Tag Archives: tories

Divisions beyond repair: Class warfare and austerity Britain

Although condemned for their free-riding of the state welfare system only recently, a horrific incident led to the massacre of six innocent children at the Philpott’s household when petrol was poured into their home, unleashing an uncontrollable blaze. 

However, as those who survived the blaze have to somehow rationalise and deal with this atrocity, Carole Malone – the notorious ultra-Tory who hates anybody that doesn’t have a 6 figure salary – argued on national television that it was, virtually, their own fault and they brought it on themselves.  “This family became a target a couple of years ago,” she argued on ITV’s This Morning; they had “probably upset a lot of people” by being a family of 17 who were receiving state benefits. “I suspect they have many enemies out there because they were seen to be on benefits,” she suggested. With the country in such a dire financial state, “People have seen families – maybe like this – wanting to take advantage.” Referring to the “culture of the family” and the fact they had brought “attention to themselves”, Malone concluded that “six innocent children have died as a result”. 

Although I won’t try and argue that there isn’t a free-rider issue, of course there is, it’s a basic economic issue when goods are provided free-of-charge, the way in which Malone attacked the family showing no compassion was completely outrageous and insensitive. Malone, after the Karen Matthews incident claimed to “live next to a council estate full of people like Karen Matthews” implying that they’re some kind of sub-human race. She later confirmed this view by saying that they are “sub (human) class that now exists in the murkiest, darkest corners of this country”, as though Karen Matthews is some how representative of all people in Britain. 

However, much like Mitt Romney’s facts and figures were inaccurate when attacking similar sects of American society, so were, too, Malone’s. A recent study showed that just 3.4% of families in long-term receipt of benefits have four or more families. So where does the real issue lie? 

Prejudice against those receiving benefits is rife in Cameron’s austerity Britain. Rather than attacking the root cause of the issue, Cameron turned attention to public spending as the cause of financial dismay. However, the issue arose when he had to justify cuts to welfare, and so a campaign of demonisation had to be enforced in order to crush sympathy.  A campaign of people scrounging from the state whilst taking multiple holidays on low-budget airlines whilst having several humongous TV’s paid for courtesy of the taxpayer. 

Yes, benefit fraud exists (and the government should know..). But according to the Government’s estimates it accounts for only less than 1% of welfare spending, but the absolute extreme examples are passed off as representative of the fraud. We’ve seen Sunday Times articles in which journalists have blazoned their perverse views of the benefit system and argued that they wish to turn disabled in order to earn as much as “they” do; when in fact this is all nonsensical propaganda. It’s belligerent journalism like this which leads to prejudice against the most indigent and destitute people who, without the support of the state, would simply suffer an unimaginable life. 

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Wholly surpassing expectations – The Olympics

It was wonderful to see a “Closing Ceremony”, rather than a “Closing down ceremony”, which many people were expecting. Me included. I’ll be honest, I never really expected the Olympics to be as successful as they were. Not just in terms of medals won and where we appeared on the medal table – but, rather, because we couldn’t afford the event (again) and pulled it out of the bag and showed the world we are pretty good – again.

One of the highlights of the event was the Royals and the government. We weren’t the whole super boring, serious Conservative nation we may have once been (were, depending on your view). The Queen parachuted for us and that said to the world “Yes, we do start illegal wars; we do owe you a lot of money; we did spill oil everywhere and endangered a lot of animals; but can your royal family do this!?”. A great cutaway was Dave, Boris and Ed and their wives dancing to Spice Girls:

Cameron looks somewhat uncomfortable in his dance; but, Boris! He’s loving his time. After his opening speech before the games began, his reputation has shot up; can I smell a new Conservative party leader!? It smells like freshly trimmed roses, frankincense, and the souls of urban London orphans.

With all this in mind, now the Olympic flame has gone out, has Britain’s flame faded along with it?

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A Letter to Kenneth Clarke, MP

Dear Sir,
I write before you under no malice or aggression; but rather out of an injustice caused to me as of 20th July, 2012. I cannot give greater proof of the high opinion I have of your candour and post as Ministry of Justice, than by the liberty I am to take by offering you advice upon a subject which you have so just a claim to act for yourself. I know you to have a love for justice, law and order and I, too, share this desire to live in a community in which shares the same views as yourself; however, upon an incident in which my motorbike was stolen, I was faced harshly with the truths of our community; perhaps, in some sense, my own naivety deceived me into believing that we live in a society in which the law and justice is respected by one-another. Apparently, your Right Honourable Gentleman, this is not the case.
You must forgive me for the way I have introduced myself and have possibly been elusive in the purport of my writing and who, in fact, I am. As you will know, the British Youth Council recently ran local elections for a local Member of Youth Parliament. My name is Joseph Williams and I was lucky enough to be chosen by my constituents of a similar age to fill this post. It is something I respect so much so, that it surpasses my power of expression – as I’m sure you’re aware of given your current position. However, those very same constituents who chose me to represent them; those constituents whom claim to lack a voice in the community which chose me to articulate for the inarticulate; those very same constituents which claim they receive a bad press for theft et al. have chosen to none other than stab me in the larynx by stealing from me.
I propose, after this malignant act, that a reformation is to take place on the current Criminal Justice Act, 2001. In Saudi Arabia, Syria and, now the old Libya (after the removal of the corrupt tyrant Gadaffi), the punishment for theft is to be:
• Branding
• Limb amputation
• Capital punishment
Now, alike your respectful self, I believe these punishments to be extremely radical. However, this style of justice system has been proven to work. If we take a look at statistics1, the total number of recorded automobile thefts in the UK (2002) was 348, 169 as opposed to Saudi Arabia’s 18, 717. These recordings have led me to believe that the current justice system in Saudi Arabia is proving much more effectual than our current system. Granted, of course, we have to take into consideration the greater number of automobiles the UK has, but when we compare that to the surface area and population of Saudi Arabia, a country rich in oil, it begins to balance out the figures.
I do not call upon you to make drastic adjustments to the bill, and I understand the timescale which often encumbers any progress; but I believe it to be within the best interest of those of which that still support you and I, and those of which I still wish to speak on behalf of within my constituency. Permit me to assure you, Sir, I believe you to be a venerable man and I fear that you will think this address impertinent; yet, I still seek your approbation and request you seek the virtue in the reasons I write such a letter. Believe me, your Right Honourable Gentleman, I merit your utmost attention and regard on these matters which I present unto you. However, I feel after such an act of betrayal – not merely betrayal to me and everything on which I stand for but lest we forget the betrayal to yourself for everything you try to serve and protect yours and my own constituents with – a change of some sort must be made. Therefore, I plead you forgive me for, what may appear to be, impudence and vow that it is the mode of the letter, rather than the tone which actually undercuts my true word. I eagerly await a reply on your opinions and views and:
I am, Sir,
Your most humble and obedient servant,
Joseph Williams, MYP

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Don’t worry. Keep your head up. It’ll be okay.

Apparently so, anyway. This is what Labour’s new policy seems to be, it doesn’t have too much to it. What Labour have suggested is “remain optimistic”, which is pretty obvious considering it probably couldn’t get that much worse. What Milliband should have probably said was “We’re close to rock bottom, really. It could get a little bit bumpier, double dip, few recessionary measures handled by that Etonian and his best mates in their ‘light-handed manner’, EU issues, but nothing we’ve not had to deal with; three more years to go and we might just get me to sort things out”.

Oh, Eddie, how I love your charismatic approach to serious issues. I myself am a strong Labour supporter. I do, in fact, hope at the General Election of 2015 that Milliband finds his voice and does something great and pulls a trick out of the bag, or at least Cameron to gets into a limousine and calls someone from Bradford a peasant (I can dream!). At the same time, I also hope good ol’ Eddie stops being such a tool and starts working things out properly. I hope he realises his manifesto isn’t that great, Ball’s and His ideas are on par with Cameron’s and Osborne’s and he can continue to slate Cameron as much as he likes but until he finds some sort of better alternative I suggest he does what the rest of us are having to do and deal with it.

Being completely honest, I can already predict some extent of the speech. It’ll go along the lines of Him saying we need to help the squeezed middle class and encourage public spending. He’ll target the public sector and defend them to his death bed because, after all, he’s a socialist (in the New Labour sense) and that’s what we do. Sadly, however, he’ll fall into the “tax and spend” trap which never really solves anything. Cameron tried encouraging public spending earlier last year and it really didn’t do much for the economy.

What I suggest is he edges on the debt relief side of things (providing Cameron doesn’t already use this). It was around the ’80’s when a lot of money was given to Sudan and over the years after changing interest rates, the debt rose to £678 million. Sudan have asked for debt relief, now if Britain essentially say “okay, you don’t owe us it, providing this contributes towards the target of spending 0.7 per cent of the national income”. That could effectively help Britain “cancel out” some of our debt and get us on track for targets.

We’ll see what 2012 has to offer for us, but I suspect internationally it’s going to be rather interesting.

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