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wonderpup

Something To Grouse About?

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I read recently that HM Government is employing debt collectors to harass people who have been overpaid tax credits in error.

Fair enough you might say- it is taxpayer money after all.

But compare and contrast to this farce;

Three days later – on Friday – the government announced it would raise the subsidy it provides for grouse moors from £30 per hectare to £56. Yes, you read that right: the British government subsidises grouse moors, which are owned by 1% of the 1% and used by people who are scarcely less rich.

It gets better;

Before examining the wider picture, let's stick with the shooting theme for a moment, and take a look at the remarkable shape-shifting properties of that emblem of Downton Abbey Britain: the pheasant. Through a series of magnificent legal manoeuvres it can become whatever the nation's wealthy want it to be.

When pheasants are reared, they are classed as livestock: that means the people who raise them are exempt from some payments of value added tax and certain forms of planning control, on the grounds that they are producing food.

But as soon as they're released they are classed as wild animals. Otherwise you wouldn't be allowed to shoot them. But if you want to re-capture the survivors at the end of the shooting season to use as breeding stock, they cease to be wild and become livestock again, because you aren't allowed to catch wild birds with nets.

If, however, pheasants cause damage to neighbouring gardens, or to cars, or to the people travelling in those cars, the person who released them bears no liability, because for this purpose they are classed as wild animals – even if, at the time, they are being rounded up as legal livestock.

http://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2014/apr/28/britain-plutocrats-landed-gentry-shotgun-owners

So the same Government that exhibits an iron inflexibility in it's dealings with poor people who have got into financial difficulty due to it's own failure to get the tax credit system right shows a remarkable flexibility in it's dealings with the leisure activities of the wealthy.

Trivial? Yes- but indicative of the subtle corrosion that wealth introduces into the principle of rule of law. If as a society we are going to persecute people whose only 'crime' was to spend money they believed was theirs to spend-on the basis that 'rules are rules' and have to be obeyed then how do we justify the farcical situation in which that same society subsidises the hobbies of the most wealthy while allowing them play fast and loose with the laws that apply to their activities?

Edited by wonderpup

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I worked for a farmer who shot his neighbour's dogs for livestock worrying. The 'livestock' were pheasants released from their pens.

He lost the ensuing court case since the pheasants were classed as wild birds :-)

He got his own back by using his landrover to 'herd' the wild birds off his neighbour's crops back into his woods.

He was also a magistrate so he fined his neighbour for spilling water from his sprayer on the road. At the same time the roads were being covered in mud by his tractors hauling sugarbeet. He also rolled his Renault 16 across the village green without being prosecuted for dangerous driving.

Life in the countryside is so different for the rich.

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They really need to reintroduce CAP headage payments for productive livestock rather than subsidies based on hectarage especially without any production requirements.

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I read recently that HM Government is employing debt collectors to harass people who have been overpaid tax credits in error.

Fair enough you might say- it is taxpayer money after all.

But compare and contrast to this farce;

It gets better;

http://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2014/apr/28/britain-plutocrats-landed-gentry-shotgun-owners

So the same Government that exhibits an iron inflexibility in it's dealings with poor people who have got into financial difficulty due to it's own failure to get the tax credit system right shows a remarkable flexibility in it's dealings with the leisure activities of the wealthy.

Trivial? Yes- but indicative of the subtle corrosion that wealth introduces into the principle of rule of law. If as a society we are going to persecute people whose only 'crime' was to spend money they believed was theirs to spend-on the basis that 'rules are rules' and have to be obeyed then how do we justify the farcical situation in which that same society subsidises the hobbies of the most wealthy while allowing them play fast and loose with the laws that apply to their activities?

I can't help but come to the conclusion that the time really has come to drag the politicians and their one percent paymasters out into the streets, strip them of everything they own, lock them up and throw away the key: I no longer see any other hope for society other than total revolution, our democracy is a farce which serves only to shuffle chairs around around the plutocrat pig trough, the "free" market has been debased into communism for the rich and civil society is being systematically deconstructed to release capital to pay for the greed, incompetence and criminality of the ruling classes.

http://www.itsarandomworld.com/2014/03/24/the-greedy-one-percent-who-wanted-it-all-and-destroyed-eveything/

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