Trivia 113


According to a report in "American Demographics (Aug. '96), efforts to count the number of homeless people in America has been nearly impossible due to shortages of census personnel (due to funds cut during the Bush Administration's war on the poor which have yet to be replaced) as well as the difficulty of counting people without a permanent address. While some independent researchers estimate the number at a minimum of 500,000 to 600,000, the census indicated far less than half that number. Now that the conservatives have won the right to keep the census bureau from using "estimate averaging", the true number will probably never be even guessed. Keeping that information from being known is very important to the Right both because they are the direct cause of the majority of homelessness due to the vaunted "Reagan Revolution" and also that the homeless tend to vote Democratic since the left doesn't create an economic atmosphere where homelessness is encouraged.

Did you know in 1991 that the CIA, responding to massive criticism regarding the paranoid level of secrecy in government and, in particular, the CIA, prepared a document to describe how the agency could achieve greater openness and honesty - and promptly classified it as a national secret? Ever wonder just how hard it is to keep writing sentences like that without throwing up one's arms in absolute frustration at this nation's stupidity?

Of course, the U.S. Army went the CIA one better. In response to President Clinton's 1995 presidential order for all agencies of the federal government to begin declassifying everything not pertinent to national security, the Army simply demanded $500 million to pay for it. Since the possibility of any agency receiving that amount for such a low level project, the Army happily refuses to begin following the presidential order.

The Center for the Study of Commercialism researched and produced a study detailing what they defined as "direct economic censorship" in which advertisers are quickly taking over what news the public will be allowed to hear by creating a climate of; 1) self- censorship by reporters who fear even investigating stories which might relate to their media's advertisers, 2) "assisting" news agencies in the creation of phony news stories which are only meant to highlight what the advertisers deem important to their images and, 3) writing pseudo news stories meant to flatter advertisers that the media is courting for their owners. The Center invited 200 media outlets to its press conference but only two showed; the Washington Post and the Washington Times. The Post completely ignored the story while the Times ran a short story which did not name even one of the advertisers cited in the research. It is indeed so ironic that case after case of the media revealing its strong right wing tendencies can be given to a nation which thinks itself intelligent but can still whine about the lie of a "Liberal Media". How very, very sad!

Now for a lot of statistics regarding America's hatred of their young.
1) According to the United Nations Children's Fund, nine out of ten young people murdered in industrialized countries are murdered in the United States.
2) According to 1993 report by the United Nations Children's Fund, the U.S. homicide rate for young people 15-24 is five times higher than in Canada, its nearest competitor.
3) Again, according to the United Nations Children's Fund, the U.S. poverty rate for children is more than double that of any other industrialized nation.
4) The final fact from the United Nations Children's Fund is that, since the 1970's, while other industrialized nations were bringing more and more children out of poverty, only the U.S. and Britain threw even more children below the poverty line (remember the Reagan Revolution and Britain's answer to the horrors of Reagan - Margaret Thatcher?).
5) According to Daedalus (Sept. 22, 1995), "Each year ten thousand children in the United States die as a direct result of living in poverty. Violence towards children has escalated dramatically: three children a day die of child abuse. Over the last thirteen years we have lost 80,000 children to gun deaths, thousands more than we lost during 25 years of the Viet Nam conflict." Just for comparison, a bit over 54,000 Americans died over that 25 year "war".
6) Maclean's 1/29/96 issue showed that "the U.S. teenage suicide rate, fifth highest in the world, nearly doubled from 5.9 deaths per 100,000 in 1970 to 11.1 deaths per 100,000 in 1991."
7) According to a UNICEF report also cited in Maclean's (9/2/96) the "projected growth of the "at risk" 13 -to- 17 age group over the next ten years will mean that the nation will see a dramatic increase in crime".
8) The Center for Disease Control and Prevention revealed on Feb. 6, 1997, that American youngsters are 12 times more likely to die by gunfire and five times more likely to be murdered than their counterparts in 25 other industrialized nations (reported by Associated Press 2/8/97).
9) The United States is the ONLY industrialized nation who has refused to sign the most important international instrument meant to protect the world's children - the United Nations Convention on the Rights of a Child - which obligates governments to insure the well- being of their children. Of course, had we signed on to that treaty, the Republican Revolution could never have been allowed to be inflicted on America's children.

Folks, if you have ever voted for the Republicans and their attack on the American people, then you are completely to blame for every injury that your government inflicts on its young. If you haven't figured out, as yet, that the Republican Party has only one goal and that is to make the rich richer on the backs of America's children and poor, then you have been fooled and have been made a fool of by them. It is quite simply that easy to understand!

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Copyright 9/5/98