Warm Southern Breeze

"… there is no such thing as nothing."

Dying Skills

Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Sunday, August 25, 2019

America is a wealthy nation.

There’s no question about it.

Even with the scourges of poverty, and homelessness affecting it, the United States is, per capita, among the wealthiest nations in the world.

The United States Census Bureau reports that “The official poverty rate in 2017 was 12.3 percent, down 0.4 percentage points from 12.7 percent in 2016. This is the third consecutive annual decline in poverty. Since 2014, the pov­erty rate has fallen 2.5 percent­age points, from 14.8 percent to 12.3 percent.”

The 2018 Annual Homelessness Assessment Report to Congress (AHAR) by the Department of Housing and Urban Development found that “On a single night in 2018, roughly 553,000 people were experiencing homelessness in the United States. About two-thirds (65%) were staying in sheltered locations—emergency shelters or transitional housing programs—and about one-third (35%) were in unsheltered locations such as on the street, in abandoned buildings, or in other places not suitable for human habitation. Homelessness increased (though modestly) for the second year in a row. The number of homeless people on a single night increased by 0.3 percent between 2017 and 2018.”

According to various census measures internationally, there are very nearly 7.6 BILLION people in the world today. The United States ranks third globally in population with very nearly 330 Million. Only China and India respectively, are more populous, each with over 1.3 BILLION residents.

Indonesia, Pakistan, Brazil, Nigeria, Bangladesh, Russia, and Mexico, in order, round out the Top 10 most populous nations.

Extrapolating from the population, that’s nearly 1 out of every 597 people who are homeless in the United States. Expressed as a percentage, that’s 0.16757575% – a little over 1/10th of 1%… well UNDER 1%.

The International Monetary Fund in 2018 ranked the United States as the 10th wealthiest nation globally. The World Bank in 2017 ranked the United States as 11th wealthiest, and the Central Intelligence Agency from 1993-2017 ranked the United States as the 13th wealthiest nation as measured by Gross Domestic Product per capita.

When measured by adult median wealth, the United States ranks 21st, according to a 2018 Credit Suisse report.

That’s among a ranking of 170-190 nations for all four measures.

And when a ranking of total wealth is considered, the United States ranks first globally – again, according to the Global Wealth Report 2018 by Credit Suisse.

Using the Gini Index – a measure of the overall equality of life – the United States ranks 12th, with a 85.4% score. The nations with a higher Gini score are (in ascending order): India, Sweden, Turkey, Russia, Lebanon, Nigeria, Cyprus, Thailand, Egypt, Kazhakstan and Ukraine.

By most comparative global measures, America is doing quite well for itself, despite the daily and nightly news reports, 24/7 news cycle, and political wranglings ongoing in Washington, D.C.

So how is it that some don’t know how to even sew on a button on a garment?

Wealth brings changes, there’s no doubt about that, but one would imagine that at least a remnant of the “old ways” would survive, eh?

Simple tasks like ironing a shirt, darning a sock, and sewing a button on a shirt, pair of trousers, or other garment would (or should) be de rigueur, obbligato, mandatory.

But apparently, that’s not so.

And so… I do.

Sew, that is.

I’m a little sew and sew.

To make that minor repair, it probably took me all of about 15 minutes – and that was taking my sweet time. It’s certainly not rocket surgery, or brain science. And every man – yes, men ESPECIALLY! – should know how to make simple repairs like sewing on a button, or mending a sock (which is called “darning”).

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