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Anyone see this on Tories/universal benefits?)

(15 Posts)
CariGransnet (GNHQ) Mon 23-Feb-15 10:40:57

www.newstatesman.com/politics/2015/02/tories-woo-grey-vote-again-pledge-protect-pensioner-benefits

Love your views!

durhamjen Mon 23-Feb-15 11:10:42

"A Cameron pledge....very scary.

"no more wasteful top down reorganisations of the NHS"

"Absolutely no plans whatsoever to raise VAT"

"I will cut the deficit not the NHS"

“There will be no cuts for front line services.”

Just a few but far too many to mention.

Cameron pledges be afraid be very afraid."

I like this, Cari, the first response to it.
Cameron changes his views as soon as he gets into office.
However, I do agree with him on not means testing, as it costs more to administer, and the Tory government cannot afford to give IDS any more work to do, poor man, he is snowed under with universal benefit.
I think you will find quite a few GNs views on this on the Baroness' thread.

durhamjen Mon 23-Feb-15 11:13:49

I read this all the time on the New Statesman website.

www.may2015.com/

POGS Mon 23-Feb-15 12:12:50

BBC News has aired David Cameron's speech from Hastings on this issue, he is taking questions as I type.

I thought it was quite a sensible speech. Now I will wait for someone to say 'Surprise, surprise' .

mollie65 Mon 23-Feb-15 12:25:23

new statesman - a little left leaning.
I do wish they would get rid of the bus pass, winter fuel allowance and the free TV licence (if over 75!) and increase the basic state pension by about £5 a week (which is taxable ) - so give each pensioner an extra £250 a year and stop the sniping of the younger generations who think it should not be given unless you are on pension credit angry
if London (or other large cities) pensioners want their 'freedom pass' - I suggest it is paid for locally by the council tax as it would be used for the benefit of the residents.

mollie65 Mon 23-Feb-15 12:26:10

I meant that the 'freebies' should not be given unless on pension credit.

CariGransnet (GNHQ) Mon 23-Feb-15 12:33:44

Yes sorry - first article to hand but it was to show the news story in general rather than a specific take

Anya Mon 23-Feb-15 12:44:53

The bus passes are optional, we don't have to get one if we don't want/need one. I'm presuming free TV licence for over 75s is the same. I'd be happy for an 'opt in' Winter Fuel allowance too. I really don't need mine and I know several people who also give it to charity.

But free eye tests and prescriptions should stay as benefits.

durhamjen Mon 23-Feb-15 12:49:14

Mollie, I think you will find that the New Statesman criticises Labour as much as the Tories.

Many people with bus passes would have to pay a lot more than £50 per year on the buses.

I suppose Cameron would have to go for the grey vote, because he's lost the student vote. He can't reduce fees like the Labour party can, because then it would just be seen as a cynical ploy to get rid of the Libdems.

FarNorth Mon 23-Feb-15 12:56:26

It's possible that having older people using their passes on the buses, keeps some routes open that would otherwise close.
So that benefits the older people and younger people too, in a better way than just giving a grant to keep the routes going.

Mishap Mon 23-Feb-15 13:01:19

You cannot help wondering why DC has not done all these things in the first place! - he's had plenty of time.

Gracesgran Mon 23-Feb-15 13:01:44

I have to agree with mollie65 that they should add all these pats on the head from past PMs and make a one off increase on top of the general pension increase. These would then be taxable for those who pay tax and not for the poorest. They could then look at - and meet the wrath of many pensioners - means testing the pension if they feel that fits their politics.

The only one I worry about is the bus pass so let us buy one cheaply to fill the buses at down times by all means.

Ana Mon 23-Feb-15 13:05:30

He didn't have to do anything, the benefits were already in place. Labour's threatening to means-test some benefits and the Tories are saying they won't do that if they get into power again.

mollie65 Mon 23-Feb-15 13:36:05

- agree with gracesgran re bus passes - if there was a senior bus pass that operated like a senior railcard - (%age off for travelling off peak) - this would at least make the 'free bus passes' less of a stick to beat us with by the young.
I have a bus pass and use it infrequently (as the buses around here in darkest Herefordshire are very infrequent ) if my car is off the road or I am going to a larger town where parking is expensive. I assume I am not costing us taxpayers a lot by doing this.
I do need the winter fuel allowance (one of the perks of living alone is that I get the full £200) as my heating bills are around 800 pounds per year (heating for 2 people is not double as we each generate heat)
I am sure those who really don't need it could pass it on hmm

mollie65 Mon 23-Feb-15 13:50:17

just to add - we are in for a bashing on mumsnet again
www.mumsnet.com/Talk/am_i_being_unreasonable/2315427-To-think-all-the-targeted-pensioner-benefits-ie-bus-pass-TV-and-winter-fuel-should-be-abolished?
There is a very blinkered view that just because an oap is not on pension credit - they are automatically 'rich'. PC pensioners already get cold weather payments, free boilers, warm home discount and full council tax payment.
and the comparison with means testing child benefit is disingenious
child benefit is £20 per week for first child and £13 for subsequent children
the WFA is about £4 per week shock per household.