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I See Social Discontent

AGBF

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While Dancing Fire has started a thread about 401K plans, I thought I should start one on what I see as relevant. I think perhaps the topic should be rioting, because I see social discontent. The stock market plummeted today. S&P downgraded the United States, perhaps unfairly, stating that their debt was less trustworthy than it had been. The stock market took that as bad news and plunged. People bought gold and US treasury bonds, thereby showing their faith in the ability of the US government to repay its debt. But I digress.

London has been beset by riots for three nights now and rioting has also spread to Birmingham, England. Great Britain has cut back on many of its social programs just as the United States is cutting back on many of its social programs (and education and road building and libraries and government work needed for everyday purposes and state parks and everything else).There's nothing like a few months of riots (I remember Watts in the 1960's) to make a country decide that it can actually afford a few social problems like giving breakfast cereal to poor toddlers. It starts to seem that it might be a better sop to feed the poor than to have to rebuild all its cities from the ground up.

Then there are the elections in Wisconsin tomorrow when we get to see whether we have a state governed by working middle class people or a ruling oligarchy. I do care, but not as much as I once did. If Governor Walker wins this round, we'll have riots and burning in the cities of Wisconsin shortly.

That's just my take on the current world's state of affairs. I thought I'd throw that out as a counterweight to Dancing Fire's Weltanshauung.

Deb/AGBF
:read:
 

Regular Guy

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Deb,

You frankly add another dimension to my awareness, which is good.

I had been both aware of the stock market, and also, the situation of starvation in Africa:

http://www.cbsnews.com/stories/2011/08/08/eveningnews/main20089767.shtml

And so, now you mention a third set of problems that I further have neither insight nor positve awareness of how I might help in any way.

Challenging times.

Ira Z.
 

AGBF

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Regular Guy|1312862894|2986970 said:
I had been both aware of the stock market, and also, the situation of starvation in Africa:

Thank you, Ira. A little thing like mass starvation on another continent slipped between the lines of my posting. Although I saw a harrowing photo on the front page of, "The New York Times" a day or two ago...of a young boy in Somalia starving to death. His abdomen was blown up and looked like one on a pregnant woman or a huge insect while his limbs were like twigs. War was keeping supplies out of the area where he was trapped. Thank you for mentioning that problem. No one has solved the genocide in Somalia yet.

Deb
 

Kaleigh

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The devastation in Somalia is on my mind first and foremost. Going to bed, I think of those babies not having any food, and their mom making the long treck to seek help... That's what really needs attention.. ::)
 

AGBF

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Kaleigh|1312864127|2986985 said:
The devastation in Somalia is on my mind first and foremost. Going to bed, I think of those babies not having any food, and their mom making the long treck to seek help...
I can understand that Somalia would be the first social problem on your mind, Lisa, especially knowing you as I do. You have a loving, tender heart and would never want to see the helpless suffer: babies, old people, or sweet animals!

Luckily, as a society we do not have to choose only one social cause to reform. We can continue to try to stop the genocide in Somalia and still realize that we are about to watch battles like those between the workers who first dared to try to start unions and the owners of the company towns where they lived and worked back at the start of the twentieth century. It necessary to choose one just cause or another. We don't have to pick just one ideal for which to stand up. So I'm stickin to the union*. (That's the name of a song.)

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9AGQgk4fFR4&playnext=1&list=PL0699752D7D1F7C10

Deb
:read:
 

Dancing Fire

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AGBF|1312861253|2986955 said:
London has been beset by riots for three nights now and rioting has also spread to Birmingham, England. Great Britain has cut back on many of its social programs just as the United States is cutting back on many of its social programs (and education and road building and libraries and government work needed for everyday purposes and state parks and everything else).There's nothing like a few months of riots (I remember Watts in the 1960's) to make a country decide that it can actually afford a few social problems like giving breakfast cereal to poor toddlers. It starts to seem that it might be a better sop to feed the poor than to have to rebuild all its cities from the ground up.

Then there are the elections in Wisconsin tomorrow when we get to see whether we have a state governed by working middle class people or a ruling oligarchy. I do care, but not as much as I once did. If Governor Walker wins this round, we'll have riots and burning in the cities of Wisconsin shortly.

That's just my take on the current world's state of affairs. I thought I'd throw that out as a counterweight to Dancing Fire's Weltanshauung.

Deb/AGBF
:read:
Deb
that's the problem with too many social programs "entitlements" it keeps the recipients in poverty forever.haven't we learnt anything in the past 2.5 yrs that big government will not work?.. :confused: we have thrown trillions of dollars (money we borrowed) into our economy and it did nothing but get our country into bigger debt.

let me tell you a story...

back in the late 60''s our family would have qualified for government assistance w/o any problem,but we were too ashamed to go on welfare, so my older brother (19 yrs old) got a job working in a resturant for something like $170 a month to support us a family of four. i remember rent was $70 per month,so we had $100 left for everything else,but nowadays these people whom are on social programs feel like the government owe them money every month.
 

Arkteia

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Really, no government can or could resolve the problem it in 2.5 years because it has been a long road towards what we are having now. I can not blame one government for creating a problem, nor can I blame another one for not resolving it in 2.5 years. In Europe, there are many governments and states' minds, some brilliant, some not so smart, but all together, they can not resolve the European situation. Things are getting only worse.
AGBF, every day I see many young, hopeless, angry young men. They are trying to find a job, applying everywhere, there are no jobs. They are not happy or proud of receiving state aid, they are saying that they are hopeless because getting a job has become more difficult than two years ago. I hope that one day we shall not get this critical angry mass...
 

Dancing Fire

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crasru|1312872440|2987050 said:
Really, no government can or could resolve the problem it in 2.5 years because it has been a long road towards what we are having now. I can not blame one government for creating a problem, nor can I blame another one for not resolving it in 2.5 years. In Europe, there are many governments and states' minds, some brilliant, some not so smart, but all together, they can not resolve the European situation. Things are getting only worse.
AGBF, every day I see many young, hopeless, angry young men. They are trying to find a job, applying everywhere, there are no jobs. They are not happy or proud of receiving state aid, they are saying that they are hopeless because getting a job has become more difficult than two years ago. I hope that one day we shall not get this critical angry mass...
that just it.. the government should get out of the way and let the private sector do its hiring w/o so many restrictions.
 

Pandora II

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The rioting in London has NOTHING to do with social problems or government cuts. It is pure greed and mindless thuggery, these people have only one interest: looting.

There are plenty of jobs - heck half a million Eastern Europeans walked into them. We just have a lazy, feckless underclass with a sense of entitlement due to generational lifetimes of free housing, free education, free healthcare and generous state handouts that enable them to sit on their backsides and whinge about how life is so unfair and how there are no opportunities rather than actually look into the endless help there is.

I was a politician in London until 2010 and I can tell you that the vast majority of cuts have no impact on these scum. The activities and organisations that are there to help young people stay occupied are VAST - and FREE.

Frankly I hope they really, really pay for what they are doing. Setting fire to small businesses and houses in their own communities. :angryfire:
 

maplefemme

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The riot in London started because police shot an alleged cocaine dealer and his family is upset.
The UK is in shambles, you can't just let EVERYONE in, the immigration policies are a joke.
As for social problems, the UK is fraught with them. You have masked extremist Muslims protesting in London's Hyde Park, waving banners that say "9-11 was just the begining, the EU is next". They had street parades in Glasgow "celebrating" the anniversary of 9-11 attacks. It's tantamount to terrorism and the Government does NOTHING.
The UK has become so PC.
I miss the days of Churchill, of Thatcher... I do not agree with all that they did, but they were LEADERS, they stood for something, they stood for England and made no apologies for it.
 

AGBF

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Dancing Fire|1312870265|2987038 said:
that's the problem with too many social programs "entitlements" it keeps the recipients in poverty forever.

Well, that simply wasn't the case between 1933 and 1945 when FDR, a liberal Democrat, took over from Herbert Hoover, a conservative Republican, and refused to be bullied by the Republican bankers. He spent plenty of government money hiring the poor to do jobs for the government that no one thought there was any money for, and he got the economy working again. And you can tell me World War II did it, but I know better. Our country is waging at least two very expensive wars now and our economy is not booming!


Dancing Fire|1312870265|2987038 said:
Dancing Fire|1312870265|2987038 said:
haven't we learnt anything in the past 2.5 yrs that big government will not work?..
People learned all the wrong lessons as usual. Big government is spending big money on many things, but never on the poor in the United States. The elderly are not getting whopping big cost of living increases on their social security checks every months. The soldiers who come home from the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan are not getting great treatment at the VA hospitals. Their mental health needs-more soldiers are suicidal than ever have been before and less treatment is available to them-are being woefully neglected when they come home. Unemployment is soaring, but money has not been put into creating jobs. So why do we have a huge debt? Do you really believe it is because the Democrats spent too much on children's school books?

FDR knew what to do. He brought in big government. I say bring me an FDR. George Bush was the worst, far worse than Herbert Hoover, but Obama is no FDR. Obama was never my choice and he can't cut it. We need someone who can stand up to the Republican bankers and Obama can't do it. We need another FDR.

Deb/AGBF
:read:
 

ksinger

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Dancing Fire|1312873360|2987053 said:
crasru|1312872440|2987050 said:
Really, no government can or could resolve the problem it in 2.5 years because it has been a long road towards what we are having now. I can not blame one government for creating a problem, nor can I blame another one for not resolving it in 2.5 years. In Europe, there are many governments and states' minds, some brilliant, some not so smart, but all together, they can not resolve the European situation. Things are getting only worse.
AGBF, every day I see many young, hopeless, angry young men. They are trying to find a job, applying everywhere, there are no jobs. They are not happy or proud of receiving state aid, they are saying that they are hopeless because getting a job has become more difficult than two years ago. I hope that one day we shall not get this critical angry mass...
that just it.. the government should get out of the way and let the private sector do its hiring w/o so many restrictions.
Well here's a newsflash DF, the private sector IS hiring without restriction. All those large companies that supposedly create jobs out of their vast concern for the future and well-being of THEIR country, are hiring OFFSHORE. And they are doing that because 1)capital chases the higher return on its investments and the US is a mature economy (the constant growth model we've been addicted to is DEAD) and this is shape of how capital acts in a mature economy, 2) DEMAND IN THE US HAS COLLAPSED. Right now supply side economic mantras ain't working very well. If everyone is too unemployed or scared of being unemployed, no one is going to buy your widgets (the few that we still actually MAKE) and the old "make it and they will come" litany falls flat on its face, and finally 3)they don't give a rat's ass about the state of their own country, they only care about the bottom line, and if that is better served in China, so be it.

Depending on essentially amoral corporations to save us is folly of the first ilk.
 

AmeliaG

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Dancing Fire|1312873360|2987053 said:
that just it.. the government should get out of the way and let the private sector do its hiring w/o so many restrictions.
I don't think the government can totally get out of the economy since I can't see it giving up its role to print the currency, manage the money supply, and set the Federal Reserve Rate. These have a huge impact on business.

When I worked with an overseas acquisition group in my company, it was interesting to see the criteria they had for investing in a developing country. The stability index they created was like the Bible for them; they saw the biggest risk of investing in a developing country is its tendency towards instability. So they had minimum requirements for infrastructure, technology, social services, government involvement in the economy and society because these elements had been proven to act as mitigating factors against the inherent instability of a developing country. Countries with totally laissez-faire governments were considered way too risky for our company's acquisition group to put our stockholders' hard earned money into.
 

AGBF

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AmeliaG|1312891409|2987091 said:
Dancing Fire|1312873360|2987053 said:
that just it.. the government should get out of the way and let the private sector do its hiring w/o so many restrictions.
I don't think the government can totally get out of the economy ....

When I worked with an overseas acquisition group in my company, it was interesting to see the criteria they had for investing in a developing country.
...
Countries with totally laissez-faire governments were considered way too risky for our company's acquisition group to put our stockholders' hard earned money into.
So true. I had the advantage of being married to someone who worked both for Standard and Poors and in the international credit department of a bank analyzing the risk of the bank. Standard and Poors had a section designed simply to study what it called, "sovereign risk" (probably the area that downgraded the United States a couple of days ago). It didn't analyze individual banks, but the entire political, economic, and social landscape of a country. If Bosnia and Herzogovina were about to go to war with Austria in 1914, none of them would have gotten a triple A rating, even if their banks were in tip top shape.

Deb/AGBF
:read:
 

Madam Bijoux

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I am all for social programs. Of course there will always be people who abuse them, but if just one child gets an education, gets out of poverty and has a good life because of a social program, it is worthwhile.
Charles Dickens wrote this a long time ago, and it is still true today:
`Forgive me if I am not justified in what I ask,' said Scrooge, looking intently at the Spirit's robe,' but I see something strange, and not belonging to yourself, protruding from your skirts. Is it a foot or a claw.'

`It might be a claw, for the flesh there is upon it,' was the Spirit's sorrowful reply. `Look here.'

From the foldings of its robe, it brought two children; wretched, abject, frightful, hideous, miserable. They knelt down at its feet, and clung upon the outside of its garment.

`Oh, Man. look here. Look, look, down here.' exclaimed the Ghost.

They were a boy and a girl. Yellow, meagre, ragged, scowling, wolfish; but prostrate, too, in their humility. Where graceful youth should have filled their features out, and touched them with its freshest tints, a stale and shrivelled hand, like that of age, had pinched, and twisted them, and pulled them into shreds. Where angels might have sat enthroned, devils lurked, and glared out menacing. No change, no degradation, no perversion of humanity, in any grade, through all the mysteries of wonderful creation, has monsters half so horrible and dread.

Scrooge started back, appalled. Having them shown to him in this way, he tried to say they were fine children, but the words choked themselves, rather than be parties to a lie of such enormous magnitude.

`Spirit. are they yours.' Scrooge could say no more.

`They are Man's,' said the Spirit, looking down upon them. `And they cling to me, appealing from their fathers. This boy is Ignorance. This girl is Want. Beware them both, and all of their degree, but most of all beware this boy, for on his brow I see that written which is Doom, unless the writing be erased. Deny it.' cried the Spirit, stretching out its hand towards the city. `Slander those who tell it ye. Admit it for your factious purposes, and make it worse. And abide the end.'

`Have they no refuge or resource.' cried Scrooge.

`Are there no prisons.' said the Spirit, turning on him for the last time with his own words. `Are there no workhouses.'
 

Pandora II

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What if they are offered a free education and don't turn up? What if they are offered jobs and turn them down because they think they are 'too good' for them and the state hand-outs are preferable?

Sometimes I think getting rid of the welfare state might be the best thing possible for some of these people - then they would have to start taking some responsibility for themselves.

Maplefemme - I'm in favour of immigration, the vast majority of immigrants are not a drain on the taxpayer, they work hard and contribute to society in many ways. I'd just like to swap some of our feckless indigenous...
 

yennyfire

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[quote="ksinger|1312888576|2987087
Depending on essentially amoral corporations to save us is folly of the first ilk.[/quote]


No kidding. This is scary. I'm not sure what the alternative is (maybe there isn't one), but having worked for some of these corporations, it is a bit frightening.
 

ksinger

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Madam Bijoux|1312894554|2987106 said:
I am all for social programs. Of course there will always be people who abuse them, but if just one child gets an education, gets out of poverty and has a good life because of a social program, it is worthwhile.
Charles Dickens wrote this a long time ago, and it is still true today:
`Forgive me if I am not justified in what I ask,' said Scrooge, looking intently at the Spirit's robe,' but I see something strange, and not belonging to yourself, protruding from your skirts. Is it a foot or a claw.'

`It might be a claw, for the flesh there is upon it,' was the Spirit's sorrowful reply. `Look here.'

From the foldings of its robe, it brought two children; wretched, abject, frightful, hideous, miserable. They knelt down at its feet, and clung upon the outside of its garment.

`Oh, Man. look here. Look, look, down here.' exclaimed the Ghost.

They were a boy and a girl. Yellow, meagre, ragged, scowling, wolfish; but prostrate, too, in their humility. Where graceful youth should have filled their features out, and touched them with its freshest tints, a stale and shrivelled hand, like that of age, had pinched, and twisted them, and pulled them into shreds. Where angels might have sat enthroned, devils lurked, and glared out menacing. No change, no degradation, no perversion of humanity, in any grade, through all the mysteries of wonderful creation, has monsters half so horrible and dread.

Scrooge started back, appalled. Having them shown to him in this way, he tried to say they were fine children, but the words choked themselves, rather than be parties to a lie of such enormous magnitude.

`Spirit. are they yours.' Scrooge could say no more.

`They are Man's,' said the Spirit, looking down upon them. `And they cling to me, appealing from their fathers. This boy is Ignorance. This girl is Want. Beware them both, and all of their degree, but most of all beware this boy, for on his brow I see that written which is Doom, unless the writing be erased. Deny it.' cried the Spirit, stretching out its hand towards the city. `Slander those who tell it ye. Admit it for your factious purposes, and make it worse. And abide the end.'

`Have they no refuge or resource.' cried Scrooge.

`Are there no prisons.' said the Spirit, turning on him for the last time with his own words. `Are there no workhouses.'
Yes. I can't tell you how much Dickensian/Calvinist-ish/Puritan "we must atone" rhetoric I hear these days coming from the mouths of my friends, even. The poor are responsible for their own plight, deserve what they get, etc, etc. Those same people (some of whom work FOR the government, just to enhance the irony) are appalled when they begin to see what a real government downsize looks like. I have no sympathy for them, and say so.
 

AGBF

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Pandora|1312876084|2987055 said:
The rioting in London has NOTHING to do with social problems or government cuts. It is pure greed and mindless thuggery, these people have only one interest: looting.

There are plenty of jobs - heck half a million Eastern Europeans walked into them. We just have a lazy, feckless underclass with a sense of entitlement due to generational lifetimes of free housing, free education, free healthcare and generous state handouts that enable them to sit on their backsides and whinge about how life is so unfair and how there are no opportunities rather than actually look into the endless help there is.
I am not sure what you mean by these two paragraphs, Pandora. In the first one you say the riots are not due to social unrest due to cuts in social programs (which have been deep in Great Britain). (Others-reporting in the news media-say that they believe the rioting is among disaffected, hopeless, poor young people.) But then in the next paragraph you say that these young people are "sitting on their backsides", whining about life being unfair, and not "looking into" the "endless help" that exists.

When you say that they are not "looking into the endless help that exists", what, exactly, do you mean? What has gone wrong with the normal course of events so that they do not have jobs? Why must they, now, look for extra help?

I am curious because I suspect that something is wrong among the working class, at least among the young. I suspect there is unemployment. I do not think that riots come out of nowhere. I do not believe that looting and "thuggery" are done "just for kicks" suddenly. I think they have roots in social problems. Why don't we see these phenomena when we have full employment? Why do we see them when we have 20% unemployment? Is it a coincidence that "thuggery increases" as unemployment does? I think not. I see a correlation!!!

Deb/AGBF
:read:
 

maplefemme

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Pandora|1312895399|2987111 said:
What if they are offered a free education and don't turn up? What if they are offered jobs and turn them down because they think they are 'too good' for them and the state hand-outs are preferable?

Sometimes I think getting rid of the welfare state might be the best thing possible for some of these people - then they would have to start taking some responsibility for themselves.

Maplefemme - I'm in favour of immigration, the vast majority of immigrants are not a drain on the taxpayer, they work hard and contribute to society in many ways. I'd just like to swap some of our feckless indigenous...
Pandora - I have nothing against immigrants, people who have something to offer, something to contribute, they make the UK rich in culture and diversity. It's the one's who do take advantage of the system (albeit one that begs to be taken advantage of) and ones that try to change British culture to suit their needs, that bother me. They may be in the minority, but minority is a relative term when you are still talking about thousands of people in that said minority.

Then there's the apathetic indigenous souls who suckle off the system, but the system allows it, rewards it.
If people are offered free education that can lead to employment, or job training, and they decline, they should be denied welfare.
Welfare has become an "option", a choice. No longer a program in place to help those who desperately need assistance, it's become an unearned paycheck.

I'm an immigrant myself, I left the UK for Canada nearly 20 years ago.
I miss the UK in many ways, but when I go back to visit I see drastic and disturbing changes.
 

Circe

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Dancing Fire|1312870265|2987038 said:
AGBF|1312861253|2986955 said:
London has been beset by riots for three nights now and rioting has also spread to Birmingham, England. Great Britain has cut back on many of its social programs just as the United States is cutting back on many of its social programs (and education and road building and libraries and government work needed for everyday purposes and state parks and everything else).There's nothing like a few months of riots (I remember Watts in the 1960's) to make a country decide that it can actually afford a few social problems like giving breakfast cereal to poor toddlers. It starts to seem that it might be a better sop to feed the poor than to have to rebuild all its cities from the ground up.

Then there are the elections in Wisconsin tomorrow when we get to see whether we have a state governed by working middle class people or a ruling oligarchy. I do care, but not as much as I once did. If Governor Walker wins this round, we'll have riots and burning in the cities of Wisconsin shortly.

That's just my take on the current world's state of affairs. I thought I'd throw that out as a counterweight to Dancing Fire's Weltanshauung.

Deb/AGBF
:read:
Deb
that's the problem with too many social programs "entitlements" it keeps the recipients in poverty forever.haven't we learnt anything in the past 2.5 yrs that big government will not work?.. :confused: we have thrown trillions of dollars (money we borrowed) into our economy and it did nothing but get our country into bigger debt.

let me tell you a story...

back in the late 60''s our family would have qualified for government assistance w/o any problem,but we were too ashamed to go on welfare, so my older brother (19 yrs old) got a job working in a resturant for something like $170 a month to support us a family of four. i remember rent was $70 per month,so we had $100 left for everything else,but nowadays these people whom are on social programs feel like the government owe them money every month.
I think the problem with criticizing social programs and throwing out anecdotal examples is that that's all they are. DF, it sounds like you came from a close-knit family and a culture that prioritized labor and education. That's awesome, but it also gave you a huge leg up. Somebody coming from a different background? They might need a little bit of help from society to get their feet under them. Expecting a corporation to give it to them is, a) unlikely, and, b) abnegating personal responsibility. It's not just that random CEO's job to help the poor: it's all of ours, collectively.

It's not the social programs that keep people in poverty: it's the larger society, with its aspects of bread-and-circus; the cuts that make it impossible to get a good education, which, yeah, you really need in order to bootstrap your way out of poverty; the persistent discrimination that continues to affect the odds of, not just the first job, but the succeeding promotions.

I'm less worried about the last 2.5 years than I am about the 8 that directly preceded them: taking a country from rich and peaceful to debt-ridden and internationally loathed in less than a decade is kind of impressive, in a nauseating fashion. But it's also this kind of divisive, caught-in-the-past mentality that propagates further issues, so I'll stop now: I just wish the Republicans in Congress would! They came in on a platform of blocking progress, and they're living up to their word, and I'm horrified by it. I genuinely can't believe that our "ruling class" can be so short-sighted. It's like watching a cadre of Bibuluses and Catos. And, hey: look where that got them.

And, just because there's too much good stuff here to respond individually - Crasru, Ksinger, AmeliaG, Madam, word. And Deb, thanks for starting such a provocative thread ....
 

pwendyp

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Pandora|1312876084|2987055 said:
The rioting in London has NOTHING to do with social problems or government cuts. It is pure greed and mindless thuggery, these people have only one interest: looting.

There are plenty of jobs - heck half a million Eastern Europeans walked into them. We just have a lazy, feckless underclass with a sense of entitlement due to generational lifetimes of free housing, free education, free healthcare and generous state handouts that enable them to sit on their backsides and whinge about how life is so unfair and how there are no opportunities rather than actually look into the endless help there is.

I was a politician in London until 2010 and I can tell you that the vast majority of cuts have no impact on these scum. The activities and organisations that are there to help young people stay occupied are VAST - and FREE.

Frankly I hope they really, really pay for what they are doing. Setting fire to small businesses and houses in their own communities. :angryfire:
I'm with you on this Pandora...I've been catching up with some of the horrific images and reports on the rioting, and it makes ugly reading. It feels like the impetus, respect and hope has gone from this new generation? Why? Lack of motivation from the overkill of PC perhaps? 'We have rights ya know' is something that's heard over and over. From all colours and creeds. I think back to my childhood, and the most daring thing I ever participated in was knocking on a door and running away, or some 'scrumping' of apples. Any more than that I would not have dared to attempt. The respect of my elders, the police and those in authority, was instilled in me from all angles, parents, school and elders. That has gone now, largely.

Sadly.

So many innocent people have lost a whole lot in these awful riots, I feel so very sorry for them.


maplefemme|1312882549|2987066 said:
The riot in London started because police shot an alleged cocaine dealer and his family is upset.
The UK is in shambles, you can't just let EVERYONE in, the immigration policies are a joke.
As for social problems, the UK is fraught with them. You have masked extremist Muslims protesting in London's Hyde Park, waving banners that say "9-11 was just the begining, the EU is next". They had street parades in Glasgow "celebrating" the anniversary of 9-11 attacks. It's tantamount to terrorism and the Government does NOTHING.
The UK has become so PC.
I miss the days of Churchill, of Thatcher... I do not agree with all that they did, but they were LEADERS, they stood for something, they stood for England and made no apologies for it.
There were policies of Thatcher that perhaps weren't completely in the countries best interests, but by jove she was a leader. She would have sent the Army in, less than 24 hours after the riots started, starting with water cannon at full blast, and working up until control was regained. Cameron is back from his family jaunt in Italy, and he's shuffling about waiting 2 more days to recall the Cabinet. Sheesh. Two more days. I simply cannot believe how he is dragging his feet. The time for action is NOW!

What are the answers, to these and other global problems? We all surely have different views and ideas, but problems we have, aplenty.

Tell the third world leaders that aid will cease, until their wars cease. The people are dying anyway because of the corrupt leaders there, syphoning off the money. We have poured trillions of pounds globally into the third world, and still they starve?? Of course, I'm not sure I mean this...I would hate to see any child, or adult for that matter, die of starvation just because we took a hard line. But...

Closer to home...blimey - how many problems are there, and how many solutions? Harsher police, harsher everything to do with crime. Make it so it simply DOES NOT pay to be a criminal of any kind. We seem to have spent 30 years playing with social experiments, and they didn't work. They are not working. Schools need the 3 R's, as much as society need guidelines that cannot be crossed. We need strong direction, from leaders that WILL NOT be swayed. Criminals should be punished harshly and publicly - perhaps by being made to clean streets in chain gangs.

Bring back some form of National Service - ye gods - that won't/can't ever work maybe. I read today that 4 out of 10 youths are leaving school unable to read or write anywhere near an acceptable level. What hope they have in any kind of military training?

And money...ah, the root of many evils? Today, the FTSE is down below 5000 - almost unprecedented losses in less than 14 days. Trillions wiped of the world index. Somehow we have to recoup that - we were trying over the past year to eighteen months, and now it's wiped out, and back lower than in a long time.

Whatever your political stance, it's clear we have global problems never seen in such sharp focus as just these past few days it seems. We need our leaders to LEAD - strongly and without waver, with determination and clarity - however they deem it necessary, and however bad the medicine might taste. Swallow it we must.


 

iLander

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Well, you can pay for that teen to be educated with job skills or you can pay for him to incarcerated, you pick.

You can pay for the mentally ill to be medicated or you can pay them a dollar for walking by when they're out raving on the street. You pick.

You can pay to help the hungry and desperate or you can pay for extra security around your house and car.

As for private, corporate help:

Today the average corporate CEO makes 40 TIMES what their workers make.

Twenty years ago, it was 8 TIMES.

It's tough to keep that CEO in that kind of style. Better go with Chinese workers, we need the money to make that CEO pay check.
 

Pandora II

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AGBF|1312897107|2987130 said:
Pandora|1312876084|2987055 said:
The rioting in London has NOTHING to do with social problems or government cuts. It is pure greed and mindless thuggery, these people have only one interest: looting.

There are plenty of jobs - heck half a million Eastern Europeans walked into them. We just have a lazy, feckless underclass with a sense of entitlement due to generational lifetimes of free housing, free education, free healthcare and generous state handouts that enable them to sit on their backsides and whinge about how life is so unfair and how there are no opportunities rather than actually look into the endless help there is.
I am not sure what you mean by these two paragraphs, Pandora. In the first one you say the riots are not due to social unrest due to cuts in social programs (which have been deep in Great Britain). (Others-reporting in the news media-say that they believe the rioting is among disaffected, hopeless, poor young people.) But then in the next paragraph you say that these young people are "sitting on their backsides", whining about life being unfair, and not "looking into" the "endless help" that exists.

When you say that they are not "looking into the endless help that exists", what, exactly, do you mean? What has gone wrong with the normal course of events so that they do not have jobs? Why must they, now, look for extra help?

I am curious because I suspect that something is wrong among the working class, at least among the young. I suspect there is unemployment. I do not think that riots come out of nowhere. I do not believe that looting and "thuggery" are done "just for kicks" suddenly. I think they have roots in social problems. Why don't we see these phenomena when we have full employment? Why do we see them when we have 20% unemployment? Is it a coincidence that "thuggery increases" as unemployment does? I think not. I see a correlation!!!

Deb/AGBF
:read:
Cuts in social programmes have had very little effect on the ground here. We have 7% unemployment here not 20%

The normal course of events that means that they don't have jobs is because they are too idle to bother turning up to school and trying to learn something and are too proud to do the kind of jobs that are then available to those with no skills or qualifications. Britain no longer requires hewers of wood or drawers of water. Manufacturing here now requires small numbers of skilled workers. We are not a socialist country that intends to spend taxpayers money propping up unsustainable businesses.

The number of programmes and schemes designed to help those with no qualifications retrain and apply for jobs, keep youngsters amused and occupied during school holidays, help for parents, I could give you lists of hundreds of bodies that try to get people out of poverty.

There's nothing wrong with the working class - it's the underclass that don't want to work that is the issue. I used to be a wooly bleeding-heart liberal - then I spent time at the coal face and it cured me pretty fast. There are people who definitely need the safety net of the welfare state but 99% of this lot don't.

People come over here from Poland and are more than happy to work on farms picking asparagus or strawberries or whatever, they are happy to work in factories packing goods. Our own youngsters would rather sit at home on benefits than get a job. We have minimum wage laws here so it's not as if these jobs are paid at below market rates.

I had a constituent come to see me to complain that the council wouldn't give him a flat-screen TV, when I enquired as to why he thought this would be a good use of local tax-payers money his response was that rich people have them so he wanted one too. I asked if he had a job and when he said no I suggested that he might like to apply to the local branch of MacDonald's that I knew was hiring. He looked at me like I'd hit him and said 'no way, you think someone like me is desperate enough to work in a place like that, my friends would laugh at me' - okay, so you have no qualifications, never done a day's work and are expecting me to pay 40% in tax to keep you because you are 'too good' to work in MacDonalds.

A large number of those involved in the rioting are employed and reasonably well-off - they simply want a free TV. Parents are driving their kids down to shops and helping them load the car up with loot. They are burning down charity shops. A guy who had been mugged was helped to his feet by a couple of youths... so they could reach his backpack, go through it and steal what interested them.

These people aren't disaffected - they are scumbag criminals and I'm only sorry that we don't have enough prison cells to chuck them in for a very long time. They have burnt down people's homes and businesses and deserve everything they've got coming to them. I dread to think what is going to happen tonight. The rioters were 2 streets away from me last night, my young cousin has just been sent home from work by the police (she's a social worker) and says that the HQ of a charity for young homeless people has been looted and set on fire. My BIL & SIL and their 4 week old baby live less than 100 yards from one of the main areas of violence last night and could smell the smoke from the burning buildings. I have nothing but disgust for these people.
 

partgypsy

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iLander|1312901911|2987187 said:
Well, you can pay for that teen to be educated with job skills or you can pay for him to incarcerated, you pick.

You can pay for the mentally ill to be medicated or you can pay them a dollar for walking by when they're out raving on the street. You pick.

You can pay to help the hungry and desperate or you can pay for extra security around your house and car.

As for private, corporate help:

Today the average corporate CEO makes 40 TIMES what their workers make.

Twenty years ago, it was 8 TIMES.

It's tough to keep that CEO in that kind of style. Better go with Chinese workers, we need the money to make that CEO pay check.
Actually, your numbers are a little out of date. American CEOS average over 300 times the average worker. Edit- some say the ratio is now around 150 times. Anyways it has skyrocketed in the past 10-15 years. No wonder why they cannot afford to hire American workers.
(from this article http://sociology.ucsc.edu/whorulesamerica/power/wealth.html)

The ratio of CEO pay to factory worker pay rose from 42:1 in 1960 to as high as 531:1 in 2000, at the height of the stock market bubble, when CEOs were cashing in big stock options. It was at 411:1 in 2005 and 344:1 in 2007, according to research by United for a Fair Economy. By way of comparison, the same ratio is about 25:1 in Europe. The changes in the American ratio from 1960 to 2007 are displayed in Figure 8, which is based on data from several hundred of the largest corporations.
 

AGBF

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Pandora|1312902552|2987200 said:
The normal course of events that means that they don't have jobs is because they are too idle to bother turning up to school and trying to learn something and are too proud to do the kind of jobs that are then available to those with no skills or qualifications. Britain no longer requires hewers of wood or drawers of water. Manufacturing here now requires small numbers of skilled workers. We are not a socialist country that intends to spend taxpayers money propping up unsustainable businesses.

...

They have burnt down people's homes and businesses and deserve everything they've got coming to them. I dread to think what is going to happen tonight. The rioters were 2 streets away from me last night, my young cousin has just been sent home from work by the police (she's a social worker) and says that the HQ of a charity for young homeless people has been looted and set on fire.
Pandora,

I read your entire posting, but it doesn't make social sense to me. Look at where you start: society in Great Britain is changing. Skilled labor is required. Only sustainable capitalist businesses will make it. Sustainable capitalist businesses will use the government of any country they can to maximize their profits and pay the workers the minimum amount possible. That is their duty to their shareholders. Great Britain you say, is not a socialist country and therefore has no obligation to prop up unsustainable businesses.

OK. Well, letting businesses fail would be OK if you could keep all the people who had worked for them employed by the government...but can Great Britain do that? If not, perhaps it has some obligation to prop up unsustainable businesses. I don't know what your definition of "socialist" is, but as I said above, FDR kept the United States functioning during the Great Depression by propping up everything with government support! And some people called the old, rich aristocrat a socialist for doing it, too! But, doggone it, we need him back!

And why are there homeless shelters in Britain to be set on fire? Why on earth isn't there housing for people? Is London some remote village in the Third World? Having homeless shelters there at all is shameful!

Deb/AGBF
:read:
 

AGBF

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Messages
21,819
iLander|1312901911|2987187 said:
Well, you can pay for that teen to be educated with job skills or you can pay for him to incarcerated, you pick.

You can pay for the mentally ill to be medicated or you can pay them a dollar for walking by when they're out raving on the street. You pick.

You can pay to help the hungry and desperate or you can pay for extra security around your house and car.
I love what you wrote above, iLander. It is very pithy and right to the point.

Deb/AGBF
:read:
 
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