Skip to comments.How to Keep the Poor Poor
Posted on 04/30/2012 3:23:17 AM PDT by Kaslin
Media personality Tavis Smiley and Princeton philosophy professor Cornell West have just published their latest contribution to American poverty propaganda, The Rich and the Rest of Us: A Poverty Manifesto.
The book should have a second subtitle: How to keep the poor poor and blacks enslaved to government. To the extent this book is taken seriously by anyone, the result can only be more, entrenched poverty.
Smiley and Wests message is simple. America today consists of a few powerful, rapacious rich people and a lot of unfortunate, exploited poor people. The rich are rich because they are lucky. The poor are poor because they are unlucky. And the only way to solve the problem is activist government to manage the American economy and redistribute wealth.
Its as if the wealthy belong to a different species of life with no common thread of humanity linking who they are to those who have less. The idea that haves might have been once have nots, or that that they did something to become haves that todays have nots might consider doing, never enters the equation.
Even if Smiley and West conceded that there might be some element of personal responsibility in how ones life turns out, their portrait is of an America now so unfair, that personal responsibility is irrelevant. There is no hope for anyone to rise, according to this book, without government boosting them using other peoples money.
A good candidate for one of the more outrageous distortions, in a book filled with them, is number one on their list of Lies about poverty that America can no longer afford.
That number one lie is: Poverty is a character flaw. No way, according to the authors, is there a chance that poverty has anything to do with ones behavior. Rather, The 150 million Americans in or near poverty are there as result of unemployment, war, the Great Recession, corporate greed, and income inequality.
Given this insight that there are 150 million poor Americans whose economic condition is the result of extenuating circumstances it is no wonder that Smiley and West never once mention what many scholars see as the major causes of poverty poor education and family breakdown.
According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, in 2011 unemployment for those without a high school diploma was 50 percent higher than those with a high school diploma and almost three times higher than those with a college degree.
According to the Census Bureau, in 2010 17.8 percent of American families with children under 18 lived in poverty. However, in households with children that had married parents, 8.4 percent lived in poverty. In households with children headed by a single mother, 39.6 percent lived in poverty.
The evidence is powerful that getting educated and getting married dramatically reduces the prospects for living in poverty. Yet apparently not sufficiently powerful to interest Smiley and West to note these factors once in their poverty manifesto.
Can better government policy expand opportunity for those who actually choose to get educated and live responsible lives? Certainly. But policy totally the opposite of what these authors advocate. Evidence abounds that countries with limited government and more economic freedom are far and away the most prosperous.
Despite this books message of the inherent hopelessness and unfairness of todays America, the authors themselves seems to be doing quite well, selling their paperback poverty manifesto at $12 a pop. Apparently its quite good business to tell Americans that America is unfair.
Perhaps this book can be used to reduce competition for jobs by immigrants.
According to the State Department, there are currently 4.6 million visa applicants wishing to enter the United States under the family and employment preferences immigration program. They apparently havent gotten the word that America is no longer a land of opportunity.
The book is obviously communist propaganda.
of course, what else
If you grew up in a poor housing area, in a poor family atmosphere, with no real hope on the future....then run (don’t walk) to the nearest military recruitment center and sign up. A military career will lift you up....make you as even as everyone else in the service....give you an education....and establish yourself as a winner for the rest of your life.
Oh how I would love to see these two in a round table discussion with the likes of Thomas Sowell, Allen West, Star Parker and Clarence Thomas.
Ask the NAACP, the black caucus, and other black organizations, AL, JESSE who are put in control of thier people so they can have a seat at the big table.
Children rebel when transitioning from infancy .... teenagers when transitionaing from childhood and into adults ... adults whom got that far surviving the uncorrected rebellion ... just because they always got it before.
Give people what they need, they will interperate it as what they want, and they will remain poor forever.
“The rich are rich because they are lucky. The poor are poor because they are unlucky”
This only makes sense if you are nine years old.
The current poor in this country are not poor by the standards of years past. http://www.shorpy.com/node/12803 - Many have flat screens, cell phones and eat well (300lbs) but are still classified as poor.
To liberals, it boils down to this:
It’s not fair that smart, hard-working people do much better in life than dumb, less-hard-working people.
So the govt must take from the former, and give to the latter. (After extracting their hefty cut.)
Since the dumb and lazy get votes, pols will always pander to them. The ‘rat party in particular wants as many dumb and lazy voters as possible, to keep them in control of the power structure.
For many Dem voters, that is objectively true. A large percentage are government employees, government contractors, or otherwise living off government. If it was not for preferential treatment towards Holder's people in employment, promotion, and awarding of business contracts, a large percentage would be making considerably less money.
This is even true for those of Holder's people who do not personally strive for the benefits -- companies MUST make their employment demographics look good, and WILL ensure that certain demographics are hired and promoted to the limit of the person's ability to do the job (and often beyond). Their legal departments will tell them they must.
Being broke is a temporary economic situation. Being poor IS a state of mind. Broke people WILL improve their lot in life. Poor people will stay that way because they enjoy sitting in their own stinking mess, while taking the lazy way out and expecting the government to create messes for everyone else.
These authors are pure evil.
“A military career will lift you up....”
Or get you stuck in Iraq! - John F’n Kerry
Brilliant advice. Like him or not, Colin Powell was very successful with that approach. I myself, joined the military because everything else I had tried up to that point had less-than-stellar results. I learned in the military that I was responsible for how things turned out, and that life doesn't have to be a series of one chance after another.
Sadly, I wonder if the military I left exists any more, with all the feel-good, PC policies. Hopefully, some remnant is left, and that they still do a decent job turning out viable citizens.
Poor people have POOR HABITS....and they like being slaves on the Democrat/Liberal Plantation...
This kind of advice is music to the enemies' ears and is precisely the kind rational behind compulsory national service. The military is necessarily the premier socialist institution. The principle moral benefit conferred by the military on it's members is discipline which has all but evaporated from the rest of society. However, it is also evaporating from the military while other "benefits" grow or even metastasize. It costs over half a million dollars to send one GI downrange for a year in Afghanistan. Is this sustainable?