Generosity

This sentiment shouldn’t be seasonal. There are a lot of families struggling to make ends meet, both in the world at large and here in the US. Someone can have a full time job without making enough to feed a family. In some cases, they keep three jobs, and with the cost of childcare, it barely works.

When a worker can have a full time job and still qualify for welfare, there’s a problem.

If you don’t have these problems, think about those who do.

The “fiction” about differences in cost of living justifying differences in pay is largely just that. In some areas of the US, families have a lot more spending money than others. If we apply a simple and somewhat arbitrary rule of having a $40,000 gap:

  • Connecticut
  • Maryland
  • Massachusetts
  • New Hampshire
  • New Jersey

North Dakota just misses the cut by a trivial $200 per year.

In many other states, discretionary cash is less than half of what consumers in these top states enjoy. Louisiana and Alabama hold the bottom position, with residents having median discretionary income of less than $14,000 per year.

The Federal Poverty Level guideline for 2010 for a 2-person family is $16,910. The state data shown are for 2018, the latest full year available.

Moral: Be grateful if you have enough, and help those who don’t. If you don’t have enough, you need to think about moving.

STATEMINIMALLY ADEQUATE INCOME FOR 2-PERSON FAMILYSTATE MEDIAN INCOME% OF HOUSEHOLDS WITH $10,000 OR LESS IN ANNUAL INCOME
Alabama$48,005$63,8375.1%
Alaska$64,342$89,8472.9%
Arizona $52,069 $69,981 3.9%
Arkansas $42,991 $58,080 4.4%
California $59,349 $86,165 3.4%
Colorado $54,205 $88,955 2.6%
Connecticut $57,696 $98,100 2.6%
Delaware $54,345 $79,386 3.0%
Florida $49,914 $66,995 3.8%
Georgia $50,437 $71,457 4.5%
Hawai’i $66,352 $95,448 2.7%
Idaho $46,179 $65,987 2.8%
Illinois $51,039 $81,313 3.3%
Indiana $44,878 $70,150 3.8%
Iowa $46,541 $76,068 2.7%
Kansas $47,280 $74,042 2.8%
Kentucky $43,661 $62,228 5.5%
Louisiana $48,181 $61,847 5.6%
Maine $52,710 $72,390 3.1%
Maryland $56,552 $101,437 2.5%
Massachusetts $55,734 $101,548 2.7%
Michigan $45,145 $72,036 4.0%
Minnesota $51,051 $89,039 2.1%
Mississippi $46,141 $57,380 6.5%
Missouri $46,603 $69,188 3.5%
Montana $49,867 $68,940 2.9%
Nebraska $49,254 $75,990 2.5%
Nevada $45,891 $71,864 3.5%
New Hampshire $50,717 $93,930 2.2%
New Jersey $56,496 $101,4042.8%
New Mexico $43,372 $58,760 6.4%
New York $59,420 $83,311 4.0%
North Carolina $52,857 $67,816 4.0%
North Dakota $46,439 $86,205 2.4%
Ohio $43,359 $72,028 4.0%
Oklahoma $48,265 $64,082 4.6%
Oregon $52,949 $77,655 3.2%
Pennsylvania $50,409 $77,491 3.5%
Rhode Island $48,983 $84,212 3.5%
South Carolina $49,466 $65,742 4.3%
South Dakota $47,393 $72,183 3.3%
Tennessee $47,398 $65,656 4.5%
Texas $46,717 $71,868 4.2%
Utah $47,333 $81,599 2.3%
Vermont $58,372 $80,452 2.9%
Virginia $55,993 $88,929 2.8%
Washington $50,797 $87,652 2.5%
West Virginia $48,704 $57,718 5.6%
Wisconsin $46,795 $76,814 2.6%
Wyoming $51,341 $78,352 2.8%

Sources: https://247wallst.com/special-report/2019/11/25/income-it-takes-for-family-to-be-considered-poor-in-every-state/11/

The model used to calculate the minimum income required for an adequate existence is provided by the Economic Policy Institute.

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