blinkernyc:

5 Facts We Learned From The War On Poverty

Today is the 50th anniversary of Lyndon B. Johnson’s announcement of The War on Poverty, arguably the extension of a liberal philosophy dating back to FDR’s New Deal programs.
Despite the relatively short-term interest in substantially financing and expanding the programs, childhood poverty dropped from 23% in 1964 to 17% in 2000, although it has risen back to its pre-WoP levels. Elderly poverty declined from almost 30% to almost 9% today.
The nation’s poverty rate dropped from 18% in 1964 to around 12% by 1969, a steep decline that hasn’t been seen since.
Today, as the challenges of poverty at home are complicated by problems like low-wage jobs, globalization, and decreased social mobility, a few fundamental lessons from the great success of the beginning of the War on Poverty remain valuable today.
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I was always taught that the War on Poverty was a failure.

blinkernyc:

5 Facts We Learned From The War On Poverty

Today is the 50th anniversary of Lyndon B. Johnson’s announcement of The War on Poverty, arguably the extension of a liberal philosophy dating back to FDR’s New Deal programs.

Despite the relatively short-term interest in substantially financing and expanding the programs, childhood poverty dropped from 23% in 1964 to 17% in 2000, although it has risen back to its pre-WoP levels. Elderly poverty declined from almost 30% to almost 9% today.

The nation’s poverty rate dropped from 18% in 1964 to around 12% by 1969, a steep decline that hasn’t been seen since.

Today, as the challenges of poverty at home are complicated by problems like low-wage jobs, globalization, and decreased social mobility, a few fundamental lessons from the great success of the beginning of the War on Poverty remain valuable today.

Read More

I was always taught that the War on Poverty was a failure.

(via geoffmullings)

geoffmullings:

blinkernyc:

NYPD Officers Need Better Accountability For Their Arrests

The NYPD has a principal-agent problem.
Take for example the NY Times publication on Noel Guzman, who was awarded $2.4 million Wednesday for a false arrest and beating he suffered at the hands of the NYPD in 2009. This incident happened in Inwood, a mostly Latino neighborhood in Northern Manhattan.
Then there’s Rayquan Callahan, a teen from Brownsville who sued the NYPD in February after an officer falsely arrested him without evidence of a crime committed, only to have that same officer arrest him on another false charge in retaliation little more than a week later.
NYC taxpayers also had to payout over $360,000 in settlements to victims of police abuse and brutality….

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NYPD officers are kept degrees apart from the impact of their arrests. It’s no wonder officers then will arrest people on bogus pot possession charges, they have no immediate knowledge of the socioeconomic costs of their actions.

geoffmullings:

blinkernyc:

NYPD Officers Need Better Accountability For Their Arrests

The NYPD has a principal-agent problem.

Take for example the NY Times publication on Noel Guzman, who was awarded $2.4 million Wednesday for a false arrest and beating he suffered at the hands of the NYPD in 2009. This incident happened in Inwood, a mostly Latino neighborhood in Northern Manhattan.

Then there’s Rayquan Callahan, a teen from Brownsville who sued the NYPD in February after an officer falsely arrested him without evidence of a crime committed, only to have that same officer arrest him on another false charge in retaliation little more than a week later.

NYPD officers are kept degrees apart from the impact of their arrests. It’s no wonder officers then will arrest people on bogus pot possession charges, they have no immediate knowledge of the socioeconomic costs of their actions.

geoffmullings:

blinkernyc:

What’s Wrong With More Expensive Fast Food?

Higher wages for workers might raise the price of fast food. And how is that a bad thing for anyone?
Cheap fast food is a cancer in most parts of American society. Not on its own though – alone it’s just a convenient and successful business plan, a fact that, combined with distance, makes it easy to ignore the problems caused by its integration into our daily lives.
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Just as oil companies are being taxed to compensate for their damage to the environment, so should fast food companies be taxed for their disproportionate damage to health, especially among the poor who are limited by their food choices already through socioeconomic segregation.

geoffmullings:

blinkernyc:

What’s Wrong With More Expensive Fast Food?

Higher wages for workers might raise the price of fast food. And how is that a bad thing for anyone?

Cheap fast food is a cancer in most parts of American society. Not on its own though – alone it’s just a convenient and successful business plan, a fact that, combined with distance, makes it easy to ignore the problems caused by its integration into our daily lives.

Read More

Just as oil companies are being taxed to compensate for their damage to the environment, so should fast food companies be taxed for their disproportionate damage to health, especially among the poor who are limited by their food choices already through socioeconomic segregation.

geoffmullings:

blinkernyc:

“Journeyman’s” Arrest Was a Sad Addition To Problems Many NYers Are Facing

If you haven’t yet heard, something wonderful is happening in Manhattan these days. Someone’s taking time out of what seems to be a norm of social media narcissism, and tracking of pointless statistics and gossip, to show some empathy toward a fellow New Yorker. It’s not unfounded, but it’s especially commendable at a time when many of us choose to mock rather than acknowledge, let alone address the social ills NYC faces.
A young man has chosen to teach a recently unemployed homeless man how to code (more like the homeless man chose to learn how to code, rather than receive a monetary donation). The student’s name is “Journeyman” Leo, he’s been learning to code since late August, and he was arrested Sunday morning by the NYPD for trespassing in a City park (sleeping on a bench past park closing hours), although today he’s free.
The arrest didn’t come without disruption though. In addition to whatever mental stress was incurred by going through the NYPD’s booking and holding process, Leo was unable to meet with his teacher that day and almost missed a media interview about his journey.
It might be a bit cynical to then say “digital coding couldn’t save the homeless guy from reality,” but it honestly didn’t. And the arrest, indeed “Journeyman’s” entire situation, is a sad lesson on how little education and experience helps in fighting today’s deeply entrenched metropolitan social problems….
Continue Reading


Wrote this because Journeyman’s situation so recently proves how vital social mobility is to success.
And the absence of social mobility could seriously stagnate an economy. We’re talking about “culture of despair” type of stagnation, which I’ll be writing about soon too through another story.
But if you want to renew hope for people, give them a chance to consider investing in themselves, if you want people to see themselves having a future, you need social mobility. The kind that overcomes racial and economic discrimination.
The kind that doesn’t let someone drop from a corporate job at Metlife in 2011 to living on the NYC sidewalk in 2013.

geoffmullings:

blinkernyc:

“Journeyman’s” Arrest Was a Sad Addition To Problems Many NYers Are Facing

If you haven’t yet heard, something wonderful is happening in Manhattan these days. Someone’s taking time out of what seems to be a norm of social media narcissism, and tracking of pointless statistics and gossip, to show some empathy toward a fellow New Yorker. It’s not unfounded, but it’s especially commendable at a time when many of us choose to mock rather than acknowledge, let alone address the social ills NYC faces.

A young man has chosen to teach a recently unemployed homeless man how to code (more like the homeless man chose to learn how to code, rather than receive a monetary donation). The student’s name is “Journeyman” Leo, he’s been learning to code since late August, and he was arrested Sunday morning by the NYPD for trespassing in a City park (sleeping on a bench past park closing hours), although today he’s free.

The arrest didn’t come without disruption though. In addition to whatever mental stress was incurred by going through the NYPD’s booking and holding process, Leo was unable to meet with his teacher that day and almost missed a media interview about his journey.

It might be a bit cynical to then say “digital coding couldn’t save the homeless guy from reality,” but it honestly didn’t. And the arrest, indeed “Journeyman’s” entire situation, is a sad lesson on how little education and experience helps in fighting today’s deeply entrenched metropolitan social problems….

Continue Reading

Wrote this because Journeyman’s situation so recently proves how vital social mobility is to success.

And the absence of social mobility could seriously stagnate an economy. We’re talking about “culture of despair” type of stagnation, which I’ll be writing about soon too through another story.

But if you want to renew hope for people, give them a chance to consider investing in themselves, if you want people to see themselves having a future, you need social mobility. The kind that overcomes racial and economic discrimination.

The kind that doesn’t let someone drop from a corporate job at Metlife in 2011 to living on the NYC sidewalk in 2013.

geoffmullings:

More Infographics at The Blinker

geoffmullings:

More Infographics at The Blinker

geoffmullings:

The Paradox of Choice


This discusses fully an attribution bias I come across frequently when discussing poor communities: a focus on personal responsibility and choice as the main factors in controlling events.

Specifically, I recall a friend who, in response to a 4/20 post about marijuana and cultural acceptance, explained that he thought marijuana was a “luxury” for poor people, and shouldn’t be consumed for that reason (basically, a waste of limited resources argument).

I won’t touch upon the irony that this person, just as poor, participates in technical analysis investing, one of the easiest to prove wastes of limited resources.

But, the video makes clear the bias in my friend’s argument. The anxiety of “choice” is internalized by a lot of people. They feel a pressure to “make the right choice” and feel that others are judging the choices they make (sorta explains my frustration with responses to the student debt crisis that amount to “you should have chosen a more lucrative major”). This anxiety can be numbing, and within a culture that pressures you to consume while at the same time admonishing you for poor consumption choices, it can get pretty toxic.

You end up with folks, mentally enslaved as I like to put it, advocating that poverty is a function of poor choices. Why not, after all these same people have internalized that everything bad happening to them must be a function of their own poor choices in a “consume, but beware” climate.

Little consideration is given to the larger complexes involved in how these events turn out. Poverty, and the poor, become a subclass that don’t yet “deserve” to have nice things and have no room for leisure: after all, they must remain in the perpetual hustle to become self-made successes, a reflection of our perpetual anxiety about choices and correlating events.

Meanwhile, remember that numbing anxiety about choice? It prevents us from becoming that one thing that might break the system: independent entrepreneurs seeking to critique and improve our society. Instead, we conform and worry.