“I’m not concerned about the very poor. We have a safety net there. If it needs a repair, I’ll fix it.”
Thus did Mitt Romney supposedly commit the gaffe of the month — for we are not to speak of the poor without unctuous empathy.
Yet, as Robert Rector of the Heritage Foundation reports in “Understanding Poverty in the United States: Surprising Facts About America’s Poor,” Mitt was more right about America’s magnanimity than those who bewail her alleged indifference.
First, who are the poor?
To qualify, a family of four in 2010 needed to earn less than $22,314. Some 46 million Americans, 15 percent of the population, qualified.
And in what squalor were America’s poor forced to live?
Well, 99 percent had a refrigerator and stove, two-thirds had a plasma TV, a DVD player and access to cable or satellite, 43 percent were on the Internet, half had a video game system like PlayStation or Xbox.
Three-fourths of the poor had a car or truck, nine in 10 a microwave, 80 percent had air conditioning. In 1970, only 36 percent of the U.S. population enjoyed air conditioning.
- Our American Entitlement Society (theroycroftreport.com)
- A Chicken in Every Pot and a Dumpster in my Front Yard – A Story of Excess (confessionsofadisorganizedmom.wordpress.com)
- The United States Is Becoming Like Greece (lukeford.net)
- Morning Bell: Dependence on Government Highest in History (notgoodnewsfinder.com)