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Britain's Hardest Grafter

Apparently not a joke; this is, as I'm sure most now know, a TV programme to be aired on the BBC. Clearly another divisive poverty porn exercise in the obscenity that is the Christian Work Ethic and rooted firmly in capitalist notions of winners and losers. Literally in this case, because those poor saps who aren't awarded the title, at the end of what will surely be a plug for some grubby gangmaster's business, won't be seen as winners.

I'm betting that business will belong to someone like Charlie Mullens the millionaire plumber who has surfaced in recent years with his 'common sense' view of reality - or what passes for reality in his gutter press programmed mind.

Britain's Hardest Grafter - and what happens to Britain's Second Hardest Grafter? He or she will be treated no different than Britain's Least Hardest Grafter. This is a sick fact of our striver and skiver society: close only counts, as they say, in horseshoes and hand grenades and so you're either the best, fulfilling your potential, or all your effort is for naught and you might as well not have bothered. What does that say about self worth? How does that foster a healthy cohesive society? But we don't have a society, we have a pyramid scheme where you're either a failure or you're the Pharaoh.

Of course the programme will be dominated by the personal stories, carefully edited into emotional bite size mental comfort snackfood for the masses. Dave, with his gaggle of one-too-many kids-and-an-xbox, will be pitted with Steve who Works Really Hard After Losing His Mum To The Big C. Dave's inadequacies and failures will be exposed by comparison to Steve and thus Steve will be the hero and Dave the villain. Toss in a few token 'foreigners', a Pole and a Muslim, for good measure (because, you know, them Asians have a good work ethic innit) and the great British storyline will unfold, under the auspice of a bunch of coke-addled 'meeja' Jack Whitehall lookalikes.

There is nothing real about this. It's intended for the same audience as Benefit Street; the same prurient armchair moral forecasters and curtain twitchers. People that have a huge hole in their souls that they are willing to fill with this kind of manipulative rubbish. What possible insights can an edited docudrama offer into today's labour market? It's victim blaming; they will set up Steve to triumph in a series of ridiculous workplace environments and use that inversely suggest that anyone who fails, like Dave, will be the author of their own demise. There will be no real examination of the nature of these workplaces, just the rewarding of Steve and his struggle against adversity - in fact the harder the job, the shittier the workplace - the sweeter his success and the more powerful the message of autonomy. No questioning of the policies of rich business owners like Mike Ashley the billionaire who keeps everyone at Sports Direct on zero hours, for example, or the dungeons of Amazon where people are forced to run marathons in unlit warehouses to fulfil ridiculous quotas only to be subject to a body search at the end of their shift (because the working class are all thieves).

It's misdirection in the guise of self development. The same crap that American lifestyle gurus peddle in order to live in opulence while telling you that your struggles on unreasonable wages are of your own making. 

Poverty Porn never seems to get old. Britains' Hardest Grafter: because if you can't live on £fuck all and you aren't willing to work in shit conditions for a millionaire EU whining plutocrat tax dodger you aren't working hard enough. At the end of each week Moloch decides whom to eliminate from the show (sorry, I meant to say 'experiment', because the BBC would like us to believe this exploitative shite is insightful); the least productive worker in the faux-factory they intend to create will be eliminated. Presumably they will have to shuffle off to the suicide booth in order to become Soylent Green for the rest. Nothing is wasted. This is after they are forced to explain their lack of productivity to the programme's chosen Work Council; justifying the last few miserable seconds of their unproductive lives before being reduced to something useful at last. I imagine that, along with Charlie, the board of the Work Council will comprise the latest iteration of Emma Harrison (we haven't heard from Hayley Taylor in a while), that Welsh twat from the Call Centre, and Joffrey Baratheon, first of his name.

What will they make in this factory? What fake products? Or perhaps this is some satire so elbaorate and so pernicious that I have failed to grasp its true subtlety. Maybe they make, in the manner of Dr Evil's modern empire, miniature models of factories. 


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