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Ian Duncan Smith can live on £53 a week... Watch

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    Mr Smith earns 135,000 as a cabinet minister and probably a lot more with other on the side ventures, I would love for him to try

    Anyway what about you guys could you live with £53 a week, is it reasonable and what do you think of Mr Smiths comment?
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    I could survive on £53 a week but not live properly. IDS should put his money where his mouth is.

    http://www.change.org/en-GB/petition...e-on-53-a-week
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    I couldn't as my mortgage works out at more than £53 a week, however I can do groceries for £15 a week, do I get points for that?!
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    Including rent I couldn't but not including rent I already do.
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    (Original post by StacFace)
    Including rent I couldn't but not including rent I already do.
    I live of less after rent.

    £53 is lubriciously high.
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    It is not supposed to be "reasonable". It is taxed money you are getting from the government that you did not earn. If you can live easily on benefits there is no incentive to work. I think £53 is about right.
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    The question of whether or not he can live on £53 a week is irrelevant; he earns a salary and pays his own way in the world.

    The people that rely on money taken by force from others do not have the right to set their own budget or to live in houses larger than necessary. In my eyes, they do not deserve anything at all; nobody has a moral obligation to be charitable. If they wish to, they are to be commended for their philanthropy, but nobody is morally obliged to be charitable.

    They should be grateful to get anything.

    And you seem to forget that benefits are not supposed to provide a reasonable standard of living. They are supposed to be a safety net, not a hammock.
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    Council house benefit is capped at the lowest rent price in the city. Therefore out of the £53 JSA a good whack of it goes on topping up rent. Then there is bills and food and everything. I wish he could be forced onto JSA but there are two important caveats: he already has a house and luxuries and he won't have to experience the grinding, unending misery of poverty because "if you called your dad, he could stop it all".
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    (Original post by jacketpotato)
    It is not supposed to be "reasonable". It is taxed money you are getting from the government that you did not earn. If you can live easily on benefits there is no incentive to work. I think £53 is about right.
    And what about the people who genuinely are trying to get jobs and have lost jobs? Should they see themselves drowning in debt after paying more than that every month in taxes and ni every week for years working honestly? It's even harder to find a job when you're stressed about money and feeding your family and paying bills that keep adding up to more and more. Imagine making the choice on whether to try your hardest to pay your mortgage or have food on the table. £53 a week is barely enough to live on after rent. A lot of money is paid by UK workers and has been paid by a lot of people who find themselves unemployed now. We have to look after our own- already there are too many on the poverty line and below it.
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    (Original post by Aspiringlawstudent)
    The question of whether or not he can live on £53 a week is irrelevant; he earns a salary and pays his own way in the world.

    The people that rely on money taken by force from others do not have the right to set their own budget or to live in houses larger than necessary. In my eyes, they do not deserve anything at all; nobody has a moral obligation to be charitable. If they wish to, they are to be commended for their philanthropy, but nobody is morally obliged to be charitable.

    They should be grateful to get anything.

    And you seem to forget that benefits are not supposed to provide a reasonable standard of living. They are supposed to be a safety net, not a hammock.
    In a post-industrial economy benefits have to be more than a safety net, because not everyone can even get on the tightrope in the first place. Because it is now a knowledge economy jobs fluctuate wildly. Even your law career is essentially made up, because it doesn't make use of physical labour.

    There is simply not enough work that needs doing. In that situation introduction of a full citizen's income should be considered. Why is it any different to employing labourers?

    And we have no right to set a budget for poor people. Why should it be the government's job to dictate how they live their lives? That is what happens under brutal theocracies like the Taliban or the Saudis. It is ideological.

    Nobody has a moral obligation to be charitable, as you always say, but even if you take this extreme viewpoint you must concede it is cheaper and more expedient to pay the poor money otherwise they will start rioting and stealing your stuff.
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    (Original post by scrotgrot)
    In a post-industrial economy benefits have to be more than a safety net, because not everyone can even get on the tightrope in the first place. Because it is now a knowledge economy jobs fluctuate wildly. Even your law career is essentially made up, because it doesn't make use of physical labour.

    There is simply not enough work that needs doing. In that situation introduction of a full citizen's income should be considered. Why is it any different to employing labourers?

    And we have no right to set a budget for poor people. Why should it be the government's job to dictate how they live their lives? That is what happens under brutal theocracies like the Taliban or the Saudis. It is ideological.

    Nobody has a moral obligation to be charitable, as you always say, but even if you take this extreme viewpoint you must concede it is cheaper and more expedient to pay the poor money otherwise they will start rioting and stealing your stuff.
    I stopped reading when you said that a law career was 'made-up' because it didn't involve manual toiling.
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    (Original post by malteser87)
    And what about the people who genuinely are trying to get jobs and have lost jobs? Should they see themselves drowning in debt after paying more than that every month in taxes and ni every week for years working honestly? It's even harder to find a job when you're stressed about money and feeding your family and paying bills that keep adding up to more and more. Imagine making the choice on whether to try your hardest to pay your mortgage or have food on the table. £53 a week is barely enough to live on after rent. A lot of money is paid by UK workers and has been paid by a lot of people who find themselves unemployed now. We have to look after our own- already there are too many on the poverty line and below it.
    If you do not have 3-6 months savings then why on earth do you have a mortgage. It is totally irresponsible. I hate the culture we have in the UK of constantly living to the very edge of your income and relying on the state if things go wrong. Other cultures which do not really have a welfare state (such as Asian countries) do not have this problem because people take personal responsibility for their lives and save some of their mone when in work. I do not believe the state should be subisdising people to acquire property through a mortgage.

    The other problem is that, if benefits are enough to pay your rent/mortgage and live reasonably well, then there is no incentive for people to take low paid jobs such as working at Tesco.

    The other big problem with your argument is that people get housing benefit on top of JSA. Low-paid people get HB while they are working; others will get it when unemployed. The benefits bill is pretty out of control, as a proportion of our economy and more than a third of government spending (which is more than half our economy), it is greater than the entire taxation of a country like Singapore.
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    (Original post by jacketpotato)
    If you do not have 3-6 months savings then why on earth do you have a mortgage. It is totally irresponsible. I hate the culture we have in the UK of constantly living to the very edge of your income and relying on the state if things go wrong. Other cultures which do not really have a welfare state (such as Asian countries) do not have this problem because people take personal responsibility for their lives and save some of their mone when in work. I do not believe the state should be subisdising people to acquire property through a mortgage.

    The other problem is that, if benefits are enough to pay your rent/mortgage and live reasonably well, then there is no incentive for people to take low paid jobs such as working at Tesco.

    The other big problem with your argument is that people get housing benefit on top of JSA. Low-paid people get HB while they are working; others will get it when unemployed. The benefits bill is pretty out of control, as a proportion of our economy and more than a third of government spending (which is more than half our economy), it is greater than the entire taxation of a country like Singapore.
    3-6 months of savings don't last when you're in your mid 50s and your job was in the construction industry which collapsed in 2008 and you were self-employed. Every situation is different but don't think it's irresponsible because others don't have the means to have a perfect financial situation when their mortgage was taken out originally 20-30 years ago and since then they've done everything to give their kids the best future instead of indulge on themselves. Maybe investing in children's future instead of saving every penny was a stupid thing but that's the situation. Not everyone fits into your perfect little bubble but nobody has a right to judge others for not being prepared to be unemployed for an extended period of time.
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    (Original post by Aspiringlawstudent)
    I stopped reading when you said that a law career was 'made-up' because it didn't involve manual toiling.
    Why? It is a profession. Salaries are kept high by raising barriers to entry and profiting off knowledge of a complex system. If that system collapses your job is worthless. See currency, especially fiat currency, for another example.

    The brain's capacity for knowledge means the knowledge economy can employ just as many people as it wants, more or less. The industrial economy, certainly as it was until Thatcher's reforms, always needed manpower. That is why there is no longer full employment.

    And a similar thing occurred thanks to mechanisation of industry in the early 1800s. The following period saw trade unionism as workers fought to protect their interests; essentially to create the sort of closed shop that professions have done so well at.

    The result of each economic rebalancing has been an uptick in living standards and less work hours at the cost of an increasing structural unemployment rate.
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    (Original post by scrotgrot)
    Why? It is a profession. Salaries are kept high by raising barriers to entry and profiting off knowledge of a complex system. If that system collapses your job is worthless. See currency, especially fiat currency, for another example.

    The brain's capacity for knowledge means the knowledge economy can employ just as many people as it wants, more or less. The industrial economy, certainly as it was until Thatcher's reforms, always needed manpower. That is why there is no longer full employment.

    And a similar thing occurred thanks to mechanisation of industry in the early 1800s. The following period saw trade unionism as workers fought to protect their interests; essentially to create the sort of closed shop that professions have done so well at.

    The result of each economic rebalancing has been an uptick in living standards and less work hours at the cost of an increasing structural unemployment rate.
    Don't you think this is a good thing? Labour is unpleasant; lower work hours are a good thing.

    The natural response to less requirement for human capital should be a decrease in population growth; but bizarrely people keep on having an unnecessarily high number of children.
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    (Original post by malteser87)
    3-6 months of savings don't last when you're in your mid 50s and your job was in the construction industry which collapsed in 2008 and you were self-employed. Every situation is different but don't think it's irresponsible because others don't have the means to have a perfect financial situation when their mortgage was taken out originally 20-30 years ago and since then they've done everything to give their kids the best future instead of indulge on themselves. Maybe investing in children's future instead of saving every penny was a stupid thing but that's the situation. Not everyone fits into your perfect little bubble but nobody has a right to judge others for not being prepared to be unemployed for an extended period of time.
    I noticed that you still failed to justify why it becomes someone else problem to fund their exuberant life style when the become unemployed. You totally failed to address the very fail points made in the post you quoted.
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    (Original post by dj1015)
    I noticed that you still failed to justify why it becomes someone else problem to fund their exuberant life style when the become unemployed. You totally failed to address the very fail points made in the post you quoted.
    Well since they paid their taxes which is the national insurance that everyone pays in case of such situations it's a guarantee from the government. Personally I find it horrible that people take advantage because I myself am a taxpayer and I've always been employed but that doesn't mean I don't understand situations. And who said anything about exuberant lifestyles? I don't think choosing between paying your mortgage and eating is very exuberant..
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    £212 a month

    -200 for rent

    -100 for food

    -50 for bills

    -200 for clubbing with friends

    = £-338



    NO, I CAN'T
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    Please keep in mind that the majority of people on benefits are people who have previously worked and have been made REDUNDANT. They haven't chosen to be there and personally I'd like to know that if I went in to work tomorrow and got told they were letting me go, that I wouldn't be left with nothing while I looked for another job.
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    (Original post by Aspiringlawstudent)
    Don't you think this is a good thing? Labour is unpleasant; lower work hours are a good thing.

    The natural response to less requirement for human capital should be a decrease in population growth; but bizarrely people keep on having an unnecessarily high number of children.
    Certainly it is a good thing - if you provide for the structurally unemployed by offering a citizen's income.

    I agree about the children. If these people had something to do with their time they would not have as many babies. The question is, what do we do to keep them occupied in return for their citizen's income?

    There are things that are badly needed but are non-profit, like sustainability, drug development for rare diseases, but they don't have the skills to do it. And really, is this idea any different from the bloated, loss-making but broadly necessary state-controlled industries we have always had, like the NHS?

    You can cut child benefit or limit it to the first couple of kids, but it doesn't matter, the cost will seep back into the system somewhere. The only other solution is sterilisation, and I don't think that's going to go down well somehow.
 
 
 
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