Fear and Loathing in the Con Dem Nation by Michelle Brown

Like poor Alice, we have tumbled into a looking glass world. As the century embarks on the difficult teenage years, as the future looks bleaker than ever before for almost everyone, a coterie of dead eyed, grinning (and crucially, rich) sociopaths literally laugh in the faces of the poor as they rob them – a familiar hobby for their leader, a man who spent his formative years cruising around in Bentleys laughing at beggars whilst burning £50 notes in front of them as a member of notorious gang of (k)nobs the Bullingdon Club. Our leaders strike me as the sort of men – and they are overwhelmingly men (overwhelmingly white male millionaires in fact, something I find so outrageous I am astonished daily people are not out in the streets going “Wait a minute!”) who enjoy pulling the wings off flies.

Against this dystopian background, policies and press alike become more and more poisonous, bad and mad – one gem among multitudes came from the Daily Mail, hysterically accusing a man who was so afraid of being found fit for work he cut off his own foot and cooked it so it couldn’t be reattached of being ‘workshy’, followed by some egregious crowing that the man in question had STILL gone on to be found fit for work. (This was cheered on by such luminously intelligent comments as ‘This shows how easy it is to get benefits’, leading one to believe the commenter had not really understood the article). Not ‘clearly desperately mentally ill’. Workshy. Such are the depths we have sunk to in our populist disgust, abjection and total lack of empathy for the poor, sick, disabled and vulnerable.

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