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Let’s think about that for a moment. In this country, we are living at a time of nearly full-employment. Although interest rates have headed back up some recently, we are still enjoying some of the lowest interest rates our country has seen in decades. When I bought my house in 1990, I was paying over 10% interest, and I remember being excited when a few years later I was able to refinance at 7¼%. Today, most people are paying less than 7%.

Think of those described as poor in our country. According to the 2000 census, 46% of all poor households own their own homes. 76% of poor households have air conditioning, while 30 years ago, only 36% of the entire US population enjoyed air conditioning.

In 1973, the average new house had 1660 square feet. Today the average new home being built is 2,434 square feet. The average poor American has more living space than the average individual living in Paris, London, Vienna, Athens and other cities throughout Europe. (Note: These comparisons are to the average citizens in foreign countries not to those classified as poor.) I remember hearing at the Jerusalem Model at the Holy Land that in Israel’s early days, the average home in Jerusalem had only 300-600 square feet.

Nearly three-quarters of poor households own a car; 30% own two or more cars. Ninety-seven percent of poor households have a color television. Over half own two or more color televisions. Seventy-eight percent have a VCR or DVD player. Sixty-two percent have cable or satellite TV reception. Seventy-three percent own microwave ovens; more than half have a stereo, and a third have an automatic dishwasher. As a group the poor are far from being chronically undernourished. Most poor children today are ...

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