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State of the Debate
George Pyle
George Pyle has been a newspaper writer in Kansas, Utah, Upstate New York, and now Utah again, for more than 30 years - most of it as an editorial writer and columnist. Now on his second tour of duty on The Salt Lake Tribune Editorial Board, he has also done a stretch as a talk radio host, published a book on the ongoing flaws of U.S.agricultural policy and, in 1998, was a finalist for the Pulitzer Prize for Editorial Writing. His most active bookmarks are Andrew Sullivan, Christopher Hitchens and Tina Brown. And he still thinks the Internet can be used for intelligent conversation and uplifting ideas.

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Pundits ponder plight of the poor ...

Taking a snapshot survey, poll or impression of anything can be dangerous.

Today, for example, many of the heathen editorial writers around the west are worried about what we are, or are not, doing unto the least of these. While the state’s faith and family newspaper examines the concerns of the money changers.

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Like I said, a snapshot.

Utah’s child-poverty trend is cause for alarm — Salt Lake Tribune Editorial

"One in six Utah children lives in poverty. Actually, it may be more than that. That number, presented in the Annie E. Casey Foundation’s annual Kids Count report, is from 2011. But the trend is not good. ...

"... Utah traditionally has received higher marks for child health and stable families to overcome lower marks for education, where the state trails the national average in pre-school attendance and high school dropout rates.

"But poverty, defined as a family of four earning less than $22,350 annually, has been dragging us down. ..."

Welcome a planned rehab center — Ogden Standard-Examiner Editorial

"Residents in South Ogden should not fear a proposed residential addiction treatment facility replacing what was once a monastery property for nuns. Some residents of an upscale neighborhood have protested the planned rehab facility. ..."

A bleak picture of child poverty in Oregon — David Sarasohn — The Oregonian

"If there were a town named Poverty, mused Tonia Hunt of Children First for Oregon, it would be the largest city in Oregon. Its population would run heavily to children, because a higher percentage of Oregon’s children are poor than other age groups. ..."

— Limousine liberalism’s good works — Catherine Rampell | The Washington Post | sltrib.com

"Is it hypocritical for a really, really rich person to object to rising inequality? ..."

Texas Gov. Rick Perry’s latest political stunt — Los Angeles Daily News Editorial

"Gov. Rick Perry’s plan to put 1,000 Texas National Guard on the U.S.-Mexico border to deal with the mass of Central American child migrants is nothing but a political stunt that will not help resolve the problem.

" ‘I won’t stand idly by while our citizens are under assault and little children from Central America are detained in squalor,’ he said in announcing the effort on Monday.

"Assault from an influx of children, many who haven’t gone through puberty or are fleeing violence and poverty? What are these troops going to do at the border — tie shoes and pass out diapers? ..."

Santa Clara County leaders reach out to kids — San Jose Mercury News Editorial

"Federal authorities have struggled to find places other than cement jail cells at the border to house the thousands of refugee children, some of them toddlers, pouring in from Central America.

"They identified shelters in different communities around the country, some in Southern California, and set out with busloads of the kids — only to be met in some towns by throngs of angry residents armed with placards and in some cases more threatening implements to keep the children out of their towns.

"Here in Santa Clara County, there was a different scene. Elected officials banded together to say: Bring them on. ..."

Climb from bottom good but not great — Ruidoso (N.M.) News


"Results from this year’s annual national survey of childhood wellbeing have New Mexico leaders once again lifting praises to the heavens for the poor and impoverished people from the state of Mississippi.

"New Mexico no longer ranks dead last in the nation in caring for our children. This year’s survey has us ranked 49th, edging ahead of the Magnolia State. While that may come as a bit of relief for some, it is still scant reason to celebrate. ..."

Ocean of prosperity, island of poverty — Bismark (N.D.) Tribune Editorial

" ... It should be unacceptable for a group of children to be trapped in poverty. The states and the federal government have been working to resolve those problems, but the stagnant numbers over the past 12 years indicate more needs to be done. ..."


Federal Reserve shouldn’t be chained with a congressional formula for interest rates — Deseret News Editorial

"Business leaders face considerable uncertainty in today’s world, much of it caused by the U.S. government. So it is understandable that some in Congress would want to impose a bit of certainty on the Federal Reserve, the agency with the most immediate control over the economy.

"But a bill in the House aimed at doing this would likely just make things worse. ..."

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