7 Reasons These Excuses Are Not Silly
Ministers have released the top ten ‘silliest’ excuses as used by benefit cheats. If you haven’t read them yet, you’ll be able to watch the countdown on BBC Three later this year. It’s narrated by Richard Bacon with insights from a bloke who once pretended he didn’t work in Lidl. Understandably. My issue with this programme is that it’s clearly going to be an excuse to laugh at people who are unable to articulate. As such they sound stupid. Having looked through the excuses I am saddened that they are are deemed silly. At least seven are very legitimate. Here’s why:
1. “I had no idea my wife was working! I never noticed her leaving the house twice a day in a fluorescent jacket and a ‘Stop Children’ sign.” - Hardly surprising given that this man is obviously blind. The ‘Stop Children’ signs don’t come in braille you know.
2. “I wasn’t aware my wife was working because her hours of work coincided with the times I spent in the garden shed.” – This man’s wife was clearly hiding the fact that she worked by playing an elaborate game of hide and seek. Every morning she told her husband to hide. He scurried off to the shed and only appeared when his wife returned home and shouted, “I give up!”
3. “He does come here every night and leave in the morning and, although he has no other address, I don’t regard him as living here.” – Shelter are a fantastic charity. For them to be pulled up on this is a disgrace and an insult. I suspect the thousands of volunteers who give up their time to help those less fortunate than themselves feel really great now. Well done ministers.
4. “I didn’t declare my savings because I didn’t save them, they were given to me.” – Is having a basic grasp on the English language seen as a bad thing now then? Surely to declare savings under the pretence that you saved them is fraud?
5. “I wasn’t using the ladders to clean windows, I carried them for therapy for my bad back.” – A man (or woman) with a whole lot of common sense. Instead of spending his (or her) benefits on expensive therapists, he (or she) purchased a ladder. It was just as effective and instead of weekly payments of £40, cost just an initial £15. I don’t understand why ministers have a problem with this. Surely they want people to show initiative? If people can find methods of lowering their outgoings how is that not a good thing? One day this man (or woman) might buy a bucket and become a window cleaner. Good for him (or her).
6. “We don’t live together he just comes each morning to fill up his flask” – Well, this clearly shows that sexism is still rife in the ministerial hood doesn’t it? Just because this woman is single, it doesn’t mean she wants to get into a relationship with every builder whose bum she spies. This woman is perfectly entitled to share her tea bags with whomever she wants. It’s 2011 for goodness sake.
7. “It wasn’t me working, it was my identical twin.” – Which only goes to prove that one half of Jedward always mimes.