Tory MS under fire for comparing Universal Basic Income to giving money to ‘rapists and murderers’
A Tory MS is under fire for comparing Universal Basic Income (UBI) to giving money to “rapists and murderers”
Peter Fox, the Conservative Shadow Minister for Finance in the Senedd, has hit out at the idea of providing every adult with a fixed income every month that would be enough to pay for all basic essentials, claiming it would be a “dystopian nightmare”.
Fox, who represents the Monmouth constituency, criticised a move by the Welsh Government to pilot a UBI scheme, in an article for Mail+, a digital platform from Daily Mail and The Mail on Sunday.
His comments in the right-wing publication have been fiercely criticised.
UBI Lab Cymru said: “Comparing recipients of #UBI to ‘rapists and murders’ taking your money from you on the street is absolutely disgusting.
“This coming from a man elected to represent Wales in the #Senedd. What on earth is wrong with you @PeterFox61?”
Welsh Government minister Lee Waters said: “What happened to Peter Fox? I wish he’d come back.”
Labour councillor Gething Jones said: “This was @WelshConserv argument against free prescriptions which they very cynically spent the Senedd elections pretending they had changed their mind about.
“Bizarre from a party funded by millionaires who have cripplied (sic) the criminal justice system (450 gwent police cut alone).”
Ewan Hilton said: “Whether you like UBI or not what we definitely don’t need is scaremongering opposition politicians and a Westminster led welfare system that is cruel, punitive, prevents movement forward abs at its worst kills people.”
Social media expert Owen Williams said: “What are they putting in the Monmouth water? Because this is an absolutely bonkers take.”
Consultant Stephen Brooks said: “I’m sceptical about UBI too to be honest, but framing it like this is quite something.”
In an opinion piece for the Mail+, Peter Fox said: “Imagine a world where every month super-rich Premier League footballers, millionaires or even rapists and murderers stopped you on the street, demanded you hand over your wallet and then rummaged through it, extracting a few crisps notes, before strolling off scot-free.
“I’d imagine you’d be pretty annoyed. And probably putting in a swift call to the local constabulary.
“No, this isn’t a joke, or even a far-off dystopian nightmare. But this could be about to be a reality in Labour-run Wales… and could easily quickly roll out to the rest of the United Kingdom.
“Despite the Western world being plunged into one of its biggest crises since World War II thanks to Covid-19, the Labour Government wants to impose ideological-driven Universal Basic Income (UBI).
“This socialism-inspired policy, believed to have its roots in Alaska, is a flat monthly income for all residents, regardless of their financial position.
“The idea is that it can reduce poverty and boost well-being – but detractors say it is wildly expensive, manifestly unfair as it isn’t means tested and reduces aspiration.”