Presenting The Working Poor Of America

Tyler Durden's picture

Much has been made of the slow but steady 'improvement' in the unemployment data we are treated to on a weekly and monthly basis from the hallowed eves of the BLS. Just as much has been written on the ugly under-belly of this apparent improvement with the work-force becoming dominated by older workers forced to stay in jobs for longer and an increasing downshift in the kind of jobs available and taken. To wit, Reuters cites a report from the The Working Poor Families Project that highlights the surprising levels of poverty so many Americans find themselves in. The number of low-income 'working' families has increased three straight years - and now stands at over 10.2million, with more than 46 million people living in low-income families. "Although many people are returning to work, they are often taking jobs with lower wages and less job security, compared with the middle-class jobs they held before the economic downturn," which means that nearly one in three working families in the United States is struggling to meet basic needs. Although they are often overlooked, the number of low-income working families has been increasing steadily, resulting in a shrinking middle class and challenging a fundamental assumption that in America, work pays - as we have pointed out before (at these levels, it simply doesn't thanks to the benefit availability).


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Spastica Rex's picture

Oregon: the Alabama of the West Coast.

Apologies to anyone from Alabama.

W74's picture

I'm not a cartographer or anything, but it looks like the states with high percentages of blacks (the south, Mississippi being the highest) and/or hispanics (in New Mexico being over half the population) are also the most darkly shaded.

Another guess is that if Maryland and Virginia didn't have so many gub'mint jobs they'd each be a shade darker as well. The same goes, perhaps, for parts of New England and NYC and NJ have more social problems than their stand-alone economic statistics would have you believe.

Appalachia and the Northern Rockies?  Well everyone knows that mountainous areas are hard to develop economically, but at least they're mostly peaceful areas to live in with some nice quiet communities.

Tombstone's picture

The Dictator's plan of income redistribution is working very well.  The middle is being hallowed out as more are driven into the bread lines.  Thus, they become wards of the socialist state of equalized utopia for all and the majority becomes the new slave class, dependent on big government for generations. 

BanjoDoug's picture

This map is nothing new.   Many of the light blue states are ones with lots of high income families which offsets the lower ones....   and many of them have very few blacks (Kansas, Wyoming, etc), and most of them have low welfare rolls.   On the other hand the darker blue states have lots of blacks on welfare, and the average family income is lower, but the cost of living is lower too, esp housing.   I am not trying to be radically insensative, I am just stating the obvious (I have lived in many of these states).   Regardless of PC-ness, large cities with large black/minority populations have high social & welfare costs.    Educational reform, equal opportunity, preferential hiring has not changed any of this since LBJ, but probaly gotten worse.   I am persoanlly tired of paying taxes for all this social experimentation & entitlements designed to buy votes - either work, go to the poor farm, or starve.....   its a free choice.

P.S. The Liberal Democrats have re-enslaved most blacks and many other minorities, promising a better life, education, etc, BUT NEVER DELIVERING, & they never will - it's the worst crisis in America, far bigger than gun control, pro or con.....

Flatchestynerdette's picture

The light blue states are generally racial homogenous with the exception of Chicago and the cities. Maine, New Hampshire, Vermont, Connecticut, Massecheusetts, mostly white. New York? It has the financial district - Manhattan - without it, NY would be a wasteland of nothingness. Pennsylvannia has the Amish and a lot of farming (same could be said for upstate NY). Ohio? Farmland outside the heterogenous cities. North and South Dakota have farmland and the Native American reservations and (sorry for non-PC) they get a lot of federal money. Native Americans on the reservation though are really at the worst end of the scale and something needs to be done there. No more casinos but the drug use and the poverty is so sad. I don't have an answer and these people are weddedd to that land. It is their spiritual home. They can't leave. Its like leaving part of themselves if they did and then they'd get into more problems in the cities. Awful. No easy answers there.

Wyoming, Montana, Utah? Skiing and vacation. Anyone know what a home in Teton Village costs now? $1.4 million and that might be a time share.

Now let's get to the south. Its historically always been agricultural/fishing.  Besides the african american population, this was where the clothing industries/fabric industries were located. The first to leave was back in the 80s to Mexico for cheaper labor and the "Look for the Union Label" song was made. Then Mexico got too high and Clinton signed South America along with China into the WTO - whoosh went the sound of all industries.

See the poor guy who's company went out of business making furniture in the USA (he was visited by Obama during the campaign). Was it that we didn't want furniture in from the USA or was it that the price wasn't right or was it the selection?

Right to work states have nothing to do with it. The problem is there's nothing to work at. Making little phones is still cheaper to do in China or Cambodia.

AND - many of the southern/western states are dealing with 3 groups: wites/blacks/ and immigrants who come and go. This last group scales the scores of schools downward as they leave the number of kids taking the test is less and so the average is condensed. Also, there's not much high tech/oil/fabrication going on in New Mexico. Heck, Virgin Airlines made a great spaceport and its beautiful but it sits there waiting for the spaceplanes.

Once we get the technology, all that land we have in the lower areas of the USA will be used to get us into space - until then? We're eeking by. If people want a better life? Please go to one of the light blue states.


reTARD's picture

<----- Oh boy... and blue is my favorite color!

Alhazred's picture

In the words of the great Mel Brooks "Fuck the Poor!"


There i said it.   ;)


Anywho, anyone else see that finally went live today?

Pretty good reading for us poor hating cigar smoking cognac drinking capitalists

Alhazred's picture

In the words of the great Mel Brooks "Fuck the Poor!"


There i said it.   ;)


Anywho, anyone else see that finally went live today?

Pretty good reading for us poor hating cigar smoking cognac drinking capitalists

Watauga's picture

Still another pompous, arrogant, pretentious little bitch.  Wake up.

sethstorm's picture

Yet a whole lot of these poverty states are also Right to Work states.   There might be some truth to the Right to Work For Less idea after all.

steelrules's picture

Looking at the map above made me think of the GINI index, and how long till there's a revolt.

Falconsixone's picture

Am I BLUE....Am I BLUE....YES I'M BLUE....YES I'M BLUE...... BECAUSE OF JEW...........

Falconsixone's picture

brb .. I gotta put more dung on the fire

newengland's picture

It is not the jews you should worry about. It is your compliance with Big Brother state Nazis of the bankster sort who are gentile as well as jew.

Confuse and conquer: that is the way of the age old powerbroker New Feudalists who have done this for centuries, and hate the Constitution, founded by the refuseniks who just said 'no' to debt servitude. 

You say 'yes', apparently.

batterycharged's picture

I keep hearing about this welfare. Can someone point me to the welfare line so I can quit my min wage job with no benefits already?

I hear a bunch of whining, but I don't qualify for ANY welfare and I'm $10K under the poverty limit.

Please, all you so informed people, tell me where this welfare is.

The state of Michigan in which I live created asset limits on food stamps, so because i have more than $5k in a retirement fund, I don't qualify.

And food stamps are the only thing which I could qualify for.

They also limited welfare to just 4 years...for life. And decreased the unemployment benefits to 22 weeks, 4 weeks less than the next lowest.

If I didn't work, I'd be living in the streets. Well then I'd qualify for something...

Someone needs to do some recalculations because I don't see all this available welfare...aside from GE getting tax breaks and Goldman getting a whole new building at tax payer cost.


newengland's picture

All this bureaucratic talk is bull$hit. The working poor American born person gets nothing unless s/he begs for it.

All wrong. All unconstitutional.

CONgress and Wall Street get everything. See O'BOMB'a pass a law this past week giving them all armed guards for life, yet claiming that guns are bad. See Clinton going to Haiti, and little of the money raised helped Haitians. See their ways continue the Bush legacy of cross and bones: money for the rich, and poverty for everyone else.

They are Nazis, and follow the Nazi playbook: disarm the people, make them willing debt slaves. See this:

The House slave is no better than the field slave.




Prometheus418's picture

You sound like a white fella.  Maybe if you cultivated a drug addiction?

Goner's picture

First of all I agree 100% with your views on corp welfare.

The rest of your post seems off. You complain that you don't qualify since you have a retirement fund, so take your money out. This allows you to qualify (if that's your goal) Its not like leaving your money in a retirement account for the bankers and your financial adviser to play with is a great idea anyhow.

And then you seem to complain you can ONLY get welfare for 4 years?

And unemployment benefits were slashed to 22 weeks? I am no expert on Michigan's unemployment but from what I can see its way more than 22 weeks

It looks like it goes in stages and you auto-magically move from stage to stage if you qualify. The stages are 20 weeks, 14 weeks, 13 weeks, 6 weeks and at that point it seems you move to Federal Unemployment so its not like it stops even after 53 weeks. Or it least that how it seems to me from reading the link below


newengland's picture

Look very closely at that map. No surrender, and I am very sorry for those who surrendered to Big Brother, drugs, spendthrifts, hateful democratic ways whereby Big Brother loves you and exploits you.

The USA was founded as a Republic, one for all, and all for one. It was not meant to be that extremist hateful thing: a democracy whereby the majority rules and bludgeons everyone else into submission because its pretty pet politicos and banksters wish it so, for their enrichment.

Long live the Republic, and the rest of you should learn to do so too. When all is said and done, there is usually more said than done. 

Government hates you. That is all you need to know. Get up off your knees.

Learn the Constitution. Defend it. Defend your community, and the Republic of the USA which is most hated by the old world of monarchists, banksters, despots and oligarchs.

Carnegie_IB's picture

before one can be free, they must first see the cage that they are inside.

August's picture

"Government hates you."

It's really more contempt than hatred.  You are unwashed, out of the loop, knowing not the Right People.

laomei's picture

Obviously, the poverty guidelines are set too high.

MeBizarro's picture

I see the racist trash is out on force on this topic as I figured they would with some of the usual suspects. 

Carnegie_IB's picture

Education in my humble opinion is a process and more about learning how to learn as opposed to "what is learned". We homeschool our children because we can take a more active role in their learning experience.  

Just like many [non scalable] things in life, you get something from what you put into it. However, with the growth in [scalable] ways to make money, it appears the socio economic divide is getting larger. Since [Scalable] ways to make money do not directly relate to time and effort relative the outcome, more and more results are "winner take all" outcomes residing in fewer and fewer hands. There are too many Black Swans. 

I myself find it challenging to increase predicitibilty in the art of market speculation, and have found 100's of ways that don't work. 

The trend is your friend until it stops working, or goes sideways, which tends to happen often. 

My apologies for straying off the topic, but I am hopeful the post can add value to whomever may benefit. 

plata pura's picture

health care and education be right and mandate; protectionism void of contestation be the singlemostest missing ingredient for these states united' followed by the killing of citizens united. the unfettered capitalist has gutted this republik whilst the multinational trust monopolies made sure it would never again make shine in the city upon the hill.

Mi Naem's picture

Sir, you've had a few too many.  Please, step awaaaayy from the keyboard. 

plata pura's picture

puts a bee in my bonnet, this subject does. the private general ratio is very importante. tommy paine once made pamphlet on the subject of mass wealth and power passed down by generations "a line can spawn a jackass" many many of the states made law against franchisement of more than two. these states united funded it's representative government by tariff alone...... then came foking reagen and the flat earth free trade war in perpetuity toss pots bush's, deregulator of cds clinton and the reagen incarnate obama. the osiris chariot of 1997ce followed by the bull dogging kachina of 11/2013ce ends these fast tracking 4th turnings; however what follows

akak's picture

That sure was one circuitous stream of consciousness!