Jemima Khan: Poverty Tourist

Posted in Janine's blog on Wed, 06/09/2006 - 15:30,

Pass the sick bag. In a horribly creepy interview in the Sunday Times, Jasper Gerard not only drools all over the page, but falls over himself in praise of Jemima's concern for the poor.

Poverty's so distressing darling. What the poor need is a dose of pity from a rich globe-trotter with more money than she knows what to do with. Jemima's cure for poverty is capitalism, which helps “if it is not exploitative”. Much in the same way that illness helps if it doesn't make you unwell.

She runs a clothing factory in Pakistan and "pays more than any comparable employer" (which wouldn't be hard, after all) though we are left guessing as to exactly how much that is. Let's see - less per year than she 'earns' in interest in an hour? Of course, the women in her factory actually work for a living - something that Jemima will never have to trouble herself doing, since her mega-inheritance from her billionaire xenophobe father James Goldsmith.

Slavering Jasper asks one pertinent question: Does she not see a conflict between her massive wealth and their massive poverty? Jemima replies: “I don’t. In some ways it helps: I always pay my way on these trips". Which must be very reassuring for the poor people she ogles at. Who the bloody hell else does she think should pay for her revolting poverty tourism? Perhaps the poverty-stricken could pay a levy to meet the fares for the filthy rich to come and pat them on the head?! And there are so many of "these trips". Jemima's concern about poverty manages to take her around the world several times over.

Does anyone really think that this will solve world poverty? Or even help just a little bit? The only hope of that lies with de-throning the likes of Jemima Khan rather than indulging her pathetic self-image as a saviour of the poor.

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