ONE RUNG AT A TIME WATCH ME CLIMB THE CLASS LADDER
When I was 13 it was habitual to watch spotty teens ‘scrap’ in the carpark of Beb High, the shit secondry school of Wirral South (the one you went to after failing the 11+). Why we were SO into watching chavvy boys hit eachother is beyond me, if that was 2016 we would definatly snapchat those scenes to our mates, video it and put it on youtube. When I grew up I experienced the exact same phenonina but instead I was sat in my living room as two toothless crackheads scream at eachother about abortions and robberies on the Jeremy Kyle show.
Some call it ‘Poverty Porn’, a form of social sadism where we rip into those who fail to take part in Camerons Britian, a Britain whose free market means seething individualism requires us to throw ourselves up the social ladder into fully formed members of the middle class. I too am Beb High educated currently attending a dead fancy London art school, and subsequently participating in the Waitrose fed neo-liberal hell that is the Capital. Summed up by my Beb High mate Kat, who moved to London at the same time as me and now talks with a full on southern accent. What do we mean when we talk about the dreaded LOW CULTURE, other than our use of it in our artful ‘SCULPTURAL ASEMBLAGES’.
‘Benefits Street’ was a glorified social experiment by Channel 4 dicumenting the ecomoic and social condictions of residents in a street in Birmingham. Where apparently about 90% of people claim benefits (the ABSOLUTE horror), the show displayed the brummie scum showing us how they shoplift, and totally abuse our ‘too generous ‘beneifts system. With the general overriding themes of how bloody dependent on the walfare system these people were, while they lack any motivation to even find work.
This was nothing short of conservative propaganda, making us fall for the capitalist myth that the WAY too generous social benefits system allows the DISGUSTING poor to totally abuse us NOBLE TAXPAYING WORKERS. The chavs just don’t want to find work, they cant be bothered they are way too busy with their illegal activies and FIGHTING and doing DRUGS and having millions of babies on their SINK esates. because the chavs, like the muslims and the immigrants are just inheritnly EVIL. I don’t know about you but its very clear to me that these people actually cant even find work in the first place, especially in places like Birmingham and pretty much any industrial town which Thatcher totally stamped all over with her crazy extremist tory feet
I know from my very own begginings that when Camell Lairds the shipbuilders in Birkenhead who made major ships like the HMS Unicorn went bust people, loads and loads of people including my uncle Keith were unemployed for AGES. there was no where else which suited his skillset, literally no other jobs about that would take him, he ended up eventually moving to France to a shipbuilders there were he became an alcoholic and killed himself, probably because he felt so displaced. BUT WHATEVER work anywhere!! Work in a shop or in a office!! Do anything for money!!
Why are we so forced to drag ourselves through literal hell just to make minimum wage? The identity of the industrial worker, like my Uncle kieth who had a deep feeling of pride within thier job and got to see their glorious ship sailing out of the proud river Mersey helping industry and the military. Their identity is validated, one of Marx’s arguments about communism was that under that structure people can actually SEE the effect of their role in society, rather than the GO GO GO capitalist free market where hundreds of people do tiny shit jobs like putting the cap on a bottle thousands of times a day and feel no gratification, feel no sense of pride and instead develop RSI in their wrists.
I don’t know but with a deep hatred of this system I would rather fucking abuse benefits than put a cap on a bottle ever single second of the day. Even so through increased developments in computerization factories are being mechanized so you don’t even have a place there to put a fucking cap on a bottle because now a robot is doing it for you. SORRY! now the only job for you here is to operate the robots which you require an actual degree in robotics , which you blatently don’t have because you are an industrial worker from somewhere in the midlands and in the 80s they told you you didn’t need a degree! you cant exactly go back to uni now because you cant afford to pay 27 grand so, sorry about that!
No fucking wonder these people are dwelling in total social decay. They have lost their entire identities as their indusrial work is moved over to China and India. The lads who fight in the carpark of Beb High, do it because they are really pissed off because their families are really poor, they live on Nocturim estate where people literally get shot and stabbed, they don’t have any prosperity because their whole family history has been wrecked by the decline of industry AND left everyone unemployed, their mum is never there because she has to work really really intense hours as a cleaner for some shit office somewhere. So they are really fucking angry and scared.
But here we find ourselves clambering our way up the ladder, dragging our depleated bodies up the greasey rungs on the towering structure, many fall past us crashing to the ground their bodies mangled as we slip our hands into the mass of tangled limbs grabbing onto the hard marble. The bellowing laughs and smell of smoke echoing from those who made it to the top, who seem like they were always there, birthed there. As we look down we see the bright flames of the orgy of decay, those with broken limbs breed into seething mutated clans, swinging fists. Flames licking our ankles as they grow with time despite climbing for years, our skin turning to hardened carapaces as we face the heighting altitudes,
© Georgina Rowlands, all rights reserved