The Spark

the Voice of
The Communist League of Revolutionary Workers–Internationalist

“The emancipation of the working class will only be achieved by the working class itself.”
— Karl Marx

California’s Working Poor

Nov 23, 2015

Almost one in six Californians lives in poverty, based on the U.S. government’s official poverty limit of $24,230 per year income for a family of four. But reality is even worse than that. The government has another poverty rate, adjusted to the cost of living (housing, food, utilities and taxes); and based on this more realistic measure, almost one in four Californians is in poverty.

In fact, for the working class, the poverty rate is even higher than that, because California has a large affluent population–upper-middle class people who are very well-off.

This poverty increase is a result of falling wages–the median wage in California has declined by more than 6 percent since 2006, while the cost of living has been increasing steadily, creating huge profits for the capitalist class.

Under this capitalist system, the enormous wealth that a small minority enjoys comes from robbing millions of workers of the fruits of their own labor. We can see that very clearly in California.