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Thread: Poverty Pervades The Suburbs

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    Default Poverty Pervades The Suburbs

    I thought about posting this in the Economic Crisis thread but then thought that this should be singled out.

    After all if you are trying to foment revolution, how best to do that but to erode the middle class?

    Poverty Pervades The Suburbs
    September 23, 2011

    Guess where most people in poverty live? Hint: It's not in the inner cities or rural America.

    It's in the idyllic suburbs.

    A record 15.4 million suburban residents lived below the poverty line last year, up 11.5% from the year before, according to a Brookings Institution analysis of Census data released Thursday. That's one-third of the nation's poor.

    And their ranks are swelling fast, as jobs disappear and incomes decline amid the continued weak economy.

    Since 2000, the number of suburban poor has skyrocketed by 53%, battered by the two recessions that wiped out many manufacturing jobs early on, and low-wage construction and retail positions more recently.

    America's cities, meanwhile, had 12.7 million people in poverty last year, up about 5% from the year before and 23% since 2000. The remaining 18 million poor folks in the U.S. are roughly split between smaller metro areas and rural communities.

    "We think of poverty as a really urban or ultra-rural phenomenon, but it's not," said Elizabeth Kneebone, senior research associate at Brookings. "It's increasingly a suburban issue."

    Suburbia's population has boomed among all classes in recent decades as job growth shifted from central cities to their outskirts. Low-wage workers were needed to service this burgeoning number of residents and companies.

    Suburbia became home to the greatest concentration of impoverished residents by 2005, Kneebone said. That stemmed in part from the collapse of the manufacturing industry based outside Midwestern cities. The loss of those jobs contributed to pushing many into poverty.

    The Great Recession, however, accelerated the rise of the suburban poor, as it did the overall poverty rate.

    The downturn also shifted where in suburbia poverty was intensifying. The collapse of the housing market caused the ranks of the poor to spike in Sun Belt communities, such as those surrounding Lakeland, Fla., and Riverside, Calif. Many low-income people had moved there during the boom to make money building and caring for homes or working in the retailers and restaurants that cropped up to service the new residents.

    Who Are The Suburban Poor?

    The face of the suburban poor is diverse.

    To be sure, there were many suburbanites entrenched in poverty even before 2000. Nearly 10 million people fell below the poverty line at the start of the last decade.

    They were then joined by new immigrants, who increasingly skipped the cities and moved directly to their outskirts in search of plentiful, but low-wage, construction or service jobs. The foreign born accounted for about 17% of the increase in the suburban poor between 2000 and 2009, according to a Brookings report.

    Also, as wages eroded over the past decade, some people living on the edge found themselves pushed into poverty. For 2010, the poverty line stood at $22,314 a year for a family of four.

    "If they are working minimum-wage jobs and see their wages decline or stagnate, they may now see themselves below the poverty line," Kneebone said.

    And, of course, there is a whole new set of impoverished suburbanites: the formerly middle class who lost their jobs. These folks may have been living the American dream -- with the house, car and white-picket fence -- but then saw it disappear in the Great Recession.

    The Community Action Partnership of Suburban Hennepin has seen a crush of middle-class residents walk through its doors after losing their jobs, said Marcy Harris, planning and development director at the agency, which is outside Minneapolis.

    "We saw people who never thought they would use a food bank. They used to contribute to them," Harris said. "And now they are here."

    Straining The Safety Net

    Once they fall into poverty, suburbanites often have a harder time accessing services that can aid them because many of these areas aren't equipped to handle the growing numbers, especially amid government budget cuts.

    "It can be difficult to find help in many suburban communities," said Scott Allard, associate professor at the University of Chicago who has studied the issue. "Providers are overwhelmed with demand or there are not that many providers to begin with."

    Nearly three-quarters of suburban non-profit agencies said they are seeing more clients who had never accessed aid, according to a report Allard published last year. A growing number of requests were for help with food or housing.

    Many agencies told Allard they had to put newcomers on waiting lists or refer them to other organizations. But these groups are often far apart and difficult to access, especially for those without cars.



    Also, many suburban poor don't know where to turn when they are in dire straits. Or they fear the stigma of having to ask for government assistance, not wanting to let their neighbors know they're in trouble.

    "By and large, if you drive through the suburbs, it looks like the American dream is still healthy and real," said Donna Cooper, senior fellow at the Center for American Progress, a left-leaning policy group. "But behind closed doors, there are increasing numbers of people who don't have jobs, their retirement nest eggs are gone and they can't meet their mortgage payments."

    Since poverty in the suburbs still remains largely hidden, it can be hard for charitable organizations located there to raise money.

    Kneebone recently visited an affluent suburb of Denver, where the poverty rate has doubled in the last decade. The social service agencies there told her they were having a tough time getting area residents to understand the extent of the problem.

    "People still donate to organizations in the city," she said. "They don't realize that right in their own neighborhoods, there is need."

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    Default Re: Poverty Pervades The Suburbs

    Plan: destroy the middle class

    Status: almost finished

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    Default Re: Poverty Pervades The Suburbs

    I have to say something here. Those of us who make a "decent income" are targeted in a lot of ways.

    I've just basically lost my "fight with city hall". I paid their fucking blood/water money to get them off my back. I couldn't get them to even understand that I was protesting what I consider to be (and 17,000 others in this city who refused to pay) an illegal tax.

    That we have a TABOR in place (Tax payers bill of rights) that says the state and local governments can't institute a tax without a vote of the people is an affront to these assholes in office and I don't care WHICH party they belong too.

    City workers hate TABOR. City Councils and mayors hate it. UNIONS hate it (especially the ones that run the skools).

    Basically, they went around the laws and created a "company" they called Storm Water Enterprise (because at least twice a vote to fund it failed) and they started sending "bills for services" to homeowners and businesses.

    The other day several businesses were RAIDING by the County - their cash/receipts were seized and people were arrested even from my understanding so far.

    They did this to scare people.

    This week they are sending the "bill" to the County assessor or someone involved in tax collection, adding a 10% "Late Fee" on the money and placing it against our TAXES.

    If we refuse to pay it, they will come after our property.

    Now... if that doesn't make it a "TAX" I don't know what does.

    How can these fuckers get away with this?

    Well, we're "home owners" and have "property" and most of us live in the "suburbs" or at least in nicer areas of the city who've been fighting this.

    What a better way to control people, kick them out of their homes, force them to "pay their fair share" and threaten to raid their business and homes to keep them in line.

    It's no wonder this country is going to hell...
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    Default Re: Poverty Pervades The Suburbs

    There are way too many people in this country that feel they have a right to other people's labors. It's sickening. Vampires.
    "Far better it is to dare mighty things, to win glorious triumphs even though checkered by failure, than to rank with those poor spirits who neither enjoy nor suffer much because they live in the gray twilight that knows neither victory nor defeat."
    -- Theodore Roosevelt


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    Default Re: Poverty Pervades The Suburbs

    Maybe there should be a vampire hunt, instead of a zombie hunt?
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    Default Re: Poverty Pervades The Suburbs

    Quote Originally Posted by Rick Donaldson View Post
    I've just basically lost my "fight with city hall". I paid their fucking blood/water money to get them off my back.
    Don't feel bad, I had to cave once also.

    Not sure if I told this before.

    In 2004 when we bought this house, the first water bill for for more than 40,000 gallons.

    Yeah.

    They said I probably had a leak.

    Really?

    Then where's the damn lake that should be in my yard?

    Long story short, it was pay it or we'll shut off the water.

    They did knock it down to 27,000 gallons or some such bullshit.

    Problem is, there are no options for homeowners.

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    Super Moderator and PHILanthropist Extraordinaire Phil Fiord's Avatar
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    Default Re: Poverty Pervades The Suburbs

    Here we are levied our annual tax on our house as others are. Of course housing values tanked and if that rate had remained the same, our tax would have gone down. The county voted and raised the rate to adjust the tax as such that we still pay the same amount but have a lesser valued home.

    It is 10k/year.

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    Default Re: Poverty Pervades The Suburbs

    You pay $10K/yr in property tax?

    If so, how the hell big is your house?

    If too personal, ignore.

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    Super Moderator and PHILanthropist Extraordinaire Phil Fiord's Avatar
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    Default Re: Poverty Pervades The Suburbs

    From what I gather in conversation, some more modest homes in a neighboring county and on standard land plot size pay more than we do annually. Also, to be upfront, it is just a big ass house. Not a mansion or anything. Nothing really special about it. It is just really really big on a little bit of land.

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    Default Re: Poverty Pervades The Suburbs

    Well here's a new one Phil.

    You've shown us pics of your house.

    And so did Rick when he posted pics of his truck or boat, IIRC.

    I had 2 pages of TAA open, and actually thought Rick said he paid $10K.

    I gotta quit doing that.

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    Default Re: Poverty Pervades The Suburbs

    my taxes are not 10k. I think I have said my taxes (income) are usually between 28-33% or so.

    My HOMEOWNERS stuff is around 800-1000 per year. My house is only about 2300 square feet. Not sure of the lot size, but it's on a hill, and has stair-stepped landscaping, on a "pie" shaped lot.
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    Default Re: Poverty Pervades The Suburbs

    My taxes are $3800/year for under 750sq feet of living space with about another 200 in our loft that we use as storage. Many people have bigger garages than my entire house.

    We are putting an addition on the house. It will probably add 450sq ft in space and who knows on the taxes.

    Property taxes infuriate me. I get nothing for them. I don't use the schools. I don't have sewer, I don't have water, I pay for my own garbage pickup and I my community dues pay to fix and plow the roads. Fire is voluntary. So I guess it's police. Almost
    4 grand for police to do what exactly for me? Not sure. Hold me up 3 months on a long gun purchaser ID and hold me up 45 days on pistol purchase permits is the only thing I can think of.

    God, this pisses me off, now I want move.
    "Far better it is to dare mighty things, to win glorious triumphs even though checkered by failure, than to rank with those poor spirits who neither enjoy nor suffer much because they live in the gray twilight that knows neither victory nor defeat."
    -- Theodore Roosevelt


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    Default Re: Poverty Pervades The Suburbs

    Sorry! lol

    I told you the place you live sucks. But then, you already knew it.

    I pay for water. I pay for sewer. I pay for gas for the furnace. I pay for trash pick up. I have no children in school any more. They won't plow the streets in our neighborhood. They won't fix or repair the side walks in front of the houses (they say that's the Home Owner's problem, even though it is a public right of way). In 22 years I've lived in that house, they have NEVER once come through and repaired cracks in the asphalt of the street.

    Granted I don't pay as much in taxes as many.... but honestly, what do I get for my tax dollars? Bad schools..... not much more.
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    Super Moderator and PHILanthropist Extraordinaire Phil Fiord's Avatar
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    Default Re: Poverty Pervades The Suburbs

    Ok. My house is 5k sq ft. It is just really big. An open contemporary style. I have seen similar houses off the Long Island Expressway. Same architect. I think the land is part of the extreme rate. It is 5 to 6 acres. When I saw Mal's rate for his house, I almost felt relief. Sorry Mal, its true.

    We have well water, septic field and pay for trash pickup. The only utils brought in are electric and gas, but we also have the propane that part of the house runs on and can convert the rest back to it if needed. We live on unincorporated land and our HOA dues fund the annual patch and repave of the roads back here.

    Rick, isn't that always the case with sidewalks? They are public domain but cities tend to put it to the homeowner. When I lived in Huntington Beach, CA, I had a similar issue. The city said it was my problem. Well, this crack was huge and buckled up. An easy trip hazard. I explained calmly to the city, that if anyone were to trip on that sidewalk and get injured, it is their liability, as my liability was released by reporting it multiple times. It is public land. Eventually, that point got through and although it was a messy patch, it got patched.

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    Default Re: Poverty Pervades The Suburbs

    I am not aware that any place forces it upon a homeowner. I can see that if my own driveway is cracked it's my responsibility. But a "city right of way" should not be the responsibility of the people living in front of a problem.

    About 20 years ago I had a tree growing in my yard. It was on the edge of the side walk (and likely was the cause of the cracks in the sidewalk and the street). I needed the tree removed because it was causing all that damage. After looking up the city regulations and the original development area, I found that the city had not only paid for, but planted that tree where it was located. It was supposed to have been a pine (they have deep roots, that don't spread out very far)... instead it was a "Cottonwood" tree which is a pain in the ass, spreads awful white seeds everwhere and has roots that grow OUT instead of DOWN. That means the tree was the cause of the cracks etc.

    I called the city multiple times and they kept refusing to send someone out to remove the tree.

    To make my point I called them from outside one day near the tree and demanded they removed it before I did. They told me I couldn't, it was "illegal". They couldn't quote me a regulations or city code showing me it was "illegal" so, I started the chain saw and revved it a few times. They FINALLY put me in touch with their "city tree surgeon" who finally "got it". The next afternoon I had a city crew out who not only felled the tree, but removed the stump and most of the roots.

    Since then I have not been able to get the side walk fixed but the damage has stopped growing.

    I think I will try that "If someone falls, it is the city's responsibility, I refuse to be responsible for something not on my personal property".
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    Default Re: Poverty Pervades The Suburbs

    Re property taxes... it sems taxes in the NE tend to be higher than other parts of the country. We live a couple hours north of Rick and our taxes are roughly $1,800 annually. The school system stinks and has terrible corruption. We have to pay extra for everything - sports programs, art, music, you name it. My brother still lives in Central New York. He pays about $14,000 annually in property tax. His house is about 3,000 sf in a relatively exclusive area. The schools are well funded as are other programs. I'm not sure what is better. I suppose I enjoy having some control over where I spend my money.

    Re suburban poverty... I was just driving down the street in a more middle class to upper class neighborhood and saw a woman on the street corner panhandling. She was caucasion, well dressed and early mddle aged. She semed to me to be a high tech employee who had been laid off. That's the impression she left me with. I've never before seen that in this particular neighborhood. A new trend, I think.
    Last edited by MinutemanCO; September 30th, 2011 at 19:18.

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    Creepy Ass Cracka & Site Owner Ryan Ruck's Avatar
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    Default Re: Poverty Pervades The Suburbs

    Looks like we were ahead of the curve...


    Burn Down the Suburbs?
    Not exactly, but Obama is already working to get rid of them

    August 1, 2012

    Editor’s Note: This article is adapted from Spreading the Wealth: How Obama is Robbing the Suburbs to Pay for the Cities, by Stanley Kurtz, from Sentinel HC.

    President Obama is not a fan of America’s suburbs. Indeed, he intends to abolish them. With suburban voters set to be the swing constituency of the 2012 election, the administration’s plans for this segment of the electorate deserve scrutiny. Obama is a longtime supporter of “regionalism,” the idea that the suburbs should be folded into the cities, merging schools, housing, transportation, and above all taxation. To this end, the president has already put programs in place designed to push the country toward a sweeping social transformation in a possible second term. The goal: income equalization via a massive redistribution of suburban tax money to the cities.

    Obama’s plans to undercut the political and economic independence of America’s suburbs reach back decades. The community organizers who trained him in the mid-1980s blamed the plight of cities on taxpayer “flight” to suburbia. Beginning in the mid-1990s, Obama’s mentors at the Gamaliel Foundation (a community-organizing network Obama helped found) formally dedicated their efforts to the budding fight against suburban “sprawl.” From his positions on the boards of a couple of left-leaning Chicago foundations, Obama channeled substantial financial support to these efforts. On entering politics, he served as a dedicated ally of his mentors’ anti-suburban activism.

    The alliance endures. One of Obama’s original trainers, Mike Kruglik, has hived off a new organization called Building One America, which continues Gamaliel’s anti-suburban crusade under another name. Kruglik and his close allies, David Rusk and Myron Orfield, intellectual leaders of the “anti-sprawl” movement, have been quietly working with the Obama administration for years on an ambitious program of social reform.

    In July of 2011, Kruglik’s Building One America held a conference at the White House. Orfield and Rusk made presentations, and afterwards Kruglik personally met with the president in the Oval Office. The ultimate goal of the movement led by Kruglik, Rusk, and Orfield is quite literally to abolish the suburbs. Knowing that this could never happen through outright annexation by nearby cities, they’ve developed ways to coax suburbs to slowly forfeit their independence.

    One approach is to force suburban residents into densely packed cities by blocking development on the outskirts of metropolitan areas, and by discouraging driving with a blizzard of taxes, fees, and regulations. Step two is to move the poor out of cities by imposing low-income-housing quotas on development in middle-class suburbs. Step three is to export the controversial “regional tax-base sharing” scheme currently in place in the Minneapolis–St. Paul area to the rest of the country. Under this program, a portion of suburban tax money flows into a common regional pot, which is then effectively redistributed to urban, and a few less well-off “inner-ring” suburban, municipalities.

    The Obama administration, stocked with “regionalist” appointees, has been advancing this ambitious plan quietly for the past four years. Efforts to discourage driving and to press development into densely packed cities are justified by reference to fears of global warming. Leaders of the crusade against “sprawl” very consciously use environmental concerns as a cover for their redistributive schemes.

    The centerpiece of the Obama administration’s anti-suburban plans is a little-known and seemingly modest program called the Sustainable Communities Initiative. The “regional planning grants” funded under this initiative — many of them in battleground states like Florida, Virginia, and Ohio — are set to recommend redistributive policies, as well as transportation and development plans, designed to undercut America’s suburbs. Few have noticed this because the program’s goals are muffled in the impenetrable jargon of “sustainability,” while its recommendations are to be unveiled only in a possible second Obama term.

    Obama’s former community-organizing mentors and colleagues want the administration to condition future federal aid on state adherence to the recommendations served up by these anti-suburban planning commissions. That would quickly turn an apparently modest set of regional-planning grants into a lever for sweeping social change.

    In light of Obama’s unbroken history of collaboration with his organizing mentors on this anti-suburban project, and his proven willingness to impose ambitious policy agendas on the country through heavy-handed regulation, this project seems likely to advance.

    A second and equally ambitious facet of Obama’s anti-suburban blueprint involves the work of Kruglik’s Building One America. Traditionally, Alinskyite community organizers mobilize leftist church groups. Kruglik’s group goes a step further by organizing not only the religious left but politicians from relatively less-well-off inner-ring suburbs. The goal is to build coalitions between urban and inner-ring suburban state legislators, in a bid to force regional tax-base sharing on middle-class suburbanites. That is how the practice came to Minnesota.

    The July 2011 White House conference, gathering inner-ring suburban politicians for presentations by Rusk and Orfield, was an effort to place the prestige of the Obama administration behind Kruglik’s organizing efforts. A multi-state battle over regional tax-base “sharing,” abetted by the president, would usher in divisive class warfare on a scale likely to dwarf the puny efforts of Occupy Wall Street.

    Obama’s little-known plans to undermine the political and economic autonomy of America’s suburbs constitute a policy initiative similar in ambition to health-care reform, the stimulus, or “cap-and-trade.” Obama’s anti-suburban plans also supply the missing link that explains his administration’s overall policy architecture.

    Since the failure of Lyndon Johnson’s War on Poverty and the collapse of federal urban policy, leftist theorists of community organizing have advocated a series of moves designed to quietly redistribute tax money to the cities. Health-care reform and federal infrastructure spending (as in the stimulus) are backed by organizers as the best ways to reconstitute an urban policy without directly calling it that. A campaign against suburban “sprawl” under the guise of environmentalism is the next move. Open calls for suburban tax-base “sharing” are the final and most controversial link in the chain of a reconstituted and redistributive urban policy. President Obama is following this plan.

    Middle-class suburban supporters of the president take note. It isn’t just the pocketbooks of the “1 percent” he’s after; it’s yours.

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    Default Re: Poverty Pervades The Suburbs


    Inside The Plot Against The Middle Class

    September 28, 2014

    Ever get the sense that the middle class is downwardly mobile, being pressed to the floor and squeezed to the limit? It’s not happening by accident. Someone is doing the squeezing: a new class of entertainment and tech plutocrats, cheered on and abetted by a priesthood of media, government and academic elites.

    Joel Kotkin’s “The New Class Conflict” (Telos Press Publishing) paints a dire picture of the undeclared war on the middle class. What he calls the Oligarchy (Silicon Valley and Hollywood) and the Clerisy (the media, bureaucrats, universities and nonprofits) enrich themselves and gratify their own strange obsessions at the expense of the middle class.

    This New Class, for instance, venerates the city and despises suburbia. They think you should feel the same way — and in innumerable magazine and newspaper pieces, they twist facts to make it sound as if America loves living in apartments and taking trains to work.

    Though New York and a few other cities have seen population growth over the last 20 years, the real surges are out there, where the space is.

    In 2012, nine of the 10 fastest growing metropolitan regions were in the Sun Belt, mainly in the Southwest. In 2013, lightly regulated Houston saw more housing starts than the entire state of California, writes Kotkin.

    So, suburbanites are punished. In California, where the New Class reigns supreme, the middle class is being garroted by environmental and anti-sprawl strictures. Those who wish to live in houses are pushed farther and farther from their jobs, spending more and more on commuting and energy costs. Proposals being debated now would, for instance, allow only 3 percent more housing by 2035 in the exurban part of the Bay Area.

    That will, of course, drive up the cost of housing within the approved development belt. Which is fine for the plutocracy that already owns property there.

    War on the suburbs

    Other California cities are pushing through policies that would radically restrict the construction of detached single-family homes, requiring a density of 20 homes per acre in many cases.

    In the past 40 years, median home prices have more than doubled relative to household income in California. In Orange County, a biomedical engineer earning well over $100,000 may not be able to afford a house, writes Kotkin.

    It isn’t surprising that the state grows ever more top- and bottom-heavy. With 12 percent of the nation’s population, California is home to about a third of its welfare recipients, while its 111 billionaires hold a collective $485 billion in wealth. The middle class is now an actual minority in the state.

    Meanwhile, subsidies continue to flow to the cities: Sprawling San Diego is reserving most of its transportation spending not for its roads and highways but for a foolish mass-transit system that is expected to increase ridership only from 2 percent to 4 percent of travelers. California is, nevertheless, suing the city to get it to spend even more of its state funding on mass transit.

    Simple revulsion at ordinary American values and aspirations drove the initial elite snobbery toward the suburbs, which dates at least as far back as 1921. That’s when sociologist Lewis Mumford derided the “dissolute landscape” of “a no-man’s land that was neither town nor country.”New Yorkers fleeing to Queens, Long Island and Staten Island built houses that were “blossoming hideously” at midcentury, in the words of historian Robert Caro.

    Anti-suburban snobbery is now dressed up in a green cloak. “What is causing global warming is the lifestyle of the American middle class,” declared developer Andrés Duany. Moving people back to urban cores would be a “climate change antibiotic,” said influential architect Peter Calthorpe.

    The New Class hasn’t noticed that America, even as we “sprawl,” has steadily reduced greenhouse-gas emissions, which have come down nearly every year since 2005 and now stand at 1994 levels.

    Carbon tax attacks

    The disaster fantasies of the Oligarchs and the Clerisy continue to obsess them. That would be fine if they weren’t trying to stick the middle class us with the bill.

    Last week, Hollywood oligarch Leonardo DiCaprio headlined a march for climate change, which in turn was cheered on by the media, the federal government and nonprofits.

    As if to illustrate Kotkin’s points about the close coordination of the elite groups he describes, take a pathetically low-rated Showtime show dedicated to climate alarmism, called “Years of Living Dangerously.”

    It was produced in part by tech billionaires such as Paul Allen and Eric Schmidt’s wife, Wendy, and hosted by celebrity “correspondents” such as Harrison Ford and Jessica Alba (), was promoted with an appearance by President Obama, who sat down with New York Times columnist Thomas Friedman to call for a carbon tax.

    Got all that? Government, media, Hollywood and tech: Check, check, check, check. They’re marshalling all of their powers to scare you into compliance.

    The opinions of middle-class Americans are irrelevant to the workings of climate-alarmist machine: By and large, we don’t care about climate change. In a March Gallup poll, climate change came second to last in a list of Americans’ chief worries, well behind issues that the elites shrug off (drug use, the deficit, crime and illegal immigration).

    Yet it’s the middle class tax whose taxes subsidize the greeniacs, and it’s they who suffer in the event of any new anticarbon legislation. Such strictures are designed to drive up the price of energy. Filling your gas tank and heating your home eats up a high percentage of your income, but these costs mean nothing to the oligarchy.

    A recent carbon-tax law in Australia, exactly the kind of thing Obama was calling for, was billed as “urgent action to stop climate change.”

    It came to be understood, more accurately, as a tax on everything. And it would have virtually zero influence on global warming. Australians, when they figured out how the Clerisy had tricked them, booted the government responsible and repealed the tax.

    Con jobs

    Higher education is increasingly unaffordable, and many of the same forces are at work.

    The government, with the media Clerisy cheering its efforts, offers cheap loans to “help the middle class.” Those subsidies are in effect a tax that everyone pays in order to aid the next generation of elites. The extra money siphoned out of your wallet gets filtered through the government and into the pockets of the government-promoting universities, whose costs are shooting up because they keep fattening their payrolls.

    Over the last 40 years, university bureaucracy has more than tripled in population — to some 750,000 administrators, who now outnumber professors on campus. All told, the universities employ 1.7 million people, most of them licking their lips at the prospect of indoctrinating 20 million students.

    President Obama let the mask slip when he offered to cap payments on, and ultimately forgive, student loans when the graduate becomes a paid-up, fully vested member of the Clerisy — spending 10 years in a government or nonprofit job.

    Yep, the regulators will happily pass along the costs of your tuition to the taxpaying suckers — as long as you join their cult and keep the cycle going. It’s as if the Vatican spared no expense to educate the next generation of cardinals, then simply decreed that the general public pick up the tab.

    Kotkin wonders whether there is a link between the business model of today’s oligarchs and their obvious disdain for the middle class. Previous business titans — the Fords, Carnegies and Rockefellers — not only employed lots of middle-class workers but they needed the overall economy to grow to produce more and more consumers for their products.

    Google, on the other hand, which is worth more than seven times as much as GM, employs one-fifth as many people, and few of those workers can be described as middle class. Google doesn’t add to a thriving middle class, nor does it much care if one is out there: Like most tech companies, it mainly sells eyeballs. It has no cause to worry about growing the base of people who can afford major items like new cars.

    Where the old industrial-age titans had a pious glint in their eyes as they talked up the holy pursuit of American growth, today’s oligarchs murmur about “sustainability.” As in sustaining their elite status.

    Elitists know best

    Just last week, an archbishop of the Clerisy urged middle-class America to get over their fears and submit to their natural rulers.

    New York Times columnist David Brooks noted that Congress hasn’t passed much legislation lately. The assumption he didn’t even need to state is that regulatory growth is, to the Clerisy, an axiomatically good thing, like economic growth was once held to be.

    Brooks thinks we need to solve this alleged “leadership crisis” and get back to churning out more laws with lots of input from people like him — Brooks is among those clerics who has secret off-the-record chats with President Obama.

    You may think the relationship between a journalist and a politician should be like the one between a dog and a lamppost, but Brooks’ understanding is that the relationship should be more like the one between one dog and another dog’s butt.

    Wrote Brooks, “We need to get over the childish notion that we don’t need a responsible leadership class, that power can be wielded directly by the people. America was governed best when it was governed by a porous, self-conscious and responsible elite.”

    Don’t bother calling Brooks an elitist. He just called himself one.

    The crisis is exactly the opposite of the one the Clerisy detects: The middle are feeling left out of the decisions. Home Depot shoppers and Subaru wagon drivers don’t have revolutions, but that doesn’t mean they’re not angry.

    “Almost every institution of power,” notes Kotkin, “from government and large corporations to banks and Wall Street, suffers the lowest public esteem ever recorded.”

    Many tech moguls, Hollywood and government figures (Al Gore is all three) profit handsomely (as Gore does) by reeling in public subsidies for the green firms in which they invest. But some members of the Clerisy aren’t wealthy. Their primary interest, wrote historian Karl Polanyi, is in safeguarding their social assets and their status. This means steering American life in the direction they choose.

    When Samuel Coleridge first used the term in 1830, he said the clerisy were the bearers of the highest ideals of society. Their mission was to transmit them to the less enlightened orders.

    What if the rest of us don’t necessarily agree with all those ideals? What if we don’t want to be enlightened? What if what we really care about is our jobs and our paychecks?

    Reply the Clerisy and the Oligarchy: Shut up and listen to your betters.

  19. #19
    Creepy Ass Cracka & Site Owner Ryan Ruck's Avatar
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    Default Re: Poverty Pervades The Suburbs

    And the beat goes on...

    Obama Making Bid To Diversify Wealthy Neighborhoods

    June 11, 2015

    The Obama administration is moving forward with regulations designed to help diversify America’s wealthier neighborhoods, drawing fire from critics who decry the proposal as executive overreach in search of an “unrealistic utopia.”

    A final Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) rule due out this month is aimed at ending decades of deep-rooted segregation around the country.

    The regulations would use grant money as an incentive for communities to build affordable housing in more affluent areas while also taking steps to upgrade poorer areas with better schools, parks, libraries, grocery stores and transportation routes as part of a gentrification of those communities.

    “HUD is working with communities across the country to fulfill the promise of equal opportunity for all,” a HUD spokeswoman said. “The proposed policy seeks to break down barriers to access to opportunity in communities supported by HUD funds.”

    It’s a tough sell for some conservatives. Among them is Rep. Paul Gosar (R-Ariz.), who argued that the administration “shouldn’t be holding hostage grant monies aimed at community improvement based on its unrealistic utopian ideas of what every community should resemble.”

    “American citizens and communities should be free to choose where they would like to live and not be subject to federal neighborhood engineering at the behest of an overreaching federal government,” said Gosar, who is leading an effort in the House to block the regulations.

    Civil rights advocates, meanwhile, are praising the plan, arguing that it is needed to break through decades-old barriers that keep poor and minority families trapped in hardscrabble neighborhoods.

    “We have a history of putting affordable housing in poor communities,” said Debby Goldberg, vice president at the National Fair Housing Alliance.

    HUD says it is obligated to take the action under the Fair Housing Act of 1968, which prohibited direct and intentional housing discrimination, such as a real estate agent not showing a home in a wealthy neighborhood to a black family or a bank not providing a loan based on someone’s race.

    The agency is also looking to root out more subtle forms of discrimination that take shape in local government policies that unintentionally harm minority communities, known as “disparate impact.”

    “This rule is not about forcing anyone to live anywhere they don’t want to,” said Margery Turner, senior vice president at the left-leaning Urban Institute. “It’s really about addressing long-standing practices that prevent people from living where they want to.” (Don't get me started on long-standing practices, like excessive taxation, preventing me from living where I want to live! )

    “In our country, decades of public policies and institutional practices have built deeply segregated and unequal neighborhoods,” Turner said.

    Children growing up in poor communities have less of a chance of succeeding in life, because they face greater exposure to violence and crime, and less access to quality education and health facilities, Turner suggested.

    “Segregation is clearly a problem that is blocking upward mobility for children growing up today,” she said. ()

    To qualify for certain funds under the regulations, cities would be required to examine patterns of segregation in neighborhoods and develop plans to address it. Those that don’t could see the funds they use to improve blighted neighborhoods disappear, critics of the rule say.

    The regulations would apply to roughly 1,250 local governments.

    Hans von Spakovsky, a fellow at the conservative Heritage Foundation, called the Obama administration “too race conscious.”

    “It’s a sign that this administration seems to take race into account on everything,” Spakovsky said.

    Republicans are trying to block the Affirmatively Furthering Fair Housing rule. Before passing HUD’s funding bill this week, the GOP-led House approved Gosar’s amendment prohibiting the agency from following through with the rule.

    Though segregationist policies were outlawed long ago, civil rights advocates say housing discrimination persists.

    HUD is looking to break down many barriers, but Gosar suggested the regulation would have negative repercussions.

    “Instead of living with neighbors you like and choose, this breaks up the core fabric of how we start to look at communities,” Gosar said. “That just brings unease to everyone in that area.”

    “People have to feel comfortable where they live,” he added. “If I don’t feel comfortable in my own backyard, where do I feel comfortable?”


    Critics of the rule say it would allow HUD to assert authority over local zoning laws. The agency could dictate what types of homes are built where and who can live in those homes, said Gosar, who believes local communities should make those decisions for themselves rather than relying on the federal government.

    If enacted, the rule could depress property values as cheaper homes crop up in wealthy neighborhoods and raise taxes, Gosar warned.

    It could also tilt the balance of political power as more minorities are funneled into Republican-leaning neighborhoods, he suggested.

    The Supreme Court is expected to weigh in on housing discrimination in a related case in the coming weeks. At issue is whether government policies that unintentionally create a disparate impact for minority communities violate federal laws against segregation.

    The Texas Department of Housing and Community Affairs is facing accusations that it makes low-income housing funds more readily available in minority neighborhoods than in white neighborhoods. This promotes segregation, critics argue, by encouraging minorities to continue living in poor communities where government assistance is available.

    Court observers say the case could have a profound impact on HUD’s rule.

  20. #20
    Super Moderator Malsua's Avatar
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    Default Re: Poverty Pervades The Suburbs

    He wants to brown the entire country, like a giant Obama standing with a foot on NY and a foot on LA taking a huge diarrhea dump all over everyone.
    "Far better it is to dare mighty things, to win glorious triumphs even though checkered by failure, than to rank with those poor spirits who neither enjoy nor suffer much because they live in the gray twilight that knows neither victory nor defeat."
    -- Theodore Roosevelt


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