Diary Of Reginald Horace – 24th June 2015

by richardhutton

Can we really prevent people from living in “poverty”? (I use quotation marks here, because of course, there is no such thing as being poor. These people are manifestly gifted solid gold mansions, season tickets to Westham Villa games, and compilations of gangsta rap by the welfare state on a daily basis).

I am not an expert, but I know a tavern landlord who has read one or two periodicals on the subject; and according to him, the non-scientific community has identified what he refers to as the ‘poverty gene’ (“fifth gene on the left” he says – with a knowing look).

It is a simple fact that parents who live on low incomes, in the poorest areas, experience a 95% likelihood (with a 5% margin for error) to have children who are poor. All right-thinking people must surely agree with Professor David Cameron when he explains that “money has nothing to do with poverty – it is merely a matter of genetics”; and with Professor Iain Duncan Smith, from the Faith-Based Institute for Social Justice, when he adds “what’s the use of punishing the poor, if some do-gooder only goes and redistributes wealth anyway?”.

Where there is a high level of impoverishment in our country, however, is in terms of moral fibre. Now, I am certainly not Left-leaning – but I know several people who are left-handed, and conferring with them affords a degree of insight into such things, for those of us who are sensible. What’s more, there is something about tradition and simplicity, that always has a place. Therefore, it seems self-evident to me that there is a simple commonsense solution to this conundrum: town-square stocks must be reintroduced into every city, town, and village throughout the land – whereby the “poor” (see above) can be hectored, belittled, and pelted with the old five-a-days by members of the public. For their own benefit, of course.

This would achieve several things: for one, it would improve people’s moral fibre; for another it would use up ‘still fresh’ fruit and vegetables with no need to donate them to communist entities, such as Foodbanks; and what’s more, it would provide young people with a good, old-fashioned communal activity. Since Guardian readers and similar nefarious sorts are constantly going on at length about the virtues of recycling/environmentalism/the young etc, their only objection to this would be the moral fibre aspect of the scheme – which we can safely ignore, as it merely confirms them for the decadents they are.

Of course in my day, child poverty was cured by the simple expedient of a paper round; and I am more than happy to refer the more recalcitrant “poor” to my local newsagents, as run by Mr Lynton Crosby (in his moments of sobriety, as warm-hearted a fellow as one could wish to avoid). Professors Cameron and Smith are right: only by dealing harshly with ne’er-do-wells can we ever expect them to become as morally upstanding as ourselves.