Wednesday, 27 November 2019

Barrows, Hatch End (West End) and an SSSI (for St. Barbe Baker)

A very good and old friend of mine (wife of the minister emeritus of the Edmund Kell Unitarian Church in Southampton the Reverend John Knopf RIP), actually met the "Man of the Trees" Richard St.Barbe Baker many years ago when he was planting trees on Southampton common..

St.Barbe was born in the little Hampshire village of "West End" some of whose land was bought by Southampton City Council in the 1950s to build the council estate on which I live called "Harefield".

Quote; "Richard St.Barbe Baker, OBE was born on the 9th October 1889 in West End. He was a forestry adviser and silviculturist and Founder of the Men of the Trees in 1922. This organisation is now known as the International Tree Foundation.
  He became Assistant Conservator of Forests in Kenya and Nigeria in the 1920's and was concerned for the rapidly decreasing fertility of the land. He believed it was necessary to plant more trees to combat the shifting methods of agriculture and he initiated the idea of voluntary tree planting by native tribesmen. He founded the society, The Men of the Trees, in Kenya in 1922.
  For the remainder of his life Barbe Baker travelled extensively around the world, lecturing and writing to convey his message about the importance of trees. Through his determination and energy he influenced the protection of the giant redwoods in California, the replanting of large areas in northern Africa and stimulated a new world-wide direction for forest conservation.
  In 1978 Richard St.Barbe Baker received an OBE for his work. He planted his last tree in Saskatoon, Saskatchewan, Canada on 5th June 1982 in a ceremony celebrating World Environment Day, and died four days later in his ninety-third year." Go to:

This is his website:

The area (actually part of Eastleigh Borough and not Southampton, in-fact you will pass a sign saying; "Welcome to Eastleigh" before reaching the turning that is the northern entrance to the estate on which I live), has almost an embarrassment of riches, some of these being Napoleonic, Iron Age and Bronze Age, one barrow to be found right in the middle of a modern housing estate..

One can get a decent cup of coffee and a bite to eat in "The Hatch" cafe in West End or use the library ..

A recommended walk is  in  the "Telegraph Woods" where there is an Iron Age fort and was a Napoleonic era beacon... 

On the other side of the city to the west is a SSSI whose exact location I will not divulge because it was stuffed with amanita muscaria this year (unusual as this has not been the case for nearly a decade), ..


Friday, 12 April 2019

#WiFi #5G #LossofSignal #Ethernet #Killfies #AWFB #SpaceJunk

Pls. view this video (was unable to embed it for some reason -?-), go to:


Quote; "Because the signals between the two devices are typically low frequency, some industry experts will tell you Bluetooth is perfectly safe to use. However, many researchers and doctors believe there is simply no safe level of RF radiation, especially when the source of the radiation is attached to your ear. A recent article on does a really good job of explaining the concerns with Bluetooth radiation:
“It is true that most Bluetooth devices emit less radiation that the government regulatory agencies “safe” standards of SAR, or Specific Absorption Rate. However, the amount of radiation exposure that these agencies consider safe is FAR off from what science says is actually safe for the human body. One issue is that researchers tend to focus on the fact that Bluetooth technology is non-thermal and non-ionizing radiation, and point to that as a reason for it not being harmful. However, science does show is that non-ionizing radiation is certainly harmful, and the fact that it is non-thermal has no impact on EMF and microwave radiation dangers. When you use a Bluetooth Headset, you are exposing your brain, your eyes, your ears, and many other organs to EMF radiation. Even though research shows that the Specific Absorption Rate (how fast radiation is absorbed by the body) of Bluetooth headsets is about .25 W/Kg, this is still high enough to cause significant damage from prolonged use,”" Go to:
for full article...

Quote; "The Trump administration and government regulators are expected to unveil a major push Friday afternoon at the White House to accelerate the rollout of the high-speed, next-generation mobile data technology known as 5G.
Under the plan, the Federal Communications Commission will release a wide swath of high-frequency airwaves for cellular use in what will be the largest trove of U.S. wireless spectrum ever to be auctioned off. As much as 3.4 gigahertz of so-called “millimeter-wave” spectrum could be sold to wireless carriers such as AT&T and Verizon in the sale, which will begin Dec. 10, according to FCC Chairman Ajit Pai.".. 
 "The two proposals reflect the most intensive effort of the Trump era to close the so-called “digital divide” and gain an edge in the global race to build a fully functioning, nationwide 5G network. Proponents say the advances that 5G offers over 4G LTE will eventually enable mobile download speeds of up to 1,000 megabits per second — roughly 100 times faster than the current standard — and pave the way for new technologies such as self-driving cars and virtual reality*." Go to:
for full article.

*Everything they do is; ""virtual" reality" #BeyondFakeNews.

5G networks: Are they dangerous to our health?

Quote; "5G, the latest generation of mobile communication, will employ higher frequencies and bandwidth, enabling users to transfer wireless data faster (with rates of up to 10Gbit per second) than older cellphone standards.
Previous 'G' networks have used frequencies between 700 MHz and 6 GHz. The 5G network will operate on frequencies between 28 and 100 GHz. To put that into perspective: 4G is 10 times faster than 3G. It is expected that 5G will be around 1,000 times faster than 4G."..
 "Around 250 scientists from around the world signed a petition recently to the United Nations and World Health Organization outlining their concerns that "cellular and cordless phones [2G, 3G and 4G networks] … and broadcast antennas," amongst other radio frequency emitting devices, may produce cancer risks due to the electromagnetic field (EMF) radio waves they produce.
 The appeal outlined: "Effects include increased cancer risk, cellular stress, increase in harmful free radicals, genetic damages, structural and functional changes of the reproductive systems, learning and memory deficits, neurological disorders, and negative impacts on general well-being in humans."
Living organisms at all levels, the scientists added, are affected by exposure to electromagnetic fields produced by smartphone devices and transmission towers.
"Numerous controlled scientific studies of 2G, 3G and 4G technologies have shown that stress, sperm and testicular damage, neuropsychiatric effects, including changes to electrical activity in the brain, cellular DNA damage and calcium overload can all occur in humans as a result of exposure to EMFs."..
 ""Especially in view of increasing volumes of data transmission, consumers own radiation exposure should be kept to a minimum when telephoning and surfing [the internet]."
Authorities have advised those with a landline to use that instead of their smartphone."..
.."Consumers, the BfS added, should keep mobile phone calls to the shortest possible duration, write text messages and not make phone calls when reception is poor. The weaker the connection to the next communication tower, the more intensively the electromagnetic field of your smartphone works near the person making the phone call." Go to:
for full article. 

Is our, "Instant Communication Culture" Killing us?

Quote; "A recent report found that 259 people died between 2011 and 2017 while stepping in front of the camera in often dangerous destinations."..
 "Termed “killfies” by some social media researchers, these accidental deaths have involved social media personalities and, of course, adventurers. Canadian rapper Jon James McMurray perished last October after crawling out onto the wing of a Cessna while filming a music video. Last October also witnessed the much-publicized deaths of travel bloggers Meenakshi Moorthy and Vishnu Viswanath, who apparently fell while taking a selfie at Yosemite’s Taft Point, a popular rock outcrop with an 800-foot drop. A month prior, Tomar Frankfurter, an 18-year-old from Jerusalem, also fell to his death in the park while reportedly taking a selfie at Nevada Fall. Last July, three stars of High on Life, a popular YouTube thrill-seeking adventure travel show, plummeted to their deaths at a waterfall near Squamish, British Columbia. And in late March, a man from Macau fell 1,000 feet to his death while attempting to take a selfie on the rim at Grand Canyon West.
 Then there are the hundreds of other people you’ve probably never heard about who died trying to get the perfect cliffhanger photo. The student who fell 700 feet at Ireland’s iconic Cliffs of Moher in January. The 68-year-old woman who was fatally scalded in a Chilean geyser. The man in his fifties who was struck by lightning while hiking with a selfie pole in the Welsh mountains. The teenage girl swept away by an unexpected wave on a beach in the Philippines."..
.."It’s easy to write off these tragedies as catastrophically bad judgment. Armchair internet commentators have had a field day with each reported death. For every lament of young lives lost in the wake of Moorthy and Viswanath’s deaths, you’ll find an equal number of comments about how the two were “surprisingly stupid,” “coddled,” “careless,” or “self-obsessed.” When the Stanislaus County Sheriff’s Department released its medical report in January, it stated the couple was “intoxicated with alcohol prior to death.” Scorn on the internet erupted further: “Narcissism!” “Stupidity!” It didn’t seem to matter that the medical examiner also made clear that it was impossible to determine the amount of alcohol in their systems."
.."Sarah Diefenbach is a professor of consumer psychology at the Ludwig-Maximilians University of Munich and lead author of the 2017 research article The Selfie Paradox. She says that, extreme or otherwise, we take selfies for all kinds of reasons: to communicate with people we love, to build self-esteem, to curate our self image, to chronicle our personal histories, and—increasingly—to build our personal brands."..
.."The problem, experts say, is what happens inside our brain while we’re snapping the photos. Psychologists call it selective attention or inattentional blindness. The basic concept is this: our brain can’t possibly process all the stimuli it receives at one time, so it makes choices about what to privilege and what to ignore*. Maybe you’ve seen the video often used to illustrate the concept: viewers are asked to count the number of times a small group of people pass a basketball back and forth. At the end of the video, the narrator asks viewers if they noticed the guy in the gorilla suit sauntering through the frame. Many people don’t. Why? Because they were concentrating on something else—in this case, counting passes."
.."I contacted Twitter and YouTube to ask if they have any plans to review or strengthen guidelines concerning the posting of dangerous selfies. Neither company responded. The representative for Instagram and Facebook told me that they are constantly refining their guidelines and means for detecting problematic images, but they don’t have any concrete plans to begin policing selfies more robustly." Go to:
for full article.

*Italics mine. 

Also see; "The Trouble with Space Junk" go to: (highly recommended), and..

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Saturday, 6 April 2019

Britain's Hidden Lore cont. "A Resolution?" #Biodynamics #BethLuisNion #Permaculture #Astrology

Avebury henge.

So as discussed in the previous post the British have a problem (illiterate savages that we are -see below-), for not only were all references to the goddess; "Arianrhod ("arian" = silver, "rhod" = wheel, therefore; "Goddess of the Silver Wheel" -the cycles of the moon-), suppressed and wherever manifest destroyed by the Romans (and after its assimilation by their state their religion as-well, although references to her consort, "Kernunnos" or, "Herne" -which is the Saxon version of his name and being also referenced in Saxon culture one of the reasons why familiarity with; "the horned one" persists in these isles-, remained), for it was, "Arianrhod" who in a very real sense defined Brythonic astrology (the, "star of the goddess" being said to be Capella, her constellation now known by its, "Mediterranean" name, "Auriga"), and, "ruled over" (quite literally), Brythonic culture, "we" were also not (as is commonly understood), a literate culture .

In the Mediterranean/Middle Eastern ephemeredise (astrological systems), Auriga is known as, "The Charioteer" whereas in Brythonic culture Arianrhod is, "the weaver" or, "spider goddess" who spins the web that controls all the cosmic forces affecting man (both within and without), however, in the Norse religion Odin rides on Sleipnir (his eight legged horse -the, "eight legs" also being those of the spider who, "rules" over the eight sabbats, both solar and lunar see prev. post-), having lost an eye to the Norns ("The Fates"), in the Well of Mimmir in order to receive the FUTHARK that is his navigational aid to the; "Nine Realms" (nine; "working moons"? Also see prev.), which speaks to the later so-called; "Celtic/Norse Fusion" of the Norse-Gaels in Britain.

Auriga rises before Orion, "The Hunter" who may represent either, "Ogmios" or Kernunnos himself ("Ogmios" is the, "child of eloquence" whose utterance is the, "sacred sound" of, "Om" or, "The Pranava" that is the, "Logos"), but knowledge of which-is-which and who-is-who is one of the understandings which has, unfortunately, been lost (at least as far as this author is aware), but as Kernnunos is avowedly an, "earth deity" one may speculate that it is the offspring of the goddess not her consort that appears in the stars, however, as the, "reborn child" (who is also, "The Green Man" -whose parallels with Ogmios are obvious because both have, "bindings", which proceed from their mouths, in the case of Ogmios the, "chains of eloquence" which bind man to his will and in the case of the Green Man foliage that also binds man to the will of nature-), does not manifest until after the return of the light and matures during the spring this may be arguable, certainly though, "Arianrhod" is thought to, "correspond (and be manifest as), with" the Hawthorn tree that is central to the, "May Day" Beltayne celebrations.
 All of this does, of course, speak to an oral tradition, precisely that tradition that has been lost. What remains of ancient, "Ogham" (the, "manifest utterances of Ogmios"), in stone is fragmentary at best and much if not all of that which would have been carved in wood has simply rotted away. The Egyptian culture was blessed with papyrus and a climate in which writings could be preserved, the Northern European cultures were not so, "fortunate", however, to denigrate Brythonic culture for an apparent lack of literacy is to severely miss the point (and such a mistake also characterises our subsequent post Roman imperial dealings with indigenous cultures all over the world), for there is much that remains in their racial-memory which marks the British out as a singular and (if you'll excuse the tongue-in-cheeky reference), "weird" people.
 So what to do? We can't, "un-rot" the past (although there may be one or two documents lurking in the Vatican archives which might well be of some use), so how on earth (quite literally), do we go about reconstructing a Brythonic ephemeris? Well there's no substitute for hard work folks and one method that suggests itself immediately is to visit all those, "unfashionable" sacred sites (esp. the circles and henges), and make as many observations as possible, this might, however, take a good while for as we know these sites (and as discussed in the previous post sites like them throughout the world), were/are, "predictive texts" and it may, therefore, take many years to unravel their secrets, nevertheless, I see no alternative but to undertake this work as a serious endeavour. We should form a group of enthusiasts who are committed to rediscovering our ancient heritage*.

Arbor Low recumbent henge.

*Nb. To this end it is also necessary both to rediscover and assimilate the ancient Brythonic tongue (after all native languages are particular to their vernacular and their is much that can be appreciated by an understanding of both their grammar and phonetics), to this end I intend to learn Welsh at the earliest possible opportunity (see..,
& view the archived responses on, "The Lifeboat News"; also see the work of Graham Phillips, go to:

Another error made by modern archaeologists is to constantly laud each new discovery concerning the use and, "meaning" of Britain's ancient sites as if each piece of the jig-saw is the last-hurrah regarding such and trumps all the other previously held notions concerning nature and usage, such hubris bespeaks a very blinkered conception; the sites were (and still are in some circles), held to be sacred precisely because they embodied a coming together (literally a, "fusion"), of the forces of creation where, "earth energies" could (with the aid of the enlightened heart and mind), harmonise with the energies of the cosmos to the benefit of all. That such sites should concern themselves with both birth and death is not, therefore, surprising for; "it is by death that life is known", and that such sites should also be places of healing also flows from this notion for it is surely fear of death that most disorders the human spirit. Modern man loves to compartmentalise his existence (which explains the mess we have gotten ourselves into), but to our ancient forebears life and death were all part of the whole and humanity was not separate from its environment, if we are to re-establish this connection in these islands we must commit to a rediscovery of their ancient lore for as discussed in the previous post all our, "groovy" biodynamic permacultures will simply fail to function if we don't understand the mechanics which make the engines of sustainability, "tick".

Nine Ladies stone circle.

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Thursday, 4 April 2019

Britain's Hidden Lore #Permaculture #Biodynamics #BethLuisNion #Astrology #Agriculture #TWDA

Quote; "The cycles of the moon have influenced gardeners from diverse cultures over many centuries. While science may not fully understand why planting by the moon works, anecdotal evidence suggests that it does.
Permaculture co-originator David Holmgren’s writes

“good design depends on a free and harmonious relationship to nature and people, in which careful observation and thoughtful interaction provide the design inspiration, repertoire and patterns.”
Observing the cycles of the moon and the way that it affects both people and plants can help to determine when to plant in order to improve our health and yield from our garden activities."..

"There are a number of methods of moon planting, some are complex taking into account far off constellations – something that I find difficult to comprehend*. There is an approach that I’ve found I can get my head around. Linking the ebb and flow of the sap in tune with the rhythms of the moon.
In a waxing moon, when light increases towards a full moon, sap flow is drawn up. This is the most suitable time for sowing and transplanting flowering annuals, biennials, grains and melons. Basically any short lived plant that we want to harvest its leaves, seed, flowers or fruits.
It’s also a good time for applying liquid fertilisers, pruning and grafting as increased sap flow produces new growth more quickly."..

 .."With a waning moon, when the light is decreasing as the moon changes from a full to a new moon, the sap flow is drawn down. This focusses the energy towards the roots, which is more suited to root crops and perennials, plants that live longer than two years.
It’s also a good time for applying solid fertilisers, pruning dormant plants and harvesting, as there is less likelihood of rotting.
This general pattern can be divided further into the quarterly moon cycles.
The new moon phase (from new moon to first quarter) is most suited to sowing or transplanting leafy annuals, where we value or eat the leaves or stem. Plants like lettuce, spinach, cabbage and celery.
The first quarter phase is most suited to fruiting annuals (not fruit trees) where we value or eat the fruit or seed bearing part of the plant. Like tomatoes, pumpkins, broccoli and beans.
The full moon phase (from full moon to the third quarter) is most suited to sowing or planting out root crops as well as decorative or fruiting perennials. Like apples, potatoes asparagus and rhubarb. It’s also a good time for taking cuttings and dividing plants.
The last quarter phase is a time to avoid planting and focus on improving the soil, by weeding, mulching, making compost and manure teas as well as digging or ploughing.
The one caveat for this method is that 12 hours before and after the transition time from one phase to the next is when sowing, planting and pruning is best avoided. Use this time instead to improve your soil.
This method of moon planting is illustrated with daily icons and moon phase times in the 2015 Permaculture Calendar,
" Go to:

*An attitude that has proved a considerable obstacle to a full and proper understanding of (what I prefer to call), "Brythonic Astrology" and one that does no credit to any who display it (and they are, unfortunately, "legion", quote; "Our islands were colonised by a Roman state the legacy of whose empire building is still with us today, our hallowed academic institutions continually turn out graduates who loudly proclaim the greatness of the classical world (especially and unfortunately Rome), and deride the former culture of our islands even to the extent of describing our magnificent forebears as living in, quote; "wooden-huts" (whilst this may be partially true such is a deliberate attempt to denigrate Brythonic culture and to represent our ancestors as "square-wheel-making" imbeciles for there are many achievements of the ancient Britons which mark them out as remarkable innovators who left us with a legacy that the technocratic culture of today still has little appreciation for nor any grasp of its true global significance -and let us not forget that we had forests the like of which the classical world did not-)"
Go to:

The Uffington, "Dragon"?

In either the; "Beth-Luis-Nion" or (depending on who your read and/or -what might be best described as-, one's, "philosophical bent"), "Beth-Luis-Fearn", "thirteen-sign" lunar tree calendars, use of which is I believe rightly ascribed to the; Mesolithic, Neolithic, bronze and iron-age cultures of these isles, there are four, "solar sabbats"; the Winter Solstice, the Spring Equinox, the Summer Solstice and the Autumn Equinox and four, "lunar sabbats"; "Imbolc" the, "early spring quickening", "Beltayne" the, "consummation of high-spring", "Lammas" the, "harvest moon" celebration and "Samhain" the, "end of year" preparation for the time of darkness that precedes the, "return of the light" at the Winter Solstice. A calendar based on thirteen moons a year leaves nine, what are known as, "working moons". Resolution between the variant solar and lunar cycles was achieved by some clever mathematics (not all of which is extant neither do I claim to fully understand all of that which is), facilitated by the, "geo-metry" (earth - measurement), of various sacred sites (specifically in the case of the resolution of the two cycles the; "Rollright Stones" in Oxfordshire).

A breakdown of the method of resolving the solar and lunar cycles can be found in a book by James Vogh (aka, John Sladek RIP), called; "The Thirteenth Sign", currently out of print but still available as a second hand original, go to:, this book is oft dismissed as a hoax, however, it is no such thing, John Sladek was a good friend of radical science fiction writer Michael Moorcock and the work neatly dovetails into the thirteen sign, "tree lore" detailed by other writers such as Robert Graves, quote; 

"Systems (or more accurately interpretations), differ, I still recommend James Vogh's (aka. John Sladek R.I.P), book, "The Thirteenth Sign" (even though out of print), for a useful introduction not only to the tree calendar but also the resolution achieved between the lunar and solar years by The, "Ancient" Bri(e)tons.
 "Imbolc" the first of this years lunar sabbats falls, "late" this year at twelve midnight (23.54 hrs), on St.Valentines' day (the full moon -should a full moon occur before twelve noon it is celebrated on the preceding night as the "witches'" day is said to fall between twelve noon and twelve noon-). The, "Beth-Luis-Nion" calendar referred to above does not celebrate the new year until after, "the return of the light" even though the, "old year" ends at Samhain, the intervening period being a time of reflection (and possibly also fasting), in The, "Brythonic" Faith as they awaited the return of the life giving forces of the Sun. Other festivals such as, "Beltayne" were celebrations of fertility for the Britons, one reason being that one would attempt to ensure that one did not conceive a child who would be, "born into the dark", during the harvest or at any other time which would make their birthing, post-natal and infant care inconvenient, difficult or dangerous, for this reason many Britons were (and still are),, born during the middle of February (I am myself), possibly as an, "Ash" (although as the lunar months fluctuate so do the periods over which the trees hold dominion).

Imbolc being the first of the four lunar sabbats is a celebration of Brygid (or "bride"), "The Maiden" who with, "The Mother" and, "The Crone" make up the three living aspects of, "The Triple Goddess", "Arianrhod" ("Arian" = silver "Rhod" = wheel hence; "Goddess of The Silver Wheel" -the cycle of the moon-, in both ancient and modern, "Bri(e)ton"), whose consort is Kernunnos ("The Horned One" who is; "lord of the trees")." Go to:

One will see from the post quoted that each tree is ascribed attributes, or, "vibrations", which characterise both it and the influence that cosmic forces such as; the sun. moon, planets and constellations have at certain times of the year. It must be remembered that concentration on astrology developed as the agricultural revolution of mankind progressed, being without the, so-called, "aid" of chemicals and machines cultures across the planet concentrated on finding ways to bring their agricultural activities into greater and greater harmony with the natural world, both discovering heuristically and by the experimental application of theory based on observation that by identifying the times when certain energies were favourable to; germination, propagation, transplantation, breeding and harvesting one could maximise yields, minimise disease and pests and ensure the biodiversity that is the engine of sustainability.

Nb. It is instructive to note that when hubris based on the success of utilising (some of), the methodologies suggested reached its zenith (and the original notion of, "harmonic relationship" had been lost -the culture concerned having become static and not continued with the undoubtedly hard work of exploring their, "dynamic environmental relationship"-), the, "conglomerations of peoples", known as, "civilisations"*, which profited from such activities all suffered catastrophic declines or, "falls" (which manifested themselves in a number of ways but which all had their roots in a, "rot within" that exemplified the corruption of the societies and cultures concerned), and new societies took their place. 

When, "ancient"** peoples realised that their relationship with their environment was never static but that; "all is impermanence" they knew that they had to find some way to both manifest that understanding and of charting the course of their own destiny, throughout the world this resulted in the construction (harmonic to the particular vernacular), of, "sacred" sites whose alignments and architecture allowed for both repeated observation and the prediction of astronomical events the knowledge of which was essential for successful interaction with a, "dynamic" environment. This knowledge can, as stated above, become, "lost" though and as with all human evolution the societies and cultures concerned were invariably forced to take two-steps-back as part of the learning process of our species.

"Nicholas Culpeper's Complete Herbal lists the rulership of plants and planets. He picked and dried the herbs himself, choosing the right astrological moment to do so. Culpeper suggested that plants are best gathered during the planetary hour associated with the plant. Yes, even hours are ruled by planets. For instance, a Mercury plant like Lavender is best gathered during the hour of the day ruled by Mercury. The aim was to pluck the herb/plant at its greatest potency***.
The first anaesthetics were herbs of course, such as Opium and Hemp - narcotics that come under the rulership of Neptune, a planet associated with the unconscious.


Planetary Associations of Herbs


Herbs under the dominion of Jupiter include agrimony, alexanders, asparagus, avens, balm, barley, basil, beet, betony, bloodroot, borage, bugloss, bur marigold (Bidens spp.), centaury, chervil, chick pea, chicory, cicely (sweet), cinquefoil, colewort, costmary (alecost), daffodil (narcissus), dandelion, endive, feverfew, flax, garlic mustard, hart's tongue, houseleek, hyacinth, hyssop, liverwort, lungwort, marjoram, meadowsweet, milk-thistle, milkweed, mint, ox-eye daisy, ox-tongue, paeony, pimpernel, pinks, Polygonum spp., self-heal (all-heal), rhubarb, rice, rose (esp. red), sage, samphire, scurvy grass, squinancy (quinsywort), St. John's wort, stonecrop, strawberry, violet (sweet), water figwort (water betony), wheat, and willowherb. Trees include almond, apple, apricot, bay, beech, bilberry, birch, (sweet) chestnut, clove, fig, gooseberry, hazel, linden (lime), liquorice, manna, maple, mulberry, nutmeg (inc. mace), oak, olive, peach, pear, pine, pistachio, spruce, sumac, thorn-apple, and (grape) vine.


Herbs under the dominion of Mars are mostly those red in colour, with sharp, pointed leaves, a caustic, burning taste, and a love for growing in dry places, with a corrosive, penetrative action on the human body, generating a subtle heat. They include wood anemone, amaranthus, asarabacca, basil, bindweed, brooklime, broom-rape, butcher's broom, Scotch broom, goldilocks buttercup, bryony, cayenne (chili), lesser celandine, chick pea, chive, cress, crowfoots, cuckoo-pint, cumin, daffodil, dame's rocket (Hesperis / eveweed), eggplant, erysimum (treacle mustard / wormseed mustard), fenugreek, fleabane, frankincense, galangal, garlic, gentian (autumn), (wall) germander, ground pine, hedge hyssop, hedge mustard, hellebore, hop, horehound (white), horseradish, leek, lettuce (wild), madder, marjoram, marrow, masterwort, mustard (black and white), nettle, onion, pepper, Polygonum spp, radish, restharrow, rhubarb, rue, saltwort (Russian thistle), sanicle, sarsaparilla (Smilax), sowbread (ivy-leaf cyclamen), spurge, squinancy, tarragon, teasel, cotton thistle, holy (or blessed) thistle, sowthistle, star thistle, toadflax (flaxweed), tobacco, weld, sweet woodruff, wormwood. Trees include bitter almond, barberry, chestnut, cinnamon, gorse, hawthorn, pear (wild), pine, gum tragacanth, savine (dwarf juniper), tamarind, and all that are prickly.


Herbs under the dominion of Venus include ale hoof, amaranthus, anemone, annual rocket cress, apple tree, arrach, barberry, birch tree, blight, bramble or blackberry, bugle, burdock, carnation, catmint, cherry tree, coltsfoot, common alder tree, common tansy, columbines, cornel tree, cowslips, crabs claws, crane's bill, cudweed, currants (red, white, black), daisy, elder, figwort, filipendula, french beans, geranium, golden rod, gromel, herb robert, herb true-love, lady's bedstraw, lady's mantel, mallows and marshmallows, mint, moneywort, mugwort, navew, orach, oxlip, parsnip, peach tree, pear tree, pennyroyal, pennywort, plowmans spikenard, plantain, plums, primrose, robert geranium, rough shepherds needle, shepherds needle, self-heal, sicklewort, skirret, soapwort, sorrel, sow thistle, speedwell, spignel, strawberry, sycamore tree, thyme, vervain, violet, water pepper, weld, wild teasel, winter-cherries, wood sage, yarrow.


Herbs under the dominion of Saturn include aconite (monkshood), amaranth, angelica, baneberry, barley, beet (red), belladonna (deadly nightshade), birdsfoot trefoil, bistort, burdock, cabbage, candytuft, cardus benedictus, castor oil plant, lesser celandine (pilewort), cleavers (goosegrass), comfrey, cornflower, crosswort, cudweed, cumin, bearded darnel, dodder, earth chestnuts, ground elder (bishop's weed / goutweed), endive, ferns (Asplenium), Royal fern, fireweed, flax, fleawort, fumitory, stinking gladwin, hare's ear, hawkweed, heartsease, hellebore, false hellebore, hemlock, hemp (cannabis), henbane, horsetail, houseleek, knapweed (greater), lentil, mallow, mandrake, marrow, mullein, nightshade (common), parsnip, pepper, buck's horn plantain, polypody, poppy (inc. corn / field), rue, rupturewort, meadow saffron, saffron, sage, shepherd's purse, Solomon's sea, starflower, melancholy thistle, toadflax (flaxweed), tutsan, valerian, vervain, water-parsnip, water-violet, willowherb, and dyer's woad. Trees include acacia, blackberry, blackthorn, box, buckthorn, caper, elm, holly, ivy, myrtle, olive, pine, poplar, quince, savine (dwarf Juniper), sloe, tamarisk, turpentine tree, willow, yew.

The Sun

Herbs under the dominion of the Sun are those of pleasant smell, good flavour, a love of open, sunny places, majestic form, and yellow or reddish flowers, with uses connected with the heart, the eyes, resistance of poison and evils, and comforting of the vital organs. They include amber, angelica, balm, barley, burnet, burning bush, butterbur, celandine (greater), centaury, chamomile, chick pea, cinnamon, cinquefoil, cumin, daffodil, elecampane, fenugreek, feverfew, frankincense, galangal, garlic, ginger, eyebright, hellebore, lavender, leek, lovage, maize, marigold, marjoram, onion, paeony, pepper, pimpernel, radish, rice, rosemary, rue, saffron, spikenard, St. John's wort, storax tree, sugar cane, sundew, tormentil, vervain, viper's bugloss, and water-lily. Trees include ash, bay, cedar, citrus (lemon, orange), heliotrope, ivy, juniper, laurel, mistletoe, mulberry, myrrh, palm, vines, and grape vines." Go to:

This notion seems both strange and barbaric to the post Enlightenment mind but all revolutions throw babies out with the bathwater and such has been the case for much of the lore which preceded the appropriation of religion by the martial states. Technology has fostered the illusion that man may impose his own order on the natural world as opposed to learning from nature in order to harmonise with it, that we are currently experiencing a denouement that parallels those suffered by other, "revolutionary" societies which had come to believe their own propaganda should be clear to even the previously most blinkered by now.

Many who proselytise for permaculture, biodynamics and, "lunar planting" in Britain do so whilst labouring under the misapprehension that one can indulge in such practices here whilst still using both the Gregorian calendar and a Mediterranean/Middle Eastern astrological system. Astrological systems are specific to their vernacular, this should be obvious, remember that such systems are rooted in agricultural practice and just as the plants grown in different regions of the world differ so do the planets and cosmic systems which have influence over them and with which they correspond. Maize grown in South America does not vibrate on the same harmonic as do grains grown in Western Europe, yes there have been huge numbers of species introduced from different regions to different regions all over the planet but these should be integrated into the pre-existing practices of the regions in which they are intended to be introduced based on an understanding of the energies which govern those regions; in order that integration can take place it is, therefore, essential to understand the cosmic and planetary forces which influence the region in which one is working and that is the problem here in Britain for a, "true accounting" of our Brythonic astrology has not been properly undertaken, sacred sites aligned to stars systems not recognised by the Mediterranean or Middle Eastern astronomers are ignored by even, so-called, "serious" researchers and, "hit-it-with-a-hammer" type astrological, "bodges" abound. Take the issue that prompted me to post on this subject today; "whence falls Beltayne this year?" The, "bodge" is to say; "well, "May Day" is the 1st of May (Gregorian), so pick the full moon nearest to that date!" Which would be on April 19th this year, but this is obviously far from satisfactory; as we know the lunar and solar cycles turn at very different speeds so it is far preferable to know which constellation (star-sign), the sun must enter into prior to the full moon that defines the sabbat but if one doesn't know which constellations one is using or how they are characterised it is impossible to predict the date of the sabbat with any accuracy (the planets also, "migrate", of-course, and to know what their movements signify is also essential -see quotes from and comments on Culpeper-). This is especially important when it comes to germination and propagation (, because as is true in many religions; "one does not labour on the sabbath", or to put it more accurately in terms of Wicca (the belief system that preserves more Brythonic lore than any other); "one does not raise on the sabbat!"** Sabbats are times when spiritual and communal energies come to the fore, when humanity must be, "true to its nature" and manifest the vibrations which are at their zenith at these times by becoming a, "pure channel" for them, preparations must already have been made, the grosser materials must transform into the, "finer-stuff" of the etheric energies in order to return to their origin for when one is attached to the material one imposes stasis on the dynamic equilibrium that informs the vitality of life and begins to manifest Thanatos where there should be Eros (and yes the Mediterranean cultures, religions and philosophies do have their place -when properly integrated-).

*Briton is an interesting case in this regard (an, "exception that proves the rule"?), because the Brythonic culture was never civilised, nevertheless when man started to forge metals from the earth the temptation grew to impose his will on both people and environment and it was during the bronze and iron ages that human sacrifice became known in these islands where and among whom (although only among some not all), it had not been known before and it was the possession of the resources needed to manufacture arms that was our downfall for it was our precious tin that really drove the Romans to make strenuous efforts to concur these islands and subjugate their peoples, therefore, it can be seen that "civilisation" is not necessarily a prerequisite for cultural and societal collapse its just that such have often manifested themselves in the form of the fall of civilisations.

**It is my understanding that this prohibition (as regards the practice of agriculture), mainly relates to the, "breaking of soil" and the consequent disturbance of its ecosystem. 

Nb. Many now-days like to proselytise for the notion that our Brythonic culture and religion went through, "revolutionary" changes at various points in our history, however, those who do so fail to realise that the religion remained essentially the same but was informed by technological change (such as the use of metals -smelting and forging of tools-), thus we see developments in the design of sacred sites from simple mounds to standing henges (both stone and wooden), to the sublimity of the recumbent henges (such as Arbor Low), and eventually the subtle, "earth carving" represented by the Bronze Age, "Uffington Dragon" (that is not a horse but rather a representation of the, "fire-from-the-earth" that must be, "appeased" and befriended in order to manifest the treasure of the iron and bronze ages).
 Whilst it is obviously true that the, "Beaker People" (whose smelting abilities are thought to have ushered in the Bronze Age in Britain), brought a new technological understanding and a different culture with them, when they migrated here from central Europe, such did not fundamentally change the pantheon or religious practices of these islands, henges and stone circles continued to be constructed in Britain well into the Bronze Age moreover without Britain's tin resources the technologies of the Beaker People would have been next to useless. Perhaps (again see following post), there are parallels here with the Norse pantheon and their belief in the Aesir and the Vanir whereby the Vanir represent the more "magical" understandings of, "The Old Religion" and Odin and his Aesir represent the more "physical", materially concerned (and also unfortunately), warlike culture of the new technologies (go to: &

The mound next to the Uffington carving is still known as; "Dragon Hill".

 **Were they really "ancient"? Much of their understanding seems very modern to me or at least highly necessary to be both comprehended and integrated by so our so-called, "modern" societies.

***Ayurveda the astrologically based system of medicinal practice with its genesis in the Indus Valley culture of India takes the minutiae of an astrological system to its limits, but let's remember, quote; "The, "environmental experience" to which I refer above is not simply that of one generation it includes the entire, "racial memory" of the people and will (of-course), have included, "The Flood" and many other cataclysmic events (dating back to the dawn of man itself). "Harry and Ron" had not only been exposed to these experiences (and the, "mythical" tales which kept them alive throughout the generations), but also to the movements of the heavens on a nightly basis. It is the conceit of modern man who spends much of his time in-front of (what one of my history teachers used to refer to as); "the smelly telly" that he is only now able to divine the movements and purpose (that is if he thinks they have one), of the heavens. It is obvious (and explains much of the, "amazing" archaeological evidence of the astronomical/astrological -"astrologomal"-, accuracy and precision of ancient cultures throughout the World), that clear skies, repeated observation and careful record keeping led, "ancient" man to make many startling discoveries (both in mathematics, medicine and environmental science -incl.agricultural science and, "plant lore"-)" Go to:
and from the same post; "If we wish to understand the mindset of our ancestors in relation to the colonisation of Britain I believe that we must understand the geological events which preceded the final retreat of Britain's ice-sheets. To this end I again refer the reader to Peter Warlow's genuinely mind-bending book; "The Reversing Earth" (let's put it this way static conceptions get us nowhere ), and to the work of Adrian Gilbert co-author of; "The Orion Mystery" and author of; "The Holy Kingdom"; when you then include Michael Poynder's; "PI in The Sky" and James Vogh's; "The Thirteenth Sign" you should come to one realisation (amongst the myriad), which is that; when, "ancient" (careful), man wrote anything down he did so for a reason, materials were too precious and skills too rare to waste on trivialities.

Par exemple oblique..

"Ancient man clearly attempted to build accurate circles, he made many brave attempts (of which Stonehenge is perhaps the best example), but he never quite managed it!"
(in other words; "brave try grunty could do better 4/10!")
"Come over here. and get hold of this."
(hands him pointed stick tied to length of rope or heavy twine)
"Right! Ron, you grab this."
(hands, "Ron" the other end of the, "rope" which is also tied to a pointed stick)
"Right, Ron you stick your end in the ground."
"O.K." Says Ron and does so.
"Harry, you walk away until the rope is taught and then walk around Ron's stick keeping the rope taught whilst scraping the pointed end of your stick in the ground as you do so!"
(after a few attempts they managed to draw a fairly accurate circle)*

*I mean Ron's stick was dislodged a few times before they got the knack and Harry's sobriety was always in question, but they persevered. "....and....
"You know I also have a sneaking suspicion that the; "Cursus" at Stonehenge may well have truly been, "dead-ground*". From; "What's that Coming Over The Hill?"

*Also see esp.  "Beth-Luis-Fearn" The "Brythonic" Tree Calendar at Imbolc" go to: 
with regard to the significance of a cursus that describes the; "Death of the Sun King""

Neither of the following sites exemplify anything like a complete understanding of the subtleties of Bythonic lore nevertheless they can be useful in helping one to come to that understanding for oneself.

"Moonwise" Go to:

"MoonGiant" Go to:
Also see the works of Lyall Watson (RIP), go to: obituary, go to: and: &
on, "Arafel".

You can help support both my work and this blog by making a payment (however small, all gratefully received I can assure you). to:
If you're as skint as I am but you like my work please simply share this content!

Wednesday, 27 February 2019

The Litany of Abuse #UniversalCredit #AlstonReport #Austerity Pt.1

The following stories have all appeared since the; "Alston Report" (Professor Philip Alston is the current Special Rapporteur on Extreme Poverty and Human Rights for the OHCHR: ), an investigation into the activities and behaviour of the British Government with regard to their treatment of the vulnerable, disabled and otherwise disadvantaged of Britain was published ( go to: );

Quote; "DWP chiefs face fury after admitting 30,000 extra sick or disabled people are owed benefit payments in an eight-year-old scandal.
New estimates suggest 210,000 people received too little Employment and Support Allowance (ESA) in a blunder that dates back to 2011.
That is more than the 180,000 victims at the last estimate - and it's the second rise since the error emerged in 2017.
Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) chiefs today insisted an army of 1,200 staff is making "good progress" on fixing the blunder, paying back 58,000 people a total of £328m so far.
But the news comes too late for more than 20,000 potential victims - who have all already died.
Shadow Minister for Disabled People Marsha De Cordova said: “Once again disabled people are suffering as a result of the chaos at the heart of the DWP.

New Work and Pensions Secretary Amber Rudd inherited the hugely costly scandal.
The blunder happened when people were put on the wrong system when they moved from the old incapacity benefit to "contributory" ESA.
The problem was spotted in 2017 - and since then the number of people affected has soared twice.
At first, ministers estimated up to 70,000 people would be hit. In October 2018 that rose to 180,000 because the DWP agreed to widen the scope of payments. Now it is 210,000, thanks to more accurate updated forecasts.
Today's update reveals 58,000 people have now received back payments worth £328million - an average of £6,000 each.
Total back payments are now expected to hit £920m, which despite more people being hit, is down slightly from the previous estimate of £970m.
By March 2025 the extra bill is set to be £1.61bn, because people will continue getting higher payments than they would have done. This is slightly down on the £1.67bn figure estimated previously."..
"..the real cost will be far higher because that figure does not include the cost of 1,200 DWP staff who are working to fix the problem."..
"Lastly, DWP chiefs today announced they will examine a further 30,000 cases that date since 2015 after new guidance was found to be less effective than first thought.
It comes after the Mirror revealed 46,448 potential victims across all groups had died since the ESA errors." Go to:
for full article.

Quote; ""The Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) failed five times to follow its own safeguarding rules in the weeks leading up to the suicide of a disabled woman with a long history of mental distress, an independent investigation has found.

The Independent Case Examiner (ICE) concluded that DWP was guilty of “multiple” and “significant” failings in handling the case of mother-of-nine Jodey Whiting (pictured), who had her out-of-work disability benefits stopped for missing a work capability assessment (WCA), and took her own life just 15 days later.

The report is the latest evidence of the institutional failure of DWP to guarantee the safety of disabled people – and particularly those with a history of mental distress – within the “fitness for work” system.

DWP has accepted the report’s findings.

Whiting’s mother, Joy Dove, has now called for DWP and those staff responsible to face a criminal investigation for the failures that led to the death of her much-loved daughter, who she described as a “lovely, caring, thoughtful” person who adored her children and grandchildren.

She said her daughter had died a “martyr” and that campaigners were right to say that the Tory government had created a “hostile environment for disabled people”.

The 42-year-old had been taking 23 tablets a day at the time she died, for conditions including scoliosis and bipolar disorder, and had been taking morphine twice daily.

She had been a long-time claimant of incapacity benefit, and then employment and support allowance (ESA), and DWP and its assessors had previously noted the severity of her mental health condition, and the risk that would be posed if she was found fit for work.

When she was approached again for another assessment in the autumn of 2016, she told DWP about her suicidal thoughts and requested a home assessment as she said she rarely left the house.

But even though a “flag” was placed on DWP’s ESA system to alert staff that she was a “vulnerable” claimant because of her mental health condition, DWP failed to refer her request for a home visit to Maximus, the company that carries out WCAs on its behalf.

Maximus also failed to act on her request, even though it had been included in the ESA50 form she had filled out.

But this was just the first of five serious failings by DWP in the weeks leading up to her death, the ICE report has concluded."..
"The report by the Independent Case Examiner, Joanna Wallace, says: “In total there have been five opportunities for DWP processes to prompt particular consideration of Jodey’s mental health status and give careful consideration to her case because of it – none of those were taken.”

She concludes that there were “multiple failings in the handling of Jodey’s case prior to her suicide”.

Wallace’s report, addressed to Jodey Whiting’s mother, adds: “I find it extremely disappointing that in investigating the complaints you have raised, we have seen that DWP have either failed to investigate, or failed to acknowledge, the extent of events in Jodey’s case.

“As such the facts of the case have not been made clear to you and no appropriate apology has been made.”

DWP has agreed to the ICE recommendation that it should pay £10,000 to the family as a “consolatory” payment for its “repeated failures to follow their safeguarding procedures” and other failings that took place after her death (see separate story).

Joy Dove, who has campaigned for justice – including through her Justice for Jodey petition – said her daughter had “died a martyr”."..
"She said: “What they have done is criminal. They had all the information in front of them. Five times they failed.

“I would like to see them charged, all of them who had anything to do with Jodey’s case." Go to:

for full article.

Quote; "A family whose daughter died after being denied the main disability benefit have been awarded £10,000 in damages.

Victoria Smith, 33, of Market Drayton, passed away last July just weeks after being told she was not eligible for Personal Independence Payments (PIP).

Her family sued Capita for making inaccurate statements on Ms Smith's health assessment.

Capita told the BBC it stood by the original decision.

Ms Smith's mother, Sue Kemlo, told the BBC: "If they hadn't cut her PIP, my daughter would still be here."

Ms Smith suffered from agoraphobia and fibromyalgia, which left her body in constant pain.

The Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) wrote to her in early 2018 to tell her she needed to be re-assessed for the benefit, which is intended to help with the additional costs of having a disability.

As part of the process, in March she was assessed at home by a healthcare professional employed by Capita.

The assessment led the DWP to decide Ms Smith was no longer eligible for PIP, a conclusion her mother said "was a pack of lies".

Ms Smith immediately appealed, but was again turned down by the DWP. She received the decision in June, shortly after she was admitted to hospital."..
"On 8 July, Ms Smith died of a brain haemorrhage, but doctors told the family her underlying conditions, particularly the fibromyalgia, had deteriorated as well.

The week after she died, a tribunal decided she was eligible for PIP." Go to:
for full article.

Quote; "The Conservatives have been accused of “economic murder” for austerity policies which a new study suggests have caused 120,000 deaths.

The paper found that there were 45,000 more deaths in the first four years of Tory-led efficiencies than would have been expected if funding had stayed at pre-election levels.

On this trajectory that could rise to nearly 200,000 excess deaths by the end of 2020, even with the extra funding that has been earmarked for public sector services this year.

Real terms funding for health and social care fell under the Conservative-led Coalition Government in 2010, and the researchers conclude this “may have produced” the substantial increase in deaths.".. The paper identified that mortality rates in the UK had declined steadily from 2001 to 2010, but this reversed sharply with the death rate growing again after austerity came in.

From this reversal the authors identified that 45,368 extra deaths occurred between 2010 and 2014, than would have been expected, although it stops short of calling them "avoidable".

Based on those trends it predicted the next five years - from 2015 to 2020 - would account for 152,141 deaths - 100 a day - findings which one of the authors likened to “economic murder”.".. 
"The study, published in BMJ Open today, estimated that to return death rates to their pre-2010 levels spending would need to increase by £25.3bn."..
"In social care the annual budget increase collapsed from 2.20 per cent annually, to a decrease of 1.57 per cent.

The researchers found this coincided with death rates which had decreased by around 0.77 per cent a year to 2010, beginning to increase again by 0.87 per cent a year.

And the majority of those were people reliant on social care, the paper says: “This is most likely because social care experienced greater relative spending constraints than healthcare.""..
"a drop in nurse numbers may have accounted for 10 per cent of deaths, concluding: "We have found that spending constraints since 2010, especially public expenditure on social care, may have produced a substantial mortality gap in England.”

The papers’ senior author and a researcher at UCL, Dr Ben Maruthappu, said that while the paper “can’t prove cause and effect” it shows an association."..
"Professor Martin Roland Emeritus Professor of Health Services Research, University of Cambridge said: “This study suggests that a change happened to cause deaths to stop declining around 2014. This is likely to be a correct finding. However, the link to health and social care spending is speculative as observational studies of this type can never prove cause and effect."*

Cllr Izzi Seccombe, chairman of the Local Government Association’s community wellbeing board, said: “We would urge government to review the evidence behind this analysis. If correct, it would clearly reinforce the desperate and urgent need to properly fund social care"" Go tp:
for full article 

*Italics mine Nb. the only epidemiology such idiots approve of is the epidemiology that supports their own assertions! Beware the algorithms! 

Quote; "Sky News has obtained a "deflection script" which confirms Universal Credit call agents were officially told to refer claimants online instead of addressing their concerns on the phone.

The claims had been dismissed by the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) as "completely false" after our initial report in October, when a former Universal Credit case manager, Bayard Tarpley, came forward to lift the lid on the controversial practice.

The documents reveal that the "deflection scripts" were introduced in November 2016 to "support staff during telephone calls".

The guidance was designed to cut down on the thousands of claimants contacting call centres by getting callers to log on to access their benefit."..
"According to the document, five call centres took place in a two-week pilot last year - including in Blackpool, Canterbury, Middlesbrough, Belfast and Bristol.

A call centre hub in Grimsby, where Mr Tarpley worked as a case manager, used the deflection scripts for a longer period of time."

Managers listened in on calls between handlers and claimants to see if the scripts were effective in "encouraging claimants to use their online account".

The document adds: "Encourage staff to ask what the claimant is calling for at the beginning of the call rather than moving straight to security questions this may open up the opportunity to deflect the caller online."

Danielle Rowley, the Labour MP for Midlothian, obtained the Department for Work and Pensions briefing - and described the practice as "outrageous".

She told Sky News: "When I heard about the deflection scripts that were used in the Sky News report, I was really disappointed but not completely surprised.

"People that come into my office ... we hear from them about how they often get rushed off the phone and how they're always encouraged to use their online accounts.

"I thought it was really important that, if these scripts are being used, they are in the public domain."..
"Mark Serwotka, general secretary at the Public and Commercial Services (PSC) Union, said: "It is breathtaking that ministers have been caught lying to the public about the existence of a so-called 'deflection script' for Universal Credit claimants.

"Our members would prefer to be given the resources and time to give a first class service to help claimants. However they are instructed to use this deflection script as a means to get people off the phones.

"It is another example of a government who has failed to invest in staff and support claimants. This is why Universal Credit must be scrapped and replaced with a system that supports those in need."" Go to:
for full article. 

Quote; "The number of rough sleepers has risen in almost every major city across England, especially across the Midlands and the North.

The government said a slight overall drop last Autumn showed its £100m investment to tackle rough sleeping was beginning to work. But charities pointed out that rough sleeping was still 165% higher than in 2010 and called it a ‘damning reflection on our society.’

The news comes as temperatures fall well below freezing in many places." Go to:

for full article.

Quote; "These are the images of a starving man who was denied vital benefits after being deemed ‘fit to find work’ – despite being unable to even stand.

Stephen Smith, 64, was rushed to hospital over Christmas when his severe health problems left him in such a poor state his weight dropped to just six stone.

Despite his awful condition, Stephen was forced to get a pass out from hospital to go and fight a decision by the Department of Work and Pensions (DWP) which repeatedly denied him benefits.

Stephen Smith, 64, was rushed to hospital over Christmas when his severe health problems left him in such a poor state his weight dropped to just six stone (Picture: Liverpool Echo)

Instead, the DWP insisted he was fit and capable of finding work.

He won his appeal after a tribunal judge saw what should have been ‘glaringly obvious’ – that Mr Smith can barely walk down the street let alone hold down a job."..
"His most debilitating illness is Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease, an incurable respiratory problem that causes severe breathing issues and gets worse over time.

But he also suffers with excruciating Osteoarthritis, has an enlarged prostate and uses a colostomy bag to go to the toilet.

Despite all of this, the 64-year-old failed a DWP work capability assessment in 2017 – which meant his ESA payments were stopped and he was told to sign on for a £67 a week Jobseeker’s Allowance.

He was also told to visit the job centre once a week and prove he was looking for work.

Throughout this period, Stephen said he was living alone and didn’t know where to turn as his health deteriorated." Go to: for images and full article.

Quote; "A disabled Hull veteran has been left feeling suicidal and says he is "starving" and "freezing to death" after his benefits were stopped.

Mark Smith, 46, of Holderness Road, suffers from cervical myelopathy, a compression on the cervical spinal cord, which makes it impossible for him to work, and he is in need of disability payments to get by.

The dad-of-two was diagnosed in 2016 and had two of the seven cervical vertebrae in his neck removed, which has left him struggling to walk and get out of the house.

Mr Smith claims he has been waiting "years" for his Employment Support Allowance to come through, and says his £200 Personal Independence Payment (PIP) was stopped in November, leaving him with no money to live on.

"I'm starving because I have no money for food, and I'm having to rely on Hull Veterans to feed me and bring round food parcels to my house in order to eat," said Mr Smith, who served in the Army for six years from the age of 16 and previously worked in care.

"I can't afford heating either, so I'm freezing to death, and the cold conditions in my house are making my neck even worse.

"I'm severely disabled and have been diagnosed with cervical myelopathy. I've had to have half my neck removed after getting constant pins and needles, and I'm now on 18 tablets a day for the condition."..
""My back is up against the wall and I feel like I've done everything in my power to get the benefits I'm entitled to, but I'm not being listened to or supported."" Go to:

for full article.

Quote; " does Sarah Newton know that 7,990 people died within six months of having their claim for Personal Independence Payment rejected?

The figure itself is bad enough but the possibility of a cover-up lasting many years would be a massive scandal.

We’ve had no report of any change in DWP monitoring policy.

Yet Alex Tiffin, on his blog Universal Credit Sufferer, reported that Labour MP Madeline Moon had received a response to a written question, saying: “Of the 3.1 million people who claimed PIP between April 2013 and April 2018, 7,990 died within 6 months of having their claim REJECTED.

“‘3,680 Personal Independence Payment (PIP) claimants died within three months of their initial application being disallowed.'”

It has also been revealed that “5,290 claimants who’d applied under the Special Rules for Terminally Ill people (SRTI), (those [who have] a terminal disease with less than 6 months to live), died before the DWP made a decision on their claim”.

If the figures on PIP claimants who died three months and six months after their claims were rejected are known to the DWP now, it seems likely that the figures on other sickness and disability claimants were known when my Freedom of Information request was slowly working its way past the obstacles the Tories kept putting in its way – and they lied about it."

Quote; “The claimant must move out of the household and is required to provide written evidence to their work coach that they are receiving help for domestic abuse before the easement can be granted.”

This is the shocking statement made by Mark Serwotka, general secretary of the Public and Commercial Services Union, (PCS). It reveals how low the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) will really go to prevent having to help claimants.

This was just one of the issues Mr Serwotka raised in a letter to MP Frank Field, chairman of the Work and Pensions Committee.

When I read this I wasn’t surprised, but to be sure I checked it out. Sure enough, there’s an entire page on getting help if you’re a victim of domestic a abuse on the DWP website.

On the page it lists certain conditions, yes conditions, victims must meet.

They include;

“You will need written evidence from a person acting in an official capacity showing that:

your circumstances are consistent with those of a person who has had domestic violence or abuse inflicted, or threatened, upon them, during the 6 months prior to you notifying
you have made contact with the person acting in an official capacity to tell them about any incidents that have occurred in the past 6 months

You must provide your evidence to Jobcentre Plus as soon as possible but no later than one calendar month after you first told us about the domestic violence and abuse.”

So a victim of domestic abuse not only has to open up to work coach about their abuse, then they get asked for proof?

The requirements do not end there. Once they’ve decided to accept that you have been a victim, you MAY be allowed a 13 week break from looking for work, but only if you satisfy the next set of criteria.

The most notable of them being,

“you have not had a 13 week break from work-related requirements as a result of previous domestic violence within the last 12 months”.

In some cases of domestic violence, the victim may return to their abuser. This is well known and it’s hard to think the DWP wouldn’t have known this.

This means a benefit claimant who’s endured repeated abuse, just has to battle on because they’ve been unfortunate enough to be abused twice in a year."..
"“The lack of training and expertise at the front line in Jobcentre Plus is a thread running through all of our benefits inquiries – and now it is becoming apparent to the public how this is leaving them unprepared to deal with the most vulnerable claimants.”".. "If you have been, or are a victim of domestic abuse help can be found in many places such as Women’s Aid, for women and Mankind, for Men, helpline details below.

women can call 0808 2000 247, the free 24-hour National Domestic Violence Helpline run in partnership between Women’s Aid and Refuge
men can call the Men’s Advice Line free on 0808 801 0327 (Monday to Friday 9am to 5pm) or ManKind on 01823 334 244" Go to:
for full article.

Quote; "The government’s new universal credit benefit system could have “disastrous” consequences for disabled people if ministers fail to make a series of major changes, according to a committee of MPs.

A report by the Commons work and pensions committee highlighted major flaws in the government’s plans to move disabled people onto universal credit.

Frank Field, chair of the committee, warned that the introduction of the new system risked forcing disabled people “further into poverty, deprivation, miserable hardship”.

Disabled activists have repeatedly warned that universal credit – which combines six income-related benefits into one – is “rotten to the core”, with “soaring” rates of sanctions and foodbank use in areas where it has been introduced, and repeated warnings about its impact on disabled people.

The work and pensions committee says in the new report that those disabled claimants not designated “severely disabled” will be “substantially worse off” under universal credit because of the scrapping of the severe disability premium and enhanced disability premium.

But the report also suggests that this will mean that even claimants with higher support needs – a group the government claims it is targeting with higher payments under universal credit – who previously received these premiums will receive less under the new system."..
"The report says that removing the “vital additional support” provided by the premiums “risks disabled people living more isolated lives, relying more on unpaid care (including from their own young children), or simply being unable to gain support to complete basic daily tasks”.

The committee points out that DWP has carried out no analysis of the financial impact of removing the two premiums on disabled people and calls for it to do so “urgently”.

The MPs say DWP should include in this analysis “clear worked examples” of the financial support that disabled people claiming different benefits under the old system will receive under universal credit.

Disability News Service is currently attempting, through a complaint to the information commissioner, to force DWP to provide similar information.

The committee’s report also says – repeating its recommendation from an earlier report on benefit sanctions – that universal credit claimants who are waiting for their work capability assessments (WCAs) should not be forced to accept strict conditions while they are waiting if they can provide a valid “fit note” from their doctor stating that they cannot work.

Such a step would restore a “vital safeguard” that “protects claimants from having to meet conditions that may be unmanageable and inappropriate”, the report says.

The report says the move to universal credit will leave 100,000 families with disabled children worse off than they would have been under the previous system.

And it says that only a third of disabled people making new universal credit claims receive their first payment in full and on time, because of delays in arranging WCAs.

The MPs also warn that the simplified process for universal credit claimants who are terminally-ill is failing many people who are forced to prove they have less than six months to live to qualify for the fast-track procedure.

The committee calls on DWP to introduce “a more humane approach”" Go to:

for full article.

Quote; "Martin Burnell, 59, from Lowestoft, Suffolk, was diagnosed with the terminal illness last November and has not worked since February when he was forced to take time off.

His employer continued to pay him while tests were carried out.

But this stopped when he was diagnosed and he faced assessments for Universal Credit (UC) and Personal Independence Payment (PIP) - despite his consultant telling him he would never work again, he says.

Motor neurone disease (MND) is a uncommon condition that affects the brain and nerves. It causes weakness that gets worse over time.

The NHS says it's always fatal and can significantly shorten life expectancy, but some people live with it for many years. There’s no cure, but there are treatments to help reduce the impact it has on daily life."But at the end of the day I have MND, my consultant said I would never work again."

Mr Burnell is just one campaigner in a fight launched by the MND Association and Marie Curie, calling for a change in the law.

Under the special rules for terminal illness applications disability benefits can be fast-tracked if the person is due to die in the next six months.

But campaigners say as MND is so complex it is almost impossible to give such a precise life expectancy.

And a second reading of a bill to scrap the six-month rule is currently going through Parliament."" Go to: for full article.

Quote; "Charging disabled people for their care and support is driving many of them into debt and forcing them to cut their spending on food or heating, according to new research by a network of disabled people’s organisations and their allies.

The study by the Independent Living Strategy Group (ILSG) found that four in 10 (41 per cent) of those responding to a survey had experienced a substantial increase in charges over the last couple of years.

Nearly half (43 per cent) had had to cut back on their spending on food to pay for care.

And two-fifths of respondents (40 per cent) said they had had to cut back on heating costs to pay for care and support.

The study concludes that charging for the support disabled people need to go about their daily lives is “unfair, counterproductive and undermines the primary purpose of the care and support system”.

The effect of charging, it says, is often to “drive disabled people into care poverty, and to create confusion, stress and complexity in an already overly burdened bureaucratic system” through what is effectively “an unhelpful and unnecessary tax on disability and old age”."..
"Baroness [Jane] Campbell (pictured), who chairs ILSG, said: “Support provided under the Care Act is meant to improve the wellbeing and independence of disabled people.

“By charging many for that support, the system is making a mockery of the spirit of the legislation and causing worry, stress and poverty.

“Charging raises a relatively small sum of money which is pushing up costs elsewhere.

“The financial impact of personal care neglect such as pressure sores, kidney infections or falls, as well as stress related illnesses, means finding extra resources for the NHS.”"..

"The Independent Living Strategy Group has been working on protecting and promoting disabled people’s rights to independent living in England since 2013.

Its members include disabled people who were part of the independent living movement during the 1970s and in later years, as well as younger activists, other individuals and organisations concerned with independent living." Go to:

for full article.
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