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I had to check whether this extract was called childless or cheerful... Cheerfully.... And hmmm both some what emotive, on the global scale I think if we are ever going to bring about any level of balance is going to come at a cost. Let's face it the luxury many westerners enjoy has already cost if not our wildlife and wilderness many people living in poor resource rich countries, should we make our selves sick to help others, obviously not, was the instance in the extract was the girl really sick??? Is misery a sickness?, left un treated it can certainly become or develop into it. Do the have nots not deserve to be cheerful too. Strange that when most haves visit the have nots the most usual comment is " i can't get over how cheerful they all are. " Particularly liked the comment re perhaps not being a mother or father being an option, is parenthood the biggest ego trip of them all? What about here in the West were poor people are literally paid to reproduce in numbers despite in many cases being unable to provide a what we now know to be a healthy growth environment for children? What are the most basic physical and emotional needs and doesn't every single human being have a most basic right to them especially in a world governed by people paid to take care of management of such things. Not to mention the physical and emotional needs of our flora fauna and planet dare I say herself... Lol don't tell me plants and animals don't have feelings too... Jolly big re shuffle n re think needed, n so far down the wrong track will we ever manage to change course without a wipeout, especially since them that's paid to manage will have to have meetings and produce reports bla bla before every making a step in the right direction or laying a hand to help... Cheerfully... Let's do another live aid n have a party for the poor and not invite them of course... God or something help us all...

Or sharing the global resources so everyone achieves an acceptable level, then see what everyone can contribute to the greater good and lend extra support to those able to do the greatest good on the most urgent upgrades for all.

There are no thumbs up icon's... So YUP will have to do...

I whole heartedly agree that there should be no need for charities in an ideal world, we have had the knowledge and technology for everyone to receive sufficient for a good life, and in an ideal world as you say there should be no need for work just collaboration for the greater good first on what ever needs doing then on individual development for the greater good of all, transition seems to be the biggest problem, there are many trying to figure this out but sadly all seem to remain Fringe movements, eg Ubuntu, resource based economy, Venus project, zeitgeist movement, new earth nation to name but a few.

Hello I'm in Spain too, well Cataluna, fully agree don't get me started Nazism without the concentration camps, yet... Too busy playing the corruption catch up game, spouting the new very new found vocabulary of sustainability with no clue what it means and sharing the EU funding amongst their mates.

Which government's have loosened it's purse strings??? No contrary or criticism or that I don't believe you, just curious where???

Greetings One and All Nice just to see evidence of people taking the time to think about such things, as someone in mid 50s and having burned out several times from attempts to raise awareness and take non violent positive action at a local level on a wide range of ethical and environmental issues and having spent most of my adult life studying and exploring world religions, sociology and the human psyche in an attempt to understand the world and it's inhabitants, and despite having no children of my own being utterly dedicated to improving the possibilities for future generations, I am fast becoming utterly disillusioned to the point where I am starting to believe earth would be better off without human beings as they presently predominantly manifest. If change in the present predominant human psyche is even possible my overwhelming feeling is that is going to be too late for for the very things that gave this place/planet it's value and beauty. A shame and shameful. Especially the feind ignorance and apathy of folks of my generation with children... But here I am on Coursera, a wonderful gift to humanity, exploring ethical altruism with you all, testament to the spirit being a hard thing to kill... As for the subject matter Mr Singer and co merit a jolly large pat on the back for engaging and getting us thinking, re the person who mentioned young folks now opting out of consumerism to experience, despite this still being a kind of consumerism for the haves, I can only suggest that, that the happiness and fulfilment spoken of only really comes from direct positive action. Actualising...