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Economic Inequality in the Nation's Wealthiest County

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Message Joel Hirschhorn
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The lead story in today's Washington Post Style section is about the many desperate people living in Loudoun County, Virginia that go through the agony of getting free food. I hope that New York Times idiot-columnist David Brooks also absorbed the economic horror of people interviewed for the story.

What makes the story all the more poignant is that Loudoun County is the single wealthiest jurisdiction in these United States of Delusion with a median family income of more than $98,000 yearly. Yet among the 255,000 residents are thousands that have slipped into economic hell. So, from my perspective, this story says something critically important about what is happening on a national scale. We are rapidly heading towards a two-class system: the wealthy and the working poor.

Here are some of the more interesting revelations from the Post story:

In reaction to the news about the wealth status of Loudoun County, one of the people waiting for food said "You're either up or down. There's no one in the middle."

The common economic inequality story lines among the people who wait for hours for some free food are about cutbacks and layoffs that cause a rapid fall into hunger.

Two-thirds of the households being aided by the food pantry have at least one employed adult. In their last fiscal year the pantry fed 9,339 households with some 35,000 people. That's nearly 14 percent of the county's population.

A worker for the food pantry noted that "You can always tell when it's somebody's first time and they never imagined themselves being here, because they're right on the edge of busting into tears."

Some of the needy can't believe the statistics about the wealth of county residents. But that's what you expect from people who find themselves in the lowest economic class. In terms of statistics, a high average or median figure for income can be incredibly deceptive when the distribution is heading towards a bimodal – or two-peak – condition. The data for the Upper Class perverts such statistical averages and means. What we should be looking at is the mean income for each of the two classes, not the combined total for the Upper and Lower Class residents.

Other signs of deepening economic doom in this richest county is that shelters for homeless families are now turning away large numbers of people, and a majority of students in some places are poor enough to qualify for free or reduced-cost meals.

I wish David Brooks and all the other elitists bullshitting about the great prosperity in our economy find themselves one day on some bread line.

It would also be nice to see newspapers that present such bleeding-hearts type stories make explicit connections in the articles to public policies that are causing so many Americans to slide into economic hell at exactly the same time that the Bush administration is bragging about how great the economy is.
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Joel S. Hirschhorn is the author of Pandemic Blunder: Fauci and Public Health Blocked Early Home COVID Treatment, Delusional Democracy - Fixing the Republic Without Overthrowing the Government and several other books, as well as hundreds of (more...)

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