Wednesday, 10 December 2014

Baroness Pennywise

I wonder if the schizoid refuge is just a normal cognitive deficit. A Tory politico called Baroness Jenkin got herself into bother. She blithely insisted the growth of food banks, was down to poor people not being able to cook.

Food banks are places people go to receive a weekly supply food donations because they can't afford to feed themselves-in part or whole. Many recipients-recommended by various agencies- are in work. The culture of austerity policies, high rents, low or zero hours contracts-where no work at all is guaranteed yet the person isn't allowed to take on something else to try and cover that, is taking its toll. 

"We've lost a lot of our cooking skills" she exclaimed bubble headedly. As if those skills where carelessly dropped along the way without oversight.

Predictably and rightly she got a stinging backlash and to her credit, apologized and corrected herself. It wasn't that her words had no merit. It was that she identified a generalized outcome/trend through the impoverished and marginalized as if it was specific to them-and absent from others who are better off.

That particular sentiment is prevalent, amongst the better off classes, regardless of their politics. They simply cannot come to terms with the fact that it takes far more skill in virtually every area you can think of to survive as a poorer than a better off person.

Their mind then has to keep making this same faux pas. I'm sure it's been pointed out as a particular form of dishonest self service, but I can't call to mind any metaphysical term.

She didn't mention her own party, headed by one Margaret Hilda Thatcher decided for no earthly good to take cookery lessons out of state education. Honesty would have forced her to say, "We/they got that wrong and now we are seeing the consequence." It's never a good sign when these links aren't made. Making them is the best way to guard against them being repeated.

Omitting this not only shirks the responsibility commentators keep using as a stick to beat their quarry with. It shows a lack of concern about stopping a repeat. You could say that is happening now.

No-one thought ending culinary education was a good idea. They either didn't care or protested yet it still went ahead, purportedly to "save money." Worse still, they replaced these useful lessons in self care with things like "food technology." Something I've quite never got, but consisted in large part of studying the design of commercial packaging. Usually the kind of ready meals that then really took off.

Entirely coincidentally I'm sure.

The Conservatives also put the provision of school meals out to tender to the kind of outfits that brought the kind fast food canteen culture food nutrition fanatics bemoan as the creator of their fevered lipogeddon scenario.

It was as if the politicians did everything they could to undermine people cooking for themselves, prepped their taste buds via school meals. Then normalized ready meals as a main focus of eating. Education eh?

It's reminiscent of a similar strategy happening with the attempts to privatize UK health by stealth. Dismantle the things that stop people being dependent on ready made commercially engineered product of whatever kind. 

It was this sustained line of policy and the lack of any strong opposition to it that made me see through the mirage of any kind of common cause when it came to food, weight and health. The truth about the food fanatics who opine about 'obesity' is they have no intellectual base or backbone or heart. They attack only those who are undefended leaving aside anyone who will remotely answer back.  

I realized that equation didn't add up. People hate fatness and insist how/what we eat is the answer. Then do little about the very things they say causes fatness to advance, because their fantasies of weight as identity i.e. slim people don't eat this kind of thing takes precedence over everything. They can't constitute a cogent defence, they don't truly care.

I said to myself, my poor old mind can't take this level of underhand bullshit. I actually did give a damn about how children are fed and felt it mattered for its own sake. But I had to accept this is in the hands of people like BJ. Who criticize only outcomes in specific groups. So, let the chips fall where they may, no pun intended, and let science give people the ability to manipulate their own signals. And let people eat what they really eat.

Whether food was the route to "weight management" or not was irrelevant to me anyway. Science has a job to do, either way

Those who shout about 'obesity' never fight the kind of policy their own complaining requires. The concentrate all their fight on attacking people. When tired of their bullying aggression, they nonsensically applied their pet viewpoints; "personal responsibility"or "boo big business."

Sorry, but porridge is hardly "cookery" the instructions invariably come on the packet. And, nor would everyone who can cook dream of putting it past their lips. I've heard the raw stuff makes a good body scrub though.
People have always gone hungry or hungrier because of lack/absence of cookery skills. It was mentioned in Orwell's famous book, the "Road to Wigan Pier." At one point he referred to a study that found a family amongst the poor and emaciated that were healthy and robust. Turned out the mother was some kind of nurse (I think). She was well trained in nutrition with a high degree of culinary skill, (she also happened to be fat by the way.) Today her success would be pathologized as 'bad lifestyle' she'd be deemed 'obese' and "unhealthy."

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