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Welcome to the baffling world of political priorities in 2014.
Conservative MPs frequently say that the Conservatives are the party of ‘hardworking people’, and the Labour Party is ‘the party of welfare’. It’s said as an accusation, an insult, and many Labour MPs take it as such, attempting to deny the charge as if it’s something to be ashamed of.
When my radio alarm clock woke me yesterday morning, I was unsurprised but deeply saddened to hear of the death of Tony Benn.
A young man I know, (I’ll call him David) who left school just before the global banking crisis, was very keen to get out into the world of work and get a job. His politeness and enthusiasm paid off, and he got a minimum wage job with a discount store, where he worked hard and was always ready to get on his bicycle and go in at short notice, to cover staff absences etc. Then, David became old enough to be paid the adult minimum wage, and was no longer wanted. He had become more expensive, so was sent back to the Jobcentre, his loyalty and hard work disregarded.