There are several ongoing strands to the coalition’s current ‘crackdown’ on what the right-wing press calls ‘workshy scroungers’.
First off, each successive “crackdown” on people who are ‘on the sick’ is announced as though the previous one had not taken place.
Targetting the sick – and especially the mentally ill – started up with Peter Lilley’s “little list” as long ago as 1992.
Ignoring doctors’ diagnoses began on Day One. Many won appeals, hence the felt need to “toughen up the system”.
David Freud’s role in all this is of ironic significance since his great-grandfather was psychiatrist Sigmund who had to flee the Nazis in 1938.
The policies of the neoliberals in respect of (a) creating mental illness with their workplace ‘precarity’ and then (b) denying the validity of such illnesses when they occur is what we should expect from the social Darwinism which links neoliberalism with Nazism.
What passes for welfare across the pond is driven by the Wisconsin Worksprogram under which welfare is restricted to two years as a lifetime total.
One of the results of this draconian policy is that the New York Times reported in January that …
“About one in 50 Americans now lives in a household with a reported income that consists of nothing but a food-stamp card …”
The coalition’s line of travel is clear …
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