Poverty in America

Public Television Runs Documentary on Appalachian Coal Mining

Power And Place The final episode of this series about the natural and human history of Appalachia sparks both heartbreak and hope for the region’s ransacked mountain ecosystem is now running on public television. Early 20th-century mineral barons ruled Appalachia with an iron fist. Company spies tracked miners’ every move. If they found a man’s…

Al Henley Elected President of the AFL-CIO of Alabama

Al Henley of Montgomery was elected president of the AFL-CIO of Alabama this week. In this exclusive interview with The Locust Fork News-Journal, he talks about the state convention, what organized labor’s plans are for the next year in Alabama and the presidential election of 2012, and how unions are planning to use new technology…

The Chinese Rate Their Job Market Better Than Americans

Majorities of people in China and America now have a more positive view of the economy in China than the economy in the United States, according to the latest Gallup poll on the subject. According to recent comments on Facebook, the Chinese people may now be advising their kids not to throw away food, since…

Republican Governors Thumb Noses at Unemployment Stimulus Money

Just in case anybody wondered if Republican governors Rick Perry of Texas and John Kasich of Ohio really care at all about unemployed workers in their states, this just in. Both governors let a Monday deadline pass to apply for hundreds of millions of dollars in federal funds for unemployment insurance benefits. The money —…

Why Do Working Class People Vote Against Their Economic Interests?

Poor But Proud: Twenty Years Later Auburn History Professor Wayne Flynt Answers the Central Political Question of Our Time by Glynn Wilson AUBURN, Ala. — In a state where intellectuals are generally scorned as “elitists” — or as former governor and presidential candidate George Wallace liked to call them for his own opportunistic political reasons,…

How Happy is America and What Can We Do to Make it Happier?

Hint: The Conservative South is Less Happy Than the Rest of the Country The Big Picture by Glynn Wilson Only in America, a country founded on the ideals of “life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness,” is there a statistical measure of “well-being” where highly paid social scientists spend a lot of time and money…

More Americans Name Unemployment as the Top Problem

Although the Deficit Edges Up More Americans say unemployment is the No. 1 problem facing the United States than anything else at the start of the new year, according to Gallup’s latest poll on the subject. Mentions of “the economy” in general as the leading problem have been trending downward since October, with 29 percent…

No Holiday Cheer in Poverty Statistics

by Randall Williams New South Books As Southern members of Congress continue to say “no” to most safety-net and stimulus proposals, the grim reality is that poverty is deepening across the nation and especially in the region. According to a report by the Southern Education Foundation, extreme poverty in the United States increased during 2009…

American Satisfaction Down to Seventeen Percent as Year Ends

The Economy and Jobs Named as Most Important Problems Only 17 percent of Americans say they are satisfied with the way things are going in the United States at this time, and for good reasons, according to the latest Gallup poll on the subject. This marks a low point in a year when satisfaction levels…

Tea or Coffee? On Tax Cut Deals and Ethics Reform

The Big Picture by Glynn Wilson The coffee tastes more than a little bitter this morning. It is no sweet tea to see your worst political predictions come true. I have been railing for the past five and a half years about the need for a coalition to come together to fight the complete corporate…

The Shock Doctrine Short Film Now on Cable

Klein Alleges U.S. Used ‘Shock’ Tactics to Privatize Public Sector “The connections are daring in journalist Naomi Klein’s new book, The Shock Doctrine, but the result is convincing,” according to William S. Kowinski of the San Francisco Chronicle. “With a bold and brilliantly conceived thesis, skillfully and cogently threaded through more than 500 pages of…

Poor But Proud: Voting to Remain Poor Still Plagues the South

The Big Picture by Glynn Wilson The news could not be any worse. I honestly wish there was some good news to report. Sorry to say, there’s not any. Well, the Crimson Tide did manage to pull out a victory over Ole Miss in Tuscaloosa on Saturday, football being about the only thing worth mentioning…

Perry County’s Arrowhead Landfill Going Bankrupt

What Happened to the Millions from the TVA Coal Ash Contract? John Wathen/Southwings Toxic TVA coal ash by the train load is filling up the local landfill only designed for household garbage, not hazardous waste, in Alabama’s Black Belt… by Glynn Wilson The Arrowhead Landfill in Perry County, Alabama — where TVA is hauling millions…

A Revolutionary Garden

Glynn Wilson There is a freeze watch in effect here for the next two nights, meaning sub-freezing temperatures are possible. These conditions could kill crops and other sensitive vegetation, like the corn, greenbeans, cucumbers, cantaloupes and such planted a couple of weeks ago in our Revolutionary Garden. This sux. But to show we can make…

Hunger Study Shows Cracks in the Economy

The Food Bank of North Alabama has released the largest study of local hunger ever conducted and found widespread poverty in a state where all the newspapers and most of the telvision news shows say the economy is booming. The Bush economy is creating a permanent underclass that is not reflected in the unemployment numbers…