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    It is possible but it's going to be quite difficult and the quality of life is going to be very low...
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    (Original post by Kibalchich)
    The downward drift hypothesis as applied to poverty? Despite all evidence, you're seriously arguing this?
    It seems self-evidently true that having a chronic illness is going to reduce a person's income vs that same person not having a chronic illness. If you disagree, why?

    Coupled with the "individual choice" argument? Lack of foresight as a character trait? Laughable. If you want to seriously argue this nonsense, you're gonna have to provide some evidence.
    Is the notion that peoples' choices matter so absurd that it even warrants scare quotes? For sure, not everyone can just choose to be a doctor or a barrister - there is also an intelligence bar there and intelligence can't be altered much - but who is forcing people overeat or to binge drink? It is self-evidently a choice, and clearly one that will reduce life expectancy.
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    Maybe some of the idiots who think they could, would like to try it, LONG TERM, it is not about a week, it is about long term for some people, I am amazed at the crass thinking by some people on this planet.
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    (Original post by Observatory)
    It seems self-evidently true that having a chronic illness is going to reduce a person's income vs that same person not having a chronic illness. If you disagree, why?
    You're using that to explain the link between social class and ill health. It will explain a proportion, but not all. How do you explain the fact that the social class people are born into broadly determines their health with this argument?

    (Original post by Observatory)
    Is the notion that peoples' choices matter so absurd that it even warrants scare quotes? For sure, not everyone can just choose to be a doctor or a barrister - there is also an intelligence bar there and intelligence can't be altered much - but who is forcing people overeat or to binge drink? It is self-evidently a choice, and clearly one that will reduce life expectancy.
    Words fail me, that you're so blind to social factors influencing diet, instead talking purely about individual choice. I guess that means its just a massive coincidence, the links between poverty and poor diet. A big statistical fluke.
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    (Original post by Kibalchich)
    You're using that to explain the link between social class and ill health. It will explain a proportion, but not all.
    I agree, but you'll remember that I also stated other reasons.

    How do you explain the fact that the social class people are born into broadly determines their health with this argument?
    One confounding factor is that a lot of chronic conditions are at least partly heritable.

    Words fail me, that you're so blind to social factors influencing diet, instead talking purely about individual choice. I guess that means its just a massive coincidence, the links between poverty and poor diet. A big statistical fluke.
    Not at all - as I said the same things that cause people to choose diets that result in obesity (lack of foresight, low intelligence, low education) also cause poverty. They're both related but poverty isn't the cause of obesity.

    It is always cheaper to not be obese than to be obese, leaving aside that obesity is harmful and therefore should be avoided even if it did save money. Assuming everyone is a perfectly knowledgeable, perfectly rational homo-economicus who places a moderate/high value on the future, obesity should only increase with income. But homo-economicus is an imperfect description of people in general and a more imperfect description of some than others.
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    So I don't have to pay rent? I think I pay something like £400 a year in gas and electric on average anyway after splitting it up so that's £8 a week and although I could have it much cheaper I pay £2.50 a week for the internet and my stupid phone plan comes to £3.50 a week.

    So that's £14 a week for bills. I'm not sure what is left besides food because I don't buy clothes very often. I can easily get my food for £35 - 40 a week.

    So without rent and assuming I can walk everywhere and that I live in shared house I can easily do £53 a week.
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    If I was living at home and didn't need to get anywhere (ie no travel costs) then I could. You can find cheap food, save on your bills by changing your lifestyle, you don't NEED a TV so licence wouldn't be an issue, and you don't NEED to go out. So I could "survive" on that amount, yes. That doesn't mean it would be an enjoyable life, I wouldn't be able to go out and would have to just have basic things- but in theory it would be possible.
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    Course I could, anyone could. But I wouldn't want to...
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    (Original post by Observatory)
    I agree, but you'll remember that I also stated other reasons.


    One confounding factor is that a lot of chronic conditions are at least partly heritable.


    Not at all - as I said the same things that cause people to choose diets that result in obesity (lack of foresight, low intelligence, low education) also cause poverty. They're both related but poverty isn't the cause of obesity.

    It is always cheaper to not be obese than to be obese, leaving aside that obesity is harmful and therefore should be avoided even if it did save money. Assuming everyone is a perfectly knowledgeable, perfectly rational homo-economicus who places a moderate/high value on the future, obesity should only increase with income. But homo-economicus is an imperfect description of people in general and a more imperfect description of some than others.
    Well what is it then? Individual choice? Or wider societal forces? or something more subtle than that? Because at the moment, you're arguing its individual choice, then saying that its also things that are determined by environment.


    This eating healthily is cheaper view btw - total rubbish and shows you to be living in a bubble. On loads of estates the nearest shops are things like Iceland and Farmfoods, or often just a Spa type shop. These places have very cheap processed food and very limited and comparitvely expensive fresh veg selection. A proper supermarket is often a bus ride away. If you have limited funds and no car, its much cheaper to buy food proccessed food locally. Its also known that foods high in fat and sugar are actually addictive and work on the brain's reward mechanisms in much the same way that cocaine does. For someone with a stressful life, they offer a quick way of getting some emotional comfort, which then becomes self reinforcing.
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    I could but I'd struggle.
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    (Original post by Kibalchich)
    Well what is it then? Individual choice? Or wider societal forces? or something more subtle than that? Because at the moment, you're arguing its individual choice, then saying that its also things that are determined by environment.
    I think I've been fairly clear - some reasons are heritable, others just result of bad luck, and others the result of choices. The question is why do the poor make worse choices that the rich? And I think the most plausible explanation is that they are poor for the same reason as they make bad choices, rather than poverty causing those bad choices to be made.

    This eating healthily is cheaper view btw - total rubbish and shows you to be living in a bubble. On loads of estates the nearest shops are things like Iceland and Farmfoods, or often just a Spa type shop. These places have very cheap processed food and very limited and comparitvely expensive fresh veg selection. A proper supermarket is often a bus ride away. If you have limited funds and no car, its much cheaper to buy food proccessed food locally. Its also known that foods high in fat and sugar are actually addictive and work on the brain's reward mechanisms in much the same way that cocaine does. For someone with a stressful life, they offer a quick way of getting some emotional comfort, which then becomes self reinforcing.
    I worded my statement very carefully: it is always cheaper not to be obese than to be obese. Obesity is determined not by the type of foods eaten but rather by the quantity. It is possible to eat McDonalds for every meal and not be fat. Eating low quality, high fat foods in smaller quantities is always cheaper than eating the same foods in larger quantities.

    There is some more truth to the claim that eating "healthily" can be expensive. But is it a major explanation? I don't think so. The cheapest food you can buy on a per calorie basis is long grain rice. The cheapest good protein source you can buy is lean chicken breast (some leg/drumstick products are cheaper per weight but much of this is inedible bone). Oily fish may be a more efficient protein source when you consider that it has a higher calorie content for its cost.

    Are these unhealthy foods? Are these the foods most favoured by the poor? And they're not some Waitrose premium organic vegetable, they're bargain basement fare.
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    A circular argument? That's it? They are poor due to bad choices, they make bad choices cos they are poor. Brilliant, just brilliant.
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    (Original post by Kibalchich)
    A circular argument? That's it? They are poor due to bad choices, they make bad choices cos they are poor. Brilliant, just brilliant.
    No, you've misunderstood entirely. They have certain bad traits: low intelligence, low conscientiousness, low social compliance, etc. which cause them to be both poor and to make unforced bad lifestyle choices.
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    (Original post by boba)
    why would you exclude all of those things?
    £140 for semester bus pass and utilities, rent, and evening meals are provided by halls. Just saying that I have that much money left after paying for those.
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    (Original post by Observatory)
    No, you've misunderstood entirely. They have certain bad traits: low intelligence, low conscientiousness, low social compliance, etc. which cause them to be both poor and to make unforced bad lifestyle choices.
    Even if I accept this argument (which I don't, its self evidently bunkum - someone born into poverty who works hard but can't escape poverty disproves it), these are things that are all influenced by environment. You're arguing for structural causes.
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    Council tax benefit has been withdrawn; everyone has to pay some amount towards it - my local council is charging 22% about £260 per year so £5 pw on the lowest bracket.

    The jobcentre expect people to travel 90 minutes to for work/job interviews in terms of petrol that's about £18 each time!

    That £53 is for under 25's - who under housing benefit rules are only entitled to a shared house rate based on the lowest x percentage of local rents. Which is fine, except that professional house sharers are reluctant to except people on 'dss' as seen in so many housing adverts and students are reluctant to except non students because of the council tax element as also seen on allot of housing adverts. Thus some end up having to use some of their £53 towards rent too for a bed sit or whatever.

    Then there's the pay card meters that are in allot of rented accommodation and the fact that they people with the least money end up paying more for their gas and electric.

    The worst thing? They will only give a 0845 number which is 40p per minute from a landline (non bt). The least i've ever been on hold before someone answered was 7 minutes - that's £2.80 before you even get through and its normally about a 10 minute wait (£4)- i'd hate to see what it costs on a mobile! Yet they require you to call the number for all kinds of reasons - most notably to make the initial claim and wont let you do it from their phones in the jobcentre!

    I mean it is supposed to be a lifeline after all but seriously the scrounger rhetoric has people thinking its a bed of roses and a lifestyle choice for everyone who claims it.

    This is good link about actual facts: http://www.guardian.co.uk/politics/2...in-facts-myths
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    Considering I live off £50 a week very comfortably I don't see what all the fuss is about. I can go to the pub twice a week and have a takeaway at the weekend and still save money.
    Granted I don't have to pay for utilities, but even if I did, I could still live pretty easily on £30 a week after bills, or even £20 a week. I could survive on £10 a week for food, but it wouldn't be much fun. Not sure I'd want to try £5/week, but it's doable.
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    (Original post by Kibalchich)
    Even if I accept this argument (which I don't, its self evidently bunkum - someone born into poverty who works hard but can't escape poverty disproves it),
    1. A lot of people (at least in absolute numbers) are born in poverty, work hard and do "escape it".

    2. That doesn't actually disprove what I'm saying: it's perfectly possible that someone could work hard but because they were born with a low IQ still fail to end up in a well-paying job. Or because they're unlucky for that matter; it's a game of averages not absolutes.

    these are things that are all influenced by environment. You're arguing for structural causes.
    The problem is that a lot of them are increasingly known to be intrinsic biological traits like height and hair colour, not the result of external environment. It doesn't fit the traditional left-sociological analysis that if you only levelise incomes and living conditions, you will levelise outcomes. Probably we have already reached the stage of economic development where almost everyone born in poverty has the material ability to substantially better their condition if they are able to and want to. Stratification remains because people have different personality traits and mental and biological capacities.
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    (Original post by Observatory)
    1. A lot of people (at least in absolute numbers) are born in poverty, work hard and do "escape it".
    The facts would be against you there. The vast majority of the world's wealth is inherited.

    (Original post by Observatory)
    2. That doesn't actually disprove what I'm saying: it's perfectly possible that someone could work hard but because they were born with a low IQ still fail to end up in a well-paying job. Or because they're unlucky for that matter; it's a game of averages not absolutes.
    People aren't born with high or low IQs. There is a large environmental influence.

    (Original post by Observatory)
    The problem is that a lot of them are increasingly known to be intrinsic biological traits like height and hair colour, not the result of external environment. It doesn't fit the traditional left-sociological analysis that if you only levelise incomes and living conditions, you will levelise outcomes. Probably we have already reached the stage of economic development where almost everyone born in poverty has the material ability to substantially better their condition if they are able to and want to. Stratification remains because people have different personality traits and mental and biological capacities.
    You're completely wrong. The more that is known about personality traits, the more that the interaction between genes and environment is regarded as important. The idea that personality is genetic is outdated tosh.
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    (Original post by Kibalchich)
    The facts would be against you there. The vast majority of the world's wealth is inherited.
    Plainly untrue; the total wealth of the world was less than half what it is today one human lifespan ago. The vast majority of the world's wealth must be the result of income.

    Also this seems to be some sort of strange side-step. Someone going from benefits to a £20k/year job isn't building up vast investments but they've for sure broken out of poverty.

    People aren't born with high or low IQs. There is a large environmental influence.
    That's broadly the opposite conclusion to empirical twin studies. Heritability of adult IQ seems to be 50-100%.

    You're completely wrong. The more that is known about personality traits, the more that the interaction between genes and environment is regarded as important. The idea that personality is genetic is outdated tosh.
    This is less well supported than IQ at least because there is no clear way of measuring personality traits. But personality-related outcomes (criminality, obesity, propensity to be long-term employed, etc.) track IQ with a high correlation constant.
 
 
 
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