There was a documentary –On The Fiddle?– in prime time on the BBC about benefit fraud investigators (a story about a multiple fraudster living in luxury, which inevitably gives the impression this is the common face of benefit fraud and helps enforce neoliberal hostility against welfare systems) and today via Chicken Yoghurt–
The director of the Serious Fraud Office plans to spend less money prosecuting and investigating in order to pursue alternative “harm reduction” initiatives, including educating on fraud prevention, alerting potential victims and civil court actions to disrupt potential criminality.
Ok now pay attention, here’s the science bit, Corporate fraud cost the UK £72 Billion, last year benefit fraud was reduced from £2 Billion to under £1 Billion. People using phones to talk to benefit officers are now having their voice scanned by lie detectors, while the SFO can’t even be arsed investigating multi billion pound frauds. The JRF discovered-
People who work and claim benefits do so often because they are in dire financial trouble, a Joseph Rowntree Foundation (JRF) study has said. Many claimants took illegal cash-in-hand jobs to pay for food and heating or to make debt repayments.
The study’s author said they were “hard-working, ordinary people trying to survive day by day”. The study called for reform of the tax and benefits system to move people from illegal jobs into legitimate work. The JRF study was based on six years of work by the East London Community Links project.
So you have fraud costing us £72 Billion perpetrated by the wealthiest and most powerful and fraud costing us less than a Billion and is largely by the poorest most desperate people in society. And the £72 Billion is not the focus of primetime tv shows and the enforcers are now looking at not actually enforcing the law. Time for Warren Buffet -currently the richest man in the world ($62 Billion)- to say his piece-
So those people who find it awfully Bolshie or impolite to talk of Class War, ought to Shut The Fuck Up, you feel me?