Friday, November 17, 2006

Re-post: Poverty of aspiration - Oct 06

From Friday, October 20, 2006

I woke up with that term on my mind, because it's really bugging me. They seem to be trying to make being satisfied with your lot into a crime. When you really think about it, contented people are enemies of the state in a way, especially if they're happy not to be earning money. And contented people don't need to spend much. If we were all happy in our lives the country would go bankrupt very quickly. Certainly if everyone lived the way we do it would.

Then again, if everyone lived the way we do, we wouldn't be able to live that way. There'd be no competitive cut-priced supermarkets, no state benefits and, by the time they'd all finished foraging, no mushrooms left for us to pick either! On the other hand there would be other systems - exchange systems, community help and support, community gardens. Hmm, that would be a diplomatic nightmare to organise. Imagine trying to negotiate with some of the grumpy, picky, bossy old men who live down our street. We'd have to send them off to find meat. Oops, I just regressed civilisation by a few thousand years.

I think I'll do some more reading and find out where this 'poverty of aspiration' term comes from.

Maybe I should email the prime minister and ask him.

It's tempting, but I won't.

posted by Gill at 8:43 AM 5 comments


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