Forbes recently reported about the idea of money ruling politics in its article entitled, “The Rich and the Rest of Us.” The title is based off of a book written by Dr. Cornel West and Tavis Smiley who are touring the country spreading awareness and gaining knowledge about the issue of poverty in the U.S. Their central point is that our government heavily ignores poverty since groups that can pledge significant amounts of money to campaigns influence most policies. Whether Democrats or Republicans their power of money is the same, according to the article.
Some key points in the article include:
- Half of the country’s population deals with poverty
- Debt is a way of life for many middle class families
- Suggest that government should work towards implementing a massive job program and invest in education
- There is a need for a revolution
The authors believe that similar to the civil rights movement that resulted in being powerful, the issue of poverty needs an uprising of its own. People should be willing to change their state and the state of many others like them for the government to actually focus on such an increasing problem. But before that, it is the responsibility of policy advocates like West and Smiley to make sure that people care about the issue of poverty and wish to see the value of change.
To Turn this into a Story:
- Ask policy advocates about their views on the impact of the wealthy on governmental decisions
- Find out whether your city fits the category of the half Americans dealing with poverty
- A possible story angle would be: The difference of opinion on governmental decisions and policy makers when coming from a middle class or poor person compared to a wealthy citizen
- Be sure to include details about their economic status, their satisfaction with their financial condition and their outlook on the country’s future with current governmental policies
Poverty Reporting and Commentary from across the web:
The Nation: Will the Poor get Poorer in the Land of Lincoln?