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Showing posts from June, 2012

Welfare and Unemployment

There are now two strands of the discussion surrounding unemployment and benefits. There is the ignored issue of unemployment, and there is welfarism. The Tories aren't really interested in the former: they have no answer to it because they don't see it as a problem. Unemployment has always been a price worth paying, in their eyes. Easy of course for the rich to say; it doesn't affect them. There's no chance of Cameron or Osbourne losing their jobs, that's the nature of the ruling elite. They'll always be comfortable; the system takes care of its masters. That seems to be how it, how capitalism, is structured ultimately. People are screaming for Bob Diamond to resign this morning: so what if he does? He won't be short of a bob or two, nor will his revenue streams be closed down if he never works again. In fact you might argue that, with all his millions and bonuses accrued, riding off into the sunset is in fact the best thing he could want! 
Unemployment i…

Blog Update

Just to inform those that survived reading Hatchet Job yesterday, i've gone through it to tidy it up and clarify a few things. I'm still rather concerned about it all, particularly the haunting phrase 'employment resettlement services', used, presumably, in reference to the Work Programme.

Hatchet Job

Following on from earlier, I've now read the letter that the DWP wrote back after my GP asked them to tell him how they were helping me (hint: they aren't). What a complete hatchet job. Now it looks like I could be in trouble: it ends with "Mr Whistler is required to cooperate with the WP to obtain JSA, at present he is not doing so therefore a doubt exists to his entitlement to JSA"! This is complete and total fucking bullshit. I have done everything I have been asked to by an organisation that, by its own admission, cannot help me.
Now the letter is dated 22/5 and in all that time I've had no comeback from the JC when I've gone in to sign, nor from the WP (though I must say I don't want to hear from them for the above reason, plus the fact that these so-called Christians are lying shitbags). Maybe then there won't be any comeback. I fucking hope not, but by god if I get that brown envelope through the door, out of the blue, telling me no more JSA b…

La La La Not Listening!

Well, well, well. I have just had it out with my GP! Sounds exciting, well not really. More depressing actually. 
For several months he's been claiming to support my pursuit of an Asperger's Diagnosis, coming into contact with that inexplicable Work Psychologist I saw at the start of the year. (It all seems so long ago now...) Now, when confronted with me actually explaining to him - again (though as emphatically as I could) - how ESA and the DWP works, he decides that he didn't and indeed never thought I have Aspergers. Not at all. Could he not have said this earlier. 
He seems to think that the diagnosis process is going to do his job for him: that they, if they indeed do believe I have Aspergers, they are going to take the decision to sign me off out of his hands. He clearly doesn't want to do it. He seems to think, bizarrely, that with a positive diagnosis, I could 'appeal', demonstrating a complete lack of understanding of the system. I had to explain tha…

The Queen and Mrs Barlow

By far my favourite story of the year is the Jimmy Carr, and now Gary Barlow, tax avoidance 'schadenfreude'. This is gold. There's nothing greater than a pompous media figure, particularly one that prides himself on his wit, being taken down a peg or two. Don't get me wrong, I love comedians, but Carr ain't a patch on Carlin or Hicks, who are as relevant today as they ever were. So it makes me laugh when I see Jimmy Carr, fresh from his stints as presenter/stand up on 10 0 clock Live where he did a skit satirising tax avoidance, exposed as a tax avoider. All legal of course. well that's ok then.
Far more entertaining is the hopefully-imminent downfall of Dame Very Ly...sorry I mean Gary Barlow. The new nation's wartime sweetheart. He's gone from a failed solo career, where his self penned middle of the road 90's shite was the backing track to one of the flattest weakest singing voices I've ever heard, to bored housewives fantasy and national ic…

More Jobs?

Lovely morning for a walk. Notsomuch for listening to local BBC radio. The topic was unemployment (more specifically 'can you find the work you want'?) and the usual array of anecdotes that, as ever, seem to be used as fact. This is the problem with the media and I really shouldn't listen to this nonsense, but there's no other debate that I can find (certainly not where I live, in the country).
So we have a discussion with old people saying that they've managed to find work later in life. Then we have some businessman in his 60's talking about how kids these days do not leave school ready for the workplace (something I'm tired of hearing, personally). We have an 18 year old kid starting up a business that has, as far as I can tell, something to do with photography, having done work experience in a studio; and we have someone that offered to work in a caravan factory getting a job. This is on top of the news that the employment figures have gone slightly do…

Jobs?

I've just been to town to do my shopping, while the weather's nice. Across the road from the seafront is a new Premier Inn being built with a Brewer's Fayre (iirc) restaurant, and possibly some other places (all owned by Whitbread). All under the same roof. I noticed in the window it said "3000 qualifications will be given out, 1000 work placements/apprenticeships for young people, and 5000 jobs over three years (or something like that)". That's 6000 jobs in a seaside Premier Inn in a matter of a few years, and this is being presented in such a way as to make me thing 'wow, lots of opportunities; maybe the government really are helping, and maybe the private sector really is the great saviour'. What it really says is that they are happy to exploit young people in jobs, not just the placements/experience (workfare?), that can't have much of a lifespan.
 Is Premier Inn such a shitty place to work to explain such a turnaround of staff to justify tha…

Ga Ga Grayling!

Well he's back, our rat faced overlord; the dull eyed and dull witted employment thug and capitalist extraordinaire, Chris fucking Grayling. This creature really does make my blood both run cold and boil at the same time. There's not many people I hate, but he's definitely one of them. A man in charge of not only ignoring both fact and wisdom, but of advocating blatant hypocrisy. A man happy to abuse the parliamentary expenses system (if only ethically - because these people make the rules in their favour anyway) but lecture the poor on their perceived obligations to his view of society; the Tory view where the poor are just serfs on their land. Same as it ever was.
Over the weekend he came out with this cock and bull, as reported in the Guardian. The nation says NO to workfare, but Grayling hears the opposite, emphatically. No doubt his corporate paymasters have cottoned on to how sweet the deal is for them (not for the slaves sent to these gulags) and are petitioning hi…

Windy Days and Inflexible Appointments

Woke up to the beautiful evidence of climate change that is our current summertime weather (yes I know climate isn't weather, but this is meant to be summer). My appointment to sign was at 10 past 10 this week. It's like a lottery; will i get the winning ticket and be given an appointment that makes sense? Not next time apparently as they have chosen to ignore the letter my GP wrote to them and can't, it seems, make any exceptions using their inflexible booking system (it seems impossible to block book my appointment times, for example, which are meant to be 10am, which would be fine). So in a fortnight I'm in at twenty to 3 in the afternoon, assuming that's ok with the buses, I don't know (I never have to travel here at that time).
Curiously as I was signed (which again involved mysterious data input before my jobsearch diary was signed - no special coupons for me) I heard a call being taken by the floor supervisor. My ears pricked up when I heard the call re…

Post Jubilee Rubble

Over the weekend I received an appointment for a diagnosis to see if I have Aspergers. Unfortunately it's miles away and I don't travel well, so I have begun to question the point of it. What good will getting a diagnosis, if it were to happen, be anyway? 
There's no way I'm going to pass a WCA just because a doctor gives me a piece of paper saying I have Asperger's. All I will be told is that plenty of people that have Asperger's work anyway, plus we all know that you need to do a hell of a lot to pass that test. My doctor is reluctant to write a sick note, even though he agrees the ESA WRAG would be the best place (at least that's the theory), that won't change. What does he think being labelled as an Asperger's sufferer will mean? Does he think that will bypass his role in getting me onto ESA? It won't. Does he think that a whole bunch of doors and opportunities will magically open? In the current climate? Nope. 
What would those opportuniti…

Jubilationed to Death!

I find all this depressingly regressive. We should be looking forward, like the Occupy Movement, not wallowing in nostalgia. It's not even proper nostalgia: we don't yearn for the days when kings and queens really had power, but for some rosy mid 20th century worldview. A time when empire still meant something, but without the excesses. 
I find flag waving equally banal. Flags are inherently divisive; you wave them to brag and to boast that yours is the richer territory, often when riding onto another's territory you wish to claim as your own. To say they have been 'reclaimed' or otherwise divested of negative connotations with the far right is spurious. Of course they haven't. The point of waving a flag is to say 'I be Engerlish!'. Well we know you're Engerlish, because we're all standing on Engerland right now! So what's the point, other than an expression of subconscious insecurity. I hate flags and the jingoism they represen…

Sunemployment

Pop quiz: what do the following people have in common? Toby Young, with Shadow Employment Minister Stephen Timms, 7/7 survivor and employment expert Dan Biddle, KFC CEO Martin Shuker, Tesco personnel director Judith Nelson and Michelle Dewberry (from the Apprentice years ago, before getting knocked up by a fellow Apprentice candidate and then resigning).
The answer is 'Sunemployment'.
I had never heard of this, which you might find a bit odd considering they were in town the day before I went to sign on and noone had ever mentioned this to me at the JC, nor was there any literature or advertising at the time. As I don't read the Sun I had, fortunately, never heard of this...this Sunemployment. Yes, it seems in a scheme so loaded with populist bullshit I fear it might destabilise reality, the Sun has its own scheme to get Britain working. Well thank god for that. Phew, we can all rest assured that Britain's best loved soft porn and football hooligan peddling shitrag …