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  #1  
Old 26 August 2008, 03:34 AM
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Shout Stats on the poor

Comment: interesting info. about the poor in America:

The following are facts about persons defined as "poor" by the Census
Bureau, taken from various government reports:

* Forty-three percent of all poor households actually own their own
homes. The average home owned by persons classified as poor by the Census
Bureau is a three-bedroom house with one-and-a-half baths, a garage, and a
porch or patio.

* Eighty percent of poor households have air conditioning. By contrast, in
1970, only 36 percent of the entire U.S. population enjoyed air
conditioning.

* Only 6 percent of poor households are overcrowded. More than two-thirds
have more than two rooms per person.

* The average poor American has more living space than the average
individual living in Paris, London, Vienna, Athens, and other cities
throughout Europe. (These comparisons are to the average citizens in
foreign countries, not to those classified as poor.)

* Nearly three-quarters of poor households own a car; 31 percent own two
or more cars.

* Ninety-seven percent of poor households have a color television; over
half own two or more color televisions.

* Seventy-eight percent have a VCR or DVD player; 62 percent have cable or
satellite TV reception.

* Eighty-nine percent own microwave ovens, more than half have a stereo,
and more than a third have an automatic dishwasher.

They need to enforce the social programs in place now and start sending
checks to those that actually work, pay there bills and pay there taxes.
Don't create more programs!
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  #2  
Old 26 August 2008, 03:40 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by snopes View Post
They need to enforce the social programs in place now and start sending
checks to those that actually work, pay there bills and pay there taxes.
Don't create more programs!
Not even a program that would teach people like this how to use the correct homonym? (oh noes, that might give them teh gay!)

I also notice there aren't any statistics concerning health care in there. It's pretty easy to come up with 39 bucks to buy a microwave, one time, on sale at Walmart, actually. Coming up with 600 dollars a month for private care insurance month after month and then the deductibles and co pay for any actual care is harder. Even if you happen to have a friggin color tv. Which one quick trip to the ER can cost enough to buy a whole store full of them.

My cable bill, as high as it is, is not a fraction of my health insurance cost. In fact, our families phone bill, cable bill, electric bill, and cell phone bill all together come to just about what my husband's boss has to pay for our premiums. If we cut out cable altogether as well as just about every non necessity we indulge in, it would still equal less, monthly, than decent insurance.

Last edited by snapdragonfly; 26 August 2008 at 03:45 AM. Reason: oops! spelling! and added
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  #3  
Old 26 August 2008, 03:42 AM
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Well, then, I guess there are no issues with poverty in America. Thanks, random email!
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  #4  
Old 26 August 2008, 03:43 AM
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You can buy a lot of that stuff used from thrift stores for a song.

Cable, I'm less sympathetic about, though I know in many areas (such as here), without it you can't really get anything on TV.

Avril
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Old 26 August 2008, 03:49 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by snopes View Post
The following are facts about persons defined as "poor" by the Census
Bureau, taken from various gov*ernment reports:

* Forty-three percent of all poor households actu*ally own their own
homes. The average home owned by persons classified as poor by the Census
Bureau is a three-bedroom house with one-and-a-half baths, a garage, and a
porch or patio.

...

* Only 6 percent of poor households are over*crowded. More than two-thirds
have more than two rooms per person.
* Ninety-seven percent of all poor people shop at Wal*Mart.

Dark "My God, It's full of stars!" Dan
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  #6  
Old 26 August 2008, 03:54 AM
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Is health insurance a neccessity? I know a guy who would go blind if he ever stopped receiving regular, expensive treatments. I also know people who can afford health insurance but choose not to get it; they're healthy and they're willing to bet that they won't need anything that an emergency room doctor won't provide to someone who gives a false name and address.

More generally, is being able to receive the best medical care possible something that everyone is entitled to? It sounds heartless to say "We could prolong your life, but that would cost more than you can pay," but on the other hand, the rich have better quality of life than the poor; is there really such a huge ethical gap between that and better quantity of life as well?
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Old 26 August 2008, 04:16 AM
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God forbid poor people be allowed to have some form of entertainment. The nerve of them having stereos! They're not allowed to purchase things on sale from discount or thrift stores, let alone receive such items as gifts! If you're poor, you must immediately pawn your possessions and move into a one-room shack that you can't own. You don't even have the right to air conditioning!

Unfortunately, the sentiment expressed in this email is shared by too many people I've encountered.
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  #8  
Old 26 August 2008, 04:46 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by snopes View Post
* The average poor American has more living space than the average
individual living in Paris, London, Vienna, Athens, and other cities
throughout Europe. (These comparisons are to the average citizens in
foreign countries, not to those classified as poor.)
I can vouch for the apartment I shared in Paris being smaller than some I've seen in the US whose occupants definitely met the definition of "poor". But bigger ain't necessarily better.
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  #9  
Old 26 August 2008, 09:31 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Cervus View Post
God forbid poor people be allowed to have some form of entertainment. The nerve of them having stereos! They're not allowed to purchase things on sale from discount or thrift stores, let alone receive such items as gifts! If you're poor, you must immediately pawn your possessions and move into a one-room shack that you can't own. You don't even have the right to air conditioning!
Poverty cannot be defined by anything other than 19th century metrics involving urchins, empty shotgun shacks and other scenic classics of deprivation. These people have TV's and porches - even patios, patios! We must end 'social programs' like welfare, medicare and public schools.

-Winged Monkey
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  #10  
Old 26 August 2008, 10:55 AM
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Liars and statistics: Here in West Virginia, we have the highest rate of home ownership, but the average home is less than that described in the first comment. We are second in the US in the rate of mobile home ownership (to Wyoming), if that is any help in thinking about home ownership.
If you don't own a car, you are poor, because you can't get to work, darn it, the subways' always closed ! We have one of the lowest median income levels as well about $38,000 per year. One of the problems for county tax assessments is that West Virginia has an annual vehicle inspection, while neighboring Ohio has none. I have seen old cars in WV with Ohio plates that I would bet couldn't make the drive to Ohio.
Yes, being poor is a good thing in the US--if you are an anonymous poster without a clue.

Ali "no way, Jose" Infree
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  #11  
Old 26 August 2008, 11:06 AM
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Quote:
* Eighty percent of poor households have air conditioning. By contrast, in 1970, only 36 percent of the entire U.S. population enjoyed air conditioning.
No wai, technology in becoming-more-affordable-with-time shock. I bet more poor people have mobile phones today than the general population did in 1988 as well. Look at them, lording it up.
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  #12  
Old 26 August 2008, 11:25 AM
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Quote:
They need to enforce the social programs in place now and start sending
checks to those that actually work, pay there bills and pay there taxes.
Don't create more programs!
Little known fact - 100% of poor people are on welfare.

I have a serious question - how many of these poor people bought their home, two cars, and various consumer electronics on credit? How deeply in debt are they?

Last edited by Natalie; 26 August 2008 at 11:31 AM.
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  #13  
Old 26 August 2008, 11:52 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Troodon View Post
Is health insurance a neccessity? I know a guy who would go blind if he ever stopped receiving regular, expensive treatments. I also know people who can afford health insurance but choose not to get it; they're healthy and they're willing to bet that they won't need anything that an emergency room doctor won't provide to someone who gives a false name and address.

More generally, is being able to receive the best medical care possible something that everyone is entitled to? It sounds heartless to say "We could prolong your life, but that would cost more than you can pay," but on the other hand, the rich have better quality of life than the poor; is there really such a huge ethical gap between that and better quantity of life as well?
I don't know if health INSURANCE is a necessity, but health CARE most certainly is, and usually in this country, no insurance means no care.

The people who know they *could* afford health insurance and don't get it, betting they will just give an ER a false name and address, are scum. Thanks a lot, jackasses, for passing off your emergency room bills to the rest of us who get to cover it with our increased insurance premiums. Yeah, there's a great model for financial soundness - just pawn your costs off onto other people. If they want to own up to the risk they took and pay off that five or six figure bill they get because they didn't want to shell out for insurance, fine.


Quote:
More generally, is being able to receive the best medical care possible something that everyone is entitled to?
Who said anything about being entitled to it, or that it has to be "best"? I happen to think that in a country with the wealth we have, that at least a basic level of care OUGHT to be something everyone has. However, that's not the point I was making. The point I was making is that most of the working poor (the extremely poor have medicaid but this letter seems to be targeting working poor) can't afford health insurance, therefore health care, which is much more of a necessity than a color tv or microwave. But a color tv or microwave can be had pretty easily and cheaply where as health care is expensive and unaccessible to many. Yet this stupid letter seems to say that if you could afford a *tv*, you aren't *really* poor, and that's just stupid.
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  #14  
Old 26 August 2008, 11:59 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Troodon View Post
Is health insurance a neccessity? I know a guy who would go blind if he ever stopped receiving regular, expensive treatments. I also know people who can afford health insurance but choose not to get it; they're healthy and they're willing to bet that they won't need anything that an emergency room doctor won't provide to someone who gives a false name and address.
I fail to see how your two examples suddenly disprove the necessity of having health insurance. You make a better argument against providing false identification. Answer: Retinal scans. But then your blind buddy would surely cheat, wouldn't he. Never trust a man who can't tell you how many fingers you're holding up.

Quote:
More generally, is being able to receive the best medical care possible something that everyone is entitled to? It sounds heartless to say "We could prolong your life, but that would cost more than you can pay," but on the other hand, the rich have better quality of life than the poor; is there really such a huge ethical gap between that and better quantity of life as well?
Entitlement? One significant (and obvious) reason the rich have a better quality of life is because they have (and have had) constant access to premium health care without being financially crippled by the cost--ask your doctor about Lourdes of Lower Manhattan if crippling continues.

By the by, what the heck is "better quantity of life"? Bouncier and more babies?
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  #15  
Old 26 August 2008, 12:00 PM
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Hello Kitty

How many people owned those things before they fell into poverty?

How many of the home-owning poor are elderly?

Four Kitties
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  #16  
Old 26 August 2008, 12:10 PM
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Oh it is so early. When I read it all I could think was those sad poor people that can only afford half of a stereo and only a third of a dish washer. I really need my coffee.
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  #17  
Old 26 August 2008, 12:11 PM
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The kind of credit often available to low income people offers the worst of all worlds--auto loans for those with bad credit tend to sell used cars at very high values (especially compared to their actual worth), at high interest rates. Ditto the rent to own places where a DVD or VCR can cost $200 or more for a $ 69 item.
Plus, not having a bank means, in many places, cashing checks at Check Cash places which take a fee on checks, or sometimes charge a percentage of the check's value. Along with check cashing places, there are the payday lenders, again charging high rates to allow you to get your paycheck early, for a little vig--which, if you fail to pay it off, becomes an ongoing hassle.

Ali "give us your tired, we will fleece them" Infree
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  #18  
Old 26 August 2008, 12:12 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Four Kitties View Post
How many people owned those things before they fell into poverty?
That hardly matters. They're still eating cake! Maybe I could let an olde-timey radio slide. Or a black 'n white TV that only displays fuzzy broadcasts of The Honeymooners. Anything else is flying under the radar. Unjustly, even. I mean, I earned my Nascar, Wrestling, and Jesus of Nazareth.

Quote:
How many of the home-owning poor are elderly?
Well, at least the elderly have poor supplies of youth which they can never ever make up. So that leaves me a bit satisfied. ...unless they're taking Viagra. Dammit, always a loop-hole for the cheaters!
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  #19  
Old 26 August 2008, 01:23 PM
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What defines "poor?" I suspect, at least at the present time (because I'm only working part time) I would be defined as poor by government standards.

However, I have a house (and it's paid off), a car (a Corvette, at that) several DVD players, a couple of VCRs, two large screen TVs, and sometime in the near future, I'm buying a new one, so I'll have three, a home theater system, a stereo, and I'm sure a few other things that might make this list.
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  #20  
Old 26 August 2008, 01:29 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by robbiev View Post
What defines "poor?" I suspect, at least at the present time (because I'm only working part time) I would be defined as poor by government standards.
According to the US Census Bureau, it depends. More on how the bureau calculates "poverty" can be found here.

Don Enrico
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