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Author: Subject: Poverty is our worst enemy

Maximum Peach



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  posted on 9/12/2005 at 01:05 PM
Very well said, Doug.

 

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Maximum Peach



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  posted on 9/12/2005 at 01:06 PM
Over the years, children in this country have gained from programs that the Dems have come up with, but as soon as the Republicans take office, many of these programs suffer severe cutbacks.
It's not just about handouts in the form of cash...we're talking about govt funded after school and daycare programs so that adults can afford to work. Free lunch and medical care for ALL children in the US. It was heading in that direction during the Clinton years, but as soon as GW got in, many of the state funds were cut from this program and millions of children were disqualified. Why?? How can anyone justify that?
The pre-k govt programs are great. Free post high school training/college for low-income familiy kids is wonderful too. Free meals for low income kids in schools is another great program. But there needs to be more for the parents of these kids to enable them to get out of the ghettos and impoverished rural areas as well. They need help at home, not just at school. And we need to stop veiwing these people as burdens of our society. They are human beings that need to have their self-worth restored. It'll take a long time but if only a hand full of people make the effort, it'll never happen.

 

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Extreme Peach



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  posted on 9/12/2005 at 01:07 PM
Poverty is a social condition that correlates with limitations on ones choices and freedoms in many ways. There are places in the world where poverty is almost non-existent. Sweden is a good example. Just consider why it is that the vast majority of people who remained in New Orleans, despite the dire predictions, were impovershed? Simply put, their options were very limited (i.e. transportation, means of self-support, emotional/psychological capacity to deal with relocation). The fears associated with facing the storm were overcome by the fears of leaving as a consequence of those limitations on their real and perceived options.

Despite such limitations, there are always uplifting examples of people who beat the odds and overcome poverty. Just as I am sure, there were many poor people who did find the means to evacuate New Orleans successfully. But the fact is that the "odds" are against the vast majority of kids growing up in poverty and "making it" in this country. Unfortunately, as good as they sound, none of those feel good, "beat the odds" stories changes that fact. While individual decision making is important, the social constraints that poverty places in an individual's life can far oustrip the power of individual initiative reflective of positive decision making.

Here is an article that provides some international comparison and perspective on poverty:

http://academic.bowdoin.edu/courses/f01/econ211/dissemination/focus_interna tional_context.pdf#search='international%20poverty%20rates'

It's a somewhat dry, stuffy academic paper, but I found it quite helpful in considering some fundamental issues of poverty.

I agree with the sentiment that poverty is our worst enemy and only add that childhood poverty is especially caustic.

Peace.

Erik







[Edited on 9/12/2005 by CEEJ]

 

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Maximum Peach



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  posted on 9/12/2005 at 01:48 PM
I tried to get to that paper you posted Erik, but I couldn't directly link to it. I did poke around on that site for a bit though. I would like to know how the people who blame the individual for their poverty striken circumstances explain how so many employed people still live in poverty? WHat are they supposed to do? And I'd also like to hear their theories on why poverty is so disporportionate among ethnic groups as well. Apparently the theory of equal opportunity for all doesn't apply to everyone, according to experts in the field.

[Edited on 9/12/2005 by musichick3]

 

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Ultimate Peach



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  posted on 9/12/2005 at 01:50 PM
quote:
There are places in the world where poverty is almost non-existent. Sweden is a good example.


You could say the same for Swedish-Americans.

 

Maximum Peach



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  posted on 9/12/2005 at 01:59 PM
Probably becuse they were raised in a postive environment before they came to America, KR. Environmental surroundings, education, mental and physical stability during childhood, and self-esteem are extremely powerfu factors that determine success in later life.
If they are so successful here, that speaks volumes of their homeland if you ask me.

[Edited on 9/12/2005 by musichick3]

 

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Ultimate Peach



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  posted on 9/12/2005 at 02:10 PM
quote:
Probably becuse they were raised in a postive environment before they came to America, KR.


One wonders why the left this "positive environment".

quote:
Environmental surroundings, education, mental and physical stability during childhood, and self-esteem are extremely powerfu factors that determine success in later life.


Agreed.

quote:
If they are so successful here, that speaks volumes of their homeland if you ask me.


Hmmmm...apply that statement to other groups and you could get yourself into a lot of trouble.

But more to the point, Sweden, while certainly a success in nearly every sense of the word, is not without problems. They have a ferocious level of alcoholism; one that would shock even the most ardent fratboy. And there is certainly poverty there although it does not quite compare to what we saw in New Orleans.

 

Maximum Peach



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  posted on 9/12/2005 at 02:12 PM
Some people just want to come here becuase they want to roam, some because of family, or specific educational or career opportunities. Not everyone comes to escape their homeland.
I bet the Swedes take better care of their poor than we do, which says alot about how each of us value our citizens.

I have a feeling that an impoverished person in Sweden would not be accepted by our INS dept at this time. You have to have a sponsor (private family member, spouse, or, educational sponsor or employer in the US) to get into the US. If you have no job, no family or no money to get here, you won't be granted a Visa. That's why we have so many illegals.

[Edited on 9/12/2005 by musichick3]

[Edited on 9/12/2005 by musichick3]

 

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Ultimate Peach



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  posted on 9/12/2005 at 02:25 PM
quote:
I bet the Swedes take better care of their poor than we do, which says alot about how each of us value our citizens.


Well I have not done a compare/contrast as you apparently have with your "bet".

The Sweden I visited had large groups of friendly and attractive blond peoples contrasted with lesser yet significant groups of very drunk and sad peoples sitting around a piles of empties in the middle of the day as well as dark skinned peoples living a life of de facto segregation in buildings that we call "projects".

quote:
I have a feeling that an impoverished person in Sweden would be accepted by our INS dept at this time. You have to have a sponsor (private family member, spouse, or, educational sponsor or employer in the US) to get into the US. If you have no job, no family or no money to get here, you won't be granted a Visa. That's why we have so many illegals.


Swedish immigration policy, like most of Europe, is very, very restrictive. American policy, in direct contrast to your very spurious claim, is based on quotas. These quotas, since 1965, tend to be skewed in favor of the third world.

Both Sweden and the USA, as is typical of prosperous countries, have sizable amounts of illegals.

 

Maximum Peach



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  posted on 9/12/2005 at 03:14 PM
Read the current Visa regulations if you don't belive me. You can find it here.....http://uscis.gov/graphics/services/imm_visas.htm

Asylum/refugee status is another story, but I doubt that would apply to most countries of origin in Europe, aka: Sweden

 

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Extreme Peach



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  posted on 9/12/2005 at 03:19 PM
quote:
I tried to get to that paper you posted Erik, but I couldn't directly link to it.


Sue -

Sorry about that. I used the quotation button, instead of the url button to create the link. Clearly that doesn't work. Anyway, I went back and edited it so it should work now.

Peace.

Erik






[Edited on 9/12/2005 by CEEJ]

 

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Ultimate Peach



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  posted on 9/12/2005 at 03:22 PM
quote:
Read the current Visa regulations


A casual look at New York City, Miami, Los Angeles, Seattle, Honolulu, and most other parts of the country shows them to be pretty generous. Most of the country is not like your beloved rural hamlet, Ms Chick. America has always been the most multiracial and multiethnic despite what you might see outside your door.

Why don't you tell me why Sweden does not take more immigrants. You can start with those Cubans who exceed the yearly 15000 and do not touch land when they flee.

 

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  posted on 9/12/2005 at 03:35 PM
I don't believe that Sweden was meant to be the topic of discussion here. However, clearly Sweden is not perfect and has its share of social problems, as KR points out. However, the Scandinavian Countries, in general, have social/cultural norms that support social policy which helps minimize poverty and unequal income distribution.

Peace.

Erik

 

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Ultimate Peach



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  posted on 9/12/2005 at 03:41 PM
quote:
However, the Scandinavian Countries, in general, have social/cultural norms that support social policy which helps minimize poverty and unequal income distribution


Yes you are quite correct. They have a much higher level of income redistrubtion via high income and consumption taxation than we do. No argument there.

The key factor, however, is that nearly everyone in Sweden (and the other Scandinavian countries) agrees with this and is completely dedicated to it. In other words, they have a culture of consensus that we do not have, let alone other European nations. That was the origin of my remark regarding Swedish-Americans which actually was a paraphrase of a conversation between Eisenhower and the Swedish PM of that time.

 

Maximum Peach



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  posted on 9/12/2005 at 03:42 PM
Right. I didn't want to get into a Sweden VS US immigration policy pissing contest here. I was simply responding to your claim that Swedish-Americans seem to be highly successful by saying their country values it's citizens by having an extremely low poverty rate, as noted in the paper CEEJ posted. Take a look. Also, cities in America have no say-so over who the US govt let's into this country or not. It's all through Homeland Security and they are very particular about who qualifies, depending on who is willing to take care of them once they get here. The sponsor has to make above poverty level income in order for the immigrant to be granted a Visa to become a permanent resident. Take a look, it's all there in the link I sent.

 

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Maximum Peach



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  posted on 9/12/2005 at 03:46 PM
My UK friends also seem to be of the mindset that it's their responsibility to take care of their unemployed and/or poor as well. They don't seem to hold the same disdain for those less fortunate. The working people get paid enough to stay above poverty level without having to work 2 or 3 jobs too. Canada is the same from what I understand.
Why is it ok for us to have such horribly poor people living in our society when we clearly have a better economic situation and higher standard of living?

 

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Ultimate Peach



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  posted on 9/12/2005 at 03:47 PM
quote:
The sponsor has to make above poverty level income in order for the immigrant to be granted a Visa to become a permanent resident.


Imagine that. What a deranged group of brutes we are, insisting that people actually have a few bucks before they come here to live. What a tragedy.

 

Maximum Peach



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  posted on 9/12/2005 at 03:50 PM
I'm not arguing with that policy. I have no problem with it at all. I'm just saying our doors are not as swung open wide to the masses as our govt would have us think, to all the poor and downtrodden in the world who wish to come to where the streets are paved with gold. I can't understand why our govt allows our own people to suffer unmercifully though while claiming to be the grandest, most generous, compassionate country in the universe.

 

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Ultimate Peach



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  posted on 9/12/2005 at 03:51 PM
quote:
They don't seem to hold the same disdain for those less fortunate. The working people get paid enough to stay above poverty level without having to work 2 or 3 jobs too.


What are you talking about? The UK has some pretty scary slums. As we speak, there are ethnic riots in Ulster taking place due to marching season. By some counts, London has more crime than New York. Their welfare benefits may well be marginally better than ours, but that no more solves poverty than our programs do.

 

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  posted on 9/12/2005 at 03:56 PM
quote:
I'm just saying our doors are not as swung open wide to the masses as our govt would have us think, to all the poor and downtrodden in the world who wish to come to where the streets are paved with gold.


Be realistic. No country can take every single person that would want to enter. Were that true, I would be tending bar on a little stretch of the Adriatic coast in Italy that I happen to love.

 

Maximum Peach



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  posted on 9/12/2005 at 04:05 PM
how many people do you know living in the UK that you are such an authority of their situation?

 

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Ultimate Peach



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  posted on 9/12/2005 at 04:09 PM
quote:
how many people do you know living in the UK that you are such an authority of their situation?


I know a good many people in the UK and I have visited the country 5 times in my life. One I brought to the Beacon two years ago.

Does that make me an expert? Probably not. But it does not take an expert to see that there is poverty in the UK. How could there not be? Take a walk through Newcastle, Leeds, Belfast, Liverpool, or numerous areas of London if you do not believe me.

 

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  posted on 9/12/2005 at 04:12 PM
Which country is it where poverty does not exist?
 

Ultimate Peach



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  posted on 9/12/2005 at 04:14 PM
quote:
Which country is it where poverty does not exist?


Some of the pundits here seem to think all except ours.

 

Maximum Peach



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  posted on 9/12/2005 at 04:16 PM
quote:

By some counts, London has more crime than New York. Their welfare benefits may well be marginally better than ours, but that no more solves poverty than our programs do.


How do you figure that the crime rates in London are worse than NYC? Maybe pickpocketing, or namecalling, but not violence.

 

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