Imagine a child born into a family that has never worked. And not only the child but generations of its ancestors have lived off the state, drawing benefits and expecting the rest of the community to accept this as the natural way of things. A community that displays increasingly low tolerance for those that need help. But this child will never have to do anything to earn its way in the world. Imagine the headlines the Daily Mail could write about such a child as it takes the hard-earned money of the country’s workers. This shirker will profit from us and never lift a finger.

And now imagine that the child is placed into a position of status and wealth on a global scale. It will be fawned over, deferred to, assured of its position above all others. It will do nothing to deserve its position, it will not have worked hard, it will not have been elected, it won’t even be chosen from a group of similar candidates. It will simply be.

All this in a country that sees itself as governed by the mother of all parliaments.

The thousands of other children born on the same day will be expected to work not shirk, and if they hold their hand out to ask for help or to ask for more they will be told to help themselves, to work harder to have more. They will be allowed aspirations, given a glimpse of what may be, just a glimpse, now you see it, now you don’t, but whatever they achieve they can’t ever have what that child has.

So make your own way and if you can’t, then, somehow, it will be your own fault because you didn’t work hard enough, because your parents weren’t quite right, because you didn’t know the right people, because you couldn’t afford to work for free. You weren’t born to a certain family in a certain society that accepts this as the way things should be for no reason other than archaic tradition, and so you will be cold and lonely and no one will listen if just one of you asks if it is fair, if it is just, if it is democratic.

One child will live their whole life at the end of the rainbow while thousands, millions of others will spend their lives in the rain and we will begrudge them an umbrella.


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