Tuesday, July 27, 2004

Deprivation

What happens when bureaurats become bored?

Horrid little community programs such as the Shoreditch Festival, which:

"... is produced by Shoreditch Our Way (ShOW) - a central government initiative to address issues facing areas of extremely high deprivation. ShOW is a community-led regeneration company primarily focusing on housing, health, education, employment and community safety."

I'd like to publicly announce that I'm deprived too. Deprived of the wonderful feeling of being surrounded by common sense. Deprived of a proportion of my earnings to fund some do-gooder nitwit's warm fuzzies.

"The Shoreditch Festival is a way to give the many local groups, businesses, schools, artists and individuals within the community an opportunity to become involved in the regeneration of Shoreditch."

I have a wild, crazy, insane idea. Find a large crowd with pitchforks to storm the local council. Send the council workers home with boxes of personal belongings and a firm boot to the ass. Ditto to other do-gooder government agency buildings. Overnight, barriers to purchasing, modifying and using property will dissappear. People won't be going to Shoreditch to receive their state-acquired alms. Whole buildings will be vacant and ready for non-insipid use. Shops will spring up as will creative, interesting buildings in shapes that we can't even imagine. Yuppies will move in as will the businesses that support yupp-ness: cafes, florists, restaurants with snooty French maitre d's, silly knick-knack shops, Toni & Guy salons, delis that sell normal food with pretentious names. Et voila! Regeneration.

The thing that actually got me looking up the Shoreditch Festival's site is a little article in the Metro newspaper about some silly art 'piece' that is part of the festival:

" ...bus passengers travelling from five bus shelters on Kingsland Road in Shoreditch will be hearing the dreams of young mothers in the area as they wait for their bus.
 
The installations have been created to build up a picture of the women's hopes and experiences, with each telling a different story."

With all the respect that could possibly be due to such a monstrous piece of drivel: 'Eh?'

Who in their right mind gives a damn about the dreams and aspirations of a COMPLETE STRANGER? Someone that has no ties to you, someone that you wouldn't recognise in a crowd, someone that you haven't even met?

This is one of the reasons that I'm inordinately thankful we humans can't read minds. Can you imagine the kind of thoughts we would be bombarded with? Something may be interesting or pertinent to one person, but that doesn't guarantee that it will be interesting or pertinent to another. I don't actually want to hear about someone else's battle to iron straight creases into their trousers every morning. I don't give a damn if they think they've left their newspaper on the train. My life will continue if I don't learn of their sexual indiscretions. Yet with the advent of trash like this and other 'reality' art such as Big Brother, this is exactly what I am learning. The everyday thoughts of any random schmuck.

Whilst we're on the subject - what were these women's qualifications? How is it that they were chosen to bleat out their dreams to an unsuspecting public?

They were women, they were mothers, they had the right postcode.

Congratulations sweetheart, you can breed. So could my cat - though with far greater efficiency.

Perhaps they wanted to express themselves somehow? Perhaps this was a way for them to receive some sort of state-sponsored therapy? Was it an ego boost for the administering government gimp or for the mumsy? Evidently someone wanted something, held their hand out to the state and got it.

It seems that all you have to do is scream loud enough nowadays to get what you want, so let me have a go.

I demand a government program aimed at MY needs, dammit. I feel demoralised and depressed when I see taxes and NI taken out of my paycheck. I become physically ill whenever I pass a Social Services office. I feel* discriminated against by the government because I'm white and there's nothing particularly physically wrong with me.

So what I need is a social worker that will be sensitive to my needs. I expect them to be able to converse with me on my level and smooth the path for me in life. As such, I'd like a management graduate who blasts all the suffocating red tape ahead of me in starting my own business. If they so much as peep ONE anti-business, anti-individual, anti-capitalist sentiment, I'll haul their ass (and their respective department's) in front of a tribunal for discrimination and for perpetrating a random 'ism'. How about successism? That'll do - discrimination against an individual because of the level of their success.

I really wonder what would happen if enough people demanded those kinds of government services? We all have needs, if the government is there to provide for them then let's give them a full list.

The problem here is, of course, twofold. Firstly, the government is NOT there to actually provide for our needs. That's just a false idea so prolifically bandied about that it's become a trusim.

The other is that in order for my subversive little plan to work, I would have to convince people who never ask for handouts to ask for handouts. Work though it might to wedge a rather large spanner in the works, watching producers become beggars would just be too much for me.

So I'll just amuse you lot and get angry on my little blog instead.

 
* Note - 'feel', I don't need to prove jack.

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