Saturday 23 October 2010

What the coalition really means by "fairness"

The new government likes to talk about fairness. We keep hearing about how it's supposedly at the heart of coalition policy. But when Cameron, Clegg and co talk about fairness, what do they really mean?

You may think they mean protecting the most vulnerable people in society, as promised in Cameron's inaugural speech. Yet the people losing out from the cuts are those with disabilities, low-income earners, mothers, children and people who need legal aid.

So perhaps you think the coalition talks about fairness, then doesn't walk the talk. But I don't think that's quite it. I don't think they're saying one thing and doing another. I think people are misinterpreting what they're saying.

I keep remembering the time I saw David Cameron talking about inheritance tax on TV, possibly during the pre-election debates. There was a phrase that he kept using: "people who've done the right thing".

You may think "fairness" means equality of opportunity and support for the vulnerable, rather than a society that rewards the rich and penalises the poor. But that's not what the coalition really means by "fairness", and Cameron's talk of "people who've done the right thing" says it all.

This coalition does not understand that people who are out of work cannot simply pop to the Jobcentre and find a new job at the drop of a hat (given stats show there are thousands more jobseekers than there are jobs), or that disabled people can't just magic an expensive wheelchair out of thin air.

Because this coalition is run by people who think the amount you earn determines your worth to society - and that the amount you earn reflects how hard you work. This coalition thinks that people on low incomes simply do not work as hard and so have no right to expect to be able to afford decent accommodation.

This coalition believes that the more money you have, the more deserving you are. That the more you earn, the more you are "doing the right thing". When they talk about fairness, they're talking about being fair to the people who have everything, not those who have nothing. And there's nothing fair about that.


  1. This coalition is run by people who want you to work - for them. They can't stand the idea we aren't all working to make them even richer.


  2. Perhaps, but then why would those who have "done the right thing" in working and paying national insurance contributions be losing their illness benefit after a year, whilst the cliche workless families have no time limit to their income-based benefit?

    I think it is far more likely that all this talk of "fairness" is just an attempt to hypnotise the voting masses into not realising how unfair some of the cuts are!

  3. In 1990 while at work I fell from about 96ft but the HSE state because I hit a stairs on the way down it is classed as two falls of 45 plus foot.

    I broke a leg Broke my back, broke my jaw in a few places, but I ended up with a lesion of the spinal cord.

    I was taken to hospital not by paramedics two people who were porters, they could not put the blue light on because they were not emergency responce crew, they did not put on a neck collar, or use a spinal board. The hospital then went into protection mode and idiot mode at the same time, they plastered the wrong leg even though I told them to look at my leg you could see the break. They told me I had a broken back and they said it seems like you have a problem with your spinal cord, an hour later I was given a book about drink and told to find my own way home.

    A car was then used to take me home, at home I had a massive fit and was rushed by ambulance to another hospital where all hell broke lose.

    The first hospital said I had walked out, the doctor said he walked out with two broken legs a broken back and a lesion of the spinal cord.

    Four years later i was sent to Rookwood spinal injuries hospital where doctors told me I had a lesion three collapsed disc and needed urgent operations, since then I've lost the use of my bowel and bladder all sexual function, and of late I'm told I've got PTSD, which does not surprise me.

    I've been active down my area thats Wales going onto Welsh TV about the closure of Remploy factories and the cut backs .

    But I do want to work, with all my injuries my job center and the Shaw trust and Remploy inter works, the Job center have been playing a game, the last job they sent me for was window cleaning, painter and decorator saying the company might want to use me painting skirting's.
    Taxi driver even knowing I cannot drive, long distance lorry drive. It's been like a game , the best was a job in Boots the chemist as a perfume sales person, then I was told Avon was a great idea as self employment would be great.

    I think this is all about getting people onto the lowest benefits.