welfare

Media articles I’d love to read…

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UK charities get sizeable donations from philanthropists in UK immigrant’s home countries – to help their population resettle in the UK.

Life after food banks – how charities are transforming people’s lives in ways the government can’t.

The rise of volunteer counselling on a mass scale – communities connecting people.

The campaign to re-focus news content on the things that matter.

Record numbers of affordable London houses being built on brownfield sites.

24/7 driverless trains come to London – one month to go.

New Michellin-star awards for politicians – their integrity and actions ratings.

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Bright lights, big city

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Big cities show survival of the fittest in action.

The fittest don’t have to be fittest in body. Just fittest in mind.

If you come to the Big City naïve, stubborn, vain, or showing poor judgement,

The city will smile its grim smile, encircle you and slowly but surely take wealth and hope off you.

 

If you come to the Big City with a survivor’s mentality, hungry to learn, hungry to succeed,

The city will take you under its wing. As one of its own.

 

Does this make the Big City harsh and cruel?

Or a good judge of character, with judgements made at big-city speed.

 

Big cities house the most charities and some of the grandest public structures,

Big cities are where the congregation of high talent assemble,

Where the future of humanity is discussed, agreed and governed from.

Big cities are indeed the bright lights.

Effective Government

The task for effective governments – flip over the coin of social sustainability:

From the current side of the coin:

Unsustainable energy, welfare payments, lifestyle health choices, commodity workforce skills & blame culture,

with sustainable crime lifestyles & corporate tax avoidance

To the far side of the coin:

Sustainable energy, self-sufficiency, healthy lifestyles, a Master’s degree workforce & personal responsibility,

with unsustainable crime lifestyles & exemption-free tax rules.

Welfare and fish

In its various forms, the welfare budget that countries make available to help those of its citizens in need is often viewed as a safety net. Some people complain the holes in the welfare net are too big, while others say they’re too small.

An alternative analogy of welfare might be as an ocean, creating a basic environment for all fish (the citizens) to swim in it.

How so? The ocean provides basic nutrients, dissolved oxygen and environmental support to the fish. The fish can move forward, or sink to the bottom. Even if the fish do sink, the ocean current does its best to slow their descent.

The fish control their personal direction and make progress as best they can, partly thanks to the ocean current, their fellow fish and their own efforts. The fish can choose to swim towards opportunity (more food, or prospective mates) and swim away from danger.

The fish can also choose to swim alone or in a group. But either way, the ocean will provide basic and enduring support, but not be the solution to all problems.

Over time, both the ocean current and the fish encounter obstacles. The ocean will either wear the obstacles down (icebergs and rocks), break them down (pollution, eventually) or flow around them. The fish can also avoid those obstacles, or choose to turn them into opportunities (shelter and local community).

Threats like over-population of the fish stocks, rising pollution, sickness epidemic in the fish communities, or choice of lifestyle by the fish, the ocean can’t compensate for. Fish seem to accept this. Why can’t humans? Maybe we’re not as smart as we think.