23% of all American children live in poverty

Anyone who doubts the United States has been in an economic free fall for the last three decades should check out the new United Nations Children’s Fund report on child poverty. OF the 34 wealthiest nations looked at by UNICEF – the United States has the second highest child poverty rate of all of them – with a staggering 23% of all American children living in poverty.

Only two nations – the United States and Romania have child poverty rates above 20%. That number would be even higher except for federal life lines like food stamps – which reduced the number of children in extreme poverty by half last year. Unfortunately – with unemployment benefits expiring around the nation – and Republicans gutting the food stamp programs – things could get a lot tougher for children in America.


Muldoonicus's picture
Muldoonicus 11 years 1 week ago

Easy, a one word answer PNAC

Sauron's picture
Sauron 11 years 1 week ago

Muldoonicus~~ I had not the slightest inkling what PNAC stood for when I read your one word answer. So I looked it up. If there is anyone else out there that doesn't know, I suggest you look it up.

Here is a choice excerpt from the Statement Of Principles of PNAC~~~ June 3, 1997

The United States must be prudent in how it exercises its power. But we cannot safely avoid the responsibilities of a global leadership or the costs that are associated with its exercise. America has a vital role in maintaining peace and security in Europe, Asia, and the Middle East. If we shirk our responsibilities, we invite challenges to our fundamental interests. The history of the 20th centruy should have taught us that it is important to shape circumstances before crises emerge, and to meet threats before they become dire. The history of this century should have taught us to embrace the cause of American leadership

Our aim is to remind Americans of these lessons and to draw their consequences for today. Here are four consequences:

1. we need to increase defense spending significantly if we are to carry our global responsibilities today and modernize our armed forces for the future;

2. we need to strengthen our ties to democratic allies and to challenge regimes hostile to our interests and values;

3. we need to promote the cause of political and economic freedom abroad;

4. we need to accept responsibility for America's unique role in preserving and extending an international order friendly to our security, our prosperity, and our principles.

Such a Reaganite policy of military strength and moral clarity may not be fashionable today. But it is necessary if the United States is to build on the successes of this past century and to ensure our security and our greatness in the next.

William Krystol, Chairman.

Palindromedary's picture
Palindromedary 11 years 1 week ago

"Our aim is to remind Americans of these lessons and to draw their consequences for today." --yup, that's PNAC for you..and they reminded us in their special way on 911.

And we need to remind Americans of the lessons we've learned over and over again....wars are a waste of lives and money...and the war mongers benefit monetarily by sacrificing, largely, non-rich people's children when they are sent off to war. Our children are turned into murderers and, if they survive, they often are physically or mentally incapacitated...usually for life.

It can hardly be in "our" benefit to bully the rest of the world by murdering their children. It only serves to create the hatreds that will foster future "terrorists" against us.

The reptilian brained criminals who create the "false flag" lies that get us into wars seldom suffer the consequences.

Just like Kony is being hunted down as a war criminal...we need to hold our leaders, and their puppet-masters responsible for their war crimes as well. So now we are left with the choice between our present day war criminal, who continued the same war criminal deeds done by his predecessor..Bush, and a whacko job killer who would likely be 10 times worse than Obama.

But I believe that Obama, or whoever else is in the White House, really has no other choice but to be the useful idiot for the rich. The people we really need to go after are the ones compelling these political puppets to act the way they have been mandated by their puppet-masters, the rich, to do. We already know what befalls a President who tries to buck the corrupt power elite...they assassinated JFK. Those who win the Presidency...and those in Congress know full well how precarious their positions are when up against the power elite who are ruthless enough to express their powers in dastardly ways.

DHBranski's picture
DHBranski 11 years 1 week ago

Just how America could do this isn't hard to understand. Bill "Kill the New Deal" Clinton tore out the entitlement to poverty relief and used the poor to create an involuntary, super-cheap workforce (a.k.a., indentured servitude). This has proved to be a powerful tool to block unionizing efforts and suppress wages. We no longer talk about US poverty. The issue was removed from the public discussion. We have watched a steady stream of jobs flow out of this country, and our sole response to poverty is, "Get a job or die." This generation of "progressives" -- at least, many in the media -- continue to praise Clinton. Today, the discussion is restricted to the concerns of middle class workers alone. We've utterly dehumanized anyone who gets pushed out of the middle class. I believe Mr. "New Democrat" Clinton could explain this. Historically, each time the richest few gained too much power, the poor and middle classes united to successfully push back, to the benefit of both. What happened to the poor is now happening to the middle class. Neither the poor nor middle class alone has the power to fight back. "Divide and conquer" has always been a powerful political strategy.

galeww@aol.com's picture
galeww@aol.com 11 years 1 week ago

Thank you, Sauron, for your post--I was unclear what PNAC meant, too. The FOG--forces of greed, which Krystol and his fellow neo-cons champion--would rather bomb children than feed them. The civil mask of the Evil Empire is slipping. We now see our sociopathic masters at their most heartless. Hungry children? Low on their priorities. They don't give a damn about their own children or they would acknowledge climate change and start doing something about it. When does the revolution begin? I'm in!

DHBranski's picture
DHBranski 11 years 1 week ago

America has completely embraced a "survival of the fittest" agenda that much of the world rejects. We are brutal to those who fall behind, to a degree that the more modern nations find morally repulsive. America is deeply divided by class, and we've nurtured a culture that encourages contempt for anyone who isn't the same as us. Meanwhile, the US has, indeed, chosen to terrorize a range of foreign nations over the past century on the pretext of bringing peace and democracy. We send our young to war, and if they come back damaged, we throw them away. In our land of opportunity, modern policies have brought class movility almost to a standstill. Our land of freedom imprisons a greater percentage of its population than any other country. In our land of democracy, we have seen a steady campaign to limit the right to vote to "the right people." When it comes to international relations, the US is consistently belligerent and arrogant. Wonder why other countries don't love us?

2950-10K's picture
2950-10K 11 years 1 week ago

How can America let this happen? Let's ask the economic sodomites like Romney!...... " I'm not concerned about the very poor,"..... That was his biblical answer to the question!

Markthomson1969.'s picture
Markthomson1969. 11 years 1 week ago

If capitalism truly works, then if there was more consumer activism people would see an opportunity to create jobs at home first
thereby raising people up out of poverty.
In the UK an independent review found child poverty levels would go back to at least those of 20yrs ago as austerity plans kick in.
The thought of any child going to bed hungry ANYWHERE is abhorrent never mind 2 of the richest nations on earth.
Politicians of all partys hang your heads in shame!!
One thing I guarantee it won't be their kids going without!!!!

Schizzle 11 years 1 week ago

We have too many dead beat dads and too many households where women are the sole breadwinners; women who make 70% of what men do thanks to a deplorable inequity in wages.

Mark Saulys's picture
Mark Saulys 11 years 1 week ago

There are two kinds of people in the U.S. for certain political economic purposes, those who are the owners of businesses and those who work for somebody else - Capital and Labor, more classically. The owners of businesses have succeeded in making their priorities - tax cuts, dereguation, etc. - dominate the national conversation. Their political representatives say things like, "We're gonna help the working people by letting them keep more of their own money.". That, of course, is ignoring the fact that working people don't have any money that doesn't come from the owners of businesses, or their employers.

David Cay Johnstone, lefty tax analyst, once described the dishonest use of language in messaging when Republicans, business people and whoever else, say things like, "The workers of _ will, heretofore, have to pay more of their own pension benefit" or "more of their own health care insurance" characterizing those benefits as some sort of charitable generosity on the part of the employers rather than what they are, the just, negotiated and agreed upon compensation by the workers owed to them by their employers. As Johnstone points out, to say that the workers will, from now on, have to "pay more of their own pension benefit" or "more of their own health insurance" is like saying that "from now on the workers will have to pay more of their own wages or salaries". That may seem to make logical sense if you are an owner of business as owners of busineses do, in fact, pay their own salaries but it doesn't fit at all when you apply it to working people.

In our political economy the owners of businesses owe those who work for them, that is, realistically, everybody else in society, a just compensation. That compensation comes in two forms, wages or salaries and other direct compansations and less direct compensation in the form of taxes. If the owners of businesses refuse to do either, as they are now, you have, then, a situation as we have now in which the middle class is destroyed and the working people are pauperized.

When I was in Madison, Wi. last spring there were many slogans being displayed on more or less makeshift signs and banners. One of my favorite ones was, "A benefit cut is a tax". So, these days, when I stand and hold a banner with Occupy Chicago in our financial district, I like to hold one that reads, "A program cut is a tax on the 99% and welfare [or free labor] for the 1%". We have to stop allowing schools, hospitals, libraries, food stamps, etc. from being characterized as charitable generosities of the 1% toward the 99%. They are, in fact, the just compensation owed the 99% by the 1% that the 99% are justly entitled to.

The Occupy movement has been accused of wanting" "free stuff" as their main platform. I liked the Diggers' (the Hippie Free Food and Free Store services in Haight Ashbury in the '60s) slogan of, "It's free because it's yours". In negation of private property rights they declared that they were giving you things for free because they are already rightfully yours. It was justice not charity. Similarly, the Occupy movement is demanding what is already rightfully ours and not a charitable donation. They are demanding what the hardworking people of our society rightly deserve.

The hippies are, in fact, an important part of the Occupy movement but only a part. The Occupy movement is like a Charlie Daniels song, it's the cowboys and the hippies and the rebels and the yanks all got together again. The current political climate is really more the Great Depression all over again than it is the 60's all over again.

Geraldine Rieman 11 years 1 week ago

Many talk show hosts on radio say that they don't want to pay for poor people, and why should THEIR taxes go to pay for others to have health care, or education. This word has spread like wildfire. So what then? The rich peoples' taxes only go for what they want ? Or maybe they all live in a separate land? Do they want a fire department or police, or will they hire their own? Will they cry to be rescued by the Coast Guard if they are on their boat? Will they want help after an earthquake, or hurricaine? Maybe not, they have so much $$$ that they can just go elsewhere. Will they mind if people around them are sick, like waiters, and maids, clerks?

Cameron.G's picture
Cameron.G 11 years 1 week ago

Food stamps should be used for those who really need it. If money was spent properly in this country then it wouldn't be an issue. Reform in many areas need to happen because right now someone could sell their food stamp card and then claim that it was lost so that they can get a new one.

George Reiter's picture
George Reiter 11 years 1 week ago

“Give a man a fish; you have fed him for today. Teach a man to fish; and you have fed him for a lifetime". Our society has taken away the boat, the fishing rod, and tackle. Now we wonder why the children are in poverty when the parents have no resources to provide for the family. Our government can be cruel at times as evidenced by a high unemployment rate and underemployment and by closing factories and shipping jobs to foreign countries like China.

The Republicans and some Conservative Democrats are stripping our education resources as evidenced by the one trillion dollar debt that college graduates are strapped with paying long after they graduate, along with the increased interest rates on their debt. And, the Republicans are increasing the interest rate on the college loans that these young adults so appropriately earned.

The Republicans have filibustered any and all Job Growth Programs and thusly responsible for our high unemployment rate. Besides, the rule of our Government allows the outsourcing of our American jobs to foreign countries, as evidenced by over 60,000 manufacturing companies being closed and shipped to China with incentives. The House of Representatives under House Leader Nancy Pelosi introduced legislation to turn around this insane program of incentives to move our jobs overseas, but the Republicans Filibuster, and it died.

President Lyndon Johnson’s War On Poverty reduced the poverty rate over 50% in just 4 years. This reduction in the poverty rate tells me that we did something correct. Now we are faced with an increased poverty rate with children tells me that there is something wrong.

President Kennedy said: “Our problems are man-made, therefore they may be solved by man. No problem of human destiny is beyond human beings.”

I’m reminded by the Bible in Matthew 25:40 “The King will reply, ‘Truly I tell you, whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers and sisters of mine, you did for me.’

Where is the justice?

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