The Curmudgeon


Sunday, April 15, 2012

What Will He Do?

It looks as if Wee Nicky will soon be facing another of those moral dilemma things. The Government's bill to reform (or, in Standard English, demolish) legal aid has been pulled apart by the Lords and returns to the House of Claimants on Tuesday. The Government is insisting that the kind of people the Government considers to be in need will be protected, which naturally is setting off alarm bells all over the place, except possibly in Belize. The Law Society says that if the Government rejects the Lords' amendments, the bill will put severe limits on the legal aid entitlements of those who suffer from domestic violence or from the irresponsibility of their employers; the Children's Society says that six thousand children would be denied advice or representation in cases having to do with education, welfare and immigration; and Amnesty International has expressed concern that the bill might keep wogs from abusing British courts by using them against British corporations.

In all fairness, the welfare of employees and poor children has never exactly been a priority in Daveybloke's Cuddly Coalition; and if domestic violence victims are too idle and unproductive to pay their own legal costs, perhaps it is time for incentivisation to begin at home. "To cut legal aid at a time of unprecedented changes to welfare support would mean disabled people who fall foul of poor decision-making, red tape or administrative error being pushed even further into poverty as they struggle to manoeuvre the complicated legal system without the necessary expert support they need," said the chief executive of the disability charity Scope, succinctly summing up the bill's advantages. Nevertheless, some celebrities and even one or two Liberal Democrats still in the Deputy Conservative party have joined the chorus of disapproval. What will Wee Nicky do this time?


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