In the last few weeks, maybe a couple of months, the volume on my tv has been on the blink. The remote control works only sporadically (it works fine for other functions) and the control panel on the side of the screen sometimes changes the volume, sometimes the channel. It seems as though the wires are crossed at times.
The tv itself is about 10 years old. My sister and brother-in-law had it originally, but I bought it off them some years back when they upgraded their tv. As things stand at the moment, I don’t need a tv. In fact no one needs one; they are a luxury item that we in the decadent west have in many of our homes.
There is no question of affordability. One can get quite a good model for around £200 these days. The way I organise my finances, I have an account that is called “treat” which I put a bit into each month and buys a few luxuries. For example, last year I had a holiday. That was my third in 13 years. I haven’t got enough for a holiday yet but I have got more than enough for a new tv. It would be nice to have a flat screen (the current one is a cathode-ray Sony Trinitron wide, which takes two people a lot of effort to lift!) and at present it seems like an expense that one could at least rationalise.
My worry is this: what if I become unemployed? Readers who have kept tabs on this blog for the last 2 years will know that I got made redundant in 2012. That could happen again. I don’t know that it will, but there have been some changes in the company I work for over the last few months. It’s not unthinkable that a corporate shake-up could result in me being out of a job. Or I could become ill. I am very thankful that I have good health and have only had need to take 2 sick days off work in the last 7.5 years. One never knows when one might have an accident that puts them out of work, or be diagnosed with some debilitating condition.
It’s not that I would suddenly be unable to pay for a new tv since I would have bought it whilst employed, but if our tabloid press government and its parroting acolytes are to be believed, then there are fewer evils that are more symptomatic of a dysfunctional society than an unemployed person in possession of a flat screen tv.
The fact that hundreds of thousands of people have been driven to use foodbanks over the last few years is, of course, not a problem at all. After all, Iain Duncan Smith must have the best interests of the poorest and most vulnerable in society at heart. The fact that I spent 6 months unemployed in 2012, filling my days with job applications, interview preparations and travelling to and from interviews where each job had anywhere from 6 to 30 applicants going for it, was merely a side effect of my own laziness and unwillingness to work. At least, that’s what I am to believe if I accept the coalition’s rhetoric.
The same goes for all those who are now in the shoes I once wore. When Esther McVey told people to get a job at Costa, of course she knew full well that over 1,600 people had applied for just 8 jobs. Those that didn’t find employment will soon realise that the reason for that is because they are workshy freeloaders, not willing to obey the simple imperative to “get a job” since that simple command is, naturally, capable of being followed without the need for intervention or a decision being made by any person other than the jobseeker. After all, employers have no choice but to accept all applications from anyone who wants a job enough.