Thursday, 22 April 2010

Welfare State will be used to "Opress and Discipline the Poor" - John McAllion - SSP Press Release

Welfare state will be used to "oppress and discipline the poor" - former Labour MP
SSP press release - 11/04/2010


The welfare state, which was once seen as a towering achievement by Labour, will be used as a “weapon to oppress and discipline the poor” as spending cuts bite after May 6th.

That is the stark warning from former Labour MP and MSP John McAllion, now an SSP member, writing in the party’s fortnightly paper Scottish Socialist Voice.

It comes as both Labour and the Tories showcase policies aimed at selling the idea of “getting tough” with the unemployed and sick in an attempt to present them as scroungers.

Branding all three Westminster parties as Thatcherite, McAllion contrasts the assault on claimants with the spectacle of MPs charged with corruption and ex ministers touting for lobbying work at £5,000 a day.

He writes:
“With unemployment still rising in Scotland, none of the big parties campaign to reverse New Labour’s welfare reforms that are now forcing lone parents back into low paid work; requiring the long-time unemployed to work for their benefits; and transferring jobcentre contracts to the private sector.

“What was once a welfare state that protected workers from the cradle to the grave will be used in coming years to oppress and discipline the poor.

“The three big mainstream parties contending for office in Westminster are now cast from the same mould as Thatcher’s Tories.

“Thatcher herself has boasted that New Labour was her “greatest achievement”. Clegg’s Liberal Democrats have positioned themselves midway between the two other Thatcherite parties.

“All three are now committed to reducing the national debt by a policy of slashing and burning the public sector. “

Mr McAllion is to host the Scottish Socialist Party’s election launch on Tuesday 13th April in Edinburgh.

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