I saw this and thought you might all like to read it:
Yes Liz, it is just you.
Liz Jones is supposedly a fashion journalist, but given her penchant for writing bizarre drivel the Daily Mail are more than happy for her to join their dedicated team of moronic columnists and they welcome her views on pretty much any subject – whether it is sending her to Somalia to report on famine, or allowing her to trace the steps of the recently murdered. Today she argues that people in fashion are a bit dim if they dress scruffily – John Galliano – and that young people riot if they don’t wear a suit and tie.
Seriously: ‘Sloppy clothes lead to sloppy minds… Don’t they, Mr Galliano?’ is the title, here are her thoughts on why young people rioted:
the problem started when the likes of Tommy Hilfiger, Calvin Klein and Gap commandeered hip-hop clothing and sold it back to young people. The style became self-perpetuating and, to be honest, it rotted young people’s brains.
Look at the footage of the young people rioting in London and Birmingham and so on, and it’s like looking at a commercial for American Apparel. Sloppy clothes lead to sloppy minds.
Just as drawstring trousers never emit the warning sign that you might be getting fat, so sportswear means you will never be smart, disciplined or employable.
Do you know anyone under the age of 25 who owns shoe polish, or an iron? Place these young men in a suit and tie, and the women in pretty dresses, and their attitudes would change, and our attitudes towards them would change, too: we would smile at them rather than shun them.
The biggest disservice the fashion super-brands have done is to relax a generation, for huge profit, and not equip them for the real, corporate world. The T-shirt and sweatpant (even denim has been ditched as being too uncomfy and restricting), rather than making its wearer athletic and healthy, does just the opposite.
It doesn’t just make its owner cash poor. Given the high cost of all this stretch rubbish, it makes them unemployable.
So, in conclusion, people are so bovine that they are completely under the influence of the fashion industry and that because of this, if we all wore suits then poverty and violence would evaporate because somehow a complete cultural and financial shift can be achieved simply by changing what we wear. Even for Liz Jones this is just beyond stupid.
Firstly, Liz gets to grips with sexism:
Women today use sexism as a way to bully and oppress others.
She then starts to make the world revolve around herself again (it appears her trip to Somalia didn’t change her at all) by complaining:
I am fed up that I am always being accused of having no empathy with children, merely because I don’t have any.
Instead, she suggests, it is mothers who have no empathy:
Once a woman becomes a mother, she becomes insular, focused on only her own children, not those of others.
And why does a women have a child? Liz has the answer:
just out of vanity and a desire to keep [their] husband[s] and take a year off work.
It may as well be noted that this column started out as a movie review of The Help but Liz is so used to talking about herself that she utterly fails to discuss the movie and instead just writes the usual self-pitying drivel. As someone in the comments points out:
I’m unsure of what her point is… does she hate women, children or just herself?
Liz Jones wallows in more self-pity today with an article that is an insult to anyone who actually works for a living (and no, Liz, scribbling a few inanities a few times a week is not work): ‘Seeking a cosy hostel, for 17 cats, four collies… and me‘ [istyosty.com link]. She writes:
I don’t think I can take any more bad news. I’ve had my property on the market since last summer without a single offer, and now stamp duty is set to rise by one per cent on Wednesday for properties like mine. This will further dampen the market and make finding a buyer nigh on impossible.
My house, which I worked for 32 years to buy, is now worth less than I paid for it, despite the fact that I’ve spent more than £300,000 of heavily taxed income doing it up.
If I do ever sell, I will have to pay off my mortgage because the Halifax won’t allow me a new one at a new property, which means I will be left with nothing, after 30-plus years on the property ladder.
So, she’ll be left with nothing. She admits that she spent more than £300,000 ‘doing it up’ which is roughly twice the average price of a house in England, and had she wanted to she could have spent that on a very nice property and have been mortgage free. But no, Liz wants to waste her money just so she can moan that she’s worse off than most of society. In order to display the magnitude of her ignorance Jones argues that instead of pursuing her six-figure-salary career she would now be in a better position had she:
just got pregnant as a teenager instead of studying for exams, and applied for a council flat. At least someone else would lag the roof and fix the guttering.
Just a quick reminder about Liz Jones:
I spent £480 on a pair of Bottega Veneta heels I couldn’t walk in. I bought my own wedding ring, and one for my husband. Total: £4,000. I even bought my husband’s made-to-measure suit.
I hired the exclusive, expensive Babington House in Somerset, every single room, and put all my guests up, free of charge. Cost? £20,000, and that didn’t even include breakfast.
My florist was the one hired every year by Vanity Fair for its post-Oscars party. Cost? £3,000 (my mum paid half).’
When my marriage was in trouble, I didn’t just tell my husband to sod off, I took him on holiday to Mozambique.
I should have worried when we got there (via business class on two planes, a private jet and speedboat) that Sven-Goran Eriksson and Nancy Dell’Olio’s names were in the guest book. The bill came to £26,000.’
Liz Jones has been paid a fortune that she has simply pissed-away because she openly admits she is financially inept – in her latest article she admits she hasn’t opened bank statements for months – yet here she is again, moaning that her life is really hard. She actually imagines that she would be better off as a single, teenage mother living on benefits. She spent more on a bat sanctuary than a year’s median salary in the UK, and she wants sympathy?
So, having wasted her money and racked-up debt living a life most people in the UK can only imagine, she now asks:
I wonder if privately owned, tax-funded hostels will take four collies and 17 cats?
Maybe, Liz, but I don’t think they would want you.
Liz Jones earns a huge salary, far more than what even the Daily Mail classes as a ‘Middle-England’ income. She earned six-figure salaries as a Magazine editor and as far as she is according to the Daily Mail ‘one of Fleet Street’s highest paid columnists’ (remember, Richard Littlejohn is on close to £1 million a year), yet all we hear from her recently is that she is massively in debt and in a recent column in ‘You’ Magazine (how apt a title for Jones) she claimed she was close to suicide.
Liz Jones makes no secret of the fact that she maintains a lifestyle that over 90% of British people could only dream about. She spent £26,000 on a bat sanctuary in her garden, spends £9 on a tube of toothpaste and her chickens have their own homeopathic vet (so really does know how to waste money). In every column she crowbars in references to how she considers any wine under £50 as cheap, how she drives a BMW and has hordes of expensive designer handbags.
Yet in recent months it has been one long tale of woe Liz Jones, debtor and pauper, culminating in a shameful column today: ‘To all 4,100 of you who answered my cry from the heart – thank you‘. In which she takes money from pensioners, is offered accommodation, is bought a lottery ticket by someone earning £46 a week and is offered money from a disabled woman whose husband is her full-time carer.
Rather than hang her head in shame and face the fact that she is in reality is a very wealthy, but very stupid and vain woman, Liz Jones actually thanks these people for their kindness, without apologising that the poor have been made to feel sorry for a very rich person. She ends her column with an interesting conclusion:
We’re always being told we live in a broken society.
That we’re greedy. My faith in human nature has been restored. Thank you, Joyce. Thank you, everyone.
I’m left with the opposite conclusion, I’ve never bought into the myth that ‘Britain is broken’ (and who keeps saying this Liz? Surely not the paper that pays you…) but perhaps any society in which the poor feel the need to help-out the wealthy and feckless perhaps is indeed broken. Her closing paragraph reads like some kind of sick joke, considering it is her greed that has caused her to be in this mess in the first place. Liz Jones’ utterly self-centred, self-absorbed drivel has just knocked my faith in humanity a little.
Liz Jones is an odd writer in that even when she is saying something that you in the whole agree with, you still can’t help but be annoyed with the way that she says it. Liz Jones sometimes tries to make a reasonable point, but her snobbery and addiction to what she pays for things always seems to cloud the point and make you want to stop reading. Take today’s column for example: ‘Try moving down here – then tell me we’re a tolerant society‘. I can kind of sympathise with Liz because she lives in Somerset and I spent the first 18 years of my life growing up in a small town in Devon, I have a fair grasp of the small-town mentality.
Yet immediately Liz – as usual – is trying to put me off with her details. The very first anecdote of Liz shopping at a local supermarket doesn’t even make it past the first paragraph without the needless: ‘I went to pay for my cats’ sustainably caught fish’. What is this adding to your point, exactly?
Liz’s general argument: that a lot of people are intolerant of outsiders in general and immigrants worse, seems broadly to match my experience of small towns where traditionally outsiders are rare. But, as Liz acknowledges, she has hardly been a positive force for interaction, I can also understand local frustration at local property prices increasing because rich Londoners like to buy second homes in nice parts of Devon / Somerset / Cornwall only to leave them empty all year round. Furthermore, the intolerance of foreigners / immigrants is largely created by newspapers like her employers, who whip up a frenzied panic about ‘tides’ and ‘uncontrolled immigration’.
What always struck me about people living in quite sheltered communities (in all my years of primary schooling I only knew of one black student, and recall none from any other ethnic minorities) is that even though the town was clearly not overrun by immigrants or other ethnicities, the population as a whole maintained a very negative stance towards immigrants and outsiders. Obviously these views were not held from experience, because we lived in an almost exclusively white, British town surrounded by other towns with almost exactly the same ethnic make-up. The views were taken from reading the papers, and with no experience that contradicted the almost entirely hostile press output, people feared something that had never even been a fleeting issue in their lives.
But I don’t want to be too negative about Liz Jones today, because some of her points are admirable:
Labour wants an Australian-style points system where the only people allowed in are those with skills and a job to go to that has been advertised for at least four weeks.
But what about the poor and desperate but woefully unskilled? I’d have thought anyone who had the get-up-and-go, the drive and the bravery to leave their home and set off in search of a better life was already pretty amazing.
Isn’t it the people who never leave the place where they were born who show no ambition at all?
This is an interesting point, as a society we generally value ambition and do look down upon people who have lived in the same town / area their whole lives as unworldly and un-ambitious. Yet, if a foreigner shows ambition and drive by moving to the UK they are to be regarded as the complete opposite: a ‘sponger’ merely taking the easy way out by coming to live on benefits in Britain. Of course, the reality is very different, they are moving to a country which probably speaks a different language and a country that they will find increasingly hostile to their presence.
But Liz needs to consider just what kind of ambition for immigrants she is talking about. Does she really want them to be ambitious and successful, or does she merely want them to be hard-working in menial tasks? Given that she makes references largely to unskilled workers it seems as if she values immigrants purely as a dedicated working class to replace our own underclass of non-workers:
maybe with a few more ‘foreigners’ running local shops, I might be able to buy a newspaper past midday on a Sunday…
I admit the quiet girls in headscarves who manned the checkouts at my local Sainsbury’s used to drive me insane when they didn’t understand what I meant by, ‘Where’s the fizzy water?’ But give me their benign stares any day over venom.
‘It’s about how we answer the concerns of care workers, people in the building trade, cleaners and janitors, people who work in shops,’ Gordon Brown said in a speech on immigration last week.
He’s missing an important point: how many white British nurses live full-time in their patients’ homes? I’ve never met one. My mum’s nurse is an African woman with a PhD who leaves her children with their grandmother so that she can do her job.
I miss my Turkish cleaner – a hard-working woman who always brought me halloumi and flat bread and olives – with an ache that can’t be filled, literally: my ad for a cleaner in this very rural area, where jobs are hard to come by, has gone unanswered for almost two years.
A danger with this viewpoint is that we are literally viewing these people as a handy commodity, rather than human beings. Is Liz really arguing for more tolerance of immigration in general, or just for the kind of stereotypical immigrant that works hard in menial jobs? What about the immigrant doctor or lawyer, are they socially acceptable?
It troubles me that Liz uses example of the African nurse with a PHD working as a live-in carer, is this really a positive image? Does it not suggest just how de-valued such immigrant workers are, if even with a PHD they still perform a role that most less qualified British nurses would not? It seems to be implying that the real value of immigrants is what tremendous value they are: rather than a standard, reluctant live-in British nurse, why not get an imported African, they have far superior qualifications to a British nurse and are grateful for any job, unlike these picky British ones.
This seems to say more about thwarted ambitions than the fair chance of achieving in foreign lands. The trouble with this argument is that it is more appealing than other pro-immigration arguments because it is backed up by a Western creation: the free market. If you want to argue with someone who is anti-immigration it is far easier to dehumanise immigrants as merely a commodity brought to Britain by market forces, and therefore all is well because the Free Market rules supreme, than to actually argue that human beings should have a right to free movement. The argument is valid, immigration is necessary in the free market as human beings are essentially a commodity that is needed in different places to serve different needs at different times.
However, in a world where we’re becoming increasingly referred to as a commodity (have you met your ‘Human Resources’ manager recently) is it a sad reflection of how dehumanised we have become when the best argument for immigration is purely an economic one? What Liz tries to get across (I’ll give her the benefit of doubt here) is that people leaving one country to seek a better or different life in another are extremely brave and show a certain ambition. As human beings we should understand that some people will happily live in one place their entire life, whereas others never want to settle anywhere. We reserve the right to move freely, and on the whole we are received with open arms in a number of countries. How about we fight for the right for others to move as they please, to have the same ambitions are ourselves, and not merely fight for their right to come and empty bed-pans for the NHS or become Liz Jones’ cleaner.
Now, I’ve thought long and hard about whether to write this. Because as you know, I’ve made it the habit of a lifetime not to slag off other writers – especially well-known, influential ones. And it’s not such a great idea to break the habit of a lifetime twice in a week.
Then I thought, sod it.
Because I really can’t stand the stupid, delusional, overpaid cow that is Liz Jones.
And I can’t contain my irritation and contempt for another second.
If anyone reads this, and wants to use the words ‘pot,’ ‘kettle’ or ‘black,’ I would like you to bear the following points in mind:
Unlike Liz Jones, I am not an Olympic-level stalker who doesn’t take ‘no’ for an answer, doesn’t take ‘fuck off’ for an answer, and treats a restraining order as a gentle hint.
Unlike Liz Jones, I am not constantly and smugly comparing myself to other women, and bragging about how much thinner, richer, more glamorous, better dressed and better groomed I am. How much more lavish my furniture is, how much more expensive my house is, how much more high-powered my job is, and how much more expertly styled my hair is. Then whining on ad infinitum that men are thick/insecure/blind for not preferring me.
Unlike Liz Jones, I don’t dress like an escapee from a travelling circus – and am not constantly showing off about my wardrobe full of designer clothes whose outrageous rip-off prices are only equalled by their mind-blowing ugliness and unwearability. Silver Prada leggings for £980? Well really, what red blooded male is not going to fancy a fifty-year-old woman wearing silver Prada leggings that cost £980? Why does Liz Jones keep meeting such ignorant fashion-backward men?
Unlike Liz Jones, I treat the lives of those around me as the sacrosanct holiest of holies, marked Totally And Utterly Off Limits No Matter How Stuck I Am For Material. This is in direct contrast to Liz Jones, who uses the lives of those around her with a casual and sociopathic disregard for their feelings – backed up with a quite astounding lack of self-awareness. She blithely dismisses her neighbours as a bunch of smelly ignorant toothless inbreeds living in the Stone Age, uses everyone’s real names without thinking twice – then she wonders why she gets dirty looks in the local shop.
Unlike Liz Jones, I’m not getting paid for this shit.
However, I’m apparently doing this all wrong – because Liz Jones gets massive great fuck-off book deals for her humourless, self-pitying, boring, repetitive shite. Her latest book is called the Exmoor Files, in which she describes how she turned her back on London society to patronise the shit out of the good people of Exmoor. Lucky old them.
Having read her columns in the Mail on Sunday, I’m pretty sure what the book’s going to be like, anyway. Here’s a sneaky peek into this forthcoming masterpiece:
Eejit Jones’ Diary
Monday August 3rd
Oh God. A terrible thing has happened. Snooty, the smallest and loveliest of all my fur babies, is dead. In a freak accident, she seems to have jumped out of the fourth floor window of my beautiful farmhouse with its ninety acres of land, five trout lakes, apple orchard and grouse moor. Nobody is quite sure how it happened, as I painstakingly keep the windows closed at all times. She seems to have somehow operated the latch with her paw.
I have no idea how I shall cope with her loss, as Snooty is the one I always pour my heart out to every night. She listens to all my stories about how men have never cared for me, no matter what I have done to make them happy. Take Terrence, my first boyfriend, who I bought four thousand pounds’ worth of flowers for in the space of a month. All he ever said to me was ‘who are you?’, ‘how did you get my address?’ ‘you’re not my bloody girlfriend, I’ve only spoken to you once,’ ‘did you break in here through an open window?’ and ‘for the love of God get out of my living room and fuck off before I call the police.’ Men are such ungrateful creatures.
I think the problem is that men are threatened by successful women. Secretly, they much prefer sad, unsuccessful and frankly unattractive women, who enable them to feel superior and powerful. Take Terrence’s girlfriend, who I later discovered he had been living with all the time. She weighed at least eight stone, and had clearly never heard that Philip Treacy’s lime green top hats were in fashion this season (those boring Topshop floral dresses – ugh!). She worked as a secretary (!!!) and had visible breasts sticking out of her chest, whereas I have long ago had my own reduced to a 32AA so that my pure white Helmut Lang shirts would hang properly. How any man can be attracted to a woman whose shirts do not hang properly, I will never understand.
I shared these confidences with Snooty every night, without fail. So I have no idea how I will cope without her. Tonight, I poured my heart out to Sulky, another fur baby. I cried into her sweet smelling fur, and told her about all the men who have rejected me. How I have always, always gone out of my way to make others happy, and received nothing in return but indifference, rejection and restraining orders. Sulky looked at me as if she understood every word. God bless my sweet, understanding fur babies. Whatever would I do without them.
Tuesday, August 4th
Tragedy has struck yet again. Sulky is dead. In a freak accident, my furry baby seems to have eaten a handful of my organic Dr Brandt sleeping tablets from Space NK Apothecary, and washed them down with my very expensive Grey Goose vodka from Harvey Nichols (which is frankly impossible to find out here. The gnarled and toothless locals have barely heard of Smirnoff. I sometimes wish I had never moved away from my beautiful and very expensive Georgian townhouse in London.)
I have no idea how I shall cope with the loss of Sulky. It is awfully depressing, living out here far from civilisation and my favourite organic chemist in South Kensington. The weather is foul, and the locals are horribly unfriendly. One would have thought they would be delighted to have a successful and elegant woman single-handedly injecting wealth and glamour into their dismal poverty stricken little lives. I am, furthermore, the only attractive woman for several miles around, and write about them at great length in my weekly column. Yet far from welcoming my arrival, they stare at me with open hostility when I walk into the village shop in search of organic Vietnamese flaxseed oil. All they can ever find to do is mumble ‘we don’t have none, we told you that last time.’ Frankly, their ingratitude is staggering.
For example, Mavis, the woman who runs the village shop, is extremely unfriendly. I have mentioned her before, as you may remember (a large and rather ugly woman with an unfortunate wart on the end of her nose and a tragic lack of fashion sense, who bears a resemblence to an ageing sumo wrestler.) One would have thought that such a frankly pitiful human being would be grateful to be immortalised in my national newspaper column, especially as I know she reads it herself every Sunday. Yet I could have sworn she stuck up two fingers at me when I saw her across the street last week. What bizarre behaviour.
These unattractive, frankly malodorous country people are terribly rude and unwelcoming. I dare say they are jealous of my seven foot tall Hummer and my £980 silver Prada wellington boots. When I go into the local village, they stare at me as if they have never seen such things before. They also seem to believe I am rather odd for having adopted twenty rats, five badgers and a mangled vole, who I have christened Edwina. And for paying a Reiki practioner to drive down from London twice a week, to tend to the emotional needs of my rescued skunk.
I weep into my fur baby Smartie’s fur that night. I confide in him about the people who I have known in my life, to whom I have shown nothing but kindness and generosity. And they have rejected me. Always. All I have ever wanted was to be loved. Just a little. Smartie looks up at me wisely. As if he has understood every word.
Wednesday, August 5th
I have been crying all morning, Smartie is dead. I found him lying in my imported Philippe Starck marble bath this morning. He appeared to have somehow cut himself across the inside of both forepaws with my very expensive Space NK Apothecary stainless steel razor. I have no idea how I will cope without him.
Tragedy has dogged my life at every step. I remember my doomed marriage to the Fat Sportswear Clad Nobody, in which I gave him everything and received nothing but disappointment in return. I shared with him my beautiful and very expensive Georgian townhouse, for which he was thoroughly ungrateful. On several occasions, he attempted to sit on my very expensive Philippe Starck sofa, and once prepared some ghastly, messy concoction called a ‘meal’ in my imported marble Poggenpohl kitchen. All this in spite of the fact that I constantly tried to make him happy, advising him when he was putting on weight, teaching him exactly how to operate all of my very expensive household appliances, and helpfully comparing our respective incomes on a near-daily basis. I even helped to raise his public profile, describing his lamentable bedroom performance and cabbagey smells to my millions of readers in considerable detail. But as so often before in my life, nothing I did was ever quite enough.
To this very day, the stupidity of the Fat Sportswear Clad Nobody astounds me. Where else will this pathetic man ever find another woman who pastes herself with Creme de la Mer and wraps herself in clingfilm before going to bed every night? Who painstakingly seperates her eyelashes with a pin every morning, and cleans the undersides of her furniture with a very expensive Dr Brandt germ killer seventeen times every day? Who has eighteen furry babies, and who can count every single one of her ribs and pelvic bones without the slightest hint of unsightly breasts or buttocks getting in the way? Frankly, it is very depressing to realise that I have everything a man could ever want in a woman, and I have never, ever, received anything but rejection in return.
I pour my heart out to Spooky, my remaining fur baby. I cry into his fur, and tell him about all the men who I have loved, who have given me nothing in return but heartache, disappointment and loneliness. Spooky looks at me as if he understands every word, with an expression of terrible sadness in his little eyes. Men may let me down, but at least my fur babies love me with all their heart…
This post originally appeared on the new adventures of juliette.