I have often heard Americans complain about how bad the USA is to its citizens. This kind of complaint is rife especially in urban environments and poor communities. I would like to point out something.
The poverty level in the USA according to HealthCare.gov is about $11,000 for individuals and $24,250 for a family of four. The average per capita income in America as of 2012 was $42,693. The percentage of the US population living below poverty level as reported by the government is 14.5% today, however that does not take into account the welfare and entitlement payments disbursed. When such figures are included, the poverty percentage falls to less than 5%.
In spite of hyperbole to the contrary, America's war on poverty begun in the 1960s is actually working, albeit without media or public attention.
That this hidden success should become widely known would not serve the government well. It would neuter the class warfare argument that serves both parties so well. Their corporate bogeyman would lose its teeth. If the true poverty level is only 5%, then why does it seem to be so much higher? The answer is as simple as your television set.
Public opinion and policy is driven by the media. With the advent of television in the 1950s, the developed world began to consider itself better informed, wiser in the ways of economics and politics because of the wealth of "information" the media presented. Only recently have people begun to cast a jaundiced eye at the media, becoming more suspicious of exactly what is being said versus what is actually going on.
The art of propaganda has a long history. It has been the tool of dictators, republics, and monarchs. Keeping the public in the dark about the truth has always been the best way to control their attitudes and therefore their loyalties. We need to know the truth if we are to elect leaders who will serve us best. If we do not stay informed and investigate the claims made by those with obvious agendas, we will always be manipulated and toyed with. We will always be subjects instead of masters.