7/13/2008

Caught Using Bad Language!

Hello,
I have spent most of this evening gardening, visiting relatives and scratching my head. I don't mind admitting David Duff had me somewhat puzzled by announcing his threat to smack me. I did wonder if last nights Carry On fest on BBC2 had got him coming over all Sid James on us but I needn't have worried. He was only pulling me up for using bad language!

In my post about the low paid client of mine below I had used the word poor to describe him which David quite rightly points out is not really accurate and suggests the word pinched in it's place I must confess to using the word poor out of laziness, habit, to avoid using the ,more accurate but still wrong 'socially excluded' and so that people will know what I'm on about.

He is right though, these people are not starving, the receive cheap or free medical treatment, are clothed and have a roof over their heads. Maybe they'd be better described as the short changed.

Anyway never one to resist a challenge I shall acknowledge the gauntlet thrown down by David and try and answer the question of what we should do about the pinched/ poor/ underclass/socially excluded. It won't be a magic wand or a complete solution. However I shall do my best to identify the problems I see through work and topically enough through my various travels in the Glasgow East constituency. My main belief is that we should make it as easy as possible to do the right thing and as unacceptable as possible to do wrong.

The one area where there is true poverty, and I'm prepared to believe worse than anything you'll encounter in any other country in the world, is in the moral, spiritual, -philosophical and educational. Not only that but a fair percentage of the population are 'pinched'. So what is to be done?

It's not an easy question to answer but to allow me to have a run at it I shall be breaking my answer down to specific areas and hope to get a bit of a debate going with each.

14 comments:

iLL Man said...

Duffer, pedantic to the last.....

I sort of gathered that you had used the word 'poor' as a relative term, but there you go..........

Financially challenged?

asquith said...

Amongst the plethora of little quibbles that I've got, here's one.

A council/housing association/private tenant who is on benefits, & lives with an adult non-dependent, has housing/council tax benefit withdrawn if said non-dependent is earning.

I understand the rationale behind this, but it seems pernicious.

Let us imagine a single mother with four children, who all grow up, still live in the house, & don't have jobs. The youngest decides to better himself, but is pathetically "educated" due to having been at a sink school. His only option is to get a low-paid job. Even this is unlikely as his brothers & his mates don't work.

So this boy drags himself into some hellhole & slaves away for a pittance, rather than sitting at home on benefits.

But he has either to move out (very hard to do on those wages), or hand over half of what he gets to his mum, & what teenager would ever do such a thing? You have identified that he pays tax & gets no credits whatsoever because of his age: he would be made better off by raising the threshold, but as things stand he is punished for working.

I have raised this with my supervisors & they say things like "they don't deserve housing benefit if someone in the faily works, this hypothetical boy should hand over the money & stop being selfish". But isn't that a big disincentive, for the people most likely to become NEETS, to work when it's barely better than sitting at home?

I am curious as to your views on the matter, as any possible solution is fraught with problems.

davidokeefe said...

Pinched
noun 3-the stress caused by poverty etc

source oxford english dictionary.

If were being pedantic, both yourself and Double D are correct.

davidokeefe said...

"The one area where there is true poverty, and I'm prepared to believe worse than anything you'll encounter in any other country in the world, is in the moral, spiritual, -philosophical and educational."

Care to expand upon this hell in a handcart bollocks. Or are you suggesting christianity and the workhouse for the poor?

I can accept that the poor are not necessarily the salt of the earth, but neither are they the scum of the earth. I'm sorry but from that passage I feel that a patronising Cameron-esque lecture is about to materialise.

iLL Man said...

I don't think Clairwil is attributing moral/spiritual/educational decline to the poor, but rather to society in general. Not that I particularly agree with that notion, but I don't think it's something she believes is exclusive to the 'economically deprived'.

Clairwil said...

'Care to expand upon this hell in a handcart bollocks. Or are you suggesting christianity and the workhouse for the poor?'

It's interesting that you associate morality with Christianity. As I'm not religious myself is it not a bit unlikely that I'd be suggesting other people should be? I regard some actions as moral and others as immoral Do you honestly believe that I would advocate sending people to a workhouse? As for caring to expand the purpose of the post was to introduce themes I'll be picking up on later and acknowledge the points made by David Duff.

I won't even dignify your last paragraph with a response. I'm quite happy to enter into a debate but if your tone continues in this rude and confrontational manner I'll have to ask you to refrain from further comment.

Sorry asquith but I'll be picking up your points later.

asquith said...

Don't be sorry, I know this particular issue takes time & thought. I'd be interested to know your thoughts, as opinion's divided, & every possible answer is a bastard :)

David Duff said...

Just to clarify, Clairwil, I wasn't intending (er, boasting, actually, from the safe distance of 400 miles!) to give you a smack because of your use of the word 'poor', but only because your post was the final kick in the bum required to make me sit down and write a post on the subject of the poor/the pinched (delete as necessary).

David O'Keefe is purblind, which is bad enough, poor fellow, but also deaf! The single, instantaneously observable characteristic of the juvenile British 'untermenschen' is their obvious lack of any sense of the difference between beauty and ugliness despite a plentiful supply of mirrors. Even the naturally beautiful ones despoil themselves. Similarly, the only indication of their musical tastes confirms a crassness of taste which can only emanate from an educational history which has never even attempted to teach the basics of aesthetics.

I don't blame them, I pity them.

iLL Man said...

I'm sure David, that someone of your fathers generation would have had the same to say about your collection of Acker Bilk 45's and your wardrobe of ill-fitting Zoot Suits. Or something.

Berating teenagers for lacking an understanding of aesthetics and liking rubbish music is a bit like haranguing you for being a daft old fart is it not?

Beauty is universal, but individual definitions of it are not.

So Nyah! =D

David Duff said...

Yes, indeed, you are right, 'Ill Man', but you miss my point. Silly fashion fads, particularly for the young, are commonplace, but it is only recently that sheer ugliness has taken over - it even boast the generic title of 'grunge'. If the young people concerned knew they looked hideous but continued out of a sense of youthful revolt, then so be it, but alas, they haven't a clue how ugly they are. And I am not referring just to their clothes. They actually make a display of various bulging bits of their pale sickly bodies through which they pierce every protrusion with ugly lumps of cheap metal, and/or, they tattoo the remainder with badly drawn pictures.

"Save them. Father, for they know not what they do"! Well of course they don't, poor bastards, they're pig ignorant, that's why. And why wouldn't they be given the total waste of space that constitutes out 'edukashun servis'!

And, yes, since you ask, I am grumpy tonight!

iLL Man said...

Hilarious David! You should be on the TV!

Grunge hasn't been used to describe fashion since about 1994 by the way......

I think you'll find that those who tattoo/pierce/expose flesh are the least of anyones worries. They may offend your eye but they often tend to be boringly normal. They are indicative of nothing much to be honest.

It's ironic David, in certain parts of the country, being a Goth/grunger/mosher can result in getting your head stamped flat by some lovely young men dressed in what I'm sure you would approve of as appropriate leisurewear for the youth of today.

Oh, and I didn't miss your point. You didn't have one to start with.

Anonymous said...

David Duff seems to do a very poor man's Wallace Arnold. If anyone remembers that.

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