(c) Copyright 2005, Hoosier Photo

Family holds a central place in our political rhetoric. Family gathered at home around the hearth or at the dinner table is a trope that is featured in movies, music and writing. Politicians talk about supporting families. Companies speak of family-friendly personnel policies and work environments.

The reality of how families are treated in America is quite different. Broadly speaking, we provide less support to families than other developed countries. These failings of support come in many domains: minimum livable income, housing, healthcare, education, transportation, child care, parental leave for newborns, and more. The wealthy and rich are able to buy all the support they need. In fact, they are the subject of much favoritism in tax and social policies.

Posts about Family in America

Briefly Noted, Family, Politics, Social Nature

What Americans can learn from Danish masculinity – a reposting

January 31, 2024

(reposted from https://theconversation.com/us) Denmark’s King Frederik X wipes away a tear as he waves to a crowd of 300,000 people. Martin Meissner/AP Photo Marie Helweg-Larsen, Dickinson College When a leader cries in public, is it a sign of weakness? On Jan. 14, 2023, Denmark’s Crown Prince Frederik was crowned King Frederik X after his mother, Queen Margrethe II, announced she would be abdicating the throne during her annual New Year’s Eve speech. After the queen —>> read more –>>

Briefly Noted, Capitalism, Economy, Family

Sources of Poverty in the US – Matthew Desmond article – Updated

March 16, 2023

Original posting – 3.6.2023 Matthew Desmond, author of Evicted: Poverty and Profit in the American City1, has a new book Poverty, by America set to be released shortly. He has written a piece for the NYTimes, “Why Poverty Persists in America”2 that is worth a read. He poses this question early on, “Why, then, when it comes to poverty reduction, have we had 50 years of nothing?” He cites a ton of statistics to prove —>> read more –>>


  1. Matthew Desmond, Evicted: Poverty and Profit in the American City (Penguin Books, 2016)
  2. https://www.nytimes.com/2023/03/09/magazine/poverty-by-america-matthew-desmond.html
  3. https://www.nytimes.com/2019/02/24/opinion/income-inequality-upper-middle-class.html
  4. There is variation amongst the analyses of whther the upper class is the top 20% or 10% of the population. In anyt event it is clear that the vast bulk of the population is in the loser column.
Capitalism, Economy, Family

My Year End Siege of Angers – the addendum

January 6, 2023

Here are two more angers: (an addendum to the 1.1.2023 post: My Year End Siege of Angers – the list) Guns:  “Eighteen percent of U.S. households purchased a gun since the start of the pandemic (March 2020–March 2022), according to new survey data from NORC at the University of Chicago, increasing the percentage of U.S. adults living in a household with a gun to 46%. Over this period, one in 20 adults in America (5%) purchased —>> read more –>>


  1. https://www.norc.org/NewsEventsPublications/PressReleases/Pages/one-in-five-american-households-purchased-a-gun-during-the-pandemic.aspx
  2. https://jamanetwork.com/journals/jamanetworkopen/fullarticle/2789269
  3. https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2023/jan/06/us-police-killings-record-number-2022
  4. Peter Temin, The Vanishing Middle Class: Prejudice and Power in a Dual Economy, 2017.
Books, Economy, Education, Family, Healthcare, Inequality, Justice/Jails, Politics

Tightrope – Americans reaching for hope by Kristof and WuDunn – book review

May 1, 2020

Tightrope provides a well-written description of the American crisis through personal stories and hard data. Unfortunately it falls flat in its call for action.

Capitalism, Education, Family, Healthcare, Inequality

We’re number 40, no we’re number 39, no, number 61, yea, we’re number 1 in incarceration!!!

April 7, 2020

The decline of the US has become so marked over the last few decades that the stories and numbers no longer shock. From a country with an enormous middle class we have become a country with rich, super-rich and big corporations at the top while the vast majority, more than 80%,  are either homeless, very poor, poor, or a paycheck or two from poor. If you want an introduction to the state of our society, —>> read more –>>

Briefly Noted, Economy, Family, Inequality

Recently Noted – “Across America, working-class people are dying of despair”

January 17, 2020

Essay explores the grim reality of life in one small corner of America within the broader landscape of the bottom 90%.

Family, Inequality, Justice/Jails, Racism/White Supremacy, Videos-Movies-Podcasts

Evicted – the book and the exhibition

April 3, 2019

Eviction from home is a regular feature of life for the poor and working class, more so for black and brown people. The civil justice system works with the same imbalance of power as the criminal system. Based on the book Evicted by Matthew Desmond.

Briefly Noted, Economy, Family, Inequality

Recently Noted – A journey through a land of extreme poverty: welcome to America by Ed Pilkington

December 27, 2017

At a time when the Republicans are transferring income and wealth to the rich and corporations over 40 million Americans fall below the official poverty line.

Family, Healthcare, Politics

Vicious Republicans Attack Children’s Health Insurance Program

December 12, 2017

Nearly 9 Million children are loosing their health insurance as states run out of funds. The Congress, controlled by the vicious Republican Party that is more focused on getting a sexual predator elected in Alabama than worrying about mere children, has not appropriated any new funds.

Briefly Noted, Family, Healthcare

Recently Noted – maternal mortality in America

August 18, 2017

The US has the worst maternal mortality rate by far of any developed country in the world.

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