Friday, October 26, 2012

In Britain the Ugly Assertions of Conservatives About Welfare Are Just as Bad as Their American Cousins

Just Why Do Conservatives Hate People of are Among the Unfortunate?

Conservatives are not against public welfare, they are just against it going to poor people.  For example, when it comes to government subsidies of wealthy farming operations, Conservatives are leading the charge to prevent benefit cuts.  And Conservatives see no problem with massive U. S. aid to businesses, and rich and powerful energy companies in particular.

But when it comes to helping a family that has fallen on hard times, well that’s another story.  In Britain it turns out the prevailing view (today, not 1830) by Conservatives is the government support of the unemployed is just making things worse.  Ian Duncan Smith is the Conservative minister in charge of public benefits.

Mr Duncan Smith will say: “All too often, government’s response to social breakdown has been a classic case of 'patching’ — a case of handing money out, containing problems and limiting the damage but, in doing so, supporting — even reinforcing — dysfunctional behaviour.

“You have to ask which bits of the system are most important in changing lives. And you have to look at which parts of the system promote positive behaviours and which are actually promoting destructive ones.”

And if that’s not clear enough for everyone, here’s what he means.  (and ever wonder what egregious condescension sounds like, well here it is).

In his speech at Cambridge Public Policy, a think tank associated with the university, the minister will not provide firm examples of what further reforms are necessary to end the promotion of destructive behaviour. However, he will question whether it is acceptable that families on benefits continue to receive “never-ending amounts of money” for every child they have when families who are working often cannot afford to have more children.

That’s right, the system of supporting people who are poor or unemployed or sick just encourages them to have more children so they can collect more benefits.  And of course the reason government in Britain cannot afford this is that the economy is not good.

“Especially so, when the economy isn’t growing as we had hoped, the public finances remain under pressure and the social outcomes have been so poor,” Mr Duncan Smith will add.

Right, people in Britain are suffering because Conservatives introduced economic policy designed to contract the economy and now because government doesn’t have the money from tax revenues to support all the programs, Conservatives want to cut benefits for those that are the victims of the ruinous economic policy and need the benefits the most.  The logic is unassailable, cut benefits so that families do not have enough food, decent housing or basic services and they will be better off.

In the United States this view was prevalent in the 1980’s, but increased social awareness has meant that more Americans understand the plight of those less fortunate, and want to use government as part, not all but part, of the solution.  Of course when American Conservatives take over you can expect to hear more of this rhetoric in this country.

After all, Conservatives are Conservatives regardless of the national origin.

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