It’s their party and we’ll cry if we want to

April 28, 2011 Leave a comment

With the country gearing up for the unprecedented excitement of a day off work for those who have work, Mr Cameron has staunchly defended the importance of the royal wedding for ordinary British people.

Mr Cameron yesterday spoke of his determination to defend the rights of ordinary hard-working families to enjoy this special day and of his deep disappointment at those who wished spoil the day by being mean about it, or, in some cases, even protesting against it.

“What these extremists don’t seem to understand is that ordinary people are struggling as this government repeals the welfare state and slashes jobs, or as we like to call it, ‘cleaning up Labour’s mess’. Because we have had to use napalm to clean the mess, a lot of people are getting very badly hurt of course, and what these people – people whose lives are falling apart – need in order to feel better is a big party to which they aren’t invited.

Do these protesters not realize how many people have lost their jobs over the last six months? This is a very hard time for people, and the only thing that will keep some going, as they adjust to loss of earnings and battle to keep their homes, is the sight of institutionalized extravagance being celebrated.

While I will never attempt to politicize a day of this importance, I think it’s worth taking a moment to appreciate the diversity this important day celebrates. A simple millionaire’s daughter marrying a member of royal family is the sort of diversity that this government has always and will continue to champion. For those with concerns about social mobility in this country, I think this is a very important landmark.

There have been some – radicals and extremists, of course – who have suggested that this government has a fundamental bias against welfare scroungers.  This wedding is a chance for us to prove them wrong – we are very much in favour of obscenely rich welfare scroungers like the Royal Family. I think the phenomenal amount of fuss we’ve generated out of one of them getting married shows the left’s lies as just that. However, I do not want this day to be dragged into the political, because this day is about ordinary people and the ordinary communities.

And since the Big Society comes without batteries included, for now we need things like the royal wedding to bring communities together, as the commoners alternate between discussing Kate’s dress and whether she’s lost weight. This distracts people from the fact that they can’t afford new clothes for themselves, and encourages them to run up the personal debt that might help save the high street despite our disastrous economic policies. But it’s more than that, more than simply about unaffordable and offensive aspiration – the important thing for ordinary people to remember is that wedding paraphernalia is the pressing issue of the day. We must keep this up front and centre, or people will start to wonder what we’re really going to do with the NHS.

But most of all, this is an important day of national unity during what we all know are difficult times, because while some of us will actually be going to the party, everyone else should be watching it on TV, supporting the economy by buying souvenir tat and remembering that we’re all in it together.”

Mr Clegg was unavailable for comment.

Categories: Uncategorized

Irish police launch sitcom. Nation not entirely amused.

April 10, 2011 1 comment

Back in Atlantis, in the Middle Ages of last week, reports came to light that our police are medieval cretins.

At an environmental protest camp in the west of Ireland, two young female protesters were arrested. Their video camera was also arrested. Because the video camera was still switched on, it captured the ensuing comedy stylings of these professional guardians of the peace as they joked back and forth about raping the two women. The transcript of the pilot for the Father Ted-esque sitcom can be found here.  

Unidentified garda: “Sounds like a Yank or Canadian.”

Garda B: “Well whoever, we’ll get Immigration f**king on her.”

Garda A: “She refused to give her name and address and told she would be arrested.”

Garda B : “…….and deported”

Garda A: “And raped.”

Garda B: “I wouldn’t go that far yet….. She was living down at that crusty camp, f**k sake, you never know what you might get.”

(Laughter) 

Garda A: “Give me your name and address or I’ll rape you.”

(Laughter) 

Unidentified garda: “Hold it there, give me your name and address there, I’ll rape you.”

(Laughter) 

Garda A : “Or I’ll definitely rape you.”

Unidentified garda: “Will you be me friend on Facebook?”

Now, before you become enflamed with righteous rage, the thing to remember is that this was harmless banter. It was mates having a laugh and telling funny, funny jokes.

This, from what I can gather, has been a significant contribution to the ensuing debate about standards one might expect from police, about violence to women, about whether we take rape seriously. Lots of people whinging that ‘they were just having a laugh.’

Sure they were. Frustrated stand-up comics, both of them. And the material! It’s almost as funny as Frankie Boyle. No, that’s not fair. I’m going to try to be fair.  It’s funny like Beavis and Butthead. In fact, if I really put my prejudice aside and try to objectively evaluate its comic potential, I am forced to admit that it’s probably almost as funny as Abu Ghraib.

 If we were to become so politically correct as to outlaw such simple, innocent office banter, that’s the sort of comic genius that would be lost to future generations. If you’re honestly going to tell me I can’t have a laugh about raping people, where will you go next? Tell me I can’t joke with blindfolded prisoners that they’ll be electrocuted if they step off the box? Oh, the hilarity of punching the powerless; where would frustrated, inadequate little wankers be without it?

But outside of the comic merits or demerits of their script is the context of the conversation. Two policemen joking about raping two women they have just arrested does not send a message that rape is taken particularly seriously as a crime. Mind you, prosecution stats provide enough evidence of that without the puerile soundtrack of two gobshites revealing themselves in all their troglodyte glory.

Some vested interests are more equal than others

April 3, 2011 Leave a comment

In the running for this week’s ‘Ya gotta be kidding me, right?’ award is this little gem.

A woman intending to have an abortion will be required to have counselling. By this I am not shocked. I wish I could be, but it’s been a long year and my usual reserves of political indignation are running frighteningly low. Patriarchal interference in women’s reproductive decisions seems more like a logical next step at this stage than something that might shock. But their explanation for the proposal is worth paying some attention to.

According to Miss Dorries, the current system means that women receive advice on terminations from a “remote abortion provider, with a vested interest”.

This proposition is an amendment to the Health and Social Care Bill – a bill that will radically change the way health care is commissioned in this country. It will open the door for all sorts of remote health providers, who some believe will have invested interests since they will make, you know, money.

The reasoning behind the amendment creates a powerful precedent – because the reason for compulsory counselling isn’t, of course, that women are raving hormonal loons who can’t be trusted to make decisions about their health or their bodies. The reasons being given for this are not even a shiny new chorus of ‘won’t somebody please think of the children.’ No, the reason for this is that an organisation with a vested interest cannot be trusted to make medical decisions.

So here are the options:

a) Dorries and Fields are weird, cowardly little creeps who actually want to make ‘impartial’ counselling compulsory before a woman has an abortion for other reasons that they are afraid to say out loud.

b) ‘Impartial counselling’ is an important measure that must be addressed whenever patients receive advice or treatment from a body that might have a vested interest.

Since there’s no way this is a sly measure to control women’s bodies and choices while making it sound as though it is designed to protect vulnerable women at one of the more difficult times of their lives, it must be (b).

So when private interests are commissioned to treat patients, we will each need counselling first, which will help us come to terms with our health and their decisions. After all, before taking antibiotics, some counselling will reassure us that the provider chosen by the consortium does have our chest infection’s best interest at heart. If I’m told I need my appendix out, I will of course require counselling first – after all, they have an invested interest, and it’s possible I could have gone for months without the thing exploding.

There’s really only one thing that confuses me about this. What if they tell me I need counselling? Will I have to have counselling before a third party health care provider with an invested interest tells me I need counselling? Since this government is fast making me lose my mind, I may need an answer to that one quickly.

Categories: Uncategorized

David Willetts, April Fool

April 1, 2011 Leave a comment

I wasn’t at all sure I’d win at Spot the April Fool this year. After all, we live in very special times and the papers have been practising for April First every sodding day for the last ten months. I mean, it turned out that criminalizing soup runs because ‘they encourage homeless people’ wasn’t a joke. How’s a person to tell anymore? Another day, another story that makes me laugh at its Stewart lee-esque brilliance before collapsing into incoherent rage as I realise it’s true.

But today is, having consulted a calendar, the first of April. So one story from today’s catalogue of infamy is just in jest. Which can it be?

I’m going with David Willetts, because otherwise I will have to just give up and smother myself with a copy of the Daily Mail. Because honest to good god and all the little fairies, this fucking bollocks can only be written in jest.

Mr Willetts’ argument goes thusly: social mobility has been negatively affected by feminism. To begin this argument involves placing 50% of the population in some bizarre holding pattern I don’t quite understand, because we are not going be talking about how 50% of the population may have been given a chance at economic and social independence by feminism. We’re just going to pretend that women are an appendage to the class system to which their men are subject. And from here, we argue that women getting access to education and jobs was at the expense of working class men, QED.

Since I refuse to accept the premise, even for a thought experiment, I’m afraid I can’t really go much further with this one. And I like thought experiments. I am completely on board with Schrondinger’s cat. But this one is just too offensively rubbish.

One of the things that gets under my skin when I read this sort of unmitigated bullshit, is how fiercely it feels the need to cast feminism and ‘the working class’ in opposition. I was brought up in a working class feminist family, feminist politics and values shared alike by my mother and my father. It took me years if not decades to discover that anyone, anywhere could separate the advance of the working class from advances for women, but that sorry revelation is a story for another day.

Because this is a story about social mobility, or it was supposed to be, until Mr Willets happened to engage a line of argument which has surprising distracted everyone. We should be talking about social mobility, and we shouldn’t be waylaid by spurious nonsense that could easily be mistaken for another funny, funny Tory gag, sent to try my blood pressure. We should be taking about how how to improve social mobility and we should be talking about what hinders  it.

Now, I don’t want to go all SWP, but while we watch the still-smouldering ruins resulting from our high speed chase through the stratosphere with unfettered cowboy capitalism, might this not, just maybe, be an apposite time to discuss how it may have had less than entirely positive effects on social mobility? I know it was probably mainly the cause of Those Damn Women, but still.  It’s just a crazy far-left thought after a long working week; I’ll leave it there for you to ponder.

Categories: Uncategorized

Verbs, and other confusing concepts

March 28, 2011 3 comments

 

Not to come over all Munchausen by proxy, but I must confess I’ve been looking up symptoms all day. Because there seems to be a plague, a plague I tell you, sweeping the country. The only symptom I’ve been able to pin down with any degree of certainty is this: the inability to tell the difference between ‘sitting down’ and ‘throwing things’. Annoyingly, it fits no diagnostic criteria I can find. But what if it spreads? What if we become unable to tell the difference between ‘eating something’ and ‘writing something’? The end of days, my friends, the end of days.

I have known many, many deeply irritating and offensive people in my time. Most of them are my friends. And they do many things which could annoy almost anyone. But generally speaking, I, and everyone else they annoy, can tell the difference between when they sit down and when they throw things. And one of these things is much worse than the other. For example, sometimes they sit down for too long and refuse to leave or go to bed; this can be distinctly inconvenient. However my reaction to this is of a very different degree of irritation to that which I experience if they throw things. That reaction tends to be brisk and efficient and marks the end of any good evening.

So on Saturday some things happened, in case anyone has been under a rock. And then there was news coverage. The things were as follows:

There was a march.

There was a peaceful occupation, which I will refer to as a sit in even if they were sometimes standing.

There was throwing of things.

These were three different events, represented by three different verbs. Despite the fact that standing and sitting are now growing confusing for me (because you see, this plague is almost certainly contagious) I am still fairly sure that I can see the difference in these verbs  – marching, sitting, throwing things.

Unlike in rock-paper-scissors, one of these things will always win. So, as ever, rock-throwing-pillocks make the papers, ensuring minimal coverage for those fighting the cuts.

Right at the start of the march I saw an odd sight: lots and lots of young people – teenagers, young teenagers – all getting dressed up in their best black uniform and matching headwear. Watching teenagers ‘suit up’ is not a pleasant experience. It is against the laws of god and man and any right thinking person recoils from it as from eating spoiled meat – there is something truly unnatural about a group of teenagers willingly donning a uniform.

Happily, being younger than us, they moved much faster than us, and we didn’t see them for long. Off they scampered through the crowd on their young legs, off to throw things. These little pillocks were the black bloc(k), which I refuse to capitalise, because they don’t deserve capital letters. They are also Wankers, which I am happy to capitalise, just for emphasis.

Had the convenient UKUncut not been around to pick up the blame, we, the peaceful, kid-carting, wheelchair-using massive who schlepped two miles in about five hours, would have been picking up the slack for those little pillocks and their actions. ‘A vote for Labour is a vote for anarchy,’ some balanced news-rag would have proclaimed, and we would have been indignant. We would have been blamed for kids out for kicks, which is what most of them were, and we would have been furious because walking is not the same as throwing things.

Instead UKUncut are carrying the blame for something that is nothing to do with them – as little to do with them as it is to do with us, the general marchers. The black block (teenagers who like wearing uniforms for fun at the weekend) are football hooligans. I’m fairly sure we figured out a while back that professional football hooligans can’t be blamed on football fans, no matter how annoying we might find football fans. These are two unrelated, albeit juxtaposed, groups. Even if the football fans are ‘drinking’ and ‘singing’ we are forced to acknowledge that they are not ‘stabbing people’ or ‘throwing rocks.’ It comes back to those  verb-things.

Sit ins, even if they aren’t your cup of tea, are not violent, and they are not the actions of the unmitigated jackasses who ran riot on Saturday. Sit ins, at worst, are the unwelcome guests who want to sing one more song at 4am when you’d prefer to just go to bed. Not the same as the twat who came along with them who, off his face, is now putting his fist through a window.

Getting these things confused is the same as blaming a random member of the police force for killing Ian Tomlinson or blaming a random priest for abusing kids – illogical, annoying, probably libellous and utterly, utterly self-defeating.

So I continue to search the medical databases. What could be the cause for this sudden inability differentiate between verbs? Is it cognitive? A new variant of synthaesia? Wilful myopia? We need to figure this out, people, because until we do we’re going to continue to sound like fucking idiots. And this country is already being run by enough of those.

Categories: Uncategorized Tags:

Down with this sort of thing

March 21, 2011 Leave a comment

                  

Rumours have reached parliament that great hordes of rabidly ungrateful individuals intend to publicly protest against the government this weekend.

“Is this about the forests again?” demanded a bankbencher.

When journalists tentatively attempted to explain that it was not about the forests so much as about closing libraries, privatizing the NHS, privatizing all public services, pay cuts, cuts to housing benefit, cuts to Disability Living Allowance, a likely million and half public service job losses, laws against feeding the homeless and a feeling that perhaps we were not all in this together, the Tories were flabbergasted.

Initial government estimates indicated that the protest would consist of the fifteen or so hard left ultra-radicals who think everyone should be allowed to have a job.  However this turned out to be an underestimation as it emerged that several hundred thousand people intend to march. Aware that all the policies being questioned are for the good of ordinary people, the Tories fear that this militant protest movement will confuse the hard-working families their polices are specifically designed to help.

“I just don’t know what more we can do to subdue these scurrilously unpatriotic attitudes,” said an unnamed minister, looking pale at the thought. “We told them we’re all in it together during this difficult time – that means they’re meant to die quietly in the gutter for the good of the country, not march about disrupting traffic and whining! What if it prevents people from shopping and supporting our economy? This is worse than savagery. It’s treason!”

“You can be sure that when we introduce conscription and make marching on a Saturday afternoon a legal requirement for most of these scroungers that they turn around and complain about that as well!” said an incredulous senior Tory. “It’s just ungrateful! I mean, here we are, all being in it together, and these people still find something to complain about!”

By afternoon, distress had spread through the government.

“And they’re all silly jobs, the ones we’re cutting, not real jobs. They’re the sort of jobs that Labour only invented to bribe people into voting for them and to pander to the notion that women and poor people are actually employable. We’re doing the country a favour by getting rid of them. Only the right kind of ordinary people should have jobs.”

Mr Cameron, sought to calm his distraught MPs with a typically wise and pragmatic assessment of the situation.

“There is a great tradition in this country of letting people wander around the capital for a while and then ignoring them. As in many aspects of this great role in which I find myself, I will be looking to my predecessors for inspiration. Although I’m not sure I will get to accuse them of having blood on their hands unless we actually set the dogs and the horses on them. Then they might have blood on their hands, I suppose.”

“It’s their way of feeling involved in things,” he added sagely. “Of course, when the Big Society kicks in, they’ll all be involved and they won’t need to take part in marches like this one – and we’ll be able to finish banning the right to assemble.”

Mr Clegg was asked for his opinion of the upcoming protest.

“Of course this is all very fair. It’s fair that we allow people to assemble for as long as that’s still legal. And it’s also fair that we pretend to respect this march because we know it’s completely ineffectual. And because there’ll be a lot of press watching. It wouldn’t be fair to use police brutality and CS gas on a march of this size, because there’ll be cameras there.”

Categories: Uncategorized

An Irish Solution to an Irish President

March 17, 2011 1 comment

Back in Atlantis, they are going to elect a new president this year. I know, they just got a new government – how much democracy can one bankrupt country afford in a single year? But they’re going ahead with it anyway – constitutional requirement and whatnot – and it will lead to a new president. Which is deeply, deeply unimportant, because the president of Ireland is a ceremonial sort of head of state role, a figurehead and nothing more. What usually happens is that each of the main (three) political parties nominates someone worthy but thoroughly unexciting, and one of them gets elected, and then everyone gets on with their lives.

But this year something mildly interesting is happening, in fitting with 2011’s resolution to really make its mark in the history books. This year, someone is being nominated by a facebook campaign. And that someone is David Norris.

David Norris is what they call ‘a well known character’ back in the old country, but I’ll provide some background notes for those who aren’t from the old country.

David Norris is a Joycean scholar of international renown. He is probably the most famous campaigner for gay rights in Ireland. He is the man who took Ireland to the European Court of Human Rights in 1988 and won, and is the reason that homosexuality was decriminalised in 1993. (No typos there, seriously. That is actually what happened.) He has been an elected member of Ireland’s ‘upper house’ for twenty years. He is also famous for not much liking the IRA. And he’s very, very funny.

This sounds good, you’re thinking. Someone with intelligence, the ability to think, to speak in complete sentences maybe. Someone with political passion and integrity. Someone with the guts to take on the overwhelming and oppressive cultural norms of the day and emerge victorious. Someone who isn’t a fan of terrorism. These are good things. They’re the sort of things I check for when I meet new people.

And yet lots of people are making funny little squeaky noises about not quite being sure they’d vote for him. I’ve been trying to translate their funny little squeaky noises into arguments because these might be easier to address than the nebulous sense of discomfort. Let’s see how I do. Let me know if I’ve missed anything.

Problem: Well, he’s too academic, you see. He’ll never get elected because he’s too academic, elitist, smart, intellectual, and other words we’ve been taught to mistrust.

Solution:  Well, we sure as hell wouldn’t want to be represented on the public stage by someone with a brain and the education to use it. Instead, always choose honest-to-god folks who can’t write their own fucking names. Start a facebook campaign demanding Bertie Ahern and George W Bush throw their hats in the ring.

Problem: It’s not that he’s gay of course. In the 18 years since his extraordinary victory in the European Court of Human Rights was made statute, Ireland has travelled an impressive distance. Just the right distance to ensure no one will admit they won’t vote for him because he’s gay. But it might be difficult for heads of other states to take him seriously, you have to understand. Because, well, he’s kind of camp. What if having to talk to a camp man offended the delicate sensibilities of Berlusconi or Ahmadinejad? 

Solution: Presumably a sixteen year old girl in full burqa would be an acceptable compromise for the gentlemen in question. I’m not sure this is actually how we should pick a head of state, but I suppose it must be considered.

Problem: Not liking the IRA is, it turns out, quite a big issue. Not that per se, of course, because we’re all very grown up now. But a man who has called the martyrs of 1916 ‘terrorists’ isn’t a suitable head of state to lead the flag-waving centenary celebrations which I personally will be avoiding like the plague unless Mr Cameron deports me before then.

Solution: Choose a head of state based on their ability to wave a flag. Better yet, save money and elect a flagpole. This would be indistinguishable from several former Irish presidents.       

Problem: We’re actually rather uncomfortable about not wanting to vote for an intellectual gay man with a noted disapproval of terrorism. We know this doesn’t paint us in quite the progressive light we’d now like to be seen.

Solution: Congratulate yourselves on just how far this country has come in thirty painful years. Then vote for Mr Norris. Shake off the coyness, the shoulder-shrugging, the lingering sense of unease about an intellectual gay man as your head of state. And please, please, vote for Mr Norris.

Categories: Uncategorized Tags:

Scorn not his big society

March 14, 2011 Leave a comment

Mr Cameron was today challenged on what some saw as a potential flaw with “releasing public services from the grip of state control”.

Cutting edge research revealed that the National Minimum Wage Act 1998 states that anyone doing work for an organisation must be paid at least the minimum wage. While charities, voluntary organisations and statutory bodies are legally entitled to employ unpaid voluntary workers, private companies are not.

On the face of it, this may present a problem for the implementation of two of Mr Cameron’s most treasured schemes – on one hand, all public sector jobs being done for free; on the other, the outsourcing of all public sector work to private industry, This morning it was pointed out by radical left wing organisers that private companies may not be covered by ‘charities, voluntary organisation and statutory bodies’ and would therefore be leally obliged to pay people for doing a job. Some representatives of the vicious left wing media went so far as to say that Mr Cameron’s two top policy initiatives might now be irreconcilable.

When the revelations broke, several senior tories scratched what appeared to be their heads. In comments made off the record, a number admitted they had never heard of the legislation in question.

“Who came up with this nonsense?” asked one. But morale in the party was hit hard when an intern confirmed that the legislation indeed existed and that the far-left’s unpatriotic attempt to undermine Mr Cameron’s hopes for a better Britain might have some legal legitimacy.

“But if we can’t make all the people we fire work for free, the whole country will collapse!” said one. “I mean, someone has to do these jobs that are getting slashed all over the place. Quite a lot of them are important.”

“Also, if we can’t make everyone work for free, how would the Big Society work?” asked another, looking confused. “We don’t have all that many policies, so it’s really important that we can keep saying this one is going ahead full steam.”

Suggestions that this revelation might discourage plans to auction off public services were quickly dismissed.

“No, we are committed to this very real option for genuine diversity,” Mr Cameron told the press at lunchtime. “Also, we’ve already promised lots of the contracts to our friends.”

However reconciling the two schemes took all afternoon, during which time Mr Clegg volunteered to be tied to a pole outside parliament to distract the public by allowing them to throw things at him.

By tonight, the government had started to downplay any suggestions that these debates would hamper their plans.      

“It’s very simple,” said Mr Cameron. “Firstly, we’ll need to repeal the National Minimum Wage Act, which we were going to do anyway. That really is the only important thing here. This will remove any controversy about our plans.

 Mr Cameron did not address rumours that the government’s back up plan involved conscription for people who have been out of work for more than one week and who can’t support themselves.

Mr Clegg confirmed that his party had checked these plans for fairness and he was as happy to approve them as he was to be released from the pole.

“It wouldn’t be right if we were seen to break the law,” he explained. “But repealing the law would mean that we don’t break it, and that means we remain completely fair, as well as blatantly transparent, which is what the country wants and what we always promised.”

Maliciously not breaking the law

March 10, 2011 Leave a comment

The delightful UKUncut have raised the issue of legal tax avoidance, which means not paying tax that one is not obliged to. A silly position, one might think, because who pays more tax than they are obliged to? Frankly, most of us pay the amount that is removed before we ever see it, and then try to remember to pay our council tax before we get a court summons. We don’t offer to pay more and there’s really no mechanism in place to do so. I’ve tried paying too much council tax, due to a serial inability to count when it matters, and they send it right back to me, or at least refund it at the end of the year.

So can it possibly be fair to label those who have not broken the law as malicious anti-social thugs who wreck the fabric of society and destroy the lives of ordinary people through their selfishness and greed?

I don’t know. Can it, Mr Cameron?

The branding of recipients of welfare payments as work-shy fraudulent scroungers is not Mr Cameron’s. It has been a mainstay of the right-wing press for years now and was pandered to pitifully under Labour. But Mr Cameron has added an entirely new layer of mythology to this fable. Mr Cameron has sought to blame welfare recipients for an international recession.

And that, my friends, is pretty fucking impressive.

I mean, seriously, I am impressed. Awed, really. I’ve read my Orwell, and I’ve seen some really impressive backtracking and arse-covering in my time but this has been my first genuine sighting of the 1984 experience.

Back in early 2010, the people of Britain were still generally under the impression that the international recession was caused by diabolically run banks. Through a subtle understanding of context clues and sheer, bloody-minded repetition, they had also grasped that this was something to do with lots of countries. There was a clue in the ‘international’ bit. Four months later, there was the sudden revelation that in Britain, the international recession was caused by the welfare state, unemployment benefits and probably Disability Living Allowance with its 1% recorded fraud rate.

And while blaming Labour for ‘giving all the money away’, there is a simultaneous attempt to blame the recipients for receiving it.

Let’s be clear about one thing – this goes beyond ‘clamping down on benefit fraud’. This is about linking receipt of benefit with a vast array of pejorative and slanderous terms – because these people are all malicious anti-social thugs who wreck the fabric of society and destroy the lives of ordinary people through their selfishness and greed.

The inability to find or keep a job during a period of international recession, and then to claim the benefits to which you are entitled makes you a malicious anti-social thug who wrecks the fabric of society and destroys the lives of ordinary people through your selfishness and greed.

Losing your job right now in any of the inevitable rounds of redundancy brought about by drastically reducing the size of local government or the civil service? That’s right, unless you’re independently wealthy and were only working because of your personal passion for the job in question, this will make you a malicious anti-social thug who wrecks the fabric of society and destroys the lives of ordinary people through your selfishness and greed.

Every mention of ‘hard working families’ means one thing – anyone not working is to blame for your hardships. You aren’t a person having a rough time during an international recession – you are a Hard Working Family, you have an identity. So do They. And They’re to blame.

At some point a logical circuit has to break in this cycle of unholy nonsense. I’m not sure how or when that’s going to happen. For many people it will come when they lose their job, possibly after years of working, perhaps having never received any state benefits before, or not in any way they appreciated as such.

I don’t know what percentage of the population will need to be unemployed before the miserable reality of making ends meet on welfare payments reasserts itself in the national consciousness. I do think we might find out, but it’s not something I’d wish on anyone.

In the meantime, querying the extent to which multimillionaires avail of their own brand of benefits, questioning their contributions to society during a time when we are repeatedly told ‘there’s just no money left’, asking why this government has not stepped up to close these loopholes with the same remarkable alacrity as they show when it comes to welfare benefits? Well, that seems quite a sensible thing to do under the circumstances.

Satire dead, eaten by Mr Cameron

March 4, 2011 2 comments

After nine months in power, Mr Cameron was asked today what he felt has been his greatest achievement to date.

“That’s a hard question – I think we have worked solidly and consistently in so many areas. But I think our most significant achievement has been to really end satire in this country. We’ve created an environment where no one knows just how far we might go with our wonderful, sweeping reforms that we have no choice about anyway. This ensures that so-called ‘comedians’, who work only to undermine the comforting certainties of ordinary people, have stopped making jokes about us.

How did we achieve this? Well, through hard work and through listening to the people. In fact, mainly through listening to the satirists and then implementing policies based on a literal interpretation of their purported jokes. It’s been working very well so far.”

A small handful of renegade satirists have continued to say unkind things about the government under the guise of humour, but with Mr Cameron’s admission that his policies are based largely on the material they provide, a fearful country is turning fast against them.

The media has implemented emergency measures banning the publication of satire or political comedy in any form, pending further investigation of its disastrous consequences.

Categories: Uncategorized