There are 57 Liberal Democrat MPs. 14 Liberal Democrat MPs have Knighthoods. 7 Liberal Democrat MPs have XX chromosomes, i.e. are female.
Of last night's Question Time panel (Boris Johnson, Melanie Phillips, Ed Davey, Tessa Jowell, Russell Brand, David Dimbleby), 100% attended fee-paying schools, regardless of party. Only Jowell and Brand didn't attend Oxford University, and 33% of the panel were in the élite Bullingdon Club (Johnson and Dimbleby).
Income distribution has never been less equal. The richest tenth of the population has become richer every year. The poorest tenth are now poorer than they were ten years ago.
15% of Cabinet Ministers are women. 51% of the population are women.
Well over half the Cabinet attended fee-paying schools, compared to roughly 6% of the population. 19 of the 29 Cabinet Ministers attended either Oxford or Cambridge Universities.
33% of the Cabinet are millionaires, collectively worth roughly £70m. Given that there are roughly 10,000 millionaires in the UK (approx 0.015%), that's an amazing coincidence.
70% of people on the National Minimum Wage are women.
Women are disproportionately imprisoned for offences for which men are given fines or non-custodial sentences.
Being female makes you far more likely to be harrassed, sacked, on benefits and unemployed.
Being female and from an ethnic minority basically makes you a non-person. Work, social security, political representation, media work, economic power… you name it, you're not important. 3 FTSE 100 companies have female CEOs. Only 17% of board members are female.
5.7% of FTSE 100 directors are from ethnic minorities. None are CEOs. The same applies to the Civil Service: the senior levels are disproportionately white, male, privately-educated and Oxbridge.
70% of judges attended fee-paying schools.
17% of 'leaders' (business, government, law, education etc) attended comprehensive schools. 47% of them went to Oxford or Cambridge.
The Ministry of Defence is stuffed with arms company employees on secondment - awarding fat contracts to… themselves. Similarly, the Big Four accountacy firms have people in secondment across government, and offer free work to all the political parties, hence their unreformed, unregulated and unexamined promotion of tax evasion and fiscal irresponsibility throughout the recession and beyond. When ministers and civil servants leave office, they go to work for the arms companies, banks and other bodies they're meant to regulate. So there's no incentive to question them. Rather the opposite.
Hope you can see why I'm so depressed. My students are 99% state-educated, 30% from ethnic minorites, and in my subjects, overwhelmingly female. We do our best (though there are worrying stats at minority degree outcomes) but it boils my blood to look them in the face and know that however energetic and well-educated they are, they're vanishingly unlikely to run the country or a company. Their needs are irrelevant to those in power. They're more likely to be in prison, unemployed or indebted. They don't have social, cultural or financial capital. Collective bodies such as political parties and trades unions which used to offer advancement are either closed to them or banished to the social margins.
There's an Establishment. Rich people employ their own. They run government and the commanding heights of the economy. They send us to prison and they treat our diseases.
What price social mobility? This game's rigged.
Gagging Law: Meeting Don Foster in Bath
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