NBC: Wealth of 85 richest people equal to wealth of half of the world’s population

Courtesy of NBC / NACHO DOCE / Reuters

NBC announced in an article today that the World's 85 richest have the same wealth as 3.5 billion of the poorest people.

When you bring up the issue of poverty in the US to ardent supporters of capitalism, they come up with the old rhetoric of capitalism vs. communism. Poverty is the collateral damage of capitalism that you have to live with because the alternative is communism. It is their excuse to ignore the issue or to ignore the poor. Where other people see human beings who they can identify with, because their struggles are the same, many capitalists only see numbers. They see the number of people collecting unemployment benefits or welfare checks. They don’t see people like them, human beings who have similar feelings and needs, who are also looking to find love, to start a family, have a respectable job, provide [...]

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Lessons from Germany: How to overcome the fear of freeloaders

Romney’s most recent statement that Obama won by offering "gifts" to African-Americans, Hispanics and young voters reminds us all of his now infamous 47% comments. But it also reminds me of something else: the Republican fear of freeloaders.

Freeloaders, as conservatives view them, include many types of people, not just those who for example don’t have a disability but figure a way to get disability benefits. It also includes people who have a hard time finding a job and collect unemployment benefits. It includes low income women who have children they can’t take care of and collect welfare benefits, and many other people who get help from the government.

When I was fifteen I traveled from Peru, where I grew up, to Germany, to visit my godmother. I marveled at the sight of the clean and organized cities, perfectly build roads, bridges and buildings, [...]

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