The House of Lords deserves our thanks, but the government are now threatening them

House of Lords during the State Opening of Parliament Photo: PA

The House of Commons just passed a bill which would cut tax credits for low paid families. This was against the wishes of many – a lot of families depend on this government top-up. The House of Lords have rejected the bill, saying that the government must first of all show how they will compensate those who have lost out. Before I go on, let me explain what tax credits are:

Tax credits aren’t what they sound like, they are actual money paid to the low paid. Now, if you are self employed, receiving tax credits gives you time to build your business up, and then you can stop having them. This beats the alternative – being on the unemployment register, where you get more money, but you add to the numbers of ‘visibly’ unemployed people, looking for jobs which aren’t there. It’s a good system in that regard as it creates employment for less money than unemployment benefits.

If you are low paid, tax credits are a way of topping up your wages so that you can afford to pay your bills – yes, I know that sounds bizarre, doesn’t it? I mean don’t we pay a living wage in the UK? No. We don’t. Let me also say here that this is effectively a government subsidy to stock market floated companies like supermarkets and other highly profitable businesses to employ people at huge expense to the tax payer, whilst paying them minimum wage – it would be cheaper all round to force a higher minimum wage, but the government won’t do anything which could be seen as ‘anti-business’ – they prefer to be clearly ‘anti-public’ instead, perhaps?

Back to the story of the day – the Lords refused to pass the bill that would cut tax credits, and the government is now threatening them. Just take a moment to let that sink in. The government – a conservative government – who like the House of Lords when it suits them, didn’t like it when the House of Lords didn’t simply rubber-stamp the government’s bill. I quote: (source)

“David Cameron has indicated that he is prepared to flood the House of Lords with Conservatives if opposition peers torpedo the Government’s plans to cut tax credits.

The Prime Minister warned peers plotting to block Tory changes to the tax credits system to consider “very carefully” any plans to overturn the will of the House of Commons.

He pointed out that is the role of MPs in the Commons to take “financial decisions” and for peers to “revise other legislation”.

The Prime Minister did not rule out a suggestion by an MP that he should “create more peers to ensure the Government can get its financial business through”.

Mr Cameron appoints members of the Lords and it is understood Downing Street is considering redressing the balance in the Upper House by announcing new Tory peers in the coming months.

Currently, the Conservatives do not have an overall majority in the Lords, meaning they can be defeated on key legislation.”

This is bullying plain and simple – if the balance of the House of Lords can be changed at whim by the sitting government, then you might as well get rid of them altogether – they are merely a figure-head – a powerless bunch of well dressed toffs who mustn’t interfere with government business? Well I thank them today on behalf of those receiving tax credits. Think again David Cameron – force companies to pay a living wage and you can cut tax credits right down. Until then – let’s be thankful that the House of Lords still has teeth.

God Bless you

Lis

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16 thoughts on “The House of Lords deserves our thanks, but the government are now threatening them”

  1. May the survival instinct prevail! Best wishes ~ 2 Cor. 4: 7-9

    7But we have this treasure in earthen vessels, that the excellency of the power may be of God, and not of us. 8We are troubled on every side, yet not distressed; we are perplexed, but not in despair; 9Persecuted, but not forsaken; cast down, but not destroyed;

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  2. Should have said “competition” above, but I only have a tiny comment box that I can se. I remember when I was younger that we could make several percent interest in CDs. Retirees could live off money in CDs. That is no longer possible, we seem to have to put our money (if we have any extra)in the tumultuous stock market, and “trust” that the rug won’t be pulled out. Ideally it would be great to have a tiny govt and laisse faire capitalisam without crony capitalism. Since we can’t make money on our money in basic things like money markets and CDs, it has turned us into a debt-based society where large corporations are continually favored. So many behemoth corporations pay no taxes since they offshore their profits, and so you’ll see employees of these corporations living it up with happy hours most days a week and regular attendance of sporting events. At the same time, half of all American workers make less that $30K. For some, it has never been better, for many, its never been worse. In spite of all of the things against us, I am determined not to be an ultimate victim! Obamacare is also levying a nice penalty (up to $2K!) against American families.

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    1. We were sold the lie of ‘trickle down economics’ which was described beautifully like this:

      The “trickle-down” theory: The principle that the poor, who must subsist on table scraps dropped by the rich, can best be served by giving the rich bigger meals.
      —William Blum

      Ugh!

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      1. Trickle-down was a disparaging term used for Reagan’s policies. Trickle down, although disparaging, might not be so bad, but now we have “trickle-up” economics that is Robinhood in reverse but worse – pure theft. Seriously! If you lose money on your money in regular investments, your weath/income are eroding. As an example, if I get 2% yearly raises over a decade even with increased performance, but inflation is 3%, then income is eroding. If a small/midsize corporations are paying hefty tax rates but huge companies like facebook. amazon, and GE pay no taxes because of tax tricks, the money is trickling up! [End rant] 🙂

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      2. Yep – I absolutely agree! Completely spot on. The rich are swindling the public. In the UK we have Amazon who pay almost no tax as they are busy undercutting the high street and say they make no profit – no but they are putting real businesses that pay business rates and taxes out of business! And the government stands by and will not chase them at all. Utter disgrace!

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      3. Yes, many employees of said corporation condemn welfare but not corporate welfare! Boeing is another company getting favorable treatment. As long as the employees of said corps get to have cocktail parties and nice vacations, they will have nothing to do in condemning this hypocrisy!

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  3. Interesting. I understand that in the UK you all probably have immediate problems and challenges there, as we all seem to have. A minimum wage cuts two ways, though. The Profits of Wal-Mart have been subsized by American welfare programs – they are profiting on the backs of the working taxpayer. Recently Wal-mart supported a minimum wage effort, it’s hurting them now but did also help to eliminate more of their completion. Seattle has a $15 minimum wage and also a burgeoning homeless population that pee on the street and live under the freeway. The Salvation Army charity seems to be trying to help.
    My personal opinion is that the biggest way elites steal from the poor and middle class is through the printing of money and the inability that we have to make money on our money. I was in a credit union recently and the rate they were offering on a 60-month CD was 1%. Do you think we could claim a loss on our money after 3+% inflation?

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    1. Yes, I agree, it’s a real double-edged sword, but what I see with tax-credits here is that because the money is administered by government, it’s very administration heavy, unweildy and expensive. It’s not as efficient as simply letting the market do the job and applying a minimum wage. However, trying to persuade people that higher prices caused by higher wages are still cheaper than administered government welfare ‘top-ups’ is a hard sell, mostly because governments dont tend to let go of any area or any funding once they’ve got it, so there is no real saving to the tax payer as the money gets wasted elsewhere, oh, I’m sorry, I meant ‘spent’ Lol! 🙂

      The elites haven’t just printed money, they have bought real assets with it, causing the prices of those assets to rise out of the reach of many. This is only adding to the woes of the poor.

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      1. Right. Currency is so devalued over the last century, and wages aren’t keeping up, and you can’t even keep up with inflation in a long-term CD, and yes it is deliberate. Maybe in your case there it is best to hang onto the tax credits if possible since you can’t control all the other stuff going on. Give unto Caesar that which is Caesars, I think Caesar wants all of the money/power! :-\

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      2. I was on tax credits for a time so years ago, and it was so helpful, but I’m doing everything I can to avoid it this time, as I just do not want any government money. I am relying on God for everything this time – please pray that He will provide.

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