Earlier today Iain Duncan Smith was on The World at One on Radio 4. It should be here. He was talking to people in Hackney about unemployment and what the government is doing about it. Naturally, everything is pinned on the Work Programme. The payment method will ensure its success. There was the usual casual statistic - there are half a million jobs in the Jobcentres each week. We need a dynamic workforce, he said. The representative of one organisation said they had not bid for the WP contracts because it was too risky, but would continue to help people. One man, with a criminal record, said it was hopeless and, when IDS disagreed, said he couldn't even get a work trial. Once again the solution was the WP, which would provide mentors to help him all the way. Another man, with a string of qualifications, said he couldn't find work either. IDS personally guaranteed that he could get him a job. (Of course he can; but that doesn't help all the others in the same position.) The interviewer asked him if it was fair that benefits are to go up in line with inflation (a line that other BBC people are also pushing). IDS said there were no plans to change that, but it was a long way short of a guarantee.
I wonder if he will come on next year to explain why the WP isn't delivering.