Pity the poor Grauniad. In the away-with-the-fairies world that many of its writers inhabit the issues couldn't be clearer; austerity measures should cause riots on the streets, the parks should be filled with homeless workers displaced by the housing benefit cuts, NHS workers should be on strike and in order to escape recession all the government has to do is employ more people at even higher wages in the public sector. It's a strange, twilight fantasy world and it's so out of touch with the country that one feels the hacks are continuing to write solely to an audience of each-other.
'Where are the sistas?' Wails the paper; 'where are the street activists?' and most puzzling of all to the hacks, why has the Guardian lost the fight for public support for welfare largesse? In fact, just getting the word 'welfare' back into common speech was half the victory; when this blog first started, using the word welfare was a bit like saying handicapped instead of disabled, or bastardy instead of illigitimacy. And there's another word for something that is more widely recognised than Guardian hacks would ever imagine - the concept of an underclass. Mick Philpott exemplifies membership; idle, welfare-scrounging, violent, sexually exploitative, poorly educated, a nightmare neighbour, costing the rest of us a disproportionate fortune in police and criminal justice, social work, special education, health and housing and management services. Everyone who lives in contact with them at some level recognises them - except Guardian hacks, from whose Strawberry Hill gothic villas such life is invisible.
You see, if the Guardian's Leveson-loving writers (with a few honourable exceptions) were proper hacks instead of luvvies playing Lady Bountiful, they'd be running columns headed 'Where are the journalists?' For there seem few resident at York Way, N1.