Two-way mirrors, hidden observers: welcome to the Department for Work and Pensions laboratory

Politics and Insights

018I regularly write to raise concerns about the current government’s misuse of psychologyin public policies and research. There has been a shift towards the formulation of targeted, prejudiced, class contingent policies which have the central aim of “changing behaviours.” This neo-behaviourist approach has some profound implications for democracy. It constrains autonomy and curtails the basic liberties of targeted citizens.

On the government website, a contract finder notice for the “Provision of Research Laboratory Facilities” for the Department for Work and Pensions says:

“The Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) requires research to be undertaken, in a research laboratory environment, with recipients of the Carers Allowance and recipients of the Employment and Support Allowance (ESA).

In a typical lab situation DWP shall have one DWP researcher in a room with the participant and other DWP researchers (if appropriate) and invited observers behind a two way mirror…

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The Purge: A mental health disaster 

An Erratic Orbit

​So how do you go through hundreds of thousands of social media accounts with a handful of staff? Answer: You don’t. You pay SEOs/Social media companies for the information.

On facebook, members have expressed fear, anxiety, and have even been suicidal. People under the most pressure from the Tories already. Junior doctors, nurses, the disabled, Union leaders. The anguished thought, taking many forms, is ‘How can our comrades do this to us?’

sitting under a bridge with your head in your handsImage from http://www.thegospelcoalition.org

Sitting with their spreadsheets in Labour HQ, no doubt depressed by columns of invective and swearing without context, our comrades see only the back end of the elephant.

The Owen Smith team are right in a way. Almost everyone is an entryist. There are few “pure” Socialists, if any, because our code is inherently compromised. The solutions are radical: Firstly we must reach out to Johanna Baxter and co. Be part of their Social Media…

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