Reader, I am rich. And, because I’ve been gaming the benefits system, George Osborne is about to crackdown on me. Ask those marvelous Sky News journalists. And the ones at LBC. And the millions of other high quality websites fed news by Sky.
Me, Bob Crow and Frank Dobson. Bastards all.
You see, I live in social housing. When we moved in to this house I was the only person earning an income, and I earned less than I do now. I’ve moved on to a better paid job and my wife works, so we’re deemed rich, and will have to pay ‘market rates’ for my rent.
By simply living here Sky reckons I’ve been ‘using the benefits system’. Because, no doubt, I am a benefits cheat.
I guess some of you are thinking Fair enough. Social housing is for people who need it. He can afford the private sector, so he should move out. There’s a deficit to pay off and we need every penny we can get, but if you bothered thinking it through for a few seconds more you’d maybe appreciate how absurd this idea is.
Should we move out of our family home and search for an overpriced, worse quality home in the private sector with a less secure tenancy because our income increased?
What happens if our income drops again?
Should any extra money we earn be offset by increasing our rent?
Is better quality, cheaper housing with a more secure tenancy the sole preserve of people on lower incomes?
Should social housing become some sort of ghetto for ‘poor’ people?
How is a ‘low’ rent a ‘subsidy’ when my landlord doesn’t receive more rent than I’m paying?
What ‘benefits’ have I been receiving?
Strip away all the ‘using the system’ bollocks, and is Osborne simply shaking me down for more rent?
Why aren’t you bothered by private landlords overcharging for crap, insecure housing?
Osborne’s devious logic is nothing new, of course, and neither is bovine acceptance. But what is interesting is the shift to middle earners. Apart from being utterly pointless, a £12bn saving will be hard to find; he’ll need new folks to pickpocket. But he’ll have a battle on his hands this time, surely?