Would Burns be voting ‘Yes’ or ‘No’ – all is revealed!
You may have seen a bit of debate on TV over whether Robert Burns would be voting Yes or No in the Referendum on Scottish Independence. I can reveal that the truth is no-one can possibly know. It’s a bit like trying to use the Bible to justify your position – you can find a text to support both sides of the argument. So with Burns. the author of Parcel of Rogues in a Nation also wrote ‘Never but by British hands maun British wrangs be righted’. He was a man of his time, sometimes commenting on the big issues of the day. He expressed views on the establishment, the French Revolution, slavery, Thomas Paine’s Rights of Man. He wrote about equality and liberty, but most of all he championed the ‘independent mind’. Scotland was a different country in his day – no devolution, no European Union, no democracy really- he didn’t even have a vote. So when it comes to the Referendum I think we should ignore what celebrities past or present, near or far, have to say, and make up our own mind.
Bedroom Tax Loophole Uncovered
Thousands of people have been wrongly identified as liable for the bedroom tax as a result of an error by Department of Work and Pensions. There could be as many as 40,000 people affected by the mistake. The DWP says it believes only a “small number” of tenants are affected, but housing experts think the figure could be as many as 40,000. The error affects working age tenants in social housing who have claimed housing benefit and occupied the same home continuously since 1996. Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) failed to make the necessary changes to regulations for the Bedroom Tax to apply to those tenants.. This is the latest example of the chaos and confusion within the Department of Work and Pensions under Iain Duncan Smith. The DWP has said the regulations would be amended as soon as possible to close the loophole. Rather than closing loopholes in the policy, the government should scrap their hated bedroom tax. If they don’t, the next Labour government will. Who was it wrote ‘the best-laid schemes o’ mice and men gang aft agley’
A Banking System that helps small businesses
I know how hard it is for small businesses in the Carrick area. Small businesses are struggling to access the finance they need to grow, yet under David Cameron it’s business as usual for the banks. The Tories are determined to cling on to the old economy in a global race to the bottom. If we’re serious about winning the race to the top with countries like China and India, then we need to build a new economy – one that allows us to earn our way out of the cost of living crisis. That means dealing with one of Britain’s broken markets: our banking system. Britain’s banking system is dominated by just four banks that control 85 per cent of small business lending. This lack of competition is a root cause of poor service, a breakdown of trust and a massive drop of £56 billion in lending to business since May 2010.
Part of the reason we rely too much on low paid, insecure work is that the small firms that could create the good, high paying jobs of the future can’t get the finance they need to grow. We need to support small and medium sized enterprises in Carrick so they can grow our economy for the future and that means creating a more competitive banking system that works for those it serves.
That’s why the next Labour Government will bring in a legal limit to ensure no bank can get too big and that the market remains competitive for the long-term. We will boost lending to small businesses, improve the service to all customers and create new banks that will work for the communities they serve. Under a Labour Government, small businesses will have a better chance of getting the support they need to grow and employ more people at decent wages. I am sure Robert Burns would have agreed with …Oh stop it!