Yes. But how many instances do we see of the likes of this; In Liverpool in 1842 39000 people lived in 7800 cellars (Edwin Chadwick).
Poor Law Commissioners report 1838;
'In the centre of the street there is a gutter, into which the potato peelings, the reruse of vegetable and animal matter of all kinds, dirty water from the washing of clothes from all the houses are poured. And there they putrify...families live in the cellars and kitchens of these undrained houses, dark and extremely damp. In these houses, fever is always prevalent.'
Now seriously.....does anyone today...anyone..have to endure living conditions remotely like this? AND this was working people!!
I do agree with you on that and I'd go further to say that we're probably living in a fairly golden period of prosperity in the UK as a whole ranging from the 70s onwards. We're one of the world's most prosperous nations with more wealth being earned here than almost anywhere else in the world. We have one of the world's financial capitals, we have more millionaires than any other EU country, we have one of the lowest overall tax burdens of the major EU nations, we can afford to fund billions of pounds of nice-to-have infrastructure upgrades, yet, despite that, we still cannot feed our own people.
We could source and distribute food that would give families a basic sustenance level for about £100 per year per person given massive economies of scale. That's £600-odd million a year yet we've paid more than that on consultancy for the HS2 railroad this year alone. Just think, if we scrapped HS2 and diverted the money to providing EVERYONE in the UK with basic sustenance food then we'd probably still have a surplus for the next 25-30 years, cut it to those who really need it and we'd be able to give them a good level of food and probably have enough spare money to fund it to the next century or longer. The 500,000 people referred to in the original link, even if it cost a vastly inflated £500 per person per year would only cost £250m to feed a year, I'm sure we can find a way to fund that out of the £549,900,000,000 that the central government has planned to spend in 2014, a fraction of a percent of total government spending to ensure the entire population is fed. I'm not sure why anyone could really argue with that, I struggle to think what could be more important to a government than ensuring its most needy are given at least sustenance levels of food.
Just think, we wasted £10bn on the idiot ID card scheme, we could have fed our hungry poor for decades with that!