Day 221: Are Canada’s Poor Just Lazy? Creating A ‘Living Income’ for Canada: Part 3

homelessPlease refer to ‘Do We have a True Democracy in Canada’ Part 1 and Part 2

From part 1:  Whether it be a little to the left or a little to the right, none of them (political parties) ever implement significant life changing policies/programs to the millions of middle income/lower income families who struggle to make ends meet, day in and day out!

‘True north strong and free…’ These words are sung out daily in Canada’s national anthem. But are they true? Sure, if you have money but if you are like most living in Canada, struggling to just pay your bills/not drown in debt, there is little strength or freedom.It just sounds nice, so should we keep singing? Why don’t we stand up and declare ’till here no further’ to the growing inequality gap–change the system so we can sing those words for real!
PROBLEM 2
So, are poor people just lazy? If you give them a guaranteed living income, won’t they just lie around all day and feed off of us productive, diligent citizens?There is a preposterous fallacy that has circulated for years and it is time to put it to rest: Giving money to people will make the lazy/apathetic/not contribute to society. People will quit work and have more babies. Oh sure, this may happen to some for awhile but eventually you will get bored and want to get up and contribute. If one has mental and physical stability/health he or she will naturally want to participate in life, some work some play. If someone is mentally and /or physically challenged they still may want to contribute/work but may also require assistance. I realize in Canada, we do have some financial assistance programs in place but it nonetheless keeps the poor poor (there are exceptions ie. someone receives assistance of some kind for awhile, and they are not lower income individuals, but this is not what I am addressing in this blog). Let’s get real, how do you live a dignified life, an enjoyable life, a relatively stress free healthy life on $10/hour? You don’t.

I have lived with little/no money and I have lived with enough money, so I will use my life experience here as an example.

Living with Little/No Money:

When I was struggling financially I felt under constant stress and this stress built up inside, day after day, it accumulated. I got depressed and wanted to SLEEP MORE, which did not mean I was lazy but I was exhausted from the pressure and needed to hide/escape, each day the bills arrived, then the debt collectors would call, I would often lie (because the collectors would pressure me to commit to a payment date) and loose track of my stories, what I had said to whom, I became more and more fearful when the phone rang, I feared the electricity being turned off and the huge re-connection fee, I feared horribly loosing my home for my children, I used alcohol to relieve some of the tension, I talked inside my head constantly about how I could scrimp here and manipulate there to get by the next few days, I would nap during the day to pass the time because the day felt hopeless and I was often sick with a hangover, I would make mental and physical lists of debt-bills, I would call relatives-sometimes friends-to borrow money, usually I would use alcohol before the call to create some liquid courage, I would talk inside my head to justify this and then (as time went on and I was having trouble seeing how I could repay them) I would talk to another character in my mind about how mean rich people were (why didn’t they just call me and say the debt was forgiven? Afterall, they have lots.) then I would suppress the deep shame and remorse I experienced by using more alcohol and sleeping pills because I knew my situation was largely of my own making, I would make a little extra money here and there but it was never enough, so I would dream of winning the lottery every night before sleep and fantasize about taking my kids on a vacation or filling the christmas tree with presents, I would try to earn more but the vicious wheel of poverty had begun to turn and I found I was not able, I became more and more incapable to think with clarity/common sense/see my situation for what it was, all I saw was hopelessness if I looked ahead but mostly that was too difficult so I focused on getting through one day, I was getting sicker because of excessive drinking, a daily pattern developed: feeling down, using alcohol for a little ‘treat’/pick me up, being hung over and needing to sleep more to recover, feeling dazed and confused, starting to feel a little better so getting stuff done, feeling some determination and hope, finally being mentally clear enough to look at/face reality as in the mess-bills /debt/what I could not give my children/memories of past mistakes, then falling back into sadness/hopelessness…so by late afternoon/evening picking up another drink and round and round we go.

391789_10150423519021275_578586274_8957014_217698180_nLiving with Enough Money:

Life is completely different. There occurs the opposite, as in an upward spiral of personal strength building day by day. My mind is no longer consumed with constant fear, I have space/some ease ‘peace’ to be able to slow down and consider options/choices, make thoughtful decisions with care/awareness, I do not have to spend my time counting pennies to be able to afford the milk for the week or considering who to call to borrow $50 to get by just to have to pay them back and be short the next week, I can choose to purchase better quality food items /clothing items for myself and my family, I can live without the shame of not affording dental care for myself and my family, I have the stability to be able to choose healthy alternatives to using harmful substances-for example attend an AA meeting (alcoholics anonymous) go for a walk, enjoy a movie- if and when I need a break from daily responsibilities, I can pay my bills instead of make lists of debt, I can re-pay people who loaned me money in the past and stand with dignity again in my life, I get up in the morning with ease and clarity regarding the day ahead, I move with physical stability to accomplish tasks to completion and not fall into a tired/depressed state, I am able to look outward to see what needs to be done within the world/humanity as I am stable within, I am much more productive/empowered/competent within my personal and business relationships and responsibilities.

Thus, as you can see from this one example, the truth is the opposite. If/when people are financially stable they have the opportunity to become more productive within their home and their world, whether they are a homemaker or business person. It is when we are continually broke/fearful that we get worn down, desperation leads to fear which builds and creates a downward spiral of poor decision making and can lead to illness/addiction or even murder/suicide.

Whereas, when one feels secure, safe, like life has some control and stability, you often feel energized /full of life and hope, there exists a mental space to pause and consider where your focus would be most productive. Indeed, you are free to live a life of dignity and health, fulfilling the promise in the Canadian anthem, with all Canadians provided a LIVING INCOME we can truly all live ‘strong and free’.

To continue, expanding on the solution

c2d29-liglogo_thumb25255b525255d Check out the Bill of Rights @ the Equal Life Foundation – a comprehensive approach to our Co-existence to ensure the Right to Life,

Freedom and Dignity for All.

Check out the Living Income Guaranteed – with solutions that can be established in this lifetime to end the disaster of a profit driven system.
Check out the FREE Downloadables at EQAFE! Educational series with Insights and Practical Support.

 

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