Too Many Dresses

doctor of romcoms, twee as fuck

Everything counts in large amounts

on April 1, 2009

Had a lovely time chatting with a few of my friends off the Film MA today, but I couldn’t help but think afterwards just how angry I am with the way a lot of things are going in this country, and how utterly frustrated I am that there is so little I can do about them. Unemployment, recession, outrageous energy bills, hapless and overpriced public transport…and all of this while our democratically electedly MPs fiddle their second (second!?) home expenses and work themselves out a nice little pay rise.

On thinking all these things through, they all seemed to come back to two things: 1) the greed and unaccountability of a large company and 2) the government’s refusal to intervene despite the tools being in place for that very purpose (e.g. the energy ombudsman).

Now, I’m not blogging here to propose solutions. I simply don’t have any, and that, perhaps, more than anything else, is what really stings about all this. I’m sitting here in one of the most developed nations in the world, where more than one in four children live in poverty. I’m fortunate to be studying for a Masters degree, when 36% of 16 year olds leave school without 5 A*-C GCSEs. This year I have watched the people that I love struggle against a vicious economic climate and seen some of the people I graduated with struggle to make ends meet in minimum wage jobs. And the only weapon that I have against all of this is my vote. Once every four years I get to choose between three candidates that are presented to us in a wave of PR and spin (this is excepting the fact that I vote in [reportedly] the safest Tory seat in the country!). I just feel so utterly paralysed and incapacitated at the moment. There’s so many things that I would change. And, yes, fair enough, where would I start, and, no, I’m not saying I would do a better job than Gordon Brown or David Cameron or even Gordon the Gopher – but I just wish I had more input.

It’s significant, I feel, that politics is not taught in schools (it is not offered by any exam board at GCSE/Key Stage 4 level due to an apparent ‘lack of demand’). The closet socialist in me says that this is a vicious tactic to keep us in the dark, to ensure that we don’t grow up knowing how to get involved, and how to rock the boat. If everything about our lives – from the quality of the air that we breathe to the price we pay for a Cadbury’s creme egg – is affected by politics, surely it should be compulsory at all stages of education? Isn’t knowing how your country runs and how to change it key in promoting responsible, involved and invested citizenship? But perhaps, in the end, that is not what the government wants.

I sincerely hope (and to some degree suspect) that I am not the only one that feels this level of extreme frustration with current circumstances. I’m imagining tomorrow’s protests will go some way to demonstrating this, although I’m not imagining that anyone will take notice (they will probably hit the headlines due to violence, and thus the media and the government will be able to successfully mask the dissent). Ah well, if anyone has any ideas, I’d love to hear them. Send any revolutionary ideas on a Che Guevara postcard please.



2 responses to “Everything counts in large amounts

  1. Sarah Wharton says:

    I didn’t know you had a blog. I’ve linked to it from mine now.

    I agree with this post so completely it’s ridiculous; I’ve often wondered why there is no GCSE in Politics and I find it obscene that so many people don’t have a clue how their country is run or how it has been run in the past. You would be hard-pressed, I think, to find an American teenager in education who did not know the structure of their government or how their President is elected. So why do so few British people understand these things? It’s frustrating and somewhat embarrassing.

    I read the other day that the BNP is becoming the third party over the Lib Dems (if they haven’t achieved this already) and it scares me no end. It’s ignorance that allows fascist politics like theirs to gain headway and ignorance is one thing at the moment that Britain has in abundance.

  2. Sarah Holbrook says:

    Loved this blog… It is all really so frustrating!!

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