Comments about ‘Poverty will end by 2035, says Gates’

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Published: Wednesday, Feb. 5 2014 10:00 a.m. MST

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Proud Father
Cottonwood Heights, UT

Great article. They clearly have a unique perspective on the subject and it is interesting to read it.

Bountiful, UT

"He and his wife are struck by how many people seem to believe that the world is getting worse, he writes. “By almost any measure, the world is better than it has ever been,” writes Gates"

One reason that many people believe that the world is getting worse is that many aid organizations have a vested interest in keeping that perception alive. "You need to donate to our cause", whatever it is, "because things are getting worse and its a desperate crisis".

Sandy, UT

Thank you Bill and Melinda for once again leading out with data, information and perspective based upon facts! This type of information can help us move forward quickly, and effectively, in supporting international development. Africa is an amazing example of great progress. Yes, there is much still to be done, but its incredible progress needs to be highlighted so others can be motivated by it, and the progress will accelerate.

Now if they would just publish statistics on how the poor in America move up in the ranks and make progress out of poverty! Those stats are hidden from us because there are powerful interests that rely upon the false perception that poverty in America is rising. While overall numbers MAY be rising (but probably are not), the important numbers to look at are the individual statistics of how long people REMAIN in poverty in America - not overall how many people are IN poverty.

America's powerful economic machine provides opportunities to move people out of poverty, which is why we are so attractive to immigrants. It is a very efficient process. We need more data reported that reflects this truth.

Bluffdale, UT

its america that the middle and lower classes are getting poorer by sending our jobs to other countries. bill clintion and congress, and the george bush and congress. tax breaks for companies to invest over seas. bill gates is richer. and the middle class is pooer, in the us.

Buena Vista, VA

What the article didn't discuss was political corruption in poor countries. Look at Zimbabwe. It was up and coming, getting richer. Then Mugabe took over, and ran the country into the ground, and as a dictator, no one seemed to be able to stop him. Look at the starving masses in N. Korea. It certainly doesn't have to be that way, but as long as the Dear Leaders are in charge, it will be. So until we can eradicate dictatorships, poverty will be with us.

clearfield, UT

Just imagine the United States of Africa. That continent is very rich in resources and people. If they could unite, as we in the U.S.A. did, then it would bode well for all who live there. As RG pointed out though, political corruption is still a huge factor in causing poverty in those 3rd world countries. I do like the optimism of Bill and Melinda though. It is easy to always see the glass as only half full. Hope they turn out to be right.

Joshua H.
Bountiful, Utah

Poverty will be eliminated because the yardstick for poverty, America, has started to decline. Soon, with debt, government corruption and a deviation from the free market system America will more represent 3rd world contires. The bar will have been lowered and Shazam! everyone lives in poverty thus poverty becomes the norm.

Sandy, UT

Poverty will only expand if the big-government liberals have their way. Their policies have actually limited prosperity and created more income inequality. The "hot money" policies of the "Fed" caused the stock market to rage last year, which benefited those with lots of money in the stock market. Meanwhile, those who get most of their money through employment or small businesses saw things shrivel due to more regulation, taxation, and invasion from outside the country. The great "War on Poverty" has been resoundingly lost by the very philosophies that created it.

American Fork, UT

Did i miss something? He actually didnt put forth any numbers or models, just the fact that poverty has decreased in some places. where does this year 2035 number come from? and what variables is he taking into account. id love to be all optimistic, but he seems to be missing a large part of the global poverty picture like already mentioned; political instability and extreme weather (which will most significantly impact poor people in warm regions.) Id also like a clearer picture of what the distribution of wealth is in nations with strong economies. In our country alone there are 46 million people living in poverty. Is there an economist in the world that agrees with them?

American Fork, UT

and this was left out. "Put simply, Gates believes improving health is one of the most powerful – maybe the most powerful – means of fighting poverty. And he’s backed up by data." As The Guardian noted in its story on this report, published in The Lancet in early December, Jamison, Summers and their team of two dozen other experts determined that key health investments in low- and middle-income countries could, if done right, contribute to 25 percent of economic growth. and a wealthy country does not necessarily translate to wealthy citizens overall; he ignores wealth inequality.

Layton, UT

'The poor will always be with us.' I'm sure many of you have heard this expression. I believe it is so, but it is our moral duty to help our family, friends, and neighbors if we can. If only by service if we don't have much money ourselves.


I wish that this could be true. Simply having a country with sufficient means does not guarantee that poverty will be eliminated. I don't think Mr. Gates understands that there are many different tiers and factors that contribute to poverty. Take South Africa, for example. Racism and violence definitely hold many down in poverty. What about severe mental illness? What about corruption and war? What about addiction? I think that if Bill Gates would live in poverty for one year, he would realize that answers and solutions are not as simple as he puts forth.

Eureka, UT

Interesting article with a lot of good points. Overall I think Gates is right. Poverty is improving meaning there is less of it around the world. Still I think there are a couple of questions that need to be asked or points brought out that he missed. 1. The income gap or the gap between the top and the bottom of the wage scale. It's widening and will that have an impact when people are being shut out of economic gain in terms of their ability to get to the top. 2. Why is it that in the United States the wages of the lower and middle class have either stayed the same or declined in buying power while those in the top 10% have risen substantially and will that have an impact on the discussion.

I don't think it's enough to say we have overcome poverty when we get to a certain number. We need to change attitudes as well and work towards greater equality so we can truly utilize the talents of all people.

Franco P.
south jordan, UT


A wealthy man is giving away more of his money every single day than some make in a lifetime. He's optimistic about the good that is being done. I am sure HE'S seen some of it first hand. So for the naysayers out there or the people that find a way to blame politics/politicians for the poor way the system is being run...Talk to the mom who's child just received a life saving vaccine, hold that tiny little baby in your arms for a moment in your mind, who cares what country she lives in, talk to the husband who was watching his wife die right in front of him and his children when a doctor showed up with donated medicine that would save her life. See if they care about politics.

Don't criticize or look for defects in the system. Don't complain because you feel like his money could be better spent. Be grateful that at least something is being done somewhere to make someones life better. Or perhaps even saving their life. What if it was you?

American Fork, UT

Well, bill, I hope you're right. Poverty exists where there is corruption, war and oppression. You're betting on these being eliminated in 21 years.

Manti, UT

So good to read some optimistic comments from the richest person in the world. Bill Gates is amazing. I believe that he believes what he writes is true, and very hopefully, he is right.

Carson City, NV

I really respect Bill and Melinda Gates, but the only way this will be true in America is if all the poor die. We are doing nothing in this country to help the poor and/or uneducated to excel. They have given up hope. But a really great idea. Wish it were so.

lost in DC
West Jordan, UT

What a misleading headline!

Nowhere in the article does it say there will be no poor, just that Gates believes the poor countries are getting wealthier. nowhere does it talk about individuals.

Someone who is MUCH wiser than Mr. Gates and who sacrificed much more than Mr. Gates said the poor we would always have with us. I believe Him more than Mr. Gates.

I respect Bill for his philanthropic work, and am in no way condeming anything he said, and hope the term "third world" CAN be eliminated by 2035. But as has been said already, corruption will need to be curtailed before that can occur. Unfortunately corruption is INCREASING rather than decreasing.

Salt Lake City, UT

Don't let the "income inequality people" hear this. They would have to stop raising taxes and growing government and CNBC would go out of business.

One can always dream...

Commerce, Texas

This article whets my appetite for the full text and any supporting information, including all of the myths mentioned.

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