U.S. a third world country?

Personally I have felt that the U.S. has been a third world country for a few decades. That was my gut assessment after watching the numbers on homeless raise and other visual indicators of extreme poverty. Now my suspicious have been confirmed.

The link to the published research paper is at the link. Both the article and the research (pdf format) are well worth our time to read. Recently I was having a conversation with an elderly individual who get all his information from a one hour TV broadcast. As most people know who choose multiple online news sources, because we boycott the talking heads of corporate media – TV news media exists as entertainment and NOT as a valid news source. What my friend told me was both shocking and not surprising. My friend declared that poor people are lazy and shouldn’t need help because there is no real poverty in America. Others are even more rigid – all welfare and assistance must be abolished. There is a whole lot of hate directed at the victims of poverty, thanks to the way the corporate news media either reports on poverty or just ignores the fact that there are too many people living in extreme poverty in the USA.

Extreme poverty = using a world Bank metric of global poverty: $2 or less, per person, per day.” (quoted from the research paper cited at the bottom).

The welfare programs were reworked under President Clinton. There was supposed to be childcare assistance for working mothers. Several states figured out how to make it next to impossible for working mothers to apply for and receive childcare assistance.

The numbers of those living in extreme poverty in the U.S. are mind blowing.

Mid 2011

1.65 MILLION households with 3.55 children were living in extreme poverty in a given month based on cash income.

This is 4.3 % of all non-elderly households with children.

“The prevalence of extreme poverty has risen sharply since 1996, particulate among those most impacted by the 1996 welfare reform.” (This was while Bill Clinton – a democrat was in the white house.)

SNAP = Supplemental Nutritional Assistance Program which used to be called the good old “Food Stamp Program”

“Adding SNAP benefits to household income reduces the number of extremely poor households with children by 48.0 % in mid 2011. Adding SNAP, refundable tax credits, and housing subsidies reduces the number by 62.8 %. “

This study documents the increase of prevalence of extreme poverty among U.S. households with children between 1996 and 2011. Note that the elderly are not covered nor are adults living by themselves or the huge homeless population. Nor does this research cover the mentally ill, who even if they have financial assistance need help in dealing with the mindless bureaucracy and gate keepers.

The study closes with this observation:

“However, it would be wrong to conclude that the U.S. safety net is strong, or even adequate, when the numbers and proportions of households with children surviving on less than $2 per day has risen so dramatically over the past 15 years, even accounting for means-tested transfer.”

Title of research paper: Rising Extreme Poverty in the United States and the Response of Federal Means -Tested Transfer Programs.

Authors: H.Luke Shaefer, PhD, University of Michigan and Kathryn Edin (Professor, Harvard University).

Additional links and comments

Why do cops grab video?

Here’s a case where the video has most likely been altered so that what happened just before cops emptied 23 bullets into a mentally ill person is missing. Talk about fishy.

Again the problem with cops and prosecutors covering for bad cops now all the cops and technical staff are painted with the same corruption as the murdering cops. All cops – every single cop must undergo mandatory training on handling, recognising individuals with mental illness. Sometime cops go into situations not knowing the mental state of their target. Then there are the Times it seems as if the cops arrive and shoot their target dead.

With a mental health system hardly even functioning across the U.S. untrained, uneducation and often barbaric cops are dealing with unmedicated people suffering a psychotic break. These people frighten the public lack any knowledge about people with mental illness. Why are the severely mentally ill out on the street (often homeless) in the first place? The mentally ill who do survive an encounter with cops often find themselves in jail – out of sight and out of mind. Jails are now the de facto mental hospitals. America is not the greatest when the shame of mental illness is locked away and hidden in jails. Or the mental patients are executed by cops. This outcome is far too common in a supposedly modern 21st century nation.

Cops demand and or steal phone video – this seems to be standard operating procedure. Any camera worn by cops or dash cams must have a locking device which can only be removed by an independent lab.

Additional links and comments

Back in the mid to late 1960s there were riots in areas with predominately black populations. One riot happened in Newark, N.J. after a black cab driver was assaulted by the cops – because the cops didn’t need a reason, like now. And that is the point of bringing up the past. Not much has changed in the years following the riots after Martin Luther King Jr assassination. Driving while black, walking while black, shopping while black, all are reasons why hundreds of African-American are killed by cops. There is a pattern and only the isolated and ignorant white folk don’t see the problem. (Link to article about the Newark riots comes from JJ Lopez Minkoff at the Skydancer blog. This article about Newark 1967 is well worth your time.)

How many more will die before the murdering and cover ups of the murders stop?

Recording of shots fired is verified

First there was a news story about how someone having a conversation and recording that conversation captured the sound of 11 gun shots – most likely the shots that killed unarmed Michael Brown in Ferguson, Missouri. The makers of the app which recorded the shots has verified the recording as being authentic. So the naysayers are yet again wrong while trying to stand up for a murdering cop. This also means that 5 of the shots went wild – thankfully no other innocent was harmed by the berserk out of control cop.

When will people in authority going to realize that people (mostly of color) are in danger from cops. Problem is we don’t know which cops are the good guys. As a woman I understand this dilemma because although only a small minority of males are dangerous if I or other women meet this guy in a dark alley or somewhere women could be vulnerable to attack – women are generally very aware of our surroundings. Because one never knows who the bad guys are. Some cops have done bad things to women so one never knows if the light flashing you to pull over is the bad rouge cop or just a guy doing his job. When ALL cops protect and give cover to the bad cops then unfortunately all cops become the bad cops.

Looking at the number of human beings killed by cops in America as compared to human beings kill by cops in other developed countries makes American cops look like crazed killers. Just saying what the lop sided numbers look like.

Police state example # 1

Growing up on military bases was like living in a police state. When I went out the gates of military the last base my father was stationed at when he retired from the Navy I vowed I would never return to a military base.

But with the militarization of all the local police forces the military has moved out and taken over the civilian world. NSA spies on civilians so that the military take over is complete.

Case in point – a disabled young woman is removed from a public bus by a cop because her eyes are red and cop says this proves she’s a drug addict. The cop is a jerk. Red eyes prove nothing – except perhaps the the victim of cop stupidity has an allergy. She was forced to take a drug test – she tested negative for drugs.

Getting arrested for red eyes. Now it is illegal to has allergies. If you have asthma – that’s a death sentence.

Military cops were always butt holes and the civilian military cops are the same.

Stories like these need to be published and blogged. We have an epidemic of rouge cops. The only way this garbage will stop is if we all let our legislators know we will no longer tolerate being the enemy the insurgents in the eyes of the cops and the government.

Mama why do they hate us?

“Mama why do they hate us?” This is a question a young child asks as she learns about racism.

Palestinian children are asking this question – when they see people they know, friends and family members killed by faceless men. The Israelis are in a killing frenzy right now which is fueled by hate and religion. Try being a daughter of a Jew and a Palestinian – and try to leave the country without being sexually harassed by the racist “security”.

Then not to be outdone in Missouri another family mourns the senseless death of their child by cop. This killing was also about racism. The racists have come out to play and make us all aware that racism is alive and still evil. It takes a lot of energy to hate a whole group of human beings based on a few genes.

Hate is taught to children. Racism can be unlearned.

Remember that plane shot down – Ukraine?

With everything that is happening in the world and here in America we might forget flight MH-17 that was shot down over Ukraine. There are three suspects – Ukraine, Russia and Ukraine Rebels. Of course Obama immediately blamed Russia and put sanctions on Russia. Ukraine and the rebels pointed fingers at each other.

Then, on 23 August 2014, Global Research News published the first English-language news-report on this matter; it was based on the second Russian-language news-report, the one that had appeared at gordonua.com on August 12th. Global Research concluded from it that, “The Causes of the MH17 Crash are ‘Classified’.” Of course, this way of phrasing the matter is a slight oversimplification, because, actually, the findings will remain ‘classified’ only if, and to the extent that, the Ukrainian Government is found to have caused the airliner’s downing. In other words: this ‘investigation’ will not be published unless the Ukrainian Government and the other three nations that are performing it agree unanimously to publish it.

There was one news report about the black boxes. There was another report with photos showing what looked like bullet holes in the cockpit of the passenger plane. That suggests that the passenger plane was taken down by a fighter jet. Which pointed at Ukraine as the guilty party. If you want to see how the game was played with the black boxes just do an internet search – “mh 17 black boxes”.

So if the “investigation” showed solid evidence of either Russia or the rebels – this fact would not be a “classified” secret. Ukraine was the only military that had fighter jets in that area. From what I’ve read Russia didn’t have any aircraft in the area and the rebels have no aircraft. One theory very early, just after MH 17 was shot down was that the colors on the MH 17 jet and the jet with Putin on board was similar enough that the Ukraine fighter pilots thought they were shooting down Putin. Interesting theory.

What a huge mess. Why does the U.S. Government back so many really evil bad guys? Neo Nazis in Ukraine killing ethnic Russians etc. Then the background of ISIS which seems to lead back to the U.S. funding “moderates” in the Syrian rebel factions. Of course there is the need to keep Israel’s blood thirsty Netanyahu happy while the IDF is busy with genocide in Gaza and the occupied West Bank.

Then there is the theory that the real battle is over the petrodollar or petroleum dollar. Oil and gas are traded on the global market in U.S. dollars. Move that market to another currency and the U.S. economy tanks. Is Russia threatening the petrodollar? Conspiracy theories are abundant regarding the International market of oil and gas.

There are far too many people who have bits and pieces of information and facts about who really shot down MH 17 for this to remain a secret. If Putin and Russia is in fact innocent we might see some interesting secrets leaked in the future. Will Putin take his punishment and remain in his corner. We lessor mortals can only watch from the sidelines and hope we don’t get caught in the cross fire.

Additional links and comments

Manual or Automatic transmission?

Most cars nowadays have automatic transmissions. But some passenger cars, SUV, and pick up trucks models still  give car buyers an option of manual or automatic. It has been reported that a car thief was out of luck when the car he intended to steal was a stick shift – which he couldn’t drive.

The change of stick shift to automatic has happened over two or three generations. Driver Ed cars were all automatic way back in the 60s – which probably helped the evolution to automatic as the dominate transmission in passenger vehicles and trucks.

For pulling our small travel trailer we are using a small pick-up truck with manual transmission. Up hills is slow going. I would join the line of big commercial trucks with their hazard lights blinking. Me and the big rigs with our loads. Mountain passes on the west coast are high and steep. I don’t mind taking it easy, it really isn’t safe to exceed the speed limit when pulling a load. There is no chance of taking corners too fast.

This time though, I was driving solo and there are those macho guys in souped up speedster who like to push the limits. Twice on this trip I encountered males who were suffering from road rage. Close to Urban areas there is at least one who does something real stupid. Like deciding they need to pass on the right just as I am easing over after carefully signaling my intention. Stupid guy following too close behind decides that he needs to be in the right lane. Probably some kid who went to a charter school where science isn’t taught.

It is long past time for our little, very old, truck to be retired. So the search is on to find a manual transmission vehicle that can tow our travel trailer a bit faster, up hill at 55 (only 5 miles under the posted speed limit). There aren’t that many trucks and SUVs with good manual transmissions out there – but there are the jeeps. We also do a few sedate rough road trips to see Ancient American Indian ruins. Some of those trails are barely a trace in the earth on some paths we follow.

Seems like the automatic transmission has invaded the off road vehicles. But really isn’t half the fun of the challenging roads – shifting gears? When I’m making a very long uphill crawl I shift gears so often that my feet feel like I walked up the hill.

The beauty of manual transmission is they don’t over heat like the automatic transmission can when stuck behind a caravan of double loaded gravel trucks (truck bed and full trailer). Last Spring we took a two lane road in western Colorado north to Wyoming. I studied the map the night before we left and made note of all the steep uphill grades. I hoped there would be lots of easy pull outs so we could let cars pass. My concern was misplaced. We were part of the long line of vehicles crawling up the steep grades. I lost track of the trucks with automatic transmissions pulled off the road with the truck hoods up and steam pouring from over heated engine. Our little truck pulling a travel trailer never over heated. And the truck never over heated when I went over two high passes on the Cascade mountains.

Automatic transmissions are great for highway driving during rush hour when a lot of urban highways turn into parking lots.

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