Dec 4, 2013
The War Against the Poor
Posted on Nov 7, 2011
By Frances Fox Piven
The organized right justifies its draconian policies toward the poor with moral arguments. Right-wing think tanks and blogs, for instance, ponder the damaging effect on disabled poor children of becoming “dependent” on government assistance, or they scrutinize government nutritional assistance for poor pregnant women and children in an effort to explain away positive outcomes for infants.
The willful ignorance and cruelty of it all can leave you gasping—and gasp was all we did for decades. This is why we so desperately needed a movement for a new kind of moral economy. Occupy Wall Street, which has already changed the national conversation, may well be its beginning.
Frances Fox Piven is on the faculty of the Graduate School of the City University of New York. She is the author, along with Richard Cloward, of “Regulating the Poor” and “Poor People’s Movements.” Her latest book, just published, is “Who’s Afraid of Frances Fox Piven? The Essential Writings of the Professor Glenn Beck Loves to Hate” (The New Press). To listen to Timothy MacBain’s latest Tomcast audio interview in which Piven discusses Glenn Beck’s bizarre fascination with her click here, or download it to your iPod here.
© 2011 Frances Fox Piven
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