Necessity, it has been said, is the mother of invention. It is not certain if that is what Frank Zappa had in mind when he composed the sublime “My Guitar Wants To Kill Your Mamma” but it is now government and not guitars that are after fecund womanhood.
Government has decided that it has become necessary to harm people in order to maximise bungs for banks, bonuses for bankers and a big, fat beano for the bastards ripping off Britain. As we are all in this together, the weakest and most vulnerable are obliged to suffer the most because, as our government points out, it is in the long term interest of the terminally ill, people with disabilities, children, the unemployed and the elderly to subsidise tax cuts for a very few, a very happy few, very wealthy Tory party donors. As necessity goes, it doesn`t get very much more inventive than that.
To their credit, the mothers of Britain are pitching in to make sure that the rich get richer. The recently published unemployment figures show that of the 28,000 increase, 22,000 are women. Cuts in child benefit, paid directly to mothers, will fund the abolition of the 50p tax rate to predominately male tycoons. A detailed report for the TUC states that the gender pay gap in the private sector is more than 18 per cent. In what is left of the public sector, even with the disaster of single status, the gender pay gap is around nine per cent. In the private sector, 50 per cent of women earn less than £15,000 compared to 20 per cent of men in identical jobs. Who loves you, mamma?
In light of the terrible unemployment statistics, the government spun the line that everything was fine because unemployment had decreased. The media swallowed the line along with the hook and the sinker as the figures for part-time work were slightly up. Erm…right. The government view seems to be that women prefer part-time work because it gives them the opportunity to cook, clean and skivvy whilst nurturing the next generation of the unemployed. Add to this the closures of Surestart Centres, astronomical increases in the cost of child care, the removal of employment and basic, human rights, the closure of refuges for the victims of domestic violence and the removal of legal aid for women being beaten to a pulp by abusive partners. One wonders what women have done to offend the government.
But help is at hand. A government spokesman said:
“We have set up the Women`s Business Council and are providing resources for volunteer business mentors who will support women who want to start or grow their own businesses.”
Fantastic. We can look forward to more women entrepreneurs like Emma Harrison who amassed a huge personal fortune through alleged fraud at A4e (Action for Jobs) at the expense of the jobless and the tax payer. Perhaps Nadine Dorries should be appointed business secretary and dictate to mothers the irresponsibility and foolishness of wishing to have a say in life, society and their own bodies.
On the eve of Mothering Sunday, some of the small people who share the house came and asked for money to buy cards and presents for their mum. In these dark days when the price of rough cider and cigarettes is going through the roof, they were offered the fatherly advice that a made present and card was more valuable than increasing the profits of Tesco or Asda. One barely literate child produced a card that said:
“The best mums have sticky floors,
Piles of washing,
A mountain of odd socks
And really happy children.”
So, from Dave and Gideon and Nick and Nadine, happy Mothering Sunday. Mr Zappa, is sadly dead.