Some comrades have reacted to Osborne’s VAT  on hot pies and pasties by critiquing the contents of a GREGG’S pastie……..’ a plastic envelope fullof dog sick’. That comrades is far from the fucking point. The point is  an issue of economics not cuisine. Osborne’s attack is on hard up working class people trying to get some cheap food at lunchtimes.We seem to be developing a bunch of METROPOLITAN  sneerers at Gregg’s and Wetherspoons – AND PROBABY STATICS – who’s lives are far removed from the daily reality of our class and prefer ‘poltical issues’. wellcomrades the increase in price of Gregg’s pasties is a fucking pollitical class issue.  Reember the historic role of bread queues in revolutions. Put it like this. There has been no increase in VAT on Osborne’s inheritance fund – the luxury wallpaper on sale in OSBORNE AND LITTLE in the Kings road. If through facebook or whatever we could mobilise thousands of Gregg’s customers to bring their pasties and pies and lob  them at Osborne and Little then we might be fucking doing something useful, which increases the solidarity of our class and it’ s antagonism and be……a fucking good laugh.


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  1. Keith

    There has for many years VAT on hot take away food. Bakeries & pie shops have gotten away with it by saying their products are hot from recent baking, but could just as easily cooled down: Greggs in particular do not keep their pasties warm in heated cabinets. Much better would be Greggs eating customers lobbing liberated gourmet goods at cabinet ministers. Here in the NW “pound bakeries” have grown up recently with £1 800g loaves & pasties at 2 for a pound. This affordable pricing is enough to make Osborne choke on his Melton Mowbray = if only he could force them to become “£1.20 bakeries”.

  2. Porkbeast

    I agree with your comments on the issue of prole food but I don’t think we should let a predatory, explotative company like Greggs get any medals for services to the working classes. Their business plan includes opening bakeries in proximity to established non chain bakers then undercutting them, driving them out of business before putting up the prices, classic capitalism. And it is also my right as a working class food lover to declare their goods as mass produced shite.




      I agree, and while the middle classes stuff their faces with expensive fancy french cakes and sun-dried tomato chiabatta, we’re expected to eat shite, (Yeah, ‘dogsick in a pastry pocket’). I love pasties but I prefer a packed lunch to some manufactured grot, whether it’s Greggs or that other well-known purveyor of non-food, McDonalds (why not sing their praises for serving cheap food?)…and fuck Wetherspoons and its UKIP boss. At the end of the day, ‘Metropolitan’ is also proletarian, not just the above mentioned ‘latte classes’ or the ‘liberal elite’ as the right has it. Just because the tories have taxed the cheap food we’re expected to live on doesn’t mean we can’t criticise the economy of grub, as Porkbeast has done so beautifully above.

    • Keith

      Of course the supermarkets have in-house “bakeries” that blast cook fast risen dough according to a set formula. They are cardboard creations that are hard on the digestion, unlike the artisan breads, that the rich can afford, where enzymes have done the work of being gentle on gentle folks’ stomachs.

      Of course Asian sweet centres produce tastier treats than Greggs with yogurt & tamarind chutneys thrown in for good measure.

  3. Ray

    There was a good prog on the Great British Campsite last night.
    There’s a lot to be said for camping but her indoors reckons that her back is no longer up to it and these days we tend to opt for the cheap short break in formerly grand hotels now on their uppers.
    Regarding Greggs. I bet no Cornishperson, regardless of how hard up they were, would feed a Greggs pastie to the dog. At the start of the recession Greggs reckoned that they were getting a lot of yuppie punters through the door who in an effort to save money were forgoing their usual parma ham on ciabatta and a skinny latte for a Greggs sausage roll and a cuppa soup. I use Greggs myself from time to time – only in an ironic way obviously.

  4. Tod Palin

    All my life I have had smart arses telling me what I should not eat, leftie smirkers, poking fun at food. The person who compared Greggs pies to dog sick might find it better to appear on Woman’s Hour, discussing with BBC experts what the proles should eat. The important issues concern the price of food to people whose incomes are under attack.

    • Porkbeast

      You eat what you want comrade. It’s up to you, I think their food is poor quality and not particularly cheap but that is my personal taste.

      For some time now I have been cogitating upon the embourgoisment of working class food; not because of some tribal reflex against new tastes or reverse snobbery, but because I like it and find it almost impossible to get hold of. Cottage/Shepard Pie and mash, liver and onions, sausage casserole, egg and chips are all off the menu in high street Britain having being replaced by the food of the franchised Sunday supplement. Pesto, mozzarella, halloumi, chorizo, chiabatta washed down with a mocca or Earl Grey have infected everywhere. They are not cheap and many taste crap even though their individual ingredients are delicious when used in a traditional way. They are also cheap to manufacture with long shelf lives and can be eaten on the move rather than sat down to savor making them capitalist efficient eat on the move prole fodder. This “posh fast food” is sold at a premium rate as a commodified lifestyle choice. Try finding a cheap meal on our transport system these days.

      There is a cafe near here that sells a huge plate of chips with two fried eggs and two slices of bread and marge for £2.60 which is enough to keep you going from breakfast to tea, it carries a copy of the Morning Star along with other papers and is a bourgeois free zone. We need to take back our restaurants and cafes to serve cheap traditional food and let those who like goats cheese with rocket or crayfish and avacado go to Marx and Sparx.


    • mark

      Us Proles might not want to eat shit though. A lot of this conversation shoiws us how well the propaganda works – be good little consumers. The food is pretty shite at Greggs – pies full of floury stodge, and salt and sugar excess – I do not tend to eat out as having been under the breadline all my life though I can cook and I do know what good food is. I also used to cook proper quality food in a high street cafe out of good ingredients including what Porkbeast likes ( below ). Not a load prepacked frozen corporate shite. Seems like we’re back to the manufacture of the working class…Cook yerself a lunchbox – its cheaper than a takeaway!!!!

  5. Ruth

    haha They sure wouldn’t be eating Greggs or cheapo plonk for ‘kitchen supper’ at Downing Street, after paying their ‘bribes for questions’ subs

  6. primark nomark

    Frankly, if you use both Greggs and Wetherspoons then you deserve all the sneering and scorn that comes your way.

    • Northern A

      Fuck off you snob. Steak bake and wetherspoons ale makes up about 90% of my diet. The point Ian’s making and everyfucker is missing is that despite Gregg’s and wetherspoons business ethics or whatever else, these are places frequented by my class and forcing prices up is not an attack on Gregg’s or wetherspoons but the people who use it.

  7. primark nomark

    Next you’ll be extolling the virtues of the national lottery on the basis that poor people are its major customer. Not all of us poor people are in the habit of continually making the wrong choices in diet, alcohol intake and gambling. This is not about class but about TASTE (or rather lack of it).

    • We have to live day by day with what’s in front of us.
      one step at at a time, tories and the rich are our biggest enemies at present, we’ll sort out Greggs and their like along the road…..

  8. Greg

    Its amazing how theyre never called to account. Cameron calimed £21000 a year and Osborne flipped houses during the expenses scandal to claim £450000 mortgage, fiddled chauffeur expenses, and has a personal stash of over £4m.

    As the black dominatrix Natalie Rowe said -We’re still waiting for George Gideon ”its not cocaine” Oliver to ”Own up to his past, I know what went on”

  9. Conan the Librarian

    My dear fellow, chucking pies at a posh git’s shop and sidling up to the Caravan Club, self-admittedly a pretty anal bunch; the question crosses my mind that you have been out in the sun a touch too much, time for the knotted hankie.

  10. No peace between classes

    Shopkeepers are the vanguard of the bourgeoisie – no matter how big or small. They deal in the value of commodities and their property prices. They don’t give a shit about the worker’s on the shop floor.

    Just look at Tesco or Asda or any other brand that’s in your high street. They are often the only large local employer in many communities with 100s of millions if not billions of profit each year, but who does that money go to? Just remember how quickly many of them were to join the work for no pay scheme recently – Greggs were one of the first to sign up for that despite their multi-millions in profit.

    And like others say, these companies destroy the produce of local communities and artisans and make it almost impossible for anyone to compete with them, except if they become petite bourgeoise.

    I don’t know about the food, I’ve never bought anything from there, but Gregg’s, like most of these shops and stores are poison to our class in so many ways other than by eating.

    Yes, our class use Gregg’s, as well as McDonald’s, KFC, etc, and yes, our pockets are being disproportionately emptied by the ruling class. But that’s no excuse not to be critical whether it’s about the food or the economics. And yes, taste (of food) is all about economics and politics and it’s why some get to eat shit while others dine on cake. I’m not having a go at the punters who shop at Gregg’s or their taste in food. I just want people who shop there to know what kind of fucked-up economics Gregg’s is peddling and bringing to every high street, not just their food and the economics and exploitation behind that food. That should be enough to make anyone sick without having to eat one of their pasties.

  11. Gregg Pasty

    I reckon the sausage rolls are a better indicator than the pasties- they started around 30 odd p a few years ago, and I think they’re about 60 odd p now.
    Have wages risen so quickly? Fucking no.
    Let’s see a graph of wages vs productivity shall we?
    It says,
    “In the last twenty years of the 20th century, each pound of UK GDP growth was accompanied by around 90 pence of median wage growth. From 2000 to 2007 that figure fell to just 43 pence.”

    Further it says that overall wages have gone up alongside productivity – if you include all wage brackets.
    For ordinary paid workers it’s a different story, and wages don’t match productivity gains.

  12. Gregg Pasty

    More on wages vs pasty prices

  13. Who’d have thought Greggs could be so divisive! 😀

    Osborne’s VAT-attack is one of the most blatant strikes in the state’s ongoing – and currently escalated – WAR ON THE POOR. Rightly or wrongly there are some brands which do have a certain (albeit undeserved) appeal among our class and, as Ian points out, their popularity can be used to give leverage to our own strategies… using their popularity for political and/or propaganda means is *not* the same as supporting them as a company.

    That said, if we really want to win the the class war then we’re gonna need some healthy fucking soldiers! The aforementioned Greggs’ ‘Bean & Sausage’ pastie weighs in at a whopping 1000 calories of fat, sugar and other assorted shit. Too many of them and the only thing you’ll be fit for is a job with the fat fucks in the MET!
    What’s needed is a Black Rose Martial Arts Centre in every working class area to promote fitter/healthier/stronger living, and other DIY strategies designed to help people grow/build/brew their own stuff. The more control we have over our own lives, the less damage the state can inflict upon us. Dead Prez had it right (except for the no-beer thing… and the tap-water thing… and the BBQ’d tofu thing!)…


    I can see it now, a 600 page Libcom thesis on ‘The Pastie and its subsumption under Capital’ …
    The truth is, is that food prices are rising globally, without extra taxation, all because the scum in the stockmarkets have shifted their investments out of Equities, Financials and Derivatives and into Commodities due to the banking crisis- The rising cost of food played a major part in the ‘Arab Spring’…and the current, invisible genocide-famines in Niger, Kenya and Sudan.
    Far from telling anyone what not to eat, I’m not a food snob, except when it comes to what I put in my own cakehole…The smell of a ‘Macky-D’s on the High Street makes me want to puke cos it smells like liquidised offal and shit to me…and I have always taken exception to the ‘Vegan Police’ telling me my fry-up is immoral, to which I sing the song of the meat porters in old Smithfields-
    “I like eggs and bacon, I like eggs and bacon! If-you-think-I’d-give-’em-up, You’d be very much mistaken!!”…

    Of-course food is a political issue- it’s literally the stuff of life! See this-

    a worker’s critique of the food service industry’

    …and I’m not even gonna mention the Caravan Club’s links to the Royal Family, lest Uncle Ian sends me to bed without any tea…

  15. Tough Love

    Fuck the economics and class hysteria – what about the cuisine. Greggs sausage rolls are looooooverly and Osbournes’ a cunt for putting up the price. The pasties are crap thou.

  16. At the end of the day, when I’ve had a free day out at gosforth park (n/cle) with my kids, we all go and get a pasty or sausage roll from greggs, and a bottle of water each. it fills our bellies for the walk back home. I’m all for our right to ‘beautiful radiant things’, but I can’t afford it, i take what i can get, and it pisses me off when some overpriveliged shitehole takes advantage of my basic needs.
    Ian’s no nonsense class analysis is spot on, again and again.

    As an aside, i’ll never waste lobbing a pasty at a tory, paving stones will do.

  17. At the end of the day, when me and the kids have had a free day out at Gosforth Park (N/cle), we all trot off to Greggs for a pasty and bottle of pop. It fills our bellies for the walk home. I’m all for our right for ‘ beautiful radiant things’, but on my wages…

    i get pissed off when some overpriveliged shite takes advantage of my basic needs.

    Ian, as usual, your no nonsense class analysis is spot on.

    As an aside, I would never waste lobbing a pasty at a tory, paving stones are far more effective, and free.

    • by the way, I’m on holiday this friday, down to Weatherspoons for a plate of chips and cheap cider, I’m going to have lots of fun with working colleagues, what’s the problem in that?

  18. Dora Kaplan

    If you’re on the streets cheap pasties from places like Greggs can be a lifesaver. It’s another attack on peoples most basic needs, and from a bunch of hooray henrys who have never gone hungry, spent a night on the streets or had to budget for food in their lives.

  19. Anonymous

    A mate with impeccable working class immigrant roots refers to Greggs as “Dreggs”. He did work in catering for years and knew good cheap food from bad. I’ll go with his judgement.

  20. some bloke

    Throw pasties at Osbourne, brilliant!
    Maybe people could post photos of themselves threatening Tories with pasties or chucking them if they can afford the fine and have the guts. [Which they should given what’s in the pasty].
    Flash mob sausage role slinging.
    I was already in a good mood about the latest Murdoch/ondigital stuff, I near pissed my self when I saw this one.
    Shine on you crazy diamond.

  21. some bloke

    Or any VAT goods thrown at any politician

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