osborneyesLook into those mince pies, and all you’ll see is pork pies

One of the more staggering stats that came out of the Election was that 80% of all the “new jobs” haha had been created in London. But now this morning the Rowntree Foundation observes that only 1 in 3 Londoners have what is defined as “a decent standard of living”. The Slog continues its series on blatant lies that won the General Election.

After the Big Lie about the UK fiscal situation (see earlier Slogpost) the second Biggest Lie we were told by the Conservatives was that the economy must be in good shape, because jobs were being created. One wonders what these might have been – downstairs parlour maid, maybe? – but the one thing we know for sure is that (a) almost all of them are low-paid and (b) over 77% of successful job seekers said, when asked last summer, that the job did not have enough hours for them to make ends meet.

The other takeaway from this data, however, must surely be, “What in God’s name is it like everywhere else to the North of London if only 25% of Capital jobs were supplied?”

It’s a fair question. And the Office of National Statistics (ONS) offers some disgraceful answers in its new release out today.

Almost a third of the UK population experienced poverty in at least one year between 2010 and 2013, equivalent to approximately 19.3 million people. The average figure for this so-called ‘occasional’ poverty across the EU is 25%.

But this is what George Osborne said in his last Budget speech:

Today, I can confirm: in the last year we have grown faster than any other major advanced economy in the world.

Five years ago, millions of people could not find work.

Today, I can report: more people have jobs in Britain than ever before.

Five years ago, living standards were set back years by the Great Recession.

Today, the latest projections show that living standards will be higher than when we came to office.”

Now, unless there was a job-creation miracle between 2013 and 2015, Georgy Porky was telling pudding and pies. And indeed he was: 780,000 new jobs were created in 2014 but only 2.5% of them were for jobs offering fulltime employment.

In fact, since the banking collapse (2008-14) a net 670,000 fulltime jobs have disappeared….and show no signs of coming back. What the Tories have done is replace well-paid real jobs with crap jobs….and bunged in the self-employed folks whose job discovery was nothing to do with the Government.

A staggering 60% of new jobs were desperate people turning to self-employment.…and given the averages for that sector of the economy, in the first three years some 11% of those will fail – while a further 25% will do no more than break even.

But it gets worse.

Almost 40% of those aged 65 years and over in the UK experienced poverty at least once between 2010 and 2013. Think about that: in a self-styled civilised First World country, 2 in 5 pensioners have experienced poverty since the Coalition came to power.

Want to go one worse than that?

60% of those living in single parent households were in poverty at some point over the period.

I was doing a little tot-up this morning – just based on my own circle of friends, family and followers with whom I have some degree of contact – of the number of single parents I know. Not a single one of them is lazy or feckless, but they’re all in what the ONS calls ‘persistent poverty’. And the vast majority are single parents because the bloke buggered off but Blair’s make-em-pay scheme was an unmitigated disaster. Others include divorced women and blokes still tied to the house by dependent children and/or ageing relatives who can’t find (or don’t want) a place in the crummy Aged Care homes we have in Cruel Britannia.

Who is to blame for this? Hmmm. How long have you got?

* Neoliberal Friedmanite theories

* Braindead bankers

* The Tabloid Tory outlook on life

* Smug Middle England

* A British Left unwilling to engage

* The Ed Miller Band and its risible metropolitan focus on minority issues

* LibDems who colluded with hard-right Conservatives during the Coalition

* A media set happy to back up bigger and more commonplace lies from the Government – and hide the truth during the Election

* The decent segment of Brits who paid little or no attention to the realities…and in the end did nothing.

* David Cameron, George Osborne, Jeremy Hunt, Michael Fallon, Theresa May, Nick Clegg, and all the other corporacratic whores happy to wave their private parts at anyone with Big Munnneeeee.

It seems we need a rephrasing of the old adage about lies. There are liars, damned liars, and George Osborne.

If you liked this piece, you’ll probably also like Debt, Disaster and Duping Democracy


  1. Planned insufficiency of work is a strategy from the globalists to keep the workforce compliant, it matters not what employment laws exist if you can circumvent them by offering fewer hours than the worker requires to live and then saying ‘ooh well there’s lots of scope for extra hours’ – until you complain or demand you lawful employment rights, then suddenly there isn’t. Can you complain – no, because you are still working your contracted hours other spurious reasons will be given why you can’t top up your hours any more, none of which can be challenged.


  2. …. 60% of new jobs were desperate people turning to self-employment…..
    a little known fact is that a large amount of these people have a small to medium lump sum, are not entitled to any benefits, naturally enough. But they cannot or do not want to work…………….
    so they register self employed…..and declare a very small business….on ebay or similar, and they pay their Class 2 NI at the reduced rate of £2/week in stead of £15….thereby making sure they get to pension age with full contributions, and a full pension.
    In fact this is such a good wheeze I’m doing it myself……
    Go on…… try this one at home…!
    How long before Osborne stops that…?????


  3. @UR

    … and don’t forget Working Tax Credits! For those who qualify (try the WTC calculator on HMRC’s site), this could be worth another £200+ per month – just the thing to pay for luxuries like food and heating!


  4. ONS REPORT: The poverty figures shown above are genuinely worrying and the headline numbers grab the attention, which is of course what they were designed to do. But the headlines of the report mask a few of the ‘facts’ that are within it, whichin turn are supported by spreadsheets, tables and graphs. Here I quote the report:

    “Looking at poverty rates for individual EU countries (Figure 2), in 2013, the UK had one of the lowest
    levels of persistent poverty across the EU but had the 13th highest level of cross-sectional poverty
    out of the 28 member states.

    This relationship between rates of persistent poverty and overall poverty can be most clearly seen
    when considering the ratio between the two rates expressed as a percentage (Figure 3). A ratio of
    50% would suggest that half of those currently in poverty were also poor in at least two out of the
    last three years. In 2013, the UK had a ratio of 49% indicating that less than half of those in poverty
    that year had been persistently poor. This is one of the lowest of the EU countries for which data are
    available and below the EU average of 58%.

    In contrast to the UK, the persistent poverty rate in Romania is 81% of the overall poverty rate for
    2013; in Italy it is 69%. This suggests that in these countries the vast majority of people in relative
    income poverty experience it over a number of years. By contrast, in the UK, for those experiencing
    relative low income, it is more likely to be for a shorter period of time”

    There is certainly no room for complacency and Gideon has a problem on his hands. However, time should be spent reading the actual report using the link JW has provided before mounting the rumbling wagon.


  5. Billy Bones quite correct,but then maybe you should follow up your own analysis,their in reality poverty is rising & although this is the start & therefore many haven’t been in poverty before it is no indication that on entering poverty people are escaping poverty & since the figures are 2yrs old,this as almost certainly the case barring changing what is classed as in poverty once again,the next set should they do one WILL be worse


  6. Self-employed National Insurance rates

    You usually pay 2 types of National Insurance if you’re self-employed:
    Self-employed National Insurance rates

    Class 2 if your profits are £5,965 or more a year
    Class 4 if your profits are £8,060 or more a year
    You work out your profits by deducting your expenses from your self-employed income.

    How much you pay
    Class Rate for tax year 2015 to 2016
    Class 2 £2.80 a week
    Class 4 9% on profits between £8,060 and £42,385
    2% on profits over £42,385


  7. You must tell HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC) when you become self-employed as a sole trader or partnership.


  8. Billy
    We need to put your entirely accurate comments into a relative context.

    Britain has always had a much, much lower persistent poverty rate than the entire ClubMed and East European regions. But the gap is narrowing.
    This may sound cruel, but the idea in my youth that we could be in any way SERIOUSLY compared economically to, say, Poland would’ve been found risible. Poland? WhoTF are they? would’ve been the response.

    Second, averaging persistent poverty NATIONALLY across the EU is a nonsense. REGIONAL comparisons are the thing that tells a true story…hence my reference to London. There is far more persistent poverty in the NE of England than there is in SW France. There is far more in the Gorbals than in Milan. And so on. In Poland, the East suffers dire agrarian poverty: the West is not in wonderful shape, but it is much better off.

    My main point in writing this piece (and the earlier one) was to make one simple point: all politicians lie – it’s an almost autonomic response for them. But nobody in history – not even Gordoooom – has lied with quite the cynical sociopathy of the Draper: to Parliament, to the media, to the People – and even to the Cabinet.

    That said, thanks for your polite and thorough response – it makes a pleasant change these days. My idea for Gideon’s fate is not so much a rumbling wagon as a Tumbril. : – )


  9. I spent the better part of today touring the waste recycling centres of Wiltshire. These sites are staffed by ‘hard-working’ people (to coin a well-worn phrase – except that these really are very hard-working folk and largely unrecognised for their efforts) who are about to be dealt a particularly shitty hand of cards. In an effort to reduce costs, the wise ones and bean counters in Wiltshire Council and Hills Waste (the contractor appointed to run the sites) have decided to close some of the sites for a couple of days per week and only open between 10-4 on the days when they graciously decide to open the gates to a nuisance public.who just want somewhere to deposit their household waste. This means that the site employees will have just 30 hours of paid employment per week where previously they had 40. The daft buggers in County Hall will probably end up spending more to clear up the increased fly-tipping that will inevitably result. Thus it continues for the vassals and serfs in this glorious kingdom.


  10. The Chancer of the Exchequer, Mr Robsone, gets his data from the Office for National Semantics. It’s a poor show, but he’ll go to any lengths not to let the poor show.


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