Faced with starving, breadless peasants, Queen Marie Antoinette said “Let them eat cake.”
Some 200 years later, faced with hungry, hard-working families, Therese Coffey may as well have sneered, “Let them work longer hours”.
And she was rewarded with retaining her handsomely paid Cabinet job.
France had a revolution. We could do with one here – a voters’ revolt against heartless, cynical politicians like the Tory Work-Harder-You-Lazy-B*****ds Secretary.
She is “entirely happy” with the upcoming £20-a-week cut in Universal Credit that will plunge millions into further poverty.
Adding insult to injury, the former accountant with Mars confectionery suggested “about two hours extra work” would make up for the cut.
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Deceitful, as you might expect. Workers can’t just demand more hours, and even if they could it would actually take up to nine hours to recoup their losses.
Complacent Coffey told MPs: “We’ll be seeing what we can do to help people perhaps secure those extra hours.”
“Seeing what we can do...Perhaps.” What a wasteland of smug indifference lies behind those few simple words. Out of touch comes nowhere near it.
She never even bothered to do an economic assessment of the impact of this benefit cut, which will hit 2.3 million claimants in work but not paid enough to live on.
Why bother, when you are the apple of the Prime Minister’s eye? A hard-right careerist who opposed gay marriage and curbs on addictive gambling and backed the bedroom tax, she’s a dumb-loyal Bojo Babe.
Coffey boasts of being a member of the Campaign for Real Ale. Millions hit by her callous, unChristian policies won’t raise a pint to her survival in the Cabinet reshuffle.
Covid-19 is bad, but Govid-21 is worse. Rubberface Michael Gove is now in charge of “levelling up” the North.
He once said of Thatcherism: “We are at last experiencing a new empire, an empire where the happy South stamps over the cruel, dirty, toothless face of the Northerner.”
Mrs T didn’t give a fig for what half the population said because the richer half would keep her in power, he bragged. “This may be immoral, but it’s politics.”
Charming, and revealing.
Power that shower!
They’re running out of water in, er...Manchester?
Sometimes known as the rainy city (and I can vouch for that), it boomed as Cottonopolis because the damp air was perfect for the textile industry.
But this year the rain has stayed mainly on the plain, not in the pluvial Lake District, where the city gets its water from Thirlmere, a man-made reservoir not a natural lake.
And that’s only 40% full, so United Utilities is urging millions in Greater Manchester to conserve water by spending a minute less in the shower.
In the great drought of 1976, the government’s slogan was ‘Save Water – Bath with a Friend’.
They hadn’t invented showers then.
Are you sure?
Image:AFP via Getty Images)
There’s one certain way to halt the flow of refugees in boats across the Channel.
Project a menacing, 100ft high image of Home Secretary Priti Patel on the white cliffs of Dover, with words underneath, ARE YOU SURE?
If that doesn’t stop them, they deserve the chance to make a new life here.