I.D.S. ...........Big Issue and Self Employment

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Dic Penderyn

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There is a lady who sells the big issue near our local Wilkinsons some times I buy one sometimes not. When ever I pass bye she always says hello and smiles, if she is self employed she is entitled to apply for Tax Credits its then up to the revenue to access her claim it is not for IDS to castigate her for applying no matter her ethnic or national origin. The vendors get the first ten copies any subsequent copies have to be paid for by the vendor. They also have to give evidence of their current situation regards housing and finances when applying.
Be careful in what you wish for, God has a sense of humour

Sunny Clouds

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The thing is, though, that what IDS is addressing is the fact that until now you could run what was no more a real business than the shell companies that half his mates probably use to ferret their money away and take advantage of the tax system.

It's a nice set of soundbites for him to refer it in terms of immigration, but it's also a practical issue.

You see, if you want to claim tax credits, your business has to be effectively full-time (I don't remember the exact number of hours) but that can include paperwork, drumming up  business etc.  In effect, if you stand outside a shop for five hours and sell one Big Issue, on paper you are operating your business for five hours.  That would be the same if you were selling teddy bears or having a market stall and selling one cake.

I wonder how many people on JSA realise they can do this?  Like I say, it doesn't have to be selling BI.  Why not hang outside the local pub/club on a Friday/Saturday night selling  lighters to smokers who've forgotten theirs and maybe a few other bits and bobs?   You can enjoy the music, chat with your mates, do very little and claim enough in tax credits to be better off than on JSA.

It's a loophole I find odd and I don't object to there being some sort of minimum earning idea or maybe an assumed minimum income.  Taking arbitrary figures to illustrate my point, if JSA-type stuff gives you £75 and tax credits would top up business earnings to £100, then I think that it would be fair not only to expect you to work full time in your business but also to assume earnings of, say, £75.  As I say, that's a random figure. 

As to the A2 thing, I have a mixture of feelings involving, for example, a sympathy with those Romanians who are also Roma and therefore on the end of social exclusion and hostility everywhere, the knowledge that I have lived and worked in other countries, a belief that people of different backgrounds should be treated fairly, a feeling of sympathy towards people whose life is rough enough for benefits and/or leaving their homeland to be attractive and a concern for population size in this country.  (As regards the latter, I have long said to others that I believe that we could afford to be  less concerned about immigration if we had a very hard-hitting campaign for everyone to reduce the size of their families, to make having more than one child socially unacceptable [but not unlawful] until our population has dropped below 50 million.)

So that's my cards on the table.
(I'm an obsessive problem-solver, so feel free to ignore any suggestions or solutions I offer, even if they sound terribly insistent.)

Dic Penderyn

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The latest Eurostat population figures show that there were 392,600 more people in Britain in 2012 compared to the previous year, putting the total population of the UK at 63,888,000.
More than a third of the increase, 38 per cent or 148,700 people, was accounted for by immigration with the rest accounted for by “natural change”, the fact that 243,900 more babies were born than people that died.
The number of live births in Britain was 813,000 in 2012, the second highest in Europe, falling just behind France where 822,000 babies were born.

So all immigrants are sterilized on entry to the UK then, and make no contribution to "natural change"
Be careful in what you wish for, God has a sense of humour

devine63

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Hi Sunny

your post made me wonder about the actual impact of the One Child policy - here are two different perspectives on it...

http://web.mit.edu/lipoff/www/hapr/summer03_security/CHEN.pdf 

http://www.economist.com/blogs/economist-explains/2013/12/economist-explains-8 

As for the stuff about the Big Issue - may I suggest everyone who can manage it buys this week's Big Issue and reads the article there about that topic?   Surprise surprise it's not eactly as IDS presents it...
regards, Deb





Sunny Clouds

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I'm not basing my views on what IDS says, I'm basing my views on
(a) a series of correspondance between myself and BI,
(b) observations of what has happened in my local community and neighbouring communities on a general scale,
(c) attendance at community meetings and reading minutes of and reports of community meetings involving BI representatives,
(d) conversations with BI sellers and others selling and/or begging in my local community,
(e) a knowledge of the local property market,
(f) a knowledge of the rules relating to tax credits,
(g) observation of how few magazines are sold by local BI sellers claiming tax credits and of how much money is given to them,
(h) the personal observation that after years of giving money to various BI sellers in various parts of the country, I was rarely handed a magazine,
(i) a sense that I'd rather people who were homeless or struggling to keep a roof over their head sold a range of products not one that I don't actually want and that even if I did, they seem reluctant to hand over in exchange for my money,
(j) a sense of indignation over the snobbery that says that if someone begs by selling the odd copy of BI, most of which end up in the bin or the gutter just down the road, and accepting lots of donations, it is somehow more acceptable than someone simply sitting there asking for money with no pretence of selling anything, or selling other items be they cheap lighters or religious tracts or the local rag.  Yes, I'm supposed to be more supportive of someone selling BI than someone selling any other publication.  I'm not.  Either they're running a business or they're not.
(k) a dislike of people/organisations who do something they think is ok but who dress it up as if it were something else instead of coming out and openly defending what they're actually doing.
(I'm an obsessive problem-solver, so feel free to ignore any suggestions or solutions I offer, even if they sound terribly insistent.)

Dic Penderyn

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Quote
your post made me wonder about the actual impact of the One Child policy - here are two different perspectives on it.

And here is another.

http://www.theguardian.com/books/2013/may/06/chinas-barbaric-one-child-policy
Be careful in what you wish for, God has a sense of humour

devine63

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grim reading indeed, Dic

regards, Deb

AccessOfficer

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Praise the Lord and pass the ammunition!!
Thanks
AO

Sunny Clouds

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But China's one-child policy is a legally-enforced policy with compulsory abortions, sterilisations etc.  I am not suggesting that, I'm suggesting a campaign to change public culture.  Anyone who thinks that can't be done, think of seat belts, smoke alarms, not smoking while pregnant, breast feeding, not leaving your kids to play by themselves in the street at an early age etc.
(I'm an obsessive problem-solver, so feel free to ignore any suggestions or solutions I offer, even if they sound terribly insistent.)

Dic Penderyn

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Quote
not smoking while pregnant, breast feeding, not leaving your kids to play by themselves in the street at an early age

All of which apply only if you have children procreation is a primal urge for the majority  not a cultural preference  to take it away you will need to use force it would be like trying to educate people not to eat drink or breath.

Mind you The Voluntary Human Extinction Movement recommends global zero population growth and extinction of the human race.

Here is some info on global fertility rates. The uk is fairly low on the ranking lists.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_countries_and_territories_by_fertility_rate
« Last Edit: 12 Jun 2014 10:51PM by Dic Penderyn »
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Sunny Clouds

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If procreation is such a great urge and if cultural norms don't modify it, what does cause the variation in birth rates?  Ok, so there is the oddity of China, but what, for instance, keeps the birth rate low in Germany where there is ample financial and practical support for babies, children, mothers, families?

I think we have a stark choice - reduce the number of new immigrants and/or reduce the number of babies.  My preference is for a bit of both. 

Incidentally, for all that we have the urge to procreate, that manifests itself primarily in an urge to engage in sexual intercourse.  My gut feeling is that the population could also be held partly in check just by better information/education as regards contraception.  I have discovered over the years how few people remember what the failure rate is for a good quality condom correctly used.
(I'm an obsessive problem-solver, so feel free to ignore any suggestions or solutions I offer, even if they sound terribly insistent.)

devine63

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According to the UK Census Office

http://www.ons.gov.uk/ons/rel/family-demography/family-size/2012/family-size-rpt.html

There were 7.7 million families with dependent children in the UK in 2012, 1 in 7 [14.3%]  of which had three or more dependent children.  [which means that 6 out of 7 families have two children or less]

The UK has a higher percentage of households with three or more children than three-quarters of European Union countries.

Nearly 9 in 10 couple families with three or more dependent children had either one or both parents working.   [which means only 1 in 10 families with 3+ children are "on benefits" in the totally unemployed sense]

What all of that means is that many couples do not produce enough children to "replace themselves" which means that if birthrate were the only factor, the population is/would be already dropping.   

Of course birthrate isn't the only factor: people living longer is tending to increase the size of the population, as is the number of immigrants...

regards, Deb


 

Dic Penderyn

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There are many factors governing fertility these include environmental, economic and social factors but there is also personal choice and that can be changed by what some call education, but I would characterize as indoctrination; which  the Chinese found insufficient so then had to resort to compulsion and force. I would rather not go down that path.
Be careful in what you wish for, God has a sense of humour

Sunny Clouds

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Education when you like it, indoctrination when you don't?

I think it comes down to this - those people who want the level of immigration we currently have to continue need to either decide how we're going to expand facilities or decide how we're going to otherwise reduce demand on the facilities we've got.

As regards size of families, there's also the issue of distribution.  If you live in an area where larger families are the norm, you're going to be more twitchy than if you live in an area where they're not.  I'm not just talking about whether I'm twitchy directly but whether I'm twitchy about other peoples twitchiness.

The other thing as regards education vs indoctrination, is that family size isn't just a general thing, it's influenced by things like social class, religion, town/country etc.  And being very undiplomatic, it's not just about the size of family that shows on the census, there's the size of family of the illegal community, which may be a small part of the population but which nevertheless has more of an impact on some conurbations than others.

I'm sure people here have heard me speak before of my views on the dreadful dilemma that will, I believe, strike us in relation to climate change.  You see, I believe in the importance of taking people in need of a home.  However, as more and more of the earth becomes more barren, more and more people will be starved into emigrating and more and more will come our way, not just from very far south but gradually from closer to home, such as Italy and France.  We can, under our obligations under international law, send non-European would-be immigrants packing (except those that get in illegally which would, IMO, be a small proportion).  But starvation brings war, war brings 'genuine refugees' (as if the risk of being shot is somehow worse than the risk of starving to death) and we will eventually have to decide whether to stick to our treaty obligations.  I myself would want to know that I could rely on such obligations, so this breaks my heart.

So why do I raise this?  Because now is the time when there needs to be a very public open and frank discussion not so much of whether we like foreigners or what their cultures are etc. but literally how many we have room for.  Then we need to consider how many of our own people (including those we have adopted as our own by already allowing them to immigrate here, our lovely varied mix of neighbours, friends and relatives) we have space for and very specifically how we will feed them etc, in a very nasty 'global market'.

Because I'm not joking when I say that I believe that as global climate change escalates, we will be able to import less and less food and will need to become more and more self-sufficient and limit or reduce the size of our population or, within 50 years, this country will starve and have civil war or major gang war. 

And closer to home is something I believe to be frighteningly true - as our population increases and our ability to support ourselves decreases, the temptation to kill people who are seen as the most burden increases.  It is out of self-interest as much as anything that I'd rather start reducing birth rate now, look next at our immigration policies and keep my fingers crossed that we can stay within our ability to feed and accommodate people sufficiently for me not, as a 'useless mouth' to be got rid of as the most socially acceptable way of limiting the population. 

So there you go.  I'm afraid I'd rather have what some would regard as indoctrination now than killing later and I have an uncomfortable self-interest in it.  An analogy I've used elsewhere is that the earth is a sinking ship and I'm asking myself at what point I'm going to find myself either hitting people's fingers and pushing them as they try to climb into my lifeboat or being unable to handle that and going down with them.

 

(I'm an obsessive problem-solver, so feel free to ignore any suggestions or solutions I offer, even if they sound terribly insistent.)

Sunny Clouds

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But back to Big Issue.  I don't think they're doing what they originally did and I think that what they do in providing medium to long term support for some people by legitimising begging (which, as a generality, I don't object to provided that it is not aggressive) is perfectly lawful.  My objection is to how they portray what they are doing and my objection is to keeping up a pretence that they are somehow substantially different from other beggars and small-time street-traders in an area.  If they were selling a different newspaper or magazine, we would not tolerate the way many that I have seen get in people's way. 

Let them be up-front about it.  To be otherwise just annoys more and more people.  If they think that how things are benefits-wise is how they should be, get out there and say it.  Put forward their case.  Maybe they'll convince a lot of people.  Any of you who've known me for any length of time know that it's very far from the case that I won't reconsider my position if a different position is well argued.   
(I'm an obsessive problem-solver, so feel free to ignore any suggestions or solutions I offer, even if they sound terribly insistent.)