March 12, 2010
Can Fiji Afford to be a Welfare State at this time?
We now hear that the current initiative for food stamps is some sort of grand plan to "widen the welfare net".
A very noble idea. But also an expensive one as the Ministry of Education is quickly realizing.
Social welfare programmes need to be better thought out -- the initiatives being proposed todate are lazy, short-term in nature, unsustainable and only encouraging of the "hand out mentality".
Furthermore these hand-outs are ultimately being borne by the middle-class who are themselves unable to escape burgeoning financial burdens.
The bottom-line of course is that the country cannot afford to be shouldering such a burden when it is simultaneously struggling to stimulate a stagnant economy.
Yes there are many citizens in this country who struggle to make ends meet and live well below the poverty line and who are deserving of assistance, but playing Father Christmas is the wrong approach.