The future of the left since 1884

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Why the welfare uprating bill is bad economics

Much of the reaction to the chancellor’s decision to uprate most working age benefits and tax credits by just 1 per cent per annum for three years has focussed on questions of distribution. As the Resolution Foundation analysis demonstrated 60...

Scrap the flawed ‘fitness to work’ test

Picking up an empty cardboard box, walking 200 metres, holding a pen and pushing a button. These are some of the ‘tests’ deployed by the government to assess whether someone is fit for work. They form part of the Work...

The case for contribution

Winning public support for spending on benefits will not simply be a matter of some new eye-catching policy proposals. First the whole debate on benefits needs re-framing. There is a growing belief that poverty is due more to individual failings...

Reviving universal credit

Many people may remain unaware of the seismic reforms to the benefits system due to be rolled out from October next year and many of the finer details have yet to be ironed out but the public debate about universal...

How Labour can make jobcentres work

Jobcentre Plus is the main point of contact with the state for job seekers and it needs to adapt. In an ideal world, visiting the jobcentre should be like visiting your GP. The role of the person helping you should...

The language of priorities

Whoever wins in 2015 will face awful public spending choices. The woeful state of the economy means the deficit will remain high and there will be almost no scope for public spending growth. So George Osborne smells blood. He is...

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