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Kristian Niemietz
30 September 2014
1 comment

There can be no doubt that spending on working-age benefits is out of control. Over the past decade alone, spending on Housing Benefit has increased from about £16 billion to £25 billion...
Kristian Niemietz
29 September 2014
8 comments

In a more rational world, planning reform would not be a tribal issue. It would, on the contrary, be an issue around which people from all major political camps could coalesce. Albeit for different...
Kristian Niemietz
26 February 2014
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41% – 3%. 27% – 0.7%. 48% – 27.8% Do these figures ring a bell? You have probably come across them in one form or another, because they form the backbone of the pro-dependency left...
Steve Davies
21 January 2014
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Yesterday saw the government announce the latest in a line of restrictions on the benefits immigrants can claim. New jobless EU migrants will be denied access to Housing Benefit from April, and will...
Kristian Niemietz
8 June 2013
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In his speech in east London yesterday, Ed Miliband hoped to reframe the debate by outlining a distinctively Labour approach to welfare policy. Distinctive perhaps but, from a policy perspective it...
Kristian Niemietz
2 May 2013
2 comments

Nobody quite remembers when and why this law originally came to pass, but at some point in the distant past, the government of Analogistan introduced a nationwide statutory limit on the amount of...
Kristian Niemietz
27 June 2012
6 comments

The previous government made the mistake of trying to reduce poverty without paying attention to the supply side factors driving up the basic cost of living. It churned out billions in tax credits...
Philip Booth
29 May 2012
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In my last blog post I looked at the complexities of the UK tax system. Unfortunately, in order to make it remotely comprehensible, it was greatly simplified. The example taken was a relatively...
Kristian Niemietz
30 January 2012
4 comments

Once again, Britain is about to become the Bangladesh of Europe. At least this is the impression one could gather from listening to the poverty lobby and the wider anti-cuts front, including...
Tim Leunig
27 January 2012
10 comments

The government’s proposed £26,000 cap on benefits for those out of work applies irrespective of circumstances and the family’s history. It will hit two groups: those with very...
Richard Wellings
11 January 2012
7 comments

Housing minister Grant Shapps recently announced plans to make the unauthorised subletting of social housing a criminal offence, with offenders facing up to two years in prison. The...
Kristian Niemietz
4 January 2012
4 comments

There is agreement across the political divide in Britain that there is a serious shortage of affordable housing. But the debate about the causes seldom goes beyond red herrings and side issues,...
Kristian Niemietz
30 January 2011
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Kosovo-style social cleansing, expelling the poor, even ‘final solution’ – the debate on Housing Benefit (HB) cuts has been accompanied by a host of gory metaphors, and no doubt...
Kristian Niemietz
9 November 2010
8 comments

Even if the debate about Housing Benefit has gone wrong in many ways, it is a good thing that it is being held at all, if only to raise awareness about the issue. The HB bill is running at about...
Kristian Niemietz
3 November 2010
1 comment

Foreign observers reading the British press may be forgiven if they expect death squads roaming the streets of London from next April on, expelling the capital’s poor. There has been no...
Peter King
28 October 2010
4 comments

After a slow start to the debate about the coalition’s reforms to Housing Benefit things seem to be hotting up somewhat. The government proposes capping payments to households at a...
Kristian Niemietz
10 September 2010
comments

“The welfare state is now a vast, sprawling bureaucracy that can act to entrench, rather than solve, the problems of poverty and social exclusion.” The above quote does not come from a...
Kristian Niemietz
29 June 2010
5 comments

Some of the old video recorders made in the 1980s had an annoying kink: they could not hold the freeze frame mode for long. Shortly after pressing the pause button, they would automatically switch...
Richard Wellings
19 May 2010
7 comments

Even Margaret Thatcher didn’t manage to dismantle Britain’s disastrous welfare system. Judging by the policy plans of the Lib-Con coalition, there is little reason to be optimistic that...
Kristian Niemietz
31 March 2010
1 comment

Unemployment figures may still look bleak, but there is one occupational group which can be thoroughly relaxed about their future employment prospects. If Ending child poverty: mapping the route to...