May 21, 2003

Today its back to the

Today its back to the usual problems with the most incompetent Government to ever elected by a free people.

In its infinite wisdom, the Government keeps changing the tax system. First, they introduced Working Families Tax Credit. Then they abolished that and created the Working Tax Credit and the Child Tax Credit. The Government ran a big campaign to get everyone to apply for the new scheme. Everyone did.

Of course the Government didnít hire any people to handle this workload. The people they did have are completely clueless. You think Iím using hyperbole. Iím not. They are completely and totally incompetent.

When you can get them on the phone, that is. And you have to get them on the phone, because it seems they have lost every application that has been sent in. They lost ours and those of over 500,000 people who have not had their forms processed. Mrs Holford tries to reach them on the phone everyday without success. The one time she got through, they said she had sent it to the wrong desk, even though that is where she was told to send it. And apparently, no one could go to where she sent it and retrieve it.

The Times has reported today that the 500,000 people who have not been paid may be entitled to compensation. Seems that the Paymaster General mentioned this in the fine print of a House of Commons Treasury Committee report.

Mrs Holford has not taken her frustration to the point that Mike Maddison of Enmore, Somerset has. He lost his job because he need the tax credit money to be able to afford to drive to work. After weeks of trying to get through on the phone, he finally got through to someone who told him to watch his bank account for the money. They he got a letter asking for the details of his company car. In Mr Maddisonís words, ďHow could an assembly-floor worker have a company car? I decided then that enough was enough.Ē
He walked into his local Inland Revenue office and superglued his hand to the desk. It worked. Within 30 minutes, he had a cheque for six weeks worth of credits.

The police had wanted to arrest him for breach of the peace, but the Inland Revenue staff urged them not to do so, as they feared the publicity would incite copycat incidents. Maddison may have been disappointed, because it was his intention to get arrested and embarrass the Inland Revenue.

The Government, by the way, never wavers from its denial that the system is in a state of chaos.

Posted by david at May 21, 2003 10:48 PM