Living Below the Line – an impact for everyone?

Baroness D'Souza

Having just got to the end of five days of living on £1 or less a day, I celebrated with two hard-boiled eggs, toast and marmite and some freshly-ground coffee.  It tasted wonderful and was greatly appreciated.

But this exercise has been an incredibly sobering experience for me. I have spent many years working in the developing world amongst communities where food is scarce and have seen for myself how heartbreaking it is for mothers to see their small children waiting patiently in line for a nutritionally inadequate main meal – usually their only meal of the day. Too often this consisted of a thin soup with some maize or cassava to bulk it up. Food – good quality, nutritionally balanced food – is essential not just for life, but to help children grow and develop healthily. And yet there are millions of children for whom there is no guarantee of a regular, plentiful source of nourishment.

You may well be asking what effect five days of a relatively meagre diet will have on a very well-fed adult and how on earth this might have a meaningful impact on starving children all over the world.

Well, I now have a fraction more personal understanding of what it feels like to be too hungry to sleep.  And due to the generosity of friends and sponsors, a number of peers who have taken part in this event have raised a significant amount of money for various charities working at grassroots level, who really make a difference in providing assistance to some of the world’s most disadvantaged people. Our minor and short-lived hardship should have a profound impact on people living on very low incomes right across the globe.

The last five days have also made me realise – with a shock – how much food we actually consume, way over and above the amount we need to survive and be healthy.

Living Below the Line is still a new campaign in the UK and I hope that next year, even more people will take up the challenge and join in. The lasting effect could be that we all learn to eat less and be more pro-active in insisting on a more equitable distribution of food around the world.

32 comments for “Living Below the Line – an impact for everyone?

  1. Lord Blagger
    15/05/2012 at 10:37 am

    Soon to be forced on everyone in the UK, because government is going all Greek.

    All taxes, no services, means people won’t have money for food. Far from being a publicity stunt, its the plan.

    No doubt MPs and Peers will be exempted as key workers

    • maude elwes
      15/05/2012 at 1:02 pm

      @LB:

      Four hundred thousand trillion dollars of derivatives means something has to give and I think you have grasped the expectation rightly.

      Based on the too big to fail story. We are throwing petrol on the fire. As I wrote so long ago.

      And yes, there will be the key workers!

      • Lord Blagger
        15/05/2012 at 1:51 pm

        Look. If you and I have a bet on the result of a football match, it doesn’t affect the outcome.

        So derivatives are an irrelevance. It’s a zero sum game in terms of cash, but still beneficial to people who want to hedge risk etc.

        What isn’t beneficial is government debt. There is no fund to back that up, unlike derivatives which invariably are collateralized.

        So its shafting the people who have handed money over to the government who give them a fraction of what they would have received if they hadn’t been threatened, or youngsters who will be forced to pay, and get no services in return.

        So on the derivatives, you’re egging up your case by not netting them off. Double counting, inflating the present value, …, its old hat repeatedly trotted out, and its baloney.

        Government debt isn’t. It’s real.

        • maude elwes
          15/05/2012 at 2:23 pm

          @LB:

          Wrong:

          IOU £100 pounds so I am going to borrow one hundred pounds in case I can’t pay you back, is sterile thinking. And the scale and speed this travels the globe has made it impossible to return to solvency.

          IOU’s of any kind are wothless.

          There is no collaterol to back any of it up. There isn’t enough real estate in the globe to cover it.

          Which is why we are where we are.

          As you raise yourself, government debt is bad debt indeed, but, the deirivitive market realies on government to gurantee losses through the banks, when all else fails, as they did with Fanny Mae and Freddie Mac, so it is us they are expecting to be their guarantors.

          Goverment foolishly follows these markets, which are a con in and of themselves.

          This game is called three card monty, you will never turn up the queen because she isn’t there. .

    • Gareth Howell
      20/05/2012 at 2:56 pm

      means people won’t have money for food It would do many people a great deal of good, making them think about what is “fast” and what is not.

  2. MilesJSD
    15/05/2012 at 12:53 pm

    We have a need, and a Right, to know –

    what exactly is “the line”
    some are living below ?

    (One human being needs but one human living:
    so what is that one-human-living ?)

    • Lord Blagger
      15/05/2012 at 1:52 pm

      One human being needs but one human living:
      so what is that one-human-living ?)

      ===========

      I haven’t a clue apart from its Jargon for some idea you have.

  3. maude elwes
    15/05/2012 at 2:47 pm

    @LB:

    Here is a little assistance to help you understand the reality of derivatives. Listen carefully and file it under reality.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JHjNauA_rDI

    And here is more.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Tw57BS3uBcA

  4. Gareth Howell
    15/05/2012 at 6:36 pm

    Noble Baroness speaks wisdom. I recall she made the same fast last year.

    Water has to be the first thing. Without clean water the stomach can not even absorb good nutritional food, which it does get. It just goes through, a variety of diseases helping it far too rapidly on its way.

    The opposite is true of the fat, adipose first world economy people who eat so much that most of it ALSO goes through undigested, for quite the opposite reasons.

    Real household saving can be achieved by reducing that intake to the level where MOST of the food is used, but it does take a good deal of concentrating to achieve it.

    One good start is NO fast food at all, so that you can remember at the end of the day precisely what you have eaten, and know what you are going to PLAN to eat the next.It can be done.

    I suspect that noble baroness finds it difficult with all her official repsonsibilites to keep dietary balance at its best!

    I often mention my bro in Ky who was working with the Rotarians, but then was approached by a Ugandan woman who needed help with her village water supply.

    He provided the necessary parts himself and went fitted it too.

    http://www.owbky.com/uganda/howtohelp.htm

    They have got their clean water again, so they have got their nutrition too, om minimum
    rations.

    Now he is putting a tin roof on the village school. That is his contribution to trhe abolition of hunger and poverty in the world.

    No big deals. No false charity. No hunger lunches. A well pump part and a roof.

  5. Senex
    15/05/2012 at 8:12 pm

    On the subject of food, house member John Earl Montagu has been buttering his own bread for some time now. Whilst its unconfirmed, photo opportunities of him dressed in 16 century livery whilst buttering his bread can be arranged? See his agent for details. Sadly, the nearest he gets to a £1 sandwich is $1.99 (£1.24) at Disney Orlando Florida.

    Ref: Sandwich celebrates 250th anniversary of the sandwich
    http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-england-kent-18010424
    Earl of Sandwich Down Town Disney
    http://allears.net/menu/menu_eofs.htm

  6. MilesJSD
    16/05/2012 at 5:46 am

    ‘Lord’ Blagger “hasn’t a clue what ‘one-human-living*'” is;

    nor does he show where all the otherand higher income (‘livings’) lines are drawn, above which the more-affluent classes who ‘indulgently’ are putting-on this “Live Below The Line (for a month/week/day/hour)” freak-show
    ‘need’ to be paid for the main 11 months of their year and for the remaining career-decades of their respective Lifespans;

    nor does LB ‘see’ that mere Derivative-Speculators can and every day do falsely raise and lower ‘markets’-
    and thereby variously falsify the true value of both civilisations’ and the Earth’s Lifesupports
    and of our variously and plethorally-‘lined’ individual- and class-human-livings
    (how many ‘lines’ are how many people living ‘above’ ?)
    ——
    LB himself “derivatises” this serious democratic place (LOTB e-site) and this bottom-line Issue by fantasising
    that “one human living” is merely “jargon” for some mere “idea” smoke-ringed upwards by some unknown outsider (milesjsd);

    this despite the public knowledge that under Labour the Guaranteed Minimum Income (i.e. “a government-guaranteed decent living” enabling every legitimate UK resident to remain ‘healthy, citizenlike, and environmentally-supportive’)
    was £143 per week but now under the tory coalition has been dropped to £140.

    ——–
    * one human living(weekly-income)
    is distinct from one dog’s-dinner income (what the pet or the guarddog costs per week to keep it healthy, doglike, and environmentally-supportive).

    Understood now ?

    • Lord Blagger
      16/05/2012 at 10:15 am

      So why invent your own jargon when you could say, weekly income?

      Guaranteed Minimum Income – who pays? Can they afford to pay?

      It’s back to the state of government finances. The government has taken your money for your pension and spent it. It owes you a pension. However, that debt doesn’t appear on its books because it has no intention of paying it, because it can’t.

      So the end result is that your guaranteed income is shot to hell.

      As for derivatives.

      Do you want to bet on the Champions league final, or should we be banned from doing that because it will affect the result?

  7. MilesJSD
    16/05/2012 at 12:10 pm

    Even ‘though I would hasten to approve ‘more than one human living’ being ‘deserved’ by in-the-field individual and personal donors, of money-materials-and-labour direct to the needy-helpless, such as Gareth’s brother

    it would remain to be scrutinised what percentage of such a donor’s nett-income & assets is being donated to such needy-helpless
    and what percentage is being spent (including being ‘hoarded’) otherwise, upon ‘feathering the nest of’ and providing ‘luxuries’ to that donor or to his/her ‘Providers’ including of course to the various ‘nests’ and ‘luxuries’ of GOs and NGOs which (who) are failing to donate sufficient lifesupports direct to such needy-helpless?

    but most importantly, what percentage of that lone-donor’s other income is in effect not being constructively-consumed, but is going into the further destruction of non-renewable-, and the extinction of bio-renewable-, resources; or is otherwise being effectively ‘wasted’, ‘hoarded’, or ‘submerged-under-inflationary-derivatives-market-forces’ ?
    ——-
    Surely we need to be working through, on our Democratic & Humanitarian Method III Round Tables, not just all of the facts, factors, and notional-solutions,
    but in the face of and resolutely through all of the instantly-irrepressible emotions* and the many ‘deal-killing-risk-factors’.

    And you (a leader) have to start by yourself transparently setting your own lifestyle budgeting ‘exemplarily’
    i.e. such that your many prospective-followers can ‘instantly’ see how they could each make their £140 per week become a sufficient lifesupport for one healthy, citizenlike, and environmentally-supportive human-being
    especially if you our ‘leader’ can permanently-publicly-demonstrate how you budget your £140 pw such as to leave £1 pw over as your ‘savings’.
    ————-
    * “Edward de Bono’s Thinking Course”.

  8. Twm O'r Nant
    17/05/2012 at 4:48 pm

    Look. If you and I have a bet on the result of a football match, it doesn’t affect the outcome.

    So derivatives are an irrelevance.

    Unless the game continues permanently 24/7.

    Blagger is trying to spot the ball while all the banks are changing market value of the football players with only 10% of the money,

    Only the Commission men are risk free.
    All they do is take commission.
    The market is machine driven.

  9. Gareth Howell
    20/05/2012 at 8:23 am

    A certain Jill Treanor resolved the Greek problems decisively in the guardian on about Thursday. Reissue the Drachma at 50% below the current euro price, then they would know what they have got to do. TIGHTEN their belts!

    I do say that it would be like getting to know a smelly old friend again, the Drachma! Yuk!

    Greek Property prices would thus instantly be 50% lower against other European property prices, and properly valued once more.

  10. MilesJSD
    20/05/2012 at 12:53 pm

    We most certainly and urgently need at least such a notional sustainworthy-model for our survival and thrival as
    “One human being gets One human lifesupport* (and no more**)”.

    * ‘One human lifesupport’ would include any manner of life-support:
    assets and environmental-supports, as well as monetary and in-kind income;
    but should also include
    ** fairly-rationed and allocated ‘morale- or lifespirit- maintainers’,
    and possibly a small measure of ‘luxuries’.

    Plenty of jobs, and of sustainworthy-lifestyles would quickly result:
    but none of them would be able to continue overpaid nor unfit-for-the-real-longterm-Purpose***.

    *** NB please: Our human-race’s greater longterm Purpose still needs to be multilaterally decided and educatively published.
    ============
    On the contrary, Lord Blagger ragingly-rebels rather than respectfully-reasons.

    Both his instances are flawed.
    (i) The ‘life-survival-itself-bottom line’ is neither
    that the “The People’s Wealth and Pension is being ongoingly embezzled by the British Constitution and Governments” (although that is partly true, other major Mal-feasance causes underlie including Mal-economics, Mal-education, and Mal-lifestyling: )

    nor
    (‘since’)
    (ii) “the Sports Championship contest result can not be manipulated, in proportion to the quantity of ante-post bets laid”
    (‘therefore neither can’)
    “the greater and more essential Lifesupports Markets (such as Foreign Exchange, Foods Markets, and so-called “Energy” and “Strategic- Commodities” Markets)
    be falsely manipulated
    namely by unreal, underregulated and often hugely inflationary derivative strategies, and spur-of-the-moment ‘spreadbets'”.

    Neither argument (i) nor argument (ii) is validly true to the reasoning-mind, nor is either fundamentally-factual to the Earthlife-experiential body.
    ================

    The real-life and future-human-race-survival-&-thrival ‘bottom-line’ is
    1) Earth’s-Lifesupports [both the Renewable and the Non-Rednewable] need to be Unitedly- Strategically
    a) preserved
    b) conserved
    c) rationed.
    ============
    2), 3), 4) and 5) have been written and could be submitted in much less than 250 words
    ====================

    • Lord Blagger
      21/05/2012 at 9:45 am

      Ah yes. The lets steal from other people so we don’t have to work economy.

      The lets give all the assets to the fraudsters who caused the mess to manage. They won’t do it again will they? In your dreams.

      Then when it comes to rationing. No doubt as key workers, MPs and Peers will be exempt from rationing. Some are more equal than others, aren’t they?

      The People’s Wealth and Pension is being ongoingly embezzled by the British Constitution and Governments

      It’s not People’s wealth. It’s individual’s wealth. The result of their hard work. It’s all been embezzled. It’s been stolen. The problem is that your solution is more theft, controlled by the same thieves that nicked the cash in the first place.

  11. Gar Howell
    21/05/2012 at 9:54 am

    Maude, Blagger suggests that each one of us owes £230,000 presumably the national debt divided by 60million or some such figure.

    With the Greek debt they all think that they are “worth” this sum or that sum, depending on their critical evaluation of their property.

    If they all divided everything they have got in half then they may be nearer to a proper appraisal of their own worth. If they opted out of the Euro and went back to the Drachma that might well happen overnight.

    In a certain sense it happens regardless.
    A ham sandwich in Cornwall costs a good deal less than it does in the West end of London.

    If the sun shines, the price goes up; plenty of visitors. That is called revaluation, but you do not have to invent a new or re create an old currency to do it.

    The one thing that would cause a drastic devaluation in the price of ham sandwiches in Cornwall is civil unrest prompted by the Cornish nationalists (probably using pasties for projectiles a la Baroness Deech).

    If that happened in Greece then chaos would ensue.

    The far left socialists are likely to get in to power at the Greek election, and they do tend to enjoy a bit of organised chaos. A lot depends on the qualities of character of the
    socialist leader. I shall do a little research.

    • Lord Blagger
      22/05/2012 at 1:22 pm

      Government debt, include the stuff hidden off the books by ignoring the rules of accountancy.

      Then the number of taxpayers.

      Divide one by the other, and you get a pro rata share.

      Drives home the extent of government fiscal fraud.

      If the sun shines, the price goes up; plenty of visitors. That is called revaluation, but you do not have to invent a new or re create an old currency to do it.

      No, that is just supply and demand.

      What’s going to happen in the UK is that the government is going to take more, and more, and more. Not for services. Just to pay its debts. And what you can guarantee is the debts owed to the favoured in the club will be paid, and the debts owed to the unfavoured will be defaulted on.

      You need to work out if you are a favourite or not, because with median wage at 26K, and average debt at 230K, the debts aren’t going to be paid.

    • maude elwes
      22/05/2012 at 1:32 pm

      @Gar Howell:

      I don’t know if Blagger’s figures are accurate, he gets them from various sources which we all know, plug whatever it is they want to push. But, whatever the sum he suggest may be,whether right or wrong, it’s seriously heavy and we are bending under it.

      However, the sooner Greece decides to do the usual Capitalist move, which is to default and declare bankruptcy, then be forgiven, the quicker we will be in a position to get a hold on the situation.

      I do think the dual currency is a good way to think. Something like the European Barter Unit I suggested in another post. The trick is to have the second currency blocked from trading in banking practices of any kind. Can’t be used for any form of credit. And not used to secure any credit.

      And as far as sandwiches not costing in Cornwall what they do in central London, have you been to Rock? The price of the food there in local outlets of Cornwall would take your head off. It’s a lot cheaper in the Kings Road than it is there at present.

      That aside, its the over inflated property prices in central London you should worry about. They have trebled in three years. This weeks magazine shows them selling middle of the road properties for £10m +. Another property boom which is always the forerunner to a bust.

      In the meantime:

      http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0HTkEBIoxBA

      • Lord Blagger
        22/05/2012 at 2:55 pm

        However, the sooner Greece decides to do the usual Capitalist move, which is to default and declare bankruptcy, then be forgiven, the quicker we will be in a position to get a hold on the situation.

        =============

        The problem is that the consequences of default aren’t being discussed. The BBC seems to think that a default only affects Greece.

        It doesn’t. It takes out the ECB who have lent their entire capital to Greece. They are then bankrupted too.

        Since lots of banks have borrowed from the ECB to loan on, the ECB may well decide, we have to have our cash back.

        Lots of other banks have deposited things with the ECB. If they go, the banks go to.

        Remember, who would you rather lend to in a couple of years? Greece post bankruptcy, or Italy pre bankruptcy?

  12. MilesJSD
    22/05/2012 at 9:40 am

    There’s no such reality as Blagger’s “individual’s wealth”

    no individual is ‘worth’ even a penny;
    because it took many other individuals, plus both ‘free’ and ‘sacred’ commodities (wild-vegetables, and gold-nuggets; wines, and rock-locked metals; plus God & All Holy Books) to create, produce, and make not only whatsoever Blagger’s-individual ‘possesses’ but that individual him-her-self
    (and of course Blagger himself, and his ‘title’
    which oft one must seriously wonder if he is truly ‘earning’)!
    —–
    Consider also, since Blagger’s ‘individual’s-wealth’ is specified to be the result not of
    ordinary and wages-worthy ‘work’
    but of ‘hard work’
    which by taking Blagger’s own contextuality one has to correlate with
    ‘ill-gotten gains (and definiens-wise very possibly ‘hector’ & ‘lecture’-based) profiteering’
    = ‘hardhanded-theft’)
    whether not only Lord Blagger but the authoring peer Lord Soley have given enough Clear information, Charitable-recognition of Others’ good-intentioned submissions, and Self-correction leeway;
    in short how good have been their respective (and interdependent) communications, and how honest have been their argumentations ?
    ——
    Blagger, you should have focused upon your opening sentence and clarified how we may (all) best “work economy”
    (work-the-economy ? or work economically ?) but how do you define your “work” and your “economy”

    shouldn’t it be majorly formulated upon the common and ‘life-law’ need to “eke-out” both resources and human-efforts ?
    ———
    Think again about “my solution”
    which is very much pro a new and sustainworthily-egalitarian “Cooperative Economics (Eke-onomics) and Non-Inflationary Financialism”

    and is very much against
    Individual Hoard-onomics & Inflationary-Derivativistic Capitalism
    which latter alas! too many, and you (two) too, are evidently blindly* trapped in
    ——
    * A wider mind-functional insight can be gleaned from Libbey’s the “Eight Deadlier Sins”, listed in The Litany within the English Book of Common Prayer, the first of which goes “From blindness-of-heart…(good Lord deliver us)”.

    • Lord Blagger
      22/05/2012 at 2:51 pm

      I still don’t get your jargon.

      Let me ask the questions again.

      Whose money do you want to take for your ‘onelifesupport’?

      How much are you going to take?

      How much force are you going to use to take the money off the people who earned it to give to the people who haven’t earned it?

      • MilesJSD
        22/05/2012 at 11:48 pm

        The posting-peer Baroness D’Souza still doesn’t appear to ‘get it’
        and neither do you ‘Lord’ Blagger;
        you still do not attempt to find the sense and good-intention in what you out-of-hand, and summarily-blindly, dismiss as fantasised “Jargon”,
        do you ?

        You have unawarely become stuck, in the same sort of insidious ‘one-eyed rut’ that Mao Zedung and his various and multifarious favourites were blind-as-bats in.
        They had to be publicly set aside, outside of the saner Deng’s more circumspect, constructive, humanitarian, inter-nationally-attuned, and cogently peaceful-revolution,
        with its pragmatic horse-before-cart field-teams recording all the Facts first,
        so that the planning-rooms thereafter would be “win-win-win-win-win-win-win” oriented to meet every real need, and to do so affordably*.

        * What Deng missed, but we (you all) must not, is the further strategic essential of making these Peacefully-Revolutionary Plans not simply ‘sustainable’ but ‘longest-term-sustainworthy’ too.
        China’s run-away coal-fired power-stations, and other polluters, are in truth not only not sustainworthy but are not going to be long-term sustain-able either; so he (‘China’) will have inadvertenrtly made the same mistake as Mao’s “we have a Billion People, we can afford to lose One-million of them to enemy Nuclear Bombs and still win the war”.
        ===============

    • MilesJSD
      23/05/2012 at 11:54 am

      Sorry about my double-posting
      the first at 0940 mistakenly mentioned Lord Soley as being the posting peer

      so at 0952 I re-submitted, ‘verbatim’ except for entering the correct posting-peer, Baroness D’Souza.

      PS That is the only ‘self-correction’ I see to be necessary.

      Thank you.

  13. MilesJSD
    22/05/2012 at 9:52 am

    There’s no such reality as Blagger’s “individual’s wealth”

    no individual is ‘worth’ even a penny;
    because it took many other individuals, plus both ‘free’ and ‘sacred’ commodities (wild-vegetables, and gold-nuggets; wines, and rock-locked metals; plus God & All Holy Books) to create, produce, and make not only whatsoever Blagger’s-individual ‘possesses’ but that individual him-her-self
    (and of course Blagger himself, and his ‘title’
    which oft one must seriously wonder if he is truly ‘earning’)!
    —–
    Consider also, since Blagger’s ‘individual’s-wealth’ is specified to be the result not of
    ordinary and wages-worthy ‘work’
    but of ‘hard work’
    which by taking Blagger’s own contextuality one has to correlate with
    ‘ill-gotten gains (and definiens-wise very possibly ‘hector’ & ‘lecture’-based) profiteering’
    = ‘hardhanded-theft’)
    whether not only Lord Blagger but the authoring peer Baroness D’Souza have given enough Clear information, Charitable-recognition of Others’ good-intentioned submissions, and Self-correction leeway;
    in short how good have been their respective (and interdependent) communications, and how honest have been their argumentations ?
    ——
    Blagger, you should have focused upon your opening sentence and clarified how we may (all) best “work economy”
    (work-the-economy ? or work economically ?) but how do you define your “work” and your “economy”

    shouldn’t it be majorly formulated upon the common and ‘life-law’ need to “eke-out” both resources and human-efforts ?
    ———
    Think again about “my solution”
    which is very much pro a new and sustainworthily-egalitarian “Cooperative Economics (Eke-onomics) and Non-Inflationary Financialism”

    and is very much against
    Individual Hoard-onomics & Inflationary-Derivativistic Capitalism
    which latter alas! too many, and you (two) too, are evidently blindly* trapped in
    ——
    * A wider mind-functional insight can be gleaned from Libbey’s the “Eight Deadlier Sins”, listed in The Litany within the English Book of Common Prayer, the first of which goes “From blindness-of-heart…(good Lord deliver us)”.

  14. 24/05/2012 at 9:42 am

    Random!

    This post has inspired so many responses that touch on the main topic but go so far beyond it as to risk losing the point. The real point being how do we provide properly for those in our society? The bin man has as much worth as the surgeon, but has his work the same value – unlikely. And moreover why would the surgeon bother to spend all the time training if he is to get no more than the bin man, a job he might have done all that time with less effort? Yet, the bin man must have a meaningful living wage, which includes an open future for himself and his children.

    Do we ‘free’ the market to feed the rich and strangle the poor, or do we strangle the market and reward the lazy?

    Are those who say the free markets should rule entirely right? It would certainly make it easier to find domestic servants, but not necessarily easier to be one.

    I make the following comments on other posts:

    Lord Blagger:

    “Look. If you and I have a bet on the result of a football match, it doesn’t affect the outcome.

    So derivatives are an irrelevance. It’s a zero sum game in terms of cash, but still beneficial to people who want to hedge risk etc.”

    Certainly, there will always be those who can make money no matter what happens, or because of it. Pedophiles have been known to ‘benefit’ from working with children abroad for charities in underprivileged countries. Is your comment an unqualified recommendation?

    “What isn’t beneficial is government debt. There is no fund to back that up, unlike derivatives which invariably are collateralized.”
    Even if the ‘collateral’ is hopelessly inadequately?

    maude elwes:

    “IOU’s of any kind are wothless.”
    Mmm… careful with that, what would removing all credit from the economy really mean?
    Milesjsd:
    “‘Lord’ Blagger “hasn’t a clue what ‘one-human-living*’” is;
    nor does he show where all the otherand higher income (‘livings’) lines are drawn, above which the more-affluent classes who ‘indulgently’ are putting-on this “Live Below The Line (for a month/week/day/hour)” freak-show
    ‘need’ to be paid for the main 11 months of their year and for the remaining career-decades of their respective Lifespans;”
    This is a very dangerous idea, that all people should be paid what every person needs, or in utopia what that person ‘needs’, for one thing this kind of system can only be imposed by force by central government, which as we know is incapable of assessing and meeting the needs of each individual, so the utopian state will not be achieved by this route, and to attempt to force everyone onto the same income will fail to reward the efficient and hard working. A system of this kind was imposed under the communist regimes under the power of the USSR, even there they recognized the need to pay doctors more than binmen. But the lack of any possible improvement through innovation or hard work benefited only the lazy and criminally minded. This kind of system will pay all taxi drivers the same no matter how long they work, so why work past clock-off time, and pick up that extra passenger desperate to get a child home? Nor does it reward the innovator who creates something really special that everyone wants to be part of, for example a popular club, rather it has to limit the club’s popularity if his income is ostensibly derived from door sales, by limiting the number of customers allowed in, and/or taking all the ‘excess’ proceeds. It encourages a ‘why bother’ mentality, and results in the only people being rewarded being those who are spying and reporting on their neighbours – an enormous and extremely efficient internal security system is also a must.

    Gareth Howell:

    Re the Drachma;
    Agreed. The idea of monetary union without fiscal union is madness, and a number of newer and economically weaker members, such as the Czech Republic, recognized and avoided the pitfalls by joining the EU without joining the euro. Returning to the Drachma would not necessarily be a bad move for Greece. All that money to be made on foreign exchange.

    Milsjsd:

    “(‘since’)

    (ii) “the Sports Championship contest result can not be manipulated, in proportion to the quantity of ante-post bets laid”
    Were you not paying attention to the recent fuss about fixing cricket matches?

    Also:

    “From blindness-of-heart…(good Lord deliver us)”
    Woodhouse’s manual for Lent says more simply: ‘From blindness of heart, Good Lord, deliver us.’ And places this within the comments upon the conscience, which necessarily involves free will? Let not good sense depart from us also.

    Baroness D’Souza is right. We each need to take stock of what we do, what we consume, and as a society we must come to a responsible compromise which allows everyone to live with dignity, but which also rewards industry and innovation.

    • Lord Blagger
      24/05/2012 at 1:06 pm

      Agreed. The idea of monetary union without fiscal union is madness, and a number of newer and economically weaker members, such as the Czech Republic, recognized and avoided the pitfalls by joining the EU without joining the euro. Returning to the Drachma would not necessarily be a bad move for Greece. All that money to be made on foreign exchange.

      ============

      And the consequences.

      1. Try and tax the profits. Money won’t come back to Greece, and they won’t have the cash to rebuild. A peasant economy results.

      2. An amnesty. End result rampant inflation as the money comes back.

      What the Greeks should do is default 100%. Then they carry on using the Euro. Government can’t run a deficit. They might be a slightly more attractive prospect than the other PIIS countries since they have no debts.

      Then set themselves up as a low corporate tax regime within Europe. 5% of a lot is better than 50% of nowt.

  15. Lord Blagger
    24/05/2012 at 1:03 pm

    Even if the ‘collateral’ is hopelessly inadequately?

    ===========

    Is it? Provide some evidence.

    I’ll give you one area, and its not derivatives, where there is a major problem. It’s anything where the collateral is government debt, because ‘government debt’ is ‘risk free’. Now no one would invest in government debt unless forced too. Who for example would freely by 100 year gilts? No one. So why is the government going to issue them? Very simple, its going to force people to buy them. People who can ill afford too.

    So annuitants, banks and insurance companies are targeted. That’s right. They are going to force pensioners to buy a piss poor product and make them fund their spending. And when they go bust, the pensioners will be destitute. It’s the plan.

    We each need to take stock of what we do, what we consume, and as a society we must come to a responsible compromise which allows everyone to live with dignity, but which also rewards industry and innovation.

    Forget the we. That is just a weazle word that justifies stealing money from one group to spend on yourself. The 2,700 each Lord spends a day on their ‘services’ is stolen cash. Extorted with threats of violence. The problem is that there isn’t enough cash. You’re assuming that if you redistrubute all will be hunkey dorey. Think again. Its the basic fraud of government to run a Ponzi, and now the Ponzi is over.

    What’s the connection between derivatives and paedophiles? What’s your causal link to tie them together. I haven’t heard such a bogus argument in a long time.

  16. maude elwes
    24/05/2012 at 2:52 pm

    @Jana:

    Reply to debt being worthless.

    It is definitely worthless when it cannot be repaid and when there is no collateral to back it up. And we are being told this is where we are at, as a bunch of thieves stole our public purse and made off with the booty.

    Concentration of wealth based on credit does not work in the situation we have and more than that, it created the mess we have.

    People on the lower end of the money tree in our society are denied aspiration and live life in an unending debt cycle, which is soul destroying and akin to the workhouse of the Victorian era.

    Credit is a con to concentrate wealth on those who already have it. Which is why the 1% of the population at the top are contemplating a life style beyond the realms of acceptable to those who are funding it from the bottom. And it doesn’t matter how you examine those figures or draw on the line of bin man to doctorate, that is what is happening to them all. The middle classes are losing their financial foothold in the same way the poorest, who once had welfare to rely on, are. IDS is making sure those who are ‘lazy,’ as you put it, are going to have to scavenge in bins, as no jobs are on offer, and our society will sink in comparison to those countries so many fled to get away from and came here as immigrants.

    You could, of course, think about the Emperor Hadrian and how he dealt with the same problem. Debt forgiveness or cancellation. That is a Capitalist answer after all.

    http://www.spartacus.schoolnet.co.uk/ROMhadrian.htm

    I really am not totally keen on the Swedish model, but, they have not seen the kind of misery we have here in the UK. Their problem is man hating and political correctness in the extreme, which stifles their creativity and sense of freedom. However, for debate it can be offered as an example.

    So, a couple of clips on the capitalist way of unloading debt, which could be applied to countries and the Swedish dream is yours for the click.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3oPi2yR0RwQ

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tDAQWJbEl9U

    Yours was a good post though.

  17. MilesJSD
    30/05/2012 at 9:41 am

    (1) “Worthless debt”, “cannot be repaid”, “debt cancellation”;

    The destructive and extinctional over-consumption of the Earth Itself’s Essential Lifesupports*
    cannot be reversed, repaid, restored. replaced

    so that is very far from being a “worthless” matter
    to be either “forgiven/cancelled”
    or dismissed as being above or below our “pay-grade”.

    Both efficient consumption
    and malfeasant or criminal wastage
    have to be made (not misrepresented as already being)
    sustain-worthy**

    * Lifesupports = all levels, from the
    (1) Ionosphere, Climates, Oxygenated-Air, Clean-Drinking-Water,
    (2) Trees, Vegetation, ‘Fertile’ soils and Micorrhiza
    (3) Ecosystems
    down through and into Civilisational Hands and technological tools/weapons/chemicals/drugs/toxins.

    ** Purposes, strategies, tactics, policies, manifestos, constitutions, laws, rules, objects-of-association
    that are not sustain-worthy
    (responsible morally and spiritually as well as ‘mindfully’ or ‘mind-functionally’)
    can not for long be sustainable (mathematically-accountable under ‘Economics’
    nor I might guess under more Thrival-Survival balanced and balancing ‘Ecoeconomics’) .

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