Thursday, 12 August 2010

Link round up

Some of these links range from a few weeks to a few months old. But I think they're important to post here to give a bit of background as to what's been going on in the War on Welfare Claimants thus far, which prompted us to create this blog.

In May this year BBC Scotland took a look at ESA and its failings. I think the most pertinent element of the piece is the hypocrisy in how Vicki Bell was "assessed" by ATOS. (Incurable Hippie posted a similar case on here yesterday.)

One of the readers of Iain Dale's Diary wrote to him and expressed their concerns about DLA reform. The point the reader emphasised was that they're more financially valuable to Osbourne claiming DLA than not. Of course, that's not true for all of us: Some of us, even on DLA, remain unable to work so offer no financial value to Osbourne despite being rich in human value. But it's excellent news that this reader convinced Iain Dale that we do have some value to society because his is a well respected voice in the Tory party. (This year's Pink List described him as "More influential outside politics than in.")

Anne Begg MP talked to Disability Now about the attack on DLA. Quite worryingly she seems to be under the impression that "The one benefit which we have in this country which actually operates on the social model of disability is DLA," which demonstrates a gross misunderstanding of the social model. Yes the DLA assessment currently focusses on what you can and can't do, rather than on diagnosis alone, but that does not make it a social model assessment. It appears that Begg has misunderstood what the medical model actually means, and in turn assumes that the social model must be the opposite. This fab post by Lady Bracknell explains why the term "medical model" can be a bit of a misnomer and might shed some light on how Anne Begg got confused. Misunderstandings of a sociological construct aside, it's good to see that someone in parliament is fighting our corner.

Comment is Free on have been great ambassadors for our cause. Articles they've published recently on the subject of disability benefits includes: Disability allowance exists for a reason by Anne Wollenberg, Cutting disability benefits is not 'fair' by Jackie Ashley, Why should I again prove my disability to satisfy George Osborne? By Rhydian Fôn James, and Disabled people are not scroungers by Emmanuel Smith. Especially important is Anne Wollenberg's piece which explains that DLA is not an out-of-work benefit something our government keeps forgetting.

Having been called a scrounger by our press and politicians so many times I felt compelled to write a blog post explaining exactly why I get the benefits I do. It seems particularly relevant today seeing as how this morning I received a letter telling me I'm being summonsed to a Pathways to Work interview next week and if I don't show up my benefits will probably be stopped.

The ever fierce Disability Bitch accepted responsibility for the recession and has agreed to make some cuts to save the government some money.

Spoof news website published a piece titled "Osborne to put coma patients to work as draft excluders". Sad thing is that given the current climate it wouldn't be too surprising to see that as a genuine headline on a real news site.

Bitch and Newsarse may be humorous sites but for my money, the funniest thing I've read since these attacks began was this piece quoting Yvette Cooper on the Tories' plans to cut DLA. Why is that so hilarious? Because the two-faced woman was a vociferous advocate of ESA, the problems with ESA having been established in my first link.

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