In his article, Blair makes clear that he plans the boldest benefits overhaul since Beveridge's in 1945. He says he will take£3.5bn from the utilities to tackle structural long-term unemployment. He also announces today's publication of a set of focus files that 'spell out the facts and underline the need for reform'.
He repeats the statistic that each family spends£80 a week on the welfare state; more is spent on social security than on education, employment, health, and law and order combined. He reiterates his belief that: 'Anyone of working age who can work, should work.' This, apparently, includes lone parents and the disabled.
He promises the new welfare state will root out fraud (estimated at£4 billion a year). 'It will be based on a partnership between public and private sectors. It will be about providing services and not just cash.