How governments in the West are stealing the expectations of those born in the distant Past, and stealing the Future of those born yesterday.
I posted this morning on the subject of an SPA reform in the UK mindlessly out of touch with social trends and moral responsibilities. It represents a case of trying to plug the hole in a dyke by using the blood of an innocent old guru unlucky enough to have been passing by.
Now look how – on a bigger canvas – the greedy neoliberal lie masquerading as an ideology is sucking the blood of youthful creativity by suggesting that getting paid next to nothing for giving up everything is the best they’re going to get.
This is one telling chart from the OECD about NEETS. These are the lucky people in neither employment or education…the blessèd folks with nothing to look forward to except occasional benefits of little or no real benefit:
If you look at the symbols representing NEET levels by the four gender/age groups above, the following realities are brutally portrayed by those social groups, by country, above and below the 20% proportion of the population:
- Plucky little Iceland has none of the NEET problems associated with EU/Banker/neoliberal run countries.
- Turkey – the most Islamist of the States shown above – has 45% of all 20-24 year old women learning nothing and getting zero commercial experience. (Turkey is a key NATO ally)
- All the ClubMed and peripheral EU countries – Portugal, Ireland, Greece, Spain, and Italy – have above average NEET levels.
- All the NordEurope States not subjected to barmy Berlin austerity have by far the lowest NEET problems.
- Spain, Italy and France have the most noticeable proportions of men aged 15-24 sitting idle. Any student of unrest and revolution will spot this as an immediate danger signal.
- Overall, the obvious bias against women is horrific: with the exception of Italy, men aged 15-24 hardly figure at all as NEETs above the 20% level. Everywhere from Latvia to Australia, NEET males are but 5% or less of the population. (Interestingly, in the UK it’s nearer 10%)
- Central and Southern America clearly have massive NEET problems – looking at the examples of Mexico, Colombia and Costa Rica, that’s obvious. For some reason, Brazil isn’t included on the chart: I wonder why this is, especially as the country has just embarked on a programme of massive neoliberalised economic privatisation….under pressure from US Dollar denominated debt.
All the countries undergoing ludicrous austerity have two glaring things in common: in every case, it is youthful idealism upon which the future depends that is being casually tossed ;overboard by the neoliberal pirates; and in every case, the old who bring the wisdom of experience to the table are being denied both a place (and the food) at that table.
Because many members of society are “vulnerable”, it doesn’t mean that they are horribly mentally disabled, physically at a disadvantage or simply idle – “unwilling to work” as the Tory Right (and many Blairites) would have us believe.
Almost always, they are vulnerable due to a passion, a selfless decision of sacrifice, a disinterest in things material, or a level of deference they were taught in the family home.
Such citizens – and most of them are the best citizens we have – are traditional mums, young doctors, unpaid and professional carers, pensioners, graduates, entrepreneurs in search of reliable finance, State school teachers, junior grade coppers, and public servants who still know the meaning of serving the public.
All of them are vulnerable. All of them should be – if they have the Right Stuff – invulnerable.
To repeat my plea of this morning: Britain – more than most Western countries – needs a VCA: a Vulnerable Citizens’ Alliance.
Not another political Party riddled with process-obsessed ideologists; rather, a closely coordinated pressure group bringing real, vote-losing facts to the electorate – in both articles and actions – where the main thing marked absent is naïve deference.