The day after watching, I Daniel Blake, and our current Government announce that £369 million of tax payers money is being spent on Buckingham Palace. The Story is here : http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-38025513
Countless millions is now being spent on the Legal system to negotiate Brexit. Money that could have been used elsewhere.
Yet the NHS is accused of over spending, but I didnt see any legal fee targets the government has. Or Value for Money assessment on the spending on Buckingham palace – and im not against the Royals by the way, but just find the cost of their DIY project, whos is paying for it, and the timing of it, in a time of Austerity (apparently) bewildering.
No one can buy the austerity narrative anymore. Or if it exists it is selective Austerity at best, and thats what makes it a Political Austerity.
There are some things that are scrutinised as value for Money, there are others where Money is just spent. The case for job creation for Trident was laughable ( ie £2m per Job) and likewise the tourism income from Buckingham Palace. But when it comes to actually helping people on benefits, when it comes to denying people allowances for disabilities, when it comes to cutting universal youth services (and replacing them with a similar cost NCS programme for young people to pay for also), cutting libraries – none of these things are maintained because it might be said that they are good to do or have – yet HS2, and Trident and Buckingham Palace are said to be good to have and not under the same scrutiny, so it appears.
So Austerity this week has been called out as a Political Choice. The Government are choosing what to apply the austerity narrative to. Its public services. Yes services for the pubic. It is local councils. Yes thats councils who are in local areas for local people. it is the NHS, and your schools, it is your safety net, which might be because of a mental health diagnosis (if you can get one). It has affected the salaries of teaching assistants in Durham http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-england-38006545, of council workers, of youth workers, of social services, the Police force, fire service and Paramedics. You know, the people we all need every now and then.
And gradually the nation is getting sicker. Gradually it is getting more pissed off. But thanks to our best pal Nigel, Donalds new golden boy, its far easier to blame other people who are in a similar situation to us, or who have travelled from even worse situations to try and find a home here. The narrative of blame for the state of this sick country has been claimed and normalised to be immigration.
If the country isnt what it used to be (says Anna Soubry in her Guardian article here: https://www.theguardian.com/politics/2016/nov/18/anna-soubry-interview
the cause of it, is not the Banking Crisis, or Brexit. It is that by choosing a political austerity that blamed the poor for poverty, rather the system that actively maintains it, and reducing support to those who need it. Thats where the blame should be. But this is not about blame, this about revealing the truth that Austerity has been a smokescreen for blazoned political judgement on the choice of government spending of tax payers money. Austerity has meant cuts, but only subjective ones.
Maybe I shouldn’t watch films that are so real and painful they stay in my head and heart for days. I, Daniel Blake tears you apart, because it is all true. It builds you back up because it reveals that humanity and dignity is found despite the system. That hope exists in friendship despite poverty. But it makes you mad that these are the crumbs of comfort in the film. The government were quick to say that the film was unrealistic. I think they’re right, the reality is that people might not be as generous as they were in the film.
If he is misrepresentative its tha Ken Loach probably over plays the helpfulness & kindness of people, he doesnt represent the system badly.
Let it just sink in that £369million pounds is being spent on Buckingham Palace. On
On an house in London. One house.
That money could regenerate the whole of Hartlepool. Or Schools in the North east. Or upgrade housing – lots of it.
Austerity is a choice the Government is making on behalf of those it wants to.