Why Poundland is opening up in Windsor

'Cheap is posh' - and even the affluent worry about poverty. This explains Poundland’s shrewd decision to open a branch in Windsor.

"Why aren't we more angry?" asks Peter Wilby in The Guardian. "Why isn't blood running, metaphorically, in the streets?" The evidence is that the very rich are getting even richer while the middle classes and the poor get poorer. Yet no one, says Wilby, makes a fuss about it.

According to the Institute for Fiscal Studies, incomes among the top 1% last year grew faster than at any time in the last decade. On The Sunday Times Rich List, the top 1,000 people in Britain are £60.2bn better off this year than in 2010, bringing their wealth "close to the record pre-recession levels". Meanwhile, FTSE chief executives are paid on average £4.2m annually, or 145 times the median wage. Bankers are doing even better: the top-paid banker at Barclays is getting £14m, 1,128 times more than his lowest-paid employee.

Yet while the very rich have "scooped the jackpot", most people's incomes have scarcely grown at all. Even at the top of the middle income scale, inflation-discounted pay has only "crept up", as Wilby puts it. (Between 1996 and 1997 and 2007-2008 it rose from £36,700 to £41,500). With inflation taking hold, people on middle incomes are already starting to feel poorer. While the rich have soared ahead in "the neoliberal period" in Britain and America, they have left behind "not only manual workers but also doctors, teachers, academics, solicitors, architects, Whitehall civil servants and, indeed, many CEOs who don't run FTSE companies". No wonder those champions of the struggling middle class, The Daily Telegraph and the Daily Mail, are unhappy. So why don't their readers make more fuss? The answer, says Wilby, is that while they dislike high incomes, they are lukewarm about "redistribution": "They worry that they are unlikely to benefit and may even lose from it."

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Fear of loss, after all, is a more powerful motivator than hope of gain. As Dominic Lawson says in The Independent, even the affluent worry about poverty, "even if on a rational assessment of their life chances they have nothing to be worried about". This explains Poundland's shrewd decision to open a branch in Windsor.

According to the firm, whose stores still sell every item they carry for £1, it's not just poorer families who shop at Poundland: more than 10% of its customers come from the A/B socio-economic group. Hence the decision "to open its newest store down the road from Eton College, in one of the wealthiest boroughs in the land". Perhaps the Queen will pop in or send her footman. She may have a fortune of around £350m, but, as Lawson says, she's always been frugal. And these days, "cheap is posh".

Obama's £1m Beast

The £1m-plus Cadillac in which President Obama travelled while in London is nicknamed "The Beast". It weighs eight tons, has windows that can withstand bullets from a .44 Magnum and eight-inch-thick armour-plating. Such was the emphasis on security that his aides requested bomb-proof double glazing be fitted in his suite at Buckingham Palace.

Tabloid money Scaggsy has no moral right to his flash London pad

The National Union of Mineworkers wants to stop paying £34,000 a year for a flash pad in London's Barbican for ex-president Arthur Scargill, says Paul Routledge in the Daily Mirror. "The NUM is taking him to court and Scaggsie is resisting the demand, claiming that all previous national officials had a right to stay in their union home until death. Or, in his case, beatification, whichever comes first."

But even if he is technically correct, Scargill hated London and in 1983 took the union headquarters back to Yorkshire. "If the capital is so dreadful, why does he still insist on a three-bed luxury flat in Shakespeare Tower, nine years after he took early retirement on a handsome pension to live in a handsome country house in an acre of land he owns outside Barnsley? Scargill may have a vestigial legal right to his fourth-floor eyrie in the City But he has no moral right whatever."

Britain is to give £4.3bn to bail out troubled Portugal, "taking the potential bill to save the euro to £600 for every British family", says Jane Moore in The Sun. "So, let's get this straight We didn't enter the euro because we felt it would destabilise our economy. And now that decision has been proved correct, we are happily haemorrhaging much-needed cash by bailing out those countries that weren't so wise? Just dandy."

"Did you know that in a couple of years' time we will be spending £11.3bn on overseas aid?" asks Kelvin MacKenzie in The Sun. "That would be enough to scrap inheritance tax (£2.9bn) and stamp duty (£8.4bn). I do worry about Pakistan (mainly I worry about how many other Bin Ladens they're giving sanctuary to), but I worry more about Preston."