Anyone who thought that her being banned from ITV This Morning, after her supremely tactless comment on Scottish life expectancy managed to appear at the same time as the Glasgow helicopter crash, would cause professional motormouth Katie Hopkins to stop and think was disabused of the notion after she started promoting her HuffPost rant about foodbanks.
Guess who just vanished from this sofa
The promotion of a post from back in October appears to have been prompted by a report in the deeply subversive Guardian about the opening of a “Social supermarket” in Goldthorpe, near Barnsley. Surplus stock is sold at a discount to those “on the edge of food poverty”. But this move, which has been supported by a number of supermarket chains, has incurred Ms Hopkins’ displeasure.
“A social supermarket is lefties babying those on benefits that refuse to work and use their cash for Sky and smokes”, she observed. “Social supermarkets are a blight on our country. Membership only for benefit claimants. Put cut price goods in supermarkets for hard working”. Yes, there is only one social supermarket in existence, she’s never gone anywhere near it, but it’s a “blight on our country”.
Both here and in her HuffPost piece, Ms Hopkins appears to have a problem understanding what constitutes “benefit claimants”. So let’s take this nice and slowly. Many benefit claimants are in work. They claim such things as working tax credits (hint in the name there), income support (ditto) and housing benefit (almost a million housing benefit claimants are in work).
Moreover, an organisation that is supported by Asda, Morrison’s, M&S, Tesco and Ocado – as the social supermarket in Goldthorpe happens to be – is hardly “lefties”. And the HuffPost article, containing such subtle comments as “Food bank users are like terminal cancer patients” while making accusations of fiddling, and of black markets, while providing no citations, is just parading prejudice.
Consider this gem, and then compare with reality: “Some food banks workers [sic] have explained how fresh produce and food that needs preparation is regularly handed back in favour of instant gratification and more expensive items” says Ms Hopkins. Reality? “some people using food banks have started to hand back items that need cooking, as they cannot afford to use the energy”.
So when Ms Hopkins makes her typically judgmental conclusion, “Of course there are genuine food bank users. But the massive growth in these food banks is not because more people are hungry. It is largely because we are feeding the dirty habits of people perfectly happy to live a life on the take”, it’s clear that her only research is her own selfishness, bigotry and prejudice.
Still, why bother doing research when you can get an audience without it?
The sooner any media outlet stops giving this person any publicity the better. The ignorance displayed is just embarrassing.
I find the woman's honesty refreshing. Here we see a woman who can truly speak for a 'certain constituency'. We all know the sort: Middle-aged but wishing otherwise, driving the soft-top Audi, nannies and Labradors looking after the kids if they're not yet in prep school, getting shagged by their personal trainers at the gym while 'Johnny' the husband is making a name for himself in the City when not shagging hermione on the 2nd floor. And all the time pretending to be a serious player in the world of business. God bless her. I'm going to miss the entertainment.
Perhaps Ms. Hopkins would prefer to look at this from a cold-hearted capitalist viewpoint. There is indeed a debate to be had on how much taxpayers' money should go to benefits claimants. So what? The community shop is a private enterprise taking £0 of taxpayers' money.
The hard truth is that this makes perfect business sense. Yes, I'm sure loads of consumers want surplus stock to be sold off cheaply to normal customers, but supermarkets don't. Flogging off surplus stock cheaply simply means that consumers hold off on buying full-price products until the cheap surplus comes along. Most supermarkets would rather throw away surplus stock than dent their markup on sold produce. Flogging them cheap to people on very low incomes does the job just as well, makes a little bit of money, and saves the supermarkets a few arguments over throwaway culture.
Ms. Hopkins, that's the free market in action for you. Is there a problem?
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