So Rich, So Poor: Why It's So Hard to End Poverty in Americaby Peter Edelman
Pub. Date: 05/29/2012
Publisher: New Press, The
If the nation’s gross national incomeover $14 trillionwere divided evenly across the entire U.S. population, every household could call itself middle class. Yet the income-level disparity in this country is now wider than at any point since the Great Depression. In 2010 the average salary for CEOs on the S&P 500 was over $1 millionclimbing
If the nation’s gross national incomeover $14 trillionwere divided evenly across the entire U.S. population, every household could call itself middle class. Yet the income-level disparity in this country is now wider than at any point since the Great Depression. In 2010 the average salary for CEOs on the S&P 500 was over $1 millionclimbing to over $11 million when all forms of compensation are accounted forwhile the current median household income for African Americans is just over $32,000. How can some be so rich, while others are so poor?
In this provocative book, Peter Edelman, a former top aide to Senator Robert F. Kennedy and a lifelong antipoverty advocate, offers an informed analysis of how this country can be so wealthy yet have a steadily growing number of unemployed and working poor. According to Edelman, we have taken important positive steps without which 25 to 30 million more people would be poor, but poverty fluctuates with the business cycle. The structure of today’s economy has stultified wage growth for half of America’s workerswith even worse results at the bottom and for people of colorwhile bestowing billions on those at the top.
So Rich, So Poor delves into what is happening to the people behind the statistics and takes a particular look at the continuing crisis of young people of color, whose possibility of a productive life too often is lost on their way to adulthood. This is crucial reading for anyone who wants to understand the most critical American dilemma of the twenty-first century.
- New Press, The
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Table of Contents
1 A Snapshot of Our Current Mess 1
2 What We Have Accomplished 7
3 Why Are We Stuck? 25
4 Jobs: The Economy and Public Policy Go South (for Most of Us) 47
5 Deep Poverty: A Gigantic Hole in the Safety Net 81
6 Concentrated Poverty: "The Abandoned" 101
7 Young People: Improving the Odds 137
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