Labour Party – the biggest bedroom tax incompetents – IT COSTS MORE you idiots!!

Patrick Sudlow:

Both main political parties, Labour and Conservative have only one mandate, to enrich the already rich. Both parties have shown their incompetence in office, their failures to address climate change, tax avoidance and evasion, and of course the continuing failure of our banks. It is time, those who do not vote, got out their and vote for any other (preferably the Green Party), to rid us of these fools. Your vote (which people died for) is totally useless, if you do not use it. This coming General Election, get out there, encourage family, friends and neighbours to vote, anything but Labour and Conservative. Labour = Conservative = A continual cycle of failure.

Originally posted on SPeye Joe (Welfarewrites):

The Labour Party are as I write (4pm) using an Opposition Day debate on getting rid of the bedroom tax.  I should be delighted at that.  Yet they are the most incompetent ineffectual buffoons who do not know anything about the bedroom tax or about how to argue for its demise.

The Labour Party are more content to isolate the Liberal Democrats on this debate than to get rid of the policy.  That assertion is, regrettably, easily proved as the BEDROOM TAX COSTS MORE!

On a few occasions in the past 18 months I have sat down with others at a high level in housing to address the simple question – Does the bedroom tax actually save money? The issue being if it does not then the pain and misery it causes mean the policy is massively misguided.  Or put another way prove the policy actually costs money and then the…

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Does the Upper Tribunal says EVERY bedroom tax decision was unlawful? Yes!

Patrick Sudlow:

Iain Duncan Smith, has been a failure and a liar, most of his life. Despite this, he has been put in charge of a department, and pursues a draconian regime against the less fortunate of the UK’s population. This is only possible, because we do not have a true democracy in the UK.

Originally posted on SPeye Joe (Welfarewrites):

Is every single bedroom tax decision wrong in law and does every single bedroom tax affected household have legitimate grounds to appeal it?  I posed those questions almost 2 years ago and was accused of talking nonsense and of stirring up a direct action campaign.  Yet that is what the Upper Tribunal lead case decision says – I was right all along and that the bedroom tax decision-making process is and always has been an unlawful sham and ALL decision made are official errors or unlawful.

Remember I drafted a standard letter which was downloaded over 200,000 times which asked your council how they made the bedroom tax decision with 6 questions.  The answers to those confirm your council made official errors / errors of law in making the original bedroom tax decisions by not defining bedroom and by simply choosing to believe the myth that a bedroom is up to…

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Austerity is a scam but green growth isn’t the answer either.

Patrick Sudlow:

There is a Global movement calling for the end of ecocide: https://www.endecocide.org/en/. Something I think Mark Burton is striving for with Steady State Manchester. Manchester City Council, under Richard Leese and Howard Bernstein, have been pushing a policy of build, build and build more. This is offices, retail units, hotels and home-to-buy, when what is needed, is investment in front-line services and council housing. And as Mark points out, there are those, who are supposed to be ‘Green’, also wanting to follow the policy of build, build and more build. Which would would only drive climate change and inequality.
That is why I was to come across the European Trade Union Institute pursuing: Social innovation and equality keys to social ecological transition. At the bottom is a link to a presentation, showing how austerity has driven inequality. One change I would make to the presentation, is slide 5. I would change the box with ‘Inclusive Growth’ in it, to ‘Inclusive Prosperity’.

Originally posted on Steady State Manchester:

Yesterday, 3rd December, 2014, The UK Chancellor of the Exchequer, George Osborne, made his autumn statement in which he set out the government’s plans on the economy.

He confirmed that a Tory government will continue to cut public spending in the years to come. Indeed it turns out, “you ain’t seen nothing yet”. As the Office of Budget Responsibility puts it, the government’s plans mean that

Between 2009-10 and 2019-20, spending on public services, administration and grants by central government is projected to fall from 21.2 per cent to 12.6 per cent of GDP and from £5,650 to £3,880 per head in 2014-15 prices. Around 40 per cent of these cuts would have been delivered during this Parliament, with around 60 per cent to come during the next. The implied squeeze on local authority spending is similarly severe.

http://cdn.budgetresponsibility.independent.gov.uk/December_2014_EFO-web513.pdf

For a sound analysis of where these cuts will fall, see Richard Murphy’s piece, accurately…

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Pat Burke, Ancoats, Manchester

It was with sadness that I heard Pat Burke had died on the 26th November 2014.  Pat Burke had been active in Ancoats for many years, recently supporting Ancoats Dispensary Trust, in its efforts to save Ancoats Dispenary.

img007 She was involved, with other Ancoats residents in the occupation of Ancoats Casualty, which took place between February 1987 and March 1989.  They were fighting to stop the closure of the casualty department, which the local Health authority had decided, had to close.  The story of the sit-in, is told in ‘Stitched Up! – Action for Health in Ancoats’ (Dunne, M.C., 1993).  Pat was one of the editorial group, along with Phil Burke, Joe Cromer, Jean Grey, Cathy Jackson and Craig Russell, which met regularly between 1991 to 1993.  There were two copies of ‘Stitched Up!’ available in the reference section of Central Library.

Local people's Commemmorative Plaque of the Sit-In

The last of years, she has been supportive of the Save Ancoats Dispensary Group, now Ancoats Dispensary Trust, in their efforts to save the old building from demolition.  Pat Burke’s Health Profile from ‘Stitched Up!, is below;

Pat Burke Pat Burke Health Profile

Dunne, M.C. (1993) Stitched Up! – Action for Health in Ancoats, Rochdale Alternative Press. 1993 Church Action on Poverty.

A Living Wage, a Viable Economy, a Liveable City Region

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Patrick Sudlow:

Whilst Manchester has some of the worst deprivation, all Richard Leese does, is blame others. He has been behind the push to get rid of council services, by outsourcing them. This is especially true of council housing and the council’s housing staff. One social housing provider in Manchester, Places for People, has the highest paid CEO in the sector. The council outsourced a number of services to G4S, which is renown for paying less than the minimum wage

Originally posted on Steady State Manchester:

The difference between the NMW and the Living wage is around £50 per week and £2'000 per year. Which has something to do with why over 50% of those in poverty are in-work.
The difference between the NMW and the Living wage is around £50 per week and £2’000 per year. Which has something to do with why over 50% of those in poverty are in-work.

This week was Living Wage Week. The new Living Wage rate, uprated in accordance with increases in the cost of living, of £7.85ph outside London was announced. At least 21.8% of people in Greater Manchester currently earn less than it, and this is similar across the UK. To mark the event SSM, along with signatories from other Campaign groups including GMB Union, the GM Living Wage Campaign and the Green Party sent an open letter to the leaders (and city mayor) of the Greater Manchester Local Authorities.

The letter urged them to take action on in-work poverty and inequality and demonstrate a commitment to the Living Wage and principles of Fair Pay. It’s below:

Living wage letter signatory logos
Dear Leaders of…

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Global tax evasion, equality and quantitative easing…

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Patrick Sudlow:

I would disagree with comment that UKIP has grown considerably. The media and especially the BBC, have given Farage and UKIP, disproportionately more publicity than they deserve. Whilst the Green Party, with an MP since 2010, a number of MEPs, control of Brighton and considerable influence in some other councils. Does not get the media response it deserves, even being denied again, a place at a leaders debate on BBC TV. It is not just Murdoch’s media empire that is an obstacle to true democracy.

Originally posted on Political Omniscience:

The Group of twenty (G20) committed to finding a global solution for tax evasion after the financial crisis, and in 2009 it agreed to make arrangements for the exchanging of tax information between tax administrations around the world. In October this year the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) and the G20 officially endorsed the automatic exchange of tax information between all OECD and G20 countries as well as major financial centres that participate in the annual meeting of the Global Forum on Transparency and Exchange of Information for Tax Purposes in Berlin. A status report on committed and not committed countries or jurisdictions and whether they will start reporting information in 2017 or 2018, is to be presented to G20 leaders during the annual summit held in Brisbane in less than two weeks. Australia along with thirty-eight other countries that include China, Saudi Arabia and Hong Kong have…

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Was Plebgate linked to corruption in Mitchell’s foreign aid dept?

Patrick Sudlow:

It is a pity no one has fully investigated Manchester City Council’s inability to properly account for the millions of EU grant money it received? Especially as local communities have been torn apart, simply to allow property developers to enrich themselves, whilst not delivering what they had been contracted to deliver. It does not help, that the EU left Neil Kinnock (former leader of the Labour Party) in charge of the anti-corruption department, despite he, himself being implicated in corruption. The chief investigator in the department did produce a report into the corruption in the EU, to be only sacked.

Originally posted on The SKWAWKBOX Blog:

Very interesting reading, this article – backed by testimony to both the UK and European parliaments.

Mitchell is apparently spending huge amounts of money trying to whitewash himself of the abuse of police officers that led to the ‘plebgate’ scandal (which may not be what you think). But what’s underneath doesn’t wash.

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Manchester’s property bubble

Richard Leese, leader of the totally Labour-controlled Manchester City Council, along with the Council’s Chief Executive, Howard Bernstein.  Are constantly promoting the need for more offices, hotels, retail units and ‘homes-to-buy’, despite the fact we have a surplus.  In other words, supply exceeds demand by some considerable margin, which any visitor to Manchester can easily observe.

In a recent copy of Commercial Property Register, North West, June – Sept 2014.  It can be easily determined we have an excess of office space.  Meanwhile, in the Hotel sector, they are boasting of exceptional hotel occupancy rates.  From the Business News, 2nd October 2014:

In the first eight months of 2014 the city centre had an average occupancy rate of 76% – a figure previously unmatched at this point in the year since records began. This figure has been sustained by record weekday rates (75% average YTD) and strong performing weekend rates (81% average YTD).

In April of this year, the Manchester Evening News published an article about the record occupation rates.  Claiming there were three days where the occupancy rate was at 98%.  This still allows for some slack, and with the average year to date (YTD) figures of 75% weekdays and 81%.  There is still plenty of room at the inn, so why is there any real need for more hotels to be built?  1 in 4 empty rooms during weekdays and 1 in 5 empty at weekends, how is this economical?  If the hotel business was so vibrant and profitable, why did Forte Hotels, put Salford’s 5=star hotel, The Lowry Hotel, up for sale.  Especially it sit across the River Irwell, from Manchester City Centre.  Some of the rooms presently occupied, will be occupied by contractors working on all this new build.

From Homes from Empty Homes:

Current Empty Homes Statistics

The data is obtained from council tax information.  The data is supplied by owners of empty homes who report their properties as empty to their council. Councils usually offer exemptions from council tax for empty homes, which gives an incentive for owners to report thier property as empty.Click here for a detailed regional breakdown.

In 2013, the figures for Manchester were, 209,138 total dwellings, of which 5,399, 2.58% were empty, whilst 2,780, 1.33% were long term empty.  So why is Manchester City Council still pursuing a policy of demolishing perfectly fit council homes?  Only to build more ‘homes-to-buy’, nobody can afford.  As well as wasting council revenues on pursuing compulsory purchase orders (CPOs)?  Just so that some speculators can enrich themselves?  The council now videos their council meetings, which people may find either amusing or pathetic, especially as a number of important documents were not available, allegedly

Manchester’s emissions

Manchester City Council recently published their latest State of the City 2013 – 14 report.  Nowadays, the council does not show comparisons between the different wards.  Except for a vague consultation of people’s satisfaction with life and how people from different ethnic backgrounds, from 2010.  Is this because the comparison between different wards, shows that the worst performing wards, are those of the senior councillors, Richard Leese (Crumpsall), Pat Karney (Harpurhey) and Rosa Battle (Bradford) for example.  I have heard a story, that Donna Ludford, the replacement for Jim Battle (ex-Deputy Leader (Ancoats) and now deputy Police Commissioner), has had her friends telling people she is no longer a councillor.  It would appear, she is feeling the pressure from the people of Ancoats who are totally dissatisfied with the performance of Manchester City Council.

My initial interest in the council’s report was in their section on the Environment and Climate Change, pages 148 to 155.  They do admit that the annual objective for Nitrogen Dioxide (NO2) have been exceeded.  They try to give the impression that Carbon Dioxide (CO2) emissions have fallen in Manchester since 2005 by 16.1%.  They have in reality fallen by only 10%, having risen from 2,745.2 in  2011, to 2,944.8 in 2012: Manchester’s emissions.  They do not put a link to the Department of Environment and Climate Change’s (DECC), Local Authority Carbon Dioxide emissions which was published 26th June 2014.  Instead, they used outdated information, stating 2012 data would be available in the summer of 2014.  Why did they not delay publication of the more update data was available?  And of course, these emissions are only estimation, and could an under-estimation of the real emissions, especially as emissions due to aviation are not included.

Manchester City Council seem unable to properly account for their on energy usage, therefore are unable to accurately estimate their own emissions.  From what I constantly observe walking around Manchester, is the amount of wasted energy on the part of Manchester City Council.

2013-12-30 23.24.34
Manchester Central Library, at 23:34hrs, when it was shut to the public and no work was being carried out on it.
Manchester Town Hall annexe at 00:55hrs, whilst no work being carried out.
Manchester Town Hall annexe at 00:55hrs, whilst no work being carried out.
Manchester Central Conference Centre at 01:00hrs.
Manchester Central Conference Centre at 01:00hrs.

Manchester suffers from some of the worst health outcomes with residents having a low ‘good’ general health expectation and a low life expectancy.   These are indications that Manchester City Council has failed totally, in addressing major issues that negatively impact on Mancuians.  Despite all their hype, they have failed time and again and Manchester has not been resilient to climate change.