HOW TO DEAL WITH POVERTY
OR HOW TO STAY AWAY FROM POVERTY
I am poor for I believe I am; you may assume I am rich for I may be earning a bit more than you. You have a car and I have a motorbike; my ‘milk man’ has a cycle so he believes he is actually poor and we are both ‘rich’ in his eyes. Poverty is a relative term for many but as far as an economist is concerned any person living below the average income line of the nation may be classified as poor. Since my concern here is not to indulge in a debate as to who is poor and who is not; but address poverty as an issue and suggest some possible ways to deal with poverty.
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For simplicity's sake let us assume that an average man who holds no tangible or intangible assets and earns a daily wage that can barely make ends meet is poor and he needs to know how to deal with ‘Poverty’. If I was writing a research paper to present in the parliament I would have been using all the big ‘mumbo jumbo’ that each finance minister presents during the budget session in India. But I am concerned about an average person who is not interested in the technical lingo but only her or his own concerns. A sarcastic friend of mine once remarked; ‘the easiest way to deal with poverty is to actually have no poor living’. This is of course is an unacceptable solution but take a look at the suicide rates around the world and you will find poverty being one of the prime causes of these incidents.
Back to my base; dealing with poverty is not an easy issue, it has got a lot to do with what are your conditions, commitments, earnings, spending and even the Government's role. Since I am ‘unfortunately’ not the Prime minister of India I can hardly play a role in the overall economic policy making but I can definitely voice my own thoughts which may help an average person to an extent. Just keep in mind before you continue reading; these are not magic tricks that if implemented can give you a 200 USD daily in your pocket but for a sizeable majority they may work. So read on if you dare:
· The first and most important things to do is to increase your income in some ways; perhaps look for a part time job if you already have a regular one or work overtime. May be setting up a small ‘shop’ or even driving a cab for a couple of hours every day can help. If you know something about online world try freelancing work a little; but do something extra.
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· Cut down your expenditures; if you take two buses to reach to your destination take one only and walk for the rest of the way. If you can skip the afternoon lunch do it. Reduce your utility bills by compromising a bit of your comfort though I am sure if you are already earning below the average your comforts would be quite few in number
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· Both the above measures may save some amount; so keep on saving as much as you can until it can reach a level where it can be used to reinvest and generate an extra income for you other than your regular job or part time work. Invest these savings wisely; go for secure bonds or Government backed monthly payment plans. In India Governments are rarely poor; though people are often
If you find what I wrote above funny then have a hearty laugh and forget what I wrote. If you can't do anything then I am afraid you will have to suffer the wrath of titans only in this case it will be the wrath of poverty!