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Bad days

So yesterday was not a good day.

This thing could be any time over the next 6 months. 6 months! God I feel sick.

And suddenly I realise why healing is taking so long, and why my writing is so ssllllowwww. My poetry is authentic; for good or ill, it's what I feel and how I sound to myself. I like it. But working on a longer story with all this crap to wade through is impossible. And as for front of camera work, forget it. Even if I wanted to do it, I just don't have the hyperbrights right now, and you really need them.

I get very frustrated with Britain, I have done since I was a kid. It's like a person brought up with great principles constantly trying to wangle a way around them.

The wars came, and even the gout-ridden moustachioes of Eton and Oxford could not get past the need for a social contract. The wars bled us dry, but at least it became clear that one could not expect Tommy Atkins to die for his country if he could barely live in it. The right to live, to be able to eat, to be educated, to have a vote and a voice, to be nurtured when sick, and protected when old or ill or young or unemployed, to have somewhere to live... this was what society had to be if we were to survive. And these good ideas were incorporated into a framework, and the framework cost money, but it worked.

Now it's as though Bullingdon Britain ( Check out its beauty :http://www.tutor2u.net/blog/images/uploads/blog-bullingdon-cameron.jpg) is over its post war shock, can't be doing with any of that old rubbish and wants its money back. I say its money; truth is that Britain's old money comes from old abuses. They have no more right to it than any warlord has a right to loot that his grandfather stole. We tolerate this because now more people have property so property rights apply to more. Trickle-down theory does work in the end, though it is extremely wasteful in terms of human lives on the way, and no-one will ever persuade me that it is the only way to bring about a cohesive and peaceful society. It's just the cheapest that oligarchy could buy.

It's this duality about GB I do not understand - though I don't know whether I should say GB, Scotland has a strong socialist background, and I really have no clue about Wales or NI. There's the revelation that in order for society to be safe, it has to have a level of safety for everyone, and not just safety; joy. But this seems to exist alongside a hysterical desire not to pay for anybody else's good, like Hyacinth Bucket sticking a fiver in the church collection plate, and then scooping out the change.

A few years back larians and I visited Haworth, home of the Brontes. Haworth was one of the least healthy places in Britain1 with a high mortality rate, horrible living conditions, TB rife though by no means the only killer of the populace... Anyone who knows their Bronte history will recall that TB pretty much wiped them out. The lack of sanitation was to our minds, extraordinary and stayed that way for a long time, partly through governmental neglect and partly because wealthy locals did not want to pay for necessary improvements. I always found this a horrible story2 - people who would ingest filth and faeces, have their kids do the same, and die of it, rather than improve conditions for the poor, as though turds magically floated towards the bad end of town. That is Mammon worship writ large, and that is exactly where we are now. But between the 19th century and the 21st, there was a moment when our consciences ruled, and the decisions made were for the good. Are we really going to forget all this?

Returning to my own situation, I have been bizarrely and undeservedly fortunate, protected by the best of love and the best of friends. But without those protections no doubt I would have fallen, crushed by the infrastructure's desire to make me disappear, easily as deadly as Terry Emmett's knife. And here's the point: I shouldn't have needed to be lucky. No-one should need to be, in order to survive in England. Not one person.

1) The Babbage report on Haworth, fascinating in a gruesome way: http://freepages.genealogy.rootsweb.ancestry.com/~jeffreywright/Babbage%20Report

2 I read this account of events in Haworth, and have not been able to trace the sources yet. Next time I visit I will check!



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