On the EDge: You ain’t seen nothin’ yet

OPINION – It’s just flat-out embarrassing.

For a state that likes to brag about its family values and concern for children, Utah is turning in abysmal numbers when it comes to children living at the poverty level, particularly Southern Utah where nearly 25 percent of our kids are living on the edge of desperation.

That’s the bad news, revealed in a report issued by the Annie E. Casey Foundation last week.

But wait, as the guy on those late-night infomercials says, there’s more.

According to all of the experts, the most important key to breaking the cycle of inter-generational poverty is education and guess what? Utah is at the bottom of the pile when it comes to per-student spending.

More bad news.

The Legislature, in its wisdom, has financed studies over the years to try to solve this problem, which was exacerbated by failed economic and educational policies initiated more than a dozen years ago at the federal level that led to a recession that has plagued these poverty-stricken kids, following them, in some instances, from the day they entered kindergarten.

The results are always the same: educate the kids so they can find better-paying jobs.

The problem is, however, that despite all the spin, the economy is still in the dumpster. Those better-paying jobs are fewer, and farther between these days, particularly in Utah, where they give away the farm to draw companies without realizing, or, perhaps, caring, that the light manufacturing jobs come to this state because employers realize they can pay their employees less than elsewhere and make out like a bandit because they are lured to the area by tax breaks and other incentives that make it a sweet deal.

We’ve seen that happen a lot, whether the deals were made with companies looking to relocate or longtime Southern Utah companies that wanted to expand. Some were honest and refused the deals, stating upfront that they didn’t want to have to pay the higher salaries. Others struck deals then found loopholes that allowed them to follow the guidelines of the agreements while not complying with the spirit of those agreements.

Don’t look for this latest report to do much more than inspire some theatrical gnashing of teeth and faux concern because, you see, we just had a mid-term election that continued the Republican Party’s hold on the House and gave it control of the Senate.

Now hungrily eyeing the White House, you can count on the GOP to be even more obstructionist than before, and that was pretty bad. They will sell this country’s soul to put their man in the Oval Office.

There is no love between Speaker of The House John Boehner and the administration. There is even less between Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell and the White House.

So, if you liked a gridlocked federal government these last two years, you’ll love these final two years of the Obama administration as the warring factions seek to do as much damage to the other side as politically possible.

We thought we saw it get as bad as it could be when the Republicans shut down the government, but, I guarantee, that was a cakewalk when compared with what lies ahead.

Already, the lines have been drawn as McConnell and Boehner have promised to zero in against the president on immigration, equality issues, and, of course, the Affordable Care Act.

The president, on the other hand, has responded by saying he has a pen and he knows how to use it, whether to veto the histrionics of a Congress soon to run amok or enact by Presidential Authorization measures vital to our well-being.

You can look to Congress to continue its coy relationship with Corporate America, offering even more tax breaks for the uber-rich while hammering the rapidly disappearing middle class and ever-expanding poverty class to make up the difference, which will not only extend the nation’s economic woes, but undo what little progress has been made to solve them.

That is the real effect of trickle-down economics, you know.

When things go well, the money stays at the top, meted out among investors and fat cat CEOs who already live lives of ease and excess. When things go south, these captains of commerce do all they can to preserve their lifestyles and those of their investors, meaning the working men and women of the nation suffer, whether through salary freezes, furloughs, or even worse, layoffs to keep the cash flow strong.

What that does, in turn, is sink even more people into poverty. The problem comes when you have a cold-hearted Congress that doesn’t want to budge on extending unemployment benefits, as we saw several years ago, and desires to curtail social programs to assist those in need.

Mark my words, by this time next year, we will see a rise in unemployment, a rise in foreclosures, a rise in the number of people living below the poverty level.

The states will see a decrease in federal funding for vital health and education programs which means those at the bottom will be steeped in even greater need as conservative lawmakers try to stick to their “no new taxes” promises, which are never kept, by the way, and insistence on holding on to rainy day funds even though there is a torrential economic downpour of bad news.

Add it all up and what have you got?

More people out of work, more kids leaving school early in hopes of finding some kind of job to help the family make ends meet, fewer young people attending college, and deeper pockets of poverty handed down to the next generation.

Meanwhile, Congress sits safe in the knowledge that it will perpetuate itself and its high-paying jobs and benefits without understanding that in their zeal for returning control of the White House to the GOP, they will crush the very people who put them in office.

 

Ed Kociela is an opinion columnist. The opinions stated in this article are his and not representative of St. George News.

Email: edkociela.mx@gmail.com

Twitter: @STGnews, @EdKociela

Copyright St. George News, StGeorgeUtah.com Inc., 2014, all rights reserved.

 

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100 Comments

  • Koolaid November 18, 2014 at 7:34 am

    Doesn’t Utah have the nation’s highest rate of children without health care? You would think parents would petition their state government (those Republicans) for some affordable health care plan. Do these parents prefer living off government welfare programs, those socialist programs Republicans despise?

    • Machew November 19, 2014 at 7:55 am

      blah blah blah Democrats good, Republicans bad. Blah blah blah blah more taxation, bigger government! Blah blah blah blah Utah sucks, Mormons are bad. Blah blah blah we are all going to die! Thank you for the insights Ed.

      • matthew November 19, 2014 at 11:22 pm

        your insights were equally as stimulating. I included less blah blahs.

  • Ismot2 November 18, 2014 at 7:37 am

    Let me be the first to say it, Ed is a Progressive BIG government communist. The GOP did not shut down the Government.

    • Bender November 18, 2014 at 8:28 am

      “The GOP did not shut down the Government.”
      .
      ISMOT2 checks in from an alternate reality. Which way does the toilet swirl when you flush there ISMOT2?

      • Spencer November 18, 2014 at 1:27 pm

        Republicans tried to pass funding on a piece by piece basis to fund necessary programs while congress discussed other more heated topics like the ACA. But democrats said no, it was an all or nothing for them because they didn’t want their precious ACA to get touched. Sadly most Americans are finding out how damaging the ACA is and democrats wouldn’t listen to their desire to have things reconsidered. If you don’t agree with me, that’s fine, but facts don’t lie and the mid term results are screaming so loud I can’t hear democrats excuses anymore over the people’s desire to get big government spending addicts to change their behavior.

        • Bender November 19, 2014 at 10:54 am

          Whoa SPENCER you’re also in ISMOT2’s parallel universe. He didn’t answer the toilet question. Have you flushed yet?
          .
          The president’s party almost always loses ground in the mid-term of his final year. Don’t read too much into the Democratic losses. The public hates both parties. I hate both parties.

    • Floyd Kitchen November 18, 2014 at 8:43 am

      No but they had a big part of the problem and if you don`t see or didn’t see it then your in the blind. The expense of living in Utah for the gain of the wealthy is way out of hand. Just take a look around St George and the monster homes that are being built. Now it is proposed to raise the gas tax of course and the Utility tax. Everything is going up in the tax price for the wealth of the state and no break for the middle class. Just look around. It is all around us. I think it is a disgrace. The Church is not doing it. It is the GOP Law Makers both State and federal that want it there way or no way. The GOP right this moment are working to make this president a failure instead of trying to make things better for Family, Children and the middle class. Take a look around. It is going on right in front of all of us while the fat cats continue to fill there pockets. For some the option is to leave the State and of course make room for those that don`t know what is happening to move in and continue to raise and pay the high increases in most of the living expenses of the State of Utah. $2.80 a gallon of gas in Nevada just next door to Utah still over $3.00 in is appalling. Just go buy an order of groceries and see what you get for $100.00. Not much. I used to do Comparison Shopping for a well known nation wide company and there were differences. Here in Utah the prices in all stick together as one raise the others follow. Look around. It’s not hard to figure it out. It’s no secret our Government of The people and for The People is out of hand and continuing to make the wealthy wealthier and the poor poorer. We the people continue to vote the same people in that are causing all this to take place. Who is to blame. If I could have it my way there wouldn`t be parties of government. There would be one government with one objective. That would be to help all the people not just a few. I can’t even go to my bank any longer and get a simple Notary of a will in Utah. I have been told I have to go to an attorney to get a simple signature from a notary that has a stamp. For what? Your right for a hefty price. It specifically states in the rule book. IN THE STATE OF UTAH it will be done that way. To suggest that anyone is a communist in speaking the truth is cheap. Look around you. If it is a communist thing then all involved in government are a part of it. Just look around. It is sad to say the least.

      .

  • Jacob November 18, 2014 at 7:46 am

    Seriously guys, why do you keep posting pieces written by Ed Kociela. The guy is such a pessimist. I’ve never seen a local news company post such blatantly one sided articles. Ed seems to have a personal vendetta against Utah. His opinion is getting really old. Everything he writes is just negative all around and it is becoming quite a turn off from your entire site.

    • My Evil Twin November 18, 2014 at 11:30 am

      No one is holding a gun to your (pin)head and making you read Kociela’s columns. In fact, nobody is holding a gun to your (pin)head and making you read SGNews. Don’t be a total dip all your life! OK so you don’t like what Ed has to say. That doesn’t mean that he shouldn’t be allowed his space, because there are people out there who find his columns interesting and welcome his “different” point of view.
      I sure don’t agree with what Ed says, most of the time! But it is my choice whether to read it or not. You are another jerk who believes that because you don’t like something, it should be taken out and killed. GROW UP.

      • Koolaid November 19, 2014 at 8:51 am

        Jacob for communism (aka Utah Republican)

    • Tony November 18, 2014 at 12:59 pm

      Agreed!

    • Notagain November 18, 2014 at 1:56 pm

      Jacob,
      Having a bad day today are we? St. George News knows what their doing. They put the usual disclaimer on his opinion crap articles. They do the same for that conservative nut case too. St. George News’s real aim is getting you to click on the ARREST log so you can see your relatives mug shots. (I think I seen your daddy there yesterday).

  • Real Life November 18, 2014 at 8:08 am

    Utah. Last in education, first in making babies. Pretty much sums it up.

    • Lillith70 November 18, 2014 at 4:11 pm

      Not last in test scores of the kids educated. Utah gets bang for its buck.

      Personally i would like church run schools. Now yowl and howl at that one.

      • Real Life November 18, 2014 at 8:37 pm

        What kind of church Lillith? Which denomination are we talking about here? I bet I have a good guess.

        • Herd November 19, 2014 at 8:52 am

          They already have a massive infusion of church koolaid.

  • Alice November 18, 2014 at 8:09 am

    Boy, what a negative nellie!

  • Red Rocker November 18, 2014 at 8:19 am

    Again, I agree with Ed K.
    The situation in America, is the exact thing that causes socialist revolutions…. Power and wealth in the hands of the few, with no hope of advancement for the masses.,,,The fan is spinning.

  • Notagain November 18, 2014 at 8:39 am

    Your so predictable Ed.
    I’m waiting for you to plug the benefits of living under a new form of government with Sharia law being the benchmark of compassion and advancement.

  • Big Guy November 18, 2014 at 8:52 am

    In the famous words of Sen. Daniel Patrick Moynihan, “Everyone is entitled to their own opinions, but they are not entitled to their own facts.” Ed, you’ve invented a number of “facts” above and selectively used others; time and space don’t allow me respond. And your ultra-liberal mindset is exposed when you say, “Utah is at the bottom of the pile when it comes to per-student spending.” Tax and spend, then tax and spend some more. If something isn’t working, it’s because we didn’t spend enough. For your information, Utah is above average in college entrance exam scores. Go figure. Spending matters to liberals, results matter to conservatives.

    • MickeyD November 18, 2014 at 7:04 pm

      Well said @Big Guy, Ed has equated “spending” to “success” in education. The data does not bear out that increased spending will produce better results. Actually, rather than an embarrassment, we should receive accolades for demonstrating such high achievement with such few dollars.

    • Spencer November 19, 2014 at 12:14 am

      Thank you! It’s funny to read everyone bashing conservative utah and “bad big business” but their answer is “good big government”. I keep reading about the little guys getting kicked again and again etc. I’m a full time college student and working full time. I make $11 an hour and I have zero student debt and don’t get a single grant or subsidy. But for some reason liberals think that it’s impossible to survive without big brother carrying you. When I have achieved my goals and become successful, hopefully a millionare it will be because of me and not according to the president ” you didn’t get there all by yourself” sorry liberals, you still can make it in America if your willing to work your butt off. The problem is most of you don’t want to and when you see someone that is successful after a lifetime of hard work he’s somehow a bad guy… If you want a socialist society please move to Canada

  • Patriot November 18, 2014 at 8:58 am

    Eddy boy , how unfortunate that after leaving Mexico you got stuck in a horrible place like southern Utah .
    I’ve lived here all my life , I’ve seen a lot worse poverty , we manage to care for each other .
    I’m sorry you feel left out.
    How about giving amnesty to all the illegal Mexicans , that will take jobs from the fathers of all these impoverish children , write about that eddy boy.
    Why don’t you write about places that have real social problems like Detroit , Chicago . Where 75% of all children are born out a father.
    The picture for your article , at first glance looked like the Nevada test site fall out from the 1950s showing the prevailing winds.
    Poor Ed just another problem .

  • Patriot November 18, 2014 at 9:10 am

    Hi Ed, You probably did not hear about the thousands of Children that crossed our southern boarder just recently (without parents) . Look it up Ed , and when you do will you let me know at what poverty level they are and write about how that affects are community’s here.

    • jimmyJamm November 18, 2014 at 9:40 am

      I agree, a lot of kids and illegals crossing the borders….they feel they can hide until they ask for hand outs…..I-15 is the dumping grounds for all these poor children. that brings stats down in our area.

      • Herd November 18, 2014 at 10:17 am

        Wow! Anyone who believes that claim has been spending some serious time drinking from the Utah Conservative Kool-Aid well.

      • Herd November 18, 2014 at 10:18 am

        I bet you voted for Shurtleff and Swallow.

  • bologna sandwich November 18, 2014 at 9:19 am

    Why in the world does St George News allow Ed to write and publish anything?! Everything that comes out of this man’s mouth is completely one-sided and at the same time he degrades everything good about St George and Utah in general to help promote his own agenda.

    • My Evil Twin November 18, 2014 at 11:33 am

      Possibly for the same reason they published your drivel here?

  • Bobbi November 18, 2014 at 9:24 am

    I agree. The GOP did not shut down the Government. You need to look into this a little more and do better research. Where do YOU feel the money all comes from to extend welfare benefits? There are certain things that need to be fixed in order to move ahead. You people think the money grows off trees?

  • travd November 18, 2014 at 9:31 am

    “Per-student spending” does not equaled better results….. Parent involvement however does.

    Also, “School” does not equal education.

    And… Our kids cant find “better jobs” that do not exist. Nor do schools teach the skills children need to be our future innovators, and job creators.

    We live in an age were EVERYTHING you ever wanted to know is FREE and at your finger tips at ALL TIMES!…. So why then, do we need to raise the cost of schooling? Technology has made schools obsolete and yet we keep dumping more and more money into them.

    • My Evil Twin November 18, 2014 at 11:35 am

      Yeah, all we need is a computer! We don’t need no stinkin’ schools. In fact, we need more “burger flippers,” so all you kids out there, drop out of school and go to work in a fast food joint.

  • Herd November 18, 2014 at 9:48 am

    Welcome to Utah where everyone hates the Federal Government but where everyone is first in line for Federal Government handouts.

    • Bender November 18, 2014 at 10:39 am

      Except for the loony far right wing commentators in St. George News HERD. None of them sully their hands with federal benefits. Medicare, U.S. Post office, research dollars that fostered the transistor, the integrated circuit, and the internet, FDA oversight of prescription drugs and food, research that made the US the breadbasket of the world, federal water projects that have made housing and farming possible in much of the West, the Interstate highway system, military might that keeps a lid on the Middle East so fuel prices stay in check — heroes like BIG GUY don’t really use those handouts because, well, the gubmit sucks and Obama is a communist.

      • S Steed November 18, 2014 at 7:52 pm

        The FDA has a revolving door with Monsanto, the post office failed once they lost their monopoly, and killing Muslims is costing a lot more than what the higher cost of fuel would be. The gubmit is also the people who suppressed technology that would have made oil obsolete as a power source over a hundred years ago, lied about every war weve been in, killed more people than any other country ever, turned education into indoctrination, dissolved the middle class by bailing out billionaires, and turned the breadbasket of the world into the most hated country on earth. But yay for Stockholm syndrome; I’m glad you like it.

        • Bender November 19, 2014 at 10:56 am

          “The gubmit is also the people who suppressed technology that would have made oil obsolete ”
          .
          Entering tin foil hat territory here. Any more crazy theories you want to air now that you have my attention?

  • Duks November 18, 2014 at 9:58 am

    So Ed, why didn’t things get better when the Libs controlled the white house and the congress? get your head out of the sand, quit drinking the Kool-Aid, and come back to reality. No matter which party in power nothing gets completed, only stuffing their pockets with money from lobbyists

  • goldie November 18, 2014 at 9:59 am

    Well-said, Ed. Children in poverty, who wonder if and when they will eat again, who live in their parents’ vehicles, or who move from motel to motel or sleep on the couches of friends face myriad challenges — education, health issues, social interaction…the list goes on. Yes, we should absolutely be ashamed of ourselves as a city, county and country. This is not a D vs R problem, nor a progressive/liberal/conservative issue. Everyone has a stake here. Wake up, Utah. The price we will pay for our lack of attention to our children’s realities will cost us dearly.

  • Teetum November 18, 2014 at 10:19 am

    State the facts before you promote your left spinning agenda. Obviously you are part of the mainstream media who currently supports the corruption in the White House, then blames the GOP for the problems you have caused. Never accepting responsibility for anything you do. People like you continually complain about Utah and it’s people-if you don’t like it move! It’s the person you put in the Oval Office who are destroying the country we all love. You should get to know the candidate you elected a little better before you support his corrupt agenda. He can’t work with anyone! His buddy Harry Reid has left nearly 400 bills sent to the Senate by Congress, sitting on his desk the last 2 years that could have helped Americans who are struggling. They care nothing about what’s best for this country or the people, only their political agenda! The Republicans taking control of the Senate, was the American people speaking that they are sick of this Administration. Democrats have left their party because of the far left agenda. People are sick of the constant lies and deception, breaking of laws, and a flat out going against the Constitution by someone who has sworn to uphold it. They continue to down grade our military, treat our servicemen and veterans terrible, and won’t allow our border patrol agents to do their jobs- letting millions of illegals and dangerous criminals to cross our borders. Terroist have been released at Guantonomo Bay, and are reunited with their terrorist groups, who continue to kill Americans. The GOP didn’t shut down the government either. The person who you put in the White House did. Locking the Veterans memorials so they couldn’t visit them, closing the White House tours, and our Parks-anything to hurt Americans. Everyday it’s something new. Pray for this great country of ours.

    • jen November 18, 2014 at 11:51 am

      Shouting AMEN to everything teetum said….perfect comment to this liberal drivel.

  • GI Tract November 18, 2014 at 10:23 am

    I bet most of the Ed haters are supporters of the that welfare dreg Bundy

  • Patriot November 18, 2014 at 10:24 am

    Look up City-data.com 101 city’s with the most poverty. I recently seen a map like this the poverty is all in blue states. Write about that eddy boy.

  • Whirled Peas November 18, 2014 at 10:27 am

    Hi Ed, Where did you get your numbers? I did not see any references. I would be interested in seeing poverty levels with factual numbers comparing red and blue states.

  • Delong November 18, 2014 at 10:42 am

    There are very few good jobs in southern Utah. And both sides of the political isle are to blame. I’ve lived here my whole life and realized a long time ago that if you want to live here, working three jobs is a must to support a family. It’s sad people can’t see why this is.

  • Visiting Anthropologist November 18, 2014 at 10:51 am

    Well, say, Patriot, I don’t know where you “seen” that map, but my guess is it was in the back of one of those magazines you like to read…’cause there’s other information out there that the bluest state in the country, Oregon, has the fewest durned kids living in poverty. I know, I know, if it don’t match yur magazine, it don’t count.

    Great job again, Eddy boy, bringing light to the darkened skies of southern Utah and the Mayberry Mormons. (Where’d ya put that lime jello, Kaysleen?)

  • Steve November 18, 2014 at 11:01 am

    Hmmm. I grew up in Utah in a household near poverty level with underfunded Utah education. I managed to attend college (in Utah) on scholarships and federal grants. With that Utah education I secured a good paying career in and outside of Utah. It’s not how much you fund per student that counts. Its what you do with that funding.

    • laytonian November 18, 2014 at 1:49 pm

      @STEVE says “on scholarships and federal grants”.

      Say goodbye to that, if Mia Love gets her way.

    • Polyg November 18, 2014 at 8:09 pm

      So you enjoyed suckling off that government teat for how many years. Are you one of the anti-government people with your hand out for more government welfare assistance?

  • The truth November 18, 2014 at 12:00 pm

    Let’s be truthful, the reason is simple, The old terminology is WET BACkS. And you welcomes everyone with open arms.

    • S Steed November 18, 2014 at 7:24 pm

      There is another term: Sheeple; and we should keep in mind that the Mexicans aren’t embezzling our tax dollars by the billions, and Utah used to be Mexico. So who really deserves to be here? Just if we are being truthful.

  • dancing infidel November 18, 2014 at 12:04 pm

    Eddy K. is merely still upset that the dems. lost the Senate and the repubs. gained more in the House. Eddy boy is like a little kid who is throwing a tantrum because he lost in the marble game and of course, lost all his marbles. Eddy knows fully well who is to blame for all of this country’s problems, but he’ll be last one to admit it. How can he???? His boy Obama is a lame duck and he will find out how difficult it will be to pursue his bad agenda. It really made me laugh in the part Eddy wrote about ” a cold-hearted Congress that doesn’t want to budge on extending unemployment benefits”. Currently unemployment benefits are for a total of 99 weeks. That’s just under two years of taxpayer funded benefits for NOT working. Sheesh Eddy, how many more weeks do you think people should be paid for not working?? And please stop using children to push your liberal, progressive, leftist, communist, “for the collective good” agenda. I suppose that 49% (that’s almost half) of the nations people are on food stamps, would you fell better if that number were 100% Eddy boy?? Like I said, Eddy boy is just pi$$ed off that his team lost and now all he can do is whine about it.

  • kyleg November 18, 2014 at 12:32 pm

    When are all you people going to wake up and realize a bigger government is not the solution to our problems. If people were left alone to make their own desicions regarding charity(forced charity called “taxes”) the world would be a far better place. Utah is the number one state when it comes to charity and people helping one another. I for one am not a fan of welfare because of how it is abused.

    All you left wing believers who think raising minimum wage will solve the problems of those in poverty. Well let me tell you something. When minimum wage is increased businesses redo the statistical data on a neighborhood seeing that they make more money and therefore raise their prices. If you want to solve poverty try getting inflation down and stop government spending on stupid things the government shouldn’t be involved in the first place.

    As for politicians they are volunteering their time to be in their positions. And volunteers don’t ask for a paycheck. So politicians who make out like thieves for what little work they actually do and accomplish are highly overpaid.

    As for you Ed. you are entitled to your opinion. Just realize this country grew into what it is now due to people like you who think the government is the answer to all your problems.

    • S Steed November 18, 2014 at 7:14 pm

      Thank You.

    • Polyg November 18, 2014 at 8:07 pm

      So is that why you voted Republican and for more taxes and more laws? How much do you allow your city government to control your lives? You can’t even go dancing without permission from your city. That’s how pathetic people are in this town.

  • freaks November 18, 2014 at 1:05 pm

    You’re a joke ed. No one takes you seriously or values your opinion. Voters have spoken and they’re tiredbof your worthless liberal socialistic nazi democrats. Suck it ed.

    • Visiting Anthropologist November 18, 2014 at 3:55 pm

      Freaks, this is one of the funniest comments ever. “Liberal socialistic nazi democrats”? Hilarious.

    • Ron November 18, 2014 at 9:12 pm

      Sorry, Freaks, but lots of us take Ed seriously and value his opinion. Yes, Republicans won this time around . . . by slightly over half. That leaves a lot of people who still believe that government exists to promote the general welfare (which includes providing health care, guaranteeing a living wage, and promoting a sound, scientifically accurate education, among other things).

  • Douglas Martin November 18, 2014 at 1:17 pm

    Southern Utah wages are 28% lower than northern Utah. They brag about bringing in $11 and $12 hr jobs barely above poverty. When I moved here I took a big pay cut. I grew up in north Davis county where there’s lots of high paying manufacturing, Aerospace, Computer and Distribution jobs. With co training at the DATC and Weber vocational center and degrees from Weber and Utah State that go along with the skills needed for these employers. Southern Utah is a beautiful place to live but I am scraping it and am having a rough time. I moved here for my wife’s career at IHCwhich has been the only bright spot in Southern Utah withgeat jobs and with Dixie adding med training for future jobs. But for the rest of the county the only ones Making it are business owners who pay barely above poverty. That’s why you have so many fathers up working away from there families in North Dakota from this area. I am not impressed with the job our leaders are doing in bringing jobs here. Viaconis only a 12 to 24 hr job. And that’s what they will continue to bring in low pay jobs and then give these companies perks to come in.

    • sagemoon November 18, 2014 at 2:23 pm

      My husband and I are in the same situation you just described. Also, he was one of the people laid off from Viracon’s closure. He hated that job. Twelve hours of labor for half of what I earn. The only bright spot was the health insurance. Southern Utah is lacking in quality jobs. No professionals want to move here because all the jobs are blue collar. The blue collar people can’t work here because there are not enough jobs. I love living here but regret the lack of job opportunities at times.

      • Shoot November 18, 2014 at 4:00 pm

        But looky at the government provided splashpad and dog parks you got!

        • David M November 19, 2014 at 12:43 am

          And with the RAP tax they can take even more money for leisure activities hard working people have no time for.

          • Herd November 19, 2014 at 9:51 am

            Diaper Town taxation is only about the kids and old people

  • Koolaid November 18, 2014 at 1:45 pm

    Psssst! Hey everybody! Obama is going to take your guns! Death panels! …. brought to by Utah Republicans for office…

  • laytonian November 18, 2014 at 1:47 pm

    If you look at the SAGE results, you’ll see that most for-profit charter schools scored much lower than the “socialist” public schools.
    Utah’s ONLY solution will be to send more money to for-profit schools, so we can fail faster and only serve a minority of the population.
    Remember, if you’re not from a “good family” (you know what THAT means), you don’t count. Just pay your high taxes and subsidize the McMansions full of children.

  • laytonian November 18, 2014 at 1:48 pm

    Kyleg: “If people were left alone to make their own desicions regarding charity(forced charity called “taxes”) the world would be a far better place. ”

    I know EXACTLY what will happen: no one will contribute to what is REALLY needed. Your “charity” goes only to the moneychangers that Jesus through out of the temple.
    That is NOT charity; that is a tax deduction in exchange for being told a fantasy story.

  • Bob Thiess November 18, 2014 at 1:59 pm

    It’s not how much you spend, but how it’s spent. Running a school, or a school district, is so similar to running a business that every position from principal through superintendent should have at least a minor degree in business. A superintendent should have an MBA. To think that an individual that has been trained in education is qualified to run the businesses that are schools, is ludicrous.

  • smartypants November 18, 2014 at 2:38 pm

    I didn’t read all the comments but I have to laugh at this whole article. Lets turn child poverty into a GOP problem when Obama has had the rains for 6 yrs. Also note that kids don’t like to work anymore. I’m in construction and I don’t see the 18-20yr. old kids out working like I did 10 years ago. People don’t want to work. They want a handout.

    • Shoot November 18, 2014 at 4:02 pm

      Just like in 2006 when the economy began sinking into the largest recession since the Great Depression was Obama’s fault.

  • Bender November 18, 2014 at 4:13 pm

    ” I’m in construction and I don’t see the 18-20yr. old kids out working like I did 10 years ago. People don’t want to work. They want a handout.”
    .
    So this sounds like a Republican/Mormon problem since most of the kids here are LDS with Republican voting parents.

  • Lillith70 November 18, 2014 at 4:18 pm

    The FLDS and illegal aliens work under the table I hear. Drive by the food and food stamp handout places and look at the trucks the papa drives. Costs more that a trailer house?

    Statistics are just that numbers.

    I think that religious groups aid in clothing and feeding the poor. Free school lunch and breakfast which used to furnish more daily calories than the cardboard food Mrs. obama doles out. A little more meat and cheese to grow on like the taller American kid who have been here longer?

    Close to poverty level. That is the fault of the voters who voter for a far left revolutionary community organizing activist. IOW under the democrats the poverty is trickling upward as the middle class grows poorer.

  • limpd November 18, 2014 at 4:23 pm

    Maybe people who can’t afford to have children should wait until they can. That’s an idea. Don’t try to put me on a guilt trip when my husband and I have no higher education and aren’t on public assistance. Novel idea… wrap it up.

  • What's Funny November 18, 2014 at 5:09 pm

    I m a blue collar worker, my friends are blue collar workers. We live and work in so. Utah. Have a car payment 199.00 house 750.00 all the other bills most of you have. But I do buy modest things, relize where I fit in society. What’s funny is I pay 10 percent tithing and other donations to a church. I still have money left over every month, not a lot but I’m not going in the red. On the other hand I know friends that own their own business, they have to buy all high end products. They are extremely in debt with credit card bills that keep going up. Everyone must relize where they fit in life then spend accordingly. What’s funny Ed moved away then for some strange reason returned to so. Utah. He doesn’t like the people, or what the majority stands for. He doesn’t like the beliefs of the people or how they live but can’t seem to stay away. That’s funny.

    • Jo November 18, 2014 at 5:46 pm

      Instead of throwing that 10% away into the church coffers, you ought to invest it in retirement plan. A regular IRA is tax deductible (as is your 10% tithing), but you accrue interest and have money in your later years. Putting money in the church just makes the church richer while assuring nothing for your retirement years except being 10% poorer.

      • Rosie November 19, 2014 at 5:07 pm

        I paid that 10% to the church and an additional 20% into my 401k plan. No reason can’t do both. Retired now and we do very well thanks to the blessings of paying the Lord first. Maybe you should try it and see if it really works. But then I doubt you will because words are cheap and you can afford them.

        • Jo November 22, 2014 at 10:15 pm

          You threw away that 10% of your income

    • Maggie November 19, 2014 at 12:32 am

      Yep!!! To everything you wrote!
      Moved here because it is beautiful and affordable. Wasn’t in debt when I got here and still not in debt. Had friends where I previously lived ,made more friends here.
      Weather and people are nice and I feel pretty safe. People have more kids than they can afford everywhere I have lived. Schools pretty much suck everywhere in this country re the unions and tenure and the constant messing with teaching methods and subject matter. Some good Charter and Private schools ,but they are few and far between. There are rich and poor people all over this country and the government appears to be deciding who that will be for the next generation.
      Note to Ed…you will note that very recently we learned that Mr Gruber,an Obama supporter left taxpayers across this country $6 million poorer and the insurance companies,big Obama supporters have had record profits .In my household we are paying $4,000.00 more next year as our employer gets to drop our plan and pay the fines which is cheaper for them. So that company is richer yet ,all due to a Democratic/Progressive and their agenda.
      Lived in bigger,dirtier ,crime ridden cities my whole adult working life until I moved here….it is better here.
      Sometimes you do not need laws to correct all problems,sometimes you just need less laws and more people that want to do more than shout how awful it is.
      What are your solutions to the problems you shout about Ed. Everyweek I meet people who really do have ideas to make this community a better place to live and they are doing something about it . I mean beside’s whining and growing hate on an internet blog kind of thingy.

  • bishpoul November 18, 2014 at 5:20 pm

    Let’s clean house at the Washington County Assessors’ office for abuse of Authority.

    Bad Government.

  • A November 18, 2014 at 6:23 pm

    Thank you, St. George news , for this article. I see people actually complaining, because apparently they only want to live in an echo chamber and cannot handle having their notions challenged.

  • S Steed November 18, 2014 at 7:07 pm

    Welcome to the realization of fascism in America. It’s been going on since 1913 with the creation of the Fed; and its officially in your face since Citizens United. If you think the government does anything that represents the will of the people, you are kidding yourself. Its just another reality show to distract you, but with very real consequences. Turn off your tv, grow a garden, and get to know your neighbors.

    • Polyg November 18, 2014 at 8:04 pm

      Yeah, right, just like the polygamists, the group that’s paranoid of everyone and is nothing but a social welfare leach. Groups like the polygamists are the demise of this country. They contribute nothing and take everything.

      • S Steed November 18, 2014 at 9:36 pm

        I understand why you would think that if everthing you know about the pligs is from the MSM; but if you live in the St. George area there is good chance that the pligs built your house. Its funny you think that “groups like that” are the demise of this country, because there are no groups like that. Unless you are referring to groups used to scapegoat attention to keep the morons who believe what they see on TV from focusing on what is really happening. At least many of us still have our soul, and that’s more than you can say Ed. Nice pseudonym by the way.

      • Rosie November 19, 2014 at 5:03 pm

        I’ve known a few “plygs” and all I’ve ever seen was hard working, good families. Yes, they have a few problems with a small number of them, but overall those folks are much better than the nation in general. You’re just jealous maybe?

        • Wowsa November 22, 2014 at 10:17 pm

          SO why don’t you marry uncle warren? Better yet, serve your 12 year old girl up to him.

      • EyesOpenWide December 18, 2014 at 2:17 pm

        You are so right, Polyg! All these people are blind to the reality of what’s going in in their state. Ed’s hit the nail on the head, but people have their heads in the sand. It is indeed a sad state of affairs to continue to watch the Rich get richer and the poor get poorer. Wake up, voters, and make some long needed changes!
        Thank you, Ed, for continuing to put the truth out there for all to see. God bless you for your contributions to society, even while you are being criticized by those who are unable to see the facts as they are!

    • Koolaid December 18, 2014 at 5:46 pm

      You know, just like people say if you don’t like the crap holes in southern Utah you can leave, the same applies with this country. If you don’t like it, you can leave. Maybe go to your imaginary Kolob planet with your harem?

  • eddantes56 November 18, 2014 at 7:52 pm

    “According to all of the experts, the most important key to breaking the cycle of inter-generational poverty is education and guess what? Utah is at the bottom of the pile when it comes to per-student spending.”

    These so-called experts are flat out wrong. The key to breaking the cycle of inter-generational poverty is changing the culture. Funny how a family of modest means with a mother and a father who deliver love and disciplline, teach a work ethic, show an example of discipline, perserverance , optimism, delay self-gratification, et al can create children who turn into productive and happy adults. This model has been going on in our country since its foundation. It has nothing to do with money or education for that matter.

    As long as Urban America live by third world values and mores and large numbers of immigrants do not assimilate and instead bring their culture to the U.S., the educational achievement will continue to stagnate and/or regress.

    Hey Ed, let’s go back to the 1960s when the avg $ spent on a student was $2,000 and those students scored higher on readin, writin and rithmative than the students of today who get anywhere from $8,000 to $15,000 spent on them each year.

    BTW Ed, in the 50 yrs since LBJ started the WAR ON POVERTY, we have transferred circa 22 Trillion dollars to fight poverty and the percentage is about the same today as it was in 1964, 15%. Hmmm. maybe we need double down and spent 44 Trillion over the next 50 years. NOT!

  • Tight Magic Undies November 18, 2014 at 8:48 pm

    It’s all good Ed. The under-paid teachers will pick up the slack of the ultra depressed moms who can’t take care of their seven kids ’cause she’s too jacked up on her meds, while dad is out chasing tail, drinking 3.2 beer, and hoping know one notices.

    • Tight Magic Undies November 18, 2014 at 8:49 pm

      …. no one.

  • hammerhead November 18, 2014 at 10:49 pm

    I am the St George news would ever publish from a writer like this. I left California to get away from these left wing idiots. Got back to the pit you came from and stay there.

  • brett November 19, 2014 at 8:44 am

    Absolutely correct, there will be a dramatic increase in Americans living below the poverty level when those numbers are reported later in 2015. The Americans out of the workforce for 32.7 weeks or longer, has doubled since 2007, and no American has received Emergency Extended Unemployment Compensation since 2013, which historically unprecedented in similar economic situations. An Extension is needed to help families in their search for employment.

  • Rachel November 19, 2014 at 9:07 am

    Ed, I bet your English teacher loved you. Bringing a bunch of random, rather unrelated studies together to push forward your agenda… bravo. The liberal higher education system couldn’t be prouder. (heavy sarcasm, in case they didn’t teach you that. 🙂 )

  • dancing infidel November 19, 2014 at 9:53 am

    I am very surprised that Ed Kociela is not, has never been and probably never will become a part of the Obama administration. Sounds just like the type that old Barry would want on his team. Ed would be oh so proud to be hanging with the types like Pelosi, Reid, Schumer, Boxer, Holder, and of course his #1and #2 idols: Obama and Jarrett. You would be in good company Ed…..now go dream about what it could have been like.

  • Rosie November 19, 2014 at 4:56 pm

    I grew up in St Geo. and was raised below the poverty level. I am 64 now and doing fine thank you. Mr. Ed obviously has an agenda and is a progressive democrat. Oregon, where I live now, is about #48 in the US for education. Very poor. Right down there with Arkansas and Mississippi while we continue to throw more money at it. Money doesn’t make teachers good ones. Get rid of tenured crappy teachers and put money into the pockets of really good teachers, not the administration and PTA. Utah has problems, true, but please don’t overstate it just because you have a forum to do so Mr. Ed. Us native Utahns are very proud of our little Mormon state and resent your liberal ideals. Go back to California please.

    • Chris November 22, 2014 at 9:00 pm

      If you are so proud of “our little Mormon state”, then why do you live in Oregon now?

  • Kenny November 19, 2014 at 9:46 pm

    I moved out of Planet Utah mainly because of the crap wages. My wife and I moved to Seattle and found found employment doing the exact same thing we were doing in Utah and doubled our income. We went from poverty to middle class just by moving out of that place and if the wacko Utah Conservative base had their way they would even pay less.

  • Judy Williams December 5, 2014 at 5:23 pm

    Utans are NOT concerned about children. They’re concerned about their OWN children, NOT anyone else’s.

    • Koolaid December 18, 2014 at 5:48 pm

      And how the government that they hate is going to pay for their kids.

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