Within a few days of our beloved States Members deciding that we cannot afford to offer our lowest-paid workers a miserly minimum wage of £10 per hour, we now discover that we are going to have to endure another excruciatingly banal TV series featuring the alleged ‘Real Housewives Of Jersey'.
There are those of you who will have taken immediate offence at my apparent conflating of a serious social problem with what some consider to be merely a slice of lightweight and harmless televisual entertainment.
Please allow me to explain why, in my opinion, these two seemingly disparate events are inextricably connected.
For a number of years now, some have warned about the downside of Jersey placing more and more of its economic eggs in the Finance Industry basket.
Whilst it is true that a great many local people have done very nicely, thank you very much, out of this business sector – a truth to which a visit to our ever-expanding marinas or to the more affluent parts of our coast and countryside will loudly testify – the negative effect of all the extra gazillions of not always entirely spotless moolah swilling about our small Rock has had enormously harmful repercussions for both our cost and quality of life.
Rampant inflation has made living here almost impossibly expensive for a great many locally-born people, a problem which has been greatly exacerbated by this and past Governments’ apparent policy of encouraging as many wealthy people as possible to come here and buy up as much property and land as they can afford – whilst offering them tax inducements they don’t really need.
This, together with an almost criminally laissez-faire attitude towards population control in general, has had a hugely detrimental effect upon our local culture, heritage and influence.
Which brings me back to my initial proposition.
The ‘Real Housewives Of Jersey’, in my view, is a symbolic representation of hedonistic materialism, a celebration of wealth and the shallow world of short-term celebrity. The cast - most of whom are neither ‘Housewives’ in any normal sense of the word, nor even from Jersey – represent the sort of people our politicians now venerate and welcome with open arms, despite the ridicule which many believe they bring to our island.
To our politicians, these people are worth a great deal more than those they believe are not worth a paltry £10.00 per hour. Shame on you!
Queen’s Road, St Helier
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