Politics Magazine

The Audacity of George

Posted on the 05 April 2013 by Thepoliticalidealist @JackDarrant

On this website, we have a habit of ‘rambling on’ about George Osborne. This is something for which I make no apology, as the moral compass of the second most powerful figure in the British Government must have never developed. Yesterday, in one of the most extreme cases of low political point-scoring the world has seen in recent years, the Chancellor has cited the case of Mick Philpott as evidence for the need for the savage welfare cuts that he is inflicting on the country.

My international readers may not be aware of the details of the Philpott case, which has dominated the news here for the past 24 hours. Allow me to enlighten you:

Mick Philpott has been jailed for life for being the “driving force” behind a plot to torch a Derby home which led to the deaths of six children, with the trial judge describing him as a disturbingly dangerous man with no moral compass. Mrs Justice Thirlwall said Philpott, 56, should serve a minimum of 15 years after a jury at Nottingham crown court convicted him on six counts of manslaughter for plotting the fire, which he and two others started in May 2012.

Philpott’s wife, Mairead, and friend Paul Mosley were both sentenced to 17 years for helping the plot. They will not be eligible for release until they have served at least half their sentences. The judge said the plot to set fire to the house and rescue the children was “a wicked and dangerous plan”, adding that it was “outside the comprehension of any right-thinking person”. The judge said Mick Philpott, a father of 17 children, aimed to frame a partner who had dared to leave him, and the court heard of his long history of violence and control of women, whom he regarded as his “chattels”.

The judge said he used his conviction for attempting to murder a girlfriend in 1978 to terrify other women, adding: “You have repeatedly used that conviction as a means of controlling other women, terrifying them as to what you might do to them if they did not follow your will.”

The case, which the judge said was unique, has angered the public. As the trio were sentenced there were shouts from the public gallery of “Die, Mick, die.” Philpott made an obscene hand gesture as he was led away to prison….

The children were Jayden, five, Jade, 10, John, nine, Jack, eight, Jesse, six, and 13-year-old Duwayne. The jury on Tuesday convicted Philpott, 56, and Mosley, 46, unanimously. Mairead Philpott, 32, was convicted by majority verdict. The judge accepted that Mick Philpott did not mean serious harm to come to any of the 11 children who were in the house, but added: “What you did intend, plainly, was to subject your children to a terrifying ordeal. They were to be woken from their beds in the middle of the night with their home on fire so you could rescue them and be the hero. Their terror was the price they were going to pay for your callous selfishness.”

The judge described how firefighters and neighbours tried to rescue the children during the blaze, and chastised Philpott for his lies afterwards. “Ever since the fire your life has been a performance for the public and the police, and then in this court,” she said.

“Your conduct has been punctuated by collapses and shows of distress designed to evoke sympathy where none is merited, designed to manipulate emotion.

“I accept you have lost six children. I very much regret that everything about you suggests that your grief has very often been simulated for the public gaze.” Philpott ensured his wife and Mosley stuck to their stories, and the judge said the wife too would have been expendable for Philpott.

Sending him to prison for life, Thirlwall said: “You are a disturbingly dangerous man. Your guiding principle is what Mick Philpott wants he gets. You have no moral compass. I have no hesitation in concluding that these six offences are so serious and the danger you pose is so great that the only proper sentence is one of life imprisonment and that is the sentence I impose upon you.”

Source: guardian.co.uk

And what was George Osborne’s response to the death of six children at the hands of a thoroughly twisted and unbalanced criminal? “I think there is a question for government and for society about the welfare state – and the taxpayers who pay for the welfare state – subsidising lifestyles like that, and I think that debate needs to be had.” This is offensive on so many levels, and it also misses a crucial point: most of Phipott’s income came from women in his household who worked. There is an emerging stereotype, encouraged by the divisive elements in the Government (i.e. the Conservative Party) of the single parent (often a woman) who lounges around all day in front of the subscription TV, and supports their eight children with nothing more than a wide range of lucrative welfare benefits with no strings attached. This person will always be unashamed of the life that they lead, and inevitably, this person will be foreign, preferably an asylum seeker (which is obviously code for ‘state-sanctioned illegal immigrant’).

Then with a liberal scattering of hints, outright lies, and talk of “scroungers” or “shirkers”, this somehow becomes representative of the bulk of benefits claimants. Let us ignore the fact that half the welfare budget is spent on the over 65s, and that much of the rest supports either the disabled or low-wage workers. But no, Osborne can do one better, and imply that Housing Benefit encourages child killing. Unfortunately, left-wing outrage can only get us so far.

I am surprised that condemnation of George Osborne has split essentially along party lines, as opposed to being near-universal. It is deeply concerning that leading politicians feel able to make such snide and distasteful remarks, but we have a bigger problem if his calculation proves to be accurate, and voters agree.

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