Saturday, July 13, 2013

British Conservatives Say Huge Increase in Food Bank Usage Not a Result of Huge Cuts in Benefits to Unemployed and Low Income Families – It’s Just a Coincidence

Nice to Know Conservatives Are the Same Uncaring People in Britain as They Are in the U. S.

British economic policy, foisted on the public by Conservatives who control that country’s government has been one of austerity.  The idea is that by raising taxes and cutting spending on the benefits for the less fortunate, confidence will return to Britain and the economy will recover.  This has not happened, as conventional economic theory says it will not happen.

But one measurable result from the failure of the policy is that there has been a huge increase in the number of people using food banks, an increase that the government minister in charge of such things says is not related to the fact that people who have limited incomes have had their benefits cut.

Lord Freud - listing 10 reasons why the British are turning to food banks other
 than the fact that benefits have been cut.

Lord Freud, a Work and Pensions minister, insisted that the recent sharp increase in people resorting to food handouts to feed their families was not necessarily linked to benefits sanctions or delays. He suggested more people were taking charity food because more food banks existed – and he prompted Opposition jeers in the Lords when he denied they were effectively a part of the welfare system.

Challenged by the Bishop of Truro, the Rt Rev Tim Thornton, over whether ministers conceded a link between the benefits system and food bank use, Lord Freud replied that it was difficult to “make the causal connections”. The minister for welfare reform added: “It is difficult to know which came first – supply or demand.”

See according the Lord Freud (gosh wouldn’t you know Conservatives would put a ‘Lord’ in charge of welfare) this increase in food handout is just because availability of food handouts has increased.

However, Lord Freud told peers: “Food banks are absolutely not part of the welfare system that we run. We have other systems to support people.” Asked what he meant, he replied: “If you put more food banks in, that is the supply. Clearly food from a food bank is by definition a free good and there’s almost infinite demand.”

Of course real people, people who work in this area unlike a British Lord who has his servants go to the market every day and get his victuals, say otherwise.

Last night, Chris Johnes, director of Oxfam’s UK poverty programme, said: “These comments don’t bear much relation to the reality. The fact is that food banks are stepping in to fill a gap left by the welfare system.” He added: “The evidence is very clear that people are going to food banks out of real need. They feel a sense of stigma that they can’t feed themselves and their families.”

Mr Mould said 30 per cent of people were referred to it because of benefit delays and another 15 per cent because of benefit changes. He said: “It’s absolutely clear there is a growing demand for emergency food supply. That is the consequence of a growing problem with people making ends meet... there is lots of evidence to that effect. The only people who seem unable to accept there is a social crisis driven by the cost of living is the Government.”

And who exactly is Lord Freud?  Well he is this.

Later, Lord Freud, a former investment banker, came under fire from charities for being out of touch with the reality of life . . .

Gosh a Lord and former investment banker, who would have guessed?

But this Forum is nothing if not fair, so here are some suggested reasons why the British people might go to food banks other than the reason that they are hungry and do not have enough money to buy food.

  1. Food bank users just love the humiliation of having to beg for food, it teaches them and their family humility.

  1. Food banks are now serving lobster thermidor and filet mignon.

  1. Each visitor to a food bank gets to play pin the tail on the Conservative donkey ass.

  1. Most Britons want to make sure their neighbors know they cannot afford to feed themselves so the neighbors will not ask to borrow money.

  1. They are attracted to the ‘surf and turf special” which unfortunately turns out to be tuna fish covered in beef gravy.

Well, you get the picture, we’re sure Lord Freud does.

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