Dead Bird. By Graham Walker.

Dead Bird Walking. By Graham Walker.
Part 2 of 2. Edited By Uncle Monty.
Story Graphics By Alex Albion.
I was appalled on behalf of all other vendors who, as
‘unreliable’ as they are, have, over the past 18 years,
stood on the streets braving the elements, subsequent-
ly lining your pockets with nugget. I was then angered
that as a Big Issue vendor myself for 15 years, you
were getting personal, you were also talking about me!
I myself have been one of your "unreliable" vendors
for 15 years. I have been so unreliable as a big Issue
vendor that I have raised £65,000 for various charities
(including £2000 for the Big Issue Foundation) and,
without going into detail, I’ve been even more unreliable
than that! And then, lost in my own achievements, for
me, guiltily too late, my thoughts turned to the many
friends I’ve lost on ‘Big Issue street’. Although you
never met them, although you’re not even aware
of their existence, to you, they were no more than
an expendable, unreliable workforce. Well I can tell
you Mr Bird, having known intimately, each one of
them, they were nothing less than wonderfully
reliable friends and vendors who are now, each
of them, ‘reliably’ dead.
So in memory, and speaking on behalf, of Pete,
Myles, Debs, Carol, Dan, Graham two ties, Craig,
Pontoon Steve, Geoff, Geordie John, Fluffy Mark,
Helen and Gillespie, and to the many I never
got to know . . .
"How dare you!”
Mr. Bird. I’m sorry if this article is a little heavy,
but it’s made so by the leadened bricks of irony you’ve
littered throughout. Yes, ironically, without the brazenly
dressed, beer swigging students, the posh g its who can’t
write proper, the violent, uncultured working class,
many of whom buy the Big Issue. Without the homeless
drug addicts, the alcoholics, the feckless, the scumbags
and the most unreliable workforce on God’s earth who
sell it. Without the charities who often pay good dollar to
advertise in it. Without the soup runs, agencies, churches
and charities such as Shelter, Crisis and the Salvation
Army who support, house, feed and often repair the
homeless, in many instances, ensuring vendors are still
capable of standing on the streets to sell your magazine.
Without each of these, the Big Issue wouldn’t survive!
And the biggest irony for me is, if the welfare state; the
benefits system, you are so, so derisory of, were to shut
up shop first thing tomorrow morning, The Big Issue Co.
Ltd. and you too Mr Bird, would be no more than five
minutes behind it! Yes, on behalf of my dear, dead
friends, and indeed on behalf of your mentally and
physically damaged, (‘irresponsibly dead’) ex-soldier.
How dare you!
A. John Bird's Nude Sketch That Fetched
Over 300 Quid For Charity Last Year.
John bird on students:
“I live near a university. All the women students
walk around with their tits hanging out and the
guys wear baseball caps backwards swigging
from beer bottles.”
John Bird on soup runs:
“Soup runs keep people ON the streets
rather than helping them off.”
What the hell are you thinking of John?
Having had a suck at rough sleeping yourself,
you know full well that this has always been a
sworn secret, sacrosanct amongst the homeless
community; an enigma that academia has
scratched it’s head at for millennia, i.e., why do
people sleep rough?. And now you’ve gone
and told the whole world and it’s blinkin’ dog!
Talk about whistle-blowing. What you’ve done
is akin to the president of the magic circle reveal-
ing the ‘sawing a woman in half’ trick on live TV.
It’s worse than someone in the know, selling
Banksy’s true identity to the Daily Mail for a few
shekels. So well done you Mr Bird, the secret is
now out. The game’s up! Yes indeed, the motive
behind people sleeping rough on the streets of
Britain, risking abuse, death from hypothermia
or being beaten senseless by a drunken mob is
down to the mug of lukewarm minestrone
they get handed late at night!
John Bird on Charities:
“We need to stop our conscience-salving donations
to Shelter and Crisis.” “The government and
charity's actions combine to keep people mired in
their “Christmas help seems to me, a desperate
act.” (Politea (right wing think tank)
Christmas address).
“The Big Issue is not a charity, it’s a business ...
I didn’t want to do a charity because
charities piss me off.”
Response from Jamie McCoy ... I spent 30 years on
and off the streets and I entirely disagree with what
Mr. Bird says. Yes, there are lots of homeless charities,
but they are all trying different things. One charity
paid for me to learn to read and write. Another
charity provided a hostel and then a permanent
home, an outreach team helped me to manage my
finances and keep my place clean, and I learnt cooking
skills at a centre for the homeless. The way forward
is to fund prevention of our drug culture, not saying
stupid things about homeless charities.
Tim, 32. Homeless, He remembers COC (Crisis
Open Christmas) “It’s been a salvation as I’ve been
depressed about Christmas. It’s like having a new
family. It makes you remember how kind some
people are, it reminds me what life could be like.”
John Bird on the welfare state:
“It exists because you could never trust the
working class to put a bit of money aside for
their kids education, or put a bit aside for their
health.” “Social security is criminal, insane,
a new form of slavery. It ensures people stay in
poverty."“The social security is the biggest
bug bear that’s ever been deposited on the
lives of the poor.”
The Big Issue UK Headquarters at London's Vauxhall.
With average Big Issue sales per vendor of less than
40 magazines per week (earnings £30), with a large
proportion of vendors living in bedsits, hostels and
temporary housing, with living costs of £150+, it
doesn’t take an abacus to work out that the over-
whelming majority of vendors are reliant on benefits:
‘Enslaved with the insane bug-bear of social security!’
Yes, the vast majority of vendors are victims, inextri-
cably locked into the benefits system you abhor. And
ironically, through purchasing ‘Issues’ from you (John
Bird), vendors do, by proxy, turn you into perhaps
the largest recipient of Social Security benefits in
the country!
John Bird on entrepreneurism:
“... for some people who start selling the Big Issue,
it gives them the chance to spend yet more bad
money to put into their arms or down their throat.
What we have to realise about entrepreneurism is
that there’s always plusses and minuses ... one guy
I heard of, left the British army, had severe mental
health and physical problems, had spent a lot of
time causing himself ‘grief’, then sold the Big Issue.
He worked for us for six months and then died!
The thing about the Big Issue is, it’s an opportunity
but, it’s also about people taking responsibility for
themselves. And if they don’t take that responsibility,
if they don’t have the social structures and support
system, they may well die. What I’m trying to sell is
the life and death reality of social entrepreneurism.”
These two articles has been written because I am
saddened and totally wearied at the constant derision
and scorn Mr. Bird continues to pour on everything and
everyone who has contributed and continues to contribute
to his personal standing, wealth and well-being. In so do-
ing, also dispelling the popular misconception that Dr. A.
John Bird MBE. BA. Hons. the ’co-founder’ of The Big
Issue, is the authoritative spokesman on homelessness.
Although he describes himself as the ‘self-confessed’
representative for the homeless community, as a ‘long-
standing’ Big Issue man; a fully paid-up member of that
community, I, along with many others, find that the maj-
ority of Mr. Bird’s views on the homeless, the solution to
homelessness, and society in general, bear little resem-
blance to the reality I have witnessed over the last twenty
years. This article is not written as a sleight on The Big
Issue, it’s core ‘intentions’, and most definitely not it’s
vendors and the homeless community at large.
These two articles (have also) been written because
I have rarely in life stood up to be counted, rarely in
life spoken out against injustice. It’s, in the main, been
a life-time perched comfortably on the fence. Now,
in the enviable position of having nothing, enviable
because I therefore have nothing to lose, it would
be remiss of me not to fling wide open this window
of opportunity to, at last, let fly my opinions and
air my responses to Mr Bird’s often outlandish
comments and often bigoted views.
I’ll leave the last word to Mr. Bird:
“I have always had a belief in myself. It is almost
delusional-as though I had been sent here to save
the world ... Religion won’t save us, even if it is
of the secular variety. You are better off in the
hands of imperfect people like me who create
something usable than the hollow hands of those
who are looking forward to the day when we
all wake up to true Socialism.”
The 10 Reference Quotes Herein Are Availabe
Upon Request. Your Feedback Is Also Welcomed.
"The Birds (Peter & John) Are Circus Freaks."
Alex Albion.
{ To enlarge any image, just click on it }


123.com said...

It's your bad attitude that is the problem and not John Bird's. Get a proper job. That should solve your problem. Stop calling yourself "The Big Issue Man." You don't represent it. Basically, all you are is a ignorant arse. Go
fuck yourself, "Mr" Graham. 123.com

Maggie. said...

I think Graham you've done a good job by quoting all that Bird says.
Between you and me, Bird is just a
big mouth. Best wishes, Maggie.

Anonymous said...

John Bird says stuff to get newspaper publicity only for himself. That's way he's laughing all the way to the bank. I have long ago stopped buying his rag.
Him and that brother of his seem to have also conspired to get rid of Monty's pitch from what I hear.
I always stopped to say hello to him when I saw him there. J. Bird is so pitiful it makes me sick. This is one of Monty's anonymous friends.