There is a new kind of poverty in Britain. It is made by politicians, and could easily be ended by politicians. The people enduring this government-enforced poverty are not on low incomes: they have no income whatsoever. They sit in dark cold homes with no money and no food. For them, budgeting and belt-tightening would be the luxury option.
Income inequality has been growing for decades in the UK, extensive evidence reveals. In recent years, so-called ‘austerity’ has served as a smokescreen for even more wealth to be transferred to a handful of millionaires.
As we enter an election year perhaps the real issues may be smuggled onto our television screens via comedy and entertainment, whilst the news media which is supposed to inform us simply keeps the debate within certain parameters.
I’ve been re-reading ‘A Christmas Carol’, and the way it resonates with present day Britain is quite remarkable. As Christmas approaches, Scrooge sits in his counting house, as he does every day, obsessed with his accounts and balancing the books, untouched and unmoved by the poverty all around him.
Media coverage of the Feeding Britain report left me feeling dismayed, as the central, indeed the only issue, the scandal of people going hungry in 21st century Britain, was obscured by a shoal of red herrings.