31st October 2013


http://www.express.co.uk/news/uk/439468/Taxpayers-to-pay-double-for-MPs-Christmas-decorations

Decorative Dave,

Apparently the Christmas decorations bill for the House of Commons is going to be double the amount it was last year, totalling £13,577. And why shouldn’t it? There is much to celebrate! The economy growing a massive 0.8%! Okay, so it took a good few years longer than expected, but from a Chancellor of the Exchequer without a grasp of basic economics? Well, it’s practically a miracle.

The news about the decorations started to get me all festive so I thought I’d order a few Tory themed Christmas cards from the official Conservatives website. Unfortunately there seem to be none left! So this started me thinking, perhaps I could come up with some well natured, good-ole self-effacing humour range of cards you could sell to replace the old ones. For this, I did seek out the help of a few friends. So, how many Tories does it take to change a light bulb?

George Osborne, Chancellor of the Exchequer, would decide it’s actually less light that is needed, not more. The saving of light right now would be vitally important in order to ensure more light in the future. Despite being told of the flaws in this theory by multiple experts, he would not only not change the bulb, he would have a few other bulbs removed.

Michael Gove, Secretary of State for Education, would decide that the bulb, after years of various advancements that had made it perform better and more efficiently, is far too modern, and the old bulbs were far better. The older bulbs, he would decide, needed to be brought back and those bulbs would be supplied by a couple of his friends in the light bulb industry who would be given long-term contracts who would provide specially customised bulbs at ten times the cost of ordinary bulbs.

Jeremy Hunt, Secretary of State for Health, would decide that changing the light bulb would result in far too many visitors benefitting from the light without being properly entitled to it. Also, before the light can go back on, he would also shut off light in other areas to concentrate the light on the area around the bulb which would mean people would have to travel further to benefit from the light making everything far more efficient. This decision would later be overturned, owing to the fact that it was stupid.

Iain Duncan-Smith, Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, would believe that changing the bulb would merely encourage reliance on the state to provide light. Furthermore, the bulb would be assessed on its true capability whereupon it would be found “fit for work” even though it could produce no more light. Eventually more bulbs would fail and they would go unchanged whereupon it would fall upon charitable organisations who would set up bulb banks providing donated bulbs. At the same time, he would deny there was any reduction in light at all. Meanwhile, the bulbs would eventually be changed by unemployed people on unpaid work experience.

And you, my darling, well, you would point out that the faulty bulb was installed under Labour but you would question if changing the light bulb is actually the answer. You would call a full parliamentary debate for which you’d send Nick, leading to a second debate which would lead to an expensively commissioned report, the conclusions of which would be largely ignored. Eventually, the job would be contracted to several foreign companies who would raise the cost of bulbs in unison every Christmas.

Must dash. Just off out to Poundland to buy 13,577 baubles.

Katy Anchant

Advertisements

30th October 2013

http://www.ageuk.org.uk/latest-news/over-3-million-older-people-worried-about-winter-heating/
http://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2013/oct/29/tory-disability-benefits-ideology-idiocy
http://www.theguardian.com/society/2013/mar/21/jobcentre-set-targets-benefit-sanctions
http://www.theguardian.com/society/2013/jul/31/atos-fitness-work-test-greg-wood
http://rt.com/news/child-poverty-heating-homes-919/

Deductible Dave,

I’m so sorry that I haven’t had the energy to support you with my letters every day as I have been previously, because as you know, my health has not been great. But I am finding myself in a little quandary here, my darling.

You see, according to a Freedom of Information request last year, it was discovered that in the space of just eleven months, 10,600 people had died within six weeks of losing their benefits. This figure was quite rightly scoffed at by poor, misunderstood Iain as being entirely misleading. After all, how can one say conclusively that one thing had anything to do with the other? (But just as a precaution, he did put a halt to all future similar requests.) And I was quite willing to give him the benefit of the doubt. But I must admit, upon finding out that I too would be moved off what little I am deemed worthy of (despite many years of dutifully paying my tax and national insurance), and made to fill out a 55-page form (for which I required a lot of help), and shortly afterwards sent another letter telling me I needed to fill in another form, I find I am starting to understand why so many people just threw in the towel.

Please don’t get me wrong. I completely understand the need to ensure that Britain lives within its means. I complete get why, when Giddy took charge, he decided that the number of people on Disability Living Allowance should be cut by 20%. Sounds legit. (20% sounds a lot better than 640,000 people to be left destitute.) To put it in real world terms, it means out of a family of five children, only one would have to go without eating. Not a huge sacrifice in our, frankly overcrowded country.

But with Jobcentres being set targets for sanctioning the unemployed, with doctors carrying out work capability assessments being forced to change their reports; with a target set so that seven out of eight claimants are found fit for work; with the cold weather coming and our gas and electricity, owned by mostly foreign companies now, upping all their rates at the same time, hitting the poor hard, further exacerbating the illnesses and conditions of around 24,000 older people who are not expected to survive the winter; with the 25% increase in homelessness; with 50% of poor children in Britain living in homes without adequate heating; added to the figure that is undoubtedly much higher this year than the aforementioned 10,600 deaths reported last year for those kicked off benefits, we could be looking at, conservatively, about 1,000 people dying a month as a direct result of withdrawal of state support.

But let me assure you again. I do understand. These figures may look grim now, but soon enough these very necessary sacrifices will ultimately manifest in a glowing statistical report; with unemployment down, the number of benefit claimants down, the pension bill down, the deficit down. And when the snow eventually melts and the first flowers of spring bloom into existence, we shall remember with fondness and gratitude those who gave so bravely of their lives for the good of the Tory balance sheet.

Katy Anchant

24th October 2013

http://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2012/mar/29/short-history-of-privatisation http://www.independent.co.uk/news/uk/home-news/fire-brigade-to-outsource-999-calls-7580719.html http://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2013/mar/27/search-and-rescue-coalition-obsessed-privatisation
http://www.theguardian.com/society/2013/oct/10/buy-services-abroad-regulator-nhs?INTCMP=ILCNETTXT3487
http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/health-24635890
http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-politics-12322117

My Devious Dave,

You do make me go all aquiver sometimes at the absolute confidence in which you transform our once fine nation, you almighty thing, you.

In Prime Ministers Questions you did it again, slapping down any argument about absolutely anything with the stock answer of “Labour wrecked our economy and busted our banks!” You say it so incredibly decisively now that not even Ed can bring himself to disagree with you. Although not so long ago it was common knowledge that it was actually private sector corporate gambling that brought down the global economy, you’ve managed to somehow blame it on public sector spending! It’s almost on a par with George Bush convincing a vast proportion of the US that Saddam Hussein had something to do with 9/11! It’s like the rich kid stealing all the biscuits and then blaming the poor kid. But you’ve actually gone one better in that even the poor kid’s mates think he done it too and are making sure they keep their biscuits to themselves from now on.

I guess you’ve said it so many times that it just rolls off the tongue. “The mess left by Labour”. And such a fine tongue. It’s the same tongue that said only a couple of years ago “there will be no privatisation of the NHS.” Even at the time of you saying it many services were already being farmed out to profit-making companies, so it came as no big surprise that a senior exec at the biggest private health firm in the US was appointed the new head of NHS England. And if he takes on the new recommendations that have been put forward by Monitor, the NHS will soon: be reducing the number of beds and shifting more patients into communal care; stopping around 30 different types of operation; and be opening its doors to international health companies from nations like India or Mexico. What forward thinking! We could have hospitals run by Chiquito or have diagnostic services run by a call centre in Mumbai. Trying to get a hospital referral would be an experience akin to calling O2. In fact, one of the world’s biggest outsourcing companies, Capita, with call centres all over India has just won the contract to run 999 calls for the Fire Service. Who would’ve predicted that?!

“Hello! My house is burning down!”
“I am wery wery wery sorry to hear this, madam. Can I have your address and the country you are calling from, please?”

It’s just amazing what one man can do. Not only have you and your like sold off major parts of every public service (fire service, police, hospitals, schools, railways, utilities, postal, even search and rescue formerly run by the RAF, now sold to a company operating out of Texas); not only have these privatisations resulted in higher prices, lower standards, and gigantic profits (rail fares due to rise next year by up to 9.1%, energy prices sharply increasing by about 10% right now just before winter hits, and the cost of the stamp is about to rise too); but also this stuff that’s been sold off didn’t belong to you in the first place. It’s a masterful coup of the highest order. It’s like you’ve managed to lose all of grandma’s money on the stock exchange then gone into her house and sold anything you could get your hands on.

Personally, I’m looking forward to the BBC going. But that may not happen under your watch as by all accounts it looks like you’ve just bought them. Ooh, you’re such a smooth operator.

Katy Anchant

17th October 2013

http://labour-uncut.co.uk/2013/09/29/for-hard-working-people-come-off-it-cameron-heres-the-top-40-of-tory-failures/

http://www.huffingtonpost.co.uk/2013/05/24/police-take-homeless-peoples-sleeping-bags_n_3331100.html

Dedicated Dave,

I wrote to you on the 9th October, completely not realising it was your birthday. I am so, so sorry. I do hope you can forgive me. In my defence, how could I have possibly known when Facebook didn’t even tell me?

I have also been so pre-occupied recently. As well as problems with my health, I’ve also been sick with worry over my benefits situation. As of this month, it turns out the DWP want me to not think of myself as incapacitated anymore but merely as needing “employment support.” I am humbled by this because I assume this means that until I am cured of my incurable condition and become just like ordinary “hardworking people”, I am allowed to remain part of society. It’s truly touching.

The thing that alerted me to your birthday was your Twitter account and the furor over the tweet you sent supporting your Help To Buy scheme. I really don’t know why there’s so much objection to your “hardworking people” slogan (apart from the fact that it’s a completely made-up word). I mean, it’s true, the Tories are the party for “hardworking people”. The people who stand to lose out the most from your policies are those that are specifically NOT “hardworking people”. For instance, children, they don’t work do they? So it’s understandable that the very necessary cuts you’ve had to make has seen over 800,000 children forced to go to school hungry; has resulted in 300,000 of them falling into absolute poverty, with the figure rising to 1 in 4 by 2020, and will see a total of £7 billion of their support withdrawn by 2015. But that’s fine because are these “hardworking people”? No. (Do they even classify as people?)

And what about the school leavers? Almost a million young people are unemployed. The number of 16-18 year olds not in work, education or training has risen to 200,000 since the last election. The number of people only in part-time jobs is at its highest ever level. A future Tory government may withdraw benefits from under25s altogether. And why shouldn’t they? Are these “hardworking people”? Well, not really.

The spare room subsidy thingy, (or “bedroom tax” as everyone else in Britain calls it), has affected about 660,000 people, two-thirds of whom are disabled. Are these “hardworking people”? Well, not unless you count complaining as a full-time job.

Homeless people. There are 25% more of these useless scroungers today than there were at the last election, and the use of food banks has tripled in just one year. Are THESE “hardworking people”? Should they be helped? Or should they (as they did in Ilford) be forcefully removed, have their food taken away, have their sleeping bags confiscated and told to go somewhere more chavvy?

Although most “hardworking people” have seen their wages stripped by rising rents, inflation, energy, travel and food costs, many have gone on to enjoy highly prosperous lives – especially those hardest working, the ones earning over £150,000 who have, thanks to you, enjoyed a sizable tax cut, so I do hope that your mates showed their appreciation on your birthday.

I personally promise to make it up to you next year, my hard, hardworking man.

Katy Anchant

9th October 2013

http://www.redpepper.org.uk/mythbuster-health-warning/ http://www.mirror.co.uk/news/uk-news/why-jeremy-hunt-as-health-secretary-is-such-a-sick-1306533
http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2013/08/29/most-efficient-healthcare_n_3825477.html

Determined Dave,

Once again, I must apologise. I do hate those days where I’m just not well enough to put finger to keyboard and tell you how amazing you are, but I know you know that already and I know you’ve also been quite busy yourself, what with all your reshuffling. I like a good shuffle myself from time to time.

I must admit, I haven’t really kept up to date with your comings and goings but I assume they would be consistent with the traditional Tory pattern of appointing positions based on how reliable that person would be at toeing the party line and not be too concerned with something as trivial as their suitability for the role – such as George Osborne in charge of our finances despite the lack of all relevant knowledge, skills or qualifications; or Iain-Duncan Smith in charge of welfare despite not suffering a day’s hardship in his life, and being crippled (or ‘unburdened’, depending on how you see it) with a completely sociopathic lack of empathy, or Jeremy Hunt in charge of the NHS, a man who once recommended the whole thing be denationalised and farmed out to private insurers. (Incidentally, the man also once blamed the Hillsborough disaster on hooligans, and also once suggested we include a celebration of Britain’s World War II achievements in the opening of the Olympic games. Not the brightest spark, eh).

One of the reasons I’ve remained so unwell, my darling, (and I’m not about to start moaning because I know you had absolutely nothing to do with it) is that the funding needed for the treatment I require has been deemed just not worth it for someone like me; I’ve been rejected twice. It can make one a little bitter. But it did make me feel a little better when I read that it’s the same everywhere. With a tenth of all surgeries now being run by private firms; with operations being sanctioned or withdrawn – like hip replacements so people can walk and cataracts operations so people can see; with one in eight referrals being rejected altogether; and with an attempt at saving £20 billion in NHS costs well underway, it’s hardly surprising that helping people takes a lower priority.

I can see what that terrific Hunt is doing. He’s moving the UK to a more US way of doing things. Although, in a recent Bloomberg study, the Unites States ranked just 46th in terms of health care efficiency, behind China, Algeria and Iran, it ranked an amazing number two in health care cost per person. This means more money for big business, which we all know now, after your fantastic speech, means a better Britain. Whether it’s about welfare reform or health costs, it is, ultimately, all about survival of the fittest (or the richest) and I justwant to tell you I understand.

But I do feel I have more to contribute to society and if by some miracle I do get better, I will pledge myself to education and training so when I know all there is to know about, say the short selling of financial instruments, or the redirecting of taxes, I ought to be more than fully qualified for a position in the Conservative government should one be available next time you decide to do a ‘shuffle’.

Always yours,

Katy Anchant

4th October 2013

http://www.newstatesman.com/staggers/2013/10/david-camerons-speech-conservative-party-conference-2013-full-text

Distinctive Dave,

I must apologise again at my tardiness at not writing sooner. I’ve not been well again and your speech at the Tory party conference was just so inspired, so mesmerising, so distinctively Conservative, that I was literally speechless. Although completely devoid of policy, it was however full of hard truths and aspirations for a country that owes so much to the champions of your cause: big business.

“The best way out of poverty is work – and the dignity that brings. We know that profit, wealth creation, tax cuts, enterprise, these are not dirty, elitist words – they’re not the problem, they really are the solution, because it’s not government that creates jobs, it’s businesses. It’s businesses that get wages in people’s pockets, food on their tables, hope for their families and success for our country.”

Because we all know that profits for companies means profits for people, right? Wealth created by O2, for instance, means thousands of well-paid jobs in call centres right here in the UK, right? Tax cuts for the people that don’t need them will mean it will pass down to the people who really do, right? Businesses that offer thousands of jobs on minimum wage, even though low pay is the biggest cause of poverty in the UK, are going to make sure they’re employees never go hungry, right?

Despite the fact that a million more people living in poverty are from working households than workless ones, you are still quite right, the best way out of poverty is work, which is why you hinted that you could be taking away benefits from all 16-25 year olds, citing the fact that a young person today could leave education and “get a flat and choose to live a life on benefits” (when in reality, the most that could be offered anyone under the age of 35 would be help towards a room in a shared house, but I won’t tell). Together with Giddy’s announcement that anyone not working within two years could be sentenced to hard labour, this would really be a great step towards a one hundred percent employment rate.

I wouldn’t worry too much about Labour either darling, because they do seem to be right behind you even if they don’t realise it. They want to put every young person who hasn’t found a job within one year into a compulsory full-time minimum wage job, which will ensure that all young achievers will be at least achieving something. So darling, your vision will actually be fulfilled no matter who wins the next election as millions of young people will come out of education with degrees in geology, biochemistry and fine art and – if Labour wins – be forced either onto assembly lines at Ford. into warehouses at Amazon or into fast food chains like McDonalds to live out a life of low wage poverty; or, if you win, they’ll be given a broom or bucket or mop and set to work at the local park, hospital or sewage treatment centre, and, if they’re under 25, go and sleep in the nearest shop doorway. What better way to build character and win the global race?

It makes me tearful even just typing this, you darling inspiring man.

Katy Anchant

1st October 2013

http://www.mirror.co.uk/news/uk-news/conservative-party-conference-george-osborne-2324930 http://www.theguardian.com/society/2013/sep/30/iain-duncan-smith-sick-disabled-benefits
http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2438020/George-Osbornes-work-dole-plan-Pick-litter-clean-graffiti-cook-elderly-welfare-benefits.html
http://www.boycottworkfare.org/?p=3018

Delightful Dave,

I don’t think I’ve ever been more excited. I mean EVER. Your keynote speech at the Tory Party conference is only a day away! After seeing George’s wonderful speech, (you looked so proud of your little Giddy) I’m so glad you seem to be sticking to your guns regarding the policies you’ve been championing. One might think that 50,000 people showing up at your conference in protest over the massive cuts to welfare, the privatisation of the NHS, the bedroom tax, unfair work capability assessments, HS2, the badger cull, workfare, austerity measures, cuts to every conceivable public service, the public sector pay freeze and redundancies, the selling off of Royal Mail, Iain Duncan-Smith’s right to exist etc, might make you tone things down a little bit. But no. In fact, it’s made you boys get even MORE extreme, with the announcement that the public spending freeze will continue for 10 years instead of 8, and that workfare will be extended to become a compulsory measure for everyone who the work programme has failed – that’s about 9 out of 10 long term unemployed – and a third of them will be made to do community service, including cleaning up graffiti and picking up poo. Bravo, my darling.

While those found guilty of drink-driving, theft, or assault charges can be given a maximum of 300 hours of community service, those that can’t find a job are going to be given indefinite sentences until they CAN find a job and with 1 in 5 unable to find work after 2 years, that could be a sentence of about 3,000 hours of shit-shovelling and bin cleaning.

Money will be saved all round as anyone who can possibly get by without the help, (some of whom would have paid taxes and National Insurance their whole working lives to pay for circumstances such as these) will decide it’s just not worth it and just stop claiming; those that can’t afford the daily travel to their placement or jobcentre will have their benefits stopped; and for those found fit for work but not actually fit enough for daily hard labour (i.e. almost all of them), well, they usually find more drastic ways to end their suffering, and they’ll no longer be a burden to anyone!

With about two and a half million out of work and only half a million jobs to go round, it’s basic maths that most of the unemployed will stay unemployed and of course, thousands of people already in work will lose their jobs (as happened when a similar programme was tried in the US) because of all the free labour, and that will mean even less jobs for the unemployed, putting even more people on to the work programme, resulting in even more free labour, resulting in incredibly clean, shit-free streets, graffiti-free walls and well stocked pound stores, and the only people getting something for nothing will be the hardworking businesses, which is the way it should be.

You know, I think most of these scrounger thugs will actually take to this new ‘Help to Work’ programme because if you think about it, they could get drunk, beat some guy up and nick their car and it wouldn’t make the slightest difference to the sentence they were already carrying out.

Anyway, got to go, Jeremy Kyle’s on. I wish you well for tomorrow, my love. I hope you break a leg!

Katy Anchant