Skip to main content

empty playground
CBS News / 60 Minutes:
Unemployment improved a bit last month but it is still nearly nine percent and the trouble is job creation is so slow, it will be years before we get back the seven and a half million jobs lost in the Great Recession. American families have been falling out of the middle class in record numbers. The combination of lost jobs and millions of foreclosures means a lot of folks are homeless and hungry for the first time in their lives.

One of the consequences of the recession that you don't hear a lot about is the record number of children descending into poverty.

The government considers a family of four to be impoverished if they take in less than $22,000 a year. Based on that standard, and government projections of unemployment, it is estimated the poverty rate for kids in this country will soon hit 25 percent. Those children would be the largest American generation to be raised in hard times since the Great Depression.

In Seminole County, near Orlando, Fla., so many kids have lost their homes that school busses now stop at dozens of cheap motels where families crowd into rooms, living week to week.

But by all means, let's piss away the time talking about austerity for the poor and tax cuts for the rich. Let's have state and federal shutdowns while politicians insist that no, in this greatest recession since the Depression, we just aren't interested in creating jobs or continuing support for the poor. We're in a nationwide war against public workers and teachers, and a state-by-state rollback of family planning services—now that puts a fire in political pot-bellies, but jobs? It's not even being discussed.

You know something? This generation of kids is going to grow up hating the people who put them in poverty, and then kept them there. The government doesn't give a damn about them. The Republicans have a fit if anyone even tries to give a damn about them. Their own states certainly don't give a damn about them. You think Chris Christie, Scott Walker, or Rick Scott gives a damn about nearly 25 percent of American children now living in poverty? I sure haven't heard a peep out of them.

A whole generation marked by poverty. Poverty caused by wealthy bankers making crappy bets, but then prolonged excruciatingly by a nation of political leaders who literally could not possibly do less to get out of recession if they tried. Poverty that will have long-term effects on these children's future prospects, and in turn on the American economy that will rely on them.

Forget mere disapproval: I think anyone talking about austerity for these children's families, while simultaneously coddling the rich and the corporate, deserves to be tarred, feathered, and set adrift in the middle of the Atlantic Ocean. The more you hear the hard numbers of how bad this "jobless recovery" actually is for people, the more offensive it becomes.

EMAIL TO A FRIEND X
Your Email has been sent.
You must add at least one tag to this diary before publishing it.

Add keywords that describe this diary. Separate multiple keywords with commas.
Tagging tips - Search For Tags - Browse For Tags

?

More Tagging tips:

A tag is a way to search for this diary. If someone is searching for "Barack Obama," is this a diary they'd be trying to find?

Use a person's full name, without any title. Senator Obama may become President Obama, and Michelle Obama might run for office.

If your diary covers an election or elected official, use election tags, which are generally the state abbreviation followed by the office. CA-01 is the first district House seat. CA-Sen covers both senate races. NY-GOV covers the New York governor's race.

Tags do not compound: that is, "education reform" is a completely different tag from "education". A tag like "reform" alone is probably not meaningful.

Consider if one or more of these tags fits your diary: Civil Rights, Community, Congress, Culture, Economy, Education, Elections, Energy, Environment, Health Care, International, Labor, Law, Media, Meta, National Security, Science, Transportation, or White House. If your diary is specific to a state, consider adding the state (California, Texas, etc). Keep in mind, though, that there are many wonderful and important diaries that don't fit in any of these tags. Don't worry if yours doesn't.

You can add a private note to this diary when hotlisting it:
Are you sure you want to remove this diary from your hotlist?
Are you sure you want to remove your recommendation? You can only recommend a diary once, so you will not be able to re-recommend it afterwards.
Rescue this diary, and add a note:
Are you sure you want to remove this diary from Rescue?
Choose where to republish this diary. The diary will be added to the queue for that group. Publish it from the queue to make it appear.

You must be a member of a group to use this feature.

Add a quick update to your diary without changing the diary itself:
Are you sure you want to remove this diary?
(The diary will be removed from the site and returned to your drafts for further editing.)
(The diary will be removed.)
Are you sure you want to save these changes to the published diary?

Comment Preferences

Subscribe or Donate to support Daily Kos.

Click here for the mobile view of the site