To be really Fucked Off with Edwina Currie

(138 Posts)
TheTruffleHunter Thu 06-Mar-14 04:55:22

She's on BBC news 24 right now saying she doesn't agree with Food Banks - having just visited one and met the people collecting what will (hopefully) keep them going for the next week or two!

She thinks that won't encourage them to 'save for a rainy day'

I'm so cross I don't know what to do with myself!!

JeanSeberg Thu 06-Mar-14 04:58:18

She's so far removed from the real world and has privileged, smug bitch written all over her.

MistressDeeCee Thu 06-Mar-14 05:09:50

I was watching it with my jaw dropping. I had to switch off halfway through., The woman is unbearable. I like the way the food bank guy kept calmly saying ' I dont agree' when she was spouting her condescending nonsense. It was shortly after that I switched off. It was a sad programme all round. But I do think a lot of people believe there aren't really any poor people here, they must be up to some kind of scam etc...the tone of this country has changed so much. These programmes pretend to be about problem-solving but really theyre just to encourage people to scorn those poorer than them, and take the piss out of poor people by having a well-heeled person publicly belittling and mocking their plight and probably being paid to do it, too. Disgusting.

Blueuggboots Thu 06-Mar-14 05:14:52

I have met her in RL a few times.

DaffyDuck35 Thu 06-Mar-14 05:17:35

If you saw her on the big benefits row thing with that hideous Katie Hopkins and the fabulous Jack Monroe you would also want to hit her, she was so mean to Jack I wanted to weep! X

bochead Thu 06-Mar-14 05:19:43

Ordinary workers don't the same opportunity to fleece their employers (the tax payers) with expenses claim in order put a little away for a rainy day.

Boinking the married boss (aka her affair with John Major while pretending to be friends with his wife) destroys a woman's career in most fields. This also compromises ones ability to put a little aside for a rainy day.

Having derived her income for a good number of years from the public purse while not helping to improve the lot of her employers - the British public she needs to stfu. The working poor at least don't leave wrecked industries in their wake like she did, with the great Salmonella scandal. It's a shame she can't be forced to repay her parliamentary salary and pension back to the tax payer for that cock up alone. By rights the farmers whose livelihoods she wrecked should have been able to claim compensation from her PERSONAL bank account.

TheTruffleHunter Thu 06-Mar-14 05:28:37

Good point - she basically derives some kind of living from being a rent-a gob these days...guess that puts food on her family's table. Sad really

TamerB Thu 06-Mar-14 06:45:47

She hasn't a clue! Sadly she doesn't appear to let it get in the way of a loud opinion.

missymarmite Thu 06-Mar-14 06:58:15

What? She really said that? Bitch!

I agree on one point though. There shouldn't be food banks; there shouldn't be a need for them. People should be able to earn enough to survive, and benefits should be sufficient to feed oneself. Disgusting.

Have a look at the Jack Monroe webchat if you haven't already. There's quite a bit about Edwina grin.

bochead Thu 06-Mar-14 07:03:43

Given rising bills for everything from utilities to housing and utilities, coupled with zero hours contracts and poor pay all it takes to need a food bank is a delay in HB or CTC payments for many working families.

Many of those using food banks are the decent working poor - people who have proper jobs where they have to EARN their money, and find the whole experience a real affront on their personal honour.

She's a professional leech who has the audacity to sneer at working families driven to penury. Personally I'd rather endure the humiliation of a food bank visit than perform sexual favours for a promotion or embarrass myself as a rent-a-gob, as she has done. There's a name for women like her, and it's not nice. Who is SHE to look down upon anyone?

Felyne Thu 06-Mar-14 07:04:37

Yanbu. Save what, exactly, for a rainy day? All the benefits they no longer get?

About as out of touch as Boris Johnson's sister who boasted that her friends were jealous she got to meet poor people.

ihatethecold Thu 06-Mar-14 07:06:47

Well put bochead

diaimchlo Thu 06-Mar-14 07:36:12

Trufflehunter YADNBU. This poor excuse for a Woman really makes me mad. angryangry

I am on ESA myself and have not had the horror of having to face any of the unjust sanctions that are applied.

I read an article the other day that people that have used the Food banks were returning foods that had to be oven cooked etc as they could not afford the fuel. This really upset me and I went to the local supermarket and bought some basics brand items such as, noodles, mash,Angel delights etc..... all things that can be prepared with water from a kettle or milk.

Whilst in there I saw a family doing their shopping, their DD (approx 8) went to the self with noodles on and asked her Mum how many? Mum said 3. Her DD then commented that they had gone down in price to 21p and asked if she should get an extra one just in case they ran out of food again. Her Mum said no we can't afford it this week. This was a child aware of food poverty trying to put a strategy in place. TBH I filled up. So saving for a rainy day is not viable.

When I went to the Food Bank to drop off the donation I was made to feel like I was an angel.... I am not, I am a human being with a heart not a swinging brick like this horrendous excuse for a Government.

Edwina Currie and all her cohorts need to be made to go through the benefits system including the sanctions for at least 3 months then come back and review their bigoted opinions on Food Banks.

Sorry for the long winded post but this is a subject very close to my heart.

Twit Thu 06-Mar-14 07:41:52

This kind of thing really depresses me. Most of us are a paycheque or two away from the food bank. Most if us are decent, hardworking people who do their best to 'get it right'.
They expect us to do the right thing and we do it because we are decent hard working people trying to do what's right by others in anyway we can, be it paying our taxes, donating food or volunteering in some capacity.
Then these 'people' come along and get paid to piss all over us.
They know nothing and do less.

TheRealAmandaClarke Thu 06-Mar-14 07:42:43

Good grief. Was she aiming for a re enactment of Les Miserables?
What a shocking thing to say. She really shouldn't be allowed out without a muzzle target painted on the back of her head

whatsonyourplate Thu 06-Mar-14 07:58:44

Surely if you need to use a food bank you are already having your rainy day/ monsoon season. And even if you have saved a little, there is only so long it lasts for.

Hungermonkey Thu 06-Mar-14 08:19:53

I like Edwina, Cannot bear Jack I'm so achingly cool I use a boy's name Monroe, though.

Food banks however - yes, of course we should support them.

NewtRipley Thu 06-Mar-14 08:24:10

She's not very bright. Strange for some who went to Oxford University, but being a Tory from and early age will do that to a person.

BringBackBod Thu 06-Mar-14 08:27:49

I can't stand her. She has absolutely no idea how difficult it can be for some people.
Did anyone see how she pounced on the supernoodles on Panorama. She went in there with a closed mind and it stayed closed.

vickibee Thu 06-Mar-14 08:28:14

she also criticised the types of foods being offered saying it was processed junk food. If you are hungry I don't think you would mind too much...

Hungermonkey Thu 06-Mar-14 08:29:35

Gosh yes, all Tories are horribly thick. That's why so many of them end up in really well paid jobs.

TheRealAmandaClarke Thu 06-Mar-14 08:34:00

Well. That kind of comment is either supreme ignorance (stupidity)
Or pure evil.
Which could it be and why would someone like a person who holds that view?

ShadowFall Thu 06-Mar-14 08:34:23


It doesn't take much imagination to see that some people on a very low income won't be able to save for a rainy day because of the rising cost of living. And even if you have been saving, if you fall on hard times, those savings won't last forever.

And I wasn't convinced either by her argument that food banks shouldn't be around because in the past people used to have buying food as a first priority, and people just need to put food back at the top of the priority list. hmm

I'm lucky enough to not have to make this choice, but if I was really badly short of money, I'd be prioritising paying the mortgage - and thus keeping a roof over my families head - over everyone in the family having 3 square meals a day. Surely being made homeless because you've spent all the mortgage / rent money on food would only make a bad situation worse?

GarthsUncle Thu 06-Mar-14 08:37:48

She is a massive nincompoop.

MinesAPintOfTea Thu 06-Mar-14 08:42:12

I don't agree with foodbanks. I think its a bloody disgrace that people in this country are forced to depend on charity due to the government wanting to punish them. And that the government, through its BS idea thinks that the community struggling to provide this is a good thing.

Edwina Currie is a political hack who needs to try to stay relevant by being in the news so she comes out with this nonsense.

hackmum Thu 06-Mar-14 08:57:21

She is a vile individual. I never watch things like that because they just enrage me.

Hungermonkey Thu 06-Mar-14 08:59:59

I think it's sometimes very easy to say that everyone using food banks is doing so because they are not getting enough money which will be true in some cases. It will also be true in some cases that they are getitnhg enough but are spending it on other things and the fact that foodbanks exist means they can.

Hungermonkey Thu 06-Mar-14 09:02:09

And I get enraged by people who have a perfectly good job but then choose to have a baby so give up that job and rely on the state to support them and then grizzle about how unfair it all is becasue they don't have enough money anymore.

Always interesting to see what gives others the rage, isn't it?

TheCrackFox Thu 06-Mar-14 09:03:17

I don't agree with Food banks either - we are the 6th richest country in the World yet we have people living in unbearable poverty. It is disgusting that Britain has sunk so low.

Edwina is a tit.

JakeBullet Thu 06-Mar-14 09:06:23

Edwina Currie is a media whore, always has been and always will be. Look at Katie Hopkins, and then ask yourself where she got the idea to be a rent a gob. I am pretty sure Edwina Currie is up there somewhere.

I cannot stand either of them.

JakeBullet Thu 06-Mar-14 09:09:51

Hungermonkey, you have to be REFERRED to a Food bank. You cannot just pitch up and demand food!
And you can only be referred up to three times.

So while there are many reasons people need foodbanks, the idea that they just use them for convenience is woefully ignorant. Perhaps do some research before posting your shite opinion eh? hmm

Hungermonkey Thu 06-Mar-14 09:09:52

It's not unbearable poverty crackfox, don't be so melodramatic. It's relative poverty . If you want unbearable, go to India or Sub Saharan Africa.

UK poverty still means a roof and clothes and food. And quite often fags and booze but MN seems to be completely blind to the fact that most of the poor smoke and will deny it or excuse it. I once saw a poster argue that poor people smoked because it was cheaper than eating confused.

I completely agree with food banks, however, like thecrackfox I think it is completely unacceptable that, in 2014, they are required.

Frankly, Edwina should wind her fucking neck in. I bet she's never had to decide whether to eat or keep warm. I hate entitled arsewipes who have never bothered to look at the world that is beyond the end of their noses. It's amazing that a good education can still turn out individuals who are as thick as a dollop of lentil soup.

Uk poverty does not mean a roof and clothes and food though, hunger. We have an increasing number of homeless people with none of these "luxuries"

JakeBullet Thu 06-Mar-14 09:14:33

Hungerfox perhaps look up the definition of "addiction" wrt smoking while you are researching food bank use!

Or do you prefer to remain a narrow minded bigot?

oldgrandmama Thu 06-Mar-14 09:17:35

I was in a Soho restaurant once and Currie and friends were at the next table. Talk about LOUD!

Anyway, I think it's tragic that we need food banks - it just shouldn't be necessary. It seems - sorry - that the policy these days is 'kick the poor and when they're down, kick them some more ...' Currie is an awful woman, as is that Hopkins cow (sorry, cows are actually quite nice animals).

I've lived a long time and seen a lot. It's always been the case that we moan about the way things are, but honestly, I can't remember a time when things were quite as awful and depressing as they are now for people who are struggling to exist. A friend of mine has multiple sclerosis - yet she's being bullied to go to work when it's patently obvious she's far too disabled to be able to do so. Doesn't stop her being threatened and harangued about losing the benefits that enable her to survive. Horrible.

ConferencePear Thu 06-Mar-14 09:17:39

Hungermonkey may be right that some people don't deserve the help that food banks give. Even so they won't be taking as much out of the economy as the bankers who are still getting millions in bonuses in addition to their high salaries.

JakeBullet Thu 06-Mar-14 09:18:49

I see families where a child has no coat because income is low and the chastity shop did not have one to fit. The child usually gets a coat as soon as parents can afford the £10 it costs in Asda.

I see families where the parents don't eat much in order to feed their children because Dad or Mum has lost their job and what money IS coming in has to pay the mortgage (yes poverty affects naice people too)

I see families where a parent has severe mental health issues meaning they cannot work. They might have adequate housing or they might not.

I could go on

UriGeller Thu 06-Mar-14 09:18:53

Jesus Christ, our family are doing alright (finally) and we haven't any spare cash for a rainy day.

It really is the worst trait, to have no empathy for people less fortunate.

JakeBullet Thu 06-Mar-14 09:19:47

"Chastity" ...

I meant "charity"

kilmuir Thu 06-Mar-14 09:20:23

Think she has a point.
People do not make putting food on table a priority. Drowning in debt from greediness

JakeBullet Thu 06-Mar-14 09:21:22

How bright can she be...she shagged the prime minister FFS! a Major craving for Jack Monroe's Curried Eggs!

diaimchlo Thu 06-Mar-14 09:23:18

Hungermonkey The majority of people that use the food banks have had sanctions enforced on them by the JCP for such things as being 2 mins late for an appointment, not being able to attend an appointment because they have not received the letter before the appt or the letter sent was in wrong format i.e: braille and trying to reschedule an appt due to it clashing with a hospital appt, the list is endless. Their money is stopped straight away even before they have been made aware that they have been sanctioned, so in their case they cannot be spending anything on other things rather than food.

Also some of the other things they may be spending money on are: bedroom tax, electricity, transport costs to attend interviews, appts and the dreaded workfare. Internet and phone charges for job hunting, quite often you are left on hold for 30mins to 1 hour if you phone the DWP, that costs even on a landline.

Another point is that there are people who do work and receive WTC that have to resort to using a food bank.

People cannot use a food bank for their weekly shop, they have to be referred and can only be referred 3 times, the bags they get only containing enough to cover 3 days normally.

There should not be food banks here at all, but the sad fact is they are and their use has risen massively since 2010.... I wonder why!!!!!!!

angry Why is this horrendous person given air time? Boils my piss!!!!

Holdthepage Thu 06-Mar-14 09:26:31

Edwina Currie is a political media rentagob, the political version of Katie Hopkins, not to be taken seriously at any time.

However I disagree about the salmonella incident. Her big gob resulted in us having the safest eggs in the world.

Hungermonkey Thu 06-Mar-14 09:27:47

jakebullet it is easier now than ever to stop smoking . Far easier than when I did twenty years ago with support programmes, patches and e cigs.

I do hope you aren't really arguing that it's perfectly okay to spend £7 plus a day on fags and then using food banks and making your children go without a coat? But actually, I think you may be.shock

JakeBullet Thu 06-Mar-14 09:29:09

I think plenty (the majority) do make food a priority kilmuir.

I know families with smoking addicts but they make sure the children are fed. When it comes down to it they go without the cigarettes!

Food banks in my experience seem to be used by families and individuals in crisis. Benefit delays, benefit sanctions for spurious reasons, sudden emergencies etc.

Have never seen a family come in to use ours based upon them spending too much on non essentials that week.

Huge number of learning disabled using them too....apparently "fit for work"! They need good advocacy when dealing with ATOS.

In short people in crisis.....and there is a limit of three referrals because whatever the crisis is should be sorted out.

JakeBullet Thu 06-Mar-14 09:31:39

No I wasn't arguing that Hungermonkey but do go on won't you, you are so enlightening in how the Tories see those who are genuinely struggling.

If there is no money to buy a coat there is no money to buy cigarettes either...or can you not work that out?

Hungermonkey Thu 06-Mar-14 09:33:07

You contradict yourself jake. One minute you are telling us they are addicts and the next they are quite able to go without to feed their kids.

So, either they are addicted and their children are suffering ( after all - most of us woudl struggle if we were spending £50 a week plus on fags) or they are not addicted and choose to spend that sort of money on fags rather than food or clothing. Neither scenario is particularly impressive, is it?

Damnautocorrect Thu 06-Mar-14 09:33:21

This is the same woman who says "food banks put shops out of business"
someones still buying the food from a shop they just aren't the consumer

DonnaDishwater Thu 06-Mar-14 09:33:22

I think there is a lot of truth in what she says, unpalatable though it might be. There are too many people in this country that do not have any kind of long term thinking, spend their money on frivolities when they have it and then moan about not having any savings when things turn bad. It''s learned helplessness IMO, and those on the left encourage it.

DonnaDishwater have you ever been on benefits? I'm lucky not to have, both dp and I work ft but know plenty who have. The system is appalling. You can end up without any cash because of their cock ups.

diaimchlo Thu 06-Mar-14 09:35:20
ifyourehoppyandyouknowit Thu 06-Mar-14 09:35:21

You don't just get to go to a food bank every week. When you get referred to a food bank you are generally also referred for all kinds of other support - benefits check, debt advice and support, support with housing and health and wellbeing. So along with being given food you might also be given help and support with smoking cessation. Because while you are in the thick of a shit, desolate situation, it's not just as simple as 'oh, I'll give up smoking'.

And you can't just go back to a food bank week after week. In my LA you can access it twice in a row, and three times over a year. You might be able to access a private food bank, but you can only access that three times in a year as well, and you need to be referred. So six times in a year. Once every two months, at most.

It is not an easy option. People who are accessing food banks are not doing it for shits and giggles.

Hungermonkey Thu 06-Mar-14 09:36:24

Absolutely, donna.

Many peopel - rich and poor- have no idea how to save, prioritise or make sacrifices. If they did the likes of Brighthouse ( spit) would be out og business.

There does seem to be a mentality that everyone should enjoy the same lifestyle and luxuries in life regardless of how much they do or don't earn.

ifyourehoppyandyouknowit Thu 06-Mar-14 09:37:32

Oh and Edwina Currie? Anyone who voluntarily lets John Major's penis anywhere near their body, does not have the critical thinking to develop an opinion worth listening to.

Hungermonkey Thu 06-Mar-14 09:37:59

dialmchlo I'll refrain from reading the mirror links for a non sensational,non biased account, if it's all the same to you.

diaimchlo Thu 06-Mar-14 09:43:29


TBH no it is not all the same to me at all.

Being someone who likes to see both sides of an argument I tend to read all articles that are relevant whether it is the Mirror or the dreaded Daily Mail.

JakeBullet Thu 06-Mar-14 09:44:28

Nope...addiction is horrible, smokers smoke all the while they can but don't if there is no money. Or is that too difficult to understand?

No contradiction there at all....most will go without cigarettes (and probably be cranky) to feed their children. They are still addicted or they wouldn't smoke at all.

Grated that the neglectful won't give a stuff and leave their children hungry but most will not do that.

Love how Tories see life as so black and white. Poor? Must be your own fault then.

Bet Shiny Dave (face of the caring Tory) just LOVES it when Edwina is on TV. She does so much damage to him.

MinesAPintOfTea Thu 06-Mar-14 09:44:28
diaimchlo Thu 06-Mar-14 09:47:46

Thank you Minesapintoftea you have saved me a job was going to search for other links but you have kindly saved me the job.

Have a pint ofbrew

Hungermonkey Thu 06-Mar-14 09:48:58

Oh thanks, minesapint - The Guardian. Another non partisan rag wink.

jake when you start being rude to me I will disengage from debating with you, It is YOU who is contradictory, not I. If they are poor and needing food banks and cannot afford a coat and yet smoke, even some of the time , at £7 a packet then they need to be looking at making some changes.

I find it mind bogggling that you are talking about the NEED for foodbanks whilst simultaneaously condoning spending upwards of £7 a day on something that slowly kills you and your children.

I can't afford to smoke and maintain my current lifestyle. Most people can't.

JakeBullet Thu 06-Mar-14 09:50:55

Brighthouse? On that point you and I agree Hungermonkey.

But please note they sell beds etc as well as the flat screen TVs and gaming devices .

If I get to people before they go to Brighthouse I can usually point them successfully in the direction of the local furniture recycling charity. They sell all the basics at a reduced rate to people.....all secondhand but all in good condition. There is an upfront cost (which Brighthouse don't have) but most families can find the help somewhere for this.

Likewise most families will support each other with food. The people I see in food banks tend to be very isolated. The learning disabled, elderly, families who are too embarrassed to ask for family help etc.

Hungermonkey Thu 06-Mar-14 09:52:18

That sounds good * jake*.

Also Freecycle, ebay, charity shops et etc.

awaynboilyurheid Thu 06-Mar-14 09:54:45

hungerPerhaps not always thick in terms of education but definitely lacking in terms of empathy and compassion, its not called the greedy party for nothing.Twit's post says it all very succinctly.

JakeBullet Thu 06-Mar-14 09:56:35

Okay....I was not necessarily thinking about use of food banks with regard to cigarette addiction. Just pointing out that most families will sacrifice cigarettes to feed their children. Or to buy a coat.

I don't smoke and don't know how anyone affords it, least of all the poorest in society. But then again the poorest in society tend to have many other issues to cope with as well so tend to be the people who DO smoke. The mental health unit I worked in was full of smokers who used cigarettes as a form of relaxation ...many saying it helped them to feel calmer.

But that is off topic except that these same people tend to be higher on the list of good bank users. They usually don't have dependent families though.

nennypops Thu 06-Mar-14 09:57:03

Gosh yes, all Tories are horribly thick. That's why so many of them end up in really well paid jobs.

If you seriously believe that being in a well paid job is an automatic indicator of brainpower, you have an awful lot to learn.

JakeBullet Thu 06-Mar-14 09:57:42

Right...housework to be done.

JerseySpud Thu 06-Mar-14 09:58:31

Holy shit she actually said that?

Typical Tory.

gamerchick Thu 06-Mar-14 09:58:51

I watched the panarama one.. I wanted to crawl into my telly and slap the twat.

what I find scary is the obvious utter contempt the tories have for the poor and struggling.. if they have so much contempt in front of voters.. what on earth are they like behind closed doors? sad

shakethetree Thu 06-Mar-14 09:59:34

I ( kind of ) agree with her. Over the years there have been times when I've had a very limited budget for food, but I always managed to buy fairly good food quite cheaply, because I budgeted. I'm not sure how food banks work, do you have to prove you're on income support or something? - personally I'd find visiting a food bank really degrading.

gamerchick Thu 06-Mar-14 10:00:27

and hungermonkey.. I really hope an upturned plug finds you clean on. Your fixating on smoking is making you look slightly daft.. do you believe every bit of propaganda that's been vomited out over the past few years?

JakeBullet Thu 06-Mar-14 10:01:16

My best friend is a Tory.....we have some right wine soaked debates grin.
He is also the nicest, kindest most supportive person I have ever met. He donates regularly to the food bank and asks them what they need before doing so. Last month they needed things like toiletries to add to boxes. He went off to CostCo and bought a whole load of soap, body sprays and deodorants as well as toothpaste and toothbrushes.

JakeBullet Thu 06-Mar-14 10:02:13

Edwina could learn a thing or too from my friend.

The assumptions on this thread are incredible shock

Ok, so everyone who needs to go to a food bank also smokes. Er, ok, right hmm

How do you know this? Have you ever been to one? Questioned the people who go there because they have to? Carried out random CO tests? Where is the evidence for this?

Hungermonkey Thu 06-Mar-14 10:05:03

jake - he sounds fab ( and a lot like me!)

jetsetlil Thu 06-Mar-14 10:08:39

I watched that program with horror and sadness. I consider myself very fortunate that I have never had to access benefits. The family from Scotland with the two little children broke my heart. However one lady did kind of annoy me - she was single in a 3 bed house and because of the bedroom tax she had fallen into poverty despite working full time, her reason for not downsizing was because her children had been brought up in that house! For gods sake why do that to yourself - live like that rather than move to a smaller property and free up that house for a family that needs it

MollyHooper Thu 06-Mar-14 10:19:24

You have to be referred to them shakethetreee, by a GP, social worker, health visitor etc...

It's painfully obvious that Edwina Currie is spouting this stuff out to get a reaction. It seems being nasty and ignorant is the new way to get yourself on TV. It used to be sex tapes.

The troubling thing is that people are lapping up her misinformed ramblings and it's damaging to the most vulnerable people in our society.

It takes very little time to research and see that she is full of shit.

MistressDeeCee Thu 06-Mar-14 10:21:37

I volunteered in a food bank last year & year before.

You can only go 3 times. Not endlessly.

Lots of people were there due to JSA being suspended on the flimsiest of reasons (job search not quite good enough). Theyre given food bank vouchers. In the meantime they appeal their suspensions. & normally win. What does that tell people?

Some people on benefits did actually work previously - I hate the fact that some cannot seem to grasp this, and are quick to scorn. & even if they didnt - some people have physical and mental needs that may not be obviously apparent. A lot of the people we dealt with at food banks had hit rock bottom and were very despondent. They weren't there smiling happily at the thought of free food, many felt ashamed.

There are a good number of people in this country who are just 1 pay cheque away from bankruptcy. & don't even think about that. When you live in a society that doesn't care about the poor and vulnerable, people thrown on the unemployment scrapheap who are suddenly 'scum' because theyre now having to claim benefits - that society isn't really any good. & should you fall down sometime you'll be tarred with the same brush.

When all said and done its crap to see this kind of thing going on in the UK. Reinforced by the media, mostly tacky Channel 4 who appear to have nothing better to do than line the pockets of poor and working class-hating faded rent-a-gobs. 1 fucked in a field, the other fucked Mr Grey who most people wouldn't touch with someone else's. Great credentials for a job chatting shit on tv.

ifyourehoppyandyouknowit Thu 06-Mar-14 10:27:28

For gods sake why do that to yourself - live like that rather than move to a smaller property and free up that house for a family that needs it

Please, do feel free to find all these suitable, one bedroom houses and flats that people can downsize to.

Pro-tip; they're in the magical field, next to the unicorns.

OnIlkleyMoorBahTwat Thu 06-Mar-14 10:29:04

I don't think anyone is saying that all poor people smoke, but the fact is that proportionately, more poor people than rich do smoke.

DM used to work in a newsagents that was the nearest shop to the 'dole office' (in the days when you could go and pick up cash from there).

She served many many people where the parents would repeatedly come in and buy cigarettes and lottery tickets and refuse to buy anything for the DCs (crisps/sweets/a drink). Of course, this was because they only fed them healthy food hmm.

I don't think parents whose children have grown up and left home should expect to stay in family sized social housing for sentimental reasons when there are plenty of younger families who need the space more.

BoulevardOfBrokenSleep Thu 06-Mar-14 10:30:10

shakethetree it's been said upthread but since it seems to be a common misconception...

Food banks are for emergency use (limited to 2-3 times a year depending on area) for people who have no money at all. Often because the DWP has cocked up, or their benefits have been sanctioned for crappy reasons as listed by diaimchlo upthread.

This is becoming increasingly common, since the folks working at the DWP now have targets of sanctions, and they want to keep their jobs as much as the rest of us...

So you have to be referred to a food bank by social services or your GP etc, you can't just rock up and say, 'hey, I've spent all my money on fags and plasma TVs, gimme some freebies'. Which seems to be what 99% of the population thinks. hmm

jetsetlil Thu 06-Mar-14 10:34:04

HopALongOn - I know that probably sounded harsh but I'm sure a family squashed in a little flat would bite her hand off to swap. The only reason she was staying there was for sentimental reasons which was putting her in poverty!

ConferencePear Thu 06-Mar-14 10:34:10

I am the last person in the world who wants to pay tax to support the idle. That said, I would like to live in a country where we take proper care of the poor especially if the young, the old and the ill are concerned. I find it really worrying that the media has managed to convince a large proportion of the general public that anyone down on their luck is a wastrel. I'm rather ashamed that there is so much anti-poor rhetoric about.
As for Edwina Currie, she has to spout controversial, rather extreme views otherwise she won't be invited back and then part of her income disappears.

MollyHooper Thu 06-Mar-14 10:35:03

I think people just can't get their head around poverty in the UK. It's much easier to believe Edwina's black and white suggestions.

Can't feed your family? Get a job.

On JSA looking for a job but have been sanctioned? Get a job faster, JSA isn't a life long benefit.

Have a job but your wages don't cover the costs? Get a better job!

Lost your job and can't afford to feed your family? Go on JSA, there is no reason anyone in the UK should be in poverty, we have a welfare system you know!

And so the circle continues. No jobs, Low wages, Job loss, sanctions, debt, poverty, food banks.

diaimchlo Thu 06-Mar-14 10:35:16

Well said Ohforfoxache

The usual stereotyping going on sad

jetsetlil Thu 06-Mar-14 10:35:27

incidentally I work in a lettings agency - plenty of one bed flats here!

ifyourehoppyandyouknowit Thu 06-Mar-14 10:36:03

I see your point jet but it's just not the case; the majority of those affected by 'bedroom' tax are people who are unable to downsize because there are no suitable, small enough properties for them.

ifyourehoppyandyouknowit Thu 06-Mar-14 10:38:21

Just because it's one bed, doesn't mean it's suitable. And that's private lets.

Moving someone into a smaller property, perhaps one where access to public transport is difficult/not available, away from their friends and family and job and support network is not cost effective or in the best interests of anyone.

Added to the fact that government conveniently ignores the huge numbers of over 65s under-occupying, the whole system is fucked up. Totally and completely fucked up.

BoulevardOfBrokenSleep Thu 06-Mar-14 10:38:39

And do many of your landlords take HB, jetsetlil?

bochead Thu 06-Mar-14 10:43:09

Hungermonkey - no poverty in the UK?

Tell that to the ex armed forces men who are statistically the most likely to end up homeless on the streets. (sorry but this particularly infuriates me as it's usually due to mental health being totally wrecked in the service of a country that treats them like garbage afterwards).

Or to the thousands sleeping in SHEDS in the back gardens of some parts of London because it is all they can afford.

Or to the teachers resorting to buying lunch & breakfast for the children they find with rice sandwiches for lunch because their parents don't want to be intentionally homeless and their white collar redundancy & subsequent McJob means they can't pay the mortgage anymore. many non-top brass lehmans employees went from comfortable to struggling overnight (not everyone who works in financial services gets big bucks).

Or to the immigrants sleeping 10 to a room and working in the black economy for £1 an hour.

Or the disabled that are literally dying due to the asinine system that ATOS uses to assess their fitness for work. ATOS incidentally are trying to break the contract early as they've decided the profits aren't worth the cost.

Anyone with a mortgage can find themselves in very real trouble really fast. Insurance fails to cover an awful lot of eventualities as some flood victims currently being told they were subject to "an act of God" are currently discovering. Anyone who falls ill can find that NHS waiting times mean their hopes of returning to work are a pipe dream. Anyone with a disabled child can discover that universal state education is now a myth.

Drug dealers, criminals & those with access to siphoning off funds from the public purse for their personal use (eg MP's) need have no fear of true poverty. The rest of us should understand that everyone is only one traffic accident or serious illness from trouble.

The welfare safety net is broken. We need to all be raising our children so that they clearly understand this for their own sakes.

jetsetlil Thu 06-Mar-14 10:45:18

HopALongOn - I'm sure you are right in many cases however I am only talking about this one. She did not want to move, end of! wouldn't even consider it.

jetsetlil Thu 06-Mar-14 10:47:48

BoulevardOfBrokenSleep. admittedly no. But some do - depends on the area

Applauds blochead

ifyourehoppyandyouknowit Thu 06-Mar-14 10:53:04

Oh well, if it's just that one case we're talking about...

Poverty affects real people. It's messy and complicated, and it sometimes is down to what we would judge to be poor choices. But choices aren't made in a vacuum. And not everyone considers things in the same way. Perhaps it was wrong for this woman to refuse to move because she was emotionally attached to the house. But surely any human being with a heart can see why she might find that a very difficult choice to make (esp when previously she had been allowed to stay there, and the goal posts have been moved).

And all this talk about poor financial choices and not saving/buying stuff. When you know, really know, that your life is just not going to get any better than it is, because there is always something to knock you down every time you think you have clawed yourself a bit of breathing space. Why would you even bother to plan for the future. Why? Poverty, real poverty, is grinding and constant and wears you down, and you have to consider people's actions and choices against a backdrop of utter hopelessness. And please, no 'I pulled myself up my own bootstraps' comments, there's a reason they are newsworthy; it's because they don't happen very often.

shakethetree Thu 06-Mar-14 11:17:21

Boulevardofbrokensleep: ( greenday fan right ? )

Thank you for explaining it to me, I genuinely wasn't sure how it worked.

TheRealAmandaClarke Thu 06-Mar-14 11:18:17

Particularly good posts from mistress and blochead IMHO.

shakethetree Thu 06-Mar-14 11:28:06

I just googled 'how to donate to my local food bank' & it took me to a fantastic page on netmums ( can I say netmums on here? ) - full of really good info & advice - so I'll get onto that & donate as & when I can.

SelectAUserName Thu 06-Mar-14 11:39:46

MistressDeeCee, Molly, bochead, hopalong, I salute you.

Anyone who doesn't agree with you can fuck right off.

This demonisation of the poor, the unlucky, the jobless, the vulnerable, the disabled makes me sick, and the fact that it is essentially state- and media-sanctioned disgusts me to my very core.

ormirian Thu 06-Mar-14 11:41:48

Agree truffle, She was on tv this week saying the same thing. Steam was escaping from my ears...

TheRealAmandaClarke Thu 06-Mar-14 11:45:37

Yep. and hopalong

bochead Thu 06-Mar-14 11:54:48

Also if you do have a reasonable disposable income, obtained through legitimate means then after you have paid your taxes & any bills it's your choice how you spend your cash.

Whether you choose to donate to charity via a food bank or to purchase that designer handbag you've had your eye on is no one's business but your own. Those who are financially comfortable should resent being told how to spend their own money as a matter of principle!

I loathe the constant hectoring patronisation of our leadership class towards the "rest of us". Once we hit 18 we are adults and I don't think it's unreasonable to expect to be treated as such.

I have done voluntary work with people facing eviction from council properties for non-payment of rent. The reason they were struggling to pay their rent was because the council had a massive backlog of housing benefit claims and were taking months to process them. This was the same council that was then seeking to evict the people. Some of those people had to choose between scraping together the money for the rent that should have been covered by HB or eating. You might have enough rainy day money to cover a couple of weeks rent but not a couple of months.

How were they feckless or undeserving when it was the council's incompetance that was driving them to a food bank.

blochead ever thought of going into politics? Great post and so true. Too many with no idea on this thread.

I'm ble

Oops I'm blessed and haven't (yet) needed benefits but still know the truth, from friends/tv etc.. I'm astounded at the ignorance of some people.

bochead not blochead sorry. Gets coat. wink

Misspixietrix Thu 06-Mar-14 12:22:18

DaffyDuck I will agree she was mean to Jack Monroe BUT that's Politics. Edwina is well averse to Politico world and like any good twat Politician. Make it personal straight away and you will distract your opponent from speaking the facts/truth. Jack should have turned around with a response such as "Yes that's right Edwina my Grandfather was indeed a Russian Oligarch with oodles of wealth at his disposal" and THEN carried on with the Facts she had at hand re Foodbanks etc. Instead it turned into a bit too much 'Big Brother' for my liking. FWIW I work at a Foodbank. Someone needs to point out that swanning in and out of a foodbank for a photo op with a few putdowns that make Katie Hopkins look positively timid is not being well averse and well researched on a given subject. Coming from someone (Edwina) who would scrounge free meals from Papers 'because they were paying' and putting sandwiches etc in a bag to take home to your family can not then go and berate others about 'taking stuff for free'.

Misspixietrix Thu 06-Mar-14 12:33:59

JetsetLi please do point people in 'Under Occupied' houses into the direction of smaller properties. They'd love to hear from you. Little tip. People who are subject to the Bedroom Tax/Subsidy Charge whatever one wishes to call it. Fall into arrears quite quickly. Social Housing Tenants can't move with arrears unless under extreme circumstances so they are then stuck in the same old cycle. Disabled people also can't move but are still subject. Many houses had many adaptations made to them I.e wet rooms instead of baths. Ramps to get in and out of the house. Where does the Govt suggest these such people move on to?

Misspixietrix Thu 06-Mar-14 12:43:38

Personally I'd find going to a Foodbank really degrading so do most of our Clients PP sad Thankfully we aren't as judgemental as the likes of Edwina and her Ilk. Three sources of referral - GP/School Welfare Officer or a Social Worker/DWP - I.e Jobcentre Staff. Can any of you on here who disagree with the use of Foodbanks honestly say that people would go to the above with a spring in their step because as Edwina puts it, after all it IS 'free' food. I can't begin to even imagine having to go to my DCs School welfare Officer and ask her to refer me because I can't afford to feed my kids. Thankfully I've never had to. Sadly many have. We also have many clients referred to us who are IN work before anyone trots out the benefits and dependancy line.

diaimchlo Thu 06-Mar-14 13:01:57

Mistress, Molly, Hopalong and Bochead

Thank you for putting some great posts up smile

ppeatfruit Thu 06-Mar-14 13:26:38

WRF to Mrs. Currie and the salmonella scandal. I know someone who was on a course for B&B owners in Fr. There she was told that the salmonella is on the outside of the eggs on the shells which can be removed just by washing them!!!! This fact was not mentioned this at the time. So all those poor farmers went out of business because of the mendacity and hypocrisy (also ignorance) of Mrs effing Currie

doodlyfiddly Thu 06-Mar-14 13:58:59

Cheeky cow! She's not above handouts herself though - when I met her in RL she was on a freebie 3 week Caribbean cruise (my honeymoon) where she just had to give a couple of talks to earn her keep. Didn't use her rainy day savings for that, did she? Her husband was with her too (also on the cadge).

MistressDeeCee Thu 06-Mar-14 14:58:06

JSA is a drop in the ocean compared to Tax Credits, the bill for which has increased hugely due to employers freely allowed to pay crap wages. Housing Benefit is another culprit. Private landlords are allowed to charge what they like, lots of workers have to claim HB to help with rent payments as their wages simply aren't enough to meet the bills.

I've heard some speak as if they consider themselves 'better' than other benefits claimants, particularly after the back-to-back benefits claimant programmes shown recently. Thinking of JSA in particular; if this government suddenly shelved WFTC - & lets face it, with this government anything's a possibility, isn't it? - after all if you're claiming WFTC then you're a benefit claimant, the system is propping up your wage - would they seamlessly move to surviving solely on a meagre wage, no further top-ups in sight? Cheerfully cutting corners and becoming the master of budgeting on a shoestring, effortlessly and immediately?

Of course they wouldnt. Their standard of living would be seriously and deeply affected. It would be a crisis.

You see - this government does not love some sections of the working class, and hate others. Its much of a muchness to them, all the working classes are being shafted in the same way. There's a tyre company a few minutes away from me, (I live in London) looking for a full-time admin officer. The wage is £15,000. They want someone experienced, familiar with customer facing roles and problem solving, competent on Word, Excel and 'office systems'. Yet they're paying school leaver money.

There is something inherently corrupt and flawed about a society that offers JSA claimants up as scapegoats, to blind the public to the fact that the biggest dent in the system is made by workers who can't manage on what they earn and so, are claiming 'top-up' benefits. As ever big business and government win again, whilst in the model of chaos Cameron has created (as all most corrupt leaders do) a good number of people get on with missing the reality of the situation completely.

Most aren't as far away from poverty as they'd like to think.

ppeatfruit Thu 06-Mar-14 15:06:47

I bet those 'talks' were sooo interesting doodlyfiddly grin were they about how to eff the Prime Minister ?? Some people should keep their mouths shut forever.I'm talking to you EC.

bochead Thu 06-Mar-14 15:16:15

In order to be considered part of the social elite in the US, individuals make a big hoo ha about their personal philanthropy. It earns them social status, and a certain cachet that is unobtainable in any other way. Ways of doing this vary from gifting University scholarships, to providing land for community gardens. It's so important to be SEEN to give back something to the community in some way if you are successful.

Over here our social elite seem to take pride in their ability to be the ultimate "gimme dat" character at any social gathering, proudly proclaiming that they have only turned up at social events for the free eats.

I'd like to know why this is. It's not about class, as a walk around any town or city in the land will mean you pass some building once gifted by a wealthy, privileged Victorian to his/her community for use as a school, hospital or some other project directly intended to benefit those without the privileges and wealth of the benefactor.

What exactly is it about the mentality of our elite that means they have to resort to sneering to bolster their own status? Vince Cable did it yesterday too, with his comments about teachers being unable to understand the world of work - it's not just a Tory thing. The last Labour governments attitude to parents who send their kids to state schools stank with the advent of an overbearing nanny state.

Have none of these people ever heard what happened to Marie Antoinette, or seen the countless examples of civil unrest across the globe in recent years?


doodlyfiddly Thu 06-Mar-14 15:27:56

ppeatfruit - I didn't go to one myself (far better things to do!), but friends went and there was one Major issue that was off the agenda!!! It was the elephant in the room every time she was around.

Tanith Thu 06-Mar-14 15:57:38

Be thankful most of you never had to endure her in Government. I think it was one of her ideas that the elderly should knit themselves scarves to keep warm when many were freezing to death.

SelectAUserName Thu 06-Mar-14 16:01:06

Tanith - I did, she did (and they should ask their grandchildren to buy them woolly hats for Christmas IIRC hmm ) and that's one of the reasons why I despise the woman.

usualsuspect33 Thu 06-Mar-14 16:09:10

Shes a Tory, what do you expect.

She talks typical right wing bollocks to demonise the poor.

BoulevardOfBrokenSleep Thu 06-Mar-14 16:30:39

bochead, that's a really interesting point.

Could the Victorian philanthropy difference be because the factory owners etc had more contact with their workforce, and more insight into their lives, than the modern 1%?

Hungermonkey Thu 06-Mar-14 16:56:34

bochead can I like your post? Very very thoughtful.

jetsetlil Thu 06-Mar-14 16:59:44

Misspixietrix - I don't think that sarcastic post was necessary, I already said up thread how upsetting I found that documentary in fact this afternoon I went to Sainsburys and put some items in the foodbank collection. I just felt that that lady has made a silly choice to stay in that house for sentimental reasons rather than eat! I'm glad I participated in this thread as I now have a better understanding of how terrible times are for some people but I am stepping away from it now

expatinscotland Thu 06-Mar-14 17:06:30

She is a vile bitch.

HopeClearwater Thu 06-Mar-14 17:24:09

MistressDeeCee great post.

What people don't seem to get is that it is mostly your circumstances which dictate how you behave, not your character. Make someone suddenly very poor for an indefinite period of time and it's very likely that they won't make the choices that the affluent middle class commentator like EC will think that they themselves would make. What's been said above about the grinding nature of poverty affects us all when we are poor.

I expect EC thinks she would be able to pull herself up by her bootstraps - yes, we'd all like to think that - but would we? And don't a lot of those rags to riches stories involve an element of luck - being in the right place at the right time? Edwina Currie is a nasty smug piece of work who should be thankful for what she has, and stop preaching to those less fortunate than herself.

sashh Thu 06-Mar-14 17:30:15

It's not unbearable poverty crackfox, don't be so melodramatic. It's relative poverty . If you want unbearable, go to India or Sub Saharan Africa.

Really? What's the difference? If you are hungry and cannot afford to buy food are you any better off in the UK?

Oh hang on a minute, the Indian government is attempting to feed everyone, providing school meals for many children.

And the numbers are dropping.

In Britain the numbers are on the increase

MistressDeeCee Thu 06-Mar-14 17:36:02

it is mostly your circumstances which dictate how you behave, not your character

Exactly HopeClearwater

Unless one's back is against the wall, how can they categorically say how they would act/cope? In a country where being poor is scorned and food banks are now the norm, complacency really isn't a wise course. Its like a backward sliding decline..rights that people fought for years ago are being eroded. Im beginning to feel if there was an initiative to uproot the poor from their homes and stick them into workhouses, it would be supported in many working class quarters in a "why should they live in a decent home? Theyre on benefits and they have a colour tv" kind of way. The government's success in creating divisions is shocking.

A couple of years ago I didnt know ANYONE who'd been to a foodbank. Didnt even realise there were so many here. Now, I know at least 3 people

JakeBullet Thu 06-Mar-14 17:49:54

Hungermonkey yes am sure you are indeed as lovely as my friend grin .

He is a die hard Tory voter...I am a floating voter.
Wine makes for heated debates ....and a lot of laughter. He votes Tory but is also a working class man who knows that life can smack people right between the eyes sometimes, smokers or not. Hence he does what he can for our local food bank or other charities. Edwina Currie could learn a thing or two from him.

Hungermonkey Thu 06-Mar-14 18:29:26

He sounds great fun and shows you can be a nasty old Tory and still have a heart of gold - ( I give to foodbanks too - feel very strongly I shoudl even though I say what I've said but ultimately - if you are lucky enough to hav eplenty you have a moral right to give - I guess that's old fashioned philanthropy?)

Misspixietrix Thu 06-Mar-14 19:01:56

jetsetli I wasn't being sarcastic. I was being factual. Not my fault if you took it that way.

Misspixietrix Thu 06-Mar-14 19:25:17

Thankyou for donating though. If you (or any poster actually) can spare even an hour volunteering please do feel free to ask around and get more info. It's very very eye opening.

SinisterBuggyMonth Thu 06-Mar-14 19:26:04

I missed the program but she's a twat.

There was similar twat on Jeremy Vine today saying people shouldn't be aloud to use food banks because HE has never been in that position where he was desperate enough to use one so no one else would be.

Lack of empathy bordering on psychopath IMO.

Misspixietrix Thu 06-Mar-14 19:38:42

Definitely Sinister!. We had a lady turn up to ours who needed several parcels. It turned out to be a social worker getting them for several families. If I was just passing through I could have easily made judgements about her. Just goes to show we shouldnt eh?

LtEveDallas Thu 06-Mar-14 19:47:51

Hungermonkey, roll-up cigarettes probably cost around £1.00 a day depending on how thinly they are rolled. Tobacco is a well known appetite suppressant. When they were on the bones of their arse my brother used to eat one day on, one day off so that his partner and child could eat. On his day off he used to smoke roll-ups and drink tap water so that he was not hungry.

Varya Thu 06-Mar-14 21:33:18

Loves herself and her unwanted opinions, to bits. Cannot stand the sight or sound of her. No idea of trying to make ends meet, dreading the fuel bill or running a fourteen year old car.

Misspixietrix Thu 06-Mar-14 21:35:03

Lteve I don't think it will matter to this crowd. Incidentally the people I know who are on benefits don'tddrink or smoke. Tell a lie. The one I did know managed to give up last year. Good for her I say.

Quoteunquote Thu 06-Mar-14 22:10:31

I've met her a few times, she is not very bright, the conversations kept going over her head.

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