This morning I got up and it was still dark, at 6:20 it was still dark, and the Johnny Cash song "Dark As The Dungeon" came to mind, and I thought of the chorus:
"And it's dark as a dungeon and damp as the dew,
Where danger is double and pleasures are few,
Where the rain never falls and the sun never shines
And it's dark as a dungeon way down in the mines."
And while the analogy of mining is there, this is a perfect analogy for the state of the low paid, unemployed, sick and disabled in most western societies. In the sixties and seventies people could aspire to buy their own own house , now with the destruction of social housing by the introduction of the "right to buy" program , that is now beyond the reach of most people.
People with what are considered reasonable jobs struggle to make ends meet and are constantly spending time filing in forms in order to get help. When I was last unemployed, I was instructed to spend seven and a half hours a day looking for a job. How soul destroying, I didn't do that but did volunteer work and some work with a start up company, but not everyone can do the latter, especially if there a bills to pay and mouths to feed.
The proliferation of food banks and charities like Help For Heroes disgusts me, not because I don't think that these charities do great work but because governments allow companies to pay starvation wages, cut back benefits, send people to war to protect financial interests (anywhere with oil needs democracy) and then when they come back from war the government wash their hands and leave it to charities like Help For Heroes to look after them.
Corporation tax is much lower than income tax I believe , "entrepreneurs" like Richard Branson make money off government handouts via tax breaks and the like.
The Basic Income concept is an excellent concept. Everyone would have it, people who work would have significantly more. If the people at the bottom end of the income scale hade disposable income, the economy would have a huge boost. It doesn't matter that they spend money on beer, cigarettes , Sky TV, Crisps and chocolate, that would boost all those markets who would then have to employ more people to cope with the demand. A lot of people would go out for mor meals , the cinema , have more holidays.
Instead governments expect them to work for nothing, (their benefits if they are lucky) and spend time filling in countless forms, waiting for someone to look and decide whether they are a deserving case.
Right that's today's thoughts out of the way.