Monday, 11 February 2008

The More Things Change...

In 1839, JC Symons, assistant Royal Commissioner on handloom weaving, commented:
It is my firm belief that penury, dirt, misery, drunkeness, disease and crime culminate in Glasgow to a pitch unparalleled in Great Britain.
Let’s contrast this with Iain Duncan Smith’s conclusion in 2008.

1839: Penury

2008: Almost 30% of Glasgow’s working age population is ‘economically inactive’.

1839: Dirt

2008: Almost a quarter of Glasgow’s total population live the most deprived 5% of Scotland’s neighbourhoods- almost half in the most deprived 15%.

1839: Misery

2008: In the east end of Glasgow, over 60% of children live in workless households. Male life expectancy in 54 in Calton; 63 in Shettleston.

1839: Drunkeness

2008: It is estimated there are 15,000 problem drug-users in Glasgow and 6,000 children live with a parent with a substance abuse problem. Men and women in Scotland are twice as likely to die an alcohol-related death than in the United Kingdom as a whole. In 2003, male liver cirrhosis mortality rates in Glasgow exceeded the maximum national figure in Western Europe.

1839: Disease

2008: The number of incapacity benefit claimants in Glasgow in double the British average and the highest of all major UK cities.

1839: Crime

2008: Nearly 1 in 5 crimes in Scotland were committed in Glasgow. Serious assault in Glasgow is 2½ times higher than the national average. There are over 170 gangs in Glasgow compared to 169 in London, which is six times the size.

I know let’s make them homeless.

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