15 June 2011

Blink and you miss it

The other day Ed Miliband delivered a speech, Responsibility in 21st Century Britain, which drew attention to people who were drawing unemployment benefits whom Miliband suspected could work.
"While out campaigning during the local elections, not for the first time, I met someone who had been on incapacity benefit for a decade.

He hadn’t been able to work since he was injured doing his job.

It was a real injury, and he was obviously a good man who cared for his children.

But I was convinced that there were other jobs he could do."
But what about people who aren't unemployed who get benefits? What about the rich who get benefits? For example, we all know that farmers get benefits but how much?

Here are the Annual Common Agriculture Policy (CAP) Payements - 2010.

But following the link takes us to
"A recent judgement of the European Court of Justice (ECJ) invalidated part of the EU legislation that requires Member States to publish the data of beneficiaries of CAP funds (see judgement in full at link below).


The ECJ judgement concluded that the requirement to publish data for individual beneficiaries (natural persons) exceeded the limits imposed by the principle of proportionality. In the light of this judgement the Commission requested all Member States to suspend publication of data on individual beneficiaries (natural persons) and has now come forward with an amending regulation that implements the ECJ’s judgement, pending a longer-term review of the legislation.

The UK is now working towards the publication of details of CAP subsidy payments made to incorporated bodies, trusts and partnerships for financial years 2009 and 2010 to comply with the revised regulation.

The UK will be pressing the Commission to bring forward new legislation that will ensure the achievement of greater transparency and openness in the use of EU funds. The UK has consistently supported the provision of data relating to payments under the CAP."

The figures for previous years can be found here, 2003 - 2004 and here 2004 - 2005 but there are gaps, eg, 2005 - 2006, 2006 - 2007, 2007 - 2008, 2008 - 2009. However, it may be possible to extrapolate from these figures to fill in the gaps.

As to the statement on the webpage, why does the UK need to press 'the Commission to bring forward new legislation' surely it has sufficient Sovereignty to do this on its own? (We aren't talking about fishing rights). I will report back here if the situation changes.

I wonder what Ed Miliband makes of this situation?


  1. I'm impressed with Red Ed's diagnostic skills. He should start doing homers for ATOS, noone would notice.

    Where do these 'people' that Clegg, Cameron and Miliband are always 'meeting', who always present their case for them so well, come from?

  2. The ones who don't present their case get beaten up (like that chap chucked out of the Labour meeting for heckling) or are marginalised out of existence. 'Real space air brushing'.