In praise of people with drawn curtains in the morning

Night time workers. Work at night, sleep at day. That’s not being a scrounger. Shame so many Conservatives and so-called populists crudely label them all as scroungers with their blunderbuss rhetoric for having the temerity to draw the curtains at home when they’re sleeping after a long session at work.

UPDATE: In other curtain commentary news… Jennie has highlighted in the comments her own post. Here’s the link to it; the comments are well worth a read for a mix of the serious and the very funny. And here’s an Olympian who left their curtains shut.

* Mark Pack is Party President and Co-leader of the party. He is editor of Liberal Democrat Newswire.

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  • What is it with governments and people who close their curtains in the morning? Though I suppose being called a scrounger by a Tory is a step up from being accused of terrorism by Labour.

  • Liberal Neil 8th Dec '12 - 10:45am

    We often keep our curtains drawn in very cold weather as it helps keep the heat in.

  • Well let’s be honest, The Tories will never get the concept of people who have their curtains drawn. They live in expensive homes with either high walls or hedges to protect their privacy.

  • “Night time workers. Work at night, sleep at day. That’s not being a scrounger.”

    More to the point, being unemployed isn’t being a ‘scrounger’ either.

  • Good to see you thinking exactly the same way as I have been for several days again Mark. It’s odd how often this happens without you reading my blog; after all, if you HAD read my blog, you’d have credited me for the idea, wouldn’t you?

  • Come on Mark – take them on with both barrels! Who cares what stupid metaphors are used (qv “Alarm Clock Britain”) – the point is that we must as a party condemn without reservation demonisation of those drawing benefits, whether employed or unemployed whether disabled or mentally ill etc. That is part of our DNA as Lib Dems. We should NOT be stereotyping individuals within perceived groups. I am amazed anyone on here even gives this approach houseroom.

    Take on the tabloids!!

  • Keith Browning 8th Dec '12 - 2:07pm

    George never mentions the ‘Bertie Wooster’ types – those that arise in the morning, when they wish, because their ancestors have accumulated a portfolio of wealth, which means they can live, very comfortably, from the interest. Where do these people fit into life’s pecking order of strivers and skivers?

  • Hear hear Tim13 and Keith.

    Will someone please wake George Osborne? He has failed this country and yet sets things up for further failure.

    We hear all this talk about how we mustnt take more from the rich who have almost everything, as from the poor who have almost nothing. But why?!?

    What about people who’s entire job has been taken to “pay off the deficit”. Hardly fair to take more there!


  • This has been a sustained attack by the Tories on those on any form of welfare. The attack has been more than just in words. Benefits are not set at lavish levels and most would struggle to live on them. Which means that restricting their rise to 1% is horrible politics to be associated with. Any benefit set at an appropriate leel should always be indexed linked…

    I would hope for a nice set up question at the next DPMQ’s to allow Clegg to distance himself from the 1% decision and remind Osbourne of some inconvenient facts about the vast majority of those on benefits…

  • Ruth Bright 8th Dec '12 - 5:47pm

    As I said on LDV a few days ago my brother works nights on a psychiatric ward – it’s nice to see the party establishment belatedly standing up for people like him who sleep in of a morning.

  • “I would hope for a nice set up question at the next DPMQ’s to allow Clegg to distance himself from the 1% decision …”

    Don’t forget that there is going to be a special bill to enact the 1% decision, which Lib Dem MPs will have to vote on. Not only will Nick Clegg not get an opportunity to “distance himself” from the decision. He – and the others – will have to go through the lobby and explicitly support it.

  • Simon Bamonte 9th Dec '12 - 2:30am

    Was anyone surprised? After all, since this coalition formed, the Tory side has been, in association with the right-wing media, been doing its utmost to convince the public that everyone who receives benefits, especially out-of-work benefits, is the Enemy and the cause of all our financial woes. This is what we expect of the Tories. Attacking the poor, the sick/disabled, unemployed and powerless is What They Do. Has Osborne never met someone like me who works but keeps his curtains closed because he simply doesn’t want every person walking by to see the interior of my home and what I own? Has he heard of people who work nights? The fact that they are so blatant in their prejudice and smears shows how desperate they have become to distract attention from themselves and the true causes of our financial woes: inept politicians (of all 3 main parties) and a greedy, multinational ruling class who use their power for not only unhealthy and unfair influence in our democracy but to avoid taxes on an epic scale, taxes due to the very society which allowed them to become so successful.

    As a (now former) Lib Dem, I see all three main parties as being generally at one with the Neoliberal consensus which has failed us for the past 30 years. To maintain this consensus, those who are unemployed through no fault of their own are demonised, while those who live off interest and the profits of the underpaid work of others are exalted as heroes and Men to Admire and if we were all just like them (and kept our curtains open), we’d reach the promised land. And that is a large part of what is wrong with our society now, but I don’t see the current LD leadership doing much to challenge (let alone change) this nasty “consensus”.

  • Tony Dawson 9th Dec '12 - 9:10am

    My very thick lined curtains are closed because if they were open my house would freeze! But I quite like being despised by that despicable man! 🙂

  • jbt What I was trying (however imperfectly) to say, was, not that Mark was joining any condemnation of people “with drawn curtains” at any particular time, but asking people, including Mark, to instead address the underlying metaphor which Osborne was drawing in his speech, ie an implied condemnation of those on benefit. Which is why I say “take it head on”.

  • A lot of Tories keep their curtains closed so they can have something to twitch.

  • I’m surprised we haven’t yet had a newspaper expose the movements of the curtains at No’s 10 and 11 Downing Street …

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