Poverty – An American Shame

As AI and other developments lead us to talk about what happens when work disappears, another debate that predates this one, is the continuing high levels of poverty in the country–a higher poverty rate than Latvia, Greece, Poland and all other members of the OECD according ot Matthew Desmond’s article in the New York Times magazine of September 16, 2018.

Desmond writes:

“Here is the blueprint.

“valorize work as the ticket out of poverty”

“debase caregiving as not work”

“Force the poor to log more hours in a labor market that treats them as expendables.”

“Skirt responsibility by blaming the safety net itself.

“Politicians will invent new ways of denying families relief, like slapping unrealistic work requirements on aid for the poor.”

Democrats may scoff at Republicans’ work requirements, but they have yet to challenge the dominant conception of poverty that feeds such meanspirited politics. Instead of offering a counternarrative to America’s moral trope of deservedness, liberals have generally submitted to it, perhaps even embraced it, figuring that the public will not support aid that doesn’t demand that the poor subject themselves to the low-paying jobs now available to them.

There’s more…read the whole article…it’s time to change the narrative and take action.

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Author: Jeremy Solomons

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