economicmultipliers_40

Economic Multipliers (40)  
 
Do you know what these are?
They help CREATE wealth in systems.
Creative ideas for stocking food banks can be economic multipliers.
 
¤¤¤¤¤
 
Every once in a while I read articles about the number of people in communities who would not have enough food if they did not get some assistance … through food stamps, food banks, food programs at schools, government surplus distribution programs, church, community, and park lunch programs, meals on wheels programs, etc.

The fact that all these programs exist underscores how critical the ability is of any nation to produce and supply its own food.

The difficulty when you ‘run’ any program is that you need resources:  time, money, food, people, distribution points, etc.

Since I believe that the United States is at a crossroads economically and we have not set up sustainable social systems, I am going to combine some other social problems with this one to show how any nation can ‘solve’ or ‘minimize’ more than one problem at once.

Know as I discuss options that many people think that I have ‘lower moral standards’ for other people than they do.  Know that I believe that whenever you try to dictate morality in communities, you end up with more problems with the generations that come after you than you would ever want.

Although I don’t believe you can dictate morality, I do believe communities, states and countries have a right (that’s where laws come in) to dictate supporting behaviors that keep people, communities, states and countries OUT of trouble.

So, here goes:  I believe we need people who can build:
  • community gardens and orchards
  • warehouses to house frozen and canned goods for ‘public’ distribution
I also believe we need people who can:
  • build bases of soil by ‘harvesting’ potting soil from garden containers, lawn clippings, leaves, etc.
  • plant and maintain community gardens and orchards
  • harvest crops and put them up for storage
  • prepare food and soups for individuals (particularly the elderly) who can manage MOST of their daily needs but not all
I believe we need most of this labor for free:  I also believe that we have an immediate and unlimited supply of it.

BUT (there usually is one), we need some new laws so we can ‘tap into’ this labor supply.

Now, appreciate that most people don’t like new laws:  they are restrictive.  But I think you might appreciate the overall value of these laws if you think about ALL the social implications and ALL the problems that any community or any nation would NOT have to deal with if the laws encouraged responsible behavior. (Keep in mind that the word ‘responsible’ is not the same as the word ‘moral’ … ‘Responsible’ is a ‘practical’ word.)

[>  FYI:  I am going to dive into a topic that many individuals find 'sensitive' and inappropriate for general conversation.  <]
  1. I believe we need to make it a crime for ANY person to have sex with any new sexual partner if they have not been tested in between for sexually transmitted diseases and can provide a medical report documenting the results to their new sexual partner (a new sexual partner might be their spouse or significant other if they decided to have ‘sex on the side’).
  2. I also believe we need to make it a crime for ANY person who is in a committed relationship (usually marriage) to NOT inform their spouse if they have had sex with another person outside their committed relationship (you can see here why I personally would consider it a good thing for gay people to get married, even if states just wanted to call it a ‘civil union’ conveying the same legal spousal rights that married couples have).  Even if they are not having sex with their spouse, they may sleep in the same bed, share the same bathroom, etc.  Those actions carry risks.
  3. I believe we should make it a crime for ANY person to have sex (even for the first time) without getting a blood test and knowing the results.
This is NOT about MY morality:
  • I am not telling people to stop having sex.
  • I am not telling people they can’t cheat on their spouse (Although I would never consider dating anyone who was married, I think that if a person is in a relationship where one person doesn’t want to have sex, it would be understandable for the partner to want to look elsewhere).
  • I am not telling people how many sexual partners they should have in their lifetime.
This is about common sense:  It’s about being ‘practical.'

If kids know they need to get a blood test before they take on their first sexual partner, I believe they will slow down.  Although we’ve never lived in a world where many young people didn’t have sex well before they considered marriage, at least in the United States, that at one time was a ‘goal.’  And, this would help ‘cut down’ on what I see as an increasing problem tied to ‘rape’ at colleges where partying is common.  If a young person must provide their blood test results to anyone they have sex with (PRIOR to the sex), they probably will never be foolish enough to gang rape anyone who is drunk or drugged when they themselves are drunk or drugged.  They also might decide that ‘picking people up’ at parties and bars IS NOT a recreational sport.  They need a copy of their blood test results in their pocket to provide to their prospective partner.

If spouses know that they have a ‘responsibility’ to their partner to keep them ‘out of trouble’ medically even if they are willing to possibly get themselves ‘into trouble’ medically, medical expenses system-wide should be lower.  (Health insurance costs are based on the number of people who have problems … you never want to have to deal with what was a preventable problem).

If a person knows that every sexual partner they take on requires ‘responsibility’ – and they must get tested between every one, they might still choose to have hundreds of sexual partners, but at least those people would have greater protection.  If we expect people to drive responsibly when they get in a car so other people don’t get injured, it doesn’t seem like too much to expect them to act responsibly if they decide to have sex with another human being.

Sex normally doesn’t get people thrown into jail (unless it’s forced or with children) but since we NEED a lot of free labor to support the food production and storage programs, it would be great if we could ‘harvest’ the time of people who have a tendency to get OTHER people into trouble and use their energy for more productive things.

Likewise, the economic benefits are great:
  • Reduced ‘pressure’ to find food and resources for people in need.
  • Lower health problems and lower overall insurance costs nationwide.
  • Kids and adults with healthier and more responsible attitudes related to sex.
  • Lower incidences of ‘unwanted’ pregnancies (I’ve never thought that abortion was THE societal problem … I’ve always thought that the problem was women who got pregnant when they were not yet ready to have children … you don’t need abortions when the women who get pregnant are looking forward to their children).
  • Less chance that blood supplies or any medical equipment could become ‘infected’ with unwanted diseases.
  • More business for doctors, nurses and drug companies where they can actually MAKE MONEY on preventing health problems:  Usually when medical facilities prevent problems, they make less money.  You NEVER want health problems or any problems to be PROFITABLE if you want healthy and wealthy communities and nations.
  • A broader LOCAL base of food production, making it more likely that any community could weather an emergency or an economic storm.
Of course, there are issues surrounding how you’d ‘catch’ individuals and what the sentencing should look like.  I believe many would be ‘caught’ because they gave someone a sexually transmitted disease and that person ultimately showed up in the medical system.  Since most people don’t usually have a LOT of sexual partners, catching the ones who pass something on shouldn’t be too difficult.  And, since I think that sex for many people is sort of a ‘group’ activity (people go looking for opportunities with friends), if one person gets caught, it might lead to many others.

Regarding the sentencing, it could work similar to the drunk driving laws:  As the number of offenses increased, so would the penalties.  And, if someone was injured by the reckless actions, the penalties for that would be even stiffer.

Keep in mind that the ‘goal’ is to reduce social problems.  If you get some free labor out of it, so much the better.

Of course, with community gardens and orchards, we’d also be able to use them as a ‘teaching ground’ for kids.  They could even get involved in planning the ‘crops’ and the ‘foods’ they wanted to eat during the school year while learning about how much it costs to produce food (minus the labor component).

And, lest we ‘turn off’ the people who want to volunteer who don’t get into trouble but just enjoy gardening (gardening isn’t a punishment for the individuals who enjoy it … and a LOT of people do), we can enlist their support to be ‘gardening mentors and teachers’ to kids and individuals who lack the basic skills.

Just remember, on the whole, we need ‘free labor’ to ‘prevent, minimize and solve’ social problems.

¤¤¤¤¤

Get creative yourself:  Pick two social problems and see if you can find a way for one problem to help solve the other (while creating long-term economic value and wealth for your community and your nation).