The government have introduced a new character divination and assessment framework to determine eligibility for unemployment benefits
It’s truly remarkable that whenever we have a Conservative government, we suddenly witness media coverage of an unprecedented rise in the numbers of poor people who suddenly seem to develop a considerable range of baffling personal ineptitudes and immediately dysfunctional lives.
We see a proliferation of “skivers” and “scroungers”, an uprising of “fecklessness”, a whole sneaky “culture of entitlement”, “drug addicts”, a riot of general all-round bad sorts, and apparently, the numbers of poor people who suddenly can’t cook a nutritious meal has climbed dramatically, too. We are told that starvation is not because of a lack of money and access to food, but rather, it’s because Britain is “broken”, and people like freebie handouts at food banks, they don’t know how to budget and cook, that’s according to the Conservative Baroness Jenkin of Kennington.
She recommends that poor people eat porridge, since it only costs 4 pence a bowl. You can always imagine the milk, sugar and the fuel to warm it, if push comes to shove. Or better still, just cook it on the aga, or the barbi outside. Sorted.
Still, at least we are graced with the thrift and self-help moralising about poor people from the fabulously rich in the media. After all, there must be something wrong with someone who does nothing to help themselves to spend nothing creatively and still manages to have nothing to show for it. The truth is that too many of these poor people are rubbish at being poor.
Jamie Oliver, amongst others, says that poor people always have a very large plasma TV. Thanks for that great tip, Jamie. If you bought one whilst in work, you should get rid of it immediately and buy an even larger one from your benefit.
You must also subscribe to Sky and get a big dish put on your house. Trade in your furniture and household items the very moment you stop working, and buy them all again so you don’t have to live with the guilt and shame of having anything you may have (inadvertently, I’m sure) bought from what you once disgracefully earned.
Another top tip is have lots of children that you can’t afford. Poor people need to try very hard to get pregnant only ever once they are absolutely broke. Never plan your children when you are in work, or down and out in prosperity, that’s a big no-no. Make sure you lose the job, house and everything else first.
This said, the government are going to kindly compensate those of you who had your children when you thought your job was secure and you were generally on your uppers. You are to be “incentivised” to breed less by having no support for any child born after the first two. Phew! It’s incentivisation. And I thought it was Victorian era eugenics.
Basically, some permanently outraged and loudly indignant people who work in what they think are secure jobs and have no children think that they are personally funding your children when you get made redundant. They prefer that their money is spent on handouts and tax breaks to the millionaires and big business instead.
Some wealthy people like to feel included in designing your lifestyle choices and you can provide opportunity for a suffering wealthy person to share their guilt-fueled outrage and spite. It’s therapeutic for them, helping to alleviate their sense of resentment, shame and inadequacy. Projection is, after all, a very valuable self-defence mechanism for anally retentive hoarders. So is threatening to leave the country when confronted with the possibility of having to actually pay some tax. They cost such a lot to keep, these grumbling misers, I think we should just let them go.
Another top poverty tip from the top is make sure you take expensive holidays abroad, walk your dog if you have one and go to the pub. You must make sure you get someone to take photos of you looking busy, ordinary and happy and post on facebook, or better still, send them to the Department for Work and Pensions.
Many Sun and Daily Mail readers think that disabled poor people aren’t allowed to do or even try anything at all that looks normal, they get very distressed and outraged that you aren’t suffering enough, and hidden away being busily housebound, so they will kindly report you. Strictly in your best interests of course, because to these kind, unprejudiced, well-meaning souls, there’s nothing more important than ensuring your complete social exclusion, sacrifice and distress, and it’s the surest way of getting your benefit stopped, then you can get on with wallowing in your hard-won destitution, suffering and absolute poverty. Because as this thrifty government of self-helping, help themselves specialists has demonstrated, you’re absolutely worth it.
And as the government tells us, poor people will only stop being poor if we “incentivise” them by making them more poor.
Rich people, on the other hand, really need “incentivising” by being given more money. That’s just social justice and fairness, say the Tories.
It’s common sense, and endorsed by top aspiring entrepreneur scientists in the cabinet office, called “behavioural economists.” I love technocrats, me. How incredibly lucky we have such great career-orientated folk designing “choice architecture” just for homeless and poor people. It’s a good job the nudgers don’t need any nudging with their authoritarian neoliberal cognitive biases and pro-status quo policy decisions, as the rest of us are just so fallible, gullible and inept that we simply have to be nudged in line. It’s well worth sacrificing democracy so that the government can have citizens who meet their needs.
Who needs a government that recognises and addresses citizens needs?
Apparently, not us.
One of the greatest joys of being poor is that many people who aren’t poor have got generous and seemingly endless advice for you. There are lots of sound tips around on how to get on with being poor quietly. And the media are interested in sharing all the details of your private life with the public, so they can tut, moralise, have some outrage, grumble, seethe and foam a lot, and then give you their “advice.” Because they care so much.
All designed to make you feel so much better about your state-designed and allocated personal failings. Lucky you. And besides, who needs a welfare state when all it does is create poverty and turn people into cognitively malfunctioning idiots who are also very hungry? Those Tories must be creative geniuses, they made work pay by cutting welfare, driving down wages and raising the cost of living. See what I mean? They really should redefine the Orwell prize, the Tories would win it every year. Champions of ordinary people, they are, exposing social evils and injustices as they go, distributing work fare, poverty, authoritarianism, insecurity and behavioural change on all those faulty people that are being failed by neoliberalism and mysterious “market forces”.
Nowadays, the better off are so envious of your lucky life experiences and lack of choices that many are thinking of becoming disabled, just so they can share that exclusive pauper status for themselves. They want to own your poverty and I suspect they’d like to privatise and commercialise it. But we know that the poor invented poverty, and so it must be exclusively ours.
Poor people fake their poverty and mismanage their generous share of nothing
A recent report from Samuel Smiles and Verity Malthus, on behalf of ThanAtos, the private company hired by the government to assess people to see if they are genuinely on the point of death from starvation in order to be eligible for poverty, says that many are just feigning starvation and despair and some are even faking thinness.
This is why we have to target support only at “those in greatest need”.
ThanAtos’s research shows that many expect to be provided with food bank vouchers so they can continue to be parked on deluxe standards of suffering indefinitely.
The report said: “These poor people have taken the easy, stress-free option of not sending their children up chimneys and into t’mills any more and won’t even try their hand at pick-pocketing and prostitution. Those were once respected pauper activities, but now these poor people are jumping on the band-waggon and tarnishing the good name of thrift, self-help and state-inflicted misery.
“Far too many of those who claim they are poor don’t even have a plasma screen and a sky dish, and we know for a fact that they don’t eat takeaways, take drugs, smoke or drink cheap cider, they lack personal ineptitudes, and many don’t even have loads of unkempt children, so they are just frauds and they must have very poor budgeting skills. The problem is that once people see the privilege and benefits of gnawing hunger and destitution, they all want some. It’s all supply-led, people just want poverty as a freebie.”
How very true, it’s a real social problem. Once people begin to appreciate the Dickensian chic of malnutrition, rickets and scurvy, and many other low budget, value Victorian age diseases, they want to dash out and buy some immediately. It is becoming something of a trend. In fact the poverty porn industry has really taken off.
The growing popularity of being very hungry has enticed many these past four years. The ease by which malnutrition can be acquired under this generous government, has been welcomed and hailed as the new poor law come-back, the return of a Golden Feudal Age for the Conservatives.
It’s a very welcomed return of nostalgic, ever so quaint and cute Social Darwinist Tory principles. But some have said that this Government has clearly created a tide of social problems, as very few people were incompetently hungry and desperately silly enough to need food banks under the last Labour government.
In fact I didn’t even know they existed back then. But that’s the “Big Society” for you. What a bright idea to replace welfare with charity and state “therapy.” Silly poor people, they just need to learn to be more creative in how they spend their state funded and allocated nothing, that’s why they end up with nothing. It’s the new generous Tory something from nothing culture, just for the poor.
Those poor people need to get one of those work fare jobs. Put them in their place. That’ll sort ’em out. What those poor people need is discipline. And a good hiding never did any harm. I say bring back the birch and the stocks. That’ll teach ’em.
It’s just like the good old Victorian days. Hurrah!
Supply-side economics and the pecking order
I don’t make any money from my work. I am disabled because of illness and have a very limited income. I don’t have a plasma TV or Sky. I do eat a lot of porridge, though. Successive Conservative chancellors have left me in increasing poverty. But you can help by making a donation to help me continue to research and write informative, insightful and independent articles, and to provide support to others. The smallest amount is much appreciated – thank you.