Skip to comments.15 Facts About US Poverty the Government Hides
Posted on 09/15/2016 6:39:24 AM PDT by E. Pluribus Unum
On Tuesday, the Census Bureau released its annual poverty report declaring that 43.1 million Americans lived in poverty in 2015.
We should be concerned about any American living in real material hardship, but much of what the Census reports about poverty is misleading.
Here are 15 facts about poverty in America that may surprise you. (All statistics are taken from U.S. government surveys.)
Poor households routinely report spending $2.40 for every $1 of income the Census says they have. The average poor American lives in a house or apartment that is in good repair and has more living space than the average nonpoor person in France, Germany, or England. Eighty-five percent of poor households have air conditioning. Nearly three-fourths of poor households have a car or truck, and 31 percent have two or more cars or trucks. Nearly two-thirds of poor households have cable or satellite TV. Half have a personal computer; 43 percent have internet access. Two-thirds have at least one DVD player More than half of poor families with children have a video game system, such as an Xbox or PlayStation. One-third have a wide-screen plasma or LCD TV. (The above data on electronic appliances owned by poor households come from a 2009 government survey so the ownership rates among the poor today are most likely higher.)
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Your email address. Sign Up Poverty and Hunger
Activist groups spread alarming stories about widespread hunger in the nation, but in reality, most of the poor do not experience hunger or food shortages. The U.S. Department of Agriculture collects data on these topics in its household food security survey. For 2009, the survey showed:
Only 4 percent of poor parents reported that their children were hungry even once during the prior year because they could not afford food. Some 18 percent of poor adults reported they were hungry even once in the prior year due to lack of money for food. Poverty and Housing
The following are facts about the housing conditions of the poor.
Poverty and homelessness are sometimes confused. Over the course of a year, only 4 percent of poor persons become homeless (usually a temporary condition). Only 9.5 percent of the poor live in mobile homes or trailers; the rest live in apartments or houses. Forty percent of the poor own their own homes, typically, a three-bedroom house with one-and-a-half baths that is in good repair. Facts About Extreme Poverty
The left claims that one in 25 families with children live in extreme poverty on less than $2 per person per day. Government surveys of self-reported spending by families show the actual number is one in 4,469, not one in 25. The typical family allegedly in extreme poverty reports spending $25 for every $1 of income the left claims they have. In Calculating Poverty, Census Ignores the Almost Entire Welfare State
Why does the Census identify so many individuals as poor who do not appear to be poor in any normal sense of the term? The answer lies in the misleading way the Census measures poverty. The Census defines a family as poor if its income falls below a specified income threshold. (For example, the poverty threshold for a family of four in 2015 was $24,036.) But in counting income, the Census excludes nearly all welfare benefits.
In 2014, government spent over $1 trillion on means-tested welfare for poor and low income people. (This figure does not include Social Security or Medicare.) Welfare spending on cash, food, and housing was $342 billion.
The cash, food, and housing spending alone was 150 percent of the amount needed to eliminate all poverty in the U.S. But the Census ignored more than four-fifths of these benefits for purposes of measuring poverty. Effectively, the Census counts poverty in the U.S. by ignoring almost the entire welfare state.
Poverty and Self-Sufficiency
Do the higher living standards of families receiving welfare mean the welfare state is successful? The answer is no. The real aim of welfare should be to make families self-sufficient: capable of supporting themselves above the poverty income threshold without reliance on government welfare aid.
Despite having spent over $25 trillion on means-tested welfare since the beginning of the War on Poverty under President Lyndon Johnson, many Americans are less capable of self-sufficiency today than when the War on Poverty began.
The pathways to self-sufficiency are work and marriage. We should reform the welfare state to promote these. Able-bodied recipients should be required to work or prepare for work as a condition of getting aid. Penalties against marriage in welfare programs should be removed.
Lets make welfare a hand-up, not a handout.
If you have a big screen TV, air conditioning, able to eat everyday without having to go to the food bank or soup kitchen, if you live in a spacious apartment or house or drive a car, you aint poor!
Its a testament to America's greatness! Even our homeless are fat and clothed!
I was at WalMart yesterday morning. Buying my stuff for cash. Two young females with iPhones, nice purses, clothes and very well coiffed were buying a bunch of junk food and sweets crap for kids plus some goodies for themselves. They pulled out the Georgia Peach EBT card and paid for the junk and then pulled out cash to buy their cigarettes. Neither of them had ever been on the paycheck side of a job but drove TWO cars there. I guess they had their little rug rats in the free Pre-K school daycare in my state. Bitches.
What nonsense this article is.
Trump is on the right side of this issue.
America needs to bring back jobs, to America.
which part(s) of this is nonsense ?
I couldn't work in retail grocery. Scenes like you're describing would get my BP too high.
For over two entire decades we have been laughing at the concept that American jobs are leaving, as American jobs left.
Now China is more competitive than America is, we run a deficit with nearly every single country in the entire world. And we are still losing jobs quickly.
What part of this article is RIGHT?
Wait a minute. Is this telling me that I’d have a lot higher standard of living if I were poor?
How do I get in on this scam? ;)
A very significant part of WalMart’s business is with SNAP and EBT customers. They laugh about it when they check out sometimes. It is disgusting. In my county, 20% of these people are on SNAP.
Fighting Poverty is an “industry”.
It is a lucrative business for many powerful people.
People classed as being in poverty justify the massive wealth redistribution that has become the norm.
If the government allowed (or admitted that) people are moving up the economic ladder and that the number in poverty is shrinking the flow of money would diminish.
When the flow of money shrinks the amount that can be scammed shrinks.
In the 90’s in California, I was in a grocery check-out line behind two Middle eastern women. Their gold jewelry could have fed a hundred people for a year, but they pulled out the food stamps to pay for the groceries. I asked about that situation and was told they were from ‘oppressed countries’ so qualified for food stamps. This graft has been going on for decades. Seems both Partys have no problem with keeping the gravy train moving.
It is FAR worse today.
Cash income under the table
And there is a cost to drugs and alcohol ... Not just the actual monetary cost of buying the product but resulting costs on the individual, families and society.
Poor people are not fat.
I grew up in a 1 bedroom house with my mom, brother, grandfather, and grandmother. We scoured the fields after the growers had harvested them and cut them loose. Helped my grandmother can everything we could find. Still had to stand in line with grandmother for commodities occasionally.
We were super poor according to today’s statistics. Had leftover bean or fried potato sandwiches for lunch on many occasions but never went hungry. Guess we would be considered destitute today.
um...that didn’t answer the original question.
are we reading the same article ?
The Daily Signal(Heritage Foundation) did their take on the Census Bureau released annual poverty report for 2015.
Which part of this Daily Signal article is nonsense ?
You obviously don’t live in Texas. You must have a vehicle. Outside the handful of major metropolitan areas, there is no public transportation. Most people live in the country and their nearest grocery store is 20-30 miles away. That’s why I only grocery shop once every 3-4+ weeks and combine errands.
How the heck do you propose they get to work or that food bank you mentioned without a car, no public transportation and 30 miles from town?
Not everyone in America (I don’t give a rat’s rear about France or Germany), no matter their income bracket, has front door services or shopping centers or pizza delivery or jobs 5 minutes away. It wasn’t until recently that we didn’t have to drive to town for our mail and burned our trash because there was no service. I still drive into town to take the bills to the PO.
Guessing you’ve never survived a Texas summer without a/c. It can be done but as much as I can’t stand the gimme crowd, I’d never fault their a/c.
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