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Government for Good: Impact of Governmental Programs on Poverty

January 06, 2014 By: nancy a heitzeg Category: 2014 Mid-term Elections, 2016 Election, Economic Development, Economic Terrorism, Government for Good, Intersectionality

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50 Years Later, War on Poverty Is a Mixed Bag, New York Times

Mapping Poverty In America – Interactive Graphic

 To many Americans, the war on poverty declared 50 years ago by President Lyndon B. Johnson has largely failed. The poverty rate has fallen only to 15 percent from 19 percent in two generations, and 46 million Americans live in households where the government considers their income scarcely adequate.

But looked at a different way, the federal government has succeeded in preventing the poverty rate from climbing far higher. There is broad consensus that the social welfare programs created since the New Deal have hugely improved living conditions for low-income Americans..

The more important driver of the still-high poverty rate, researchers said, is the poor state of the labor market for low-wage workers and spiraling inequality. Over the last 30 years, growth has generally failed to translate into income gains for workers — even as the American labor force has become better educated and more skilled. About 40 percent of low-wage workers have attended or completed college, and 80 percent have completed high school…

But with real incomes for a vast number of middle-class and low-wage workers in decline, safety-net programs have become more instrumental in keeping families’ heads above water.The earned-income tax credit, for instance, has increased employment among single mothers and kept six million Americans above the poverty line in 2011. Food stamps, formally known as Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program benefits, kept four million Americans out of poverty in 2011.

Above all, the government has proved most successful in aiding the elderly through the New Deal-era Social Security program and the creation of Medicare in the 1960s. The poverty rate among older Americans fell to just 9 percent in 2012 from 35 percent in 1959.

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Tax the Rich: An animated fairy tale

December 02, 2012 By: seeta Category: Anti-Racism, Civil Rights, Consumer Rights, Economic Terrorism

Two Million Americans Could Lose Unemployment Insurance In December If Congress Fails To Extend Program

November 15, 2012 By: seeta Category: Anti-Racism, Civil Rights, Economic Terrorism, Intersectionality, Poverty, Workers' Rights

From ThinkProgress:

The expanded federal unemployment insurance program that provides benefits to millions of long-term unemployed Americans is set to expire at the end of December. If Congress fails to extend it, roughly two million Americans could lose their monthly unemployment checks.

States provide unemployment insurance for the first 27 weeks after a worker loses his or her job; after that, the federal government has provided benefits under the Emergency
Unemployment Compensation program passed in 2008. There are currently five million Americans who have been out of work for longer than six months, and of those, virtually everyone who has been out of work since the end of July stands to lose their benefits at the end of the year.

Republicans have previously created fights over unemployment extensions, arguing that the program creates a culture of dependency and causes beneficiaries to stop looking for jobs. Despite those claims, the EUC program requires recipients to search for jobs while they receive benefits, and studies have shown that recipients of unemployment insurance look harder for jobs than those who don’t benefit from the program.

For Obama, a Bigger Win Than for Kennedy, Nixon, Carter or Bush #ObamaMandate

November 07, 2012 By: seeta Category: 2012 Election, Anti-Racism, Civil Rights, Voting Rights

From The Nation:

It wasn’t even close. That’s the unexpected result of the November 6 election. And President Obama and his supporters must wrap their heads around this new reality—just as their Republican rivals are going to have to adjust to it.

After a very long, very hard campaign that began the night of the 2010 “Republican wave” election, a campaign defined by unprecedented spending and take-no-prisoners debate strategies, Barack Obama was re-elected president. And he did so with an ease that allowed him to claim what even his supporters dared not imagine until a little after 11 pm on the night of his last election: a credible, national win.

Obama’s win was bigger than John Kennedy’s in 1960 (303 electoral votes, popular vote margin of 112,827), bigger than Richard Nixon’s in 1968 (301 electoral votes, popular vote plurlaity of 512,000), bigger than Jimmy Carter’s in 1976 (297 electoral votes, popular vote margin of 1,683,247), bigger than George W. Bush’s in 2000 (271 electoral votes and a popular vote loss of 543,816).

Significantly, Rove’s man, George W. Bush won his 2004 re-election run with just 286 electoral votes, and faced serious challenges to the result in the state that put him across the 270 line: Ohio.

Never mind, Bush claimed a broad mandate.

Obama’s Victory: Today’s Front Pages from Across America (Photo Heavy) #TheObamaEra

November 07, 2012 By: seeta Category: 2012 Election, Anti-Racism, Civil Rights

Obama Wins 2012 Presidential Election, Gives Transcendent, Soaring Victory Speech

November 07, 2012 By: seeta Category: 2012 Election, Anti-Racism, Civil Rights


An excellent editorial from the NYT. Here’s an excerpt:

President Obama’s dramatic re-election victory was not a sign that a fractured nation had finally come together on Election Day. But it was a strong endorsement of economic policies that stress job growth, health care reform, tax increases and balanced deficit reduction — and of moderate policies on immigration, abortion and same-sex marriage. It was a repudiation of Reagan-era bromides about tax-cutting and trickle-down economics, and of the politics of fear, intolerance and disinformation.

A solid majority of voters said President George W. Bush was to blame for the state of the economy rather than Mr. Obama. And voters showed more subtlety in their economic analysis than Mr. Romney probably expected. Those who thought the housing market and unemployment were the nation’s biggest problems said they voted for Mr. Obama. Those most concerned about taxes voted heavily for Mr. Romney.

Significantly, 60 percent of voters said taxes should be raised either on the rich or on everyone. Only 35 percent said they should not be raised at all; that group, naturally, went heavily for Mr. Romney. The polling made it clear that Americans were unhappy with the economic status quo, and substantial numbers of voters said the economy was getting worse. But Mr. Romney did not seem to persuade voters that the deficit was a crushing problem. Only 1 in 10 voters said the deficit was the most important issue facing the country.

Republicans had to be disappointed in the results of their unrelenting assault on Mr. Obama’s health care reform law. Only around a quarter of Americans said it should be repealed in its entirety.

People who were comfortable with the rightward slide of the Republican Party (as measured by their comfort with the Tea Party) voted heavily for Mr. Romney.

See also: Huge night for Democrats and liberals

Mittens Gives Gracious Concession Speech

November 07, 2012 By: seeta Category: 2012 Election, Anti-Racism, Civil Rights

Mittens Having Tantrum, Refuses to Concede

November 07, 2012 By: seeta Category: 2012 Election, Anti-Racism, Civil Rights

The math makes it impossible for him to win even with Ohio, but this petty little man refuses to concede.