British expat pensioners to be given badge of shame by British Government


(Clive Christopher Walley) #1

In some previous blogs I have referred to the current British Government as being too far right wing…. Well in the Chancellor's Autumn Statement he has shown just how right I was to make such a denouncement.

Whilst Ian Duncan Smith, the now infamous “Expat-Hater”, continues in his war of words and deeds against expats everywhere along with attempts to send expat pensioners to early graves by freezing them to death, using dodgy and manipulated data, the chancellor has sunk to an even further level.

According to the treasury itself five hundred thousand expat pensioners will be given what will feel like a “Badge of Shame” to wear, just as Jewish people were forced to wear the Yellow star with the word “JUDE” emblazoned in the middle of it stitched to their clothing throughout occupied Europe.

This man has decided that expats cannot be trusted and must complete a form to prove they are “Still Alive” and entitled to draw the pension they contributed to all their working lives.

They must take the form to their neighbours who will witness them signing it. This is to remind them of course that they have not escaped the clutches of the British Authorities….and will probably be shot at dawn if they fail to do so!

This is not just some innocent and random attack on expat pensioners but is part of a serious, sustained, calculated and vicious attack on large swathes of human beings by a so-called democratically elected government sworn to the teachings of democracy.

The Treasury claims “The crackdown will save the Government tens of millions of pounds every year. We currently pay a bit of money to people who are dead, and we don’t know they are dead, and their families keep the money”.

Yes this sort of thing does happen – it happens in the UK a lot. However Mr Treasury Spokesman, I challenge you to tell the truth about just how many cases occur amongst expat indigenous Brits and how many occur in the UK itself amongst the whole populous there. Common, be a sport and tell us the truth for once. Of course the truth does not come easily to this government – does it?

The truth is that this has nothing to do with saving money but is all about denigrating expat pensioners over and over again. The circus continues. Get UK citizens to hate expat pensioners with continual lies and deceit to get them on side for the next election – any old vote will do cry’s the boss “Flashman”.

Expat pensioners continue to be hounded by this obnoxious group of political pigmies and failed politicians but we are made of sterner stuff than you think. You would of course like us to feel guilty for living longer than planned for by politicians of all persuasions – but we worked hard, paid through the nose and can stand your company no longer a good reason for being over here!

Apparently the Spanish Government is more co-operative with the British Government than the French Government are. Thus people in Spain will not be required to do this – yet! The poor souls in France are apparently less trust-worthy because the French Government doesn’t go around telling tales, even to the British government! Vivre La France!

Clive Walley, ex-Conservative, ex-pat–pensioner writing from a still very cold Spain – Sunday 8th December 2013.

(Ann Parkhouse) #2

I do agree that the new rules on Winter Heating Allowance are skewed. As someone who left UK before I was 60, I never had it anyway. With regard to life affirming form filling. Well if you are an expat teacher living in France (and probably elsewhere) you have to be "still living" authenticated every 5 years. Authentication had to be made by someone, on same list as for passports and a qualifying period of how long you had been known to this trustworthy official. At times this isn't always easy to provide. However being a left wing ex-pat, none-the-less I recognise the need to do this. In fact on the "to do" list for my inheritors - at the top - is contact Teachers' pensions, contact DWP - Notify death, otherwise you, my inheritors will have to pay everything back later. I don't think that expats are singled out - there are others, for one, THE DISABLED. The British Govt are pledged to get 25% of disabled people into work. ATOS have been passing severely disabled people fit to work. Some of these disabled have even committed suicide. If you're an NHS patient you suffer further from cutbacks. As you will know the lack of care in MANY hospitals has been life threatening. There are considerable cut backs in catatact operations, hip and knee replacements (for the elderly.) In France there are many advantages that expats enjoy and gain over English residents in UK. So I don't mind filling in an occasional form, that states that I'm still alive and entitled to my pension. This needs putting into perspective.

(Carol Lavinia Fraser) #3

Brian, my husband I received ours around the end of November. We both had letters dated 16/11/2013 saying the payment would be made. Time to be grumpy!

(Brian Milne) #4

Slight deviation BUT having received the usual letter re WFP dated 26 November, with slightly contradictory info about 'within three weeks', then 'by Christmas', this year there is no sign of it having arrived in my account. I'll give it another week before I call them and do my Grumpy act. However, the question is: have all corresponds reading this thread received theirs or do others still have no sign of it in their account?

(Carol Lavinia Fraser) #5

Don't be put off Clive, you are talking sense and we should stand up for our rights, not be prepared to lay back and let them be taken from us. So sorry for your news Ley. Is it possible for you to make a one off payment to cover that year? Might be worth asking so you can get your S1.

(Clive Christopher Walley) #6

Thanks Ley and thanks Carol. Happy New Year to you both. Thanks for the words of support. I won't blog on here again because I resent being picked out for censorship to passify a small clique of brain-dead morons.

I have been a tory all my life but will go to the ends of the earth to see this conservative government thrown out on it's a**e.

Take care both, not stopping just passing by and got an email alert to say there was some comments made (nice ones this time).

(Ley Thompson) #7

Well said Carol. It is amazing how many people are prepared to walk blindly into the abyss. Britain (I guess I mostly mean England) is now a selfish right wing shadow of its former self. So very sad for what once was a great nation. As an example, I have just moved permanently to France this year after building a home here for my retirement over the past 20 years. As I haven't paid NI contributions for the past year (I was living on savings) they will not give me an S1 to cover the health care I now know I need (thanks to French doctors - missed by the Scottish ones) to repair my heart. I have no home back in the UK and no rights to French health care. SO what do I do? I have paid all my life and now they reject me. And by the way this refusal to fund my treatment and other expats, will save the NHS around £300 million. That's a drop in the ocean of its budget. Sickening and disgusting action by a so called developed and definitely wealthy country. Oh and by the way, I have a disabled son too who gets no help at all and I still have to finance him. My other kids all pay massive taxes. The tories are a bunch of bastards! And I wish the spell check on here would stop encouraging me to spell tory with a capital letter. Something I refuse to do ;-)

(Carol Lavinia Fraser) #8

Having read Clive's original post and some of the subsequent responses I think a little reason has flown away. I can understand Clive's anger and am surprised so many of you think he is in the wrong and not the government. This current government is probably the nearest a UK one has come to being fascist in many a year. One only has to listen to the news, 11 million living in poverty, 1 million pensioners undernourished, no pensioner has received a rise in the tax allowance since this government came to power, children being sent to school hungry, disabled people targeted (they shut the Remploy factories!) and losing their care assistants. A nearly blind and deaf old lady could not read the letter from the council telling her, her care assistant was being withdrawn! So very many grievances, the civil service demonised as scroungers so no-one to watch out for us. Not enough school places for the new intake.

Shall I go on, I could and all those things happening in the UK. Then we have the expats rights, or lack of. Don't you people care? I am British, still proud to be British if I am in despair.

(Brian Milne) #9

Alexander Boe we're nae a' English y'ken, sae dinna worry, y'willna be back again..

(Ley Thompson) #10

Good grief!

(Brian Milne) #11

OK, I am not a Jungian. But let us not go into the different schools of psychoanalytical thought. However, I will say the world has come along since Freud in the 1890s, via Jung. I prefer Brenner. Try also Juliet Mitchell who would laugh herself under the table hearing the old chestnut about genes carrying memories in the way you describe it.

I deeply and profoundly dislike what the present UK government and its lackeys are doing. Also some of us said we find Clive's form of expression offensive, not that we are offended. There is a vast difference. Some people, but a minority, had a go at Clive. If you look at how he responded objectively you will see that he told all that they are wrong and used sarcasm several times but offered no substantiation for his rebuttals. That does not win favour and sympathy. I feel that some people thus tried fighting fire with fire, however futile that tends to be on either side of any argument. Had Clive had rational responses then it would have been far more convivial.

As for what I said previously, my colleague there was studying migration as I was. My work was in South America, far removed from his which was return migration from Israel to Germany by Jewish people that included ones who had been in the concentration camps. They mainly went back because they wanted to be back 'home'. I went to a few of his seminars at our institute in Berlin and was impressed enough by some of what I heard to visit a couple of the camps in then East Germany to try to get a bit of a picture, at least to stretch my imagination. I then bought Mein Kampf and read it to find out. I already knew about the persecutions in Russia and other eastern European countries such as the Ukraine that preceded Hitler's horrendous written rants. The whole history is gruesome but as with slavery, an issue I still work with at present in the form of child trafficking, the people living today cannot be blamed as some people do. It is in the past, since it is only in the living memory of few people it has become one of those black areas of history. I would imagine most young people today know little if anything about it at all, many people of my generation born soon after 1945 are also only distantly and vaguely interested but by no means enough to suffer any degree of guilt. Nations can only be discouraged from doing these things again, albeit the world seems not to be doing too well on that front. Perhaps I have been too exposed to the 'horrors' and have seen more than a few over the last 45 years or so, too many for me to actually bear when I reflect on them. However, it is not guilt as you see it. I question whether I could have done better doing what I do, personal guilt perhaps.

I feel a certain amount of guilt about the present UK government, because I have not been critical enough mainly. I am aware that National Socialism began with small, rather extreme ideas and its roots in Italian national syndicalism that became radical authoritarian nationalism or fascism as we now know it. Fascism is under the surface of all right wing governments who espouse nationalistic ideas and authoritarianism as the coalition in the UK is beginning to do. In Iain Duncan Smith they have a zealot who those who believe in what his department are doing under his leadership think will put the masses back in their place by breaking their metaphorical backs. Pensioners, the disabled and all other weak social groups are used as an example to show how everybody could be treated.

No, it is not peculiarly an English thing the present government are doing. I have seen directly or through things I read or am otherwise informed about things far, far worse. I am of the 'real' left, in other words a socialist who has never seen any form of real socialism in our world but only dictatorships no better that Nazism. I really do believe that a world without the extreme differences between ethnic groups, beliefs or social and economic groups can be achieved. Yet I would not call on the Judenstern as a symbol of what is being done in this case. It is by no means as extreme as even early Nazism, let alone comparison with anti-Semitism.

As for the form that will be sent out to prove we are alive, that is so naive anyway because that is very easily falsified, so many other countries already do it that the analogy does not hold water. Their citizens would already have used it one or two cases I would speculate.

All in all, psychoanalytic analysis of Clive's method would not serve him well, also too many modern psychoanalysts would groan and wonder how you latched on to a rather dated Jungian notion. Personally, unlike many people from my own discipline, I see humanity through other eyes anyway and not ones that are too persuaded by ideas about collectivism in an age of individualism where conscience is left to those who are probably naive enough to believe in the basic good of all people.

(Ley Thompson) #12

Brian, I'm not sure you understand the collective conscience as I do. It is archetypal and is carried in memory in the same way as muscles have memories. There are numerous theories as to how this could be possible. Perhaps carried in genes or in received behaviour patterns from generation to generation, for example. Personally I do believe in archetypal patterns in all life and I also believe that we collectively feel. I picked up from my mother her feelings of horror at the holocaust and I now feel those same feelings as a result. I picked up her guilt at her government's inability to prevent the slaughter. And so on. Only a very simplistic example perhaps but helpful I hope. All through this blog, my input has not been to negatively criticize Clive for his analogy but to try to understand his point which I feel very few others did. The blog turned into a platform for 'having a go' at Clive. I found that much more distasteful than his analogy. I would rather have discussed what was in his blog. As it happens I discovered today that I have to take a friend (who receives a pension from the Portuguese government after years teaching in Lisbon University), to Bordeaux to the Portuguese consulate or whatever. This, so that she can prove to them that she is still alive. So you see had we widened the chat out rather than 'slag off' Clive, we would have discovered that this is not a peculiarly British (Cameron Tory have a go at the pensioners) thing after all. But rather a common sense approach to saving money where it is not needed. To me that's a good thing and perhaps it leaves more for me. By the way, perhaps I wasn't offended by Clive's analogy as I have done my bit to assuage my collective guilt over the holocaust many years ago by living and working in Israel on kibbutzim and being ripped off by the Israelis (note I did NOT say Jews - there is a difference) and witnessing the treatment of the Palestinians first hand. I have also educated younger generations by arranging visits to Auschwitz etc. I'm sorry if anyone is offended but this blog felt like a witch hunt to me. A little like what Clive was alluding to!

(Brian Milne) #13

Ley, the Jungian collective conscience cannot include those who are far too removed from an event by history; for instance, being born post-1945 then reaching an age at which knowledge of those events had been publicly extensively aired and having too many alternatives. I have a Jewish German acquaintance whose parents met in a camp as teenagers and lost parents there but remained in Germany after being liberated. The ex-colleague was born in Germany, lived and worked there and is a very secular Jew. He would have been appalled by the use of the Judenstern. Is he part of the collective who would suffer from that guilt?

I know his story from seminars he gave, not from personally imparted information. However I follow his feeling that forgiveness is better than rubbing salt in and history has a context rather than being an everyday thing we should constantly live with. That is the basis of my view on the use of the Judenstern.

(Ley Thompson) #14

Vic, I don't have time to explain what I mean on here - sorry. To understand 'collective' issues in the sense that I meant it, you would need to read Jung. It really is too deep a subject to deal with here. What I can say is that it has nothing to do with whether you were alive or not at the time as it is a collective issue. I.E., it belongs to the collective which in this case is the general experiences of the group. I.E., the population that exists at present with all its past influences, values, experiences etc. and how that affects them in the present which leads to their thoughts and actions. I hope this helps:

(Brian Milne) #15

Problem: How do we find somebody 'respectable' in France, or Belgium, or Germany or, England, Wales, Scotland or on the moon? ;-)

(Véronique Langlands) #16

Ok I have read & re-read the post but I still don't see why it is a big deal, should we also be up in arms at having to have passport photographs certified by a 'respectable person' ?? In 34 years' time when I retire (34 years at the present rate of calculation; chances are it'll end up being more like 50) I don't think it will bother me getting someone to attest to my still being alive.

(Martin Allen) #17

Cate, common get off the fence, tell it like it is!
I do wonder if this, by name and nature, is not just a wind up merchant.
Hey oh, off to the secret Santa afternoon at our local EDL meeting.

(Clive Christopher Walley) #18

Ley - you really are needed on here - so blog away my friend and good luck with it!

(Clive Christopher Walley) #19

Thank you Dorethy. Whatever I want... Just justice and fair play for elderly people from politicians and a little respect towards them would be nice.

Off to make a large cup of Rosey Lea now!! Cheers

(Ley Thompson) #20

I understood perfectly Dorothy's post and what she meant by it. She was of course referring to the manner in which Clive was being berated by what she called 'vultures'. This is a perfect example of how things go wrong in these forums. I just wonder if Clive had used the analogy of say Stalin and his gulags, would there have been the same reaction? I very much doubt it. The anger expressed by some re the analogy with the holocaust smacks of collective guilt for not having taken action to prevent it in the first place. Time to forgive and to move on.