1 November 2014   2 comments

UNICEF, the arm of the UN entrusted with the welfare of children, has issued a report on the rate of poverty for children in developed countries since 2008.  The report is grim: more than 2.6 million children entered poverty than left poverty. The Guardian reports that: “Norway has the lowest child poverty rate, at 5.3% (down from 9.6% in 2008), and Greece has the highest, at 40.5% (up from 23% in 2008). Latvia and Spain also have child poverty rates above 36%. In the US, the rate is 32%.” Many of these children will be trapped in poverty for their entire lives.

Bangladesh suffered a nation-wide electricity blackout on Saturday.  A transmission line from India failed and the entire electrical network collapsed.  Bangladesh is no stranger to electricity shortages, but the scale of this failure was unprecedented.  Fortunately, it occurred on a weekend, or the economic consequences of the blackout would have been quite serious.

When Ireland went through a very serious banking crisis in 2008, it needed money from the European Union to finance its government debt.  In return, the EU demanded that the Irish government implement a whole range of austerity measures to raise government revenues, including a new separate charge for water (which had been traditionally funded out of the general tax revenues of the government).  The new charges have been implemented and the oppositions to the new tax has been furious.  The protests in Ireland have been very large and very noisy, and it is likely that the Irish government will  have to back down.

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Posted November 1, 2014 by vferraro1971 in World Politics

2 responses to “1 November 2014

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  1. How is child poverty rate measured? The number 40.5% is a little too astounding to believe.

  2. Poverty rates are usually determined by measuring a family’s income. The reason the percentage is so high is that poor families typically have a larger number of children.than wealthier families. Thus, the percentage of families below the poverty line is about 18% in the US. If those families have 3-4 children, then the number of children is proportionately larger.

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