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How much on Ice Cream and Pets when so many starving??

(43 Posts)
MamaMaiasaura Wed 20-Jul-05 10:46:32

This has arisen again and has been ignored. 35bn spent on pets in America and 10bn spent on ice cream in europe and all that has been requested is 30m. In this day and age why are children dying of hunger?? \link[http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/world/africa/4698943.stm\here}

I started a similar thread a while ago but this is such an important issue.

MamaMaiasaura Wed 20-Jul-05 10:46:59

here even

fqueenzebra Wed 20-Jul-05 10:49:50

never mind pets, what about having to buy & own many pairs of "shoes", this year's football strip, lottery tickets, New LCD tvs, computer games, etc.? The number of people I know with debt problems but who insist that they wouldn't have any quality of life if they didn't have SkyTV...I don't know where people's priorities are, either.

OOh, bet I'm in trouble now....

MamaMaiasaura Wed 20-Jul-05 10:54:10

I actually think you have a fair comment. I feel bad cos i am sat infront of a computer (££) in a relatively nice house (££) drinking coke (££) replying ot test message (££) wearing nice clothes ((££)). But whiat it is is that every month we have 3 dd's set up for £5 each to differnt charities. It isnt much i know but it is something. I am not suggesting people feel guilty for what they have but couldnt we all give a little like we did when the tsunami hit. At the end of the day a small amount each month could be equivalent ot a packet of cigarettes a bottle of wine trip to pictures.. etc.

Just a thought and maybe i am a relentless 'do gooder'

expatinscotland Wed 20-Jul-05 10:58:19

Well, we have two cats - both taken in as strays. We have Freeview, though. Yes, we have debts, but ALL of it is from the high cost of living v. our low wages - council tax arrears, even food after we lost our tax credits.

We have 3 jobs between us, but our rent, council tax and power are so straggeringly expensive - and before you say, move someplace cheaper!, please help us find jobs there, b/c we're trying - we're permanently scraping by. We buy all our clothes in charity shops, off Ebay or they're gifts. My daugher is clothed entirely by my parents, who are better off.

Haven't been on ANY sort of holiday in years. All of our furniture is from a charity shop, too.

I have to wear nice shoes to work to look presentable so I can make money to feed my family.

So I don't feel guilty about a tub of ice cream once a fortnight and a couple of cats we rescued.

QueenOfQuotes Wed 20-Jul-05 10:59:28

Good point.

However.

1. It's the goverments who give the UN aid money - not the people

2. People in those countries affected are also spending money on their pets and icecream (amongst other luxuries

3. Much of the aid given to these countries (via their goverments) does NOT reach the people it needs to reach

"However, the government has also sought to play down the scale of the crisis.

It has refused demands to distribute free food and has been criticised for not doing more to prepare for the food shortages."

fqueenzebra Wed 20-Jul-05 11:01:44

QoQ's point 3 is the one that really bothers me.

but have you spent £31,000 on shoes, Expat?

fqueenzebra Wed 20-Jul-05 11:02:02

ps: and would you admit to it in public, when Live8 was just on?

MamaMaiasaura Wed 20-Jul-05 11:02:54

chill expat - it wasnt directed at each person.

QoQ - really good point. I can never explain myself very well. Point 3 i probably the most disturbing as i think it goes on weapons etc. How can a government and taking into account point 2 as well - allow the children of their country to starve to death? You are right as well abuot government gven UN money. Was that what the G8 summit was about as well? tbh i dont know enogh re politics and completely speaking as a lay person here

nutcracker Wed 20-Jul-05 11:05:56

I agree with Expatinscotland.

We struggle alot, to pay bills, to buy food and clothes etc but yet yes we have a cat and sky tv.
The reason being that there are already countless things that we are unable to do/buy and I think if we had to go through life having nothing that we wanted at all, we could jump off a cliff. My dp works hard for a pittance and so we don't regard Sky tv as a luxery but a reward for that work seeing as we don't have holidays or anytihng like that.

Last week I had £50 to do a weeks food shop for 5. When i had finnished I went back round the shop and put ice lollys in the trolley. We couldn't afford them no, but we never can, and the look on my kids faces when they realised they had them was pricless.

MascaraOHara Wed 20-Jul-05 11:20:39

The figures are being used to show in the grand scheme of things 30m is a small amount (even though it sounds large) you could equally say if everyone gave £1, for exmaple, they would reach a target of xyz.

It is terrible that they didn't receive a single pledge in x amount of time or that they didn't reach their target but that has nothing to do with the fact that people eat ice-cream or have pets.

MascaraOHara Wed 20-Jul-05 11:22:11

Sorry my post sounds like it is detracting from the point - it isn't at all.

expatinscotland Wed 20-Jul-05 11:28:45

Am I guilty of some crime of humanity if I have spent £31,000 on shoes, which incidentally, I probably haven't spent £30,000 on anything besides rip off landlords?

Mostly I wear Clark's, b/c they fit my narrow heels and b/c I've always worked as a secretary of some sort in an office where we can't wear flip flops, trainers, or other very casual footwear.

But DH spent £75/pair of steel-toed work boots when he was a workie .

Would I admit it if I had spent £31,000 on shoes over the course of a lifetime? Sure, why not. What does Live 8 have to do w/it? It's not a crime when folks spend their disposable income as they see fit.

I don't have much disposable income theses days, but if others have it's not for me to shame them or guilt them on how they chose to spend it. It's really none of my business, IMO.

oliveoil Wed 20-Jul-05 11:30:16

This thread is going to end up like that Monty Python sketch "cardboard box? you were lucky you had a cardboard box" etc etc.

saadia Wed 20-Jul-05 11:30:31

It is an obscene situation though, feeding those hungry children would cost peanuts for some rich countries which find the cash to go and invade other countries whenever they feel like it.

I know next to nothing about how the allocation of resources is decided but I would think that the buck possibly stops with the UN.

QueenOfQuotes Wed 20-Jul-05 11:34:35

but saadia - we've been ploughing money into 3rd world countries for years - and yet it doesn't help the people who need it.

The G8 meeting solved nothing - they said they'd give 'more money'........big deal - what they need is LONG TERM help, such as fairer trade and supplying the things they need to be able to support themselves in the long run/

It's all very well giving out sacks of mealie meal (a staple in many african countries) but that only last for the short term, and then they run out. If you supply them with the means to grow their own, or for their children to go to school etc etc then things will improve.

A LOT of the aid already given to these countries never makes it to the people who actually need it. and with the Niger government being criticised for refusing to distribute free food - who can blame other countries for not giving any more money???

saadia Wed 20-Jul-05 12:19:01

I do agree QoQ, but part of the current problem in Niger is due to lack of rain and harvest, which is just bad luck.

I agree that it is their govt's duty to distribute food, and failing that I think that ideally the richer African countries should be helping out their poorer neighbours. But things in Niger have now gone beyond crisis point, and there is a need for immediate help and surely as a planet we should have some kind of safety net to prevent such suffering.

Of course fairer trade, self-sufficiency and more government accountability should be the ultimate aim in these countries, but my understanding is that one of the biggest problems is corruption and how do you tackle that?

MamaMaiasaura Wed 20-Jul-05 12:31:48

sorry if sounds agreesive but not. Totally agree olivoil with the monty python sketch. Expat - this is not aimed at you and tbh it isnt about wether you were clarkes shoes. I think i probably titled thread wrong but used the line from the actual artical in question.

The point is, is that we are so very lucky to be born where we have been and to have what we have. Am very that there are still children dying of hunger in the world when there is enough to go around.

QoQ and Saadia you make some very interesting points.

edam Wed 20-Jul-05 12:33:36

give the money to aid agencies? I know they aren't perfect either, but may be better at getting relief and aid to people who really need it.

Corrupt governments were often put in place or sustained by Western countries in the first place so "we" do owe the people of those countries some justice.

Branster Wed 20-Jul-05 12:39:29

this may be true in terms of the figures presented but that's life, isn't it?
above all, it's the governments who would give money to poorer countries not us the people.
yes, we live in an expensive house, have an expensive lifestyle, go to work blah, blah, blah, but that's because we so happen to live where we are.
even so, the corruption over there is on such a large scale that not much can ever be done for teh forseebale future.
i lived in a poor country but not once did i think: oh, why don't the westerners give us their money so we can have decent food and nice clothes and running water. life is different for everyone. that's the way it is.
not sure what i'm trying to say but basically tehre's onl;y so much we can do as individuals and to be fair immediate life is more pressing , or am i the only one thinking like that?
however, i admire people like you who keep on bringing these issues to the surface to help us put things in perspective from time to time.
i'm still buying ben&jerry's and feed my dog on expensive food though...

MamaMaiasaura Wed 20-Jul-05 12:39:37

why would the government want to help get these countries out of poverty when it appears that the government are making more money out of the poverty and the wars over there by selling weapons.. ??

<<ducks>>

Branster Wed 20-Jul-05 12:41:27

it's nit just one government though, is it?! and it's not top priority for them.

MamaMaiasaura Wed 20-Jul-05 12:45:27

thats ok then is it? if our government arent the only ones?? Sounds a bit playground tbh. It is like well xx is being mean to yy as well and so are cc & vvv so it is ok then?

Sorry - cant start anarchy on mn got to collect ds from school very soon - summer break time

edam Wed 20-Jul-05 12:51:22

well, we as individuals could give more money to aid agencies that would go directly to the people who desperately need help. (with some sliced off for admin costs, of course).

Branster Wed 20-Jul-05 12:53:55

of course is not OK. nothing is OK about the whole poverty issue. and poverty is spread throughout the whole world, everywhere. but as individuals we can only do so much.

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