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Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Awareness of poverty over three centuries

Martin Ravallion
14 February 2011

For how long have we cared about poverty? Tracing the number of references to the word “poverty” in books published since 1700, this column shows that there was marked increase between 1740 and 1790, culminating in a “Poverty Enlightenment”. Attention then faded through the 19th and 20th centuries, leaving room for the second Poverty Enlightenment in 1960 – and interest in poverty still rising.
"The last three centuries have seen a shift away from complacent acceptance of poverty, and even contempt for poor people, to the view that society, the economy and government should be judged in part at least by their success in reducing poverty. There are a number of possible explanations for this change. Greater overall affluence in the world has probably made it harder to excuse poverty. Expanding democracy has given new political voice to poor people. And new knowledge about poverty has created the potential for more well-informed action."


D B A D, St. Nick!

Port Authority sued over still-unbuilt church near ground zero

By Chris Kokenes, CNN

The lawsuit, filed Monday in federal court in Manhattan, cites "...arrogance, bad faith, and fraudulent conduct" on the part of the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey in an agreement that would have allowed St. Nicholas Church to rebuild at 130 Liberty St., adjacent to the church's original location.
The church claims that the Port Authority reneged on paying $20 million in due consideration for their property at 155 Cedar St., where the church building originally stood.
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But the authority said the church made extra demands that threatened to delay the construction of the entire site. The authority said it made its final offer in 2009 of up to $60 million and told St. Nicholas that the World Trade Center could not be delayed by the issue. It says the church rejected the offer and walked away.
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"We assumed we agreed that a deal was on the table" Arey said. "St. Nicholas no longer exists, and it needs to be rebuilt for ethical reasons. There are other things that are relevant than just money."

Morning Paper Rule #1: Read the comics first.

B.C. by Johnny Hart
Baby Blues by Rick Kirkman and Jerry Scott
Zits by Jerry Scott and Jim Borgman