Friday Links:

Happy Friday!

It’s been a week…

Low-cost housing: how can you escape the rent rat race? This makes me furious. These are all insecure housing options. Ma’s flat has some disadvantages but the best thing it has is security of tenure and low rent increases. I love my flat and my landlord is decent but my contract comes to an end in June and given the amount of work that’s being done right now, I know the rent is going up and I’m expecting it to be an increase of 10 to 20%, and things are going to get tight again. It’s not fair or equitable and that’s with a decent landlord and I’m well paid. There aren’t enough decent housing options for people in worse situations than me, renting a room in a co-op is not a solution…

Retired early and wondering what to do? How about fighting for the rest of us? Well it’s not me, I’m not rich enough to retire now and probably won’t be when I hit retirement age at 67 or 68 depending. Most of this is a class thing but it’s also a generational thing. My mum left school at 16 and retired at 64, by comparison I started working at 19 and if it’s 67, we’ll have worked the same amount of years, but I won’t retire, with the pension (either state or private) that Ma did. Ma did better because a rising tide raises all boats and although she’s working class she’s also a Boomer, born in the luckiest year to be born in the 20th Century. She and most of her generation are proof that if you have the political will to think differently, people can have a secure future. That’s what we need, politicians and voters to think differently about how we live and what we should live for.

UK benefit changes have pushed people into dead-end, low-paid jobs, says IFS

‘A serious threat’: calls grow for urgent review of wood-burning stoves. My asthma does not love woodsmoke, but I love it and I understand why you’d want a wood burner.

Children to be housed closer to family in overhaul of England’s social care system. It won’t work! It needs lots of money and joined up thinking and apparently there isn’t any of the former and none of the latter in the government.

Sunak thinks he is following Thatcher’s union-busting playbook. But he has fatally misread it

‘Some weeks I only speak to the postman’: how to escape learned loneliness – and soar socially. What this is basically talking about is community. For me Grace, the allotment and some volunteering have helped me develop that and the joy of my particular style (extroverted introvert) is that I need a lot of time alone but can engage on a superficial level.

‘A lot of the demons seem a little cheesy now’: Sarah Michelle Gellar on Buffy, her burnout and her comeback

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