I Can’t Believe It’s Not Fiction

Posted: April 18, 2014 in Uncategorized
Tags: , , , , , ,

More and more these days, I find myself making connections, feeling that little bit closer to understanding exactly what is going on around me, in both local government, and at a national level.

To try and relax the other day, I sat down to watch a film…wanting to switch my brain off and float about in a fictional world that had nothing to do with me.  Even doing that, there was no chance to achieve what I set out to do.

I’d decided on watching The Rainmaker.  Knowing very little about the storyline other than it involved a lawyer, I had no idea what I was about to watch.  As it began, I settled into getting to know the characters, and a bit about their backgrounds. 

As the story then progressed, I couldn’t help but start drawing comparisons between the ill young man being denied insurance cover, and the ill & disabled people all over the country.  Further comparisons were then drawn between the insurance company itself, with it’s team of big-shot lawyers, and the Department for Work and Pensions, with Iain Duncan Smith at the helm.

The young man in question had leukaemia, and was desperately needing medical treatment for which the insurance company refused to pay, despite his mother keeping up to date with the premium payments.

The insurance company itself was a dubious setup, specifically targetting impoverished and underprivilged families – with the intention of automatically denying claims made.  The claims were then shifted between departments, with each department knowingly kept in the dark independently of each other.  This resulted in a perpetual cycle of claims being made, denied, appealed, denied and so on and so forth…leaving the lad’s mother with a total of 8 letters of refusal for her son’s treatment.

This inhuman and immoral cycle was orchestrated by the CEO and his number 1 lawyer, with the knowledge that they could extort incredible amounts of money from the policyholders, with an extremely low payout margin, which = heaps of $$.

The reason this was possible was down to cleverly written manuals for the claims managers (where have we heard that one before??), and through the forced ignorance of the claims departments, leaving the CEO & lawyer as being the only two people with knowledge of the true statistics regarding claims & payouts.

You may be asking yourself how this can possibly compare to a government department & those that make claims through that specific department?

If you have ever had the wonderful experience of contacting the DWP regarding a claim for ESA, Income Support or DLA, you will be more than aware that these particular departments do not tend to exchange information with each other, other than the very bare bones of your claim.  Often it is the caller that has to prompt one dept to interact & share information with another.

IDS & the DWP awarded the (private) contract, worth £500 million, for the new ‘Work Capability Assessments’ to a company called ATOS.  A company which has declared cancer patients, stroke victims, amputees & the severely mentally ill, Fit For Work.  A company which have denied a record number of claims amongst the most ill and disabled in society, which in reality need support, empathy & care, not hounding to their graves.

Coincidentally, the government stopped recording the number of ill & disabled claimants who died after being declared fit for work by ATOS.  That figure stood at more than 10,000 when this information ceased to be recorded, and people didn’t stop dying simply because the people in a position of responsibility that set these wheels in motion began to deny it was happening.

Week after week, we see IDS on various television programmes in a state of complete denial, refuting every set of statistics placed in front of him that contradict his version of events.  The statistics presented to him are either out of date, wrongly collected, or just plain wrong.  The statistics that flow out of his mouth have little basis in reality, for example, putting people placed in the Work Related Activity Group (after being declared fit for work, regardless of ill health & disability) firmly in the bar graph under the heading ‘Employed’ – despite this group of people struggling with their illness, struggling to pay their bills, trying not to starve to death, and needing to visit foodbanks to ward off starvation.

People have already starved to death under these ‘reforms’.  Meanwhile IDS is throwing money down the drain attempting to develop a computer program which patently doesn’t work, and has lost £303 million, effectively chucking it down the drain – but never mind that.  His claims that benefit fraud costs the taxpayer £1.2bn, primed the general public to back the reforms by creating resentment.  No mention is made however, about the £35 BILLION lost to our economy through tax avoidance by high earners & multinational companies.  No, it’s not illegal, but I find it extremely hard to swallow the disabled & impoverished minority being smeared by those that are depriving the economy of an amount far, far greater than benefit fraud.

Just like the medical insurance denials in the film, disability claims are being rejected by people that have little or no medical training, and the system is designed in such a way that people become so dejected that they simply give up.  The have not the energy, nor the health to be able to constantly fight for what they need, what they’re entitled to.  The system is designed by those that profit from the very people they deny services to.

How bad has this mess got to get before things change?  The tragedies are mounting.

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Comments
  1. Unfortunately the most unpleasant people and organisations target those least able to defend and stand up for themselves. but this is changing and there are people who have clout speaking the truth like Owen Jones. But even more heartening are the wonderful stories of the disabled fighting and dragging themselves to protest, going to tribunal and telling the truth. It will change if we all stick at it but letting things slide into rioting and violence is not the way. The cycle of violence, revenge and retribution has to be broken by care, love, compassion, empathy justice, and community.

    We are many, they are few. And the many are waking up fast!

    Love
    x

  2. Reblogged this on amnesiaclinic and commented:
    A very useful comparison and joining the dots…..

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