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  #41  
Old 12.08.2011, 01:21
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Re: Is begging more respectable than accepting social support?

Very well said Vlh22. I am sorry to hear about your predicament and wish you all the best on Monday.
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  #42  
Old 12.08.2011, 01:28
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Re: Is begging more respectable than accepting social support?

Vlh22, I have my fingers crossed for you. And if whatever you're about to embark on doesn't work, don't be disheartened but try try try again.
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  #43  
Old 12.08.2011, 01:38
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Re: Is begging more respectable than accepting social support?

VLH22 best wishes to you, it is so recomforting that you have not lost hope, way to go and best of luck!
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  #44  
Old 12.08.2011, 01:42
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Re: Is begging more respectable than accepting social support?

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I've found this thread very interesting...

As someone who is on social aid, I was prepared to be offended, I must admit!

To be honest, I do feel guilty about 'scrounging' off the Swiss state (which is a word I use myself to describe what I do). Particularly as I'd only actually earned money (and paid taxes) for 4 months... even though I'm only entitled to it because I did pay into the system in the UK.

However, I did use all my savings before turning to the state, and, as I wasn't in a fit state to beg, turn to the state I did.

Yes, I think I would have more self respect if I'd been able to find another job, or a way of making money, but I couldn't. And that was 18 months ago... and every attempt to 'get back on my feet' has been unsuccessful. So personally I'm very glad the state was there. And astonished (still) and what I get here compared to what I would get in the UK.

But yes, I do feel guilty. The thing I feel worst about is when the social services signed me up for an intensive French class... I lasted 2 days, then got ill and was back in hospital within a week. Now, even though I know I told the social worker I wasn't sure I could cope, and even though she told me to just give them a go, I still feel bad because I know how much those classes cost.

I tried making and selling jewellery (encouraged by the hospital)... but no-one bought (enough) of it... I have a voluntary job one day a week, and last month they realised that I've been paying for my travel expenses... so they gave me some money. I was so pleased to have money I'd actually worked for! Of course, I had to declare it and therefore had a deduction in my social aid...

Which is an interesting point, come to think of it. To get social aid, I have to complete forms each month, provide copies of my bank statements, and any other particular expenses I can claim back. It's all documented and above board. And believe me, if I go over my savings limit I will hear about it! But begging is 'cash in hand'. So although a beggar may be an entrepreneur, what about the question of whether he (or she) declares his (or her) income and makes the appropriate contributions? Isn't that part of respectability too?

By the way, I start a process on Monday that will hopefully get me back to being a productive member of society...
It's obvious you don't deserve to be where your at, you are articulate & I hope for good news for you on monday.

Personally I could never beg, I ran away from home once as a kid, slept in a park for a night, nearly starved until a woman offered me a meal without asking me...then went through my wallet when I was in the WC...found my little address book..and called my mum.
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  #45  
Old 12.08.2011, 01:55
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Re: Is begging more respectable than accepting social support?

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Might one argue, therefore, that begging is more honourable, more honest and more decent than accepting social support from the state?

I can imagine begging being both decent or indecent, depending on individual circumstances. The same goes for accepting social support from the state.
If a person is decent, honourable, respectable at heart, all his/her actions will be so.
Beggars are here to remind us of essential human weakness and to encourage generosity and gratitude for what we have. As far as I know, even some Buddhist monks carry the so called begging bowls to show the importance of compassion and opening the heart to the needs of others.
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  #46  
Old 12.08.2011, 02:49
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Re: Is begging more respectable than accepting social support?

Sorry, late to the party on this one. Begging is a career, as is prostitution, tax collection and baking. Beggars get up, go to work and come home. Life is tough, beggars have a tough life, living through scorn and resentment. Bankers do too. We all do what we can for a living, some people kiss ass and lie on the corporate ladder, some do this at the Railway station. With beggars you can always say no. some have a family to feed, some have a pimp to please. At the end of the day , we all work to feed loved ones. Who cares how. Don't like it ? Say no. Pity them ? What loss is a few coins ? Amongst them are the needy, I don't care if I say yes to a few scoundrels and on the off chance feed a needy kid. Cynicism feeds resentment, generosity feeds a family.
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  #47  
Old 12.08.2011, 08:17
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Re: Is begging more respectable than accepting social support?

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If I were take the example of a friend of mine, a mime artist, he used to come to Zurich each Summer and did mime up and down Bahnhofstrasse. He took in about CHF15,000 per month. From there he went on to finance a mime school in the UK and I think another in the US.

Begging is probably a better route, though she might have more frequent run-ins with the police...
In the UK i see plenty of those people. Apparently, as one said, you actually study to be a street performer and you have to pass as audition.

I dont mind giving money to them. I like what they do and they are very entairtaining. As for beggars they can fork off.
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  #48  
Old 12.08.2011, 08:54
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Re: Is begging more respectable than accepting social support?

Why can I not see the "thanks" icon on this thread?
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  #49  
Old 12.08.2011, 09:05
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Re: Is begging more respectable than accepting social support?

I am not really sure.

Beggars receive anonymous help. The giver decides on his/her own, pays and walks away. Zero control over where the cash goes, why beggar needs it. It's purely making money on people's good will without them wanting to know, or bug the receiver about this. Which I think might be the reason, since they might use the cash for something givers would disagree with. Stranger's opinion is irrelevant, though. I will not attach any moral judgment on this, nor on people who actually work hard jobs for this feeling to receive cash and have nobody to report to, what they actually do with the cash. Some beggars seem to beg, so they avoid this authority above telling them what to do with their income, or their own conscience telling them what to do with their income. Free cash they didn't have to work for. I don't consider hand stretching work, really, not foot work, since people have to stand on their feet at work, too, and actually work on top of that. Do what is asked of them.

Gov supported people, at least in my home country, are scrutinized, why are they unemployed, if it is a fault of attitude, training or economy. They have to check in, accept a few interviews a week and zero refusals available, to actually say no to a job. They have to accept requalification courses, psy help if needed, etc. Then they get helped, for limited amount of time. I find that a huge drill, and deterring to actually sponge off the state. The money is meager. Yet, people go through this, instead of stretching a hand to anonymous giver. I find a person who has cash for pride, or wants to beg to have this pride of self maintenance, hasn't touched the bottom yet, that will make her/him go through this humiliating process of accepting tax payers cash and have the controller deciding if they are worth the dough or not, officially.

I think to actually look good when begging might be a strategy, only. Ie, help me, I am just now in need, I just need your 200fr to not do this tomorrow. A trick. To differentiate themselves from the "dirty" beggars, to get more sympathy. I have clean clothes, I am one of you, I am more entitled to be helped by you. Life has only mistreated me just now, can happen to anyone, you too, so gimme. Dunno.

If you take begging as one of the strategies of learned helplessness that actually make beggars benefit, there is zero incentive to change. I think I do have trouble with that concept. Morally. Loads of people donate out of guilt or to support their own good feeling about themselves. I don't mind my taxes going into a system that will help to teach the people to take care of themselves, help them get permanent work, instead of benefiting from learned helplessness.

I think this thread is more to criticize how official help is inefficiently distributed in the UK, maybe. Actually penalizing people who work.
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  #50  
Old 12.08.2011, 09:12
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Re: Is begging more respectable than accepting social support?

since social programs in the US are being scrapped to save some money for defense spending, how long will it be until the streets of the US resemble the streets of Kolkatta?
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  #51  
Old 12.08.2011, 20:08
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Re: Is begging more respectable than accepting social support?

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and zero refusals available, to actually say no to a job. They have to accept requalification courses, psy help if needed, etc. Then they get helped, for limited amount of time. I find that a huge drill, and deterring to actually sponge off the state. The money is meager. Yet, people go through this, instead of stretching a hand to anonymous giver. I find a person who has cash for pride, or wants to beg to have this pride of self maintenance, hasn't touched the bottom yet, that will make her/him go through this humiliating process of accepting tax payers cash and have the controller deciding if they are worth the dough or not, officially.

I think to actually look good when begging might be a strategy, only. Ie, help me, I am just now in need, I just need your 200fr to not do this tomorrow. A trick. To differentiate themselves from the "dirty" beggars, to get more sympathy. I have clean clothes, I am one of you, I am more entitled to be helped by you. Life has only mistreated me just now, can happen to anyone, you too, so gimme. Dunno.

.

I think this thread is more to criticize how official help is inefficiently distributed in the UK, maybe. Actually penalizing people who work.
DB, UP the Hatter and MUsic CHick - you all have interesting points of view.

MC, I can understand the idea of "learned helplessness," particulalry common amongst females, but I think the person I saw at the SBB was actually trying to keep out of that category, rather than becoe a part of it.

Also, the concept of "rock bottom" could differ with individuals - I think most people would be less unfortable with signing on for benefits, than begging, but it now seems that others see it as a point of more pride to beg independently, rather than have to deal with any official social services.

I know that it is a cliche, but the old saying of "there but for fortune.." has kept coming to my mind since the weekend. I feel that I am very lucky to have the life that I have.
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  #52  
Old 12.08.2011, 20:17
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Re: Is begging more respectable than accepting social support?

So if you have savings do the unemployment people expect you to go through them before you get any payments?
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  #53  
Old 12.08.2011, 20:28
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Re: Is begging more respectable than accepting social support?

No, but the welfare people will.

Tom
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  #54  
Old 13.08.2011, 11:04
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Re: Is begging more respectable than accepting social support?

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To get social aid, I have to complete forms each month, provide copies of my bank statements, and any other particular expenses I can claim back. It's all documented and above board. And believe me, if I go over my savings limit I will hear about it! But begging is 'cash in hand'. So although a beggar may be an entrepreneur, what about the question of whether he (or she) declares his (or her) income and makes the appropriate contributions? Isn't that part of respectability too?
That's a very good point, and one I hadn't considered.

But if beggars could be registered, given 'mendicant licences' to be produced upon demand by a police officer, and were instructed to keep proper accounts and pay taxes, surely that would address that particular problem?

Good luck on Monday, by the way!
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  #55  
Old 13.08.2011, 11:11
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Re: Is begging more respectable than accepting social support?

Unemployment benefits in CH are not 'endless' as in UK. So when your unemployment rights come to an end, the social welfare system picks up from there, with the minimum required to survive and with lodgings, etc.
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  #56  
Old 13.08.2011, 13:15
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Re: Is begging more respectable than accepting social support?

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So if you have savings do the unemployment people expect you to go through them before you get any payments?
No idea... I'm on 'revenue d'insertion' for people with low or no income and low or no savings, but not on unemployment benefits because I have a medical certificate...

... and when said certificate started to be reduced (so that technically I was 'ill' at a certain % and 'unemployed'for the remainder) my social worker told me not to go to the unemployment office as she didn't want me to have the stress of dealing with them and being 'pushed' back to work before I was ready. Had 3 social workers now, they all seem to take the same view...
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  #57  
Old 20.10.2011, 12:48
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Re: Is begging more respectable than accepting social support?

Child beggars make £100,000 a year each

http://www.thesun.co.uk/sol/homepage...year-each.html

A bit of The Sun sensationalism but whether begging is respectable or not it certainly can be profitable!
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  #58  
Old 20.10.2011, 13:30
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Re: Is begging more respectable than accepting social support?

Funny, I've watched it yesterday with my boyfriend, too. Well, as a Romanian, not a gypsy/Roma mind you, all I can say it does not surprise me. I was only a bit amused because of their creativity at the "working" place. They put on the Muslim scarfs, the rest of the clothes being in the line with their own dressing code anyway. Brilliant, they found another target group to be milked!!
As a side note, at one point we could find out about a false birth certificate of someone born at 31 of November, part of dossiers for welfare approved by some British community council, seems corruption is present and well alive over there too.
The thing is, be it in Romania or U.K., they have protection because they buy it. It is that simple, in reality those who are supposed to do something about trafficking children do nothing, for obvious reasons. I repeat, be it in Romania or U.K. Sad, but true.
What was also disturbing, it was that at one point, a Romanian Roma said that it is all normal, the begging. 'cause this is their tradition since they came to Europe, from India. Let me tell you that that is a lye. Romas had traditional occupations, other than begging, not more in demand nowdays, but still. They had and still have brilliant musicians, many of them are fully integrated into the Romanian society and contributing, minus, of course, the interlope clans leader who want to keep their own people in poverty. Because how could we name this - not sending the kids to school, especially when the school is free of charge up to the highest level - the PhD studies.
I also think that the biggest mistake of the Western countries, was that they treated them as a discriminated minority, and not as international organized criminal gangs. It seems the fog started to spread a bit.
So, think twice before you "lend" some money. Some people do rely on strangers' kindness.
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  #59  
Old 20.10.2011, 22:53
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Re: Is begging more respectable than accepting social support?

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Funny, I've watched it yesterday with my boyfriend, too. Well, as a Romanian, not a gypsy/Roma mind you, all I can say it does not surprise me. I was only a bit amused because of their creativity at the "working" place. They put on the Muslim scarfs, the rest of the clothes being in the line with their own dressing code anyway. Brilliant, they found another target group to be milked!!
As a side note, at one point we could find out about a false birth certificate of someone born at 31 of November, part of dossiers for welfare approved by some British community council, seems corruption is present and well alive over there too.
The thing is, be it in Romania or U.K., they have protection because they buy it. It is that simple, in reality those who are supposed to do something about trafficking children do nothing, for obvious reasons. I repeat, be it in Romania or U.K. Sad, but true.
What was also disturbing, it was that at one point, a Romanian Roma said that it is all normal, the begging. 'cause this is their tradition since they came to Europe, from India. Let me tell you that that is a lye. Romas had traditional occupations, other than begging, not more in demand nowdays, but still. They had and still have brilliant musicians, many of them are fully integrated into the Romanian society and contributing, minus, of course, the interlope clans leader who want to keep their own people in poverty. Because how could we name this - not sending the kids to school, especially when the school is free of charge up to the highest level - the PhD studies.
I also think that the biggest mistake of the Western countries, was that they treated them as a discriminated minority, and not as international organized criminal gangs. It seems the fog started to spread a bit.
So, think twice before you "lend" some money. Some people do rely on strangers' kindness.
I've read this post twice and started a third time and given up. I don't understand what you are saying or whether you are for or against - or even what the argument is...
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