A quick(ish) moan about benefits and the workshy.

This is a story that keeps bobbing it's head up every now and then. Many people have commented on it in the past; I'm sure I have, but I may as well have another pop as it always gets my piss boiling when it does the rounds.

The 190 families with ten children who cost you more than £11million in benefits A YEAR

That's right, 190 families with ten or more children, claiming huge amounts of benefits. It's like the 1% in reverse.

Personally I don't think any benefits should be paid out in respect of children that were born while a parent was claiming. It's way too easy for workshy folk to turn extra children into cash cows. That's no good reason for bringing a child into the world and it's no good reason for working people to be forced to pay more taxes.

Iain Duncan Smith proposes £26,000 benefit cap

That's good. Well when I say good I mean it's a good start. Julia has also pointed out another good start that is getting the feckless and lazy off benefits.
Half of those claiming unemployment benefits would prefer to lose their handouts than do a stint of unpaid work.
Figures show that 20 per cent of those ordered to take part in four-week community projects stop claiming immediately…
Good times! There is of course outrage in the comments. Shouts of, "Slave labour!", "You can't force people to work unpaid!", etc. The point that these people are missing / ignoring, is that it isn't unpaid work. It's work for benefit payments that we, other workers, have to fund.

I wasn't really going to comment on the 190 families as it's been done before. That was until I read the sentence.

Statistic show extent to which handouts condemn families to life on benefits

You see it's not their fault, it's the fault of the benefits system itself.  There is some truth to that but not a lot. You could say that if you were offered a lot more money to stop at home rather than spend most of your time working for a living, are you not likely to take it?

If you are on the receiving and of the money then the moral issue is where the money comes from. If it's a lottery win or an inheritance for example, then fine, take it. When the money is actually looted from hard working people by force and handed over to you, maybe a person with a conscience would do their best to accept as little as possible and try instead to make some for themselves.

Handouts do not condemn people to a life on benefits. People make choices to have more children than they could ever afford to keep on a full time wage. People choose to keep breeding and stay at home rather than go out and find work. (I know the job situation is far from ideal at the moment but I am talking about those who refuse work because benefits pay more, not those who try but can't find work)

Scores of workless families with ten or more children are living on state benefits worth more than £60,000 a year.
Figures released under the Freedom of Information Act show that there are 190 families with at least ten under-18s where one or both of the parents gets an out-of-work benefit.
These families are eligible for £61,183 a year in state support – much more than they could hope to earn if they entered the job market.
A family in work would have to earn £93,000 to be left with this amount of money after tax.
The statistics illustrate the extent to which enormous handouts condemn such families to a life on benefits, because it would not be worth their while to take on work.
Not worth their while to take on work. The only reason they are in receipt of such silly amounts of money is the number of kids they have. If they were childless, or had just a couple of kids they wouldn't be receiving anywhere near that amount of money.

They put themselves in that position. No person or system 'comdemned' them to the life they now lead.
One minister has suggested that parents should think twice about having so many children if they cannot support them without the help of benefits.
Nearly 100,000 people on benefits have four or more children, with more than 900 claimants having at least eight.
Work and Pensions Secretary Iain Duncan Smith wants to impose a benefits cap of £26,000 – the income of an average family – on workless families.
Sources say the cap is essential to stop workshy families using extra children as revenue-raisers, getting more child benefit and perhaps a larger house.
Indeed it is. I would even say that the cap should lowered slightly, year on year, and I don't think benefits should go up if people choose to have children while they are claiming.
But the plan is hitting trouble in the House of Lords, with some Lib Dems arguing that the cap should be set higher.
Of course they do. The 'Liberal' Democrats love the benefits culture for reasons that I have been unable to fathom.

Now lets hear from one of the 190.

£95,000 - AND STILL THEY'RE NOT HAPPY

Pete and Sam Smith receive £95,000 a year in state benefits to look after their ten children aged one to 15. They live in a four-bedroom house rent-free and the council even pays for breakfast to be delivered.
The Smiths were evicted from their previous home in Bath, leaving it uninhabitable, according to their former landlord who claimed that mattresses and walls were stained with human and animal excrement.
I don't know if the DM just picks the worst case and embellishes it a little in order to get my goat. Probably, but even so, this family is seriously extracting the urine.
But despite being given a new home by the council in Bristol, Mrs Smith, 36, complained: ‘It’s very cramped. We have four bedrooms with bunk beds for the kids and that’s it. We’ve been told we might not be given a new house for another nine months, which is ridiculous.’
Ridiculous? You are on a waiting list for a home that most wage earners would never be able to afford. You haven't been denied this huge luxury, you just have to wait a while. What is ridiculous is that you are somehow entitled to huge wads of taxpayer cash because you chose to have your children in a box under the stairs.

She claimed they were so short of money that the children had only one Nintendo Wii games console between them.
Wha..?
She said in September 2010: ‘We do get breakfast delivered but sometimes we have to ring them to remind them and it’s not like proper hot food. ‘It’s usually beans, tinned tomatoes and cereal, which isn’t really enough for us all.’
W..Wha..?
The couple have not worked since Mr Smith, 40, resigned from the Army in 2001 to care for his wife, who has curvature of the spine.  At that time they had three children.
And that's where their benefits should have been capped. If her bendy back didn't stop her from having a further seven children, then she can't be all that bad.
The family receive child benefits, disability living allowance, carer’s allowance, tax credits and income support totalling £44,954 a year. They also have a £950-a-week bed-and-breakfast deal where the council pays for breakfasts delivered to their home.
This comes to £49,400, making a grand total of £94,354 a year.
We are a childless couple earning in the region of 30k before tax. If we had one child we would have to make serious cut backs to make ends meet. (Admittedly the cutbacks are there to make as we live life as a childless couple, not one who wants to have children one day.) Two children would be a serious push and anything over that would be totally impossible. Unless we got better jobs after some serious retraining, or just asked all you lot to start chipping in in the form of benefits.
It was reported last week that the Government is planning last-minute changes to the controversial cap on benefits for workless families in an attempt to quell a rebellion among Lib Dem peers.
The £26,000 figure is based on average income for all families, including those on benefits, which means it is lower than the income of a family in work. Some Lib Dems argue that the cap should be set higher, to the level of the average income of a family in work.
I think the Lib Dems should shush.
Just over a year ago, Culture Secretary Jeremy Hunt provoked a storm by saying it should not be the state’s responsibility to fund the ever-growing families of the workshy.
He said: ‘The number of children that you have is a choice and what we’re saying is that if people are living on benefits, then they make choices but they also have to have responsibility for those choices.
‘It’s not going to be the role of the state to finance those choices.
‘You can have children but if you are going to ask for support that is more than the average wage that people earn, then we’re saying no, the state shouldn’t support that.
‘That’s not fair on working people who have to pay the taxes to pay those benefits.’
Why did that provoke a storm. To me, them's wise words. Wise words indeed.

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