UN Expert Shames US Over Poverty And Trump Tax Cuts

When the United Nations has to tour the United States and shame the political world here, noting that there's even a county in Alabama where ringworm is back due to lack of adequate sanitation?

The United States, one of the world’s richest nations and the “land of opportunity”, is fast becoming a champion of inequality, according to the United Nations Special Rapporteur on extreme poverty and human rights, Philip Alston.

Entrenched poverty will be made far worse by policies being proposed by the Trump Administration, warned Philip Alston in a statement after a two-week fact-finding mission to California, Alabama, Georgia, West Virginia and Washington, D.C., as well as Puerto Rico.

The Special Rapporteur continued: “I have been struck by the extent to which caricatured narratives about the purported innate differences between rich and poor have been sold to the electorate by some politicians and media, and have been allowed to define the debate. The rich are industrious, entrepreneurial, patriotic and the drivers of economic success. The poor are wasters, losers and scammers.

“Despite the fact that this is contradicted by the facts, some of the politicians and political appointees with whom I spoke were completely sold on the narrative of such scammers sitting on comfortable sofas, watching color TVs, while surfing on their smartphones, all paid for by welfare.

“I wonder how many of these politicians have ever visited poor areas, let alone spoken to those who dwell there.”

And right on cue, Breitbart Radio has on a hack to say this. (Link goes to Media Matters):

The Special Rapporteur expressed the fear that proposed changes in the direction of US tax and welfare policies could have devastating consequences for the poorest 20 percent of Americans.

The proposed tax reform package stakes out America’s bid to become the most unequal society in the world,” Mr. Alston said. “It will greatly increase the already high levels of wealth and income inequality between the richest one percent and the poorest 50 percent of Americans.


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The dramatic cuts in welfare, foreshadowed by President Trump and Speaker Ryan, and already beginning to be implemented by the administration, will essentially shred crucial dimensions of a safety net that is already full of holes.”

“Several administration officials told me that as far as welfare reform is concerned, states are, in Justice Louis D. Brandeis’ famous phrase, ‘laboratories of innovation’. Recent proposals to drug-test welfare recipients in Wisconsin and West Virginia, along with Mississippi’s recent purge of its welfare rolls, raise concerns that the administration would happily look the other way while states conducted what were in essence unethical experiments on the poor.

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