100 million Americans Poor or near Poverty Line

By MAC SLAVO | SHTFPLAN.com | JULY 23, 2012

It’s bad out there. Really bad.

As world leaders finally begin to admit that we are smack dab in the middle of another Great Depression and the economy stands at the cusp of another earth-shaking collapse of the financial system, the US census reports that nearly 100 million Americans are now classified as living in poverty or are considered “near poor.”

That’s nearly 1/3 of our populace who are living in the worst economic conditions in nearly fifty years.

We haven’t seen these highs since the mid ’60s. That survey indicates the poverty level has grown from 15.1% to as high as 15.7% [since 2010], and it’s spreading at record levels to many socio-economic groups from unemployed workers, suburban families, to the poorest poor.

…More discouraged workers are giving up on the job market and unemployment aid is running out. They found that the suburbs are seeing an increase in poverty

Those experts surveyed also predict poverty will remain above the pre-recession level of 12.5% for many more years.

Via Yahoo:

It’s not encouraging any way you look at it. And if you look at near poverty, which is another measure – the next income bracket up… you’re looking at just a huge number of Americans; I think on the order of almost 100 million people are either poor or close to poor. And poor, just in case you haven’t kept up on the definition is $11,000 a year for an individual or $22,000 for a family of four.

Poverty is up 25% since President Obama took the helm, and as predicted by the survey, will continue unabated as economic conditions worsen.

There can be no economic recovery – ever – if we continue down the path we’re on:

They are responsible for the overspending and making of promises that cannot be kept and thus the stifling of the economy as a whole as resources are shifted to an infantile and futile attempt to maintain the illusion of prosperity.

Prepare for a storm, my friends, for it is coming our way.

Source: Market Ticker

For 100 million of our fellow countrymen today, the storm is already pounding them with hurricane-like winds.

The contagion is most certainly spreading.

Twenty two percent of Americans are unemployed, underemployed or simply no longer counted, and half of American households are dependent on some type of government benefit to make ends meet. In fact, more people are applying for government disability benefits each month than there are jobs created.

The storm is coming, and when it strikes the government will be powerless to stop it, despite the belief by the majority of Americans that existing social safety nets and emergency response plans will bail them out.

46 Million Americans Live Below Poverty Line

The poverty rate for children rose from 20.7 percent in 2009 to 22 percent last year.

by David Morgan
Reuters
September 13, 2011

The number of Americans living below the poverty line rose to a record 46 million last year, the government said on Tuesday, underscoring the challenges facing President Barack Obama and Congress as they try to tackle high unemployment and a moribund economy.

The Census Bureau’s annual report on income, poverty and health insurance coverage said the national poverty rate climbed for a third consecutive year to 15.1 percent in 2010 as the economy struggled to recover from the recession that began in December 2007 and ended in June 2009.

That marked a 0.8 percent increase from 2009, when there were 43.6 million Americans living in poverty.

The number of poor Americans in 2010 was the largest in the 52 years that the Census Bureau has been publishing poverty estimates, the report said, while the poverty rate was the highest since 1993.

The specter of economic deterioration also afflicted working Americans who saw their median income decline 2.3 percent to an annual $49,445.

About 1.5 million fewer Americans were covered by employer-sponsored health insurance plans, while the number of people covered by government health insurance increased by nearly 2 million.

All told, the number of Americans with no health insurance hovered at 49.9 million, up slightly from 49 million in 2010.

The economic deterioration depicted by the figures is likely to have continued into 2011 as economic growth diminished, unemployment remained stuck above 9 percent and fears grew of a possible double-dip recession.

The report of rising poverty coincides with Obama’s push for a $450 billion job creation package, and deliberations by a congressional “super committee” tasked with cutting at least $1.2 trillion from the budget deficit over 10 years.

Faced with deteriorating job approval ratings, the president is trying to convince Republicans in Congress to support his package.

Analysts said poverty-related issues have relatively little hold on politicians in Washington but hoped the new figures would encourage the bipartisan super committee to avoid deficit cuts that would hurt the poor.

The United States has long had one of the highest poverty rates in the developed world. Among 34 countries tracked by the Paris-based Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development, only Chile, Israel and Mexico have higher rates of poverty.

Welcome to Poor America. 43 Million and counting

History repeats itself as corporate colonialism claims another nation-state.  The United States is a prisoner on its knees waiting to be shot on the head.

Washington Post

One in seven Americans is living in poverty, the highest number in the half-century that the government has kept such statistics, the Census Bureau announced Thursday.

Last year was the third consecutive year that the poverty rate climbed, in part because of the recession, rising from 13.2 percent in 2008 to 14.3 percent, or 43.6 million people, last year.

Asians were the only ethnic group whose poverty rate did not change substantially; every other race and Hispanics experienced increases in poverty rates.

In addition, 51 million Americans were uninsured, as the number of people with health insurance dropped from 255 million to less than 254 million — the first decrease since the government started keeping track in 1987. The number would have been worse because 6.5 million fewer people got insurance through their jobs, but it was offset by a leap in government-backed health insurance. More than 30 percent of Americans now get coverage from the government.

“Given all the unemployment we saw, it’s the government safety net that’s keeping people above the poverty line,” Douglas Besharov, a University of Maryland public policy professor and former scholar at the American Enterprise Institute, told the Associated Press.

The grim statistics reflect the depth of the recession that began almost three years ago and could have an impact on midterm elections less than two months away.

“These numbers should be a wake-up call,” said Peter Edelman, a Georgetown University professor and co-director of the Georgetown Center on Poverty, Inequality and Public Policy. “These are deeply disturbing numbers.”

At organizations where the unemployed come to get help finding a job or seek food, the numbers were no surprise.

“In the decade I’ve been doing this work, this is a low point,” said Jason Perkins-Cohen, executive director of the Job Opportunities Task Force in Baltimore. “We’re getting a real feeling of desperation. For sheer numbers, it’s a new, unhappy world.”

At the nonprofit Action Though Service in Prince William County late Thursday morning, the shelves of the agency’s pantry were starting to empty, as the line for help snaked out the door with a few dozen people seeking assistance.

Prince William resident Carol Williams said she has come to the shelter once a month since January, when she was laid off from her job at United Medical Center due to budget woes.

“I worked since I was 15, and, now, for the first time I don’t have a job and I can’t feed my family,” said Williams, 55. “I have a degree; doesn’t matter. The jobs aren’t there.”

Williams said she has been applying for dozens of jobs a week and had about 20 interviews since January. “I think people are scared to hire someone who is not working,” she said, adding there also is just a lot more competition because of the high unemployment rate.

A single mother, Williams has five mouths to feed — children and grandchildren– ranging in age from 17 months to 28. Williams said she was able to raise three sons on her own, but she now turns to the food pantry at ACTS and her father and friends for help.

“We had no bread, no nothing last Friday because the pantry was closed,” she said. “Luckily a friend helped me or we would have had no food for the weekend.”

Advocates said they’re seeing a lot more people like Williams.

“We have definitely seen many more individuals who are very well-educated, with high degrees, where it’s the first time to ever be in a situation to ever have to ask for help for food or shelter,” said Vickie Koth, executive director of Good Shepherd Alliance in Loudoun County.

Koth recalls one family of four in particular, where both parents were highly educated — the mother was a lawyer, and the father was a mortgage broker. “They were in the business of buying and selling homes, and they had three foreclosures within the same span of time and were homeless for the first time.

“We’re full all the time and we turn people away every day, and that’s always been true. But the types of people that call have changed,” Koth said. “Time after time I’ve heard individuals say, ‘I’ve given to shelters, I’ve volunteered at food pantries. I’ve never thought I’d be here myself.’ “