Finance Friday | Easy Money
When I was younger, there was a lot of industry in the Black Country. Working and making money was hard, but there was also ‘easy money’. Making beer could be considered a lot easier than working in a foundry or down a mine.
There was easier ways to get your money though. There were people who inherited huge amounts of wealth and titles too. The aristocracy owned most of the rights to the coal that the industry was built on. Industry made things, but the first factory that was set up in Birmingham using steam power made little metal boxes, trivial items for the growing middle classes.
Many things are seen as essential; housing, food and energy. The people who produce this wealth work hard, but they don’t seem to valued as much as they should be. Farmworkers have never been well paid, it’s always been the landowners that make the money. When we relied on coal for energy, miners weren’t valued as much as they should have been. Workers in the building industry, bricklayers and so on, earn average pay, yet they build our homes, work places and offices.
If you become well known however, a so called ‘celebrity’ then your ‘talent’ is valued and society throws money at you. You can become a singer, an artist and pickle sheep in formaldehyde, a actor and pretend to be other people or even just a banker and play around with other people’s money. These people are valued and get easy money.
There are people in society, with essential jobs, they work in our emergency services. The police, the paramedics, the doctors and nurses. Should we value them more? Are they more valuable than politicians or judges with their high incomes and gold plated pensions?
How about people working for Camelot. running the National Lottery, that seems like easy money. The woman who runs the national lottery earns a million a year. There are lots of people in government, local and national earning 6 figure incomes with pensions to match. Are these people worth it?
Many of these so called celebrities are now under investigation by the police as part of ‘Operation Yewtree’. It seems they thought they could get away with all kinds of abuses, just because they are ‘famous celebrities’. Has the celebrity status got out of hand. Do we celebrate and pay them a bit too much? Should we share the opportunities around a bit more? We could perhaps give more opportunities to singers and comedians that we see in our pubs and clubs every weekend. Many of those are struggling and would settle for a decent living and a bit of respect for their talent. Do we have to give it all to a minority, can’t the good fortune be shared around a bit more? Can’t we all enjoy a bit of ‘easy money’?
What do you think? Should we value the people we need more and the celebrities a bit less? Please share your thoughts in the comments box.
- A quacking event in Richmond this weekend (richmondnoticeboard.wordpress.com)