Sciolus wrote: ↑
Tue Oct 20, 2020 7:48 pm
discovolante wrote: ↑
Tue Oct 20, 2020 5:58 pm
https://twitter.com/TomSwarbrick1/statu ... 51822?s=20
I'm torn about this tbh. I mean, obviously Andy Burnham really should have consulted me before going on about resisting lockdown restrictions after I'd spent all that time defending him on here. And the virus-related (as opposed to economic) reasons for resisting tier 3 lockdown didn't seem particularly strong. I mean I am pretty pro lockdown and I think if it had been a Tory banging on about it not being necessary I would have been raging. I would also probably be more pissed off with Andy Burnham if I really felt like the restrictions the government is putting in place are going to make a huge difference. They might though, I suppose, and we'll see in time.
On the other hand, I also think the government needs to cough up now and worry about the cost later. I admit I'm not the most economically literate person in the world, or even in my house, or even in this room where I am currently alone apart from a few spiders and a rubber plant, but there seem to be a lot of reasons for helping to stop people falling into destitution during a pandemic, and I don't know what other leverage Andy Burnham had, even though it wasn't much to begin with and he lost anyway.
And at the end of it all if the government hadn't basically spaffed all our money up the wall at the beginning of the year there might be more to go around now. I know that's not really how it works, but it's hard for me not to feel a bit resentful about that on top of this.
And of course being a northerner by blood and birth tends to skew things a bit for me as well.
There is a real issue with support for the low-paid. Clearly the original furlough scheme can't continue, but 67% of minimum wage is just wasting everyone's time. There is a good correlation between low paid jobs and jobs that involve mixing with a lot of people and potentially spreading the virus around, as opposed to the relatively well off working fro home, so it's a false economy not to take that into account. Whether money is better spent supporting businesses or individuals I don't know, but I don't have a particular problem letting small businesses close that will reopen again when the time comes, as long as individuals are supported properly. That may mean increasing dole rates.
Universal Credit was increased at the beginning of lockdown, by a whopping £80 per month (give or take). Of course the benefit cap still applies and if you are in private rented accommodation below the local housing allowance you are still screwed, as far as I'm aware.
I would massively prefer people who want to stay in work to be supported through that as much as possible. There's no guarantee that if you have casual work that if the business you work for reopens or re-expands again that you will be offered anything.
Question, if lockdown restrictions in some sectors are effectively the same as March/April (i.e. total shutdown), with regular reviews, why can't the furlough scheme continue in those specific areas? Compared to prolonging the agony of semi-shutdowns, people deciding that risking a fine that will take months if not years to pay off is better than staying at home, etc.
Even a furlough scheme along those lines wouldn't cover all risk because of course no shop, cafe, bar etc operates in a vacuum, economically. Even my work was pretty severely affected by non-essential businesses closing (and I am on a fixed term contract which expires next year, good-o). Lots of people were furloughed; if you only furloughed places that were directly ordered to close that still wouldn't cover everyone affected. So it's still a fairly modest ask in the grand scheme of things.