Poverty In America

Americans really need to rethink their ideas of poverty. They need to cast off and spurn the depraved phantasmagoria created by the Liberals’ political elite and look at the reality of what is called poverty in America.

It doesn’t do anyone except the Liberal politicians and professional activists any good to maintain false impression of poverty and the poor within America. It certainly doesn’t benefit most of those who are classed by the federal government as poor.

To the average American, the word “poverty” implies significant material deprivation, an inability to provide a family with adequate nutritious food, reasonable shelter, and clothing. Activists reinforce this view, declaring that being poor in U.S. means being “unable to obtain the basic material necessities of life.” The news media amplify this idea: Most news stories on poverty feature homeless families, people living in crumbling shacks, or lines of the downtrodden eating in soup kitchens.

The actual living conditions of America’s poor are far different from these images. According to the government’s own survey data, in 2005, the average household defined as poor by the government lived in a house or apartment equipped with air conditioning and cable TV. The family had a car (a third of the poor have two or more cars). For entertainment, the household had two color televisions, a DVD player, and a VCR. If there were children in the home (especially boys), the family had a game system, such as an Xbox or PlayStation. In the kitchen, the household had a microwave, refrigerator, and an oven and stove. Other household conveniences included a clothes washer, clothes dryer, ceiling fans, a cordless phone, and a coffee maker.

The home of the average poor family was in good repair and not overcrowded. In fact, the typical poor American had more living space than the average European. (Note: that’s average European, not poor European.) The poor family was able to obtain medical care when needed. When asked, most poor families stated they had had sufficient funds during the past year to meet all essential needs.

Yet the oft-times strident protestations of professional anti-poverty activists and Liberal politicians almost always try to push two ideas: that poverty in America is widespread, affecting as many as one in seven Americans, and that being poor in America means serious material deprivation.

The first idea, that poverty is widespread in America, cannot be argued for or against. It is an based upon US Census data and an arbitrary household income level that is, at least partially, based upon relative standards. The second idea, that being poor in America means serious material deprivation, is false on its face as research using the government’s own data has proven.

These lies make perfect sense though; they’re both firmly rooted in selfishness and self interest.

The professional anti-poverty activists make their money off of poverty. They’re naturally going to market it in a manner that draws the most attention, sympathy, and money. Also, by misrepresenting the nature of poverty in America, they can ensure that funding goes to programs that do not lift people out of poverty, thereby ensuring their own continued source of employment and revenue.

The Liberal politicians are a different and more disgusting and evil story. They’re just farming votes and using the poor, especially the Black poor, as something akin to sharecroppers. And just like so many landlords after the Civil War, they’ve set things up so that the sharecroppers can never actually buy that land they were promised.

Yes, Americans need to wake up and look around at the reality of poverty in America and how it differs from the self-serving myths certain unfriendly elements have promulgated. Then we might be able to address the real problems both at the tactical and strategic levels.

Related Reading:

Minds Make Societies: How Cognition Explains the World Humans Create
The Once and Future Liberal: After Identity Politics
The End of Poverty: Economic Possibilities for Our Time
The New Confessions of an Economic Hit Man
Black Rednecks and White Liberals

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6 Responses to “Poverty In America”

  1. C. S. P. Schofield Says:

    This comes into play in the loudly trumpeted War On Obesity; if you think about it the hysterics are telling us that we, as a people, have achieved a society where the commonest dietary problem of the ‘poor’ is that they are too fat.

    My reaction? Why isn’t anybody celebrating?

  2. Paradigm Says:

    It’s a matter of definition. Relative poverty is probably a major factor in the riots in London now. It’s people who’s jobs have been outsourced and have nothing to do but to watch the rich rub their wealth in their faces. I don’t mind class differences but we got to be in the same boat at the end of the day. When people who used to be respected workers find that the rest treat them like garbage they will eventually revolt.

    It’s human nature. We are tribal creatures. You can’t have non-members in your tribe and hope they will behave. Same problem as with multiculturalism.

  3. jonolan Says:

    Welcome and well said, Mr. or Ms. Schofield!

    I’d thought about the intersection of the War on Poverty and the War on Food but had never summarized it so well nor thought about how we should be celebrating this “problem.”

    ~*~

    Paradigm,

    From looking at various photos and videos of the riots – some from MSM sources, some from friends and associates over there – I’ve seen few rioters that looked liked your “formerly respected workers.”

    Most looked young, stupid, and largely unemployable – just vermin who grew up on the dole and are pissed that the government tit is running dry.

  4. Paradigm Says:

    I didn’t mean those particular individuals, I mean they are working class (or ghetto as you say in America) their parents were workers but their kids are not – they are the non-members. Sure, they are stupid. Don’t assume (like liberals do) that most people are intelligent and friendly. They are very basic and mammalian. And like most mammals they need to belong to a pack. If class differences go too far you reach a point when they don’t feel they belong in the pack known as society – and that’s when society becomes the enemy.

  5. jonolan Says:

    That point I agree with.

    Sadly, Britains voted themselves ongoing largess from the public trough and essentially bred generations of “domesticated” poor and now, in the wake of the trough running closer to dry, they’ve gone feral.

  6. Alan Scott Says:

    Paradigm,

    The British rioters have nothing to justify their behavior. A lot of small business owners had their stores burned down. What did they do to these poor underprivileged youths?

    Jonolan is right. This is a war on people who work and invest, by the parasites of society. And who created the parasites? Who demonizes achievement?

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