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The View From The Shining City - 1984

"Poverty grew sharply between 1979 and 1982. But a study by the Census Bureau claims that official estimates may exaggerate the number of Americans
"Poverty grew sharply between 1979 and 1982. But a study by the Census Bureau claims that official estimates may exaggerate the number of Americans who are poor."

Listening to spin in a historic context can be baffling at times. Buried in the middle of an ABC Radio "World News This Week" broadcast from February 1984 was this report about poverty levels in the U.S. between 1979 and 1982. To hear a spokesman from the Census Bureau come out, matter-of-factly and say the number of people living below the poverty line during that time wasn't exactly true, since many of those people were receiving foodstamps and Medicare and were therefore deemed no longer "at the poverty line" seems rather bizarre to me.

This is the kind of painful spin we've been getting used to over the years. A report like this lends further evidence the Reagan Years were pretty much a sham. The casual disregard for real figures in place of fancied up ones. Mythic feel-good proclamations have done nothing but stave off what has become the inevitable.

To think our current economic situation will be cured by a snap of fingers or wishful thought disguises the fact that our current situation is the result of bad decisions and distracting spin from decades earlier.

Maybe it's not a chicken, but perhaps the Ostrich has come home to roost.

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(Nice shiny miracles from that City On A Hill)

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