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Fri Nov 15, 2013, 04:02 PM

80% of the US Population is at or below the POVERTY line - WHY is this NOT a National Emergency???

After this thread yesterday regarding food insecurity and food stamp cuts: http://www.democraticunderground.com/10024033339

I come across this article today posted by a friend on FB: http://politicalblindspot.com/us-poor/

If you live in the United States, there is a good chance that you are now living in poverty or near poverty. Nearly 50 million Americans, (49.7 Million), are living below the poverty line, with 80% of the entire U.S. population living near poverty or below it.

That near poverty statistic is perhaps more startling than the 50 million Americans below the poverty line, because it translates to a full 80% of the population struggling with joblessness, near-poverty or reliance on government assistance to help make ends meet.

In September, the Associated Press pointed to survey data that told of an increasingly widening gap between rich and poor, as well as the loss of good-paying manufacturing jobs that used to provide opportunities for the “Working Class” to explain an increasing trend towards poverty in the U.S.


THIS is where I get pissed... WTH is going on when this issue is not seen as a FUCKING Emergency?

Congress and our POTUS are BOTH responsible for the blind eye to what is happening in this country. For years now I have fluxuated between hope and despair, between thinking it is MY fault and that the Fat Cats have us under their heel... I am SICK that my children may never see college, or a real job in their LIFETIME...I am sick that I may never be off assistance even IF i finish my damn degree and put myself more into debt to do so...I am LIVID that nobody in leadership has done a DAMN thing to make US the priority. They are all so FUCKING disconnected, they have NO idea what it is like to struggle daily for YEARS with no end in sight. My parents don't understand how I can be so destitute and my sister can be so well off (but they are living on credit and *so* close to the edge too)...but my parents don't understand this is NOT the world they were able to work and buy a house and pay dr bills and be middle class in.

We have got to stop blaming just one party or just one branch of Govt...and really we should stop blaming just one administration...and really blame gets us nowhere. Personally I'd like to wrap my hands around the throats of those Wall St fuckwads and then pick their pockets.

What will it take? Will we have to reach critical mass and be on the brink of starvation before we 'storm the bastille'...?
I don't know, but I know my rage is getting there ...


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Reply 80% of the US Population is at or below the POVERTY line - WHY is this NOT a National Emergency??? (Original post)
FirstLight Nov 2013 OP
Chuuku Davis Nov 2013 #1
FirstLight Nov 2013 #3
RebelOne Nov 2013 #6
haele Nov 2013 #23
Bohunk68 Nov 2013 #45
nomorenomore08 Nov 2013 #112
billhicks76 Nov 2013 #132
merrily Nov 2013 #2
Rex Nov 2013 #4
FirstLight Nov 2013 #5
Rex Nov 2013 #12
RKP5637 Nov 2013 #72
Cosmocat Nov 2013 #169
merrily Nov 2013 #21
Brigid Nov 2013 #91
Iwasthere Nov 2013 #7
FirstLight Nov 2013 #11
woo me with science Nov 2013 #17
FirstLight Nov 2013 #20
RKP5637 Nov 2013 #80
Kelvin Mace Nov 2013 #41
woo me with science Nov 2013 #49
RKP5637 Nov 2013 #83
Ghost Dog Nov 2013 #109
passiveporcupine Nov 2013 #190
RKP5637 Nov 2013 #76
Oilwellian Nov 2013 #116
woo me with science Nov 2013 #117
merrily Nov 2013 #141
truedelphi Nov 2013 #185
HooptieWagon Nov 2013 #32
merrily Nov 2013 #143
libdem4life Nov 2013 #53
sabrina 1 Nov 2013 #133
libdem4life Nov 2013 #137
sabrina 1 Nov 2013 #181
libdem4life Nov 2013 #186
sabrina 1 Nov 2013 #195
libdem4life Nov 2013 #199
merrily Nov 2013 #138
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7962 Nov 2013 #75
truedelphi Nov 2013 #176
Agnosticsherbet Nov 2013 #8
FirstLight Nov 2013 #14
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merrily Nov 2013 #140
LibDemAlways Nov 2013 #54
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diane in sf Nov 2013 #139
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CountAllVotes Nov 2013 #40
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merrily Nov 2013 #152
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questionseverything Nov 2013 #173
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FirstLight Nov 2013 #179
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agent46 Nov 2013 #68
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haele Nov 2013 #105
pnwmom Nov 2013 #107
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agent46 Nov 2013 #62
DeSwiss Nov 2013 #64
woo me with science Nov 2013 #84
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aggiesal Nov 2013 #66
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Bonhomme Richard Nov 2013 #74
Name removed Nov 2013 #77
Boom Sound 416 Nov 2013 #82
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FirstLight Nov 2013 #183
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Response to FirstLight (Original post)

Fri Nov 15, 2013, 04:08 PM

1. Can't get to the article

What exactly is "near poverty"?

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Response to FirstLight (Reply #3)

Fri Nov 15, 2013, 04:17 PM

6. Worked for me. n/t

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Response to Chuuku Davis (Reply #1)

Fri Nov 15, 2013, 04:41 PM

23. Near poverty is when average cost of living expenditures are equal or close to total income.

Average cost of living expenditure is an estimate of average taxes, average housing (single room per adult), average basic food, average transportation to/from work costs or food source, and average basic (energy/water) costs in a location. Near poverty is when this cost is equal to or within a set percentage of one's annual income.
Poverty is when one's potential annual income is below that cost of living. The federal poverty indicator is supposed to be the official mean at which CoL meets across the US. Unfortunatly, that mean isn't re-calculated very often, so the poverty indicator is probably far lower than it should be.

What usually isn't considered in is communication (cable, internet, phone), medicine, education, clothing, personal transportation (motor or pedal) or entertainment, because those costs aren't consistant over a wide population or necessary for survival. These costs are subjective cost of living estimates for particular groups of population.

To say that 4 out of 5 Americans are at or near poverty is a bit of an iffy stat to get one's head around, because at least 1.5 of that 4 out of 5 are probably around the median income in the US, but one paycheck away from homelessness because they are either are in a high cost of living area where the average cost of housing alone is at least 2/3 of median income, or are struggling with student loans or medical debt.

That's more subsidy programs now-a-days are starting to list 400% above the federal poverty indicator as the cut-off for support. That says a lot about the actual cost of living and CPI, that support is required for most americans who make the median income - or more - in this country to keep a minimum standard of living.

Haele

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Response to haele (Reply #23)

Fri Nov 15, 2013, 05:15 PM

45. Thank you for that.

I had the same question and you answered it in a manner I can understand readily and clearly.

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Response to haele (Reply #23)

Fri Nov 15, 2013, 07:54 PM

112. Yeah, it's more accurate to say that 80% of Americans aren't all that financially secure, at best.

Still a completely unacceptable situation, needless to say.

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Response to Chuuku Davis (Reply #1)

Sat Nov 16, 2013, 02:48 AM

132. Poverty is everywhere now

 

I think the best point of the article is to not just blame one party. That's how the fat cats keep us divided and fighting each other instead of them.

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Response to FirstLight (Original post)

Fri Nov 15, 2013, 04:09 PM

2. Yes, not one branch or one party.

Of course, it's an issue. It's an issue for everyone at or near the poverty line, especially with the cuts to food stamps. But the plutocrats are in control and they want it that way.

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Response to FirstLight (Original post)

Fri Nov 15, 2013, 04:13 PM

4. Because we live in a plutocracy.

 

nt.

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Response to FirstLight (Original post)

Fri Nov 15, 2013, 04:17 PM

5. so we just give a simple one sentence answer and forget about it?

I KNOW we are living in a corporate plutocracy...the question is, if the PTB aren't seeing this as a serious emergency, what is our critical mass? people are gonna snap sooner or later, and I think I am hoping for sooner...

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Response to FirstLight (Reply #5)

Fri Nov 15, 2013, 04:23 PM

12. There is no critical mass, people will get used to living with far far less.

 

Haven't you noticed that THAT is the trend of the past half century? A working class that merely survives on slave wages is already here...just look at Mc Donalds telling their employees to get a second job.

If you think the PTB want an active and we regulated economy, then you haven't been paying attention. We live in the endless cycle of disaster capitalism. Fraud, bailouts and more fraud.

It is our standard of life now.

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Response to Rex (Reply #12)

Fri Nov 15, 2013, 05:59 PM

72. Sadly, this is the way I see it too, constant adjustment to disaster capitalism. Also, I think

many live in denial as to how bad off the majority of the population are ... it is seen as a failure in this country not to be financially fit, even if it has absolutely nothing to do with respective individuals. There is also the question of what next ... we vote, we campaign for hope in corrections, but we basically get the same. And, we have the garbage and propaganda peddled by MSM that never really questions much anymore other than for $$$$$.

And, those in congress, and the rest, are insular to the conditions faced by most Americans, probably not too many in congress are at the edge of the poverty line.

Over the last 40 or so years the system has been collapsing for the majority of citizens as those with wealth and power have done shenanigans to make it the way it is now. It is not accidental the majority of us face the situation we are now in.

As many have said before, it's the boiling frog syndrome ... and the Stockholm syndrome. In short, collectively, we are fucked, until a major catalysis occurs. I have no idea what that will be or how it will come about ... but, this will likely not go on for eons, it is going to collapse on itself, eventually.

I know I'm preaching to the choir in my response, but this helped me this this off my chest. Thank you!

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Response to Rex (Reply #12)

Sat Nov 16, 2013, 01:18 PM

169. Unfortunately I agree

I have pretty much given up hope.

The problem is the people who vote/not vote.

We collectively have no capacity to make sober and solid decisions in the voting booth.

We repeatedly elected people who clearly are unsuited for government/re-elect people who are not doing a good job.

And, what has been proven over time is that the electorate simply does not respond to facts and a call for good government, it will elect people for all kinds of senseless reasons, and "going negative" will win more often than not, all of which serves to incentivize candidates and politicians to not operate from a standard of good government.

Somehow, the "policy" and political discourse in this country is such that people are itching to have SS cut.

THAT is how fucked up this country is now.

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Response to FirstLight (Reply #5)

Fri Nov 15, 2013, 04:40 PM

21. Who says a one sentence post = forgetting about anything in real life?

Would a three or four sentence post make anyone's life better than a one sentence post?

If you want change you have to write checks, work you bottom off, etc. in real life, not write longer posts.

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Response to FirstLight (Reply #5)

Fri Nov 15, 2013, 06:24 PM

91. We need that smilie here at DU.

Skinner?

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Response to FirstLight (Original post)

Fri Nov 15, 2013, 04:18 PM

7. I hate it when I hear 'Both sides are at fault'

At the very beginning of our presidents career he had opportunities to become incredibly wealthy, he choose not to accept the positions. Instead choosing to work for his community for little $$$. He has a big heart, his hands have been tied and still have done a LOT! There have been lists posted here that show his accomplishments. I have NEVER strayed from my support. Stay the course.

As far as poverty, I feel that if we invested $$$$$$ in national infrastructure (Obama once again has his handfs tied here too)the high paying jobs (millions of them) would even out the $$, which is exactly what the repubs and Koch DON'T want.

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Response to Iwasthere (Reply #7)

Fri Nov 15, 2013, 04:22 PM

11. nope

I am not going to give him a pass on this either...no matter how 'humble' his beginnings were...he is now just like all of them IMO... living in those ivory towers changes people

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Response to Iwasthere (Reply #7)

Fri Nov 15, 2013, 04:32 PM

17. The record shows aggressive pursuit of a corporate agenda.

Last edited Fri Nov 15, 2013, 08:55 PM - Edit history (1)

The record does not show this administration trying to enact liberal policies and being obstructed. The record shows aggressive, proactive efforts to install corporatists into the administration and enact a corporate agenda.

http://www.democraticunderground.com/?com=view_post&forum=1002&pid=3152360

Ignoring the real problem and circling the wagons around betrayal ensures that nothing will change. Republicans have long tried to enact these predatory policies. What has changed is that Democrats have joined the corporate gravy train and are complicit in the looting.

This is the economy in which our "moderate" President is working to fast-track the TPP, impose more austerity, and cut Social Security and Medicare:

http://m.







Study: "Trade" Deal Would Mean a Pay Cut for 90% of U.S. Workers
http://www.democraticunderground.com/10023661805

Obama To GOP: I’m Serious About Cutting The Social Safety Net - TPMDC
http://www.democraticunderground.com/10022507004

President Obama explains the need for a Grand Bargain
http://www.democraticunderground.com/10022507426

Obama seeks to fast-track secret Trans-Pacific Free Trade Agreement
https://www.commondreams.org/headline/2013/10/23-5

How Wall Street Killed Financial Reform
It's bad enough that the banks strangled the Dodd-Frank law. Even worse is the way they did it - with a big assist from Congress and the White House.
http://www.rollingstone.com/politics/news/how-wall-street-killed-financial-reform-20120510

Obama's Top Economic Adviser Tells Democrats They'll Have to Swallow Entitlement Cuts
http://www.democraticunderground.com/10023930278

The Untouchables: How the Obama administration protected Wall Street from prosecutions
http://www.democraticunderground.com/10022246632

Obama Appoints Bain Capital Consultant Jeff Ziets to Top Post
http://www.democraticunderground.com/10023662209

Obama selects former Monsanto lobbyist to be his TPP chief agriculture negotiator
http://www.democraticunderground.com/10023662210

Wall Street Deregulation Garners Bipartisan Support Despite Devastating JPMorgan Report
http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2013/03/19/wall-street-deregulation-_n_2910168.html

This is a complete list of Wall Street CEOs prosecuted for their role in the financial crisis
http://www.democraticunderground.com/?com=view_post&forum=1002&pid=3653154

Wall Street will get away with massive wave of criminality of 2008 - Statute of Limitations
http://www.democraticunderground.com/10022516719
Obama seeks longer PATRIOT Act extension than Republicans (December 2013)
http://www.democraticunderground.com/discuss/duboard.php?az=view_all&address=439x380450




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Response to woo me with science (Reply #17)

Fri Nov 15, 2013, 04:37 PM

20. FUCK yeah!

THANK you for those stats and graphics...it really *does* show how much we have been collectively reamed, doesn't it?

now, what can we DO about it? oh, that's right...I'm inciting revolution, better watch out or they will be outside my house with the black SUV's

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Response to FirstLight (Reply #20)

Fri Nov 15, 2013, 06:13 PM

80. Exactly what is happening, the surveillance noose is tighting all of the time, every minute

detail of ones life is being quantized into discrete packets of information for analytical analyses. Step out of line, disagree with the system, look to improve the system and you will be dealt with accordingly. And, this is not fiction, it is exactly what is occurring.

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Response to woo me with science (Reply #17)

Fri Nov 15, 2013, 05:13 PM

41. People look at me funny

 

when I laugh hysterically when I here Obama described as "a liberal", never mind a "socialist", a "Marxist", or a "communist".

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Response to Kelvin Mace (Reply #41)

Fri Nov 15, 2013, 05:21 PM

49. It's absurd, isn't it.


That is the power of the propaganda machine. We're separately propagandized to believe that the Other Side is getting everything it wants and is responsible for all the problems in government. We are constantly divided and set against each other with these absurd lies and distortions, to keep us from realizing that corporatists live in both parties and are exploiting ALL of us.

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Response to woo me with science (Reply #49)

Fri Nov 15, 2013, 06:15 PM

83. +++ 1,000,000,000 +++ n/t

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Response to woo me with science (Reply #49)

Fri Nov 15, 2013, 07:41 PM

109. That is the essence of it, apparently, in the USA.

There appears to be a lot of psychoactive medication being taken, also.

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Response to woo me with science (Reply #49)

Sat Nov 16, 2013, 06:46 PM

190. It's time for the rise of the socialist party

Seriously

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Response to woo me with science (Reply #17)

Fri Nov 15, 2013, 06:06 PM

76. In short, R=D when it comes to $$$$$, but many live in denial of that fact. n/t

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Response to woo me with science (Reply #17)

Fri Nov 15, 2013, 08:51 PM

116. Your video link is no longer available

I saw you post it recently and wanted to see it, but alas.

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Response to Oilwellian (Reply #116)

Fri Nov 15, 2013, 08:56 PM

117. Thank you for the heads up. I've replaced it.

I've replaced it with a working link.

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Response to woo me with science (Reply #17)

Sat Nov 16, 2013, 06:32 AM

141. I agree with your sentiments.

However, as to the graph showing the number of high net worth individuals in various countries, isn't part of that due to the very large size of the US population, as compared with, say, the population of Germany?

The US is very good at making the rich richer and widening the gap between the rich and everyone else. I have no doubt about that.



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Response to woo me with science (Reply #17)

Sat Nov 16, 2013, 05:20 PM

185. Great post and it's exactly what you say it is.

Our "Democratic leadership" on the economic front would not only make FDR spin in his grave - I think they could get Nixon to spin in his grave.

Nixon did a lot of very bad things, primarily related to the War against the people of Vietnam. But he instituted price rollbacks, and he was not at all fond of the banking class.

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Response to Iwasthere (Reply #7)

Fri Nov 15, 2013, 04:57 PM

32. the corporatists, D and R, are to blame.

 

And when a corporatist D in the WH is pushing through a secret Free Trade Agreement that amounts to a corporatist wish list, the problem will remain. Yes, both sides are at fault.

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Response to HooptieWagon (Reply #32)

Sat Nov 16, 2013, 06:35 AM

143. Maybe we are, too.

I say "maybe" advisedly because I'm not sure what our options are at this point, but we've have been extraordinarily docile about the rich from the days of the East India Trading Company and John Hancock until today.

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Response to Iwasthere (Reply #7)

Fri Nov 15, 2013, 05:26 PM

53. I love PBO. Still, the Presidency is a very well-paying, lifetime position. It pays much better

 

after they leave. Their names go in history books and, in his case, the Legacy of the ACA will cast him within the top tier of American Presidents, including being the first black President.

They bring in large sums of money for speaking engagements, being on Boards of Directors...many ways...and for as long as they want to continue. This also dictates the performance of the last term. It's not that a president can now do whatever he wants because there will be no more elections, they are also setting up their future popularity and income of the more corporate nature. And "they all do it", as befits their accomplishments.

He had good reason, and fortunately we all had the good fortune that he decided to be here today.

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Response to libdem4life (Reply #53)

Sat Nov 16, 2013, 03:02 AM

133. I hope that what you posted is simply your opinion.

When people were disappointed in a lot of decisions he made, appointing Republicans, abandoning the PO, extending the Patriot Act, not including Progressive Dems in major decision making, claiming that bi-partisanship was the way to go etc etc, WE were told 'wait 'til his second term, his won't be tied by facing another election'.

NOW you are telling us, that while this is not a concern anymore, HE can't do what is right because he has to think about making millions AFTER he's done in the WH??

Are you SERIOUS? I am certain this cannot be true but to even it suggested is stunning.

Presidents are NOT elected to make themselves obscenely wealthy. Did you know that?

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Response to sabrina 1 (Reply #133)

Sat Nov 16, 2013, 04:02 AM

137. I didn't say that. It is a job and it pays very, very well, as it should. It holds historical

 

significance and those with immature egos need not apply. And it is tradition that ex-presidents have a high earning capacity, if they so choose.

However, back to 2009, being a politically correct campaigner as a Washington outsider has serious drawbacks when you get elected and need insider cooperation. The unelected and unappointed permanent Federal Bureaucracy mostly runs the Beltway. The Heads...Cabinet, Department Heads, et al are placeholders, and usually merely political appointees who serve at the pleasure of the current administration.

The parties through the House and Senate, determine who writes the checks...R or D. The Presidency is primarily an advisor with a bully pulpit with veto power that's seldom used, but is short term in comparison. The power of the President depends on how well he can put all of that together and if you are just getting to know these folks and who can do what to whom, it's significantly more difficult. He's part of the group now.

He never was a Progressive, in my definition, so wasn't terribly disappointed. And he did give us the ACA which is as Progressive as felt he could be, although surely far short of what I would have hoped for. But do I expect him to start going back to 2008 and revive what many thought he meant and he likely hoped he could do? Sorry. And it is my opinion, but I don't think so.

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Response to libdem4life (Reply #137)

Sat Nov 16, 2013, 04:46 PM

181. Well, I don't disagree with most of what you said, including that he was never

a true progressive, that became obvious towards the end of the campaign, but he was the most progressive of the two choices we had left on certain issues, such as 'no mandated insurance'. Hillary was for it. And 'no cuts to SS' and he had opposed the Iraq War, Hillary supported it. We did the best we could by choosing the candidate who expressed MORE progressive opinions.

However I do not have the defeatist attitude I am seeing around that a true, tough Progressive Candidate can not be elected to the WH. I believe, on the contrary, that such a candidate, assuming the Party Leadership was not pushing a not-so-progressive candidate and finally decided to be on the side of the people, would win in a landslide. This country is left leaning on the major issues but we are constantly deprived of candidates with a record of representing that majority.

Other than that, I have no argument with you.

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Response to sabrina 1 (Reply #181)

Sat Nov 16, 2013, 05:26 PM

186. Funny, I just wrote a post that helped me clear up that war vote...I strongly opposed that. But

 

remembered she was a Senator in New York and had been very close and personal, lived there I believe, and may have even had friends in the 9-11 horrors. Obama was not yet a Senator, so could afford to take the PC stand and I do believe that helped him in the Primary.

So now I can cut her some slack on that, too. I wasn't as active in politics then. I did vote for Obama in the Primary, but was one of those superficial straight-ticket national voters...blame it on the internet now ... LOL.

And don't you find it interesting the thing about the health care...HillaryCare and ObamaCare...in the end? Can't remember if there was any other plan that was so titled?

We've got lots of grass roots and up ticket/down ticket work to do, but the country is definitely turning just a bit left. Some of the idiocy of the RWers now get on national press/social medial. I believe that it is part of it...people are shocked...like the Todd Akin rape thing...going viral is not a good concept with these 19th century sound bites/videos. Love it. And the Tea Party provides no end to the entertainment...yet it's to their demise.

So I firmly believe that the Democrats can and should have their disagreements and tussle for the final Voice of the Party. It's an unbelievable political moment that would give us 8 more years, 16 years of Center Left give or take, which will help the Real Left rebuild while the Republicans are rummaging through their political rubble to find some non-populist candidate that has a chance.

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Response to libdem4life (Reply #186)

Sun Nov 17, 2013, 01:49 AM

195. Well, I live in Ny and did at that time. Most NYers did not want a war in Iraq and those who

elected Hillary to the Senate were almost 100% against that war, including many outspoken victims of 9/11. Why would she need to try to please the right wingers who did not and never would have voted for her?

I'm sorry, but even if all of the above was not accurate, it was WORTH LOSING a election to SAVE THE LIVES of not just thousands of our own troops, but of the hundreds of thousands of innocent Iraqis, men, women and children whose lives are no less precious than American lives.

It was a horrifically immoral vote and, as we now know, a thoroughly irresponsible vote and since most of US knew Bush was lying, someone as intelligent as Hillary certainly knew there were no WMDs in Iraq.

That leaves YOUR theory, that she risked all those lives .... for her own political career.

I would prefer it if she actually believed Bush. But was there anyone in their right mind back then who did NOT know he was lying?

I could forgive someone for doing what she did IF they actually believed the fairy tales Bush was telling. But I could not vote for them either because anyone who was that incompetent, who made such a deadly mistake, is surely not fit to be given that much power.

And I certainly could never support anyone who made that tragic decision, knowing how many lives would be lost, for their own political career. I cannot think of a more immoral act.

We need people who get these decisions right! The first time. It is that important a job.

Had she voted against it, ironically, she would have been proven right, as we know now, and probably would have won the 2008 election.

I try to put myself in the place of the victims of these decisions made by strangers they do not know, have never done anything to and shudder to think what it must be like when your child is blown to bits because someone far away was worried about their career. Or was too unintelligent to fall for a lie that decided the fate of my child. I'm not sure it would matter.

We have to STOP making excuses for our elected officials. If they make immoral decisions for power and money OR because they are foolish and irresponsible enough to make such a decision, the only way we can save this country from becoming something we are ashamed of is to hold them accountable and remove them office.

And right now, thinking of all the people who died so that politicians don't lose a career that really is not such a big deal in the scheme of things, or because we are electing people who can't see when someone is telling glaring lies, all I can conjure up is anger and sadness that those of us who tried so desperately to stop that horrible war, failed. And we failed because of people of like Hillary. She betrayed us.

You may want to live in an Empire that goes around the world killing people but remember, Empires never last very long. This one is crumbling so all the 'clever' politics we think we are so great at, has done nothing but diminish this country in almost every possible way.

I want our elected leaders to have integrity, morality, intelligence and compassion. Those are STRENGTHS. What we have now is a broken system where our leaders excuse the mass killings of people in other countries and approve either openly or silently, TORTURE.

That was another reason I lost total respect for Hillary, when she prevaricated on the question of whether or not she would approve of torture.

I can't think of anyone over the past decade in whom I was more totally disappointed.

So as someone who, until her Iraq vote, had met her and respected her, I could never support her for President.

As for Obama, yes, he was not in the Senate at the time and I am aware that if he had been, from what I have observed over the past few years, would have voted for that horrific war.

We need to move forward from these center right/left candidates, there is no center left in a system that is so far right that the only 'left' in politics is actually moderate Republican, and go all out to get some candidates who care more about their duty to the people who elect them, than to their own personal needs and careers and/or to Corporations.

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Response to sabrina 1 (Reply #195)

Sun Nov 17, 2013, 03:07 PM

199. Thank you for your reply of experience and your thoughts. I was in the Flower Power Generation on

 

the West Coast and have been vocally anti-war. I lost friends in Vietnam. I marched, we hung Nixon in effigy at his college alma mater, Whittier College.

I hated the Bush/Cheney/Rumsfeld Grand ME Adventures, aka illegal wars. Still, no matter how egregious her vote...and there were many others...I refuse to enable a Bush-like second run at it (read, Iran and Syria) for another 8 years in this election. Hillary will not take us there...she is on the same page as Obama and the public opinion, as are many other former war voters. There is also a huge difference between voting as a lawmaker, and the Commander in Chief setting it up.

Any Republican in the mix, and especially one of the End-timer Armageddon Let's Roll yahoos like Bush was and is still...raking in a fortune for a speech, will take us there and can't wait to get started on Iran on Syria once Obama is gone.

Many experienced lawmakers have evolved and/or no longer feel the intense pressure...which would include Hillary

Here's a Republican ... Rohrabacher-R-CA there for both. It was a different time.

"A decade later, Rohrabacher says he’s learned his lesson. “For those who say we should intervene against Assad because he's a dictator,” he said in a statement, “we should have learned our lesson in Iraq, which cost us the lives of 6,000 Americans and tens of thousands wounded, not to mention a trillion dollars added to the debt that hangs around the necks of the American people. Even worse, those we sacrificed for are not grateful.”

and another ...

"Rep. Ralph Hall (R-TX), who was then a Democrat, echoed Culberson’s approach (Hall switched parties in 2004). He said at the time, “In the vote, it's going to appear to be George W. Bush versus Saddam Hussein, and I don't think a lot of politicians have the courage to vote for Saddam."

Hall has now changed his tune. In a statement, he said, “I have received hundreds of calls and letters from constituents expressing strong opposition to any U.S. involvement in Syria, and I plan to vote ‘no’ in accordance with their views.”

http://www.thedailybeast.com/articles/2013/09/05/iraq-hawks-flip-flop.html

This was an insightful link below with pretty much statistics, as it shows the Senate and House votes of both the Vietnam War and the Iraq War.

http://www.voteview.com/gulfwar.htm

That is of course history. This is right now. The fresh-faced leaders of the Tea Party...many avid RW Fundie "Dominionists" (it's the biblical Marshall Plan for the globe) are mostly inexperienced in global matters, i.e. war, and these new guys itching to Get It On are the worries.

I believe we must get past this visceral hatred of her and our glee in so doing in order to "cut off our Democratic nose to spite our 8 years of Republican disaster face." It affects other's views and votes and certainly depresses the same down-ticket races to which these folk seem to be so committed.

The proud "stay-at-home" party...better to vote a la Nader or Perot, perhaps Bernie rather than to fully participate in the non-democratic (as in democracy) personal repeal of their own voting right. Worse yet, to convince others to do the same. The Republicans are hot on that trail, as well.

I can't help it that no one else is up there as a rival. She's not all that powerful. The others are just not willing, or able or don't care enough. Blame them, if you must. Maybe you all would prefer she not run? That will be great for the Democrats...no one...enter the Tea Party for certain. Maybe it's the billion dollars they have to raise. Maybe they all think it's time for a woman. Who knows.

Elizabeth Warren, Dreamers aside, will not run and create the bruising Primary, a la Obama and Hillary 2008, that many dream she will do. She will not. It's not in her nature, and we need her for the long haul setting our financial ship aright again. I watched her yesterday in the hearings...they were not ready for her steady and forceful questions and responses...deer in headlights. Why? Because they have had full reign up to now. Not even token investigation. I'll say it again ... every one of those buggers pray she'll run...and start right away.

All that said, I thank you for your response. You made many good points and sent me to do some research. I cannot imagine what it was like to be there and did not personally know anyone who had to go through it. Hopefully the years provide some healing.

Peace.

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Response to sabrina 1 (Reply #133)

Sat Nov 16, 2013, 06:15 AM

138. +1

I don't know what the poster's opinion is, but I agree with you. The Presidency is not about taking care of the President (or his party).

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Response to merrily (Reply #138)

Sat Nov 16, 2013, 05:35 PM

187. It's that a second term does not turn a President back into a Populist. He has a legacy to build

 

from a much more informed place, Beltway and political realities and years have intervened. It just happens to also pay very well...as it should. He literally risks his life, has almost no privacy, shoulders intense BS from that other arm of government, and for those and other reasons, it's very hard on the family. There should be plenty of perks.

Someone mentioned that he had given up a high-paying job to run for President. I merely pointed out that it, too was a high paying job. Or not, it he so chose. Pretty innocuous, IMO.

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Response to Iwasthere (Reply #7)

Fri Nov 15, 2013, 06:06 PM

75. Somewhere along the way he became a millionaire too

 

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Response to Iwasthere (Reply #7)

Sat Nov 16, 2013, 04:16 PM

176. I am sorry but BOTH SIDES ARE AT FAULT.

Name one appointee that Obama got into a high positions relating to economics that didn't screw over the middle class? Geithner should have been tried for RICO violations - instead he got the top position at Treasury.

Do you not understand what the Bernie Sanders-insisted upon audit of the Federal Reserve meant? That SIXTEEN TRILLION Dollars went off secretly to the Biggest Banks and Biggest Huge Financial conglomerates that ever existed.

Experts have stated that some 45.7 trillion dollars of these monies will never ever ever be repaid.

Right now, 49 cents out of every dollar of profit generated in this country goes DIRECTLY into the coffers of the Biggest Banks. 49 cents!

Back during the 1980's, that amount was eight cents out of every dollar. As long s this statistic is as it is, we can't gt an economic recovery that will help the middle class.

And it is not just the Oval Office inhabitant. It is the damn bought and paid for Democrats. The VERY FIRST MAJOR INITIATIVE the Democrats undertook when they secured their majority in Congress, circa Jan 2007, was to up the costs of postage for very small business firms, and individuals, while discounting the major businesses like Amazon and Time/Warner.

This means a modest enterprise like the one I run basically gives up and lets Amazon handle books sales (I help run a small publishing firm.) So the company gets screwed twice - once should we mail off anything, and do it at accelerated rates. And secondly when we allow Amazon to take over the book sales. And the main reason for allowing them to do this is this: they have the more convenient cheaper postage and Amazon has been free of sales tax situation!



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Response to FirstLight (Original post)

Fri Nov 15, 2013, 04:19 PM

8. Because the median net worth of a US Congress person is $6.5 million.

The median net worth of a Senator is $9 million.

And even President Obama's net worth is 11.8 million (2012).

We all grow up with the fantasy of the "American Dream" where any person can get rich just through hard work, which implies that if you aren't rich it is because you don't work hard, which is the great American myth of the lazy poor.

It is not an issue, because Consumerism (our functioning economic system for the masses) mandates that the middle class and the poor go in debt to their eyeballs to buy stuff they don't need simply because it is the automobile of the rich, or the beer of the rich, or the underwear of the rich. If we drive the same automobile, drink the same beer, and wear the same underwear, our ass is rich, or just like rich.

Spend an evening watching television and look at how wealth and social class is used. There are entire towns that have no poor (even sanitation workers are middle class or wealthy). Well over 90% of the poor you see will be on crime dramas and they will be drug addicts, homeless, or criminals. The few that are not are clowns.

Poverty isn't an issue because we indoctrinated from day 1 of our lives to believe we are losers if we are poor. This indoctrination makes any attempt to deal in a constructive way with poverty almost impossible.

President Johnson's Great Society initiative was the last great attempt to deal with this issue.

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Response to Agnosticsherbet (Reply #8)

Fri Nov 15, 2013, 04:27 PM

14. true, historically and psychologically

we have been conditioned...but as the reality of NOW sets in and more of us realize we actually ARE those poor bastards, consciousness will change pretty quick.

I have watched a few movies recently about the financial meltdown, not documentaries, but the Hollywood version. You know what pisses me off ? They all make the fuckers involved seem like sympathetic characters, at the same time there's no actual REMORSE they feel...they are all just worried about how they are going to make it with *just* the golden parachute..

ugh, it disgusts me. I feel a class war coming on, and it won't be pretty

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Response to FirstLight (Reply #14)

Fri Nov 15, 2013, 04:45 PM

25. We've been in a Class War with Republicans at least since Reagan,

and we lost.

I think things will fall apart, but more as a symptom of the collapse of the US empire than because there is much of an impetus to jacquerie among the poor.

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Response to Agnosticsherbet (Reply #25)

Fri Nov 15, 2013, 06:21 PM

88. Americans are held in a financially repressive society, nothing akin to jacquerie among the poor

could happen in this country. Look, for example, at what was done to OWS. This is a financially repressive society, many/most live in denial of that fact.

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Response to Agnosticsherbet (Reply #25)

Sat Nov 16, 2013, 06:24 AM

140. As a species, we've probably been in class warfare with the rich and/or powerful

since day one.

We lost because we didn't fight back anywhere near enough.

Still don't.

I don't think it's a matter of Republicans.

Thanks for the new (to me) word, though. I bookmarked the wiki for when I am more awake.

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Response to Agnosticsherbet (Reply #8)

Fri Nov 15, 2013, 05:28 PM

54. The most recent Woody Allen movie featured a grocery store

bagger mom, separated from her blue collar husband, living in a charming apartment in San Francisco. It is appallingly obvious that Allen is clueless. Just one example, I know, but one of many.

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Response to LibDemAlways (Reply #54)

Sat Nov 16, 2013, 01:50 AM

131. You're absolutely right .. even these renowned film makers can't get it right .. they're too rich.

 

that charming apartment in SF is probably like $1500 a month or more. Jeez who can afford that? Certainly not a grocery store checkout person. PU-LEEEZE!!

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Response to YOHABLO (Reply #131)

Sat Nov 16, 2013, 06:18 AM

139. $3000 a month or more. In reality she'd be commuting in from Oakland or Concord.

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Response to YOHABLO (Reply #131)

Sat Nov 16, 2013, 09:40 AM

158. Way MORE than $1500 a month in San Francisco

TV & movie people always have exaggerated living conditions in shows & movies. The ONLY one that comes to mind that was accurate was "Roseanne". THAT'S how blue collar people live.

Most people who are not wealthy, have ratty, nearly-worn out furniture..miss-matched appliances, etc.

All you have to do to confirm that is to go to zillow & look at the photos with the listings,. ...for the "not-so-cute" houses that most of us MIGHT be able to afford.

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Response to SoCalDem (Reply #158)

Sat Nov 16, 2013, 11:32 AM

166. That's what gets me about Modern Family

 

It's a funny show and kind of cute but......

All three of those families are doing so well on JUST ONE INCOME. There was even a time when, in one family, no one was working. No one had a job and they didn't lose their home or their electricity wasn't cut off or their car was not reposed.

TV and movie families are really unrealistic when it comes to economics. It has become so distracting for me that I can't watch Modern Family anymore because it seems like too much of a fantasy.

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Response to SoCalDem (Reply #158)

Sun Nov 17, 2013, 03:47 AM

198. The Honeymooners.

Kramden's digs were decidedly bleak.

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Response to YOHABLO (Reply #131)

Sun Nov 17, 2013, 02:23 AM

197. $1,500?

You couldn't get that in my neighborhood in NJ and San Francisco is even more expensive.

See a sampling of what rentals go for in my town.

http://realestate.aol.com/blog/rental-listings?loc=Hoboken,NJ&flv=1


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Response to FirstLight (Original post)

Fri Nov 15, 2013, 04:19 PM

9. As long as very rich people get richer, all is right with the world.

We're just dust to them.

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Response to valerief (Reply #9)

Fri Nov 15, 2013, 04:44 PM

24. Reminds me of the line from Lear...Replace "gods" with "rich."

 

As flies to wanton boys are we to the gods;
They kill us for their sport.

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Response to Arugula Latte (Reply #24)

Sat Nov 16, 2013, 06:43 AM

144. Old school. Now they do it because they think the "takers" deserve to die.

One of the most dramatic political moments for me in my life was the Republican debate in which Ron Paul was talking about someone dying outside the door of an emergency room because of lack of insurance and loud cheers came from the audience.

I realize at least some of them were paid to cheer (politics being so phony anymore), but still. Honestly, I don't think I could cheer the death of anyone under those circumstances. I still feel such a deep sadness and shock whenever I recall it.

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Response to merrily (Reply #144)

Sat Nov 16, 2013, 03:08 PM

172. It's shocking how coldly indifferent to suffering and death so many rightwingers are.

 

It frightens me how widespread that attitude is.

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Response to FirstLight (Original post)

Fri Nov 15, 2013, 04:21 PM

10. At, below, or near

Not just at or below. Doesn't make much difference but I'll point that out so you can edit before someone says your whole post is invalid because of that.

And the reason it isn't a national emergency is because the people who decide what is or is not a national emergency are in the other 20%, in fact at the very high end of it.

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Response to FirstLight (Original post)

Fri Nov 15, 2013, 04:25 PM

13. I salute your outrage, but question your stats

Average household size in the U.S. is 2.5 people.
Poverty line for a family of five is about $28k.
The lower limit of the 4th quintile of US household income is about $62.5k.

In other words, 40% of US households have a household income of $62k or more, which is more than twice the poverty line. Moreover, household size actually increases with income, so that 40% of households contains more than 40% of Americans. So no way 80% of America is at or below the poverty line.

This is an important issue, but it's not well-served by easily debunked stats.

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Response to Proud Public Servant (Reply #13)

Fri Nov 15, 2013, 04:34 PM

19. not my stats, but you are going to turn away just because it isn't *that* bad?

Look, what matters is the reality on the ground. I have three kids and have NEVER made more than $17K in a year, and that was in the 90's...

outrage has it's place
Obviously, YOU aren't feeling the hurt, so the rest of us are just overreacting because statistically, it doesn't add up.

I'd like to say something very unladylike to you, but don't want the thread to get locked

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Response to FirstLight (Reply #19)

Fri Nov 15, 2013, 04:54 PM

29. Nobody's turning away from anything

You have no idea what I do or don't do to alleviate poverty. Yes, our family is comfortable. And we all contribute money and labor to food banks and homeless shelters in particular.

Nor did I say you were overreacting. The problems are urgent.

And I know you're just quoting an article. They're not your stats. I never said otherwise.

But the stats don't add up and, crazy as it seems, I think facts matter, especially when it comes to politics and policy.

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Response to Proud Public Servant (Reply #29)

Fri Nov 15, 2013, 08:44 PM

114. Errr, correction needed

Actually your post title says "your stats", now you say the opposite?
]
"And I know you're just quoting an article. They're not your stats. I never said otherwise. "

I get where you're coming from, no problem there, just pointing this out. Your exact post title:

"I salute your outrage, but question your stats"

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Response to dreamnightwind (Reply #114)

Fri Nov 15, 2013, 10:35 PM

123. Fair enough

By "your stats" I meant "the stats you cited," but it was sloppy language and I stand corrected on that point.

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Response to Proud Public Servant (Reply #123)

Fri Nov 15, 2013, 10:46 PM

125. You literally said you didn't say exactly what you said - enough said

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Response to dreamnightwind (Reply #125)

Fri Nov 15, 2013, 10:59 PM

126. Really? That's what you're hanging your hat on?

Obviously. English being what it is, "Your stats" could mean a couple of different things.

I acknowledged that. I said my language was sloppy. I clarified. That's what intelligent, reasonable people do: acknowledge mistakes, clarify intentions. But if yelling "gotcha!" makes you feel all warm an fuzzy inside, please continue.

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Response to Proud Public Servant (Reply #126)

Fri Nov 15, 2013, 11:31 PM

128. OK, sorry

Not meaning to attack, didn't sound to me like you quite owned up to it (even now, really, but no matter). I have nothing against you nor any need to pursue this.

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Response to FirstLight (Reply #19)

Fri Nov 15, 2013, 04:54 PM

30. Facts matter. I'm poor and I was questioning those stats

 

the problem with false statistics is that detract from the real, critical and tragic reality of poverty in this country.

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Response to cali (Reply #30)

Fri Nov 15, 2013, 05:19 PM

47. And that was my point

Thanks for making it more eloquently than I did.

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Response to FirstLight (Reply #19)

Fri Nov 15, 2013, 05:54 PM

69. The median household income in 2012 was over 50,000,

which means half the households had higher and half had lower.

So how does that square with your 80% figure?

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Response to pnwmom (Reply #69)

Sat Nov 16, 2013, 10:58 AM

163. a $50K income anywhere in Maine is very high. In NYC, San Francisco, Honolulu...

 

basic housing will eat up a large chunk of that income.

That's the problem with statistics. Lies, damn lies, and so on...

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Response to magical thyme (Reply #163)

Sat Nov 16, 2013, 04:08 PM

175. And the median is much higher in those cities. It still doesn't work out

that "at or near poverty" is around 80%. Or anywhere close to 80%.

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Response to pnwmom (Reply #175)

Sat Nov 16, 2013, 05:19 PM

184. Agreed. And I followed the links to the source, which is a study that showed that 80% struggled...

 

with unemployment and so on by the time they were 60 years old *at some point in their lifetime.*

That original article and study were already hashed out on DU, and the last time it was posted it had a misleading headline as well.

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Response to Proud Public Servant (Reply #13)

Fri Nov 15, 2013, 05:14 PM

43. Poverty line is different in each community

In SF, DC and NY and probably others the poverty line is significantly higher than in rural areas.
The federal poverty guideline does make an exception for some communities by increasing the number (but no-where near enough of a difference). IMHO it should be changed for each community EVERY year and it should reflect the actual costs of basic expenses for everything including taking into account the size of a property needed to house a family of 5 vs the size needed to house a single person.

No taxation should occur in any salary that does not exceed the poverty line.

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Response to dickthegrouch (Reply #43)

Fri Nov 15, 2013, 05:22 PM

50. Agree on all points

Especially locality. It's absurd that there's only one set of poverty line calculations for the whole US, especially since the federal government acknowledges local cost of living in other ways (e.g., on the civil service pay tables).

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Response to Proud Public Servant (Reply #13)

Fri Nov 15, 2013, 06:12 PM

78. You missed the point entirely.....

You are citing the "official" government designation of the poverty line which in most thinking people's estimation is much, much too low to define as the poverty level. I believe that for a single person like myself it's somewhere around $11,000 a year. Now please tell me where you can live in the US and be middle class on just $11,000 a year?

I live very frugally and I can tell you that if I didn't get my small monthly pension of $630 plus a part time job where I bring home less than $900 a month (total of $1530 per month "extra money" I have), I would be living on my Social Security of $1,000 a month. That would be $12,000 a year and I can tell you from personal experience that there is no way I could afford to pay for my utilities, my home, health insurance, car insurance, telephone, electricity, gas for heat and still eat. If I ever had to see a doctor, my copay is $40 (luckily I'm still healthy) and if something breaks down on my old car, then what?

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Response to llmart (Reply #78)

Fri Nov 15, 2013, 10:33 PM

121. You've got a curious definition of "middle class"

You say:

You are citing the "official" government designation of the poverty line which in most thinking people's estimation is much, much too low to define as the poverty level. I believe that for a single person like myself it's somewhere around $11,000 a year. Now please tell me where you can live in the US and be middle class on just $11,000 a year?


I don't think anybody, of any political stripe, imagines that the poverty line demarcates the line between the poor and the middle class. The poverty line is meant to be the line between people who can't meet even basic human needs and those who can; the middle class starts well above the level of "meeting basic needs."

Now, are there places in the US where a single person can meet basic needs on $11k/year? I'd imagine so, off the coasts (I speak as a former resident of "flyover country"; since you ask for a specific place, I'll say Dubuque, Iowa. But it wouldn't be a nice life (which is what makes it borderline poverty) and it wouldn't work at all on the coasts or in major cities (which is why a single poverty level for the whole US is stupid, a point I've already agreed with).

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Response to Proud Public Servant (Reply #121)

Sat Nov 16, 2013, 11:11 AM

164. oh, I think it can be a decent life

because I have actually lived it.

And I apparently, in some ways, live better than people with much more income.

In 2007, my wage income was $10,640. In 2008, it was $11,968.74.

There are two things that make a decent life possible at that income.

1) a house that is fully paid for.
2) money in savings

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Response to Proud Public Servant (Reply #13)

Fri Nov 15, 2013, 06:39 PM

98. ...actually

The U.S. poverty rate was essentially unchanged at 15 percent in 2012, as roughly 46.5 million people were stuck living at or below the poverty line, the U.S. Census Bureau reported Tuesday. This marks the second straight year that both the poverty rate and total number of people living in poverty were stuck at their current levels.


http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2013/09/17/poverty-america-census_n_3940812.html

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Response to Proud Public Servant (Reply #13)

Sat Nov 16, 2013, 04:49 PM

182. Agree, doesn't seem quite right

If it were really that bad, there would be a lot of upheaval. Maybe even the rioting in the streets people seem to want sometimes.

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Response to Proud Public Servant (Reply #13)

Sat Nov 16, 2013, 05:39 PM

188. What is meant by "4th quintile of US household income"

Is that the same as top twenty percent?


Right now, households are not synonymous with what used to be a household. Before the housing collapse, most US households were much smaller. And there were of course, far fewer homeless, and far fewer people crashing at a friend's or living in their van.

I can think of far too many households where mom has moved in with the kids and grandkids, so her social security can help with the bills the younger married family has.

Or the kids in their late twenties have moved back home with the parents.

What keeps us from realizing how bad off we are is the fact that people still have their homes. Homes that the younger generation might never get to buy, as wages are so tiny these days.

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Response to truedelphi (Reply #188)

Sat Nov 16, 2013, 08:32 PM

193. A quintile is 20%

The first quintile is the bottom 20%. So the fourth quintile is the 61st-80th percentile; 5th quintile is the top 20%.

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Response to Proud Public Servant (Reply #193)

Sun Nov 17, 2013, 05:35 PM

201. Got it.

My memory kept telling me the fourth quintile was 80 to 100%, but somehow that didn't seem right.

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Response to FirstLight (Original post)

Fri Nov 15, 2013, 04:28 PM

15. That 80% number simply isn't true.

The article is getting it's 80% number from http://politicalblindspot.com/shocking-study-4-out-of-5-in-usa-face-near-poverty-and-unemployment/

It says: "According to The Associated Press, four out of 5 U.S. adults struggle with joblessness, near poverty or reliance on welfare for at least parts of their lives"

That means that 80% of us are at or near poverty at some point. It doesn't mean that 80% of us are at or near poverty now.

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Response to FirstLight (Original post)

Fri Nov 15, 2013, 04:29 PM

16. Uhhhhhhh....what exactly is your definition of "Near"?

First, your subject is utterly wrong - you dropped the word "near" from the article. By saying "at or below", you are arguing that 50M people are 80% of a country with 300M people.

Second, if you go look at the stats for household income in the US, a line at 80% would mean everyone making less than $100k is "near poverty".

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Response to jeff47 (Reply #16)

Fri Nov 15, 2013, 05:12 PM

40. +1


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Response to jeff47 (Reply #16)

Fri Nov 15, 2013, 06:14 PM

81. + a lot. I imagine almost everyone has been unemployed at some point in their lives

 

I didnt read as far as you did till I read your post. This really is kind of a BS article.
Then theres the question of just what defines "poverty". According to the statistics, my parents are poor, yet they go without nothing that they want or need.

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Response to FirstLight (Original post)

Fri Nov 15, 2013, 04:32 PM

18. Single payer

But the numbers of those below the poverty line does not merely reflect the number of jobless Americans. Instead, according to a revised census measure released Wednesday, the number – 3 million higher than what the official government numbers imagine – are also due to out-of-pocket medical costs and work-related expenses.



So those "bronze plans" are going to contribute to this.

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Response to FirstLight (Original post)

Fri Nov 15, 2013, 04:41 PM

22. Huge K&R. It should be an emergency. But what is on the horizon?

What has our Democratic administration signaled as its priorities?

The Trans-Pacific Free Trade Assault, which will drive millions more into poverty and replace Constitutional government with corporate rule...

More austerity and cuts to Social Security and Medicare,

And legalization and expansion of the surveillance/police state that is destroying investigative journalism, our primary check against government abuse, and preventing us from fighting back against what is being done to us.

We are in deep, deep trouble in this country. Our government, both parties, has been hijacked by corporate interests and is now working aggressively against ours.

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Response to woo me with science (Reply #22)

Fri Nov 15, 2013, 04:54 PM

31. I am so right there with you...

those three things are terribly frightening standing alone, combined, we are in some serious shit - especially since we are just 'citizens' and we make no difference, the huge steamroller of govt and corporate willpower and greed will just mow us down.

IMO Occupy was a beginning of something, but look how systematically they were crushed by the police state and DHS

I personally wish there was a way to fight back, make a difference and get this thing turned around, but alas, I am but one middle aged woman with kids and living on foodstamps myself... I am worn down just surviving, all I can DO is feel the rage and the despair, but I lack the physical stamina for more than that...

That's why they continue to win and rape the planet and pillage our children's future and enslave us for their use... because we are too hungry and worn down to fight back. God it's like being stuck in an abusive relationship... because as fucked up as it all is, I am *STILL* trying to fix my life and get my degree and make the money and give my kids a future...even if it IS futile.
insanity, clearly
depressing, definitely

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Response to woo me with science (Reply #22)

Fri Nov 15, 2013, 06:00 PM

73. Hey, woo me with science, here's some math.

The 2012 national median household income was more than $51,000, so it is mathematically impossible for 80% of the population to be at or near the poverty line, unless the definition of "near" is so broad as to be meaningless.

http://www.nytimes.com/2013/09/18/us/median-income-and-poverty-rate-hold-steady-census-bureau-finds.html?_r=0

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Response to FirstLight (Original post)

Fri Nov 15, 2013, 04:51 PM

26. Because the GOP controls Congress and want to see non-GOPers suffer and blame Obama AND

 

a fair number of Dems feel the same way or don't find it compelling to stand and really fight for 99%.

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Response to kelliekat44 (Reply #26)

Fri Nov 15, 2013, 04:57 PM

33. And some would rather shout "It's not Obama's fault" than to face the actual problem

 

which is that nearly the entire federal government, including the president, is owned by lobbyists and works for them, not the people.

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Response to Doctor_J (Reply #33)

Fri Nov 15, 2013, 06:30 PM

93. Owned? How can you say owned?

 

They just have a 99-year lease, that's all.

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Response to Ace Acme (Reply #93)

Fri Nov 15, 2013, 08:49 PM

115. I think the country has been mortgaged

and the banks hold the title.

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Response to dreamnightwind (Reply #115)

Fri Nov 15, 2013, 11:19 PM

127. Well stated.

 

When I was a kid my Dad always impressed upon me the fact that the bank owned our car
and we didn't. I resolved to pay cash for cheap cars, and have lived by that ever since.

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Response to kelliekat44 (Reply #26)

Sat Nov 16, 2013, 07:03 AM

145. Food Stamps were cut recently. That's House, Senate and Oval Office.

Word is an even bigger cut is coming.

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Response to FirstLight (Original post)

Fri Nov 15, 2013, 04:53 PM

27. Probably not a national emergency because your numbers are way off....

so it invalidates your whole argument. Sorry!

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Response to cbdo2007 (Reply #27)

Fri Nov 15, 2013, 04:59 PM

34. again, not MY numbers...but hey, that's a good enough reason to NOT care, right?

look around...just because YOU may have it together, don't think you aren't ONE little glitch away from being on skid row either. And I can guarantee that most of the folks that are paying their bills and working their jobs and making their house payments and buying things are *that* close too...

maybe the stats don't add up, but REALITY on the ground is right in front of your eyes, if you can stop being so arrogant in thinking you are better than those who have it this bad..

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Response to FirstLight (Reply #34)

Fri Nov 15, 2013, 05:05 PM

38. actually it is....nobody wants to have a discussion with someone with incorrect facts.

14 out of 10 people polled say incorrect facts are a dealbreaker. Sorry!

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Response to cbdo2007 (Reply #38)

Fri Nov 15, 2013, 05:41 PM

59. They aren't?

 

A point that can't be made using real number shouldn't.

Incorrect facts are a problem in part because they give an easy opportunity to discredit an otherwise legitimate argument.

Luckily, the point of income and wealth inequality can be easily made with correct numbers.

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Response to lumberjack_jeff (Reply #59)

Fri Nov 15, 2013, 05:53 PM

67. ...except that the OP isn't about income equality...

...it's about poverty. This graphic says nothing about that.

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Response to brooklynite (Reply #67)

Fri Nov 15, 2013, 06:35 PM

94. If the claim is that "80% of americans are below poverty" how could it not be about inequality?

 

If 80% of people are poor then the problem is either inequality or the definition of poor.

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Response to lumberjack_jeff (Reply #59)

Fri Nov 15, 2013, 07:16 PM

108. +10000 Valid numbers that illustrate the emergency have been posted all over this thread.


yet the Third Way pretends they do not exist in order to continue their relentless mocking and minimization of the impoverishment of millions in this country.

It is an excellent illustration of the contempt for the desperation of the 99 percent that we have come to expect from the corporate Third Way.

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Response to FirstLight (Reply #34)

Fri Nov 15, 2013, 09:43 PM

120. Those numbers are HUGELY off - it's more like 15-16%

If you are going to post saying that it's 80%, then expect to get challenged, and no, you can't defend yourself by saying that people who know those statistics are completely bogus just don't care about poverty. They do. That's why they know your post is, statistically speaking, garbage.



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Response to cbdo2007 (Reply #27)

Fri Nov 15, 2013, 05:11 PM

39. This is the callous, dismissive garbage we have come to expect from the Third Way.

The middle class has been hollowed out. Millions have been driven into poverty. Child poverty in this country is now down on the list with Romania.

Your flippant, dismissive response here demonstrates once again that empathy and Third Way policy do not go together.


Incomes Flat in Recovery, but Not for the 1%
http://www.democraticunderground.com/1014400736

Top 1% get 121% of income gains since 2009 (100% of new income + 21% from your old income)
http://www.democraticunderground.com/10022384139

U.S. corporate profits stronger than ever, workers' wages fallen to lowest-ever share of GDP (CNN)
http://www.democraticunderground.com/10021922334

U.S. Income Inequality Now Worse Than Many Latin American Countries
http://www.democraticunderground.com/10022268073

Ranks of working poor increasing
http://www.democraticunderground.com/10022200197

Inequality Rages as Dwindling Wages Lock Millions in Poverty
http://www.democraticunderground.com/10022198286

The Middle Class In America Is Being Wiped Out – Here Are 60 Facts That Prove It
http://www.democraticunderground.com/10022144851

Child poverty rates increase unabated
http://www.democraticunderground.com/10022268450

40 Percent of Americans Now Make Less than 1968 Minimum Wage
http://www.democraticunderground.com/111631016

Corporate Profits Have Grown By 171 Percent Under ‘Anti-Business’ Obama
http://www.democraticunderground.com/1014372334

US poverty on track to reach 46-year high; suburbs, underemployed workers, children hit hard
http://www.democraticunderground.com/1002998131

Poverty, hunger among retirees increasing
http://www.democraticunderground.com/1002748342

The Economy is "Recovering" By Creating More Low-Wage Jobs... Increasingly Filled By Graduates
http://www.democraticunderground.com/10022602162

"Recovery" in US is lifting profits, but not adding jobs
http://www.democraticunderground.com/1014414149

Obama to use pension funds of ordinary Americans to pay for bank mortgage settlements
http://www.democraticunderground.com/1002205218

What Recovery? Across America, People in Distressed Cities and Small Towns Face Economic Catastrophe
http://www.democraticunderground.com/10022545596

Real wages decline; literally no one notices
http://www.democraticunderground.com/11172387

Wall Street Soars with Wealth as Wages Stagnate, Jobs Remain in a Slump
http://www.democraticunderground.com/12526154

Wages for bottom 90% declined 1.2% during 2009-2011 recovery, top 1% income grew 8.2%
http://www.democraticunderground.com/10022271466

Three Minimum Wage Jobs Needed To Afford Two-Bedroom Apartment
http://www.democraticunderground.com/10022578738

Wages have fallen to a record low as a share of America’s gross domestic product.
http://www.democraticunderground.com/10022183930

The Real Numbers: Half of America in Poverty -- and It's Creeping toward 75%
http://www.democraticunderground.com/1002290698




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Response to woo me with science (Reply #39)

Fri Nov 15, 2013, 05:59 PM

71. Facts are now "callous, dismissive garbage"??? That is exactly the problem.

This is like saying, "55 million people died last year of starvation so we need to end world hunger!"

Well of course we need to end world hunger, but saying 55 million people died last year of starvation is just wrong. 55 million people died last year but only 15 million were due to starvation, so it is just a very poor way to have a conversation and discourages any actual helpful discussion because someone obviously doesn't understand fact vs fiction.

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Response to cbdo2007 (Reply #71)

Sat Nov 16, 2013, 07:11 AM

146. Facts are not dismissive, but your post was dismissive.

Trying to lay that off on facts is silly.

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Response to woo me with science (Reply #39)

Fri Nov 15, 2013, 08:07 PM

113. +1000

 

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Response to FirstLight (Original post)

Fri Nov 15, 2013, 04:53 PM

28. It is! The PTB want to get it up to 95% or so.

 

I really thuought that Obama and the 2009-2010 Congress was a new beginning. Stupid me.

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Response to FirstLight (Original post)

Fri Nov 15, 2013, 05:00 PM

35. In a country where money is speech, the poor are voiceless.

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Response to eShirl (Reply #35)

Fri Nov 15, 2013, 05:05 PM

37. you win - sums it up perfectly

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Response to eShirl (Reply #35)

Fri Nov 15, 2013, 05:25 PM

52. +10000

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Response to eShirl (Reply #35)

Fri Nov 15, 2013, 06:27 PM

92. Well said!!! Exactly!!! n/t

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Response to FirstLight (Original post)

Fri Nov 15, 2013, 05:01 PM

36. 100% of Americans cannot walk*!

 

Why is this not a fact driving all medical research today????











* at some point during their lives.

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Response to alcibiades_mystery (Reply #36)

Fri Nov 15, 2013, 06:23 PM

89. OK, that one almost made me spit out the drink.......

 

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Response to alcibiades_mystery (Reply #36)

Fri Nov 15, 2013, 10:41 PM

124. You win the thread...



Sid

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Response to FirstLight (Original post)

Fri Nov 15, 2013, 05:13 PM

42. sorry, forget I said anything

so the stats are off and I am hyperventilating over poverty which can never be fixed and that just makes me a whiner and I am going to just go back to my 'poor corner' now and shut up like a good sheep.

(this is why i rarely post here anymore, btw... DU has changed, but maybe it's an indicator that the rest of the country/world has become more shallow, snarky, and insensitive as a whole)

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Response to FirstLight (Reply #42)

Fri Nov 15, 2013, 05:35 PM

58. Oh please.

so the stats are off and I am hyperventilating over poverty which can never be fixed and that just makes me a whiner and I am going to just go back to my 'poor corner' now and shut up like a good sheep.

No. Only the first clause is correct. The rest of that is crap you are throwing as an "oh woe is me".

The reason getting the stats right is important is it makes a huge difference in what we should do about it.

If 80% of the country was actually at or near poverty, good ideas would be a massive hike in minimum wage and confiscatory income tax rates at the very high end. And that's it. And you'd have solved the problem.

But what the article is talking about is 80% of the country is at or near poverty at some point in their life. That's an utterly different problem to solve. It turns from a "people are only not making enough money" problem to "people don't have enough financial security" problem. And because the problem is different, the solution is different.

It means that instead of just injecting raw cash into the economy, we need to also do better to protect people from financial disasters - getting sick shouldn't bankrupt you. Going to college shouldn't bankrupt you. Retirement should mean more than cat food. And so on. Just handing out more cash isn't going to fix those - even though we need to do that too.

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Response to jeff47 (Reply #58)

Fri Nov 15, 2013, 05:41 PM

60. ...

you know, sometimes passion about something means you are really close to it... because it is slowly killing me to deal with this fucking struggle EVERY minute of every day and NOT see a way out... and maybe I am standing here screaming about it because I can;t take it anymore...it's not 'woe is me' dude...the tears are real, so f-you

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Response to FirstLight (Reply #60)

Fri Nov 15, 2013, 05:46 PM

61. Reading beyond the first sentence might be a good idea. (nt)

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Response to jeff47 (Reply #61)

Sat Nov 16, 2013, 07:52 AM

152. Sure. So would some empathy for a fellow DUer on food stamps who just had them cut and

reached out to DU because she seems to be near the end of her rope.

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Response to merrily (Reply #152)

Sat Nov 16, 2013, 11:52 AM

168. Except that's not what she was doing in this thread.

She found an article, and either read into it what she wanted or miss-represented the statistics. Then she attacked everyone who asked about those statistics.

A post "I'm at the end of my rope" is completely different than "80% of us are in poverty! Join the revolution!".

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Response to jeff47 (Reply #168)

Sat Nov 16, 2013, 01:22 PM

170. Yes, that is what she was doing in this thread. Just not explicitly.

Sorry you can't get that she could use some support, even if her stats are wrong and she didn't follow the protocol you thought she should.

She sure showed some stress when she replied to you and all you gave her was not to bother you with a "tale of woe."

It's still not too late, you know.

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Response to FirstLight (Reply #60)

Sat Nov 16, 2013, 03:13 PM

173. don't let them get to you

the 80 % number is actually pretty accurate,they just chose to not "get it"

most families are one paycheck away from desperate,that missed check could come from sickness or in the form of an extra expense like a car breakdown or a broken arm

the medium income is bs since the millionaires and billionaires are averaged into that

people forget that we had this huge crash in 08 and while things are better,none of the working earn what they did before however we have the same expenses as we did before*...that accounts for many of your 80% number

* current admin was successful in getting some stimulus to reduce those expenses but it wasnt enough and did not last long enough

remember you are in a big club filed with the best people!!

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Response to questionseverything (Reply #173)

Sat Nov 16, 2013, 07:10 PM

191. the medium income is bs since the millionaires and billionaires are averaged into that

Actually, that is mean income. Median income means 50% of the people make more than that and 50% make less.

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Response to jeff47 (Reply #58)

Sat Nov 16, 2013, 07:50 AM

151. Wow.

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Response to FirstLight (Original post)

Fri Nov 15, 2013, 05:14 PM

44. Poverty sucks and our system is lacking in fairness and safety nets

BUT I question these numbers. 80%? I just don't think that's even close to being correct.

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Response to FirstLight (Original post)

Fri Nov 15, 2013, 05:18 PM

46. Because rich people own every media source in the country

 

And they know that the ONLY way we will ever reduce poverty is by reducing their exorbitant wealth.

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Response to FirstLight (Original post)

Fri Nov 15, 2013, 05:21 PM

48. not shiny and new, not newsworthy, won't sell products (what the media thinks)

Disgusting, I agree...so far beyond outrage here the word for what I usually experience doesn't exist.



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Response to FirstLight (Original post)

Fri Nov 15, 2013, 05:24 PM

51. In a historical context, this nation is ripe for signficant social unrest.

 

A storm is brewing ... I can feel it in my bones.

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Response to 1000words (Reply #51)

Sat Nov 16, 2013, 07:17 AM

147. Wish I did and you'd never know it from this thread.

People piling on again and again about statistics after the poster has described her own personal circumstances. Tell her poverty is not worth discussing.

And we're supposedly dealing with the most concerned group of Democratic citizens in the country on this board. Would it be worse on a Republican board? Maybe. And Democrats and Republicans are the vast majority of voters in the country. The rest can't even be arsed to vote.

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Response to merrily (Reply #147)

Sat Nov 16, 2013, 04:31 PM

179. that's it right there

maybe I reacted emotionally to something I don't really understand.
I just know how it FEELS to be here and unable to get out of a hole that I don't remember putting myself into - just life circumstances i guess, and yet I live with the constant shaming and hostility for my lot in life, and even get smacked by the system for trying to better myself.

as I said above, i hardly post here anymore, because people have become much more hostile, snarky and fixated on arguing the details of where the decimal point goes -rather than discussing the REALITY that a huge proportion of us live with and the trauma it entails on a daily basis.

It looks like "we" democrats are no more compassionate than the republicans we claim to despise.... and our president is not faultless - but how dare I say *that* at all?

thanks for your understanding

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Response to FirstLight (Original post)

Fri Nov 15, 2013, 05:28 PM

55. A real national emergency is when some pop star shakes her butt on TeeVee.

 

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Response to Tierra_y_Libertad (Reply #55)

Fri Nov 15, 2013, 05:54 PM

68. Yeah. And our pop stars can't even do that right

Tell Miley Cyrus to take a nap. Let the grownups show us how it's done.

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Response to FirstLight (Original post)

Fri Nov 15, 2013, 05:30 PM

56. Since when is 50 million people 80% of the population of over

300 million?

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Response to doc03 (Reply #56)

Fri Nov 15, 2013, 05:50 PM

63. "At or near." The near part must suck up a lot of people.

But the statistic doesn't seem quite right to me either. I think part of it has to do with retired people who own homes. Their income might not be very high, but if they own their homes and have most of their medical bills paid for, they're much better off than young families with comparable incomes.

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Response to pnwmom (Reply #63)

Fri Nov 15, 2013, 06:13 PM

79. I am a retired person and own my home. It's a mobile home,

but it is mine. I am collecting Social Security. I do not have any medical bills, or any credit cards. I have the usual expenses of food, electric, cable, internet and phone, car and home insurance. But all of those expenses eat up my monthly check, so I consider myself near poverty.

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Response to RebelOne (Reply #79)

Fri Nov 15, 2013, 06:21 PM

86. The other thing I realized is that the national median household income

Last edited Fri Nov 15, 2013, 07:02 PM - Edit history (1)

is above $50K -- so it's just about mathematically impossible to say 80% live at or near the poverty line.

Something is wrong with the numbers in that article.

(But yes, even low income seniors who own houses face financial struggles.)

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Response to pnwmom (Reply #86)

Fri Nov 15, 2013, 06:58 PM

105. Median on wage income is a different statistic than median on population.

Skew in the elderly on social security, the disabled on SSDI, people living on interest income, small business owners or family business owners, students, children, and the unemployed, and you can easily have 80% of the population with a household income between the federal poverty line and the median wage income, in which there is not a large difference.

Population/household income figures are very compressed at the lower quintiles, and then really open up in the two upper quintiles.

There is also the perception on what is "poverty", because there are a lot of different interpretations depending on what aspect of poverty you are looking at.

Is it food insecurity?
Is it the ability to secure adequate housing?
Is it wages or job opportunities?
Is it access to transpiration?
Is it the ability to match basic expenditures against household income?

Is poverty living Shanty-town/living in a refrigerator carton under an bridge poor as opposed to just being able to rent an apartment that is too small for your family and only having to make a decision about paying basic bills and food when there's a unexpected crisis?

Is it requiring government assistance just to survive, or requiring government assistance to be able to stretch your income enough to pay all the bills and still provide medical, child care (if needed), transportation, and the occasional thrift store shopping spree for clothes or utensils?

Does a family making $50K a year deserve the same basic amount of assumed support as the family making $20K a year or, heck, even $70K a year if they live in a high cost of living location? If you've stripped away all unnecessary spending and still can't afford to pay for the basics to survive where you live, it doesn't matter if you're making $20K or $50K or $70K.

If after you strip out everything, all expenditures but the basics of what is necessary to get you to where you need to be for your income - if you still don't have enough income to put a roof over your family's head and food on your family's plate every night without going into a negative financial balance, you're in poverty.

I'm not even counting medical necessities, or pets, or school in this.

How we treat people who work and are still struggling and under pressure - especially with the resources we are wasting on frivolous crap that produces nothing and helps no one, says a lot about our society.

Those at the top .5% - the upper portion of the upper economic quintile, are making a shitload off this class war.

Haele
edited for speeeling.

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Response to haele (Reply #105)

Fri Nov 15, 2013, 07:04 PM

107. The groups you listed are included in median household income figures.

They're not "skewed" out.

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Response to pnwmom (Reply #63)

Fri Nov 15, 2013, 06:24 PM

90. The stat in the actual article is 80% are at or near poverty at some point in their lives

Meaning 80% at least hit a "rough spot". The article isn't clear how long that has to last for it to count in the 80%.

For example, I'm not sure if getting laid off one week and having a new job the next would count - for that week your income would be below poverty.

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Response to jeff47 (Reply #90)

Fri Nov 15, 2013, 06:37 PM

96. Well, that explains it. Probably 80% depends on a regular job to get by.

And 80% have probably lost a job at least one at some point of another, or spent some time living with their parents after college, etc.

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Response to pnwmom (Reply #96)

Fri Nov 15, 2013, 06:38 PM

97. Exactly. Doesn't mean it isn't a problem, but it does require a different fix. (nt)

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Response to FirstLight (Original post)

Fri Nov 15, 2013, 05:31 PM

57. Because another 10 percent

Are too busy swimming to complain and the final ten percent are too busy checking their portfolio.

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Response to FirstLight (Original post)

Fri Nov 15, 2013, 05:48 PM

62. It's not a national emergency

It's called social engineering. It's the new normal and this is just the beginning.

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Response to FirstLight (Original post)

Fri Nov 15, 2013, 05:50 PM

64. This is what FREEDOM feels like.....

 

...in a Fascist State.

- K&R

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Response to DeSwiss (Reply #64)

Fri Nov 15, 2013, 06:16 PM

84. +100000

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Response to FirstLight (Original post)

Fri Nov 15, 2013, 05:51 PM

65. Just checked census site

They say its 15% below line. Check it out.

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Response to FirstLight (Original post)

Fri Nov 15, 2013, 05:52 PM

66. The US public has been dumbed down so much that . . .

the only a question they'll ask after reading this posting is:
"What is bastille?"

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Response to FirstLight (Original post)

Fri Nov 15, 2013, 05:56 PM

70. It would be an emergency if it were TRUE, but it isn't.

The median household income in 2012 was over $51K, which means that more than half of households had incomes above that figure -- well over the poverty line.

The real situation is bad enough -- incomes, adjusted for inflation, are lower than they used to be. But it doesn't help our arguments to blatantly twist the facts, as whoever wrote the article you cited did.

http://www.nytimes.com/2013/09/18/us/median-income-and-poverty-rate-hold-steady-census-bureau-finds.html?_r=0

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Response to FirstLight (Original post)

Fri Nov 15, 2013, 06:03 PM

74. Then lower the line for Gods sake.

Or should I say the republican response.

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Response to FirstLight (Original post)


Response to FirstLight (Original post)

Fri Nov 15, 2013, 06:14 PM

82. 50 million is 16% of the population

 

Give or take

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Response to FirstLight (Original post)

Fri Nov 15, 2013, 06:19 PM

85. Really?

I thought it was somewhere between 20% and 50%.

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Response to FirstLight (Original post)

Fri Nov 15, 2013, 06:21 PM

87. It is a simple answer, too many of those in poverty votes for candidates who take good care of the

Top ten percent of earnings and then wonder why they struggle so much. They don't give a damn about those at 90% and below. They vote on the dumb bell on one issue and it does not have anything to do with creating jobs.

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Response to Thinkingabout (Reply #87)

Sat Nov 16, 2013, 07:26 AM

148. It starts with deciding who are the candidates, though.

My assessment is that most politicians, regardless of party, take good care of the top ten percent and excellent care of the 1% of the %.

Warren Buffet seems like a nice guy. I kind of smile whenever I see him on TV or hear him speaking. But that is not what accounts for his ability to get through directly to anyone in Congress or the White House whenever he wants.

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Response to FirstLight (Original post)

Fri Nov 15, 2013, 06:36 PM

95. I don't have time to read the whole thread now...but

From the census bureau,

The percentage of people in the US with income below 50 percent of the poverty thresholds grew from 5.0 percent in 2000 to 7.0 percent in 2012. Over this period, the percentage of people with income below 125 percent of the poverty thresholds grew from 16.5 percent to 20.8 percent. Among the largest 25 metropolitan areas, poverty rates in 2012 ranged from 8.4 percent to 19.0 percent.

I think the OP title is very misleading, as the article linked to states that 80% of the people in the US are at or near poverty level "At some point in their life", not at or below all the time.

The OP makes it sound much more dire than it really is. We do need to address poverty in this country, but lets not make up stories about how bad it is. Let's deal with facts.

http://www.census.gov/prod/2013pubs/acsbr12-01.pdf

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Response to passiveporcupine (Reply #95)

Sat Nov 16, 2013, 07:30 AM

149. I hope that when you do read the whole thread, you will cut the OP some slack.

And maybe even express some empathy for her and wish that things get better for her.

The pile on on this thread about statistics without a mention of her or what we might do differently to eliminate poverty is...no words.

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Response to merrily (Reply #149)

Sat Nov 16, 2013, 07:27 PM

192. You are correct Merrily

I didn't even read the whole OP. I only read the link to the article that mistated the facts. I wasn't aware this thread was a plea for understanding and help for someone in need. I too live close to poverty, so I know what it feels like. I'm not a parent though, I live alone, and I can't imagine what it would be like to be a parent under such circumstances.

I am not trying to pile on anyone, as I said I hadn't read the thread so did not realize how many spoke up the same as I did. But there is a reason we did. It was inaccurate, and when people start using inaccurate "facts" to try to move people, the people to whom facts are important, get hung up on that, rather than reacting to the rest of the post. I was so hung up on it, I didn't even get to the real reason for the OP (and I was trying to rush outside to work before dark).

I do feel for the OP...I do believe our poverty rate levels are set too low, and as someone said above, they don't reflect the real poverty rate in different locations of the country. Another poster said the things we need to address are not just wages, which is true. We need to look at why the middle class is falling into lower class status, and how to stop the inequality of our social classes and start enabling people to move upward again. Part of that is in providing affordable health care and education. Also increasing minimum wage and using taxes to level the playing field a bit.

We also need to address this problem before we become another "Grapes of Wrath" situation. Unfortunately, it takes a lot of suffering to get people desperate enough to overcome their inertia caused by the poverty itself (as the OP mentioned...it is depressing to live that way).

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Response to FirstLight (Original post)

Fri Nov 15, 2013, 06:43 PM

99. I didn't think is was that bad

When do Legs Dimon and Pretty Boy Lloyd give triumphant speeches under a banning reading mission accomplished?

[center][/center]
[font size="1"]
Eugène Delacroix, Liberty leading the People (1830), from Wikipedia Commons (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Eugène_Delacroix_-_La_liberté_guidant_le_peuple.jpg)
(Public Domain)
[/font]

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Response to FirstLight (Original post)

Fri Nov 15, 2013, 06:47 PM

100. "What will it take?"....

 

There are Morans out there that will tell you, "That's what you get with a Demo-cRat."

Then they'll tell you about their plans to buy gold. (Not that they have the money to actually do it.)

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Response to FirstLight (Original post)

Fri Nov 15, 2013, 06:51 PM

101. Because the rich rule the world

and they convince those who are not to support the leaders that the rich put in power.

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Response to FirstLight (Original post)

Fri Nov 15, 2013, 06:52 PM

102. That...just...isn't...true.

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Response to FirstLight (Original post)

Fri Nov 15, 2013, 06:52 PM

103. Why?

Because "somebody" (er our 1% owners) has us right where they want us?

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Response to FirstLight (Original post)

Fri Nov 15, 2013, 06:57 PM

104. I agree it's higher than it should be in this great country..

...but 80%. Not buying it. We can't perpetuate this kind of bad information.

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Response to FirstLight (Original post)

Fri Nov 15, 2013, 07:00 PM

106. It's pretty simple why

 

The corruption culture has caused this

http://www.democraticunderground.com/10024035751

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Response to FirstLight (Original post)

Fri Nov 15, 2013, 07:48 PM

110. Shocking Study: 4 out of 5 in USA Face Near-Poverty and Unemployment < Is the headline

 


Not that 80% are IN poverty, but that 4 out of 5 face it sometime during their lives.

Here --> http://politicalblindspot.com/shocking-study-4-out-of-5-in-usa-face-near-poverty-and-unemployment/

The facts are that 50 million are IN poverty, a hundred million around 200% or below. That's unacceptable.

Described accurately, that's about a third of the country barely making it, and a full 80% that will find themselves mired in poverty during their lives. For many it will be during a time when there is little hope of recovery.

That's bad enough - especially when we are making banks richer, and instead of cutting our trade deficit to create good jobs people are even discussing cutting what little bit stands between people and utter ruin.


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Response to FirstLight (Original post)


Response to FirstLight (Original post)

Fri Nov 15, 2013, 09:27 PM

118. I don't think your statistics are correct.

And just because you saw it on facebook doesn't make it true.

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Response to FirstLight (Original post)

Fri Nov 15, 2013, 09:40 PM

119. Because it isn't true!!! Try 15 - 16%

Seriously. Median household income in the US in 2012 was $51,371.
http://www.census.gov/prod/2013pubs/acsbr12-02.pdf

Median means half below, half over. This doesn't include social benefit programs either - just cash income.

This is a more detailed report, giving 16% as the equivalence adjusted poverty rate and 15% as the official poverty rate:
http://www.census.gov/prod/2013pubs/p60-245.pdf

If you are going to believe everything you read on the web you are fated to spend most of your life hiding under your bed because of the chemtrails/acutely radioactive fish from Fukushima/aliens, etc.

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Response to FirstLight (Original post)

Fri Nov 15, 2013, 10:34 PM

122. Its not a national emergency because the information is bogus



That's total population divided into "quintiles", or fifths. Only the bottom fifth is at or below the poverty line. You could say the next fifth is near the poverty line to be fair (at an average income of 45k per year), but that's still only 40% of the population. And anyone who makes about 45K a year and used to make about 30K a year would tell you - HUGE difference.

The poverty rate in the US is about 14%, not 80%.



That's still way too many people for a basically wealthy country, but its definitely nowhere near 80%.

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Response to bhikkhu (Reply #122)

Sat Nov 16, 2013, 01:13 AM

129. But I love how certain posters are determined to K&R even though these numbers are way off

There they are, high fiving away and of course, blaming the Dems for numbers that aren't even true. It's embarrassing.

When facts and legitimacy become your enemy and you become a slave to "emotions" at the expense of all else, then you're fighting a losing battle. And few will want to join you.

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Response to Number23 (Reply #129)

Sat Nov 16, 2013, 09:36 AM

156. 115 recs for this turd...

because it fits their worldview that everything is shit.



Sid

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Response to SidDithers (Reply #156)

Sat Nov 16, 2013, 10:48 AM

162. Stupidity knows no political boundary

 

And it is sad to watch rubes convince themselves that the strange sucking sound they are hearing is not coming from their own heads.

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Response to Android3.14 (Reply #162)

Sat Nov 16, 2013, 01:29 PM

171. Neither does insenstivity.

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Response to merrily (Reply #171)

Sat Nov 16, 2013, 04:38 PM

180. Your right, of course

 

Yet how can anyone learn unless they feel the discomfort of a challenge to their worldview? People become critical thinkers when their previous method reveals their ignorance in an uncomfortable fashion. Progressives worshiping at the altar of self esteem is one of the reasons the Tea Baggers have such a strong voice. Not everyone's opinion deserves respect and sensitivity, especially when they base their opinion on something they heard from a stranger.

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Response to FirstLight (Original post)

Sat Nov 16, 2013, 01:18 AM

130. Legal double standards are a fact of American life now, too. Until Wall St. cons go to jail, that's

how it looks to me. With no mass protest and little to no judicial recourse, there's only the ballot box left.

Maybe your numbers are off, but the spirit of your difficulties is real. Most of us understand. My Gen X daughter and Millennial son have managed, not without economic struggle, as well, to become somewhat comfortable. Living within one's means might mean a change to another region where the weather is warmer, the cost of living lower, where the trappings or 'markers' of middle class life aren't valued. I do believe that one needn't live so close to the bone as to be depressed and stressed; yet for millions like us, economic struggle seems insurmountable. But there are ways to be frugal that save much from the usual cost of living standards. I won't tell you that your situation will end. No one can ever be that sure.

Many strugglers have sold everything to buy themselves a one way ticket and expatriate to countries where there's social justice enough to eke out a living until one can change citizenship. All I can say is, try to acquire some daily routines toward your personal recovery, hang tough with affinity groups and be as kind as you can to everyone. Good health and the love of family are taken too much for granted these days.

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Response to FirstLight (Original post)

Sat Nov 16, 2013, 03:09 AM

134. The Oligarchs And Corporations Own And Control The Politicians That Own And Control Us

eom

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Response to FirstLight (Original post)

Sat Nov 16, 2013, 03:47 AM

135. The title is misleading

The linked article says:
According to The Associated Press, four out of 5 U.S. adults struggle with joblessness, near poverty or reliance on welfare for at least parts of their lives, a sign of deteriorating economic security and an elusive American dream.


That is not the same as saying 80% currently live at or below poverty.

http://politicalblindspot.com/shocking-study-4-out-of-5-in-usa-face-near-poverty-and-unemployment/

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Response to FirstLight (Original post)

Sat Nov 16, 2013, 03:56 AM

136. It is where our political/corporate leaders want us.

It enriches them and renders us powerless.

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Response to FirstLight (Original post)

Sat Nov 16, 2013, 06:33 AM

142. Because the 1% owns everything, including DC and the Media.

 

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Response to FirstLight (Original post)

Sat Nov 16, 2013, 07:48 AM

150. First Light, I am sorry that you are in this situation and also sorry

that some posters are so obsessed with correct stats that they don't stop to even try to think what we might do to reduce or eliminate poverty, especially given the recent cut in food stamps, or wish you well.

Yes, we can all do our part, to the extent of our ability, but the essence of Democrats is supposed to be the recognition that only government can really address the core problems or take care of all the poor in the nation, as opposed to only those in our own respective families, or churches or neighborhoods or whatever.

I am sad to say that I don't know how we make government address it, much as I wish I did.

I think, in the near term, anyway, we have to think of ways we can help each other, as inadequate as that is. I don't know the details of your situation so it's hard for me to even think of anything useful, but, is there a way that you can reach out to any organization that can help? Even if you are not a believer, maybe a religious group?

If not, perhaps you can join with other moms in circumstances like yours and even give each other a break with child care, so that each of you can at least de-stress for a while? Maybe brainstorm together about how you might help each other in other ways? Concerted action with regard to your local government maybe? I think the smaller the governmental unit, the more likely they are to respond, though I've just about given up on all politicians.

I am sad that I cannot think of more. I hope with all my heart that you catch a break of some kind very soon.

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Response to merrily (Reply #150)

Sat Nov 16, 2013, 04:50 PM

183. thanks

I appreciate your ideas and compassion. While some of the actions you mention wouldn't quite fit, there's something to be said for support. I do have loving parents that help when they can, but the strings attached and the guilt of asking is sometimes ulcer-worthy.
Believe me, I am ALWAYS on the hustle for some ay to make ends meet in a better way. I have resumes out there for gigs and am looking for ways to make extra money online - even if it IS through cheesy schemes...I'm about that desperate. We can't relocate, the support system of friends is far too valuable and my kids would probably freak out. Not to mention it would be like going from the frying pan to the fire without some kind of solid income to rely on. (and child support is non existent). We live in a very small town, rural sierras...after living here 20 years I have made a lot of connections and burned a lot of bridges too. I've also been taken advantage of by employers who promised me the moon, while I worked for $10 setting up or fixing their programs or office system, only to get fired at the end of the project...
On top of it all I have an illness that should qualify me for partial disability - but I don't want to apply because I don't want to admit to myself that I can't do the things I used to...I keep thinking I can get myself better.

Right now I guess I just have to be patient and believe that finishing my degree will help somehow. I'm adding up more student loan debt - but somehow I have to think that once I get my BA I will be able to make enough to turn things around. If not, well....I guess I'll have to start looking for a sugar daddy, lol

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Response to FirstLight (Original post)

Sat Nov 16, 2013, 08:31 AM

153. The real numbers are bad enough

 

1/6 of our population are living in poverty.

That's outrageous.

But we do the cause no favors when we embellish and say it is 4/5. That's not off by a little... that's an outlandish exaggeration.

That is the stuff the right does.

Tell the truth. The truth is bad enough. We don't need to embellish.

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Response to scheming daemons (Reply #153)

Sat Nov 16, 2013, 09:26 AM

155. Exactly

We have our hands full trying to address problems we really have. It doesn't enhance our credibility to claim we're Bangladesh.

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Response to scheming daemons (Reply #153)

Sat Nov 16, 2013, 09:36 AM

157. Nailed it...nt

Sid

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Response to scheming daemons (Reply #153)

Sat Nov 16, 2013, 04:27 PM

177. When we dig down into the report, we learn the magic phrase "for at least parts of their lives..."

And that makes all the difference.

Many people are close to poverty if they lose a job. And, particularly in this economy, we have a lot of people losing their jobs. Some get rehired in other jobs, others struggle. Many endure the "starving student" days while they get an education, and nowadays, while they're trying to pay off those frigging usurious loans they live hand-to-mouth.

But eighty percent IN poverty? All at the same time? That's Haiti.

The collars (headlines) and cuffs (text) on this story just don't match.

I agree--tell the damn truth, it is bad enough.

And, speaking of "the report"--it's not a new one--it's from WAAAAAAY back in JULY....so I'm not sure what the motive is for digging it up and dusting it off, unless the desire is to use it in an apples/oranges way to illustrate the mendacity of the GOP re: the SNAP issue.

http://www.cbsnews.com/8301-201_162-57595861/


80 percent of U.S. adults face near-poverty, unemployment, survey finds


Four out of 5 U.S. adults struggle with joblessness, near-poverty or reliance on welfare for at least parts of their lives, a sign of deteriorating economic security and an elusive American dream.

Survey data exclusive to The Associated Press points to an increasingly globalized U.S. economy, the widening gap between rich and poor, and the loss of good-paying manufacturing jobs as reasons for the trend.

The findings come as President Barack Obama tries to renew his administration's emphasis on the economy, saying in recent speeches that his highest priority is to "rebuild ladders of opportunity" and reverse income inequality.

As nonwhites approach a numerical majority in the U.S., one question is how public programs to lift the disadvantaged should be best focused -- on the affirmative action that historically has tried to eliminate the racial barriers seen as the major impediment to economic equality, or simply on improving socioeconomic status for all, regardless of race....

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Response to FirstLight (Original post)

Sat Nov 16, 2013, 09:26 AM

154. Reminds me of The Hunger Games

The ruling class elite and everyone else. This is a true bipartisan effort.

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Response to FirstLight (Original post)


Response to FirstLight (Original post)

Sat Nov 16, 2013, 10:30 AM

160. The 80th percentile has an income

of over 5X the poverty level. The intent of the article seems to be to trivialize poverty.

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Response to FirstLight (Original post)

Sat Nov 16, 2013, 10:43 AM

161. Uh...no.

 

Really? The source is a site with the acronym PBS, (Gee, ya think Political Blind Spot is trying to capitalize on a former well-known acronym of a respected news source?). It references another story from the same site which references an unlocatable AP story. This...is...bullshit.
There is so much disparity in our country, there is little need to make stuff up. It is stories like this that only undermine our efforts to address the real problem of disparity.
The saddest thing is watching people verbally contort themselves in order to make themselves feel like they are reading something with actual news value.
It is appalling that so many folks will accept false information that is so painfully inaccurate simply because it reinforces their own bias. It's crap like this that makes us as awful as the Palins, Gohmerts, and Tea baggers of the world.
How about we consider a source with some actual legitimacy?
http://www.theatlantic.com/business/archive/2013/11/a-shockingly-high-number-of-americans-experience-poverty/281172/

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Response to FirstLight (Original post)

Sat Nov 16, 2013, 11:28 AM

165. Will we have to reach critical mass and be on the brink of starvation before we 'storm the bastille'

Yes. I think so. It's a sad commentary on people, but I think that most people don't see the light, until they feel the pain, either personally, or someone very close to them. And even then, some will still cling to the status quo.

I read an article that said Americans are trinket rich but equity poor. Yes, we have gadgets, furniture, & nice cars, but we have very little in actual equity. I think many Americans are fooled by the trinkets & think they are doing better than they really are.

Recently, (maybe last year?), there was a survey that showed that over half the respondents did not have $2000 cash to draw on in an emergency. That's not a lot of money & no where near the 'six months cushion' I was always advised to have, back in the day before easy credit.

The playing field has never been even, but it's getting more skewed every day & more & more people are falling into the abyss. I think we are slowly approaching that critical mass you mentioned, & at some point, it will accelerate, & then, who knows where it will go?

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Response to CrispyQ (Reply #165)

Sat Nov 16, 2013, 05:43 PM

189. It is always so amazing to come in contact with people in their early twenties.

So many in the younger work force - all they can talk about is the Gold iPhone they want to order. And of course, the only way they can afford to do that is to either live with a bunch of other twenty somethings, or live at home.

Everything trinket-wise comes on account of credit cards.

The main point of the OP would be more obvious if older people didn't still have their homes.

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Response to FirstLight (Original post)

Sat Nov 16, 2013, 11:42 AM

167. Trickle Down is Buy-Partisan.

Hey! The poor people in America are considered rich in other countries!



Remember: JFK Battled Wall Street

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Response to FirstLight (Original post)

Sat Nov 16, 2013, 03:15 PM

174. The headline is so false that this OP is highly counter-productive

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Response to cthulu2016 (Reply #174)

Sat Nov 16, 2013, 04:29 PM

178. It is a cherry pick of this story from back in July...

http://www.cbsnews.com/8301-201_162-57595861/

As presented in the OP, the "eighty percent" is factually inaccurate.

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Response to FirstLight (Original post)

Sat Nov 16, 2013, 08:40 PM

194. "reliance on government assistance" = S.S. and Medicare, for example. Govt pensions, maybe.

 

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Response to FirstLight (Original post)

Sun Nov 17, 2013, 02:13 AM

196. There's something wrong with that figure, 80% of Americans are not at or below the poverty level.

2013 POVERTY GUIDELINES FOR THE 48 CONTIGUOUS STATES
AND THE DISTRICT OF COLUMBIA


Persons in family/household - Poverty guideline

1 $11,490
2 $15,510
3 $19,530
4 $23,550
5 $27,570
6 $31,590
7 $35,610
8 $39,630


For families/households with more than 8 persons, add $4,020 for each additional person.

http://aspe.hhs.gov/poverty/13poverty.cfm

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Response to FirstLight (Original post)


Response to Name removed (Reply #200)

Sun Nov 17, 2013, 05:35 PM

202. What?

 

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