to think that a girl called Jack should stick to budget cookery tips and NOT bash

(180 Posts)
LordElpuss Wed 09-Oct-13 16:58:49

people who are losing their child benefit

Guardian article

merrymouse Fri 11-Oct-13 17:33:44

Re: arguments about the lifestyle you can expect to live on £50K and whether you do or don't need an extra £80 a month, that isn't really the point.

Plenty of people benefit from healthcare, pensions and school even though they could afford to opt out of the system and pay privately. Somebody on £50K a year pays about £14K in taxes. I am sure the Conservatives would love to make that tax bill at least £80 a month smaller, so either way, the higher earner is probably compensated in the end, and the pot available for benefits becomes smaller.

A system where we have universal benefits, universal support for the NHS and faith in the state school system depends on everybody taking part, both as recipients and contributors. (And we can all expect to be one or the other at various points in our lives).

The pricing this is more a rant at the guardian. Sure on jack's blog it's all part of a painful story of accumulating store cupboard stuff gradually and eating cheap stuff bought in bulk until you can't face it again.

But on the guardian it's contextless. It looks like a recipe that you could actually procure the ingredients for and make for that price. But you can't buy 2p of oil, or one stock cube, a teaspoon of dried herb or spice or a bit of a sainsbos value tub of yoghurt. You have to buy a pack of stock cubes, a bottle of oil, a packet of herb or spices, and the whole tub of yoghurt. If you're hoping that it will come in at the price specified, you'll be bitterly disappointed.

Jaçk has had to work hard to make sure that she can produce food at those costs. And a lot of meal planning must go in to making sure that you use up all the yoghurt before it goes off etc. in the guardian it's just presented as 'ooh, look how cheaply you can eat', which only encourages people to think that food poverty isn't really an issue.

There are loads of exclamations on here about how much money people on £50k must have, because thinking in gross salary means you don't see how much disappears before it gets to your bank account.

In fact, a bit of calculating based on my own personal circumstances indicates that (if I were a single parent), I'd get more money in my bank each month on £26k a year (plus tax credits) than I would on £40k (where I wouldn't be entitled to them). In both cases I'd still be paying student loan and pension contributions, but it would come out a bit more on the topped up income than the higher one. It might even itself out more based on taking childcare vouchers on the £40k salary, but I wouldn't actually be better off. I'd still have the same expenses too. The system is a bit of a mess, although I'm sure UC will make sure that the topped up income reduces significantly (because that's what the coalition is all about, making sure people are entitled to less hmm).

And the guardian article does claim that people on £50k have £1000 a week. You can't not pay tax and NI (certainly not on PAYE, and it wouldn't be advisable otherwise) so they don't have £1000 a week. People on twice that salary have about £1000 net.

And it all has nothing to do with my actual salary which is neither £40k nor £26k, and not high enough to lose CB.

frumpet Fri 11-Oct-13 11:46:47

Actually i have decided i am upper class grin , if kate middleton can do it , i too will get a nice bottom and marry well !

fatlazymummy Fri 11-Oct-13 11:46:42

trumpet it used to be defined by the occupation of the male wage earner, so as a child you would be defined by your father's occupation (manual labour = w/c ,etc), then by your husband's occupation if you married.
Of course there's cultural elements to account for also.

Norudeshitrequired Fri 11-Oct-13 11:44:41

Research suggests that there are now seven different classes. Middle class is split into things like: emerging middle class, traditional middle class and upper middle class. There is also an underclass which is defined as those who don't work and have no desire to do so without good reason or are regularly engaged in criminal activity. It is more complex than that as there are lots of related factors that define class and status.

Middle class traditionally was defined by your education and job status, background, cultural awareness and housing status.
A teacher would be middle class because they are educated to degree level and in a skilled profession, likewise social workers, nurses etc.

I just don't think that class is clear cut anymore.

fatlazymummy Fri 11-Oct-13 11:41:33

Why are people quibbling over her pricing? It's pretty obvious you can't buy a single stock cube. However , you can buy a pack for 20p, as she states. I shop at Sainsbury's (mainly), as she does, and I find her pricing quite accurate.
Regarding her portion sizes, she states quite clearly that her child is a toddler. Common sense tells us that older children, teenagers and adults will need more. She's only sharing what worked for her, not dictating that everyone should eat exactly the same thing. Personally I quite like her recipes as I'm a vegetarian and I already cook with lentils and pulses.

frumpet Fri 11-Oct-13 11:35:55

Womma , can someone start off in life working class and end up middle class ? in which case the middle class would have an idea wouldnt they ?

frumpet Fri 11-Oct-13 11:34:33

Am sitting here trying to work out what class i am , if i am middle or working ? I think i am elements of both , but it would depend how it is calculated ?

Norudeshitrequired Fri 11-Oct-13 11:30:26

2 adults and 4 children is nit the norm though :/

Even with 3 kids they would be getting around the benefit capped amount of 26k, especially if their rent is more than £180 per week.

And housing benefit going straight to the landlordhmm
The working person also has to pay rent or mortgage out of their income too - their housing doesn't come for free just because they are working.

I'm a big fan of the benefit system whether it be to support people in times of unexpected circumstances or to top up low wages. But it really gets my goat when people think 'oh but you don't need child benefit because you earn £50k, but I need it because I only get unemployment benefits'. When the reality is that disposable income might not be much different and both sets of people might equally need the child benefit to buy shoes or food for the children.
I think higher rate tax payer would be more supportive of the benefits system if they felt fairly treated and dint end up worse off financially for working (which can be the case once you factor in childcare and commuting costs). It's very difficult for a family who work many many hours and forego precious time with their children to feel happy about having their child benefit removed when the couple down the street don't work and have the same disposable income (or more in a minority of cases).

My household is not affected by the child benefit means testing so I have no reason to feel resentful of anybody. I just think the whole situation is a farce and set to breed resentment.

Viviennemary Fri 11-Oct-13 11:27:53

I don't shed any tears for people losing child benefit. But I see why they are cross about it. I can't stand the Guardian and its sanctimonious approach to everything.

womma Fri 11-Oct-13 11:23:22

Oh the poor middle classes! Boo hoo. You have
no idea do you?

frumpet Fri 11-Oct-13 11:22:12

The thing is aswell those people over the 50k , will have to pay back that part of CB that is expected , so what if 165,000 people havent got round to signing up for self assessment , they will get fined and have to do it anyway , the tax office do not piss about when you owe them money !

frumpet Fri 11-Oct-13 11:18:52

Perhaps i am misreading her intention . You are right of course one is more than the other . I accept that my earning power is less than say someone who studied for 7 years to be a Doctor and i have no issue personally with them earning more than me , nor the people who started off in call centres and worked their way up to directors . Why should i be angry about them earning more than me ?

Didactylos Fri 11-Oct-13 11:15:47

I didnt particularly like the article - I think shes falling into the divide and rule camp. I actually firmly believe that CB should be one of the few universal benefits - have you read some of the stories on here over the years of financial and emotional abuse, and people (who on paper would be financially stable if they had equitable partnerships) using this money to get them and their children out of such situations. And the social cohesion produced by

I am going to fill in a tax return and pay back part of the child benefit I recieve this year and am happy to do so if thats the current rules. I do earn a good wage - between 50-60 thousand this year so am not complaining about lack of money. But - I have an unstable job, change employers every 3-6 months and at the start of the financial year really have only a ballpark figure of my predicted earnings - and if any big changes occur during the year eg ill health & sick leave, maternity leave, paid and unpaid carers leave or even loss of job then the CB will be a comparatively larger part of my income and would be appropriate to claim during these times. All these issues have come up over the last few years and CB has variously gone from being barely noticeable contribution to 'depended on for groceries', depending on the month or circumstances. Also - speaking to a friend who had left the country with her children for a few years and thus not claimed CB, she had lots of problems accessing benefits for her children (uk citizens) when she needed to when her circumstances and needs changed partly due to the lack of the paper trail in their names.

btw - its probably not sexist and patronising to refer to her as a 'girl' since that is how she has titled her blog

frumpet Fri 11-Oct-13 11:14:43

I earn a lot less than the magic £50 k , about a fifth of that infact , so to be fair i dont pay an awful lot of tax . The thing that i have noticed over the years , since i was a poor single parent student , is that so many things have shot up in price that effect day to day living . For instance running a car , i mananged to keep an old little car on the road when i was a student , but the cost of petrol/diesel , car tax and insurance have gone up substantially . The cost of utilities again have shot up . Food shopping seems a lot more expensive , perhaps that is just me i am not sure . These are all things that eat away at the money you actually do end up with on payday .

PeppiNephrine Fri 11-Oct-13 11:09:32

But you're assuming that she is thinking you have that to spend. Perhaps she is assuming that we all know that you have to make deductions from that.
It doesn't really matter in essence when its about comparisons. 200£ a week or 1000£ a week...you make deductions from both, more deductions from the latter...but the basic fact is that one is still a lot bigger than the other.

frumpet Fri 11-Oct-13 11:07:14

Peppi , because in the link she goes on about earning a £1000 a week as though that is what you actually have to spend if you earn that amount , which clearly you dont . Not suggesting that the majority of people dont realise that smile

frumpet Fri 11-Oct-13 11:05:28

Not everyone who earns over 50k is toff banker either , most of the people i know who earn that have worked their way up or spent a long time training to be able to acheive that sort of wage . Or work 60 plus hours a week !

PeppiNephrine Fri 11-Oct-13 11:04:05

Why do you think people imagine you have 50k to spend just because they are using that figure?
We're not all that stupid. Even the poor folks understand about taxes.

To get £1000 a week after tax, NI, student loan and pension contributions (which is what comes off many people's salaries in professional type jobs), you need to be earning around £100k. It would be much better if people understood quite how little of their gross salary higher earners actually have to spend on anything.

Sure you earn nearly £2k a week gross, but you only get about half of that in the bank. Yes, £1000 a week is still lots of money, but it is much less than the gross salary people seem to imagine you have to spend.

frumpet Fri 11-Oct-13 10:56:23

If you earn say £52 K , does she really think you get all of that money ? Someone earning that amount pays a lot of tax , 40 % on some of it i believe . Which is fine that is the rules , but still i think it is naive to think that you get a wage slip with £1000 in every week !

Yes, but the pricing has displayed in the bloody guardian doesn't have the context of 'I bought a cheap bag of X and we ate it for a fortnight until we were heartily fed up'. No, in the guardian it appears that the curry (this week's recipe) just costs 60 or 70p a portion.

And the lack of context makes it appear that you'll be totally satisfied by this portion, because there isn't the explanation about how being poor means that you are often hungry even though you got some nutrients in to you today.

I think I'm more annoyed at the idiots at the guardian who genuinely don't see that by pretending you can actually source just 2p of oil anywhere, they're making it look like life is cheaper than it is. And ignoring the massive amounts of planning and effort it would take to manage to buy stuff so that your weekly shop comes in at £10 or whatever.

Trills Fri 11-Oct-13 10:49:13

If you look at her blog the pricing is actually reasonably sensible, She'll post one day that she bought a value bag of 3 aubergines, then post an aubergine recipe, then the next day post another aubergine recipe, to use them up.

The pricing in the recipes also really annoys me tbh. You don't buy stock cubes individually, or 2 tablespoons of oil at a time, or 100ml of natural yoghurt to cool your curry down (the stuff that comes out cheap for 100ml comes in big pots). The stock and oil might keep in you cupboard so you can benefit from the 'well I only used 2p worth' logic but the yoghurt certainly won't. You have to use 100ml of yoghurt in all your bloody meals that week for it to have actually cost 35p or whatever is being claimed.

It annoys me because it makes it all look much cheaper than it is when you fill up a basket to try to make a week's worth of such meals.

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