By Dude Swheatie of Kwug
Congratulations to the 8 people so far who have found their way to the special General Elction 2015 and you page that I uploaded on Monday 30 March. As I intended to give that some prominence in the run-up to 7 May General Election here in the UK, I gave it a special 'gadget' link high up in the right hand margin of the blog layout to help highlight it.
Much attention has been given recently to the ‘soundness of mind’ of airline pilots etc who have others’ lives in their hands, and too little attention to the ‘soundness of mind’ and ‘fitness for purpose’ of the ‘key decision makers’ who too easily walk away from the disasters they create. A General Election is a time to help redress the latter matter, as voters get to decide who they want to design the nation's ways into the future. So the page concerned is called General Election 2015 and you.
That page is one of the longest I've created so far on this blog, but for good reason. Who we each decide to vote for goes toward deciding who the 'key decision-makers' for the next UK Parliament should be. But with the aid of the linking 'gadget' in the layout at the top of the right margin, you can have more than one bite at such contents as:
"neoliberalism is characterized by investigative reporter Naomi Klein as a "holy trinity" -- privatization, deregulation and cuts to social spending -- in which governments dismantle trade barriers, abandon public ownership, reduce taxes, eliminate the minimum wage, cut health and welfare spending, and privatize education. She calls the means of achieving this goal "disaster capitalism" and describes how it has resulted in a worldwide redistribution of income and wealth to the already rich at the expense of economic solvency for the middle and lower classes. "Incidentally, I’ve noticed that those most in favour of ‘deregulation’ — aka ‘cutting red tape’ — seem to be the most voluble proponents of regulating the lives of poorer people via benefit caps, claimant commitment, etc. And they also have the most to gain by adopting the definitions of ‘mental illnesses’ defined in the ‘Bible’ of the American Psyciatric Assn such as ‘ODD’ or ‘oppositional defiant dysfuntion’. What Doctor’s Don’t Tell You magazine’s March 2015 issue has an article Mama, We’re All Crazy Now about such cues for applying the chemical cosh, and the tie-ins with Big Pharma.
- Consider how the economy of the UK has become increasingly dominated by the neoliberal drive to privatise the welfare state, particularly since the 2010 General Election and the introduction of 'fracking licensing' etc that undermines national inegrity.
- How will the various political parties standing in this General Election tackle neoliberalism, or whether they would embrace it even more?
Benefit sanctions are applied with the excuse of ‘doubt’ rather than ‘reasonable doubt’ and so most benefit sanctions are overturned when challenged. The application of a sanction on the basis of ‘doubt’ without reason is thus an example of authoritarianism. Commenting on clinical psychologist Bruce Levine’s assertion that Albert Einstein had many of the characteristics of the typical ODD patient, Einstein biographer Ronald Clark says that Einstein’s real problems stemmed from abhorence of the authoritarian and Prussian discipline in the schools he attended.
The fiscal cosh is applied promiscuously to those who dare to claim out-of-work-benefits. Sanctions lower the claimant count and intensify poverty. Those sanctioned who do not kowtow to illegitimate authority are those most likely to get their benefits reinstated after a benefit sanction. So, naturally, US-based companies in the ‘welfare to work service industry’ who have applied the fiscal cosh even more than UK jobcentre staff would love the licence to apply the chemical cosh to defiant benefit claimants who are justifiably defiant, too!