allowed time to - to do my deeds.
    INEZ: One always dies too soon - or too late. And yet one's whole life is complete at that moment, with a line drawn neatly under it, ready for the summing up. You are - your life, and nothing else.

    Jean Paul Sartre - No Exit 1944

  10. #10
    Senior Member Senior Member English assassin's Avatar
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    Default Re: Another Job well done by Labour

    But the flat rate benefit acheives that. At the moment you have two systems of bureaucracy, one doling money out and the other collecting it in. You can acheive the same effect with one system, taxation, thereby enabling you to sack about a billion civil servants in the DSS (ha, how ironic, they will have to sign on, except there will be no more signing on under this system) and spend the money on something more useful.

    If you like you give everyone the benefits and then you take it back off the people who don't need it. it sounds perverse but its actually easier. And its just as progressive as you would like in terms of giving more to those who need it.
    "The only thing I've gotten out of this thread is that Navaros is claiming that Satan gave Man meat. Awesome." Gorebag

  11. #11
    Jillian & Allison's Daddy Senior Member Don Corleone's Avatar
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    Default Re: Another Job well done by Labour

    Jag,

    There's a problem with taking a philosophical slant to dedicate all of societies resources to those on the bottom. While yes, many down there just need a hand and we should look for ways to encourage their development, there are many, many members of this segment that are there because have neither the ability, nor the drive, to be anywhere else. Sad but true.

    There is a certain segment of society that consumes without production, and feels entitled to do so. Is it your argument that society must consume itself in order to supply these n'er-do-wells with their hearts' delights?

    Let me give you an example. In the United States, people 'living below the poverty line' frequently have public housing of at least 1600 ft^2, air conditioning, cable television (enhanced, not basic) and yet, recently, a judge declared that 'broadband internet access', not just dialup, is a basic right that the local housing authority must provide. Why? These people aren't working, and they're not using the internet to better themselves. Does the government have a moral obligation to provide people who won't work with progressively better and more expensive diversions to while away their day with?

    As far as tax credits for poor people, how do they serve any purpose if you're already not paying any taxes? Would you give them back more then they put in on their returns? EA's absolutely right about a Flat Tax accomplishing what you claim to want. Almost every proposal I've ever heard for it puts a floor in at 35% median income or higher. Many start at 50K US per household.
    Last edited by Don Corleone; 06-03-2005 at 16:21.
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  12. #12
    Member Member LordMonarch's Avatar
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    Default Re: Another Job well done by Labour

    Consumerism leads to abuse of the welfare state as individuals see the NHS, social welfare etc. throught the eyes of consumers not as citizens. Correspondingly, they treat the NHS like a consumer product and New Labour tries to pander to them by offering choice.

    They have even managed to turn political parties into products, where each party creates policies based on focus groups etc.

    Politicians primary role should be advocacy, the education of the public. Having them pander to citizen's baseless fears over MMR etc. as an abrogation of their duty.

    Fields made a rather ascerbic comment about Beverly Hughes when he was Pensions Minister and he had to work with her.

    "She thinks Beveridge is a drink."

    HAHAHAHAHHAHAHAHAHA

    What a funny man.

  13. #13

    Default Re: Another Job well done by Labour

    Quote Originally Posted by English assassin
    But the flat rate benefit acheives that. At the moment you have two systems of bureaucracy, one doling money out and the other collecting it in. You can acheive the same effect with one system, taxation, thereby enabling you to sack about a billion civil servants in the DSS (ha, how ironic, they will have to sign on, except there will be no more signing on under this system) and spend the money on something more useful.

    If you like you give everyone the benefits and then you take it back off the people who don't need it. it sounds perverse but its actually easier. And its just as progressive as you would like in terms of giving more to those who need it.
    I would tend to agree. The problem with "tax credits" is that they are nothing of the kind: they often exceed the tax paid by the person involved, and in any case are calculated with absolutely no reference to the person's taxpaying position.

    The only reason they are called tax credits rather than benefits is for the look of the thing: importantly, if they were called benefits than the "tax collected" line of UK Plc's accounts would be much higher, and so would the "welfare spending" line. This way it looks as if the UK is a low-tax, low-spending jurisdiction.

    If you kept them separate from the main tax system then life would become a lot clearer - like the way NI is separate from income tax, though administered by HMRC. Mind you, to take that example, if NI were aligned much more closely with IT then life would be simpler yet (why not have the same definition of "earnings", for example, rather than 2 definitions and a raft of patching legislation to plug the unnecessary gap?).

    Cheers,

    Pell.R.

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