‘Food Poverty’ – Getting The Needle All The Way Past Eleven!

Patrick Butler ramps up the hyperbole:

The detailed testimony of UK food poverty, both from those who suffer from it and those who try to alleviate it, still retains the power to startle and dismay.

Really? *yawns*

Take some of the stories uncovered by Samir Jeraj, who researched an investigation into food poverty in the south east of England for Green MEP Keith Taylor published this week.

Oh, gosh, a report compiled for a Green MEP. That one goes to the top of the ‘must read’ pile…


The biggest rises in demand, it found were in wealthy counties like Surrey and Berkshire, where, it seems, the normalisation of food banks as a response to a creaking welfare system continues apace.

Hang on, either it’s a ‘wealthy county’ or it’s ‘dependant on welfare’, surely? It can’t be both, can it?

As the report states:

The places they are opening are no longer just traditionally deprived areas, every major settlement either has or will soon have a food bank if trends continue.

Those ‘trends’ being the expansion of the ‘charity’ sector, I suppose?

According to Lee Hodgson, the manager of the local Citizen’s Advice Bureau, his staff now have to ration the vouchers by deciding which of its hungry and penniless clients are “most deserving” of charity help.

He says: “How do you make that choice? I don’t think anybody should be in that position. That’s how bad it’s got.”

I’ll make it for you, if you like…

The manager of New Forest basics bank, Peter Bassett, points out that people were not just going without food but essential toiletries. Bassett says the price of nappies meant that “he had heard anecdotal evidence of mothers having to choose whether to regularly change babies”.

And once again, we see the progressives falling on anecdotes like starving wolves when it suits them.

And from this near-chaos, the last word must go to John Marshall of Milton Keynes Food Bank, who worries that the UK is hurtling apace down the route disastrously taken two decades ago by the US and Canada, where charity food banks are now part of the welfare mainstream:

If we are all still doing this in 20 years we will have failed. The country will have failed itself.

Right. And I suppose those who can’t support their lifestyle without welfare can’t be said to have failed, can they?

5 comments for “‘Food Poverty’ – Getting The Needle All The Way Past Eleven!

  1. Stonyground
    December 24, 2013 at 3:14 pm

    Back in the eighties I knew a bloke who used to volunteer for the Red Cross. They used to do an annual delivery of Christmas hampers to supposedly hard up families. I remember him talking about the decision to knock this on the head due to the volunteers repeatedly watching these poor people transferring the contents of their hampers to cupboards and fridges that were rather well stocked with booze and ciggies.

  2. December 24, 2013 at 3:51 pm

    My next door neighbour, the drunk, who lives in an identical rented house to my rented house (mine at three times the rent as it is ‘private) but his owned by the Housing Commission, dropped by to use my phone. He has a mobile given to him by ‘welfare’ but it only takes incoming calls as he would have to get (buy) ‘phone credits to make outgoing calls.

    He wanted to phone for a pizza. $30. !! $30 friggin’ bucks. That is enough for three day’s meals for me.

    I charge him $3 a call. At least three times a week.

  3. December 24, 2013 at 4:17 pm

    During the season of goodwill it might be a good idea to check first whether there are any deserving cases in existence, even though one’s conscience might suffer as a result.

  4. December 24, 2013 at 5:01 pm

    Maldives or Majorca this year – difficult choice for them.

  5. December 25, 2013 at 12:35 pm

    There is a question that this whole topic brings to mind,and that is,”How does the state separate deserving from undeserving cases?”

    When we have a bureaucracy, a system based on objective answers to objective questions, it can become as difficult to ensure that the assistance goes to those who will not abuse it as it is to prevent it goingto those who do notdeserve it but know how to work the system..

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