What is a bedroom – There is a minimum size and specification…from the coalition

16 Sep

Patrick Sudlow:

All those affected by the ‘bed-room tax’, should read this and appeal the decision.

Originally posted on SPeye Joe (Welfarewrites):

This coalition government DO have a minimum room size and minimum room width and a detailed specification of what constitutes a bedroom and below is a game changer in the bedroom tax and especially in appealing this ill-conceived policy.

In the bedroom tax everything hinges on the term ‘bedroom’ as Housing Benefit is only reduced (the ‘bedroom tax’) if you have a spare bedroom. Nothing is deducted for a spare toilet or any other spare room, it is only on a spare bedroom, however defined.

Until now it has been believed there is no definition of the term bedroom and the DWP infamously issued the U6 HB circular in September 2013 to say a bedroom is merely a room that can accommodate a single bed.

Yet in August 2013 this coalition government put out a highly detailed definition of what is a single bedroom, a twin bedroom and a double bedroom.  A single bedroom…

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Margaret Hodge attempts to talk her way out of Islington paedophile scandal

5 Sep

Patrick Sudlow:

Child abuse was known about in the 1990s, for a Minister to state it was not understood, is diabolical. There was wide-spread political cover-ups of the situation, country-wide. My sister reported a manager in a children’s hostel, of suspected child grooming. Only for her to be moved to housing and for no action to be taken by Labour-controlled Manchester City Council! And Manchester City Council’s Children’s Services are still inadequate, leaving children vulnerable to child abuse; Manchester’s children put at risk

Originally posted on spotlight:

In yesterday’s Guardian, Margaret Hodge spoke about her time as leader of Islington Council, when it was proved that a paedophile network had been sexually abusing vulnerable children in every one of the council’s children’s homes.

Margaret Hodge blasts HMRC over tax hotline

Her own tenure was not without its controversies: within weeks of taking on the job, accusations resurfaced that while she was leader of Islington council, from 1982 to 1992, she had not done enough to follow up allegations that a child abuse ring was operating in her borough. When a victim protested her appointment as minister, she described him as an “extremely disturbed person” and tried to prevent the Today programme from airing his claims; she eventually had to make a formal apology in the high court and pay £10,000 in damages to a charity. “All that happened when we didn’t really understand child abuse in the way that we understand it now. This…

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Reading the Salaita Papers

3 Sep

Patrick Sudlow:

The systemic anti-Semitism and racism, that corrupts modern academia, in the USA. Money should count for nothing, what corporate and ethical considerations has this university in place, if any? Would they quite happily take money of the likes of Hitler or Stalin, which, what they are doing equates to?

Originally posted on Corey Robin:

There are many developments today in the Salaita affair, so I’m going to do this as a two-part post. Part 2 is here.

This morning, the News-Gazette released 280 pages of documents obtained under the Illinois Freedom of Information Act revealing extensive donor pressure on Chancellor Wise.

As news spread in late July about a new University of Illinois faculty hire and media outlets began publishing some of his profanity-laden tweets, a number of wealthy donors threatened to stop giving money to the university, recently released documents show.

The letters about professor Steven Salaita started arriving in Chancellor Phyllis Wise’s inbox July 21, and the writers did not hold back.

“Having been a multiple 6 figure donor to Illinois over the years, I know our support is ending as we vehemently disagree with the approach this individual espouses,” wrote one UI business school graduate.

The letters from donors…

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The Republican, Issue One

27 Aug

Patrick Sudlow:

An interesting article about the Peterloo Massacre and one of the important people Richard Carlile, fighting for democracy in the UK. Something that is still, sadly lacking, due to the ‘first-past-the-post’ system.  Unfortunately, far too many middle-class, so-called socialist, think Marxism is the only socialist movement the UK had. Marx plagiarised the work of early British, French and German socialists, to produce a work of contradictions.

Originally posted on conradbrunstrom:


The Republican Issue One

The Republican was first published on this day, August 27th, 1819.  Its creator was Richard Carlile, who was one of the intended speakers  at the St Peter’s Fields reform meeting before the yeomanry transformed the occasion into the Peterloo Massacre.  Shocked by the spectacle of unarmed men women and children being cut to pieces just because they wanted to hear a bit more about democracy, Carlile wrote an account of the event for Sherwin’s Weekly Political Register which led to his instant prosecution.

The Prince Regent also put pen to paper.  He took the initiative of writing personally to congratulate the troops on how promptly and efficiently they had put the plebs to the sword.

(You see, soldiers who slaughter civilians aren’t committing a crime.  People who point that soldiers slaughter civilians are the real criminals.)

Carlile changed the name of his paper to

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”Israel”, Rotten Fruit of False Knowledge

25 Aug

Patrick Sudlow:

Palestine existed since Babylonian times, even the Romans did not call the area Israel. The United Nations was established, because the League of Nations had been deemed to have failed. So the United Nations was established in the USA, and has every since, been manipulated by the USA. One of it’s very first acts, was to establish a state of Israel in Palestine. There has been no Peace in the World, since the inception of the United Nations.

Originally posted on System Humanity:

“Israel” is a fascinating word. According to the Bible it means, “He struggles with god”. This was the name given to Jacob because he struggled with God all night. And won. A ridiculous statement if taken at face value. As a metaphor it opens a treasure of interpretations. In any case, this all-night wrestling match between a shepherd and the creator of the universe should not be regarded as documentary.

Academic Bible researchers tell us that the entire story of creation was added to the Story of Moses as a prologue hundreds of years after the time of Moses. This makes the name Israel even more fascinating. Who were these Israelite-Egyptians who invaded and conquered the land of Canaan?

For one thing, they were not slaves. They were armed. Slaves don’t carry weapons. The Bible refers to them alternatively as tribes and armies. Moses was negotiating for them with the…

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IDS’s latest bedroom tax strategy is all men are rapists!!

22 Aug

Patrick Sudlow:

The very inept UK Government, goes from one stupid assertion to another!

Originally posted on SPeye Joe (Welfarewrites):

All men are capable of rape therefore all men are rapists was one of the strident assertions of the New York feminist movement in the early 1970’s.

Contrast that with what Iain Duncan Smith says about the bedroom tax and I quote directly from a DWP argument put into the Upper Tribunal which says:

a. the Government intended that all rooms that are capable of being used as a bedroom should be classified as such (see for instance DWP circular U6/2013);

The absolute perversity of such a statement is lost on the DWP legal department.  It is legally, economically. practically and politically perverse to say a room capable of being a bedroom is a bedroom.

  • I can fit a mattress on my bath therefore its a bedroom.
  • I can fit a single bed in my bathroom therefore it is a bedroom.
  • I can fit a bed into my kitchen therefore…

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Stafford protest camp sets vital NHS example – ignored by media

19 Aug

Patrick Sudlow:

This Government has misused what have been poorly configured assessments to black list hospitals for closure. They have done irreparable harm to the National Health Service, in order to achieve the objective of privatising the health service.

Originally posted on The SKWAWKBOX Blog:

If you don’t live in Stafford or the surrounding area, you won’t have heard that the people of Stafford have gone to extraordinary lengths to try to save their hospital. For some time now, a ‘Greenham Common’-style camp – started and entirely run by ordinary local citizens – has been pitched outside the hospital to protest against the relentless plans by the government’s ‘TSA’ (Trust Special Administrator) and to try to save vital health services.


You would think, all things being equal in a 24hr-news age, that such an unusual thing would have attracted the interest of all kinds of media – at the very least as ‘filler’ on thin news days. But apart from a few mentions in the local media and in the blog of local activist group SSH (‘Support Stafford Hospital), the existence of the camp has been conspicuous by its absence in the press and on…

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Peterloo Massacre 195th Anniversary

17 Aug

August 16th was the 195th Anniversary of the Peterloo Massacre, and a commemoration of the event was held on the 17th August 2014, on Windmill Street on the edge of the original site.  A number of different groups had walked in from other parts of Lancashire to represent the original marches to join the Peterloo Rally. 

The Middleton contingent  walking up Southmill Street towards Windmill Street, passing, what was the Free Trade Hall.

The Middleton contingent walking up Southmill Street towards Windmill Street, passing, what was the Free Trade Hall.

A couple of the replica banners from the Peterloo Rally August 16th 1819

A couple of the replica banners from the Peterloo Rally August 16th 1819

Maxine Peake had appeared the year before at the Manchester International Festival, doing a reading of Shelley’s Masque of AnarchyDSC_0008. 

The Maxine Peake started the proceedings.

The Maxine Peake started the proceedings.

The Deputy Lord Mayor of Manchester started the reading of those innocents killed on that inglorious day.

The Deputy Lord Mayor of Manchester started the reading of those innocents killed on that inglorious day.

A number of Ancoats Dispensary Trust and supporters, were at the event. 

A number of Ancoats Dispensary Trust and supporters were at the event.

A number of Ancoats Dispensary Trust and supporters were at the event. 

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Tribunal Rules ‘Absent Parents’ Can Have Spare Bedrooms For Visiting Children

16 Aug

Patrick Sudlow:

The courts keeping finding legal flaws in the criminal bed-room (Spare Room)tax law.

Originally posted on Same Difference:

Well known Bedroom Tax blogger SPeye Joe has some very good news.

He goes into a lot of legal detail, which you can read from his site if you wish.

However, this is such an important ruling that I thought I’d summarise it for those who have less of an interest in the full legal background.

Basically, readers, the case the post reports on is this:

A father has two sons. One son lives in Scotland with his mother but goes to his father in England for one weekend a month and school holidays.

The father was hit with a 14% Bedroom Tax for his one spare bedroom, where his son who also lives in Scotland stays, until the tribunal found that  the Right to Respect for a Private And Family Life section of the European Convention Of Human Rights required it to rule that  a ‘home’ includes a place…

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Biggest London march in support of Gaza, Palestine.

10 Aug

Jews against Zionism.

Jews against Zionism.

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America's 9/11, Palestine's 24/7.

America’s 9/11, Palestine’s 24/7.

Entering Grosvenor Square, home of the US Embassy.

Entering Grosvenor Square, home of the US Embassy.

Everton Fans against apartheid.

Everton Fans against apartheid.

Arsenal Fans against apartheid.

Arsenal Fans against apartheid.

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At the start of the march in Portland Place.

At the start of the march in Portland Place.


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