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Talk:Benefit scrounger

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The term is an example of the straw man fallacy, as most welfare recipients in the U.K. are either willing or unable to work, and the few people who do cheat the system cause comparatively little drain upon it

Proof? Self delusion?

Hasn't anyone seen Shameless or The Royle Family? MarcusCicero (talk) 21:37, 20 March 2011 (UTC)

I'm with you on this one, MC. Back in the 80's I worked in a North London Unemployment Benefit Office. I went in a wooly liberal and when the Fraud officer said that around 60% of claims were fraudulent I thought that was just the way the sort of person who becomes a fraud officer thinks. Eighteen months later I believed the 60% figure to be on the low side.
Having said that, it is impossible to construct a system that is both fair and equitable and fraud proof. 60% is what we have to live with if we are to have a humane benefit system. Jack Hughes (talk) 22:50, 20 March 2011 (UTC)
I would probably consider myself a 'neoliberal' in most relevant ways (An Economist reader, for example) and so am generally quite happy with the reforms brought about by Ian Duncan Smith and the coalition government. Beveridge would have a heart attack if he saw the modern British benefits system. The Welfare State should exist to enable people to survive on a subsistence wage until such a time arises as they find gainful employment. This was how it was initially envisaged. The State's share of spending in the economy has risen gradually and substantially over fifty years, and now the State is a complex patchwork of entitlements, benefits, tax write offs, tax credits... Its not quite as bad in the UK as it is in the US... But its pretty close to it.
Welfare fraud is rarely entirely invented. Mostly its a case of people who should claim something claiming more than they need or deserve. Welfare dependancy is a relatively recent creation, something the great framer of the Welfare State would have been horrified of. Labour is not a natural condition. People would rather abstain from work; they need to be both incentivised and coerced into it. A strict ratio of relative need to relative want must be imposed, and more importantly it should aim to get people off welfare as soon as possible.
Thank you for humouring the musings of a cranky Irishman, who is admittedly, slightly drunk. Hence the incoherence. MarcusCicero (talk) 00:29, 21 March 2011 (UTC)
Did you catch the recent proposal from the US where welfare claimants could only have that money on a specific debit card that would be restricted to what it could buy and would effectively prevent claimants from being allowed to carry cash? It's an interesting one because of course we don't want that money going on cigarettes and alcohol, but at the same time such an act would be have massive implications for civil liberties. If you go that far, you may as well go back to building workhouses. But the main problem is that there is a system, not a specific problem with the system itself. If you have a system, you have rules. If you have rules, it becomes a game. If it's a game, people will find the best way of exploiting those rules to win. The same exploits appear whenever you have a system, from voting to school grading - and benefits are no different. If you can get extra money for having children, have children. If you can claim more money for saying you're estranged from your parents, you'll do that. The only way to prevent such over-claiming or outright fraud would be to remove the system entirely. Otherwise the exploits will continue. Scarlet A.pngpostate 02:32, 21 March 2011 (UTC)
I'm sure that some amount of exploitation will be inevitable, but there is a lot of it that is utterly preventable. I like that idea of having a debit card that can only go on food, rent etc. Its not an attack on your civil liberties. You don't own the benefit and in my eyes aren't entitled to it; you receive it as a privilige and those who grant it have a right to stipulate where it should be spent. The government isn't ordering wage earners were to direct their spending, but if it is directing those unlucky enough to be unemployed not to spend it on booze or drugs, then fine. My liberal conscience isn't overly offended by that thought. MarcusCicero (talk) 12:57, 21 March 2011 (UTC)
But where do you draw the line. No benefits to be spent on booze or drugs - what about cigarettes, or unhealthy food, or... OK, so I'm guilty of reductio ad absurdam but the point is valid. Jack Hughes (talk) 14:54, 21 March 2011 (UTC)
With plastic-style debit cards, it's pretty easy to enforce these rules. Where I live, the plastic card that's distributed by the food stamps programs doesn't work for alcohol, cigarettes, and unhealthy food (I'm not sure what the exact limitation is, but it's mostly egregiously shitty food like 50 lb. bags of pork rinds or something). I don't see anything wrong with that -- the purpose of the program is to tide people over until they can provide for themselves, not to just throw money at them. Plus, it gives people more incentive to work and helps the obesity problem among the poor. Nebuchadnezzar (talk) 21:18, 21 March 2011 (UTC)

The recipient or the guys helping you for the paperwork?[edit]

Is the article talking about welfare recipients or the guys who is making welfare accessible for all by helping the recipients on the paperwork? The wording seems a bit vague on that line. ThiehTK = Terry Koeckritz 05:53, 25 August 2012 (UTC)

The recipients. How is it vague? Scarlet A.pngpostate 15:00, 25 August 2012 (UTC)
"The benefit scrounger, according to these sources, is an individual who makes a profession out of milking the welfare system for all it is worth, rather than entering gainful employment."
Those guys getting welfare accessible for all is the profession. K61824Monitoring virgin birth experiment 16:26, 25 August 2012 (UTC)

Surely the answer is[edit]

if these people can manipulate or game the system, is to encourage them to do it constructively - eg by becoming bankers and 'advisors on personal benefits-from-tax-and-other-allowances maximisation'? 82.44.143.26 (talk) 18:08, 3 June 2015 (UTC)

More benefits scroungers?[edit]

What is the position regarding politicians claiming federal funding for their offices and employing their relatives? 82.44.143.26 (talk) 14:59, 5 June 2015 (UTC)

UK Parliamentary expenses scandal[edit]

They were claiming unjustified expenses - so they were benefits scroungers. 86.146.100.17 (talk) 21:44, 16 April 2017 (UTC)