Biting the hand that feeds

Ken Loach has launched an uncompromising attack on the UK government at the 70th British Academy Film Awards.

Speaking as he picked up his award for outstanding British film for I, Daniel Blake, which is conceived as a critique of the current state of the benefits system, Loach touched on accusations by some that his film failed to reflect reality.

Hasn’t it been said state which has financed his entire career? Including that very dandy indeed house in Widcombe?

24 comments on “Biting the hand that feeds

  1. When the scumbag does a film about the 150 million murdered by socialism–so far– I’ll listen to what he has to say.

  2. As I have mentioned on here before, I was on the receiving end of a full-on drunken rant from a Bath-based acquaintance of mine who works in the more *ahem* “commercial” end of the film industry. He’s the one who described Loach’s house, which he’s been to, as a mansion and said that he couldn’t understand why the BFI keeps funding Loach to make movies no-one goes to see.

  3. also there was a rather amusing comment on an article about Loach’s speech in the Chronicle website saying “on a train once I overheard Ken Loach moaning that he’d spent twenty grand on a new bathroom and the taps didn’t work. Socialism obviously pays well”

  4. Not entirely. Some of his films had financing by the governments of other European countries.

    I wouldn’t mind if he was up with Eisenstein or Leni Riefenstahl. A commie and a nazi, but at least Battleship Potemkin and Triumph of the Will are interesting films.

    His films construct characters and situations that are about as detached from reality as a Transformers movie. He creates these saintly characters that have done absolutely nothing wrong, and then pits them against everything bad. It’s really shocking to me how critics fawn over this rubbish.

  5. Bloke in Wiltshire – “He creates these saintly characters that have done absolutely nothing wrong, and then pits them against everything bad.”

    What is worse “everything bad” tends to be everything Ken has supported his entire life. Take I, Daniel Blake. About the way in which a man meets a single mother and is treated poorly by a vast and indifferent bureaucracy. How much of Loach’s life do you think he has spent calling for a vast and indifferent bureaucracy?

    He has got what he spent his entire life fighting for and then he is p!ssed off because it does not work the way he dreamt it would, but exactly the way that the Tories said it would. The idiot can’t even be consistent.

  6. State provision of welfare will always be bureaucratic and rules based and people will fall through the cracks. No system covers everything.

    You don’t want it otherwise – you don’t want the bureaucrat having a discretion to decide who eats and who doesn’t. Too much power.

    This is why the state is only part of the solution, and needs to work hand in hand with other provision – churches, charities etc. who can exercise that discretion.

  7. How dare Ken Loach get up at an awards ceremony and make a speech about the film for which he won the award. Bloody cheek of the man.

  8. If he really cares about the state of the benefits system, he should campaign for its denationalization and the return of friendly societies and mutual assistance.

  9. “Loach continued by making reference to the Tory government’s apparent U-turn on its promise to accept thousands of unaccompanied children fleeing danger in Syria and elsewhere.”

    How many could be housed in his mansion? I bet they’d love the new bath!

  10. SMFS,

    “He has got what he spent his entire life fighting for and then he is p!ssed off because it does not work the way he dreamt it would, but exactly the way that the Tories said it would. The idiot can’t even be consistent.”

    You misunderstand. Loach simply doesn’t want a system at all. He wants people to walk in off the street, say they’re sick and be handed money with a smile. Because, you know, fuck all those working people who have to pay for it.

    The level of people throwing in the towel and failing assessment was huge. Of the people who were notified about the assessment, 38% were found to qualify for benefits. Less than half. And 37% just gave up during the assessment process. OK, some of those would have been people getting better, but in 3 months?

    I’m not saying it’s a perfect process, but it’s clear that the level of abuse of the IB system was far from a few isolated individuals.

  11. It’s not inconsistent to receive funds from government while at the same time lambasting them. There are pensioners who openly admit that they don’t need their winter fuel allowance.

    There are plenty of ex-military types on here who aren’t averse to criticising defence policy or calling out poor management.

  12. KJ

    Is that what you think he did? Because the words I heard and the words written in he Guardian’s report were nothing to do with his film. He side-stepped the criticism that it was unrealistic and instead spoke about those evil Tories.

    “Unrealistic”is.a.pretty damning critique of a film attempting to depict gritty social reality don’t you think.

  13. Bloke in Wiltshire

    Spot on – the scale of benefit fraud in general is mammoth and accounts for a huge percentage of the sum – despite ‘official statistics’ which claim it is tiny through slight of hand

  14. BiW–Don’t forget that various govt’s were quite happy to boost the disabled claimant list as a way of cutting the unemployment figures of the era.

  15. @MrEcks – another piece of leftwing doublethink – believing at the same time that a) the only reason so many people are on disability is because FATCHA tried to conceal unemployment by putting healthy people on other benefits AND b) anyone on disability is a saint and a genuine case, and any attempt to prove otherwise makes you literally worse than Hitler

  16. It is true that disability benefit was “widened” out under THATCH!. Alan Clark talks about in his Diaries. The process continued under Major and Blair.

    The other bit of double-think required was reconciling these two statements:

    1) The NHS is the greatest, etc
    2) The UK has 2.9 million working age disabled (or whatever the figure was)

  17. I wonder what percentage of people who laud him have never seen one of his films? A surprisingly high number, I’d imagine.

  18. Bloke in Wiltshire – “You misunderstand. Loach simply doesn’t want a system at all. He wants people to walk in off the street, say they’re sick and be handed money with a smile.”

    I can understand that. After all it seems to be the way he has funded his film career and that has worked out very nicely for him.

  19. Public film funding (and in fact a lot of media commissioning) is a rats nest of corruption. I had a very entertaining evening not that long ago talking to someone who works in that area firsthand.

    At least in the private sector if it’s rubbish as well as corrupt you get fired.

    Loach is a hypocrite of epic proportions. The funding he gets is the definition of welfare for the rich.

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