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Archive for the ‘poverty’ Category

Per the NYT, the Census Bureau, on Monday, is going to release a new, alternate measure of poverty.  The NYT itself did it’s own study based on various different methods of calculating poverty.  These methods incorporate “food stamps, work expenses, taxes, and the cost of living.”  While cautioning that the Census Bureau will not be using the same data, the NYT found that poverty did decrease, most prominently in rural America from 16.4% to 10.9%, where the cost of living is lower.  Poverty did, however, increase in metropolitan areas, from 13.9% to 14.9%.

The NYT found, when comparing those who are considered poor under the traditional standard versus those not considered poor under the newer methods, that over 2/3 benefited from food stamps.  This should be further proof that government aid does benefit people and make their lives better than without these benefits.

Also, this reminds me of that old West Wing episode where a new economic formula led to 4M more people being considered poor, with Josh and Sam finding a way to spin that news into a positive.

Josh : “Well, I’m not an expert but wouldn’t we have a better chance of getting re-elected if we could say there were four million fewer poor people? Hang on, wait, I am an expert.”

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