They say money can’t buy you happiness.
Well, taken literally this may be true but if your life from leaving school has been one long, soul destroying journey, financially stumbling from one month to the next, trying to put food in the bellies of your family and keeping a roof over their heads, a substantial amount of it would forestall a lifetime of misery.
There are millions of people in the UK living exactly those conditions. Eking out a meagre living on or around minimum wage with little or no prospect of ever improving the situation.
We’re told then to work longer and harder - take on a second job, learn to manage our money better, get ourselves educated and we will find that we will be rewarded with a happier life. Hogwash!
How would taking on a second job improve your life and make you happier?
Yes, there may be a little more money available so that you don’t always have to rob Peter to pay Paul but then you will find that you are getting up, dashing off to work for some ungrateful and nasty, pompous twerp who stands watching you clock in and out, making sure that you don’t steal a whole minute of your labour from him.
Then it’s off to the next mind numbing session, to the next boss standing over you to make sure that you don’t spend 30 seconds of his precious time socialising with your co-slaves.
He’ll watch while you dash off to the loo and make a note of your departure and return times and heaven help you if you’re longer than he deems a reasonable time or if you should need to do so more than once per shift.
Finally you return home exhausted, an hour maybe, before bedtime. You stuff a hastily prepared, not very nourishing meal in your face and then collapse into bed to ready yourself for the next gruelling day.
And on it goes; day after day, year on year. Your weekends are spent doing the chores that you don’t have time to do in the week because you’re not there to do them.
Not everyone is suited to the further education track. They don’t have the mindset necessary to concentrate and learn new skills and when would they squeeze it in anyway while trying to pay the exorbitant bills from local government who plead poverty but manage to pay their top echelon mind boggling sums in salaries and buy their damned lunches and travel expenses too.
The government tells us to save for our retirement but how exactly does one do that when every penny you earn gets swallowed up simply trying to stay alive from one week to the next while the vultures circle overhead waiting for their pound of flesh.
If that’s what your life is, then it is likely that your retirement won’t be very long anyway. Is that what they call a silver lining?