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On being poor
People line up at a food pantry. The number of people in poverty rose in 17 states, the Census Bureau says.
September 20th, 2012
05:02 PM ET

On being poor

By Moni Basu, CNN

(CNN) The Census Bureau released a depressing statistic Thursday: 46.2 million people in America fell below the poverty line last year. One in five children are poor. 

What does it feel like to live in poverty?

Writer John Scalzi knows.

He remembers a Southern California childhood marred by a broken family. His mother put her two children in the back of the car and drove away from the home they’d known.

She bought a box of Raisin Bran and warned her children: “That has to last.”

John Scalzi's essay on poverty was based on his own experiences.

Scalzi, 43, was in the first grade then.

Years later, the Raisin Bran memory became a line in an essay called “Being Poor.” He wrote it in the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina, when so many asked why the poor of New Orleans had not fled their drowned city.

It occurred to him then that wealthier Americans did not understand that the poor do not always have the luxury of choice.

But he knew.

He was the kid who wore the cheap shoes from Lucky Drug Store – the ones with the glued-on soles. He could feel them come off on the playground.

He was the kid who discovered letters from his mom to his dad begging for child support and the kid hoping he would get invited to a friend’s for dinner. He once stole a piece of meat from Ralph’s supermarket, fried it up and cleaned the plate before Mom came home. He then told her she didn’t have to make any dinner because he wasn’t hungry anyway.

Here are a few other ways Scalzi measured poverty:

Being poor is getting angry at your kids for asking for all the crap they see on TV.

Being poor is going to the restroom before you get in the school lunch line so your friends will be ahead of you and won’t hear you say “I get free lunch” when you get to the cashier.

Being poor is living next to the freeway.

Being poor is a heater in only one room of the house.

Being poor is hoping your kids don’t have a growth spurt.

Being poor is Goodwill underwear.

Being poor is thinking $8 an hour is a really good deal.

Being poor is stopping the car to take a lamp from a stranger’s trash.

Being poor is making lunch for your kid when a cockroach skitters over the bread, and you looking over to see if your kid saw.

Being poor is a sidewalk with lots of brown glass on it.

Being poor is picking the 10 cent ramen instead of the 12 cent ramen because that’s two extra packages for every dollar.

Read Scalzi’s full essay here.

Posted by
Filed under: Census • Economy • How we live • Poverty • Who we are
soundoff (1,694 Responses)
  1. Jimson

    For some reason I feel that this is somehow misleading. I feel that there are many, many programs that provide these people with resources to get food, housing, and healthcare for almost nothing in return. Do food stamps and other organizations not provide enough food? I feel a less anecdotal account of poverty is more valuable.

    Because, for some reason, I feel that some of these people (not all of them) may have things that I do not.

    Can somebody be considered poor if they have an iphone?

    September 20, 2012 at 8:09 pm | Report abuse |
    • blade1975

      I find it a weak excuse of having a tv or Iphone, when it's the people who get the 2000 buck tax returns buying such items, and being broke the rest of the year...

      September 20, 2012 at 8:13 pm | Report abuse |
  2. Stoneman

    What do you notice about the picture at the top of this article?

    COUNT THE NUMBER OF PEOPLE THAT ARE FAT.

    Just about all of them, right? Only in America do we consider a fat guy with a cell phone and a car to be in poverty. Sixty percent of the people who are supposedly in "poverty" have cable TV, according to a recent WSJ article. Seventy five percent have a car. Thirty percent have TWO CARS.

    Yet if you ask them, they'll tell you how they are poor. Victimized by Big Bad Corporations. Held down by Evil Rich People. Romney could have said it more gently, but he was right– almost half of this country is convinced they are victims. Helpless. Need liberals and their gubbermint-funded Nirvana to make things right.

    I hope there are enough self-reliant people remaining in this country to dispose of the Socialist/Democrat regime and their legion of parasitic voters.

    September 20, 2012 at 8:09 pm | Report abuse |
    • Jojo

      Only here there are so many people believing that poor people can't or shouldn't be fat. This is the true sign of an ignorant culture.

      September 20, 2012 at 8:17 pm | Report abuse |
    • Been There

      I have lived poor, it is when the best part of the school year is when you go to JoAnn Fabric to pick out a new "patch" for the holes that always appear in the knees of the only pair of blue jeans you own as a kid. It is when one pair of shoes has to last the entire school year and getting glasses is something that distresses the family budget even though mom tries not to let you see.

      I think the comment about fat people is ridiculous only because the food economy and the type of food that is cheapest is the type that causes people to become obese and diabetic. If you use obesity to measure poverty surely you can do a little research, in this country poverty is not categorized by bloated stomachs, stick arms and legs and large heads as in many third world countries. In our country, you cannot put a tin shack on public land and cover the door with a sheet. Malnutrition occurs, in this country, even in obese people because our food pyramid is upside down and cheap grains are thrown at the indigent while beef and vegetables come at an incredible price.

      If you want to judge the people who live at the poverty level, restrict your income to $12,000 per year and find a way to live on it. Then, write an article about it or even a book.

      September 20, 2012 at 8:19 pm | Report abuse |
  3. Anywhere USA

    Eye-opening ... and the sad part is so many more are at this point or on the verge because the economy STINKS and it NOT GETTING BETTER. Many unemployed and underemployed are just getting by .... VOTE FOR A CHANGE THIS NOV. ROMNEY/RYAN 2012
    It can't be any worse than the last 4 years!

    September 20, 2012 at 8:08 pm | Report abuse |
    • Veteran

      ROMNEY/RYAN buddies had brought us here!!!!!!!!

      September 20, 2012 at 8:22 pm | Report abuse |
    • c s

      The Great Recession was brought to the US by Republicans and President Bush or is your memory so short that you have already forgotten about it.

      September 20, 2012 at 8:24 pm | Report abuse |
  4. W A R N I N G !!!

    MOVE TO CANADA OR SCANDINAVIA!

    September 20, 2012 at 8:08 pm | Report abuse |
  5. will

    Not to take anything away from the experience of being poor in this country, but poor is always relative. The "poverty line" in this country is considered middle or even upper class in most of Asia and Africa. I lived in India for a couple years and the median income in Chennai (a city of over 15 million people) is around 500 dollars a year. In India and much of the 3rd world, economies exist that allow people to survive (not thrive, but survive) on 300 to 400 dollars a year. They can buy a kg of rice for 10 rupies (about 25 cents) and they can survive.

    There have always been poor and there will always be poor in very society because "poor" is always a relative term (relative to the "rich"). In America, the 95th percentile of household income is roughly 10 times the 5th percentile ($150,000/year vs $15,000/year). While this is a big gap, in India, that gap is about 1,000 times (the 95th percentile is lower than the US at about $100,000/year but the 5th percentile is much much lower at about $100/year).

    I personally feel that America has done more to help the poor in this country than almost any other country out there (with the possible exception of Singapore). We have minimum wage laws and welfare programs that keep the poor well above the survival line. Yes it is demeaning to be be poor and yes they struggle with basic "necessities" like healthy diets and heat. But you will never be able to eliminate poverty (the poverty line will always be drawn somewhere). The measure of a society is not whether it can eliminate the poor, but how well the poor are treated. In this regard, I believe that the US is well above the majority of the world.

    The "Occupy" movement talks about the 99% and the 1%. But the bottom 99% in this country is the top 1% of the the world.

    We need to keep that in perspective as we decide how to move forward with our national policies.

    September 20, 2012 at 8:08 pm | Report abuse |
    • Glenn

      Will, GOOD POINT!!!!

      September 20, 2012 at 8:12 pm | Report abuse |
    • Unafiliated

      Nice post Will.

      September 20, 2012 at 8:17 pm | Report abuse |
    • Jimmy

      Will/Glenn/Unafiliated, nice try buddy.

      September 20, 2012 at 8:23 pm | Report abuse |
  6. 40FORD

    Don't count the immigrants and then tell me the %.

    September 20, 2012 at 8:07 pm | Report abuse |
  7. grafixer

    Obama didn't cause this. Too bad there are people that are in such denial (because they voted for those that DID cause it) that they can't see reality.

    September 20, 2012 at 8:07 pm | Report abuse |
  8. Duke

    Liberals.. THINK for one moment in time. I know how difficult that is for many of you but try anyway without emotion. What if you had two homeless panhandlers... one with a squeegee on one corner and the other with a sign asking "anything helps" on the other corner. Whom do you think will have more money at the end of the day? Go ahead, take a guess...

    September 20, 2012 at 8:07 pm | Report abuse |
    • grafixer

      The one with the sign will have more money. The reality is, the guy with the squeegee will only be hired by those that will take advantage of his situation. They won't pay him much – no matter how hard he works. The one with the sign will collect a buck or two often enough – from those that feel badly that people are in his situation. Then, there are those that won't even make eye contact with either of them.

      September 20, 2012 at 8:10 pm | Report abuse |
      • Duke

        WRONG!

        September 20, 2012 at 8:13 pm | Report abuse |
    • Glenn

      Duke, I would like to think they both would have enough to survive that day, for that is all that GOD has promised, one day at
      a time.

      September 20, 2012 at 8:17 pm | Report abuse |
  9. ohbehave

    If you are poor, don't buy that Xbox,
    ...and don't buy a dog....or a ferret....or a python. You don't have the means to properly and ethically keep them.
    Oh, AND DO NOT HAVE KIDS!!!!!!
    To be stone cold broke and decide to create a family???? That is almost child neglect and abuse the moment you get impregnated!

    September 20, 2012 at 8:06 pm | Report abuse |
    • grafixer

      "...the moment you get impregnated"? LOL. So, I assume, from your statement, that you feel only the woman is responsible, eh?

      September 20, 2012 at 8:11 pm | Report abuse |
      • Been There

        I'm sure that if they didn't have money, they couldn't get impregnanted. Romney logic 2012...money can't buy common sense.

        September 20, 2012 at 8:26 pm | Report abuse |
    • Jo

      You speak like a true "romney", completely disconnected from reality. Haha

      September 20, 2012 at 8:26 pm | Report abuse |
  10. Blake068

    you are all forgeting that this is still all George Bush's fault. lol. GO ROMNEY RYAN

    September 20, 2012 at 8:06 pm | Report abuse |
    • Hadenuffyet

      Yes , by all means ....GO...

      September 20, 2012 at 8:11 pm | Report abuse |
    • Glenn

      Blake068, that's not true, WE THE AMERICAN PEOPLE are to blame, this is – Government for and by the PEOPLE....

      September 20, 2012 at 8:21 pm | Report abuse |
    • AlexJ

      You forget that many republicans distanced themselves from ROMNEY's camp, because they are embarrassed by Romney's comments.

      I have republican leanings and am so angry people may think I have the same disrespect for the people not born to a magnate father.

      September 20, 2012 at 8:29 pm | Report abuse |
  11. Unafiliated

    Being middle class is not knowing what "self-efficacy" is and when someone explains it to you, you ask, "well, doesn't everyone have that?"

    Being poor is not knowing what "self-efficacy" is and when someone explains it to you you say, "that's BS."

    September 20, 2012 at 8:06 pm | Report abuse |
  12. Rich

    Wow look at how much fun they are having not paying taxes.

    September 20, 2012 at 8:05 pm | Report abuse |
  13. LaurenW

    Amy why don't you come back when you learn to articulate an idea. Spewing invectives does not count

    September 20, 2012 at 8:05 pm | Report abuse |
  14. Sahari

    If you're focused on your hunger, then food is what will keep you alive.
    If you're focused on the fact that you're 'fat,' then food is the monkey on your back.
    If you're focused on being 'right,' then other people will appear as superior or inferior.
    If you're focused on God/Allah/Krishna/Jehovah/All That Is, then whether you are in this dimension or another, whether you are fat or thin, whether you are learning or teaching, you are in Love.

    September 20, 2012 at 8:03 pm | Report abuse |
    • dowdotica

      heaaaavy! right on!

      September 20, 2012 at 8:04 pm | Report abuse |
  15. Mitt Romney

    Folks. Borrow some money from your parents and start your own business. Being poor is your fault.

    September 20, 2012 at 8:02 pm | Report abuse |
    • dowdotica

      what if i gots no parents? den what? robba bank??

      September 20, 2012 at 8:03 pm | Report abuse |
      • Glenn

        dowdotica, according to the GOP, at least you would be showing some individual inatiative!!!

        September 20, 2012 at 8:25 pm | Report abuse |
      • SickofIt

        You could do what Romney did and find some rich people funding death squads to give you some money to start a business shipping jobs away to China!?!

        September 20, 2012 at 8:59 pm | Report abuse |
  16. ass9

    Poor=fat.. I didnt know it worked like that

    September 20, 2012 at 8:01 pm | Report abuse |
    • Joe

      You'd think that good quality food, personal trainer, less stress for what you're going to put on the table tomorrow for your kids, would amount to something, right?

      September 20, 2012 at 8:08 pm | Report abuse |
    • makessense

      poor=high calorie diet,low nutrition diet and lack of exercise. That's the unfortunate truth.

      September 20, 2012 at 8:11 pm | Report abuse |
    • Terry

      Fat food is cheap food. Healthy food is expensive, Fruits and vegetables = $$$. Ramen = pennies. Still don't know it works like that?

      September 20, 2012 at 8:14 pm | Report abuse |
  17. Amy

    Great job Obama!!! Still can't believe their our idiots out there that will vote for you.

    September 20, 2012 at 8:01 pm | Report abuse |
    • Terry

      And so many of them are the poor that he helped get to being poor. And Abe doesn't get it because he isn't poor.

      September 20, 2012 at 8:16 pm | Report abuse |
  18. Bob

    This "one in five" children statistic includes the one in five children who are thirld-world immigrants, both legal and illegal. Of course they're overwhelmingly poor, because their parents are generally uneducated and struggling (which is why they immigrated here). I'd like to know the true poverty statistic for people born and raised here.

    September 20, 2012 at 8:01 pm | Report abuse |
  19. nolongerarepublican

    What is it like to be poor?
    From personal experience after Bush's fiasco, I can say IT SUX!
    But thanks to Obama, things are a lot better for me and profits for my business are increasing every day..

    September 20, 2012 at 8:01 pm | Report abuse |
    • bertha59

      Bad beginning but great going forward. Good luck.

      September 20, 2012 at 8:02 pm | Report abuse |
    • Duke

      It's getting better because you're in front of your computer on CNN making comments how bad you had it? ummmm wonder why you had it so bad.

      September 20, 2012 at 8:09 pm | Report abuse |
    • Terry

      Honestly, good for you. Clearly, 46 million don't have the same success story. IT IS NOT A REPUBLICAN/DEMOCRAT ISSUE. IT IS A LOOK OUT FOR MY OWN POLITICAL CAREER ISSUE AND DAMN ALL THE PEOPLE IN MY WAY ISSUE. But, good luck with your business.

      September 20, 2012 at 8:23 pm | Report abuse |
  20. PJ

    No

    September 20, 2012 at 8:00 pm | Report abuse |
  21. Joe M.

    Poor is having a car for the household. Poor is having a cell phone for everyone over 18 in the household. Poor is having a current generation gaming system. Poor is having a flat-screen TV. Poor is having air conditioning. Poor is having a washer and dryer in the house. Poor is having a dishwasher.

    Simply picking the worst case scenario doesn't really give a good description of what is meant by "poor". You have to look at what the average "poor" household has, which is what I've listed above. Also, the people who make up the "poor" are constantly changing. Most people move out of this definition into the middle class after several years, to be replaced in the group counted as "poor" by recent graduates or others who are temporarily down on their luck.

    September 20, 2012 at 8:00 pm | Report abuse |
    • ricki fellows

      Joe, you are referring to the temporarily poor. But I think the article is talking about the folks who are almost without hope; those who have slipped from middle class and are not likely to get back.

      September 20, 2012 at 8:09 pm | Report abuse |
    • Tricky J

      Consumer goods (the dishwashers and air conditioners you mentioned) are the cheapest they have ever been, thanks to the globalization of capital and labor. However, the real needs for a good life include housing, health care, and education, all of which consume larger shares of income than was the case 30 years ago. A roach filled apartment with flatscreen and AC in a decaying neighborhood is still a lousy place to live or raise a family.

      September 20, 2012 at 8:18 pm | Report abuse |
    • honest abe

      WOW... you mean a flat screen tv that you can buy for $100 something or used even cheaper. $20 a month cable tv, prepaid cell phones.... we are still in America right... if they make $900 p/mo. yes they are poor, but just because they buy a few things – gee maybe even a christmas gift for their kids. that makes them bad. being poor doesnt mean you should never do anything or get anything. I can see it right now... poor guy at Best Buy – hey sir – you can't buy that $100 electronic device "YOU'RE POOR" – we don't allow poor people to purchase items that aren't edible.

      September 20, 2012 at 8:19 pm | Report abuse |
    • JAnn

      As an old Indian saying suggests, you should really try wearing the moccasins before you make such statements you have made. I am not poor but I, by choice, walk beside the poor every day. You are partially right. I do sometimes see a car. When I go to the rescue with a can of gas. The gallon or two they were able to buy didn't get them home again from the store. I see them when I go along to car shop–looking for $500 pile of junk that hopefully can chug to the doctor, school and back. They are dead on their doorstep about half of the time. And the cell phones! Ah yes, most have limited minutes only. When they are used up (as they often are) no calls go in or out. The lucky ones can still
      send a text in an emergency or call 911. The school, family, doctor calls me to go take them a message or see if they are all right. Washer and dryer? Dream on..,. Piles of dirty clothes? Many live off the top of the pile simply because two loads is all their scraped up change will pay for at the laundromat.
      I am fully aware of individual differences in the character development of the poor as well as the stable and the wealthy. There are bad apples in every barrel. But let's not disavow compassion for the poor simply because some may not "deserve it",

      September 21, 2012 at 1:57 am | Report abuse |
  22. NoTax

    Thanks to Mr.Obama for 46.2 poor americans

    September 20, 2012 at 7:59 pm | Report abuse |
    • Lisa Allen

      Poverty is degrading.

      September 20, 2012 at 8:07 pm | Report abuse |
    • Nebuchadnezzar

      There were just as many people living below the poverty line with the Unintelligent One in the office

      September 20, 2012 at 8:07 pm | Report abuse |
      • Terry

        Actually, the number has grown in recent years under Obama, but the number was surpringly high under Bush, too. We live in a society where no one wants to talk about it....not til election time anyway.

        September 20, 2012 at 8:38 pm | Report abuse |
  23. SugarMan

    Being poor is attaching a string around your sugar cube and letting it dip into your coffee cup just long enough to prevent the whole cube from dissolving in the coffee, and having enough of the sugar cube left for the next couple of days.

    September 20, 2012 at 7:57 pm | Report abuse |
  24. Rafael

    This article brought tears to my eyes. It's sad that in 2012 families live like this and as a father who's currently poor,I endure everything on that list. And yet I have the rich (Romney) calling me a leech. It hurts it really does. The only thing that feels like has any real value in my life is my family and my right to vote.

    September 20, 2012 at 7:57 pm | Report abuse |
    • Chris

      You're only a leech if you don't do anything to get off government support. I think people with common sense understand what he is referring to. You have thousands of welfare families and welfare babies who go from birth to grave on the tax payer's dollar.

      September 20, 2012 at 8:05 pm | Report abuse |
    • L

      Romney is not blaming "everyone" that is poor. There are those taking advantage of the system – generational which make it hard for those who really need help. I know A LOT of people like this. In my opinion neither running for president should be in the White House. Obama has added to the ranks of the poor and is rich himself. It's a fact that Romney can't just kick "everyone" off assistance. Don't let the scare mongers get to you on the dem side.

      September 20, 2012 at 8:08 pm | Report abuse |
    • Maurice Stud.

      Get off your butt and get a job, go to college and get a degree. NOTHING comes to you if you dont take charge. What the hell do you expect? the money to come to you? Do something with your life instead of wasting it, be a benefit for society instead a leech

      September 20, 2012 at 8:15 pm | Report abuse |
      • Been There

        Maurice, let me be the first to tell you that you are rude and inconsiderate. When you pass through a "bad" neighborhood, instead of locking your doors, get out and talk to people. Find out what keeps them from getting IN to college (yes, not everyone has a high school diploma and not everyone can pass the tests to go to college), ask what the barriers to a job are for them (stable address, telephone connection (ability to pay that cell bill every month), daycare costs for children while working, health problems, etc.)

        There should be an exam prior to distributing voting rights...it's ridiculous that those who "have" and who do not understand can take self-sustainability away from those who "do not have" and in reverse do not understand the "system" constructed around them.

        September 20, 2012 at 8:39 pm | Report abuse |
      • Glenn

        We Americans used to to be united, we all can not be doctors, or lawyers, or stock brokers, there is a place in this country
        for all of us, even the poor... The problem today is so few jobs for so many people, a country that moves its low skill jobs
        off shore to markets to inprove the bottom line of corporations is just wrong.

        September 20, 2012 at 9:00 pm | Report abuse |
  25. .-?

    It's evident that the forces of evil control the 'world'. Why else are so many people in poverty?

    September 20, 2012 at 7:57 pm | Report abuse |
  26. Blake068

    Im 24 years old, what will this place be like in 5 or 10 years. This country is going to be 3rd world real quick and its very sad. Itdoesnt matter who the president is. To be honest, with how everything is going right now I wouldnt mind if the world came to an end this December.

    September 20, 2012 at 7:56 pm | Report abuse |
    • Gary

      Well aren't you a basket of rainbows and fluffy bunnies?

      September 20, 2012 at 7:58 pm | Report abuse |
    • bertha59

      You sound so dreary and I am so sorry. I hope you reach out to someone to get beyond the dreary. Good luck.

      September 20, 2012 at 8:00 pm | Report abuse |
  27. KWS

    Did anyone else catch the irony of his "poor" list? Here in America, when you're poor you still have:
    – TV
    – shoes
    – sandwiches for your kids
    – a car
    – a place to live
    – electricity

    I'm not saying it isn't still tough; I do some of those things today, and I have a job! Still, we have it pretty darn good compared to most of the world.

    September 20, 2012 at 7:53 pm | Report abuse |
    • Tyler

      Yes, but when you live in a country with people driving around lambos, that is a pretty huge gap.

      September 20, 2012 at 7:57 pm | Report abuse |
    • jimmy

      And why are "poor" people in America so fat? You want to see "poor", look at people in third world countries that are actually hungry. Look at the photo above? See anyone that isn't overweight?

      September 20, 2012 at 7:59 pm | Report abuse |
      • Wintercity

        One of the reasons is because the cheap food they can afford (ramen, mac & cheese, McDonalds) has very low nutritive value and is high in carbs, calories, fat and salts, not to mention chemical preservatives and artificial ingredients.

        September 20, 2012 at 8:13 pm | Report abuse |
    • Joe

      Mitt will fix that! Romney 2012

      September 20, 2012 at 7:59 pm | Report abuse |
    • ckv199

      And what if you had all that "stuff' BEFORE you lost your job, your car and your health insurance???

      September 20, 2012 at 8:05 pm | Report abuse |
      • Jo Ann

        Good point!

        September 20, 2012 at 8:21 pm | Report abuse |
    • aj

      I couldn't agree more. We don't understand poverty here in the USA. Our poor have big screen tvs and satellite dishes. Let's open our eyes and see how good we have it, see other parts of the world where poverty is real. I'm poor I only made 17,000 last year but that's a hell of alot compared to other people in other places. I've lived in my car, I've scrounged for change to buy some canned food at the 99 cent store but I always know how good I have it. If you're concerned, truly concerned then help someone out, give that guy on the subway some change, give the lady begging a dollar, don't judge just help. There's nothing wrong with being poor so don't stigmatize us.

      September 20, 2012 at 8:06 pm | Report abuse |
      • L

        It's not people like you – it's people taking advantage of assistance. You are right, people don't know what poor is.

        September 20, 2012 at 8:12 pm | Report abuse |
    • L

      If you earn your money or get it from family IT IS YOUR MONEY. I worked my way up to what I make today – I am 48 and it took 27 YEARS to get a college degree because I knew it would help me. I pay A LOT in taxes and I shouldn't pay a penny more for anyone, especially those who want to do NOTHING NOTHING NOTHING to better themselves. Obama has a lot of money too so lets not compare who is richer!

      September 20, 2012 at 8:10 pm | Report abuse |
    • Brian Wilson

      I agree, the process in which they assume who is poor is extremely exaggerated. I went into business for myself 2 years ago. If you look at it on paper, I'd qualify for welfare. Because i was raised to work for your money, I couldn't see filing welfare when I have a nice stock portfolio and a nice size inherited IRA that I am re-investing. My first year, I showed a profit of $3,500. Now many agencies will accept my business taxes and give me free benefits because it appears i made $3500 in a whole year. What they don't even consider is, this is after I have taken cash payouts to myself all year to pay my bills. It makes the system extremely easy to play for a sole proprietor. When they ask for a W-2, I reply,"I have my first year business taxes, which they accept. My personal income is deducted from my net gain or loss. I do it the honest way for 2 reasons, the first being, I was raised to do the right thing, secondly, i don't want to go to jail for tax evasion. Lot's of work needs done to fis this nation......

      September 20, 2012 at 8:12 pm | Report abuse |
      • Jo Ann

        Actually, people with nice sized stock portfolios generally don't qualify for welfare.

        September 20, 2012 at 8:23 pm | Report abuse |
    • WJ

      Ever try to eat healthy on a limited budget? Check out how much chicken and veggies cost versus McDonalds dollar menu or top ramen. I used to look down at fat people using food stamps, thinking "Looks like you have enough to eat." until I later realized that most cheap food is full of fat and sodium. So now you have overweight poor people with health problems.

      September 20, 2012 at 8:17 pm | Report abuse |
  28. Veteranof3Wars

    Poverty, tailspin, and socialism: vote Obama. Prosperity, economic freedom, and liberty vote republican. Romney speaks the truth: those on the doll will ALWAYS vote for Obama and the democraps, until they resolve to make their own way and get off the government dole. Its not politically correct, but its true.

    September 20, 2012 at 7:53 pm | Report abuse |
    • Gary

      Did you get a TBI in any of those wars?

      September 20, 2012 at 7:56 pm | Report abuse |
      • Veteranof3Wars

        No Gary: I got a CIB and three bronze stars. You liberals sleep under the blanket of freedom and protection provided by better men and women than yourself......thats service. A concept alien to mouthy, gutless, socialist inclined liberals.

        September 20, 2012 at 8:04 pm | Report abuse |
    • darkstar

      You must be an angry poor white guy from the country (or the south)...the Republican party (the party of the rich) has duped you undereducated people to vote for their ideology by making issues of silly things like gun control, abortion, etc., all the while they deregulate the market, send your job to China, and tell you democrats want to take you liberty away, whatever that means. Wake up confused boy. Better yet, go read a work of nonfiction, rather than the bible, and maybe you'll something.

      September 20, 2012 at 8:04 pm | Report abuse |
    • William1956

      If your a veteran of 3 wars then you got paid, you get a check every month from the government, you get free medical care and prescriptions, you get low interest loans, you get free education etc and you complain because people are on the dole. I myself am on the dole my dad was a veteran of WW II Tunis, Tunisia where my dad took 28 pieces of shrattinal into his chest and later died when I was 18 I was never able to enjoy some of the benefits that you enjoy and the VA pays for because my dad enlisted.

      September 20, 2012 at 8:28 pm | Report abuse |
    • Pelican

      To Veteranof3Wars. Last time I checked, there still wasn't a draft for military service. For many who join the U.S. Armed Forces, although not all, enlisting is the ultimate example of on-the-dole. You just join up; most will make it through basic, then you get an instant job with on-base housing, PX, free healthcare, cheap golf, etc. Also, some enlisted get food stamps. Are you service-connected and on-the-dole V3W?

      September 20, 2012 at 8:30 pm | Report abuse |
      • Terry

        People like you, that have no respect for the men and women in our armed forces fighting for your freedom so that you can bash them on a CNN comments page, are DISGUSTING. Shame on you.

        September 20, 2012 at 8:50 pm | Report abuse |
  29. hadassah

    Sarah-I am not poor but I have done all those things because I live frugally and therefore manage what I do have so that it goes further.

    September 20, 2012 at 7:53 pm | Report abuse |
  30. GrampaSez

    If you send $2 BILLION to Egypt...?

    How many $25,000 per year jobs (for 1 year – no employer match or expense), is that?

    Answer: 80,000

    September 20, 2012 at 7:53 pm | Report abuse |
  31. jason

    being poor is hoping u close at the restaurant that way you can get the mis cooks that all the unthankful customers complain about so u can have dinner at 11 at night.

    September 20, 2012 at 7:51 pm | Report abuse |
  32. TomCom

    you know you are poor when you get evicted and your parents aren't alive to move in with. You are an only child and too proud to tell anyone what happend. You sleep in your car thinking things will change soon.

    September 20, 2012 at 7:49 pm | Report abuse |
    • Veteranof3Wars

      or typing about it on your home computer? Rather Tomyour definition of "poor" is better suited to "Loser"

      September 20, 2012 at 7:55 pm | Report abuse |
      • leons1701

        Or you could always use the computer at the library for free. Simply posting online does not guarantee that someone owns a computer.

        September 20, 2012 at 8:12 pm | Report abuse |
  33. Relative

    Did you know that the US poor are still in the 25% of Standard in Living when combined with the World Population.

    September 20, 2012 at 7:49 pm | Report abuse |
    • Terry

      Only if they took their money out of the U.S. to live. I'm a king in some parts of Africa, not here. You are rich or poor only compared to what is around you.

      September 20, 2012 at 8:54 pm | Report abuse |
  34. Sadsadsad

    I don’t know which is sadder, the poverty memories in the story or the comments above. Feels like this nation is doomed to repeat the same mistakes over and over again. No nation has thrived while there has been a large divergence in wealth and income.

    But it is obvious that the only thing thriving in this nation is hate and ignorance.

    September 20, 2012 at 7:47 pm | Report abuse |
  35. jason

    Being poor is taking a calculator to the grocery store to make sure u can pay the tax.

    September 20, 2012 at 7:47 pm | Report abuse |
  36. Vina Shah

    Why are we so judgemental. If we can not help we have no right to insult any one. He is just victom of the todays situation. I blame totally our President OOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOBama. I think every one need to see the movie 2016 Obama America. Then decide who you want to vote. We can not insult any one just because they are standing on the side walk and ask for help. IF YOU CAN NOT HELP, DON'T HURT THEM EMOTIONALY.

    September 20, 2012 at 7:47 pm | Report abuse |
  37. Mike Brown

    It's amazing how the poor and middle class are completely apathetic and refuse to fight for their diminishing rights. Give the masses iPhones, video games, and other cheap entertainment to occupy their time and they become too stupid to see what is going on because their too preoccupied. The gap between the wealthy and middle class (which really shouldn't be called the middle class anymore, but borderline poor), continues to grow. This isn't a democracy, its a farce of epic proportions. The wealth divide got much, much worse after we started deregulating all of the markets in 1999-2000 for the big banks, after they spend hundreds of millions of dollars in lobbying efforts to repeal Glass Steagall and impose the god awful Commidities Futures Modernization Act, which essentially allows them to manipulate the shadow derivatives markets with almost no oversight. Before the Commodities Futures Modernization Act was imposed the typical American family spent only 7% of their disposable income of food and fuel. After the criminals in Washington that were bought out by special interest groups implemented CFMA and killed Glass Steagall, the costs for food and fuel for the average American family have no shot up to over 20% of disposable income. The real criminals are on Wall Street and in Washington. Our entire government and system has been poisoned from top to bottom and from the local, state, and national government level with trojan horses for big special interest groups that continue to funnel wealth from the 99% to the elite chosen few that reside in the 1%. It's time for an American revolution to rid ourselves of this systemic and widespread poison that continues to demolish what's left of this so called democracy.

    September 20, 2012 at 7:47 pm | Report abuse |
    • Joe

      Mike I couldn't agree with you more. If there were another revolution, it would be a handful of people against the masses of ignorance and apathy. People of this level of intellect probably deserve the slavery they're slowly receiving. I'm starting to think expatriation is the only thing left.

      September 20, 2012 at 7:57 pm | Report abuse |
    • Veteranof3Wars

      Deep thoughts there Mike! One quick reminder: the richest five percent of Americans pays fifty four percent of the entire national tax burden, while forty seven percent of Americans (Obama crew) pay nothing.

      Thats socialism.

      September 20, 2012 at 7:59 pm | Report abuse |
      • darkstar

        Socialism is where the govt. owns the means of production. We don't have socialism in this country. You can learn that in any simple textbook on basic political science wen you dare to learn facts. When you engage in hyperbole by simply calling any Democrat a socialist you discredit yourself. If Obama is a socialist, then Romney is a corporate stooge facist, and I'd rather be a socialist than a facist. Do ya like that?

        September 20, 2012 at 8:09 pm | Report abuse |
    • Independent thinker

      Mike Brown, a revolution is all that's left to do. This thing can no longer be fixed from the inside. But we aren't at critical mass yet. Give it 5 more years.

      September 20, 2012 at 8:00 pm | Report abuse |
    • DJ

      And now with Citizens United, it will get worse and worse.

      September 20, 2012 at 8:02 pm | Report abuse |
    • WJ

      Sorry, I couldn't read your entire post because it was long and had some big words. Boring! Hey, did you hear Lindsay Lohan was arrested again?

      September 20, 2012 at 8:23 pm | Report abuse |
  38. dubrats

    hmmmm....did'nt romney just talk about the 47% and was called a fool for saying it???....oops.

    September 20, 2012 at 7:47 pm | Report abuse |
    • John

      True Romney does the one thing Obama has not done in four years...Tell the truth – Too many people just want to be lied to, I guess they are the ones who enjoy being peed on and being told it's just rain...

      September 20, 2012 at 7:50 pm | Report abuse |
      • Jim

        John, what truth are you talking about? People born to families that have this much money and power as Romney's do not have access to a real vision.

        Look who they marry, who they choose to open their souls to, they seclude themselves within groups of big $$ and power, and they look down at the ones poorer than them.

        September 20, 2012 at 7:59 pm | Report abuse |
  39. sneakypete

    When poor people with no education continue to have children, you have more poor people. When poor people with no education are allowed to sneak into our country we get more poor people. When the government encourages these 2 things you get more poor people. Next question please.

    September 20, 2012 at 7:46 pm | Report abuse |
    • Ralph

      When the big banks gamble with the people's savings accounts, with their mortgages, when the lobbys become super-efficient, and laws are passed to favor the rich, the rich become richer, and poor become even poorer.

      September 20, 2012 at 8:03 pm | Report abuse |
  40. jboHDrider

    Those are the places you need to choose from when you move.

    September 20, 2012 at 7:46 pm | Report abuse |
  41. caligirl82

    Poor is having your brother steal tampons and motrin because your in too much pain to run from the store yourself

    Poor is finding creative ways to cook potatoes for a month cause thats all you have

    Poor is wearing your brothers baggy pants to a department store so you can stuff as many bras and panties down your pants as possible.

    Poor is sponge bathing in the bathroom sink because the tub is rotting through the floor

    Poor is being cinderella at a friends house to have a safe place to sleep

    Poor is your BFF's dad paying for your bus pass and school supplies so you can graduate like everyone else

    September 20, 2012 at 7:45 pm | Report abuse |
  42. TheGuyWithAHugeGun

    Must Suck to be poor lol.

    September 20, 2012 at 7:44 pm | Report abuse |
    • sam stone

      i would think so.

      i meet one of those criteria (living next to (well, in my case 3 blocks away)) from the freeway

      September 20, 2012 at 7:52 pm | Report abuse |
  43. palval

    Poor is a relative term. Being poor is NOT having underwear, NOT having a heater, NOT having a TV to see what others have. If you are poor, be resourceful. Give up cigs, dope, booze, lottery tickets and take stuff that is there for the taking. There's lots of it. The times we are living in are tough but there is no excuse for anyone starving. If you truly need gov't subsidies, they are there for you. Make good choices, be of good cheer and don't give a damn about what others think. There are some great stories here of people who have come through their poverty by hard work and determination.

    September 20, 2012 at 7:44 pm | Report abuse |
    • MC

      Wow, you're not poor if you have underwear.

      What an idiot.

      September 20, 2012 at 7:45 pm | Report abuse |
      • claire

        Have you ever seen a really dirty homeless person? yeah those people don't have underwear, if they do it's probably not clean. Wake up please, get out of your silly little mind.

        September 20, 2012 at 7:59 pm | Report abuse |
    • John

      Wait, What? You mean be accountable for your own action.???..Whooa..The left will never stand for that, That would be called – wait for it...... responsibility, Oh No...We can't have that, who would they blame ones poor life on if they can't blame it on some false made up excuse...or someone who works hard and does the right thing...no, that's crazy talk mister

      September 20, 2012 at 7:54 pm | Report abuse |
      • Cereal

        Hahaha – So true. Weird...didn't CNN just publish an article about the highest demographic of flat screen TV owners are in this "poor" range. Maybe they should put down the flat screens to cloth and feed their children...just sayin.

        September 20, 2012 at 8:02 pm | Report abuse |
    • thestorytelleronline

      Definitely relative my friend. I remember, as a Social Worker, transitioning to rural Social Work, and being amazed that people owned their homes. Your existence is defined by your reality. As a poor urbanite growing up, my family would have felt rich having our own property but without animals, seed, or the means to grow a crop and pay taxes owning property meant nothing.

      September 20, 2012 at 7:58 pm | Report abuse |
    • claire

      Ha I just saw that economist article also, the level of low income people spending 20% of their income on ciggs and alcohol and bottom 13% spent 9% of income on lottery tickets. Crazy, but idk sometimes ciggs and lottery tickets give meaning to life because nothing else does. Most people buy things to fill this sense of pride that has been stripped away. I get it, totally, I've been there and right now as a college student and part time worker I have no savings to my name just 24K of student loans.

      September 20, 2012 at 7:58 pm | Report abuse |
      • palval

        Of course there are poor, homeless people...mental illness is one of the reasons. But to say that one in five Americans is poor is a blatant lie. If you owe 24K for your education, I hope you are doing something about getting work to pay it off. You must have had the drive to get an education so use that same drive to better yourself. Stop pitying yourself.

        September 20, 2012 at 8:18 pm | Report abuse |
    • Akash

      Have you ever stayed without food for one day? All these theories only looks good on paper. You can stay cheer only if you get something to eat twice a day and feed your own family so that they don't go to bed empty stomach.

      September 20, 2012 at 8:03 pm | Report abuse |
  44. What???

    I think America is in deeeep do do because of the American people and not because of our politics. Washington is in the mess it is because we voted for these idiots and didn't stop, look and listen to what they said and did? We are personally in debt up to our eyeballs! We don’t know what is right and what is wrong and we have no value for a good basic education. All we want is what we can get right now and we elected people who told us they could give it to us only if you would elect me! America is getting what it asked for and we all are going to pay that piper! If you don't know your past you are doomed to repeat it! Some of you need to read a little world history! Ha ha ha ha ha !!!.... I hope you can protect you and yours because it will become necessary at the rate things are going? Oh, that flushing toilet sound is us going down the crapper!

    September 20, 2012 at 7:44 pm | Report abuse |
    • LinSea

      Excellent points.

      September 20, 2012 at 7:59 pm | Report abuse |
  45. Consequence

    46.9 million is a horrific number, but the bigger part of it is best resolved through an economy which produces jobs for americans. obama has proved himself incapable of providing jobs for this large group. from what i have seen of romney's career, i believe romney when he says he can get america back to work again. i can no longer believe Obama. So, i am moving on to Romney...and, yet, Romney is likely correct, most of those on assistance will vote for Obama because they are hooked on assistance more than they are hooked on helping their nation create jobs and a better economy.

    September 20, 2012 at 7:43 pm | Report abuse |
  46. Bill Fitzgerald

    46 Million? Wow Romney guessed 47off the top of his head. This guy is amazing. Goodbye and good ridence to Obama.

    September 20, 2012 at 7:43 pm | Report abuse |
    • Charles

      Did anyone teach you the difference between integers and percents in grade school?

      September 20, 2012 at 7:46 pm | Report abuse |
    • MikeyMikey

      Actually, his number was 47% of the population, which would have to be only 100 million for your point to be correct.

      September 20, 2012 at 7:46 pm | Report abuse |
    • Andy

      Actually Romney said 47% of people received government handouts. This article is talking about 46 million individual people below the poverty line. Bill your lack of reading comprehension skills is precisely why you are voting for Romney.

      September 20, 2012 at 7:48 pm | Report abuse |
    • MC

      Hilarious. Another GOP retard heard from. Let me guess: hotel management major?

      September 20, 2012 at 7:50 pm | Report abuse |
    • Brenda

      Dems can smell non-rich Republicans like you a mile a way.

      September 20, 2012 at 7:53 pm | Report abuse |
  47. David

    How's that hope and change working out?

    September 20, 2012 at 7:43 pm | Report abuse |
    • Joe

      Well we aren't in a full-blown depression after finishing up WW3 so it's a heck of a lot better than had a republican been elected.

      September 20, 2012 at 7:46 pm | Report abuse |
    • Charles

      Much better than quoting an idiot from Alaska.

      September 20, 2012 at 7:49 pm | Report abuse |
    • Paul

      When Bush left office were bleeding hundreds of thousands of jobs a month. Now we are adding tens of thousands a month. While it is only barely enough to cover the increase in workforce size it is better than before.

      So as far as 'Change', definitely better than staying where we were.

      As far as 'Hope', I will take it over the voices of doom I am hearing from the other side.

      September 20, 2012 at 7:52 pm | Report abuse |
    • Darth Cheney

      It isn't. Republicans filibustered and obstructed it to death.

      September 20, 2012 at 8:12 pm | Report abuse |
  48. Yago

    not really, there are a lot of hiding allocations all over the the National Budged, under different names and different sectors. We still a huge lack of accountability of how our Department of "Offense" use our taxes. We are full of loop wholes, allocations, amendments that we don't even know they exist. If you put all together is bigger than medicate and medicare.

    September 20, 2012 at 7:43 pm | Report abuse |
  49. Tyler

    Growing up as a kid being poor is pretty terrible for a kids psyche, I grew up very poor to Americas standards, and this was in the 90's when things were a lot better. My experience being poor was all I knew in life at the time, so now I am very grateful with everything I have. We stayed in anything from Cars, to shelters, to abandon homes. No electricity, no gas, no water. This happens in America daily.. I went to 8 different elementary schools, and missed a big part of being a kid, but in the end I grew up a lot faster than most. I think I am a much more humble person because of this experience. Money can never buy who I am.

    September 20, 2012 at 7:42 pm | Report abuse |
  50. Isaac

    Why are people pretending this is a real story. It doesn't matter how well the average American is doing it only matters how the average American Corporation is doing. Right Mitt?

    September 20, 2012 at 7:42 pm | Report abuse |
    • David

      This experiment we called "democracy" won't last much longer.

      September 20, 2012 at 7:50 pm | Report abuse |
  51. Akash

    It is so sad to read this article and thinking I can be one of them tomorrow. I hope this changes soon and become better in coming years

    September 20, 2012 at 7:42 pm | Report abuse |
    • Joe

      You seem a kind and empathetic being. Should you become poor tomorrow, I have a feeling you'll be surrounded by friends and family to help you through.

      September 20, 2012 at 7:44 pm | Report abuse |
      • GuyWithAjob

        DON'T HAVE CHILDREN PLEASE!!

        September 20, 2012 at 7:47 pm | Report abuse |
  52. Truth will prevail

    VOTE for OBAMA that way we can ALL be below the POVERTY LEVEL!!!!! People lets wake up we will become the next CUBA at this pace!!!

    September 20, 2012 at 7:42 pm | Report abuse |
    • Charles

      Cuba actually feeds all of their people and has a health care system with better outcomes and at a lower cost than the U.S.

      September 20, 2012 at 7:44 pm | Report abuse |
  53. GuyWithAjob

    I have over 250k in the bank, own my house and car and have no credit card debt. Did I mention I'm only 31 years old.

    Life doesn't seem that hard!

    September 20, 2012 at 7:41 pm | Report abuse |
    • Eli Cabelly

      Yeah, this country has been good to you. This country has been good to about 10% of the population, but not to the other 90%.

      It's time to switch that around.

      September 20, 2012 at 8:05 pm | Report abuse |
  54. Joe

    I work 80+ hours a week. I've always worked hard, even in school. I went to grad school for free because I had great grades and got a PhD in engineering. I don't mind helping people out, but I think they should be working hard as well. In my experience, that is just not the case. Every single person I know that worked hard starting in their school years is doing very well. The slackers have had mixed results.

    September 20, 2012 at 7:41 pm | Report abuse |
    • Joe

      (A different Joe). I work in IT. I promise you we're working on offshoring your job to someone in China for 25cents an hour. Enjoy it while it lasts brother, as you'll get the empathy you deserve when your time comes.

      September 20, 2012 at 7:42 pm | Report abuse |
  55. carol wilson

    Buying day old bread
    Wearing clothes when you go outside and only underwear inside..saves laundry and wear
    Re-glueing shoes together
    Cutting your own hair...badly
    Washing clothes without soap
    Recycling cans and bottles for car gasoline money
    Not going out with friends because you have no money
    Learning to repair clothes

    September 20, 2012 at 7:40 pm | Report abuse |
  56. mm

    Mitt Romney makes me sick! As a child, my father left my mother with 3 kids to raise on her own. We were instantly thrown into poverty. We made it after years of living on the edge. But all 3 of us graduated from college and been successful with our lives.

    But Romney's line of thinking would have put us all in the 47%...unworthy of his 'concern' to represent as president of the United States.

    What a mor0n you are running, GOP! And I used to be Republican!

    September 20, 2012 at 7:40 pm | Report abuse |
    • GrampaSez

      "Romney's line of thinking" doesn't change just because you wish to LIE about it.

      September 20, 2012 at 7:42 pm | Report abuse |
    • scrtantyon

      Good riddance. If you are no smarter than that I hope you don't vote.

      September 20, 2012 at 7:44 pm | Report abuse |
  57. Margaret

    Add: Being poor is your Mom scrounging the alleys and making your Christmas and Birthday presents from it.

    Being Poor is your Dad selling his blood to buy you school clothes.

    Being poor is a pair of cheap flip flops for the summer.

    September 20, 2012 at 7:39 pm | Report abuse |
  58. Duke

    LOL, You can think mostly the democrats for putting more people into poverty than any other organization. Think about how they have destroyed the black community with welfare checks. Obama just recently removed a work requirement to receive welfare, he decreased the qualifying to go on disability. Why? Because he's a socialist at best and he is simply pandering for votes anywhere he can get them. Welcome to the WELFARE STATE where everything is fee!!!

    September 20, 2012 at 7:39 pm | Report abuse |
    • Darth Cheney

      Ironically, "Duke" (David?), the typo in your last sentence increased, rather than decreased, its veracity.

      September 20, 2012 at 8:17 pm | Report abuse |
      • Duke

        LOL, That's the best you can do is point out a typo? wow

        September 20, 2012 at 9:01 pm | Report abuse |
  59. JOn

    Let's ask Mitt Romney...

    September 20, 2012 at 7:39 pm | Report abuse |
    • blade1975

      Or ask Obama...he's a multi-millionaire.

      Oh right he pretends he was poor cause rich parents forced him to go to college before his trust fund.

      Must of been hard getting rammen on 200k a year eh?

      September 20, 2012 at 7:40 pm | Report abuse |
      • aaron

        At least Obama paid taxes on his. Romney didn't do that, based on his refusal to release his tax returns for the time before he decided he was going to run for president....when he was being himself that is.

        September 20, 2012 at 7:44 pm | Report abuse |
    • jose martinez

      Additional generic comment.

      September 20, 2012 at 7:44 pm | Report abuse |
    • PK

      Let's ask Mitt about KB Toys, Ampad, and Worldwide Grinding and where those employees are today and how he gutted those companies.

      September 20, 2012 at 7:58 pm | Report abuse |
  60. Unafiliated

    Being middle class is not owning a big-screen TV until in your 40s, turning it on, and seeing a big-screen TV in every house featured in COPS.

    September 20, 2012 at 7:38 pm | Report abuse |
    • Rick

      Huge laugh, thanks.

      September 20, 2012 at 7:52 pm | Report abuse |
    • Steve

      Good one!

      September 20, 2012 at 8:11 pm | Report abuse |
  61. Tim

    Being poor means that you shouldn't be wasting your time posting stupid comments and instead looking for a job. There will always be rich and poor people. Some have it easy and others don't. It's called life. Things aren't fare so get over it and push yourself to succeed.

    September 20, 2012 at 7:37 pm | Report abuse |
  62. Unafiliated

    Being middle class is remembering what it's like to eat 10/dollar ramen and 5/dollar mac&cheese and being glad that you got an education, sacrificed, and worked hard to get out of it only to have people that never try to get out of it accuse you of being heartless and uncaring for not understanding why they don't get an education, sacrifice, and work hard.

    September 20, 2012 at 7:36 pm | Report abuse |
    • GrampaSez

      WELL SAID! The "YOU CAN'T KNOW HOW I FEEL" crowd, seems to know exactly WHAT WE KNOW, and HOW WE FEEL, and HOW MUCH EMPATHY WE HAVE.

      And the PRESIDENT keeps right on LYING.

      September 20, 2012 at 7:40 pm | Report abuse |
    • Joe

      When the offshoring slave-masters come for your middle class life, you'll get to experience the joy of Ramen all over again. Hard work and an education guarantee you nothing when someone decides they're paying you too much and you're living too well.

      September 20, 2012 at 7:41 pm | Report abuse |
      • Unafiliated

        Joe, See, that's what I mean. I got out of it, and that makes me the enemy in your eyes. Typical success-o-phobe.

        September 20, 2012 at 7:47 pm | Report abuse |
      • Joe

        @Unafiliated Friend I'm doing fine myself and hope the same for you. I'm just saying that your eating some Ramen & Mac & Cheese in college doesn't amount to poverty.

        September 20, 2012 at 7:51 pm | Report abuse |
    • Hot Rod

      Great post, could not have said it better myself! Plus, if they can afford a tv, I am not sure they are so poor after all. Tell those teenagers to go get jobs to help out the family!

      September 20, 2012 at 7:44 pm | Report abuse |
  63. Consultofactus

    Being poor is waking up with te expectation that you'll continue to be poor
    Being poor is not knowing what the term "fire in the belly" means
    Being poor means sitting on your hands and cursing your fate
    Being poor is something you do to yourself

    September 20, 2012 at 7:36 pm | Report abuse |
  64. Every Ignorant Republican

    Thanks Obama

    September 20, 2012 at 7:35 pm | Report abuse |
    • Duke

      Thanks for what? You can think mostly the democrats for putting more people into poverty than any other organization. Think about how they have destroyed the black community with welfare checks. Obama just recently removed a work requirement to receive welfare, he decreased the qualifying to go on disability. Why? Because he's a socialist at best and he is simply pandering for votes anywhere he can get them. Welcome to the WELFARE STATE where everything is fee!!!

      September 20, 2012 at 7:41 pm | Report abuse |
    • aaron

      At least Romney can up his figures of who doesn't matter now. 47% was apparently too low thanks to 8 years of Bush and his cohorts looting the country and the Repubs favorite employment program...outsourcing. And 1 in 5 children are too lazy to get a job and support themselves? Disgraceful. Next on the Repub agenda...get rid of those pesty, unfair child labor laws.

      September 20, 2012 at 7:43 pm | Report abuse |
  65. Veteranof3Wars

    Uncle Sugah...send me my welfare check early...things are looking bad...my flatscreen is broke...where is the government when I need em?

    September 20, 2012 at 7:35 pm | Report abuse |
  66. John Tucker

    Karma is coming for all of you not showing empathy.

    September 20, 2012 at 7:35 pm | Report abuse |
    • Duke

      Funny empathy is why more on in poverty. Liberalism may have good intentions and yet giving a man a fish is very true. It just feels better doesn't it. I can go out everyday and make a good living mowing lawns, leaf blowing, raking leaves, washing cars, washing dogs, hauling etc.. Don't give me that B S about not feeling any empathy. Some people need help and I won't give money to the street pan handler who doesn't have a squeegee in his hand

      September 20, 2012 at 7:47 pm | Report abuse |
    • John

      Why show empathy for people who have the opportunity to do what ever they want, yet chose to accept it or blame white people, black people or other people different from them. Not one of those people in the picture looks like they need food, to them poor in America is only one flat screen and two smart phones. If President Oama wins, count on everyone depending on the Government in four years...Being poor is only a starting ground. It's up to the individual to make his destiny. Equal opportunity doies not mean equal outcome...When are you on the left ever going to see that?

      September 20, 2012 at 7:47 pm | Report abuse |
    • Hot Rod

      I will not show empathy to someone who sits around with their hands out. There are jobs all over this country, you have to be willing to move, join the military, or work at any job you can find. Been there, done it myself. I got tired of eating mac and cheese everyday, and wanted better for my children.

      September 20, 2012 at 7:48 pm | Report abuse |
  67. Dan

    The Federal Reserve doesn't care about the poor and are busier than ever with printing money to help relieve the big banks of more toxic assets and helping the Euro-zone while killing the value of the Dollar. It's the working poor that suffer the most when food and gas prices jump while pay stays the same. Though, Obama and Reid are blocking efforts to audit the Fed and Romney doesn't seem much better. The investor class is largely shielded, since stock prices go up with a devalued Dollar.

    September 20, 2012 at 7:33 pm | Report abuse |
  68. Bob

    "The poor should first consider selling some of their stocks and mutual funds before asking the government for handouts." - Mitt Romney

    September 20, 2012 at 7:33 pm | Report abuse |
    • GrampaSez

      Obama doesn't have enough empathy for us to quit LYING to us...

      September 20, 2012 at 7:37 pm | Report abuse |
  69. Rick McDaniel

    Obama wants all of us poor and on welfare, so we will vote for the Democratic Party.

    Not going to happen.

    September 20, 2012 at 7:32 pm | Report abuse |
    • 0704American

      Yours is the dumbest post I have read all day.
      How many jobs has the GOP created in the last 4 years to help America recover from this economic disaster they put us into?

      Answer: 0
      Yet you will be dumb enough to vote for them.

      September 20, 2012 at 7:36 pm | Report abuse |
      • fred37ify

        The house has passed over 20 jobs bills ! Dirty Harry Reid won't bring them up for a vote slick !

        September 20, 2012 at 7:45 pm | Report abuse |
      • Larry L

        Each of those "bills" had political riders about "personhood" or the Canadian oil pipeline. None were real and all were political theater. Do your homework.

        September 20, 2012 at 11:19 pm | Report abuse |
    • Veteranof3Wars

      spot on Rick. Pandering to poverty is the socialist, liberal way. Keep em on welfare, keep em on the doll, a chicken in every pot gets votes! (FDR)

      September 20, 2012 at 7:43 pm | Report abuse |
    • fred37ify

      Bingo ! You got it exactly right ! But whats actually going to happen is those poor people are going to BLAME Barrack ! And they ain't going to vote for the guy that forced them into poverty !!!!!!!!!!!!!111111111111111111

      September 20, 2012 at 7:43 pm | Report abuse |
    • Darth Cheney

      And the winner of the 'Kool-Aid Post of the Day' goes to...

      September 20, 2012 at 8:20 pm | Report abuse |
    • johnharry

      awe good luck with that.

      September 20, 2012 at 8:26 pm | Report abuse |
  70. ES

    > Being poor is living next to the freeway.

    Oooooook.I thought being poor mean not having anything to eat. That is what being poor means everywhere else.
    Outside of the US if you have basic food, a couple changes of clothes and shelter you are middle class.

    September 20, 2012 at 7:32 pm | Report abuse |
  71. Yago

    Poverty? How could we dare to talk about Poverty in America when we are not even interested in control the already monstrously big Military Budget? Including sending toys to mars. All our resources are going to private hands, and they keep asking as to keep consuming more and more to sustain "the economy". Double Message all over, Political Battles meant to go to no where, We need to worry less in technicalities and put our hand on the real problem here, the LEGAL Corruption going on. Corruption has no Ideologies. Corruption is the Key element to end up on the Third World. We are not too far. WAKE UP AMERICA. Republicans? Democrats? Time is clicking, and while you keep battling technicalities, the bout keeps sinking. You diced.

    OUR FREEDOMS:
    If our FREEDOMS are based of the Tyranny of others, then we don’t Need these FREEDOMS. If our LUXURIOUS LIVES depend on the Misery of others, then we don’t need this LUXURIES either.
    Our greatness is based in our abilities to forge a future with our own efforts and scarify, our Freedoms are based in our Coexistence and ability to live under the Law and the cooperation with ourselves, not on the Conquest of other Nations, the bloodshed of innocents and the depletion of resources of other countries. We are turning into our Enemies of the Past. We need to be careful about it.

    Yago

    September 20, 2012 at 7:32 pm | Report abuse |
    • Yago

      what are you talking about? Who is talking of the Arab Outrage, and who is blaming Obama? (besides, he is only a puppet, as well as the last 3 ex POTUS)

      September 20, 2012 at 7:38 pm | Report abuse |
  72. 0704American

    Sad but true. After Obama gets re-elected we can expect another 4 years of no help for American's from the GOP.
    I wonder what some of these poor republicans think of the GOP. The GOP has failed America miserably by no helping to create more jobs in America. Obama may not be perfect but at least he has tried very hard and created jobs.

    September 20, 2012 at 7:31 pm | Report abuse |
  73. MikeyMikey

    America's poor live better than many countries' rich.

    We shouldn't let anyone TRULY in need starve. But my wife's experience in providing autism consulting services to inner-city families was a little different. Just about every family was on food stamps... and had multiple flat-screen TVs.

    September 20, 2012 at 7:29 pm | Report abuse |
    • Mandy

      I've worked home health in inner city areas. Most people didn't have even ONE TV, and if they did it was old and they had rabbit ears to get local TV channels. Some of the places I had to go to take care of indigent, seriously ill children were places in which it was scary even in daytime, and these families lived there. Peeling paint, horrible neighborhoods, trash outside blowing around. Don't know where your wife was working, but that was not at all my experience.

      September 20, 2012 at 7:44 pm | Report abuse |
    • greg

      yeah. Lets not worry about it until our Poor are the poorest in the world! America can be #1 again!

      September 20, 2012 at 7:48 pm | Report abuse |
    • Eddie

      who cares!

      September 20, 2012 at 7:48 pm | Report abuse |
  74. Veteranof3Wars

    aaaaaah yes. THIS is Change you can believe in! One in five Americans living in poverty! Just give ol Barak the socialist and his democrap apologist, social justice lemmings four more years!

    September 20, 2012 at 7:29 pm | Report abuse |
    • 0704American

      VOTE FOR OBAMA !

      Unemployment will sky rocket under Romney while he lets more jobs be outsourced to other countries.

      September 20, 2012 at 7:33 pm | Report abuse |
      • Nick

        Also the GOP will make every state a right to work state thus getting rid of unions thus creating more minimum wage jobs!!!

        September 20, 2012 at 7:55 pm | Report abuse |
    • Larry L

      You do know the recession was started by the Bush Administration with over 8.5 million jobs lost BEFORE the President took office? Remember the two wars? The cut & spend economic plan? The corruption in the defense contracting sector? The lack of oversight of the financial district? The spiraling costs of healthcare?

      Republicans met on the very first day to plan obstructing all progress so they could win seats in 2010. Remember how the House in 2010 held America hostage on the debt ceiling crisis until S&P lowered our bond rating? You right-winger radicals can use your Fox News phrases as much as you'd like, but independent voters are dropping the Republicans and Romney is finished. America is fortunate that everybody isn't bigoted, stupid, and brainwashed by the hate media.

      September 20, 2012 at 7:38 pm | Report abuse |
    • Walter

      Who will you blame for the world's problems when Obama leaves office? Who did you blame before you ever heard the name 'Obama'?

      September 20, 2012 at 7:42 pm | Report abuse |
    • Klaas Jan

      As if this is Barack's fault. What a massive bellend you are.

      September 20, 2012 at 8:29 pm | Report abuse |
  75. Glenn

    Israel is getting to be a pain in America's 'You Know What' , if we can live with Russia having all our major cities targeted for fifties years, the leader of Israel can live with a country that for now can only talk about erasing Israel off the map. First
    they cried wolf about Saddam... Iran knows that if they attack Israel, a country we know has the bomb, they Iran would be
    destroyed. If I was POTUS Benji would be removed from office, Israel needs a more sensable leader, you look at Nentiyahu , he seems like a man that enjoys war.

    September 20, 2012 at 7:28 pm | Report abuse |
    • Veteranof3Wars

      Glenn: as an apologist democrap clown its important that you know your history: Benjamin Netanyahu's brother was killed as the commander of the raid on Entebbe, you spinelesss, drivelly lemming liberal

      September 20, 2012 at 7:31 pm | Report abuse |
      • TrueVeteran

        Veteranof3Wars - under different names you keep attacking the posters on this site. The fact that you sign cowardly under an honorable name does not make you honorable. "Clown", really that's the best you can do?

        September 20, 2012 at 7:48 pm | Report abuse |
  76. GrampaSez

    In TODAY'S NEWS: Household Income went DOWN if 49 of 50 states this last month.

    September 20, 2012 at 7:28 pm | Report abuse |
    • Sarah

      It does at the end of every summer. Lots of seasonal jobs end.

      September 20, 2012 at 7:37 pm | Report abuse |
  77. Sarah

    What it's like being poor is buying antibiotics made for fish because your kids were sick, and you knew they had an infection, but there was no money to go to the doctor, much less buy a prescription. What it's like being poor is attending church chosen only because they served breakfast before the service. What it's like being poor is waiting until the afternoon of Dec 24 to buy Christmas dinner because stores were selling meats, fruits, and veggies cheap. What it's like being poor is to peel uncanclled stamps off letters to send home-made birthday cards. What it's like being poor is to put children's clothes on them wrong-side out when at home, and then turning them to right side when going in public.

    September 20, 2012 at 7:27 pm | Report abuse |
    • Sarah

      This all happened during the great Ronald Reagan years - NOT!. No real safety nets then. I understood that education would help, went to college, and ultimately earned a Ph.D. I am no longer poor, my children are all grown and are very frugal. And, I extend help to others whenever I can. I am blessed, and I know that. But those were tough, tough years.

      September 20, 2012 at 7:40 pm | Report abuse |
  78. Victim47

    Pathetic displays in the comments of people slamming those who have prospered. In due time we will all be in poverty at the rate this centralized government is taking us. Riots in the streets, because people can't get their free crap anymore.

    September 20, 2012 at 7:27 pm | Report abuse |
    • Joe

      Riots in the streets? Too funny. No my good man, heads will roll and the streets will run crimson with the blood of the oligarchs.

      September 20, 2012 at 7:35 pm | Report abuse |
    • Glenn

      Tell me, a company close its plant in your community, they build a new plant in China, 6 months later, they have an ad on TV
      new iphone 5 will be in your local Best Buy for $399, 1) Do you get in line the night before or 2) Refuse to purchase the new iphone 5 as a protest...

      September 20, 2012 at 7:45 pm | Report abuse |
  79. Mecca

    Somebody explain to me why they are all overweight despite being so poor.

    September 20, 2012 at 7:26 pm | Report abuse |
    • Mike

      Filling food with high calories and low nutrients is cheaper than filling food with with low calories and high nutrients. It is also easier to obtain in many cities.

      September 20, 2012 at 7:28 pm | Report abuse |
      • Victim47

        This has always been a fact. So eat less and/or work physically harder.

        September 20, 2012 at 7:32 pm | Report abuse |
      • Mike

        Easier said than done. If you don't get enough nutrients your body begins to break down when you add lots of physical activity.

        And...the low nutrients associated with cheap food is a relatively new thing.

        September 20, 2012 at 7:34 pm | Report abuse |
      • animal172

        You are kidding right?

        September 20, 2012 at 7:36 pm | Report abuse |
      • Mike

        Not kidding at all. There is plenty of research that supports those facts.

        September 20, 2012 at 7:38 pm | Report abuse |
    • Victim47

      First thing I noticed. Thankfully, no skin and bones in that line.

      September 20, 2012 at 7:29 pm | Report abuse |
      • Glenn

        Victim47, we only see what we want to see, Wall Street stocks are over 13,000 points, Companies in this country are sitting on 2Trillion dollars, we spent trillions of dollars bombing and dieing in a needless war in Iraq, our president ask congress to pass a 69 Billion dollar infrastructure Bill...

        September 20, 2012 at 7:53 pm | Report abuse |
    • terri

      The wealthier are getting fatter too. Not a problem exclusive to the poor.

      September 20, 2012 at 7:35 pm | Report abuse |
    • anti-rv41

      Because the wrong foods are the only choices you have, and your children can't grow on potato's alone. Take a look at the prices of fruits and vegi's, they are not cheap. I've paid attention to these prices, and the price of gas means $4.00 spent before getting to the grocery store. Try to think for yourself mecca.

      September 20, 2012 at 7:44 pm | Report abuse |
    • truff

      Several Reasons

      1) Poor access to quality food. Lower income neighborhoods typically tend to not have well stocked supermarkets so many people either rely on fast food or processed prepackaged food; both of which are calorie dense and nutritionally poor. Moreover, making a trip to find a good grocery store that has fresh foods necessitates money and time – two things that the working poor typically do not have in spades.

      2) Being poor is stressful and fatty and sugary foods make you feel good. There is a lot of literature on the addictive elements of the fat/sugar nexus and it is particularly easy to eat fatty/sugary foods as an outlet/escape.

      3) Cooking from scratch is costly in both time and money. Fresh fruits and vegetables are not as cheap as you would think and moreover it takes time and energy to cook food. If you are coming off of two consecutive shifts it is going to be easier to pop a frozen meal in the oven then make a salad and main course.

      4) The death of traditional food ways. Fractured families and stress means that people aren't learning or are forgetting family recipes etc.

      September 20, 2012 at 8:20 pm | Report abuse |
  80. tresterq

    and it will continue to rise. obama is going to raise taxes, he will tax you for not affording insurance (this is the ne wtax. small increments of taxes on little things... get used to it) you will become poor

    September 20, 2012 at 7:26 pm | Report abuse |
    • bill

      Only those making around $200,00.00 and up. Again with the right wing stupidity-be specifc and accurate when you make an assertion. I know right wingers like to engage in generalizations, but please try.

      September 20, 2012 at 7:48 pm | Report abuse |
  81. Cheshire2011

    I lost my job three years ago. Mother of two and divorced I was making good money as a manager and able to make ends meet. Little did I know when the first furloughed me and then couldn't still afford to take me back so laid me off, that I would for the first time in my life at age 39 need financial assistance for food, home and medical. You see both of my daughters have medical issues....one has bad asthma and the other has the real ADHD....very bright lil lady but just can not for the life of her sit still in her chair unless she takes a low dose (because that's all I'll give her) of medicine. I remember getting the prescription before my medical insurance ran out and going to the pharmacy for the first time – $650 for my daughters medicines a month!! I started to cry there in line but I knew I would make it. I went into social services head hung low and had the best experience with a caseworker who reminded me I worked since I was 16 and deserved this help because I had paid for it. I would take my girls to school and hit the pavement. It took a year and a half of working part time minimum wage jobs (two to three at a time) but was blessed with a job and a neighbor who I trusted with my girls and got back to work. I now have insurance, food and clothing (still shop at the discount stores first) for me and them. We all need help sometimes. Another fellow I worked with made 6 figures and supported his whole family and they laid him off too...going from that to less than minimum wage was hard on them....he is still looking for work! You never know til you walk in their shoes. I pray for all the unemployed to find jobs to survive.

    September 20, 2012 at 7:26 pm | Report abuse |
    • Jared

      I'm glad you made it, and I'm glad you are unwilling to turn a blind eye to those behind you. Being American and being a patriot should always be about something bigger than yourself.

      September 20, 2012 at 7:30 pm | Report abuse |
    • Jo Ann

      Thanks for sharing! Those of us who have not had to struggle need to hear these stories.

      September 20, 2012 at 7:33 pm | Report abuse |
    • anons.person

      I am also glad to hear that you were able to get through such a difficult time in your life. And the case worker was correct. You paid into the system. You deserved help from the system. It's the people who have never paid into the system that I have a problem with or the people who are gaming the system. The people who are proud to get something for nothing need to learn about pride that comes from hard work.

      September 20, 2012 at 7:39 pm | Report abuse |
    • Glenn

      Cheshire2011, Happy to hear you getting the help you paid for, God said bring your extra to the storehouse, that what our
      taxes are... If we bought one less Aircraft carrier, we could do even more for people.

      September 20, 2012 at 8:02 pm | Report abuse |
    • Nick

      I'm also happy u made it! I have been in same position! I guess it's the people that abuse the system that ticks me off! I guess thats one of the top things that i would put on my list is to get rid of that fraud! I'm not sure how,home visits unannounced i don't know but something has to be done

      September 20, 2012 at 8:06 pm | Report abuse |
  82. Veteranof3Wars

    Its simple: Democrats believe in Socialism, Repubs believe in Freedom and free markets. History is indicative of what works. Socialism has failed universally.

    September 20, 2012 at 7:25 pm | Report abuse |
    • Ron

      Thanks for showing us what failing a civics class can do for you.

      September 20, 2012 at 7:27 pm | Report abuse |
      • Darth Cheney

        True, but he clearly got an A in Faux News Revisionist History.

        September 20, 2012 at 8:23 pm | Report abuse |
    • Nate

      I've been poor at times in my life. Lived in neighborhoods where everyone is poor.

      The people around me were all poor for a reason. They made poor choices. They had kids out of wedlock. They didn't pay attention in school. They have no marketable skills. They make no effort to improve their lives.

      And it makes me angry that I'm asked to pay for it. Very angry. Im more than willing to help people that are poor through no fault of their own, but that's NOT the case for the majority of people I had to live near.

      Why should I have to pay for those people and their bad choices?

      September 20, 2012 at 7:34 pm | Report abuse |
      • megan

        I feel the same way as you, Nate. I've noticed the same thing about most of the poor I've seen.

        September 20, 2012 at 7:54 pm | Report abuse |
    • Tina

      Yup. Repub's philosophy – everyman for himself; Dem's philosophy – individuals are part of a community too, no one stands on an island. The funny thing is those Repub's who thinks they're so much better than others also expect services from government – they expect government to educate their workers, they expect government to provide defense of their property/rights/way of life, they expect government to provide civic infrastructures such as roads, airports, raillines, water delivery and treatment systems, hospitals, etc. etc. etc., all the things and services in a civilized society, without which they could not make their millions or billions. They just don't feel like they should pay for it any more than those 47%, even though they are benefiting disproportionately from it.

      They remind me so much of the rich spoiled brats who's got everything and thinks they deserve it all, even think they earned it all on their own; who respects no one other than those who're even brattier than them; who has no compassion for anyone. They measure others by how much money they have and are paranoid about who's trying to take their money.

      September 20, 2012 at 8:02 pm | Report abuse |
    • truff

      Well, this is isn't entirely true. Most of the capitalist states in the world are actually better termed as social democracies (an appellation frequently used to describe northern European states I realize but it is much more broadly applicable) because there is generally some form of "redistribution" and provisions for public goods. For example, Reagan in his tax reform act expanded the EIC program (earned income tax credit) which provides tax credits to low income families with children and frequently results in refunds which is itself a form of government assistance. As for the proof of history, history would likely prove that some sort of feudalist societal configuration is the most stable and longest lasting. The current global economic system is relatively young (it has only really existed for about 60 years.) Moreover market capitalism as we understand it has only really come into existence in the last 100-150 years. It should also be noted that our notion of freedom is a relatively recent invention as well, particularly "negative liberty" (not negative as in bad, negative as in not enabling)

      September 20, 2012 at 8:04 pm | Report abuse |
    • truff

      Also, as an amusing side note – Abraham Lincoln received a letter from a young Karl Marx congratulating him on advancing the cause of abolition. Moreover, the communists at the time believed that the United States would help bring about the worker's paradise.

      September 20, 2012 at 8:07 pm | Report abuse |
  83. Independent thinker

    the fools in this thread acting like either of these blood-sucking, power-grabbing political factions cares about the poor. You people are overrun with the need for validation. Combined with a lack of civility, mediocre sarcasm tinged with arrogance, and you have what you have right now: Sheeple. Go ahead, vote Romney. Vote Obama. Then lie to yourself that you tried to help someone.

    September 20, 2012 at 7:24 pm | Report abuse |
    • Yessireebob

      ...nail on the head...

      September 20, 2012 at 7:42 pm | Report abuse |
    • Darth Cheney

      Actually, neither Romney nor Obama is the problem. The problem is we live in a country whose populace, culture, laws, and norms all but make it inevitable that we get these kinds of choices. We are the ones who actually listen to what turdsandwiches like Sarah Palin and Rush Limbaugh have to say.

      September 20, 2012 at 8:26 pm | Report abuse |
  84. Cheshire2011

    I lost my job three years ago. Mother of two and divorced I was making good money as a manager and able to make ends meet. Little did I know when the first furloughed me and then couldn't still afford to take me back so laid me off, that I would for the first time in my life at age 39 need financial assistance for food, home and medical. You see both of my daughters have medical issues....one has bad asthma and the other has the real ADHD....very bright lil lady but just can not for the life of her sit still in her chair unless she takes a low dose (because that's all I'll give her) of medicine. I remember getting the prescription before my medical insurance ran out and going to the pharmacy for the first time – $650 for my daughters medicines a month!! I started to cry there in line but I knew I would make it. I went into social services head hung low and had the best experience with a caseworker who reminded me I worked since I was 16 and deserved this help because I had paid for it. I would take my girls to school and hit the pavement. It took a year and a half of working part time minimum wage jobs (two to three at a time) but was blessed with a job and a neighbor who I trusted with my girls and got back to work. I now have insurance, food and clothing (still shop at the discount stores first) for me and them. We all need help sometimes. Another fellow I worked with made 6 figures and supported his whole family and they laid him off too...going from that to less than minimum wage was hard on them....he is still looking for work!

    September 20, 2012 at 7:24 pm | Report abuse |
  85. liberal destruction strikes again!

    i love the Romney posts, when its all Barry's policies at work,you are not fooling anyone, we know who did this!

    September 20, 2012 at 7:24 pm | Report abuse |
    • Joe

      You actually think people are too dumb to realize that this is the Republican congress at work?

      September 20, 2012 at 7:37 pm | Report abuse |
      • Aziraphale

        If you have to ask....

        September 20, 2012 at 7:50 pm | Report abuse |
  86. 2/8

    Who cares about the poor.....the billion dollar Mars robot is about to TOUCH A ROCK!!!! Quick, tune in!!!

    September 20, 2012 at 7:23 pm | Report abuse |
  87. jason

    being poor is hoping the car starts on Friday to get to the bank for gas money

    September 20, 2012 at 7:22 pm | Report abuse |
  88. William

    Isnt it funny when ever the media speaks of the poor now days- they feature mostly on white people? I guess its a new thing for them being poor, for most blacks and latins its just another day.

    September 20, 2012 at 7:22 pm | Report abuse |
    • e

      Most of the poor have always been white, would you rather they feed into the stereotype that all poor people have brown skin?

      September 20, 2012 at 7:29 pm | Report abuse |
    • Sedl

      Yes, I noticed, good SA. It does tell you about where the priorities are with reporting. This is a reflection of values at CNN. By Moni Basu, CNN. They are Dems but they aren't real. All talk just for the minority vote.

      September 20, 2012 at 7:49 pm | Report abuse |
  89. Ladybug

    Being poor is being without famiy, without love. Didn't know we were poorer than dirt poor until everybody else figured out that was our status. We just knew we were loved, we were cared for, and we had lots of respect for each other and others around us. Didn't own a house, a car, or anything else. Ate what we grew or killed. No heat in the winter, no a/c in the summer. 7 women sleeping in one room, no heat, holes in walls, and a pee pot for nighttime nature runs. Ate lots of fatback & biscuits, mayonnaise sandwiches. No red meat. Mostly vegetables. Didn't know but guess we were vegetarians. 2 beverages, water or tea. No milk no juice. Water was pumped from an outside pump. No running water, only hot when heated on a wood stove, only one, in the kitchen for cooking. But, for us, that was life. Didn't know any other. No regrets.

    September 20, 2012 at 7:19 pm | Report abuse |
    • e

      now try it without any land to grow food on, without a wood burning stove, in a crowded apartment crawling with roaches and peeling lead paint.

      September 20, 2012 at 7:27 pm | Report abuse |
      • Kerri

        Exactly! That is major part of the issue. I grew up on a farm during my earlier years of life but due to drought issues in the 80's and a tornadoe, we had to move to the city. We grew up working hard from morning until night and thankfully I have that work ethic. However, I saw the struggles of my family thrown into hardship. We had to move to an apartment in the city because at the time that was one of the only options. No longer were we able to go out to the garden and get what we needed. We used to have chickens and a few cattle. Those self sustaining items were gone. We learned about food stamps and health care which helped my family get back on their feet. It was a hard pill for my father to swallow but our family truely needed the help and living in the city makes it difficult to make it on your own if there are no jobs available. You can only grow so many tomatoes in a flower pot.

        September 20, 2012 at 8:01 pm | Report abuse |
  90. abbydelabbey

    poverty that I remember from my youth:

    eating one meal a day - sometimes the meal was ketchup and water to make "tomato soup," sometimes a slice of bread with margarine with sugar sprinkled lightly on it, sometimes a box of macaroni and "cheese" powder made into "cheese" with water - not the margarine and milk one is suppose to use
    no a/c in summer; no heat in winter
    no medical care, no OTC medication
    buying clothes at a church rummage sale if you have the money
    collecting bottles for refunds (remember those days?)
    avoiding using water to have a low water bill
    avoiding using electricity to have a low electric bill
    walking and walking everywhere you can
    no television at all - no, didn't even have one

    your stomach growling from hunger
    getting headaches because you're hungry
    getting sick from lack of proper nutrition

    lifetime outcome of poverty:
    unhealthier life
    shorter life
    earlier death

    September 20, 2012 at 7:19 pm | Report abuse |
  91. JVD

    This is a really sad and appalling statistic. Lets' just hope this country doesn't elect Barrack Obama for another four years, otherwise that 46 million will probably double...I guess each country deserves its leaders, after all, we are the ones who elect them.

    September 20, 2012 at 7:19 pm | Report abuse |
    • e

      Do tell us how tax breaks for the RICH are going to help.

      September 20, 2012 at 7:27 pm | Report abuse |
      • bertha59

        I'd like to know as well.

        September 20, 2012 at 7:28 pm | Report abuse |
    • Nick

      I would like to know Romney's plan!!! to create all these jobs???

      September 20, 2012 at 8:19 pm | Report abuse |
  92. Kirk

    4 years of Obama is enough is there anything this guy can do right? Who held his hand when he was in Illinois? He spends so much time blaming other people as everything he does fails. you people that back him are clowns. Romney is right you are all lazy waiting for handouts. Cant wait for the Obama care tax and the tax for bailing out china banks hits. Good job Democraps

    September 20, 2012 at 7:18 pm | Report abuse |
    • Jared

      Am i to read this as something other than you blaming obama for your problems? rofl. I bet you spend almost all day doing this, maybe if you actually tried at life you might be successful or happy.

      September 20, 2012 at 7:25 pm | Report abuse |
    • meh

      You think Mittens is the answer? More of the same that created this mess? He doesnt give a darn about you. When Romeny said 47% of people are on handouts he failed to mention that a lot of those are republicans that WILL vote for him. Around half of the population does not even vote. Of the other half that do, about half of THOSE will vote for Obama and about half for Romney. He cant even get that right. He wants to give corporations even MORE tax breaks and cut even MORE regulation. Even though America is one of the most business-friendly places on earth already.
      Ask Nevada how low regulations and very business friendly taxes works (they have both) and they have one of the highest unemployment rates and the highest foreclosure rates. Guess his business model aint that rock solid now is it?

      September 20, 2012 at 7:26 pm | Report abuse |
    • Daniela

      Oh quit this Obama stuff...um...there was no poverty before him, right? Give it a REST and do something to help the poor instead of blasting your political opinions on here.

      September 20, 2012 at 7:51 pm | Report abuse |
    • Kerri

      Its kind of hard for Obama to do the things we need when republicans keep blocking the bills. They aren't even reading them or caring about who they are affecting by voting no no no no. They just want to do whatever it takes to stop Obama. Watch c-span once in awhile. That will really show you some scary info about how our congressmen are running things. Can't wait to vote democratic ACROSS THE BOARD.

      September 20, 2012 at 8:05 pm | Report abuse |
  93. Jamanta

    Being poor is sleeping in a cardboard box, being poor is not having a cat, being poor is not having furniture, nor water or heater. Being poor is to having a job to walk to, being poor is not having underpants at all or a bra, being poor is when you are 6 years old and your mom throws you on the street to beg for money.

    You guys live in a different reality. Go to Africa, Asia or South America and you will stop whining in a second.

    September 20, 2012 at 7:18 pm | Report abuse |
    • Jamanta

      no, i just think that there is some sort of opportunity for everyone. can they get a job at mcdonalds, for example? or find something to do? let me tell you something. i had a 6 figure a year job and got laid off in 2006 when everything came crashing down. instead of sitting on the couch and collecting unemployment and taking resources from who really need it, i took a job serving room service in a hotel for 2 years. i finally was able to get my job back. why? perseverance. i grew up in south america to parents who were in their teens. we didn't have much but we decided to change instead of sitting on our hands.

      September 20, 2012 at 7:33 pm | Report abuse |
    • Tim

      Well said.. Stop complaining and pointing fingers... that will consume your mind. Now go find a job

      September 20, 2012 at 7:39 pm | Report abuse |
  94. Mike Searcy

    Welcome to Obama's America. The more people that are poor, the more they need the government and the more powerful it needs to become. More power means it needs more money, and more money means more taxes on the rich to go to the poor. Of course the poor will get that money through the government handouts they can't live without.

    September 20, 2012 at 7:18 pm | Report abuse |
    • Interested48

      The average amount allowed for food stamps each week is $133.84 for one person. Wow! They poor are livin' in the lap of luxury!!!

      September 20, 2012 at 7:25 pm | Report abuse |
      • Joyce

        The average single person gets $133 per week in food stamps? That is almost $600 per month. Insanity. I pay for my groceries and don't spend but about 1/3 of that. That means people on food stamps are eating quite well. Why should I have sympathy for that? Why should I pay for them to eat better than I do when I work and pay for my own groceries?

        September 20, 2012 at 7:54 pm | Report abuse |
    • meh

      The "rich" have the lowest tax rates now since World War 2. And you want to give them more? Why does this not make sense to me? It is a myth that all rich people are "job creators." There is no way they are going to fire their gardener or pool boy because they dont get as much of a tax break – thats really the jobs we are talking about here, BTW. For their businesses they still get PLENTY of tax breaks and would continue to receive.

      September 20, 2012 at 7:31 pm | Report abuse |
    • welltemperedwriter

      Mike, that essay was written in 2005.

      September 20, 2012 at 7:37 pm | Report abuse |
  95. Alex

    It's a sordid image: Romney with a group of similarly privileged people disparaging half of America. He has the nerve to preach of entrepreneurial spirit, of opportunity, of true and honest work. He has no idea of magnitude of his grotesque advice.

    His wife's father was a city mayor; his wife – like Romney – a prep-school girl; Romney's father was chairman and president of American Motors Corporation, Governor of Michigan, and the United States Secretary of Housing and Urban Development. He was offered on a platter all the things he urges the people of America to obtain through honest and sustained work. He belittles people for not obtaining through personal efforts the things he achieved and which were available to him just by being born to privilege.

    What a disgrace!

    September 20, 2012 at 7:17 pm | Report abuse |
    • MikeB

      You have no clue how the Democrats have used regulatory powers to be punitive to communities and States that don't coddle to Obama.

      September 20, 2012 at 7:19 pm | Report abuse |
      • To Mike

        MikeB, what you say is just illiterate background noise, in place of a real argument.
        Puppets who fight for Romney to succeed are of a particular breed; you look at Romney, and you look at these poor tools and laugh.

        September 20, 2012 at 7:26 pm | Report abuse |
      • Darth Cheney

        You mean like how red states get more back from the government than they put in, and blue states get less back from the government than they put in? Where do you come up with this balderdash, and why do you believe it to be true?

        September 20, 2012 at 8:29 pm | Report abuse |
    • MJ Hunter

      Yeah, I'm sure that the President of an auto company doesn't have to work very hard. Only 70 to 80 hour weeks.

      September 20, 2012 at 7:25 pm | Report abuse |
      • CMJ

        The fact that their fathers were hard working guys does not mean that they were.

        Mr. Romney and his wife were silenced before, by their own party, when they tried to allude to the fact that they grew up poor; they were laughable and did damage to the republican credibility.

        September 20, 2012 at 7:36 pm | Report abuse |
      • darkstar

        yeah, and they recieve 5,000 percent more money/compensation than the people who actually creat value for the company...

        September 20, 2012 at 7:54 pm | Report abuse |
    • Kirk

      I just want to thank you for the Obama care tax and the china bail out tax. Its because of clowns like you we are all going to be screwed. If you performed as bad as Obama has at work they would fire you. Time for change.

      Shame on You

      September 20, 2012 at 7:25 pm | Report abuse |
    • 007

      Alex, unfortunately his deep-pocket donors can afford to employ an efficient posse of mercenary posters.

      September 20, 2012 at 7:30 pm | Report abuse |
    • meh

      Alex, dont forget his advice for the youth of america.
      "Borrow money from your parents to start a company."
      Seriously – he said that. He is SOOOO out of touch with reality that it I dont know whether to laugh or cry.
      Thats how HE did it, but everyone doesnt have that option, not do they Mittens?

      September 20, 2012 at 7:35 pm | Report abuse |
    • Char

      Notice that both the Romney's had fathers! 1 in 5 children are poor – no surprise there – in fact I thought it would have been much higher as fatherless children are sadly becoming the norm as we continue to glorify single mothers (and I don't mean the ladies that are widowed or divorced). Everytime I hear 5 children with 5 different men – sorry, but I have zero sympathy.

      September 20, 2012 at 7:39 pm | Report abuse |
  96. Jeb

    Romney doesn't believe in a minimum wage.

    But he does believe in giving himself another tax cut.

    September 20, 2012 at 7:16 pm | Report abuse |
  97. Mr. Kris

    I, am sure there is no where else our money can be used, here

    September 20, 2012 at 7:15 pm | Report abuse |
  98. Jeb

    Romney's father was on Welfare and Food Stamps when he was younger.

    Romney has clearly forgotten where he came from.

    September 20, 2012 at 7:15 pm | Report abuse |
    • 55ford

      I think he remembers all too well. I don't think people give him enough credit in this regard.

      September 20, 2012 at 7:26 pm | Report abuse |
    • Consequence

      i know someone who knew the Romney's grandparents when they lived in Mexico. They were plenty poor and, at times, jobless. Mitt's father, George Romney, had tremendous drive and bootstrapped his way into management at American Motors and, later, as Governor of Michigan. Mitt did not profit from an inheritance, he moved out of state to massachusetts where his father's name had less clout, he went to the best schools and worked hard. while pusuing success in business, he took time out to personally help the needy within his Church. As Governor, he took no pay, but, again, he did not forget the needy...in particular, those who had no health insurance. He took no pay when asked to go save the Salt Lake Olympics which was in dire straits. MItt did it willingly and, as always, professionally. i don't understand how critics of his seem to fashion Mitt a thoughtless demon ...he is nothing the like. i believe some of his critics are jealous and the rest closed minded.

      September 20, 2012 at 8:03 pm | Report abuse |
    • LinSea

      Looks to me like he remembers it too well, Jeb. He got educated and worked hard so he wouldn't have to be in that position again. It's called learning from the past instead of repeating it.

      September 20, 2012 at 8:24 pm | Report abuse |
  99. Charlie

    Any of you actually read this guy's rambling? Everyone should do the things or experiences those things he talks about whether you're poor or not. Be prudent! Be stingy! You will be happy about it later. Consumerism is for Satan! The Lord is my shepherd, there is nothing I shall want!

    September 20, 2012 at 7:14 pm | Report abuse |
  100. Joanne

    Awwww the rich Republicans are crying, because their one chance for hope is a complete idiot! Let him keep putting his foot in his mouth, I am finding it very entertaining!

    September 20, 2012 at 7:14 pm | Report abuse |
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