Michael Gove. One of the gimlet-eyed zealots in government like Iain Duncan Smith who rather than just being an out-and-out bastard in the traditional Tory mould, actually believes he has a mission from on high to save us all from ourselves. This week he came out with the frankly insulting statement that people who are reduced to begging for 3 days’ worth of dried and canned goods from a church hall have only themselves to blame for their situation.
“I appreciate that there are families who face considerable pressures.
‘Those pressures are often the result of decisions that they have taken which mean they are not best able to manage their finances.”
He knows all about what drives people to go to foodbanks you see, because he’s visited one once. That makes him totally qualified to make sweeping statements about people who have to use them to survive, because they can’t claim expenses the way he can. They’re so feckless these poor people you know, they just can’t be trusted to manage their affairs. That disabled chappie there, he should have predicted that years of manual labour would cripple his back by the time he was 50, and got a nice desk job at Westminster instead, then he’d be able to pay the Bedroom Tax no bother. That single mother, she should have been able to tell her kids’ father would fuck off and leave them when the baby was a few months old and not pay a penny towards its upkeep. That young chap there who has to wait 6 weeks while his housing benefit claim is processed, he should have saved a few months’ rent for a rainy day, from his zero hours minimum wage job that he’s just lost. Honestly, it’s so easy looking after money.
Especially when you work in a job where you can claim money (ooh, let’s say seven thousand pounds of it) back from the taxpayer to furnish your house. That makes it really easy to budget, doesn’t it? And if you should choose to spend almost a third of that money in a shop belonging to your mother-in-law, well, that’s just showing excellent common sense and fiscal responsibilty, isn’t it?
I for one have no problem whatsoever that a man on a wage of £64,000 made us pay for his coffee spoons at £5.95 each, or £500 for a night in a hotel while he was moving house. Or indeed the £13,259 it allegedly cost him to move. I think that makes him the go-to guy to tell people who live on £9 a week once they’ve paid their rent and energy bills how they’re just a bit shit at managing their money. Obviously the banking crash, the outrageous cost of housing and global recession is all their fault too, the stupid poor sods. Serves them right that they have to walk miles to get some free cornflakes and tinned tomatoes in a carrier bag.