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Andrew Coyne: Forget The Richest 1%—Let's Talk About The Poorest 10%
Economics | November 30, 2012

Andrew Coyne: Forget The Richest 1%—Let's Talk About The Poorest 10%

"Surely if there is a problem that merits our concern, it is not that we have too many rich people, but too many poor," Andrew Coyne proposes in a recent column. "For much of the past two years, much of the media has been obsessed with a tiny number of very rich people—'the one per cent.'" The 'Occupy' movements have helped bring public attention to concerns over wealth distribution in much of the developed world. However, Coyne argues that perhaps we have been shifting our attention to the wrong part of the problem by focusing on the richest part of the population rather than the poorest.

While he notes that the poverty rate has been dropping over the past few years—and that this is indeed a positive thing—he says that it is troubling that "so many remain so poor, in a country as well off as ours." There are many more people living in the bottom ten percent of income (the very poor) than the one percent (the very rich). This is especially worrisome, he explains, due to the staggering amount of resources being allocated to raise the very poor out of poverty. While there have been improvements to government programs that help those in need, there are still far too many people living below the poverty line. Focusing the attention on what the rich have, rather than what the government needs to do to help the poor, is the wrong approach.

Currently a columnist for The National Post, Coyne has spent two decades commenting on political and economic issues. He is thoughtful, passionate, and never afraid to speak his mind, and provides insightful analysis on the most pressing issues at hand. He encourages audiences to demand more from their government, and he presents a clear and candid representation of what is going on—and how to change it.
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