Perhaps the notion of a 'Charity' or Charitable Trust sends shivers down your spine. But probably not for the same reasons. My argument against certain 'charities' is that they provide cover for the shortfall of social necessity. Why should basic necessity be met or dependent on charity when the Govt. or local authorities hold office for the responsibility to provide basic needs, aka food, clothing, shelter and in the Northern Hemisphere - warmth? Ergo by giving to certain Charities you are aiding and abetting a Govt. from shirking from their responsibilities to the people they serve. So to me many charities are a form of voluntary taxation, but with the added value of 'feel good' to a priviliged few over meeting the needs of the many.
After analysing the RNLI 'industry' - and lets face it, it is what it is - a powerful, yet emotive, resource grabbing industry - that many locals feel less compelled to contribute to thanks to 'urban myths' surrounding its lack of transparency and accountibility - you would think the Charities Commission would have some clout. Not so.
The Charities Commission (of HM.Gov) "We register and regulate charities in England and Wales, to ensure that the public can support charities with confidence", is clearly in 'conflict' with its own interest ie to collect taxes and re-distribute wealth back to the citizens via public services and social benefits, according to the policies of the democratically elected Govt. of the time.
My argument is not with HMRC but the fact that the Govt. is streaming more and more responsibility of 'social order' onto HMRC, whilst at the same time cutting their budgets, causing stress leading to lethargy to strike action, they just can't cope. How on earth does the Govt. expect them to fulfil their duties either diligently or earnestly? Who needs 'loopholes' when the average HMRC employee is undervalued, underpaid, overworked and erm "not that bovvered", and who can blame them? For all we know these very same people are facing homelessness, calling at foodbanks and seeking warmth from the cold front. Indeed how can public services be sustainable unless taxes are collected to support and finance them? Its a vicious circle.
HM.GOV "We have 4 offices in Liverpool, London, Newport and Taunton, and employ 323 people.
"Within England and Wales, we’re responsible for:
- registering eligible organisations in England and Wales which are established for only charitable purposes
- taking enforcement action when there is malpractice or misconduct
- ensuring charities meet their legal requirements, including providing information on their activities each year
- making appropriate information about each registered charity widely available
- providing online services and guidance to help charities run as effectively as possible
Compare that to the number of Charities in the UK: as at 30/09/14 there were 164,097 charities with a total registered annual income of £64billion (yep billion). see here: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/charity-register-statistics/r...
Hardly seems an even playing field does it?
Poverty is not often a choice and is certainly not a crime, yet it is the poor that are being punished. At a time of 'austerity' this Govt. has imposed budget cuts to all its departments, inc HMRC, and the catastrophic cuts to local authority spending resulting in many front line services lacking the resources to be 'fit for purpose'. The simultaneous increase in 'funding' available via Charitiable organisations, many with their own narrow agendas, surely needs to be questioned.
To add to the 'mix' the Govt. have today announced plans for Social Investment into Social Action " would ensure that social action in the UK became "part of the way of life that lasts from youth right through to old age". He said: "It's an integrated effort to make sure that volunteering becomes very much part of what a young person starts off doing from the age of 10 and continues right through to older age. It's part of what I’d call a bigger, stronger society." http://www.thirdsector.co.uk/social-investment-will-feature-tory-manifes...
The rest of that article is pretty scarey too .... and certainly made me shiver : "Uniformed Youth Groups" & "Volunteer Police Cadets"
So mebbe when someone shouts out for 'help' and the only resource or open door is a local independent charity, ask why and then take a deep long look at the much bigger picture.
or if you prefer: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OZLUa8JUR18