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In this modern age of compassionate conservatism, the Bush administration has espoused no child left behind and an ownership society. No child left behind was meant to make sure that every child had the opportunity to get a fair chance at life, to have a good education and to become productive members of our modern, compassionately conservative, ownership society. In this society, while children aren't being left behind, people are benefitting from owning their own homes, people should have full control over their own fate, being able to do things for themselves. Even their retirment should be under their own control. That way, people will be able to live, humble middle-class or better existances for everyone with people doing it themselves, pulling themselves up by their bootstraps. That what he'd like everyone to think anyway.
The age of "compassionate conservatism" is anything but compassionate. Up to this point, poverty has increased during the first term of this administration. 2004 numbers will hit tomorrow but let's examine 2003 number's first.
"The effort by the Administration to understate the extent of economic hardship in the U.S. serves their broader and extremely troubling agenda to reduce or eliminate social programs that play a positive role for low-income Americans, while pursuing egregious tax cuts for the wealthy," said Deepak Bhargava, executive director of the Center for Community Change in a press release.
-- More people live in poverty! In 2003, there were 35.9 million people living in poverty-up from 32.9 million Americans in 2001. The numbers living in extreme poverty, below 50 percent of the poverty income level, hit 15.3 million in 2003, steadily increasing during the Bush Administration. We expect tomorrow's numbers to show a similar trend.
-- More children living in poverty! By the Census' own admission, 12.9 million children lived in poverty in 2003, more than 18-64 year olds and more than that of seniors 65 years and older. http://www.census.gov/hhes/www/poverty/poverty03/pov03hi.html
-- Less information is better! In July, the Senate Appropriations Committee sent to the Senate floor a bill with inadequate funding to continue the Census Bureau's American Community Survey (ACS). They also recommended slashing the sample size used for the national poverty data, the Current Population Survey (CPS).
The ACS is a survey that provides income, poverty, housing quality, and other important data for states. Without these data, detailed information on income and poverty by state will only be available every ten years-severely limiting the ability to plan for funding for critical social programs like TANF, food stamps, Medicaid, housing assistance, child care subsidies and energy assistance. This will not only effect federal funding levels, but state and local community planning that depend on this data.
-- Less help is available! $35 billion dollars in cuts have been mandated from low-income programs like Medicaid, food stamps, and student loans in the FY 2006 budget that Congress will consider in September. Another "reconciliation" bill to be considered in September includes more than $100 billion in new tax cuts for the wealthy.
-- Less public attention is better! For the second year in a row, the U.S. Census Bureau has released the poverty data in August-notoriously the slowest time of the year in Washington, D.C.-when Congress, President Bush, and many reporters are on summer vacation.
"With the release of the poverty numbers tomorrow, we can expect the trend to bury data to continue that might challenge overly optimistic policy statements by this Administration. Rarely has this behavior to mask the poverty problem in this country been so blatant," says Bhargava. "What America does not need is political leaders who pretend that families are not struggling everyday to sustain a dignified standard of living, because their struggles are very real for too many Americans."
The point is that this administration really promotes social darwinism which basically means, every man for himself. Do it to them before they do to you. "Decrease the surface population." Unfortunately, there's far too much of this in America and there has been for a long time. We've got to do something and we've got to many people leaving in poverty, mostly children and the elderly. Unfortunately, there are far too many children left behind.
posted by Stithmeister @ 7:24 PM
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Give them credit, they are lifting some children out of poverty. As more and more money goes to the top 1% it is invested in multinats, who move the last few factories out of American and into Mexico and China. These people move into the factory jobs, and have some small increase in their standard of living - small, the minimum possible, but some. And so there are a few children that benefit.
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