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Translated from Gegenstandpunkt: Politische Vierteljahreszeitschrift 4-2005, Gegenstandpunkt Verlag, Munich

Every American President still declares it to be a decisive component of his program to want to take care of the living conditions of that section of its citizenry that never manages to take care of its own maintenance. However, the continual repetition of this message is never meant as an admission of some sort of failure on this front, as a national self-criticism perhaps. Poverty after all is the indestructible downside of American wealth: if, in defiance of all government efforts, growing wealth is accompanied by a tendency for the poor to become ever poorer in increasing numbers, then that’s just the situation that state power sees itself confronted by; a “challenge” it faces and for which it always seeks, and must seek, suitable “answers” anew.