Polly on unemployment pay

Sigh.

This manager talks of new claimants\’ shock at hearing the dole is just £60.50. "They are totally incredulous," he says, as well they might be. "They ask, \’how can I live on that?\’" This punishing workhouse rate must be raised before there are bread riots.

Err, no. Richard Layard:

If you pay people to be inactive, there will be more inactivity.

And Polly again:

But unlike the 1990s, there is no longer an option to put older or less employable people on invalidity benefit: the Conservatives used it to cut numbers, but it was often kinder to give higher benefit to those likely to stay on it for ever.

Richard Layard:

Consider for example policies to encourage early retirement. If we start at the sustainable rate of unemployment and labour supply is then reduced by early retirement, unemployment will fall at first. But then, as labour shortages bite, inflation will rise and aggregate demand and employment will be cut back until employment is back in line with the now reduced supply of labour. Alternatively, if we encourage more older people to work and labour supply increases, inflation will at first tend to fall, permitting a rise in aggregate demand and in the number of jobs. This is the direction in which Europe has to move if we are to support an ageing population from a reduced flow of births.

Sorry Polls, nul points there I think.

7 comments on “Polly on unemployment pay

  1. The reason people are shocked at the £60 a week is that they’ve paid taxes for years and then when they need to call upon the welfare state for the first time in their lives they see just what they get in return for all that tax.

  2. As usual, isn’t Polly being economical with the truth? Don’t many people also get a rent subsidy too, on top of the £60?

  3. “Don’t many people also get a rent subsidy too, on top of the £60?”

    Not if you have savings or investments, income, or co-habit with someone who does.

    Why do you assume unemployed people are paying rent, anyway? You’re thinking like the first part of creating a Government system: make assumptions, build a system around that, make people fit the system.

  4. Polly Toynbee is, as usual, utterly delusional. In a just society her head would be on a pike. If only wishing made it so!

  5. “Why do you assume unemployed people are paying rent, anyway?” Dear lady, try reading what I wrote; “many” I said, not “all”. And the £60 vanishes too if you have decent savings. Do you have any idea what you’re talking about?

  6. And the £60 vanishes too if you have decent savings.

    I’m not sure that’s correct if you’ve paid your NI contributions – don’t you then get a non-savings affected JSA?

  7. The original quote is a good indicator of how much right-wing tabloid idiots have poisoned the well when it comes to benefits.

    Ordinary working people believe, falsely, that everyone on the dole gets the absolute high-life, rather than the absolute minimum to live on – and it’s only when they’re forced to claim the dole themselves that they realise how meagre it is…

    @ Matt: yes, you do. Contribution-based JSA is *only* reduced if you’re also receiving a pension, there is no testing by wealth/savings at all.

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