In light of CallMeDave and his bunch of rich toff cronies abolishing by statutory instrument (ie with no discussion in Parliament) the right for poor students to receive maintenance grants for further education, I thought this should be dusted off.

Also, anybody got any opinions on the idea that students who signed up for loans in 2012 have now had the loan conditions altered restrospectively?

Don’t forget pop fans. If you were hoping to retire at 65, as of April you’ll need to wait another two years.


OK pop quizzers. A quick question for you.

Q/ In the UK, which group of public sector workers is not tied into a system where their pay rises by a meagre 1%  per year for the next five years?

A/ Now you’re just being silly. Of course you know the answer. It’s MPs. They’ve nailed increases elsewhere in the public sector to the niggardly 1%, and have now accepted a whopping 11% themselves. Yet they are, after all, public sector workers, funded by the taxpayer (eg me) just like any other public sector workers.

To add insult to injury, the IPSA, the bloody quango that answers to nobody, like all quangoes, awarded them this monstrous hike and thinks that future rises should be linked to rises in the private sector. Not 1% like every other poor bugger.

If I were an MP, still reeling from the impact of the expenses fiasco (which was in fact the stimulus for IPSA to be set up in the first place, to discourage the more roguish elements in the House from raiding the country’s purse to buy gold plated bathplugs,) I’d hang my head in shame.

I’d expect a bit of a rough time from my constituents too. Particularly those who live outside the Smoke, but live there during the week to work, yet can’t claim the cost of their second home, which the moneygrabbers in Westminster can do.

Oh, and all the blather about the extra £4.5M being offset by reductions in pension and other allowances? Bollocks. They’ll weasel their way round that, you mark my words. And all this in the week where there were proposals from IDS and his band of brigands to reduce working tax credits, thus forcing an estimated 1,000,000 more children with working parents into poverty

I sometimes wonder if the Republicans have sneaked across here under the radar.