Garbage In, Garbage Out

The great 21st century economic divide can find people worlds apart living in close physical proximity, often separated by little more than a few dumpsters. “Trash picking is a profession more often associated with shantytowns and favelas than a city at the doorstep of Silicon Valley. The Global Alliance of Waste Pickers, a nonprofit research and advocacy organization, counts more than 400 trash picking organizations across the globe, almost all of them in Latin America, Africa and southern Asia. But trash scavengers exist in many United States cities and, like the rampant homelessness in San Francisco, are a signpost of the extremes of American capitalism. A snapshot from 2019: One of the world’s richest men and a trash picker, living a few minutes’ walk from each other.” The NYT: In San Francisco, Making a Living From Your Billionaire Neighbor’s Trash.

+ “Their savings accounts are stretched. Their health and retirement benefits inadequate. They need more than they have. They’re not outliers, either. Household income is lower today than before the recession in almost half the counties in Greater Cincinnati. Poverty is worse in one-third of those counties. Wages for the poorest workers have barely budged since the recovery began. The recession ended years ago, and the economy is undeniably better. But for those still trying to find their way back, the road is long and hard.” Reporters at the Cincinnati Enquirer set out to discover if we’ve actually recovered from the Great Recession. This is what they found.

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