Socialist Worker


Issue No. 2382

Poor people? They’re dust at  the bottom of a cereal packet

Boris Johnson threw off his “harmless buffoon” image last week with a savage attack on poor people.

According to Johnson poor people—or as he described them, the “bottom cornflakes”—are poor because they are stupid.

“As many as 16 percent of our species have an IQ below 85,” he said, as though this is relevant to anything.

IQ tests claim to measure intelligence but are widely discredited.

But Johnson, like the rest of the ruling class, need us to believe that everyone has their “place” and that inequalities are natural.

Presumably Alexander Boris de Pfeffel Johnson got to where he is today through his natural abilities, not his background.

It must have had nothing to do with the fact that his father was a Tory member of the European Parliament and his mother was the daughter of a knight.

Boris also assured us that “some measure of inequality is essential” because it’s great for the economy.

Presumably he meant it’s great for him. 

Or he just hasn’t noticed the deep economic crisis that has gripped Britain as the gap between the rich and poor has grown.

Johnson likes to portray himself as an unconventional maverick.

In reality he is a vicious bigot and a ruthless fighter for his class.

Earlier this year Johnson said that foxes may appear cuddly but were in fact “a pest and a menace”.

The irony was lost on him.

The government has no money, it says, so we can’t afford decent hospitals, schools, wages or pensions.

But it can subsidise posh porsches. The Tories are giving people buying a new luxury £89,000 porsche £5,000 off.

The cars use an electric motor as well as a petrol engine—so qualify for a subsidy that is meant to promote green measures. 

The Lords are having a hard time. They say noisy protests are making them “physically ill”.

Former Tory party chairman under Thatcher John Gummer, also  known as Lord Deben, insisted that he didn’t want to restrict the freedom to protest. 

But he said peers needed “protection”.

More lies to whip up panic over migrants

“Immigrants are far more likely than the indigenous population to be jobless and on welfare,” claimed Daily Express columnist Leo McKinstry last week.

He was encouraging people to panic about migrants from Bulgaria and Romania coming to Britain.

Yet a European Commission report published last month confirmed, “On average, mobile EU citizens are more likely to be in employment than nationals of the host country”.

A University College London (UCL) report produced last month backed this up.

Immigrants who arrived after 1999 were 45 percent less likely to receive benefits or tax credits between 2000 and 2011. 

They made up a third of the immigrant population in Britain in 2011.

How the rich are slumming it in style

Are you a rich person looking to see what it’s like to live in absolute poverty?

Then the Emoya Luxury Hotel and Spa in South Africa has the answer.The firm has created Shanty Town—shacks made from scrap wood and corrugated metal, but without the inconveniences of a real slum.

“This is the only Shanty Town in the world equipped with under-floor heating and wireless internet access!” it boasts. Rooms cost around £50 a night—or half a month’s wages for the average South African.

Tory attacks on benefits have driven more people into debt.

Iain Duncan Smith’s Universal Credit has pushed just over a third of claimants to borrow money to make ends meet according to a review of the scheme’s pilot areas. The figure was 19 percent before the change.

A high wire act comes to Heathrow

Bosses at Heathrow airport are bringing in a circus act to change the light bulbs.

No lights have been changed at Terminal 5 for five years—because they are so high that no one can access them.

As the terminal grew dimmer, bosses considered gondolas and high-level cherry pickers.

Now high wire artists are being brought in to change the bulbs.

It’s expected to cost millions. 

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Article information

The Troublemaker
Tue 3 Dec 2013, 18:15 GMT
Issue No. 2382
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