Download Betrayed: Politics, Power, and Prosperity by Seth D. Kaplan (auth.) PDF

By Seth D. Kaplan (auth.)

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1, but most suffer from many of them. Furthermore, because the poor are so exposed and vulnerable to sudden jolts of all kinds, a problem in just one area of their lives can tip the balance and send them plummeting into disaster. * * * It’s hard to generalize about a group that includes up to one in every two people on the planet. But, as the table shows, almost all poor people in the developing world face one thing in common: little or no access to opportunity. This chapter explains how this lack of opportunity prevents the poor in the developing world from bettering their lives.

50 per day (the median poverty line of all developing countries except the poorest 15),6 then, as noted in chapter 2, about 3 billion people qualify as poor. 7 That proportion is dropping, but more slowly; the total number is higher than it was in 1981, but lower than it was in the late 1990s. 2 shows the progress made between 1981 and 2008 in tackling different levels of poverty. 25, but it hardly means that one is living in the lap of luxury. , time-saving) assets such as bicycles, sewing machines, phones, or anything but the most basic farming tools.

Life in conflict-prone places (including Afghanistan, Somalia, and the Congo) is the hardest. That is not to say that life is completely unbearable—new technologies and medicines have reached most parts of these countries and improved many lives in some way—but poverty is grinding and all but inescapable. Relative levels of poverty vary a lot depending on the region and country. 17 In 2008, Sub-Saharan Africa was home to 30 percent of the world’s poor, up from 11 percent in 1981. Another part of the world unlucky enough to have seen its share of global extreme poverty rise is South Asia.

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