From the VOMITORIUM
Both party loyal have a position on poverty and how we can pull ourselves up and finally live the American Dream….one thinks tax cuts will eliminate the poor and the other thinks that throwing money away will do it……both are delusional. First, we have had a generation of some sort of tax cuts and the poor are just as poor as they were when it started……second, we have had a wealth of programs and government give aways to put the poor on the right trajectory out of poverty, and the poor are still as poor as they were…..none of these short sighted short term plans is going to eliminate the poor.
But we can point to all the months of economic growth, as small as it is, but it is still growth and that is traveling in the right direction, right? Put all this Democratic good news and campaign fodder and the gloom and doom of the GOP into a sort of perspective……how are the ‘real’ American people really doing?
This year, hundreds of thousands of Americans are expected to be too broke to file for bankruptcy.
The average cost to file for Chapter 7 bankruptcy protection, the most common form of consumer bankruptcy, is more than $1,500, according to recent research submitted to the National Bureau of Economic Research.
As a result, anywhere between 200,000 and one million consumers are estimated to be unable to afford that steep cost this year.
So many Americans cannot afford to even file for bankruptcy…..what sort of sign is that? If lower and middle class are having a problem, what about the poor (this assumes that there are those worse off than the middle class)?
From an article by Alexander Eichler writing in the HufPo…….
It’s getting harder for poor Americans to lift themselves up.
Don’t believe it? The Federal Reserve Bank of Boston has some pretty compelling evidence.
Between 1996 and 2006, most Americans in the bottom 20 percent of earners never moved up the income ladder, according to a recent research brief by Katharine Bradbury, an economist at the Boston Fed.
Moreover, she writes, it was harder for people to lift themselves up off the bottom in those Clinton-Bush years than it was in the decade from 1976 to 1986, or the decade from 1986 to 1996.
In other words, the data suggests, America’s not the land of opportunity anymore. Instead, it’s become the land of stasis.
Bradbury’s not the first to suggest that the U.S. is increasingly a country where the poor stay poor. Income inequality is at its highest level in decades, and repeated studies have shown that it’s harder to achieve economic mobility in America than in other wealthy, industrialized countries.
A record number of Americans are living in poverty, according to the most recent census, and nearly half of households are believed to have almost nothing in the way of meaningful savings. The problems don’t look to be abating any time soon; wages have more or less frozen in place for many Americans.
With all these facts and stats (which I will assume will be challenged) what conclusion can we draw about the path the two parties are traveling……..will Americans, especially poor Americans, ever find that American Dream?