Video: Yes. Liz Truss really did just say that on national TV #CPC17


Chief Secretary to the Treasury Liz Truss was interviewed on Monday’s Daily Politics programme on the BBC at the Tory party conference in Manchester, on the topic of the government’s disastrous Universal Credit (UC) benefits system, which the Tories insist they will continue to roll out in spite of enormous problems.

What she had to say was as revealing as it was mind-boggling:

Challenged by presenter Jo Coburn over the massive problems the switch to the new system is causing to claimants who are finding themselves penniless for six to twelve weeks because of delays caused by the change-over, Ms Truss:

  • simply ignores the question of how one woman, who finds herself with four pence to last her a month, talking only of local Jobcentres
  • answers a question about a ‘dire’ situation for people with no income by claiming an increase to the so-called ‘living’ wage would make it ok
  • answers a question about the fact that over forty percent of families on UC are in arrears because of delays in payment by claiming that the system helps people with budgeting and the ‘positive habits of being in work’
  • claims that UC ‘is working for people who are on the system’ and the system is ‘successful’ – in spite of having been told all the above

Ms Truss also claims she ‘knows lots of people who say that the system is great’ – presumably these are the same ‘people’ who the Tories claimed were praising the effectiveness of sanctions that summarily deprive benefit claimants of all income:

bbc fake claimants.png

Most astonishingly of all, though, Ms Truss attempts to claim that the UC system is alright because her experience in a Jobcentre was good.: Truss answers Coburn’s challenge about UC being described as ‘a disaster waiting to happen‘ with:

Certainly my experience of my local Jobcentre, which I’ve visited very recently, is that the roll-out is going well, that people are benefiting from it…[I] strongly encourage you [Coburn] to go to a Jobcentre and see what’s happening because it is really quite exciting.

Yes, she really did say that in a nationally-televised interview.

According to Ms Truss, the problem with UC is not that it is depriving people of income for six to twelve weeks, leaving them penniless and starving.

It’s just that they’re not a government minister.

Could anything more clearly depict how out of touch and utterly callous the Tories are?

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  1. These Tory MP’s are utterly deranged and detached from reality because no one in there right mind would accept what is happening to many citizens

  2. Sorry, it’s simpler and sicker than that. They don’t care they have money now on the gravy train even if thrown out of office who cares. One of them nice people who hang around the cons will give me a nice paid job and everything is alright in her world.

    I pity her constituents if she thinks universal credit and the jobcentre is wonderful! She must really work hard for the people who are damaged by it for them to say how wonderful the system is…

  3. Judicial review is often the main way to challenge unlawful government acts and policies another is to change the Government. But proposals to double cost caps, or even remove them altogether, threaten the ability of both individuals and NGOs to hold government to account. Theresa May’s new administration must urgently rethink! Does the government diminish the rule of law by introducing complex court procedures and removing costs protection for citizens who want to bring judicial review proceedings in the public interest?

    And would such conduct be justifiable, when it deters citizens from using the courts to challenge the government’s own unlawful behaviour. These are questions environmental lawyers are asking but I see no reason the same arguments and questions should not be used here. Except she has stolen legal aid from the many but there are still a few who can get legal aid just needs a clever solicitor specialising in social care/public law to challenge . So where are all the legal mavericks ?

  4. How can it be lawful for Councils to force tenants who are not in debt in anyway to pay a surplus payment in their rent in anticipation of them getting into debt due to transfer to Universal credit at some point in the future? Blatant admission this is a deliberate and premeditated act. Local regulator the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) said in April that 3.3 million British people are in “persistent debt”Now we have Ministers suggesting the poorest in our society must also contribute to the debt industry. The link is about Credit card debt,bad practice and ethical behaviour so how can this Government get away with it ? Any legal professionals reading this?
    Give me a line and I will run with it I am entitled to legal aid . https://www.bitsonline.com/credit-cards-debt-deliberate/

    1. Not only council tenants.
      Housing association tenants as well. Most are inviting tenants to build up a 5-week rent buffer.
      Private landlords/estate management companies, are extremely wary of renting to benefit claimants.

  5. Although the implementation Universal Credit system has been beset by problems its important not to divert people’s attention from the fact that essentially this is how the Tories (IDS and the Council for Social Justice) intended it to work.
    Welfare Benefit schemes have always been used as tools of social engineering as far back as the Poor Law Amendment Act of 1834. The devil is always in how the payment of benefit is administered. Universal Credit is aimed at increasing hardship by disallowing claims or simply making it difficult to claim in the first place and forcing people on the benefit in to low paid work. Universal Credit does this with a vengence and those under 25 have been singled out for particularly harsh treatment.
    IDS has always said “Universal Credit is not just cost cutting exercise” and the increased homelessness figures will not come as any surprise to him – the effect was entirely predictable.. This is why the Tories still intend to continue with Universal Credit even when the dreadful cock ups in its implementation are pointed out. The cock ups are in fact actually helping them to achieve their goal a little quicker. If Universal Credit had had been implemented without any problems it would now be fully in force across the UK but the current situation that many claimants now find themselves in would not be any different.

  6. I’d just like to point out that is me at Welfare Weekly who first broke the story about the DWP using “fake” claimants in a benefit sanctions leaflet. If the editor of this blog wants the ACTUAL leaflet, please give me a shout at editor@welfareweekly.com

  7. I believe this is an unlawful system change and is a charge which is challengable. It is discriminatory. Copied. ”I believe the loan that can be taken out for a deferred Universal Credit payment is not the same amount as benefits awarded. We can already assume that the benefit someone gets is barely enough to listen even off for most people. Why would someone therefore be expected to live off far less for a period in time under a loan, that’s way below the poverty universal credit amount already awarded?
    Why would you want people having their chances of eviction increase? A high proportion of this group are vulnerable and disabled. The system has not be designed around disabled, vulnerable and their unpaid carers? Why has the media not grilled the mp’s about this?
    There has been so much bullshite that those who start to go back to work will be allowed to keep more of their wages. Will someone please say how this will benefit the millions of unpaid carers paid benefits to look after their family or friends saving the state billions? We are working as carers. I don’t have to by law look after my elderly mum. So why am I in a financial loss?
    As for this crap you keep more of your money when gaining employment, has that been paid for up front by others with the six week deferred payment? Also by those of us who are being productive as unpaid caters who will not benefit from this so called keeping more of your benefits as you gainfully obtain employment. We are slipping g through the net again. I’ll repeat I’m a qualified accountant so I also do not need to learn how to budget. I’m more qualified than have the Tory cabinet, so this hogwash is utter bullshite

  8. So, it thinks people with 4 PENCE to last a whole month is ‘exciting’ does it? Only to be expected from someone who gets almost orgasmic about opening pork markets in China.

    Thick, ignorant (Insert relevant term here**) will be going all ‘berlusconi’ next, and telling the homeless to pretend they’re camping out.


  9. “I’ve spoken to people who say the system is great”

    Would they be the same people who told dummkopf-schmitt they ‘loved’ working for their dole?

    Or where they the same gobshites what dreamed up the utterly incompetent scheme in the first place?

  10. “We’ve got an excellent network of jobcentres…That we’re closing down wholesale – so if you want the ‘excellent support’ that’s (allegedly) on offer (ffs) then you’ll have to travel that much further to be told to get to f*** “

  11. There must be a way to force a general election.

    May was terrible on Radio 4’s Today programme this morning. Broken, staccato sentences breathlessly blurted out.Just a gabble. It was painful to listen to. Worse than that, she had nothing to say that was worth the effort of listening.

    The con party must know their days are numbered, so why not just hold a general election now and be done with it?

  12. You could have said the same early in Major’s government in 1993 when he was being constantly challenged by his frothing anti-EU back bench ‘bastards’.
    Yet they clung on to the very latest date they could before being evicted in 1997.
    When it comes to taking money off taxpayers to pay for their haughty ‘superior’ lifestyle, Tory MPs will cling to the privileges of office like shit sticks to the pan.
    May’s shower of shite she calls her ‘cabinet’ will be no different, I fear.


  14. Universal Credit, was designed SPECIFICALLY to stop people receiving either no money what so ever or little or nothing!
    Universal Credit was designed SPECIFICALLY to leave people to starve!
    Universal Credit was designed SPECIFICALLY to kill!
    Rees Mogg stated yesterday, that he and his Party were not dispicable?
    They’re not!
    They’re cold blooded, callous evil mass murderers and the people WILL NOT STOP, until this epitome of evil Party, in accordance to violations of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, and under Articles 2 & 4 of the Convention for the Prevention and Punishment of the Crime of Genocide, that every EVERY SINGLE INDIVIDUAL RESPONSIBLE FOR THIS CRIME AGAINST HUMANITY IS HELD ACCOUNTABLE in an international court of law for the deaths they are 100% responsible for!

  15. Hey Skwarkbox,

    ~ Own Fault Rhetoric ~ By ~ Dewin Nefol ~

    The impoverished souls of universal Ministers.
    Fills me with the urge to defecate.
    If only my homeless body had eaten any food to pass.
    By God, I ‘d go ape-shit then!
    Said the Minister for Poverty.
    “We are a country of opportunities you must grab.”
    “Grab, grasp, exploit and capitalize for oneself.”
    “Opportunities, ” he said that, “grab you who do not”
    “Grab them with gutless greed and ghoulish guile.”
    “Or grasp them to exploit for yourself.”
    “It ‘s your own fault if you don’t,” continued the Minister.
    “Not the deficient ineffective redundant policies of Government.”
    “Or indeed our propensity for power wealth and privilege.”
    “Our government provides support for those impoverished, homeless.”
    He paused without grace his of banquet of fries and flies.
    Then continued to masticate on his mouthful of lies.

    Namaste 🙂


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