The left and austerity *short*

The left, ie the cultures and individuals who identify themselves as such, did not fight austerity. The attachment of that culture prevented ANY challenge to austerity and the imposition of dogmatic nonsense onto an economic transformation that was nothing to do with it, prevented debate about austerity moving forward.

The trade unions at the heart of the old left have chosen and will be supporting Labour, in delivering their version of austerity. The organisations like the SWP, and the social network of the so called radical left have been an elite protective protective fringe around our political system to prevent challenge to austerity. The political parties and newspapers at the heart of the centre left are now selling austerity.

The left are over and are now just cultures that need to be swept aside so that people can speak. In the age of the internet we do not need these intermediaries any more and the spite and violence that comes with any suggestion the left are pointless is just the dying days of that culture.

The debate about our economic system, it’s relationship with social policy, inequality and political narratives is not dead, it was just suppressed by that bullshit. It will continue. It will develop and as people talk to each other without having nasty tribalism imposed on them, answers will come and knowledge will grow. The voices that count will talk to each other, and no longer will they be subsumed by strange elitist, misogynist, racist, entitled cultures who served to do nothing but act as an electric fence to change. Voices from grassroots are being heard, now that this is happening.

The people’s front of Judea can develop again when things are more settled.

The unpleasantness of this week

One of the difficulties with managing the message politics when translated to the internet is that people answer back, the other is chronology. It get’s quite difficult for someone to declare their good intentions when they repeatedly show they are full of shit, and it’s quite difficult to steamroller and exploit people with an exploitative message when you have to exist along side them.

For the part of the twitter bubble who came from traditional elite backgrounds, where they were bred to believe they had the right to lead the docile proles, bred to take their place in power structures, and for those who expected their media platform to give them the right, it is often difficult to adjust. If you have spent your years at Uni doing your hard slog in the local party and pontificating about ‘the poor’ and making teh right connections, it is difficult to find the poor are not sat waiting for your answers. Or that they know your answers are their problem. Often you can delay the point where you find this out, by utilising a noxious political culture, the elitism of your institutions, and existing media frameworks, but occasionally it is hard.

It can be hard to fathom that not only can you not manage the message any more, but that people have the temerity to exist outside your thought processes and needs. The poor are always with us and they don’t shut up because you block them. For those of us swimming in the pool of digital media transition this exposes us to danger. For a culture where smear and lie and attack is the way to protect their ideas and power being threatened, it’s a transition. Stella Creasy had have it pointed out to her that she is an elected representative on a public forum and as such people may discuss the relationship between payday loans and the welfare reform Labour are committed to, within earshot. She could not grasp that reflex smear is unacceptable behaviour and she has a block button.

For some the block button is not enough. And they expect the world to not exist outside their delusions, these people are to be pitied. The ones who think because they press block the conversation they want to pretend doesn’t exist goes away. Even when they lash out and resort to the defamation and smear tactics that defined old media power structures, we should seek to find forgiveness. I think this is par for the course in the transition to digital culture, and we need to be patient with those people. It’s a type of blindness and they will grow out of it as digital culture moves quickly past them.

For the media types who are failing to recognise we live in a media democracy, who are used to power without accountability, they have not been bred for such an environment, they think the world is like twitter because their world is like twitter, it’s going to take a while. I think we just have to bite the bullet and accept how dangerous a place they make the internet, while we record their stars falling. They don’t understand that we don’t know them, don’t care who they are, and just need to change the effct of the bullshit they sell. This about their environment and culture, and their inability to differentiate between real life and twitter, their inability to regulate their own behaviour is a cultural problem from the homogenous world they inhabit offline. We must work to understand these people are a product of a culture, are afraid of the fact that they can’t compete without the advantage they did not earn and record the dying days of this system, and the role of our flailing media poppets within it, safe in the knowledge that this is what lays the ground for what comes after.

I think forgiveness is appropriate in these circumstances, they don’t know they are tiny weeny poppets in a new ocean of millions of perspectives better informed than theirs. They don’t know the certainty that comes when your perspective is grounded in realiy and not a message you need sell by behaving like children. Forgiveness is where it’s at. And enjoying the show they give as they flail and die…

400,000 Made Destitute By New JSA Sanctions Regime

Birmingham Against The Cuts

jcp-signThe new sanctions regime for jobseekers, which can see benefits stopped for up to three years, has hit over 400,000 people in the 9 months from October 2012 to June 2013. 48,000 people have had benefits stopped for 3 years, a number which will increase hugely as people sanctioned for the first or second time get caught out again by an increasingly kafkaesque benefit system and the new claimant commitment.

Esther McVey, the minister for employment reckons that sanctions were only used against those who were “wilfully rejecting support for no good reason”, but we know that this isn’t true and have compiled a list of truly ridiculous sanctions which has also been turned into a tumblr page, to keep track and raise awareness of the sometimes bizarre circumstances under which sanctions are applied.

JCP advisors have targets to meet and face performance reviews if they aren’t…

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The block function

When you have blocked someone, you cannot read their tweets or see them. If you go searching for yourself on twitter and you have blocked someone and read tweets that include your id, but are clearly not intended with you as the audience, and your feelings are hurt, it’s lesson. Don’t search for yourself on twitter, if you want to see or engage with those tweets, unblock the person and do so.


Chavs: A demonisation of the working class

In 2010, as a single parent, it became apparent that austerity was going to target single parents. MY mother had been a single parent, giving birth to me in 1978 at the birth of Thatcherism and the trajectory that accelerated during austerity, was trialled throughout my childhood, as the estates I grew up on(there were many) were systematically attacked and turned into demonised matriarchies.

I have always been politically aware, and through working at the DWP and then as a social worker, my personal understanding of the intersection of politics, economics, social policy, was contextualised with a professional experience and theory base which ensured I was fully aware of what would happen. I wrote a guide to delivering public service cuts, several months before the election which turned out to be quite prescient. As Labour and their poppets got ready to capitalise on austerity and exploit the feelings of the anti-cuts movement, I was picked up by Guardian to write about my perspective. I was invited to an event called Netroots, which I naiively attended. This is what I said. I said that welfare reform, social care cuts and social work cuts were subject to political consensus and outlined how false left/right tribalism in the political media served to sell this.

I was so threatening at the event I had been invited to speak at, that I travelled to at my own expense, that Jessica Assato, Jennifer Mahony and Sunny Hundal concocted a smear against me, which Ellie Mae O Hagan put on the New Left Project. The labour blogosphere then went on to whitewash the cuts I discussed and the effect, and there was no mention of welfare reform the Tories were pushing through within the Labour blogosphere for quite some time. While Ian Duncan Smith showed how vicious the tories would be on the people and areas I spoke about, if he had no opposition.

From that point on I critiqued the centre left and the left and their role in selling austerity. I did this eloquently. articulately and as austerity developed and I watched people around me crushed under the weight and tried to keep upright, I continued to do so. The blog I kept was then shortlisted for an Orwell Prize. I was smeared when the New Statesman validated a women who had been stalking me and my family for several years, with the assistance of a man local to me, with Mehdi Hassan and Helen Lewis both fully aware of the effect on my and my family.

At that time, Owen Jones was using the twitter bubble that was feted as the way to oppose the cuts, to publicise his book, ‘Chavs; A demonisation of the working class’. I had naiively thought that Owen didn’t know that his colleagues and friends were whitewashing austerity, and politely on several occasions tried to explore with him the problems with the narrative in his book. Which was largely a discussion of broadsheet editorial, left and right, which had served to disenfranchise the very people he spoke about. Rather than discussing Labour movement indifference to the women, the sick, the ill, and the unemployed who fell outside the Labour movement and the preservation of labour movement fiction in disenfranchising the estates I grew up on, Owen’s book chose to paint those people as our saviours.

I am a chav, have always been a chav, and am fairly proud of where I come from.

After several months of trying to engage with Owen, only to receive gaslighting, abuse, or have him hold up a straw man he could knock down so he didn’t have to engage with my substantive critiques, I realised my initial belief that he was not aware of the effect of what he did was wrong.

However, as I am not an unpleasant person I did the following. When I received updates about his facebook feed, on my facebook as a result of the message in the last blog post on here, I blocked him as I assumed he would not want me to see these as they were private. When I was invited to attend an IPPR event in Manchester, where he would also be in attendance, I declined the invitation, because I didn’t want to make him uncomfortable. I notified him of this.

As he had blocked me on twitter and he could not see my tweets, I used his twitter id to tag my critiques of how the centre left were selling austerity before my eyes, often noting how his particular narrative was clearly disingenous, confident that he could not see my tweets at all. As he claimed validity on the basis of twitter, this was valid political action. I was subjected to repeated abuse his followers, as he showboated to them knowing I could not respond, and he watched as i was abused by his followers.

I continued to include his id in conversations about the effect of the narrative he sold, as he had established he was a media entity. You can see posts deconstructing centre left narratives he has sold, throughout this blog. I refused to write for the Guardian and turned down all media opportunities as i did not want to contribute to the hardship suffered by those around me. I have been very open about trolling Owen as the point in our political media machinery which claims to speak for those he disenfranchises.

I recently christened him Midget Jones. Which I think was very funny.

This morning Owen accused me of stalking him, and other people, presumably using the platform he once feted as a way for ‘working class people’ to make their voices heard. Presumably not my voice.

Twitter is a tool I do not only use to deconstruct the left and centre left, who have placed me and my family at risk on several occasions, but a tool I use to pick up work.

His defamation of me comes after he has refused every single opportunity to discuss the very substantive criticisms of him i have made. Valid criticisms about the imposition of labour movement fiction and false left right tribalism, on austerity which is largely about the intersection of economic inequality, social policy and political narratives on the people he claims to speak for.

I have always accused Owen of having no first hand experience on which to base his false narrative about the demonisation of the working class. I now know that is not true. Owen is willing to demonise the working class, if the Chavs he writes about dare to point out the effect of the false narrative he sells. And as he finds it increasingly difficult to justify his position as a triangulation point selling Labour austerity, he will resort to defamation of character and attempting to undermine the reputation of the Chavs he speaks of, even knowing they are in poverty, if it threatens his career.

Far from being upset about his defamation this morning. I can only conclude his disingenuousness as he fakes shock when Labour confirm what I outlined at Netroots, repeatedly, is deliberate. And he does know about the Demonisation of the Working Class and like his peers is willing to do what is necessary to perpetuate it.

I apologise to Owen for my blindingly brilliant and eloquent critique of the way the centre left worked together to sell austerity for Labour and thank him for this morning’s demonstration. Sincerely and from the bottom of my heart.

As austerity continues to target the people around me, I will continue with this critique, and will be continuing to use Owen as a vignette to demonstrate.

Why we don’t cover domestic violence in MSM

Am leaving this comment here, which is an email from someone with regard to an interaction where two very valiant male journalists wanted to cover the problem of domestic violence and austerity but could not without a smoking gun and a body. Both were well intentioned, and before they both declared their good intentions I understood what the outcome would be.

That attitude there is why so many stories are only covered when it’s too late. They need the official anointment of a court verdict or coroner’s verdict or political speech before they run anything. We *know* DV is up because statistics show it. We *know* DV services cut because there’s been plenty of research showing it. But we’re not allowed to put two and two together without a dead body and an official report because otherwise we’re being ’emotive’ or ‘hysterical’ – but MSM can freely discuss whether the welfare system led to Mick Philpott’s murders…
The entire MSM is currently railing against state-sanctioned media – the left is railing against the NSA and GCHQ, the right is railing against Leveson. I don’t know why any of them bother because they barely run anything that isn’t sanctioned or validated by an organ of the state.”

Dear Guardian,

I sent this to Becky Gardiner, who was my editor with you when I provided you with token poverty porn.

”Could you rectify your style guide and be clear that when the Guardian reports on ‘single parents’ that when they use numbers to imply there are too m any, that is an approach that comes with a body count.

Could you also ask them to cease using insulting pictures in subheadings and contributing to editorial styles which exacerbate the demonisation of the women paying teh price for all the handwringing. Coroners are quite concerned at the numbers of dead women appearing and local authorities are threatening to remove children with bedroom tax notices.

While I dont expect the Guardian to stop selling the rolling back of equality for working class women and I certainly dont expect your feminism pages to even acknowledge what it is being done, as the consequences are being felt with rape, violence and the death of women could you be a bit more responsible. Ta”

I wanted to clarify a few things for you. The difference between a single parent and a married one is a husband. Women leaving relationships is not a social problem, women staying in relationships that are not safe is a social problem. One which is reflected in coroners courts. Deliberately created poverty is not something that can be addressed by treating those women as exhibits whose choices are to be picked over. Women facing economic inequality as a result of motherhood is a problem which also afflicts you, I recall Gaby Hinsliff downsizing once she became a mother and her role as editor of the Observer was pushed out of the question. It is not news that women are more likely to be recipients of state support when they have children, the workplace is fairly hostile to mothers and I know your lot aren’t very bright but a calculator should show you the reason poverty has a female face in this country and why and how austerity targeted women.

I know you don’t view working class women as women, and I know you view working class mothers as a sub species if they leave their partners, but they are not. Equality was just rolled back, I know this is not the concern of feminism when there are pink kinder eggs, crochet politics and the latest ego trip of Charlotte Raven to worry about. I know women who reproduce are betraying the cause of your vacuous feminist writers, and I don’t expect the current war on women to make it to your feminism section on that basis, but I have a few requests.

First of all when you discuss ‘Lone Parents’ like a sub species, could you stop. When you choose your photographs to illustrate the poverty porn your readers like to wank over as your paper sells Labour austerity priorities and the disenfranchisement that led to that poverty, could you stop choosing insulting photographs designed to reinforce Daily Mail prejudice. Could you perhaps contextualise the occasional poverty porn or handwringing about domestic violence you do include, with the fact it is has been made economically impossible for mothers to leave relationships which are harmful to them and their children, work won’t make a difference, and could you perhaps not report the numbers of households where there is one parent like there are too many of them and somehow preventing women from leaving would reduce these numbers, that is a method which only increases deaths and abuse not decrease poverty. Equality till you breed, and only then if you are middle class is not really equality at all.

Women have had the right to choose who they fuck for a long time, even that sub species the working class. Whether women fuck their husbands is not a matter of political debate because they are of a different class to you. When they are forced by economics to stay it increases deaths and rape and the numbers of women living in fear.

When Jess McCartney Morley needs an adjective to describe why a 350quid coat is fashionable, could you perhaps explain to her that it is not austerity fashion. In fact could you please revise your insulting and exploitative approach to whitewashing the rolling back of equality for women full stop. The women you exploit, and the women who pay the price for wilful ignorance are not a sub species, they are your betters.

I appreciate for you, the systematic removal of legal representation, democratic representation and systematic exploitation of gender inequality as the wheel to deliver austerity is not important because …Labour. I appreciate you believe you have the right to protect your self image by publishing poverty porn and masturbating over rapes and deaths, while selling the reason those rapes and deaths are on the increase, but you don’t. It’s offensive. More offensive than a stock cube advert and a Heidi Klum halloween costumes.

While you may not view them as women, especially not women important enough to stir the concern of your self appointed feminist vanguard, I can assure they are not ‘those’ women just because it’s an article about benefits, and you can illustrate it with a picture of a girl in a hoody with a pram or someone standing next to an empty kitchen cupboard. Most of them contribute more than your vacuous little commentariat fishpond could ever imagine. Their sexual autonomy is as important as the whinging of Oxbridge women in your feminism pages, their right to democratic representation was as important, and their right to be able to choose lives free of abuse for them and their children was more important than Charlotte Raven’s latest ego trip.

Could you stop editing your poverty porn as if it is a Tory issue when you are fully aware, because you sold Blue Labour, that exploitation of gender inequality is also Labour’s plan. Could you stop Polly Toynbee and her exploitation of the poverty of women, while she is also praising Rachel Reeves for planning to be tougher on women than the ridiculous Ian Duncan Smoth(you are aware welfare is a women’s issue and why).

I would like you to remember that selling the systematic subordination of working class women while wanking over their misery is disgusting and I would like you to remember this is the age of the internet and you are only making yourself obsolete and demonstrating why your business model is a failure.

The debate about intersectionality is not about the hurt feelings of your columnists, it’s about the intersection of gender, race and class, which means you can ignore a war being waged on women while claiming yourselves as the voice representing them. I would remember that people are watching and can see what you are selling and how and your position as the home of UK feminism is being made ridiculous by the content of your pages as working class women are pushed back to the dark ages.

British War on Women

I saw a post on Facebook, Alfie Meadows had told a protest that it was time to challenge sexist politics in terms of the ‘right to protest’, and I nearly choked. The abusive radical fringes of our misogynist political cultures have no clue that their misogny prevented women fighting the most brutal three years of austerity imaginable, they had no sense that they had never had any right to impose themselves as a sorting hat deciding who could protest and who could not or decide the parameters of what was acceptable protest.

I think it’s time to acknowledge the war on women that is happening without comment. Not just in terms of Oxbridge women who are slightly resentful of people mean to them on the internet, but the brutality of the war on women being waged everywhere outside their eyeline. I think it’s time to acknowledge that the intersection of gender, race and class is not a topic to be idly discussed by those with the privilege of Oxbridge educations, in terms of whether they need to ‘check their privilege’, but the brutality of the abuse women are sustaining. From the girls in Rochdale, Oxford and Keighley, who are the same as girls all over the country. The girls in Blackpool whose murders go undiscussed, the 2 women a week who die at the hands of their abusers and the numbers who take their own lives as a result of that abuse. And the wide scale state sanctioned economic abuse and violence raining down on women of all ages outside the very selective eyeline of our elitist political press. The women behind deliberately closed doors at Yarls Wood so they could be raped and sexually abused along with their children to please imaginary Daily Mail readers who drive the policies we need to keep immigrant labour exploitable and wages low.

The economic warfare a male dominated politics, finance and media culture are waging on the women they pretend they can’t see while they slutshame with poverty. And the collusion of the women within our political media culture as they jockey for position and approval of the men waging this war. Women the only group where it could be  decided they can walk into closed courts with no legal representation as the threat of losing their children is held over their heads while men cry ‘what about me’.

The war we are raised to expect as normal, and trained from birth to submit to.

While protection, access to justice and political representation has been systematically removed, there is a war being waged using psychological abuse, emotional abuse, coercion, control, rape, violence, economic warfare and the use of children as weapons. A war we are supposed to internalise responsibility for. Systematic subordination using every means available, behind the shield and with the sanction of a faux feminist media wall as they discuss who should be allowed to join their shitty club to escape it.