On the news recently was an item about the rise in the minimum wage and the potentially negative impact it was probably going to have on social care in this country as the increased wage bill would push some care providers out of business.
I’m more a little cynical when it comes to the “poor us” outcry of some of the larger companies who run these places. Care workers are notoriously badly paid (along with many other worthy professions) and I have to wonder whether, rather than these companies just saying “we can’t afford it” is whether the subtext is “we can’t make enough profit out of it any more”. I doubt very much whether many (if any) of these companies are altruistic in nature and providing these services at cost. Let’s face it – the Altar of Money is a mighty powerful one and the love for it by the vast majority makes me think that the side order of profit is one which many feel that they are unable to live without.
Let’s just stop for a moment and think:
“… the love of money is the root of all evil …”
Most of the time this is misquoted as “money is the root of all evil”. Slight misquote there then. Or is it? That usually gives rise to the response: “… but money makes the world go round”. Hmm… well, yes I guess it does. But should it? I’m not a conspiracy theorist – I just think a lot. Maybe the misquote has arisen so that it can be relatively easily dismissed, by most, as nonsense. Of course money’s not evil! You need it to survive in this world. It’s the all-powerful, utterly necessary thing that none of us can live without but if you really think about the “love of money”, it really does start to make a little more sense. To me at least.
We all know that it is, in fact, possible to live without money in theory but most of us wouldn’t want to do it in practice. We’ve got used to a comfortable existence and having the concept that you earn money to the pay the bills to be able to afford your house, car, clothes, food and any other fripperies that may come to mind and every year we need a pay rise to be able to improve, to afford to buy more or (for some of us) to be able to afford to stay at the same level of comfort we currently enjoy.
I am actually paid less now than I was 15 years ago. I’m not talking about “in real terms”. I’m talking about the amount of money that lands in my bank account at the end of every month. As is to be expected, I don’t have the same level of disposable income that I had 15 years ago, but I’m content. I’m very lucky in the sense that I can afford to pay my bills every month and (as long as it’s not too frequent) can cope with the odd unexpected expenditure without going overdrawn. I can’t afford to go on holiday and have to think very carefully about trips anywhere but it doesn’t bother me. I’ve got to the stage in my life where I’m happy with the stuff that I’ve got.
I’ve finally got to the stage where I want all I have instead of having all I want (which I don’t want any more)
I roused myself from the sleepwalk of bigger, better, faster, improved, house, car, things, clothes treadmill and stepped off, choosing to free myself of the chains of perceived improvement and the older I get, the more annoyed I get with the constant silent chant of “got to have more money this year than last year” and “got to make more profit this year than last”. Try as I might, I cannot get my head around the world’s economies being reliant on a load of overgrown children running around selling stocks and shares, capable of bringing the supposed civilised world crashing down around our ears through a few days of frantic selling and offloading of unprofitable stocks and shares. This just makes no sense to me.
I sometimes feel like I’m standing on the sidelines of a merry go round, watching it spin faster and faster and knowing that, sooner or later it’s going to spin so fast that something’s going to fly off and the whole thing will come down with a serious bang.
Oh hang on, didn’t it do that in 1929? And in 1987? And again in 2008?
I’m guessing the sticky tape and chewing gum used to put it all back together again is getting a little worn by now.