The Curmudgeon


Tuesday, July 10, 2012

Useful Advice

In Daveybloke's Big Society thingy, social mobility is a rather simple matter. Nice people, like Daveybloke and his chums, either stay where they are or else get richer; the rest of us pay for it, and if in the process a few million go down and out, the resulting healthy competition will ensure that there are always more proles to spare. Presumably this epic simplicity, which rivals Michael Gove for efficiency and Eric Pickles for finesse, is the reason why Daveybloke has been able to get away with having Alan Milburn as an adviser on the subject.

Milburn has been informing the education select committee of the coalition's various achievements: plunging children into poverty, keeping the best jobs for the right people, and setting the poorer classes against each other. This last is, of course, the principle of divide and rule, although from the way Milburn talked one would think it some sort of regrettable side-effect: he described the Conservatives' traditional and thoroughly rational policy of "pitting the interests of the kids at the bottom against the kids in the middle" as a risk to be avoided rather than a defence to be maintained. Milburn even claimed that the Government would "need permission from the majority" to address the issue, as demonstrated by the noted democratic triumph which was Twizzler Lansley's furtherance of Milburn's own party's assault on the NHS.

Milburn also provided useful advice on child poverty targets, arguing that they could be met if their deadlines were postponed and if the Government suddenly decided to take an interest in doing the exact opposite of what it has been doing since it came into office. Doubtless the Bullingdon Club will be duly impressed, and will listen with bated breath when Milburn gets around to warning them that cutting rich people's taxes will make the rich people richer still.

Me at Poetry-24
The Road to Serfdom


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