Thursday 9 October 2003

How IDS can become Prime Minister

The Daily Mail today (no link) has an article about two families: the Bardsleys who get £37,402 a year in state benefits and the Sprys who earn £27,000 a year after tax. Mrs Spry, who has two children, works 45 hours a week in two separate jobs and her husband was working 70 hours a week as a nightclub manager until recently but has now re-mortgaged the family home to open his own restaurant. The Bardsleys had five children when Mr Bardsley lost his job as a tree surgeon and they have subsequently had three more.

Mrs Bardsley, whose family spends £140 a week on cigarettes and £70 a week on bingo, says:

“It is not like we are defrauding the system – we are entitled to all that money.

People should leave us alone and get a life if they have a problem with us having benefits. I am an adult with a mind of my own and if I choose to have eight children, I know I can look after them, love them and provide for them, so what is the problem?"

Well, the problem is not that Mrs Bardsley seems to think that she provides for her children when they are actually funded by you, me and the Sprys. The problem is that there appears to be absolutely no opposition to this kind of outrage from any mainstream politician. If Iain Duncan Smith were to tell the Conservative Party Conference that he personally would go round to the Bardsley’s house and kick them out within one hour of becoming Prime Minister he would probably win Arnie-style.