Save the Children\’s UK poverty work

You know, I\’m less than convinced by this:

For eight months last year Danielle got by without a fridge, putting milk and her son\’s medication (which is meant to be refrigerated) out on the windowsill of her flat. In the summer the doctor refused to prescribe any more of the growth hormone her son needed daily when he realised that it was not being stored correctly. He told her she had to get a fridge.

\”It mattered a lot because he needs injections every day,\” she said.

A single mother with a three-year-old and an eight-year-old, she was unable to save the money needed to buy a fridge. It was only in the autumn, when her support worker referred her to a local charity supported by Save the Children, that she was given one, and the treatment was able to resume.

When Save the Children announced last year that it was starting an appeal to raise money for poor families in the UK, there was surprise, and disapproval from some quarters, that a charity best known for its work with victims of war and famine in troubled parts of the world should be turning its attention to problems at home.

Danielle is in Westminster. Where do you go to get a cheap/free fridge these days? Freecycle, that\’s where.

Small Fridgedaire fridge – only a couple of years old. Very clean. We are on Victoria Square, near Victoria Station.

Agreed, there isn\’t one there on that particular Westminster board each and every day. But we\’re a rich enough society that you can, within a month or so, scrounge basic household equipment and furniture off that and similar places.

This isn\’t a problem of poverty in the income sense. It\’s a problem of poverty in the information or hustle sense. OK, so you don\’t have the internet: but the library does.

Maybe someone else will also be looking for that fridge: but the English are the English after all and \”I need a fridge for my son\’s medicine\” will put you at the head of the queue for that fridge.

So I\’m sorry but I just do not believe these stories. With an ounce of gumption you can (in a very basic manner it\’s true, and not immediately but over weeks to a couple of months) furnish a house in the UK for nothing but the goodwill of your neighbours. It just isn\’t money that\’s the problem.

Indeed, I\’d happily make a bet on this. Plonk me down in any urban location in the UK in a bare flat. Within a month I\’d have it furnished for no cash outlay at all. Now well, not perfectly, but functionally.

87 thoughts on “Save the Children\’s UK poverty work”

  1. Does she have neighbours?
    And I’d be surprised if the Benefits Office wouldn’t supply one.
    I suspect there’s a mental health problem here too.

  2. Whether or not the mother has a mental illness or not it is beyond belief that her support worker didn’t suggest finding a free fridge from one of the many sources. Even a bright 8 year old child should bve capable of working this out.

    It’s so difficult to legally get rid of white goods these days people will almost literally pay you to take away their old stuff.

    But then I don’t understand why so many folk in London (mainly bankers) have diffculty getting a teenager to baby sit their kids on a Thursday evening (£10 per hour (more after midnight), £20 for taxi, free wifi and help yourself to whatever’s in the fridge).

  3. Salvation Army are brilliant and this, without the self-righteousness of Save the Children, or the political lobbbying costs

  4. Actually “facilities for the storage, preparation and cooking of food” (which sounds like a fridge to me) is part of the 1988 Housing Act’s requirements for any rented housing.

  5. I looked on Freecycle once at the suggestion of one of my blogging pals. It was all “chair, one leg missing” and “single training shoe, would suit one legged hiker” and shit like that.

    I mean really, this isn’t one of Tim’s best arguments here and, it sort of demonstrates why “the right wing” never get anywhere, when you’ve got somebody spending half his time screaming that taxes on fabulously wealthy people will cause armageddon, then saying that poor people shouldn’t have a problem furnishing a flat for no money at all because, free stuff. It really just does not play well to the general public.

    Danielle wasn’t too big to fail, presumably.

    Tim adds: Yes but Ian…..I did actually link to Freecycle to show that there was a working fridge actually in the very same area of London as “Danielle”.

  6. Even new fridges are ridiculously cheap these days. I just bought a half-size fridge new for 80 quid. Even if we ignore Freecycle I expect you can get small fridges for 20-odd quid on eBay.

  7. I call bullshit on this story. As a single Mum of two children I’m assuming (so shoot me) She gets some benefits. Straight away there were two immediate options open to her. A government provided, interest free crisis loan (small amount, sorted out over the phone, available the same day) or an interest free budgeting loan (available in two to three weeks but is normally requested for larger amounts). Both are repaid via a small, weekly deduction from said benefits. The fact that this woman didn’t use this financially prudent system, or even a non financially prudent door step/internet lender (such as Provident/Wonga) proves that She is either a fucking imbecile/fucking liar/fucking made up person. Hells teeth, yes, you probably could get a free fridge on free cycle but why bother wasting the time when you could buy one on E-Bay for about £50 or even, in a pinch, a brand new shiny one from Tesco, Argos etc for £100. She could even have popped to her local BrightHouse store and got one on credit (they love the ones on benefits). For fucks sake, she could have saved a fiver a week and still had a new fridge in less time than it took ‘save the cheeeeldren’ to swing into action. This story is a crock of shite, and if it isn’t, someone should look at this woman in closer detail. After all, her child appears to have a serious medical condition yet She is sooooooooooo stoopid She can’t even figure out how to get a fridge, free or otherwise, regardless of the gazillions of ways She could have done so.

  8. “Whether or not the mother has a mental illness or not it is beyond belief that her support worker didnt suggest finding a free fridge from one of the many sources.”

    How do we know they didn’t? Like Just Me above, this story doesn’t pass the smell test, but then, its the Guardian…

  9. 80 quid is a lot of money on a benefits budget; JSA is about 65 a week, I think. Bear in mind, any large item acquired on eBay requires transport. To give an extreme example, I bought a CRT monitor about 18 months ago on eBay for 12 quid… and over a hundred to UPS to transport the darned thing from Liverpool.

  10. Julia, I think you’d be surprised.

    I remember Sean Gabb over at the Libertarian Alliance some time ago writing about this. Fact is, we all like ranting about people on benefits, but we also like them existing because, for most people, needing them is a real possibility. The reason the Tories are now a “center-left” party is it’s the only way they can get elected, because the truth is that not enough people are willing to vote Nasty Party when they get into the polling station; because in their heart is a little voice warning them that they could be the benefits scrounger next year if the economy goes tits. Sean’s point was that (Libertarians) ranting about benefits scroungers and demanding an end to the welfare state is (politically) strategically suicidal, and I tend to agree. I appreciate that this is not a libertarian blog, but I think the same applies generally to the “right wing”. There’s much more hay to be made highlighting the benefits awarded to the insiders at the top, than to the outsiders at the bottom.

  11. Ian B, yes £80 is a lot of money on a benefits budget, but we are talking about the long term health and well being of a child here (most normal parents would sell their soul/body/playstation 3 for far less than the cost of a fridge if it came down to it). Had the mother taken a £100 crisis loan the money deducted from her JSA would have been about £3 a week, which would not have affected her child tax credits (£100 a week). Also, did you really pay £100 postage for a £12 monitor?. I do believe Argos/Tesco sell them quite cheap, also.

  12. Just a small word from the reality based community.
    Yes to a lot of above, but….
    Specifically on the Freecycle idea. Great site if a bit like Ian says. Lot of people wanting rubbish cleared for free. However there’s a few assumptions here. The lass has to have internet access & be a bit internet savvy. (Most people won’t have heard of Freecycle. It’s really a middle-class suburban community. Bottom end of the social scale tend to a) use till it’s unusable b) Try & flog to friends who are also potless c) If all else fails, flytip) If she can’t afford a fridge she’s not paying for internet at home or have an IPad hanging around. And difficult with two kids to use a netcaff. Most are very anklebiter-unfriendly for obvious reasons.
    And just say she locates that free fridge in Westminster. What then? HTF does she shift a fridge from one flat, across town, to another flat? Minicab won’t look at the job. Man-wiv-a-van? This is congestion charge territory. Men-wiv-vans don’t park ’em in Westminster. So they’ll be charging

  13. (Don t know what happened there)
    £8 on top of hourly rate of £25/h minimum. Whole lot’d add up to more than a new fridge.
    It’s something the critical middle-classes have great difficulty getting their heads around. Being skint is a very expensive business. Most everyone they know is as boracic as they are, so they’re not networked in to helpful chums with Volvo estates or even with much spare resources to help in any other way. Often they don’t have any chums, helpful or other wise. It’s a sad, lonely, difficult life.

  14. We once gave our white goods away to the British Heart Foundation. “Would you like to Gift Aid this?” they asked. “Er, you can only Gift Aid monetary gifts” I replied “and trust me, I do know this stuff”. But no! In fact they haven’t accepted your white goods as a gift at all. They are in fact acting as your agent in SELLING your white goods for you. In the meantime they send you a short note telling you that, unless you object, they will assume you wanted to donate the money they received for it and you also wanted to Gift Aid that money. Did they give it away to Danielle? Like hell did they.
    This is called Tax Avoidance.
    If, say, Starbucks, Barclay, ABF or HSBC tried this Richie and his friends would shoot their loads.
    So the British Heart Foundation can fuck off and Save the Children UK can fuck off too. Give me an honest rag ‘n’ bone man any day.

  15. Just me,

    Yes I did. Nobody sells new CRTs any more, so, eBay. I can’t get on with LCDs, the color rendering’s crap, they make my eyes go funny, and the crayons skid about on them anyway.

    Funny thing was, a few weeks later UPS got back in touch to declare that their machine had measured the box as 1 cm bigger on each side than I’d claimed and they wanted another 40 quid. So, after some considerable time on the phone explaining in colourful language that I’d still got the carton and would be more than happy to bring both it and a tape measure to a court of their choosing, they graciously dropped their assertion that it was 66 rather than 65 cm on each side. But of course, that’s another factor in modern society; where you get largely depends on the capacity to navigate formal systems, whether in the public or private sectors. Which is probably part of the reason that people don’t do so well if they’re not so bright, not so educated or not so ranty as they could be.

  16. “The English are the English after all and I need a fridge for my sons medicine will put you at the head of the queue for that fridge.”

    Good luck finding someone English in London then.

  17. ” Also, did you really pay £100 postage for a £12 monitor?. I do believe Argos/Tesco sell them quite cheap, also.”
    I do believe Ian specified CRT. LCDs aren t compatible with certain graphics work because of poor colour rendering.
    Right Ian?

  18. >To give an extreme example, I bought a CRT monitor about 18 months ago on eBay for 12 quid… and over a hundred to UPS to transport the darned thing from Liverpool.

    WTF? I have bought and sold lots of heavy music gear over the years via eBay and even the heaviest things (40kg) cost me about 40 quid to transport, and usually transport costs about 10-20 quid. It’s best to book via third-party site like Interparcel rather than use UPS direct, but you can usually see transport costs on eBay anyway so you just dont buy from someone who is charging a ridiculous delivery price.

    Anyway, places like Currys, or local second-hand fridge/washing machine shops will deliver for not much money.

    And there are so many fridges on eBay that you could just buy one from someone nearby who can bring it around themselves. There are loads of mini-fridges available for next-to-nothing that will fit into even an ordinary car.

  19. So I just dont buy the idea that everyone will agree that we have to bankrupt the country just because some possibly-made-up dimwit is too poor and stupid to acquire a small fridge, and maybe that will be us next year.

  20. “WTF? I have bought and sold lots of heavy music gear over the years via eBay and even the heaviest things (40kg) cost me about 40 quid to transport, and usually transport costs about 10-20 quid.”

    Well, that’s what they charged me, so *shrugs*. It was one of those things where the combination of size and weight had the cost escalating on their price calculation formula rapidly, the two factors together.

    I considered using one of the third party UPS bookers, but I’d never shifted something via them before and the internets reviews had all sorts of people with bad stories about stuff getting lost because UPS et al treat such deliveries as “second class” so I went with the UPS price beause the monitor was very important to me.

    In general though, this is why I normally don’t admit what I’ve paid for anything to anybody, because guaranteed somebody will say, “you were ripped off, I got that for half the price with a free widget too” kind of thing. So all I can say is, that’s what UPS charged me, and shrug.

  21. BIS-

    LCDs aren t compatible with certain graphics work because of poor colour rendering.

    Yes, but opinions vary somewhat. Many gamers hate LCDs also. By the mid 2000s, CRTs were phenomenally good and phenomenally cheap, and then they just stopped making them apparently for dubious Green reasons. Bastards.

  22. Okay, but I just dont think the story is relevant here. Like I said, eBay items usually include delivery costs, and eBay sellers usually know how to get a good delivery price (plus local stores, etc.)

    Look at this small fridge: found after half a minute on eBay: 20 quid, 5 for delivery, could also keep some milk and butter in it too.

  23. Tank, that fridge appears to have room for one can of beer, and an ice cube. I’m surprised it doesn’t run off USB.

  24. And in Argos you can find a mini fridge for £22.49. Small enough to carry. Not ideal, but surely better than the windowsill (meant for drinks).

    Argos will deliver for £3.50 or there is a store in Victoria.

    The problem is more likely to be problem solving – using the internet, finding the crisis loan, knowing that if the machine fails, it is under warranty, being able to pursue remedies, being able to budget.

  25. It’s something the critical middle-classes have great difficulty getting their heads around. Being skint is a very expensive business. Most everyone they know is as boracic as they are, so they’re not networked in to helpful chums with Volvo estates or even with much spare resources to help in any other way. Often they don’t have any chums, helpful or other wise. It’s a sad, lonely, difficult life.

    This.

  26. Ian B, whoa there Hoss. I have read and re-read these comments and the only person ranting about benefits is you. I tried to understand your last comment, in relation to the topic at hand, but I just couldn’t make sense of it. The topic at hand was how a grown woman, with not one, but two children, couldn’t have gotten a fridge (free or otherwise) without the help of ‘Save the Cheeeeeeldren’, which others, and myself have stated is utter bollocks. How you managed to conflate this with some kind of anti-libertarian, anti-benefit scrounger post I don’t know. I suspect it is probably because you are a little bit stoopid yourself when it comes to financial stuff. Let’s be honest here, you willingly forked out £100 postage for a CRB monitor that cost you £12 *snork*.

  27. To make you even more bitter & twisted, Ian, you could have had 2 x 28″ ones for zilch not long ago. Company was slinging them & my old work colleague e-mailed to ask if I knew anyone to give them to, rather than take them to the tip.

  28. Just me-

    That was a 12 quid monitor that I’d have paid, say, 200 for if it were available new. Hell, I remember back in the early 200s paying over 400. So, total cost, £112. Bargain. I felt guilty that the seller only got 12 quid, but luckily nobody else bid for it.

    It’s that marginal utility thing. What I’m prepared to pay is what the good is worth to me, not what somebody else thinks it’s worth to them.

  29. At the end of this sad little piece about Danielle we’ll have a request for our money. It doesn’t go to Danielle though does it. It gets used to pay the salary of an ex-Labour “special advisor” taking a break until the next election meanwhile employed as Director of Communications. I know we’ve been her before, but to what UK charities can I give my money without it going to fund Damian McBride’s salary?

  30. Isn’t the story an example of “Poverty of Aspiration”?
    “Danielle” apparently just sat there saying “I haven’t got a fridge, when will someone get me one” rather than thinking “How do I get a fridge?”
    On the other side, the authorities (both the support worker and charities in this case) also seem to think that people like Danielle are incapable of getting a fridge so “something must be done”.
    Both sides being equally accepting that Danielle couldn’t possible do it on her own.
    Personally, I think this poverty of aspiration is far more dangerous / damaging than actual poverty.

  31. >Tank, that fridge appears to have room for one can of beer, and an ice cube.

    Yes, so it will fit some medication in.

    Look at it this way. How many people have been on welfare since the creation of the welfare state? Tens of millions? Twenties of millions? How many of them failed to be able to get themselves a fridge, especially when it really mattered? Not many, I would say, other than maybe a few utterly hopeless types, or some people with mental health problems or severe depression. So are we really supposed to think that this is terrible problem? Its a
    bit like John Edwards mythical child whose family couldnt afford a coat.

    (And before you ask, yes, I have spent many years in poverty, including living on benefits, and in London too. Im not saying its an easy life by any means. But this cant afford a fridge or a coat stuff just doesnt wash).

  32. @ ironman
    Try doing what I do. Help. And it’s help people often need rather than the money. Couple hours of time & trouble can be worth more than a couple of hundred.

  33. “Often they dont have any chums, helpful or other wise. Its a sad, lonely, difficult life.”

    She must, once upon a time, have had a partner (or maybe two).

    Why should the state (in the form of the taxpayer/fakecharity) step up if he didn’t?

    Sorry, but I don’t go to work to provide for the feckless.

  34. (Bugger, it did it again.)
    Just got a lass a 150km up the road with her kid & everything she owned. She starts work Monday in a country with 28% unemployment.
    Fuel cost 50€ & we stocked the larder for another 20. There’s just no way that could’ve happened without a helping hand.

  35. Julia
    It’s not always the chick’s fault. Believe me. I’m a man. I know about these things.

  36. Ian B,
    I have a CRB monitor, perfect working order, I’ll flog it to you for £112 pounds, including postage, I will use half the money to buy this poor, hard done by lady another fridge, just in case the one she has been gifted by ‘save the cheeeeldrin’ breaks and the rest I will spend on posting you a monolithic but well working computer monitor.
    Me x

  37. This is how I once got a tumble drier across London – and via the tube too:
    http://wilmanequip.co.uk/wp-content/uploads/fishing-trolley.jpg

    But the point of this story was that she needed the fridge to store medicines, which doesn’t need much room, and there are easily carriable fridges for sale for very little money.

    The bigger problem is what do we do about all these clueless people in society.

    Do we try to push them into being a bit more capable, or do we accept that they can’t cope and go back to a workhouse system where they will be looked after and given some simple work to do in return?

    What is nonsense is expecting someone to cope in an increasingly bureaucratic society when they can’t even manage to get a free or cheap fridge in London.

  38. Jeez, Richard, why don’t you just stop & think for a minute. Unless they’ve been Christening girls Dick recently, something tells me your not a 50kg chick with a couple of kids in tow. Who’s unlikely to know anyone with a stack-barrow or could afford to buy one & a fridge. And probably couldn’t yank the ensemble up onto a tube train or have enough strength to control the thing. That’s apart from those nasty little words in TfL’s conditions of use. “Travellers luggage is carried at the discretion of TfL” Great fun, turning up at the station & some jobsworth won’t let her past the barrier, So she’s stuck at Embankment with a fridge & trolley.
    Of course, I’m tempted to agree there’s an element of John Edwards/coat/tearjerker about the tale but I also know how easy it is for people to slip through the safety nets there are. Getting a Benefit Loan’s not as easy as it sounds. Even if you know it’s available or how to apply. The people who run the various social services are most definitely not the most helpful people on earth unless you know your rights & how to push.
    It’s because people like Danielle are vulnerable & helpless they stay vulnerable & helpless, while toerags from unspecified foreign climbs screw the system for everything it’s got.
    And don’t start me on that. I could write a book, from personal experience.

  39. @bloke in spain: its not my fault either (I didnt get her pregnant or introduce her to an unsuitable or unreliable sperm donor) so why should I support her?

  40. One aspect being ignored here is the question of what the made-up mother was doing with the extra money that had already been given to her to buy the things that her son required. Benefits would be fairly generous if they were just to be spent on food, electricity, and other short-term needs, but in fact they include a component for things like, ooh, I don’t know, buying a fridge.

  41. Bloke in spain

    Just so you know: I take disabled, elderly and infirm people on a week’s holiday every year. That is their holiday; not mine. I clean them, wash them, feed them and I pay for the privilege.
    Now, I asked a question, would you happen to have an answer?

  42. Dave’s quite right. I’ve seen the comprehensive list of stuff has to be provided to “asylum seekers” (for a catch-all term) being set up in a home. Runs to pages. Theoretically our Danielle should be entitled to most of it, if she can’t provide for herself. But does she know? Does anyone in the “system” care?

  43. I’ve just bought a new fridge to replace a fridge freezer. Delivered yesterday and they took the old one away for free. The freezer was buggered, but the fridge worked, she could’ve had mine, I’d even have driven it up for her.
    I still have the drawers ( thought they might come in useful ) if she wants them.

  44. JuliaM: Because one day, it might be you. That’s the point of the state welfare system. You can disagree on the implementation details but I for one am damn glad that it exists in some form.

  45. Just to clarify, earlier in the thread I lied. Shipping cost was £85.52 inc vat. I just checked.

    Still a lot though.

  46. Incidentally, you’d be surprised how hard it is to find homes for free fridges. The day job involved stripping out innumerable kitchens, so we had serviceable appliances coming out of our ears. A lot of charities won’t take them because anything electrical has to have a test certificate before resale. If it turns out duff, they’re stuck with appropriate disposal. Even transporting stuff in the van can be problematic, because there’s a licence required to carry “waste”. Getting pulled over on a spot check & being suspected of heading off fly-tipping’s not much fun. (Thank the EU for regulation & landfill taxes.) There are organisations pass the stuff on to people like our Danielle but they’re not exactly a bundle of fire. They want to collect at very much their convenience & expect you to warehouse the stuff in a small flat for a week for them. Then not show up. The reconditioners would always take the good stuff, of course. Give you £5 for a cooker, with much sucking of teeth & it’d be in the shop for £150, the next day.

  47. suppose, for the sake of argument, that a significant proportion of poor people (in rich countries) are in the position they are because they are stupid and lack initiative.

    what’s the policy conclusion? that they deserve their situation and should be left to it?

  48. Luis Enrique,

    Obviously we do not leave them to it. We offer lots of services – housing , benefits, support. And clearly we dont offer that much – I couldnt possibly survive on benefits or even median household income. So it isnt that we are being overly generous, but at the same time, we know that we are feeding a poverty of aspiration.

    I dont have a good solution for this. Better education? More help for problem families? An end to the entitlement culture? One wonders how the Nordics dealt with this.

  49. One wonders how the Nordics dealt with this.

    By having teeny tiny populations. Many people (on both sides of the spectrum) tend to forget that, when lauding the Scandiwegian approach. Norway, for example, has lakes and lakes of oil and a population of three, if you include Colin* the dachshund.

    *or H

  50. “ken // Mar 20, 2013 at 5:39 pm

    Luis Enrique,

    Obviously we do not leave them to it. We offer lots of services

  51. Sam

    Their populations are small, but not that small. If you look at deprivation in Scotland, which has a similar sized population, population size doesnt seem to matter. One answer put forward by polsci people was the homogeneity of the society and increased burden sharing (not much empirical support btw for this one). Another that is put forward is the Nordics use of Eugenic based sterlisation programs during the mid-20th C. (not large enough in my view).

  52. So Much for Subtlety

    I really hate this software.

    bloke in spain – “It-s not always the chick-s fault. Believe me. I-m a man. I know about these things.”

    Actually it is always the chick-s fault and almost never the man-s. I guess that is really politically incorrect these days, but it is true. There can be no responsibility without some, well, responsibility. Men are held responsible even though they are not. They have to pay if they are raped – children under 18 have been held liable for fathering a child. They have to pay if their insane ex-wife broke into their sperm bank and stole their seed. They have to pay if they agreed to one sex act that could not lead to reproduction, but the woman used the semen to get pregnant anyway.

    What is more, women have control of their bodies. They can choose abortions. They can choose to give the baby away. In both cases without even telling the biological father.

    So given men have no input into the situation worth a damn, there is no reason to think they are or should be responsible for the outcome.

    49 bloke in spain – “something tells me your not a 50kg chick with a couple of kids in tow.”

    There are no 50 kg chicks with a couple of kids in tow in London. Not one. A couple may be as low as 150 kg, if they skipped breakfast, perhaps, up the far end of the Northern Line, but even they are rare.

    “Who-s unlikely to know anyone with a stack-barrow or could afford to buy one & a fridge.”

    She knows enough men to have a couple of kids but she doesn-t know any well enough to ask them to help her with a mini-bar fridge? Well, perhaps she should not f**k boys who cannot be relied on to move a damn fridge to save her son-s life?

    55 andrew adams – “No one is forcing you to donate to Save The Children.”

    I bet they are. What percentage of their dosh comes from the government these days? By the Ritchie-Leftist definition we all are too as they get a tax rebate for donations.

    57 Matthew L – “Because one day, it might be you. That’s the point of the state welfare system. You can disagree on the implementation details but I for one am damn glad that it exists in some form.”

    Then you are putting the chances you may want to get knocked up with three sprogs by four different fathers ahead of the welfare of girls who do get knocked up with three sprogs by four different fathers. The purpose of the welfare system must be to make people better off. This girl does not look like she is better off to me. This is the road that leads to Baby P. By all means, let us have a safety net. But one that is a path out of poverty, not a trap to keep people there. And not one that does not reward behaviour that is self destructive. Someone who loses a leg, sure, there but for the Grace of God etc etc. Someone who chooses to have children without a present father? Not so much.

    63 Luis Enrique – “what’s the policy conclusion? that they deserve their situation and should be left to it?”

    No they should be paid a lot of money so that they have many children, and people on the borderline of competence give up and join them, so that the middle class becomes an ever declining minority in a sea of morons.

    69 ken – “Another that is put forward is the Nordics use of Eugenic based sterlisation programs during the mid-20th C. (not large enough in my view).”

    We will come around to this solution in the end. Either the government will do it for us, or the Gods of the Copybook will assert themselves and Nature will take its course. I guess the latter is more liberal.

    We could try a little more judgement and a lot less understanding?

  53. @SMfS
    I’d be the last one to be a cheerleader for feminofascism, but sorry, to blame single mums exclusively for their own misfortune’s going a bit far.
    I know what I was like in my 20s & faithful wasn’t part of it. If things had broken differently, could easily have had a bride & a sprog. But it wouldn’t have lasted. Sit at home watching TV every night in the smell of nappies? I’m wasn’t good marriage material. Wouldn’t have stopped me kidding myself I was though. Or some poor chick believing me until I started not coming home nights. Blame culture, upbringing, what you like. A lot of blokes are damned irresponsible. I was, I know.

  54. So Much For Subtlety

    bloke in spain – “I’d be the last one to be a cheerleader for feminofascism, but sorry, to blame single mums exclusively for their own misfortune-s going a bit far.”

    Why? This seems to be an unfortunate reminant of Victorian piety that deems all men cads and all women angels, mixed with, as you say, something like femo-fascism. But in reality, who has any say in this situation except the woman in question? If someone makes really bad choices with no input from anyone else, who is to blame?

    “I know what I was like in my 20s & faithful wasn-t part of it. If things had broken differently, could easily have had a bride & a sprog. But it wouldn-t have lasted.”

    But you would not have got a leg over if some generous young woman did not agree to it. You would not have had a child if she did not decide to carry it to term – even if you wanted to do the right thing and were willing and able to look after it, she could kill it without reference to you. As for it lasting, who knows? But given that women make most of the decisions to end marriages, even that is largely in her control as it turns out.

    “I-m wasn-t good marriage material.”

    So who in their right mind would sleep with you? Who is to blame if some girl is not in her right mind?

    “A lot of blokes are damned irresponsible. I was, I know.”

    Sure. And in most sane cultures a lot of pressure is put on men to behave otherwise. Not for us though. Cheap sex and easy divorce means men are no longer shamed for not doing the decent thing. Most sane cultures also tell girls to wait for sex to make sure he is worth it. We do not do that either.

    So men have no obligations except to pay money. They have no control over any of the circumstances or decisions. Therefore they have no responsibility except to pay money. The burden lies entirely on the women who choose to have children with irresponsible men. Which is nice for us as individual men, but a disaster for us as a civilisation. See Detroit, or London 2050 as I like to call it.

  55. Of course it’s very important to apportion blame between the mother and father, before we get on with punishing the child.

    They have to pay if their insane ex-wife broke into their sperm bank and stole their seed.

    Perhaps SMFS would provide a link to this story. Or perhaps he’s making stuff up, as usual.

  56. So Much For Subtlety

    PaulB – “Of course it-s very important to apportion blame between the mother and father, before we get on with punishing the child.”

    Like Baby P? The welfare system you support creates such parents. The fault is with those that encourage such women to have such children with such men. Nothing I do or say would come close.

    “Perhaps SMFS would provide a link to this story.”

    Sure. Why not?

    http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/uknews/8544783/Woman-had-two-children-after-secretly-taking-ex-husbands-frozen-sperm.html

    The 57-year-old man had stored his sperm at a world famous fertility clinic after being told drug treatment for arthritis could make him infertile.

    But two months after they separated, he says his former wife, 51, forged his signature and used her

  57. So Much For Subtlety

    PaulB – “Of course it-s very important to apportion blame between the mother and father, before we get on with punishing the child.”

    Like Baby P? The welfare system you support creates such parents. The fault is with those that encourage such women to have such children with such men. Nothing I do or say would come close.

    “Perhaps SMFS would provide a link to this story.”

    Sure. Why not?

    http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/uknews/8544783/Woman-had-two-children-after-secretly-taking-ex-husbands-frozen-sperm.html

    The 57-year-old man had stored his sperm at a world famous fertility clinic after being told drug treatment for arthritis could make him infertile.

    But two months after they separated, he says his former wife, 51, forged his signature and used her [25,000 pound] divorce settlement to give birth to a son and daughter through IVF at the Bourn Hall Clinic, Cambridge.

    The man only found out about the children three years later when his ex-wife-s sister phoned to say his son was critically ill in hospital. By then he had remarried and had two other children.

    In 2007, the same judge who ruled in their first divorce hearing, ordered the man to pay his ex-wife [100,000 pounds], on the grounds that the previous settlement did not take the two children into account.

    Take a moment to saviour the insanity of that last bit. The man is being held liable for children that he did not want, he did not agree to have, that he did not know of – and his divorce settlement was overturned to take into account the two children who did not even exist at the time his divorce came down.

    “Or perhaps he-s making stuff up, as usual.”

    Ahh, Paul, this is so sad it is not even worth getting annoyed about. It is pure Butthurt. No doubt you can console yourself with the comforting lie that you do not lose arguments so often because you are an ignorant prat, but in the end, it is not going to help. You are just out classed. Accept it and move on.

    Which you promised to do by the way. Why are you still here?

  58. Paul, you’re nitpicking. “Broke in” is a reasonable conversational approximation for gaining access by forgery. SMFS has the issue correct; arguing about specific language is just a diversionary tactic.

  59. Oh fuck off Paul. The ‘term ‘ broke in’ is commonly used where access is gained illegitimately. A company’s computer system can be ‘broken into” from another continent without physically smashing the data centre’s window.
    As a sperm bank isn’t a “bank” in any real way it’s perfectly OK to talk about “breaking into ” it, in a non-real way.
    Tit!

  60. Anyway, while Paul mithers, the basic problem is that the legislation is written with an implicit assumption that a man can only father a child by either conscious choice or negligence, so is always liable; the result being that responsibility is defined simply by the presence of the man’s DNA in the child. There is simply no provision for the possibility that a woman can impose fatherhood on a man against his will. There has also been at least one case of a woman fishing a used condom out of a wastebin, impregnating herself with its contents and, again, the man being found liable for child support.

    Here’s an interesting further thought; it would certainly be theoretically feasible to create a child from the DNA in any cell. So, when that becomes easily available, will a man be liable for child support if a woman (who he may not even have a relationship with) uses a shed skin or hair cell?

    It’s also worth noting that union feminism actively campaigns against men having the right to paternity test children. As such, men can be held liable for child support for a child that they suspect is not theirs, but for whom they cannot gain consent for a DNA test.

  61. Re- the welfare state. There seems to be the assumption in those that are supporting what we are lumbered with, that “before” this country was like a jungle. I dare say it was not.

    And I am pretty sure that Beveridge and co did not have in mind what it has become, which is a huge bureaucracy mostly devoted to increase its size. It is also interesting to note that those same supporters mention that the system is too complicated for simpletons like this woman (if she exists) when I would have thought that these people are precisely the target audience.

    Last time I checked, this welfare state costs me 100s of thousand of pounds in the last 25 years, either directly via taxes or indirectly via inflation and opportunity costs (see Bastiat, or as was mentioned before, increasing poverty of aspiration for example) without me having any say in whether I wanted it or not. So to say that one should be glad it is there is a moot point.

    This woman (if she exists) is a moron.

  62. One thing Beveridge had in mind was eugenics. In a speech to the British Uegenics Society (now The Galton INstitute) he explained that child benefit was supposed to reduce the breeding of the Residuum; it was noted that wealthier women had fewer babies than poor ones. Ergo, if you give women money they have fewer babies. Ergo, give money to the poor their breeding rate will be reduced.

    That worked out well then.

  63. Strikes me the whole problem starts end of the century before last with the suffragette movement. Seem to remember a discussion about this here. How wonderful it was women got the vote & were admitted tom higher education. (was this PaulB?)
    Big deal for the middle class intelligentsia!
    Working class people. didn’t do so well out of it. Their women weren’t likely to be going to Oxford. And they didn’t vote according to what sex they were. They voted for what was best for them or their families. So it really didn’t matter whether it was one vote cast by the man. Or one by the wife as well. What was she going to vote for? Employment rights or women? She was already working. With no option.
    But what you have seen is all the failings of the middle class intelligentsia visited on the poor. Lack of work ethic. Adultery. That it’s OK to screw the housemaid without thought of the consequences. Except the housemaid’s yer mate’s sister.

  64. bis: I don’t recall such a discussion, but certainly I think men should have the same rights to vote as women, and the same opportunities to be admitted to university.

    It’s a pity that this woman lacks the initiative to get herself a fridge without help from a charity, but I very much doubt that’s because her energies have been sapped by university study and the rigours of the democratic process.

  65. Possibly not Paul but I do see in you a victim of the academic intelligentsia.
    It couldn’t be natural.

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