Is poverty a choice? How do the rich and powerful keep the poor down? How do we help the poor? What is the truth about poverty?
A follow up to Stefan appearance on the Joe Rogan Experience podcast on 1/6/14: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kPGofMn0ktI
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In good economic times or bad, the typical poor family with children is supported by only 800 hours of work during a year: That amounts to 16 hours of work per week. If work in each family were raised to 2,000 hours per year-the equivalent of one adult working 40 hours per week throughout the year- nearly 75 percent of poor children would be lifted out of official poverty.
Father absence is another major cause of child poverty. Nearly two-thirds of poor children reside in single-parent homes; each year, an additional 1.5 million children are born out of wedlock. If poor mothers married the fathers of their children, almost three-quarters would immediately be lifted out of poverty.
Each year, the U.S. imports, through both legal and illegal immigration, hundreds of thousands of additional poor persons from abroad. As a result, one-quarter of all poor persons in the U.S. are now first-generation immigrants or the minor children of those immigrants. Roughly one in ten of the persons counted among the poor by the Census Bureau is either an illegal immigrant or the minor child of an illegal.
In the late 1990s, the United States established a reasonable record in reducing child poverty. Successful anti-poverty policies were partially implemented in the welfare reform legislation of 1996, which replaced the old Aid to Families with Dependent Children (AFDC) program with a new program called Temporary Assistance to Needy Families (TANF).
In general, children born and raised outside marriage are seven times more likely to live in poverty than are children born and raised by married couples.
“Religion has a big influence on giving patterns,” said the Chronicle. “Regions of the country that are deeply religious are more generous than those that are not.”
— Although liberal families’ incomes average 6 percent higher than those of conservative families, conservative-headed households give, on average, 30 percent more to charity than the average liberal-headed household (,600 per year vs. ,227).
— Conservatives also donate more time and give more blood.
— Residents of the states that voted for John Kerry in 2004 gave smaller percentages of their incomes to charity than did residents of states that voted for George Bush.
— Bush carried 24 of the 25 states where charitable giving was above average.
— In the 10 reddest states, in which Bush got more than 60 percent majorities, the average percentage of personal income donated to charity was 3.5. Residents of the bluest states, which gave Bush less than 40 percent, donated just 1.9 percent.
— People who reject the idea that “government has a responsibility to reduce income inequality” give an average of four times more than people who accept that proposition.
Democrats represent a majority of the wealthiest congressional districts, and half of America’s richest households live in states where both senators are Democrats.
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