Just one way the Government destroys savings, and drives people to food banks…
We do not have a benefit for people unfit for work. We have a benefit for people who score fifteen points on a very restrictive test, which may not include some registered blind, or even people incapable of living without a carer. So people unfit for work get refused ESA.
They go to the jobcentre, and are asked what kind of work they are looking for. If they know the game, they can say that there must be work they can find, and they will do anything they are qualified for, but they cannot walk 200m or stand for more than half an hour (which would have qualified them under the old Incapacity Benefit test, but scores no points now). They have to look for work, and will likely be sanctioned, but will get something.
But some say they are not fit for work, but cannot get ESA. They are then refused any income at all, because to qualify for JSA you have to be “actively seeking work”. They are sent back for another ESA medical, which may be delayed for weeks, and which they will likely fail. No-one has to tell them how the system works. This is how the system works, to pay people with no money nothing, so their debts will mount, and they may lose their homes.
S said she saw someone like this when she went to her ESA medical, and I feel impotent rage and hatred. She knows this, but I feel the need to explain it again. Such anger!
I wonder if my “thinking emotionally” is the effect of my powerlessness. The person with power makes a decision emotionally, then rationalises it, and has the power to put it into effect. I, having little power, go along with that, until I can go along with it no more, and have an emotional irruption. He then can show that his rationalisation, being “rational”, is superior to my emotional thinking. All I can do then is sulk, or fail to co-operate.
Not understanding my phone- why would the screen go blank, while I am phoning?- I failed to ring off, and have used seven hours out of five hundred minutes on one phone call. I am glad I found this before going to bed, or I would have had a large bill. I thought again of those people fruitlessly claiming ESA and cried a little over it.
It is my own powerlessness at which I rage.
I have chosen these Degas bathers because they look like still lives- especially the first, with that table slashing through the picture, and the jugs and brush which might appear in any other nature morte.