|The Great Society President?|
So lower poverty and a stronger larger middle class is good for the whole country, especially for the people who were once living in poverty. Because now they have the skills and a good job to take care of themselves, but it's also good for everyone else who had to pay the taxes to be able to take care of these people. While they weren't ready to take care of themselves, this is something that President Johnson understood. That was his vision anyway. What I don't think he quite figured out that President Nixon of all people figured out and then President Clinton put into law in the 1990s, was the best way to get people out of poverty, is through education, job training and then job placement into a good job. So they have the resources to take care of themselves. The Great Society has a lot of programs in it that were deigned to financially support people while they are in poverty, but doesn't do much to help them out of poverty.
We had a 13% poverty level in America by the time President Bill Clinton left office in 2001. That didn't happen by accident and people on the right especially have made the argument, that this was a result of the economic boom of that decade. And that was part of it, but if you are a low-skilled worker or a low-skilled person seeking work, you are not going to get a good job with those skills. No matter how good the economy is. But if you empower these people by putting them back in school and into job training, they'll benefit from the economic boom as well. The only people in America that are eligible for public assistance, are retired workers and seniors and people who don't earn enough money to financially support themselves. Or who aren't retired, but aren't earning any money on their own. They're on Welfare or Unemployment Insurance. So to move people out of poverty, people in poverty need the skills to get themselves a good job and not be eligible for public assistance at all. Because they're earning enough money on their own.