Those who have been reading the blog for a while, may have picked up that I am a bit posh. Not champagne-drinking, Puccini-listening, bun-throwing posh, but certainly on the posher side. My parents weren’t all that posh, and my siblings, although they like to think they are posh, are a rather grubby, dishonest, grasping type of posh that the world could really do without.
I, on the other hand, am more of your oh-so-worthy worried scruffy noble posh. The kind of posh that nobody really wants to employ, because we value honesty and integrity over money, which makes us rather unpredictable and a bit too competent at times. There is nothing worse than trying to pull a fast one and having your underling/colleague point at you and tell you you just aren’t good enough.
This means that I am very helpful if you happen to be nearby and require some help with anything, or if you want anything organised before you get rid of me in case I show any sign of independent thought or action. This is not particularly convenient for me, but immensely helpful if you have more Machiavellian tendencies. What I really need is to be around somebody a lot more savvy and mercenary, who smiles at my attempts at worthiness and simplistic view of the world in terms of thinking that we should make some efforts to actually do the right thing, now and again.
Having said all this, a junkie in Govan once attempted to mug me at a bus stop, and I was able to talk her out of it by pointing out that she had children, a house, a nice watch, a nice phone which she was using so much I can only assume she had plenty of money for her contract, and really had no business attacking me as I was returning to my mother’s house after another miserable day in a call-centre because nobody actually wants a smartass posh graduate in Glasgow.
Even the museums refuse to take you unless you have been unemployed for some considerable time. I am not the only person who has been extremely frustrated by this, and the attitude that people like me do not need to work, just like everybody else. It is testament to my bloody-mindedness that I managed to keep myself in multiple jobs until my mother needed me, despite this.
Anyway, having given you some insight into my odd political mix in terms of the parental revolutionary communist/conservative gene mix, I have some concerns about the mess that is the DWP at present. We spend a lot of money with private companies repeatedly hammering the poor, when far more money could be gained by employing a great number of accountants to retrieve the uncollected taxes we are owed. These taxes to which I refer are owed by individuals and smaller businesses, since I believe the larger companies negotiate their enormous amounts of relief, and frankly, if they didn’t, they would simply find a way to pay their tax to somebody else.
Please take the time to look at the table at the beginning of the above blog post, and ask yourself whether the government have prepared for taking an extra half million children into care due to homelessness? Conservative and Labour alike, if under Smith, are willing to follow this plan. I can only assume we will be getting articles about breeding scroungers to prepare us for the vans turning up to evict and split families, since the only way some of these people are going to be employed, is if the government shells out yet more money forcing employers like Poundland to make them work for nothing.
Iain Duncan Smith, and his half thought out, poorly planned and semi executed plans for welfare should really be prosecuted for what he has done to the disabled, welfare claimants and now families in the course of his celebration of the Conservative love of societal inequity. God Bless him, we all know he was sparing with the truth on his CV and is not terribly bright. Further, it is probable that an even nastier character stood at his shoulder egging him on as he laid waste to people that need opportunities and hope rather than eternal damnation. How clever of him to resign on the basis that he no longer agreed with his own poorly made plans! I worked in Easterhouse in the nineties, and again in the noughties, and the Easterhouse he saw was vastly improved. I wonder how he would have responded had he been hunted by a pack of dogs, as I was in the nineties? Security was tight back then.
I have seen some evidence this week, that the Conservatives are quietly trying to tidy up this mess. Labour, of course, are in no position to challenge them on anything, because they are still trying to kill Jeremy Corbyn in case something awful happens, like being voted into power. I sincerely hope, for the sake of all these children, that the Conservatives take action quickly.
May I ask why it makes sense to channel people in poorly paid work back into the welfare system to do the same job for no money? I presume it benefits the companies willing to make people work this way, but do you really think this provides people with opportunity, social mobility or a sense of optimism? Is crushing the spirit, and lowering the birth rate via housing benefit policy really good for productivity in the workplace? Perhaps people would be more motivated if instead you offered them hope, and sufficient to eat, instead of contempt and ever more punishment.
This is not to say that I do not agree with anything that the Conservatives do on principle. I have far more loathing for New Labour. They have a far more sordid, unoriginal and dishonest approach to producing the same results. What does concern me however, is that a love of your country should involve pride in the inhabitants and a noble wish to provide a basic level of decent care, nutrition and health, and I do not see this at present.
There are ways of elevating the whole economy, which seem to be regarded as rather quaint and old fashioned and which our current crop of politicians appear to have no knowledge of. I am losing my patience awaiting some sign of awareness. Is it that they do not know how to do it, or is it that most of the population want to see people suffer and die for their own amusement? If the latter is the case, then evidently I am out of step.