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The Forum > Article Comments > Social Impact/Social Benefit Bonds grow an update > Comments

Social Impact/Social Benefit Bonds grow an update : Comments

By Cheryl Kernot, published 7/12/2011

An innovative financial instrument pays dividends to government and cures social problems.

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I sympathise with the well meaning ideals which underlie these schemes but I'm not sure that they would be secure investments. I guess this is in effect a low interest loan to the Govt by individual investors. Are these returns guaranteed? Can people pull their money out? My concern is that programs run by Govt are often poorly managed. More information is needed which I guess wil be forthcoming.
Posted by Atman, Wednesday, 7 December 2011 9:31:14 AM
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I also sympathise but (1) citizens are not given the information required to make judgements, nor are parliamentarians, and (2) we lack "system" planning so link-by-link elements are operationally- and tax-ineffective. Maybe social planners won;t understand this but OLO has had numerous posts on these aspects
Posted by Frederic Marshall, Wednesday, 7 December 2011 11:06:00 AM
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Well I don't sympathise with this rubbish.

It is about time we banned all NGOs, NPOs, & all other such useless organisations designed to supply totally unnecessary, & basically useless jobs for failed, & totally useless ex politicians & academics, who otherwise may just have to get a real job.

Not for profit except the organisers, would be a better name for these type of activities, with far too much "help" from grants.

Who the hell do councils, & these bussy bodies think they are? It is none of their business if I use fast food, or chocolate for that matter, to eat myself into an early grave.

If I do, it will be to everyone else's advantage, as the younger I die the less I'll cost in medical bills. Making the elderly, or the obese, live longer is very wasteful.
Posted by Hasbeen, Wednesday, 7 December 2011 11:51:49 AM
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It's the overeducated uni people, they are to smart to get a real job, so invent one.
Posted by 579, Wednesday, 7 December 2011 1:26:14 PM
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Cheryl Kernot, now that name rings a number of bells. Do people such as her ever contemplate not being a nuisance at times ? Looks like a positive no. Obesity should not get any money thrown at full stop. If the Government has the kind of funding such as the figures quoted by Cheryl then would it not be wiser to invest it in prevention of obesity by way of a National Service ? You'd kill several birds with one stone. Reduce obesity, increase social interaction, build better characters, install a sense of responsibility, the list goes on.
Obesity is not an illness it's a total lack of will & exercise & selfishness in general. Don't blame the fast food, blame the instant gratification mentality of the individual useless, lazy muncher.
Get a National Service & obesity will disappear to a great extend. We not only have physical obesity, we also have psychological obesity. Cheryl suffers from both symptoms. Let her do some of her do-gooder work in Ethiopia for a year & you won't recognise her.
Posted by individual, Wednesday, 7 December 2011 5:07:12 PM
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I'm far to world-weary to see this "market-based solution" as anything more than another cynical money-grab that has the added benefit, for investors, of buying legitimacy while turning social diseases like obesity and mental illness into sound investments.

You have to love this bit of euphemistic spin:
"to pay investors a reward [sic] in addition to the repayment of the principal"
Er, that would be a "profit" in the old lingo, wouldn't it?

"The bond will be targeted at investors who need [sic] to make a return on their money but are also keen to achieve a social good"--the usual sharks then, who want the kudos of philanthropy while making a shrewd investment?
And, the best bit..
"SIBs sold to private individuals will qualify, allowing investors to reduce their tax bills by 5 per cent a year".

Oh hooray! Those in a position to invest could use another tax break (as inducement), on top of profits--super's looking a bit dodgy these days--funded by the rest of us who can't afford to get on board! How do you quantify the philanthropy in all this again?

The most disturbing element of this mock-benevolence--philanthropy for profit--is the way it insidiously promotes an indifferent system as caring--processing the victims into malcontents. Ingenious!

Hang your head in shame, Cheryl Kernot!
Posted by Squeers, Wednesday, 7 December 2011 6:37:23 PM
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