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Something is rotten in the state of...

.....well, finish that phrase as you choose, but we're looking specifically at the UK, where a campaign featuring a skunk holds up an olfactory mirror to the cost of living crisis - aka #CostOfGreedCrisis.

Skint stinks

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For first direct bank, it takes a swipe at how cr@p it feels to have money problems. Indeed, especally in a world where we can all see/hear about unbelievable amounts of money that are only available to a tiny percentage of people. 

The big tail and say-it-like-it-is attitude of the skunk make a bold metaphor for those challenging the unnecessary suffering caused by financial inequality.

It's not the only campaign with a whiff of revolution to it.

Taking an axe to fuel poverty

The National Energy Action (NEA) charity to eradicate fuel poverty delivers a clearly community-based message about donating your energy rebate to others if you can afford to with the simple image of chopping logs in half.

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However, its heart-warming intention falls in a bleakly unequal landscape.

As Britons were urged to scrimp and cut back in order to save on heating bills, British multinational oil & gas company Shell logged all-time record profits of more than £32 billion for 2022, while British Petroleum (BP) reported £23 billion - more than twice the previous year. 

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Some point to the inevitability of rising energy prices due to the Russia/Ukraine conflict; economists may argue that companies such as Shell and BP are merely doing their job by raking in profit and distributing it among shareholders - some of which are pension funds in which many people are invested at one level or another. But against this backdrop, there's a hint of the breadline about these good souls lining up to wield the axe.

Reliably, environmental organisation Greenpeace says it like it sees it:-

"The fossil fuel industry is built upon colonialism and injustice"

That message is beginning to strike home. 

While Greenpeace activists took possession of a 34,000-tonne oil platform belongng to Shell in one of its daring at-sea actions, British Prime Minister Rishi Sunak was heading for deep water as pressure mounted for him to impose meaningful windfall taxes on the energy giants.

 “As the British people face an energy price hike of 40 per cent in April, Rishi Sunak is letting the fossil-fuel companies making bumper profits off the hook with his refusal to do a proper windfall tax." (Ed Miliband, shadow secretary of state for climate change and net zero)

With government apparently unwilling/unable to safeguard its own people, a hashtag like #EnoughIsEnough sums up the mood.

A tipping-point may be approaching.

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Who will the 'most vulnerable' really be as the axe continues to swing?


Posted by Tree Elven on 23/02/2023

Keywords: ad campaigns, cost of living crisis UK, fuel poverty UK, Wunderman Thompson UK, donate rebate ad, NEA

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