Monday, 29 September 2014

They, We, Them and Us.


OK, enough pussy-footing around and playing at penny-pinching then posting like you're some sort of saint when you claim to do without a bottle of wine in the name of charity - I've had enough of it and this blog is about to get back to the real basics - back to how it used to be in the previous century! If you don't like it, don't read it, SIMPLE!

When your earned income dictates that you fall below the Government’s definition of poverty, it can get really frustrating!
290914_thumbnailFrugaldom, as well as now being a real place, is the act of living a frugal, thrifty or austere lifestyle at nobody's expense except your own. We have no problems with sharing our surplus or helping support one another. How we source our income, spend our income and live our lives is our own business. Sharing the wherewithal to pursue such an existence is paramount to the success of frugaldom and it is a project that means the world to me - it is my world!
In the mid-80's, many of us were forced to learn the hard and fast way of budgeting to within a penny of bankruptcy and homelessness. By the 90's, many of us were still licking our wounds and struggling to climb back out of debt and take full control of our finances after some very turbulent times of society unrest, disillusionment and what many perceived as injustice. But we survived. Just like generations before us, through wars, famines and enforced displacement. Do we learn from it? I'm not sure! One thing I am sure of is that everyone has the capacity to learn in their own way and we all do it in different ways. Academics is not the only way!
In 1998, NYK, which, in this case, stands for 'Now You Know', established its first official challenge, not simply about money but about sharing a mutual goal, whether it be arts, crafts or writing. Most would agree that securing a guaranteed, long term income as a writer (or artist) was a dream that came true for only the chosen few. But we pooled our talents and we said 'do or be damned'. Our voices counted, no matter how much bullying and intimidation was experienced.
Some of us learned the lesson of the past and that lesson was self-responsibility, with the added security of knowing that help would be at hand to support us if we fell below a certain line. Despite the billions of pounds of debt being accrued each year by Government spending, the safety net would remain... or so we thought! We were walking a financial tight rope - we still are - except the safety net is shrinking. Sadly, for some it seems to have vanished completely. But surely the question shouldn't be, "What are 'they' going to do about it?" Surely, the question should be, "How can we help?"

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