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PJD
Admin


United Kingdom
281 Posts

Posted - 07/05/2008 :  01:56:58  Show Profile Send PJD a Private Message
yep. we're off to the towers of power again!

and this time we're hosting!

3pm on the 9th of June 08 at Portcullis House we are aiming to meet MP's, victims and reporters alike. and we have got help rounding up who to invite etc and a book of victims experiences being put together.

we are still planning at the moment. but we are always open to ideas (Guy Fawkes type stunts might get us in trouble tho) and a roll call of who might be able to attend wouldn't go a miss.

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Alan the Geordie
Admin



3032 Posts

Posted - 07/05/2008 :  02:02:43  Show Profile Send Alan the Geordie a Private Message
>>we are always open to ideas (Guy Fawkes type stunts might get us in trouble tho)<<

Save it for November when we can burn an effigy of The Lying Scotsman - if he's still around by then. We can use the mountains of paper that HMRC send us as fuel for the fire?

Apathy rules OK - so why do I bother?
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Resurgam
Admin



United Kingdom
144 Posts

Posted - 07/05/2008 :  02:49:34  Show Profile Send Resurgam a Private Message
Now, there's an idea, Alan.

What a good publicity stunt!

Of course, we would have to apply, in triplicate, to the Stazi for permission to actually hold a fireworks display - and pay a few grand for fire brigade attendance for the bonfire. Then, after we've kept the elf-n-safety jobsworths in food for a few months ....

... we could burn a suitable "Tax Credit" effigy, fuelled by the mountains of indecipherable paperwork that HMRC send us in the spirit of communication.

A drawback is that none of us who are waiting for a reply to a letter will have any fuel!!

You couldn't make it up!

What about you becoming chief "Gunpowder Plot" organiser?
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Alan the Geordie
Admin



3032 Posts

Posted - 07/05/2008 :  10:59:50  Show Profile Send Alan the Geordie a Private Message
OK ..... bin that idea then!

How about my old(er) idea that I once posted; You remember the one about CDs?

We (allegedly) have some 300 members who could each send Brown, Darling & Kennedy 2 CDs each. They needn't have anything on them and they could even be music CDs - a perfect chance to get shot of your old Abba & Des O' Connor albums.

It all means that HMRC and our Glorious (unelected) Leader will end-up with some 900 CDs - two of which just may be the "missing" ones. All of the packaging will need to be opened and the CDs checked and that will involve somebody in a whole heap of extra work & inconvenience and I think it will make for an interesting story in the press.

The only problem is in getting our apathetic members to take part. At present, we'd struggle to send two dozen CDs!

Apathy rules OK - so why do I bother?
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auntieh
Rank; Really should become a politician



United Kingdom
625 Posts

Posted - 07/05/2008 :  20:36:53  Show Profile Send auntieh a Private Message
I don't remember that suggestion Alan but it sounds great. I have many mysterious looking CDs connected with my offspring who have probably recorded some obscure songs or artists on them and then lost interest. Gord would love those!

"You can dress a pig in a suit but you can't stop it grunting"
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Alan the Geordie
Admin



3032 Posts

Posted - 07/05/2008 :  21:09:26  Show Profile Send Alan the Geordie a Private Message
quote:
Originally posted by auntieh

I don't remember that suggestion Alan but it sounds great. I have many mysterious looking CDs connected with my offspring who have probably recorded some obscure songs or artists on them and then lost interest. Gord would love those!

"You can dress a pig in a suit but you can't stop it grunting"



I think I may have posted it at Tumbleweed Junction, Auntie you know - that area where posts go to die.

(Aye, you're right; I do still think the co-coordinators' area is stupid!)

And while I'm about it I also think that this forum/site/campaign/whatever has far too many freeloaders. Be huffed or pleased as you wish!

Apathy rules OK - so why do I bother?

Edited by - Alan the Geordie on 07/05/2008 21:12:35
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n/a
deleted



223 Posts

Posted - 07/05/2008 :  21:20:22  Show Profile Send n/a a Private Message
Alan, I agree. I have posted on many occasions that to download the pack you should have to join, end of. Otherwise we will see little real movement in membership and HMRC will piss themselves.

I have joined around 10 new forums recently and beleive me they all use stuff to leverage you into membership. One of the sites wouldn't even let me view forums until posting an introduction that was then moded before being posted.

"The difference between what we do and what we are capable of doing would suffice to solve most of the world's problems".
Mahatma Gandhi
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Alan the Geordie
Admin



3032 Posts

Posted - 07/05/2008 :  21:24:19  Show Profile Send Alan the Geordie a Private Message
Thanks Bonny Lad!

"Divven't drop yer dottles on wor lass's new proggy mat!!"

Edited by - Alan the Geordie on 07/05/2008 21:25:24
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Ali M-W
Mod



3558 Posts

Posted - 07/05/2008 :  21:53:44  Show Profile Send Ali M-W a Private Message
Consumer action of any kind has to be large scale and unified, so the public imagination has to be captured, people need to feel inspired and motivated, and to see a value in it for themselves and for others. It's got to feel worth the effort, as people are often so ground down, busy and careworn that they don't want to be burdened with anything else to take on. My guess is that people don't want to waste effort - we are a quick-results society, and want payback now. I don't think we are too far away from reaching the stage when 'can't be bothered' becomes 'go for it!', but we have to inspire and motivate people to go the extra mile. One way might be for us all to bring in three people who seem to have some fire in them. I could think of a few from here - can you?

Morpheus: … as long as there is a single breath in his body he'll never give up… and neither can we.
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Alan the Geordie
Admin



3032 Posts

Posted - 07/05/2008 :  22:03:39  Show Profile Send Alan the Geordie a Private Message
Bollox!! We need some Terms & Conditions for new members to adhere to.

Apathy rules OK - so why do I bother?
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n/a
deleted



223 Posts

Posted - 08/05/2008 :  00:16:32  Show Profile Send n/a a Private Message
Ali TCC have come so far, but if its to go to the next level you have to prove that the people who TCC claim to represent give a F**K.
Its claimed on the site that millions of families have been overpaid, yet we have less than four hundred members about half of which have never even been arsed to post.
The petetion is at around 1200, I can't imagine HMRC losing any sleep. I think the best show we have at the moment is the unique count.
How can we inspire and motivate when we can't even agree to get a simple message out via email to our membership (FTC didn't seem to think it worth doing).
Total respect to everyone who got things off the ground and worked so hard, but now its off the ground you have to learn to keep it in the air.

If you always do what you have always done, you will always get what you have always got. Thats people who download the pack and can't even be bothered to leave a fake ID.

So the Westminster day is not for me, but good luck to all who attend.

"The difference between what we do and what we are capable of doing would suffice to solve most of the world's problems".
Mahatma Gandhi
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Alan the Geordie
Admin



3032 Posts

Posted - 08/05/2008 :  00:22:51  Show Profile Send Alan the Geordie a Private Message
>>Its claimed on the site that millions of families have been overpaid, yet we have less than four hundred members about half of which have never even been arsed to post.
The petetion is at around 1200, I can't imagine HMRC losing any sleep. I think the best show we have at the moment is the unique count.
How can we inspire and motivate when we can't even agree to get a simple message out via email to our membership (FTC didn't seem to think it worth doing).
Total respect to everyone who got things off the ground and worked so hard, but now its off the ground you have to learn to keep it in the air.

If you always do what you have always done, you will always get what you have always got. Thats people who download the pack and can't even be bothered to leave a fake ID.<<

Sounds about right to me!


"The meek shall inherit the earth?? .. Sod that! They wouldn't know what to do with it!!"

Edited by - Alan the Geordie on 08/05/2008 00:24:31
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onlimee
Rank; Hector Tax Inspector



50 Posts

Posted - 08/05/2008 :  00:53:33  Show Profile Send onlimee a Private Message
It seems to me that people's primary or only interest is getting help with their cases rather than signing up to "the campaign" - do they care about that? Note the lack of posts in the success thread - is that a reflection of HMRCs refusal to cancel overpayments (and fuel for the campaign) or lack of interest in TCC users when they've won their case and no longer feel the need to contribute/log on to TCC?
Do TCC expect them to/hope they will sign up to "the campaign" in return for the help offered?? What say do users have in the running or aspirations of the "campaign" or even what that means?

To my mind, the support is either offered freely, or conditionally with TCCs vision made clear to users as well as the contribution they are expected to make.

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Ali M-W
Mod



3558 Posts

Posted - 08/05/2008 :  06:16:28  Show Profile Send Ali M-W a Private Message
Onlimee, that is the dilemma - whether to offer unconditional support for people who are commonly, COMMONLY so desperate that they can barely sleep with worry, are already depressed (which tends to demotivate and disempower people anyway, due to 'learned helplessness' and a view that nothing they can do will ever change things), and can barely even face doing the things they need to do for themselves, or to scratch only the backs of those who scratch ours.

It's not a dilemma for me - I work in social care, and whilst I really do believe that self-empowerment is the real salvation for anyone who is ground down by life, discrimination, oppression, disability, disadvantage, poverty etc., it is something by definition that only the individual can do. In my 'day job', I find the most effective work is always, always with those who will work with you, rather than want you to do things for them, or who don't really know what they want, and work at cross purposes with you. But Utopia doesn't happen, and people won't always respond in the ways you want them to. So what happens then? Do those in 'helping' or 'enabling' roles work extra hard to still try to help them help themselves, or do we just shrug our shoulders and walk away?

There is no absolute right or wrong. Of course I do feel frustrated that it is quite possible to work your socks off trying to help someone, without any guarantee of success of any kind. But I really can't think of any situation where all input is wasted. At the very least, people can make an informed decision as to whether to dispute or give in and pay up, and if they do just give in and pay up, it tends to be because they have thought about things and decided that they must have done something wrong, even if they can't make up their minds what that 'something' was. Those who give up quickly won't even contemplate campaigning, because if they don't feel passionate about injustices done to them, they will never go the extra mile and generalise how they felt to how the rest of us feel, and want to act collectively.

Then there are those who have hit rock-bottom and can't even look beyond their own case. They are probably so low that they couldn't find the energy to fight their own case were it not for the fact that they simply have no alternative, and paying back just isn't an option, because their income is so low and their overpayment so massive that it would take them decades. How can we expect people who have been suicidal to be writing to MPs, baring their souls to the media, attending campaign meetings, and writing case studies for Westminster next month? We just can't. If we are really lucky they will sign the petition, but I wouldn't even hold my breath on that. Effort expended way exceeds gains to campaign - except that every dispute waged at HMRC is a vote for dissent and write-off, and every person brow-beaten and cowed is a vote for the current oppressivev system. The best we can hope for in the short term is to help a fellow human being face their life again, and for my part I am happy if we can just do that. But they are invisible people in terms of helping the campaign. Once they win, the picture changes. Paula, Sarah and I get fantastic emails from people, thanking us for being there in their hour of need, and I know a few people now who have 'given back'. But of course there will always be people who take what they need, write a 'thank you, I won and so can you' forum post, and disappear into the ether. That's not ingratitude, it's just life.

When all this started, the three 'golden oldies' Paula, Sarah and I did agonise over what we thought we might do if we won our cases completely and had our whole overpayments written off. We liked to think we would stick around, and whilst my own overpayment has 'shrunk' from £6500 to £700-odd as HMRC has gradulally admitted its own mistakes and written chunks off, I feel more motivated rather than less. But then, to campaign like this you do need, I happen to believe, a touch of obsession about it all. When I was seven years old I was just the same - hated injustice above virtually anything and everything else, and my parents must've been heartily sick of hearing 'it's not fair!'. Their response tended to be, 'Life's not fair!', and of course they were right.

This isn't my shout, of course, but a collective one, but I don't think we can pick and choose who we help - other than that we aren't here to defend the fraudulent and opportunistic who saw problems coming, thought they would come off well, came unstuck and want bailing out. I do believe in karma - that one way or another one good turn deserves another - but don't expect a direct connection. What we are doing is not going unnoticed. Human beings are complex creatures and there is good in almost everyone..... and MPs are noticing. Believe me, MPs ARE noticing. Journalists too. And lawyers.

I am not going to break my heart if people we try to help don't come back with 100 ideas and a passion to help others, when they are further down the road to recovery and remember the lowest point in their lives. I was in a hospital ward once after a life-saving op, doing a job I hated, and vowed, because of the way my nurses gave me back my life, to go into social care. I had to re-train first - it didn't happen at once. But they inspired me. I do what I can and enjoy my job. Both jobs!! The rewards will come. We WILL get tax credit justice - it is just a question of when. I do believe this summer will see us break through. I may be wrong, but my best guess is this summer.

People who don't join in may ultimately benefit, but they won't get the buzz of having been part of this campaign. It's their loss. There is nothing like being part of positive change to make you feel alive. Miss it at your peril.

I am sure Red or Resurgam could find me a lovely quote now to round this off - perhaps from Ghandi or Luther King, but I am stumped.

Don't they say that the best views come from having climbed the highest mountains?

I have my binoculars ready...!


Morpheus: … as long as there is a single breath in his body he'll never give up… and neither can we.
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Ali M-W
Mod



3558 Posts

Posted - 08/05/2008 :  06:22:07  Show Profile Send Ali M-W a Private Message
That said, here's something 'easy peasy' for even the most disheartened and demotivated to do. It takes a click of a mouse and a sentence in your own words:

Please visit ww.taxCC.org , then vote for the TCC's nomination at You must be logged in to see this link.

Can we all do this, please?

Morpheus: … as long as there is a single breath in his body he'll never give up… and neither can we.
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Resurgam
Admin



United Kingdom
144 Posts

Posted - 08/05/2008 :  13:05:29  Show Profile Send Resurgam a Private Message
Here's one, Ali:

As we express our gratitude, we must never forget that the highest appreciation is not to utter words, but to live by them.
John F. Kennedy

And another:

In this world there is always danger for those who are afraid of it.
George Bernard Shaw

More:

There is a time when we must firmly choose the course we will follow, or the relentless drift of events will make the decision for us.
Herbert Prochnow

And probably the one you wanted:

It's easier to go down a hill than up it, but the view is much better at the top.
Arnold Bennett



Edited by - Resurgam on 08/05/2008 14:04:52
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Ali M-W
Mod



3558 Posts

Posted - 08/05/2008 :  15:29:34  Show Profile Send Ali M-W a Private Message
Thanks, Resurgam. If that doesn't motivate everyone, what will? Alan shaking his proggy mat???

Morpheus: … as long as there is a single breath in his body he'll never give up… and neither can we.
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n/a
deleted



223 Posts

Posted - 08/05/2008 :  16:57:43  Show Profile Send n/a a Private Message
Lovely words Ali and many true, I work in a very similar environment and share your views of empowerment and realism.

"If you gave a man a fish, he will eat for a day, if you teach him to fish he will eat for a lifetime"

It does worry me sometimes that in both work and life people like me and you end up giving out a lot of fish, only to see the individual develop responsive behaviour and constantly return for more fish.

Its all got very fishological around here.

"The difference between what we do and what we are capable of doing would suffice to solve most of the world's problems".
Mahatma Gandhi

Edited by - n/a on 08/05/2008 18:29:53
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Alan the Geordie
Admin



3032 Posts

Posted - 08/05/2008 :  17:54:05  Show Profile Send Alan the Geordie a Private Message
Until I became Mum's full-time carer I messed about with dodgy boilers.

(I was a gas fitter/heating engineer & electrician)

Apathy rules OK - so why do I bother?
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n/a
deleted



223 Posts

Posted - 08/05/2008 :  18:30:41  Show Profile Send n/a a Private Message
Ok Al you lost me ?

"The difference between what we do and what we are capable of doing would suffice to solve most of the world's problems".
Mahatma Gandhi
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Alan the Geordie
Admin



3032 Posts

Posted - 08/05/2008 :  19:49:16  Show Profile Send Alan the Geordie a Private Message
quote:
Originally posted by Red Rocket

Ok Al you lost me ?

"The difference between what we do and what we are capable of doing would suffice to solve most of the world's problems".
Mahatma Gandhi




Sorry Red ... I thought we were discussing our various professions.

Geordie: She's a dodgy boiler mind!

English: That lady's morals are a bit suspect.

Edited by - Alan the Geordie on 08/05/2008 20:15:32
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