Week 23: Villain – Michael Gove

by George_East on June 10, 2014

Last Week’s Villain of the Week Award goes to Secretary of State for Education Michael Gove

Tory_VillainThere really is no more odious member of this odious government than Michael Gove.  He even makes George Osborne appear bearable.  Utterly loathsome in every way.

Not only has he been continuing to piss astounding amounts of money up the wall on failed free schools, run by mates of his like the equally odious Toby Young, but even by his standards he has been excelling himself over the last week or so.

There is the current hugely exaggerated row about the Islamist entryism in Birmingham schools, which seems to be largely cooked up to attract UKIP supporters – more on that soon.

But the policy announcement that really took the biscuit in the last week is the announcement that the government will be bringing legislation forward to penalise parents of kids who fail to send their kids to school by docking child benefit.

Firstly, this is a policy that is practically directed at the poor – the more poor you are as a family, the more you are going to be reliant on child benefit to get by.  If you are from a rich family and you are not being sent to school, then you and your parents are not going to be affected at all.

Secondly, how on earth are you going to help those kids by making them poorer still and their households more pressed for money for basics like clothes, food and heating?   Child benefit was designed to be paid to the mother of children precisely because the evidence was that then it would be more likely to reach the child.

Gove, like so many of the clueless ultra-Thatcherite millionaires that rule over us, views being poor as evidence of moral deficiency.   It is therefore to be punished.  If the children of the poor are adversely affected by the policy too, well that just serves them right for not being born to richer parents.

He is a truly hideous excuse for a human being – Michael Gove, you are this week’s Villain of the Week.

{ 4 comments… read them below or add one }

Fionauk512 June 10, 2014 at 10:21 pm

I agree with everything you say but would also add that the ‘Trojan Horse’ furore has allowed the government to slip under the radar that schools will now have no notice inspections. Do I trust that to be a supportive and constructively critical experience….no. Someone should be looking at the raft of improvement consultants who are being paid handsomely, out of the public purse, when a school gets a dodgy Ofsted report. Many of these consultants are Ofted inspectors or past inspectors. Conflict of interests anyone?


Jackie_South June 10, 2014 at 10:47 pm

I think this is a further unfortunate step in the continual politicisation of Ofsted. Whilst it has always been unloved by some teachers, at least it was established to show the independence of the inspectorate from political interference.

Since Ed Balls onwards, Secretaries of State have become increasingly more willing to give Ofsted political direction. Perhaps an incoming Labour government should pledge to depoliticise Ofsted again?


Alex w June 11, 2014 at 11:07 pm

I’ve written a brief article about this issue, if you are interested in publishing on the site i can send a copy?..


Ray_North June 12, 2014 at 1:47 pm

Hi Alex, we’d love to publish your article – could you send it to the following Ray_North@allthatsleft.co.uk


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