The Homeless and Middle Class Welfare …..
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Yesterday there were three mid-twenties homeless people sitting at intervals along the Acland Street shopping strip, all with hand written signs saying they were homeless and hungry; it seems to me that the number of young people begging is increasing!
It isn't reasonable to say that it's their choice, although it may be the result of choices they've made in the past. One of the good things about the Buddha Dharma is that it never allows you to ask, why me? You get the results of what you have done, not as punishment or reward but simply as part of the Law of Cause and Effect.
If you want to know what you did in past lives look at what is happening in your present life. If you want to know what will happen in the next life, look at what you are doing now. So there's no point putting it back on the homeless, for whatever reasons it wasn't always their deliberate choice to end up where they are now; but now they need help, particularly the young ones, to stop their condition becoming permanent.
Like everyone I'm wary of healthy looking panhandlers asking for my spare change, but every time I ignore them I think to myself that it would be better to be wrong than ignore a person in real need.
A recent survey found that less than one per cent of available rental flats are affordable for singles on social security benefits; and as well as being unaffordable, there is also a grave shortage.
The aim of negative gearing of rental properties was to increase the pool of low rent accommodation. Taxpayers claimed net losses of almost $8 billion on rental properties under the negative gearing provision in 2010-11, and this concession means less tax income for all the other genuine social needs. There has been a failure to follow Churchill's axiom that 'However beautiful the strategy one should occasionally look at the results!'
Negative gearing simply hasn't worked and should be abandoned; Click on Publications to read my earlier article 'To Sin by Silence'.
This problem is not going to go away unless we all do something to help, so I propose to keep coming back on this.
Don Gazzard LFAIA