Hoisted by ones own Petard? Lies, Dammed Lies and IDS speak?

Hoisted by ones own Petard?

Lies, Dammed Lies and IDS speak?

 This government is it would appear very accident prone, finds it easy to slip on banana skins it discarded itself.

 Recently we have Ian Duncan-Smith (IDS) refusing to take a move in the reshuffle claiming he wanted to stay and implement all of the “improvements” he has designed and overseen within the department to the UK Benefits System.

 This might on the surface appear very “Nobel” very “Dignified” but look past the gloss the shine, look deeper and perhaps he was more afraid that his lies and rhetoric would expose how his changes are based upon at best shaky information or at worst bent to suit his ideological needs, all of which puts the “dodgy dossier” of Teflon Tony, that took us to WAR, into the shade.

 So Lets look at the validity of IDS and his words


IDS started some two years ago using a Mantra claiming that there were within numerous families across the UK generations of people who had never worked, admittedly he softened this slightly when challenged by I think Paxo on news Night (BBC2)  but of late he has lead a charge, a full press by his own departmental Ministers, Misters form other departments supported by the Chancellor and The Prime Minister.

I asked under the FOI for clarification, I asked how many such families had been identified and which counties of the UK did they resided in?.

I waited, the 20 working days passed and after some prompting the DWP submitted a late response without an apology for the delay.

It denied my request on the grounds that such information was not readily to hand and would cost too much to assemble.

But IF Ministers had been and continue to make statements based upon information, after all they would not lie to either the people or parliament, would they? Where did the information come from?

Well I can reveal its extracted from apiece of research carried out by a think talk at Bristol University. The full document can be found here.


It should also be noted that the author is most unhappy at the misuse of the report by HMG and here is the blog expressing that displeasure & setting the record straight.


Thee is also a link to a Guardian Article that also questions IDS etc


It is worth noting that the report by Dr Lindsey Macmillan and Paul Gregg Was written to dispel the Myth of worthlessness, to show that the THREE main data sources in the UK showed the figured to be miniscule IE less than 2% or less than 1% of households but does admit that there could within the 180,000 households some inter-generational worklessness but its not recorded.

So we know yet again IDS bases his “facts” on what he thinks, not what he knows or can prove!! So now we know that IDS and his fellow Ministers have and continue to at best mislead, at worst LIE both to parliament and the PUBLIC over their worklessness claims, claims made without any factual base, factual knowledge or evidence.. They can’t even get research right and use data without distorting and bastardizing it.

Question 2

IDS launched a full broadside attack, with support from Junior Ministers, loyal MP’s asking planted questions in the house on the Housing benefit scheme, using such outrageous claims to dismantle the system, attack the poorest and most needy families in out society.

Make no mistake the FOI clearly leaves no doubt that this assault was an ideological attack it had nothing to do with reforms, it was about forcing people off benefits, may of which are claimed to supplement poor basic wages paid by large multinationals and other employers.

IDS has and continues to state “ It cannot be right that we have families claiming more than £100,000 pa in housing benefit, living in the best houses in the area when other working people cannot afford to buy or even rent decent housing”

A statement clearly part of their plan to turn people in on themselves, to get one section of society attacking another based on a headline or article in the daily mail or Express.

Articles that never tell you what’ early is wrong with it, only who to blame for it.

SO IDS launched his attack supported again by junior ministers the Chancellor and other Cabinet members not to mention the Prime Minister based upon what numbers , what had the evidence to justify what amounted to a nuclear attack on the housing benefit system found?

Well given the ferocity of the attack you might think that there are hundreds if not thousands of such claimants spread across the country.

In reality the number is wait for this earth shattering news…………………………………………………………………………………..The NUMBER is

                                           10 (ten)

the same as the number on the Prime Ministers front door.


I am sure that you will not be surprised to learn that these


families live in CENTRAL LONDON.

Yet again the FOI has exposed the lies and deception practiced by Mr Cameron and his Ministers, they have no shame, they have ethical or moral or other mandate to make such attacks on the people of the UK.

For now we can expose them, ask other MP’s to question and challenge them in the House, and remind them that 2015 they have to face the electorate, they have to attempt to convince us the people that they have acted morally, ethically and in the interests of all citizens.

That will be an Oscar winning performance and should they actually succeed, it will be a tragedy for the people of the UK.

Blindmike 47




This is the text of the DWP FOI response, the original is available upon request.

Dear Mike Hughes,

Freedom of Information ref: 2012-4356

Thank you for your Freedom of Information request received on 05th November 2012.

You asked:

On the Andrew Marr show Sunday 4th November the Minister Mr Ian Duncan-Smith said

1. There are two and three generations within families that have never worked,

How many such families are there in the UK and which county or geographical region are they in?

2. he also said

“when we came to power we were paying more than £100,000 pa in housing benefit to families in London,

How many families were there in central London, Outer London, and in other regions of the UK?

In response to question 1 of your request;

Specific information on the number of families where two and three generations have never worked is not readily available. We estimate that the cost of researching this piece of information for would exceed the appropriate limit of £600. The appropriate limit has been specified in regulations and for central Government it is set at £600.

This represents the estimated cost of one person spending 3½ working days in determining whether the Department holds the information, and locating, retrieving and extracting the information. Under section 12 of the Freedom of Information Act the Department is not obliged to comply with this part of your request and we will not be processing this further.

However a research report was produced by the University of Bristol in 2011 looking at this issue. This reports that there are pockets in Britain where there are two and three generations of families who are unemployed. This report can be found here:



In response to question 2 of your request;

The following table shows the number of housing benefit recipients with a recorded weekly award of £1,917 or more a week, from November 2008 and August 2012. This would be the equivalent of more than £100,000 a year if they remained on this amount continuously for a year.

Payment information is sourced from the administering local authority once a decision has been made on amount of Housing Benefit awarded. The decision is based on details entered on the Housing Benefit claim form and supporting evidence.

It is possible that errors can occur in the recording of weekly award (both on a form and inputting onto a computer system within the local authority that is processing the claim).

In particular, it is possible that, for some claimant records, the monthly award may be recorded instead of the weekly award. Therefore, care should be taken when looking at high weekly award bands.

Housing Benefit Recipients with a recorded weekly award of £1,917 or more, November 2008 – August 2012 Total

Central London

Greater London

Rest of GB



























Source: Single Housing Benefit Extract 100% individual level data (SHBE)


1. Recipients are at the second Thursday of the month.

2. Components may not sum to total due to independent rounding.

3. Figures are rounded to the nearest 10.

4. ‘-‘denotes nil or negligible

5. SHBE is a monthly electronic scan of claimant level data direct from local authority computer systems. The data is available monthly from November 2008 and August 2012 is the latest available.

Methodology: Data is collected on a monthly basis and released as the Single Housing Benefit Extract 100% level data (SHBE). This provides the weekly housing benefit amount for each individual household. The annualised amounts are then calculated by multiplying by 52.18.

Information on individual level weekly benefit amounts prior to November 2008 is not held by the Department.

If you have any queries about this letter please contact us quoting the reference number above.

Yours sincerely


A New Sport Attack the Blind Person!



A New Sport

Attack the Blind Person!


This blog was intended to be about the blindmice “rampage” to and through London, our exploits in navigating the capital, eating & drinking, the royal Albert Hall, ( Yolanda Brown) Wineopolus in Southwark, etc.

Sadly events have over taken us.


On Monday 19th November 2012 theblindmice were in Birmingham at the now famous Frankfurt Christmas Market which recently opened for its 12th year, and every year it gets bigger & bigger.

We had a great time exploring the market & reporting for the Birmingham talking Newspaper.


Late in the day we retired to our “local” when we are in the city centre, they staff know us and take excellent care of us.


I went home on an early train and Paul stayed to dine at the pub to avoid the rush he planned to take a later train.

He went to the quieter entrance of new Street Station a little after 730pm so there were still loads of people about due tot eh Market and it being the end of rush hour.

Paul was befriend by a man who sought information from station staff and calmly escorted Paul to the right platform and found him a seat, advised him how long he had to wait for his train, the guy the Mugged / Robbed him and ran off.

Paul was he says “lucky” he was shocked but unhurt and the transport & local police together with station staff who he says were superb.


What surprised me was when I posted this event to face book (mike Hughes) I was surprised by how many other disabled and yes BLIND people who had been robbed in such a manner.

Today I “read” of an elderly” Blind” who was infact partially sighted” who was mugged and died from her injuries in the attack.




The fact that TWO young School boys, YOUNG teenagers who are still in the eyes of the law CHILDREN, have been arrested seems not to be shocking. The event has, however, brought out even more blind people who say things like


when i was mugged first i knew of it was when i was punched in the face. completely destroyed my self confidence


These sorts of attacks seem to be on the increase which is really worrying. I agree, what are schools and parents teaching these kids? My nieces and nephews would never do anything like that as they have all been brought up to respect and help others. Its easy to let something like this affect your confidence. I got attached a few years back when i was still living in London and it really knocked my confidence. But thanks to good friends and family it didn’t take long to get back out and about again and I wasn’t going to let that lowlife scumbag win.


I am by comparison to many only “recently” blind and now realize that I am far too trusting, far to relaxed when I am out and about.

Yes I admit it, I go out & about, I attend meetings championing the cause of the disabled and especially the blind, I go to the theatre, I have even been known to go shopping, but now there is a “hunting” season, an open season on the BLIND, I will have to be more cautious, perhaps carry a pepper spray like the ones my daughters have in their handbags, but even though It seems that I have a target on my back, I will not become a recluse, I will not stop going out, and offer fair warning to potential muggers, If I get only half a chance I will fight back so wear a cricket box type protection before attacking me.


Lest we forget the price of Freedom

Lest we forget

Freedom was hard fought for and a high price paid


Friday 19th October Nick Griffin who describes himself as a Patriot and is described by others as a far right extremist, a racist and even by some who will, on twitter, for example not even speak his name, they simply refer to him as the #talkingrurd. This man who presents himself as a fair-minded reasonable man holds beliefs that revolt me so there is no doubt this is the man, the leader of the BNP.

His words revolt me, his ideas cause me heartache and concern, it is everything I would oppose to my dying breath, but yet I will stand and fight for HIS right to say that.

Why you might ask? Well so many died fighting Hitler defending the very freedoms we enjoy today, the freedom to worship how and whom we please, to virtually say and do as we please, to practice our sexual orientation without fear or prejudice all valuable freedoms we are in danger of taking for granted.

During a heated twitter debate following these mornings Radio5 live debate I became involved a twitter war of words and found myself defending this man whose words I find revolting.

During the often very heated discussions I was, from a quiet voice of reason,  tina@thethinker51 reminded of a Pat Parker poem that is so apt, I have with full acknowledgement reproduced it here.

Adolf Hitler Saluting With Hess and Himmler Behind Him

This a poem about gays,  Hitler started with gays, then called homosexuals, spoken in a derogatory way, he went on to the disabled , the Gypsies,and then the final solution for the Jews, lest we forget, our hard fought freedoms came at a cost but would be taken from us by those who act like thieves in the night, and once lost it asks a simple question “where will you be? Where will you be when they come?

 Pat Parker

 Boots are being polished and trumpeters clean their horns
Chains and locks forged, the crusade has begun

Once again flags of Christ are unfurled in the dawn and cries of soul saviors sing apocalyptic on air waves

Citizens, good citizens all, parade into voting booths and in self-righteous sanctity X away our right to life. I do not believe as some, that the vote is an end,

I fear even more it is the beginning

So I must make an assessment and ask

Where will you be when they come?

They will not come a mob rolling through the streets

but quickly and quietly move into our homes and remove

the evil, the queerness, the faggotry, the perverseness from their midst.

They will not come clothed in brown and swastikas or baring chests with gleaming crosses

The time and need for ruses are over,

They will come,in business suites to buy your homes and bring bodies to fill your jobs,

They will come in robes to rehabilitate and white coats to subjugate, and where will you be when they come?

Where will you be when they come, and they will come!

They will come as we are defined as opposite~~perverse and we are perverse

Every time we watched a queer hassled in the streets and said nothing it was an act of perversion

Every time we lied about a boyfriend or girlfriend at coffee break it was an act of perversion

Every time we heard “I dont mind gays but why must they be so blatant?” and said nothing it was an act of perversion.

Every time we let a lesbian mother loose her child and didnt fill the court room, it was an act of perversion.

Every time we let “straights” make out in our bars, whilst we couldn’t touch because of laws, it was an act of perversion.

Every time w put on proper clothes to go to a family wedding and left our lovers at home, it was an act of perversion.

Every time we heard ” Who I go to bed with is my personal choice, its personal not political” and said nothing it was an act of perversion.

Every time we let straight relatives bury our dead and pushed our lovers away, it was an act of perversion.

And they will come, they will come for the perverts

It wont matter if your a homosexual not a fagot

A lesbian not a dyke, gay not queer

It wont matter if you own your business, have a good job or are on Social Security.

It wont matter if your Black, Chicano, Native American or white

It wont matter if your from new Your or Los Angeles, Galveston or Sioux falls.

It wont matter if your Butch or fem, monogamous or non monogamous

it wont matter if your Catholic, Baptist, Atheist, Jewish or M.C.C as they will come.

they will come to the cities and to the land, to your front rooms and into “your” closet.

They will come for the perverts and where will you be when they come?

Pat Parker copyright 1978

Margaret, David & Ian a Legacy of Lies & Deciet

Margaret, David and Ian

A letter to the PM

(A Legacy of Betrayal & Lies)

David the caption says it all, this is what we think of you & your government!

Dear David

When your hero Margaret, Lady Thatcher, came to power and entered Downing Street, she paused, in a very planned and calculated way, and in her own way started a precedent when  she quoted St Francis of Assai.

David you broke with tradition and adopted a mantra that senior party members, grandee’s and the “plebs” of the party adopted it was elegant, catchy, concise and said so much

“We will protect the weak, the elderly, the disabled, and the most vulnerable in our society!

What a shame these words were in fact nothing short of a sales pitch, a marketing ploy to capture votes and offer false hope to so many. What a pity that once in office these words , whilst still being chanted, were infect being destroyed by both the Chancellor and you smiling assign Mr Ian Duncan Smith.

Whilst in opposition IDS had done what was widely recognised to be some important and groundbreaking work on the linkage between poverty, benefits and employment. What a shame that once elected that work was shelved and open warfare declared on the disabled, the elderly the most vulnerable in society!

Ian the architect of dismantling the benefit system famously once said “Beware the quiet man” a reference to himself and the label that the press had given him.

He has and probably never will speak a truer word.

Your man Ian is a consummate communicator and is adept at ensuring he says one thing and means another, that he can with seemingly impunity mislead, misdirect, misuse facts, whilst merging fact and fiction.

Ian has , it is worth others noting, for example when giving evidence to the Commons select committee he uses phrases such as,” I understand, I believe, it is my impression etc,” never committing, always leaving wiggle room stating what he knows or suspects to be untrue yet never laying himself open to a charge of misleading parliament. We all know you can commit even the most hennas of crimes so long as one doesn’t not knowingly or wilfully mislead Parliament, in plain words LIE to Parliament.

Ian, other members of the DWP team and other MP’s regularly appear on TV and radio programs where misleading, untrue and controversial statements are made and are allowed to go unchallenged or uncorrected as it suits the party line, one such “fact” often repeated and mow firmly fixed into the public mind thanks to spin is “50% of benefit claims are false or fraudulent” whilst the real figure according to YOUR stats is 0.8%.

Another outrageous LIE that was perpetrated on the public from the lips of Ian was “There are generations of the same family that have never worked, that have always lived off the state, scrounged etc” yet when challenged Ian, his team, the Government were unable to produce the high numbers they had claimed, in fact the TRUTH is that you couldn’t produce a single real, accurate example.

On Monday 8th October 2012 Ian, never one to allow truth & fact to intrude upon or get in the way of a good speech, gave his address to the party conference. As speech that was long on rhetoric, short on fact, a speech stuffed full of allegations, innuendo. It alluded too much and yet offered No supporting statistics, facts or substance that anyone seeking truth and honesty could verify. It’s only a matter of time before that speech is exposed for the empty, hollow LIE it was and the LIES it contained.

The country is in serious trouble, we need a serious, honest leader, a leader with integrity, a leader who genuinely believes in and understands the word COMPASSION.

David you are about to be a one term PM, that the Tories treachery and betrayal of the very people it vowed to nature and protect, will ensure that the Tories will be in opposition for a generation, and all this on your watch,.

Legacy is much used word of late and yours will be a Legacy of LIES and BETRAYAL a legacy of destroying not improving the very things that make Great Britain Great?

9 Some Days are Golden

9   Some Days are Golden

Years ago there was a song, I forget who it was bye, its not really important except that the line “Some days are Golden” came into my head to describe today Friday 5th October 2012.

Its now almost 4 complete years since I entered this world of darkness, at first there was some residual sight, the odd colour if the light was right, but that quickly disappeared and with the darkness cam the dreaded depression.

Like most disabled people or people who I should say “become” disabled” life is a roller coaster ride, with far more downs than ups it has to be said. I was dragged to the brink of suicide, a slough of despond so deep I thought it was the real bottomless pit, but one day, don’t ask when or why, I awoke and decided to have a life, not just to live, or exist, I wanted as much of my life as I could back again, even though there would be serious financial restrictions along theway.

I discovered Ad theatre, concerts and all forms of art that I had once enjoyed, I even found AD Ballet thanks to the Birmingham Royal Ballet & Birmingham Hippodrome.

But the world of art, old masters, and the impressionists eluded me.

Just over a week ago the Birmingham Mail our local paper which thankfully publishes on line and tweets headline grabbers through the day, announced that a famous “convicted” art forger was to hold an exhibition “Provenance” in Birmingham’s Water Hall Gallery, part of the art gallery & museums complex in Birmingham, another of the cities hidden gems.

John Myatt @john_myatt served his time and after his release set about using his undoubted talents to create copies and “new” works in the style of famous artists, ranging from Cézanne, Turner, Monet, Matisse Van Gogh Jan Vermeer Mark Chagall and so many others etc, but its time they are all signed in his own name.

His PR team in turn tweeted me after I circulated tweets informing others about the exhibition; they asked if I would be attending. My response was all too familiar, “I have to find a sighted guide to describe the works to me otherwise its pointless my attending.”

Their response was fast and simple, when do you want to attend and we will try to fix it, we need 24 hrs notice..

My response was perhaps faster and was direct Friday 11am preferably, giving almost 72 hours notice, and within the hour it was fixed.

One of the last TV programs I was able too “see” was when John painted Myleene Class in the famous Jan Vermeer painting, “the girl with the pearl earring”, this together with a copy of the original were side by side at the exhibition.

Another stand out picture was that as Stephen Fry as Pope Innocent in the style of Diego Velasquez you need a keen eye to spot Stephen in this one but trust me he is in there.

What they had arranged for me was a lady (Pat) who is a friend of the gallery,and works in their customer support team, it was her first go at describing art to another person who know the artists in some cases the original painting but was unable to see what John Myatt had created. There was no need to worry she grew rapidly into her role and allowed me to ask questions as we navigated the works of art, which had been collated into small or similar groups.

The tour concluded when I purchased a rather expensive catalog which John Myatt signed for me, we had a discussion about one of my favorite pieces of art, Rubens 4 negro heads, or Black Kings as they are now called, they can still be seen in the National Museum in Brussels. the picture is believed to have been a study for a sculpture but either way the detail is stunning.

This really was a golden day, and sadly there are not many or enough of them, either for me or my disabled friends.

All the cares and worries of what will this Government do next? How will the next round of cuts affect me? These were questions I didn’t ask, or discuss when I bumped into friends, yet usually they are our main topic of discussion.

Thanks top all, who would have thought a simple visit to an art gallery could be so special!

The Exhibition closes on October 12th but signed limited edition prints are available as well as original works of art if your pockets are deep enough

Birmingham Museum & Art gallery


Castle Galleries (local dealer)


Washington Green (publishers)