With a new gauge, the poverty rate ticks upward

posted at 4:21 pm on November 15, 2012 by Erika Johnsen

As President Obama so often and helpfully reminds us…

…he’s the real champion of the downtrodden, and as he rarely fails to inform us, he’s here to make sure that the rich don’t get richer off of the backs of those who can least afford it. But here’s the tricky thing about measures that operate on the basis of “fairness”: Maybe you “just” want to skim a little off of the richest of the rich, but you’ll probably end up making the poor, poorer in the process.

For all of President Obama’s stimulus and entitlement expansions and deficit spending, it doesn’t look like it’s doing much to boost people into the middle class. According to a new census report, the number of people in poverty in the U.S. increased to about 50 million people in 2011, via the AP:

The ranks of America’s poor edged up last year to a high of 49.7 million, based on a new census measure that takes into account medical costs and work-related expenses.

The numbers released Wednesday by the Census Bureau are part of a newly developed supplemental poverty measure. Devised a year ago, this measure provides a fuller picture of poverty that the government believes can be used to assess safety-net programs by factoring in living expenses and taxpayer-provided benefits that the official formula leaves out.

Based on the revised formula, the number of poor people exceeded the 49 million, or 16 percent of the population, who were living below the poverty line in 2010. That came as more people in the slowly improving economy picked up low-wage jobs last year but still struggled to pay living expenses. The revised poverty rate of 16.1 percent also is higher than the record 46.2 million, or 15 percent, that the government’s official estimate reported in September.

It’s a new measurement system, ergo not dealing in constant variables, but the gist of all of this is that despite the additions to federal and state welfare spending, it’s been four years and by far too many measures, things have conspicuously not improved. We spent trillions of dollars to end up with an employment rate barely budging the one we started with (minus the decreased labor participation rate!). Stagnant economic growth and poor job creation are what drive people into poverty, and no amount of government spending or assistance can mitigate that. Prosperity is what lifts up and aids the greatest number of people, and prosperity is something that is remarkably at odds with a lot of the effects of President Obama’s agenda.


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Making sure the middle class diminishes every day in every way.

totherightofthem on November 15, 2012 at 4:22 PM

Free stuff!! Big Bird welfare!! War on wimmins!!

kim roy on November 15, 2012 at 4:22 PM

Initial claims for unemployment rose a massive 78,000 last week, to
439,000. The 4-week moving average rose 11,750 to 383,750. Continuing
claims rose 171,000 to 3.334 million.

Oh. This wasn’t manipulated prior to the election !! More BS from the BLS

J_Crater on November 15, 2012 at 4:22 PM

Making sure the middle class diminishes every day in every way.

totherightofthem on November 15, 2012 at 4:22 PM

Obama will make up the difference by making sure the evil rich join the middle class.

forest on November 15, 2012 at 4:25 PM

Prosperity is not the goal of the Obama Administration. It never has been.

Curtiss on November 15, 2012 at 4:25 PM

can be used to assess safety-net programs by factoring in living expenses and taxpayer-provided benefits that the official formula leaves out.

In other words, let’s see if the benefits the taxpayer are providing actually are enough.

If not, let’s increase them.

BacaDog on November 15, 2012 at 4:26 PM

Exactly as planned.

vcferlita on November 15, 2012 at 4:27 PM

“I’ve got a mandate to help middle-class families.” —President Obama at his news conference yesterday

What was it Reagan said about fearing the words “I’m from the government and I’m here to help”?

Doughboy on November 15, 2012 at 4:27 PM

Give it up already.

That’s just more people being added to the democrite party total vote.

In case you missed the point of Nov. 6 ………

IT AIN’T THE ECONOMY STUPID……….

FlaMurph on November 15, 2012 at 4:29 PM

President Middle No Class.

affenhauer on November 15, 2012 at 4:29 PM

Can’t have a banana republic without some rotten bananas

uncommon sense on November 15, 2012 at 4:29 PM

this measure provides a fuller picture of poverty that the government believes can be used to assess safety-net programs by factoring in living expenses and taxpayer-provided benefits that the official formula leaves out.

Hey Jindal, what about those free gifts?

faraway on November 15, 2012 at 4:29 PM

goddamn moron.

sesquipedalian on September 12, 2012 at 12:00 AM

rogerb on November 15, 2012 at 4:32 PM

He’s just trying to make it easier on himself. It will be much easier to take care of the “middle class” when only 100 of them are left.

PastorJon on November 15, 2012 at 4:32 PM

“I’ve got a mandate to help middle-class families.” —President Obama at his news conference yesterday: OFA.BO/xRSG9n

He may think that he has this mandate.

The fact is THAT IS HIS JOB !!! Mandate or no.
Additionally, he has the job of helping ALL Americans.

Jabberwock on November 15, 2012 at 4:33 PM

Gee, wouldn’t this have been handy to know before the election…..//

Sekhmet on November 15, 2012 at 4:33 PM

Election’s over. Now it’s back to full-bore fomenting of class warfare by the Marxist in Chief.

rayra on November 15, 2012 at 4:33 PM

I’m thiniking about the time of the midterms…

… the whole Country should resemble Staten Island.

Seven Percent Solution on November 15, 2012 at 4:34 PM

obviously, we need single payer…and we need it now…we are a poor country…the illusion that we were anything else, was just that an illusion.

fortunately, barry will lead us to an advanced nation status…like France and Canada…and his heirs will lead us to a land of heaven on earth, where there will be no want.

r keller on November 15, 2012 at 4:35 PM

President Revenge H. FixIt

Pork-Chop on November 15, 2012 at 4:37 PM

WWPD – What would Putin do?

faraway on November 15, 2012 at 4:38 PM

Following Alinsky, Obama campaigns today as an advocate for the middle class. But he and his compatriots see the American middle class as a moral embarrassment because we are so much richer and more prosperous than the rest of the world. That is what he was thinking when he was foolish enough to say “we just can’t keep driving our SUVs, eating whatever we want, keeping our homes at 72 degrees at all times regardless of whether we live in the tundra or the desert, and keep consuming 25% of the world’s resources with just 4% of the world’s population, and expect the rest of the world to say you just go ahead we’ll be fine.”

I keep this in mind every time he or his minions say the words “middle class”.

He has nothing but contempt for the middle class.

Way to go, voters.

tru2tx on November 15, 2012 at 4:38 PM

goddamn moron.

sesquipedalian on September 12, 2012 at 12:00 AM

rogerb on November 15, 2012 at 4:32 PM

Squid finally got one right!

slickwillie2001 on November 15, 2012 at 4:39 PM

LiB

sandee on November 15, 2012 at 4:39 PM

He’s got a man-date alright. With Reggie Love.

ctmom on November 15, 2012 at 4:40 PM

This goes beyond Marism, into Destructionism.

faraway on November 15, 2012 at 4:40 PM

Marxism

faraway on November 15, 2012 at 4:40 PM

To clarify, what does Erika mean by “constant variables”?

NorthernCross on November 15, 2012 at 4:42 PM

In the name of Shaniqua… The story of Barack Obama… He wants to turn us all into Shaniqua the welfare queen…

mnjg on November 15, 2012 at 4:43 PM

More people in poverty than ever? That doesn’t show that government is failing citizen. That shows how much citizens need government!

And libs will continue to say that, until the government collapses, and suddenly everybody is able to find work doing whatever they feel will generate the best income (see Europe, Eastern).

hawksruleva on November 15, 2012 at 4:43 PM

Marxism, hell….. he is a communist socialist dedicated to marginalizing this country. Khrushchev would be proud of him. He is doing it without banging his shoe on the desk…. for all we know…… Liberals are such morons. Ohio State… Benghazi? Who is he?

ultracon on November 15, 2012 at 4:44 PM

I didn’t realize that serfdom had a middle class. Who knew?

Mo_mac on November 15, 2012 at 4:44 PM

The issue of birth certificate was put on ice during the election. Can we raise it again now?

Archivarix on November 15, 2012 at 4:46 PM

Free Sh!t Army don’t give a….

catmman on November 15, 2012 at 4:49 PM

The issue of birth certificate was put on ice during the election. Can we raise it again now?

Archivarix on November 15, 2012 at 4:46 PM

It is a meaningless distraction… There are many important and much more effective stuff to go after the communist…

mnjg on November 15, 2012 at 4:49 PM

You need people to be poor and downtrodden in order for them to depend on Big Govt Daddy. Mission Accomplished.

Jackalope on November 15, 2012 at 4:50 PM

The issue of birth certificate was put on ice during the election. Can we raise it again now?

Archivarix on November 15, 2012 at 4:46 PM

.
As was the need to banish CORRUPT politicians form DC !!!

Remember, CLEAN UP DC Cronyism ?

And America doubles down on these crooks… Palin still the only one with balls

FlaMurph on November 15, 2012 at 4:52 PM

I smell more QE infinity cooking.

FlaMurph on November 15, 2012 at 4:53 PM

War on wimmins!!

kim roy on November 15, 2012 at 4:22 PM

lol!

Idiot, you spelled it wrong. It’s “wymmyns”
:P

Glenn Jericho on November 15, 2012 at 4:55 PM

You need people to be poor and downtrodden in order for them to depend on Big Govt Daddy. Mission Accomplished.

Jackalope on November 15, 2012 at 4:50 PM

Yes that is the democrat party base… The poorer they are the better for these f***ing communists…

mnjg on November 15, 2012 at 4:58 PM

President Middle No Class.

affenhauer on November 15, 2012 at 4:29 PM

ROFL *SNORT!*

Laura in Maryland on November 15, 2012 at 4:59 PM

Prosperity is what lifts up and aids the greatest number of people, and prosperity is something that is remarkably at odds with a lot of the effects of President Obama’s agenda.

It’s not a bug, it’s a feature.

Midas on November 15, 2012 at 5:02 PM

goddamn moron.

sesquipedalian on September 12, 2012 at 12:00 AM

rogerb on November 15, 2012 at 4:32 PM

attaboy, rodge.

sesquipedalian on November 15, 2012 at 5:05 PM

“But at least he doesn’t have binders full of women.”
–the US electorate

MidniteRambler on November 15, 2012 at 5:06 PM

Get used to this. We’re all going down.

Spouse and I have talked about what we’re going to do. Going to do everything to make sure that we fall under the next tax bracket. And we’ll cut back on our dining out and donations. Hmmm. . . wonder who gets hurt the most by all of this.

Fiscal cliff, here we come.

COgirl on November 15, 2012 at 5:07 PM

Get used to this. We’re all going down.

Yup, we are all to share equally in misery. Our political and corporate elites excepted of course.

hawkeye54 on November 15, 2012 at 5:09 PM

“But at least he doesn’t have binders full of women.”
–the US electorate

An astute group they are. I stand in awe of their wise choice in re-electing Barry.

hawkeye54 on November 15, 2012 at 5:11 PM

Tax the rich it is made up with higher prices on others…why is that hard.

tomas on November 15, 2012 at 5:14 PM

We spent trillions of dollars to end up with an employment rate barely budging the one we started with (minus the decreased labor participation rate!).

Hell, how much has been spent on “The War on Poverty” since the mid-1960′s?

Never fear! The libs just need MORE time and MORE money!

GarandFan on November 15, 2012 at 5:21 PM

Tax the rich it is made up with higher prices on others…why is that hard.

It ain’t hard, and those that collect the tax don’t care about our paying higher prices. All they care about is getting their hands on additional tax revenues to redistribute to their cronies and faithful voter base, as well as pocketing a tidy sum of said taxes for themselves.

hawkeye54 on November 15, 2012 at 5:23 PM

I SAY we proudly praise the wonderful achievements of Obama to utterlly sink an entire COAL industry, roll back a promising industry (fracking/offshore oil drilling)….

CHEERS to OBAMA!!! For he knows how to put everybody out of work for the sake of the Spotted Owl.

Varchild on November 15, 2012 at 5:32 PM

Hell, how much has been spent on “The War on Poverty” since the mid-1960′s?

The war could and can never be won. But the primary goal was achieved. That of getting a growing perennial dem voting bloc thanks to creating generations having grown accustomed to the entitlements with which they have been rewarded. Not enough to get ‘em out of poverty but sufficient to keep ‘em on the dem plantation.

hawkeye54 on November 15, 2012 at 5:32 PM

Gee, Mr. President, if you really want to help the middle class, I have an idea…..

…. resign. So far, all you’ve done is make things worse.

tom on November 15, 2012 at 5:32 PM

Who needs JOBS?

Who needs a HOUSE?

Who needs to EAT??

Who needs clothes??

Who needs a functioning Stock Market?

Who needs a private sector???

NOBODY!!!!!!!!!!!!

We just need 4 more years of Obama, Candlelight, Vigils.

Varchild on November 15, 2012 at 5:34 PM

“I’ve got a mandate to help middle-class families.”

Yeah, help them into poverty. Liberals, you bought it, you own it.

Ward Cleaver on November 15, 2012 at 5:34 PM

Never fear! The libs just need MORE time and MORE money!

GarandFan on November 15, 2012 at 5:21 PM

Good line in an old Temptations song I was just listening to “Ball of Confusion” – “the politicans say more taxes will solve everything”. They wrote that over 30 years ago.

dentarthurdent on November 15, 2012 at 5:36 PM

I pulled every dime, nickel, penny, out of the Stock Market in anticipation of Obama possibly winning.

Now that he has won….So went my Retirement fund…100% OUT OF THE STOCK MARKET!!!!

No chance in God’s country for prosperity…

Welcome to the “OH MY GOD I HAVE NOTHING TO EAT AND WILL NOW DIE SOON” society of the Obama Regime.

Varchild on November 15, 2012 at 5:36 PM

Communism, lets all get poor together.

The poor will lose in the end, you cannot equalize intelligence, without killing a bunch of people.

tarpon on November 15, 2012 at 5:45 PM

Gee, Mr. President, if you really want to help the middle class, I have an idea…..

Barry really wants the middle class, or at least its political mentality, to disappear. Its tends to lean too much towards conservatism and political independence. Barry wants more reliable voters found in the government dependent classes, gimmiedats, if you will, by way of entitlements, or those beholden to government, such as union members.

hawkeye54 on November 15, 2012 at 5:48 PM

The ranks of America’s poor edged up last year to a high of 49.7 million, based on a new census measure that takes into account medical costs and work-related expenses.

I believe this new formula also says that people only spend 1/7th of their money on food, as opposed to the current government models that say people spend 30% on food.

SNAP still uses the 30% to calculate how much money families get for food…maybe it is time we update the equations for calculating food stamp eligibility?

weaselyone on November 15, 2012 at 5:48 PM

Pretty soon…

… there will be no place to hide.

Seven Percent Solution on November 15, 2012 at 5:52 PM

But the poor will feel so much better if they’re not alone in their plight.

I’m pretty sure that’s the equity Democrats look for in social programs.

ButterflyDragon on November 15, 2012 at 6:18 PM

The ranks of America’s poor edged up last year to a high of 49.7 million, based on a new census measure that takes into account medical costs and work-related expenses.

Oh, shut up.

49.7 million “poor people?” Give me a break. In a country with roughly 300 million total people, that means we’re being told that nearly 20% of our population is poor? Uh-huh. We’ve stretched the definition of “poor” so far that a good number of middle class families can reach it. Sorry, but “poor” is not when you have to choose the 32″ TV instead of the 40″ one.

Shump on November 15, 2012 at 6:26 PM

The land so deserves this miserable buffoon.

Schadenfreude on November 15, 2012 at 6:39 PM

Oh, shut up.

49.7 million “poor people?” Give me a break. In a country with roughly 300 million total people, that means we’re being told that nearly 20% of our population is poor? Uh-huh. We’ve stretched the definition of “poor” so far that a good number of middle class families can reach it. Sorry, but “poor” is not when you have to choose the 32″ TV instead of the 40″ one.

Shump on November 15, 2012 at 6:26 PM

I’ll bet those poor people even have to drive cars with cloth seats. Can you imagine that in America? The shame of it all.

slickwillie2001 on November 15, 2012 at 6:40 PM

He’s still the DOTUS.

24/7

PappyD61 on November 15, 2012 at 6:41 PM

It’s a new measurement system, ergo not dealing in constant variables, but the gist of all of this is that despite the additions to federal and state welfare spending, it’s been four years and by far too many measures, things have conspicuously not improved.

We need an election to get a President really soon!

And what a cowinky dink that this doesn’t come out until the week after the rat-eared wonder edged into a second term and the stories of election day fraud are only now leaking out.

Happy Nomad on November 15, 2012 at 6:42 PM

We’ve stretched the definition of “poor” so far that a good number of middle class families can reach it. Sorry, but “poor” is not when you have to choose the 32″ TV instead of the 40″ one.

Shump on November 15, 2012 at 6:26 PM

The definition of poor entirely depends on who is expected to pay for that extra 8″ of TV.

Happy Nomad on November 15, 2012 at 6:46 PM

Free Sh!t Army don’t give a….

catmman on November 15, 2012 at 4:49 PM

The likes of UES and Sesqui are fine with their food stamps and medicaid. Little motivation with those types.

CW on November 15, 2012 at 7:16 PM

“I’ve got a mandate to help middle-class families.” —President Obama

And he’s got delusions of competence as well.

lynncgb on November 15, 2012 at 8:54 PM