New survey shows majority of Americans struggle with near and real poverty, no job or other ills of a nation mired in economic insecurity
(NATIONAL) — For some, the results of a new Associated Press economic survey about the struggles of Americans may come as a shock. To some it may be an outrage and a call for action.
But for others, now jaded and quite familiar with the story line, the survey will provide no news — simply a confirmation of survey after survey before it that indicate there is something radically wrong in America and that for many the American “dream” has become the ongoing American nightmare.
The AP’s survey shows four out of five adults in this country, for at least part of their lives, struggle with joblessness, near-poverty or reliance on welfare and that the hard numbers show a sign of “deteriorating economic security and an elusive American dream.”
The survey results seem to lend credence to President Obama’s comments in the past that there is a growing sense in this country that the game is somehow rigged for those at the top at the expense of those in the middle and the poor classes.
What’s happening here?
More than 19 million whites fall below the poverty line of for a family of four, accounting for more than 41 percent of the nation’s destitute.
WASHINGTON — Four out of 5 U.S. adults struggle with unemployment, near-poverty or reliance on welfare for at least parts of their lives — a sign of deteriorating economic security and an elusive American dream.
Survey data exclusive to The Associated Press points to an increasingly globalized U.S. economy, the widening gap between rich and poor and loss of good-paying manufacturing jobs as reasons for the trend.
The findings come as President Barack Obama tries to renew his administration’s emphasis on the economy, saying in recent speeches that his highest priority is to “rebuild ladders of opportunity” and reverse income inequality.
Hardship is particularly on the rise among whites, based on several measures. Pessimism among that racial group about their families’ economic futures has climbed to the highest point since at least 1987. In the most recent AP-GfK poll, 63 percent of whites called the economy “poor.”
“I think it’s going to get worse,” said Irene Salyers, 52, of Buchanan County, Va., a declining coal region in Appalachia. Married and divorced three times, Salyers now helps run a fruit and vegetable stand with her boyfriend, but it doesn’t generate much income. They live mostly off government disability checks.
July 22, 2013
The Department of Justice told a federal court this week that the NSA’s spying “cannot be challenged in a court of law”.
(This is especially dramatic given that numerous federal judges and legal scholars – including a former FISA judge – say that the FISA spying “court” is nothing but a kangaroo court.)
Also this week, the Department of Justice told a federal court that the courts cannot review the legality of the government’s assassination by drone of Americans abroad:
“‘Are you saying that a US citizen targeted by the United States in a foreign country has no constitutional rights?’ [the judge] asked Brian Hauck, a deputy assistant attorney general. ‘How broadly are you asserting the right of the United States to target an American citizen? Where is the limit to this?’
“She provided her own answer: ‘The limit is the courthouse door’ . . . .
“‘Mr. Hauck acknowledged that Americans targeted overseas do have rights, but he said they could not be enforced in court either before or after the Americans were killed.’”
(Indeed, the Obama administration has previously claimed the power to be judge, jury and executioner in both drone and cyber-attacks. This violates Anglo-Saxon laws which have been on the books in England and America for 800 years.)