Sir Freudian Slap – The Mentality of Privilege

BRITAIN’S PRIME MINISTER, David Cameron, predictably hid behind his son’s death when defending Lord Freud’s comment that disabled people were not worth the minimum wage. Ivan Cameron, who was seriously ill, died at the age of six in late February 2009. He suffered from cerebral palsy and epilepsy. His death was, as it is for any family, a terrible blow for family. David and his wife deserve our sympathy, but his cynical use of this loss and the suffering of his own son, are despicable beyond belief. Lord Freud, the Minister for Welfare Reform (a coded term for saving the government money by taking it from those who need it most), spoke with such ease about the worthlessness of people struggling with disabilities that it betrayed a culture of such a vile attitude within Britain’s privileged class – of which Cameron and his wife are members. He did not stop at calling them worthless; he went on to suggest that they might even be prepared to work for £2 an hour. We can only assume that a country where the crippled-dead-weight of society worked for peanuts would be a Conservatives dream.

Of course political capital is going to be made out comments like this, but some people (myself included) know that it is like to care for people with disabilities, and others know what it is like to live with a disability. The difference is that we don’t have social and economic security behind us that Ivan Cameron had when he was alive. When Ivan was sick he was taken to St Mary’s Hospital in Paddington where he would be cared for without the anxiety of cost, waiting lists, and as the son of the Prime Minister. When we are sick, or caring for seriously sick or disabled loved-ones, we have to deal with transport costs, fees, over-subscribed doctors, over-worked nursing staff and other caring professionals. In the real world the disabled have to eat, find somewhere to live, afford a decent quality of life and find meaningful employment – all in a world where the Cameron family are attacking the benefits system. It may seem heartless to bring poor Ivan into this, but David brought him into this to shut us up. No, as sad as the plight of Ivan Cameron was, it doesn’t even measure with the plight of thousands in the real world.

Ivan Cameron never received regular letters from the government asking him if his cerebral palsy had cleared up or if he had been miraculously healed of his epilepsy. Little Ivan wasn’t ever at risk of losing his place at school or having the specialised transport to and from that school taken away because of government cuts. No, Ivan Cameron never had a clue. He would never have had to deal with these inconveniences of the real world. So David Cameron can take his crocodile tears, stick them where the sun don’t shine, and sit back down.

Lord (no less) Freud (coincidently enough) made these comments in such a relaxed manner that it gave away the fact that he assumed his opinions were shared by most – if not all – of the people around him. His disgusting and shameless words give away something else, something that is even more telling of his mentality of wealth and privilege – the mentality of the born-to-rule. In his head the person, the human being, the real flesh and blood somebody, is reduced to a unit. These meaningless units are to be instrumentalised, objectified and utilised to the ends of capital and wealth creation. This is the purpose – at least to the privileged – of the ‘lower orders.’

The reader might think this assertion is perhaps an exaggeration. It certainly is not. Freud used the word ‘worth’ in regard to a human being, and not in the sense of intrinsic value as a human being with rights and dignity. No, he was using ‘worth’ in the only way he knows how: pounds, shillings and pence worth and value. To the likes of Lord Freud we are nothing but our cash and taxable value. The very moment that this value falls below a given threshold then we are no longer valuable to him or the state. It only makes sense that this measurement of humanity extends to cover not only the mentally ill and the physically disabled, but every member of the ‘lower orders (that is us)’ who are of no or limited value to the wealthy British Establishment. We have to remember that the real disability here is the moral decrepitude of this privileged class. If this is their attitude towards the very weakest members of their own – English – society, then you can guarantee that they don’t give a rat’s arse about the people of Scotland.

– Ùr-Fhàsaidh
Jason Michael, Ayrshire
Blog Contributor

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9 thoughts on “Sir Freudian Slap – The Mentality of Privilege

  1. That nails them down exactly. Freud was also heard last year calling the population of the the UK as “stock”. Cameron and Co sicken me.
    Great article again.
    “Any society that would give up a little liberty to gain a little security will deserve neither and lose both.”

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  2. I cannot believe a father would use a son who endured so much before his life ended could display what should have been a very private experience within the family.It was totally wasted on Lord Freud who is devoid of any decency and with no empathy or care for others who are tragically disadvantaged being disabled. If PM Cameron is blind to the obvious perhaps he should consider if he is fit for purpose.

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  3. This is only the most recent example of Cameron using his son’s death, he also used it a few weeks ago at the Tory party conference as his justification that the NHS is safe in his hands. Gordon Brown also used his daughter’s death during the referendum, for the very same purpose – saying that he would fight to protect the NHS, and the SNP were lieing. Each time I hear that kind of thing, I have a sharp intake of breath, because I just cannot see how you would use the death of your child for political gain, but then I also cannot see how this government justifies the current attacks on the sick and disabled via Ian Duncan Smith and his continued attack on Benefits. Its not wonder they want to withdraw from the EU, so that there can be no Human Rights challenges to those courts, as has already happened here.

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  4. But it is even worse than that
    http://www.courier.co.uk/Tunbridge-Wells-councillor-says-disabled-people/story-23179735-detail/story.html
    Thus it would seem that David Scott – a Tory Councillor has scammed his own mentally disabled gardener out being paid the minimum wage.

    “That is why no amount of cajolery, and no attempts at ethical or social seduction, can eradicate from my heart a deep burning hatred for the Tory Party that inflicted those bitter experiences on me. So far as I am concerned they are lower than vermin.”
    Aneurin Bevan:

    I commend the full text of that speech, part of which is reproduced here:
    http://www.sochealth.co.uk/resources/national-health-service/the-sma-and-the-foundation-of-the-national-health-service-dr-leslie-hilliard-1980/aneurin-bevan-and-the-foundation-of-the-nhs/bevans-speech-to-the-manchester-labour-rally-4-july-1948/

    And is as true today as it was then.

    One hopes that the Tories also suffer in GE2015.
    (Apologies if this is a duplicate. A first attempt was ‘bounced’.)

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  5. Updated tragic list of welfare-related deaths of UK’s sick and/or disabled people. This is the tip on the iceberg: They shall be remembered forevermore …

    Avenge the dead. Resuscitate the living. We must fight on for freedom from Westminster’s murderous policies and support the struggle of all Britain’s sick and/or disabled people simultaneously. Saor Alba.

    Terry McGarvey, 48. Dangerously ill from polycytheamia, Terry asked for an ambulance to be called during his Work Capability Assessment. He knew that he wasn’t well enough to attend his WCA but feared that his benefits would be stopped if he did not. He died the following day.

    Elaine Lowe, 53. Suffering from COPD and fearful of losing her benefits. In desperation, Elaine chose to commit suicide.

    Mark Wood, 44. Found fit for work by Atos, against his Doctors advice and assertions that he had complex mental health problems. Starved to death after benefits stopped, weighing only 5st 8lb when he died.

    Paul Reekie, 48, the Leith based Poet and Author. Suffered from severe depression. Committed suicide after DWP stopped his benefits due to an Atos ‘fit for work’ decision.

    Leanne Chambers, 30. Suffered depression for many years which took a turn for the worst when she was called in for a WCA. Leanne committed suicide soon after.

    Karen Sherlock, 44. Multiple health issues. Found fit for work by Atos and denied benefits. Fought a long battle to get placed into the support group of ESA. Karen died the following month of a heart attack.

    Carl Payne, 42. Fears of losing his lifeline benefits due to welfare reform led this Father of two to take his own life.

    Tim Salter, 53. Blind and suffering from Agoraphobia. Tim hanged himself after Atos found him fit for work and stopped his benefits.

    Edward Jacques, 47 years old and suffering from HIV and Hepatitis C. Edward had a history of severe depression and self-harm. He took a fatal overdose after Atos found him fit for work and stopped his benefits.

    Linda Wootton, 49 years old. A double heart and lung transplant patient. Died just nine days after the government found her fit for work, their refusal letter arriving as she lay desperately ill in her hospital bed.

    Steven Cawthra, 55. His benefits stopped by the DWP and with rising debts, he saw suicide as the only way out of a desperate situation

    Elenore Tatton, 39 years old. Died just weeks after the government found her fit for work.

    John Walker, 57, saddled with debt because of the bedroom tax, John took his own life.

    Brian McArdle, 57 years old. Suffered a fatal heart attack the day after his disability benefits were stopped.

    Stephen Hill, 53. Died of a heart attack one month after being found fit for work, even though he was waiting for major heart surgery.

    Jacqueline Harris, 53. A former Nurse who could hardly walk was found fit for work by Atos and her benefits withdrawn. in desperation, she took her own life.

    David Barr, 28. Suffering from severe mental difficulties. Threw himself from a bridge after being found fit for work by Atos and failing his appeal.

    David Groves, 56. Died of a heart attack the night before taking his work capability assessment. His widow claimed that it was the stress that killed him.

    Nicholas Peter Barker, 51. Shot himself after being told his benefits were being stopped. He was unable to work after a brain haemorrhage left him paralysed down one side.

    Mark and Helen Mullins, 48 and 59 years old. Forced to live on £57.50 a week and make 12 mile trips each week to get free vegetables to make soup. Mark and Helen both committed suicide.

    Richard Sanderson, 44. Unable to find a job and with his housing benefit cut forcing him to move, but with nowhere to go. Richard committed suicide.

    Martin Rust, 36 years old. A schizophrenic man who killed himself two months after the government found him fit to work.

    Craig Monk, 43. A vulnerable gentleman and a partial amputee who slipped so far into poverty that he hanged himself.

    Colin Traynor, 29, and suffering from epilepsy was stripped of his benefits. He appealed. Five weeks after his death his family found he had won his appeal.

    Elaine Christian, 57 years old. Worried about her work capability assessment, she was subsequently found at Holderness drain, drowned and with ten self inflicted wrist wounds.

    Christelle and Kayjah Pardoe, 32 years and 5 month old. Pregnant, her benefits stopped, Christelle, clutching her baby son jumped from a third floor balcony.

    Mark Scott, 46. His DLA and housing benefit stopped and sinking into deep depression, Mark died six weeks later.

    Cecilia Burns, 51. Found fit for work while undergoing treatment for breast cancer. She died just a few weeks after she won her appeal against the Atos decision.

    Chris Cann, 57 years old. Found dead in his home just months after being told he had to undergo a medical assessment to prove he could not work.

    Peter Hodgson, 49. Called to JCP to see if he was suitable for volunteer work. Peter had suffered a stroke, a brain haemorrhage and had a fused leg. His appointment letter arrived a few days after he took his own life.

    Paul Willcoxsin, 33 years old. Suffered with mental health problems and worried about government cuts. Paul committed suicide by hanging himself.

    Stephanie Bottrill, 53. After paying £80 a month for bedroom tax, Stephanie could not afford heating in the winter, and lived on tinned custard. In desperation, she chose to walk in front of a lorry.

    Larry Newman suffered from a degenerative lung condition, his weight dropping from 10 to 7 stone. Atos awarded him zero points, he died just three months after submitting his appeal.

    Paul Turner, 52 years old. After suffering a heart attack, he was ordered to find a job in February. In April Paul died from ischaemic heart disease.

    Christopher Charles Harkness, 39. After finding out that the funding for his care home was being withdrawn, this man who suffered with mental health issues, took his own life.

    Sandra Louise Moon, 57. Suffering from a degenerative back condition, depression and increasingly worried about losing her incapacity benefit. Sandra committed suicide by taking an overdose.

    Lee Robinson, 39 years old. Took his own life after his housing benefit and council tax were taken away from him.

    David Coupe, 57. A Cancer sufferer found fit for work by Atos in 2012. David lost his sight, then his hearing, then his mobility, and then his life.

    Michael McNicholas, 34. Severely depressed and a recovering alcoholic. Michael committed suicide after being called in for a Work Capability Assessment by Atos.

    Victor Cuff, 59 and suffering from severe depression. Victor hanged himself after the DWP stopped his benefits.

    Charles Barden, 74. Charles committed suicide by hanging due to fears that the Bedroom Tax would leave him destitute and unable to cope.

    Ian Caress, 43. Suffered multiple health issues and deteriorating eyesight. Ian was found fit for work by Atos, he died ten months later having lost so much weight that his family said that he resembled a concentration camp victim.

    Iain Hodge, 30. Suffered from the life threatening illness, Hughes Syndrome. Found fit for work by Atos and benefits stopped, Iain took his own life.

    Wayne Grew, 37. Severely depressed due to government cuts and the fear of losing his job, Wayne committed suicide by hanging.

    Kevin Bennett, 40. Kevin a sufferer of schizophrenia and mental illness became so depressed after his JSA was stopped that he became a virtual recluse. Kevin was found dead in his flat several months later.

    David Elwyn Hughs Harries, 48. A disabled man who could no longer cope after his parents died, could find no help from the government via benefits. David took an overdose as a way out of his solitude.

    Denis Jones, 58. A disabled man crushed by the pressures of government cuts, in particular the Bedroom Tax, and unable to survive by himself. Denis was found dead in his flat.

    Shaun Pilkington, 58. Unable to cope any more, Shaun shot himself dead after receiving a letter from the DWP informing him that his ESA was being stopped.

    Paul ?, 51. Died in a freezing cold flat after his ESA was stopped. Paul appealed the decision and won on the day that he lost his battle to live.

    Chris MaGuire, 61. Deeply depressed and incapable of work, Chris was summonsed by Atos for a Work Capability Assessment and deemed fit for work. On appeal, a judge overturned the Atos decision and ordered them to leave him alone for at least a year, which they did not do. In desperation, Chris took his own life, unable to cope anymore.

    Peter Duut, a Dutch national with terminal cancer living in the UK for many years found that he was not entitled to benefits unless he was active in the labour market. Peter died leaving his wife destitute, and unable to pay for his funeral.

    George Scollen, age unknown. Took his own life after the government closed the Remploy factory he had worked in for 40 years.

    Julian Little, 47. Wheelchair bound and suffering from kidney failure, Julian faced the harsh restrictions of the Bedroom Tax and the loss of his essential dialysis room. He died shortly after being ordered to downgrade.

    Miss DE, Early 50’s. Suffering from mental illness, this lady committed suicide less than a month after an Atos assessor gave her zero points and declared her fit for work.

    Robert Barlow, 47. Suffering from a brain tumour, a heart defect and awaiting a transplant, Robert was deemed fit for work by Atos and his benefits were withdrawn. He died penniless less than two years later.

    Carl Joseph Foster-Brown, 58. As a direct consequence of the wholly unjustifiable actions of the Job centre and DWP, this man took his own life.

    Martin Hadfield, 20 years old. Disillusioned with the lack of jobs available in this country but too proud to claim benefits. Utterly demoralised, Martin took his own life by hanging himself.

    Annette Francis, 30. A mum-of-one suffering from severe mental illness, found dead after her disability benefits were ceased.

    Ian Jordan, 60. His benefits slashed after Atos and the DWP declared Ian, a sufferer of Barratt’s Oesophagus, fit for work, caused him to run up massive debts in order to survive. Ian was found dead in his flat after taking an overdose.

    Janet McCall, 53. Terminally ill with pulmonary fibrosis and declared ‘Fit for Work’ by Atos and the DWP, this lady died 5 months after her benefits were stopped.

    Stuart Holley, 23. A man driven to suicide by the DWP’s incessant pressure and threat of sanctions for not being able to find a job.

    Graham Shawcross, 63. A sufferer of the debilitating disease, Addison’s. Died of a heart attack due to the stress of an Atos ‘Fit for Work’ decision.

    David Clapson, 59 years old. A diabetic ex-soldier deprived of the means to survive by the DWP and the governments harsh welfare reforms, David died all but penniless, starving and alone, his electricity run out.

    Chris Smith, 59. Declared ‘Fit for Work’ by Atos as he lay dying of Cancer in his hospital bed.

    Nathan Hartwell, 36, died of heart failure after an 18-month battle with the ­Department for Works and Pensions.

    Michael Connolly, 60. A Father of One, increasingly worried about finances after his benefits were cut. Committed suicide by taking 13 times the fatal dose of prescription medicine on the 30th October – His Birthday.

    Jan Mandeville, 52, A lady suffering from Fibromyalgia, driven to the point of mental and physical breakdown by this governments welfare reforms. Jan was found dead in her home after battling the DWP for ESA and DLA.

    Trevor Drakard, 50 years old. A shy and reserved, severe epileptic who suffered regular and terrifying fits almost his entire life, hounded to suicide by the DWP who threatened to stop his life-line benefits.

    Death of a severely disabled Dorset resident, unnamed, who took her own life while battling the bedroom tax.

    May their deaths be avenged.

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