Popular Media

Growth, Not Redistribution, Is the Solution to Poverty

When one thinks of America’s war in the 1960s during the administration of President Lyndon Johnson, the Vietnam War comes to mind. The American government spent about $175 billion and the lives of about 58,000 men in a futile attempt to stop the communist takeover of South Vietnam. But as costly as this war was, it pales in comparison with the other war President Johnson, and all subsequent presidents have fought in vain—the “war on poverty.” In an address to Congress in January 1964, President Johnson declared an “unconditional war on poverty.” The effort has been almost entirely futile and has cost the American taxpayers more than $30 trillion. This is more than three times the cost of all military wars from the American Revolution to the War on Terror.

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