The UN, that bastion of freedom, fairness, and unbiased discourse is at it again by holding accountable rogue dictators and countries with poor human rights records by…
I’m just kidding. They are going after the United States.
This time a “UN human rights investigator” has released a report purporting that the US is far behind other “rich democracies” when it comes to poor citizens.
Philip Alston, U.N. special rapporteur on extreme poverty, called on U.S. authorities to provide solid social protection and address underlying problems, rather than “punishing and imprisoning the poor”.
While welfare benefits and access to health insurance are being slashed, President Donald Trump’s tax reform has awarded “financial windfalls” to the mega-rich and large companies, further increasing inequality, he said in a report.
U.S. policies since President Lyndon Johnson’s war on poverty in the 1960s have been “neglectful at best”, he said.
Yes, it’s those nasty tax cut’s fault. Never mind that we haven’t actually cut welfare, it’s provably true that the tax cuts have helped the middle class, and that there’s no actual link between the tax cuts and welfare spending.
Who needs facts and real correlation though when you’ve got a grand tale to push at the UN?
“Its citizens live shorter and sicker lives compared to those living in all other rich democracies, eradicable tropical diseases are increasingly prevalent and it has the world’s highest incarceration rate…and the highest obesity levels in the developed world,” Alston said.
The tax cuts and their subsequent effects are literally killing people or something.
It’s worth nothing that no country in human history has done more to help eradicate global poverty than the United States. It’s also worth noting that things like obesity and life expectancy are more directly correlated to the excesses of our society, not poverty.
“But the policies pursued over the past year seem deliberately designed to remove basic protections from the poorest, punish those who are not in employment and make even basic health care into a privilege to be earned rather than a right of citizenship,” Alston said.
“Punish those who are not in employment” is weak kneed socialist code for “we disagree that able bodied adults should be required to seek work to get benefits.” Then we get the predictable denigration of the fact that health care is not a “right” in the US. The concept of freedom of labor is foreign to this investigator apparently.
Mr. Alston continues…
Citing “shameful statistics” linked to entrenched racial discrimination, Alston said that African Americans are 2.5 times more likely than whites to live in poverty and their unemployment rate is more than double. Women, Hispanics, immigrants, and indigenous people also suffer high rates.
At least 550,000 people are homeless in America, he said.
“The tax reform will worsen this situation and ensure that the United States remains the most unequal society in the developed world,” Alston said. “The planned dramatic cuts in welfare will essentially shred crucial dimensions of a safety net that is already full of holes.”
There it is. You knew it was coming.
He goes with the charge of entrenched racism being the only factor in black communities lagging behind in the US. Did Mr. Alston mention that the black unemployment rate is now the lowest in US history (including parity point with other races)? Of course he didn’t. He clearly set out to create a narrative irregardless of current trends of facts he’d eventually come across.
How do I know that?
However, the data from the U.S. Census Bureau he cited covers only the period through 2016, and he gave no comparative figures on the extent of poverty before and after Trump came into office in January 2017.
The Australian, a veteran U.N. rights expert and New York University law professor, will present his report to the United Nations Human Rights Council later this month.
Yes, you read that right.
Hidden inside all his grand pronouncements is the admission that he used zip, zilch, zero data from the time during the Trump administration. This despite framing his entire report as proof of the harm Trump’s policies are doing.
Wanting a UN “expert” to understand you can’t use old data to make pronouncements about current policies is expecting a bit much I suppose.
Despite this, Reuters ran with this headline:
America’s poor becoming more destitute under Trump: U.N. expert
The report literally admits that the investigator did not use any data during the Trump administration to formulate his conclusions. For some reason (odd right?), Reuters still decided to run with the “Trump is making poverty worse” line based on nothing more than a UN investigator’s data-less anecdotes (he took a road trip to four places in the US).
I’ll wrap up with an exercise in irony.
Poverty in Australia, a country that’s far less diverse, far easier to manage, does far less for the world, and who’s population is 7% of the size, has a higher poverty rate to that of the United States. Australia’s rate is also increasing while the US has seen a decrease.
Where’s this “UN investigator” from you ask? Australia of course.
That’s the parody of the UN. People from countries who have no business lecturing the United States spend all there time lecturing the United States.
The question of poverty in America is valid. What’s also valid is pointing out that unsustainable European policies, such as those in Australia (which have already led to the downfall of several EU member states) are the quickest way to exacerbate that poverty.
Exit stat: Germany, usually held up as the pinnacle of civilization by socialists, has a higher poverty rate than the United States. 15.7% compared to 12.7%. Will we be getting a breathless report on the evil’s of German policy or nah?