Saturday, August 13, 2011

When in Doubt, Blame the Poor

British Prime Minister, David Cameron, has responded to the rioting in London over his budget, by blaming parents and kids who live in social housing. He promises to evict, and allow landlords to evict these "criminals" to teach them a lesson.

Across the country, they are listening.
Several councils - including Manchester, Wandsworth and Salford - have said they will take action to evict tenants if they are found to be involved in rioting.

Ravi Govindia, the leader of Wandsworth Council, said: "People who live in council homes should be under no illusions about the fate that awaits them if they are found to have been involved in Monday night's destruction and thuggery."
Poor people protest actions to make them poorer, and they are being punished by being thrown into the street.

Cameron makes Margaret Thatcher look like Mother Theresa. His critics were right when they said that he would pander to the rich. A prep boy who has no idea how many are forced to live.

Community leaders are right when they say:
Regarding the cause of the riots, community leaders say inequality, cuts to public services by the Conservative-Liberal Democrat coalition government and youth unemployment fed into the violence in London, Birmingham, Manchester and other multi-ethnic cities.
Already volatile with the English Defense League attacking Muslims, there could be a small civil war. And like Rob Ford in Toronto, one of the places where Cameron plans to cut, is on policing. But not to worry:
Defending planned police funding cuts against criticism from opposition Labour leader Ed Miliband, Cameron proposed more police powers ...
"More police powers". That worked so well at the G-20 in Toronto.

In Philadelphia, young rioters have also taken to the streets, prompting curfews and other measures. Most of the rioters are black youth, but as many are saying, this is not about race. It's about the growing gap between the "have" and "have nots".

The by-product of neoconservatism.

In Philadelphia they are targeting upscale dining and entertainment venues. One woman almost choked when her diamond earring fell into her Foie gras.

In Toronto, Rob Ford is taking preemptive measures, by also reducing the police force, while making threats of what will happen if you oppose him.

His sidekick, Giorgio Mammoliti, claims that any dissenters will be deemed to be "Communists", and he is already sniffing them out.

I think Ford would love nothing better than an all out riot in Toronto. He and his new BFF, Stephen Harper, would probably host a Toga Party, where they'll watch the mayhem on a wide-screen TV, while engaging in a food fight.

Sorry for all those not old enough to remember the cult classic, Animal House, but for those who do, be honest. Does Rob Ford not remind you of John Belushi's "Bluto" Blutarsky?

I keep expecting him to appear in a Toga with a wreath of vines on his head.

Mammoliti makes a perfect "Stork", suspected of having brain damage, and Stephen Harper a shoe in to play the clumsy "Flounder".

Only now all grown up (sort of), they prefer more powerful ammunition. A spoonful of mashed potatoes, thrown at the poor, will only invoke accusations of pandering to the hungry from their neocon friends. It would reek of Communism, for sure.

How do you like neoconservatism so far?


  1. sure hope that church sign isn't located in Canada because that is so absolutely disgusting! Super post Emily!

  2. Triple the cost of education then blame the poor for its ignorance.

  3. Bypass Parliament's regulatory framework to take massive extra housing benefits. Then triple the cost of education and blame the poor for its ignorance.

  4. Brazil’s level of economic inequality is dropping at a faster rate than that of almost any other country. Between 2003 and 2009, the income of poor Brazilians has grown seven times as much as the income of rich Brazilians. Poverty has fallen during that time from 22 percent of the population to 7 percent.

    Contrast this with the United States, where from 1980 to 2005, more than four-fifths of the increase in Americans’ income went to the top 1 percent of earners. (see this great series in Slate by Timothy Noah on American inequality) Productivity among low and middle-income American workers increased, but their incomes did not. If current trends continue, the United States may soon be more unequal than Brazil.

    Several factors contribute to Brazil’s astounding feat. But a major part of Brazil’s achievement is due to a single social program that is now transforming how countries all over the world help their poor.

    The program, called Bolsa Familia (Family Grant) in Brazil, goes by different names in different places. In Mexico, where it first began on a national scale and has been equally successful at reducing poverty, it is Oportunidades. The generic term for the program is conditional cash transfers. The idea is to give regular payments to poor families, in the form of cash or electronic transfers into their bank accounts, if they meet certain requirements. The requirements vary, but many countries employ those used by Mexico: families must keep their children in school and go for regular medical checkups, and mom must attend workshops on subjects like nutrition or disease prevention.

    The payments almost always go to women, as they are the most likely to spend the money on their families. The elegant idea behind conditional cash transfers is to combat poverty today while breaking the cycle of poverty for tomorrow.