Chancellor George Osborne has outlined plans to cut incapacity benefit, insisting those capable of working should work, citing the example of coma patients who could easily take up gainful employment as draft excluders.
His comments come as the government seeks to make further inroads into the £155bn budget deficit, with those on incapacity benefits seen as an easy way to save a couple of billion a year.
He told reporters at the G20 summit in Toronto, “Sure, you might have a bad back, so you’re not going to be working as a handyman – but drug companies are always looking for people to test stuff on, and you are more than qualified for that.”
“This isn’t just about saving money, it’s about making people feel better about themselves by making a contribution to society – a contribution made by taking on a minimum wage job nobody else wants.”
Osborne said that in these times of austerity, people with considerably less wealth than him would probably insist those people who are on incapacity benefit should be making some sort of contribution to society.
He continued, “I just don’t believe that all these people should stay at home being all incapacitated when they could be out there contributing to society as a drugs tester or one of those guys sat in a chair holding a ‘golf sale’ sign.
“Look at all those coma patients, what sort of middle class family wouldn’t want such an eco-friendly draft excluder? It’s all natural and 100% biodegradable.”
“It’s minimum wage work, granted, but it still means fewer benefits paid by the state, which is obviously a good thing.”
“Yes, there will be the odd beep or alarm from the equipment that follows your new draft excluder around, but this is nothing compared to sense of personal satisfaction experienced by the coma patient for the contribution they will now be making.”