Recent Posts via Disqus

Independent Appeal: 'We were the family from hell'

Maybe the architects of the modern welfare state and high-consumption economy (with the outsourcing of manufacturing) would care to admit finally their social experiment has failed. The fairy tale of two professionals juggling their rewarding careers with their parental responsibilities has only been realised in a minority of middle and upper class families. On the ground we have broken families who have lost all sense of purpose, letting their offspring be brought up by TV, school bullies and social...

Not just a white Christmas in Luton

I spent part of my youth in Luton and can assure readers the above article is a fairy tale for wishful-thinking followers of the Neoliberal Church of Economic Globalisation. The grim reality on the ground is Luton's ethnic composition has changed dramatically over the last 40 years. In my secondary school on the outskirts of Luton fewer than 5% were from discernible ethnic minorities and a smattering were descendants of postwar European and Irish immigration (hence references to a Polish club), very much...

Welfare benefits and fertility II

What? Mr Rentoul admits a morsel of truth, something some of us realised even before Mr Rentoul's beloved Blair began his reign over the least sustainable economy in the world. Check your figures!! The birth rate among key sections of the population, principally single mothers and certain ethnic minorities has risen significantly, while that of the middle classes has remained constant. So why did New Labour not offer fiscal incentives for smaller more viable families with, err, two parents? Soon New...

Mary Dejevsky: Everything else is being cut, so why not student numbers?

As someone who dropped out of uni way back in the mid 80s, only to complete my educayshun via the open uni, I have to agree. Most degree courses test your ability to complete assignments, mainstream your thinking and methodically rehearse exams. I work alongside young IT graduates and believe those who can actually develop applications from scratch are in relatively short supply and most IT graduates end up as project managers telling developers like me how they once did a bit of C++ at uni, but are...

Teachers fear restraint powers will bring chaos

This is just amazing. Most posters seem to favour the expansion of video surveillance and even less intergenerational contact. We need to look at why kids misbehave and IMHO the answer lies in the kind of dysfunctional households encouraged by benefits dependency, single parent households, celebrity culture, TV, video game addiction and a bogus children's rights movement. Children should have a right to a mother and a father figure and sensible environmentally sustainable role models. If we contaminate...

Jobless who refuse work will lose benefits for up to three years

As a loyal Independent reader and keen supporter of Labour Party initiatives may I suggest the following policies: 1) Outsource all manufacturing to low wage economies... 2) Subsidise single parents and extend the definition of disability to free 5 million from the trouble of getting out of bed in the morning... 3) Subsidise private landlords so they can charge what they like to accommodate benefit claimants, driving up rents for those stupid enough to pay market rates. 4) Transform an obsession with...

Historical fundamentalism

First, I have little sympathy for Tea Party fanatics, astrologists, creationists or alchemists, though I guess I'd support their freedom of speech. However, one wonders why we should accept lessons from someone who have failed to learn the most basic lessons of the last 15 years and fails to address the real reasons for the US/UK occupation of Iraq. I really don't know who's more dangerous. As Mr Rentoul has often cast doubt on higher estimates of Iraqi death toll caused by the US/UK invasion, I guess we...

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