In advance of the budget the concerted attack on poor people that is coming and IDS’ plan to change the definition of child poverty, I thought this was useful to bear in mind:
….obstinately high child poverty has its roots in developments in the labour market. Whether it be because of mass unemployment**, deindustialization, the offshoring of low-skilled work, technical change or whatever, the fact is that things have gotten tougher for what used to be called the respectable poor in the last 40-odd years.
It is this fact that Duncan Smith seems to want to gloss over. From the point of view of the ruling class, it is better to question the character of the poor than the health of capitalism. And, sadly, I fear he might succeed in this aim: the egocentric bias means many voters like to think well of themselves and hence less well of others. There will therefore be an audience for slanders against the poor.
A good piece on the Stumbling and Mumbling blog: