Britain's MEPs and poor folk face threats imposed by Brexit, including dodgy trade deals
|'TTIP — the hidden threat' poster should include reference to the threats to social security and poor people|
With Britain out of the European Union Parliament, there would by definition be no more seats for British Members of the European Parliament in the European Parliament; and global corporate lawyers would seize the opportunity of a Conservative & Unionist Government ever more desperate to enter dodgy trade deals and dismantle the welfare state.
Regarding dodgy trade deals, there would be a more exclusively UK trade deal with global corporations from the USA. On her website that is still up and running at present, Molly Scott Cato MEP (South West England, Green Party of England & Wales) looks at the perils and pitfalls for the UK as Germany looks like it is pulling out of the 'Transatlantic Trade & Investment Partnership' (TTIP).(1)
'Privatisation of public service delivery' equals dismantling of the welfare state
Kwuggies (Kilburn Unemployed Workers Group members) have been against TTIP for about two years now, and of course deeply concerned about what corporate lawyers would want to do to not only the NHS, but also the welfare state as a whole. One of the worst 'players with people's lives' in the American health insurance industry — Unum — has been 'advising' successive UK governments on 'welfare reform' since the early 1990s.(2) (3)
The Disability News Service has reported that in 2005, whilst at Unum, Professor O'Donnell [now Chief Medical Officert at Maximus, the company that replaced Atos' administration of Work Capability Assessments for the Department for Work & Pensions] wrote: "We know that our views and understanding are not yet in the mainstream of doctors' thinking, but Government Policy is moving in the same direction, to a large extent being driven by our thinking and that of our close associates, both in the UK and overseas."(4)
Regarding the then Unum Chief Medical Officer's reference to the 'direction' in which UK Government Policy was moving in 2005, there has been the ongoing matter of the regulation of psychotherapeutic professionals and the standards, methodology and 'outcomes' by which they operate.(5) That has more recently extended to the recruitment or attempted recruitment of helping professionals such as pscyhotherapists and counselling professionals into 'delivering the work cure'.(6)
There is further encroachment of Unum and its associates into the dismantling of the welfare state even without even more dodgy trade deals:
In Secrets and Lies: Maximus the leader of the inhumans we [Disabled People Against Cuts] ask why Disability Rights UK have agreed to a) be part of the Maximus testing process on the WCA [Work Capability Assessment] and b) why they've teamed up with Unum and other insurance companies to develop a TV programme showing how much better off disabled people will be if they take out private insurance. With user-led disability organisations like these we don't need enemies.(7)Workfare — 'work for your benefits' exploitation — originated largely in the USA under the Clinton Presidency, ridiculing Clinton's purported aspirations of being kinder to poor people than his Republican opponents. One of the major — and fraudulent — players with vulnerable people's lives that emerged from America's introduction of workfare was Maximus Incorporated.(8) (9)
Revd Paul Nicolson of Taxpayers Against Poverty has drawn attention to the lack of human rights orientation in American-based accountancy firm Grant Thornton's accountancy framework:
I had specifically drawn Grant Thornton's attention on the 3rd May 2015 to the work of the Government Office for Science and the Royal College of Psychiatrists showing that debt is linked to mental health problems. Grant Thornton replied on the 5th May 2015,
"We have no remit over related public sector bodies nor to opine on the impact of this policy on the well-being of those required to pay council tax."(10)
That is the kind of mentality that we face. Corporate lawyers' and accountants' orientation to the rights of 'shareholders', 'investors' and 'stakeholders' with financial/legal clout seem to reign supreme; and TTIP-type deals are driven by 'Investor to State Dispute Settlement' (ISDS) corporate law enforcement that overrides democracy and the rights of poor people.
The UK Government's systematic abuse of disabled people's rights continues while an investigation of its actions is still pending. Disability News Service reports:
Delayed UN examination of UK government 'will take place next year'Disabled people's organisations and grassroots groups are set to call on disabled people across England to provide the evidence they need to prepare a "hard hitting" report on the government's failure to implement the UN disability convention.The Reclaiming Our Futures Alliance (ROFA) has announced that it will put together a "shadow report" to submit to the UN's Committee on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (CRPD). It emerged this week that the Committee is set to hold its delayed public examination of the UK Government's progress on implementing the UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (UNCRPD) next year; the first time the UK has been examined since the Labour government ratified the Convention in 2009....(11)
Do the devisers of ISDS-driven trade deals have any consideration regarding the rights of disabled and disadvantaged people re UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities? Any possibility of 'government by corporate law firms' must be suspended until that investigation has been carried out, I would argue
Britain's Members of the European Parliament may no longer have seats in the European Parliament, but they and Kilburn Unemployed Workers Group members can still engage in extra-parliamentary activity — activity outside parliaments. Our extra-parliamentary activities still include the Internet.
Dude Swheatie of Kwug
- See especially Jennifer Maidman's detailed comment at http://www.communitycare.co.uk/blogs/social-care-experts-blog/2009/08/cognitive-behavioural-therapy/