Believe it or not, one in seven Americans – 15 percent of the country – now need government-provided food stamps simply to survive, according to latest government figures.
Nearly 46 million Americans receive food stamps out of a population of some 311 million people, the US Department of Agriculture, which administers what's officially called the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Programme reported Thursday.
The continued high unemployment and the weak US economy have contributed to the explosive growth of the food stamp programme with no end in sight to the monthly increases, CNN said noting that 27 million people were dependent on food stamps in October 2007.
The US Postal Service warned on Friday that it could default on payments it owes the federal government, just days after the US government itself narrowly averted a default.
The government's mail service said it lost $3.1 billion in the period from April to June, blaming "the anemic state of the economy" and the growing popularity of electronic communications over old-fashioned letters.
As a result of its mounting losses, the US Postal Service said it would not be able to make a legally required $5.5 billion payment in September to a health-benefits trust fund.