America has more poor people than the entire population of Australia. Why?
But it's not just the super rich. America runs on 2 systems, one for Haves and one for Have-Nots. You know who you are. Read on if you're willing to get uncomfortable.
PC: Mark Stebnicki
Jobs for high school graduates pay less today than forty years ago, just 95 cents on the dollar. Jobs that don't require a high school diploma pay even less, 90 cents on the dollar.
Who gains? Corporate profits. If you own stocks, mutual funds, or a 401k, you Have benefited from low wages for the working poor.
PC: David E. Lucas
High rent for bad housing is normal because poor people have no other choice but homelessness. Even if they can afford a better neighborhood, any past eviction, conviction, or bad credit keeps them where they are, and landlords know this.
Who gains? Other neighborhoods, which look attractive by comparison. If you live in a neighborhood with grocery stores, shops and restaurants, good schools, safe streets, and rising home values, you Have benefited from keeping poor neighborhoods walled off from yours.
PC: Tony Webster (https://www.flickr.com/people/87296837@N00)
Who gains? Payday lenders of course, but also traditional Wall Street banks who lend lenders money and share their profits. If you have a credit card, auto loan, or home mortgage, you Have benefited from a credit system that helps you build wealth while making it difficult for poor people to do the same.
PC: Hunter College NYC Food Policy Center
We think poor people get more than enough government assistance, and programs like Medicare, CHIP, TANF and SNAP should be cut back because they promote “welfare dependency".
We think rich people don't get any government assistance, yet popular programs like the mortgage interest deduction, 529 college saving plan, long term capital gain tax and other tax breaks are all government funded.
Who gains? Everyone does. Almost all Americans receive government assistance, but we think the poor get too much and the rich are entitled to more.
Let's face it, our wealth is tied to our homes and stock portfolios. We like the status quo. Naturally, we protect it for ourselves and our children.
But our status quo comes at the expense of the Have-Nots.
What's the answer?
“Have you heard?” is our way of sharing another point of view on commonly held beliefs. Through this we hope to encourage curiosity, dialogue, and tolerance of diverse ideas.