He claims that 14 million people are living in 'extreme poverty'; no doubt he's encountered them living down sewage pipes, or under piles of Autumn leaves (if they're lucky).
Another recent report claims that there are 55,000 problem school-age gamblers (11-16) in the UK. In all, 450,000 children regularly gamble; betting an average of £16 each week. And these, I imagine, are just the poverty stricken ones.
Meanwhile, chip shop owner, Philip Suhadolnik of Darlington Co Durham, cannot find anyone to work for him. Several have been offered jobs, but simply failed to turn up. They prefer to live on their generous benefits (presumably down their cosy sewer pipes) than actually go out to work.
Back to Alston and his claim of poverty. All so-called poverty is comparative. In the UK, these hundreds of thousands of 'poverty stricken' children can afford to gamble £16 a week, probably own a smart phone, a laptop, and an X box, and maybe manage to afford a few lines of Columbian marching powder at the weekends. This can hardly be called 'poverty'. In fact it is an insult to children worldwide who really DO live in poverty; by which I mean they have NOTHING, and struggle to find something to eat, like the Indian street children in the photo above..
Of course there are people in the UK who are, without question, living below an acceptable financial standard; there always will be. Austerity (or what I prefer to call 'good housekeeping') has meant that some have had their hand-outs reduced. But please, Alston, don't write silly reports to the UN saying that the UK is a country gripped in extreme poverty. You, and I, both know, it simply isn't true.
According to the IMF, the UK is the world's 5th (or some say 10th) largest economy.
p.s. I now see that Ms Denise Coates, the boss of Bet365 (a major UK on-line betting site), has an annual salary of £265 Million. And who said gambling doesn't pay?
As you say, it is a severe disservice to the many children around the world who really do live in poverty. Honestly, my mind boggles at how children under sixteen can gamble, or even want to. Maybe Australia is not such a bad place.ReplyDelete
It's a shocking revelation. Where does all this money come from? I can't imagine them doing a paper round.Delete
Two things; Children can mean someone up to 17 years, not advocating gambling of course but we all run a perilous track through a society that is always on the sell.ReplyDelete
Poverty is surely comparative to the income received. If children are going hungry in this country (5th richest) then surely it should be noted. It is all down to the welfare system of course.......
It's also down to what the parents spend their money on. It may be a generalisation, but those who are always in the pub', are covered in tattoos, and drive expensive BMW's, are presumably not spending enough on their children.Delete
It is my belief that the basis for Philip Alston's findings are Government statistics of child benefit payments. He looks through stats and then comes up with a report. There are roughly 14 million children in receipt of family allowance, or child benefit as it is now called. It does not mean they are living in poverty.ReplyDelete
That sounds logical; and a very illogical way to assess 'poverty'.Delete
He did the same report in the United States last year and came up with the figure of 40 million.Delete
There IS great poverty in the US; you only have to look at all those 'trailer parks'.Delete
Poverty as you say is relative.ReplyDelete
I remember a TV documentary about people living on benefits and complaining about their "impoverished" existence. whilst siting on a sofa surrounded by take-away containers watching a 55" TV with cigarette in one hand and can of Tennants Super in the other (or it might have been Carlsbery special)
Sadly there's a lot of truth in that; the last people to benefit from the dole are usually the children.Delete
I can remember years ago families from Glasgow being rehoused in the north of England. They were 'refugees' from what used to be called the slums.ReplyDelete
Many today don't know the true meaning of the word poverty.
I'd recommend Orwells book The Road to Wigan Pier (first part) as an account of poverty and hardship in Britain for those who are genuinely interested.Delete
The word 'poverty' is bandied about with far too much ease. It should be reserved for real hardship. The last book about poverty I read was Angela's Ashes. A pretty dire tale.Delete
I was born in Liverpool: a city with incredible described by Helen Forrester in her novels. I remember a city of children playing in the street with no shoes when I travelled to my work in the city centre on the tram from the suburbs through the 'slums'. That was poverty. As was what was described in Wigan Pier, The Ragged Trousered Philanthropist and many others. Of course poverty is relative and therein lies the problem.ReplyDelete
That really was my point, and to have UN envoys talking of extreme poverty in present day UK, rather diminishes its seriousness.Delete
Yes, there are trailer parks in the US and they are mostly lived in by the working poor and the elderly. There is no shame in that. After paying rent, utilities, and healthcare, there is little, if any, left for food. A hungry person is a hungry person no matter where they live. Life is better when you show compassion rather than judgement.ReplyDelete
I certainly didn't make any 'judgement'; I was simply pointing out that there is poverty everywhere, even in the US. I always feel for the poor, where ever they come from, but please don't confuse the affluent poor with those who have absolutely nothing.Delete
Cro you did say 'thoses trailer parks' my family lived in a nice trailer in a very pretty park. For some a trailer is all they can afford.Delete
Many years ago trailer parks were awful an easy joke. it is/was the quick way to say cheap, poor and criminal.
Try Chicago, city of Obama and his good friend Rahm Emanuel If you wanted to make a poverty statement try Englewood, Chicago is a bad as they come,
I know many slums in neighborhood with houses here in Tucson. That are like any slum in East London (?) I will be writing a post on what has happened to my Mum's old neighborhood and home. It became a drug/crack house !
I have to say Gwil that most, if not all, of us in blogland have no idea what real poverty is.ReplyDelete
I would go a little further, and say that very few in the UK have any idea of poverty. It really is an insult to the genuinely poor to say that 14 Million Brits live in 'extreme poverty'. But I suppose the crazy left will grasp at anything.Delete
I really must apologize (yet again) for 'Chloe's' obsessive rantings about me. He is totally obsessed, and should be forgiven. Trolls are sick people, and need pity rather than anger. Please try to forgive him.ReplyDelete
Other post-lunch mad-cap rantings are a different matter, and any support by Mr Chloe are simply testament to the strength of alcohol.
Sorry about the Troll Cro.Delete
I cannot understand the appeal of being so hated by everyone. He is a very strange, and sad, person.Delete
I hate all the adverts for gambling on the TV. Bingo this bingo that. Bingo is still gambling even if they are trying to make it glamorous. Years ago, you would never see adverts for it. They werent even allowed to advertise in the yellow pages, casinos or bingo halls. Who changed that? you can thank Blair for that. His legacy is bingo adverts every 15 minutes.ReplyDelete
The ad's I've seen all offer free money too!Delete
I give it 5 hours before the second comment before last is deleted. Magic.ReplyDelete
I only have three criteria for deleting. Stupidity, insolence, and drunken rambling.Delete
I haven't heard the word insolence used seriously since school days.Delete
I grew up in real poverty with uneducated parents who did their best to keep the only low paying jobs they could get. We had no extras but we were clothed and fed. They hated handouts and rarely took them and yet I consider my childhood a good one. My husband and I now live under the US poverty line BY CHOICE. The less we make the less taxes we pay. We work hard to raise a huge amount of our own food. We do not consider ourselves poor, nor do we accept any government help but when I drive past our local food pantry and see yet another well dressed family on smart phones loading up their 2018 car with donated food they get for free...I nearly have an aneurysm.ReplyDelete
re: the food pantry, it happens here too. People even park their fancy cars around the corner so as not to be caught out. The extreme left use such places as a rod to beat the right.... if only they knew the truth.Delete
This man and his report were roundly condemned on Radio 4 - even by ardent leftists - late last week. It is politically motivated nonsense.ReplyDelete