But it is also the case that the official poverty figures alone have never fully captured the extent of the economic burden in this country and that millions of people in the USA are hovering just above the poverty line or are constantly drifting back and forth. (The official label for the group not quite reaching the poverty line is "almost poor," a distinction I suspect they know for those who may be able to pay their utility bills for a month but know they can't The weekly unemployment supplement of USD 600 and the no-strings checks provided by the Cares Act have not only brought people to the brink of disaster, but have also shown that there is little else than political Indolence that prevents the government from providing every human being with the resources needed not only to cross the lower poverty line, but to lead a decent and decent life.
Most of our existing measures of poverty also raise questions about low expectations when it comes to how people live and what they deserve. If the ultimate goal of our current political regime is Lift people out of poverty What kind of life does that guarantee, as the chorus often says? Shouldn't we be reaching for more than anything just above the wretched misery? (…)
“Before we invented civilization, our ancestors lived mostly in the open air. Before we developed artificial light, air pollution, and modern forms of nighttime entertainment, we watched the stars. There were practical calendar reasons, of course, but there was more to it than that. Even today, the most jaded city dweller can be unexpectedly moved when they encounter a clear night sky dotted with thousands of twinkling stars. When it happens to me after all these years, it still takes my breath away. "
~~Carl Sagan, Light blue dot: A vision of the human future in space
TWEET OF THE DAY
What should I do if Twitter goes down?
Are you quitting tweeting long enough to rule the world with justice and benevolence?
I do not think so.
– God (@TheTweetOfGod) October 15, 2020
BLAST FROM THE PAST
At Daily Kos that day in 2008– Thoughts after the debate:
In Isaac Asimov's 1955 book Franchise, a supercomputer chooses a "Voter of the Year" to decide the fate of the election. This person then answers a series of questions that the computer uses to determine the election results.
Joe Sixpack thought he hit the jackpot, but unfortunately the fictional "Joe the Plumber" got the gig.
At least that's what I learned from John McCain, between his angry outbursts and his snorting.
In essence, I actually thought McCain was doing his best yet if he wasn't distracted by his strange expressions and snorting. Still, Obama is on a different level overall. If Romney or Giuliani were the contestant, these might be fairer competitions, but it's not even close. And while McCain seemed better prepared than in previous debates, tonight was also the most wingnutty McCain has ever seen. The whole veneer of being a moderate person was removed when he mockingly tossed aside the term "mother's health". The thought was an insult to his sensitivity!
Not that it matters. There was nothing here tonight that could change your mind. Given that Obama has already broken 50 percent nationally and in major battlefield states, and a significant percentage of voters have already cast their early votes, McCain had to radically change the shape of the race. That means a homemade achievement coupled with an Obama collapse. Neither happened.