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Ending Poverty: Changing Behavior, Guaranteeing Income, and Reforming Government

Recorded on December 5, 2008

  Location: The Heritage Foundation's Lehrman Auditorium

Poverty is a relentless problem in America, and the current panoply of government programs designed to alleviate it are not working.  In Ending Poverty, Joseph V. Kennedy presents a new approach to government policy, one that is capable of eliminating preventable poverty within the foreseeable future.  He posits an aggressive, conservative, governmental reform plan that is institutionalized through an income contract between the individual and the government and will guarantee adequate income for all who participate.

Based on three main principles - government policy is more effective when it channels market forces than when it overrides them, individuals should have more control over the resources that government spends on their behalf, and access to a decent life free of poverty should be seen as a conditional right in American society - Kennedy sets out reform guidelines for education, health care, housing, retirement savings, and taxation.

Joseph V. Kennedy is an attorney and economist.  He has held several positions in the public and private sectors including Chief Economist of the U. S. Department of Commerce, General Counsel for the U. S. Senate Permanent Subcommittee on Investigations, Senior Economist with the Joint Economic Committee in Congress and over ten years as an economist and attorney with the Manufacturer's Alliance.