I thought this will be an interesting read, from what I have read so far.
I agree with his definition of poor. I know my oldest son felt we were poor, although we always had enough for necessities and a few luxuries. He was probably frustrated by my lack of sympathy over his having to co-ar-dinate to get to drive the family car when his friend was given a new, tricked out truck upon graduating from high school, but he knew me well enough to know not to even bring it up. The lack of the latest Apple phone does not make you poor.
I see some of his ideas are obviously wrong, given 200 years of rapid increasing knowledge and a different culture. His assumption of the importance of beer is the obvious one. Still I believe he was simply voicing the common belief. As evidence I refer you to read Benjamin Franklin's autobiography about working in a printers shop in England when old ben was a young man, where they felt that you couldn't be strong without drinking beer).
If you are upset about the patriarchal focus, go find another book, but look for a more recent publication. Most of the writing of this time will be similar. Alternatively, you could simply right it off for what it is, a man's perspective given at a certain culture, time and place and thank God you were born here and now.
As far as idleness is concerned, at this time in England the commons were pretty much gone, which had provided a cushion for the working rural poor, this drove down wages, and people worked much harder just to get enough to eat and keep themselves clothed (When well made pants were expected to last a couple of decades). In that situation, a couple of hours each day might be viewed as a waste.
I agree the guy writing this took a lot of time to write it, which indicates to me he was NOT one of the poor.