Less… is still enough!
The collective wealth of all the Belgian people is more than 2.000 billion euro (De Tijd). The 10 richest families together own almost half of all that wealth (Knack). Yearly in Europe – and you read it correctly – we throw away 590.000.000 ( five hundred and ninety million) tons of food. 20 % of all young people between 13 and 20 years of age regularly think about suicide (Enquiry National Youth Service).
Are you still following?
Is each one of us not a prisoner of conventions, caught in material things and that what is on the surface? Are the energy we invest in production and the effort we make in order to consume, not out of proportion?
In the middle of progressive thinking the question arises about what proof we need to realise that some thing or other is getting out of hand? To put it in a different way: what else has to happen to us before we come to an insight ? Usually it is difficult to admit that to have ‘more’ and ‘property’ are addictive. With (a little) less it would become quite difficult for some. For the poor without doubt, because they always live with ‘less’.
Professions without borders
This is a televsion programme in which professional people from here go and cooperate with colleagues in far away countries. At the end of their trip, filled with experiences, each one of them nearly always has the same reaction:
“Do we really realise what a good life we have in Belgium”?
Confronted with shortage and poverty, ‘people that have a lot’ get to know the inner side of ‘people with less’. The encounter is very emotional and touching. It is ‘enrichment’ that they receive from these ‘poor’ people. Who helps who?
Someone said it as follows:
“Since I live with less, I do not feel the shortage, but rather have the experience of ‘more'”.
Or less is more … or at least enough!
- Capitalism and economic policy and Christian survey
- Materialism, would be life, and aspirations
- Capitalism downfall
- Increasing wealth gap of immense proportions in the Capitalist World
- Self inflicted misery #1 The root by man
- European Year for combating poverty spurred mobilisation and commitment
- Yad Vashem: Remembering the Past, Shaping the Future
- Catherine Ashton on the EU annual report on human rights
- Looking to the East and the West for Truth
- Welfare state and Poverty in Flanders #1 Up to 21st century
- Welfare state and Poverty in Flanders #2 First two decennia of 21st century
- Welfare state and Poverty in Flanders #3 Right to Human dignity
- Welfare state and Poverty in Flanders #4 The Family pact
- Welfare state and Poverty in Flanders #5 Housing
- Welfare state and Poverty in Flanders #6 Transport factor of immobilising financial growth
- Welfare state and Poverty in Flanders #7 Education
- Welfare state and Poverty in Flanders #8 Work
- Welfare state and Poverty in Flanders #9 Consumption
- Welfare state and Poverty in Flanders #10 Health
- Welfare state and Poverty in Flanders #11 Participation
- Welfare state and Poverty in Flanders #12 Conclusion
- Poverty and measurement
- Poverty placed in history
- 1985-2012 Poverty in Europe
- 2014 Economics
- Poverty and conservative role patterns
- Ability for a community to come back from a crisis
- Bleak forecasts for children in the UK
- Violence against disabled children
- Anti-Crisis anger calling out
- A risk taking society
- Securing risks
- Green Claims in Europe
- A Snippet of Advice on Cultural Analysis
- The natural beauties of life
- Problems by losing the borders
- Migrants to the West #3
- US poverty worse than previous recessions
- Nearly 50 million poor North Americans
- Expanding opportunities for more American families
- Subcutaneous power for humanity 5 Loneliness, Virtual and real friends
- Depression Is and When
- High time to review the right to keep and bear arms
- Your struggles develop your strengths
- If we, in our prosperity, neglect religious instruction and authority
- From Winterdarkness into light of Spring
- Reflect on how much idolizing happens
- Message of Pope Francis I for the 48th World Communications Day
- Pope Francis says Catholics must become evangelisers
- Full text of Pope Francis’ Interview with ‘La Vanguardia’
- When we love we do not need laws
- Catholicism, Anabaptism and Crisis of Christianity
- Being Religious and Spiritual 1 Immateriality and Spiritual experience
- Being Religious and Spiritual 8 Spiritual, Mystic and not or well religious
- All I want is peace!!!
- The Observer view on London’s wealth gap (theguardian.com)
Striking new figures show that the proportion of households classified as either poor or wealthy has grown across the country in recent decades, leaving a shrinking middle. But it is in London that the trend is by far the most pronounced.
London is now a city of contradictions. It is the richest part of the country, but also its most unequal, with the highest levels of poverty. It is home to some of the world’s most expensive real estate, but has the highest proportion of renters of any area of the country, many of whom are locked out of home ownership. It has some of the world’s best teaching hospitals, but suffers from profound health inequalities.
- The Richest Have Never Been Richer: US Household Assets Rise To Record $97 Trillion (As The Poor Get Poorer) (infiniteunknown.net)
In Q4 US household net worth jumped by $1.5 trillion to $82.9 trillion, driven by a rise in total assets to $97.1 trillion, even as the long awaited increase in “good debt”, that of mortgage debt, remains elusive and Mortgage debt hasn’t budged from $9.4 trillion in 8 quarters
- In Europe, Parents’ Dismay as Syria Jihad Lures Troubled Teens (voanews.com)
As Belgium braces for a verdict in Europe’s biggest trial of those accused of fostering Islamist violence in Syria, much attention is on poor Muslim immigrant communities’ struggle in a region blighted by youth unemployment.
But for parents in Antwerp, a city on high alert since the Charlie Hebdo massacre in Paris and police raids on Belgian jihadists, Wednesday’s ruling by judges there may never explain why their two sporty teenagers, with no Muslim heritage, abandoned comfortable homes to take up arms in the Middle East.
- Thousands of Belgians protest against austerity measures (worldbulletin.net)
About 10,000 people have gathered in the Belgian capital of Brussels to protest against the center-right government’s “austerity” measures.
Workers and labor unions said on Wednesday they had been angered by austerity measures being imposed by Belgium’s new center-right government, which include a two-year extension to the age of retirement, cuts in spending on healthcare and delays to the indexation of wages in relation to prices.
Between 8,000 and 10,000 people attended the demonstration, local media reported, where protesters held banners reading “No Poverty” and fired smoke flares at a square in central Brussels.
Belgium’s four-party coalition government under Prime Minister Charles Michel, which took office on October 11, has also pledged to cut corporation tax from 33 percent to 25 percent.
- Poverty in Germany reaches a record high (counterinformation.wordpress.com)
“Poverty in Germany has not only reached a new record high, it has also threatened the country with disintegration into disparate regions.” Thus begins the annual poverty report of the German Federation of Welfare Associations.
Although the economy has grown slightly and unemployment is relatively low, the poverty rate in Germany has increased; it has been rising almost continuously since 2006 and now stands at 15.5 percent. This means that about 12.5 million adults exist on less than €845 per month as unmarried persons or less than €1,873 in a family with two children.
- Many foreigners escape fines on Belgian roads (deredactie.be)
Xpats.com’s Robyn Boyle says that at present more often than not it’s only motorists from France, the Netherlands, Germany and Luxembourg that have to pay a fine, if they commit a traffic offence in Belgium.
- 2 suspected Islamic recruiters arrested in Belgium (whitenewsnow.com)
Belgium has been one of Western Europe’s nations to furnish the large numbers of foreign fighters in Syria relative to population size.
- A Wealth Tax for California? (sandiegofreepress.org)
California has one of the highest poverty rates in the nation. According to the U.S. Census Bureau’s main poverty measure, 16.8 percent of all Californians and 23.5 percent of the state’s children lived in poverty in 2013. Yet it also has the most billionaires in the country: 111. The state’s 33,900 millionaire taxpayers (just .2 percent of the state’s taxpayers) have combined incomes of $104 billion. According to the California Budget Project, California has the seventh widest income gap between rich and poor among the 50 states, ranking between Alabama and Texas.
- Belgian coin spat awakens ghosts of Waterloo for the French (trib.com)
Belgium is looking to change a commemorative Waterloo coin to an unofficial value of 3 euros ($3.18) to avoid what it called opposition from France. Coining unofficial values do not need backing from other countries in the 19-nation eurozone.
- Microcredit Today: The Shift from Lending to Savings (mint.com)
Increasingly, the world’s poor are able to securely borrow small amounts of money through microfinance institutes. This is proving to be an essential element of growth for poor or rural populations and their businesses.